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About lordabdul

  • Rank
    Senior Member


  • RPG Biography
    I started playing The Dark Eye before I knew what an RPG was. Then I moved on to Cyberpunk, Vampire, and eventually found Call of Cthulhu. I'm still playing that.
  • Current games
    Call of Cthulhu/Delta Green, 7th Sea, GURPS, Runequest, Unknown Armies, Numenera, TimeWatch
  • Location
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
  • Blurb
    Video game developer in Vancouver, BC

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  1. lordabdul


    Sure, but then you proceed to list "special places" (or situations) as rivers, lakes, caves, storms, etc. Doesn't feel very "special" to me But just so our expectations are in line, what I meant was that they're common enough that, for every full day of travel through the countryside, I suppose there's a 50% chance of seeing a spirit at least from a distance. Would that be a fair encounter rate?
  2. lordabdul


    AFAIK, elementals are spirits that are able to materialize in the physical world. So you would encounter them almost as easily walking around the wilderness as you would travelling the Spirit World. And they would be everywhere: around a specific landmark (big ol' tree, nice big rock, etc.), along a river, at the top of a hill, etc... that is, unless I'm mixing up elementals with nature spirits like dryads and nymphs?
  3. Yeah having an innate affinity for the Spirit Rune would fit that trope nicely. Cue the kid, hidden under a bear skin, saying "I see... dead people...".
  4. Isn't everybody born with a fetch? (or almost everybody) And it's just that only a few actually "awaken" it and get to control it? I don't want fetches to become the new midichlorians Maybe not what those assholes on the 4shaman forums say... "you're not a real shaman unless you have a shaman mentor who gives you drugs in the desert while you're dehydrated"... there's gatekeeping in Gloranthan tribes, too!
  5. You make good points but they all still highlight what bothers me with Divination. Past present and future shouldn't be any different for deities if we believe that they live in the "God Time" which is supposed to be this time-less thing (although it still has causality... wrap your head around that!). And sure we can hand-wave a lot of things to rationalize all this stuff when you're writing fiction or NPC backgrounds or setting history, but when it's time to put it in a game rule and expose it to players, it becomes a lot fuzzier and dirtier. Omens and visions are classic tropes of myths, but IMHO they really break down when you try to formalize them. They better fit HQG, where the GM already has a constantly higher pressure put on herself, than RQG, where you need actual rules and numbers. But anyway.... True. Speaking of hand-waving and rationalizing that stuff, what first comes to mind for me is that it might be the classic case of "self fulfilling prophecy", where, actually, the Lunars might very well have asked their Goddess for a divination, and she might indeed have told them that shit was going to get real. So they took a lot of precautions, based on what she told them: they killed all the Dundaelos people, they moved/reaffected a whole bunch of armies, etc... but then in the end these actions made the Sartarites all the more angry and passionate about retaliation, somehow opened some weakness somewhere, and, in the end, made the Dragonrise possible instead of preventing it. Another classic trope of myths.
  6. Yeah they only know what their worshippers said in their prayers... so if you want you can have a time loop paradox thing where someone uses Divination to ask their god where the McGuffin is, the god tells them, they go get it, and on the next worship day they have a little prayer "hey thank you god, I got the McGuffin from that place" and now boom the god knows where it is and can tell it in the past. Personally I don't like Divination too much... it's a loophole in the Compromise, it can quickly get in messed up time paradoxes as indicated above, and it puts all the work on the GM's shoulders to figure out what the god will be able to say to the PC... I guess the original intent of this mechanic was to let the players effectively ask the GM for help (kind like the Idea roll in Call of Cthulhu, but with an associated cost), but I think it's way too easy to abuse, and puts too much pressure on the GM.
  7. Awesome, Thanks for that!
  8. Holy shit... I mean... well, "pics or it didn't happen". If you have players who like cosplaying, I will definitely want to see some photos! (and if it's even half as good as your average WoD or 7th Seas gathering, it will probably be awesome already). I believe that Lunars have a habit of re-purposing existing myths to assimilate them in the Lunar pantheon, yes, but I'll let the grown up speak about that because I don't know too much yet. Somewhat related, there's this person running an RQG game who had a Lunar heroquester try to sabotage some Orlanthi festivities. See this post on the RPGnet forums, and start reading at "The climax of the gathering is a Summons of Evil rite"... there's the GM commentary in a follow-up post for some "behind the scenes" info. It might give you some ideas!
  9. There's been an update to the KS, in particular there's a new "gimme everything" pledge for $699. Also, there's a YouTube playlist for new miniature turntables. This way you better see what they look like from all angles. Personally I like that almost all of the sculpts make you go "huh, that's interesting", regardless of whether you like it or not. You can say negative things about the character designs, but I think "bland" would definitely not be it except for maybe 1 or 2 of them.
  10. Since the time between shooting arrows is "5 + DEX SR", in effect, your friend Robin will be able to shoot arrows faster than you. So that works out I think. What isn't modeled in RQ is, for example, your friend Robin being in fact generally slower than you at most things (lower DEX), except reloading because she practiced drawing from her special-designed quiver a lot, and so that makes up for the difference. If you want to be crazy you could for instance model this by adding a new "Fast Reload" skill where, if you succeed, you get a couple SRs back (and you fail, you waste SRs... on a fumble you drop your quiver or something). Nice house rule, thanks for sharing!
  11. I always get surprised by RPGs where specific skill descriptions have specific rules that go along with it -- not nearly an RQG-only problem but yes, I often make the mistake of assuming a skill is self-explanatory when, really, there's a chance there's more to it. But in the case of the Riding skill, I agree with @g33k that these look more like good general rules for any skill, really. Ideally, this paragraph would actually be moved to the "Experience Gain Rolls" chapter and presented as an example. YES Which is why I'd really love it if Chaosium would spend some time in 2020 to really go through the whole RQG text again and release a 1.1 version or something. I probably would not put this in a house rule per se, and instead just add a blurb about the GM having the ability to use common sense for what a character did between adventures that might warrant an experience roll. For example, consider a Praxian currently visiting Esrolia as a mercenary/bodyguard. If you write the rules like that, the Praxian could get an experience roll in any Esrolian cultural skill. To give a few examples: Farm: probably not? I don't imagine our bodyguard is killing time plowing the fields around Nochet? Or maybe it's because she can see farmers working all around her, so she's picking up a few things... but is that really worth a full 1d6? (maybe 1d6-2?) Intrigue: maybe? She can hear Esrolians being up to no good at the tavern or something? Customs (Esrolian): Yes, definitely! Spirit Combat: Nope. So to reiterate, I think using the cultural skills list of the place you're spending your time at is a great recommendation for GM, but probably not as a "proper rule". Of course, you could also take this rule in the other way: sure, the Praxian can pick any cultural skill, but that will influence the next adventure! The player picked "Farm" and "Intrigue"? Okay then, by next season, the mercenary has somehow become involved in some political feud between 2 rich farming families!
  12. I agree. Just because she likes some of them doesn't necessarily mean that she created them (directly or indirectly). The draconic origin of dinosaurs is complicated enough to have plenty to play with already, and it means we have a different angle (and potentially more interesting) to think about the relationship and interactions between dinosaurs, Dragonewts, and Earth Shaker priestesses.
  13. Sorry for being picky but I'd say it simulates the real world more than other systems, not necessarily "better" Yeah, I think RuneQuest's DNA/goals has always been about (1) making low-tech melee weapon fighting more realistic, and (2) making magic more sophisticated. Other aspects of the system are deliberately not as crunchy, which results in a fairly non-uniform crunchiness throughout that some people might be bothered with (hence house rules). Gloranthophiles are blessed enough that there's no less than 3 officially supported game systems (you can stretch it to 4 if you count Mythras!) from where to start before you add house rules... I don't know if any other setting has this kind of luxury!
  14. Sorry if I sounded mean, that wasn't my intent -- I was merely asking about the reasoning behind 6 skill levels since the way you wrote your replied made it look like you had just come up with that table 5 minutes beforehand. But I explicitly said that I didn't want to think about it Aside from the fact that I explicitly said I'm a GURPS-fan you mean? The point wasn't to say that GURPS is the gold standard. The point was to say that GURPS is considered "overly complicated" by many gamers, and so it should give you pause when you design a system that's even more complicated than GURPS. No, why would you think that? It just had one already. Yep. If Darius' idea of fun is "more realistic income and education inequality" then by all means he should proceed -- it's not my fun but I support and love to see people come up with house rules. My point was to highlight that this kind of change tends to seep into many other parts of the system. Even if you have different design goals ("realism" vs "game balance"), it does affect all that other stuff one way or another... so that's why I was challenging Darius' quick reply composed of "it's easy, look" followed by a simple table.
  15. Why not? Because you have to draw the line somewhere about what to model and what not. RQG drew the line there and I don't feel the need to move it... and that's coming from me, a big GURPS nerd, a system that does have different skill difficulty ratings. But see, it's "easy" to come up with a table, but it's harder to make it work and justify it -- if only vaguely evidenced by the many lines of text to try and justify it immediately afterwards. First, your table has 6 levels of difficulty. GURPS, a system known for supposedly being overly complex, only has 4. Why did you pick 6? Did you think about it? Second, your table only addresses training. Why are character creation rules exempt for this? Why would 21 year-old basket weaver and a 21 year-old alchemist have the same ratings in their respective professional skills when one has an easy skill and the other has a very difficult skill? How are you going to address gameplay balance? Different difficulty ratings will mean that different characters will progress at different speeds. You might realize that, given the categorization you've done, some occupations will be unfairly "slowed down" while others are "boosted". People with "difficult" rating for their main professional skill will progress slowly, which affects their yearly income... but if their skill is "difficult", surely they are in some expert field and are bound to charge more, no? So you have to go and check back on all the income amounts. And you have to check back on all the skills marked as "main occupation skill", to see if that needs rebalancing. And also you need to see if any occupation has an unbalanced skill list compared to other occupations... I call that the "suck it, healer" problem, where if you want to play, say, a druid-type healer, you need to learn medicine and surgery and herbology and chemistry and all kinds of stuff like that a suddenly you have a whole bunch of "difficult" skills, so your character creation points evaporate way faster, and your character progression comes to a crawl, compared to the fighter guy who only spends points and improves his weapon and shield skills (both average in difficulty). So then you need to maybe change the skill list, to fix the problem of some occupations having too many skills by grouping several skills into one or something... and so on. This thing is going to slowly and insidiously ripple through the whole game system and next thing you know there's something slightly wrong or unsatisfying with your characters and your campaign, and you realize what you've done. Or maybe your players are not so picky, maybe your campaigns don't last that long, maybe you end up with a bunch of PCs that don't expose this problem too much or at all (like, say, everybody's a fighter!).
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