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In my continuing second read of the mighty RG:Q tome the Treat Poison skill is really sticking out to me.

As read someone may, once per poisoning, attempt a skill check to purge 2D6 POT of the poison from their patient's system before damage is rolled. I definitely like this, since a straight up poisoning looks downright lethal in some circumstances (refreshingly as it should!). Ingested something bad? A quick regurgitation should help deal with some of the incoming damage. However this does come with a thematic incongruity: what about venom entering someone's blood stream? Or even vapour?

We can look to the old "suck and spit" method perhaps, even combined with a tourniquet with a dramatic spot of bleeding for good measure. It's a shame that this method rarely manages to do anything meaningful, and can even be detrimental in the wrong circumstances.  I'm certainly not trying to poke holes! But in a system that loves to model reality in a truly fantastical world with certain bronze age trappings, I'm wondering how this might actually look.

One of the things I find striking about Glorantha is how ritualism is so tightly bound with the spirit. Looking at such things as the peaceful cut or, it's polar opposite, inflicting such pain that you cause a person's spirit to flee into their extremities, I don't believe it's a reach that something like Treat Poison could also be ritualistic. I can very easily imagine inciting the person's spirit, and thus their body in turn, to reject the invading substance whether through instant and severe sweats or some forced and deep exhalation. Perhaps even some form of pressure point manipulation?

Certainly not a serious thread, it's just an image that appeals. How does it look in your Glorantha?


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I just assume that the Healer knows the best way to purge the poison.

  • Animal sting - Cut it and suck out the poison *
  • Vapour/Gas - Blow healing smoke into the lungs
  • Irritant - Put some kind of salve on it
  • Swallowed - Make them vomit it back up

It isn't necessarily going to be accurate and Doctors, Nurses and Paramedics can tell us of the many reasons why this wouldn't work in the real world, but for a Fantasy World and a RPG Rules system, it works well enough for me.

* Reminds me of the old Castlemaine XXXX advert, where someone has been bitten on the backside by a snake, so his mate calls the Doctor. "You need to suck out the poison, or it'll be really bad", he says. "What did the Doc say?", the stricken chap asks, "He says it's going to be really bad ..."

Edited by soltakss
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