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Lunar Demons

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There's a lot of mentions of Lunar Demons. Are there any published examples of such?

The Glorantha Bestiary has an entry on Demons:

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...usually have Darkness and Death Runes, and possess Rune magic from Darkness or Chaos cults.

Would this be true also for "Lunar Demons", or would they also have the Moon Rune and Rune magic from the Lunar pantheon?

(I'm about to GM the "If you go into the woods today"-scenario from TotRM #18, and want to replace the main enemy with something more Lunar.)

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I run some Lunar Demons as bestiary demons, but with the Moon rune instead of Darkness. 
Some as intelligent Lunes with extra powers. 
Some as other things according to my whim.

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Are you talking about some random demonic encounter with strong Lunar ties, or are you talking about one of the entities summoned (or constructed, as Duel at Dangerford) by Lunar magicians and possibly gone feral? The most famous of such entities was the Watchdog of Corflu which had been released into some temporary freedom of control when sent against the White Bull host in 1624.

Things may accumulate in pools of moonlight, or they may creep into an otherwise innocent natural being, warping it into something dangerous, and possibly tainted with Chaos. That taint may be something like the Telmori taint, or it may be something aggressively infectious.

Think Princess Mononoke.

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Could also be Lunes, Selenes, Madness Spirits (Jonstown Compendium)... I have a particularly nasty Lunar Demon in "The Duel at Dangerford," but that's really just a GW Demon Prince run through a Ray Harryhausen blender. "Demon" is just another name for "hostile otherworld entity," after all.

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There was a Jon Quaife article on Demons in issue 92 of White Dwarf, if you can get hold of a copy. That had a number of Lunar demons in it, if I remember right.

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It’s been sent by ”some Lunars” to disrupt a sacred rite, not really expecting more opposition than a single priest. I’ve constructed a variant of the bestiary demon, with Moon magic. It’ll work.

I’ll see if I can find that White Dwarf. I was curious about ”canon”-statted playable lunar demons.

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9 minutes ago, Sumath said:

There was a Jon Quaife article on Demons in issue 92 of White Dwarf, if you can get hold of a copy. That had a number of Lunar demons in it, if I remember right.

Yes, there was Megaera, based on the Griffin Island cult, adapted for Glorantha. She has minions who appear first to deal with summoners: The Captured Souls (wraiths), Celebros the Torturer with Whip of Eternal Torment (no stats), Mavrlam the horror of battle (STR 158, SIZ 54, INT 14, DEX 20, Gladius 250% 1D6+1+12D6 plus huge shield, no POW or mps), Tagrikas The Devourer (Aura of Death, 50 POW vs pow attack), Elbetha The Seductress (6 armed woman,  seduction), finally you get to Megaera and her four War dogs (STR 50, CON 50, POW 45 DEX 30, bite 500% 1D8+5D6). Megaera takes 300mp to summon and has a POW in excess of 3000...)

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12 minutes ago, David Scott said:

Yes, there was Megaera, based on the Griffin Island cult, adapted for Glorantha. She has minions who appear first to deal with summoners: The Captured Souls (wraiths), Celebros the Torturer with Whip of Eternal Torment (no stats), Mavrlam the horror of battle (STR 158, SIZ 54, INT 14, DEX 20, Gladius 250% 1D6+1+12D6 plus huge shield, no POW or mps), Tagrikas The Devourer (Aura of Death, 50 POW vs pow attack), Elbetha The Seductress (6 armed woman,  seduction), finally you get to Megaera and her four War dogs (STR 50, CON 50, POW 45 DEX 30, bite 500% 1D8+5D6). Megaera takes 300mp to summon and has a POW in excess of 3000...)

That rings a bell. I remember reading that article at the time and wondering if there was any party in the world that would survive that summoning ritual. You'd need to be a Hero or a demi-god to get through it.

Still, the minion demons could be summoned or encountered separately, or used for inspiration.

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2 minutes ago, Sumath said:

That rings a bell. I remember reading that article at the time and wondering if there was any party in the world that would survive that summoning ritual. You'd need to be a Hero or a demi-god to get through it.

Still, the minion demons could be summoned or encountered separately, or used for inspiration.

@soltakss I think 😛

 

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2 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

@soltakss I think 😛

Oh, I'd be the one killed in SR1, without a doubt. 

We did look at those as NPC antagonists in the RQ3 game, but I can't remember using them. They'd have given the PCs a run for their money, though, they might have lasted 10 rounds.

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3 hours ago, Puckohue said:

It’s been sent by ”some Lunars” to disrupt a sacred rite, not really expecting more opposition than a single priest. I’ve constructed a variant of the bestiary demon, with Moon magic. It’ll work.

"Lunar" demons can also include any sort of Dara Happan Underworld demons. I used Shargashi Hellmen to disrupt an Ernalda ceremony in my HQG game.

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4 hours ago, Nick Brooke said:

... "Demon" is just another name for "hostile otherworld entity," after all.

I think it's slightly more specific than that... sometimes.  Most particularly, beings from the Underworld carry the "Demon" label more often (and of course Chaos beings).

"Spirit" is the general term for "otherworld entity," but I don't think "hostile spirit" = "demon" as a general rule.  Angry ghosts aren't demons.  Just because he's been a Naughty Initiate, I don't think a repentant Initiate will call his Cult's Spirits of Reprisal "Demons."  Spirits of particular places (a sacred spring, etc) might be hostile if the place is threatened or defiled, but aren't usually "demons."

But I try to keep in mind that the average person in Glorantha may use "Demon" in a very casual and culture-centric way, even an own-POV way (and such usage might contradict the ideas above).  Spirits from other cultures, and/or hostile Cults within their own culture, will be "Demons" to them, but not necessarily to the culture-or-Cult-of-origin... they are servants of their respective God(s).  So a shaman witnessing an errant Issaries Initiate being assailed by the Cult's SoR might descibe his companion as "attacked by a Demon of Greed."   Humans attacking a forest might describe being fought by "Elves and other plant-demons."   Etc.

 

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I cribbed together a Lunar demon once using the Bestiary's demon entry, and throwing it a few Chaos features and the Control (Human) spirit magic spell for flavor—I don't think they can actually use it unless they know Attack Soul or something, since they're embodied entities?

Really nasty Chaos feature with demons is regenerating magic points at the end of each round (2D6-5, min 1, if I remember the entry correctly). Considering a demon's AP & HP is based on it's current magic points... yikes.

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39 minutes ago, Crel said:

I cribbed together a Lunar demon once using the Bestiary's demon entry, and throwing it a few Chaos features and the Control (Human) spirit magic spell for flavor—I don't think they can actually use it unless they know Attack Soul or something, since they're embodied entities?

I don't know whether you can just send a pet spirit or five to battle down a human and then cast Control Human. Of course, the human (or other embodied entity) would be unconscious for longer than the spell duration, so unless you are a shaman able to maintain a spirit magic spell indefinitely, there is no point in this kind of spell, really.

 

The only magics in RQG that allow some form of control over humans or similar sentients are sorcery (Dominate Human), rune magic (e.g. Command Priests) or dominant possession by a spirit able to coordinate the anatomy of the victim. The Harmonize ability of Jack o'Bears is a lesser form of control.

From a GM perspective, how much control should an NPC be able to get over a PC, and vice versa? This is an invitation to abuse others, or to instill some body horror on the player character victim (and potentially the player, triggering some personal fears).

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What actually makes them textbook Lunar demons in my mind is

  1. the presence of a Lune rune
  2. origin in a hell, generally Lunar - although see a certain spider-limbed goddess for an obvious exception

The worst of these have a Chaos rune as well, in my humble opinion.

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Does anyone know what they'd be? I guess PCs aren't overly likely to run afoul of them, but for such an iconic entity it would be neat to see them roughly outlined. I assume Darkness since they're from a Hell (ie. Underworld), but should one infer anything else?

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21 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Does anyone know what they'd be? I guess PCs aren't overly likely to run afoul of them, but for such an iconic entity it would be neat to see them roughly outlined. I assume Darkness since they're from a Hell (ie. Underworld), but should one infer anything else?

I would anticipate a Buserian or Irippi Ontor Rune - in the present iteration a truth rune, or alternatively Law. I visualise them as ledgers whose entries flare with the light of the moon. To write in one requires a quill made from a destexin feather. 

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33 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

Does anyone know what they'd be?

Rogue Mostali complete with magical abacus and the ability to turn you into your weight in silver coins.  

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9 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Rogue Mostali complete with magical abacus and the ability to turn you into your weight in silver coins.  

Or just bits of you, excised with surgical precision. (A precise pound of flesh, if you will)

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9 hours ago, soltakss said:

I remember a description of the Red Emperor that said he had the ability to control a specific type of Lunar Demon.

If you can't remember where you found it, it'll be in A Rough Guide to Glamour as part of the Red Emperor Cult writeup - they're one of his spirits of retribution. We mention various other demons in passing, as you would expect: the Bat Demons atop the Outer Wall, the Tax Demons in the Court of Sacred Largesse, the demons who dragged the first Imperial Warlord to perdition, the Ice Demons of Valind's Glacier....

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