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Peace between the Red Moon and Orlanth

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3 hours ago, redmoongoddess said:

The only thing i'm getting from this is that if there is no way Sedenya and Orlanth can accept peace, then the only option is practically the total culture genocide of either the Lunars or the Orlanthi. That's pretty fucked up. And apparently that is canon according to Greg.

I agree, with a couple of important exceptions. See my last post for what I think of 'canon'.  

Peace would involve change. Which makes absolute sense to me. What's the point of the game if not to change something?  These are the Hero Wars. You have to change things and make it happen. It's the end of a Gloranthan Age. Things do not stay the same.

Another point of my understanding of the two books was that that was what was going to happen without player intervention.  So, yep, things are mess unless the players make it otherwise.

Which to me makes for the foundation a for a good game.

Edited by DrGoth
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5 hours ago, John Biles said:

We never got the Lunar version of the future of the Hero Wars and possibly never will. 

We spread light and peace throughout the world and were destroyed by stupid barbarians.

 

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22 minutes ago, soltakss said:

We spread light and peace throughout the world and were destroyed by stupid barbarians.

 

I would presume the Lunar version would involve some degree of Lunar triumph.  

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4 hours ago, DrGoth said:

Peace would involve change. Which makes absolute sense to me. What's the point of the game if not to change something?  These are the Hero Wars. You have to change things and make it happen. It's the end of a Gloranthan Age. Things do not stay the same.

Another point of my understanding of the two books was that that was what was going to happen without player intervention.  So, yep, things are mess unless the players make it otherwise.

Which to me makes for the foundation a for a good game.

  

7 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

As a general rule, I tend to prefer not to "lose" cultures/factions/groups in fictional universe. The idea of the Lunars or Orlanthi having to disappear bums me out (although the canon does allow for some survival of Lunars in *some* sense). 

I've got a player experiencing the same frustrations both in-person and in-character as he starts digging into the lore and exploring the canon future. Which, for the record, I've explicitly told the players will basically happen unless they change something. Perhaps this reaction to the canon is intentional? I.e. "here's a terrible prophecy that says..." and then see how the players react? Glorantha's not a fiction setting, but a roleplaying game setting, after all.

A big part which bugs him is the death of the gods, the loss of magic. More the general apocalypse than the "keep everyone alive" angle. But I think the sentiments remain similar.

At the same time, as a storyteller I do feel it's important that not all stories have an "everyone wins" option. I typically find muddled endings more emotionally powerful than "and everyone lived happily ever after..." And Arkat/Argrath's sacrifice of moral character to save the world qualifies, for me.

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3 hours ago, Crel said:

A big part which bugs him is the death of the gods, the loss of magic. More the general apocalypse than the "keep everyone alive" angle. But I think the sentiments remain similar.

That's the part I dislike the most too.  My personal interpretation is not so much that the gods died, but that their ability to reach the world and easily provide magic was destroyed....

Until someone can find a way in the 4th Age to reach the gods again.  (Much like regaining literacy for those who lost it.)

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6 hours ago, Crel said:

  

I've got a player experiencing the same frustrations both in-person and in-character as he starts digging into the lore and exploring the canon future. Which, for the record, I've explicitly told the players will basically happen unless they change something. Perhaps this reaction to the canon is intentional? I.e. "here's a terrible prophecy that says..." and then see how the players react? Glorantha's not a fiction setting, but a roleplaying game setting, after all.

A big part which bugs him is the death of the gods, the loss of magic. More the general apocalypse than the "keep everyone alive" angle. But I think the sentiments remain similar.

At the same time, as a storyteller I do feel it's important that not all stories have an "everyone wins" option. I typically find muddled endings more emotionally powerful than "and everyone lived happily ever after..." And Arkat/Argrath's sacrifice of moral character to save the world qualifies, for me.

I'v read KoS and the end seems promising, at least from an Orlanthi point of view. Argrath and dragons destroy the physical body of the Red Moon goddess and everything is supposed to be different from that point on. Can you give more information about the death of gods, disappearance of magic and Argrath's lack of character? I probably missed one the books explaining this part. 

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3 minutes ago, Eagle Talon said:

I'v read KoS and the end seems promising, at least from an Orlanthi point of view. Argrath and dragons destroy the physical body of the Red Moon goddess and everything is supposed to be different from that point on. Can you give more information about the death of gods, disappearance of magic and Argrath's lack of character? I probably missed one the books explaining this part. 

For Argrath's lack of character: 

1) Returning Sheng Seleris to the world of the living.
2) Aiding Sheng Seleris in defeating and cannibalizing the Red Emperor
3) Causing the Kalikos Icebreaker Expedition to fail, triggering a catastrophic winter.
4) Sending his Uz allies to kill and eat Pentan noncombatants during said winter.

5) "Will no one rid me of this turbulent Mularik?"

These are all textually attributed to Argrath. 

In the "Argrath and the Devil" text, the gods are devoured by Wakboth in a way that suggests Argrath deliberately brought this about by sabotaging the Ritual of the Net. This is probably metaphorical. 

It is also very slightly intimated that Argrath may have been personally involved in the deaths of Kallyr Starbrow and Gunda the Guilty. 

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2 hours ago, Eff said:

Gunda the Guilty. 

To be fair, I seem to recall she died while, ahem, sacking Boldhome with Harrek and the boys.

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A small note about the death of the gods passage.  The passage is only a single paragprah appended onto the end of another text in a different font (1st edition KOS was quite different,, 2nd edition is only in italics).  This may be a case of a orphan paragraph being attached to a text which may not have originally had it.  

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5 hours ago, Eff said:

For Argrath's lack of character: 

@Jeff keeps insisting he's very Honorable.  I guess we will see how it plays out.

Given than, in our campaign, Kallyr (and others) just died heroically after enduring great pain and nasty Lunar curses, while Argrath is taking credit for some of her deeds, maybe involved with her death (?), and is summering in Pavis after previously allying with Harrek's mass-murderous pirates, you might say my character has doubts.  🙂

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5 hours ago, Eff said:

1) Returning Sheng Seleris to the world of the living.
2) Aiding Sheng Seleris in defeating and cannibalizing the Red Emperor
3) Causing the Kalikos Icebreaker Expedition to fail, triggering a catastrophic winter.
4) Sending his Uz allies to kill and eat Pentan noncombatants during said winter.

If we follow Jeff's comments that the LBQ is about restoring Cosmic Order, then the return of Sheng is the return of the "rightful" Solar Emperor, who had been slain and imprisoned by the Lunars.  The defeat and cannibalization of the Red Emperor is part of that return, reclaiming for the Sun what was previously taken by the Moon Emperor.

Similarly the "holding back of Winter", which the Kalikos expedition was about, was clearly a violation of the Cosmic Order and a suppression of Valind's/winter's rightful place within it.  That "Darkness" and "Death" come with winter is certainly part of the original Great Compromise.

So none of this necessarily makes Argrath dishonorable, just returning balance and order to the world.

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20 hours ago, John Biles said:

Though it strikes me that the really appropriate thing, given the past, is that Argath kills the REd Goddess, then discovers he screwed the universe and has to find a way to bring her back, which then leads to reconcilliation.  

This but without Argrath and with "the PCs" instead...unless they decide to kill Orlanth...
 

55 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

 

So none of this necessarily makes Argrath dishonorable, just returning balance and order to the world.


I, um, don't see how allowing trolls to EAT INNOCENT PEOPLE is "honorable" or "returning balance". And frankly it seems like the "order" that Argrath is "returning" to the world is the "cutting people's heads off if they are sexually attracted to people of the same gender" sorta order that was the reason why Orlanth and his daddy and Ernalda decided to rebel in the first place.

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1 hour ago, jajagappa said:

If we follow Jeff's comments that the LBQ is about restoring Cosmic Order, then the return of Sheng is the return of the "rightful" Solar Emperor, ...

Similarly the "holding back of Winter", which the Kalikos expedition was about, was clearly a violation of the Cosmic Order and a suppression of Valind's/winter's rightful place within it. 

So the "rightful order" necessitates putting a Genghis Khan inspired figure on the throne, plus the starvation and privation of many thousands?

Chaos is looking pretty good - sign me up @Nick Brooke  🙂

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2 hours ago, jajagappa said:

If we follow Jeff's comments that the LBQ is about restoring Cosmic Order, then the return of Sheng is the return of the "rightful" Solar Emperor, who had been slain and imprisoned by the Lunars.  The defeat and cannibalization of the Red Emperor is part of that return, reclaiming for the Sun what was previously taken by the Moon Emperor.

Similarly the "holding back of Winter", which the Kalikos expedition was about, was clearly a violation of the Cosmic Order and a suppression of Valind's/winter's rightful place within it.  That "Darkness" and "Death" come with winter is certainly part of the original Great Compromise.

So none of this necessarily makes Argrath dishonorable, just returning balance and order to the world.

I wouldn't say that these things are necessarily dishonorable (and it's worth noting that the Court of Silence can't retrieve Sheng Seleris- this is attributed to Sheng being in an inaccessible Hell, but the Court was able to pull Arkat out from wherever he'd been stuck, so perhaps it's because Argrath is monstrously warping the LBQ in order to get Sheng rather than some other Solar figure) but rather that they show a lack of character in his methods of rebalancing the world. 

Which is of course nicely ambiguous and liminal- our boy Prince Argrath is clearly doing things that are a bit shady, but equally clearly there's no firm basis for denouncing those things beyond abstract ethical principles most Orlanthi don't buy into. 

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2 hours ago, redmoongoddess said:

I, um, don't see how allowing trolls to EAT INNOCENT PEOPLE is "honorable" or "returning balance".

If he allowed smilodons to return and eat their natural prey (humans), would that be "honorable" or "dishonorable"?  We might just call it "natural".  (And it may well have happened too!)

Do the trolls discriminate between the "Guilty" people and the "Innocent" people?  Probably not.  We might just say they eat "food" just as humans busily slaughter and eat "innocent" cattle, sheep, goats, fish, rabbits, birds, …  and do not discriminate between the "guilty" animals and the "innocent" ones.

Trolls are part of the Great Darkness - they ruled the world then.  They ruled the "dark, winter world" and feasted upon the weak remnants of the world.  The Lunars tried to eliminate that, but that is part of the Great Compromise.  So returning that is a step towards balance that got shifted once again to the "bright, summer world".  

2 hours ago, Rodney Dangerduck said:

So the "rightful order" necessitates putting a Genghis Khan inspired figure on the throne, plus the starvation and privation of many thousands?

Sheng had ruled both of the Solar Empires (Peloria and Kralorela), and the Pentan solar people.  He is AN embodiment of the Imperial Sun.  He is also the Shadow of the Red Goddess (born the same year, probably upon the same day), so its only natural that he is the one who returns to impart the Cosmic Balance.

We assume from KoS that Argrath embarked on the LBQ with intent to ask for and resurrect Sheng.  But, if the intent of the LBQ is to restore Cosmic Balance, not to ask for a specific person to return as Jeff has indicated, then perhaps it was not Argrath's intent to bring back Sheng, but to restore the rule of the Imperial Sun to Peloria to counter the Red Goddess.  And the only means to restore it was with the figure who truly could (and perhaps the only one who could) embody the Imperial Sun at that point.  Sheng was heir to all the Solar powers.  

I suspect (and KoS does suggest) that it was much more than Argrath expected.

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How come "restoring the Cosmic Balance" always involves "my side wins?"

Sheng may be an embodiment of the Imperial Sun.  He is also a horrible person clearly inspired by Genghis Khan etc.  You completely refused to address that.

Edited by Rodney Dangerduck

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11 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

If he allowed smilodons to return and eat their natural prey (humans), would that be "honorable" or "dishonorable"?  We might just call it "natural".  (And it may well have happened too!)

Do the trolls discriminate between the "Guilty" people and the "Innocent" people?  Probably not.  We might just say they eat "food" just as humans busily slaughter and eat "innocent" cattle, sheep, goats, fish, rabbits, birds, …  and do not discriminate between the "guilty" animals and the "innocent" ones.

The troll's natural prey are Dwarfs and Elfs and bugs, not humans, and even then, the animals humans eat are usually not sentient creatures like what the trolls eat.

And even if the trolls are innocent of wrong doing, we were judging Argrath's actions in the posts you reply to, not the trolls. Argrath openly choose to have unarmed citizens be eaten by the trolls with no remorse.

If an human intentionally let loose an pack of bears onto you with the intend of murdering you, would you consider him "innocent", because it's natural for bears to eat humans? I don't think so.

Regarding Sheng: we're judging Sheng by the qualities of his personality, not if he is the embodiment of the sun or not, and as it happens, Sheng is an total asshole who gladly murders and rapes innocent people. Plus, didn't Sheng FORCE his way into becoming the sun? I don't care if Sheng is the "rightful" ruler of the sun or whatever. His actions cause nothing but pain and suffering for the innocent that even the generally totalitarian sun wants to avoid. If the world REALLY needs an sun emperor to be around, then get another person to be that emperor. Don't rise the guy who murders innocents from the grave.

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Emperors murder innocents. That comes with the job. Sheng or Daxdarius, there's no difference from the PoV of killing the innocent. Only the choice of innocent varies. 

Satar might be the exception. I can't recall his history well enough off the top of my head.

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26 minutes ago, Rob Darvall said:

Emperors murder innocents. That comes with the job. Sheng or Daxdarius, there's no difference from the PoV of killing the innocent. Only the choice of innocent varies. 

Satar might be the exception. I can't recall his history well enough off the top of my head.

Sartar built alliances, brought groups together, reconciled the Telmori with everyone else by creating a king for them and basically went around radiating niceness, which is what his homeland needed, was someone to rise above the feuds and murdering and bring them together.

Also, there's a difference between the amount of damage a normal emperor does and the kind of blood-soaked hell-wake that Sheng Seleris brought in all his careers.

Sheng makes Harrek, who is a gore-soaked sociopath and plunderer, look like some dude stealing candy from babies.

Sheng probably doesn't know how to eat breakfast without causing a massacre.

I think bringing back Sheng had to be deliberate on Argath's part and generally reflects that Argath is the same kind of monomaniac that Arkat and the EWF leaders were.  

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21 minutes ago, John Biles said:

I think bringing back Sheng had to be deliberate on Argath's part and generally reflects that Argath is the same kind of monomaniac that Arkat and the EWF leaders were.  

Or that he worked with the tools he was given.

Monomaniacal I'll agree with. He had to be to defeat (if he did) the Lunar Empire. No one but a single minded fanatic (or group of them) could have done so from the position Sartar/Heortland had in 1615.

And yes bringing back Sheng was crazy and probably desperate. So was releasing/enabling The Crimson Bat. Or building Lord Death on a Horse. Or any of the other answers to the Hero Wars. "The land is afflicted with a hero."

The fall of empires is always bloody, traumatic and generally devestating for the populace. It could be argued that sacrificing populations to the Bat would be a better outcome in terms of numbers than what it took to eliminate the beast. The victims might disagree.

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1 hour ago, John Biles said:

I think bringing back Sheng had to be deliberate on Argath's part and generally reflects that Argath is the same kind of monomaniac that Arkat and the EWF leaders were.  

or Argrath is just a good scholar and had a fine plan :

use Sheng to destroy lunar then, after years of destruction / slavery by the bad Sheng, then destroy Sheng to be gratefully welcomed as new lord of peloria.

remember the prince, Argrath, remember the prince

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Just now, French Desperate WindChild said:

or Argrath is just a good scholar and had a fine plan :

use Sheng to destroy lunar then, after years of destruction / slavery by the bad Sheng, then destroy Sheng to be gratefully welcomed as new lord of peloria.

remember the prince, Argrath, remember the prince

Sending a human typhoon is a pretty good way to ensure there's no one in Peloria to welcome you.

Also, when the Pelorians know you turned Sheng loose on them, that's not a plan that's going to work very well.  

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people have not so great memory after a long crisis. They want to survive. And who could know the decision ? the scholars and politics ? the previous masters of the people ? Can a pelorian farmer trust a defeated dara happan lord (still alive, so a traitor or coward or both) saying the Argrath is a bad guy like Sheng ?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Prince

 

Edited by French Desperate WindChild
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