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RQiG Bound Spirit Question.

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In the new RQiG, my character really hit a dinger and got a Bound Spirit as a gift. See RQG pg. 40 Random Boons and Gifts Table

This Spirit has POW and CHA attributes only, but does have the Strength 2 Spirit Magic spell.

Can this spirit learn any other Spirit Magic spells?

On the one hand, it already possesses one spell. On the other, it has no native intelligence by which to learn any more [no INT stat]

What do you guys think?


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1 hour ago, dumuzid said:

depends on the kind of spirit.  some have their full CHA worth of spirit magic, some have only limited selections.  what sort of being is it?

The description doesn't say.

RQG, pg. 40, Random Boons table; it reads:

"20     You have a spirit bound in an animal or item. It has a POW of 3d6 and a CHA of 2d6. See Binding Enchantment, pg. 249."

The Binding Enchantment discussion on pg. 249 is no help either.

In my particular character specifics, the character got a large onyx with the bound spirit as a Random Boon from Queen Leika of the Colymar. I rolled an item with a Strength 2 matrix in it for a family heirloom at the end of character generation, and the referee and I agreed that it made more sense to impart the spell into the onyx stone. I then said that the stone was mounted as a pommel for my sword [my character is Humakti]. So now I have a POW 15 CHA 10 pommel stone with a Strength 2 spell, and I'm wondering if the spirit can somehow learn more spells and how I would go about doing that.

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I'd suggest that if it's a normal spirit, then the binding rules on page 249, 250 imply that there is no reason, with the right control/command spells that it can't be released from the binding animal/object, commanded to fight a spell spirit and then stuffed back into the binding object.

If it's source is a cult, then it's command cult spirit, and you'd be limited to what spirit spells that cult teaches.  

Otherwise, then a shaman would have access to the right spells.

If I was your GM, I wouldn't want to make it too easy, so I'd think of some payment the cult or shaman required, which would just happen to be a hook to my next adventure.  But then trying to get my players to head in any sort of helpful direction is always a bit of a task for me; they turned up late for the Battle of Dangerford...

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6 hours ago, svensson said:

Can this spirit learn any other Spirit Magic spells?

I think you can teach Bound Spirits spells, you certainly could in RQ2, which is the Spiritual ancestor of RQG.

6 hours ago, svensson said:

On the other, it has no native intelligence by which to learn any more [no INT stat]

Spirit Magic uses the CHA stat not INT, so if it has 2D6 CHA then is could learn points up to CHA.

6 hours ago, svensson said:

On the one hand, it already possesses one spell.

What spell does it have and what is its CHA? That might help determine if it is able to store more magic.

4 hours ago, svensson said:

So now I have a POW 15 CHA 10 pommel stone with a Strength 2 spell, and I'm wondering if the spirit can somehow learn more spells and how I would go about doing that.

Reading pother posts might answer my own questions.

So, CHA 10 and Strength 2 mean that you have 8 points of spare CHA, so should be able to teach it 8 points of Spirit magic.

Personally, I would say that you could teach a Bound spirit a new spell, in the same way that an Adventurer could be taught a new spell.

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Of course, having a 2D6 CHA speiit could mean a really good one of a really bad one. One Player in our last Gloranthan campaign rolled 2D6 POW for a spirit and rolled 5, so he spent a Hero Point to reroll and rolled 4, then spent another and rolled 3. Some spirits just aren't very good.

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4 hours ago, soltakss said:

Spirit Magic uses the CHA stat not INT, so if it has 2D6 CHA then is could learn points up to CHA.

There's a couple aspects from the RQG Bestiary that can factor into the topic:

1) p.165: Some spirits also possess INT, which typically ranges from 2D6 to 4D6. These spirits are self-aware and sentient.

If you have a spirit without INT, it means it is neither self-aware nor sentient, so can it really learn (even if it has the CHA to do so)?

2) p.167 under Spirit Powers: Spirit Magic - The spirit possesses its CHA worth of spirit magic.

Clearly a spirit can have the power to possess its CHA worth of spirit magic.  But if it doesn't when you gain it, perhaps without INT it can never do so?

3) p.167 under Animal Spirits: Animal spirits typically possess their CHA worth of spirit magic spells.

So the type of spirit may be a factor.  Of course, Animal spirits (and Plant and Landscape spirits) also have INT.


I'd probably go with the approach that:

1) spirits with INT are sentient and can learn - they can gain new spirit magic

2) spirits without INT that are bound and already have spirit magic, are probably spell spirits, and therefore could potentially be raised to a higher level of the spirit magic.  I'm not sure this is learning though.  It might require something more like osmosis where it is brought into contact with another spell spirit of the same type that is stronger in the spell.

3) spirits without INT and do not have any spirit magic, can only gain spirit magic by acquiring the Spirit Magic Power.  This might require bringing them to a particular place in the Spirit or mundane world (e.g. the Well of Power, the Door of Spiritual Transference, etc.).  The spirit probably has to be drawn out of its binding and commanded to engage with the place of power (some POW vs POW test).  If successful, the spirit gains the Spirit Magic Power and can absorb spirit magic (perhaps one-time at that point?).

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15 hours ago, svensson said:

In the new RQiG, my character really hit a dinger and got a Bound Spirit as a gift. See RQG pg. 40 Random Boons and Gifts Table


What do you guys think?

This is a really great example of something special. As it was acquired outside of the normal system, there's no need to follow a proscribed course (the rules):

What was the circumstance in which you got the bound spirit (if not clear, make it up).

What's it bound into - statuette, other item (make it interesting - don't pick a weapon or armour) or what sort of animal is it.

What, who, is the spirit - an elder race, an ancestor, etc.

Want it to learn another spell - take it to a shaman - they always know what to do with spirits.

13th Age treats this kind of thing as one unique thing, which is fantastic starting point for story hooks (13G page 25):


Your Gloranthan character has a unique, or one unique thing, much like a standard 13th Age character. Given the nature and recent history of Glorantha, here are some points to consider when inventing your character’s one unique thing.

From the SRD (http://site.pelgranepress.com/media/SRD/CharacterRules.pdf):

One Unique Thing

Your character’s One Unique Thing (their unique) is a special feature invented by you, the player, which sets your character apart from every other hero. It is a unique and special trait to your player, and markedly unusual. The intent is that it provides a special flavor to the campaign and can assist the GM in determining how your character can interact with characters and story in the campaign.

Your character’s unique should not provide general practical value in combat. That is not the intent. The intent is to open up story arcs and fun roleplaying opportunities.

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Random comments from what I can tell from the rulebooks:

  1. If the spirit only has CHA and POW, it's probably some kind of animal spirit or other natural phenomenon spirit. These types of spirits tend to only have one function and, therefore, few spells.
  2. The spirit is not sentient or intelligent, and can't perceive anything from inside the onyx stone, so it really only acts as a spellcaster for your Strength 2 spell. The character must be in physical contact to order the spirit to cast the spell.
  3. You and the GM may want to agree on the set of "conditions" that were put on the Binding Enchantment when it was created... maybe anybody touching the sword's pummel can contact the spirit inside, or maybe it's only when you whisper "Taco cat", or maybe it's only the character can use the item. It may become relevant at some point in play.
  4. You and the GM may also want to agree on who did the spirit binding. If that NPC dies, the spirit is freed. That would be a very lame thing to do to your character, but who knows, maybe your GM wants the option to be mean in the future :) .
  5. In theory, that spirit counts against your character's limit for bound entities (CHA/3).
  6. You can tap into the bound spirit's POW and use that as magic points to fuel spells, so it's an extra MP storage, too.
  7. If your character has the "Control (whatever that spirit is)" spell, they can release the spirit, order it around a bit, and put them back in the sword's pummel. There's probably not a lot of reasons to do that, since you run the risk of losing it, but who knows.
  8. According to RQG Bestiary, spirits without INT typically have less than 50% in Spirit Combat skill. That's relevant if, as per my previous point, you want to release the spirit from the stone. On the other hand, the RQG Bestiary also says that when in doubt, give POWx5 for the Spirit Combat score.... so who knows? I guess it can be whatever. In which case it could be quite an effective sidekick for Spirit Combat.
  9. If, as David Scott says, you were to add more spells in that stone after visiting a shaman (and doing whatever side quest the shaman asks), I would probably explain it as "the shaman merged the stone spirit with some other spirits who knew other spells"... as opposed to "the spirit learned new spells"... (because, as others pointed, it has not INT).
    1. Actually, my understanding of "learning" a new spirit spell is pretty much having bits of spirits merged into you anyway... (the whole terminology of "learning" and "forgetting" is not a good choice IMHO).
    2. If the PCs were to try and do it themselves (maybe they have a shaman in the group), the GM would have to figure out how that works, though. Maybe @David Scott has some more suggestions? I would probably rule that they have to find a spirit with the new desired spell, defeat it in Spirit Combat, take out the old spirit from the stone, hold it in place with Control (Entity), handwave some spirit merging mumbo jumbo (at this point the shaman might have rolled enough dice, but the GM might decide on one last roll here), and finally put the "enhanced" spirit back in the stone.
  10. I can't find any spirit with only POW and CHA in the Bestiary that we could use as an example, but that kind of spirit shows up all over the place in NPC stat blocks.
    1. Just like your character, these NPCs have bound spirits in objects. These spirits tend to only have a nickname, if any, and no description beside maybe the description of the object. That's probably because they never get out of the object, and even if they did, none of them know Visibility anyway.
    2. Most of those bound spirits have zero or one spell (in the case of zero spells, it's just for supplying extra magic points). In some cases, they can have a handful or a dozen points of spirit magic (up to CHA). So I guess anything goes. I think it depends more on the author than on any worldbuilding or rules considerations.
    3. Occasionally, I see that a bound spirit has a bit of fluff to it. So for instance you can give your bound spirit a bit of personality, or some roleplay hook, like "the spirit wants the stone to be struck against a rock once every night".
    4. One interesting example of a spirit with only POW and CHA is the Colymar Tribal Wyter. I'm surprised that it has no INT, since it's supposed to be able to talk and show initiative? I wonder if that's an oversight?
Edited by lordabdul
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  • 1 month later...

How about using/sacrificing the POW of the bound spirit? If a character spends the first point from his personal POW for a sacrifice or enchantment can he take all the extra POW from the bound spirit? Is there any ways to use the spirits POW this way?


About binding enchantment (RuneQuest (2018) p.249): "The bound entities are bound to the physical world by the lifeforce of the binder. If the binder dies, all their bound entities are immediately freed." I suppose this means the spirits are freed but the enchantment remains.

...althought discorporating adventurer does not cause his bound spirits to get free, while isn't the death pretty much the same? 


OT: Are giants also special resistant to spirit combat just as they are resistant against spells affecting their mind?

We are at the first steps of Daga Fal shaman campaign in our game.



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