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Transferring bound spirit to another person


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So, how do you transfer a bound spirit to another person?

As far as I can tell, if the new would-be owner fulfills the binding enchantments user conditions, it's probably just tossing the binding to the new owner and have the new owner cast Spirit Binding on it, no resistance for the spirit! 

Now, if the new would-be owner does not fulfill the binding enchantments user conditions, they need another binding enchantment, and follow this procedure (here it is assumed that the spirit is an Umbroli):

1. (Optional) Have someone who fulfills the original enchantments user conditions cast Control Air Elemental on the Umbroli.

2. Someone who fulfills the original enchantments user conditions (like the caster from 1.) commands the Umbroli out of the binding and to show itself.

3. New would-be owner cast Spirit Binding on the Umbroli, and then beats it in POW vs. POW (as all spells require that).

4. If 3 is done successfully, the Umbroli is now bound into the new owners binding enchantment and counts against the new owner's CHA/3 limit, and no longer counts against the previous owner's CHA/3.

If 3 was failed, the spirit is free to leave, unless 1 was done. If 1 was done and that spells duration has not ran out, the would-be owner can try again. 

Now, if 1. was done, and Bob fails, the spirit is still controlled. If 1 was skipped and Bob fails, the spirit is now free to leave!

With rune magic, it would be one or two Command Cult Spirit -spells from a cult or cults that can command the spirit in question.

Am I even close to correct here?

 

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13 hours ago, tnli said:

As far as I can tell, if the new would-be owner fulfills the binding enchantments user conditions, it's probably just tossing the binding to the new owner and have the new owner cast Spirit Binding on it, no resistance for the spirit

for me there is no need to the new owner to cast spirit binding, the spirit is already bound. But to use it, the new owner should have to cast some control spirit spell for any order he wants to give (p249)

 

if the new owner can use the enchantment, there is nothing to do

If the new owner cannot, there are two solutions :

a) create a new enchantment the new owner can use then find someone who can use the previous one and command the spirit to leave the previous one (no pow vs pow: "Control spells automatically work against creatures while they are bound in items" page 250), then redo a full spirit binding process(but with no pow vs pow: "Control spells automatically work against creatures while they are bound in items" page 250)

b) create a new enchantment the new owner can use, then find how to break the previous one. Then redo a full spirit binding process with pow vs pow (as the spirit is not bound)

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11 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

for me there is no need to the new owner to cast spirit binding, the spirit is already bound. But to use it, the new owner should have to cast some control spirit spell for any order he wants to give (p249)

The reason I would lean towards requiring a new binding enchantment is because, as per RAW, when someone dies, all their bound spirits are freed. This means that the binding enchantment somehow remembers who made it. If you just gave the item to someone, they might suddenly see it empty because the original owner died of a tragic accident a hundred of kilometres away. Of course, I guess that's possible (and probably very common: some enchanter sells or donates enchanted items)... but if you really want to *transfer* the bound spirit to a new owner, I would say the new owner needs to redo the binding.

Edited by lordabdul
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7 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

The reason I would lean towards requiring a new binding enchantment is because, as per RAW, when someone dies, all their bound spirits are freed.

I think that means the current person in control of the bound spirit.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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2 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

I think that means the current person in control of the bound spirit.

It says specifically (p249) that if the binder dies, all the bound entities are immediately freed.

I don't even know how you would define the "person in control" of, say, a spirit bound to an object like a sword. Too many weird edge cases.

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13 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

It says specifically (p249) that if the binder dies, all the bound entities are immediately freed.

I don't even know how you would define the "person in control" of, say, a spirit bound to an object like a sword. Too many weird edge cases.

Oh, now that I re-read it, I am confusing Spirit Binding with Binding Enchantment. In effect, Spirit Binding seems to take the place of the old Control spell, so I think you just cast Spirit Binding on the spirit in the binding and you're done. You are the last person that bound it, so it goes when you die.

I'm not a big fan of the rule though. I'll probably ignore it if it ever comes up. I don't remember Rune Lords losing their Allied Spirits in previous editions if they died and got a rez.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

Oh, now that I re-read it, I am confusing Spirit Binding with Binding Enchantment. In effect, Spirit Binding seems to take the place of the old Control spell, so I think you just cast Spirit Binding on the spirit in the binding and you're done. You are the last person that bound it, so it goes when you die.

Indeed, you may not have to (re)cast Binding Enchantment on the item again, as it's already been prepared to be suitable as a spirit vessel... so then you just rebind the spirit "in place".

I have to admit that the binding/enchantment rules are confusing to me anyway. For example, here are the different ways to "control" (lowercase "c") a spirit so you can bind it into an object:

  • Spirit Binding (spirit magic spell): can bind any spirit into an enchanted item. The weird thing is that I can't find anybody who teaches it... given that Vishi Dunn has it, it may be a shaman thing, but I don't see it referenced anywhere in RQG...
  • Bind Spirit (sorcery spell): while the name might make it look like this is the sorcery equivalent to Spirit Binding, the text is actually similar to that of Binding Enchantment. It's unclear if this sorcery spell does both at the same time (enchant an item and bind the spirit into it), or if it does just one (the enchanting, based on the description). If the latter, then what is the sorcery spell for binding spirits? I guess you can invent your own spells....
  • Control (Entity) (spirit magic spell): this can be used to, well, control some type of spirit or other entity. It's unclear if this can be used to force a spirit into an enchanted item.
  • Command Cult Spirit (Rune magic spell): this looks to me like a superset and subset (at the same time!) of Spirit Binding: while you can make the spirit do anything (instead of just telling it to go into the enchanted item), it also only works on cult spirits. And it costs a whooping 2 Rune Points (compared to the Spirit Binding's 1 Magic Point). At least it's a common spell so everybody has it already.
1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

I'm not a big fan of the rule though. I'll probably ignore it if it ever comes up. I don't remember Rune Lords losing their Allied Spirits in previous editions if they died and got a rez.

I'm not a big fan either. I think the kind of scenarios where you find an old temple with some old spirit guardian, or find some ancient relic with a bound spirit inside, are pretty standard (and even expected at some point!) in fantasy worlds. But "because" of this rule, the GM has to figure out other ways to bring these kinds of encounters to the table... like... the spirits are actually ghosts and not bound spirits... or they are cult spirits who want to be there and protect those ruins for some reason... or the original enchanter used some fancy spell that stays active after death... or whatever.

And sure, YGWV, MGF, and all these acronyms... it's easy to hand-wave things away... but hand-waving things away isn't what we're supposed to do. We should lean into the world as written. And in that world, bound spirits get freed when the enchanter dies. I've been trying to come up with good stories using that premise, but somehow I don't find them as compelling as the alternative. Maybe I'm lacking imagination.

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Do spirits leave bindings on death in Glorantha? I am unsure how much is for RQG and how much is interpetation of Glornathan reality. I am generally not super well versed in Glorantha Lore, so I don't know many of the stories of the world outside of Myths and some adventure materials. Has anyone been defeated by having their magician slain and then losing spirits/powers/abilities bound for them by someone else? 

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24 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

I'm not a big fan either... "because" of this rule, the GM has to figure out other ways to bring these kinds of encounters to the table... like... the spirits are actually ghosts and not bound spirits... or they are cult spirits who want to be there and protect those ruins for some reason...

I don't think the GM has to do that. You just put into your scenario what you want. Not everything has to have a playable mechanic that is in the basic rulebook.

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8 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

I don't think the GM has to do that. You just put into your scenario what you want. Not everything has to have a playable mechanic that is in the basic rulebook.

They do have to at least be vaguely prepared for (1) a player asking about it or (2) somebody commenting on this "plot hole" in a published scenario. It's not a deal breaker by any means, but as a GM as like to have explanations for everything (although the explanations don't have to make sense ;) ). So I would at least make a note about what kind of half-assed excuse I can use, so I don't have to come up with it on the fly.

Edited by lordabdul
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12 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Oh, now that I re-read it, I am confusing Spirit Binding with Binding Enchantment. In effect, Spirit Binding seems to take the place of the old Control spell, so I think you just cast Spirit Binding on the spirit in the binding and you're done. You are the last person that bound it, so it goes when you die.

I'm not a big fan of the rule though. I'll probably ignore it if it ever comes up. I don't remember Rune Lords losing their Allied Spirits in previous editions if they died and got a rez.

thanks @lordabdul I m exactly like Phil. Not so clear thant I believed then. I would prefer a kind of "harmonization" (no need to know any spell) if you fit the enchantment conditions, you can decide to harmonize so now it is yours. But that is not the rules

so don't know how to do it. Does that mean someone with no spell for that cannot use any spirit enchanted weapon / armor / ring /tool ?

 

9 hours ago, lordabdul said:

But "because" of this rule, the GM has to figure out other ways to bring these kinds of encounters to the table... like... the spirits are actually ghosts and not bound spirits... or they are cult spirits who want to be there and protect those ruins for some reason... or the original enchanter used some fancy spell that stays active after death... or whatever.

or they are trapped in the site. We can imagine  the binding enchantment owner is not the priest but the god itself in a temple (so no risk... hum few risk to see the gods's death one day)

Or for sorcerer and other enchanter without god, if the binding enchantment is made in an "object" the spirit is free when the owner dies but if it is made in a "site" then the spirit is trapped

But again, not the rules, same issue...

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10 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

I would prefer a kind of "harmonization" (no need to know any spell) if you fit the enchantment conditions, you can decide to harmonize so now it is yours.

That could work -- the original binder might just willingly transfer the binding ownership to someone without having to roll anything: just spend an hour or so holding hands and touching the item or petting the animal and boom it's done. Just for good measure, I'd at least throw in a roll for a small chance that the spirit "escapes" during the "harmonization". Maybe a POW roll or CHA roll, or a control spell on the spirit, or maybe something like the Spell Trading mechanic where each player rolls a d100 and on a 96-00 something bad happens?

The interesting thing about this is that it might make it possible for someone to coerce someone else into giving them their bound spirits (especially if no spell, not even a control spell, is needed for the transaction). I can already picture Tusk Riders telling captives that they will be let go if they give up 3 bound spirits.

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Does that mean someone with no spell for that cannot use any spirit enchanted weapon / armor / ring /tool ?

Anybody who fits the conditions of the enchantment can use the enchanted item, AFAICT. Just touch the item, communicate with bound spirit, and so on. Just remember to cast a control spell to put the spirit back where you found it, that's basic etiquette!  (and probably written on a big sign on the door to a shaman's hut :) ).

Now AFAICT, the conditions are set by the enchanter and not the binder. It's not clear if the enchantment and binding have to be done at the same time and/or by the same person, but I think I would allow the 2 operations to be separate... that is: someone could throw a binding enchantment on a piece of jewellery, and sell it like that ("Binding-ready arm ring! Only 5L! Grab them now!"). Then someone else could bind a spirit inside it a week later... similarly, if the spirit is freed from the item, I would allow another spirit to be bound to the same item without the need for a binding enchantment again, as it's "already enchanted"... but I'm not sure if that's per RAW or not.

However, since the conditions are set by the enchanter, I assume it's common to have binding enchantments tailor-made to yourself, so it's probably common to have to re-do the enchantment anyway. That example enchanted arm ring from the previous paragraph would probably only be sold with some generic conditions that make it sellable ("only usable by members of this tribe"?), which might be OK for a casual buyer, but maybe not restrictive enough for the more discerning adventurer.

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or they are trapped in the site. We can imagine  the binding enchantment owner is not the priest but the god itself in a temple (so no risk... hum few risk to see the gods's death one day)

Yep, another good excuse to throw on the pile of possible excuses, thanks :D 

 

8 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

Considering that there are heirlooms with bound spirits, at least in these cases, they must be easily transferable.

I hope grandma passed her heirloom down to you before dying :)  

Edited by lordabdul
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Farong Farosh was an EWF functionary/worshipper who was slain and bound to an item or location, survived (as a bound entity/ghost), the Fall of the EWF and the Dragonkill and waited for centuries until he was 'discovered' or disturbed IIRC, by a 'brain-dead' or soulless adventurer. Farong took this opportunity to inhabit the body and now resides in the village of Tink in the Dragonewt Wildlands. This implies that at least some spirit-bindings survive the death(s) of the creator(s). 

Now to be fair, that may just be down to the EWF being 'weird mystics' and having Strange Dragon Magic. You can never be sure when it comes to Dragons.

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Binding a ghost is different from binding a spirit into an enchantment, and we don't know how exactly Forang Farosh lost his bodily existence.

 

The rules lawyer in me tells me that in order to bind a spirit beyond a mortal's lifespan, you  had best command a spirit with the ability to bind (other) spirits to do just so.

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I also wonder why a spirit would be released upon the binder's death. It's stuffed into an enchantment or crystal, and other enchantments last past the caster's death. If I put coins into a lockbox, it stays locked up even if I die.

It also doesn't seem very MGF, as there wouldn't be any really old items with bound spirits in them, and it's non-obvious how heirlooms with bound spirits would work.

Although it would be kinda fun that upon the death of any shaman, people will have to yell "run!!" as dozens of spirits get released, all at once...

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10 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

I also wonder why a spirit would be released upon the binder's death. It's stuffed into an enchantment or crystal, and other enchantments last past the caster's death. If I put coins into a lockbox, it stays locked up even if I die.

Spirits are bound to you by the force of your personality. When you die, that force no longer binds them.

11 minutes ago, Akhôrahil said:

It also doesn't seem very MGF, as there wouldn't be any really old items with bound spirits in them, and it's non-obvious how heirlooms with bound spirits would work.

I suppose you could enslave a spirit and bind it permanently, if that's the way you want to go.

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2 hours ago, soltakss said:

Spirits are bound to you by the force of your personality. When you die, that force no longer binds them.

Are they, though? In an ongoing manner? The process looks a lot more like beating them up, once, and then locking them into an enchantment. No obvious reason to why that would break upon death.

(Spirits kept in your fetch is another matter, I will agree.)

Edited by Akhôrahil
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4 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

Are they, though? In an ongoing manner?

Since you're limited to CHA/3 spirits, I'd say yes. But I suspect that the rules assume that the binder is always the owner. This whole business starts to feel weird when you can consider that the binder gives the bound spirit to somebody who then goes back home on the other side of the lozenge. While you could wave your hands in the air and say that binding spells don't know about physical distances because *~*~*magic*~*~*, it just doesn't work well because anything could happen to the binder (death, loss of CHA, whatever), and it's not even sustainable for them anyway since they can only give out a handful of items before being out of business.

I'm coming to the conclusion that the rules not only assume the binder is the owner, but actively enforce it. Few people will have Spirit Binding, but everybody has Command Cult Spirit. So that also enforces that most people will have cult-appropriate spirits in their enchanted items (which they can still buy "empty"... few people have Binding Enchantment).

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5 minutes ago, lordabdul said:

Since you're limited to CHA/3 spirits, I'd say yes. But I suspect that the rules assume that the binder is always the owner. This whole business starts to feel weird when you can consider that the binder gives the bound spirit to somebody who then goes back home on the other side of the lozenge. While you could wave your hands in the air and say that binding spells don't know about physical distances because *~*~*magic*~*~*, it just doesn't work well because anything could happen to the binder (death, loss of CHA, whatever), and it's not even sustainable for them anyway since they can only give out a handful of items before being out of business.

I'm coming to the conclusion that the rules not only assume the binder is the owner, but actively enforce it. Few people will have Spirit Binding, but everybody has Command Cult Spirit. So that also enforces that most people will have cult-appropriate spirits in their enchanted items (which they can still buy "empty"... few people have Binding Enchantment).

While I would have to look, I would be shocked if there wasn't any number of old loot - or new loot that you take from a newly slain corps, for that matter - that includes bound spirits in published adventures.

The Windsword has a bound spirit, for instance, although I suppose you could argue that artifatct-level items like those are special cases.

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I took a look through my PDFs and there's some interesting stuff in the old RQ2 books:

  • RQ2 p43: "If the binder dies all his bound spirits will immediately be freed. They are held to the physical plane by the life force of the binder and they cannot remain after his death. Even if the binder is instantly brought back to life by some means all of his bound spirits will be gone."
  • RQ2 p44: "The range of the telepathic link between binder and bound is 5 kilometers. If this range is exceeded, the bound spirit is freed." (yep! you're supposed to bind your own spirits!)
  • RQ2 p44: "The bound spirits of a Shaman wait to see if he can resurrect himself, because he knows how to maintain contact with them in the Spirit World."  (that's an advantage of shamans over "normal" people, see first point)
1 hour ago, Akhôrahil said:

While I would have to look, I would be shocked if there wasn't any number of old loot - or new loot that you take from a newly slain corps, for that matter - that includes bound spirits in published adventures.

I haven't found any -- all bound spirit mentions that I could find so far have been bound spirits for a (live) NPC. If you kill that NPC, the bound spirits would be freed as usual.

There's one item in Plunder that is special and for which bound spirits aren't counted against your limit... with some implication that they might stay there after the previous owner(s)/binder(s) have been slain.

There is precedent (like in the GM Adventure Pack) for a spirit that "functions much like a bound spirit" but isn't one.

I just did a crude search for "bound spirit" and haven't done any other alternate searches with different terms.

Edited by lordabdul
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One thing I'm not keen on is magic items that as a side effect can be used as a "has-Bob-died" detector. Not sure how to square that with bound spirits being released instantly on death.

Imagine setting up a communication system that involves getting loads of trollkin to bind one spirit each, and you keep the bindings in one place and the trollkin in another. By selectively killing the right trollkin, you could send messages. You could call it the killegraph system.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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7 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

One thing I'm not keen on is magic items that as a side effect can be used as a "has-Bob-died" detector. Not sure how to square that with bound spirits being released instantly on death.

 

Oh, you are such an egregious munchkin! If you had not brought that use to life no-one would have got that one.

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42 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

Imagine setting up a communication system that involves getting loads of trollkin to bind one spirit each, and you keep the bindings in one place and the trollkin in another. By selectively killing the right trollkin, you could send messages. You could call it the killegraph system.

“The only thing known to go faster than ordinary light is monarchy, according to the philosopher Ly Tin Wheedle. He reasoned like this: you can't have more than one king, and tradition demands that there is no gap between kings, so when a king dies the succession must therefore pass to the heir instantaneously. Presumably, he said, there must be some elementary particles -- kingons, or possibly queons -- that do this job, but of course succession sometimes fails if, in mid-flight, they strike an anti-particle, or republicon. His ambitious plans to use his discovery to send messages, involving the careful torturing of a small king in order to modulate the signal, were never fully expanded because, at that point, the bar closed.”
—Terry Pratchett

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