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The Five Arkats & Hero Wars Ralios


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So, I'm not an expert on Ralios, and there's not a ton written about it in the publications I have.  In another thread, I would love to get a handle on the 3rd Age history of Ralios, but in this thread, I'd like some help figuring out how the Hero Wars unfold there.  My knowledge is mostly limited to the "Hero War Begins" sidebars in the Guide.  The stated events are The Five Arkats, the Swarm, One God One King One Empire, and Hezel Darong far to the east.   I can wrap my head at least a little around all of them except the Five Arkats.  This is what The Guide says:

Quote

"The ways of Heroquesting are abruptly opened, and it isn’t what everyone expected. One is a troll, one is a Chaos monster, and no one is quite sure which incarnation the other three are. The resulting Heroquesting provides awesome weapons of destruction to the leaders vying for power."

 

My understanding is that when the Godlearners broke the Stygian Empire, they locked down the ability for Arkati to access Arkat via heroquesting.  For the last sever centuries, various Arkati factions have been trying to break the GL firewalls, and during that time their doctrines and secret knowledges increasingly diverged from one another.  Do I have all that right?

 

Suddenly, all the firewalls drop, and people have access to 5 Arkats.  Do the Arkats literally come to life again in and around Safelster, or are they visions of Arkat that may now be contacted?  Are they "metaphorical" Arkats with the 5 Arkats being major heroes across Genertela?  Something else?

 

Finally, timing: Despite being listed first in the Guide, I could imagine the order is Swarm in 1622, Seshnela / Tanisor invades, and then sometime in the mid-late 1620s the Arkats emerge.  Or dothe Arkats really emerge first?

Edited by Nevermet
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  • Nevermet changed the title to The Five Arkats & Hero Wars Ralios
12 minutes ago, Nevermet said:

Suddenly, all the firewalls drop, and people have access to 5 Arkats.  Do the Arkats literally come to life again in and around Safelster, or are they visions of Arkat that may now be contacted?  Are they "metaphorical" Arkats with the 5 Arkats being major heroes across Genertela?  Something else?

I suspect a mix of the above.  I think Argrath is one.  Harrek might be one.  Ralzakark may be one.  Major heroes have gained/regained the Arkat magics/heropaths.  Quite possibly this frees one or more original Arkats from prisons/hiding places in the Gods World as well. 

 

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39 minutes ago, Nevermet said:

So, I'm not an expert on Ralios, and there's not a ton written about it in the publications I have.  In another thread, I would love to get a handle on the 3rd Age history of Ralios, but in this thread, I'd like some help figuring out how the Hero Wars unfold there.  My knowledge is mostly limited to the "Hero War Begins" sidebars in the Guide.  The stated events are The Five Arkats, the Swarm, One God One King One Empire, and Hezel Darong far to the east.   I can wrap my head at least a little around all of them except the Five Arkats.  This is what The Guide says:

 

My understanding is that when the Godlearners broke the Stygian Empire, they locked down the ability for Arkati to access Arkat via heroquesting.  For the last sever centuries, various Arkati factions have been trying to break the GL firewalls, and during that time their doctrines and secret knowledges increasingly diverged from one another.  Do I have all that right?

 

Suddenly, all the firewalls drop, and people have access to 5 Arkats.  Do the Arkats literally come to life again in and around Safelster, or are they visions of Arkat that may now be contacted?  Are they "metaphorical" Arkats with the 5 Arkats being major heroes across Genertela?  Something else?

 

Finally, timing: Despite being listed first in the Guide, I could imagine the order is Swarm in 1622, Seshnela / Tanisor invades, and then sometime in the mid-late 1620s the Arkats emerge.  Or dothe Arkats really emerge first?

I favor 'Crisis of Infinite Arkats'.  Five cults in Ralios all manage to Heroform a different Arkat and each of them latches onto a different 'Gbaji' figure.

I like your idea of how the cults broke the Godlearner lock and that's how it happens.  I would add 'It's because Argath was trying to tap into Arkat Power'.

Chaos Arkat fixates on Argath as his new Gbaji to go after.  (Chaos Arkat should call himself Malal, but that's just me mixing game universes.)

Stygian Arkat tries to rebuild the Stygian Empire and goes after whatever is in the way of that.

Another Arkat decides the Rokari church is fundamentally corrupt and can't stop until it's wiped out.

Kingtroll Arkat goes to Dragon Pass, teams up with Argath and urges him on to kill everyone in Peloria on general principles.  Doies this mean a Kingtroll vs Chaos Arkati battle?  Of course it does.  

The Fifth Arkat should take his Arkating into Fronela.  

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My understanding was that Ralios major battles vs. Seshnela don't begin until 1624/1625 depending on sources; i.e. after Quinpolic League gone and Boat Planet risen.

There was a thread on this earlier that I mined too, for similar reasons. I personally prefer the idea that the 5 Arkats have little to do with the heroes in Dragon Pass; e.g. Harrek is not one of them. There are plenty of interesting local contenders. If Argin Terror isn't the Chaos aspect then I'd be shocked, as he is clearly set up to become a Big Bad (more so than he already is!). I guess Argrath could be Arkat the Destroyer or there could be more than one of those.

Personally I feel the Arkats should already have some connection to Arkat or it becomes silly, e.g. anyone can be an Arkat. Of course Arkat could become ~anyone via heroquesting but that is different.

Meriatan the Swallow has been suggested as Liberator aspect. 

Troll aspect would presumably come from / Halikiv Zorakarkat but I don't know who is most likely.

See also:

Alternative Seshnela-Ralios timeline : https://glorantha.steff.in/digests/HeroQuestRPG/11657.html and https://www.pensee.com/dunham/ror/aruzban.html

 

Argin Terror info, as Arkat the ?Deceiver/Devil/Gbaji: https://basicroleplaying.org/topic/8076-on-argin-terror-and-tinaros/

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Another question is if Arkat is the Seven-headed God (Guide 376-377) why are there only five Arkats now.  Where are the other two?  Which of the aspects is missing?

I'm not a fan of theories that point to extra-ralian figures as aspects of Arkat.  For example the Black Dragon Mountain Pictographs XIII and onwards clearly has "an uzko and four men"* as the Arkats.  Harrek is depicted elsewhere and so he is not one of the five,  The Arkats set up an uneasy polity ("The Arkats wear a collective crown but fight amongst themselves" Guide p748, "The New Archons had proclaimed the Dark Empire my ancestor had founded. But they were weak and disunited" Guide p750) which IMO rules out Argrath** and others.  

*which also implies that the chaotic Arkat is still in human form and working with the other four!

**Also Cragspider was right next door to Argrath?  If he was one of the five, wouldn't the pictographys have shown him in Ralios?

The missing aspects, I think, are the Peacemaker (nobody is bringing peace with the Elbves and Dwarves) and the Great Arkat (if he was present, the other Arkats wouldn't be fighting amongst themselves would they?)

Kimiv (Duke of Naskorion) could be the Troll as he worships Argan Argar and so can turn into one.  But the Troll Aspect is Arkat the Destroyer and there is a tension between Argan Argar and Zorak Zoran, the God most associated with Arkat the Destroyer (although Kimiv does establish Zorakarkat).

Chaosbane seems to be Arkat as a Humakti who it is in that guise that he is acclaimed as the Killer-of-Chaos by the Slontans which he "dearly coveted" Guide p129.  I'm inclined to rule out Garyunder as his son picks a fight with Five Arkats as a Dragon according to the Pictographs.

Argin Terror is obvs the Devil.

The Liberator is Arkat as a Hrestoli (explicitly described as such on Guide p376).  I think this is Aamor (Guide p413).

That leaves the Saviour by my reckoning.  There are two claimants also unaccounted for (Foyalfine of Azilos and Erengazor of Sentanos)

 

 

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7 hours ago, Nevermet said:

Suddenly, all the firewalls drop, and people have access to 5 Arkats.  Do the Arkats literally come to life again in and around Safelster, or are they visions of Arkat that may now be contacted?  Are they "metaphorical" Arkats with the 5 Arkats being major heroes across Genertela?  Something else?

You might find these helpful:

Guide Art Direction – The Seven Faces of Arkat (2013)

A Question About Arkati Henotheism and Arkat’s Runes

Arkat in the prosopaedia - lists the five Arkats

https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/12429/HeroQuest-Glorantha--Introduction-to-the-Hero-Wars

 

 

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2 hours ago, Akhôrahil said:

Interestingly, the comic suggests that he’s The Destroyer.

The comic suggests that Harrek is the Destroyer.  Which he is.  He's just not Arkat the Destroyer. 

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Thinking a little bit more on this.

It seems to me that Arkat the Savior and Arkat the Loser are the same aspect, both representing the period when Arkat was in the underworld.  Like Yelm, Arkat is holding fast to his own truths in the Underworld and is returned to life.  If true, this fits Erengazor who is currently suffering defeat after defeat as of 1621 and suggests much worse in in for her (perhaps a Lady Stoneheart figure?).  That leaves Foyalfine as the Chaosbane,

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Perhaps this is what cult hopping does to illuminates - metaphysically they actually a bunch of different people, merged into a single body while they are alive, but the bonds are weaker when they pass from the mortal plane. Ralzakark when he returned was a bunch of different physical beings as well.

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Another question this reminds me of: When and how was Arkat illuminated?  I vaguely remember something about it maybe involving the Aldryami, but I have no idea, and I may be inventing that by accident.

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15 hours ago, EricW said:

Perhaps this is what cult hopping does to illuminates - metaphysically they actually a bunch of different people, merged into a single body while they are alive, but the bonds are weaker when they pass from the mortal plane. Ralzakark when he returned was a bunch of different physical beings as well.

That does provide a consistent picture for Arkat and Ralzakark, who both rather pushed it.

 

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On 3/29/2021 at 9:58 PM, Nevermet said:

I still don't have  a clue what is going to happen, but I have a lot more to chew on.

In your Campaign, what happens depends on what you want to happen, what has already happened, what is currently happening, what else happens in the future and, maybe, on what happens in official or unofficial supplements.

As you don't know most of those, you don't have a clue on what is going to happen.

 

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Elves of Brithos: that's odd. Maybe visiting remnant White Elves from the Sky Realm? Perhaps that helps explain why his Sky Realm home is in the Celestial Forest ("Doves").

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18 minutes ago, Snugz said:

Elves of Brithos: that's odd. Maybe visiting remnant White Elves from the Sky Realm? Perhaps that helps explain why his Sky Realm home is in the Celestial Forest ("Doves").

The timeline is tight.  Arkat is supposedly born during the Sunstop and turned over to the Brithini at 13 at which point he's already illuminated.  That's 388 ST.  At this point in time, the Heortlings are not fully subjugated and a Nysaloran rebellion has just broken out in Maniria.    We can assume that Gaalth has reached Seshnela at this time (because he's noted as doing so in the reign of King Gwaloring who died in 390 ST).  But crossing the sea to Brithos is markedly different than landward travel among the elves. 

 

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