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What is the difference between an awakened herd man and a human, and questions about awakened herd beasts and unawakened herd men more broadly


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2 hours ago, David Scott said:

You are right in this. It's a connection back to pre-covenant times - the golden age where man and beast were equal. That's why it's rare and costly.

So why do the Praxians want or need to reestablish this connection through Awakening ? What does this bring ? Some practical reasons have been given, but what are the religious or cultural ones ?

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1 hour ago, FlamingCatOfDeath said:

My analysis as someone fairly new to Glorantha (probably very wrong, hopefully entertainingly so):


In the case of the non-Morokanth tribes the main practical reasons to cast the spell appear to be: regaining a intelligent magic casting mount if your Bound Spirit mount got killed (though you will need to get the shaman to teach it spirit magic), and securing the loyalty of key Warriors when your position as Khan is under internal threat. For the Morokanth it seems to mainly be a way to convert 2 POW and a herd men into a new clan member with opposable thumbs. Beyond using it to have intelligent thumb possessors in the clan (slaves would also serve this role) it seems useful for Morokanth when the clan has taken significant casualties and needs new members right now in order to defend the herd.

your analysis is very human centric 🙂

the herd man becomes a "true" morokanth

the herd beast becomes an intelligent mount for human being

 

for me this alteration should not be seen for any utilitarian dimension: the beast you transform in sentient is no more your beast. You (the khan) would probably see it as a clan member. Now imagine yourself as a clan member. Will you accept to be the mount of your boss ? will you accept to no have the same status than the other members ?

if you lose a bound spirit in a mount, it would be better to prey and ask your god for another one, after a mourning period.

 

of course our glorantha vary  so that is just my feeling, but Waha is not god of human beings, he is god of praxian people (human, morokanth, ... bison, impala, ...) Remember his father is a bull (not exactly 😛 ) , and his mother/wife is a cow (or any other beast, ... not exactly 😛 )

He makes difference between herd (food) and sentient (eater), he makes no difference with their shape. (again my perspective only)

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56 minutes ago, Zit said:

So why do the Praxians want or need to reestablish this connection through Awakening ? What does this bring ? Some practical reasons have been given, but what are the religious or cultural ones ?

You need to reword the framing:

So why do the Waha Khans and Shaman want or need to reestablish this connection through Altering a creature ?

No one else can do this. It's not an awakening, it's a reversal of the covenant.

It's a Middle World representation of what can only be experienced through heroquesting. It's a microcosm of the original macrocosm. An altered creature is an original child of the founders and protectresses. I'd suggest that each Waha Khan and shaman does this at least once in their lives to show their connection to original macrocosm.

In my games it's one of the Waha quests, where Waha is shown the Golden Age. Unborn Waha is trapped in Goddesses Dream inside his mother, his Grandmother Dreams him into the Golden Age and shows him the land before the Great Darkness. When the khan or shaman is reborn after the quest, they alter a creature as a gift of this quest and to show their clan / tribe they have been to the Golden Age.

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3 hours ago, David Scott said:

This a section of Eiritha genealogy from Cults of Prax, with Morokanth filled in. An altered herd man's ancestors are herd men back to the covenant, then humans. There's no Daka Fal problem as the ancestors that will appear are pre-covenant humans. Likewise they are related to Morokanth too, so under Daka Fal Morokanth will appear, even if 12th or 13th cousins.

My calculation gives me between 60 and 70 generatons since the Covenant, possibly more for herdmen. That's about as long ago as Merovech from us, or as Aeneas for Augustus. Kinship and shared individual ancestors may reach back a dozen generations in a few cases, but usually a lot less.

The primal ancestors, aka the first generation since Founder and Protectress, are probably again as many generations back, upon entry of the Founders into Genert's Garden from the Slopes of the Spike. Those would be equidistant for two- and four-legs, agreed.

But 13h cousins? That would imply a common ancestor around the time of the Battle of Alavan Argay, or one of the miraculous births by Eiritha or the high priestess resultng in a mixed litter of two- and fourlegged children. Aren't those supposed to be rare? There was a "recent" one when Joraz Kyrem sired a girl and a zebra on Zebra Mother, about 30 generations ago. Different tribe, though..

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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About the appreaance of the Morokanth Founder and Protectress: pre-Covenant, I would have expected a minotaur build (male human body, herbivore head) for the Founder and the female herbivore body, human head shape for the Protectress, unless the Morokanth were expected to cheat in the Covenant already when Storm Bull met Eiritha. That mixup of body types must be a consequence of the Covenant.

But then, ur-ancestral body shape may not have been an issue at all prior to the Covenant.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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7 minutes ago, Joerg said:

I would have expected a minotaur build

Storm Bull's sons (The Founders) mother is Eiritha.

The protectresses may also he just the female herd animal (this is what Praxians see in the Great Herd). The anthropomorphised version has a human female head. The Founders are the opposite, but can just be men (or horned men, or animal bodied men.). The founders aren't minotaurs.

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1 hour ago, David Scott said:

Storm Bull's sons (The Founders) mother is Eiritha.

Yes. And their grandparents include Hykim and Mikyh, next to Umath and the Earth Mother (which may have been Ernalda, or one of the two previous generations).

Their appearance is the opposite of that of the Lammasu Storm Brothers in Glorantha: The Gods War, minus the wings (which they might be able to manifest in a Storm context).

 

1 hour ago, David Scott said:

The protectresses may also he just the female herd animal (this is what Praxians see in the Great Herd). The anthropomorphised version has a human female head. The Founders are the opposite, but can just be men (or horned men, or animal bodied men.).

Yes, there is a number of manifestations possible. The appearance on the counters of Nomad Gods is just the convention that we have after the Covenant, freezing that part beast part human pairing according to the results of the Covenant split, which makes the Morokanth stand out as the contrary couple.

 

1 hour ago, David Scott said:

The founders aren't minotaurs.

Except that their appearance on those counters almost matches (especially the Bison one, but the other tribes other than the Morokanth follow that pattern). No hooves for the Founders, although that is already speculation given the detail on those counters.

The Khan gets the same appearance, which is obviously not quite the case in real life, but may match his Other Side appearance.

This appearance shows the similarities between Storm Bull's get and Ragnaglar's.

 

The morphic contribution of the Good Shepherd is interesting, as is this individual in general.

Probably the inventor/archetype of pastoralism, with only a rebirth or two among the Storm Brothers (Varnaval, Voriof), possibly a follower of Tada. Possibly Grandfather Mortal.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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4 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

your analysis is very human centric 🙂

the herd man becomes a "true" morokanth

the herd beast becomes an intelligent mount for human being

One can be simultaneously a mount and an equal or even a mount and a superior officer (Black Horses). The other herd beasts don’t have opposable thumbs which limits what roles they can play as a member of the clan, the herd-men are not constrained by this limitation.

 

4 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

for me this alteration should not be seen for any utilitarian dimension: the beast you transform in sentient is no more your beast. You (the khan) would probably see it as a clan member. Now imagine yourself as a clan member. Will you accept to be the mount of your boss ? will you accept to no have the same status than the other members ?

Everything the Praxens do has utilitarian components to it. That which is sacred is sacred in addition to providing the clan a benefit (or avoiding a loss). 

I never said didn’t have equivalent status to that of any other clan member. But everyone must contribute to the clan and a awakened (covenant role swapped if you want to get technical) thumbless herd beast is unable to contribute in most of the normal ways. So serving as a warriors or shaman would be the main paths available.

4 hours ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

if you lose a bound spirit in a mount, it would be better to prey and ask your god for another one, after a mourning period.

Unless you are exceptional you will never get a second bound spirit

Edited by FlamingCatOfDeath
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IMG, the Praxians revere the Green & Golden Ages, the time before the Survival Covenant was needed.  It is their ideal.

Genert's Garden = Garden of Eden

(They would all be actively trying to return Prax to this state, if they thought it possible or practical, but mostly they do not.
IMG, those who are trying this are seen by Praxians as "Holy Fools" -- sacrosanct, in pursuing such a sacred & noble goal, but fools.)

 

As such, a herd-beast returned to pre-Covenant & sentient state is an embodied exemplar of the ideal -- they were brothers and peers at one time, before Chaos-Wars and Great Darkness forced some to forego eating from Eiritha's Plenty, some to forego sentience, some to become Eaters and some to become Eaten.

Any "practical" effect is ancillary to this.

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On 6/11/2022 at 9:40 AM, FlamingCatOfDeath said:

Just to double check a allied spirit counts as having “died” when their host object/creature dies? It is kind of odd that hit points going to zero in the case of elementals just means you need to re-summon them where in the case of allied spirits it means losing them permanently.

Most GMs I know play that you don't lose the allied spirit, it stays around discorporate until you bind it into an object or another host.

 

21 hours ago, Joerg said:

Yes. However, if your awakened Herd Person remains among the Morokanth, other than ritual marriages with Eiritha or Waha priesthood, what partners would they have? Herd People with bound spirits or familiars, or "slaves" or captives waiting to be ransomed may be the limitation of their social circumstances, while animal-minded herdmen are abundant.

An Awakened Herd Man mating with a Herd Man would be bestiality. So, their choices are other humans or other awakened herd men, who are humans. A Herd Man familiar, with a spirit bound into it, would still count as a Herd Man, so would still be bestiality, but people might not know. A mate who is an allied spirit of the Awakened Herd Man is possible, as is an allied spirit of a Morocanth.

 

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2 hours ago, soltakss said:

Most GMs I know play that you don't lose the allied spirit, it stays around discorporate until you bind it into an object or another host.

Sure, that's the RQ2 rules, with the whole Ritual of Atonement. RQ3 & RQG says not.

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5 hours ago, soltakss said:

An Awakened Herd Man mating with a Herd Man would be bestiality. So, their choices are other humans or other awakened herd men, who are humans. A Herd Man familiar, with a spirit bound into it, would still count as a Herd Man, so would still be bestiality, but people might not know. A mate who is an allied spirit of the Awakened Herd Man is possible, as is an allied spirit of a Morocanth.

That's quite harsh on the herd man who loses its mate(), parents, and offspring by the rite, and must no longer feel that kind of attachment.

And it is even harder on the awakened sable antelope, impala, high llama or bison all of a sudden having no more mates around them.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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55 minutes ago, Joerg said:

And it is even harder on the awakened sable antelope, impala, high llama or bison all of a sudden having no more mates around them.

They'd be out grazing with them. Understand Herd Beasts is a great skill for them, likewise Speak with Herd Beasts with a long extension would be a great goal (you can see why Eiritha is effectively their default cult).

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28 minutes ago, French Desperate WindChild said:

 a question... once altered, what does the new sentient beast (bison, herd man, impala... )  speak ?

Praxian ? beast speech ? ba ba ba ?

It's in the spell description (RBM 10-11), They speak Praxian with an initial skill equal to their INT.

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On 6/10/2022 at 11:32 AM, FlamingCatOfDeath said:

Given this I am having trouble understanding what difference there is between Awakened herd-men and humans,

RQ3 had a concept called Fixed INT, which applied to animals.  Fixed INT meant that the intelligence of the creature wasn't rolled and it wasn't sentient in the same sense a human or a trollkin is sentient.  Animals function according to instinct or some-such under the Fixed INT rule, and can only understand a few words in terms of their language acquisition.  Awakening a herd man was simply removing their Fixed INT status, plus some small physical changes.

Awakened herd men are essentially human beings.  The fact is, an obstreperous human prisoner of the morokanths can be subject to Alter Creature and become a herd man, and when his friends pay his ransom plus casting fees, he can be changed back to a human being.  Herd men "awakened" this way are a bit like feral humans; they likely have few skills and little language (except maybe Understand Beast Speech?), but they now have full sentience and so can learn far more easily.

Cosmetically, herd men have large teeth, and it is at the GM's discretion whether the Alter Creature spell changes this.

Edited by Darius West
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