Jump to content

Upland Marsh Heroquests


Erol of Backford

Recommended Posts

Does anyone have sources for Upland Marsh Heroquests: The Humakti ducks teach the heroes a strange variant on a popular Ernalda quest. It takes the heroes under the Upland Marsh and into a haunted grotto, where an imprisoned daughter of Ernalda grants them a powerful blessing. The ducks are enthusiastic about it and have been using newly gained Lunar secrets to get a new blessing to use against Delecti. The heroes can complete the quest without the Lunar secrets, but that makes the quest harder. If the group needs powerful magic to use against undead, this quest is a great place for them to earn it.

I saw this in 13th Age Glorantha and thought powers against undead would be a good thing especially if the PC's may be part of the Temple of the Wooden Sword even if for a short period?

What might the powerful blessing be?

Any help is appreciated, as always and thank you in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hmmm... powerful anti-undead blessings for a successful Heroquest.... Hmmmm....

OK, just a couple of ideas off the top of my head:

- Sever Spirit on Undead at will w/o needing Rune Points

- Any Undead slain by the hero is automatically released to their afterlife and can never be raised, resurrected, or bound again. The corpse immediately turns to dust and cannot be reformed or reanimated.

- Any Undead must make a POW v. POW /MP vs. POW roll against the hero or act as if Demoralized

Edited by svensson
  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

But aren't you looking for inherent powers, not just item abilities? Or is the goal of the Heroquest to acquire a legendary item?

We have two examples of Heroquesters who were successful in their quests and are described by RQG statistics: Queen Leika of the Colymar and Sarostip of Jonstown. Both of these worthies have legendary items in their possession, but both have inherent abilities granted by their questing.

My thought on this is that Heroquests for items are of a lower magnitude than Heroquests to gain inherent abilities. My reasoning on that being that items are, by their very nature, temporary. After all, items can be stolen and an item's power is only available when the character is actually using the item in question. This isn't to trivialize 'item quests', however. Some items are legendary enough to require MAJOR Heroquesting.

Something else on this subject occurs to me:

Humakt's system of Gifts and Geasa/Geases indicates a 'power versus sacrifice' system in his cult. It's not too far-fetched to extend that into his Heroquests as well. We have the example of Sarostip Prince-Killer who can kill with a glance, but the cost was the vision in one eye. Both the ability and the cost are directly stated as being the results of the same Heroquest.

 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

A daughter of Ernalda who hates undead despoilers and can grant a military blessing sounds a lot like a Barbeester Gore subcult.

The “lunar secret” might be a secret connection to the moon - maybe the hero quest foes are weakest during dark moon. Or strongest. Or there might be a lunar talisman which grants passage at a critical point in the quest - maybe the vampire bats don’t attack if you carry the talisman or speak a secret password.

Reward - Something Earth related, like heroic summon gnome, or heroic use of great parry against the undead?

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Although the quest is learnt from Humakti, I read the premise as the power coming from the Earth. So it depends on whether I wish to destabilize or weaken the Upland Marsh, so it would be a power that others can use, or simply a cool power for a player character.

In the first case it could be some kind of enchanted fence that slowly drains the swamp and forces undead to succeed at a resistance roll to cross, while requiring maintenance and magic sacrifices. The effect on undead that cross it would be similar to the indvidual power.

In the second, it may be the ability to command the earth to hold the dead, so all undead in an area sink slightly in the ground, while the living move normally. That would immobilize them unless they overcome a STR equal to the MP spent by the Quester. Each round. 

I would expect the ducks to be ambivalent with the Earth overcoming Water, but any resident near the marsh would prefer the first option.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Related idea to some of the above. The Heroquester can draw power from the Earth to burn any undead who are in contact with it. It only works while on dry land. Given the nature of the Marsh, this may largely be of use to someone who can use an Earth Elemental to raise dry land around themselves, or under the feet of an undead foe.

  • Thanks 1

--

The Silver best-selling The Children of Hykim offers over 150 pages on Glorantha's shape-changing totemic animal people, the Hsunchen. "Magisterial ... highly recommended" - Nick Brooke. "An amazing labor of love" - Evan Franke, Exploring Glorantha. "A deep dive" - Joerg Baumgartner. "Excellent sourcebook, well-written and well-researched" - Niall Sullivan.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, JRE said:

 

I would expect the ducks to be ambivalent with the Earth overcoming Water,

2 hours ago, Brian Duguid said:

The Heroquester can draw power from the Earth to burn any undead who are in contact with it.

Or maybe combine these to have the “blessed” earth beneath the swamp purify the water above it producing undead-burning “holy water”. You can have fun with this: area effects that fade toward the edges of still water; blessing the riverbed upstream of an undead enemy; tricksters selling buckets of supposedly purified water to zombie hunters …

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, mfbrandi said:

“blessed” earth beneath the swamp purify the water above it producing undead-burning “holy water”

Maybe there is a turn undead area effect granted to the character by expending magic points while in or near the swamp or a 5% bonus to hit and parry for allies in a radius sort of like the crusade ritual (I think there was one) but it also works as a negative 5% to hit and -1 damage done by undead in a radius around the character?

Have Howling Tower and will review.

I am not sure of the fire aspect as they are wet and its a swamp... imagine the smell of wet burning zombies, it might turn into poison gas? Maybe something that explodes heads of undead? An undead psionic blast of sorts...

Another twist would be that the undead in a radius of the character have to match magic points versus the character or come under their control? Even if one per round it would be fun, zombies and skeletons fighting each other, a taste of their own medicine.

Lots of good ideas here, thanks everyone!

image.png.520dde50d308369a1736de26aa542ae9.png

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Erol of Backford said:

I am not sure of the fire aspect as they are wet and its a swamp

I was thinking of an acid burn rather than flames. I don’t know what Brian had in mind. Probably don’t want a third element dragged in, anyway.

Quote

the undead in a radius of the character have to match magic points versus the character or come under their control

It would be fun, but would it appeal to Humakti ducks? It sounds a bit … Zorak Zoran.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...