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Are there gases in Glorantha ?


Agentorange

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Here on earth the air we breathe is of course made up of a variety of gases, besides which you can get methane in mines ( firedamp ) and so on and so forth.

The origin of Glorantha is of course entirely mystical, which led me to wonder.....are there gases in Glorantha ?

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55 minutes ago, Agentorange said:

Here on earth the air we breathe is of course made up of a variety of gases, besides which you can get methane in mines ( firedamp ) and so on and so forth.

The origin of Glorantha is of course entirely mystical, which led me to wonder.....are there gases in Glorantha ?

Sure. Eurmal has "Fart".

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Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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1 hour ago, Agentorange said:

Here on earth the air we breathe is of course made up of a variety of gases, besides which you can get methane in mines ( firedamp ) and so on and so forth.

The origin of Glorantha is of course entirely mystical, which led me to wonder.....are there gases in Glorantha ?

Hard to see how a storm god would operate otherwise.

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1 hour ago, Agentorange said:

Here on earth the air we breathe is of course made up of a variety of gases, besides which you can get methane in mines ( firedamp ) and so on and so forth.

The origin of Glorantha is of course entirely mystical, which led me to wonder.....are there gases in Glorantha ?

I'd say no. "Air" is an elemental substance. The elements of our air are hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon, and a few other traces. The elemental component of Gloranthan air is Air.

And the absence of air is not a vacuum, it's the absence of the strength and movement and vigour that air embodies. So no, it's not a gas in the same way that our air is a gas.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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We know for a fact that there is poison gas, and we can conclude from this that there are gas-like substances which are neither solid nor liquid yet which expand to fill an available space. We know that most Gloranthan land animals can't breathe underwater, because their lungs fill with the wrong stuff ("drowning"), and that most Gloranthan water creatures can't breathe above water (for the same reason). We know there are volcanoes which emit "sulfurous fumes", and fumaroles that emit "poisonous gas". Poison gas clouds sometimes sweep north from the southern deserts of Pamaltela. We know that "natural gas" can be found underground in some places, associated with oil, although it's of no interest to most surface-dwellers (for an example, see the Fire Fens in Slon, where natural gas vents and burns).

So yes: there are definitely gases in Glorantha. But we don't know if they always behave in the same manner as in the real world, and we certainly don't know if they are made of the same constituents.

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It is not the air that is weak, it is us, weak humans that are part earth and part air, even some fire and water and, whispering, dark. As you get into the air, only those strong in the air rune can be comfortable. Air creatures and those with strong enough air could fly to the moon, if those pesky moon rays and meteors did not shoot them down. 

It is a divine trial, to fly up the mountains. 

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2 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

I'd say no. "Air" is an elemental substance.

Aren’t Gloranthan elements — except Darkness and [cough!] Moon — more like the phases of matter than they are like our chemical elements? So roughly: Earth = solid; Water = liquid; Air = gas; Fire = plasma. Do they need to be seen as competing for space with the chemical elements in a Gloranthan chemistry?

I always wonder which species were supposed to have been around “before” the birth of Umath — and I am sure someone here will know — and whether they had lungs (or even gills).

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It feels strange for me as a chemist, but in Glorantha all air is air, but like people, some air is stinky, some air is nice, and some is really toxic. But for the Gloranthans those are qualities of the air, not a matter of impurities or mixes. Though we all know still air will go bad more easily than moving air, as it will happen also with water. Fire will weaken the air, can even make it lifeless, and even taint it with dead earth as well (soot). Too much dead air can also kill you. 

As for what happened before Umath, most people do not worry. You just did not need to breathe, as plants or fish do not need to breath. Animals and people came later. If you travel there you may need some time to adapt, and you better have a strong element association to traverse the elements, but you will not need to breath. It was not invented yet.

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9 hours ago, Agentorange said:

Here on earth the air we breathe is of course made up of a variety of gases, besides which you can get methane in mines ( firedamp ) and so on and so forth.

Nope, not as we know it... no atoms, no gases... no to many scientific facts in my  Glorantha. Does not mean there are not things that duplicate our world's "science" in explicable ways...

 

7 hours ago, Brian Duguid said:

We know for a fact that there is poison gas, and we can conclude from this that there are gas-like substances which are neither solid nor liquid yet which expand to fill an available space.

See!

 

7 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

And the absence of air is not a vacuum, it's the absence of the strength and movement and vigour that air embodies. So no, it's not a gas in the same way that our air is a gas.

Yep

 

7 hours ago, JRE said:

It is not the air that is weak, it is us, weak humans that are part earth and part air, even some fire and water and, whispering, dark. As you get into the air, only those strong in the air rune can be comfortable. Air creatures and those with strong enough air could fly to the moon, if those pesky moon rays and meteors did not shoot them down. 

It is a divine trial, to fly up the mountains. 

Most importantly, one most be able to explain a scientific phenomena in a mythical way. 

 

Edited by Bill the barbarian

... remember, with a TARDIS, one is never late for breakfast!

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So are pneumatic and hydraulic mechanical effects visible in Glorantha? As examples,

Can you blow up a bladder as a balloon, as used to be done in the RW?

Does a hand held fan work to cool your face?

Can you suck up water or beer in a straw?

Can you squirt water from a bladder, bag, or a piston-and- tube arrangement?

Does a blacksmith's bellows work to propel a jet of air, which causes a fire to blaze up?

If I fan a fire with my hat, will it blaze up?  If not, do Gloranthans have a harder time lighting fires than we did in the RW?

If you invert a cup and lower it into a basin of water, then turn it upright. Will you observe an air bubble?

Will a piston type pump work. for either air or water?  Or are all ships' pumps chain and bucket pumps, or are there simply none?

 

 

 

 

Edited by Squaredeal Sten
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8 minutes ago, Bill the barbarian said:

Most importantly, one must be able to explain scientific phenomena in a mythical way. 

I am not a Campbellian (I cribbed what follows from Wikipedia), but we are sometimes told that Glorantha is built on Campbell’s armature.

From Joseph Campbell: a Hero’s Journey:

Quote

So half the people in the world are religious people who think that their metaphors are facts. Those are what we call theists. The other half are people who know that the metaphors are not facts. And so, they're lies. Those are the atheists.

From The Masks of God:

Quote

The Cosmological Function
Explaining the shape of the universe
For pre-modern societies, myth also functioned as a proto-science, offering explanations for the physical phenomena that surrounded and affected their lives, such as the change of seasons and the life cycles of animals and plants.

Apparently, no one thinks that a metaphor is a metaphor. Why this should be so, I cannot say.

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6 minutes ago, Squaredeal Sten said:

So are pneumatic and hydraulic mechanical effects visible in Glorantha?

If you mean, we should assume minimal deviation from real-world physics and chemistry to avoid headaches and nosebleeds (and so players can figure out what their characters could reasonably attempt), then I have every sympathy. For other people, that is not their MGF.

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As Glorantha is made of Runes instead of atoms, I would imagine that air is made up of air runes. Impurities are caused by other Runes getting into mix. Humidity is water runes, haze Earth runes, etc.

I'd refer to the elemental rune progression to determine any broader cases, for example CON is a function of the Earth Rune, so in the elemental progression a poison would be water based, however depending on its source I'd look at that too.

There was a god Learner school devoted to this exploration of the Gloranthan microverse. They were rightly destroyed, but not for any abominable behaviour, it was that they imploded once they reached the age old debate of how many air runes can dance on the end of a pin.

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7 hours ago, JRE said:

It feels strange for me as a chemist, but in Glorantha all air is air, but like people, some air is stinky, some air is nice, and some is really toxic. But for the Gloranthans those are qualities of the air, not a matter of impurities or mixes.

Or it could be spirits.

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2 hours ago, Squaredeal Sten said:

So are pneumatic and hydraulic mechanical effects visible in Glorantha? As examples,

Can you blow up a bladder as a balloon, as used to be done in the RW?

Does a hand held fan work to cool your face?

Can you suck up water or beer in a straw?

Can you squirt water from a bladder, bag, or a piston-and- tube arrangement?

Does a blacksmith's bellows work to propel a jet of air, which causes a fire to blaze up?

If I fan a fire with my hat, will it blaze up?  If not, do Gloranthans have a harder time lighting fires than we did in the RW?

If you invert a cup and lower it into a basin of water, then turn it upright. Will you observe an air bubble?

Will a piston type pump work. for either air or water?  Or are all ships' pumps chain and bucket pumps, or are there simply none?

Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes, yes.

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18 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

I'd say no. "Air" is an elemental substance. The elements of our air are hydrogen, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon, and a few other traces. The elemental component of Gloranthan air is Air.

And the absence of air is not a vacuum, it's the absence of the strength and movement and vigour that air embodies. So no, it's not a gas in the same way that our air is a gas.

It's not air, it's ether 😱 And I don't mean the stuff one sprays into air intakes to get an engine to start.

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One of the basic points in my Glorantha is that it must be true both for a quicksilver dwarf (who may well be aware of the atomic rune theory) and has access to a dozen different gases for different purposes, from firedamp (methane) to choking gas (chlorine) and one of the Stormwalkers, who intrinsecally knows that all the air is just Orlanth's breath,  and it is their internal breath who keeps them flying, supplemented if necessary by Orlanth's.

That said, I do not see how air being a whole with different qualities in different areas would affect pneumatic phenomena. If you blow, you exert pressure. How much pressure can Orlanth exert? And as you suck air, you can suck other things, such as water, dust, or fire, though you would need to be fire resistant to do it more than once. 

Poison for me has no fixed elemental link, as it can have many origins. I would expect most gloranthans consider poisoning to be an induced rune imbalance. But it can come from darkness, such as lead, but also from some plant getting into you and trying to colonize you (hemlock) , even some beast (animal poisons), or corrupted air (how most Gloranthans would see the dwarven deployment of chlorine bombs) that chokes you and takes away your ability to breath, while the dwarf will know it comes from mixing spirit of salt and certain ores.

The touchstone would be whether you can use Tap Air on a Chlorine cloud, or a firedamp cumulation, or manifest an Air elemental from the concentrated fumes from roasting limestone to get quicklime (in the RW it would be CO2, in Glorantha I would say it is dead air). I say yes, as that fits with the definition of air, despite lacking oxygen or nitrogen. That would differentiate gases (that you cannot normally separate from air) and suspensions, such as fog or dust haze, which are water or earth mixed with air, and would be recognized as such, if only by the thin film of water or dust you get afterwards.. 

The all versions is true would include one of us, so natural phenomena, without intervention of magic, work as they do in Earth. Syphon for instance, or the Skyfall, is magic, as is the Red Moon or the shadows over Dagori Inkarth, but also Kero Fin or the Tower of Xud..

Edited by JRE
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51 minutes ago, JRE said:

The all versions is true would include one of us, so natural phenomena, without intervention of magic, work as they do in Earth. Syphon for instance, or the Skyfall, is magic, as is the Red Moon or the shadows over Dagori Inkarth, but also Kero Fin or the Tower of Xud..

It's all magic. Some of the magic is so pervasive and consistent that we, and to some extent Gloranthans, don't think of it as such. So essentially you can think of it as not magic, in the same way that macroscopic physics is not quantum mechanics even though it is an inevitable emergent behaviour of it. It is really, if you look hard enough. A powerful enough Dispel Magic should be able to stop "gravity" from working, but it would have to be super huge and super carefully targeted because the magic is so ancient and powerful and subtle. Much easier to use a Fly or Telekinesis or Water Spout spell to locally supersede it. Bring in another behaviour, rather than cancelling a background one.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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