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Thanatar and Krarsht in the Lunar Empire?


EricW

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20 hours ago, svensson said:

Nope. Not even. If you have a tentacle growing out of your head, no amount of Illumination is going to hide that fact. That take Illusion Rune magic, and lots of it. I've never heard of Illumination concealing overt signs of Chaos taint.

As to Illumination helping Chaotics, it absolutely does. Couldn't agree more. For one thing, Illumination helps the Chaotic be patient enough to learn tradecraft in the first place.

Only if you have turned into a broo is that a problem.  Hence the "become broo" chance with chaos features.

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17 minutes ago, Darius West said:

The point being they won't detect as being chaotic.  Yes, the overt signs will be present, but not all chaos features have overt signs.  This is why Chaos features also have the "become a broo" chance.  This is the point at which your chaos features can no longer be hidden, and you can no longer pass as your original species.

Chaos Gift doesn't turn you into a Broo, so there must be a workaround. Follow the path of the Goddess and you will learn how to strengthen yourself with chaos, without developing unfortunate manifestations and transformations which mark you as an unskilled, inferior seeker of the deeper mysteries. 

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8 minutes ago, EricW said:

Chaos Gift doesn't turn you into a Broo, so there must be a workaround. Follow the path of the Goddess and you will learn how to strengthen yourself with chaos, without developing unfortunate manifestations and transformations which mark you as an unskilled, inferior seeker of the deeper mysteries. 

Chaos Gift isn't permanent.  It's temporary rune magic.  From memory it does give you a permanent chaos taint however.

Edited by Darius West
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46 minutes ago, Darius West said:

The point being they won't detect as being chaotic.  Yes, the overt signs will be present, but not all chaos features have overt signs.  

I prefer Borderlands

Quote

CHAOTIC FEATURES
Many players and referees treat chaotic features as invisible
strengths for a given monster. In some cases this is true: in most
cases this is not true. A chaos feature is not only a source of power
to the broo or other chaos thing, but it is also a source of chaotic
malformation. If a broo were, for example, to have the chaotic
feature of +6 points of skin armor, it would very probably show
on him in some way, such as enormous sagging bags of leathery
skin, or as a mass of scabs over his body. A broo with the chaos
feature of reflecting 1 point spells may very well have a reflective

appearing hide, or some feature of his body that visibly returns
the spell (such as a third eye). No two broos look alike.

Borderlands p25

 

 

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18 hours ago, Darius West said:

Chaos Gift isn't permanent.  It's temporary rune magic.  From memory it does give you a permanent chaos taint however.

How does that invalidate my point? Perhaps temporary gifts are the price of avoiding the risk of transforming into a Broo - being strengthened by chaos, but keeping it temporary. Temporary transformation seems very much in tune with the ethos of the Goddess, use chaos but keep some distance. At least, that seems to be the ethos before the rise of the monster empire.

A Lunar veteran with access to multiple chaos gift spells would be more formidable than most chaotics - and the veteran would have the advantage of being able to pass as human most of the time.

Perhaps one day some Lunar will discover a hero quest which grants access to heroic casting of chaos gift - as many castings as you want, as you can power. There is a hint such things might be possible in "Dorastor, Land of Doom" - one of the Slime Broos has the power to grant a random temporary chaos feature by touch.

Edited by EricW
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8 hours ago, EricW said:

Perhaps temporary gifts are the price of avoiding the risk of transforming into a Broo - being strengthened by chaos, but keeping it temporary.

Or perhaps the chaos feature itself is not really the point: it is a religious/devotional thing, not a practical thing. Acquiring the permanent chaos ‘taint’ as a mark of one’s devotion to the Goddess is the point, and the chaos feature is just one’s immune system reacting to the chaos ‘infection’. Once one’s body and soul have learned to accept chaos, the ‘feature’ — more like a bug — goes away. Those with permanent, extreme, or multiple chaos features have not yet accepted Our Lady of Chaos into their hearts — they are still fighting and/or tormented by chaos.

Maybe even play it that repeated receipts of the ‘gift’ are increasingly less likely to produce a chaos feature, unless the ‘taint’ has been cleared or the Lunar is apostate (and attempting to reject chaos).

Unblemished Nysalor is more chaotic than the most deformed broo. Or at least, more at peace with chaos.

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On 11/24/2022 at 11:04 AM, Akhôrahil said:

This is true, but then, I don't picture wearing the heads at all time is a requirement?

It is a matter of pride. They love having their heads on them at all times. Sometimes they put them in bags, or big, blousy, pockets, so they don't stand out, but leaving them behind? That's like asking a Discworld Wizard to leave his beard and pointy hat behind.

Spoiler

That reminds me of the scene where the Wizards went somewhere in disguise and, after a lot of brainstorming, they put little wires behind their ears to make it look as though they had false beards. 

 

On 11/24/2022 at 11:53 AM, Akhôrahil said:

I wouldn't argue that they do. A Thanatar cult is bound to be a pit of vipers and treachery. Infighting probably does more to keep them in check than any outside policing.

Exactly, that's what keeps them in check. That and the fear of your head hanging on the belt of an upcoming priest, so you off them first.

 

Edited by soltakss

Simon Phipp - Caldmore Chameleon - Wallowing in my elitism since 1982. Many Systems, One Family. Just a fanboy. 

www.soltakss.com/index.html

Jonstown Compendium author. Find my contributions here

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On 11/21/2022 at 4:05 PM, AlHazred said:

The Bat is basically relegated to questionable areas at the edge of the Empire, where it can feed on foreign barbarians and unnecessary locals.

Like Pavis street urchins.

On 11/22/2022 at 1:38 PM, Akhôrahil said:

I'm sure the Lunars strongly disapprove of Krarshti infiltration into the tax administration, but not particularly more than they would non-Chaotics trying to take a cut of the taxes. It's not the Chaos, it's the crime and power-grab.

Not if the Lunar Plotical Super-Pacs are donating their monetary gains from the Krarshti enterprises?

Edited by Erol of Backford
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On 11/21/2022 at 6:12 PM, svensson said:

Lastly, IF Gim-Gim has been compromised [and nothing says outright that he is, it's just rumors], just exactly what are PC's gonna do about it? Trying to out him would bring down the wrath of the entire Lunar power structure in Prax on them, both overt and covert. They'd spend the rest of their lives dodging Spoken Word and Lanbril agents. And it's entirely up to the referee whether it's true or not anyway.

The old modules all link well, have played them several times, each time gets better as they have great plot links and give a great reasons to dislike Gim-Gim more over time and to go after him. We just need a full map of the tunnels under New Pavis and the Rubble that lead to his private torture chamber, shrine to the Maw, the drug smuggling subterranean warehouse spaces and his personal objets d'art museum created to house stolen artifacts!

Spoiler

Curious does anyone link Sun County to Pavis with Krarshti tunnels in their campaign and if so where and how?

The "poor house" front in Pavis feeding the Krarshti and Ogers in the Rubble and Valley also fits nicely.

I think there is no doubt via the Big Rubble cover that there are issues with the Krarshti?

image.png.d01e66f771d7d3c75e7b9e21b26695d8.png image.png.6511b1a33fbbe3bf29927ef6fb737d45.png

 

Edited by Erol of Backford
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On 11/26/2022 at 12:55 PM, EricW said:

How does that invalidate my point? Perhaps temporary gifts are the price of avoiding the risk of transforming into a Broo - being strengthened by chaos, but keeping it temporary. Temporary transformation seems very much in tune with the ethos of the Goddess, use chaos but keep some distance. At least, that seems to be the ethos before the rise of the monster empire.

A Lunar veteran with access to multiple chaos gift spells would be more formidable than most chaotics - and the veteran would have the advantage of being able to pass as human most of the time.

Perhaps one day some Lunar will discover a hero quest which grants access to heroic casting of chaos gift - as many castings as you want, as you can power. There is a hint such things might be possible in "Dorastor, Land of Doom" - one of the Slime Broos has the power to grant a random temporary chaos feature by touch.

No character has access to that many RP, plus it is subject to the Lunar cycle (RQG p322).

The bone I have to pick is that unless the character is illuminated they will detect as chaotic thereafter.  That isn't a good look for someone who wants to be an unobtrustive infiltrator.

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6 hours ago, Darius West said:

No character has access to that many RP, plus it is subject to the Lunar cycle (RQG p322).

The bone I have to pick is that unless the character is illuminated they will detect as chaotic thereafter.  That isn't a good look for someone who wants to be an unobtrustive infiltrator.

I meant pass for human in polite society, like ogres do :-).

but yes, if said veteran wanted to live in Storm Bull territory, illumination would be a plus.

Having said that, how many non-illuminated veterans who had used chaos gift or otherwise become tainted retired to occupied lands anyway, without the protection of illumination?

The locals hated them anyway, so I’m not sure a chaos taint would have made that much difference to the level of risk. 

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6 hours ago, EricW said:

I meant pass for human in polite society, like ogres do :-).

There are examples of groups of ogres living in Lunar and SunDome territories but I assume Thanatar would be a stretch.

I have to ask what does Krarsht do that ogers don't? Sacrifice humans? Lunar slaves can be eaten, sacrificed, etc. as they are property correct?

I also assume if the Lunars have a Vampire Legion what's so different about them than than ogres or Krarsht?

The Bat needs food so what's the big deal.

Here is the plan, vampires feed off the ogre's slaves and then when they die they eat them. If the meat isn't good enough for the ogre palate they pass them through the Krarsht tunnels to the Bat Cave. Everyone in this scenario is happy?

Killing your boss and shrinking their head isn't something the higher level Lunars would want done to themselves however.

Edited by Erol of Backford
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2 hours ago, Erol of Backford said:

Killing your boss and shrinking their head isn't something the higher level Lunars would want done to themselves however.

This is just a failure of marketing.  It just requires the right salesman with the right pitch to sell the idea to the right person.

Edited by Darius West
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3 hours ago, Darius West said:

This is just a failure of marketing.  It just requires the right salesman with the right pitch to sell the idea to the right person.

It’s actually a form of immortality. The owner of the head hierarchy promises to consult all heads before making decisions which affect the group. Meanwhile you can socialise and enjoy the amenities, while being part of a unique, vibrant, active community which caters for your needs, and respects your individuality and contribution.

Edited by EricW
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6 hours ago, EricW said:

It’s actually a form of immortality.

Possibly a vampire or undead with free will would be better than a shrunken slave head?

How does the clip below used as marketing Mr. West make you want to take a get-away long vacation weekend with your friends?

Hey, isn't there an immortality sorcery spell in RQ3? That might be just a bit more desirable than being garroted? Wouldn't Lunars prefer that...

image.png.cfb10458cb788b4063dacd43d166d751.png

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On 11/24/2022 at 4:59 PM, Jeff said:

Something a lot of people seem unclear about - there is no universally accepted way to know something is Chaotic. Some cults claim to have magic that identifies chaotic things but that magic curiously fails when confronted with some obviously Chaotic entities. The Storm Bull cult is sworn to destroy Chaos and claims to be able to "sniff" Chaos. But even their senses fail to register some obviously Chaotic things - so clearly there is secret Chaos everywhere.

People with third arms, glowing eyes, weird misshapen bodies, goat heads, etc., are obviously Chaotic. In Theyalan or Malkionni lands such people are often accused of being Chaotic monsters and killed, or just lynched by angry mobs (assuming they can muster the courage to act). In the Lunar Empire such people are accepted as people and judged by their actions. That being said, iff there are unsolved crimes, such people are often accused of being active worshipers of evil Chaotic deities and blamed for the crimes. But they at least enjoy the official tolerance and protection of the Lunar rulers.

So going back to this - Chaos Gift and Chaos Features usually have overt manifestations. But is that tusked monster a human with a Chaos Feature or just a dark troll? Is that a broo with a harmless appearing Chaos Feature or just a satyr? 

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Within most human societies, Chaos cults are viewed as an abomination. Theyalans, Praxians, Malkioni, trolls, elves, etc., aren't going to tolerate the worship of Chaotic entities in areas they control. When they learn of such activities, they are going to stop it with force if they can (the Storm Bull cult is kind of ideal for this).

Of course, this assumes the authorities: 1. know that Chaotic worship is going on, and 2. can stop it at a reasonable cost. Most Chaos cults operate in secret or far away from their enemies. Many Chaos temples are hidden and well defended. For example in Dragon Pass, Snakepipe Hollow and the Upland Marsh have the most Chaotic activity- these are places that are dangerous to go to and it is easy to hide your activities there. There are likely other Chaos cult activities, but they need to stay hidden and secret, lest they are killed by trolls or local authorities. This helps explains the survival of Krarsht, for who is better at hiding than the Hungry Mother?

The Lunars are different. Chaos cults are not viewed as abominations per se, but are judged on whether they serve the interests of the Red Goddess and her temporal viceroy, the Red Emperor. So maybe a Thanatar temple can operate under the supervision of the local satrap, IF it pays enough money, agrees to not commit crimes against Lunar cultists, and performs plenty of useful services to the local magistrate. Maybe the local magistrate will turn a blind eye to the activities of the local Krarsht ring for money and services. And as long as the satrap is fine with this (and remember they are pretty much all Red Goddess initiates), then no problem. But if the Chaos cults cause problems for the satraps (especially if they cause disturbances that make tax collection difficult), then hunt them down and kill.  

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10 hours ago, Darius West said:

This is just a failure of marketing.  It just requires the right salesman with the right pitch to sell the idea to the right person.

Let's see if I got this correct, you are saying pitchmen (well salespeople to be accurate) are chaos-ridden slime? Hm...

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

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13 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

Let's see if I got this correct, you are saying pitchmen (well salespeople to be accurate) are chaos-ridden slime? Hm...

Chaos ridden slime?  How dare you refer to the Lunar Tax Demons in such a denigrating way, you barbarian?  Audit time!😈

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17 hours ago, Bill the barbarian said:

Let's see if I got this correct, you are saying pitchmen (well salespeople to be accurate) are chaos-ridden slime? Hm...

3 hours ago, Darius West said:

Chaos ridden slime?  How dare you refer to the Lunar Tax Demons in such a denigrating way, you barbarian?  Audit time!😈

 

At the weekend club BBQ the German chef complained that nobody was buying his potato salad. So I got a big red marker pen, circled the salad on the menu board, and wrote "try this" with the red pen.

The potato salad sold out in an hour. 

Clearly it was the use of the demonic red pen... 🙂

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On 11/21/2022 at 4:25 PM, Bill the barbarian said:

The crimson bat does not seek to take over the empire, just eat it!

Now as Peter says, the bat can be controlled. I assume the two cult who originate this topic would be more dangerous to try to control but if controlled (the local elements of the cults, not the whole) could be of great benefit to those holding the reins.

Why not just use mind control on the High Priest after teleporting up on the Bat, have the it eat the Lunar Army and then for good measure, possibly fly right up the Oslir River Valley, landing on Glamour, then kill the High Priest. Done.

I see an issue with the Bat only having a movement of 10. It'd take a while and so those in mind control would need extensions or a long duration on any spell. Possibly a powerful warding could be set up on the Bat's back or maybe and Ermali would be onboard with some illusions?

image.png.bccdbb4510dc1818bb3f5894d50f97bd.png image.png.fecf6fbcc16048a22c37a04c66759306.png

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