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School me on the Changes to the Malkioni


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Harald, MOB, and I have done a fair amount of work on the folk of God Forgot and of the Esvulari. A few notes: BACKGROUND INFOFirst a few facts. There are about 100,000 Esvulari people in Kethaela. Ab

Wow - well I guarantee you that some "American Taliban" has ABSOLUTELY ZERO to do with this. Instead, it is that the key myths of Christianity simply are completely incompatible with Malkionism and it

Oh it definitely makes sense - it is always good to look at some RW variations. But always remember, Glorantha is NOT our earth, and its religions are grappling with a core set of phenomena that in ou

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But now we have the definitive version of the no longer canonical interpretation of the Seshnegi in print. Sadly the Loskalmi document "Book of Joy" has gone into the deepest Underworld, and is jealously guarded by Subere, as Newt folded all Glorantha publications.

 

Debates on sorcery never end...

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@JeffSorry if this came across as unfair criticism. No such thing was intended.

 

I'm in favor of the direction sorcery has taken onwards from HQG with the six techniques, and applying them to the runes to create spells in RQG.

The doubled casting time per magic point compared to rune magic or spirit magic is a design choice that I would have liked to understand in a world context. But then, looking at some of the meta-rules of sorcery spells, these spells almost act like insubstantial creatures summoned from the sorcery plane, making a temporary manifestation carried by the magic (MP) the sorcerer powered them with. It is always the spell strength of a sorcery spell that is matched with the characteristics of a target, never the POW or MP of the sorcerer as a person, so maybe that melee round is the minimum time to manifest that sorcerous entity in the Middle World.

I'm on the record (Codex fanzine issue 3) to have suggested pre-medieval heavy lancers for Malkioni "chivalry" (nowadays men-of-all) more than 25 years ago, which means I never bought into the "The First Knight" style aesthetics for anywhere in Glorantha. 

 

RuneQuest sorcery and Glorantha didn't start that harmoniously with RQ3, and despite a lot of hard work to make the rules fit (Arlaten), I was never quite satisfied with what RQ3 had to offer in Gloranthan context.

The shift in the depiction of Malkionism happened some time between the publication of "Middle Sea Empire" which is full of articles where Malkionism is depicted as something happening "in churches" and the presentation of the West in the Guide.

I know how hard it is to take Greg's thoughts from MSE and turn them into a terminology devoid of vanilla medieval associations while keeping much of the text intact because I have tried to do that.

I agree completely that one should not take any real world religion or philosophy and apply it 1:1 on Glorantha.

 

I would like to see some notion how non-zzaburi Malkioni interact with the Invisible God. A short example how a Malkioni wizard leads a group of worshipers through a service, how he forwards the magic (is the chain of veneration still a thing?) and how much he can take out of that energy for the purpose of doing magic for the community. Such a description would go a long way to get a feeling for Malkioni society.

And yes, I will probably ask for more details on how such things vary between different schools of philosophy (loskalmi, rokari, non-rokari Safelstrans). Or for guidelines to create such.

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Yeah I am toying with getting Men Of The West, it does look pretty good. 

However after changing the Malkioni depiction several times, I really would love to see some more official canon for the Malkioni. 

I never really get into the debates regarding magic and such, I don't really care if Malkioni use Sorcery or Rune Magic. The later would have been preferable, just to un-complicate matters, but that horse bolted several decades ago, so I just go with the flow.

I am more interested in how these fantasy cultures are presented, and what historical civilisations can be considered analogies to be blended together, to give us a sense of how to portray these unique cultures in Glorantha.

I'm seeing some Vedic influences at times, primarily with the emphasis of Caste etc which is almost a different sub-culture within each regional culture of Malkioni. I really like the notion that Caste isn't just another version of 'social class', but it encompasses role, magic, destiny, etc. Will be very interested in how far this idea goes with RQG.

I tend to view the Horali as being similar to Byzantine and Sassanid Cataphracts. That works for me at present, but I'm interestred where the canon goes with it.

It's funny, after reading some Tales Of The Arabian Nights and watching some Sinbad movies, I've started to envision the Malkioni having lots in common with Mythical Arabia. Not sure why, but some of the G2G artwork hints at this as well, and I can easily see Sinbad being Dormali.

I also envison some flavour coming from Slavic folkore, especially the colder regions like Fronela. Not sure why, but the Zzubari tend to feel like Eastern European Orthodox scholars and Priests to me.

Will be interesting to see what the canon Malkioni are like, but some of the these analogies work for me 

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1 hour ago, Mankcam said:

I tend to view the Horali as being similar to Byzantine and Sassanid Cataphracts. That works for me at present, but I'm interestred where the canon goes with it.

That depends on the region/cult, I think. Rokari and Brithini horsemen are, if I've understood it correctly, mostly Talars, whereas Horali (or rather, Men-of-All) horsemen are probably more common among Hrestoli and others (Loskalm, Castle Coast, etc.). For the Rokari (Seshnelans and surroundings), Horali are mostly foot soldiers, I think. 

I could be wrong, but that's the impression I've gotten from the Guide and discussions here. 

The comparison to cataphracts is, however, pretty spot on, regardless. 

1 hour ago, Mankcam said:

It's funny, after reading some Tales Of The Arabian Nights and watching some Sinbad movies, I've started to envision the Malkioni having lots in common with Mythical Arabia. Not sure why, but some of the G2G artwork hints at this as well, and I can easily see Sinbad being Dormali.

 

Some of the artwork in the Guide features domed buildings and rich, vivid textiles, etc. Stuff that while possibly more directly borrowed from India, can evoke the Middle-East/North Africa as well. Not to mention, the Malkioni have a rich history of seamanship (which, admittedly, is only recently being rediscovered) so that probably skews the impression towards Sinbad and other mythical Indian Sea traders. Albeit with triremes and the like instead of dhows. 

1 hour ago, Mankcam said:

I also envison some flavour coming from Slavic folkore, especially the colder regions like Fronela. Not sure why, but the Zzubari tend to feel like Eastern European Orthodox scholars and Priests to me.

The guide, iirc, has a picture of Fronelan (Loskalmi?) Zzaburi looking straight up like a mix of Judaic priests and Russian Boyars, in front of onion-domed architecture. Sog City also has onion-domed architecture, which kinda mixes (imho) Eastern (Central Asian?) and Slavic influences. 

There's also artwork of a Pithdaran Zzaburi in the Guide wearing fur-lined clothing in the subtropical Seshnela, emphasizing how Rokari caste ideals hearken back to the Ice Age, iirc. Another trigger for Russian imagery, perhaps. 

In addition, the Zzaburi have the same breastplates as the Judaic Kohenim had, and presumably among the Zzaburi, a similarly scholarly and literature-heavy culture as some Jewish diasporic groups migght thrive, without me really knowing too much about how that worked in practice. They're also quite a lot like the Brahmins of course, with priests in both cultures being subject to a number of cleanliness taboos. 

Anyway, this could go on for ages. The Guide illustrates a lot to get a look and feel for them. Sorta Indian-Persian-Byzantine-Central-Asian-Slavic kind of folk, with different regions expressing different influences to different degree. This is not limited to soldiery and armor, of course. Based on what I've seen of Men of the West in the example thread on this forum, it does a pretty comprehensive job of illustrating the military side of things.

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15 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

That depends on the region/cult, I think. Rokari and Brithini horsemen are, if I've understood it correctly, mostly Talars, whereas Horali (or rather, Men-of-All) horsemen are probably more common among Hrestoli and others (Loskalm, Castle Coast, etc.). For the Rokari (Seshnelans and surroundings), Horali are mostly foot soldiers, I think.

Seshnela does have some mounted Horali. The colour plate in the Seshnela chapter shows one, and it's mentioned that although most regiments fight on foot, a few are mounted.

It's likely that whether a warrior is mounted or not may be connected to their martial beast, and certainly the Horse Society of Fornalaor is noted as being famed for their cavalry.

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17 hours ago, Mankcam said:

I am more interested in how these fantasy cultures are presented, and what historical civilisations can be considered analogies to be blended together, to give us a sense of how to portray these unique cultures in Glorantha.

I'm seeing some Vedic influences at times, primarily with the emphasis of Caste etc which is almost a different sub-culture within each regional culture of Malkioni. I really like the notion that Caste isn't just another version of 'social class', but it encompasses role, magic, destiny, etc. Will be very interested in how far this idea goes with RQG.

The 'take' in Men of the West uses a variety of inspirations, ranging from Indo-Bactrian-Greek, Sassanian, other Persians, Byzantine, to northern India, and a small dash of Kievan Rus.

By necessity, in addition to the military, Men of the West has to delve some way into the cultures and religions.

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On 11/16/2020 at 4:35 AM, M Helsdon said:

The 'take' in Men of the West uses a variety of inspirations, ranging from Indo-Bactrian-Greek, Sassanian, other Persians, Byzantine, to northern India, and a small dash of Kievan Rus.

By necessity, in addition to the military, Men of the West has to delve some way into the cultures and religions.

Sounds good to me, and may fill the gap until more canon is published.

It has been 5 years of waiting so far, and another five years could easily be on the horizon for more official Malkioni content.

It's entirely understandable, given the amount of content needed just to flesh out Dragon Pass, as I am just as eager for more publications on Sartar, Prax, Esrolia, and also the Lunars - at least Dara Happa and Peloria.

So any official Malkioni publications may be some time away. 

However if it ends up being 2025 then its doubtful what troupe I will have to run it with by then. That would have been a decade or so after the G2G, and even then that may be too soon.

Would really love some resources on Safelster, Seshnela, Castle Coast, New Coast, just for starters. Then the Janube Cities etc 

So yeah, although its not canon, I think Men of the West will fill the gap nicely, and its something I can sink my teeth into before my hair gets too grey.

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2 hours ago, Mankcam said:

It has been 5 years of waiting so far, and another five years could easily be on the horizon for more official Malkioni content.

I saw a post from Jeff on Facebook that was saying about how they might have cracked Malkionism. He sounded quite enthusiastic about it.

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