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New RuneQuest and gods' Runes.


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I have fortunately got a RuneQuest GenCon 50 Preview, thanks to my friend.
So there are some questions about the new RuneQuest.

The first thing I was concerned about is the Runes of the gods. The gods in the new RuneQuest have a different Runes than the Guide
of Glorantha. For example Yelm has Life, Fire, Death (same as RQ3), but in the Guide he has Stasis, Fire, Mastery.

Which of the following is the correct understanding of this?

  1. Gods' rune changed again. (or the descriptions of the Guide were canceled).
  2. It is the Yu-Kargzant Rune, which is not same as the Emperor.
  3. It is only RuneQuest rule for Rune magic and backward compatibility (and not the very nature of Glorantha).
  4. It does not have to be the same. Official Glorantha Will Vary.
  5. Something other?

Does Eurmal have Movement rune?  How about Issaries's Communication Rune? and so on.

 

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Agreed; essentially you're just saying YGMV at a metaphysical level and that makes perfect sense.  Even more if you've ever actually met Greg.   THAT SAID, and not to get too deep into game-theor

But still to be the canon. We are speaking about two different things: -          Glorantha as a work if literature. It is great and plays with complex intellectual concepts, discussed i

Glorantha is at the same time a great strength of RuneQuest and also its greatest weakness. It is a fantastic, rich setting that is refreshingly fundamentally different from the typical D&D s

If this is correct and not a typo, it's also weird for Yelm to have Life and Death -- as combining two opposing runes has heretofore been the ambit of the Red Goddess alone.

The description does say that the cult is for Yu-Kargzant, rather than Yelm as worshipped in Dara Happa, but that makes me wonder why the cult wasn't just listed as Yu-Kargzant.

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5 hours ago, hanataka said:

For example Yelm has Life, Fire, Death (same as RQ3), but in the Guide he has Stasis, Fire, Mastery.

The Lightbringer myth explains why Yelm has the Death rune (his time in the Underworld),  It's more clearly representative than Stasis, if you ask me.

Yeah, I know, you didn't. :D

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7 hours ago, kaydet said:

it's also weird for Yelm to have Life and Death

Except that Yelm mastered the powers of Life and Death and he reveals this each day by rising from/overcoming Death and then bringing Life again to the world.  He also is the Emperor, hence maintains order (e.g. Stasis), but from Jeff's note it sounds like the emphasis in RQG is again on the Life/Death/Fire powers.

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2 hours ago, Psullie said:

So the Runes can assigned to any divinity?

No. Only within the scope of the God. It depends on a lot of things, especially the context of their worshippers. Eg. Yelm should never be assigned any other element rune other than Fire. We know that he is the current owner of the fire rune. As for the difference, my current mind set is that the Guide shows us the quintessential runes defining the God within that Pantheon - source of Fire, stasis - hard to change culture all about order, Mastery as he's the ruler. RQG is from the rpg aspect - fire the same, but life and death provide opposite poles for a character to struggle with. Only the enlightened can truly overcome this and raise both runes. What a great goal.

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2 hours ago, David Scott said:

No. Only within the scope of the God. It depends on a lot of things, especially the context of their worshippers. Eg. Yelm should never be assigned any other element rune other than Fire. We know that he is the current owner of the fire rune. As for the difference, my current mind set is that the Guide shows us the quintessential runes defining the God within that Pantheon - source of Fire, stasis - hard to change culture all about order, Mastery as he's the ruler. RQG is from the rpg aspect - fire the same, but life and death provide opposite poles for a character to struggle with. Only the enlightened can truly overcome this and raise both runes. What a great goal.

Thanks David, I prefer this answer to the OP's question as it hints to the potentially fluid nature of Rune ownership and that heroes can exhibit Runic tendencies separate from their Gods which makes sense in a truly polytheistic society. 

Also one worries that the Guide should have an advisory applied given it's GL heritage :-)

 

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53 minutes ago, Psullie said:

Thanks David, I prefer this answer to the OP's question as it hints to the potentially fluid nature of Rune ownership and that heroes can exhibit Runic tendencies separate from their Gods which makes sense in a truly polytheistic society. 

Also one worries that the Guide should have an advisory applied given it's GL heritage :-)

 

Not to mention that we, as players of an RPG, sort of mechanically REQUIRE that the gods be 'assigned' runes for play....at least from the QS, the runes are pretty fundamental now to spell casting, etc?  In fact, I believe that was one of the key goals of the new design.

Besides, while it's the general consensus in Gloranthan culture that what the GL's did was wrong (in a moral sense), I'm not sure I've seen anything that identified what they did as actually, factually mistaken...in fact some might point out that it largely worked was validation of their theories, hmm?

Inconsistencies do hurt the Guide's claim to infallible authority in all things Gloranthan, but it's probably humanly impossible to make sure everything is exactly consistent in a work of that size and a setting that (we hope) will continue to grow and thrive.

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1 hour ago, styopa said:

Besides, while it's the general consensus in Gloranthan culture that what the GL's did was wrong (in a moral sense), I'm not sure I've seen anything that identified what they did as actually, factually mistaken...in fact some might point out that it largely worked was validation of their theories, hmm?

I have always understood this to mean that the fundamental GL error was the belief that the "moral sense" was not an equally-factual part of the universe.  The Runes are not mechanical controls to be manipulated at-will -- they CARE what you do with them.

I think there was a book about that?  "Gods who Love Too Much, and the Runes they Embody"?

So even as the GL got it all "right" in a mechanistic sense, they got it all wrong at the same time.

 

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1 hour ago, styopa said:

Not to mention that we, as players of an RPG, sort of mechanically REQUIRE that the gods be 'assigned' runes for play....at least from the QS, the runes are pretty fundamental now to spell casting, etc?  In fact, I believe that was one of the key goals of the new design.

Yeah, we DO need to know these, in game-mechanical ways... for the new RQG more than ever!

1 hour ago, styopa said:

Inconsistencies do hurt the Guide's claim to infallible authority in all things Gloranthan, but it's probably humanly impossible to make sure everything is exactly consistent in a work of that size and a setting that (we hope) will continue to grow and thrive.

True Dat.

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2 hours ago, styopa said:

Inconsistencies do hurt the Guide's claim to infallible authority in all things Gloranthan, but it's probably humanly impossible to make sure everything is exactly consistent in a work of that size and a setting that (we hope) will continue to grow and thrive.

I see what you call inconsistencies, just variability. The Guide is the authoritative book on Glorantha, no question of that. The assignment of runes to gods is by no means fixed.  RQG just has another flavour of variability. When Jeff said to me the runes for Waha in RQG are Death and Man, I said sure, why not. I know it's different in the Guide and HQG, but the explanation is valid given the RuneQuest rune system. It may be different again for another system. We want RQG to work, not be broken just to fit another viewpoint.

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5 hours ago, styopa said:

Inconsistencies do hurt the Guide's claim to infallible authority in all things Gloranthan, but it's probably humanly impossible to make sure everything is exactly consistent in a work of that size and a setting that (we hope) will continue to grow and thrive.

Sure. But we I think we can reasonably expect the runes of the main gods to be listed accurately.

9 hours ago, David Scott said:

As for the difference, my current mind set is that the Guide shows us the quintessential runes defining the God within that Pantheon - source of Fire, stasis - hard to change culture all about order, Mastery as he's the ruler. RQG is from the rpg aspect - fire the same, but life and death provide opposite poles for a character to struggle with.

This seems silly to me. Why should a god's aspect differ based on what game is representing him?

9 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Except that Yelm mastered the powers of Life and Death and he reveals this each day by rising from/overcoming Death and then bringing Life again to the world.  He also is the Emperor, hence maintains order (e.g. Stasis), but from Jeff's note it sounds like the emphasis in RQG is again on the Life/Death/Fire powers.

How and where does Yelm ever show mastery of Death? That state was inflicted on him by his enemy, and then he was convinced to return to the world by the intervention of that very same enemy. Anyway, the point I was making was that the embodiment of duality has been the description of the Red Goddess, not the Sun -- that's why it's weird for him to have Life and Death.

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3 hours ago, David Scott said:

I see what you call inconsistencies, just variability. The Guide is the authoritative book on Glorantha, no question of that. The assignment of runes to gods is by no means fixed.  RQG just has another flavour of variability. When Jeff said to me the runes for Waha in RQG are Death and Man, I said sure, why not. I know it's different in the Guide and HQG, but the explanation is valid given the RuneQuest rune system. It may be different again for another system. We want RQG to work, not be broken just to fit another viewpoint.

Agreed; essentially you're just saying YGMV at a metaphysical level and that makes perfect sense.  Even more if you've ever actually met Greg. :) 

THAT SAID, and not to get too deep into game-theory weeds, what we're scratching at here is the fundamental dichotomy that is not only yet unresolved, but highlighted in a new edition of RQ that more than ever intends to embrace/internalize Glorantha:  Runequest, as a game, is widely regarded historically as a more mechanistic, 'crunchy' (I know that has a lot of meanings, not all of which apply), reality-based set of rules.  (Particularly if you're using D&D as the normative centerpoint.)  % to hit, hit locations, skills instead of classes etc. all combine to suggest a mechanics-heavy game.

OTOH Glorantha conceptually is fluffy, nebulous, relativistic, dynamic, and indeterminate. It's Schroedinger's role playing setting.

How one bolts those two things MORE TIGHTLY together than before?  That's asking a lot.

This specific discussion is a perfect example.  I understand your point, I understand Jeff's point about even nailing this stuff down being a sort of God-Learnery exercise in the first place.  But if one is putting out a GAME, and a SETTING, there have to be some constants.  This isn't FATE CORE rules, this is Runequest.   I'd argue that the critically-important Runes of the head of one of the core pantheons is fairly significant.

If a customer grabs RQG and says "sweet, this is cool; I hear there's this MASSIVE sourcebook out there, greatest thing ever I should buy that too?" and then is told "well, yeah, but because Glorantha is wibbly-wobbly changey-stuff, some bits of it don't really apply" what does that say to that consumer?

Really, now's the time to lock that stuff up wherever if can be found, and make the "new RQ" as tight and cohesive and consistent as possible.

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1 hour ago, kaydet said:

How and where does Yelm ever show mastery of Death? That state was inflicted on him by his enemy, and then he was convinced to return to the world by the intervention of that very same enemy.

GRoY p.42: Yelm is the One, the Light, the Lord of Day, the Enthroned One, the Giver of Live and Death, the Attended One, ... the Reborn One, the Eternal Witness, ... the Victor over the Dark Way, the Shining Overhead, the Blazing One, the Thousand Beams of Light, ... the Opener of the East, the Self-born Father, ... the Sacrificed, the Self-resurrected, the Arisen, the Receiver of Sacrifice, the Resurrector,...

GRoY p.32: Second, Yelm conquered the Rebels. While doing nothing except praying, his power extended itself over the Rebels so that they died and surrendered to him. Third, Yelm conquered the Underworld. This realm had formerly been lost, and Yelm redeemed it by bringing salvation, light, and rebirth to the Land of Darkness. Most importantly, Yelm was Illuminated. He experienced the impossible. Yelm experienced being one of the Many while he was nameless and faceless. He had no contact with the One. He at last knew the Other.

As far back as the cult writeup of Yelm in Cults Compendium, you will find that Yelm has the Resurrection spell.

Yelm is Illuminated, just as the Red Goddess - that's a core reason he can hold both runes.  He rules both the Sky World and the Underworld.  He resurrects himself each day (and does not require Chalana Arroy to do so for him).

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8 hours ago, styopa said:

...

Inconsistencies do hurt the Guide's claim to infallible authority in all things Gloranthan, but it's probably humanly impossible to make sure everything is exactly consistent in a work of that size and a setting that (we hope) will continue to grow and thrive.

Even more so as Glorantha is a world based on living myths, which may even contradict each other and still will be true. This is (one of) the core idea(s) of Glorantha, and any game system based on this setting may try to set up definitions, which are consistent in the context of this game, but will never be able to define a single true and only, always applicable set of definitions for this world.

So regarding everything related to the God Time (runes, myths, gods) the Guide to Glorantha may provide the most consistent view of 'pre-history', but surely not the only one possible. (And even that may be true only from a Godlearner's point of view.) That's at least my understanding.

Edited by Oracle
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25 minutes ago, kaydet said:

Okay, that's super cool. I wish that was more widely represented and explained.

Yes, hopefully this type of material will eventually be covered in a Gods of Glorantha book.  Right now it's somewhat scattered and only fragments are in the Guide.

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14 hours ago, David Scott said:

No. Only within the scope of the God. It depends on a lot of things, especially the context of their worshippers. Eg. Yelm should never be assigned any other element rune other than Fire. We know that he is the current owner of the fire rune. As for the difference, my current mind set is that the Guide shows us the quintessential runes defining the God within that Pantheon - source of Fire, stasis - hard to change culture all about order, Mastery as he's the ruler. RQG is from the rpg aspect - fire the same, but life and death provide opposite poles for a character to struggle with. Only the enlightened can truly overcome this and raise both runes. What a great goal.

So... this being the case, will there be guidance on to how to interact or explore these other runic associations; dare I say it, these other aspects of the gods? For example, how would a character explore Yelm's mastery aspect, rather than life or death, in the game. Would this simply be a matter of staying within the culture and rising through various social barriers? And how might this effect new magic spells?

I ask, because exploring these "other aspects" might be fodder for various quests that must be accomplished by a PC.

SDLeary

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19 hours ago, hanataka said:

Jeff, Thank you for your reply. I still do not understand God Learner's work.

When you meet them next time, Ask them if Yelm should have two Fire rune (like Orlanth and Ernalda).

The Yelm of Dragon Pass is Yu-Kargzant of the Pure Horse People, not the Yelm of Dara Happa (who definitely has two Fire Runes).

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7 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Yes, hopefully this type of material will eventually be covered in a Gods of Glorantha book.  Right now it's somewhat scattered and only fragments are in the Guide.

From the RuneQuest rules at Gen Con thread:

On 23.8.2017 at 7:12 AM, Texarkana said:

...

The second wave of books will include The Heroes Book to provide support for heroquesting, Trollpack, a second quickstart, Cults of Dragon Pass (the first of several cult focused books) and a Glorantha quickstart (short setting introduction).

...

This seems to indicate, that there are plans to publish several (localized?) cult books instead of a universal Gods of Glorantha volume. This should give the guidance asked for earlier:

5 hours ago, SDLeary said:

So... this being the case, will there be guidance on to how to interact or explore these other runic associations; dare I say it, these other aspects of the gods? For example, how would a character explore Yelm's mastery aspect, rather than life or death, in the game. Would this simply be a matter of staying within the culture and rising through various social barriers? And how might this effect new magic spells?

...

Or it may lead to more confusion, because I can imagine, that these cult books may describe cults for the same gods with different rune associations depending on the region/culture the cult is associated with.

Edited by Oracle
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