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M Helsdon

Shields

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Just now, Jenx said:

Sorry, I should have written that better - By Orlanthi I mean "An initiate of Orlanth", not Orlanthi when used as broader describer for several cultures.

Orlanth’s worshippers specialize in use of the sword, and pride themselves in using all weapons. Orlanth defeated all the Elemental Deities in combat and gained use of their weapons at some time during the Gods War. Some other cults, less fortunate in receiving the use of all weapons, view with dislike Orlanth’s appropriation of their favorites. Whether the same is true for shields I don't know, but I suspect that his worshippers use round shields because he bested so many Solar gods in combat.

It's possibly a bit like a warrior in Homeric combat, stripping his defeated foe of their panoply, weapons and shield: all valuable and prestigious items.

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Orlanth has several shields - at least the (presumably square) shield of Arran  from his wife and the golden round shield (IIRC of justice) he wrestled from Yelmalio at the Hill of Gold. I would bet there is a myth about Wild Orlanth/Varanorlanth grabbing a bush or some slain beast's bones to parry every incoming blow, too.

While I haven't seen anything of this repeated in later publications, the old Hero Wars hero write-up had a sword thane, a spear thane, a shield thane and a backboy to surround the Orlanth hero, so there are several candidates among the lesser god names (previously and since mostly and collectively the Thunder Brothers) that we were inundated with in Thunder Rebels that may step forth as embodiment of Orlanth's shield. I still like that concept, not in the least because it allows a weapontake rite to prepare an entire party for a heroquest which has been written as a solo experience, and to step up and perform a crucial and for this individual specific task. Maybe that's for training heroquests, but it may provide well choreographed first steps on the hero plane, and a first minor hero plane benefit for a character.

And we know which groups will have exploited such easy rides to the hero planes for their own nefarious plots...

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6 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

I don't know who or what Brighteye was.

Might be a fragment/aspect of Yelmalio or Polaris or some other star for all we know (probably not Yelm given Jannisor's barbarian heritage, but the DH did rally to him and I think Brighteye would have been a factor there).

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7 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

Given the date of Dan Barker's illustrations, I suspect he received an outline from Greg, so I am not going to argue with two canonical illustrations, however 'strange' the shield design is.

It originates with an earlier version of the vase painting design that was done in WF11.  I don't recall the artist and don't have it handy at the moment.  But it's been a very longstanding design.

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4 hours ago, M Helsdon said:

Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be much information around about Jannisor and Brighteye (and I have searched).

Aside from what was in the Redline History of the Lunar Empire (now in the Sourcebook) and one other old WF article (which I think was reprinted in Wyrms Footprints), the only other Jannisor material printed is what I wrote up in my NLG issues (or maybe one or two items which I posted on the old Glorantha Daily forum).  There's some additional stuff that I never got published but I don't recall that I ever wrote a story on how Jannisor acquired/obtained Brighteye.  I am inclined to think it was either a Hill of Gold quest or a quest to the Heavenly City - more likely the latter as it fits with Jannisor's assault upon Glamour (a "Heavenly" City on Earth).

Also, found that the original WF picture is online on the old Glorantha site here: http://www.glorantha.com/forums/topic/proto-grotaron-sighting/ 

The shield in the original has 12 points around the central eye.

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5 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

but I don't recall that I ever wrote a story on how Jannisor acquired/obtained Brighteye

Nope, wrong about that.  I did write a story.  It's in the collection here:  https://oliverbernuetz.neocities.org/mything/Mything links.pdf  in the story "The Belly of a Fish: a Jannisor Tale".

But that's just one story, and I'd probably write a different one now.

 

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And Brighteye also appears in the story "The Death of Jannisor" in the same collection.

"Where Brighteye glared, grim-faced men fell and begged for mercy or red comets vanished as if mere illusions. Where Jannisor's Spear of Hope struck, the defenders were daunted and fell back. Where the daemon, Karash'arll, walked magic vanished and death spread. Before these weapons and the pikes of Dara Happa, the Lunars broke and fled. It was not long before the next wave came. Now red-faced brothers and sons of the Emperor walked forward, sickles and scimitars glowing with the power of their magic. The elvish arrows bounced off their magic shields, falling harmlessly to the earth far below. Jannisor ordered the nomads forward in a furious assault followed by the solid phalanxes of pikemen. Honed to perfection, though, the moon sons proved deadly foes. Each move by a moon son brought down many of Jannisor's allies. So Jannisor advanced. Brighteye's glare broke the lesser sons. The Sable Folk, led now by their queen, proved immune to the madness the moon sons sought to invoke and they brought down many of their foes. In the center of the fray, Jannisor met the five greatest of moon sons. He danced with them, circling first one way and then another. They met and parted and met again. They dropped when he rose and he rose when they dropped. Jannisor spun upon his heels and with each spin he struck with his spear. First one moon son and then another fell until all five lay dead. Jannisor repeated his dance with another group and another. Under the hero's deadly thrusts, the defenders fell back and Jannisor's army surged ahead."

Edited by jajagappa
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5 hours ago, jajagappa said:

And Brighteye also appears in the story "The Death of Jannisor" in the same collection.

"Where Brighteye glared, grim-faced men fell and begged for mercy or red comets vanished as if mere illusions. Where Jannisor's Spear of Hope struck, the defenders were daunted and fell back. Where the daemon, Karash'arll, walked magic vanished and death spread. Before these weapons and the pikes of Dara Happa, the Lunars broke and fled. It was not long before the next wave came. Now red-faced brothers and sons of the Emperor walked forward, sickles and scimitars glowing with the power of their magic. The elvish arrows bounced off their magic shields, falling harmlessly to the earth far below. Jannisor ordered the nomads forward in a furious assault followed by the solid phalanxes of pikemen. Honed to perfection, though, the moon sons proved deadly foes. Each move by a moon son brought down many of Jannisor's allies. So Jannisor advanced. Brighteye's glare broke the lesser sons. The Sable Folk, led now by their queen, proved immune to the madness the moon sons sought to invoke and they brought down many of their foes. In the center of the fray, Jannisor met the five greatest of moon sons. He danced with them, circling first one way and then another. They met and parted and met again. They dropped when he rose and he rose when they dropped. Jannisor spun upon his heels and with each spin he struck with his spear. First one moon son and then another fell until all five lay dead. Jannisor repeated his dance with another group and another. Under the hero's deadly thrusts, the defenders fell back and Jannisor's army surged ahead."

Yes, I was reading that again, last night. Brighteye seems to have powers of Truth and Light.

Perhaps its glare means lesser foes can't even come to blows with its bearer, so its multitude of points are never a hazard in such combat. However, lesser shields of that shape are unlikely to have the same capability.

Edited by M Helsdon

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I drew a rather interesting concave shield as concept art for 6A, which ended up not used (it was on a very distant fringe of what we needed).  

It was meant for light manipulation magic. Hopefully I'll be able to show it after the game's released. (even if it doesn't appear anywhere in it :D)

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3 hours ago, JanPospisil said:

I drew a rather interesting concave shield as concept art for 6A, which ended up not used (it was on a very distant fringe of what we needed). 

That reminds me: I should have included a conical shield, like those used by the Assyrians. Will have to modify one of the designs.

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