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Charlie D.

RuneQuest roleplaying in Glorantha yes or no?

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I've roleplayed for decades. But I've never played in Glorantha. Do you think RuneQuest roleplaying in Glorantha is a good place to start? I know the rules somewhat, the world not at all. Or will I feel like I've missed out on decades of history and be wasting my time?

I'm okay with dangerous combat and big magic. I don't want to argue minutiae or feel like the world is trying to run the game instead of the player characters' decisions driving the game.

My players felt like Mythras/RuneQuest 6 was too complicated but Basic Roleplaying was okay. I have to get them on board as well of course.

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I would say try the Quickstart scenario, and see whether and how much your players are willing to buy into this cultists etc. thing.

There are decades of history, which is a good thing if you find yourself and your group willing to dig into it. But it is fine to take only as much as you and your group feel you can digest comfortably and go wild with that. After all, the old world is ending (this was the slogan of the Hero Wars rpg), and the recent events means that you are rising from the ruins of the first waves of disaster to avoid and/or inflict the next waves.

It is possible to go to the density of "The Coming Storm" in background and character description, and even with RQG you could use that HQ supplement as a rules-free booklet of cameos and NPC backgrounds, which you would have to stat or improvise when using them in your games. It is possible to play with much less information, walking from place to place, or just joining some patron who provides places to go and foes to overcome or allies to convince (by doing stuff for them).

Use this forum as sounding board. If you have a vague idea you want to check out, lots of people will be willing to add their ideas or impressions on a place or major NPC.

And there are going to be more scenarios in upcoming publications.

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It’s a standalone game and is easily able stand on it’s so ignore the history. As joerg says take look at the free QuickStart, gets some friends together and have a go.

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I'd try the quickstart, to echo other folks. As far as the world...

Glorantha is very mutable. Its part of the point. Belief and culture matter more than any attempt at locking down the 'truth' of the matter. Its focused entirely on the 'cultural' belief of someone. "Where am I from, and who are my people, and what do they believe?" is the normal foundation of a character. Followed by then, "Who am I?"

So, really, the world as written can suck it. Its always written from a biased in world source. You want something to be different? It should be. You want Ralzakark to not only maintain his position as the sexiest man in the setting, (which is of course an impossible to argue against FACT) but to also form up a party of illuminated chaotics and make them responsible for saving Glorantha from the third age via manufacturing that 'Argrath' character and working to engineer all the catastrophes? Frickin great.

The only place that I see little immutability is in the 'feel' of the setting. Its a place where magic determines 'why' things happen, and people have not seriously begun thinking of real physical laws beyond "The gods say so" and "Because that's how it is". It can be grim, it can be malevolent, it can be light hearted and a little absurd, but its not modern. I think thats really the only really immutable bit.

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17 hours ago, Charlie D. said:

My players felt like Mythras/RuneQuest 6 was too complicated but Basic Roleplaying was okay. I have to get them on board as well of course.

To me, RQG is on the same level of complexity as Mythras, even if for different reasons.

If you want something simpler, I suggest you try OpenQuest.

https://d101games.com/openquest/

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19 hours ago, Charlie D. said:

I've roleplayed for decades. But I've never played in Glorantha. Do you think RuneQuest roleplaying in Glorantha is a good place to start? I know the rules somewhat, the world not at all. Or will I feel like I've missed out on decades of history and be wasting my time?

I'm okay with dangerous combat and big magic. I don't want to argue minutiae or feel like the world is trying to run the game instead of the player characters' decisions driving the game.

My players felt like Mythras/RuneQuest 6 was too complicated but Basic Roleplaying was okay. I have to get them on board as well of course.

Charlie D:

I think the question which you must ask yourself and your players is, "How mythical do we all want to go?". But one piece of advice always is worth remembering. Start local and build out in scale and complexity from there. If you want a low mythical foot-print in your game to start with, then have your players participate in some local events which are mythically-light. A cattle raid, kin-strife, inter-clan violence, pursuing brigands, competitions at a local fair, a boar hunt, or the killing of chaos raiders like broo or a chaotic gorp infestation might be a good place to start.

If you and the players all desire to get deeper into the weeds of Gloranthan mythos then make the cattle raid a minor heroquest as a ritual raid of a rival clan with different religious roots which must be ritually defeated with the victors then taking a prized and potent bull or ram to improve the players' clan's herd health and quality next year. Make the kin-strife theme rooted in different cult allegiances and sprinkle some modest mythic elements into it. Perhaps a trickster is secretly stirring things up in the players' clan as part of a ritual to honour his mischievous god, so the players have to figure out who is causing the trouble, why they are doing it, and seek counsel as to what correct mythical course the players must take to prevent further disruption and to fix the damage already done. If inter-clan violence is the path you choose, then perhaps a minor heroquest to either empower your own clan's warriors or one that weakens the foes of your clan could be undertaken. A quest to a local sacred grove, swamp, wilderness, tomb, barrow, ruin, sacred place or some such location where a ritual must be performed or a ritual item/ingredient must be collected and retrieved. The players must guard and protect a vulnerable individual or group who will actually do the ritual or gather the required materials, so they can be ignorant of the mythical nature of what's going on and just act as heavies protecting those in the know.

If the players and you want to go full-on-mythical, then that will require some homework on everyone's part, but it is doable too. It just requires more preparation. And if later you find that you were mistaken about the mythos, chalk it up to a critical failure by the organisers of the ritual or to heinous heretics who momentarily deluded everybody in the mistaken ritual. Then a new scenario can be crafted to fix the mistake or to lessen the damage done by it. Just start small and limit yourselves to dealing with one or two cult mythologies at a time until you all have a better understanding of the greater mythical milieu and can complicate matters with complex inter-cult competition and rivalries later.

The key is just to have fun, not to earn a PhD in Gloranthan lore from your local knowledge temple to Lhankor Mhy, Dayzatar, Irrippi Ontor or gods forbid, Thanatar!

Cheers.

Evilroddy.

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Hi Charlie - 

I (and most players) find that the RQ/BRP rules seem complex from the outside, but they're surprisingly intuitive once you're actually using them.

The GM Pack (soon in layout) has summaries and handouts for most core rules systems, to make things easier for players. 

We're doing a series of videos explaining the game, the world, and the system specifically, and these might help you get onboard if it's still an open question. 

The first video is here: 

 

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4 hours ago, Jason Durall said:

Hi Charlie - 

I (and most players) find that the RQ/BRP rules seem complex from the outside, but they're surprisingly intuitive once you're actually using them.

The GM Pack (soon in layout) has summaries and handouts for most core rules systems, to make things easier for players. 

We're doing a series of videos explaining the game, the world, and the system specifically, and these might help you get onboard if it's still an open question. 

 

Beyond the quality of the work, I am rather disappointed by the absence of long examples on the rules of combat. I would love to know the details of Vasana's fight against the broos and especially Joshar's move to protect Yanioth. With HQ:G no worries but with RQ:G the relationship between movement and action (being in the right place at the right time) is very blurry. It's very nice to make videos but downloadable pdf might be more convenient...If we have to wait for the GM Pack...let's wait

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You know, as a GM I love having the heft of material behind me that I can pick up and use as I want to.   I make it clear to the players that, if we are in Glorantha, it is my Glorantha and I will not entertain arguments about points of detail (unless, as is eminently possible) I have contradicted myself.

Just because something is printed in one of the myriad of books, magazines and online sites about Glorantha does not make it true for my game.  My preference, in that kind of situation, is to take it in game.  "Who told Robart that the Governor of Pavis in 1621 was Duke Raus?"  That way the misinformation is part of the game rather than an out of game distraction.  I can lead the party through a very small bit of exposition that lets them know who is really in charge.

As long as you have established this simple thing, there is nothing for the 'expert' to fall back on, you have invalidated all of his authoritative sources, though he can rely on broad knowledge of the setting, he cannot rely on specific items of information.  Make the history and detail a positive rather than a scary edifice of things to learn...

 

Stephen

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Your Glorantha Will Vary - quite right. I like to strike a balance betweeen knowing the sett8mg well being a beneficial and rewarding thing for players, and having the flexibility to go my own way in my campaign. I’ve never found it to be an issue in practice.

Simon Hibbs

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On 5/29/2018 at 9:36 AM, Charlie D. said:

My players felt like Mythras/RuneQuest 6 was too complicated but Basic Roleplaying was okay. I have to get them on board as well of course.

"BRP" is rather a toolbox; it certainly COULD be tweaked to be as complex as RQ6/Mythras, but IME most people do like a simpler subset...

 

On 6/4/2018 at 6:43 AM, Charlie D. said:

Thanks. All these replies really helped. Probably not the game for us--rules too complex. I did look at the previews and quickstart.

I confess myself a bit surprised; at its core, it's still the rather tightly-elegant RQ2 engine.  Is it the overlaid Runes/Passions & Augmentation rules, that add too much complexity?

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3 hours ago, g33k said:

"BRP" is rather a toolbox; it certainly COULD be tweaked to be as complex as RQ6/Mythras, but IME most people do like a simpler subset...

 

I confess myself a bit surprised; at its core, it's still the rather tightly-elegant RQ2 engine.  Is it the overlaid Runes/Passions & Augmentation rules, that add too much complexity?

If I was to venture a guess, its the way combat is handled. The 12 second breakup of combat round and 'prestate actions' and all that tends to turn most people I know off, who'd consider RQ6 less complicated in that regard. Its not something most systems do, heck, even my group of rather experienced people are pretty keen on not using RQG combat at all.

Its just not a system that anything else they've played uses. But thats my group, not anyone elses.

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We abandoned declaration of intent and haven't missed it at all.  I'm pretty sure you could do that in RQG as well.

We found it may have been slightly more realistic, but added a lot of complexity too.  So, getting rid of it was a net improvement FOR US.

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3 hours ago, creativehum said:

This is, I suppose, off topic... But if the players don't state what Rhein PCs are doing... how do you know what the PCs are rolling?

It's not that they don't state what they're DOING, it's that they don't declare it at the beginning of the round.

For us, when their initiative comes up, they just do what they want at that point.  

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13 hours ago, styopa said:

It's not that they don't state what they're DOING, it's that they don't declare it at the beginning of the round.

For us, when their initiative comes up, they just do what they want at that point.  

How do you calculate their Strike Rank if they do not declare whether they move, strike, fire a ranged weapon or cast a spell? Initiative is decoupled from statement of intents only when you use DEX ranks or Mythras Initiative. With "classic" Strike Ranks*, your initiative depends on your intents.

* and Revolution D100 Strike Readiness, FWIW

Edited by RosenMcStern

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Strike Rank is one area where I strongly prefer RQ2 & RQG over Mythras. I've never been a fan of modern D&D's cyclical initiative, and Mythras is a bit too close to that for my taste.

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2 hours ago, RosenMcStern said:

How do you calculate their Strike Rank if they do not declare whether they move, strike, fire a ranged weapon or cast a spell? Initiative is decoupled from statement of intents only when you use DEX ranks or Mythras Initiative. With "classic" Strike Ranks*, your initiative depends on your intents.

* and Revolution D100 Strike Readiness, FWIW

We use randomized initiative + dex modifier, -for weapon siz.  We've never enjoyed the fixed-initiative system in RQ, it's far too predictable.

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On 6/6/2018 at 3:31 PM, g33k said:

"BRP" is rather a toolbox; it certainly COULD be tweaked to be as complex as RQ6/Mythras, but IME most people do like a simpler subset...

 

I confess myself a bit surprised; at its core, it's still the rather tightly-elegant RQ2 engine.  Is it the overlaid Runes/Passions & Augmentation rules, that add too much complexity?

Combat. For something written by people who have re-enacted hand to hand combat it runs fairly clunky and slow. When we run combat it feels like us as players playing a game rather than our characters in world fighting for their lives.

In contrast to that is combat in Warhammer FRP 2E. A percentile system with parries and dodges, it runs really quickly and the players feel the tension and fear of their characters.

Sometimes RuneQuest combat seems complicated just for complications sake.

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Hmmmmm......

Methinks you should try Mythras or Revoulution, then. The level of crunchiness is the same, but the approach to combat is more simulationist and cinematic.

 

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33 minutes ago, Charlie D. said:

Combat. For something written by people who have re-enacted hand to hand combat it runs fairly clunky and slow. When we run combat it feels like us as players playing a game rather than our characters in world fighting for their lives.

In contrast to that is combat in Warhammer FRP 2E. A percentile system with parries and dodges, it runs really quickly and the players feel the tension and fear of their characters.

Sometimes RuneQuest combat seems complicated just for complications sake.

I will re-iterate my advice to try and read OpenQuest, then.

Its combat system is as simple as something built on the classical Attack/(Parry or Dodge)/Weapon damage BRP scheme can be.

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48 minutes ago, Charlie D. said:

Combat. For something written by people who have re-enacted hand to hand combat it runs fairly clunky and slow. When we run combat it feels like us as players playing a game rather than our characters in world fighting for their lives.

In contrast to that is combat in Warhammer FRP 2E. A percentile system with parries and dodges, it runs really quickly and the players feel the tension and fear of their characters.

Sometimes RuneQuest combat seems complicated just for complications sake.

As someone who's played both, personally I disagree that WFRP 2e is any better 

...but it's pretty clearly an aesthetic chgoice.  I personally prefer RQ(X) where X is probably 3 with modifications but honestly, they're more like cousins than unrelated strangers.  

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