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RQ Sorcery


metcalph

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Just now, scott-martin said:

If everybody weren't tempted to Tap there wouldn't be nearly as much effort delineating loopholes.

There is still plenty of temptation to Tap. On your personal magic points you can cast one really good spell, with a good crystal a second. Within the span of a single days adventuring, there is always the possibility you might want to cast a third ūüôā

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 In book communities they love their books. In communities where literacy is prohibited or simply prohibitive, draw a shape on the floor in flour and get moving. Intersections between Western and Eastern sorcery.

Without wanting to rule out the ideas of schools of learning that transmit traditions orally in an ancient Academy way, especially for the Valkaro sorcerers, I think mostly in Glorantha communities where literacy is prohibited or prohibitive just practice one of the other forms of magic. I certainly think Kralorelan sorcery is highly literary, and so was EWF sorcery, and so is Lunar sorcery, as well as Malkioni. That covers pretty much everybody as far as I know. 

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34 minutes ago, davecake said:

There is still plenty of temptation to Tap. On your personal magic points you can cast one really good spell, with a good crystal a second. Within the span of a single days adventuring, there is always the possibility you might want to cast a third ūüôā

And this is why bound spirits would be very useful for sorcerers.

Sure it's two points of POW for binding one to an object, but that's something you can recover through other means. (Such as training, or taking part in worship ceremonies.)

In return, you get the spirit's magic points to fuel your magic.

A potent wizard likely has many spirits and elementals bound to his service. This helps show the power of sorcery, for you can make the rebellious spirits act according to the laws of the Invisible God, and the whims of the wizard.

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45 minutes ago, davecake said:

There is still plenty of temptation to Tap. On your personal magic points you can cast one really good spell, with a good crystal a second. Within the span of a single days adventuring, there is always the possibility you might want to cast a third ūüôā

Actually, you have one extra spell in your crystal for the entirety of your adventure, or you need to insert a day's worth of magical abstinence to refill the crystal.

4 minutes ago, Tindalos said:

And this is why bound spirits would be very useful for sorcerers.

Which is a return to the abysmal "spirit zoo" sorcerers. Yes, it works, with only about 20 points of POW put into enchantments, a few less if you find good dead crystals. Plus there is the Charisma limit for how many bound spirits you can maintain under control in such enchantments or crystals. You might be able to add a few more with long duration "Dominate" spells, but those spells will either eat up Free INT or need more POW for inscription.

In short, your sorcerer either needs a bunch of discardable enchanters or a previous career as such with a side career providing POW gain checks.

 

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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6 hours ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

I dunno, actual bookbinding (as opposed to locked-together plates) seems a bit medieval in my mind, but I might be wrong.

Even in the 1st Century, the Bible was in circulation in a 3-volume Codex form -- the word "codex" being the original word to designate a bound book.

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2 minutes ago, Julian Lord said:

Even in the 1st Century, the Bible was in circulation in a 3-volume Codex form -- the word "codex" being the original word to designate a bound book.

1st Century is pretty late though - I guess I forgot that Western Genertela is based more on the late Classical period rather than the actual Bronze age. That does to some extent apply to much of Genertela, but it's more evident in the West.

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9 minutes ago, Sir_Godspeed said:

1st Century is pretty late though - I guess I forgot that Western Genertela is based more on the late Classical period rather than the actual Bronze age. That does to some extent apply to much of Genertela, but it's more evident in the West.

Well, most of the RW cultures that have directly inspired some roughly similar Gloranthan ones were indeed more Iron Age than Bronze Age ...

I suppose a good point of comparison on this question is that the Native Americans were at the start of transitioning from Bronze & Copper to Iron when Columbus landed.

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On the subject of tapping, we should remember that the RQ3 material viewed tapping as evil because only people could be tapped - something which isn't the case in RQG.  So tapping air, darkness or light could be seen as a sorcerous inspiration rather than an act of evil (although others may not necessarily agree).

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The Tapping of the things in the land was a RQ3 fact since the publication of the Genertela Box, which described Arolanit as a country tapped of almost everything.

And I think that tapping animals and bound or otherwise materialized spirits was possible already before that. The sorcerers might have been able to tap the spirit or essence of a place for their magic. In a way, little different from how Eiritha allowed a part of herself to become the Dead Place when granting that energy to Storm Bull.

HQ1 made tapping attack a quality or ability of the target. HQ2 did away with opponents' abilities, HQG says that a local manifestation of a rune is converted into raw magical energy (without going into details how that benefits the sorcerer, as there are no concerns about powering a spell in HQG).

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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14 hours ago, Tindalos said:

AÔĽŅ potÔĽŅent wizard likely has many spirits and elementals bound to his service. This helps show the power of sorcery, for yÔĽŅou can make ÔĽŅthe rebellious spirits act according to the laws of the Invisible God, and the whims of the wizard.ÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅÔĽŅ

This is of course true, and the wizard who has multiple spirits and elementals bound will feel very powerful. Until he meets a shaman who has more spirits, can command them more effectively, cast spells infuriating fast, and has other neat powers besides. Which is about the time the sorcerer retreats and realises that it’s very important for RQ sorcerers to plan ahead. Sometimes several years ahead. 

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Tapping is inferred, not mentioned in the description of Arolanit and that was published a few years after RQ3 described tapping as basically evil.  Even Gods of Glorantha foucssed only on the question of whether humans should be tapped and gave no idea of whether inanimate matter could be tapped.  Hence applying RQ3 ideas about tapping to RQG is unwise.  One could still argue that the Malkioni have a dispute about whether people could be tapped but this has lost its importance given that inanimate substances can be easily tapped.  

If Steal Breath is known by sorcerers in Dragon Pass with nary a hint of moral opprobrium then I don't think the west is going to be up in arms about the issue.  There may be an artcile or two about the long-term effects of particular types of tapping in the west (ie Arolanit's light without radiance) but I doubt that notions of widespread environmental degradation are warranted - it's not Chaos.

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14 hours ago, Joerg said:

In short, your sorcerer either needs a bunch of discardable enchantersÔĽŅ or a previous career as such with a side career providing POW gain checks.ÔĽŅ

I have a long standing theory, since the RQ3 era, that if professional magicians all get roughly the same number of POW gain rolls, and priests mostly put that POW into rune magic, and shamans split it between their fetch and rune magic, sorcerers (even considering Inscription in RQG) are going to have a lot more POW to invest in enchantments, especially as enchantments are more necessary and useful to them. And Malkioni sorcerers have a strong incentive to work collectively, with specialists of various kinds. So RQ would seem to imply that the West is comparatively littered with magic items, and the power of the ‚Äėchurch‚Äô is in large part due to its reserves of enchantments that powerful wizards have access to (and collaborative magical efforts to bind big spirits and elementals). Mostly in the form of magic point storage and bound spirits and elementals.¬†

Edited by davecake
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31 minutes ago, davecake said:

I have a long standing theory, since the RQ3 era, that if professional magicians all get roughly the same number of POW gain rolls, and priests mostly put that POW into rune magic, and shamans split it between their fetch and rune magic, sorcerers (even considering Inscription in RQG) are going to have a lot more POW to invest in enchantments, especially as enchantments are more necessary and useful to them.

Theist rune masters put some of their POW gains into divine intervention, which can be quite costly. Shamans can be enchanters, too, or otherwise assistant shamans get to be the ones dumping their POW (and that of volunteers) into artifacts.

The new rule that only one point of POW for an artifact needs to come from the enchanter himself, and the rest can be donated by volunteers, makes community support for enchantments fairly important, but even so there is a constant drain on the enchanters.

 

31 minutes ago, davecake said:

And Malkioni sorcerers have a strong incentive to work collectively, with specialists of various kinds. So RQ would seem to imply that the West is comparatively littered with magic items, and the power of the ‚Äėchurch‚Äô is in large part due to its reserves of enchantments that powerful wizards have access to (and collaborative magical efforts to bind big spirits and elementals). Mostly in the form of magic point storage and bound spirits and elementals.¬†

Sorcerers have traditionally come in orders. These look like they have a set of specialists for certain types of spell, knowing or having inscribed maybe two or three of those, carefully taylored to their runes and techniques to require the minimum amount of magic points.

That's more or less diametrically different from your standard player sorcerer who is going to have  a somewhat wider range of magics to help himself through confrontations. And in those Malkioni schools where Men-of-All get (the advanced, i.e. RQG rules) sorcery the approach is probably similar - some more flexibility and much less specialization, possibly leading to more frequent MP doublings.

A group like Sir Narib's Company probably has a mix of these approaches - a few highly over-specialized big guns or strict supporters, and a number of less specialized sorcerers able to deal with a variety of tasks.

 

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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2 hours ago, metcalph said:

If Steal Breath is known by sorcerers in Dragon Pass with nary a hint of moral opprobrium then I don't think the west is going to be up in arms about the issue.

I don't know where that idea comes from, I think that anyone making liberal use of Steal Breath in Sartar is going to have a really hard time.

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1 hour ago, Joerg said:

Sorcerers have traditionally come in orders. These look like they have a set of specialists for certain types of spell, knowing or having inscribed maybe two or three of those, carefully taylored to their runes and techniques to require the minimum amount of magic points.

Bear in mind that inscriptions cannot be passed on to others, they are specific to the sorcerer. I think that's why the rules use the word "inscription" instead of "enchantment". Maybe we will see rules for orders with grimoires that act as inscriptions that can be shared, but right now it's not strictly an option.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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6 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

I don't know where that idea comes from, I think that anyone making liberal use of Steal Breath in Sartar is going to have a really hard time.

P390 "This section lists and describes a sample of spells that might be known by sorcerers in the Dragon Pass area."

Steal Breath is one such spell and it is not described as chaotic.  So there is no problem as far as I'm concerned.

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1 hour ago, metcalph said:

P390 "This section lists and describes a sample of spells that might be known by sorcerers in the Dragon Pass area."

Steal Breath is one such spell and it is not described as chaotic.  So there is no problem as far as I'm concerned.

It is exactly the sort of spell that *might* be found in a collection of spells deep in a library. It is exactly the sort of spell that gives sorcerers a very bad reputation. Tap itself isn't Chaotic. But an asphyxiation spell or other soul to energy spell is hardly going to make you well-liked in the hills of Sartar. You'll probably need to live in some kind of defensive tower and surround yourself with mercenaries and servants who don't care what you are doing as long as they are paid.

Jeff

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17 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Bear in mind that inscriptions cannot be passed on to others, they are specific to the sorcerer. I think that's why the rules use the word "inscription" instead of "enchantment". Maybe we will see rules for orders with grimoires that act as inscriptions that can be shared, but right now it's not strictly an option.

But that is not how a grimoire is supposed to work. From the use of "sacred texts" like the Abiding Book or My Black Horse Troop as providing insights that allow a sorcerer to develop a spell from studying them it appears that the grimoires describe correlations of runes, but not the precise manipulation of them in terms of intensity, range, duration as does an inscription.

Telling how it is excessive verbis

 

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3 hours ago, Joerg said:

But that is not how a grimoire is supposed to work...

So maybe they can just encocde the base spell and act as a 1-point inscription. I seem to remember MRQ2 had a similar mechanic, you could cast spells from memory or by opening up your grimoire.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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On 12/4/2018 at 10:33 PM, Sir_Godspeed said:
On 12/4/2018 at 10:29 PM, Julian Lord said:

Even in the 1st Century, the Bible was in circulation in a 3-volume Codex form -- the word "codex" being the original word to designate a bound book.

1st Century is pretty late though - I guess I forgot that Western Genertela is based more on the late Classical period rather than the actual Bronze age. That does to some extent apply to much of Genertela, but it's more evident in the West.ÔĽŅ

Those early 1st Century Christian books were quite small - more the size of modern note books. The much larger book that is shown in the illustration of a Malkioni wizard in the old Gods of Glorantha box turn up in the 4th Century CE. The picture on p380 of RQG with the scrolls placed on sloped shelves reflects a more Bronze Age vibe, but would also represent a serious investment of time and money for its owner. 

I imagine the Abiding Book used by Malkioni liturgists as a large scroll rather than a large book, and therefor the ceremonial practices of the Malkioni as being more like those of Orthodox Jews in the RW. I have an image of important worship ceremonies featuring a group of elderly bearded gentleman dancing around with 1m+ scrolls covered in expensive cloth while chanting and singing discordantly.

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16 minutes ago, Gryphaea said:

the ceremonial practices of the Malkioni as being more like those of Orthodox Jews in the RW. I have an image of important worship ceremonies featuring a group of elderly bearded gentleman dancing around with 1m+ scrolls covered in expensive cloth while chanting and singing discordantly.

Considering that the picture of a stereotypical zzaburi in the Guide is clearly based heavily on a Jewish Kohen of the Jerusalem Temple, that seems good to me.

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On 12/12/2018 at 5:32 AM, Sir_Godspeed said:

Considering that the picture of a stereotypical zzaburi in the Guide is clearly based heavily on a Jewish Kohen of the Jerusalem Temple, that seems good to me.

Don't forget the Zoroastrians.  They are the origin of the very word "Magi", from which we get magic etc.  They had an immense impact on Judaism.  It was the Persians who freed the Jews from the Babylonian captivity after all.  The word Pharisee derives from Parsee, which directly refers to Zoroastrianism and is also derived from the word Persia.  Remember the  3 wise men and Simon Magus?  All Zoroastrians.  It is likely that the 4 Element system also derives from Zoroastrianism and travels west to be adopted by the Greeks who assume it is Chaldean.  The Jews before Babylon were pantheists, after Babylon they became proper monotheists. Here are some pictures of some magi:

magian.JPG

dasturji_kotwal.jpg

magi_sacrificing.jpg

Edited by Darius West
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While all that is absolutely true - I was actually specifically referring to the breastplate the zzaburi is wearing. In Glorantha, this breastplate represents the Runes, iirc, but in real life it was a symbol of a high priest of the kohen priests, and the stones were a symbol of office, as well as a means of divination, iirc.

(pardon the low resolution)

 

priest.jpg

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On 12/14/2018 at 3:02 AM, Sir_Godspeed said:

While all that is absolutely true - I was actually specifically referring to the breastplate the zzaburi is wearing. In Glorantha, this breastplate represents the Runes, iirc, but in real life it was a symbol of a high priest of the kohen priests, and the stones were a symbol of office, as well as a means of divination, iirc. (pardon the low resolution)

Yes, there was that show "Dig" that featured it recently.  I think the breastplate is called the "Hoshen".  I never watched it to the end, mores the pity. 

I call it a great way to store one's POW storage crystals, as well as those spell amping ones.  A few pts of chest armor thrown in.  Noice!

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On 12/15/2018 at 4:18 PM, Darius West said:

I call it a great way to store one's POW storage crystals, as well as those spell amping ones.

Derak the Dark Troll, in our old RQ2 campaign, had a leather jacket with "DERAK" picked out in POW Storage Crystals. He definitely had style.

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