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Quackerjack

The Bat, and Beyond Level 10

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The 13G book points out that no PC of any level is capable of taking on the Crimson Bat when it's well-fed. That is as it should be, given the rule structure. But my player is already indicating he is interested in shaping reality in Glorantha the way Harrek or Jar Eel does. Ie, bringing back the Green Age and that sort of thing. Any ideas on how to do play this sort of thing out? I want to avoid a game around politics and rulership, and have it be more personal. 

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That is bound to get rather free-form, as normal rules of any game break down at this level except for the very abstract HQ conflict resolution or similar purely narratice approaches. The likes of Harrek or Jar-eel are capable of taking on the Crimson Bat when it is well-fed or hunger-crazed. Conflict between the likes of them shouldn't be taken to detailed dice rolling IMO.

Bringing back The Green Age should be cosmologically impossible, as it would be reverting all of history and the Gods War. Bringing back an aspect of the Green or at least Golden Age like the forests of Prax or even reconstituting Tada or Genert should be possible, but even a re-constituted Genert would be able to have all his Golden Age comrades like Yamsur or Seolinthur around, let alone those no longer remembered. Entropy is a real thing in Glorantha, and can always only be partially inverted, and possibly with as great or greater cost somewhere else.

The early Artmali (Afidisia) did manage to return Innocence to the Gods War, but in a very limited way.

A "realistic" way to change their part of the world this way (amidst the general ruin all around them) would be to do something similar to what Sartar or Belintar did. Go about to aid (and gain subsequent support of) communities in dire straits, build up that support until you either apotheosize or become a godking demigod. In the interest of on-going playability, the godking demigod goal might be more to your player's taste than achieving his goal through leaving the physical existence in the middle world.

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2 hours ago, Joerg said:

Bringing back The Green Age should be cosmologically impossible, as it would be reverting all of history and the Gods War. Bringing back an aspect of the Green or at least Golden Age like the forests of Prax or even reconstituting Tada or Genert should be possible, but even a re-constituted Genert would be able to have all his Golden Age comrades like Yamsur or Seolinthur around, let alone those no longer remembered. Entropy is a real thing in Glorantha, and can always only be partially inverted, and possibly with as great or greater cost somewhere else.

It would be larger scale than anything we have seen described, possibly including the Greater Darkness, but we can always speculate. The GM would have to be ready to test Glorantha to destruction, but that's part of the fun, isn't it? Some of the following may be speculative, but you're basically on your own anyway. 

One peaceable way would be to simply replant the world with trees until rationality succumbs and we go back to the old ways before thinking. Though it might not be exactly what was wanted. Make sure to kill any pesky Fire Gods while you're at it. Oakfed, your time is up. Zorak Zoran, get your affairs in order. 

I thought about killing off the Man Rune, but that's probably a step too far back. 

It might also be useful to consider what happens if an enterprising Hero assassinates Time, at Dawn or perhaps later. A Heroquest that did this could arguably be seen to void the Compromise and have all sorts of interesting knock-on effects. Permitting 'Time travel' would be one of them, I would say, so it's a stepping stone to going for the actual Green Age. 

Or a Hero could show that devoured Gods can be rescued from the maw of Entropy/Kajabor (which possibly later became Time). Doing this might involve all sorts of strangeness, like Heroquesting to the lair of Arachne Solara, which might be outside of Glorantha. Say hi to the spiderlings. You can then sneak back currently dead gods like Genert or even gods who were annihilated and are now utterly forgotten. 

Some of this might mean that your player runs a Chaos Hero, but illuminate yourself properly and perhaps it will be tolerable. 

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4 hours ago, The God Learner said:

One peaceable way would be to simply replant the world with trees until rationality succumbs and we go back to the old ways before thinking. Though it might not be exactly what was wanted. Make sure to kill any pesky Fire Gods while you're at it. Oakfed, your time is up. Zorak Zoran, get your affairs in order. 

But you'd have to get rid of those before the Green Age could come into being. After all, the Green Age is a time of innocence. No hunger, no death, no separation of us vs. them, no concept of good vs. evil, etc. As soon as you bring any action like that into being, the Green Age ends for innocence has been lost.

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1 hour ago, jajagappa said:

But you'd have to get rid of those before the Green Age could come into being. After all, the Green Age is a time of innocence. No hunger, no death, no separation of us vs. them, no concept of good vs. evil, etc. As soon as you bring any action like that into being, the Green Age ends for innocence has been lost.

Looking at the Afidisa story, a limited recurrance of innocence is possible, up to reviving the ruined Camp of Innocence on the shores of the Sea of Blue Flame (Revealed Mythologies p.47f). The story (told from a Doraddi perspective) claims that the Artmali of that period were not awake, like themselves were.

This does indicate that a mental regression of a portion of the populace might be able to impose a state of innocence that might even be reflected by a land susceptible to this. Even ravaged Genert's Garden, all of whose surviving inhabitants have a deep yearning to the better times they had deemed lost forever. Even if that means a reversal of the effects of Waha's covenant.

I am less inclined to believe that anything like this might work for the Orlanthi, but I am willing to be convinced otherwise.

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Mechanically, the Crimson Bat can be killed, you just do a lot of damage to a vital location. Historically, it has been killed many times, so killing the Bat is not particularly unusual. 

Personally, I don't like sweeping statements such as "no PC of any level is capable of taking on the Crimson Bat when it's well-fed", but I can see why it is there in terms of D&D players going through Deities & Demigods to take them out.

In my games, if the PCs have taken out the Crimson Bat, they have either done it by dealing a shedload of damage or by using magical means. 

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2 hours ago, soltakss said:

I can see why it is there in terms of D&D players going through Deities & Demigods to take them out.

The difference is, in Glorantha it seems there is always a worse munchkin. So you want to do the Lightbringer Quest? Harmast was first and already did it, twice actually. You want to ravage the Heroplane? Get in line, Arkat already been there and the Lunars are doing it now. You want to kill a god? Harrek did that and is wearing its skin. Oh you want to be a world-dominating sorcerer? Hello, my name is the Invisible God, sorry, Zzabur. But why don't you go and talk to those Jrusteli fellows first.

 

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8 hours ago, Quackerjack said:

Some Bat Priests met their doom today. So, who's going to control the Bat tomorrow? Hello? Anybody there? Oooops.

That's what happens when PCs don't think things through, or, "One problem at a time, guys..."

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18 hours ago, The God Learner said:

The difference is, in Glorantha it seems there is always a worse munchkin.

Not to mention the sadly persistent tale that the current set of gods are mostly God Learners, time travellers and various constructs (Yelmite, Theyalan and otherwise) anyway. Your ears should perk up every time 'syncretic' is mentioned. 

 

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1 hour ago, soltakss said:

"One problem at a time, guys..."

"It would be nice if we could control the Bat instead of that nasty Red Goddess."

"I suppose we could serve as the new Bat-Priests, just for a little while."

"In an interim capacity."

"Right. It's for the common good, really."

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1 hour ago, The God Learner said:

"It would be nice if we could control the Bat instead of that nasty Red Goddess."

"I suppose we could serve as the new Bat-Priests, just for a little while."

"In an interim capacity."

"Right. It's for the common good, really."

To be honest, that's what my Players would probably do.

I'd probably grumble a bit and then begrudgingly allow it, but it had better be a good roll, while secretly being very pleased indeed.

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