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Shiningbrow

A fetching question... (ie, shamanism)

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Q: do spells such as Spirit Screen, Spirit Block etc have any affect on the Bad Man when the wannabe shaman goes up against her/him to get his/her fetch?

RAW, neither entity does MP damage. If the Bad Man wins the round, a taboo is imposed. If the wannabe wins, s/he gets a shamanic ability. But, the above spells are specifically about MP loss - not the imposition of taboos...

Also, does the Spirit Combat skill reduce for skills over 100%, as per other combat skills? If so, then it means the Bad Man is going to be very nasty to any wannabe shaman... 170% is going to reduce most applicants to almost nothing... fortunately, not lethal, but still...

 

One last question - when it comes to pacts, there is the 1% chance of finding a deity to pact with. What would be the POW sacrifice for such a being?

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Remember to augment your Spirit Combat with your Spirit Rune. See if you can find someone to cast Charisma on you as well, or find an Issaries to help get it with Spell Trading. Or Glamour, for a +10%. Shame there's no Spirit Combat Trance...

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47 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

Remember to augment your Spirit Combat with your Spirit Rune.

Spirit Rune?

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17 minutes ago, Crel said:

Spirit Rune?

I guess I mean Man Rune. Or Beast Rune if you're a baboon. Or, if you took an elemental rune bonus to your CHA, maybe that rune could be used. I think I'd allow it. Maybe Moon rune (because POW). Maybe even Loyalty (Tribe), Dance, Sing, or Meditate.

Edited by PhilHibbs

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I'm aware of the augment... I still doubt an Assistant Shaman going for full shaman-hood is going to have a huge skill... and likely whatever their is is going to be reduced.

Either way, that's not my main query...

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15 minutes ago, Shiningbrow said:

I'm aware of the augment... I still doubt an Assistant Shaman going for full shaman-hood is going to have a huge skill... and likely whatever their is is going to be reduced.

I dunno about your players, but one of my players started with 95% Spirit Combat as an assistant shaman of Waha. He's currently up to about 105% after about two sessions (we're playing with weekly instead of seasonal skill increase checks).

Edited by Richard S.

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Those spells will do nothing, since they only reduce MP loss and there is no loss in this fight. And yes, if like Vishi Dunn you start off with 95% in Spirit Combat and go straight up against the Bad Man, you are reduced to 25%.

Edited by PhilHibbs

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Re-reading the section now, it seems to me that the only really important thing is to have as high a Spirit Dance skill as possible, as that dramatically affects the POW and CHA of your fetch. The Bad Man fight is just how many taboos or free shamanic abilities you get. The fetch is the big deal.

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I don't think Spirit Combat rolls are reduced the way weapon skills are. IIRC the over 100% rule only occurs in physical combat situations--it's in the Combat chapter, not the Game System chapter, which leads me to believe it's a specific addition, not a broad rule.

On augments, you could use your Moon Rune mostly, because that Rune can be used in any sort of "magic" situation. I can see Man or Beast applying, or another cult Rune (like Death for a shaman following Waha), but under a strict reading of the augmenting rules I don't believe that counts since as written, they don't seem to care about cultic connections.

I'd rule that those spells aren't effective against the Bad Man, since that encounter doesn't care about MP loss. I could see a weird/mystic shamanism cult having a special Rune spell which would buff Spirit Combat or otherwise interact with this type of encounter, if you would want to give the adventurers in your Glorantha an extra edge.

It's also important to note that you can increase your Spirit Dance roll when awakening the fetch with ritual practices. Spending one extra day adds 50% to this roll. You might be inclined to give the same ritual practices bonus to the Spirit Combat against the Bad Man.

Finally, you could still use a skill augment, such as Sing or Play Instrument.

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1 hour ago, Crel said:

I don't think Spirit Combat rolls are reduced the way weapon skills are. IIRC the over 100% rule only occurs in physical combat situations--it's in the Combat chapter, not the Game System chapter, which leads me to believe it's a specific addition, not a broad rule.

p144:

Quote

Example: Nathem achieves a 120% skill at Move Quietly
through a combination of a critical Rune augment and favorable
conditions., and must escape the notice of a Lunar scout with a
55% chance of Search. The scout’s chance of finding Nathem is
only 35%, reduced from 55% by –20%, the amount by which
Nathem’s skill exceeds 100%. Nathem’s skill is modified to be
100% for this opposed roll.

1 hour ago, Crel said:

It's also important to note that you can increase your Spirit Dance roll when awakening the fetch with ritual practices. Spending one extra day adds 50% to this roll. You might be inclined to give the same ritual practices bonus to the Spirit Combat against the Bad Man.

Finally, you could still use a skill augment, such as Sing or Play Instrument.

Multiple augments to the same roll? I think that's specifically disallowed, isn't it? Let me check...

p144:

Quote

Only one
augment may be attempted per ability, and an ability
can only be used once per session to augment a task
being attempted.

So, the question then becomes... does ritual preparation count as an augment? It is described as such:

p146:

Quote

An adventurer may try to augment the characteristic used in
the resistance table with an appropriate skill, Rune, Passion,
or even with the Meditate skill or ritual.

That also settles another thought, that "becoming inspired" would be different to a "skill augment" and might stack, but that quote clearly implies that runes, passions, skills, meditate, and ritual are all "augments". One only, sorry! Unless you houserule it, of course. I might rule ritual preparation to be different from and stackable with one other augment.

Also, just one day of ritual preparation? I'd go for a whole season, why not?

Edited by PhilHibbs
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2 hours ago, Richard S. said:

I dunno about your players, but one of my players started with 95% Spirit Combat as an assistant shaman of Waha. He's currently up to about 105% after about two sessions (we're playing with weekly instead of seasonal skill increase checks).

I'll emphasize this point. We can quibble about what constitutes "huge" in relation to RQG skills, but this is easy for starting characters to do. 

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29 minutes ago, EpicureanDM said:

I'll emphasize this point. We can quibble about what constitutes "huge" in relation to RQG skills, but this is easy for starting characters to do. 

Yeah, Vishi Dunn starts with 95, and didn't even need to put any elective choices into it.

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Fair enough to all of the above. (Yes, I didn't think you could double-up on bonuses - skill + Rune augment). Which still means most assistants are going to take a hit (unless they're going to be an assistant for many years... although, of course, our adventurers are not normal people!)

Bad Man will usually have an edge (probably minimum of 20%, probably higher), and so the new shaman is likely to have a few taboos, and not likely to have more than the starting ability (after the initial battle).

My question was based on previous iterations of the games and the use of the spells mentioned - which blocked the actual spirit attack, not the MP loss.

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15 hours ago, Crel said:

I don't think Spirit Combat rolls are reduced the way weapon skills are. IIRC the over 100% rule only occurs in physical combat situations--it's in the Combat chapter, not the Game System chapter, which leads me to believe it's a specific addition, not a broad rule.

The reduction is applied in all opposed rolls, including spirit combat (RQG p142 to p144).

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5 hours ago, Kloster said:

The reduction is applied in all opposed rolls, including spirit combat (RQG p142 to p144).

Huh. Missed that somehow, evidently. Thanks.

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On 4/15/2019 at 1:46 PM, Shiningbrow said:

Q: do spells such as Spirit Screen, Spirit Block etc have any affect on the Bad Man when the wannabe shaman goes up against her/him to get his/her fetch?

Yes, they would help. However, I have always played that a prospective Shaman should not use magic when going against the Bad Man, as it is considered cheating. Nothing to stop them doing it, though, except for it being bad form.

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8 minutes ago, Crel said:

How would you rule they help, mechanically?

I was thinking about the old versions of the spells, which effectively reduced the POW of the attacking spirit. The new versions of the spell just reduce damage taken, so they wouldn't help.

On the subject of getting help against the Bad Man in general, Vasana's Saga says:

I asked if he had been cursed by Tada’s spirits and he replied, "I was cursed and blessed. I have one eye in the Spirit World now. There are places in the Spirit World I must travel to repay my debts—the Earth Serpents aided me against the Bad Man and I  owe them dearly. I travel to them in the night, but do not worry, for my spirit-self keeps watch over me."

So, maybe it is OK to get outside help, or use magic, against the Bad Man.

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3 hours ago, soltakss said:

Yes, they would help. However, I have always played that a prospective Shaman should not use magic when going against the Bad Man, as it is considered cheating. Nothing to stop them doing it, though, except for it being bad form.

It'd be only fair - he's called a "Bad Man" for a reason... :p

TBH, yes, I did actually think that.. dishonouring or disrespecting one's ancestors, etc...

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If a character goes up against the Bad Man, and they break off before the 1D6 roll of rounds is reached, am I right in thinking that the taboos and abilities accumulated are disregarded as they have not become a shaman?

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Reading this again, p355:

Quote

The shaman need not choose which shamanic ability at this
point: it may be chosen later.

This implies that the shaman can choose a shamanic ability right away, if they so wish. If you're going to take Spirit Defense (+10 Spirit Combat skill), do it right now!

Edited by PhilHibbs

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