Jump to content
Tywyll

Do spells have a visual component (when they don't obviously have one)?

Recommended Posts

 
 
 
 
3
14 hours ago, Shiningbrow said:

Two Ernaldans are in an argument (perhaps who's the best champion to Bless, perhaps whether to go to war, whoe's the next High Priestess... or maybe just what to have for lunch). One, decides to get her own way and casts Charisma (she really wants tacos! - which may or may not be the name of the champion or priestess 😛 )

Will the other priestess(es) say "OMG(dess) - you're right, Our Great Mother has spoken - Tacos it is!" Or, will they go "Oi! Don't you try that on us, we know what you're doing!!!" And, go and cast their own Charisma (cos Sandwiches is better... again, champion or otherwise)

 

(I'm bamboozled that the Trickster Lie spell doesn't have a resistance roll!)

Unlike seemingly everyone else, I agree with you. 

It's one thing to roleplay, it's another to have to forego logic completely. Things that don't make sense will make me lose interest in a film/show... and will definitely be a huge flaw in a roleplaying game. 

I think it should be up to the GM to decide which spells are flashy/obvious, and which are not. It also might depend on the situation. Assassins/thieves might not want to make a big show out of it, while an Orlanthi rushing into battle might want to impress everyone. An Ernalda priestess will want everyone to believe she is right (like, really, factually right), which won't happen if people know she's just "cheating".

 

Also, Lie should be resisted.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The common Rune Spells can be cast using any Rune which implies that different gods with different Runic associations can achieve the same result.

To me, that variation would extend to the visual effects of their spells.

The visual effects of Heal Wound or Spirit Block may look very different than those of the same spells from an agricultural god.

These visual effects of course may include no visual effect.  This would be quite common for spells from gods who focus on stealth (thieves, Assassins, Hunters etc).  Some gods may have spells that have very noticeable visual effects and others that don't.

 

In my opinion, the answer is that yes they do have a visual effect.  However, just like zero is a number, the visual effect may  be None.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, gochie said:

It's one thing to roleplay, it's another to have to forego logic completely. Things that don't make sense will make me lose interest in a film/show... and will definitely be a huge flaw in a roleplaying game. 

An Ernalda priestess will want everyone to believe she is right (like, really, factually right), which won't happen if people know she's just "cheating".

An Ernalda priestess calling on Ernalda's power is cheating? Baffled. That just makes no sense at all. Fair enough, though, maybe this isn't your kind of game world.

Edited by PhilHibbs

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Mechashef said:

In my opinion, the answer is that yes they do have a visual effect.  However, just like zero is a number, the visual effect may  be None.

Yep, I think the question of whether spells (in general) have a visual effect or not is "yes, maybe" (YGWV and all that). While some obviously have some visual effect (like Claws), some others obviously don't (like Lie, which actually says "undetectably" in the description), while the rest is up to the GM. We ended up debating around the Charisma spell specifically as an example, but whatever different GMs decide about how to handle that spell shouldn't be mistaken as the way they would handle all other spells.

Charisma is an interesting case though, and I originally also figured it would be an "invisible" spell. But after thinking about it more, I like the idea of it having some visible effect indeed (although I think it might vary depending on the situation), but I realized that "visible" is different from "noticeable". For instance, if a character uses Charisma to woe the daughter of a neighbouring clan, it might indeed have a visible effect -- time seems to slow down, the light falls just right on your character's hair which is caressed by the warm Fire Season wind, the runes on their neck seemingly glistening... (and yes I totally want to write Gloranthan erotica now). The effect was visible, but the target didn't notice, that was the whole point... it just looked that way at that moment... because really what's the alternative? You cast the Charisma spell, and there's nothing for the GM to describe, it's just about getting the extra CHA points? Seems a bit bland to me. But again, it's fine for different GMs to do it differently.

Edited by lordabdul
  • Like 2
  • Haha 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/8/2019 at 3:21 PM, Tywyll said:

Do spells, especially Rune Spells, have a visual component when cast?

Some do, some don't, in my game.

Spells such as Fireblade obviously do, as a flaming sword is hard to miss.

Invisibility does, but you can't see it, the visual component is that the target cannot be seen.

For spells such as Bladesharp or Protection, I play that it makes the blade look sharper or the armour/skin look stronger. Now, such a description cannot be described, so I just say "The Lunar soldier uses a scimitar that looks sharp and has apparently strong armour". 

Spells such as Truesword make the blade glow slightly. Seal Wound makes the weapon glow black.

For targeted spells, I normally have a streak going through the air, unless the spell is a hidden one, vast by thieves and assassins.

Spells such as False Form don't have a visible component, as it defeats the whole point of the spell. Face of Lanbril has the indistinguishable face as a component. Lie does not have a visible component. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 5/10/2019 at 4:50 AM, Shiningbrow said:

So - what happens when 2 Ernaldan priestesses (or even just an Initate and a Priestess) both bring down their goddess through (for example) a Charisma spell, and they're arguing against each other?

My point from above isn't that they don't believe the god/dessess exist - it's that they're so prominent in daily life, and so is their magics amongst the religious hierarchy, that using such invocations becomes 'normal', and therefore the motives of the caster more suspect. (especially obvious when an Eurmali is Lie-ing to you... or suddenly sounds really logical (at the time). "Dudes, we should totally go raid Glamour right now - the place has been abandoned!".. "oh, really, who told you that?" - "The Eurmali... come on, let's go!!" )

At the very least, I'd expect extra Resistance rolls to be made. Especially when your 'dude' friend points out the obvious....

Not at all.

If two Ernaldans are arguing and both look very convincing, people know they are using magic and don't care. The most charismatic person isn't always the one who wins the argument, being Charismatic simply helps.

Having two Tricksters using a Lie spell to give different information is similar, "The Rebels went towards the Blue Hills", "The Rebels went towards the Black Caves", both would be believed and the targets would think that the rebels split up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In most Gloranthan communities, everyone knows that the gods act through their worshipers. This isn't considered "cheating" or "tricks" - of course any Ernaldan priestess worth her salt is VERY impressive when she wants to be.  Of course people accept ideas and suggestions of the Trickster from time to time, even if doing so makes no sense on hindsight. Of course the local priests buckle down when confronted by the local Orlanth Rex. That's how society works. 

Another word for the visual aspect of Rune magic is Heroforming. The caster takes on the aspect of the god and often gets referred to as the god. So it wasn't Priestess Arndala who told the council they must make an alliance with the new Prince, it was the goddess Ernalda who spoke. And so on. This is part of the Gloranthan mindset. The gods can and do have multiple incarnations, and sometimes they even confront themselves. Orlanth Adventurous confronts Orlanth Thunderous, and so on.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Jeff said:

 This is part of the Gloranthan mindset. The gods can and do have multiple incarnations, and sometimes they even confront themselves. Orlanth Adventurous confronts Orlanth Thunderous, and so on.

I've got more reading to do.... :(

3 hours ago, Jeff said:

of course any Ernaldan priestess worth her salt is VERY impressive when she wants to be

True - unfortunately (the way I see it), Charisma (spell) isn't all that awesome mechanically, as per RAW... maybe only a 15-20% increase in communication skills.  Clever Tongue doubles Orate and Fast Talk... which would be much more significant (and impressive) than Charisma.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, soltakss said:

 

For targeted spells, I normally have a streak going through the air, unless the spell is a hidden one, vast by thieves and assassins.

 

I've never played that.... let the Befuddle confound everyone! (also, much more fun when the players don't know that it's even happened, let alone who cast it!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

An Ernalda priestess calling on Ernalda's power is cheating? Baffled. That just makes no sense at all. Fair enough, though, maybe this isn't your kind of game world.

Using external powers that only you have access to to convince people to do things they otherwise wouldn't... Yeah that could be seen as a kind of "cheating" in an argument.

I agree that there are visual effects for less obvious spells, including Charisma, but they are just not noticed. The Charisma issue isn't resolved at all by saying "people just accept that the goddess speaks through the priestess". Again, what if it's priestess vs priestess? One Ernalda is right, the other isn't? What if it's a Malkioni, broo, or whatever other species who is targeted, and really doesn't give a crap if he's listening to Ernalda? 

Also, a cultist can (often) use rune magic to do things the god/dess would disapprove of. I get visual effects for spells, I just don't really get the "evoking your God" every time. Gods are less personally invested in tlmy World I guess, they just lend their cultist the tools to do the work. 

To me, this extravagant God personnification happens when you use Divine Intervention, or maybe when you use some heroquest powers. 

My Glorantha is fine, thank you. I just like when things make sense. If they want to start publishing the specific visual effects of each spell then we'll talk about how some don't or do make sense. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, gochie said:

The Charisma issue isn't resolved at all by saying "people just accept that the goddess speaks through the priestess".

So an answer from Chaosium's creative director, who has had access to Greg's thinking on Glorantha for decades, isn't good enough? Ok, I think this is a lost cause. Like I said, maybe Glorantha isn't to your taste, and that's ok. Plenty of people whose opinions I respect don't like Glorantha, and this is one of the reasons.

6 minutes ago, gochie said:

Again, what if it's priestess vs priestess? One Ernalda is right, the other isn't?

Nobody is saying "she cast Charisma therefore everyone has to obey her without question", which is what you appear to be arguing against. They roll their dice and that decides who is the most convincing.

6 minutes ago, gochie said:

What if it's a Malkioni, broo, or whatever other species who is targeted, and really doesn't give a crap if he's listening to Ernalda? 

Nobody has to. They probably wouldn't even notice the signs of an Ernalda Charisma spell, so you just run the game mechanics the way you would normally, but with a bit of a CHA bonus to the skills. I really don't see the problem here.

Yes, people might notice that divine or spiritual power is present in the world. No, that doesn't make it cheating. That's Glorantha - everything is magic and magic is everything. You wouldn't call an engineer a cheat for using a slide rule.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
50 minutes ago, PhilHibbs said:

So an answer from Chaosium's creative director, who has had access to Greg's thinking on Glorantha for decades, isn't good enough? Ok, I think this is a lost cause. Like I said, maybe Glorantha isn't to your taste, and that's ok. Plenty of people whose opinions I respect don't like Glorantha, and this is one of the reasons.

Nobody is saying "she cast Charisma therefore everyone has to obey her without question", which is what you appear to be arguing against. They roll their dice and that decides who is the most convincing.

Nobody has to. They probably wouldn't even notice the signs of an Ernalda Charisma spell, so you just run the game mechanics the way you would normally, but with a bit of a CHA bonus to the skills. I really don't see the problem here.

Yes, people might notice that divine or spiritual power is present in the world. No, that doesn't make it cheating. That's Glorantha - everything is magic and magic is everything. You wouldn't call an engineer a cheat for using a slide rule.

I appologize, I didn't realize questioning the logic, even if it is from the Creative Director, meant the game I've been playing for over 20 years is not for me. No offense to Chaosium staff, but we're all human, and it's possible they haven't thought of every possible situation/conflict. Of course I just might not agree with something that makes sense to them... Which is fine. Also, it is but one (rather small) aspect of the World. If I disagree and houserule it differently, it hardly makes the game world "not for me". I assume most players have some disagreements/houserules... Doesn't mean Glorantha/Runequest is not for them. 

Now that we've cleared that up, the way Jeff put it seemed like the priestess turns into this mighty Ernalda avatar, which contradicts your "They probably wouldn't even notice the signs of an Ernalda Charisma spell" for other species/cultures.

Some spells, I agree could be showy (although I think becoming an embodiment of your God should be reserved for Di's)... Specifically war/battle related magic. Others, like Charisma, would possibly have clues/tells, but you would really have to be observant or resist the spell to be able to tell. Finally, others would be completely invisible, like stealth-related spells that aren't resisted.

In Charisma's case, I could even see a failed Orate roll as one of the people may have noticed the effects of the magic and called the priestess out on it.

I guess the whole thing I disagree with the most is that people would knowingly accept to be swayed by a magical effect, just because the World is full of magic. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, gochie said:

I guess the whole thing I disagree with the most is that people would knowingly accept to be swayed by a magical effect, just because the World is full of magic. 

Because Rune magic is the power, voice, and manifestation of a deity. If you go against your deities and they withdraw their support for you, effectively cursing you and your community, you learn that it is best to be swayed by "magical effects".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, gochie said:

What if it's a Malkioni, broo, or whatever other species who is targeted, and really doesn't give a crap if he's listening to Ernalda? 

Then I'd expect a Resistance or Opposed roll to whatever she is saying. 

But also think about what Charisma means - it doubles your CHA. This can manifest in multiple ways, but particularly in augmenting communication and leadership (it's not necessarily appearance). How would a an initiate of Ernalda use her charisma vs. these unbelievers? With a Malkioni she presents a logical oration, guided by the mind of Ernalda and how she convinced (or deceived) the logicians of the West (or perhaps its a mystical Song hinting at secret knowledge of how to Combine and Separate magical powers in new ways). With a broo she may be visible as the angry Earth Mother who intimidated Thed, and thus invokes her Intimidation to maximum effect.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, jajagappa said:

Because Rune magic is the power, voice, and manifestation of a deity. If you go against your deities and they withdraw their support for you, effectively cursing you and your community, you learn that it is best to be swayed by "magical effects".

But the use of Rune magic isn't always in the best interests of those deities... We'd like to think that Ernalda wouldn't like her priestesses abusing the powers given to them... but, they're only human (usually) after all, and have human foibles.

And, again, it's not "go(ing) against your deities", it's going against the individual who manifested the power of the deity (ie, cast the spell). And, even then, it's not really "going against" - it's merely noticing the use it was put to...

Edited by Shiningbrow
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
26 minutes ago, gochie said:

the way Jeff put it seemed like the priestess turns into this mighty Ernalda avatar, which contradicts your "They probably wouldn't even notice the signs of an Ernalda Charisma spell" for other species/cultures.

But this "contradiction" in all likelihood IS part of the magic and its power.  Other Ernaldans see or hear the shadow or voice of the goddess. Outsiders are affected by the presence of this person, not necessarily any manifestation of Ernalda (or maybe there is! the ground trembles at her voice, your mind feels heavy with the weight of her words, or whatever).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, Shiningbrow said:

But the use of Rune magic isn't always in the best interests of those deities... We'd like to think that Ernalda wouldn't like her priestesses abusing the powers given to them... but, they're only human (usually) after all, and have human foibles.

As long as they act within the bounds of the cult and provide Ernalda worship, what is, or is not, abuse of that power? There are plenty of examples from Esrolia of powerful queens fighting each other (both in the past, and recently, e.g. Hendira vs. Samastina). Did Hendira abuse her powers? Samastina proved herself closer to Ernalda, but may have "abused" more powers to get herself made Queen. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, gochie said:

Now that we've cleared that up, the way Jeff put it seemed like the priestess turns into this mighty Ernalda avatar,

I think that's over-stating it.

Quote

which contradicts your "They probably wouldn't even notice the signs of an Ernalda Charisma spell" for other species/cultures.

Someone with a CHA over 30 is pretty impressive, and it would be a reasonable conclusion that divine power has been invoked even if the spell doesn't have obvious zing-bang effects when cast. The enhanced CHA would be apparent, but the source would not necessarily be.

Quote

In Charisma's case, I could even see a failed Orate roll as one of the people may have noticed the effects of the magic and called the priestess out on it.

Again, just baffled that an Orlanthi would call out a priestess for doing something that Gloranthans consider to be so perfectly normal and acceptable.

Quote

I guess the whole thing I disagree with the most is that people would knowingly accept to be swayed by a magical effect, just because the World is full of magic. 

Nobody accuses accountants of cheating for using a calculator. To us, this is a game, and we define some parts of it as magic and some not. To Gloranthans, it's all a normal part of life. In the HeroQuest game system, there's literally no difference between a mundane ability and a magical one, and in that respect HQ is more like Glorantha than RuneQuest.

Edited by PhilHibbs
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Everyone uses magic. It's not a crime and it's not cheating. Powerful people use more or better magic. 

Sure, you might know that magic is being used and that might give you a bonus, or you could use a Passion as an augment because magic is being used. You could also question the result of a contest because magic is being used. 

However, when PCs use magic, Players don't accept that NPCs might not accept the result because PCs used magic.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, gochie said:

I appologize, I didn't realize questioning the logic, even if it is from the Creative Director, meant the game I've been playing for over 20 years is not for me.

That was wrong of me, I apologise. I rather did become "some guy on the internet", didn't I? It's just that to me, the integral nature of magic to Glorantha is one of the biggest positive features. It is THE defining feature that makes it great to me.

Edited by PhilHibbs
  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, two Ernaldan priestesses arguing with each other using magic does present certain theological problems.  

Now in arguing against each other, they are not arguing against the Goddesses' interests.  The Goddess is vast and encompasses multitudes even to the extent of a tiff here and there.  In having the disagreement, they are still acting as Ernaldans do and thus there is no sin against Ernalda.  Ernalda does not have a Great Checklist of what is right and what is wrong for every particular circumstance, She has a wide variety of answers, available to her worshippers through myth and magic, but because of the Compromise her worshippers need to work out which of Ernalda's answers is right for a given circumstance.  And since a common myth of Ernalda in the God Time is arguing with her Sister-Goddesses, in having the argument and using charmisma spells etc, both are being Ernalda.

Most gloranthans being simple folks have long accepted the rule that whoever wins is in the right.  A few are rightly concerned with the conundrums posed - how can both Ernaldans be Right?  What is Right?  What is Ernalda?  The names for these people are God Learners, Philosophers and Illuminates.  

 

 

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Nobody accuses accountants of cheating for using a calculator. To us, this is a game, and we define some parts of it as magic and some not. To Gloranthans, it's all a normal part of life. In the HeroQuest game system, there's literally no difference between a mundane ability and a magical one, and in that respect HQ is more like Glorantha than RuneQuest.

I have never heard it said that way, the lack of difference twixt skills and magic, that is interesting.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, soltakss said:

Everyone uses magic. It's not a crime and it's not cheating. Powerful people use more or better magic. 

Sure, you might know that magic is being used and that might give you a bonus, or you could use a Passion as an augment because magic is being used. You could also question the result of a contest because magic is being used. 

However, when PCs use magic, Players don't accept that NPCs might not accept the result because PCs used magic.

And, that' was basically the angle I was coming from...

If the players can do it, so too can the NPCs. And, I'd be quite certain that the players would most certainly try to question the (ab)use of magic to influence people (in a way that may be considered "cheating"). Especially if they're told "nope - you totally accept her argument". Especially, again, when that quiet little wallflower they've known and loved for ages suddenly turns into something awesomely powerful and amazing. (ok, exaggerating... but a 9 to 18 would be pretty obvious)

Q: If someone has a Detect Magic spell on at the time, and see (and maybe know exactly the spell) would they be less likely to accept the outcome powered by a Charisma or Clever Tongue - or not?

 

(again, I'm not denying the power of the gods. What I'm saying is that most people know that individuals will use that power to their own ends, and not always to better the goals of the deities they serve)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...