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klecser

Pre-gen questions for first game

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Some general questions about some pre-gens for GMing my first session. I’ll be running Cattle Raid.

My group of five will be: Harmast, Yanioth, Vasana, Vostor, and Nathem. I am jettisoning Sorala and Vishi Dunn as options cuz Sorcery.

My perception of what everyone is good at:

Harmast: Sword plus utility spells, plus you get to ride a Zebra as a vanity mount. Bargain skill strength.

Yanioth: Priestess Magic user that can summon and control a Medium Earth Elemental. (Not sure why they tease the Large one? Bait a player into spending three of four Rune points on a big one and then not being able to have two points left to control it? Seems like kind of a snide way to tease/"gotcha" a new player.) Orate skill strength.

Vasana: Good general combatant, can charge with her Bison (with a capital B). Battle skill strength.

Voster: Diverse combat skills (weapon and spirit magic) plus small fire elemental. Battle and Scan skill strength. (I noticed he has entries for both Medium and Large shields. Does that mean he carries both at the same time? Obviously he can only use one at a time.)

Nathem: Clear scout with kitty cat, plus tricked out magic bow. Lots of scout-y skills. Lots of utility Spirit Magic.

What else did I miss about what each character is good at?

Edited by klecser

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Their Runes. Not only does it define their character but with Runic inspiration hints at how they will act. Note that with 19 CHA Vasana is the group's leader (most groups assume its Harmast because his noble)

Up to you but I generally play that Vostor carries only the Large Shield, and no Javelins.

Good luck and have fun

Edited by Psullie

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Do you think it would be wise to pre-mark their character sheet with the Rune that each weapon/spell is associated with so that they have some pre-hints for Runic Inspiration, or is that stealing autonomy too much? Or print pages 48-49 of the core book? I know my group and I feel like if they aren't told options they won't take them.

Edited by klecser

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21 minutes ago, klecser said:

Do you think it would be wise to pre-mark their character sheet with the Rune that each weapon/spell is associated with so that they have some pre-hints for Runic Inspiration, or is that stealing autonomy too much? Or print pages 48-49 of the core book? I know my group and I feel like if they aren't told options they won't take them.

I'd put it on their sheet so they will know; it doesn't steal autonomy/agency to give them the option!!!

One thing you might do, early on, is narrate some mechanics that your NPC's do, explicitly citing Runic Inspiration, or a Passion, etc, as an Augment to a given roll; "you attempt to intimidate him, but the Orlanth uses his Air Rune's proud nature (rolls) to Augment his Loyalty:Family (rolls) and scoffs at your threat."

Including any bad roll, "oh damn!  He's gonna take a -20 to his skill!"

 

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1 hour ago, klecser said:

Harmast: Sword plus utility spells, plus you get to ride a Zebra as a vanity mount. Bargain skill strength.

Don't forget Insight(Human) - good sense of what others they encounter might do.  Both Farsee and Detect Enemies can be useful. And his Spirit Combat is pretty effective.  Of course, he also Hates Greydogs.

1 hour ago, klecser said:

Yanioth: Priestess Magic user that can summon and control a Medium Earth Elemental.

Also very good Spirit Combat. Charisma, Inviolable, and Heal Body are all very useful (probably more so than worrying about an elemental).  Very strong Earth and Fertility runes which can help inspire other actions.

1 hour ago, klecser said:

Vasana: Good general combatant, can charge with her Bison (with a capital B). Battle skill strength.

Decent Scan and Listen skills. Her Rune magic such as Fearless, Lightning, and Shield can all come in handy. Lance coupled with Bison charge can be very effective.

1 hour ago, klecser said:

Voster: Diverse combat skills (weapon and spirit magic) plus small fire elemental. Battle and Scan skill strength. (I noticed he has entries for both Medium and Large shields. Does that mean he carries both at the same time?

Pick one shield to have with him. Nobody is going to carry two along, especially when on foot.

1 hour ago, klecser said:

jettisoning Sorala ... as options cuz Sorcery

You can always use the Quickstart version of Sorola which provides spirit magic (e.g. Detect spells) instead of sorcery. She's also decent with sword and adds in more knowledge skills.

1 hour ago, klecser said:

some pre-hints for Runic Inspiration, or is that stealing autonomy too much? Or print pages 48-49 of the core book? I know my group and I feel like if they aren't told options they won't take them.

If you know they often don't take or miss options, then at least walk through the Runic (and Passion) inspirations and skill augments. My players made good use of these, and they can significantly help in particular situations.

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2 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Also very good Spirit Combat. Charisma, Inviolable, and Heal Body are all very useful (probably more so than worrying about an elemental).  Very strong Earth and Fertility runes which can help inspire other actions.

I noticed this for several characaters, but I'm not sure how they'd use it? What do you use Spirit Combat for? The rulebook in the Skills entry says: "Spirit Combat covers contests of psychic energy, such as when a spirit tries to possess (or intrude into) a corporeal body, or a shaman tries to bind a spirit, or when two magicians enter a trance, discorporate, and do magical battle."

And the Spirits chapter says: "Spirit combat may be initiated only by a discorporate being. A normal corporeal being may not initiate spirit combat. A shaman wishing to engage in spirit combat must first discorporate to begin spirit combat."

Nobody in Cattle Raid seems to have any options for summoning a spirit. Is there some obvious way to engage in Spirit Combat that would be relevant in Cattle Raid?

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14 hours ago, klecser said:

Do you think it would be wise to pre-mark their character sheet with the Rune that each weapon/spell is associated with so that they have some pre-hints for Runic Inspiration, or is that stealing autonomy too much?

Good idea, but it raises an interesting point. I just looked through the pregens and poor old Nathem is losing out on weapon augments. He uses axe and bow, but has ony 50% in Earth and nothing at all in Fire. I suppose if he goes for an Earth augment and fails it, earning a penalty on all Earth related activities, he can just try not to engage in melee and hang back with his bow instead.

Spirit Combat is fairly unusual, unless you are investigating ancient haunted ruins or fighting a disease outbreak. Both of which happen a lot, actually, but that's not what Cattle Raid is about.

Edited by PhilHibbs
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14 hours ago, klecser said:

... plus you get to ride a Zebra as a vanity mount ...

Don't forget sheer speed.  His mount can get him further, faster, than un-mounted.  And while magic can do that too, a Zebra costs nothing from his Rune Pool or MPs...

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Remember the Vostor Vasana Dynamic, it's a good way to demonstrate opposed rolls. Vasana has Hate Lunar Empire at 90%, Vostor normally opposes with Honour at 70% (a few have used Moon at 80% - The Empire is not the Red Moon, the Empire is a corruption of her ideals by the Emperor. He only has Loyalty Emperor 60% and not forced to roll).

Usually it ends up with tie. So Vasana is suspicious of his behaviour, until proven otherwise. On few occasions Vasana has failed and vostor succeeded, so they are good mates. and of course the opposite. Vasana waits to be betrayed so she can kill him. However I usually force her to roll again after a successful mission or when vostor saves the day and Vostor usually get a bonus. On one occasion Vasana has left Vostor to die...

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1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

Good idea, but it raises an interesting point. I just looked through the pregens and poor old Nathem is losing out on weapon augments. He uses axe and bow, but has ony 50% in Earth and nothing at all in Fire. I suppose if he goes for an Earth augment and fails it, earning a penalty on all Earth related activities, he can just try not to engage in melee and hang back with his bow instead.

Do you think the intent behind giving him the Multimissile matrix is to compensate for that?

I'm most concerned with my players getting an accurate impression of the flavor, and having fun. I'm certain whoever chooses Nathem will have a blast.

Edited by klecser

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1 minute ago, klecser said:

Do you think the intent behind giving him the Multimissile matrix is to compensate for that?

Could be, but Augments aren't everything anyway.

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On 5/27/2019 at 9:49 PM, klecser said:

What do you use Spirit Combat for? The rulebook in the Skills entry says: "Spirit Combat covers contests of psychic energy, such as when a spirit tries to possess (or intrude into) a corporeal body, or a shaman tries to bind a spirit, or when two magicians enter a trance, discorporate, and do magical battle."

Dream-wefts! (Check them out in the Quickstart p.33)

On 5/27/2019 at 9:49 PM, klecser said:

Nobody in Cattle Raid seems to have any options for summoning a spirit. Is there some obvious way to engage in Spirit Combat that would be relevant in Cattle Raid?

Idrima does!!! If those pesky adventurers happen to thwart Idrima's sprul-pa, she just might decide to make their lives more difficult, particularly if they seem reluctant to join her cause.

13 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Spirit Combat is fairly unusual, unless you are investigating ancient haunted ruins or fighting a disease outbreak. Both of which happen a lot, actually, but that's not what Cattle Raid is about.

Hmm, Broken Tower... just might be an ancient ruin, and, oh, there's an ancient Earth goddess haunting it. And she wants people to sacrifice (cattle) to her! Oh! The adventurers don't want to go along and are stealing her offerings! Well, maybe if her dream-wefts possess them, they'll cooperate more...  😉

At least in my run through, Idrima didn't like people stealing her offerings.

 

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13 hours ago, PhilHibbs said:

Spirit Combat is fairly unusual

It was rare in my old RQ3 campaign since most of the PC's did not have much capability to prevent it. But now that they've got some Rune points, some skill in Spirit Combat, and an accessible Spirit Block, I'm quite happy to make spirits more prominent. 😈

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3 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Dream-wefts! (Check them out in the Quickstart p.33)

Idrima does!!! If those pesky adventurers happen to thwart Idrima's sprul-pa, she just might decide to make their lives more difficult, particularly if they seem reluctant to join her cause.

Hmm, Broken Tower... just might be an ancient ruin, and, oh, there's an ancient Earth goddess haunting it. And she wants people to sacrifice (cattle) to her! Oh! The adventurers don't want to go along and are stealing her offerings! Well, maybe if her dream-wefts possess them, they'll cooperate more...  😉

At least in my run through, Idrima didn't like people stealing her offerings.

I think the "Cattle Raid" scenario from the GM Screen Pack is different from Broken Tower in the Quickstart...

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5 hours ago, g33k said:

I think the "Cattle Raid" scenario from the GM Screen Pack is different from Broken Tower in the Quickstart...

Yes, it is. My bad!

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10 hours ago, jajagappa said:

Dream-wefts! (Check them out in the Quickstart p.33)

Idrima does!!! If those pesky adventurers happen to thwart Idrima's sprul-pa, she just might decide to make their lives more difficult, particularly if they seem reluctant to join her cause.

Hmm, Broken Tower... just might be an ancient ruin, and, oh, there's an ancient Earth goddess haunting it. And she wants people to sacrifice (cattle) to her! Oh! The adventurers don't want to go along and are stealing her offerings! Well, maybe if her dream-wefts possess them, they'll cooperate more...  😉

At least in my run through, Idrima didn't like people stealing her offerings.

 

Honestly, I don't know what any of that means. There is no Idrima in Cattle Raid?

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14 minutes ago, klecser said:

Honestly, I don't know what any of that means. There is no Idrima in Cattle Raid?

See @jajagappa's last post, he was muddling up Cattle Raid with The Broken Tower from the Quickstart. Which, to be fair, deals with the aftermath of a cattle raid...

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1 hour ago, PhilHibbs said:

See @jajagappa's last post, he was muddling up Cattle Raid with The Broken Tower from the Quickstart. Which, to be fair, deals with the aftermath of a cattle raid...

Yeah, and I was a little bemused to realize when you add up ALL THE PUBLISHED ADVENTURES for RQG ... you end up with 50% Cattle Raids!

 

Which, you know... may be Chaosium telling us something about Sartarite's and cows...

 

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4 hours ago, g33k said:

Yeah, and I was a little bemused to realize when you add up ALL THE PUBLISHED ADVENTURES for RQG ... you end up with 50% Cattle Raids!

 

Which, you know... may be Chaosium telling us something about Sartarite's and cows...

Hardly surprising if you know that Jeff used to be a member of the Seattle Farmers Collective who were famous (notorious?) for their obsession with cattle and raiding thereof.

Cattle raids (or the aftermath of having been raided) are an excellent excuse to pull player characters into some nearby wilderness with rather little preparation.

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4 hours ago, Joerg said:

Hardly surprising if you know that Jeff used to be a member of the Seattle Farmers Collective who were famous (notorious?) for their obsession with cattle and raiding thereof.

Cattle raids (or the aftermath of having been raided) are an excellent excuse to pull player characters into some nearby wilderness with rather little preparation.

Plus the added bonus of having to chase them under dire circumstances. It just makes sense. So many opportunities for varied conflict. If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

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10 hours ago, Joerg said:

Hardly surprising if you know that Jeff used to be a member of the Seattle Farmers Collective who were famous (notorious?) for their obsession with cattle and raiding thereof.

Cattle raids (or the aftermath of having been raided) are an excellent excuse to pull player characters into some nearby wilderness with rather little preparation.

I first read that as "Herdly surprising".... :D

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On 5/29/2019 at 7:22 AM, g33k said:

Yeah, and I was a little bemused to realize when you add up ALL THE PUBLISHED ADVENTURES for RQG ... you end up with 50% Cattle Raids!

Which, you know... may be Chaosium telling us something about Sartarite's and cows...

There's method to the madness.  Trying to manage a milling herd of...anything...while carrying on a fight makes for crazy excitement.  One of my most exciting moments, personally, in the last few years was fighting off a 3 AM raccoon raid while trying to protect a flock of panicked chickens.  It sounds funnier than it was (in the dark and at close quarters, raccoons might as well be bears), but as an exercise in multi-tasking it was a real challenge.

The fight's the thing, but maintaining home and hearth are what set the Sartar adventures apart from wandering-hero games.

!i!

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