Bell Digest v940418p3

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To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (Daily automated RQ-Digest)
Reply-To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (RuneQuest Daily)
Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Mon, 18 Apr 1994, part 3
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Subject: Strangers in Prax Errata
Message-ID: <>
Date: 17 Apr 94 12:40:06 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3674


I said, when answering Sandy's question: "How much is 'weird Australian-oid' 
material based on Australian culture?"

>No doubt John Hughes (if he's keeping up the RQ Daily at the moment) can
>elucidate further on his sources of inspiration if you like.

And elucidate he certainly did!  (I loved your Gloranthan games stuff John.
Is choral farting really a noble British art?  Perhaps Dave and Nick
could arrange a recital for Convulsion, preferably outside?)

Top Five Topics

Someone writes (sorry, I accidently chopped off the name when pasting to
my WP program!):

>What I'd really like to hear is what areas other people on the
>Digest would like to see developed. Here's my own top 5 list.
>        1) The Arkat cults and Illumination in general
>        2) Dragonnewts
>        3) Lunar Empire
>        4) Sog City
>        5) Heroquesting

Tales of the Reaching Moon carried out a survey asking its readers what topics
they were most interested in as special issues in future.  The top five
were: Lunars, Hero Wars, Magic, Prax, the Wastes.

Full results of the survey (including top 10 best and top 10 worst articles -
some articles appeared on both lists!) are to be found in Tales #11.  If
you ain't a subber, ask me how to put you in touch with your local 
Reaching Moon Megacorp rep!

Strangers in Prax Errata

Devin Cutler (who had some nice things to say about Strangers in Prax
and especially the Lunar Coders) also writes::

>Continuing on with Strangers in Prax.
>While I like the supplement a lot, is there any chance that the writers of
>these supplements can:
>1) Stop letting RQ2 anachronisms slip into the supplements
>2) Ever get the spell casting percentages of NPC's right?
>Frex, take the writeup of Count Julan on page 27:
>POW 18, INT 17, DEX 20
>This would seem to give a spirit magic spell casting percentage of Pow x5% =
>90% plus magic bonus of 25% for a total of 115% - ENC. 
>However, the supplement lists Julan's casting % as 75% - ENC. This could make
>an extremely big deal in combat.
>RQ3 has never been able to get spell casting % correct. Every supplement that
>I have read (and I have them all) botches these. Why? It's really not that
>difficult of a mechanic to understand?
>Perhaps the above was a fluke? Nay. On page 29. Princess Anderida has POW 20,
>INT 16, DEX 15 for a total casting % of 129% - ENC. The supplement lists her
>% as 94%. Hey, only 35% off.
>Her allied spirit Vectis has POW x5% as his casting chance, with no mids for
>Magic Bonus.
>Maculus on page 30 has a POW of 16, INT of 18, DEX of 13 for a casting % of
>96%. Supplement lists it as 75%.
>#1 - Be consistent. Sometimes , even when figured correctly, Casting %
>includes magic bonusses, sometimes not. Which is it?
>#2 - It can't be that hard to edit the NPC stuff to weed out RQ2isms and
>botches like the above. Hell, I'll volunteer to do it at no charge!

OK Devin, I stand guilty as charged.  The stuff-ups with the spirit magic
casting percentages were my fault to start with (I didn't have the RQ3 
Errata for one thing), and my goofs obviously slipped through the editors 
too (tut, tut Mike and Ken!).

Here, to set the record start is the official...

Strangers in Prax: Lunar Coders Errata 1.0:


According to the official RQ3 Errata (available from Avalon Hill - write to
'em and they'll send it to you), the chance to cast spirit magic is
equal to:

(POW x 5) +/- (magic skill modifier) - ENC.

Ergo, here's the correct spirit magic casting percentages of the Coders:

1.      Julan 115% - ENC 20 = 95%
        Armbreaker (allied spirit) 109%

2.      Anderida 129% - ENC 6 = 123%
        Anderida is particularly susceptible to the phases of the
        Red Moon.  Her magic skills are affected.  Alter spirit magic thusly:
        Dark/dying moon (halved)... 65% - ENC 6 = 59%
        Crescent/Half Moon (no change)
        Full Moon (increased by half again)...194% - ENC 6 = 188%
        Vectis (allied spirit) = 126%

3.      Maculus 96% - ENC 5 = 91%
        Seris (familiar) 107%
        Canus (familiar) 138%

4.      Nose Ring - doesn't use magic
        Moonflower (allied spirit) 123%

5.      Eslas 103% - ENC 12 = 91%

6.      Wyvern Mounts: 38% - ENC (rider)
        Reptus: POW 16, INT 12, DEX 13 Spirit Magic: 84% - ENC (rider)
        Albus: POW 15, INT 06, DEX 13 Spirit Magic: 73% - ENC (rider)


Julan's ENC is 20, not 36 as noted.  His fatigue therefore is 37 - 20 ENC = 17.

Maculus's second familiar Canus's Magic Points are not included in Maculus's
total.  Add Canus's 24 to the total, giving a grand total of 111 for Maculus
to play around with.

Red Goddess Magic

Curtis Shenton writes:
>        Lunars and Lunar Sorcerors
>What ever happened to lunar magic from GoG? I thought the variant on
>spirit magic was much more interesting than the RQ3 rules for sorcerors
>but judging from the supplements it's not any where near as common as
>regualr sorceror in the Empire. I was at least expecting the Red Goddess
>initiate in Strangers to have Lunar Magic.

The Lunar Initiate, Maculus, does have Red Goddess magic skills - Amplify 100%,
Combine 69%, Distance 81%, Prolong 55%.  This is why he only knows all of
his spirit magic spells at the minimum (1)  - if he wants 'em bigger, he
can try to Amplify/Prolong etc. 'em.  The sort of thing he might do during
a night operation is cast Light 1, Amplified x5 (50 meter radius) and
Prolonged x12 (1 hour duration) for a cost of 19 magic points. Of course, on 
really dark nights (dark/dying moons) he can't use his spell manipulation
abilities, so would have to use his Glow spell instead.  On nights of the full
moon Maculus's Red Goddess magic skills really come to the fore, as he
can use his full Free Int (18) on each of the Lunar Magic Skills, eg
Amplify 18, Distance 18, Prolong 18.  Costly on MP's though, eg:

Maculus is on the roof of Hanufel's Magic Goods, where he lodges in the
upper storey.  He has come up to look at and commune with the Red Moon,
for tonight is the Goddess's Night, and the Moon has risen in all its
crimson glory.  Maculus's reverie is disturbed however, by a fracas going on
somewhere in an alley over in Suntown.  He piously uses his Red 
Goddess magic skills to investigate.  Spotting a large post near to where the
noise is coming from, he uses Combine to cast Light 1, Distance x 9 to light the
post (500 meters away) and Farsee 1, Amplified x18 and Prolonged x1 (10 minutes
to then look around.  This has cost him a hefty 30 magic points,
with a 55% chance of success (his lowest skill of all the skills employed 
here - in this case Prolong).  Maculus might spend a few moments in a
worship Ceremony asking the Red Goddess to improve his chance of
casting the spell (eg. spends a round or two using Ceremony).

Maculus's Light spell naturally bathes the area in a crimson glow and
his incredibly powerful Farsee (which improves his Scan skill by 90%) enables
him to spot the source of the trouble: a Badside thug taunting and 
beating up an old beggar, who desperately tries to fend off his blows with 
his walking stick.

Maculus is tempted to end the fracas with a low-intensity and
long-range Smother spell, but decides to amuse himself and the Goddess

First he uses his Distance skill to cast a Protection 1, Amplifed x10 on the
old geezer, so the bully's blows will just bounce off him.  This costs
20 magic points (1 for the Protection, 9 for the Distance and 10 for
the Amplify).  The chance of successfully casting is equal to
his skill % in his lowest skill of all the skills employed here, in this
case his Distance, 81%.

He then uses his Combine skill to cast an Demoralize spell, Amplified x5 and
a Slow, Amplified x3, and Distanced x9 on the thug.  This costs another
20 magic points, but if successful, the thug will be virtually unable to
move and thoroughly Demoralised (chance to hit reduced by 50%, and then
a further -25%).  Chance to cast equals Combine skill here, lowest of all
at 69%.  Maybe Mac uses Ceremony again?

The old geezer starts laying in to the cringing thug, rejoicing in his
new-found miraculous powers.  Maculus, somewhat drained (having expended 90
magic points!) watches on with wry amusement as the Sun Town watch show
up, casting Light spells of their own, to drag off the thug.  The old
boy dances around them, telling them it must have the Red Moon herself who
answered his plea for help.  The new convert later checks in to the Teelo Norri
doss house and, in between mouthfuls of potato bread and date mush, regales
everyone with his story.  Maculus returns to his devotions.

Note also, Eslas the Tracker also has a Speedart Matrix thumb ring 
that was created using Red Goddess magic.  The Lunar College of Magic made it. 
The matrix casts a Speedart spell Amplified by 7 points (+40% to hit, +10 
damage).  Nasty!




Subject: Re: Illusion, Trickster
Message-ID: <>
Date: 16 Apr 94 20:42:25 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3675

  Paul here.  Jonas writes:

>On a lighter note, if Illusion is temporary reality, isn't reality just a
>big illusion with lots of Extension? And wouldn't that make Trickster the
>Creator? Now I know this is not The Truth, because I suggested it to Greg a

  There are Earth mythologies where Trickster is also Creator; I believe
the !Kung believe this.  Will have to check...


  Joerg writes:

I have been disappointed about the Tricksters' Rune possessions for some 
time. The God Learners' associations for Eurmal (Illusion) and Bolongo 
(Disorder) seem wrong to me, and totally meaningless for Genertela. (I 
blame this text on one of the Umathelan universities.)

For Theyalans, Eurmal is the logical successor of Ratslaff, so his Runes 
would be a double disorder, and maybe a single Illusion. The logical choice 
for the double Illusion rune (accompanied by harmony) would be Donandar, 
whose puppeteer followers tellingly are quoted in RQ2 as wielders of this 

Bolongo? Who's that? A mask?


  I agree with Joerg - HOWEVER I think it is perfectly believable that
people don't know who the true Master of Illusion is, and are mixed up
about the Owner of Disorder.

  Eurmal is clearly Disorderly - look at his pal Orlanth.  The Storm Gods are
a pretty disorderly lot...

  As originator of Boratory I was pleased to see Alex Ferguson's comment:
>> Borotory should be compulsory for all Tricksters.

  Joerg writes:

>I think Disorder is as all-embracing as is Chaos, although Disorder is _of 
>the world_, not from without it. Their similarity made the disorderly (the 
>Boggles, Zorak Zoran) the most effective fighters of Chaos.

  Orderly beings tend to snuff it when disrupted by Chaos.  Disorderly things,
having less structure to start with, are more likely to survive a brush
with Chaos.  Even if hit with a mutating power, they can 'slough off' the
mutated parts (unlike something more structured...)


Subject: Re: RuneQuest Daily, Fri, 15 Apr 1994, part 2
Message-ID: <>
Date: 17 Apr 94 00:41:32 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3676

Devin Cutler here:

Lewis writes:

"Finally I got round to looking in the RQ3 magic book and sure enough the 
casting chance for spirit magic is POW*5 - ENC; the magic bonus is not 
mentioned and the text implies that this is the complete formula.  I think 
that this was on page 16 or thereabouts.  Also divine magic is 100 - ENC.  
Only in sorcery and ritual magic is the magic bonus included (as it would 
have to be with the casting chance for spells starting at d6% - ENC.  "

I just bought the RQ3 Deluxe Editions set that has been presente dunder a
single binding. My comments on this product below.

Lewis, your statement is correct, although I had successfully deduced that
the authors had meant the Magic Bonus to apply to Spirit and Divine Magics.

Now, if you can get your hands on the official RQ3 errata, you will find that
the Magic Bonus IS explicitly added to both Spirit Magic and Divine Magic.

The errata reads:

Page 100 "A spirit magician has a percentile chance of successfully casting
non-ritual spells equal to his POW x5, plus his Magic skill category bonus."

I presume that ENC is still subtracted (do we need errata for the errata?)

Page 111 "A user of divine Magic skill has a 100% chance of successfully
casting a divine spell, plus his Magic skill category modifier, but this
chance is reduced by 1 percentile for each ENC carried. (with no ENC there is
still a chance of failure with a d100 roll of 96-00)"

or, I might add, if the magic Skill category modifier is a -6% or less, then
the spell fails on a roll less than 96-00 even with no ENC.

Looking throughout Roc, Sun County, Stranger in Prax, etc., even ignoring
obvious spell casting chance errors, the percentages often add Magic Bonus or
do not in a haphazard fashion.

Regarding the RQ3 rules in the single book format, I love this format, let's
use it for RQAiG (if that ever gets made...and if we are not going to use
three-ring binders :). I notice that every attempt is made to position RQ3 as
a Gloranthan work without changing any of the text. How is this done? 

1. A map of Peloria, Dragon Pass, and Kaethela is superimposed on the back
cover. Glorantha is blurbbed extensively in its own paragraphs on the rear
cover without any mention of Alternate Earth.

2. The Gloranthan Runes have been added to the front cover and side binding.

3. The entire inside front cover advertises mostly Gloranthan RQ supplements
and exclaims "Expand your Adventures in the World of Glorantha..."
Unfortunately, Monster Coliseum and Daughters of Darkness are then listed
below this heading, falsely suggesting that they are Gloranthan.

4. The first page has "May Arachne Solara bless and protect this book"

5. Page 3 and 4 offer an introduction to RQ3 and to Glorantha. TOTRM is
plugged, and nowhere is Alternate Earth mentioned.

I do feel sorry for novices who are going to read all of this and then see
all of the Alternate Earth crap in the rules. I feel especially sorry for the
neophyte who buys Daughters of Darkness thinking it's Gloranthan!

Curtis writes:

" I was at least expecting the Red Goddess
initiate in Strangers to have Lunar Magic."

Um. he does. I quote from page 30, the writeup of Maculus the Monitor (whose
spirit magic casting chance is botched, of course:)):

Magic +15:Ceremony 119%, Enchant 107%, Summon 103%, Intensity 121%, Duration
112%, Range 93%, Multispell 97%, Amplify 100%, Combine 69%, Distance 81%,
Prolong 55%

As you can see, the Lunar Magics are therein.

Curtis also asks if anyone has invented a SECRET (i.e. the God Learners'
secret) for their campaign. Yes, I have...but I can;t say what it is because
my players may be reading this. 


Devin Cutler


Subject: Re: RuneQuest Daily, Sat, 16 Apr 1994, part 2
Message-ID: <>
Date: 17 Apr 94 00:41:39 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3677

Devin Cutler here:

Regarding John Hughes' lengthy response to Sandy's response to me about our
concenrs that Korantha not become too Terran equivalent, while I will let
Sandy defend himself, I will elabprate on why I originally posted my concern
in the first place.

I like the TOTRM 11 stuff a lot. None of it should be changed. However, I was
merely warning against picking up on the obvious Aboriginal/African Tribal
themes and carrying it to an extreme. There are a lot of people on this list
and the RQ Playtest list who seem to be VERY knowledgeable about anthropolgy,
ethnography, and world history, and I have seen a lot of text batted back and
forth regarding Terran analogues and the like.

Often, and idea has been rejected for a part of Glorantha because it doesn't
exactly fit with the Terran analogue of that area. This IMHO is wrong.

Therefore, I was not actually criticizing anything yet published, but merely
trying to invoke some caution at going overboard.

Kralorela can be "Oriental" is flavour, but I do not want it to become
Cathay, Tibet, et al.

I do not want Vormain to become Japan. I do not want Pamaltela to become
Africa or Australia, nor Peloria to become Rome, nor Sartar to become Norway.

I want Kralorela to become Kralorela, Vormain to become Vormain, etc. That's
all. I just wanted to warn people that too much of a good thing can be bad. I
like weirdness too. That means I like to see sertain cultural combinations
show up in Glornatha that have no earthly parallels or borrow from several
earthly analogues.

To Chris Cooke:

In RQ3, even Initiates may progress beyond 100% in skills as long as they
have a positive skill cateogry modifier.

Also, regarding Tricksters, at worst they are limited to Dex x5% (as for
other Acolytes), but since they are listed as Initiates, I treat tham as
Initiates with reusable spells. Regarding their common divine way.
They do not get any such....only the special divine magics.


Devin Cutler


From: staats@MIT.EDU
Subject: Requirements for Exceeding 100% in a skill
Message-ID: <9404170221.AA03026@primavera.MIT.EDU>
Date: 17 Apr 94 02:21:19 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3678


	RQ II required you to have a Rune status to break the 100% mark in
a skill, but RQ III did away with this requirement. 

	Personally, I still retain a modified Rune status requirement in
our on-going campaign.  I require characters to have attained something
equivalent to a Runelord status to surpass the 100% mark.  It adds a more
heroic feel to the game; the characters must serve a larger ``good'' to 
truly achieve excellence in their chosen studies/path.  Then again, a
Krarsht Runelord serves a somewhat different form of a ``greater good''
than does a Storm Kahn!  So, this requirement is not too restrictive.

	In service,



Subject: RE: Spirit Magic Casting Chance
Message-ID: <>
Date: 17 Apr 94 03:25:33 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3679

Lewis sez:

> Devin points out that RQ supplements need better proof reading (non

No argument from me, either. If you guys (AH) need some help, let me know.

> However he then goes on to state that the RQ3 chance of casting Spirit
> is POW*5 + Magic Bonus - ENC.  This is not the way I play it (no Magic
> but since I keep quite a few bits of RQ2 in my play to cover up the obvious

> holes in RQ3 I did not comment immediately.  

> Finally I got round to looking in the RQ3 magic book and sure enough the 
> casting chance for spirit magic is POW*5 - ENC; the magic bonus is not 
> mentioned and the text implies that this is the complete formula.  I think 
The casting cost of spirit magic in the Magic Book IS POWx5-ENC but in the
errata (available from AH) it corrects the formula to include the Magic
Bonus. The problem is, as Devin stated, that the percentages listed don't
match EITHER formula. For example, Julan has a POW of 18 and a Magic Bonus of
+20. Under the original formula, his skill should be 90%-ENC. Under the
revised formula it should be 110%-ENC. It is listed as 75%-ENC.

Dave Camoirano