Bell Digest v940509p1

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Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Mon, 09 May 1994, part 1
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X-RQ-ID: Intro

This is the RuneQuest Daily Bulletin, a mailing list on
the subjects of Avalon Hill's RPG and Greg Stafford's 
world of Glorantha.  It is sent out once per day in digest

More details on the RuneQuest Daily and Digest can be found
after the last message in this digest.


From: 100270.337@CompuServe.COM (Nick Brooke)
Subject: Pretty Elves and Blueskins
Message-ID: <940507073435_100270.337_BHL22-1@CompuServe.COM>
Date: 7 May 94 07:34:36 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3941

Glad you liked the write-up, Alex!

I agree about Yelmic nobility lording it over racially-distinct Lodrili 
peasants: remember my Von Daniken pastiche ascribing their origins to two 
types of spaceship? One of the incidental joys of ancient history (sorry, 
Devin!) was discovering the Babylonian underclass were called 'blackheads' 
by all their various rulers...

I'm not sure I did Nick you with Carmanian Kshatriya: try using the three 
cities of the Tripolis as 'caste-functions', Priests (Yuthuppa), Noblemen 
(Raibanth) and Soldiers (Alkoth). Yuthuppan Astrologers and Augurs are like 
the real-world Chaldaeans and Etruscans rolled into one. Alkoth gets all 
the great Spartan customs and mannerisms, and Roman military discipline 
perhaps. Raibanth ain't what it used to be since Glamour was built next 

Enjoyed Sandy's piece on old Yelmic nobility fallen into genteel decay. To 
find a Third Age role for them, I borrow from the Romans: the Dara Happan 
nobility work in my view of the Lunar Empire much as the Roman Republican 
Senatorial class did in the early Roman Empire. The channels of power have 
been redrawn to exclude them, with jumped-up nobodies (Commoners! Slaves!! 
Women!!!) holding 'new' offices in the bureaucracy which really runs the 
state, but the form of the old government is retained in many places, with 
trivial jobs that only Yelmic Nobles can be appointed to (often in the 
municipal government of Dara Happan cities!).

I am pretty sure there is a Lunar Imperial Senate, and similarly sure that 
it is essentially a useless body. Though they do get to wear neat togas...

I'm using a lot of 'parallels' here to get ideas across; sorry if anyone 
gets upset by this handy shorthand. Please, let's not have a "That idiot 
Nick says Lunars are Romans..." flaming session.

Sandy wrote:

> Mike Dickison says that trolls aren't insects (I agree) and elf women  
> shouldn't have breasts because they're not mammals. He also feels  
> that elves should be ugly as sin. A long-standing tradition on not  
> only Glorantha but Earth is that the woods-inhabiting Faery should be  
> inhumanly beautiful, or at least intriguing.

I think some elves -- the ones selected for it -- are inhumanly beautiful. 
Others look more like lurching things out of Mythago Wood. These don't get 
to meet people so often, and when they do they're mistaken for War Trees. 
Dan's pic of a Wenelian elf in Tales #9 is persuasive to me as an average. 
(Hey, back in RQ2 days the average elf had a human-perceived CHA of 4).

But then I also believe elves are more functionally specialised than the 
rules let on. So 'breeding' (pruning? gardening?) attractive, personable 
elves to meet the outside world would make lots of sense. And, of course, 
these would be the ones we meet most of the time.

> I think that elf women have breasts because they're a lot less
> interesting without them.

Agreed. Like duck teeth, really.

MOB asked:

> A question: when the renascent Vadeli arrived off the Pamaltelan sea-
> board claiming they were gods (neato trick!), what did they think of
> the wretched Blueskins (Veldang) of Fonrit?  Or are they the wrong
> shade of blue?

I wonder if the Second Age Jrusteli Empire made quasi-genocidal attempts on 
the blueskins of Pamaltela for ancestral/religious reasons. Certainly they 
could have invoked a religious justification for any kind of oppression or 
brutality against the Veldang. And this cultural attitude would still be 
found in Third Age Umathela. IMHO, things that really bug the Brithini are 
likely to have been passed down to other Western cultures: hatred of the 
Vadeli is one of these. "Thou shalt not suffer a blueskin to live".

Cain and Abel? I meant to hybridise this some day with Abraham and Isaac, 
but forgot to do so in time for my last posting.

Is it possible for the Vadeli to use Hrestoli concepts of caste-mobility, 
and ascend through their 'species' caste-structure? I read one of Greg's 
Ancient Western Sources when I visited Chaosium in which Hrestol becomes 
"Judge of the Vadeli" after his exile from Seshneg; the Vadeli were not 
developed in this account at all, and Hrestol ruled them as a nice guy in 
the story. Me, I'd keep the title but change the tale...


Is the Pharaoh a Blue Vadeli??


Subject: Rune Metals
Message-ID: <>
Date: 8 May 94 00:27:16 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3942

Here is something I wrote three years ago, and recently updated. 
It might prove useful to some people.

                           METAL NOTES
                           Martin Crim

There are some problems with the metal rules.  For one thing,
published sources keep changing the storm gods' and lunars'
associated metals.  In RQ II, the storm gods had tin and the
lunars had silver.  In Gods of Glorantha, the storm gods had
silver and the lunars had no associated metal.  In Elder Secrets,
the storm gods have bronze, and the lunars are undefined.  Elder
Secrets probably makes the most sense, but then why does it give
Orlanth and the lunar cults Enchant Silver?
     Maybe the Moon rune should have an entirely new metal, as
befits its status as the sixth element.  It is dangerous to
forget that Gloranthan metals' english names are just analogues,
but for simplicity's sake, we could call the lunar metal
selenium.  It would be extremely rare, extracted from moon-rocks
or the minerals of the blue moon plateau.  Its properties would
be a secret of the lunar empire.  Since earth's selenium is
photoelectric, glorantha's might be photo-magical.
     On the other hand, silver has been identified too strongly
with the lunars to entirely sever the connection.  The province
under the moon is called Silver Shadow, for one thing.
     Another problem with Elder Secrets is that it does not give
Lodril Enchant Aluminum (called lo-metal, for Lodril's metal). 
It does give him Enchant Tin (Dayzatar's metal), which "is not
often enchanted."  I suggest that Lodril get Enchant Aluminum
instead of, or in addition to, Enchant Tin.  After all, one of
Lodril's sub-cults is Gustbran, the smith.  Gustbran worshiped
independently should get at least Enchant Iron and Enchant
     Why does Lhankor Mhy get Enchant Iron?  Does this make sense
to anybody?
     For any cult to have gotten Enchant Iron, a hero of that
cult must have gained the secrets of iron from the dwarfs or from
some other possessor of iron.  Then that hero must have
accomplished a second great deed to gain the secret power of
passing the first secret along.
     The list on page 36 of Elder Secrets' Secrets Book excludes
a large number of cults.  The following list fills in some of
those excluded, and clearly indicates which cults lack Enchant
[Metal].  I haven't done all cults; even MY bullheadedness has

Aleshmara: none
Ancestor Worship: none
Annilla: Enchant Lead
Aranea: Enchant Lead
Barntar: none
Black Fang: none
Black Sun: Enchant Lead
Bolongo: none
Brastalos: Enchant Quicksilver
Caladra & Aurelion: Enchant Copper, Enchant Gold, Enchant Iron
Calyz: Enchant Aluminum, Enchant Copper
Chalana Arroy: none
Daka Fal: none
Danfive Xaron: Enchant Iron
Dayzatar: Enchant Tin
Deezola: Enchant Copper
Dendara: Enchant Copper
Donandar: none
Dormal: Enchant Quicksilver
Eiritha: none
Elmal: Enchant Iron
Etyries: Enchant Silver
Eurmal: none
Flamal: none
Furalor: Enchant Iron
Gagarth: Enchant Iron
Gbaji: none
Geo: none
Godunya: Enchant Iron (Godunya magic)
Golden Bow: Enchant Gold
Gorakiki: none
Grain Goddess: none
Gustbran: Enchant Iron, Enchant Aluminum
Heler: Enchant Quicksilver
Himile: Enchant Lead
Hon-eel: Enchant Copper
Horned God: usually none
Hungry Ghosts: none
Hwarin Dalthippa: Enchant Iron
Hyalor: Enchant Gold
Hykim: none
Immanent Mastery, Path of: none
Inora: none
Irrippi Ontor: none
Issaries: none
Jakaleel: Enchant Lead
Jmijie: none
Kalikos: Enchant Gold
Krarsht: none
Lightfore: Enchant Gold
Lokarnos: Enchant Gold
Lorion: Enchant Quicksilver
Mahome: none
Mastakos: none
Molanni: none
Oakfed: none
Odayla: none
Ourania: Enchant Gold, Enchant Tin
Pamalt: Enchant Copper
Pavis: Enchant Iron
Polaris: Enchant Gold, Enchant Iron
Praxian Spirit Cults: none
Solf: as per Lodril
Somash: as per Yelm 
Spirit Cults: usually none (if any is given, it is the only
divine spell that spirit gives)
Teelo Norri: none
Telmor: none
Third Eye Blue: Enchant Iron (sorcery)
Valind: Enchant Iron
Voria: none
Waha: none
Xentha: Enchant Lead
Xiola Umbar: Enchant Lead
Yanafal Tarnils: Enchant Iron
Yara Aranis: Enchant Iron
Zola Fel: Enchant Quicksilver
Zong: none

MALKIONI SECTS AND SAINTS (all sorcerous, and wizard caste only):
Brithini: all Enchant [Metal] spells
Stygians: by saint or cult
Vadeli: all Enchant [Metal] spells
All else: available through saint's shrines (usually a matrix in
an altar)

Saint Arkat: Enchant Iron, Enchant Lead
Saint Dormal: Enchant Quicksilver
Saint Gerlant: Enchant Iron
Saint Hrestol: Enchant Iron
Saint Malkion: Enchant Iron
Saint Paslac: Enchant Gold, Enchant Iron
Saint Talor: Enchant Iron
Saint Valkaro: Enchant Quicksilver
Saint Xemela: Enchant Copper

Bagog: none
Cacodemon: none
Crimson Bat: Enchant Iron
Gark: none
Ikadz: none
Krarsht: none
Malia: Enchant Lead
Ompalam: Enchant Iron
Pocharngo: none
Seseine: none
Thanatar: Tien: Enchant Tarnished Silver, Atyar: none
Thed: none
Vivamort: Enchant Iron, Enchant Lead (sorcerous)



Subject: Re: Runegate; Initiation
Message-ID: <>
Date: 7 May 94 21:34:26 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3943

Paul Reilly here.

  Alex Ferguson writes:

> I happen to know a bit detail info on Jonstown, from the united 
> efforts of a group of friends in contact with Greg and AH.

  I know someone else has Alda-Chur staked out.  Does anyone have info
on Runegate?  I would like to write a story set in some town in the
region, but want to avoid stepping on anyone's toes.  Thus I am
looking for a town that no-one else is working on.


  There has been much discussion of late on Initiation.  I have come to believe
that this is a development of the process by which a shaman develops a
presence on the Other Side.  The Initiate also develops a presence on the
Other Side, but is restricted to walk in his god's domain.  The shaman is
much freer in his exploration of the Otherworld, but does not have the 
protection of his society and his God - he must face the Bad Man himself.

  If there is interest I can post something longer on this topic.



Subject: Re: RuneQuest Daily, Fri, 06 May 1994, part 1
Message-ID: <>
Date: 7 May 94 21:54:12 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3944

  I write:

> > They (UZ) were not forced to take
> >particular shapes until exposed to Yelm's light (when he went to the 
> >Underworld.) 

>I disagree: They interacted with other races long before Yelm was slain. 

  They COULD take shapes, but were still Shapestrong: they were not bound to
a particular shape until Light burned off most of their powers.

  And Uz heroes who ventured up into the realms of Light would be forced
into shape early on, cf:

>  How would Gash and Gore have known their path to the surface world had 
>they not traveled it in the shape they had on their exodus? Also remember 
>the troll family tree in Uz Lore.

  See my comments about mating and eating.

p  > Like other darkness creatures, Uz could practice 
p> eating-and-becoming: eating something to take on its shape and properties.

j>Hmm. This sort of shape change is related to Triolina in GoG. In the 

  Water is the Second Element and creatures of the Deep are still shapestrong.

>I find the equation of all insect life = darkness doubtful even for 
>Glorantha. The timinits surely aren't darkness creatures the way bats 
>or trolls are. Bees and wasps have too many solar functions to really 

  I think that bees, etc. can have lost their Darkness just as trollkin are
doing and Muri have done to some extent.  Light overcomes Darkness, and
Darkness creatures are stuck in the Hurtplace, an alien realm.  They
adapt (like bees or Muri) or die (like Uzko).

j > Strange. Most molds and mushrooms eat themselves into the plant (or its 
j>decaying remnants) from the outside.

  They don't ingest the plants into a stomach like an animal, instead they
grow themselves into the plant.  (At least where I come from - do fungi
in Germany swallow?)

p>Dwarfs ...
p> can make working metal limbs for humans (Arazban (sp?) & Count Alehandro)

j>Like the famous iron hand for Goetz von Berlichingen, or a living limb 
j>(like in Moorcock's Corum Saga)?

  The latter.  The limbs are described as movable; Arazbarn crushes trolls
in his for example.

p>   I do think that adult Irondwarfs will have iron skeletons, etc., even
j>I would make this later installation an enrichment in their bones rather 

  I actually describe it as a sort of metal-ceramic composite when people
come across a Dwarf skeleton.


From: 100102.3001@CompuServe.COM (Peter J. Whitelaw)
Subject: Bits and pieces
Message-ID: <940508125152_100102.3001_BHJ52-1@CompuServe.COM>
Date: 8 May 94 12:51:53 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3945

What a great fortnight !

I received Codex1 and Strangers in Prax.  Two RQ supplements in 14 days - I
don't think I ever experienced that before, even in the heady days of the early
eighties .

I would like to commend all those involved with both publications on their
quality.  Lots of useful stuff.  RQ/Gloranthaphiles must buy these !

I though Stepehen Langmead's artwork in SiP was excellent.  My only bitch about
the supplement (thus far ;-)) is that bloody awful psychedelic border which
clashes mightily with, IMHO, the pleasantly subdued tones of the other recent RQ

Strangers in Prax Errata v1.1

MOB, after a quick read-through of the Coders may I offer these as possible
	p.25 "Maculus' Sorcery Regimen:  Every Season Maculus casts a Damge
Resistance Intensity 13, Duration 13 on each of the other Coders except Julan".
However, the hit location diagram for Anderida shows no bracketed damage
protection, just the 12 from her Cloak.  Nose Ring's shows but 12 bracketed
damage resistance, similarly Eslas'.  Is this an oversight or am I unaware of
some subtlety in the Sorcery rules?
	p.33 Eslas has "stiff leather" on her body and her Coder cloak is
enchanted +8AP.  But her hit location diagram shows 11 torso AP. Was it intended
to be 10AP or is her "stiff" leather more like cuirboilli ?

I would also like to apologise for such an embarrassing display of pedantry .
My plea in mitigation is that whilst many of us here, I am sure, are big enough
and fat enough to cope with these little inconsistencies that these, like the
casting percentage errors, would probably frustrate players new to the system
who might doubt their own understanding rather than the proffreaders' ;-).

The Spoken Word.

Previous to running Melisande's Hand I roughed a few notes out on this
mysterious organisation.  I don't know how much these dovetail with MOB's ideas
but I would like to offer them in the hope that someone might pull them to
pieces and offer something better.

Cells of the Spoken Word are found both without and within the Lunar empire
although their functions in these environments differ in purpose.  Within the
Empire the SW may operate openly and their members are noted for the mains
gauche with which they are presented upon induction and which have come to be
recognised a symbol of their station.  Members of the SW are known as Agents and
are drawn from amongst the ranks of the most devoted servants of the Red Goddess
(initiates of high standing in a Lunar cult).  Their progress in whichever
branch of the Empire's religion from which they were drawn from is encouraged as
long as this does not compromise the effort which is required by the Agent in
meeting his SW duties.  In general, the ecclesiastical hierarchy will not fail
to grant dispensations to SW Agents that they meet these demands.  Beyond the
Glowline Agents often act as spies and recruiters and organisers of saboteurs
and informants thereby building up networks .  

The chain of command is geographically hierarchical with one region being the
responsibility of an Agent Commissioner known only to his Master agents who in
turn are known only by their Cellmasters.  All agents adopt the names of spirits
and demons within Lunar mythology (eg. Karash'arll, Jajagapa [WF11]) when they
join the SW.  

All skill limitations on active skills that may have been imposed on a PC are
removed by virtue of membership of the SW as membership.

I had thought that the SW might be treated as a Spirit Cult within the Lunar
pantheon into which agents might be 'initiated' when they are selected to join
but have not yet got around to working on this.  



From: (Alex Ferguson)
Subject: Anything but initiation.
Message-ID: <>
Date: 8 May 94 17:00:46 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3946

Sandy Petersen:
> For that matter, there are red-skinned entities that come from  
> the Red Moon, but are not necessarily related to the Red Vadeli. 

There are?  Who, humans, the fabled Moon Elves, or...?

Bryan J. Maloney:
> It is UNCERTAINTY that drives science.  It is technocracy that posits that
> our current knowledge can "solve everything".  The Godlearners had an
> _a priori_ "system" and they tried to shove all Glorantha into it.

Oh?  Why do you say that?  On the basis of the scanty information on them,
one could equally well assume their theories were arrived at experimentally.
While they certainly made some attempts to change reality to fit some of
their theories, this isn't Platonic thinking if you can actually _change_
reality, rather than just ignoring the discrepancies/fiddling the

Jim DeGon:
> Glorantha is absolutely, positively and with no doubt a Creationist
> world with _no_ evolutionary history as we 20th century "humans" know
> it.  There is no point in classifying families in this manner.

But there is "evolution" of a sort: just a very bizarre sort.  The most
significant factoid about mythical evolution in Glorantha is that is
both convergent and divergent, which screws up a tree-shaped taxonomy.

Dave Camoirano:
>    I believe that Gloranthan creatures defy terran classifications. Humans in
> Glorantha are NOT homo sapiens. That is a terran classification that does not
> apply here. Gloranthan scholars (you Lhankor Mhy know who you are) would most
> likely use runes to classify various species.

Yup, I think this is a good way too: after all, it reflect their mythic