Bell Digest v940915p3

From: RuneQuest-Request@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (RQ Digest Maintainer)
To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (Daily automated RQ-Digest)
Reply-To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (RuneQuest Daily)
Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Thu, 15 Sep 1994, part 3
Sender: Henk.Langeveld@Holland.Sun.COM
Content-Return: Prohibited
Precedence: junk


From: henkl@aft-ms (Henk Langeveld - Sun Nederland)
Subject: Re: missing dailies...
Message-ID: <9409150630.AA04654@yelm.Holland.Sun.COM>
Date: 15 Sep 94 07:30:41 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 6220

As Bob Luckin's experience shows, you may experience
a time warp with the Daily.  As I typically get complaints
about the Friday issues,  I suggest we change the "for 24h."
to "until after the week-end."

----- Begin Included Message -----

From Wed Sep 14 21:08 MET 1994

Well, I eventually got 3 parts.  But two of them arrived after Saturday's
and Sunday's Dailies.  The same thing happened the week before; I got someone
to forward the missing parts to me and the genuine ones showed up later.

> If this happens to you, please abide by this
> short checklist:
> 	- first wait for 24h.
> 	- check on
> 	- ask me

Good checklist, but based on my experience 24 hours is probably too short.
Hope it reduces the hassle you may be getting from disappointed subscribers,
though.  :-)

Cheers, Bob

----- End Included Message -----


From: (Clayton, Lynne)
Subject: Convulsion '94; Lunars; Soldiers of the Red Moon
Message-ID: <>
Date: 14 Sep 94 13:23:11 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 6202

From: Paul Honigmann, Oxford, UK

     I don't have direct access to the Net, so I tend to put together large
documents of accumulated like this over a period of a month or so, then ask a 
friend to put it onto the Digest. This starts way back at Convulsion!
     Also, I've been having trouble getting large files onto the Daily - this
is the 3rd time I've sent these comments. This time, I've split the file into
several chunks of <8kB.

     Once again the organisers put together an excellent convention. I'll
leave discussion of the convention itself at that, no doubt others will
dissect it at length, but I wish to convey a couple of impressions I
     Firstly, RQ players seem much less rules-oriented this year. Whether
everyone is exhausted by the RQ4 trauma, or have simply become resigned to
constant changes (so why bother) I'm not sure, but it seemed much less of a
train-spotters' event. People had questions for the Chaosium staff about
rules, sure, but far more about Glorantha and mythology. This seemed much
healthier to me, as if the RQ Community had reached a sort of inner balance -
'The Game's The Thing, not The Rules'.

     Secondly, items like Greg's original notes on obscure Gloranthiana at the 
auction went for much less than last year. This could be because people are 
no longer prepared to pay for something which may have been gospel in 1974
but is three revisions out of date now.

     You'll have already gathered that all the Changes generated a peculiar
atmosphere among the players there. Perhaps the words Resigned and Exhausted 
I used above should be 'a sense of wry humour'. One theory is that Greg is
deliberately changing things because if everything is set in stone, Glorantha
will go stale: he has often admitted it was inspired by his experiences in
life, and he is always reinterpreting its history as he gets older and his
perspective shifts. He is trying to subtly teach his 'disciples' more about
Life and Themselves by shifting things whenever they get too complacent!

     Perspective changes and his conviction that there is more to life than 
what's in front of your eyes was a large part of Greg's main address. He even
mentioned that RPG's could be the means that some people use to interact
with what they are normally blind to. 'I don't think I'll ever bring out HQ,'
he said, 'because it is up to *you* to develop a system that's what *you*
need. Once you've travelled that path, you'll have learnt a lot about yourself
and your relationship with the Invisible World.' There was very little
dissent about this - by now, most of us 30+ year olds have tried
Heroquesting and understand it's more about interacting with myths and your
people (cult / tribe / country) than powergaming.

     It's strange writing about mystical / meaningful things like this on 
an open Net of sceptics. Normally we discuss things on the Daily which are 
accepted as tongue-in-cheek, 'what if...' off-the-wall ideas and we expect to
give and receive loads of abuse in the spirit of fun. Perhaps there will be
some mud-flinging at the above. But consider this: Greg was trying to
tell us *something*, and it was pretty moving to those who heard it, so
think about it first.

     And now more in the RQ Daily tradition, I'd like to touch on some 
issues of a more ideological and controversial nature, to wit, Lunars.

     I shamelessly pumped Sandy Peterson, Greg etc for further info on the
Empire (thought I'd just drop in a few Names there) and Mike Dawson on the
forthcoming Soldiers of the Red Moon. They wish it to be made plain that none 
of what follows is official, it's their current feelings on these matters and 
they may well change their minds before publication of material. But it should
help those of us running Lunar campaigns & characters.

     What is a Tax Demon?
     SP: A tax demon is a horrible spiky flaming monster. The point about 
these is they don't attack a mere peasant for not stumping up his dues. The
Emperor sends them to get the King / Governer etc of a *province* which has
fallen behind in sending him its taxes.
     This is one of the Big 'Secrets' of the Empire, SP says. The Emperor
doesn't care *what* goes on in a province, as long as he still gets his taxes
and the Lunar pantheon is still worshipped. So you can get an incredibly
oppressive regime right next to a liberal one, and the Emperor won't lift a
finger to help the oppressed. However, neither will he help a tyrant whose
people rise up & depose him: but if a new government is installed, they'd
better be sure to keep those taxes coming...
     Tax demons are backed up by a (cult?) called the Furies. This is a
female warrior organisation in the Heartlands.

     What are we likely to see in the forthcoming Soldiers of the Red Moon?
     MD: SotRM is intended to allow players to play soldiers / mercenaries in
any of a number of Lunar cults, in the Southern reaches of the Empire. The
Lunar fighting cults are generally considered to be Yanafil Tarnils, 7
Mothers, Hwarin Dalthippa, Hon-Eel, Yara Aranis, perhaps the Furies...
     Note this list does NOT include Danfive Xaron, which is not considered
primarily a *fighting* cult (though he agreed with my description of them as
a Foreign Legion type force).
     SP: Don't forget that a lot of Lunar soldiers are not full-time and are 
in Dee'Zola or Lodril. Those are also decent fighting cults if pressed.

     What can you tell us about Yanafil Tarnils?
     MD / SP: The initiates can take a gift / geas if they wish. These are
not as gross / debilitating as Humakt's, for example, Lunars aren't prejudiced
so there's no 'double damage vs. trolls' gift. The rune magic includes one-use
Sever Spirit, and reusable Morale, True Scimitar etc. YT Lords can resurrect
themselves, too, using a presacrificed one-use rune spell of 6 or 10 points
(why not use DI?) and, as many are Illumined, often have access to the Red
Goddess' magic and / or sorcery.

     SP: Mainly a healing goddess, the Earth aspects are left to Hon-Eel
(the grain goddess who introduced Maize). Rune spells include Prehealing,
where you cast the Magic Points required *before* you get wounded (I assume
this lasts for longer than 15 minutes or it's pretty useless - PH) and a
Resist (Disease) one where you sacrifice points of POW which are permanently
added to your CON for purposes of resisting one specific disease.

     Irippi Ontor?    
     SP: Whereas Humaktis have a really intense dislike of Yanafil Tarnils 
because YT is so obviously a copy of Humakt, IO gets on OK with Lankhor Mhy
because their approaches are quite different. I can't recall further details.

     ...Teelo Norri?
     SP: TN is not really a cult, it's more a charity like the Salvation Army.
The 'priestesses' of TN actually get their magic from other Lunar cults.

     ...She Who Waits?
     SP: No-one really knows anything about her. In ceremonies, her part is
taken by someone wearing a mask.

   ***************  CONTINUED, hopefully below  ***************


From: (Sandy Petersen)
Subject: Re: RuneQuest Daily, Wed, 14 Sep 1994
Message-ID: <>
Date: 14 Sep 94 06:32:54 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 6206

>Our little RQ group here was once captured, tied up, and forced to  
>play Shadowrun for five tortuous sessions. 

	There's worse systems. Twilight 2000, for one. I'll admit,  
tho, that the VERY WORST live action game I ever played in was based  
on Shadowrun. It seems to stimulate bad GMing. 

Guy Hoyle: 

>Since we know what tactics the Morokanth use (thanks, Sandy!), how  
>about some tactics to use AGAINST them??
	The tactics that would amuse me the most include (but are not  
limited to) the following:
	1) Diguise yourselves as herd men and hope the Morocanth take  
you in. 

	2) Dig a tunnel to the herd men corral and spirit 'em out. 

	3) Ask _very_ politely for your mate back. Offer to give up  
your weapons as proof of your sincerity. 

	4) Offer to fight the Morocanth champion, bare-knuckled,  
winner take all. 

Thanks to Marc Paterno, I'm pumping in more details about Praxian  
herd beasts: 

	High llamas prefer open woodlands and dry savannah. Scattered  
tree growth is best for these guys, for obvious reasons, but they are  
able to subsist, if not thrive, on dry grass. In general, high llamas  
congregate near rivers during the dry season, and spread out into  
deciduous woodland during the rainy. 

	High llamas are mainly active during the evening and early  
morning, and rest during the heat of the day. It usually sleeps  
standing up, but sometimes lies down. 

	A high llama can lope for immense distances without tiring.  
No horse can keep up with one. For long-distance running, they are  
the best of all animals on the plains. Unfortunately, despite their  
feet's large size, they get bogged down in wet terrain, so must avoid  
marshes, and rivers present significant barriers to their movement.  
High llamas are able to go without water for months at a time -- they  
are commonly found near rivers not for the water, but for the tree  

	High llamas are both solitary and herding -- the herds can be  
up to a hundred animals, or may be as small as 2-10. Young males live  
in bachelor herds, but become increasing solitary as they age. Most  
wild high llamas of the plains are solitary, as when herds are  
spotted, the high llama riders devote much effort to capturing them. 

	Females give birth about every two years, normally at the  
height of the dry season, though some mating activity does go on  
year-round. The gestation period lasts 15 months. The calf can stand  
up 20 minutes after birth and is ready to roll from then on. High  
llama mothers are not particularly affectionate, much less so than  
bison or sable, and are occasionally known to abandon their young  
when pursued hotly. At birth, the young weigh 45-70 kg (100-150 lbs).  
The calf nurses for about a year, and remains with the mother another  
2-5 months after weaning. Females reach sexual maturity in 3.5 years,  
males in 4.5 years. Females reach full size in 5 years, males in 7  
years. A female is able to calve until she is at least 20 years, and  
these animals can live up to 50 years or even more. 

	Yes, high llamas can "spit". This is actually the contents of  
the animal's stomach, ejected from its mouth at a reasonably high  
velocity in an attempt to express displeasure. When forced by hunger,  
high llamas are known to eat fish, bones, or skin. They require more  
salt in their diet than most other Praxian beasts, and get this from  
salt-bearing plants (common in the Wastes). 

	High llama riders tend to be aloof and snotty, much like  
their male mounts. Their bachelor gangs are small, last year-round,  
and are not formally organized. When the high llamas see enemies,  
they can always escape. When they see prey, they can always catch up.  
The other tribes have been forced to adopt a number of interesting  
strategems to deal with the "high llama problem". Fortunately for the  
other tribes, the high llamas breed the most slowly of all the large  
tribal animals, and the high llama riders themselves generally group  
in small bands, often no more than 40 or so riders in a sept. 

	Breeding occurs year-round, and the gestation period is a  
year and a half. The calf weighs 40-65 kg (90-150 lbs) and is wobbly  
for 2-3 days. When alarmed, the calf runs _ahead_ of its mother,  
unlike most other herd beasts, which follow their mothers. Weaning  
commenses at only 2 months, but nursing continues sporadically for  
over a year. Females give birth every 2-3 years, and drive off their  
latest calf just before they give birth. Sexual maturity comes at 4-5  
years, but females won't have their first calf till they're 7 or so,  
and most males won't mate till they're at least 10-12. They live up  
to 40-50 years, and females remain fertile almost till they die. 

	Rhinos are, of course, not particularly herd-oriented, though  
they'll temporarily band together in groups of a dozen or more, with  
smaller, permanent units as well. Bulls are usually solitary, they  
patrol their territory and try to prevent estrous females from  
leaving. Bulls engage in mild lackadaisical fights when their  
boundaries are violated, but when they're fighting over an estrous  
female, there's some real action (head-on-charges, ramming, etc.),  
which is regarded as high entertainment by the bison folk. Several  
females and their calves often associate together. Subadults (driven  
away by their mother with the arrival of their next sibling) will  
join up with one another. Sometimes several will join up with an  
adult female (who's not about to give birth) and accompany her. 

	Praxian rhinos need four things to thrive: flat ground, thick  
bush cover, short grass (for eating), and water for drinking and  
wallowing. They are almost entirely grazers, specializing in short  
grasses. Wallowing in the mud is actually pretty important -- not  
only does it help the rhino maintain an appropriate temperature, but  
rids the animal of pests, to which it is more subject than most  
Praxian fauna. Generally it takes 1.5 to 2 square km to support an  
adult rhino. Vision is crappy, but senses of hearing and smell are  
good. The rhinos depend heavily on their riders in combat. 

	Rhino riders tend to live in open groups. A clan will  
normally graze over an immense area, the rhinos scattered thinly. The  
only real requirement is that any given rider must be able to see the  
next rider over -- perhaps a mile or more away (rhino riders often  
tie flags to their lances to help in this). One reason the rhino  
riders can get away with this is because their herd is practically  
immune to most predation. Coyotes, hyenas, even broos generally think  
twice before messing with a rhino. 

	When human enemies are spotted, the riders signal one another  
and rapidly band together into an unstoppable mass. A typical rhino  
rider has one bull and a few cows with calves. Not really enough to  
support a family, but combined with gathering and some hunting, the  
rhino riders make do. "Poor as a rhino rider" is a saying in Prax. 

	Morocanth, in some ways, resemble the earthly tapir. But in  
other ways they are, of course, unique. No doubt if they hadn't  
cheated at Waha's Contest, they'd make a fine herd beast for some  
human tribe. Short, bristly hairs are scattered thinly over a  
morocanth's thick hide. The general form of the morocanth is narrow  
in front, and thick and rounded behind. This is an excellent design  
for crashing through brush, and a morocanth on the run through dense  
vegetation can't even be caught by a rhino (other herd animals are  
slowed down too much to be considered). Morocanth ears are thick,  
erect, and not particularly mobile. They have three thick "claws" on  
their front feet, perhaps better termed "hooves". Their wrists are  
very mobile, and they can wrap their hoof around objects to take a  
crude grip on it. They have a very short, hairless, useless tail.