Bell Digest vol04p08.txt

Subject:  The Faceless Stone Statue,  Volume 4,  Number 8

First Distribution:  May 22,  1990

This issue:
	Skill check system				(Steve Maurer)
	Re: Fanzines					(Elliot Wilen)
	About AH and The Chaosium			(Bruce Mason)
	Re: Possessing a shaman				(George Harris)

Ed's note:  If you folks could give me more informative titles than "Re:
RQ digest x#x",  I would appreciate it.  You don't need to coerce the
mailer to change the subject line,  just imbed a title somewhere in the
text.  A useful title is helpful for tracking down old articles.


From: (Steve Maurer)

Subject: Re:  RQ digest 4#5

Jeff Okamoto:

> This is pretty nice!  At DunDraCon, I was talking with Larry DiTillio,
> and he has come up with an idea that I may try too.  The problem was
> that his group would only play once a month, and his adventures would
> often take 3 or 4 sessions, thus allowing only that many chances to
> advance.
> What he has done is to say, every time you successfully use the skill,
> take a check.  When you have accumulated 5 of them, right then it's
> as though you successfully made an experience gain roll.  For combat
> skills, you only get one check PER FIGHT.
> And of course, at the end of the adventure, you roll the rest of your
> checks normally.  Larry didn't mention, but I suspect that each extra
> check adds some percentage to the chance of advancing.

    My way was even simpler.   You may stack checks.   When you get
the "week to mull it over", you may roll all the checks you have
stacked.   You may also use a check to roll your stacked checks
immediately ("perfecting a new technique").

    I allow you to get a new check once per "new experience".   This
typically is once per fight, but if there are several disjoint battles
involving the same type of foe (i.e. yet another band of Trollkin),
PC's don't get additional checks from subsequent battles.   If you
have to do wildly different things (fight mounted horseman, fight a
broo), even if it is in the same battle, you get two checks.

    This adds only minimal overhead to the game, and makes it much
more realistic.

						Steve Maurer


From: ichiro@enzyme.Berkeley.Edu (Elliot Wilen disguised as Ichiro Matsumura)

Subject: Re: Fanzines

Dave Gadbois:
>[Re: Broos, a French RQ fanzine]
>I plan to try to get some issues in the hope that I can con someone into
>translating it for me.  If there are any French speakers out there who
>are interested, please let me know.

I am not a native speaker of French, but I can read and translate it
quite well, in my humble opinion of course. I would be happy to do
some translating for a good cause!

>Other fanzines:  Hall favorably mentioned "Alarums and Excursions" and
>"White Wolf Magazine."  Does any one have addresses for these?

Gee, I thought A&E had died a long time ago. Not much help, I know...

Eric Jablow:
>Also, on the recent articles on magic items, one of the glaring
>omissions in RQ3 is the lack of Alchemy and other temporary enchantment
>rules.  RQ2 had its Alchemy rules, but these are barely adequate.  How
>does a shaman make a medicine bundle?  Permanent items all require the
>sacrifice of POW, but what about one-use items?  Elder Secrets
>introduces the new Mostali spell of Store Sorcery, requiring a
>sacrifice of 1 POW for to store a sorcery spell in an object.  But,
>what do we do for Shamans and Priests?  What do we do for Alchemists?
>Any suggestions?

Well, if you dig back into Volume 1 of the Digest, you'll find some
guidelines I whipped up for Alchemy under RQIII. They essentially follow the
pattern of RQII Alchemy, which means that they should fit well with
the RQ system, even if they don't model how alchemy "actually" works.

--Elliot Wilen



Subject: About AH and The Chaosium.

Apparently Greg Stafford is busy renegotiating the contract with AH
at the moment.  I do not know what the options are but maybe a little
letter-writing to those jolly nice folks about the dismal artwork &c.
might not go amiss.



From: George W Harris 

Subject: Re: Possessing a shaman

> >>unclear.  For example, what happens to a shaman on the spirit plane who
> >>is reduced to zero magic points by a spirit?  Is his body possessed?
> >
> >Yes, the body is possessed.
> I agree.  I suppose that the shaman's spirit gets pushed
> back into his body, with the possessing spirit following,
> and taking it over.  One problem, though--what about the
> shaman's fetch?  Now, you have three spirits inhabiting the
> same body!
Yes, this is a problem.
> Perhaps the fetch gets a last ditch attempt to drive off the
> possessing spirit.  If the fetch is defeated, the body is
> taken over.  If the fetch wins, the spirit goes back to the
> Spirit Plane.
Actually, since the fetch is technically possessing the shaman's
body in his absence, the spirit would have to drive the fetch out,
if the spirit could manifest on the mundane plane, which i contest.
> Spirit bothering to fight off the losing shaman's fetch.  I
> would allow a Spell Spirit to attack; it's mindless anyway,
Sorry, spell spirits cannot initiate spirit combat, which it would
have to do to overcome the fetch.
> and it wouldn't know any better.  A Soul Waste Spirit
> doesn't have to bother; it may attack if it wants, but the
> Shaman automatically suffers Soul Waste anyway.  An
> Elemental has two choices; it may manifest around the
> Shaman's body, evading all protections around the area.
> Perhaps I'm talking through my hat here.  A more interesting solution
> might be for the Shaman's spirit to be lost on the Spirit plane in the
> same way that a forcibly discorporated adventurer's spirit would be
> lost.  Then, the victorious spirit automatically possesses the shaman's
> body.  The fetch doesn't cooperate with this, and so things do get
     One thing that needs to be addressed is how the spirit in question
*gets* to the shaman's body.  The spirit combat is taking place on the
spirit plane, & when the combat is over, you would *still* be on the
spirit plane.  Returning to the shaman's body thence is a non-trivial
> somewhat tense for the shaman and his fetch.  The fetch cannot expel
> the possessor; perhaps it can Mindspeak a companion, or perhaps a
    Why not?  actually, the fetch was there *first*, and would have to
be expelled before the spirit could possess anything.  & even presup-
posing that a spirit *did* possess the shaman's body, well, a fetch can
discorporate & attack in spirit combat, so why can't it do that here?
However I think (I know, who cares what I think) that the victorious
spirit would just have control *on the spirit plane* of the shaman's
magic point-less spirit, while the shaman's fetch would be back home in
the shaman's body.  This does leave the shaman in quite a fix, which
is a good reason for a shaman to know Spirit Screen 10.  It would be
possible for another shaman to attempt to find the offending spirit
somewhere on the spirit plane & wrest the first shaman's spirit from
it, but how he would do this I don't know.

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