Subject: The RQ Digest, Volume 5, Number 6 RQDIGESTV05N06 First Distribution: January 18, 1991 This issue: Humakti Status and Custom (Martin Crim) Stormbull (Robert McArthur) Praxian Tribes and Clans (Martin Crim) The Written Rune (Bryan Maloney) ---------------------------------------------------------------------- From: CRIMMARTI@urvax.urich.edu (Martin Crim) Subject: Humakti Status and Custom HUMAKTI STATUS AND CUSTOM The central feature of the Humakti status system and the customs of the Humakt cult is ritual boasting. Every time a Humakti engages in a fight, he must boast about it to his temple. The process runs like this: on every Godsday, all the temple gathers together. After a brief liturgy, the officiating Sword calls for boasters to come forward. (Because of the importance of the rite, Humakt never imposes the geas of Never Speak on Godsday.) One can, but need not, boast if one has not fought recently. The boasters come to the front of the hall, following a strict order of precedence in coming forward. Swords go first, beginning with the officiating Sword. Then Daggers (see notes below) boast. Then initiates may boast. Non-initiates may not boast. Within any of the three groups, the order of precedence depends on the swordsman's status, which in turn rests on what deeds he has boasted of. Humakti seem to have a feel for where they are in the precedence ladder. When conflicts occur, the assembled congregation chants the honor name of the one they think should go first. (Thus, it is important to have an honor name, and to have one that is easily chantable--see the note, below.) If the congregation divides, the officiating Sword places his sword between the two and touches it to the one who will go first. This precedence determines who among qualified candidates will be called to an open Dagger or officiating Sword position, allowed to lead a company of mercenaries, or given some other honor. See the note on Humakt's loot. Boasting has three salient characteristics. It is accurate, detailed, and poetic. It is also loud, so having a good speaking voice is important to advancing in the cult. Humakti demand accuracy in their boasting. This means telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Humakti have a special vocabulary for describing techniques, tactics, and all other aspects of combat. They use their swords to punctuate the boasting and, sometimes, to demonstrate particular actions. A description of a fight usually begins with a recitation of who the speaker is, whom he has fought (and killed) in the past, and who was with him when he fought. It often takes five times as long to describe a fight in the minute detail required as it took to fight it. The boaster ends with a summary of the outcome of the fight, what loot and prisoners were taken, and what scars he has to show. Winning the fight is good, but valiant fighting is more important. Everyone in the congregation accompanies the boasting by beating on a drum or a shield, and the boaster usually follows a standard meter. Alliteration and metaphor are the primary poetic elements. Advanced boasters employ metonymy and repetition, and employ flowery words. Musically gifted boasters will sing all or part of their boast. The value of a boast depends on the deeds boasted of and the boaster's adherence to the three characteristics of boasting. A certain amount of boasting is required to maintain one's status. That amount depends on how active the temple's members are. After a boast, one's friends evaluate the boast privately, and reexamine where the boaster ought to fall in the boasting hierarchy. "Stale boasting" refers to boasting about an event that the person has already boasted of. It usually only occurs with regard to very impressive acts, and if an initiate often engages in stale boasting, it usually signifies that he has retired. If a temple can only muster stale boasting, people take it to mean that it needs to attract more active initiates. GAME MECHANICS: A successful boast requires a roll less than both the character's Speak [language] skill and his Orate skill. If he sings, he must make a separate Sing roll. If a character has an Orate skill below 5%, the temple will train him up to the 5% level for free. No one wants to listen to really inept boasting. A successful boast merits skill checks in all skills that succeeded. NOTES Honor Names One does not choose one's own honor name, although one can hint at what it should be. One's friends in the temple choose it, based on a particularly boast-worthy exploit or salient characteristic. Honor names tend to stick, unless the person does something to undo or outdo it. Humakt's Loot Certain Humakt holy items must remain in use but within the cult. Most iron, all items bearing Humakt spirits, and all weapons and armor bearing Humakt gifts are Humakt's loot. (Note that a Humakti who uses a gifted thing must observe the associated geas.) When the current owner dies, such items do not descend to his heirs. They return to the cult, where the Swords decide who shall receive them. Certain traditional rules keep the items divided amongst the Swords, Daggers, and initiates. If the owner becomes an apostate or even just inactive, the ownership reverts to the cult. If he does not return the property, the cult will send someone to take it. A successful Divination will always reveal the item's current location. Daggers (Acolytes) Each temple has a number of Daggers. The maximum is one for every fifty initiates. Daggers provide magical support in battle and maintain the temple, its sacred objects, and its writings. Temples vary in the financial ability to support a Dagger. A Dagger must have the following skills at 50% or better: a Sword Attack, Read/Write [whatever the temple's language is], First Aid, and Orate. In addition, he must have a POW of at least 10, 50 percentiles in ritual skills, and five points of Divine Magic from Humakt. He must pass the Test of Holiness, which requires a 500 p. fee and is abstracted as POW x 5%. A Dagger gains an allied spirit, whatever Humakt's loot his predecessor had, and his choice of armor and weapons from the armory. He may take one Gift and its associated Geas. He has all the other benefits and burdens of being an Acolyte. omitted spells GoG omitted descriptions of two Humakt spirit spells, even though it mentions them in the Gifts and Geases table. Parry variable Ranged, temporal, passive Each point of this spell adds 5% to the parry skill used with the targeted shield or weapon. It also adds 1 AP to the item, which does not protect the item, just its user. Detect Undead 1 point Ranged, temporal, active Causes the caster's focus object (usually his sword) to point toward the nearest undead creature. Like other detect spells, it is blocked by solids 3 meters thick or thicker. necessary spell This spell is key for Humakt, but could be important in other cults, as well. Transfer Blessing 1 point ritual (ceremony) Transfers any one Humakt gift, tied to one item, to another item. If no part of the original item is available, the caster's skill is halved for this ritual. If the roll fails, the gift cannot be transferred until the next holy day. If it fumbles, the gift is lost. If the ritual succeeds, the original item shatters, unless magically protected. spell notes: 1. Turn Undead, on a failure, Demoralizes the target. This works even if the undead is not normally demoralizable. 2. Create Ghost is a Humakt Special Divine Spell. If the spirit belongs to a Humakti, the caster need not defeat it in spirit combat. The ghost of a Humakti will remain with and protect the regimental regalia, if created nearby. 3. Humakt does not teach Berserk. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- From: email@example.com (Robert McArthur) Subject: Storm Bull CONTENTS: 1. STORMBULL - proposed modifications 2. Calculations of how many StormBull members at the block (plus a breakdown of the types). --------------------------------------------------------------------- I started playing RQ2 in 1984. Since then, I have played only three characters that I can recall - an Erlin harper amongst the trolls at Skyfall Lake, a thief in Borderlands, and a StormBull initiate. The SB is my first, longest running and favourite character (6 years older in our time, only 2.5 years in the game!). As such, I have had a lot of time to look at my initial choice of SB as a cult, and to look at the cult through the eyes of a potential rune level (I'm almost there folks, this next High Holy day and I'm going to go for it!). Most characters are striving towards rune level from the first moment. It may look a long way away and there may be intermediate goals but I would say that the goal, for most, is a strong runic association. Therefore, this is a very biased set of questions and comments about the SB cult. I realise that SB may have changed in RQ3 but, as the group I play with feels, for the most part, it is significantly inferior to RQ2, we have not adapted many of it's features to our play. Knowing nothing about RQ initially, I opted for SB as a cult to be associated with because of comments in CoP (Cults of Prax). Since I still like them, I'll print them (without permission) here: "Socially they are unacceptable. They characteristically act with total disregard for any tribal taboos or manners, even to the extent of occasional murders which will go unavenged. Normal people consider all worshippers of this cult to be mindless brutes, barely human, certainly deranged, and absolutely dangerous. These opinions are correct." At the time, this sounded perfect "adventurer" material (this says a lot for my social/personal development at the time. I now would like a Chalana Arroy priestess.... how people change, sigh :-) ). I knew nothing about rune spells, rune levels specifically (only that you were supposed to strive to be one and you had to join a cult to get there) or anything about the system or Glorantha. The first thing my SB did was look at a map, find the first thing that said chaos (chaos woods), and convince the rest of the party to head there and beat up everything which moved. Fortunately we never got there or my poor little initiate, just out of initial training, would have been swiftly plastered by nasties. However, I have never looked back going through Griffin Mountain and Lord Skippen's Mansion, and many local adventures (StarBrow's rebellion, the Lunar "invasion" of Corflu, a nasty *HUGE* god learner construct/spirit inhabiting the old city of Karse etc). Let me also say that on the two times I have called on divine help, the first to help me single-handedly destroy the demon in Lord Sk's and the second to get out (alive) from Karse before it blew up. So the vibes are good from SB. (I was also born in the sacred time and have some minor thing for that - totally random I assure you and quite minor). So, The main query is why does the writeup of SB in CoP, when taken with the other cults and in the Companion, make SB look like one of the major Gods, when this seems to conflict with the actual mechanics eg. Priests can only learn 1 and some 2pt spells. Although "The SB is one of the oldest manifestations of Umath the god [Primal Aer]"; SB beat up Lodril (not hard, I will admit :-)); SB beat up the Devil; "...finally there are the awesome powers of SB..."; SB is one of the (relatively) few cults with enchant iron; etc. eg. priests can only summon small sylphs. This is ridiculous. SB emphasises both beast and storm/air as it's major runes. See Umath quote above; numerous quotations about the strength of the desert wind in all seasons but especially Storm season; Even Orlanth Adventurous, who emphasises mobility above storm/air, can summon medium sylphs. eg. the strength characteristic of SB, such a large part of most of the tales of him (it? Just kidding SB!!!) is not reflected in the cult except for a spirit available to very few priests. "SB contained ...raw unthinking strength, guided by instinct and the sensitivities of a god." eg. SB members should have some affinity with truestone (besides hoarding it at the Block and what they've learn't over the years). SB drew the Block from the edge of the world to munge the devil. This is (loyal SB here) the most important happening in history or pre-history as nothing else could have stopped the devil, so everything after this is nothing compared to it, and there was nothing before to even come close. (No bunch of 5 [ notice they were too wimpy to do it alone] pieces of gorp-bait are going to overthrow *THAT* deed!) Basically, I feel that a number of changes should be made to SB in CoP to reflect the statements. Firstly, SB priests can learn all common rune spells. Secondly, SB priests can summon all sizes of sylphs. Strength made 1/2 price to lay, free to initiates (double time to learn, 1/2 cost = normal time). I haven't worked out anything about truestone yet. I don't think the above really changes much outside the cult. There really has to be a reason why SB worshippers haven't been munged before and pretty much wiped out (they are pretty anti-social and must have really upset the gentile EoTWF). They have always been a small bunch interested in one thing and so these changes won't, I feel, overbalance the cult while making the mechanics at least look somewhat like the Gloranthan background. The rest of the cult is pretty much OK. The lower levels know what to do and how to do it, the lords' writeup is fine (though sparse, there is never enough space). The priests is really where I had to take the CoP to task. I think I could further argue for the use of small gnomes by SB because of the very strong ties to Ernalda and Eiritha. After all, Waha, with no ties to stasis, gets the use of small gnomes from Eiritha. Think about it...You can actually do almost anything to SB as a cult because a) they are too small to do anything influential politically or against big armies; b) they don't want to unless they are chaos based; and c) they never will get a huge number of members because so many die trying to kill chaos. ---------------------------------------------------------------- The number of SB cultists at the Block (necessary calculations for our current adventure and my future rise in the ranks). Based on "Glorantha", "Cults of Prax", "RQ"2 (soft cover) and "Griffin Mountain" the original. tribe size No.of tribe as ----- ---- SB members bison 80000 5600 high llama 65000 3250 impala 120000 6000 sable 75000 0 pavis 20000 ?=0 baboons 10000 0 morokanth 80000 3200 other 20000 ?=2000 ------ 21000 members of SB in Prax Assuming from initiation (13 years old) that they don't get to do anything. Know that figures start from 17 year olds. Assume that maximum age is 50 and that the pop. histogram is linear. So, (50-17)/(50-13) are active members = 33/37 = 89%. .89 * 21000 = 18690 members active throughtout the whole of prax. Given the size of prax and that most nomads live outside the area close to Sartar, rather than across Vulture's Country, assume %60 live outside "inner prax" (near Sartar). This is much higher than, for example, Waha since Waha stays with the herds. There is generally more nasty chaos in "inner prax" than in the wastes. The figure for Waha would probably be that 90-95% live outside "inner prax". So, .40 * 18690 =7476 members in "inner prax". There are 5-8 main sites for SB worship but the block is the main one. Assume 25% are at the block .25 * 7476 = 1869 members at the block! Assume, in a fighting cult, 3% of members are rune level. This is low but represents the fact that once at rune level, you don't die as easily but you do, in SB, have to always go on v.dangerous missions. Normal cults I would assign about 5%. .03 * 1869 = 56 rune levels Assume, for SB that they have more initiates than some other cults due to the relative ease in becoming one once you've made up you're mind (one year membership in cult and have done nothing bad). 60% are init. .60 * 1869 = 1121 initiates therefore .37 * 1869 = 692 lay members Of the rune levels, although SB emphasises fighting most, priests are needed for recruitment as only they can do it so I'll assume a 50-50 split. .50 * 56 = 28 lord and 28 priests. Of these, some will be retired and only there for teaching and sleeping. Because of the nature of SB, I'll assume there are still 85% active rune levels which is much higher than I would say for most other cults, even Humakt. .85 * 28 = 24 active lords, 24 active priests. of the priests, 1 priest will be the high priest (taken to be active since they have no time for teaching any more). Assume 15% of priests are chief priests, given the nature of the cult and the speed of acquiring 15 points of rune magic. .15 * 24 = 4 chief priests. The remaining priests are normal priests = 19. Assume 60% of chief priests (in SB) are working to becoming lord-priests. This, again, reflects the fighting nature of the cult. .6 * 4 = 2 on sabbatical building up to lord priest. Assume 10% of those on sabbatical have made it .10 * 2 = 0. The results are as follows: The total number of SB at the block = 1869. The number of SB lay members at the block = 692. The number of SB initiates at the block = 1121. The number of SB active normal lords at the block = 24. The number of SB active normal priests at the block = 19. The number of SB active chief priests at the block = 2. The number of SB High priests at the block = 1. The number of SB Lord-Priests at the block = 0. The number of SB priests on sabbatical = 2. The number of SB retired lords = 4. The number of SB retired priests = 4. Phew. Any comments will be __________ received. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- From: CRIMMARTI@urvax.urich.edu (Martin Crim) Subject: Praxian Tribes and Clans PRAXIAN TRIBES AND CLANS Bare Bones Background This information would be available to a Praxian with a Human Lore of 75%, or a Sartarite with a Human Lore of 100%. All Praxians would know the names of the clans of the main tribes, and for their own tribes know all the cults of the clans. GMs may require a Human Lore roll to identify which particular clan someone belongs to. A Sartarite would need a successful Human Lore roll at +50 to identify a Praxian's tribe (or Animal Lore at +25 to identify the mount); Praxians would be able to know a person's tribe just by looking at the person. All riding tribes: base skills as standard except Boat (00), Climb (15), Ride (40), Swim (5), Fast Talk (00), Animal Lore (15), Conceal (15), Sleight (00), Hide (5), Sneak (5) Tribe Clan Temples* Alticamelus: GSB, MH, MO, MCA, MG, MF Cirrus GW, GEi, MSB, mH, sCA, sF, sG Cumulus GW, GEi, mO, mSB, sCA, sF, sG Lost Rocks GW, GEi, MSB, mG, sCA, sF Sky Storm GW, GEi, mSB, mH, sO, sCA, sF Stratus GW, GEi, mY, sOakfed, sCA, sF Languages: Praxian (30), Sartarite (10), Trade (10) Hair & hat style: head shaved and covered with a round felt or leather cap (1 AP), long ponytail in back Bison: GSB, MH, MO, MCA, MG, MF, MBG Bull's Blood GW, GEi, MSB, mH, sCA, sF, sG, sBG Death Bat GW, GEi, mSB, mH, mO, sCA, sF, sG, sBG Lance GW, GEi, mH, mSB, sO, sCA, sF, sG Midnight GW, GEi, MSB, mZZ, mG, sCA, sF, sRaven Skull Bat** GW, GEi, mO, mH, sCA, sF, sBG Sword GW, GEi, mH, mO, mSB, sCA, sF, sBG ** a/k/a Flower clan Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (10); Midnight clan: Darkspeech (10), others: New Pavic (10) Hair & hat style: long, loose hair; wide-brimmed leather hat (1 AP) Impala: GW***, MY, MO, MH, MSB***, MF Bramble GEi, MY, mW, mO, sH, sCA, sSB, sF Brierquill GEi, mSB, mW, mY, mO, mCA, mH, sF Cactus GW, GEi, mY, mO, mH, mCA, sSB, mF Nettleburr GEi, MW, mY, mH, mCA, sF, s-Frog Woman Prickly Pear GEi, MO, mW, mY, mH, mCA, sF Thistle GEi, MY, mW, mO, mH, mCA, mF Thornoak GEi, MF, mW, mY, mO, mH, mCA *** dominated by single clan (Waha: Cactus, SB: Brierquill) Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (20) Hair & hat style: very short hair; felt hat (1 AP) Morokanth: GSB, MG, MF, MZZ Claw GW, GEi, MSB, mZZ, mF, sG, sCA, sBG Fire GW, GEi, mSB, mZZ, mF, mOakfed, sCA Flood GW, GEi, mSB, mF, sCA, sZZ, s-Frog Woman Frost GW, GEi, MZZ, mSB, mG, sCA, sF, s-Inora Tornado GW, GEi, MSB, mO, mF, sCA, sG Languages: Praxian (30), Darkspeech (20) Hair & hat style: mohawk, no hat Sable: GW, GEi, G7M, MEt, MBG, mCA Sangfwa GW, MEi, M7M, mEt, sBG Scimitar MW, MEi, M7M, sEt, sBG Serpent GW, GEi, mY, sCA, sBG, s7M Sickle Horn MW, MEi, M7M, sEt, sCA Silver MW, MEi, M7M, sEt, sBG, sCA Languages: Praxian (30), New Pelorian (20) Sable Hair & hat style: men: short hair, no beard, cuirbouilli helm; women: long decorated hair, cloth or felt hat Paps: G/M*Ei, G/m*SB, G/M*W, s Three Bean Circus, s Ronance, s The Good Shepherd, s*Aldrya, s Mahome, M/s*E, sBG Cultural weapons: 1H Axe A & P (25), Shield P (25), Bow A (20) Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (10), Earthspeech (10) Hair & hat style: short hair; felt hat (1 AP) Independents: Agimori: MF, ME, mLodril, sCA STR 3D6+6 CON 1D4+14 SIZ 3D6+6 others as normal Cultural weapons: 2H Spear A & P (25), 1H Spear A (25), Shield P (25), Thrown Javelin A (30) Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (20) Other base skills: Boat (00), Climb (45), Jump (50), Ride (00), Fast Talk (00), Animal Lore (25), Evaluate (00), Conceal (25), Devise (25), Sleight (00), Scan (40), Search (30), Track (30), Hide (25), Sneak (25) Hair & hat style: short hair; no hat notes: taboos against riding, stealing, and owning slaves; resistant to heat and thirst, but vulnerable to cold Baboon: Four Major Clans (for humans, GMs should require a Human Lore or Glorantha Lore to tell which one) Anubis M7M Gelada MSB Hamadryas MF Mandrill s-River Horse, s-Frog Woman, s-Dew Maid notes: Anubises hate Geladas and vice versa; Mandrills tend to remain near water, and the River Horse cultists remain near the headwaters of the Basmoli Berserkers: M-Hykim/Basmol (no DF) Cultural weapons: 1H Sword A (30), Bow (30), Fighting Claw A (25), Shield P (20) Languages: Basmoli (30), Praxian (20) Other base skills: Boat (00), Climb (20), Ride (05), Fast Talk (00), Animal Lore (25), Evaluate (00), Conceal (15), Track (30), Hide (25), Sneak (25) Hair & hat style: dreadlocks; fur or leather hat (1 AP) notes: main activities are raiding, blackmail, & being mercenaries; they ride stolen mounts or walk, but dismount to fight Bolo Lizard Riders: MW, MEi, sBG, sF Cultural weapons: Bolas A (30), 1H Spear A (25), Dagger A (25), Shield P (25) Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (20) Hair & hat style: shaven head; lizard skin hat (2 AP) Oasis People: Temple Adari mE, mO, mI, mCA, sTada Agape sE, sMalia (permanent) Barbarian Town mE, mO, sCA Biggle Stone sE Bull Ford mE Cam's Well m-Escaturigine Day's Rest sE Horn Gate mE, sCA Indigos mE Monkey Ruins sOakfed (permanent) Moonbroth m7M, sE, sGagarth (permanent) Pairing Stone sO Tourney Altar sH Cultural weapons: 1H Spear A (20), Shield P (20), Thrown Javelin A (15) Languages: Hasalaru (30), Praxian (20) Note: Hasalaru is the language of the downtrodden "native farmers." Each settlement speaks a noticeably different dialect, so there is a -5 modifier when speaking or trying to understand different dialects. Other base skills: Boat (00), Ride (00), Plant Lore (25), Conceal (15), Hide (20), Sneak (20) Hair & hat style: short hair, felt hat (1 AP) Ostrich Riders: MW, MEi, mY, sF, sCA Cultural weapons: Boomerang A (30), 1H Spear A (25), Dagger A (25), Shield P (25) Languages: Praxian (30), Moche [Sun Domer] (20) Hair & hat style: long hair decorated with feathers; no hat Pol Joni Horse Riders: MO, MEi, sH, sCA (no DF) Cultural weapons: 1H Spear A (25), 1H Sword A (25), Shield P (25), Bow A (25), T. Knife (20) Languages: Pol Joni (30), Praxian (10), Sartarite (10) Hair & hat style: close-cropped hair; horse hide hat (and clothes) (1 AP) Rhino Riders: MSB, MEi, mW, sO, sG, sZZ, sCA Cultural weapons: 1H Spear A (30), 1H Sword A (25), Thrown Javelin A (25), Shield P (25) Languages: Praxian (30), Trade (10), Sartarite (10) Hair & hat style: long, loose hair; leather hat (1 AP) Sun-Dome Templars: GY, ME, mCA (no DF) Cultural weapons: 2H Spear A & P (30), 1H Spear A (25), Shield P (25), T. Javelin A (25) Languages: Moche (30), Praxian (10), New Pavic (10) other cultural skills: Ride (00), Plant Lore (25) Hair & hat style: short hair; straw hat Unicorn Riders: GBG, mE, mYelorna, sCA Cultural weapons: 1H Spear A (25), Bow A (30), 1H Axe A (25), Shield P (25) Languages: Praxian (30), Moche [Sun Domer] (10), New Pavic (10) Hair & hat style: close-cropped or shaved head; helm NOTE: the Unicorn Tribe maintains its numbers by frequent adoption of disaffected women from other tribes; it holds few if any slaves; and it practices universal male infanticide. Outsiders believe that unicorns will only tolerate a rider if she is a female virgin. Many tribeswomen ride other mounts. Zebra Riders: MEi, mPavis, sY, sCA, sI Cultural weapons: Bow A (30), 1H Spear A (25), 1H Sword A (25), Shield P (25) Languages: Praxian (30), Moche [Sun Domer] (10), New Pavic (10), Trade (10), Pol Joni (10) Hair & hat style: short hair; zebra hide hat (1 AP) * Nomad temples do not work on the same principles as sedentary cultures' temples. G/M* indicates a temple which has enough initiates and mana to be a great temple on the high holy day, but only enough for a Major temple the rest of the year. Spells available only at Great Temples are only available in the week after a High Holy Day. They can be regained at any major temple. s* indicates a shrine that only operates on the high holy day of the associate cult. Key: G=Great Temple, M=Major, m=Minor, s=Shrine BG: Babeester Gor CA: Chalana Arroy E: Ernalda Ei: Eiritha Et: Etyries F: Foundchild G: Gagarth H: Humakt I: Issaries O: Orlanth 7M: Seven Mothers SB: Storm Bull W: Waha Y: Yelmalio ZZ: Zorak Zoran NOTE: temples to Daka Fal, being common and always large through spirit participation, do not appear on the above chart. Where a tribe does not practice ancestor worship, (no DF) appears. Praxian temples, if they can be called that, consist of their regalia, which the priest(s) keep with them. The amount and magical power of the regalia vary with the size of the temple, more or less following the rules on pp. 29-30 of the Magic Book. Some regalia exist which can be used by various temples and have enormous innate power: War Arrow Medicine Bundle (Fire), Tada's Sandals (Air), Tada's Cudgel (Darkness), Horn of Plenty (Earth). Large temples of the major tribes usually possess them. Each temple has various holy sites, scattered across Prax and the Wastes. A temple usually establishes its first site in the Sacred Ground. The priests do not need to be at a site to worship, but being at the site has various game and non-game effects. Temple Size #/priests #/sites shrine 1 0-1 minor 1D4 1-3 major 2D4+3 2-7 great 2D20+10 3-18 Spirit cults of Prax: Darkness: White Princess (a/k/a Inora), Raven (Illusion) Water: River Horse & Frog Woman (both Mobility), Dew Maid (Life) Earth: Three Bean Circus (Harmony), Ronance (Mobility), Good Shepherd (Life), Tada (Harmony) Earth & Water: Escaturigine (Life) (described elsewhere) Sky/Fire: Oakfed & Mahome (both Disorder), Sun Hawk (Mobility), Pole Star (Harmony), Evening Star (Death), Morning Star (Life), Yelorna (Fire, Spirit, Death) Air: Thunder Bird (Mobility), Lightning Boy (Death), Mistress Calm (Stasis), Rainbow Girl (Illusion) Dew Maid (Water, Life) Find Water 1 point self, temporal, stackable, reusable Each point of this spell above the first adds to the range. If there is any fresh water within the range, the caster's fetish will point towards the largest source of it, and he or she will have a general idea of how far it is. This spell is not blocked by solids, but each meter of solids counts as 10 meters of range. Evening Star (Light, Death): True Spear Frog Woman (Water, Mobility): described in GoG, under Horned Man Good Shepherd (Earth, Life) Seal Spirit 3 point ceremony: summoning, one use If the caster succeeds in his summoning roll, he retrieves the soul of the recently departed. He can then force it into the corpse if he defeats it in spirit combat or overcomes it with Control Ghost. The reunited body and soul regain life. If the caster fumbles his ceremony roll, a random spirit returns which, if bound, controls the body fully. Inora (Cold, Ice, Harmony): two spells Chill (spirit spell) 3 point touch, temporal, passive The target of this spell begins to cool off. The spell can not affect any living thing or item containing a spirit, but can affect things in contact with one if the creature's MP are overcome. The rate of cooling varies inversely with the SIZ of the target. The gear of a normal person (ENC 10-30) cools off fast enough to cause 1 point of damage to total HP per round per round, beginning with the second round, to a maximum of 6 points per round. Obviously, normal armor will not protect against this, but magical or natural armor will. Cold items may become brittle. The spell cancels 6 dice of heat in very hot things. Frost (divine spell) 1 point touch, duration: 12 hours, stackable, reusable Lowers the temperature in a 10 meter radius by 5 degrees Celsius. Additional points either add another 10 meters to the radius or lower the temperature another 5 degrees. If the humidity is high, the spell causes condensation, which can be gathered. Except in Dark and Storm Seasons, this spell causes grass to grow, increasing the available fodder. Lightning Boy (Air, Death): Lightning Mahome (Heat, Disorder): Reduce Flame (Lodril) and Ignite Mistress Calm (Air, Stasis): Decrease Wind (Orlanth) Morning Star (Light, Life): Beacon 1 point self, instant, non-stackable, reusable This spell causes the caster to suddenly emit a great light. It must be stacked with MP, and the intensity varies with the number of MP used. The light will dazzle sighted onlookers, giving the caster the effect of that many points of Shimmer for one round. Each MP will cause 1 HP of damage to a shade engulfing the caster, with damage decreasing to 1/2 at 10 meters, 1/4 at 20, and so on. The light will be visible in darkness for a distance in km. equal to MP used, to a limit of five more than the distance to the horizon. Oakfed (Heat, Disorder): Create Wildfire, Cremate Dead (Lodril) Pole Star (Light, Harmony): Catseye (Yelmalio) Rainbow Girl (Air, Illusion): Illusory Sight Raven (Darkness, Illusion): Illusory Sound River Horse (Water, Mobility): Ride River Horse 2 points touch, instant, stackable, non-reusable This spell can only be cast at a headwaters. It summons the River Horse, who can carry the caster and up to nine passengers. For each additional casting stacked with the first, the spell carries an additional ten persons. The trip lasts virtually no time and deposits the carried persons at any other headwaters in Prax or Dragon Pass. If the caster has no clear idea of where he or she wishes to go, the destination is a random headwaters. Ronance (Earth, Mobility): Pathway 1 point ranged, temporal, stackable, reusable Lets the caster know where the nearest oasis is. If stacked, the second point lets the caster know where the second nearest oasis is, and so on. The caster magically knows the direction and the distance to the nearest 10 km. Sun Hawk (Sky, Mobility): Sun Run 2 points touch, duration: special, non-stackable, reusable Allows the target to travel all day without fatigue. The spell can only be cast while the sun is up and it ends when the sun goes down. It can be cast on a mount or a person. It effectively doubles the distance that an unmounted person can travel, and triples the distance a mounted person can travel. Tada (Earth, Harmony): Summon Gnome, Command Gnome Thunder Bird (Air, Mobility): Whirlwind 4 points This spell creates a magical wind with a strength of 4D6 (roll each round that the wind tries to affect something). The locus of effect of the wind can move 10 meters per strike rank so long as it remains within the spell range. The wind will extinguish fires with a radius of one meter or less if it overcomes the intensity with its strength. It will pick up an object of less than one cubic meter if it overcomes the object's size with its strength, but it cannot be used to carry things--rather, it tosses them in a random direction. The wind cannot affect objects tightly gripped by a person or tightly connected to a large object.The winnd will pick up and scatter dust, water, and sand, which may reduce visibility in its immediate area or even temporarily blind someone standing directly in it (this requires the caster to overcome the victim's MP--if it fails, the wind dies). The wind will also fill sails. Three Bean Circus (Earth, Harmony): Peace 3 points ranged, temporal, non-stackable, re-usable Roll a single resistance roll against all sentients within 160 meters of the caster. Add an allied spirit's or familiar's MP to the character's. If the spell overcomes the sentient's MP, the sentient will not fight for the duration of the spell. The caster must preach peace and love for the duration of the spell, or else the effect will cease. Yelorna (Fire, Spirit, Death): Shooting Star 1 point touch, temporal, stackable, reusable Causes an arrow to trail sparks when it is fired, and act as a combination Firearrow and Multimissile 1. Each additional point stacked in the spell adds 2 more missiles. All missiles must be targeted against the same target. This spell is incompatible with Firearrow and Multimissile. If the arrow is larger than normal, each point of spell will add only 1 more missile. If the arrow does more than 3D6+2 damage normally because of its size, the spell cannot affect it. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- From: Bryan
Subject: The Written Rune The Written Rune Using Runes for Writing in Glorantha Copr. 1990 Bryan Maloney (RuneQuest and Glorantha are copyright the Avalon Hill Game Company.--I wish it could be Chaosium.) [Actually, I believe the Copyrights are still held by Chaosium -- Avalon Hill just owns the distribution rights --Ed] The Runes of Glorantha embody certain elements key to all inner workings. In a way, they can be considered a "Periodic Chart" to the world, defining the basic blocks upon which all other things are built. Runes are assumed to be basic to all magical manipulations, required for the enchantment of foci and powered objects. Some go so far as to associate skills with Runes. However, no runic usages for Glorantha address, so far as I know, a basic use of Runes: Writing. Runes can be used for alphabetic writing. The following is a proposed system for using the runes of Glorantha as a writing method. I welcome any suggestions (please post to the list for discussion continuity). Some may argue that the Gloranthan runes are too sacred to be used for something as crass as writing, however, all writings are reputed to have sacred origin. Furthermore, many cultures used alphabets in which each letter was reputed to have sacred significance. Yes, this has led to difficulties. For example, Hebrew represented numbers with alphabetic characters. However, their numeral for 10 turned out to be YH, which is the first two letters in YHWH, a word too sacred to be even begun, much less written. Therefore, they created a new symbol for 10. The following is a proposal. I do not consider it the word of the Gods, nor do I consider its design perfect. If it were perfect, I'd not be asking for suggestions. May Arachne Solara bless this work. The Gloranthan alphabet presented below utilizes the runes of Glorantha. It is unique to the continent of Genertela. Pamaltela utilizes syllabaric writing forms which have been provided by Pamalt to his children. Some Genertelan realms also do not use the runic system. Most notably, Kralorela uses an ideographic system of great complexity. The alphabet traces its existence to the Godstime, when the Celestial Court would dance with the Runes and leave them about as signs of their presence. Eventually, the Court came upon the conventions of leaving certain combinations of Runes to represent what they had been doing. This practice was passed to their children, the Burtae. After the Great Compromise, the Gods discovered that the Runes would not speak of their own accord while within Time's web. inspired Thondril Runecarver to Heroquest to the Godtime and bring back the secret of the speaking Runes. The Runes fall into two categories: Fixed and Flowing Fixed Runes represent the same sound values, regardless of what culture uses them. Their sound values still reflect the names of the original owning deities. Flowing Runes vary in value from culture to culture, although most remain constant. Why some Runes should be fixed while others flow is a mystery. Some conjecture that the fixed Runes still maintain some sort of link to the original owning deity of the Celestial Court. How this is possible is highly disputed. The writing system is entirely consonantal, with vowels added as diacritic marks above the preceding or following letter. Which method is chosen depends upon local custom. (I apologize for only giving the Runes' names, but ASCII has its limits.) Fixed Runes Rune Value Beast h Darkness n Death k Disorder r Earth g Fertility y (consonantal) Illusion t Man d Motion l Plant f Water z Notes: There is some logic to the assignment of Runes to this category. All appear to be constants in the great chain of life for mortals on Glorantha. However, the presence of Disorder, Illusion, and Motion disconcerts many scholars. Followers of Eurmal and claim that disorder and illusion are the true basis of reality, therefore they are the only true constants. Whether or not this is a practical joke is debated. No one has yet come forth with an explanation for the presence of Motion among the fixed Runes. Flowing Runes (The values given are those most commonly used in the Dragon Pass area. These will differ from region to region.) Rune Value Air m Dragonewt v Fire th (unvoiced) Healing ch Infinity j Law b Magic zh Mastery th (voiced) Spirit sh Stasis s Truth ng Notes: Mostali maintain that the Stasis Rune belongs in the fixed group and was wrongfully displaced by the Motion rune. The use of the Dragonewt Rune is exclusive to the Dragon Pass area, and is unknown elsewhere. The Lunar Empire is the only culture which makes use of the Moon Rune, giving it a fixed status (unrecognized by others). Some scholars have begun using some of the flowing Runes as vowels, abandoning the use of diacritics. No sane culture uses the Chaos Rune for any sort of writing. Diacritic Marks The vowel marks vary from culture to culture, but the following is accepted over a wide band of peoples. Remember that a mark goes over the preceding or following consonant depending on local custom. These values are not strictly phonetic, as a mark can have the phonemic value of a set of related sounds, determined by context. Many more diacritics exist in great profusion. Some languages use a set of five or six to represent all vowels, diacritics doing multiple duty. Others have evolved marks for each vowel sound in the language. Mark Value ' u " a ^ o - e = i ~ ae ---------------------------------------------------------------------- The RuneQuest(tm) mailing list is a courtesy of Andrew Bell. All opinions and material above are the responsibility of the originator, and copyrights are held by them. 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