Subject: That's not a Bug, It's a Chaos Feature!, Volume 6, Number 3 RQDIGESTV06N03 First Distribution: March 27, 1991 This issue: Old Wind Temple John Castellucci Spell Spirit Strengths Eric Jablow Delecti and the Upland Marsh Revisited David Gadbois ====================================================================== From: firstname.lastname@example.org (John Castellucci) Subject: Old Wind Temple RUNEQUEST: OLD WIND TEMPLE (C)1991 J. H. Castellucci RUNEQUEST and GLORANTHA are owned by Chaosium May be distributed without profit Intro: This is my version of OLD WIND. I am sure it is quite different than Greg Stafford's origin version. I have taken some license with Glorantha to create my own myths and legends. This version of the temple is intended as a base of operations for characters who have outgrown Apple Lane. It is based loosely on what direction I think that the Sartar campaign was going. There is still a lot of malleability in this writeup, and I have purposely not included any writeup of statistics. Feel free to give the residents of the area stats that will fit into your campaign. Stats are also omitted to keep potentials players at unawares! I also play RQ II 1/2 (RQ II + some RQ3 and house rules), so how I've worked things wont exactly fit into other worlds mechanically. OLD WIND is intended as a jump off point for the published scenario packs as well as other original material. Everyone who uses it should add their own Heros, Legends and Personalities. OLD WIND TEMPLE --------------- Before Time: The many confrontations between Orlanth and Yelm before time began have become the stuff that HeroQuests are made of. OLD WIND is twice blessed in the eyes of our lord Orlanth Thunderous. For there he was able to (with the aid of Eurmal) to humble Yelm not once, but twice. Orlanth in his youthful boasting, claimed that he could beat Yelm not only in any contest of arms, but any contest of intellect as well. Yelm, deciding to put the upstart in his place once and for all agreed to match wits against Orlanth. Yelm wagered his Golden Chess Set against Orlanth's Sky Cape that Orlanth could not beat him in a game of chess. Orlanth in his youthful confidence easily agreed to this challenge despite Yelm's reknown at the game, never having lost a match. On the appointed day, Orlanth rode the winds to Yelm's golden halls upon the Spike but refused to enter. Yelm strode forth with the chess board in his arms to meet the challenge. As soon as he set the board down, Orlanth seized it and hurled it off the Spike and into the winds. 'Let the free wind spirits declare the place where we shall contest, not vainglorious Yelm in his golden halls!', spoke the Storm God. These words were so haughty that they drew the attention of Ruath-nen the Grand, mighty dragon of Dragon Pass. He then drew in his awesome breath and caused the golden gameboard to light down in the Storm Hills in the place that was to become OLD WIND. There the two met for the game, unknowing of the two spectators that they had attracted, Ruath-nen from his cave and Eurmal the Trickster, who secreted himself behind a rock. Yelm then proceeded to easily take the upper hand in the chess game. With every move he taunted Orlanth with his superiority, causing Orlanth to shake with anger and to play even worse. Eurmal, seeing an opportunity to have a little fun, wispered into the winds, knowing that all words so done will eventually fall upon the ears of Orlanth. 'Is this a contest to see who is the better chess player or a contest of wits? Yelm has taken the upper hand by tricking you into his own game! Can you not show him the inferior by playing him for the fool? How can Yelm lose playing on the Golden Board that bears his Rune? Use your own rune, show him who is smarter, or you truly are his inferior!' Orlanth heeding these words invoked the Subtle Wind and caused a cloud to momentarily block out Yelm's revealing light, and then commanded the Subtle Wind to rearrange the game pieces in Orlanth's favor. Yelm was so proud and confident that he failed to notice the slight change in the Golden figurines. When Orlanth drove Yelm's king into checkmate, Yelm's disbelief was so strong that the sky actually dimmed for a moment. Just as Orlanth was claiming the Golden Board as his own, Ruath-nen the Grand burst from his cave and with his mighty breath blew away the rock that was hiding the Trickster from view. 'This is the true winner of your petty contest', bellowed the dragon, 'and his prize shall be the honor of being my next meal!' At this Eurmal quaked from the top of his head to his magic boots and fled into the Storm Hills. Ruath-nen then spread his enormous wings and took to flight after the Trickster. How Eurmal tricked the mighty dragon into not eating him is a legend for another time, because we must now return to Yelm and Orlanth. Yelm was so angry at being tricked that he started to radiate so intensely that the very earth was scorched to bare rock. 'I admit you winner by deceit, commander of the winds, and name you Orlanth Treacherous for your deeds today! Take your prize, the Golden Board, and enjoy in it, for none will play you, Orlanth Treacherous!' spoke Yelm unto Orlanth. The Sun God then withdrew to his golden halls to mourn his lost while Orlanth stood staring at his prize upon the hill. Orlanth's rage at Yelm's words grew and grew until the winds raged and howled in torment. The gale then swept up Orlanth into the skies and bore him unto Yelm's Golden Halls. The winds burst open Yelm's vaulted doors and carried Orlanth before the the Golden Throne. 'Take back your words, dim one, less the storms blanket the land and block out your light forever!' stormed Orlanth. 'I am not afraid of you, Insignificant Wind! Meet me on the morrow a the spot of your accursed treachery. If you can best me again, even with treachery, I will take back the name you have been given. If I best you, as I surely will, you will return unto me that which you have taken unearned, and accept your name, Orlanth Treacherous!' raged Yelm from his Golden Throne. 'So be it!' the winds chorused as the Storm God departed for his own halls. When the two next met, they were alone upon that soon to be hallowed hill. Now a word was spoken at the two battled at chess. Once again Yelm took the upper hand. Our Lord Orlanth realized that if he were to best Yelm again, he would have to outwit the vain Sun God. Once again he prepared to invoke the Subtle Wind, but before he released it he noticed that Yelm bore with him the Tiniest Flame, a fire so small that even the Subtle Wind would extinguish it and reveal to Yelm that he once again had been duped. Then Orlanth though his own deep thoughts and searched himself for the power to win this battle of wits. By the sheer power of will, Lord Orlanth caused the pieces to rearrange themselves upon the Golden prize, and again mated Yelm's king. Ever since, Orlanth's faithful have been able to move by the sheer force of will. Yelm then stood high, his head blazing in the sky, and looked to the Tiniest Flame as to reveal the source of Orlanth's victory. Yelm stood there, frought with disbelief at the Flame's still flickering form. 'I know you have cheated me again, Stormy One, but Yelm has pride and honor, and takes back the name he has branded you with as well as gifting you with his precious Golden Board', Yelm calmly spoke to the victorious Storm God, 'We shall meet again, Thunderer, we shall meet again...' And then Lord Orlanth hallowed the barren ground where the Golden Board still layed, and gave its keeping unto the Wind Children of the Storms Hills. 'This is shallow victory, but a victory none the less', proclaimed Orlanth, 'Let a temple here be raised that it never be forgotten!' From an ancient scroll Translated by Betha Storm-Eyes S.T. 1609 During Time: After the Dragonkill war had destroyed the entire human population of Dragon Pass in the year 1200, the legend of the Orlanth's Golden Chessboard was forgotten, and OLD WIND was left shrouded in legends guarded only by the Wind Children as so commanded them by Orlanth. Then a wandering Rune Lord of Orlanth Adventurous, Bobben Cliffclimber felt a strange compulsion to climb to the top of the Storm Hills. After much hardship and effort, he collapsed before he reached the peak and fell to the earth, landing on the giant chessboard. He was then given refuge by the Wind Children of OLD WIND, who lifted him one under each arm, and carried him on their wings to High Wind. After five years of seclusion amongst the Wind Children Bobben emerged in the year 1409 a Rune Priest of Orlanth Thunderous. He then returned to the hill peoples among whom he was born and began to preach. It was from these original converts that would build present day OLD WIND. The visions that Bobben received in his five year seclusion gave him the strength and foresight to accomplish this task, and it is said that Orlanth still sometimes sends visions to those who visit OLD WIND. In the year 1578, Dragonnewts used Dragon Magic to come upon OLD WIND in stealth, and managed to steal from the temple treasury the legendary Dragonarmor that the cult Hero Jaerod had won from Ruath-nen's cave 100 years earlier. This has caused an enmity between the temple and the Dragonnewts of the area that still exists to this day. Heroes of OLD WIND: Alread Kingslayer truly attained his status while questing on the Hero Plane. There he encountered a minor aspect of Yelm and was able to beat him in a chess game. Orlanth was impressed by his ability at the game that he bound his spirit to the Golden Board. His spirit still remains and will play anyone who challenges him to a game on the magic board. Every chess game played against him add +5% to chess playing ability up to a max of INT x 5%. Jaerod Dragonarmor was awarded the title of Hero for finding the magical Dragonarmor in the cave of Ruath-nen. Two parties did he lead into those horrid caves in search of the fabled armor. Both times was he the only survivor of failed missions. It was not until many years later, on his third venture into the caves did he find what he sought. The old man had gone there to die, but instead returned with the magical Dragonarmor. None would he tell of what he had seen in Ruath-nen's caverns. Realizing that he was too old to wear the armor into battle, he donated it to the temple and retired. It was on his journey home to the northern Sartar hills where he was born, the Jaerod Dragonarmor was set upon by avenging dragonnewts. They slew him mercilessly, but Orlanth set aside a special task for his soul. His spirit has since been seen inside Ruath-nen's caves, but none know the purpose. The Stormwalkers are a mixed band of men and spirits who as a group are considered a cult heroes. The humans can discorporate and fly through the air and the spirits can form human bodies. The Stormwalkers greatest power is their control over storms. Working together as a group they can summon two types of storms. The first is a one day deluge of the local area that floods all streams and rivers. This storm is so fierce that all within it must seek shelter or risk bodily damage. The second storm is a three day steady downpour over the entire area of Dragon Pass. This will cause streams and rivers to flood on the third day of the rain. The Stormwalkers are somewhat mystical figures that come and go as they will among the inhabitants of OLD WIND. They are treated and respected as Rune Levels when they associate with the men of the temple. They are known to sometimes show up at rituals, training, meals, and other common events. The Stormwalkers are believed to reside in Orlanth's Storm Castle when they are not among men. Political: OLD WIND, being the oldest Orlanth temple in Dragon Pass, does have its place in the politics of the area, but in a more ceremonial than powerful way. The OLD WIND High Priest (called by the title of Grand Wind) is only outranked in Dragon Pass by the High Priest of Orlanth Rex. Even though The Grand Wind is revered wherever he visits and is seated at the tables of kings and chieftains, he is almost totally excluded from the actual day to day running of things. In times of war and strife he is called upon to bring the blessings of Orlanth, but not to confer on plans. He is also sought out to quell fearsome storms and blistering droughts. The specific aspect of Orlanth Thunderous has never strong in Sartar politics. Until the Lunar invasion, OLD WIND was in fact a way to get rid of Rune Levels that did not agree with the current political machine as well as a place to send aging Rune Levels to make way for younger blood. OLD WIND was very quiet and contemplative. Those who did not like this bland retirement picked up the mantle of Orlanth Adventurous and left Dragon Pass in search of adventure. This all changed after the Lunar invasion of Sartar. OLD WIND's reclusive location as well as the abundance of Lunar hating Orlanthi made it the perfect location for Rebellion headquarters. There have been some squabbles between the existing priesthood at OLD WIND and those exiles who have sought refuge in the temple, but so far they are all together in the goal of freeing Sartar from Lunar hands. There is also a temple to Orlanth's wife, Ernalda at OLD WIND. Personalities of OLD WIND: Acting High Priest Lathan Haldress: Lathan is a man torn between two ideals. He is very dedicated to Orlanth and knows full well that the temple's first purpose is to preserve the memory of Orlanth's victory over Yelm. He has also seen the deterioration of the Storm aspect of Orlanth decrease in political power over the years and would like to see it regained. He fears that if the Lunars completely conquer Sartar that they will plunder OLD WIND and take the Golden Board as a present for the Red Emperor. Lathan has been acting High Priest for the last three years. He has not taken the title of Grand Wind, because the whereabouts of previous High Priest is still unknown. The Grand Wind disappeared after trying to summon the Storm Castle. It is not know whether he survived the summoning, entered the Castle, or met some other fate. If the situation at OLD WIND becomes desperate enough, he himself will try to summon Orlanth's Storm Castle. Wind Lord Stethan Coldbreeze: Stethan is the brother of Lathan and trusts him implicitly. The Wind Children also place great trust in him. He will be the one who will make the final decision as to whether OLD WIND will just remain the base for rebellion or if OLD WIND will marshall all of its forces and march against the Lunars. He is the ranking Rune Lord at the temple and commands the defense of the area. Sartar Priest Gortho the Large: Gortho earned his name from his enormous girth, at a weight of just over 300 pounds. Gortho is very adamant about routing the Lunars from Sartar. Deprived of almost all rune magic because of the destruction of the Boldhome temple, he has taken to traing at arms. Drake Mallard has proclaimed that he has never seen anyone take to the sword so fast. Unknown to anyone, Gortho smuggled King Sartar's Magic Iron Sword out of Boldhome Temple and hid it in the Storm Hills. He is hoping to recover it someday and personally drive all Lunars from Boldhome. Londra of Londros: (see WF 11) Drake Mallard, Beak of Humakt: Drake is the leader of a band of outlaw ducks from the Duck Point area. His band originally came to OLD WIND escorting a small band of refugees trying to escape Lunar persecution. The ducks were accepted by the Priests of OLD WIND and have settled on the banks of the stream that supplies OLD WIND with water. Drake leads his band of guerilla ducks on raids of former duck lands, and has nearly doubled the number of duck refugees at HIGH WIND since he first arrived. His band, known as the Wind on the Water Gang, has a bounty of 500L per beak, and Drake sports a 5000L bounty himself. Illith Allia Goodwing, Wind Child High Priestess: There as been a growing rift between Illith and Lathan over the Lunar Invasion. Illith sees the temples main job as to preserve this holy spot as it has done since before time. Lathan points out that Orlanth Thunderous is the Storm God of Sartar, and that unless they do something about it soon, there will be no Sartar. She has not come down from High Wind in over a year, and most of the Wind Children side with her. Only at Roka Swordwing's insistence did she use the THUNDEROUS COMB to stop Lunar forces from reaching OLD WIND, but now regrets that action because of the repercussions from both Lunar and Storm Bull cultists. Roka Swordwing, Wind Child Wind Lord of Orlanth Thunderous: Roka is the only Wind Child to actively hate and pursue the Lunar Empire wherever He finds them. He barely escaped the sack of Boldhome while his wife (a human priestess of the City God Sartar) was slain at the High Temple. Since then, he has been persecuting Lunars and encouraging others to do the same. Census: Humans: 6 Priests of Orlanth Thunderous 1 Rune Lord of Orlanth Thunderous 1 Priest of Orlanth Rex 4 Priests of Orlanth Adventurous 8 Rune Lords of Orlanth Adventurous 2 Priestess of Ernalda 1 Priest of Sartar 1 Priest of Lhankor Mhy 1 Priest of Issaries 2 Chalana Arroy Priestess 9 Acolytes of Orlanth Thunderous (most aged) 26 Acolytes of Orlanth Adventurous 5 Acolytes of Ernalda 5 Rebel Leaders (various Rune Levels/Initiates) 54 Rebel Men at arms 160 Refuges from Sartar Wind Children: 1 High Priestess 2 Rune Priestess 1 Rune Lord 4 Acolytes 8 Pilgrims Ducks: 1 Beak of Humakt 1 Lieutenant 15 Outlaw Ducks at arms 22 Refugees from the Lunar decree Stormwalkers: 0-3 in temple area Several Sartarite tribes have claimed the lower valleys and live in mixed populations. There are numerous small hamlets within a day's journey of OLD WIND. Rituals: Reenactment of Orlanth's victory over Yelm: Late every Dark Season, a member of the temple (usually someone who has lost face and needs to regain it or a new member trying to prove himself) sets out to kidnap a member of a Sun Cult (Yelm/Yelmalio) and return him to blindfolded to OLD WIND. There the captive is made to reenact the famous chess games. This ceremony traditionally takes place on Clayday and Windsday of Disorder week of Storm Season. It is traditional for the Orlanthi to cheat in this game to insure victory. After the ceremony, the Sun worshiper is usually returned to the foot of the Storm Hills (minus most of his valuables). It has become tradition that every new Grand Wind issue a challenge to the high priest of Sun Dome. This replaces the above ritual in the first year of the new High Wind Priest. Required Verse: OLD WIND templars are required to say the following whenever the meet a Sun worshiper in battle. 'Twice did Orlanth beat thee in battle. Twice was the Sun dimmed in shame. We are but pawns of our Masters. as it was as in Godtime so shall it be again.' Ritual of Manhood: It is still popular among rich/powerful Sartarites to have their sons come of age at OLD WIND. The youth makes a pilgrimage (usually with a Rune Level) to OLD WIND, where he is blessed by the high priest, initiated into the Orlanth cult, taught in the ways of tradition, and is allowed to sacrifice for Rune Magic (1 pt. non-reusable). This usually costs the parents 1000L. Rune Sacrifice: Due to the holiness of this temple and the dire needs of Sartar, Orlanth has allowed for all of his worshipers to sacrifice for Orlanth Thunderous Rune Magic at OLD WIND. The Orlanth Thunderous Rune Spells are (from WF 13): Increase Wind Decrease Wind Increase Clouds Decrease Clouds Thunder (Bolt) Subcult of the Golden Board: Orlanth's victory over Yelm gives his followers access to a special Rune Spell. This spell may only be sacrificed for at OLD WIND. Teleport Object Cost 1 POW Range 160 m Duration Instantaneous Non-stackable Non-Reusable This spell allows the caster to teleport one small object (max. current POW in lbs) to another location within the spells range. Parts of objects may not be teleported separately unless they are separate entities (i.e. you can't teleport a swordblade without its handle, but you could teleport a whole sword out of a scabbard). Objects may not be teleported into space occupied by anything other than air (no teleporting swords through people's heads!) Physical Layout: OLD WIND is on the second highest peak in the Storm Hills, second only to Storm Walk Mountain. Though it was originally designed as a mountain retreat, it has been fortified in the last few years. The original building surround the clearing where the Golden Board has remained in place since before time. The temple is bounded on one side by a stream which has since become home to the duck refugees. The older buildings have the airs of a hunting lodge and hunting has traditionally been very good in the area, although the large number of refugees is starting to deplete the forests and streams. OLD WIND's main defense in the narrow gorge that the only trail follows. A small rockslide could easily wipe out an army trying to climb up to the temple. A 10' stockade wall has also been raised about the original complex. There are cabins all over the valley, and most of the Sartarites enjoy living in this location. The temple still controls all issues, as well as keeping the storehouse. All surplus food and supplies go to the temple for storage for time of need. All the houses are very sturdy to survive the storms that have been known to rage in the area. The main temple is not ornate, but has a very appealing rustic quality to it, as well as numerous guardian spirits. Wind Fists are known first appear here before they go off to punish cultists who have gone astray. Shadow Cats and Vroc Hawks are native to the surrounding valleys. The upper part of the valley is named Sheep Valley because of the magic sheep that live there tended by the priestess of Ernalda. The presence of Ernalda at OLD WIND is small but very strong. Ernalda rituals take place at an ancient earth mound in sheep valley. She is also worshiped side by side with Orlanth Thunderous in the main temple. Heler's Rock is the name given to the prominent stone outcropping that oversees the entrance to the valley that holds the temple. Seasonal rituals to the god of rain are performed on this rock, as well as the sacrifice for the Rune Spells Increase and Decrease Clouds. Thagyar's Spring is a magical water source in an adjoining valley that is guarded by a friendly tribe of mountain dwelling fresh water newtlings. There is also a small tribe of demi-men called the Mrestlek's who have been living in the upper valley of the storm hills since before time began. They physically differ from the Sartarites by being more squat in form and covered with hair. They have large heads with protruding brows. They are not counted among the tribes of Sartar and have their own primitive forms of magic. They are usually shy of outsiders and dwell in secluded caves. High Wind: The most inaccessible portion of OLD WIND is called High Wind Temple, and that is the residence of Wind Children members of the Temple. It is atop a high crag, and is only reachable by flight, teleportation, or Divine Aid. No non-Orlanthi has ever been allowed into High Wind, and that is where the chess pieces are stored when not in use. A Rune Level must always accompany the Golden Pieces when they leave High Wind. High Wind is guarded by an extremely old and power spirit of air called 'Old Wind.' This spirit is said to be part of the physical manifestation of the Air Rune. Treat it a sylph of the most enormous size with Rune Level wind based spells available to it. 'Old Wind' is friendly toward Wind Children and will tolerate Rune Levels of Orlanth because of their mastery of the Air Rune. This spirit is still very unpredictable and its true purpose for residing in OLD WIND in unknown even to the Wind Children. Plunder: THUNDEROUS COMB see WF #11 GOLDEN CHESSBOARD Description: A large (8' x 8') chessboard inlayed with intricate gold scrolling and 32 unique chess pieces (one set gold, the other white gold) each representing a different God or Goddess from Godtime, of which only a few are still known by name (The Gold King is Yelm, a gold pawn is Orlanth, all four Rooks are unknown dragons, etc...) Cults: Associated: Orlanth Thunderous, Yelm, Yelmalio Knowledge: Cult Secret; Famous, One of a Kind History: Yelm himself crafted this board for his own enjoyment in his golden halls. It became one of his prize possessions and all the gods agreed that there was no other of its equal. Procedure: Yelm could probably make another, but has never played the game since he lost his prize possession, and is unlikely to make anther. Powers: This Chessboard, other than being ostentatiously ornate, is also animate. A player need only command a piece to move or attack and it does so of its own accord. The pieces will go as far as to have their own mock battles on the chessboard. Now with the powerful cult spirit bound to the chessboard, it is very likely to fight all hostile forces. Value: A major Yelm or Yelmalio temple would probable cough up 50,000L+ for this artifact. Melted down, it would probably bring 10,000L and the wrath of both Orlanth and Yelm. Some Adventure Ideas: Ruath-nen's Cave: Rumor has it that after the dragonnewts raided OLD WIND for the Dragonarmor, that instead of taking it to the Dragon's Eye they returned it to its original resting place in the caves. Recovering the armor for the cult would sure be a step toward Herodom, for no one knows what dragon magics are left in the cave from godtime. Yelmalio's Revenge: Lunar General Fazzur Wideread has offered the High Priest of Sun Dome a spear made of solid gold if his cult can destroy the temple of Yelm's ancient foe. Yelmalio cultists and Rune Levels are all eyeing this prize, and several bands have are trying to organize raids on the temple. The Trouble with Stormbulls: In the most recent Lunar exploratory expedition against OLD WIND, the hight priest of the Wind Children used the THUNDEROUS COMB to raise a great windstorm which swept an avalanche of giant boulders down on the invaders and drove them out of the Storm Hills. Unfortunately, one of those rocks was a sacred Stormstone, which Storm Bull had made sacred by urinating on it. Stormstones are known for their weather abilities. If a Stormstone is wet, then it has rained recently, if it is dry, then it hasn't rained recently. Several Stormbulls have sworn revenge upon the Wind Children and are organizing a raid against OLD WIND. The Heir: Word has reached the High Priest that another heir to the Sartar throne has been located, this time in the City of Pavis. It is essential to the rebellion that he/she be located and brought to the safety of OLD WIND before Lunar assassins can strike. Storm Walk Mountain: Orlanth is said to stop there at times, riding the neverending winds. Storm Bull is also said to roam this desolate peak, as well as other fearsome spirits. The Castle: It is said that on certain Holy Days that a storm rages above the hills and in the center of that storm is a gateway to Orlanth's Storm Castle. Is the Grand Wind still alive and in the Castle, or is he riding Orlanth's eternal winds? The Mrestlek's Secret: What have these demi-humans been worshiping in their caves for the last 2000 years? Is it a source of great magic or unbelievable evil? The Golden Fleece: Several outside forces have been trying to steal Ernalda's magic sheep for years. Broos want to mate with the sheep in order to create a magical race of Broos. The Trolls of Troll Woods want to eat the sheep in the belief that it will cure the eater of the Trollkin Curse. Storm Bulls believe the magic sheep to be incredibly tasty. Also a lamb with golden fur has been recently born, and the High Priest of Sun Dome has had a vision of this lamb, and claims it is a sign from Yelmalio. My Sartar Campaign Timeline (Some events) ----------------------------------------- 1602 Lunar sack of Boldhome 1606 Lunars assassinate most members of royal house in exile 1608 *Original Characters Adventure in Apple Lane Area 1609 *Characters visit Boldhome *Character relocate to OLD WIND 1610 Lunar's invade Prax and capture Pavis *Characters travel to BLOCK to negotiate with Stormbulls *Characters visit Barbarian Town and raid Monkey Ruins 1611 Lunar settlers arrive in River of Cradles *Characters explore cave of Ruath-nen *Characters fight off Yelmalio force *Characters journey to Duck Point and Find Legendary Duck Tower *Characters visit Beast Valley 1612 Lunars and Sartarite woo trolls for support *Characters journey to Troll Woods/Chaos Woods *Characters climb Storm Walk Mountain *Characters visit northern Esrolia 1613 Battle at Altar of Orlanth Victorious Starbrow's Rebellion *OLD WIND actively rebels/Characters sent to fight at altar *Characters journey into Snakepipe Hollow 1614 *Adventures in Troll Lands *High Priest send Characters to Prax to search for Heir *Adventures in Prax (Prax/Pavis campaign combines w/ Sartar) ???? The Crimson Bat comes to Prax! These events were played somewhat out of order and with different players/characters. There is also a *lot* of stuff ommited (small adventures/interestesting characters encountered/places of old magic). At some point, the Sartar Campaign combines with the Pavis campaign (Borderlands/Pavis/Big Rubble) and the Hero Wars begin. ------------------------------------------------------------------ About the Author: I work as a full time computer programmer at the world's 5th largest IBM PC software developer. I've been role-playing since the late 1970's. Among my favorite RPG games are RQ, Call of Cthulhu, Villains & Vigilantes and Thieve's Guild. I'm an avid SF/Fantasy reader, collect comic books, play guitar, and will probably turn 30 in a few years. ------------------------------------------------------------------ ====================================================================== From: email@example.com (Eric Jablow) Subject: Spell Spirit Strengths I remember a 'zine article from long ago, about the time that RQ3 was begun, that plans were first made to get away from the "Variable Spell Limitation" rule in a very specific manner. Originally, spells such as Bladesharp, Protection, and Shimmer were limited to 4 points, while Healing, Glue, and Xenohealing were limited to 6 points. The suggestion I saw (perhaps in a John Sapienza article in Alarums and Excursions, although I forget) was that each cult would be limited in the size of the spells it could teach. Humakt might be able to teach Bladesharp 5, while Issaries might only be able to teach Bladesharp 3. The mechanism for spell earning has changed in RQ3, but it gives me an idea. A character can learn a Spirit Magic spell basically in one of three ways: he can learn from a Shaman, he can learn from a Priest, or he can find the Spell Spirit himself. The major questions are the following: 1. How many points of magic will a Spell Spirit have? 2. How POWerful will it be? 3. What quantity and quality of Spell Spirits will the different sources have? To give answers to these questions, we need to make some assumptions. First, let us assume that cults that have special ties to a spell have access to more powerful spirits for that spell than the norm. When we compare a Humakti Bladesharp Spirit to an ordinary Bladesharp Spirit, the Humakti spirit should either provide a better spell for the same POW, or it should have the same spell but lower POW, so that it can be Summoned more easily. These two statements are, of course, the same. To determine the POW of a Cult Spell Spirit, we should determine whether the cult does have any special ties to the spell. One can check Runic or historical associations, or look at the price tables from the cult descriptions in Cults of Prax and similar supplements. My suggestions are to use the following relationships: POW Cult Relationship (1d4-1)/point Cult is sole possessor of spell. Food Song for Aldrya Jumping for Kyger Litor 1D3/point Cult is prime source for spell. Bladesharp for Humakt Healing for Chalana Arroy Strong Net for Krarsht 1D4/point Cult has major tie to spell. Healing for Xiola Umbar Glue for Issaries (1D3+1)/point Cult has simple possession of spell. Bladesharp for Orlanth 1D6/point Cult has difficult possession of spell. Heat Metal for Kyger Litor You may change these guidelines however you like. They're just suggestions. To determine the strengths of Spell Spirits summoned by Shamans or even by ordinary, independent characters, use the suggestions from a Different Worlds article from a few years ago. Spirits are most easily summoned from certain rare "Spirit Places". Often the site of an ancient battle, these places are where spirits collect. The population reflects the composition of the battle. A Spirit Place connected with an ancient Troll/Elf battle will have many elven spirits, including those for Speedart and Multimissile, and it will have many troll spirits, including those for Bludgeon, Darkwall, and Dullblade. Determine the spirits' statistics based upon your idea of the battle. If many Rune-levels died, make the spirits more powerful. Now, who has access to which spirits? I will make a working assumption that Shamans and Priests do not just Summon random spirits for spell teaching purposes. After all, they wouldn't want to Summon an overly powerful Spirit; it would either be too dangerous or too frustrating to handle. I also doubt that one can summon a random "Bladesharp 4" Spirit. One might be able to get a random "Bladesharp" Spirit, but I can't imagine anything more specific. Therefore, I must assume that Shamans and Priests usually Summon spirits they know. They occasionally Summon a random Spell Spirit, and if it proves suitable, they Command/Control it to divulge its True Name. Eventually the summoner develops a catalog of spirits he is familiar with. Temples can store their knowledge of spirits in the temple papers, or just pass this knowledge verbally. An additional consideration is that Spell Spirits cannot be used constantly; they don't recover their spells for some time after they are forced to divulge them. I would guess that they can only be used once a season. Also, the effort (MP) required to summon a spirit is proportional to its power; the best spirits require a lot of preparation. A poor Minor Temple might not be able to Summon a POW 25 spirit without the use of Mindlink and similar magics, and this they will rarely do. I therefore suggest that part of the referee's writeup for each temple or shaman should be a list of spell spirits it can summon. Should this be impractical, just a list of the following type would work: Spell Limit Bladesharp 3 (occasionally 5) Heal 2 (occasionally 4) ... etc. Major Temples should be able to teach more than Minor Temples, and Great Temples more than Major Temples. Experienced Shamans should be able to teach more than novice shamans. Independent summoners get pot-luck. Instead, one may postulate that Shrines with Spellteaching rarely deal with Spirits of POW > 12, Minor Temples rarely deal with Spirits of POW > 15, Major Temples rarely deal with Spirits of POW > 18, and Great Temples rarely deal with Spirits of POW > 21. Any Spirit of excessive POW must be summoned ad hoc, not by Name. ====================================================================== From: David Gadbois
Subject: Delecti and the Upland Marsh Revisited In volume 5 number 12 of the RuneQuest Digest I posted some questions Ken McKinney and I had about Delecti the Necromancer. I had sent these questions off to Greg Stafford and got a reply today. As usual, the response generated more questions than it gave answers. Here are some of the salient points: o Greg does not think Delecti is really a vampire. The reputation of him as such comes from his (its?) association with the Marsh, which is well known as an undead hangout. Delecti can, however, transfer his spirit to new bodies as the old one rots away. o Delecti does have the ability to create undead. He can also stitch pieces of creatures together and animate them. By way of trivia, the undead killer whale in the Marsh was created this way -- it has tentacles from some other creature stuck on. o Delecti was one of the leaders of (a faction of?) the Empire of the Wyrms Friends. This group was on their way to becoming demigods through their draconic association. Instead they broke the process for some self-serving end and perverted their original intent. (I supposed this might have something to do with why the dragonkind became unhappy with the Empire.) Delecti managed to become a demigod anyway. o Greg seemed to like the idea that Delecti can only animate and maintain undead he has animated if he can see them directly or via a chain of these creatures. Ken and I had inferred this from the mechanics of the Zombie Chain in the Dragon Pass game. Thus is Gloranthan history made. Greg noted, though, that Delecti's attention is limited, and so it may be possible for people to sneak around in the Marsh without Delecti noticing. (Actually, Delecti might not mind people wandering around, since they are eventually a good source of corpses to animate.) o Delecti is one of the "in-betweeners" who occupy a strange place in Gloranthan ecology. He is neither alive nor dead. Dragons cannot sense such beings, which explains why he was not killed off by them at the end of the Dragonkill War. The True Golden Horde had it in for Delecti, too, but I guess they never made it as far as the swamp. o Oddly enough, ducks (and the Telmori) are also in-betweeners, though in a different and less powerful way. They are in between the Man and Beast runes. The affinity ducks have for Death rune cults is a misinterpretation of their in-betweenness. I guess animals have a different connection with Life and Death than do humans. It may have something to do with the separation of Man and Beast described in the Praxian mythology. o The Marsh was indeed formed when the Earth recoiled in horror at Delecti's deeds. Only Water dared fill the gaps. In this sense, the whole Marsh is also an in-between place. (I think Greg must have been keen on oppositions of the Runes when he wrote his reply.) o Duckpoint is "a painful combination of a duck's version of a gigantic nest and a human town." o There is a place called the Howling Tower near the eastern edge of the Marsh that houses an imprisoned alchemist who "is either transforming bone into bronze or coating skeletons with bronze." ====================================================================== 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. Unless specified in the specific article, all RQ Digest material is freely redistributable on a not-for-profit basis as long as author credit is included. RuneQuest is a trademark of Chaosium, Inc. Send submissions, mailing list changes, requests for old article lists, etc. to: firstname.lastname@example.org ...!mcnc!unc!bell Request old articles by volume number and issue number.