Re: Spirit of the Forest/Flyers and Superheroes

From: <buserian>
Date: Mon Feb 27 16:27:54 2006

Hi All,

> The spirit is not necessarily useless without elves, it could be
> allied independently, for instance. Elves would be good, though, but
> not a lot of them.

I think my battalia gives ... hell, how hard is it to open a file? I had three elf units for the Redwood Forest (plus the Gardener and his spirit), two for the Vale of Flowers (plus the Dryad and her Tanglethicket physical agent), and two for the Stinking Forest (plus the High King Elf).

Plus one unit of dark elves, who have a dark elf "priest". I originally gave this one a physical agent as well (Spores), but now I am not certain HOW to do the dark elves. Maybe they don't need a leader.

> In the Balazar games I was working on, each forest had its own
> elves that could be allied, unless you were playing the Inhuman wars
> where the elves were all together, elves stick trolls stick dwarves.

That is exactly how I figured it would work in Shadows Dance, if the elves were available for alliance (in most scenarios, they would not be).
> Was the Elder Wilds Great Tree burned down? I thought it was the
> Great Tree for the Stinking Forest as well.

The "Great Tree" of Balazar and the Stinking Forest MIGHT be one tree now, but if so it is not truly a great tree. It acts as one, but it was grown within Time, to keep the forests from being destroyed. Work on "Oak and Thorn" (or whatever the Elf book is going to be called) early last year worked out exactly what the six great forests were, and neither Stinkwood nor the Elder Wilds is on the list, but we did confirm that the Elder Wilds was a great forest at the Dawn.

The great tree of Tallseed Forest once grew in Shadows Dance, and it was the life force of the entire forest from the northern break in the Rockwoods, down through all of Dragon Pass, and across through Shadows Dance. It was chopped down in the Darkness by a troll hero (Tree Chopper, natch, which is probably just a guise or title of Karrg), and all that is left of it now is the Stump, still a powerful spirit. The great tree of Balazar survived the Darkness, but was destroyed during the Gbaji Wars. (Griffin Mountain at one place says Zorak Zoran chopped it down, in another place says that Gbaji destroyed the elf forests of the Elder Wilds in the First Age -- this implies that it was Arkat, or one of his lieutenants, such as Kwaratch Kang.)

Personally, given this new idea, I prefer that there be a local "grand tree" for each sub-forest. :)

The old Glorantha Book from RQ3 indicated that there were six great forests in Glorantha. This is slightly inaccurate, as there are actually six great forests of green/brown elves in Genertela -- IIRC, the Fethlon forest is a great forest, but as it is yellow elves it is not in this list. I do not recall for certain what the six were, beyond the most obvious ones -- Arstola, Winterwood, and whichever one is mentioned specifically in the old Genertela Book (Ballid, I think).

> >> Hey, just had another thought. How about a nice a juicy mini-dragon
> >> spirit if you do the right things (e.g. magician unit emmissary) at
> >> Dragon Pass itself (ie. the skull)? Since it's part of/inherent to
> >> Dragon Pass, perhaps it's part of an arsenal of 3-4 objects/spirits
> >> could acquire before you went to Kerofin or the temple - say if you
> >> all that then you get another 15 diplomacy per turn, or something
> >> cool :-)
> >
> > An interesting idea -- I do like the idea of some mini-quests, but
> > never considered what you could actually get for them, besides
> > Diplomacy point bonuses is a good possibility.
> Well, resurrecting Tada! is sort-of a HeroQuest, you have to get
> the Grisley Portions together at Tada's High Tumulus and then do a
> little dance. There should be more of these things around. You could
> even get more than one player trying to do the quest and get the
> same benefit, with the other players trying to stop them.

Actually, this was originally part of Greg's conception for Shadows Dance -- one of the blurbs about it in Wyrms Footnotes mentioned that the grisley portions of Harrek and JarEel would be available in the game, and that you could use them to bring those superheroes back.

> In the combined Prax/Shadows Dance game, you could send someone to
> Giantland and come back with the Cradle, for instance. You could go
> to the Paps and do some things, perhaps liberating a spirit.

The full Waha counter, of course!

> Steve:
> > Someone had mentioned Flyers should be able to avoid combat. How
> > letting flyers "fly high" to avoid the effects of most units? They
> > burn up X of their MF to attain altitude. Once they were flying high,
> > they would ignore all ZOCs and earthly units -- they could neither
> > nor be attacked. To return to normal altitude, they would have to
burn up
> > the same number of MF again.
> Certainly they would be able to fly over ZOCs, but they wouldn't
> be able to avoid combat, I think. They get tired and have to come
> down to rest, in which case they could be attacked. In DP, it is not
> much of a problem, as you don't have many flying units (although
> imagine the Stormwalkers, Wasps and Pterodactyls stacked with the
> Travelling Stone for a kick-arse combination, add in a dragon for
> extra effect). But, in NG you have units such as Gargarth and
> Thunderbird. I wouldn't like them to be able to avoid combat
> whenever they liked, only to swoop down and take out stacks
> arbitrarily. It makes them too powerful.

Well, they CAN'T just swoop down arbitrarily, because once they have swooped down they are subject to counter-attack during the same combat PLUS every other player gets their turn before the player controlling the flyers can have them fly back out. Certainly, part of the "High, Flying, Adored" rule (sorry, couldn't resist) would be that no such unit could ever do a move to avoid combat regardless of how high their MF is.
> > While flying high, a flyer would "ignore" all terrain types (as they
> > generally do anyway) EXCEPT what I call Impassible Mountains, which
> > would have to traverse as if they were normal mountains. (Impassible
> > Mountains are the high ranges of peaks like the Rockwoods; they can't
> > crossed by normal units, and even units like dwarves and flyers that
> > cross them must spend 3 MF to do so.) Flying high should not allow
> > to enter true Sea hexes, but it should let them fly over Lakes and
> They should be able to cross Sea Hexes, but not to stop on one.

Yeah, probably. But then, of course, MoLaD ought to have one unit (a sea dragon or sea eagle or -- yeah, the Boatbird!) that can stop on sea hexes, too.

> Once again, they have to stop for a little rest and they'd drown in
> the sea, or lake. Yes, I agree with the Impassable Mountains, but
> they only really apply when using the big board with DP and EW
> combined.

Exactly, although I think a couple of the northern hexes of DP should actually be Impassible Mountain, I'd have to check.

> > I think there should be an exception to the No Attack rule, and that
> > that Spirit Magic and Exotic Magic should be able to affect them, but
> > RF of the magician ought to be halved to take into account the extra
> > distance their height gives them. I can't decide whether any magician
> > ought to be able to attack them, or if they should be vulnerable only
> > magicians stacked in a temple or something like that.
> Rather then halving range, the flyer should use a certain MF to
> climb, then the same MF to drop. This MF is subtracted from the RF
> of attacking units. But then you have the problem that they have to
> rest, so they have to use the MF each turn. Hmmm, tricky.

Exactly. Easier to just let them avoid combat completely -- if you are flying that high, you can pick where to land without being seen, I suppose. Also, each turn is only a day -- in a magical world, any being or group that can fly that high ought to be able to keep up the movement for a day or two without stopping.

Of course, we should ALSO add a special Kadone the Grounder unit of Ernalda priestesses who can ground all flyers within their RF once per game, anyway, and they ought to get their full RF against even high flyers. (Since I have decided that we ought to add an Ernalda Temple to the Dragon Pass board, in keeping with the new Sartar map from the Dragon Pass book, this is a perfect opportunity to add a Kadone unit as well.)

> > Instead of Heroic Escapes, the player can choose to
> > cheat death. The hero or superhero is returned to the board in the
> > same way as normal. The player then rolls the die (the first time
> > occurs, 1 time for superheroes, 3 times for heroes; after that, 3
> > for each). Each number rolled is lost to the player -- if he rolls
> > number any time for the rest of the game, it is ignored -- causing
> > a No Result (i.e., no alliance, no spirit draw, etc.) OR he must
> > to get a number that works (for combat, frex).
> Presumably this is dead to that counter only, not to the entire

Yes -- to any roll that involved that unit, even if other units were involved as well.

> I can't see how it would work, can you give some examples?

Not really -- it is all pure theory, only uncovered the day I posted this message from old notes. I'll think about it -- the issue of combat is a tricky one, I admit, and was not part of the scope of the idea originally, since that era's version of MoLaD did not use Dragon Pass mechanics at all, but was using a very strange variant of one of the old CRTs.



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