Bell Digest v930201

Date: Mon, 1 Feb 93 17:25:14 +0100
From: RuneQuest-Request@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (Digest Maintainer)
To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (Daily automated RQ-Digest)
Subject: The RuneQuest Daily, Mon, 01 Feb 1993

This is an semi-automated digest, sent out once per day (if any
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From: (Brian J. Kondalski)
Subject: Spirit Scan
Message-ID: <9301291824.AA27213@Sun.COM>
Date: 29 Jan 93 18:26:41 GMT

I didn't get alot of response to this on r.g.f.m, so I'll start it
here.  I'm working in a RQ2 campaign and was wondering how people
handle spirit scans?  When can a spirit discern runes, exact power,
cult status (lord/priest/initiate) or other attributes (possibly
int?).  I've been using the rules from an issue of the Wyrm's
Footnotes that gives discorporate spirits a range of 100 meters for
detection, 10 meters for approximate power (+-5), and only in spirit
combat do the runes, exact power, int, and cult status come through.
A embodied/bound spirit is the same except for ranges (10 meters for
detection, 1 meter for rest).  The only change I made to this was that
a person could choose to "project" his runes so that they could be
seen at the 10 meter range.  I figure that there are times when a rune
carrying adventurer would want to make his runes known without
resorting to spirit combat!  How else have other people been doing

Brian J. Kondalski
TRW V.S.S.I.            Voice: (313) 781-7382           "The guaranteed eternal
4505 West 26 Mile Road  Fax: (313) 786-7702              sanctuary man."
Washington, MI  48094   Views expressed here are MINE!


Subject: Re: RuneQuest Digest for Fri, 29 Jan 1993
Message-ID: <>
Date: 29 Jan 93 10:02:54 GMT

I've a point to make about the "Arthurian" knight (actually more of 
a late fourteenth-century sort by the description of the armor):

1: The HEAVIEST armored knight wore no more than 50kg (=50ENC) of
armor, so far as I know.  These very heavy knights only appeared AFTER
the advent of gunpowder, etc.  Furthermore, in the ages of Chivalry,
the knight NEVER fought from horseback because of the weight of the
armor.  Knights fought from horseback because it gave them advantage
over infantry.  However, all knights would fight unhorsed if need be,
usually NOT with their swords, if they could help it, but with their
lances, cut down for shield and spear fighting.  The problem with a
sword is that it allows your enemy to get close to you.  A knight had
to be able to MOVE in his armor, not just barely creep along.  That
bit about knights being lifted into their horses by winches is nothing
more than a Vicotorian bit of nonsense.  Maybe some old, fat knight
might have needed it, but knights could and did move around in their
armor on their own.  In fact, during the heaviest ages of armor, the
knight would fight as often as not without his horse, which is another
reason why he needed the heavier armor--he was more exposed to the
incidental damages of battle.

I do agree that the armor value of any non-completely-soft armor
should be reduced if it is worn under other armors.  This is to
reflect the fact that such armors would lose a good deal of their
effectiveness thorugh losing their spreading effect to some extent or
another.  I do not agree that the ENC should be raised.

(By non-completely-soft I mean anything not soft leather or cloth or
padding, things which worked more by cushioning than by spreading.)


From: (Brian Mcdaniel)
Subject: Re: RuneQuest Digest for Thu, 28 Jan 1993
Date: 29 Jan 93 23:12:08 GMT

Does someone out there know of any programs to generate RQ characters
(from any edition). I have heard rumors, but I would like to get my
hands on one before I start my next campaign. Source code especially

Brian McDaniel


From: carlf@Panix.Com (Carl Fink)
Subject: RuneQuest Digest
Message-ID: <199301300513.AA17030@sun.Panix.Com>
Date: 29 Jan 93 19:13:44 GMT

Alex ( writes:
>Sun County provides at least one possible answer itself: Invictus,
>Light Captain of Sun County is a Light Son and Acolyte, but not a
>priest.  Since this is as close to a Rune Lord-Priest as it's possible
>to get under RQ3 rules, not too bad.  But the write-up also implies
>that _first_ Invictus became LC, and _then_ an Acolyte.  This seems
>a little odd, to say the least, as it would result in a "Chief Priest"
>unable to conduct Worship ceremonies.
There is talk (so far not resolved) of bringing back the old
"Associate Priest" rank from RQ2 for RQ4.  What do people think?
>Lay Membership: I confess I don't understand the current thinking on
>lay members.  Initially I thought they were being omitted from the
>short forms only, but most long write-ups lack them too.  Surely
>most cults should have some kind of "Outer Temple: Admit One" status,
>even if this has little in the way of requirements or benefits.
Lay members definitely still exist, as evidenced in _King of Sartar_.
They just don't get religiously-defined benefits from their status.
That is, in most religions there isn't a formalized cult status called
"lay member", but anyone who attends services without becoming an
initiate is probably going to be referred to as a "lay member".  Some
cults will vary - I agree that in a cult like Yelmalio, in which
joining requires years of pre-initiate status, this sort of thing
would be more rigid and rule-bound.
>Light Priests: no POW-based requirement?  This seems odd.  I'm not
>sure I much like the RQ3 test of holiness, but no POW test at all
>is going a bit far, surely.  Do many people stick with the old 18
>POW restriction, or some variant thereon?
I never have used the 18 POW rule, and I don't know anyone who has -
it's too arbitrary for my taste, in that you can roll up a starting
character who is suddenly a priest.  The "know ten points of divine
magic" requirement seems like enough of a POW restriction to me.  The
Test of Holiness is rarely a die roll in my games, I take the role of
the High Priest (or the deity, in some religions) and simply decide
based on the character's conduct.  Sometimes I will roll dice to fool
the player, but that's about it.
>Mongroth: POW of 60?!?  That's a bit stiff for geas-breaking.  Do
>people play this strictly as written?  Mind you, breaking a Humakti geas
>is worse, but no surprises there.  Personally I'd prefer a more sliding
>scale for retribution, but this might be in keeping with Yelmalion
Well, remember that good PC shamans under RQ3 can easily defeat
Monrogh!  Actually, the whole idea of this would seem to be that
Monrogh should never lose.  Then again, he doesn't kill his targets
under normal circumstances.  Have you read Monrogh's origin in _King
of Sartar_?
>Yelorna: are we going to get a revised/reprinted write-up for RQ3?
No, but there is one being worked on for RQ4, which I think is a
dramatic improvement (and it's already semi-approved by Greg
	Carl Fink


From: (P A van Heusden)
Subject: Re: RuneQuest Digest for Fri, 29 Jan 1993
Date: 30 Jan 93 09:34:29 GMT

Hmm.. the soft armour debate rolls on. 

Anyway, with the latest gripe against RQIV, I've finally decided the
time has come. We've got arguably the best RQ designers around on this
list. Lets redo RQ.

I have been busy with this for a while. My basis is RQIII. Now, I know
RQIII has tons of bugs. However: It is modular, so you can throw
things out, plug new things in, very easily. Also, it is more closely
modeled on physical processes than RQII. (I like attack/parry more
than a defense %).

So, what needs to go:

Sorcery - We are working on a system (looks good so far) based on Ars
Magica to replace sorcery.

Fatigue - I forget who posted it, but in the Digest a while back,
there was an excellent new fatigue system using Fatigue points and
Wind point. I'll look it up.

Combat - I don't like the armour ignoring effect of slashing weapons.
I will get the details, but we essentially swapped the critical
effects of slashing and impaling weapons. Ie. an impale ignores armour
if it happens to get that lucky crack.

Character Creation - RQIII character creation stinks. This is so far
my bigggest problem. My result so far is a cross between a system of
cultural skills (ie.  ones learnt in daily life, plus from your
parents) and proffessional skills, and an adaptation of Ars Magica's
Virtues and Flaws system.

Lotsa other stuff I have forgotten to put in. Come on, bitch, moan,
scream. It would be great if we could figure out what is wrong with
RQ... and then the players can redesign it, not the manufacturers.
Also, it will be a darn side cheaper than buying the RQIV box set
whenever that comes out..



From: trystro!rune@Think.COM (Peter Maranci)
Subject: Alternate Sorceries
Message-ID: <9301301215.AA00670@Early-Bird.Think.COM>
Date: 29 Jan 93 06:31:19 GMT

Virtually all of the RuneQuest players I know consider Sorcery to be
the weakest point of the system. Many fixes have been proposed; some
have been mere patches upon the present system, while others have been
very radical indeed. I have to wonder: what sort of experiments with
magic have other players had?

There's another point about magic in RuneQuest. There are, we're told,
only three basic types of magic in Glorantha. However, even though
Glorantha will reportedly be (rightfully) restored as the default
setting of RQIV, RuneQuest will still be a system useable with many
different worlds. Need all these other settings be limited to Spirit
Magic, Divine Magic, and Sorcery (in whatever form)? This seems
unreasonable. Different campaign settings should reasonably have
different kinds of magic. And the RQ system is so easy to work
with...perhaps entire "colleges" of alternate magic could be written
up and released as general supplements.  Rather than being limited to
three kinds of magic, RuneQuest could have dozens of schools of magic.

Personally, I found it very easy to graft Spell Law spells into the RQ
system. And I've been working up a Rune-based alternate sorcery system
that seems to fit in with the system well -- though it may require too
much of a gamemaster. In any case, I'd be very interested in hearing
about the experiences and opinions of other RQ players/GMs.

On a completely seperate note, I'd like to applaud the idea of a
Digest mailing list. A great idea, and one long overdue.
Peter Maranci
trystro!                  or              rune@trystro.uucp
If you want to make sure you reach me, email me -- my host purges frequently.


From: (Kirsten K. Niemann)
Subject: Sun County problems
Message-ID: <>
Date: 31 Jan 93 17:17:08 GMT

I did a bit of editing and "error trapping" on Sun County. Not as much
as I wish I had, but then that was the first thing out under the new
system, with Ken.  I wrote the temple defenses--glad no one has any
bones to pick with them so far!
Yes I think, as some of you have pointed out, that there are several
odd things in Sun County as written. Mike O'Brien's vision of
Glorantha is rather different from mine.
lay membership is being put back into RQ IV.
Sooneror later Yelorna will reappear. Probably in one of many Pavic
products in vague stages of planning.
Yes, there are too few priests mentioned. I assume there are many
others who are just too vanilla to write up.
The Yamsur mentioned in SC is not the dead god. Just a hero named
after the god.The Crown of Yamsur is not a relic of the god. This is a
late change/addition--MOB gave no explanation of it, so rather than
make the Crown some Big Nasty Enchanted Relic, we turned it into a
thing tha belonged to a mortal. Personally, I didn't like the whole
Dragonkill thing, and begged to be allowed to rewrite the explanation
of the Old Temple's destruction. It is beyond my imagination that
Yelmalio would allow the "accidental" destruction of his temple in the
manner described.
Of course, King of Sartar makes it clear that the Yelmalio cult did
not really exist at the time of the Dragonkill War, but I can explain
Solinthor the Yelm Elder: your guess is as good as mine. I suppose he
did it because he could.


From: (Ghost Dancer)
Subject: Visibility and Combat
Message-ID: <9302011016.AA00963@Sun.COM>
Date: 1 Feb 93 10:16:00 GMT

Whilst we are on the subject of possible problems with the combat
rules I feel it would be a good time to add a new thought to the
discussion. As an ex member of a Dark Ages combat society I have some
real life experience of arms and armour and would like to offer some
thoughts on visibility in combat.

One of the most important factors in any combat situation is being
able to see your enemy, after all if you can't see his sword coming
how can you parry it?  The most singular effect on visibility in my
experience is caused by the type of helmet worn. Helmets generally can
be grouped into three types:

1) Open Face
2) Semi Guarded
3) Full Face

and the visibility offered by each decreases proportional to the
protection offered. In the worst case a full face helmet has only thin
slits which typically are located 2 to 3 inches in front of the
wearers eyes, this has a severe tunelling effect on the wearers vision
(Try looking through your letter box from about 6" away to get a rough
idea what I mean). This will inevitably reduce the wearers combat
skills, both in attack and parry, a factor not reflected in RQ or any
other system (to the best of my knowledge).

For certain weapons the limitations of visibility should be even
greater, a bow for example would be very difficult to aim with a full
face helmet on.

To try to reflect the effect of visibility I suggest the following
modifiers to combat when the various types of helmet are worn:

                  Attack/Parry     Bow/Missile
Open Face               -             -
Semi Guarded           -10%          -10%
Full Face              -25%          -25%

In this way better armour protection becomes a trade off against
weapon usage which is historically correct and as it should be. After
all when in history has anyone armed skirmishing troops or Archers
with Full Plate???

If anyone has any thoughts or comments on this subject I would be glad
to hear them.

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