Bell Digest v931030p1

From: RuneQuest-Request@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (RQ Digest Maintainer)
To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (Daily automated RQ-Digest)
Reply-To: RuneQuest@Glorantha.Holland.Sun.COM (RuneQuest Daily)
Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Sat, 30 Oct 1993, part 1
Precedence: junk

X-RQ-ID: Intro

This is the RuneQuest Daily Bulletin, a mailing list on
the subjects of Avalon Hill's RPG and Greg Stafford's 
world of Glorantha.  It is sent out once per day in digest

More details on the RuneQuest Daily and Digest can be found
after the last message in this digest.


From: (johnjmedway)
Subject: Slavery, Cities and The Holy Country
Message-ID: <>
Date: 29 Oct 93 06:14:26 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2139

though not as a single thread...

>>  From: (charles gregory fried)
>>  Date: 25 Oct 93 17:27:09 GMT
>>  X-RQ-ID: 2106
>>  of their time is devoted to the craft of war.  (And I wonder what role
>>  slaves do fulfill in SD society -- isn't large scale slavery as much
>>  of a threat to the Sun Domer farmer as Southern slavery was to the
>>  Northern free farmer in the pre- Civlil War US?  Is Yelm an abolishonist?)

I wouldn't think so. Yelm, in civilized regions, is very much a "put things
in their places" kinda guy - and that includes people, of course. I've read
that slavery is practiced here and there, but I don't recall any comprehensive
treatment, for Prax, the EMpire, or anywhere.

BTW: The Sun Domers are almost universally worshippers of Yelmalio, not Yelm.

>>  This makes me wonder: why aren't there more cities in Glorantha with
>>  the same meaningful status as, say, a Sparta or an Athens?  Pavis
>>  comes to mind, but it is an anomaly, and pretty much decadent at this

Pavis is also a _very_ small city by those standards. It only warrants a dot
on the map, for lack of better dots! (And for historicla reasons, of course.)

>>  point.  In Glorantha, nations and tribes adopt gods as their
>>  'founders' and protectors, but not cities, at least as autonomous
>>  political units.  Where are the parallels to the classical model of
>>  the city as THE most important thing in life, with temples devoted to
>>  the gods of the city (the Parthenon!), and the duties of citizenship
>>  including military service, voting in the Assembly, serving in the
>>  Council of Elders or Magistracy or Juries?  Or do I need to read the
>>  Glorantha book more carefully?  In any case, despite the illustations

In some regions people may worship the City, and the Civic Body. Some of the
cities of the Empire come to mind. David Gadbois is a worshipper of Yuthip
in my campaign, since he's from Yuthippa. Although, that falls into the founder
camp again. Hmmm, there oughtta be at least one...

And now for something completely different ( or not ):

Once again, it's time for my plea for info on what you folks think the "look
and feel" of various regions is. Primarily I need some info on the costume and 
the military of the Holy Country and the Grazelanders so that I can have some-
thing appropriate on the table in Baltimore. Building Wall Battle, anyone?

A friend of mine, Sean Summers, suggested Egyptian-style garb for the people 
of Esrolians.  Though he was (is?) a Albany insider, this seems too easy. 
Pharoah. Egypt. Naaah.  Just too obvious. They also have too much contact with 
the West, and the Orlanthi to not have adopted some of their ways and garb and 
military. So what should they look like?

BTW: I know there's a reason for the standard pronunciatioon of Nochet. But...

|  |  Landmark Graphics Corp  |  512.292.2325  |


From: (David Dunham  , via RadioMail)
Subject: Losing POW
Message-ID: <>
Date: 29 Oct 93 06:58:39 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2140

>From: (Sandy Petersen)

Interesting post.

>It is entirely possible that the  
>nonchalant way with which POW loss is treated in RQ is the result of  
>trends in the Chaosium campaigns, in which POW gain and loss was no  
>big deal. 

Can you elaborate on these trends? Might be useful if RQ4-type rule changes
are in the offing.

It's always been a big deal in games I've been in. If for no other reason
than in RQ3, you have to recompute several bonuses when it changes :-)


Subject: Extension is a *bad* spell
Message-ID: <9310291123.AA28639@Sun.COM>
Date: 29 Oct 93 11:21:00 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2142

Good day all, Graeme here (the new Graeme)
       I was looking in the Dorastor book the other day and among the gross
monsters I noticed that one several (Platewalker in particular) have got large
value extension spells - 18 points worth as I recall.  I wondered just how long
this would last and came up with the following table which I present for your
delectation and amusement. 

points duration in mins    duration in other units
0         15
1         30
2         60        1hr
3        120        2hr
4        240        4hr
5        480        8hr
6        560       16hr
7       1120       32hr   1d 8hr
8       2240       64hr   2d 16hr
9       4480      128hr   5d 8hr
10      8960             10d 16hr (break even)
11     17920             21d 8hr  3w 8hr
12     35840                      6w 16hr
13     71680                     12w +(7)     1 1/2 seasons
14    143360                     24w +(8)     3 seasons
15    286720                     48w +(9)     1Gy + 1 season
16    573440                    97w 3d 16hr   2Gy + 2 seasons
17   1146880                   195w 8hr       4Gy 27w
18   2293760                   390w 16hr      9Gy 12w
19   4587520                   780w 1d 8hr   18Gy 24w 
20   9175040                  1560w 2d 16hr  37Gy 6w 2d 16hr exactly

Explantion: The figures in parentheses indicate a time equivalent to an
extension spell of that level e.g. (7)=1d 8hr.  hr=hour d=day w=week
Gy=Gloranthan year [42 weeks exactly] The last column is approximate, but
within 2%.
This means that extension is one of the best spells in the game!  You don't
need that gross an NPC Rune Preist to have 20 points of Rune Magic given that
they have to have 10 points to start off with.  I'd imagine that every cult has
at least one spell that it would be useful for the preist to have permanently
up. That is, the preist casts the spell with a 15 pt extension at the beginning
of each year and spends the next fortnight recovering the extension spells -
unfortunately they can't recover the one that they're extending though - how
Then they have that spell up for the whole of the year.   Obviously this only
works with certain spells - but imagine a Sword of Humakt, her Iron Sword
with Truesword lasting over a year on it.  "We'll wait 1/2 hr to make sure all
her spells have worn off and jump her"  "You do this but she manages to get a
hit in with her greatsword - erm 22 points of damage - good job she didn't
critcal!" [moral: yet another reason not to mess with Swords]  In this case
this is equivalent to the humakti gift "Bless a weapon to do double damage
against all opponents" except the cost is 15 POW instead of never accepting any
healing at all - and it's transfereable - I know which I'd prefer to pay!  Or
it could be a "permanent" Find Enemy - equivalent to the Sense Assasin skill
but more general, no geas and more reliable.
You see what I mean!  There are so many spells that this would be brilliant
with - Soul Sight is a perfect example or Shield  (best keep this to Sheild I
otherwise you'll have serious trouble with healing spells [and our ref has
things to say about this as well]).  How about Find Enemy - don't go out without
it.  A Lankhor Mhy Priest curses a wayward follower with Truespeak lasting
a whole season  while the head scribe has Translate literally at his fingertips
all the time ......

Anyway I think you get my point - having a large value extension is *so* useful
and *so* cheap,for such a powerful effect, that every Priest should be
accumulating it, if they have access to it, and most cults do.

I appreaciate that a particular spell can be removed with dispel magic or
equivalent but how often will they get hit with one that can remove 16pts of
divine magic?  Who'd dare try to steal a Sword's sword?  One assumes that items 
that have such heavy magic on them are protected in both magical and mundane a
mundane fashions like being chained to one's wrist.  

I suppose that this can be just an arguement on how to spend 16 pts of POW -
are sixteen varied short lived spells better or worse than one spell with 15
extensions.  Of course I'd prefer 16 different spells *and* 15 extensions :-)

This isn't just about super-RQing either.  Most players know priests - they do
their cult service, learn spells, give tithes and so on, and as I say, it's not
that hard to gain these levels of extension.  How much would you pay/charge for 
*only* 5 days worth of your favourite Rune spell?

Comments please!
[Just for the record, if you need to make Platewalker more nasty(!) give him
Truesword, Spirit Block II, Sheild I, Find Enemy all lasting 9 years - the rest
he keeps "for emergencies" and no I don't want to think about Beserk lasting 9


From: (Colin Watson)
Subject: Divine Intervention
Message-ID: <9310291221.AA17300@condor>
Date: 29 Oct 93 12:21:50 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2143

I'm slightly puzzled about how the rules stand concerning DI.
On one hand the book implies that a God can only give aid using the
powers within its domain; on the other hand it gives a couple of
"standard" DI effects, namely Teleporting folks out of trouble and
Raising people from the dead.
I tend to agree with the domain restriction because Gloranthan
gods are not omnipotent by any means.
Now, surely only gods associated with Mobility should be able to
teleport their worshippers and, similarly, only gods with power
over Death (and maybe healers:-) should be able to bring people
back to life.

So what do you all think: should the "standard" DIs be available to all or not?


Message-ID: <29_Oct_93_13:05:03_A10CF8@UK.AC.GLA.VME>
Date: 29 Oct 93 12:05:03 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2144

Hello, All. Sam here again.
* Just a quick message of thanks for all the replies I got.
  At first I thought I wouldn't get any. I was amazed, also, to#
  see how few people actually owned up to having run a Sartar Campaign.
* Can I buy a rough guide to Boldhome without going to RQ-Con?
* I will supply a booklist. I have just bought a couple of new, brilliant
  books. 'City', a book about the building of a Roman City, is fantastic.
  It has plans, diagrams of Forum, houses, bathhouses etc. It may be
  my Notchet should I ever require it.
* I am off with printout to digest all on the last few days worth of dailys.
  Hooray, what fun..
Cheers, Sam. x


From: (Sandy Petersen)
Subject: re: RQ Dailyi
Message-ID: <>
Date: 29 Oct 93 05:52:24 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2145

Hello all. Sandy again.

Dave Dunham sez:

> I was under the impression that the various fertility spells just 

> balanced out the death of Genert, and the productivity was about 

> that of Earth (with similar technology)

Correct. I concur. Northern Europe was a fertile and fine place for  
many centuries, afflicted by famines only when crops were disrupted  
by egregiously bad government, warfare, or pests (like the Irish  
Potato Blight). 

There is still agriculture in parts of Pamaltela. It is common in  
Umathela, for instance, where Genertelan norms exist. It is also  
present in Fonrit, where the exceedingly prosperous crops enable a  
huge hierarchy of wicked villains to oppress the population. 

Along the ocean coasts of Pamaltela, and at the inland oases,  
horticulture (as opposed to agriculture) is practiced, so that the  
inhabitants can have ready access to certain plants without being  

Greg Fried sez, re: cities

> Refuge: something like Sog City in small, Brithini ruling a normal 

> populace. 

Refuge was created to be a direct copy of Sanctuary, so we could use  
the Thieves' World module in Glorantha. I thought of the rulers of  
Refuge as Malkioni, not Brithini, but your information might be more  
recent than mine own.

James King sez: 

>  I've only got RQ2 and CoP.  Would any kind soul like to tell me 

> whether RQ3 is worth buying, and which of the supplements are worth 

> the investment?

As one of the conspiracy responsible for RQ III, I hope you'll take  
my opinions seriously. I use RQ III in my own campaign, but it is  
pricey, I admit. If you're comfortable with RQ II you may as well  
stick with it. Most of the RQ III stuff can be used anyway. 

I think the best supplements are GODS OF GLORANTHA, CREATURES OF  
GLORANTHA, and GLORANTHA. Admittedly, I wrote much of these, but I'll  
stand by my suggestion. At least they're good for background. I'll  
let other folks theorize as to the best scenario packs. 

Colin Watson sez: 

> if the "Gods" are supposed to be mindless then how would sorcerers
> explain how Divination works so effectively, eh?

A) The gods are supported by subsidiary spirits that answer the  
questions for them. 

B) The gods aren't Mindless, exactly, they just lack free Will.  
That's why they can't take any original actions and must always obey  
anyone who calls on their power. Still not worth worshiping. 

C) You tap into the Universal All with Divination and the answers  
come from your own subconscious.
D) The Invisible God is answering the questions for reasons of his  
E) Divination doesn't work. They're just fooling themselves, like  
with Palmists or that bogus Market spell of the Issaries guys. 

Loved your reasons for Lay Membership. 

re: Dragon Pass Lake

There's Skyfall Lake, too. Not real useful for humans, though. 


From: (Colin Watson)
Subject: Deezola diplomats
Message-ID: <9310291557.AA25287@condor>
Date: 29 Oct 93 15:57:17 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2146

Sandy Petersen wrote about Deezola:
>Deezola is a healing goddess, but not  
>just another version of Chalana Arroy. In my own version (I'm working  
>from memory here), her cult was not so much worried about fixing  
>things that had already happened (like curing disease, etc.) as it  
>was oriented towards preventative medicine.

Interesting. In my campaign the healing goddess is also the godess of
diplomats and arbitrators. Priestesses would rather prevent a fight from
ever arising than heal up the mess afterwards. They are (supposedly)
peacemakers who use their vocal skills to persuade aggressors to adopt an
alternate approach instead of violence. They'll parley with anyone, even
chaotics. Their attitude can really wind-up combat-happy PCs :-)
Some cult members are truly altruistic, but others are cynical old
politicians. "We condemn violence. Aggressors must be pacified!"
and other such rhetoric.

>One of the spells I gave  
>her was Ward Disease. This is a stackable, instant spell which, when  
>cast, takes 1 POW from the recipient, who must be willing. The number  
>of points in the Ward Disease is added to the appropriate stat of the  
>target [etc..]

What a neat spell!
For clarification: does the recipient have to expend 1 POW for *each* point
of spell, or just 1 POW overall?

BTW, I always assumed that diseases simply suppress points of characteristic
rather than actually destroying them. This way I justify (to myself) the fact
that Restore Health cannot create new points of characteristic, it just
relieves the suppression of existing stats.


From: (Carl-Johan Lundell)
Subject: Sorcery-using PCs
Message-ID: <>
Date: 29 Oct 93 19:01:52 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2147


There have been some discussions about having sorceror PCs. I would like to take
the opportunity to ask for some advice on GMing Malkioni PCs:

I have a PC who is one of the refugees from the fallen Malkonwal of Heortland.
He has banded up with some Orlanthi rebels of Dragon Pass. He knows some low
level sorcery and often is disappointed with, for example, his ability to
heal damage compared to spirit magic users. Would he consider it heresy to learn
spirit magic or use spirit spell matrices?


Carl-Johan Lundell


From: 100270.337@CompuServe.COM (Nick Brooke)
Subject: More Spartans, plus a message from my sponsor
Message-ID: <931029215033_100270.337_BHB32-1@CompuServe.COM>
Date: 29 Oct 93 21:50:33 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2148

Speaking of which, I just remembered one of my favourite Laconic sayings:

: To the person who had asked why none of their ancient laws might be
: changed, Pausanias son of Pleistoanax said: "Because the laws ought
: to control men, not men the laws."

That works very nicely for me re: Malkioni Religious Law.

There's an *excellent* Penguin Classic called "Plutarch on Sparta", which 
includes page after page of these little gems as "Collected Sayings of the 
Spartans". Hours of fun, if you like pithy abuse for those "sophisticated" 
foreign ways. Loads of them are adaptable/inspirational for Glorantha. Go 
out of your way to find it!

Sandy said:

> The Humakti would rather compare it to a blood feud, and point out  
> that they killed the enemy in open combat, rampaging through  
> Temertain's castle like the 47 ronin. Of course, the end result was  
> much the same as if they'd planned an assassination. 

Oh aye, forty-seven Humakti to take on one elderly Grey Sage? That's what 
they call Humakti "Honour", is it? I am not impressed.

BTW, there must be something in that old Lhankor Mhy saying, "the pen is 
mightier than the sword(s)". After all, how many of them got away alive?