Bell Digest v931127p2

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, 27 Nov 1993, part 2
Precedence: junk


From: henkl@yelm (Henk Langeveld - Sun Nederland)
Subject: Re: climbing mountains; scalability of % skills
Message-ID: <9311261701.AA29936@yelm.Holland.Sun.COM>
Date: 26 Nov 93 19:01:57 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2453

Replying To: (Colin Watson)

>I liked your idea for abstracting climb chances for long ascents. Would you
>care to put a figure on how far "normal progress" should be?

I'm not a mountaineer, so my proposal really is an attempt to make
the % skill system scalable in time.

I would appreciate any effort of the more experienced climbers on
the list to fill in the details.

Any interest in working out this system of long-term skill resolution?
Do we need it?   The rules for navigating a ship already provide 
something similar...

Henk	|	Henk.Langeveld@Sun.COM - Disclaimer: I don't speak for Sun.
oK[]	|	My first law of computing: "NEVER make assumptions"


From: (David Dunham  , via RadioMail)
Subject: temple size; Syndic's Map; dolphins
Message-ID: <>
Date: 26 Nov 93 17:22:13 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2454

>have allowed this player to regain any divine spells at any Trickster 
>shrine as they are all linked in the 'divine' sence. What does anyone 
>think of this?

Against the rules, but certainly practical.

>From: (Geoff Gunner)
>re:  The map of Fourth Age Glorantha.  Err ... what about the Great Compromise
>I though time travel was supposed to be a No-No (Heroquesting's more travel to
>No-Time).  So *HOW* did this wretched document get there ???

Who said it's authentic? As long as the Syndics were worried. Heck, it
could have been planted by Zzabur to get them to destroy their own

>From: (johnjmedway)
>OK, so dolphins are cool, then.

Don't forget the heraldic dolphin is quite different from the actual mammal.

>From: (Mark Sullivan -- Michigan Library Consortium)
>the Spirit of Darkness called the White Princess

See the Gods of Glorantha Prosopaedia under Inora.


From: (Roderick Robertson, SC1-5, x52936)
Subject: Why climb Wintertop
Date: 26 Nov 93 17:20:00 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2455


   With all the questions and answers floating around about climbing 
Wintertop, and me just having re-read Elder Secrets (even indexing it 
for my own use), there is a good reason to climb the dang thing: There 
is a Temple to Mountain, Mother of Storm at the top (the temple to 
Maran Gor is at the base). 

  Orlanthi priests fly or climb themountain in "fits of religious 
zeal". The acceptable way to come down is jump...

   "Top of the World has never been climbed by known reputable 

  Elder Secrets, Secrets Book pp13-14: The Three Dragon Mountains, and 
Top of the World.

Roderick Robertson


From: (Colin Watson)
Subject: shipping rules
Message-ID: <9311261841.AA26615@condor>
Date: 26 Nov 93 18:41:43 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2456

Henk says:
>Any interest in working out this system of long-term skill resolution?
>Do we need it?   The rules for navigating a ship already provide 
>something similar...

Y'know, I wonder how much playtesting went into the ship journeying rules.
I have a merchant character who faces the sharp-end of these rules
on a daily basis. It's only a matter of time before probability
catches up on him; his captain fumbles on a windy day and his entire
cargo goes down to stock Davy Jones' Locker (not to mention his life)...
It really ain't worth the risk of sailing anything less seaworthy than a
Large Cog, and even that is dodgy.
That does it! Time to cut and run with the profits...
...well, maybe just one more trip...heh, heh.

Do the Lunars have shipping insurance? I can see it being mighty popular.

BTW It seems to me that the freight cost for shipping 150kg of cargo by
water is rather high (several pennies per day?) considering that a Cog can carry
75 tonnes. A fully laden Cog would rake in thousands per day in transport
revenue alone: enough to pay the crew, maintain the ship, even pay your
taxes once in a while and still have enough to buy a new ship every month.
I assume transport costs for bulk cargo must be a *lot* cheaper.

Well, that's enough trivial pedantry for now...


From: 100270.337@CompuServe.COM (Nick Brooke)
Subject: No Way!
Message-ID: <931126184116_100270.337_BHB53-1@CompuServe.COM>
Date: 26 Nov 93 18:41:17 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2457

Adrian Russell said:

> I have a player who loves to play the Trickster, given that it is hard 
> to collect a wide range of Trickster spells due to the nature of shrines 
> it would follow that it would be hard to regain any of these spells. I 
> have allowed this player to regain any divine spells at any Trickster 
> shrine as they are all linked in the 'divine' sense. What does anyone 
> think of this?

Me, I think it's an abomination, and a blatant attempt at powergaming. The 
Trickster rune spells are limited that way for a reason: it's meant to be 
hard to regain them. But it's your game. Just see how it goes...

Geoff Gunner raised a good question about spells, resistance rolls, etc.

There's clearly loads of room for interpretation here. I tend to be player- 
friendly rather than rules-heavy in practice: I think it's evil for a GM to 
insist that Countermagic blocks Healing spells, for instance. But I agree 
that an unconscious character is unlikely to be up to much in the spell- 
resistance department. Perhaps this is the simplest solution -- just as (on 
the one hand) a character with no Magic Points becomes unconscious, so (on 
the other) a character who becomes unconscious resists spells, spirit 
combat, possession, etc. as if he had no Magic Points.

We know that "nice" spells can be cast on unwilling recipients, or Humakti 
wouldn't be resurrectable.

Editorial Comment:

> [Editorial comment: I deleted 34 quoted lines -HL]

Come on, guys, let's cut down the volume of internally-referential 
citation. Some of Joerg's recent posts have included chunks of other folks' 
postings, with no comment attached. I *hope* we can follow a thread that 
stretches over a couple of days without all the bulky critical apparatus. 
Forty-two lines of quotation to ten lines of comment is a bit steep!

And, "womyn"? Pardon me while I snicker!


I agree with Carl and Thom. This is not a relevant factor in an argument 
about Gloranthan mountaineering. It simply doesn't matter, in Glorantha.

Yelmalio in Peloria:

Joerg said:

> Oh, and there Yelmalio's name would be Antirius or something, not
> Elmal or so...

From the Horse's mouth: "Antirius" is NOT just the Dara Happan name for 
Yelmalio. Most of the Antirian mythology is utterly unrecognisable as 
Yelmalion, and rightly so. This simplification should be stamped out. There 
is more Truth in the claim that "Zorak Zoran is the Troll name for Humakt."

Joerg also said:

> Venice never was a spiritual centre in Italy.

Quite. It was a mercantile centre. Like the centre of the Issarian Heresy 
would surely be. Profit is their religion.

Mark Sullivan asked:

> How the heck do [Lunars] march on roads?  Seven wide is a pretty wide
> column for anything except a major highway.

Send seven men ahead as scouts, then march two- or three-abreast?

March the chief file (seven men) together with the officer (one man) at the 
head of the unit, two- or four-abreast?

March two (or four) paired fifty-man sections side by side?

> Biggest difference is the Sun Domer's doubled defence; probably due to
> their use of the longer pikes.  It seems to me that the units are almost
> identical.

OK, I'll play you at Dragon Pass some time with *all* my units' DFs 
doubled. They'd be "almost identical" to their normal strengths... 



From: (Kirsten K. Niemann)
Subject: Protective Circle Errata
Message-ID: <>
Date: 26 Nov 93 20:06:20 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2458

Hi guys. 
Many thanks to the few of you who replied to my solicitation for
comments on Pritective Circle. I have used some of your suggestions
in the rewrite of the spell.
Strangers in Prax will include the Official Errata for Protective
Unfortunately the RQ 3 reprint was too far ahead for it to have it
put in there. The reprint is already past blue lines.
Here's the spell as it stands now:
Protective Circle Errata

The original Protective Circle spell as written in RuneQuest 
is incorrect. Substitute the following description of the spellUs 

This spell must be combined with Spell Resistance, Damage 
Resistance, or Spirit Resistance in a Multispell to be effective. 
When completed, the Protective Circle encompasses an area 
equal to the radius of the spellUs intensity in meters.

A Protective Circle must follow a predefined shape on the 
surface the spell is being cast on. Most casters use a circular 
shape, since this is the most efficient use of the spell, but the 
shape of the protected area may be any single form within 
the spellUs radius, as defined by its intensity. The shape could 
be a square, a triangle, a pentagram or an oval for example, 
as long as the whole shape fits inside a circle of the correct 

The spellUs shape is definable by the caster, based on the 
form drawn before casting the spell. Drawing the shape may 
be done by any method, from scratching in dirt or weaving 
in carpet to inscribing on metal, or anything in between. 
Breaking the inscribed line ends the spell, but the inscribed 
line is inside the Protective Circle. Any attempt to break the 
line from outside the Circle must overcome any appropriate 
Resist spells.

The walls of the spell arc from the furthest point toward the 
center of the spell, so walls near the outside of the radius are 
shorter than those near the center, where the top of any wall 
is as high as the radius. The floor of the protected area is 
defined by the plane of the inscribed surface, and is also 
affected by the spellUs protective qualities. A circular 
Protective Circle forms a hemisphere with a base, and other 
shapes form Rcut outsU of the maximum hemisphere.

When combined with Spell Resistance, all spells passing into 
the Circle must overcome the intensity of the Spell 
Resistance, or they have no effect. If the attacking spell 
overcomes the Spell Resistance, then it affects the target 
normally. Everyone within the Protective Circle can cast 
spells without interference. 
When combined with Damage Resistance, all physical 
creatures must overcome the intensity of the spell with their 
STR to pass within the Circle. Otherwise, they cannot enter 
the Circle. All damage done by weapons wielded within the 
circle must also overcome the intensity of the Damage 
Resistance spell, or the blows have no effect. Missiles passing 
through the boundaries of the Circle must match their 
maximum possible damage against the intensity of the 
Damage Resistance. If successful they affect their target 

When combined with Spirit Resistance, all disembodied 
spirits attempting to pass into the CircleUs area must 
overcome the intensity of the Resist Spirit spell with their 
Magic Points. Otherwise, they cannot enter the circle. Once 
within the Circle, they may attack normally. 

Protective Circles may be combined with more than one of 
the Resist spells at once, though only a single Protective 
Circle spell may use a single inscribed line as its base. 
Multiple Circle require multiple inscribed forms.

Sorry about the "smart" quotes. If you have any feedback on this,
please let me know. In particular-is the spell clearly defined? Do
you understand what it says? Have I missed any terrible crock or
weenine-exploitation subclause?

Thanks in advance-
Mike Dawson


From: (Steven E Barnes)
Subject: Rank and File
Message-ID: <>
Date: 26 Nov 93 04:33:33 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2459

I'm going to display my total ignorance of ancient army trivia here.
While I can see the esthetic benefits of having a military unit based
on a power of 2, surely battle casualties will screw up all the
flexibility of such a unit?  Likewise, a unit of 49 men can be arrainged
into phalanxes of various depths, with either extra stragglers at the
back, or a couple gaps in the back row.  Is this a problem?



From: (Carl Fink)
Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Fri, 26 Nov 1993, part 1
Message-ID: <>
Date: 26 Nov 93 13:00:44 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2461 (Geoff Gunner) writes in part:

R>When does a spell have to overcome MP's in order to work ?

R>Is it something in the spell which says 'I am an evil spell' ?  In which case
 >the humakti gets screwed when the baddie throws a 'beneficial' heal 1 onto

R>Does the target's spirit detect the effects of a spell, and resist it if it
 >doesn't like the effects ?  Very clever, and (IMHO) not the case.  And that

R>Is it (my favoured-disliked solution) that ANY spell which is not deliberatel
 >accepted by the recipient must make a MP roll ?  In which case, watch out for
 >those high-POW'd characters getting knocked out in battle.  It could proove t
 >be impossible to overcome their MP's to sucessfully heal them.  This solution
 >I feel is the right one, but a decade of being a player screams out in

  I've always run it that way, and it's explicitly that way in the RQ4
draft -- unless a person consciously accepts a spell, they instinctively
resist it.  As for your unconscious high POW character -- what do you
think First Aid and Treat Wounds are for?

  Hidden danger -- what if you've used Star Magic and raised everyone's
magical defenses by ten points?


From: (Mark Sullivan -- Michigan Library Consortium)
Subject: Comments on Air and other things
Date: 26 Nov 93 16:56:30 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 2462

Carl Fink on Air

Quoting me:

>> I liked your ideas on climbing Wintertop, but I think oxygen
>> should be a problem.  One solution: use controlled Sylphs to
>> provide breathable air.

> Oxygen?  What's oxygen?  Oxygen is not a relevant concept in
> Glorantha, where Air is an element.  We need Air to breathe, not
> some imaginary component of that air.
So I repeat.  Use controlled Sylphs to provide breathable air.

Thom Baguley on Climbing Wintertop

> I think lack of Oxygen on Wintertop would be unaccesptable -
> aren't mountains Sacred to Orlanth (especially Wintertop). I
> would imagine that (given this elemental association of air with
> earth) that (breathable) air extends all the way to the sky. I
> think that only when you reach the sky might breathing become
> a problem ... (maybe you have to be able to breathe fire or
> aether?)

Good point.

Joerg Baumgartner on Cosmology and minor matters

> One half sphere below, Darkness, containing the Lower 
> World, therein Water, drifting upon that, Earth (with a big hole
> in the middle, Magasta's Pool, leading right down to the Lower
> World), a half sphere above, Sky, with the Upper World inside the
> shell, in between Air. Where both spheres meet, we find the Outer
> World: Luathela and the Gate of Dusk, Altinela, Vithela and the
> Land of Dawn.

Thanks for clarifying.  Now I get it.

Quoting me:

>> However, I would contend that because of Orlanth's defeat of
>> Yelm and the displacement of the Sky by Umath, that Air blocks
>> the line of sight.  Sight is an attribute of the Sky.  In God
>> Time before the birth of Umath, sight was not blocked.  One
>> could see in a straight line as far as the eye could see.  Now
>> the power of eyesight is limited due to the defeat of the Sky
>> gods by the Air gods.

> Runic ties Dart Competiton starting again: the appropriate sense
> for Sky is heat sense - of little practical use, like a certain
> emperor cult.

This I don't get.  It seems *clear*.  Yelm and Yelmalio both get
Farsee and Yelm has Command Hawk and Eagle (both exceptionally
keen-eyed creatures).  Orlanth does not get Farsee.  Sight is tied
to the Sun Rune (if to any Rune).  Orlanth's Wind Words spell
indicates that Air is closer to hearing than sight.  But its
probably closer still to speech.  Hence the expression - big bag of
wind ;-) .

> I liked Paul Reilly's proposal that light rays are as bent as a
> certain leading light deity or his rune...

I don't think I saw this.  When did it appear?  Bent light rays
would seem to cause way more paradoxes (or is that paradoxen?) than
they solve.

> I am not a Yelm sympathizer, am I?

I never would have guessed.

 * Mark Sullivan *