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Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Fri, 13 May 1994, part 1
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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: (Scott Haney, AFDS770 Functional Test X2069)
Subject: Timinits and stuff
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 03:03:52 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3984

Thanks for the info on timinits, Sandy.  Much obliged.

I made a (cursory) run of my local gaming shops, and I found NOTHING 
for Runequest!  (Well, okay, I found Sun County, but I already have 
that one.)  Does anyone have the address of a decent game shop near 
Cedar Rapids, Iowa, or one that will mail me a catalog?  I'm 
supposedly on Avalon Hill's mailing list, but I hear nothing from 
them.  (And since I'm moving into my new home this weekend, I suspect 
that I never will.)



From: (Brandon Brylawski)
Subject: Re: RuneQuest Daily, Thu, 12 May 1994, part 2
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 15:11:14 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3985

With regard to Sandy's comments on food:

    I agree that the link between monotony of the basic staples and
spiciness seems well-founded. People will add just about anything to their food
to make it more interesting; Mexican cooking is illustrative. While some
cuisines, for example Szechwan, combine both great variety and great spiciness,
these (as Sandy points out) are probably derived from simpler peasant fare 
which was centered around one or two basic foods (for Szechwan, rice and 

   One exception to the "unvaried staples means spicy food" idea in Glorantha
might be Sun County. I have always viewed them as having mostly a barley-based
diet; yet I picture the stoic Sun Domers as making a virtue out of the 
simplicity and predictability of their diet rather than seeking to vary it.
"I raise good barley and strong sons for the glory of Yelmalio.". Any thoughts?

   I have always pictured wealthy Lunars as eating a diet reminiscent of 
wealthy romans, including the decadent excesses seen in some households in
late imperial era. I imagine such things as High Llama Necks stuffed with 
Zebra Sausage and the like.



From: (Roderick Robertson, SC1-5, x52936)
Subject: Lunar Food
Date: 12 May 94 16:29:00 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3986

Sandy Petersen talks of Lunar food and spices:

>	At least one book I've read states that spicy-hot dishes  
>appear in areas where there is a large peasant population with but a  
>single staple foodstuff. In an attempt to make their bland, dull diet  
>palatable, the oppressed farmers add chilis, paprika, or pepper to  
>their meal. When the rich folks finally get a hold of these  
>interesting spices and sauces, and add them to their own diet (which  
>includes meat), you end up with a cuisine. The pattern holds for  
>Mexico, India, and southeast Asia. In Europe, where peasants might  
>well starve, but would generally do so on a varied diet, composed of  
>fish, wheat, rye, millet, barley, cabbage, pork, etc. such spicy  
>dishes never evolved. Ditto for Japan.

   For Europe, I thought there just wasn't much in the way hot spices. 
Lots of garden herbs, but no peppers, thus the need to go India.  
However, history of cuisine is not my forte (Where does Paprika come 

>	I think that the New Lunar Cuisine is horribly adulterated,  
>with few "natural" flavors or unprocessed food. I also picture it as  
>fairly expensive, and not much eaten by the lower classes, except  
>maybe on a feast day. I don't think many folk can afford Sauteed  
>Newtling Tail on Wild Rice every day. 

   At RQ (we promise it will be warmer than RQ-CON 1) CON 2 ,  The Eat
at Geo's competition this year will be "Lunar Decadence", so bring out
those Newtling Tails, Duck tongues in honey and garlic, Waltapus 
tentacle in fermented fish sauce, and other delicacies. We also want
to have the recipes (both in and out of character) to publish in the
post-con book. 

Roderick (Don't ask me about RQ-CON2, ask Eric Rowe) Robertson


From: (Alex Ferguson)
Subject: Very tricky, in fact.
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 15:58:27 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3987


> Alex:
> >Steady on there... I'm absolutely _not_ suggesting a Quorum of 75 Eurmal
> >Acolytes at every Holy Day. 

> So does this mean you agree that the 75-inits limit is bunk in general?

Yes and no...  I think it can stand to be "loosely interpreted" (counting
associate worshippers. to some extent), perhaps bumped down to about 50
("seven sevens"?).  Eurmal's weird cult structure suggests further fudging,

> Joerg: perhaps you should send it to Alex as well, or perhaps even post itI

Yah, why not post?

> By "official", I didn't mean "recognized", I meant "formalized". I.e. when
> Eurmal gets a _priesthood_ that seemingly has a set job description, a
> salary, a uniform, etcetera, I think we're getting away from the spirit of
> Trickster.

Well, no.  When a Eurmal acolyte becomes a "priest", he gets a shrine
to sleep it off in, regular buckets of slops on the head, and jeers and
derision on demand.

> This is a problem with the other write-up I mention above as well: it
> divides tricksters into initiates and priests. I happen to _like_ the
> anarcho-democratic do-it-yourself tricksters of GoG!

I do too, I think most Trickster worship is like this.  On the other hand,
I'm resistant to the idea of Trickster being a monolithic GLised entity
with only one universal mode of worship.  And in places where he isn't
_totally_ beyond the Pale, such as the Barbarian Belt, perhaps it is
possible to worship Eurmal, in some way, without becoming an outcast?
Just a thoughtlet.

> When you argue for a
> complete _separation_ of these questions, it seems you're saying that RQ as
> a rules system should be governed completely by considerations of
> (power-)gaming balance.

There's something of a dangling referent here, I assume "you" is John
Hughes, not, say, me.  At any rate, I'm about to broadly agree with Jonas
here, just as soon as I've uploaded the latest excessive number of outgoing



From: (Alex Ferguson)
Subject: Why Arkat brought Malkionism to Maniria?
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 16:30:37 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3988

Joerg, X-RQ-ID: various:

> > Okay.  My picture is of less Malkioni influence, and correspondingly
> > a less prevalent role for the IG in Heortland. 

> Which I assume for the Volsaxi, Kitori, Marcher Barons and most of the 
> hill people, and even half of the Hendriki nation, mostly the lower 
> classes. That the higher classes of the Hendriki are somewhat malkionized 
> follows clearly from both Genertela Book and RQ-Companion.

Yes, I agree with this last bit, but you've been proposing that "weavers"
follow the Aeolian church.  To say nothing of "Saint Barntar".

> > De gustibus, n'awrat.

> Right, although if there ever should appear an officialized version of 
> Heortland, one of the views would prevail.

Officialisation could produce anything it feels like.  I reserve the right
to take issue with it, too.

> [Aeolians = / <> God Learners]
> > Heh.  No, what I meant was the inclusion of deities in the creed which
> > aren't in _either_ Western or Orlanthi cosmology: I wasn't objecting
> > to the combination of these two, which is obviously the whole point.

> Which, for example?

I forget the whole creed, but Maker and Grower spring to mind, and the
identification of Glorantha, Ginna Jar, and Arachne Solara.

> Alex Ferguson in X-RQ-ID: 3868

> > My understanding is that the dominant Western influence on Maniria is
> > post-Closing. (The "Trader Princes".  See G:CotHW; GB2, p46.) 

> That's the western part of Maniria, west of Esrolia.

I still suspect this is the origin of said influence, but I grant that
Heortland is more Westernised than the rest of Maniria.

> For the Holy 
> Country, we are in the lucky position to have the RQC description, 
> which tells us that the Hendriki inherited the rule over Heortland 
> from him. In my opinion they adopted knighthood and related concepts

Minor quibble: they didn't, really, as Hendriki "knights" aren't a
Malkioni-style caste or class, much less anything at all like modern
Hrestoli knights.

> I'm certain the Hendriki were 
> part of his host, and fought alongside Ralian Orlanthi and Seshnegi 
> Hrestoli.

I'm not convinced that any Westerner likely to accompany Arkat, a person
who'd just apostasised from their religion, would be likely to make good
"missionary" material.  Certainly not to the extend that a millenium later,
a country in the middle of theist territory would end up as IG-inclined as
central Ralios, who have Seshnela breathing down their necks.  That they'd
influence them in military matters is easier to believe.

> > This
> > seems to be very much a "top-down" influence.  This timescale also
> > corresponds roughly to the settling of the Quivins area, by people,
> > recall, seeking to establish "old-time Orlanth worship".

> This would apply to the Colymar, who are said to come from Esrolia 
> (or Ditali lands?) in CHDP.

Indeed, but they and their fellow colonists, who were likely to have
similar motivations, don't seem likely to be fertile ground for rampant

> > But in any case, if all Aeolians worship their Trinity, my point holds
> > good.

> They all say so in the credo their wizards/priests taught them. I doubt 
> that many would seriously reflect on the implications of this tradition. 
> Those who do are likely to have at least some degree of clerical investment.

They may not "reflect on the implications", but if they all turn up at
a building marked "Aeolian church, apply within", then they are all linked
by having, in essense, the same "cult", right?  Stop arguing with me while
I'm trying to agree with you. ;-)



From: (Alex Ferguson)
Subject: Attention Tight British Mythographers.
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 16:31:59 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3989

If you have a Bargain Books (or other remainder-festers) near you, you
might want to check if they're selling the Senate edition of the Myth
and Legend series.  Two quid a throw in these parts.  Blatant
monomythising in the _Egypt_ volume. ;-)



From: (Alex Ferguson)
Subject: Level-headedness.
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 16:34:18 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3990

John "Lithium" Hughes raves:
> Some serious issues again this week - Levels of Gloranthan 'Reality', 
> Godlearners, Tricksters and polygamous marriage. Please excuse my 
> subtext of slightly manic 'humour'. After all, I've just attempted to 
> read and make sense of a full week's download of the initiation 
> debate all at once! 

Crash team!  Resuss!  Defib!  Clear!  

Better now? ;-)

> Now perhaps I'm a cynic and of little faith, but I like to draw 
> distinctions as to what 'level' I'm discussing. I see at least four 
> fairly distinct and (IMHO) ultimately unreconcilable levels of 
> Gloranthan 'reality'. If each is a 'map', let me list them in terms of 
> smaller and smaller 'scales'.

I don't see why they are, in principle, irreconcilable, though I'm sure
one could haul out examples of inconsistencies both between and within a
"level" all day.  I'm not sure a really see any particular progression
in "scale", either: and isn't the fourth level the territory, not a map?


These two sound like much the same thing to me: not that all RQ is combat,
but that the only purpose of the distinction seems, to me, to be to
distingush between "good" RQ-as-simulation (touchy-feely scenarios), and
"bad" RQ-as-simulation (wicked hack-n-slash).


> KOS is the best example of this level.

A very vague category, and one which doesn't really even "catch" all of
KoS, to my mind.  I'm not quite sure if it's meant to cover all
"storytelling" exercises, or if one gains entry to its hallowed halls
by some crypto-value-judgemental step.


The trouble with this level is that it isn't a means of description, as
such.  While we may wish to aim at this, since we can't book a day return
there we have to grope our way towards it, by whatever means available,
be it game rules, fiction, myth-making, or the Daily-patented free-form
stream-of-consciousness ramblings we wallow in even as I (somewhat
painfully) type.  A postmodernist delight, really.

"Hence the pantheon initiation rules are seen to desconstruct themselves."

> (Of course, cult writeups are GodLearner documents, and so should 
> be treated with a healthy contempt).

Yeah.  Which is why they tend to be so accurate.  Certainly, you learn
more about the Carmanian cult of Humakt from the Humakt writeup than
you would by asking the worthies in an Esrolian Humakt temple.  As an
added bonus, it's also printable.

Of course, what should be realised is what they _don't_ tell you.

> I especially think it is 
> unprofitable to vacillate in discussion between different levels. 

Oh?  I'm not clear what your objection is here.  If you mean in "for
public consumption" texts, such as published scenarios, fiction, etc,
then I take your point: sequeing from (allegedly) high fantasy source
material to a lot of stats or chatty-asides-to-the-reader, and things
like that can be most annoying.  But I see no harm in carrying out
"parallel" discussions of rules, literature and whatever else here,
if it's all to the same purpose.

> And make clear in your posts which level you are operating on.

If it isn't _a priori_ clear, is it a meaningful distinction in the
first place?  I think this is only worth belabouring if there would
otherwise be a serious danger of confusion between conflicting
expectations or understandings.

"Do keets talk like Donald, Daffy, or the mallard down the local pond?
Only (RQ rules derived|Greg Approved|Literarily consistent|One True
Glorantha) answers need apply."

> The cult and magic rules are especially fragile. 

Joerg intervenes:
> This is "hinting" at Alex' and my discussion on initiation, isn't it?

It was?  

Well, if a simulation fails to describe the details, in thermodynamics 
I have learned to apply modifications to the original function/rule to 
bend it to apply. The RQ rules are a fair basic tool for Gloranthan 
experiences, but as soon as you want to leave the immanent abstraction 
of the rules (e.g. for combat, but also for magic) you conflict with 
reality and playability.

> > Don't worry or complain if it breaks down at other levels, and 

Well, I don't think Glorantha needs to be "reconciled" to RQ, but I
see no problem with the converse.

> Here we disagree. I want to reduce the difference between the realities 
> you postulate as far as possible. The simulation mechanics must not 
> hamper the simulation, so they need fine tuning.

This is a fair attitude.  On the other hand, despite my half-hearted
"defence" of RQ3 in re initiation, and my use of RQ jargon in discussing
it, I'm much more concerned with what the "Gloranthan truth" of the matter
is, and not particularly with "fixing" the rules (or saving them from being



From: (Sandy Petersen)
Subject: oops
Message-ID: <>
Date: 12 May 94 06:25:38 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 3991

In a recent mailing, I mentioned that I didn't know anywhere in  
Glorantha that a classic Aldryami War was still raging. David Cake  
kindly reminded me of Dorastor, where the Poisonthorn and Hellwood  
elves have been fighting just such a war for many decades. 

	In addition, the Onlaks Elf/Human war is being fought just  
like an Aldryami War. The beleaguered humans can go for years without  
seeing a single elf, but must struggle against invasions of  
stone-breaking trees, poisoned lumber, etc. 

Paul Snow, in an interesting discussion on the relative importance of  
Runes, asks:
>Would it help players to focus on the nature of their
>Humakti character by deciding whether he is of the Truth Death  
>affilition (Dirty Harry ?) or the Death Truth followers. etc
	The current theory about Humakt is that he has _two_ death  
Runes, and a single truth Rune. The paired death Runes symbolize the  
fact that he is the Origin of that Rune. 

	When Greg and I labored over the Runes for GoG and RQ III,  
'twas decided that the Runes came in several different "flavors" for  
different gods. To wit:
	ORIGIN: A god can be the Origin of a Rune. This means that  
all other deities that share that Rune get it, by hook or crook, from  
the Origin. If the Origin god of a Rune was to somehow vanish from  
the universe, almost everything would irrevocably change. Probably  
this can't happen -- If Humakt were to be destroyed, probably some  
other god would take over the function, just as when Kargan Tor  
vanished, Humakt stepped in. There are two different ways you can be  
the Origin of a Rune. Either you can be the original source of it, or  
you can have inherited it somehow. For instance, Uleria was the  
original source of the Life Rune, and still is. Humakt is _not_ the  
original source of the Death Rune. If you are the original source of  
a Rune, then you have the Infinity Rune. If you are _not_ the source,  
but are the current Origin, then you have two of that Rune. Hence,  
Orlanth has two Air Runes, since he is the current Origin (but not  
the original), whereas Flamal has a single Plant Rune, plus an  
Infinity Rune, since he is not only the current Origin, but always  
has been. Now, this "doubled" Rune imagery is obviously just a  
symbolic conceit, and could just as easily have been displayed the  
other way round. Glorantha has a long history of considering a  
doubled Rune to be equivalent to the Infinity Rune. Dragons, for  
instance, have two Beast Runes, but no Infinity Rune, yet everyone  
knows that Dragons display the powers of Infinity. In fact some  
people think that the infinity Rune was originally formed from a pair  
of Beast Runes put next to each other. Hence, all gods that are  
Origins of a Rune are Infinite. 

	PRIMARY: A Primary Rune is a Rune that is central to a  
particular god's existence. Generally speaking, Primary Runes are the  
Runes that are mentioned in CoP, GoG, CoT, and other cult  
manuscripts. Orlanth's Primary Runes, frex, are Mobility and Mastery. 

	SECONDARY: A Secondary Rune is a Rune that a god only kinda  
has. It is not so important to the god, but he still is considered to  
possess it. Sort of. For example, the Storm Bull has the Primary  
Runes of Storm, Death, and Beast. But he also has the Secondary Rune  
of Disorder. Secondary Runes have in the past not generally been  
listed in cult descriptions, except occasionally when the cult would  
mention that a god was "loosely associated" with a Rune. For  
instance, Mastakos has been given the Light Rune, but really this is  
a sort of honorary representation of the fact that he has a Secondary  
Fire Rune. 

Paul Pofandt asks:
>What is required to join a sub cult? 

	It depends on the cult. Most cults have no membership  
requirements for their subcults. All you have to do is find a temple  
with the appropriate shrine built in. For instance, most Humakti   
hero cults are freely available to initiates. However, the Hiia  
Swordsman Humakti hero cult requires its members to take an oath that  
they will never use poison or venom. Most just take a geas to that  

>Is another POW sacrifice required (to join a subcult)?
	This would be extremely rare. I can't think of a cult which  
does, off-hand.

>Is a member of a sub cult also a member of the parent cult?