Bell Digest v940622p1

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Subject: RuneQuest Daily, Wed, 22 Jun 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: (Bill Robertson)
Subject: Long dead metal thread
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 23:52:45 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4715

Of interest...
     A few weeks ago somebody was having a discussion about the nature
of Gloranthan Bronze, and one of the questions was, "When mined directly
from the ground is it an 'ore' or an 'alloy'?" (well something like that
anyway)  I don't recall the question really being answered.

I was paging through the Glorantha Book last night, and I re-read
the section on metals.  It states very clearly that Bronze ore can be mined
from the ground.

So, there you go.  Of course, I don't have a clue as to what difference
it makes, but I like to try to be helpful.  :).



From: (Happy birthday, MOM!)
Subject: Blank Lands
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 04:41:38 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4716

> I always liked the idea of out-of-the-way Blank Lands, so that 

I played one of the Blank Lands as just that...Blank.  There was 
NOTHING there.  Zero.  Zip.  Nada.  Looking at it was rather like 
having a giant blind spot in your vision.  People would on occasion 
enter the area, but none have ever returned....

It was fun.  The players went nuts trying to figure it out.



From: (David Cheng)
Subject: Colin on Lokamayadon
Date: 21 Jun 94 14:42:19 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4717

Colin summarizes KoS on how Lokamayadon sought to cut off the worship of
Orlanth in yesterday's daily.

As I understand the legends, Lokamayadon acted not to eliminate
Orlanth, but to _replace_ him.  Instead of carrying out his priestly 
duties to facilitate worship of Orlanth, Lokamayadon found a way to
interpose himself in the 'worship chain.'  He claimed the new way to
worship Orlanth would be through him, and not directly.  

This is much like the worship of the Kralori Dragon Emperor.  Except
Godyuna and his ilk are generally perceived as being more benevolent
than that Lokamayadon-dude.

* David Cheng
  (212) 472-7752 [before midnight]                       GEnie:  D.CHENG


From: (Jussi Sarkkinen)
Subject: HELP
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 21:39:40 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4718



Subject: Humakt
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 16:27:05 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4719

Regarding Sandy's comments on Humakt:
From what you say, Greg seems more 
than anti-Humakt.

I agree that Humakt is not Just a death 
god.  He is a Warrior god.  Rick Fields, in 
his book _The Code of the Warrior in 
History, Myth, and Everyday Life_, 
points out  the underlying message of 
the first warrior:
"     He might kill for many reasons, 
many of them inexplicable or even 
reprehensible to our eyes.  He might kill 
for revenge, or to be admired, or to take 
a head to gain a powerful soul, or to 
give his child a name;  in some cases he 
might even kill, like us, for resources 
like land or 'protein.'  But whatever the 
causes of his fight, whether it had to do 
with the mythic-psychic undergrowth 
of the first planters, or the ecological 
paleo-cybernetic balancing of people 
and environment, or the genetic success 
of the fittest and fiercest, whether 
brave or chivalrous or sneaky, the first 
warrior's fight was personal.  No one 
fought for him and no one could order or 
force him to fight.
     The first warrior was sown along 
with the first garden, was invented 
along with cultivation, when the clear-
cutting of the earth began.  He fought, 
strange as it may seem, to bring life 
from death, as the seed fallen in the 
earth brings the plant to the sun.  He 
fought to restore the balance of the 
world, of his people, again and again, 
against the others, the not-quite-
     But he didn't sell his body, and he 
didn't sell the body of his brother, 
either.  He was, to put it simply, 
responsible for his own actions.  It was 
a straightforward sort of code - a good 
place for a warrior to start."

Thus, to be a warrior is to kill for 
personal reasons and to be willing to be 
responsible for the deaths of the people 
you kill.  I believe this is one of the 
reasons Humakt has the Truth rune.  A 
warrior is someone who is true to their 
own beliefs, who is true to themselves.  

However, the personal beliefs of the 
warrior are influenced by the cultural 
beliefs of the society in which he or she 
lives.  Every warrior fights to preserve 
life, but they fight to preserve THEIR 
way of life, with THEIR beliefs and 
THEIR ways of behaving.  Orlanthi 
Humakti say that they preseve life by 
following the Code of Humakt.  I believe 
that the Code of Humakt is only found 
among the Dragon Pass Humakti, where 
it developed due to the cultural concept 
of Orlanthi honor.  I think of the Code as 
the Sheath which Orlanth made for his 
Sword.  It is something mythically 
available to the Humakti cult in the 
areas where Orlanth is strongest, 
allowing this dangerous cult to fit into 
the culture safely.  This in turn has 
allowed the Humakti cult in that region 
to develop into it's highest socially 
beneficial form.  Outside of this region, 
I think Humakti warriors become more 
likely to kill themselves and others, and 
are less socially beneficial.  An 
example of this are the Esrolian 
Humakti with their Lottery Swords.  
Doubtless, the brutal KoW Humakti say 
that they are preserving life by killing 
the weak and helpless, thereby allowing 
for the survival of the fittest.  I believe 
the KoW Humakti almost always dual 
one another to the death, usually kill 
prisoners who have combat skills, and 
rarely accept the surrender of an enemy.  
None of this "honor the fallen" stuff for 

Obviously, values such as honor are 
culturally determined.

As to the constraints on behavior 
imposed by geasa, I don't believe that 
gifts or geasa ARE given/imposed 
directly by Humakt, despite the official 
cult description.  I believe they come  
through cultural heroes worshipped via 
subcults.  (I came to this conclusion 
after hearing Greg's story of "George 
Missinghands" at the RQ-Con Heroquest 
seminar.)  Thus, the gifts and geasa 
available at temples in a given region 
reflect the values and beliefs held by 
and about Humakti warriors in that 

Heretical thoughts, I know.... 
Peace,     Peter


From: (Sandy Petersen)
Subject: howdy
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 05:38:14 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4720

re: The GoLEM, & Hasueros the Unveiler
	I will, of course, devote my efforts towards the unmasking  
and destruction of this pernicious group. 

Plug for Stephen Black re: his search for RQ players between 9 July &  
21 July: I've played with Stephen before, in all three aspects of the  
Cosmic Gaming (i.e., he GM/me PC; me GM/he PC; both of us PC/someone  
else GM), and give him highest ratings as a player. By the Chaosium  
player rating system, he receives a "-1", for those of you who know  
what that means. 

	Stephen, are you going to go to Convulsion? If so, see ya  
there. If not *sigh*, maybe at next years' RQ Con in California. 

Devin says:
>> [a captive] Priest will make DI about 18% of the time. The other  
>>82% he will simply be tortured.
Joerg retorts:
>If you play by the rules. In this situation, I wouldn't. 

	I would. If DI is not Highly Restricted in use, then it  
totally distorts almost every facet of Glorantha. If you can't ever  
capture a priest or plunder a temple, or keep a Rune Lord dead, or  
even surround and capture a band of 10 or more folks and keep them  
incommunicado (at least one of them will DI out of there), then  
Glorantha is SO different from Earth that our previous experience and  
research is totally useless. 

	I don't do this because I'm worried about players abusing the  
rules -- I do this because I'm worried about the results for NPCs and  
society as a whole. But I don't want the rules to be totally abused  
and destroyed by DIs.  

	I admittedly do adjust my DI rolls. I've already confessed  
that Valgrim Bull-Answers-Twice has a special dispensation by which  
his reasonable DIs _always_ succeed (he's unaware of this, but his  
player isn't). But I also outright forbid DIs if I think them  
appropriate to the god or the situation. My general rule is that you  
can only try a DI ONCE in a given situation, and never again; AND  
that no one else can try to DI for that request -- 'tis been refused  
by the God Hisself. In this way, I attempt to prevent the dread use  
of "line up the initiates and have 'em each try DI until the  
Priestess is resurrected." which prevents most assassinations. 

>Alakoring Dragonbreaker takes his war against the dragons and 

>dragonfriends from Ralios to Aggar and Holay.
Jonas Schiott
>Did he have an _army_, or was it just him and his ... companions?
	I don't think he could have brought an army with him. Whether  
or not there's a way through the Rockwoods beside Kartolin Pass,  
there's clearly not a route good enough for a whole army. Halikiv  
trolls raiding in winter is one thing, a whole army is another.  

Michelle says:
>Why not expand the possible roles available to women beyond Wife of
>Knight, Daughter of Wizard and not make a separate sex/caste
	Hear, hear! While I don't mind having a separate  
classification for women (so long as, in the end, they can do  
everything a man can do), I, too, have chafed under the seeming  
assumption by various other writers that no Woman in the West can  
have any fun. I have mentioned and still adhere to my belief that  
there are female nobility, warriors, and magicians in both Loskalm  
and Tanisor, whether or not they call them Lords, Knights, and  
Wizards (which I'm not yet sure they don't). In Tanisor the women  
might all belong to the same caste and be allowed to learn any skill  
available to their father, but in Loskalm I suspect they may belong  
to exactly the same castes as the men though, (in many but _not all_  
cases) the caste distinctions may not be identical.
	I am convinced that somewhere in Loskalm there is an Order of  
the Shrike (or something) which is an all-female warrior band. There  
are also doubtless some knightly orders which permit both women and  
men; but are probably mostly men -- admitting that a culture is  
largely gender-conscious is not the same as _never_ letting any women  
be whate'er they want. 

	For what it's worth, I once had a discussion with Greg about  
the nature of female oppression in Glorantha (I was arguing that some  
nation somewhere -- can't even remember where, now -- should treat  
its women as slaves), and Greg said that Earth might have had the  
plague of chauvinism throughout its existence, but by Gum, Gloranthan  
wasn't, and he was perfectly prepared to ensure that women had an  
important place in every nation in Glorantha.
	No doubt it's possible to draw different conclusions by  
finely sifting the data on one nation or another and interpreting it  
just right, but Greg's goal should be public, I feel. 

Joerg asks:
>Where was the Goddess Switch?
	I think it was in Slontos. We know that just before Slontos  
was destroyed the mother goddess of the area went chaotic. 

Kevin Rose mentions:
>Numbers might have been somewhat on the side of the Russians, but  
>wealth wasn't. Germany and Russia had the same steel production  
>befor the war started. 

	I can never keep from commenting when anyone talks about  
WWII, especially as sensibly as Kevin is doing. I'd like to point out  
that not only did Germany's industry rival Russia's before the war,  
but that by the time of Germany's assault on Russia, she had control  
over almost all the rest of Europe -- Czechoslovakia, France, Poland,  
Norway. Plus she had the lion's share of trade from Spain and Sweden.  
In the first three months of war, using Blitzkrieg tactics which the  
Soviet army (still in flux) was unable to halt, the Germans occupied  
something like 1/3 of the Russian population base. So when the  
struggle _really_ started, the Russians no longer had much of a  
population edge, and certainly had an inferior industrial base. 

	But they were able to mobilize their resources much more  
effectively than the Germans (so much for Nazi "efficiency"). 

	Perhaps a better comparison for the Loskalm/KoW struggle  
would be Frederick the Great in the Seven Years War (fighting France,  
Austria, and Russia, all together). Or Alexander the Great vs. the  
horrendously huge Persian Empire which had a perfectly competent  
army. Or the Mongols vs. China. Or Japan against China in WWII (who  
were generally victorious until destroyed by the advancing Americans  
in the Pacific). 

Graeme Lindsell:
>The KoW could just as easily be categorized as warriors who are  
>extremely skilled at individual combat, but not at war.
	Of course they could, but let's get serious. Where's the fun  
in that? When the Germans launched their blitzkrieg in 1939, using  
all-new, untried tactics, they could presumably have been completely  
wrong-headed, and been stopped handily by the Poles and later by the  
French. The war could have been over by Christmas, and no one would  
ever write a wargame about it. That would have been Good. But lack of  
a similar war in a fantasy world such as Glorantha would be Bad. I  
vote that the KoW turn out to be powerful, well-organized, and  
dangerous, because even if the PCs are NOT opponents of the KoW it  
makes the world a more interesting place for them to live. 


From: (Colin Watson)
Subject: Re: The great Babeestor Gor scam
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 17:52:16 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4721

Dave Cake tells it like it is:
>        I think that the truth in Glorantha actually is that it is possible
>that a person who wants Axe trance can actually gain it by becoming an
>initiate of Babeestor Gor,
>I do NOT think that it is necessary to obey the cult restrictions of
>the BG cult
>In other words, scamming the gods is a game for the
>illuminated and God-Learners,

Bravo! Somebody give this man a cigar. :-)
Now we've got that little matter out of the way, brother, the next question is:

Do the gods have any conscious existance at all; or are they just
socio-culturally constructed focal-points which primative peoples require
as an aid to exploiting the natural, magical power of the world?




From: (Kuri)
Subject: D.I. as HeroPoint.
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 17:30:00 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4722

About HeroPoint rule:

 RQ is a Heroic Role Playing Game, so I think HeroPoint rule should
be introduced.

I use this HeroPoint rule in my Heroquest campaign and it works good.

HeroPoint rule:
- PC can expend POW for her skill roll and she can raise her success
  level 1 per 1 POW. Only 1 POW per 1 action per 1 round allowed.
  ex. A PC success her sword attack. She call for Heroic Deed and
      expend 1 POW. Now her sword attack makes Slash and the Death 
      Lords massive right arm has cut off!

- GM can anytime prevent this. He simply says "No. It's not the time."
  The PC lose the POW, but next day (in game time) she can recover it.

I think this is D.I. variant and also works in normal RQ campaign.


                       // Kuri ( //


From: (Bryan J. Maloney)
Subject: E prime, tee hee hee
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 08:36:08 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4723

Yup, E prime is pretty funny.


Chaos and evil have perfect identity with each other.
Evil and chaos function as interchangeable terms for the same thing.
Evil and chaos share all traits.

et cetera.


From: (Bryan J. Maloney)
Subject: Chaos-Loving Chalana Arroy, eh?
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 08:49:47 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4724

>Rom (initiate of SB) was in combat with a Chaos 'gator, Andara (initiate of
>CA) used her sleep on the creature Rom was in combat with(loosing badly too)
>and succeeded.  Even when it was obvious the creature was helpless and above
>her protests, Rom killed it.  They both feel they acted within their cult
>guidelines.  Rom killed a creature under her protection(ala sleep spell),
>other then withholding healing (and reporting it to her High Healer) what can
>she do?

So basically, YOU decided to screw your characters over, eh?
A Chalana Arroy would "do" nothing beyond witholding healing and reporting
the transgression if it were cute and fuzzy bunnies that had gotten killed.
She might scold the Storm Bull, but Chalana Arroy do not take violent 
retributive action.

>Can they reslove this?  Rom feels he's done nothing wrong, the rest of the
>party is just blowing it all off.  "We have plenty of healing don't worry
>about her. She'll get over it and if not, who cares."

Rom did nothing wrong.  If he had let the creature live and not killed it
at first opportunity, I would have ruled that he would have become an apostate.
He would have been luck not to have been killed on sight at the next Storm
Bull ceremony he attended if he hadn't offed that critter.

>I've set up cult/race incompatibilities on purpose in the past with accaptable
>outcomes for both sides but it looks like they are just going to ignore Andara
>except when they need her.  Her player has already expressed an interest in a
>different character to keep this from happening again.  I want to keep the CA
>and encourage more then just Hack-n-Slash.  Ex ADnDers... *SIGH*

This is NOT an Ex ADnDer phenomenon.  This is the result of assuming that a
cult writeup (RoC Chalana Arroy) is 100% perfect and true.  Why would Chalana
Arroy give protection to Chaos?  She used her gifts on the Lightbringers'
Quest to HEAL the world's wound, NOT HELP IT!  Chaos is a wound upon the 
world.  Killing chaos creatures is the equivalent of surgery.  Pustulated,
gangrenous tissue must be excised or the patient will die.

>any suggestions on outcomes?  possible resolutions?  should she have known
>better?(it had already been identified as Chaotic by the Storm Kahn with them)
>How can he make contrition?(should he?)  Bear in mind they will be in the
>swamp a while yet(with an assult on the fort at Ogre Knoll yet to come) so
>Andara won't be able to report to her High Healer for a while yet.

If it had already been identified as chaotic, she should have known better
IN SPADES.  What the Hell is a Lightbringer doing defending Chaos?????????
I'd say that the Storm Bull was being remarkably restrained in not chopping
her to bits as a filthy, chaos-loving slimeball.

>As a general rule, how would the CA at the Block deal with similer problems?

There are not similar problems at the Block.  Storm Bulls kill chaos, Chalana
Arroy heal Storm Bulls.

An enlightened Chalana Arroy or a Lunar Chalana Arroy (they have them, you
know, or at least a cult that Theyalans would call Chalana Arroy--she's in
Yelm's court) might defend a chaos beast.  But for a good Lightbringer Chalana
Arroy to defend a chaos monster, even one she had slept, is like a doctor
insisting that a tumor be left in a patient because the tumor is "living


From: (Bryan J. Maloney)
Subject: Sun Dome Hoplites, and military units in general
Message-ID: <>
Date: 21 Jun 94 08:25:16 GMT
X-RQ-ID: 4725

Okay, a few things:

A Phalanx is a pretty worthless formation except in specific circumstances.
There is a reason why the phalanx as an unsupported body was only popular
in the Aegean area.  Anywhere else, it would be outflanked and cut to bits.

However, if you can anchor your flanks or have good peltastoi and cavalry,
the phalanx makes a nice army core.

It does fall apart when it has to meet up with something more flexible, like
a legion.  Legions, unlike phalanxes were not solid bodies of men.  Instead
they were split into maniples of 120 men each.  A legion was intended to be
made up of 50 maniples in three ranks.  Each rank had distance between it
and the other rank.  Each maniple had distance between it and the adjacent
maniple.  The maniples were arranged so that a rank could interpenetrate
another in the same legion without having to sidestep.  The third rank was 
not meant to be committed to combat immediately, but was a reserve.  The
greater Roman generals would be even more creative and insert cavalry,
slingers, archers, etc. in open formation between the second and third ranks
and move these troops around as adjuncts to the first two ranks of the legion.
However, the legion takes a shitload more professionalism on the part of 
individual soldiers to work than does a phalanx, since you have to not only
learn to coordinate with the guy next to you, but you have to be able to
maneuver as a small body of men and maintain cohesion of that body within the
larger body and as a part of the larger body.

Of course, both tend to work better than the "heroic mob".

Anyway, phalanxes are pretty inflexible, fragile entities unless they have
anchored flanks and/or excellent flank support.  A legion is a great deal
more flexible, but it requires a lot more outlay for training and thus requires
that the state support a standing army.  The advantage of a phalanx is that
it permits you to have a respectable army composed of non-professional

Then, of course, there is the heroic mob of the Germanics and the medievals.
I wonder how they would have done against a disciplined, well-ordered legion.
They never faced one, you know.  By the time the Germans started invading
Rome, things had sunk pretty low.  

And let us not forget the Byzantine army, both pre-thematic and thematic.
Now THAT was a hell of a military force (until they lost their economic
support with the loss of Anatolia and Egypt, that is).