HW and what happens

From: Merlin Cox <merlin_at_...>
Date: Sun, 09 Apr 2000 18:35:53 +0100

When I first heard about the HW mechanics, my first thought was that it was going to try and represent things at a mythic level. This wasn't Robin's intention as such, but it can be seen this way. HW's kind of resolution system is said to represent outcomes rather than how they happen, but I don't thing many Gloranthans see the result of a fight as the secondary caused effect of the individual blows struck and body parts involved (maybe impious Malkioni) -- i.e. HW does try to simulate how things happen (and is 'simulationist' or could be used that way, depending how you see story-logic working in Glorantha). RQ is out of sync with Glorantha in its spurious percentage detail, the level of things it simulates (at odds with most Gloranthan minds), and its specific inaccuracies re magic and so on. None of that stopped a lot of people from having great RQ campaigns. HW, assuming its resolution systems work as intended, has a very different gap between rules and the actual descriptions during play -- which would include things like fatigue, hit locations, that RQ has specific mechanics for. That demand is not a trivial skill to learn for a new player or one used to RQ-like systems.

I want HW trait levels nailed down in my head so I can make stuff up more confidently, the way Sandy Petersen and experienced RQ GMs spew out RQ stats, though I'm happy not to be told how many kg a mule can carry. I'm glad to know that a minor hero with W3 probably needs at least a clan and likely a tribe behind him or her; I hope there's something in the rulebook about heroes representing a people's needs and hopes and passions, as Greg made explicit in 'In Defense of Superheroes'.

It looks like the nobles' abilities in King of Dragon Pass may have had HW numbers in mind, perhaps fair 11-20, good 1W-10W, very good 11W-20W, excellent 1W2-10W2, reknowned 11W2-20W2, heroic 1W3+ (fair/good/excellent by inter-clan politics standards).


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