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Subject: Creating Runequest Characters for Each Empire? rss

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Ray
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A thought occurs to me. We have seen discussions about mixing Cthulhu wars and The Gods war. But what about mixing Runequest and the Gods War?

In particular if I wanted to create characters that follow or worship each of the 8 pantheons in The Gods War which deities have character following rules fully fleshed out for and which do not? (I understand RPGs do not occur in this age. Are some of these empires no longer worshipped?) Also what rpg books or products are needed? This is a complex or large question, but I have faith some of you are up to the task. The Glorantha community is amazing. Thank you!
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Andrew Couzens
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I can provide my 2 cents based on my Runequest 3rd edition experience and use of the supplements (I'm not an expert by any means, so maybe others can give more complete answers). I'll touch on each Empire one by one I guess. Just note that Runequest is set in the 3rd age, and you wouldn't use the Gods War as the main setting for a campaign (though you could definitely include heroquesting that sends your players into that mythic time).

Storm

Orlanth is the cult to worship here, and is often suggested as a kind of 'default adventurer' cult. A good supplement, as far as I know, would be Cults of Prax (actually, that's the best choice of supplement for most of the factions). Griffin Mountain might also have stuff on Orlanth.

Sky

You could generate a Yelm-worshipper, though the sky pantheon is fairly extensive. If you have Cults of Prax, it includes a write-up on Yelmalio, which would be another option.

Darkness

Easy: get your hands on the Trollpak. This supplement will give you everything you need to create a troll character, which is what you'd most likely be playing if you are a Darkness-worshipper.

Chaos

I don't think there are any supplements for generating chaos-worshipping characters. It's something that is explicitly advised against in most of the Runequest books I've read. However, you could potentially do a Gbaji-worshipping character, as there are facets to that God that make it a possibility for a player character. I think the Dorastor supplement has info on that. The other useful supplement would be Cults of Terror, which lists a bunch of the nastier deities, including members of the Chaos pantheon. Just note that Gbaji wasn't really related to the Godtime at all – he was key to the Dawn Age immediately after.

Earth

Probably Ernalda is a safe bet. Again, I'd go for Cults of Prax.

Sea

I actually don't know anything about any of the sea gods, so can't help you there. I have a vague feeling there has been a supplement that provided information for generating merpeople characters, but I'm not certain about that.

Invisible God

This one is easy. Just generate a sorcerer character. Sorcerers in Runequest are awesome to play as. I don't know what supplements deal with the Western religions and Malkionism etc.

Moon

Another easy one – your character would be a Seven Mothers worshipper, either a Lunar or one of their invaded subjects. I believe the Pavis supplement has stuff on Lunars, and Cults of Prax has an entry on the Seven Mothers.

I think that covers it – don't take that as gospel, as I'm not a Glorantha expert by any means.
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Christopher Dearlove
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For Chaos see the old RQ2 supplement Cults of Terror.
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Lincoln Petersen
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I'll make sure Sandy gets to see this thread today and reply to it.

However for Sky why wouldn't you worship the Sky Death god of Genocide, Shargash?
 
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Dan Barker
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linkthestink wrote:
However for Sky why wouldn't you worship the Sky Death god of Genocide, Shargash?


Is there a cult write up of Shargash?
 
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Lincoln Petersen
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Luckily when your dad pretty much helped write most of RQ he can help you make up cults!

There is a brief one that doesn't have a lot of info in one of the books I think, but it doesn't have any RQ divine magic he could use or stuff like that.

Here's a brief overview:

90% in 5 weapon skills and you must have killed an initiate of another cult or equivalent to be initiate. To be acolyte you must have killed an Acolyte for Death Lord that's right you must have killed a rune lord!

Spirit magic unique spell:
4 point Flare
Basically fireblade but works on ANY weapon type. i.e. maces

Unique Divine Magic:

Inner Fire 2 point Rune spell
For the spell's duration, the following is in effect:
1) Increase the target's Damage bonus by 1 level (if you had a +1d4 it becomes +1d6 etc.)
2) Increase hitpoints by 10 (when spell ends they go away which can kill you)
3) You become Indefatigable cannot become tired or fatigued, and you are immune to the effects of hunger or lack of sleep

Each additional point of Inner Fire added to the basic two increases duration. +1 point lasts an hour, +2 lasts a day, +3 lasts a week

There's more divine magic but this is just a taste.
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Lincoln Petersen
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Back to the original topic though.

You need to understand that the people who worship their gods try to emulate them. For instance Orlanth/Storm worshipers are more likely to be tribal and Strong and find common ground and solutions. Also most likely to go adventuring.

Sky worshipers are more likely to be a part of a great kingdom and are mostly nobles and such. These guys are less likely to go out adventuring because well they're part of a great kingdom. Also you just take orders from the king and so forth you don't try to talk things out.

Earth worshipers are mainly peasants of Sky worshipers. Mostly because most earth gods deal with fertility and plants and such! So these guys are even less likely to go adventuring.

Sea worshipers are mostly pirates/merchants and have as you'd expect spells that deal with the sea! Also merfolk worship sea gods as you'd expect.

Darkness worshipers are trolls. Hopefully this explains what they're like. Doing raids and really it's a type of Ancestor worship. They also love undead and can have zombies in their armies.

Moon... I'll be honest I don't know much about the moon stuff. HOWEVER their empire is basically like byzantines/romans trying to innovate and find solutions by dabbling in chaos.

Chaos worshipers are all horrible monsters. This is how Sandy always explained Chaos to me: There's a troll and a barbarian that are trying to get some gold. So they fight over it and such. Chaos comes Chaos wants to destroy the gold. Thusly the troll and barbarian band together to destroy the Chaos, because that's just worse than the other guy having it.

 
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Jörg Baumgartner
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linkthestink wrote:
Earth worshipers are mainly peasants of Sky worshipers. Mostly because most earth gods deal with fertility and plants and such! So these guys are even less likely to go adventuring.

Got to disagree here (you're continuing a family tradition there, Lincoln) - plenty earth worshippers are females from Orlanthi or Praxian culture, often priestesses in charge of earth mysteries, used to command manfolk from any other faction around. Earth queens.

Chaos worshippers can join one of the subtle chaos cults, like Cacodemon (ogres hiding in human company), Malia (typhoid mary acting like a healer), Krarsht (criminals, assassins and spies), Thanatar (headhunters, assassins and spies) or Seseine (using desire to manipulate). Fonritian characters can easily fill such a role, and can be found in any port city. Any Chaotic character will have an unhealthy agenda, possibly kept in secret from the party, possibly shared ("my enemy's enemy...") and may backstab the rest of the party (though that's not exclusively a Chaos trait - Earth priestesses are notorious for such behavior, too, as are fickle or overly traditional others).

Lunars can be out seeking to enlighten others. They don't have to be from the empire, either - they could be Artmali on a quest to return to their former glory (I had lots of fun in a game where my group represented blue-skinned demigods returned to Melib).

Regarding your example with the gold: the troll just wants to eat it/feed it to his mom. (Dwarves eat gold too, like a vitamin. Keeps them thinking.)
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Lincoln Petersen
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Okay I was talking about male characters. You are right though that Earth priestess are a part of storm cults and usually are beneficial.

The way it works is that Storm gods marry earth Gods, and Sky gods marry water gods. So you'll usually find that storm and earth cults are usually in close proximity and help each other out.

But if you're a male in an earth cult you're most likely some peasant farmer. If you're a female earth cultist you can rise up really high in the hierarchy and be a priestess and such.

Also how dare you say that people that worship chaos aren't MONSTERS. Really the people you describe probably have MONSTROUS personalities.
 
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Guillaume Andriot
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Lets just say the religions and cultures of Glorantha are quite detailled and complicated and trying to summarize them in a few short sentences is bound to be innaccurate at best and missleading at worst. laugh
 
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Jörg Baumgartner
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linkthestink wrote:
The way it works is that Storm gods marry earth Gods, and Sky gods marry water gods.

Almost everybody marries earth goddesses - water goddesses rarely are married. Apart from Oslira (the only one I can think of who married a sky god) I can only think of Warera, wife of Malkion and mother of the caste founders (at least the top three castes).

linkthestink wrote:
So you'll usually find that storm and earth cults are usually in close proximity and help each other out.

Earth cults are practically everywhere on dry land - even the Malkioni tolerated them in much of their history.

linkthestink wrote:
But if you're a male in an earth cult you're most likely some peasant farmer. If you're a female earth cultist you can rise up really high in the hierarchy and be a priestess and such.

There is hardly any place in Glorantha where you have extamt male earth cults, unless you count Lodril as an Earth god rather than a Fire god (which he was born as).

If you include Lodril as earth god, you get the fireblading spearman adventurer.

linkthestink wrote:
Also how dare you say that people that worship chaos aren't MONSTERS. Really the people you describe probably have MONSTROUS personalities.

I find monsters when I look at non-chaotic worshippers, too - Shargash, Zorak Zoran, Storm Bull, Eurmal, Zzabur, Babeester Gor, Humakt, Wachaza - okay, mainly war deities or other killers, but definitely prone to attract monstrous characters.
 
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Lincoln Petersen
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Okay I guess I was just thinking of Oslira for Water marrying Sky. I know the Earth Goddesses marry everyone.

Thank you for clarifying I should've elaborated.

I mean I suppose Lodril is an Earth God at best he's in a gray area and again if you're worshiping him then you're most likely a peasant.

Killing/fighting enemy civilizations isn't monstrous in my mind. Which is what those death gods are for you know. Murdering kinfolk and poisoning the well because you worship Malia and such is monstrous. You know the stuff Chaos worshipers do.
 
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