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Gloranthan Overload

posted Aug 10, 2012 03:52:17 by JasonMorris
I'm not sure how it happened. It was like some sort of fever struck me. I picked up all of the 2ng age Glorantha stuff on drive thru rpg.. It took me a little reading to get over the twiggy elves and the mortar-grinding dwarfs, not to mention the ducks. But, somehow I got pulled in, and before I knew it I had all of the 2nd age stuff, the Glorantha classics stuff, as well as Sartar Kingdom of heros and the sartar companion.

They say too much choice is not a good thing, and I feel as though I am inclined to agree with them. Whoever "them" is...
So, I will ask you, learned folk, what you think the best place for me to start would be. How best to introduce my players to the decidedly unique fantasy world of Glorantha?
What is going to fit most easily with the new RQ6 rules? The 2nd age supplements or the Glorantha Classics stuff?
[Last edited Dec 04, 2012 22:15:20]
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14 replies
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Pittel said Aug 10, 2012 04:59:25
I would say, start in the 3rd age. Sartar or Pavis are best. Sartar is maybe a bit more simple, however, with the RQ2 Classic Books Pavis, Borderlands and Cult Companion you have good RQ sources. The new HeroQuest Pavis-book is brilliant with really cool scenario options.
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RudyBoe said Aug 10, 2012 05:47:35
I would suggest Pavis as well, although you will have to do some serious prepping the first time, after that its easy enough. Get the Pavis book, a great tome with all info you need in one spot, with descriptions of the people, politics, encounters (no stats tho), temples, the rubble, it's all there. It's a great setting with little long range travel, kinda like a adventure camp :) and your troupe of Broo or Trolls or Ogres only a short but deadly walk from the entrance ;)

When rolling up characters be prepared for a two phase session, as you might want to take some time to describe the passions of your characters, linking them into the city and the story from the start. When defining a passion linked to a person, keep a short list with the name of the passion target, a short note, and its POW and CHA, or whatever is needed. A bit of a fuss to startwith, but definitely worth the effort afterwards!

Now without the new pavis book all of this is possible as well, you could play Pavis rises, also a great take on the city, although we never played 2nd age, I did order it all and read it for background.

Hope that helps.
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WoeRie said Aug 10, 2012 07:10:42
The 2nd Age MRQ/MRQ2 supplements would fit the best (no question), regardless, I would go for 3rd Age and the HQ2 books. It is always a good thing to start with a "living" series. I doubt that there will be any 2nd Age material in the next decades and MD is working on even more of their great tomes for 3rd Age.

I think that there is a huge chasm between RQ6 and Glorantha. This will require a lot of work to prepare the Cults, decide how the Magic has to be houseruled/toolboxed, HeroQuesting, Sorecery Grimoires and so on.
I think the MRQ2 material you already bought, can help you quite a lot as a preference to change RQ6 to fit for Glorantha. There are only a few changes necessary between 2nd Age and 3rd Age.

The RQ2 classics, require a lot of modifications, too.
- The Cult Comp. is good if you do NOT have the MRQ2 Cults book.
- Pavis is great but the new HQ2 book is even better, though is has not included the Big Rubble part.
- Griffin Mountain is a camapign on its own and I would only grab it if you want to play at that location.
- Borderlands could be nice as an addon to a Pavis campaign.
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JasonMorris said Aug 10, 2012 13:56:04
Thanks for your insight, guys.

It sounds like no matter what direction I go, I am going to need to do a lot of prep work with the magic/cults. Probably backgrounds/cultures too.
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Pittel said Aug 10, 2012 14:48:02
I dont think it is lot of prep work. Spells are more or less compatible, it is the flexible %system. Magicpoints are the same. Cult discription and mythos dont changed. Alter the rules for the important cults as you like, we did that everytime we played Glorantha, doesnt matter which rules we used.

I was forced in the past to play Glorantha with D&D 3.0 and I dont changed much :-)
[Last edited Aug 10, 2012 14:48:38]
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VaughanCockell said Aug 10, 2012 16:05:59
A bit more work may be needed when converting animist cults, as pre MRQ2 shamans often had divine magic, and on that subject, how would people rule magics from cults associated with spirit cults? I considered using the animism skills in place of the theism skills for those miracles.
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X said Aug 16, 2012 16:26:40
Jason: keep us informed as to how is it going please! We can always help! ;-)
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Skoll said Aug 19, 2012 10:03:44
Jason,

Personally I prefer 3rd age, but the easiest way to get started would be to use the 2nd age stuff released with MRQ2. Apart from magic, the covertion work required should be minimal and there are two campaigns available. Blood of Orlanth, that was originally written for MRQ1 but there's a free coversion PDF available; and Pavis Rises. The biggest issue is probably folk/common magic, as RQ6 nerfs it significantly. I'm about to start a new RQ6 campaing, and I'm thinking about using MRQ2 common magic rules there, as I just can't imagine Glorantha without the old style Bladesharp.
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richardgorman said Aug 19, 2012 11:36:44
The 2nd Age stuff is good too. Blood of Orlanth would make a good starting campaign game and setting. (Dara Happa Stirs is wonderful and epic but very specific about the characters you have to use...Dara Happans essentially). There are a number of wee scenarios in Signs and Portents and the like which you can pick. Easy enough to make up your own using the excellent Ralios background. I believe that a lot of the Second Age amterial, especially the background, is superbly written and makes for great campaigning. I've had an occasional troupe heading through Fronela and down towards Ralios for a couple of years now and we've had great fun.

For the 3rd age I highly recommend that you buy all the superb giant Moon Design re-releases for the 3rd Age (Including Cults of Glorantha which has lot of great background info) and run them in the order Griffin Mountain (Your players grow up in a magical wilderness gradually becoming aware of the great powers beyond), Borderlands and Beyond (The players are hired by an Imperial Duke to secure his lands in a dangerous frontier) and Pavis and the Big Rubble (Your group experience Urban intrigue, plots and lots of dungeon delving in an Imperial frontier town by the ruins of a great second age city). Each one of these supplements probably has 2 or 3 years worth of gaming in them. Stick them together and you can pretty much keep going forever! Yes there are rule inconsistencies but honestly I reckon you'll be able to wing them easily. If I could do it all again this would be my dream Gloranthan RQ campaign(If you can also buy Apple Lane, Sun County, etc etc and spend most of your natural life on this tack. I'd beware of the hugely overpowered crud which all too often slops over Glorantha though...Dorastor, Strangers in Prax and so on.). If you can only buy on Pavis is the obvious choice as it covers various styles of game.
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JasonMorris said Aug 19, 2012 22:49:42
I think what I am going to do is a 3rd age campaign that at least begins in Dragon Pass.
I think I can make good use of my copies of Apple lane, and snake pipe hollow.
Also, I have all of the "Gloranthan Classics" stuff...

three of my players (all my kids) have expressed interest in playing Orlanthi folks. They like the whole Celtic/Viking/Vandal vibe the Orlanthi seem to have.

Right now, I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about character generation, with Orlanthi backgrounds and professions,etc... Do I just use the RQ6 "barbarian" culture and related professions?
Also, need to figure out what the best way to do a Kolati Shaman. Does a new Shaman character start out as a "follower" or a full Shaman?

Last but not least I need to determine how the Elder Races are going to fit. I know my old RPG buddies from high school are coming from more 'traditional' fantasy games like D&D and Warhammer where Dwarves and Elves can say they hate each other, but seem to get along just fine in a party.

That doesnt seem to be the case in Glorantha. Elder Races seem to be positively murderous toward one another.
Im guessing I should just ban the Elder Races from being player characters for a while..

Sorry. I seem to be babbling a bit.
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VaughanCockell said Aug 20, 2012 02:41:44
>Right now, I'm trying to figure out the best way to go about character generation, with Orlanthi backgrounds >and professions,etc... Do I just use the RQ6 "barbarian" culture and related professions?

Pretty much,I would say. If you have the MRQ2 Glorantha core book, you could use Heortling as a close match.

>Also, need to figure out what the best way to do a Kolati Shaman. Does a new Shaman character start out as a >"follower" or a full Shaman?

I'm afraid he'll be a Spirit Worshipper, as you need 70% in Cult Skills to hit Shaman levels, RAW at the mo, unless you lower those limits for all Cults by 20%.

>That doesnt seem to be the case in Glorantha. Elder Races seem to be positively murderous toward one another.
>Im guessing I should just ban the Elder Races from being player characters for a while.

I would agree here again. In Glorantha the Elder Races are DIFFERENT, not least psychologically, much simpler for everyone to play human. Trolls could just get away with being playable, but are much more powerful physically, and Ducks are relatively close but have their own issues. Aldryami and Mostali - not easy at all.

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Skoll said Aug 20, 2012 07:45:54
Richard,

> run them in the order Griffin Mountain (Your players grow up in a magical wilderness
> gradually becoming aware of the great powers beyond), Borderlands and Beyond (The
> players are hired by an Imperial Duke to secure his lands in a dangerous frontier)
> and Pavis and the Big Rubble (Your group experience Urban intrigue, plots and lots
> of dungeon delving in an Imperial frontier town by the ruins of a great second age city).

I recently bought the Classics pack and spent most of yesterday pondering which order I should run the campaigns. To me, the logical order seemed to be 1. Pavis&Big Rubble, 2. Borderlands and 3. Griffin Mountain (Griffin mountain I think should be the last one, as it seems to be most epic with some epic loot). But as our last campaign was Pavis Rises, I don't want to start with Pavis, so I thought I'll do 1. Borderlands, 2. Pavis&Big Rubble and 3. Griffin Mountain.

So my question is, could you explain the reasoning behind the order you suggested. Thanks.
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X said Aug 20, 2012 17:04:11
Hi Jason:
You can have dwarves and elves that get on better than usual if you start with characters living in Pavis, where there are also many orlanthis.

Hi Skoll:
The last scenario in the Borderlands book has a nice lead into Griffin Mountain. Richard probably suggested starting with Griffin Mountain because it is an enclosed area, good for starting players as tribal young with no need to tell much about the world to new players. It will be fun however you do it! :-)
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richardgorman said Aug 21, 2012 15:54:37
Skoll, you should definitely do it the way that suits you first and foremost...especially if you're following on from Pavis Rises.
My personal reasoning involves the development of the players characters and the ease of linking them.

Griffin Mountain first because the characters can start out in an environment that's easily grasped (Wilderness, big empire out there somewhere...) with characters they can handle. No need to go into the minutiae of Glorantha at this point, so Jason's got it pretty much right. Also you are likely to have quite straigtforward goals - help the tribe, become the best darned scout there is... You're right about the hefty swag but if you don't want them carrying Ye Mighty Sword of Doom around there's no reason you can't place that out of their reach until they return all heroed up.

Borderlands second because once your gang have a reputation it makes sense for m'lord Rone to hire them. Your players simply accompany a caravan south and look for employment. The Borderlands are handily placed for Pavis. A few trips there for supplies, message delivery and the like are almost inevitable. So you have your connections set up for phase 3.

Pavis has some serious unpleasantness running around in the Rubble (Then Trolls sure are mean...) so experience and skill are going to big up your survival chances. Also Pavis presents another kind of challenge. Subterfuge, politics and power collide here. If your heroes have survived this long they are likely to be rather powerful or renowned figures who will be sought out as serious players in this game. Lunar and Orlanthi factions are going to be beating a path to their door with offers they 'can't refuse'. Of course they won't be able to keep everyone happy and venturing into the Rubble for some good ol' delving can make a nice contrast. Being part of a wee bit of Gloranthan history as Lunars domination comes under threat seems a nice way to round things off. The epic confrontation that is 'The Cradle' seems to offer a very satisying, and high powered, conclusion. Pavis can be their launch pad to Gloranthan superstardom.

That was my line of thinking but it should definitely be ignored if you have your own Grand Scheme in mind! First time round I actually started them in the order Pavis, Griffin, Borderlands with all of them going simultaneously for a few years. Complicated but fun! You know your own players best. They're superb supplements anyway Skoll so you'll have a blast whatever you decide! Slainte Mhath!
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