Home Forums Glorantha Glorantha Discussions Answers for a Lunar Campaign

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  • #5270
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Quote from David Paul on November 16, 2013, 03:22
    I’m interested in running a Lunar campaign, and there are three things, in particular, that I’d find helpful:

    1) A clear discussion of the differences and relationships between Illumination, Sevening and Enlightenment.
    2) A clear discussion of who is allowed to worship/initiate/devote to which aspects of Yelm. (And, to a lesser extent, the other Dara Happan gods.)
    3) Discussion of the differences between Theist, Animist, and Sorcerous Heroquesting, as well as Lunar Travel & Journey.

    My answers:

    1) Illumination and Sevening are the same spiritual state. Enlightenment is a similar spiritual state that is found in Kralorela and the Eastern Isles. Ince there are no HQ2 rules for any eastern cult, I’ll put that to one side.

    The difference between Illumination and Sevening is that Illumination is associated with Yelm and Nysalor while Sevening is associated with the Red Goddess. The Lunars use Sevening to manipulate the Cosmos through their Glamours and rules for it are given in the Pavis: Gateway to Adventure.

    Nysaloran Illumination is long gone and only marginally relevant to a Lunar campaign.

    Yelmic Illumination is a madness that breaks out among the poor and destitute of Dara Happa since their suffering parallels that of Yelm in Hell. Thus illuminated, they become capable of casting Yelmic magic which is traditionally reserved for the rich and powerful of Dara Happa.

    A Yelmic Illuminate is capable of superseding the Cosmic Compromise (as Nysalor did at the Battle of Night and Day). He can learn Yelmic Feats or the Feats of any Light or Fire Rune Cult (but only if they are Light or Fire Rune Feats). Unlike ordinary Feats (as given in Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes p82-83), a Yelmic can a) Ignore an Identity Challenge b) Get a bonus of up to +1W or c) Act outside the limits of the Feat’s Myth (ie do what Yelm wouldn’t do). Doing one of these alone is safe. Doing two of these at the same time is attracts the attention of the Gods of the people you are smiting. Doing all three results in your soul being absorbed by Yelm and blessed death.

    b) If you are not noble, the traditional Yelmic cult is not interested in you. You could renounce worldly possessions to become a Yelmic Illuminate. The Yelmic Nobility will hate you from a distance, fearfully do whatever you want in your presence and look at ways of feeding you to the Crimson Bat after they’ve left your presence.

    c) Given the spirit of HQ2, I don’t think there is going to be any major or even minor difference rules-wise about questing on the Hero-Planes depending on your religioous background. Questing in the Gods Realm and so forth is different but is not really normal Heroquesting.

    #6238
    Profile photo of David Paul
    David Paul
    Spectator

    Thanks, this is a big help! Could I just ask for clarification on a couple more things?

    About Sevening: About how many Lunars are Sevened? Are we talking a few hundred throughout the empire? A few thousand? More?

    About Questing: I wasn’t really talking about game rules, more about what a “typical” Heroquest is like in terms of content. Theists “become” their god and re-enact a particular myth. Do animists “become” a particular spirit? And what about sorcerers — I can’t imagine they could incarnate the Invisible God! Do they re-enact the deeds of ascended masters instead? What about those masters who lived within Time? I guess I just don’t have a very clear idea of what the animist and sorcerous otherworlds are like, and what Heroquesters actually do there.

    Again, thanks for taking the time to answer my questions!

    #6240
    Profile photo of Harald Smith
    Harald Smith
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Discussion of the differences between Theist, Animist, and Sorcerous Heroquesting…
    what a “typical” Heroquest is like in terms of content. Theists “become” their god and re-enact a particular myth. Do animists “become” a particular spirit? And what about sorcerers — I can’t imagine they could incarnate the Invisible God!

    An animist/shaman would, I think, quest to challenge and prove their spiritual strength vs. other spirits. They do not become the spirit, they conquer it (or are conquered).
    The sorcerer would quest to prove their ‘theory’, following logical paths to manipulate the runes and gain desired secrets.

    Quote:
    don’t have a very clear idea of what the animist and sorcerous otherworlds are like, and what Heroquesters actually do there.

    Heroquesters would use those otherworlds as bridges to the Gods War, where all otherworlds come together and you can take action for benefit.
    The Spirit World is a shifting, rather amorphous plane often ‘fuzzy’ to those without the right senses. Unlike the Gods World where the various domains are clearly defined, you might find yourself rapidly shifting from the Vale of Four Winds (where Kolat dwells) to some strange forest of little trees to the hostile realm of some festering disease spirit. Large powerful spirits rule over lesser ones and you must avoid becoming a slave to these great beings while conquering lesser ones and forcing them into your charms, etc.
    The Essence World is a logically defined network of runic interrelationships but devoid of others. You might quest to gain a spell of fear, so you open a gateway to the node of Truth, an endless library of all truths in the world, where you must find and open a ‘book’ that serves as a gateway to the Essence of Darkness, a place with no light whatsoever. From the Pit of Darkness you must move until you hear the sound of gibbering voices and fearful whispers which means you have reached the Cave of Fear – and must overcome your own worst fears to enter. Doing so allows you to write down and record some spell of fear. Then you must find the path back to the Library of Truth, which may not be the same path you came.

    #6243
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator

    On the subject of Sevened Lunars, ye olde Gods of Glorantha reported a figure of 2% of the entire empire or a little under 170,000 Seveneds. Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes reports 250 Red Moon worshippers in Boldhome out of a total lunar population in Sartar of 4500 (Seven Mothers and Doburdon). This last figure ignores Lunar troops which is 10,000 before the Invasion of Heortland starts up. Adding that to the 4500 gives 14500 of which the Sevened Lunars in Boldhome make 1.7%.

    #6244
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator
    Quote:
    I wasn’t really talking about game rules, more about what a “typical” Heroquest is like in terms of content. Theists “become” their god and re-enact a particular myth. Do animists “become” a particular spirit? And what about sorcerers — I can’t imagine they could incarnate the Invisible God! Do they re-enact the deeds of ascended masters instead? What about those masters who lived within Time? I guess I just don’t have a very clear idea of what the animist and sorcerous otherworlds are like, and what Heroquesters actually do there.

    For a typical Heroquest – everybody (theists, animists, lunars, whathaveyou) heroquests on the Hero-Planes specifically the Storm Age. Quests to the Golden Age and Chaos Age are known but they are much less common and have their own dangers. The Lightbringers Quest, for example, is a Chaos Age Quest.

    Questing in terms of going on the Gods World, Spirit World or Essence Planes is Not Done. The last people to do it were the God Learners who ghosts would do anything just to burn in hell. People do travel to the Divine Worlds (Gods World, Spirit Worlds etc) but they do so in terms of their religion. When the Orlanth fly to Storm Home, they are visiting the Gods World within their religion but they are smart enough not to do anything stupid there.

    In terms of worldview, the animistic and the sorcerous HeroQuesters are pretty much like the Theists – they are still following the footsteps of their divine predecessor. But their closeness to the divine is measured in different ways.

    When an animist does a Chalk Man heroquest, for example, he does the same things that the Chalk Man did. What determines his closeness to the Chalk Man is the number of strength of Chalk Man spirits that he has. The better these are, the closer he is to the Chalk Man and the greater his chance of success. A God Learner might explain it as that the spirits that an animist has are fragmented portions of the World Spirit and are as much a part of the animist as the spells of the Sorceror or the affinities and feats of the Theist. But animists would never think in this way.

    Sorcerous HeroQuestors are primarily interested in knowledge. Their divine closeness is dependent on the numbers they have and the strength of their learning (ie Grimoire). They go onto the hero-planes to see more clearly the interactions of the Runes. A Buserian starseer, for example, would travel to see the Doom Conjunction in which Orlanth slew Yelm. once there, he will cast his analytical spells in the hopes of strengthing his knowledge of the related planets (Broken Planet or Sun), learning a new spell (extinguish sunlight) or capturing a special planetary radiation which is only emitted then to take back and bless his community. All the time during which he has to dodge various planets, meteors and other astral phenomenon.

    #6247
    Profile photo of David Scott
    David Scott
    Keymaster
    Quote:
    Quote from Peter Metcalfe on November 16, 2013, 20:54
    On the subject of Sevened Lunars

    The usual number for all “magic” persons is 1% of the population. A Magic person is a priest, devotee, wizard, shaman, etc. (This is the number used by Moon Design)

    Pavis – Gateway to Adventure explains the basis of the Lunar religion. Every lunar initiate is tied to a phase, not the whole Moon. If you want to use the magic of another phase, you must first gain the Black phase of illumination. Illuminates may eventually “collect” all the phases giving them the Moon Rune itself.

    You don’t need to be illuminated to be a lunar priest. So the number of illuminates is well below 1%.

    Note that in the Pavis book, NPCs are given the Moon rune to denote their general magic availability, even though they are tied to a phase. It makes it easier to read rather than the phases.

    #6248
    Profile photo of David Scott
    David Scott
    Keymaster
    Quote:
    Quote from Harald Smith on November 16, 2013, 13:48

    The Spirit World is a shifting, rather amorphous plane often ‘fuzzy’ to those without the right senses. Unlike the Gods World where the various domains are clearly defined, you might find yourself rapidly shifting from the Vale of Four Winds (where Kolat dwells) to some strange forest of little trees to the hostile realm of some festering disease spirit. Large powerful spirits rule over lesser ones and you must avoid becoming a slave to these great beings while conquering lesser ones and forcing them into your charms, etc.

    The Spirit World is quite clearly defined, it overlays the Middle World geographically although the actual appearance of things in the spirit world may differ considerably from the Middle World. Everything has a spirit, and so animists see it in terms of that. Some areas exist in one and not the other and vice versa. There is also the Skyworld and Underworld.

    Depending on the power of a shaman they can access deeper areas of the Spirit World. Here are maps of the Praxian & Balazaring Traditions:

    Praxian spirit world -> The Larger Herd -> Larger realm of Animals (gods and Great spirits)-> Genert’s ancient demesne (The Green Age) -> Earthmaker’s demesne (The Primal Plasma).



    Balazaring spirit world -> The Larger World -> Larger realm of Animals (Gods and Great spirits)-> The Green Age -> Earthmaker’s demesne (The Primal Plasma).

    These regions are indistinct from each other, often overlapping and including the lesser within the greater. They tend to shift and meld at times, merging and offering no distinct boundaries.

    As you can see, all of the spirit worlds are connected.

    The greatest difference between visiting the Spirit World and Heroquesting there – is what happens to your body. In a heroquest you take it with you. Getting your body possessed is a real danger as is dying.

    #6253
    Profile photo of Harald Smith
    Harald Smith
    Spectator

    Thanks David – nice overview!
    I would imagine that places in the Middle World that are strongly theist or essence in nature would have some different in their ‘place’ in the immediate Spirit World, perhaps a spirit (or spirit realm) that was defeated by the God, etc.

    #6299
    Profile photo of David Paul
    David Paul
    Spectator

    Thanks a lot for the info, guys — it’s a big help!

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