Home Forums Gaming in Glorantha HeroQuest Orlanthi initiation; people with atypic runes

This topic contains 9 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Robin Mitra Robin Mitra 4 years, 1 month ago.

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  • #10456
    Profile photo of Jon Thorvaldson
    Jon Thorvaldson
    Spectator

    I am just starting up a HQ campaign in Sartar. My idea was to play out the pcs initiatory rites, and only afterwards finish the character generation and figure out their runic affinities etc.

    My thought was, that since initiation is separate for men and women, and most men have Air, most women Earth, how would you play out the initiation of someone who would differ from that? Like a Vingan, or an Elmalite? Would they still get Earth and Air respectively, and later change, or would they come out of their initiation rites with Air and Fire instead?

    (I am thinking now people who are on that path already entering adulthood, not someone who would change later in life.)

    #10465
    Profile photo of Down With People
    Down With People
    Spectator

    I figure they would come out of their initiation that way. Most Orlanthi get Air and Earth, but there’s still plenty who get Fire, Water or even Darkness.

    #10466
    Profile photo of Jenx
    Jenx
    Spectator

    http://www.glorantha.com/docs/orlanthi-initiation-rites/
    http://www.glorantha.com/docs/ernaldan-initiation-rites/

    I would recommend reading through these excellent write ups of the two initiation rites by Greg himself.

    And to answer your question – The initiations themselves are (generally) the same regardless of what your runes will eventually be. While one God or Goddess might have helped you, but not your friends during your initiations, your actual affinities and runes will not be revealed until the rites are over.

    However, if you chose to stick to the rites described by Greg in those links, you won’t really be able to run just one initiation for a mixed gender party, as male and female rites are very different in how they approach initiation.

    #10469
    Profile photo of Ufnal
    Ufnal
    Spectator

    Those write-ups are brilliant and quite Element-neutral, but I also always thought that people with different elemental runes should have their initiation proceed a bit differently. For example a girl with Darkness rune could perceive the first part of her journey in a much different way. Or the things a future Vingan does in the Storm Age could be way different from what Earth girls do. Those rites are mainly culture-based, so the changes would not be too great, but they should be there, to indicate that the person is somehow different.

    #10474
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    An opinion: all of the children, soon to be adult, go through the ritual organised in a standardised path, the boys as part of a group initially led by adults and the girls alone but led by adults. However, based on their choices and paths, when the now young adults return to the starting point, the presiding priest or priestess is inspired to tattoo their new runes. If the runes are of Chaos, the child will almost certainly be immediately exiled and then killed. A Moon rune may lead to a lot of trouble, as will the runes of Eurmal or Gagarth or several other unpleasant and unwanted gods.

    Note that this inspiration can include inscribing runes previously unknown to the priest(ess) – such as the Sartaring rune for the descendants of Sartar or the Kovdig rune for Harmast.

    YGWV

    #10477
    Profile photo of Robin Mitra
    Robin Mitra
    Spectator

    As mentioned above the new adult can have any runes as long as they are not in opposition to the clan’s believes. The runes are determined by the child’s experience and role in its first heroquest – and there is always a place for Argan Argar, Elmal, Heler, and other members and friends of the Storm pantheon. Hence the adult would have the runes most appropriate to his or her life. Unless extremely strange or transforming events occur later in life the runes of a person never change – they are the soul.

    As a side note, technically speaking Vinga is Orlanth and as such her initiation is well known to the clan. The only difference is that followers of Vinga have female bodies. The same goes for Nandan followers, who are female Ernaldans in male bodies.

    #10483
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    As a side note, technically speaking Vinga is Orlanth and as such her initiation is well known to the clan. The only difference is that followers of Vinga have female bodies. The same goes for Nandan followers, who are female Ernaldans in male bodies.

    Here’s where it gets difficult. I suspect that these exceptions start their initiation as the gender of their body and somehow find or make their way to their true path from there. Additionally, there’s a section in King of Sartar that indicates that it is not unknown for women to join Vinga temporarily to rescue or avenge their children.

    #10484
    Profile photo of Bruce Turner
    Bruce Turner
    Spectator

    Additionally, there’s a section in King of Sartar that indicates that it is not unknown for women to join Vinga temporarily to rescue or avenge their children.

    There are at least a few examples of people changing their runes, usually as a result of joining specific cults (Fire -> Light for Yelmalio initiates, Storm -> Moon for Danfive Xaron penitents, Orlanth initiates gaining the Mastery rune to join the Orlanth Rex subcult). The cults of Orlanth, Ernalda and Vinga probably have rituals that will change a supplicant’s Earth rune to Storm or back again. These are unlikely to be easy rituals, but a woman looking to avenge her murdered children may have a motivation to attempt extremely difficult magical tasks to get her revenge.

    I think a reasonable modern-world parallel would be people who engage in a dramatic mid-life career change. Not many folks change from insurance agent to graphic designer, there are a lot of barriers for those who try, but a few people will do it.

    #10485
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    Veering wildly off the original topic, while hoping that it has already been adequately dealt with…

    I think that changing runes is a huge deal but gaining additional runes is normal. ‘Everyone is made of everything’ means to me that all runes are present in all people. At initiation only 3 of these runes are ready to support magic. By going on quests, a hero can power up additional runes. For Orlanthi to become chieftain, questing for the mastery rune must be a fairly well known path.

    And from what I have learned over the past few years about the western approach to magic, I suspect that sorcerers aggressively quest for additional runes as ‘combination’ seems the most flexible of their principles of magic.

    #10490
    Profile photo of Robin Mitra
    Robin Mitra
    Spectator

    Here’s where it gets difficult. I suspect that these exceptions start their initiation as the gender of their body and somehow find or make their way to their true path from there.

    Yes, that is one option. But I think it is also possible that the child starts with the correct initiation right away. After all the initiation is prepared by clan members and gods who all know the child since birth. On Jon’s original question that means to me: do whatever is more fun. If you have a girl that is supposed to become a Vingan, either put her with the boys or have her start her Ernaldan initiation only to divert from the common path and end up among the Thunder Brothers. I think both are valid approaches, just go for what your players will like most.

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