Home Forums Glorantha Glorantha Discussions Questions about Heroquesting

This topic contains 17 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Michael Hitchens Michael Hitchens 3 years, 5 months ago.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 18 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #5417
    Profile photo of Michael Hitchens
    Michael Hitchens
    Spectator

    I was pondering, in my ill-educated way, some things about Heroquesting. I’m sharing my thoughts here, more to have them shot down before I wander too far into silliness than anything else, but anyway.

    First I was thinking about the example of Heroquest Challenge in Sartar Kingdom of Heroes (p. 200) and it seems a bit odd to me. In it we have the climax of the Lightbringers Quest, with an Orlanthi (Korolvanth) as Orlanth facing off against a Yelmalion (an unnamed Count of Sun County) as Yelm as Korolvanth endures the Flames of Truth. The example has Korolvanth winning if he passes the test, the Count winning if Korolvanth fails. But wouldn’t the Count (Yelm) want Korolvanth (Orlanth) to pass the test as well? Unless the Yelmalion version of the myth has Orlanth failing the test. I wouldn’t have thought the latter likely though.

    So if both want Korolvanth to succeed, what might be going on? Maybe it’s a question of attitude. The count wants Korolvanth humbled but alive, whereas Korolvanth wants to come through proud and free? Maybe they both want him to succeed and the contest shouldn’t be against the Count but against something else (the Flames themselves)? Maybe it’s not a great example? Maybe I’m missing something?

    One thing that struck me about the Heroquest Challenge in general was its zero-sum game nature. Somebody loses for someone else to win. Given that the Hero Wars could be looked on, at least in part, as a massive magical arms race then I’m wondering if Heroquesting is tilted towards everybody winning, at least if they follow their defined Heroquest paths. Afterall, following the paths means simply following what their Gods did, for better or worse. The trick, as I understand it, is succeeding where you should and not dying were you have to fail. So if everyone plays fair, everyone wins (gets the magical benefit) and the arms race goes on. Obviously, in isolation, if every quest succeeds, everyone gets better, but I’m particularly thinking of where different parties of Heroquesters interact. If they do what their god did, for better or worse, they’ll get the reward.

    Which means, how often should a Heroquest Challenge (as the climatic part of the quest) be against something that’s likely to be another Heroquester playing their role? Because I can’t see how it works at a point that is at the end of two quests, if both sides are actually Heroquesters as both need to succeed at the end but both want what happened to happen. Success for both would follow from the same events. I see the point of the stake and the risk, just not how it works against another Heroquester (one who is following the mythic rules anyway).

    Leaving the Heroquest Challenge aside I can certainly see places where one Heroquester (or party) fails and another succeeds. In a number of places the section on Heroquesting in Sartar Kingdon of Heroes says that the quester must fail at some stations (see page 196 for example). I can understand this. If to follow the quest you must do what your God did, and if at a certain point your God suffered a defeat, then so must you. I can see that many times that defeat is reflected by some other heroquester, acting as the other side of the mythical encounter, getting a victory at their station, because that’s what their myth says. I have this image of the myths as a network of paths, with many intersections. And most stories that do cross only touching each other at one (or maybe two) stations.

    Let’s say there’s some myth, where early on Orlanth suffers a defeat at the hands of the darkness folk. This teaches him a valuable lesson which he later uses to defeat the fire tribe (darkness tricks being useful against them as well). Could that early encounter be part of some Uz myth where Karrg beats up Orlanth?

    Both the Orlanthi and the Uz need the other to keep following their respective myths to get that particular station in both myths. Even if you only meet a particular foe/group once in a myth it doesn’t mean that they weren’t doing something else. In fact, if they are on the Other Side to be able to be in your HeroQuest, it had to be for their reasons. Which would be (I expect) following their own HeroQuest.

    This led me to think about HeroQuest surprises. I wonder how many of them are places were you *should* fail. Are they (at least often) events in the myth that the God went through, but not where they had a particularly happy time. Worshippers are likely, over time, to downplay the parts of the story where their God was on this important task, but just happened to (say) go through a forest and get beaten up by Aldryami. Not much important there to the story, nope, we’ll just leave that bit out when we are trying to inspire young initiates. Especially before the possibility/importance of Heroquesting was realised I wonder how much this happened? Recitations of the myth “editing out” parts that didn’t make the God look good. But Heroquesters are now stumbling back over those parts (stations). Could lead to “Well boys and girls, we really need you to go out to the ruins and try to find first age versions of the myths. Cause they may have that bit you stumbled into in your last Heroquest. And then we’ll know what we’re supposed to do.” So, are Heroquest surprises, at least some times, bits that got left out of the recitation of the myth over time?

    I don’t expect all surprises are like this. I think some might be parts of other stories the party accidentally wanders into. Some might be parts that got left out, but where your God succeeded. It was just somebody forgot that bit in passing the story along. And so on.

    Of course, not everyone plays fair. God Learners tried (and at least some Lunars try) to change other people’s myths to their own benefit. That could give rise to surprises and opposed challenges between heroquesters and all sorts of things.

    So, to summarise:
    Can someone explain what I’m missing about the Heroquest Challenge example?
    How often are Heroquest Challenges actually against other heroquesters and how often against something else? Can they arise from attempts to change a myth?
    Am I right about the picture of myths as a network with limited crossing between pairs of myths from different pantheons?
    How many Heroquest surprises are forgotten parts of the myth? And how many of those are places where the God suffered a setback?

    Sorry if they are dumb questions.

    #7763
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator
    Quote:
    But wouldn’t the Count (Yelm) want Korolvanth (Orlanth) to pass the test as well? Unless the Yelmalion version of the myth has Orlanth failing the test. I wouldn’t have thought the latter likely though.

    The Count’s victory is that Korolvanth has the rebellion burned out of him and abases himself before the Emperor.

    #7764
    Profile photo of Michael Hitchens
    Michael Hitchens
    Spectator

    Which is the alive but humbled option. I can see the Yelmalion myth running that way

    #7767
    Profile photo of Simon Phipp
    Simon Phipp
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30
    I was pondering, in my ill-educated way, some things about Heroquesting. I’m sharing my thoughts here, more to have them shot down before I wander too far into silliness than anything else, but anyway.

    Nobody knows a lot about HeroQuesting – most of us make it up as we go along.

    This is all in my opinion and it probably all wrong.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30First I was thinking about the example of Heroquest Challenge in Sartar Kingdom of Heroes (p. 200) and it seems a bit odd to me. In it we have the climax of the Lightbringers Quest, with an Orlanthi (Korolvanth) as Orlanth facing off against a Yelmalion (an unnamed Count of Sun County) as Yelm as Korolvanth endures the Flames of Truth. The example has Korolvanth winning if he passes the test, the Count winning if Korolvanth fails. But wouldn’t the Count (Yelm) want Korolvanth (Orlanth) to pass the test as well? Unless the Yelmalion version of the myth has Orlanth failing the test. I wouldn’t have thought the latter likely though.

    So if both want Korolvanth to succeed, what might be going on? Maybe it’s a question of attitude. The count wants Korolvanth humbled but alive, whereas Korolvanth wants to come through proud and free? Maybe they both want him to succeed and the contest shouldn’t be against the Count but against something else (the Flames themselves)? Maybe it’s not a great example? Maybe I’m missing something?

    Sometimes, these things are a matter of viewpoint. The Orlanthi winning that test means that he has seen the Truth of his actions, but is not crippled by the guilt/shame. The Orlanth losing means that he is affected by the guilt/shame. Either way, he has seen the Truth of his actions and their consequences.

    When dealing with Yelm, Orlanth would be affected by the result of the Flames of Truth. If he had failed, then he would be a grovelling wretch, begging for forgiveness. If he had succeeded then he would be proud but apologetic.

    Orlanth refusing to take the Flames of Truth test would be a failure of the LBQ in its current form. In that sense, whether Orlanth passes or fails the test is irrelevant, taking the Test is what is important.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30One thing that struck me about the Heroquest Challenge in general was its zero-sum game nature. Somebody loses for someone else to win. Given that the Hero Wars could be looked on, at least in part, as a massive magical arms race then I’m wondering if Heroquesting is tilted towards everybody winning, at least if they follow their defined Heroquest paths. Afterall, following the paths means simply following what their Gods did, for better or worse. The trick, as I understand it, is succeeding where you should and not dying were you have to fail. So if everyone plays fair, everyone wins (gets the magical benefit) and the arms race goes on. Obviously, in isolation, if every quest succeeds, everyone gets better, but I’m particularly thinking of where different parties of Heroquesters interact. If they do what their god did, for better or worse, they’ll get the reward.

    In situations where a power is passed from one person to another as part of the Challenge, it makes sense for one to win and one to lose.

    Not all HeroQuests are like this, but many are framed in this way, for dramatic purposes.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Which means, how often should a Heroquest Challenge (as the climatic part of the quest) be against something that’s likely to be another Heroquester playing their role? Because I can’t see how it works at a point that is at the end of two quests, if both sides are actually Heroquesters as both need to succeed at the end but both want what happened to happen. Success for both would follow from the same events. I see the point of the stake and the risk, just not how it works against another Heroquester (one who is following the mythic rules anyway).

    In my opinion, most HeroQuests are against other HeroQuestors. Very few are against the actual deities from the myths, except when the HeroQuestor is becoming a Hero or Deity on a GodQuest.

    There are many ways to look at these.

    1. The Deity is victorious in the Myth and comes away with a power, the HeroQuestor wants the same.
    2. The Deity loses in the Myth and loses a power, the HeroQuestor wants to undo this and win.
    3. The Deity loses in the Myth and loses a power but gains knowledge or a different power, the HeroQuestor wants to emulate this.

    The classic example is the Hill of Gold. The Zorak Zoran HeroQuestor wants to take fire powers from Yelmalio and gain them himself. The Yelmalian may want to gain the ability to use Fire Powers by defeating Zorak Zoran. The Yelmalian may also want to lose to Zorak Zoran and lose all fire powers, because that is what happened to Yalmalio. At the end of the HeroQuest, Yelmalio is best by a horde of chaos creatures, naked and frozen, he is defeated yet comes out of it strengthened as he has survived against all the odds. Having Fire magic at this point means that Yelmalio is not frozen and can fight back, so the HeroQuestor defeats the chaos foes and gains an ability/reward, but it is not the same reward.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Leaving the Heroquest Challenge aside I can certainly see places where one Heroquester (or party) fails and another succeeds. In a number of places the section on Heroquesting in Sartar Kingdon of Heroes says that the quester must fail at some stations (see page 196 for example). I can understand this. If to follow the quest you must do what your God did, and if at a certain point your God suffered a defeat, then so must you. I can see that many times that defeat is reflected by some other heroquester, acting as the other side of the mythical encounter, getting a victory at their station, because that’s what their myth says. I have this image of the myths as a network of paths, with many intersections. And most stories that do cross only touching each other at one (or maybe two) stations.

    Sometimes you can fail in a clever way. Nobody wants to throw a HeroQuest, as that weakens the deity. However, you can put up a stooge as an opponent. On the Hill of Gold Quest, again, Yelmalio meets Orlanth, but the Orlanthi is a friend of the Yelmalian and they have a ritual combat where the Yelmalian does not lose, but gives up his arms and armour anyway. Here, the Yelmalian has fulfilled the Station but at little personal cost. Similarly, a Storm Bull HeroQuestor might have a captured broo who is set free at a certain point for the Storm Buller to kill.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Let’s say there’s some myth, where early on Orlanth suffers a defeat at the hands of the darkness folk. This teaches him a valuable lesson which he later uses to defeat the fire tribe (darkness tricks being useful against them as well). Could that early encounter be part of some Uz myth where Karrg beats up Orlanth?

    Both the Orlanthi and the Uz need the other to keep following their respective myths to get that particular station in both myths. Even if you only meet a particular foe/group once in a myth it doesn’t mean that they weren’t doing something else. In fact, if they are on the Other Side to be able to be in your HeroQuest, it had to be for their reasons. Which would be (I expect) following their own HeroQuest.

    This could be an example from Pavis, where an Orlanthi and Troll know each other. They perform the myth, Orlanth gets beaten, but not too badly, the Troll gets Orlanth’s breastplate, or whatever, the Orlanthi learns a secret from the Troll in return and everyone is happy.

    Sometimes, you attract your “own” HeroQuest opponents. These could be friends or foes, but they are personal to you. Often you will find that they become unwitting participants in the HeroQuest, or that you appear as one of their Stations and they appear as one of your Stations.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30This led me to think about HeroQuest surprises. I wonder how many of them are places were you *should* fail. Are they (at least often) events in the myth that the God went through, but not where they had a particularly happy time. Worshippers are likely, over time, to downplay the parts of the story where their God was on this important task, but just happened to (say) go through a forest and get beaten up by Aldryami. Not much important there to the story, nope, we’ll just leave that bit out when we are trying to inspire young initiates. Especially before the possibility/importance of Heroquesting was realised I wonder how much this happened? Recitations of the myth “editing out” parts that didn’t make the God look good. But Heroquesters are now stumbling back over those parts (stations). Could lead to “Well boys and girls, we really need you to go out to the ruins and try to find first age versions of the myths. Cause they may have that bit you stumbled into in your last Heroquest. And then we’ll know what we’re supposed to do.” So, are Heroquest surprises, at least some times, bits that got left out of the recitation of the myth over time?

    I don’t expect all surprises are like this. I think some might be parts of other stories the party accidentally wanders into. Some might be parts that got left out, but where your God succeeded. It was just somebody forgot that bit in passing the story along. And so on.

    If you tell the HeroQuestors “And at this point you should fail” then you are stacking up the HeroQuest in a certain way. Sure, it can be done that way, but failure should be a natural consequence of the HeroQuest, rather than throwing the HeroQuest.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Of course, not everyone plays fair. God Learners tried (and at least some Lunars try) to change other people’s myths to their own benefit. That could give rise to surprises and opposed challenges between heroquesters and all sorts of things.

    So did Arkat. He knew where a HeroQuest should be failed and probably failed it on purpose, but his trick would be to succeed in another way. So, being locked up in Argan Argar’s dungeons in the Palace of Black Glass is bad for a Humakti, but not that bad for a troll, so all an Arkati needs do is to switch into Troll-Mode and get out as Zorak Zoran.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30So, to summarise:
    Can someone explain what I’m missing about the Heroquest Challenge example?

    You are not missing anything, I think.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30How often are Heroquest Challenges actually against other heroquesters and how often against something else?

    Usually against other HeroQuestors, very rarely against something else. If the something else is a stand-in for the deity, then that really counts as “other HeroQuestors”, so killing a dryad is the same as killing an elf HeroQuestor to a Zorak Zorani. Neither are the same as killing Aldrya.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Can they arise from attempts to change a myth?

    Yes, as the Myth tends to try and get back to how it “should” be. Succeeding in the challenge makes the Myth different in some way. Doing this in the God plane makes a new Myth for someone to follow on their own HeroQuest and this makes you a Hero, perhaps with a cult of your own.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30Am I right about the picture of myths as a network with limited crossing between pairs of myths from different pantheons?

    In my opinion, yes. I keep wanting to make a network diagram of the important myths and how they interconnect, like the London Underground Map, but it is difficult and complex.

    Quote:
    Quote from michaelh on May 4, 2014, 10:30How many Heroquest surprises are forgotten parts of the myth? And how many of those are places where the God suffered a setback?

    A HeroQuest Surprise can be a forgotten part of the myth, or it can be something the HeroQuestors don’t want to talk about.

    Where the deity suffers a setback, there is only a surprise if that part of the HeroQuest is not commonly known.

    #7771
    Profile photo of Harald Smith
    Harald Smith
    Spectator
    Quote:
    In it we have the climax of the Lightbringers Quest, with an Orlanthi (Korolvanth) as Orlanth facing off against a Yelmalion (an unnamed Count of Sun County) as Yelm as Korolvanth endures the Flames of Truth. The example has Korolvanth winning if he passes the test, the Count winning if Korolvanth fails. But wouldn’t the Count (Yelm) want Korolvanth (Orlanth) to pass the test as well? Unless the Yelmalion version of the myth has Orlanth failing the test. I wouldn’t have thought the latter likely though.

    Korolvanth is on the Lightbringers Quest, but that doesn’t imply that the Count of Sun County is. It’s not necessarily a perfect alignment of quests. If you think about the ‘network’ of quests, from the perspective of the Count, he may be performing the Naming of the Gods quest, ala the scenario from the Pavis book (just juxtaposed into Sun County); or a similar quest to ensure the subservience of the gods to the Emperor (there’s probably a few of those).

    Here, the Count’s quest may be to ensure that his realm is properly ordered and that all rebels, dissidents, and other undesirables are named/placed in the Underworld. The juxtaposition of the two quests may mean that if Korolvanth loses, he is proven worthless and consigned to the Underworld (i.e. he might not return from his quest; he returns in a manner bound to the Count (must submit to the Count when in the county); he might not be able to block the rays of the sun with clouds; etc.), while the Count returns from his quest as undisputed Emperor/Ruler of the world (i.e. his domain). So the Count does want ‘Orlanth’ to fail/submit.

    #7772
    Profile photo of Roko Joko
    Roko Joko
    Spectator

    I agree that there’s only a conflict if heroquest participants want to act out different versions of the myth, which could be motivated either by tradition or novelty. And maybe sometimes they don’t want different versions. But it’s easy to imagine that they do, like you did (humbled vs. proud-and-free), or (GRoY p. 37) “Second, [dead] Yelm conquered the Rebels. While doing nothing except praying, his power extended itself over the Rebels so that they died and surrendered to him.”

    I don’t care too much where the Flame of Truth is in the Count’s story, because IMG the Count and Korolvanth can experience the same quest completely differently. It’s not a physical place and time, it’s magic and perception. Also, their timelines can branch.

    So when Korolvanth gets to the Flames of Truth, dies, and is booted out of a nightmare, maybe the Count sees neither a Flame of Truth nor a death; maybe he just sees the Rebel come in, see the light and hear the prayers [contest here], and then surrender. Or, maybe the Count’s experience has something like a Flame of Truth, but rather than a pit of fire it’s the light emanating from Dead Yelm; so it’s Rebel Guy falling to his knees and burning to a crisp in the Light of Justice. And then their timelines can diverge, with Korolvanth’s leading to a victory for darkness and the Count’s not.

    And I’m comfortable taking it much farther than that in terms of saying there’s an underlying symbolic thing that’s experienced totally differently by different participants.

    The timelines could also branch if Korolvanth loses before he gets to the court. That scenario is bad for Korolvanth, but most likely, the Count experiences a different timeline that never intersects with Korolvanth’s in the first place.

    IMG influencing someone else’s heroquest is fuzzy: it can be partial; it can have occurred in the past; it can be a combination of people doing the influencing. That makes it very easy for me to ignore or fudge questions about how often you interact with other questers.

    I think the literature leaves lot of room for our own interpretations about heroquest variations and surprises. FWIW, I’ve heard that in Greg’s GMing they were frequent and mysterious. And I think the idea of heroes discovering forgotten ways of worship does come up regularly in the literature. Airbrushing a god’s weaknesses less often, and it’s easy to imagine weakness and loss being embraced if the focus of the story is on enduring or overcoming, but the airbrushing thing can make for great stories, no doubt.

    #7775
    Profile photo of Erick Eckberg
    Erick Eckberg
    Spectator

    Really Dumb Question: Heroquesters encounter other Heroquesters who fulfill certain roles in the quest. Some of these Heroquesting “foes” are willingly (or not) taking part in that particular Heroquest (as in the case of Stormbullers releasing a captured broo to be slain as a representation of chaos in that myth). Others are blundered upon in the Otherworld as they pursue their own quest which happens to overlap. Does this random meeting of different questers happen temporally in the “Real World”, that is, if the groups meet-up in the Otherworld on what would be Fireday of Truth Week in Season it is because they are both questing on that same day and time in the “real world”?

    It seems that, although this would happen now and again, such confluences would never-the-less be rare. OR, does the “funky” nature of time passage in the Otherworld allow some “tweaking”? I imagine this could be difficult to manage, though, and would allow for paradoxes.

    Using the Korolvanth vs the Sun Dome Count example; Am I to assume that Korolvanth and the Count of Sun County both just happened to be engaged in independent Heroquests for their respective cults which just happened to align perfectly?

    I have also seen the term “Drawn into a Heroquest”, as in, “The Count of Sun County was drawn into Korolvanth’s Heroquest to represent Yelm.” I get the feeling that some magically powerful folk are occasionally forced to fill roles in the rituals of other cults. I’m sure I’m being pretty stupid here, but, that can’t be so, can it? The Count can’t be going about his daily business only to find he has somehow been magically absconded so as to fill some role in an Orlanthi Heroquest, correct?

    #7777
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    In Glorantha, there is a ‘Law of Convergence’ that ensures that every hero has worthy opponents and that in every story, there are appropriate antagonists for every protagonist.

    What this means is that, in a ‘this world’ quest, people will be drawn into roles as part of their ‘mundane’ activities. They will not be suddenly popped out of existence, dropped somewhere to perform a role, then dumped back, wounded and bleeding, to their original location. Attempts to seed your quest, such as captured broo, often work. However they sometimes act as magnets to draw in a much more powerful opponent. For example, you capture a stickpicker from an enemy clan to take an enemy role. Usually that will work and you have an easy conflict in that stage of your quest. However, occasionally, a fully prepared party of rescuers from the enemy clan will arrive on their own this world quest and now you are in serious trouble.

    For an otherworld quest, a much more powerful thing, your heroes’ magical preparations ensure that the ‘right’ opponents make their own preparations so that they meet.

    The roles do not have to exactly line up. What one side thinks the other side is doing does not necessarily mean that is what the other side thinks they are doing.

    An experienced HeroQuester tends to meet some specific opponents again and again, though they (both sides) may not be acting in the precise roles they took in previous meetings and they generally do not recognise each other (very special magic such as the Eye of the HalfBird excepted).

    And always remember the surprises where the basic elements of the story do not match the experience of the quest.

    #7778
    Profile photo of Erick Eckberg
    Erick Eckberg
    Spectator

    Thank you, Charles, that definitely clears some things up for me.

    #7783
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    Answering, I hope, the original questions from @michaelh

    It is unlikely that Korolvanth and party know that the opposition is the Count of Sun County. And vice versa. My guess is that the Count is questing to enhance his powers of rulership and/or suppress rivals to his authority within Sun County.

    Assuming this, then the Count has 3 possible outcomes in order of preference: the opposition find the truth that they must submit to his authority (his authority is enhanced); or the opposition are removed (rebellion is suppressed without necessarily removing its causes); or the opposition (and the count) find the truth is that his rule is unjust.

    The winning conditions are not necessarily totally symmetric for both sides – for example, for many Orlanthi, it might be better to die than to be forced to submit to the Emperor – lookup the Immolation for examples where a glorious death in rebellion inspired later generations.

    In general, I think that a HeroQuest Challenge should always be against another HeroQuester. However, the GM may only know in general terms who the opposition is and the players probably should not know who the opposition is unless they can find out in the mundane world through research and rumours or they have powerful magic (a possibility is the Eye of the HalfBird [Sartar Companion p176]).

    Quote:
    And most stories that do cross only touching each other at one (or maybe two) stations.

    This is exactly how I see the myths working except, during the Great Darkness, many races and cultures were completely wiped out. And since Time began, as cultures have met and interacted, they have chosen to re-interpret their myths to involve each other – the canonical example is that when the Storm and Solar cultures met, the Storm’s Evil Emperor was morphed into Yelm and the Solar’s Rebellius Terminus was morphed into Orlanth.

    HeroQuest Surprises are truly surprises and not just normal unknowns. The myths are human scale attempts to understand in human and somewhat linear terms what happened in the god-time. However the god-time is non-linear and occasionally non-causal. So you are supposed to cross an ocean and instead you find a vast mountain range. This is OK if you have prepared to fly across the ocean. However, if you have instead prepared to be carried across the ocean by Sofal, then you have to re-plan your quest with access only to the resources that you have at the time.

    Changing a myth can be very straightforward or be very subtle. But in either case it is very difficult. The straightforward version is to build up to where your community’s representative challenges their community’s representative, each with the full backing of their community (i.e. they magically bind themselves to the result).

    The subtle version is not generally well understood – after the cosmic abuses of the Godlearners, knowledge of the techniques were suppressed with extreme prejudice. What that means is that we have to make our own story of how to achieve it. My guess is that the technique involves: a) having a deep runic understanding of the truths behind the myths and b) getting key representatives of the other community into situations where they can be influenced to change apparently unrelated rituals – perhaps by teaching them a new version of a ritual that apparently gives an improvement in their community’s existence but in actuality is tweaking the more fundamental myths in a direction that they do not necessarily want.

    The example where this happened is where the God-Learners took the Issaries and Lhankor Mhy cults and used them to invade and, perhaps for a while, control the cultures of Esrolia and Heortland. This was achieved with the full co-operation of the Issaries and Lhankor Mhy cults because how it was executed was so in keeping with the core beliefs of each. For Issaries, the benefit was the vast expansion of trade opportunities around the Middle Sea. For Lhankor Mhy, the benefit was their involvement in the collection and collation of all of the (surface) knowledge of the cultures around the Middle Sea.

    #7784
    Profile photo of Jeff Richard
    Jeff Richard
    Keymaster
    Quote:
    Quote from Charles Corrigan on May 5, 2014, 01:10
    In Glorantha, there is a ‘Law of Convergence’ that ensures that every hero has worthy opponents and that in every story, there are appropriate antagonists for every protagonist.

    I prefer to call it a “Law of Synchronicity” myself, but Charles is absolutely right.

    #7825
    Profile photo of Simon Phipp
    Simon Phipp
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Quote from Erick Eckberg on May 5, 2014, 00:01
    Really Dumb Question: Heroquesters encounter other Heroquesters who fulfill certain roles in the quest. Some of these Heroquesting “foes” are willingly (or not) taking part in that particular Heroquest (as in the case of Stormbullers releasing a captured broo to be slain as a representation of chaos in that myth). Others are blundered upon in the Otherworld as they pursue their own quest which happens to overlap. Does this random meeting of different questers happen temporally in the “Real World”, that is, if the groups meet-up in the Otherworld on what would be Fireday of Truth Week in Season it is because they are both questing on that same day and time in the “real world”?

    All my answers to this assume that we are talking minor HeroQuests, not Quests on the God Plane.

    Imagine a bunch of trolls HeroQuesting against an Orlanthi clan. They want to raid the clan, so perform a “Gore and Gash bash Ernalda” HeroQuest, as they know that most Orlanthi clans have a lot of Ernaldans. After several stations, they reach the Orlanthi clan. At this point, the Orlanthi thanes see a bunch of trolls attacking their clan, so they fight against them. One of the thanes might decide to do what Orlanth did in such situations and takes control, perhaps even remembering the “Orlanth drives off Gore and Gash” HeroQuest. Although the Orlanthi are opponents on the troll HeroQuest, they are not necessarily on a HeroQuest themselves. However, defeating the tolls might gain them a HeroQuest reward, as they have just participated in a HeroQuest.

    Quote:
    Quote from Erick Eckberg on May 5, 2014, 00:01It seems that, although this would happen now and again, such confluences would never-the-less be rare. OR, does the “funky” nature of time passage in the Otherworld allow some “tweaking”? I imagine this could be difficult to manage, though, and would allow for paradoxes.

    I would guess that they would be common.

    Quote:
    Quote from Erick Eckberg on May 5, 2014, 00:01Using the Korolvanth vs the Sun Dome Count example; Am I to assume that Korolvanth and the Count of Sun County both just happened to be engaged in independent Heroquests for their respective cults which just happened to align perfectly?

    I doubt that.

    The Count of Sun County is a representative of Yelm, in many ways. He would often have stood in for Yelm in a HeroQuest. If an Orlanthi came to Sun County on a HeroQuest, then he would be honour bound to play the part of Yelm. I don’t think that he just happened to be performing a Yelm HeroQuest at the time.

    Quote:
    Quote from Erick Eckberg on May 5, 2014, 00:01I have also seen the term “Drawn into a Heroquest”, as in, “The Count of Sun County was drawn into Korolvanth’s Heroquest to represent Yelm.” I get the feeling that some magically powerful folk are occasionally forced to fill roles in the rituals of other cults. I’m sure I’m being pretty stupid here, but, that can’t be so, can it? The Count can’t be going about his daily business only to find he has somehow been magically absconded so as to fill some role in an Orlanthi Heroquest, correct?

    In my opinion, that is exactly what happens.

    The Count of Sun County has a number of duties, one of which is to represent Yelm to the Sun County inhabitants. This can, of course, be very inconvenient.

    One of the ways to disrupt a ritual is to perform a HeroQuest that forces the people performing the ritual to participate as opponents. That is where you get active HeroQuesting, with two sides HeroQuesting against each other.

    #7841
    Profile photo of Michael Hitchens
    Michael Hitchens
    Spectator

    Thanks all – this has helped. I have one question at the moment though

    Quote:
    Quote from Charles Corrigan on May 5, 2014, 01:10
    An experienced HeroQuester tends to meet some specific opponents again and again, though they (both sides) may not be acting in the precise roles they took in previous meetings and they generally do not recognise each other (very special magic such as the Eye of the HalfBird excepted).

    I’m not sure how this works versus the Heroquest challenge. Given the change in power (and what it says about the Count of Sun County in the example) would the loser of a Heroquest Challenge be able to confront the winner again, or even continue heroquesting (The Count is said to lose most of his rating in his Mastery Rune). OK, if it’s only a specific ability, it’s not as dire. But in the example given it sounds pretty final for the loser.

    #7845
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    Not every HeroQuest has a Challenge available. And even when there is a HeroQuest Challenge available, it is a choice whether to invoke it. And, yes, many heroquesters fail and are unable to quest again and some are crippled and some die. Big risks.

    But there is always an element of choice as to the level of risk a questor takes on. The situation that they are in may require a quest to provide some sort of acceptable resolution. However, they do not always have to take the path where one side irrevocably wins and the other loses. A less risky path is usually one where the other side is made to go away for a few days or a few weeks with a slightly bloody nose.

    #8295
    Profile photo of Bohemond
    Bohemond
    Spectator

    So I have a different question about Heroquesting. When heroquesters are doing a God’s World quest, they disappear from the mortal world, whereas when they are doing a This World quest, they don’t. So let’s say that Hrolf is doing the Orlanth and Aroka hero quest as This World quest. Hrolf’s perceptions change and he sees the world as Orlanth did during that myth, and when he meets the bandits who are playing Gagarth, he sees them as Gagarth and his followers. Presumably the bandits see Hrolf as Orlanth who suddenly appeared during some ritual they are doing.

    But what does everyone else see? Do they see Hrolf start the quest, and then just walk away from the place where the ritual began? Can they follow him as he walks off over the hills and runs into a group of bandits? Can they jump into the fight and help him by killing some of the bandits to make the fight easier? If they did that, would that somehow suck them into the myth? Obviously if the audience is playing a support role by praying and sacrificing, following the quester is out of the question, but what if Henrik just stumbles across the sacred grove where the quest starts, and is therefore not a supporter of the quest? Can he follow along to see an interesting show?

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 18 total)

The forum ‘Glorantha Discussions’ is closed to new topics and replies.

Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes