Home Forums Gaming in Glorantha HeroQuest Tapping anyone?

This topic contains 6 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Clay Clay 2 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #16094
    Profile photo of Paul Delaney
    Paul Delaney
    Spectator

    I can get my head round the application of Summon/Dismiss, Command and Combine/Seperate to produce various spells. Examples are given in The HQ:G rules. But Tap – “conversion of a local manifestation of a Rune into raw magical energy”? What can this be used for in games terms. It has me scratching my head. Has anyone thought of any examples? Or are we going to have to wait for the Malkioni sourcebook? 🙂

    #16095
    Profile photo of Roko Joko
    Roko Joko
    Spectator
    #16097
    Profile photo of Edan Jones
    Edan Jones
    Spectator

    Tapping something diminishes it, depending on how it is tapped.

    A sorcerer who knows a spell to Tap Life, could tap plants, animals, or people, sapping their health and progenitive energies, and turning them into raw power to fuel the sorcerer’s other spells (in game terms, a benefit of victory)

    The guide mentions “[tapping] the Stasis out of a rock, turning it to dust, [or tapping] the Life out of a tree, killing the orchard to get magical power.” Of course, not all uses of tapping will be immediately obvious. What does it mean to tap Truth or Mastery? For these you’d need to look for secondary associations, as with Tapping Stasis destroying a rock.

    Tapping someone’s Truth Rune could destroy their memory, since Truth is responsible for knowledge and similar. Depending on the Consequences of Defeat, they could forget brief and unimportant things for Hurt, to completely forgetting who they are when Dying or Dead (since the person they once were is effectively so).

    Likewise, tapping someone’s Mastery Rune could leave them unable to command the loyalty of others, their confidence would be drained, and their friends, allies, and even their family would see them as a pariah (on a high level of defeat, of course. Lesser injuries will have lesser consequences, naturally.)

    Of course, most Malkioni cultures of the current era shun the usage of Tap spells, viewing them as immoral. Few schools supported by Malkioni nations will teach spells related to this principle (at least in public), and any seen using them will be viewed as evil sorcerers.

    (IMG, some otherwise pious Malkioni wizards still use tapping on their foes, cloaked under the label of curses. “I curse those who have sinned against the Invisible God. They use evil tapping magic against the whim of the Invisible God.” Double-Think is a wonderful tool.)

    #16105
    Profile photo of Alistair Jones
    Alistair Jones
    Spectator

    I like your idea with respect to the Mastery rune, and I think that a similar approach could actually make the effect upon the Truth rune even more problematic than memory loss. If the character becomes progressively less and less able to tell the truth, or even to discern the difference between a truth and a lie, we could be in for some serious MGF.

    This does lead to some interesting possibilities for tapping a Broo’s Chaos rune, leaching away first magic, then Chaos Features, the urge to destroy, the urge to rape, the physical appearance that accompanies the spiritual degredation….. Hmmm…. Ralzakark?
    Tapping could be seen as a Gloranthan version of psychotherapy. Not nice, not at all nice.

    #16118
    Profile photo of Clay
    Clay
    Spectator

    I agree with the OP, tapping in HeroQuest seems to be a bunch of hand-waving to me.
    .
    The idea stated is that Sorcerer taps another rune to gain power “to power his spells”. That’s a lot of hidden meta dancing around those words.
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    In RQ, the meta was obviously handled in the description of the Tap spell.
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    In HQ…not so much at face value…
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    At the most basic, I suppose the sorcerer gets a lingering benefit to his magic related to the rune tapped commensurate to the level of victory. So, tapping the stasis out of a rock not only destroys the rock, but gives you a bump to your stasis magic.
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    Maybe this is where HQ falls down a bit, at least until players get used to narrative structures rather than mechanical structures to differentiate effects in the game. My players, upon coming to understanding with rules, ask the simple question: “How does Animist magic feel different from Theistic magic?”
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    In RQ, the feel was obvious and enforced by the rules. Of course, this meant there were a lot of specific, crunchy rules to learn.
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    In HQ, we, basically, have One Rule to Rule Them All, and everything else is narration. I had to sit down and write out for my players, narratively, how the magic systems felt, and thus played, differently.
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    Tapping ended up being part of the that discussion. Sadly, unlike RQ where Tapping really felt “nasty” for some reason, in HQ it doesn’t really pop out from the crowd of other abilities as particularly nasty – on paper. Again, I guess it’s up to the players to put tapping in narrative terms. They do this when talking about Chaos all the time, after all.

    #16145
    Profile photo of Roko Joko
    Roko Joko
    Spectator

    “tapping in HeroQuest seems to be a bunch of hand-waving to me.”
    .
    Another way to say it is, they haven’t detailed any cultures for PCs that practice tapping. (Either way, I don’t like it any more than you; I’d rather have seen rules that were general enough to apply to anywhere in the setting. That said, the fact that the rules are lite does makes that easier.)
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    “in HQ it doesn’t really pop out from the crowd of other abilities as particularly nasty”
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    How about if an NPC taps a PC, the PC takes a permanent reduction in a keyword or ability. Nasty enough now? 🙂

    #16154
    Profile photo of Clay
    Clay
    Spectator

    How about if an NPC taps a PC, the PC takes a permanent reduction in a keyword or ability. Nasty enough now? 🙂

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    Well, I would agree. In HQy just say that the consequence (Hurt, Imparied, Injured, Dying) of Tapping is nearly impossible (or impossible) to heal, except by a hero quest or by tapping the rune back.
    .
    That’s nasty.

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