Home Forums Glorantha Glorantha Discussions The Alien Combination Machine

This topic contains 8 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Bohemond Bohemond 3 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #5399
    Profile photo of Bohemond
    Bohemond
    Spectator

    So I’ve got a PC who is a Lhankor Mhyte, so I’ve got to figure out the Alien Combination Machine. I’ve got several questions.

    1) Is the ACM a physical object that exists somewhere, like Nochet, or is it more of a theistic process (“I’m going to go into a trance and use my Alien Combination Machine”)? If a player finds a book of sorcery, can he automatically convert it with the ACM, or must he go to Nochet or wherever it’s located to make use of it?

    2) Is it a specific grimoire(s) that a PC learns (like the Cult of Pavis), or can it be any collection of spells the PC wants?

    3) Rules-wise, does the character cast the spells using his Law Rune rating, or does he have a rating in ACM, the way a Wizard has a rating in a grimoire? I’m guess the former, but I wanted to make sure.

    #7597
    Profile photo of Charles
    Charles
    Keymaster

    It is a physical thing: ” The Alien Combination Machine consists of several disks inscribed with runes and symbols” (S:KoH p163).
    I like to think that each sage that take the skill has to make their own as part of their apprenticeship.

    #7598
    Profile photo of Scott Martin
    Scott Martin
    Spectator

    Ramon Lull’s “combinatory wheels” may be a good source of inspiration here. I love Charles’ note that you probably don’t have to go to Nochet to spin the wheels — because the basic principles should already be committed to memory and the Machine is simply an external aid to solving foreign magic.

    #7600
    Profile photo of Jeff Richard
    Jeff Richard
    Keymaster

    Ramon Lull’s combinatory wheels are the source of inspiration – Lullian wheels appear in more than one context in Glorantha. The ACM is an external aid, and you don’t need to go to Nochet to spin the wheels, Any decent temple to LM ought to have one.

    #7601
    Profile photo of Bohemond
    Bohemond
    Spectator

    Ok, thanks! That basically answers 1 and 2. What about 3. Am I right that an LM casts wizardry with his Law Rune rather than having a separate rating for his spells?

    Can the Law Rune be used for anything other than spell-casting? In the write-up, it doesn’t seem like it, but wouldn’t something like Lawspeaking fall under that heading? Or am I taking too literal a notion of Law here? Could it be used for anti-chaos things?

    On a side note, as a medievalist, I heartily approve of using Ramon Lull for inspiration.

    #7608
    Profile photo of Pentallion
    Pentallion
    Spectator

    This world is so rich and detailed that there is always something, no matter how deeply you think you’ve delved into it, that crops up that you’ve never heard of before.

    Can anyone direct me to source material for the Alien Combination Machine? I’ve never heard of it before. What does it allow a LM to do?

    Thanks.

    #7609
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Am I right that an LM casts wizardry with his Law Rune rather than having a separate rating for his spells?

    Yes.

    Quote:
    Can the Law Rune be used for anything other than spell-casting? In the write-up, it doesn’t seem like it, but wouldn’t something like Lawspeaking fall under that heading? Or am I taking too literal a notion of Law here?

    Law is sorcery. Whether Lawspeaking falls under the Law Rune is a matter of taste, I’d feel.

    Quote:
    Could it be used for anti-chaos things?

    There is no Moorcockian Law/Chaos dichotomy in glorantha, the real division is between Cosmos and Chaos. For example Storm Bull has plenty of chaos fighting powers but is not a Law Rune deity. However the Moorcockian view is found in the Cults of Terror writeup of Krarsht.

    #7610
    Profile photo of Peter Metcalfe
    Peter Metcalfe
    Spectator
    Quote:
    Can anyone direct me to source material for the Alien Combination Machine? I’ve never heard of it before. What does it allow a LM to do?

    The reference is the Lhankor Mhy writeup in Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes. The Scholar uses the Alien Combination Machine on sorcerous grimoires (usually Malkioni) to reveal the lost magics of Lhankor Mhy. There is a philosophical dispute about whether all grimoires (ie God Learners) should be so translated.

    #7611
    Profile photo of Bohemond
    Bohemond
    Spectator

    I take your point about the Moorcockian approach to Law v Chaos, but S:KOH does say that, at least in the West, Law and Chaos are seen that way, as opposing polarities and therefore as Power Runes, so I was wondering if it had that application elsewhere. Law isn’t a very ‘developed’ rune (there isn’t a lot of material that really explores it, as opposed to, for example, the Earth Rune), so it can be hard to get a real grasp on it. But thinking of it as the rune for Sorcery makes sense. Thanks.

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