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Midjack
Dec 24, 2007



Their deal with disinfection before entering the citadel sounds a whole lot like the old short story "The Chemically Pure Warriors" by Allen Kim Lang.

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8one6
May 20, 2012

When in doubt, err on the side of Awesome!

Speleothing posted:

Yo dudes, let's skip having Glorantha lorechat for the eighth time and go strait to mechanics before you get bogged down and distracted by minutiae (again)

Night10194 posted:

Runequest has mechanics?

They keep printing Glorantha stuff and this thread keeps covering the lore over and over again. I'll summarize:

something... something...
gently caress with the ducks
DON'T gently caress WITH THE DUCKS
something... something...
reenact myths
something... something...
Rules I guess...

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
Glorantha: things get weird fast.

As for Tekumel, what's so weird about it? Besides being, IIRC, a game made by anthtopologist about a failed human colonisation world where demons are a thing and iron basically isn't.

E: "The Chemically Pure Warriors" is a title straight out of 40K or 2020 AD (but I repeat myself).

JcDent fucked around with this message at 06:53 on Jun 18, 2018

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool

Toilet Rascal

The Setting

Speleothing posted:

Yo dudes, let's skip having Glorantha lorechat for the eighth time and go strait to mechanics before you get bogged down and distracted by minutiae (again)

this is true, basically everybody either knows this or won't know it from all the discussions. The Gods came, fought each other, hosed everything up, kind of fixed it and then time started, a lot of people had issues with Hubris, got hosed up then we get into recent history. I'll talk about the current state of play because it's baked in to the rules and actual game, but I don't want to say anything here I wouldn't say to a player in the first session. I like my reviews breezy and conversational anyway

there's an excellent tumblr from a while ago that did a lot of writeups of stuff here, go scroll around if you want specifics
the glorantha thread for everything that isn't relevant

Lets just skip ahead to Character Creation

The game gives us a particular order for character creation that I donít think is very good.



Doing it in chronological order makes a certain kind of sense, but Iíd probably do steps 4, 5 and 6 first, since theyíre the most important for determining what your character does mechanically. To demonstrate the process, since thereís a lot of fluff, Iíll run a character through the process. Conveniently, most decisions have as many options as a common dice has faces, so itís possible to randomly generate a character. They might not make sense or work mechanically, but itís possible.
The first step to creating a character is to select a homeland. The game provides 6 sample homelands, all surrounding the region of Dragon Pass, like every Runequest thing ever made.

  • Sartar: Kingdom of Heroes, full of tribes of Storm-worshipping hill barbarians centered around royalty in an urban center. They recently threw off the rule of the Lunar Empire and probably just kickstarted an apocalyptic war. The canonical winners of the video game King of Dragon Pass
  • Esrolia: A civilised urban matriarchy that worships the earth goddess and her many husbands, situated within a region called The Holy Country alongside a bunch of weirdo kingdoms. They used to be ruled by a magic rear end in a top hat named Belintar, who disappeared recently.
  • Grazelanders: Semi-nomadic Horse tribes with an underclass of serfs. They worship some Sun Gods and get fire magic
  • Prax: Violent Nomads in a nearby wasteland who herd and ride strange animals, like Bison, bigger Llamas, Impalas and antelopes. Thereís also some Sartarites who went there and ride horses like boring people. There isnít anything on the Tapir People who herd non-sentient humans in this book, which is a shame.
  • Lunar and Old Tarsh: Itís a lot like the Sartarites, except they got conquered by the Lunar Empire earlier and havenít freed themselves, so their religion is a lot more ingrained. The Old Tarshites are rebels in the hills fighting a guerrilla war. Both worship the Earth Goddessís Crone Mother, who likes Earthquakes and Dinosaurs.
Each Homeland gives 3 passions to start with, ranked at 60%. Their mechanical effects are discussed later, but for now they give a good idea of your characterís priorities. Thereís also some skill boosts that give your character some of the basic cultural competencies and ordinary weapons of their people
I rolled somebody from the Impala tribe of Prax. They get a stat adjustment because theyíre pygmies, which I should remember. It boosts a few skills, most importantly riding impalas, shooting a bow and Sprit Combat if I ever get involved in Shamany stuff. I also start with the passions of Hate (Chaos) 60%, Love (Family) 60% and Loyalty (Tribe) 60%. The Hate one is a big deal since itís frequently applicable.

2. Family History
This edition of Runequest provides an extensive list of events in recent history that may have happened to your grandparents, parents and the PC, along with random rolls to determine the exact outcomes of people involved. Although Iíve heard a few complaints that it really puts the central conflict of Dragon Pass vs the Lunar Empire and the Hero Wars front and centre, itís a very effective way to introduce a player to the setting and give their character some history. It does provide an alternative for people looking for quick starts that you can use if your campaign is in Ralios or something. Because I donít think the thread wants to read 100 years of fictional history, Iíll run our Impala Riderís ancestors through it and see what pops up.
  • Their grandfather was a crafter, who helped the Lunar Empires attack the Sartar capital city and stole 600 bucks worth of mementos for the kids
  • His Daughter, and our characterís mother, was a Priestess who died gloriously during the first Lunar invasion of Prax, giving the PC the Honor Passion and 2 points of reputation
  • There was a Great Winter when the PC was 18, which lead to them joining up with anti-lunar rebels for support. They fought in the Battle of Auroch Hills but didnít do anything interesting, giving us +5% to the battle skill
  • the next year they killed someone from a nearby tribe, probably a Sable Antelope Rider since they like the Lunars, and got Hate (Sable Riders) 60%
  • in the year before the game starts, our guy watched the Sartarite Mystic Argrath summon the Praxian Hero Jaldon Goldentooth, and pledged loyalty to him. They went to help liberate the city of Pavis from the Lunars, and nearly died after an attack from Moon Demons, giving Hate (Lunars) and +10% spirit combat. They also watched a Dragon eat a lunar temple full of important people, which was probably satisfying.
This does place your guy at a hell of a lot of different big events, which is reasonable for a would-be hero and gives a bit of introduction to the setting. Often there isnít that much detail on what happened, although that would probably be overwhelming and you don't really need to know much.

3. Rune Affinities
Each character is connected to several runes as an expression of their soul and connection to the Gods. Thereís a variety of mechanical and narrative purpose to these: They represent your characterís personality, and define their magic and connection to the Gods. The game lumps these into 4 main categories: Elemental, Power, Form and Condition, but thereís 2 different sorts mechanically. There are 6 Elemental Runes: Water, Air, Earth, Sky/Fire, Darkness and Moon. You start with 60%, 40% and 20% in 3 of your choice, and get a 10% boost in one based on your homeland. You get a lot out of Element Runes: They give a stat bonus, let you augment some skills and are important for Rune Magic. The other runes available at the start are the Power runes, which are set up in opposition of Harmony/Disorder, Fertility/Death, Movement/Stasis and Truth/Illusion. Man/Beast is also available at start for humans, although it isnít technically a Power Rune. These runes are set up in opposition, so if you increase one, you must decrease the opposite by that much. These get used in Rune Magic a lot but are also for defining your personality. You get to assign two to 75/25, and thereís 50 extra points after all that to spread around.
I have no idea why this section is before characteristics and Cults since itís so important to match these to your God and the stat boost is useful. The stats in this game are kind of dumb so youíll probably tailor secondary element runes to them. More on that next time.

Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017

Exploration is ill-advised.

wiegieman posted:

Skinks with tiny versions of everything. Tiny uniforms, tiny drums, tiny banners, marching songs they sing off key and with the wrong words.

Reminded of how I was making a skink battallion but they lacked a Musician model I could notice, so I used a handy horn thing I had laying around on a blowpiper to make a Skink blowing a horn.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
I have an Imperial Guardskink with a lasgun.

For all its faults, Total hams 2 sold me on skinks. Well, at least the art did. They're like the good, smart version of goblins/gretchin.

Barudak
May 7, 2007

Thank you Spitalians, for introducing somethig that undermines a setting construct with a vague handwave

Ghost Leviathan
Mar 2, 2017

Exploration is ill-advised.

JcDent posted:

I have an Imperial Guardskink with a lasgun.

For all its faults, Total hams 2 sold me on skinks. Well, at least the art did. They're like the good, smart version of goblins/gretchin.

Skinks are basically Warhammer's kobolds. I do like how well they play off Saurus and Slann. (does remind me of my own ideas of how D&D 4e Dragonborn and Kobolds interact, since the canon goes into little detail about that)

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso

JcDent posted:

As for Tekumel, what's so weird about it? Besides being, IIRC, a game made by anthtopologist about a failed human colonisation world where demons are a thing and iron basically isn't.
Well, Tekumel doesn't fit the model of your standard D&D setting. (Except for some sops like dungeons, magic spells, and pantheistic cults--in 1974 it was difficult to imagine a fantasy setting without these things.) It doesn't fit the model of a vaguely European continent, ostensibly "medieval" but set in no particular setting, onto which you can project anachronisms like a reliable network of hotels. It's a very different culture and you have to understand a few key things about it in order to have fun with it.

That's not what I was actually talking about, though. Tekumel is hard to get into because its publication history is a shitshow.

The first edition was Empire of the Petal Throne (1974), a boxed set published by TSR, which basically used D&D rules for a radically different setting.

The second edition, Swords & Glory (1983) was a 3-volume set. The first volume is just setting. The second has character creation and game mechanics. The third volume, the GM's guide, was never completed and published.

The third edition, GardŠsiyal: Deeds of Glory (1994) was a boxed set. It did not include character creation rules (only premades) or monsters. You had to buy supplements for those.

The fourth edition, Tťkumel: Empire of the Petal Throne (2005) was a one-book game by Guardians of Order using their Tri-Stat system. Say what you will about GoO, they managed to publish a Tekumel game that makes sense in a single coherent book.

The fifth edition, Bethorm (2010) was authored by Jeff Dee and Barker himself. It's great in terms of showcasing every combination of clan and caste you can be and how they interact. It's also way too loving complicated; the system can be roughly described as "Everything I dislike about old-school D&D, plus everything I dislike about 80s skill-focused systems."

There are several unofficial rulesets floating around; my favourite is Heroic Age of Tekumel, by a coolgrog who played with MAR Barker when everyone called him Phil.


So if you ever read someone going "Waaah why is everyone such a dumb Forgotten Realms babby instead of playing Glorantha or Tekumel," the latter is not what I'd call accessible.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
Just as much as I love the actual reviews in F&F, the RPG history trivia is also something worth returning for.

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso
I would really like to know if any other RPG has managed to produce a core boxed set that somehow didn't include character creation or a monster manual. That's a special and, AFAIK, unique sort of gently caress-up.

Apropos of nothing, I think Erol Otus must have taken a great deal of inspiration from Tekumel and put it into his D&D and other work:









The ornate headgear, peaked collars and shoulders, partial armor, and impossible blades are very Tekumel. (Tekumel is really hot, and most of their weapons and armor are made out of treated hide that's about as tough as bronze. So there's lot of impractical-looking armor and blades in shapes and colours that would be impossible to forge in metal.)

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!
I love the brave decision to have basically zero continuity in the names of the editions.

Also, Jesus Christ, leather swords. Yep, that's the weirdest poo poo ever, Glorantha ain't got poo poo on that.

Freaking Crumbum
Apr 17, 2003

Too fuck to drunk


i've been doing speculative work trying to find another game to review after Dark*Matter, and i managed to come across an original copy of the Maztica campaign setting for AD&D Forgotten Realms.

"Oh cool, i've heard vague things about this but I've never actually read it. This might be good!

.
.
.

Oh my god the book starts with 45 pages of lore and it starts in the pre-history of the setting and is so cliched and uninteresting that my eyes cross after reading any two consecutive paragraphs. Make the pain stop!"

i don't know if Maztica has any cool or weird stuff in it because the entire first chapter is impenetrably dense realm lore that i can't be bothered to parse. i think there might be some interesting (for AD&D FR) twists but it's really really hard to sift thru 45 pages of uninteresting setting mush for hidden gems.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

Freaking Crumbum posted:

i think there might be some interesting (for AD&D FR) twists but it's really really hard to sift thru 45 pages of uninteresting setting mush for hidden gems.

There's not. Maztica is very, very blatantly just Spain invading and conquering the New World, now in the Forgotten Realms with Amn as your Spain stand-ins and the clergy of Helm standing in for the Catholic priests cheering on the conquistadores' atrocities.

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso

Freaking Crumbum posted:

Oh my god the book starts with 45 pages of lore and it starts in the pre-history of the setting and is so cliched and uninteresting that my eyes cross after reading any two consecutive paragraphs. Make the pain stop!"

i don't know if Maztica has any cool or weird stuff in it because the entire first chapter is impenetrably dense realm lore that i can't be bothered to parse.
This is such a 90s thing, and D&D heartbreakers (and even some actual D&D campaign settings) do it just as much as White Wolf inspired games.

This is yet another thing I have a weird pet theory about. It seems that there was this general anxiety of "I have to differentiate my game from D&D, but it can't be too different or it won't sell." So you get dozens of games that start with an immense setting chapter explaining the detailed origins of their cliche fantasy races, the details of their cliche vaguely Roman pantheism, the details of their cliche D&D not-Europe...stultifying detail lavished on the same old cliches.

Robindaybird
Aug 21, 2007

Neat. Sweet. Petite.

I remember that being in the background in Baldur's Gate 2 (another reason why everyone was not happy with Helm), even then I had thought there's no way it wouldn't be awkward or tone deaf.

PoontifexMacksimus
Feb 14, 2012

inklesspen posted:

I feel like he has a point on the very nice art that PurpleXVI embedded in the posts. Were it not for that I'd be happy to put it back in.

PurpleXVI posted:

My bad, he threatened to sue me for a while, and I conflated it with him asking for the review to be taken down.

And you could always just replace the art with placeholders of some sort. An "IMAGE REMOVED".jpg or something, I'll even make you one, if you like.

inklesspen posted:

That's kinda-sorta :effort: but if you wanna make a properly snarky placeholder I guess I'm down.

Uh, not to toot my own horn, but...

NoWayToTheOldWay posted:

Fear of drawing the ire of Osprey Publishing? :haw:

A long time ago I put these together, but forgot to post them, so might as well now before this game fades forever into deserved obscurity:







(Osprey Men-at-Arms 317 - Henry V and the Conquest of France and Osprey Warrior 68 - English Medieval Knight 1400-1500 are both illustrated by Graham Turner, one of the best-ever Osprey artists, so they have good taste at least.)

That's just what I could spot, of course, who knows what else lurks in there. In the last picture the pants on the brown-hatted guy looks like a photograph of slacks, and I'm pretty sure the crowd in the middle behind the flames are from a reenactment group.

I do find it weird that so many obvious lifts are primarily just from one book, but then I noted that the cover featured, not a trace, but an obvious reference (MaA 317, plate E):



And he even shows up like three times in that crowd! So I don't know, maybe the author just insisted all art look just like his one favourite Osprey pamphlet. :shrug:

Freaking Crumbum
Apr 17, 2003

Too fuck to drunk


Robindaybird posted:

I remember that being in the background in Baldur's Gate 2 (another reason why everyone was not happy with Helm), even then I had thought there's no way it wouldn't be awkward or tone deaf.

there's only 3 demi-human races in Maztica:

humans

dwarves (that crossed some subterranean cavern network on the ocean floor from FR proper and the oldest among them might remember some things about the Sword Coast)

aboriginals halflings

halflings are described as being dark-skinned and immediately visually distinct from "regular" halflings, fulfill the same cultural niche as real-world aboriginals (living in stone-age tribes in remote jungles), and even get a -1 racial penalty to INT. yeahhhhh

"Also, these [Maztican] halflings receive a +1 modifier when using short bows".

+1 modifier to what? Is that a THAC0 bonus or an attack roll penalty? Is it to damage rolled? do they ephemerally become "halflings+1" as long as they're holding a short bow? the mind boggles

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso

Freaking Crumbum posted:

"Also, these [Maztican] halflings receive a +1 modifier when using short bows".

+1 modifier to what? Is that a THAC0 bonus or an attack roll penalty? Is it to damage rolled? do they ephemerally become "halflings+1" as long as they're holding a short bow? the mind boggles
adndcombat.txt

Freaking Crumbum
Apr 17, 2003

Too fuck to drunk


Cythereal posted:

There's not. Maztica is very, very blatantly just Spain invading and conquering the New World, now in the Forgotten Realms with Amn as your Spain stand-ins and the clergy of Helm standing in for the Catholic priests cheering on the conquistadores' atrocities.

it'd be an even worse slaughter because Maztica explicitly doesn't have arcane magic (no wizards, sorcerers, warlocks, bards, etc.) and their cleric XP growth caps out at 5th level spells. it's not even like Athas where arcane magic exists but is outlawed and psionics are the functional replacement and elemental clerics and druids can still progress up to 9th level spells. nope, just clerics capping out at 5th level spells and no other magic to speak of.

although i guess if they were trying to recreate the "guns. germs & steel" aesthetic but with a D&D flavor, giving the native population almost no access to spell casting is the biggest in-setting power disparity you could come up with

occamsnailfile
Nov 4, 2007



zamtrios so lonely
Grimey Drawer

Freaking Crumbum posted:

it'd be an even worse slaughter because Maztica explicitly doesn't have arcane magic (no wizards, sorcerers, warlocks, bards, etc.) and their cleric XP growth caps out at 5th level spells. it's not even like Athas where arcane magic exists but is outlawed and psionics are the functional replacement and elemental clerics and druids can still progress up to 9th level spells. nope, just clerics capping out at 5th level spells and no other magic to speak of.

although i guess if they were trying to recreate the "guns. germs & steel" aesthetic but with a D&D flavor, giving the native population almost no access to spell casting is the biggest in-setting power disparity you could come up with

I read the lovely novels about Maztica when I was a young nailfile who knew no better and I remember the conquistadors using ranked crossbow fire with faux-musket drill because St. Gary decreed in the long-ago that Guns Must Suck and Aren't Fantasy.

Also something about giant ants?

Skellybones
May 31, 2011




Fun Shoe
The destruction of the not-Aztecs was actually somehow crueller and weirder than the real life one, and the guy who did it got promoted too!

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!
What's frustrating is that things like of the fall of the Aztec and Maya Empires had relatively little to do with technological differences in the first place. It was a factor, sure, but "we crushed them mostly through illness and skullduggery" just isn't as classically exciting to Western minds as the notion of doomed indigenous warriors falling before King Slug.

Kavak
Aug 23, 2009


Was the knowledge of how disease basically erased native civilization even that embedded in popular historical consciousness when Maztica was written?

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso
The widespread knowledge that colonists brought disease long predates that book. I was taught this in elementary school.

I could swear that Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman did an episode where army officers were selling smallpox blankets.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, a game called 7th Sea was produced. I wrote it up for the first iteration of this thread, in 2011. In 2015, AEG announced that they'd made a deal with John Wick Presents, transferring all publication rights to John Wick. In 2016, John Wick crowdfunded 7th Sea Secnd Edition to the tun of $1,316,813. The rules were delivered later that year, and since then, there have been a number of supplements, exanding the setting with more detail on places like the Not Caribbean, Not Middle East, Not South America and, more recently, Not Africa, with promises of delibery of an entire Not Asia-centered core book and supplements for later this year or next. It is time for me to return and see what's changed, and what's better, and what's not.

7th Sea 2nd Edition: Mors Rattus Returns



All of the covers, incidentally, resemble movie posters. It's kinda neat!

The opening prose story has also improved in quality, but that's hardly a high bar. Chapter 1 jumps us straight into the conflicts of the setting, most notably the swashbuckling, the power of magic that lies in noble blood, and the freedom of piracy and adventure, alongside intrigue and nationalism, romance, and...the Syrneth. This is a big change - we're addressing the Syrne right upfront. They were an ancient, ruined civilization with ancient secrets that are now all the rage to try and discover. They are not space aliens, as far as I've been able to tell. The entire space alien metaplot has been scrubbed from the book - as has much of the metaplot in general, honestly, in favor of the Eternal Now. The Vaticine Church and Objectionists are still around, as is the Inquisition, which has recently seized power still.

When we get the list of nations in Theah, you're going to note some changes. We still have Avalon (Not England), Castille (Not Spain), Eisen (Not Germany), Montaigne (Not France), Ussura (Not Russia), Vodacce (Not Italy) and the Vestenmennavenjar (new spelling, but sitll Not Scandinavia and Not Holland). The Highland Marches (Not Scotland) and Inismore (Not Irelend) are now being recognized as full nations, and we've added the Sarmatian Commonwealth (Not Eastern Europe). Secret societies still exist, but the intro chapter doesn't list them. We have new continents mentioned - Ifri, the Lands of Gold and Fire (Not Africa) and the New World (Not South America), along with a mention that there are a number of settled coloniues north of the New World, and of course the Crescent Empire still exists in the east. These will all, we are told, get their own sourcebooks. (And did, except for what is presumably Not North America, so far.)

That's the entirety of Chapter One - it's basically just an introduction to the setting. The adding of the Sarmatians does patch a hole that has been there for a long time, though, in that 7th Sea 1 had...no Eastern Europe at all.

Next time: Chapter 2 - Theah.

inklesspen
Oct 17, 2007

Here I am coming, with the good news of me, and you hate it. You can think only of the bell and how much I have it, and you are never the goose. I will run around with my bell as much as I want and you will make despair.
Buglord

Wrestlepig posted:

In 1977, A game called Dungeons and Dragons was invented. Almost immediately after, a budding anthropology student and game designer thought he could do a better job. The result was a long-running series, the latest version of which is:



So, wait, what is the actual title of this F&F writeup? I need to know for archiving reasons.

NoWayToTheOldWay posted:

Uh, not to toot my own horn, but...

I never said they weren't plagiarized, just that Star-Lord was really upset at the high res art in the writeup, and if I'm going to go through and add the old writeup to the site again, I want some low-effort way of swapping it out.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

occamsnailfile posted:

because St. Gary decreed in the long-ago that Guns Must Suck and Aren't Fantasy.

Guns actually did exist in the Realms during 2nd and 3rd edition, and there were rules for muskets and pistols - in the religion book, the god of craftsmanship and invention was noted to be so fond of guns that his avatars would dual-wield them. Gunpowder and guns were treated as very new technology, only available in the island nation of Lantan where they were invented and in the largest trading cities like Athkatla and Waterdeep, but the technology hadn't spread far.

They were completely axed in 4E.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
They were mechanically totally useless, though.

As were crossbows, generally.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009

I love the potoo,
and the potoo loves you.

Night10194 posted:

They were mechanically totally useless, though.

As were crossbows, generally.

Hey now. The light crossbow had a very respectable place in 3/.5E as the default sidearm of every level one adventurer.

But yeah.

Robindaybird
Aug 21, 2007

Neat. Sweet. Petite.

Halloween Jack posted:

The widespread knowledge that colonists brought disease long predates that book. I was taught this in elementary school.

I could swear that Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman did an episode where army officers were selling smallpox blankets.

yeeah, they may not understand germ theory, but they know "Put stuff sick people touched in the fruit basket" and "Put corpse of a plague victim in well" is an amazing and awful way of decimating your enemies.

Halloween Jack
Sep 12, 2003

La morte non ha sesso
Wasn't there a Greyhawk NPC who dual-wielded wands that were actually pistols? A time-traveler from the Old West or something?

8one6
May 20, 2012

When in doubt, err on the side of Awesome!

Halloween Jack posted:

Wasn't there a Greyhawk NPC who dual-wielded wands that were actually pistols? A time-traveler from the Old West or something?

Murlynd (the one who invented Murlynd's Spoon). He was one of the first PCs for Gary's home game. For as much poo poo people attribute to "St. Gary" he pretty much let people do what they wanted in the games he ran.

Pieces of Peace
Jul 8, 2006
Hazardous in small doses.

Robindaybird posted:

yeeah, they may not understand germ theory, but they know "Put stuff sick people touched in the fruit basket" and "Put corpse of a plague victim in well" is an amazing and awful way of decimating your enemies.

Germ warfare and even unintentional smallpox didnít really have time to do much for the Conquest of the Aztecs, though - that was more about the 2,000 conquistadores being backed up by 200,000 local levies from the neighboring state of Tlaxcala, that saw the arrival of these weird foreigners as a chance to get out from under the grip of Tenochtitlan.

In a grim, unpleasant way, itís a lot like an RPG story - a bunch of bumbling, vicious idiots stumble their way into a war, luck through it, then over the next couple decades take back all the gifts they offered to their allies to dust as disease saps their strength.

JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!

occamsnailfile posted:

I read the lovely novels about Maztica when I was a young nailfile who knew no better and I remember the conquistadors using ranked crossbow fire with faux-musket drill because St. Gary decreed in the long-ago that Guns Must Suck and Aren't Fantasy.

Also something about giant ants?

Don't quote me on this, but when the Conquistadors came to the New World, they had more crossbows than guns.

Zereth
Jul 9, 2003



Halloween Jack posted:

Wasn't there a Greyhawk NPC who dual-wielded wands that were actually pistols? A time-traveler from the Old West or something?
There was a god who was basically A Cowboy, IIRC. Paladin Cowboy.

Although that might have been Mystara?

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool

Toilet Rascal

inklesspen posted:

So, wait, what is the actual title of this F&F writeup? I need to know for archiving reasons.

the game is officially called Runequest: Roleplaying in Glorantha so I'd probably call it that.

anyway



4. Characteristics. Can you believe these were originally designed in 1978?
Each character has seven different characteristics. The different categories of skills get a bit of a boost from high stats, some important things are derived from them, and theyíre occasionally used as checks on their own.
  • Strength gives your character bonus damage, carrying capacity and can give a bonus to Agility skills. HP tends to be pretty low overall so extra damage is a big deal, but thereís magic ways to increase that and not everyone will bother calculating encumbrance, so itís importance varies.
  • Constitution is mostly for determining your Health and Healing Rate. Having high HP is very important so hopefully you rolled high on this
  • Size is a weird stat, and gets factored into a lot of things, like your Strike Rank (an initiative equivalent), bonus damage, hp and a lot of skill categories, sometimes negatively
  • Dexterity is dexterity. It boosts a lot of skill categories but not much else
  • Intelligence helps with knowledge skills and how many Sorceries you can memorise, so it does fuckall for most characters. It also cannot be increased by training for some reason
  • Power is the God Stat that determines basically every Magic thing, from MP, advancement in a church, or in opposed checks in magic attacks. The only possible reason to have a low POW is if youíre really committed to being a mundane thief, or your Rune Magic is mostly self-buffs and you donít want to advance in the cult
  • Charisma is Charisma for the most part. It also has a couple of magic factors: It limits how much rune magic you can learn and how many spirit magic spells you can possess. Leadership stuff is probably more useful in Glorantha, with the focus on community.

The stats are determined by rolling 3d6 down the line, except for Size and Power getting 2d6+6, because Power is the most important stat in the game by far and the game doesnít want heroes that are 4 feet tall. The book acknowledges that this is bad and recommends you mitigate this in multiple fashions, like re-rolling 1s or bad results, and says that the Game Masterís guide will have alternatives when it comes out because point buy or stat arrays are really hard. Thereís a couple of extra modifiers based on your homeland for differently sized humans, and you can get a +2 or +1 in a stat based on your elemental rune affinities, which means that every PC is going to take at least a bit of Moon because that gives the POW bonus. Any rune can give a charisma bonus, if you want, so that's easy to increase.

Occupation
These mostly function as a skill package, as well as providing starting gear, an option for a passion, income, the amount of money it would take to ransom or resurrect you, some suggested Cults to join, and sometimes some starting magic. Not all of them are equal, but they tend to have something to them and between your Homeland and Cult it's easy to have someone capable in a fight.
  • Bandits get decent fighting abilities, stealth and wilderness skills but have no money. It's also probably legal to murder you in most places, so it's an interesting RP challenge.
  • Chariot Drivers donít get a chariot. That belongs to a noble or church. Theyíre good at driving them and get some extra battle skills and decent income. Iíd only touch one if I was in a Mad Prax campaign though
  • Entertainer is actually pretty good. You get a lot of cultural skills, alright money and the game frequently points out that you can augment spells with Music and Dancing easily. With the right cult and homeland youíd make a pretty good Bard or Trickster figure.
  • Healer is mostly an NPC thing. Thereís a healer goddess with a cult thatíd make you popular around the table, but I canít imagine it being fun.
  • crafter, farmer, fisher, herder: who cares, I think these are for statting up npcs or for overly simulation-focused players
  • Hunter: good at ranged fighting, stealth and wilderness skills, and fit nicely with a lot of cool cults. You also get a pet hound or Lynx Cat
  • Merchant: A good option if you arenít looking to be combat focused. Social Skills and lots of money
  • Noble: A lot of Money, Gear and combat ability along with some token cultural stuff with no downsides except for a big ransom.
  • Philosopher: is the only starting profession with access to Sorcery from the get-go, as well as a few Intelligence and Communication skill boosts
  • Priests: Get a bunch of money, gear, social skills and get an extra boost on a skill from their cult. Itís a very good option if you make sure to boost a combat skill.
  • Scribe: an Intellectual who mainly gets knowledge skills and decent money.
  • Thief: you get a bunch of Stealth, social and utility skills as well as a minor boost to weapons. The main thief god isnít written up but itís a good base for a trickster.
  • Warrior: is pretty self-explanatory. The game breaks them down into Light and Heavy Infantry and Cavalry, and theyíre what youíd expect

Cults
Unlike the old Runequest Games, you start as an initiate into a Cult. Runequest doesnít care about the modern connotations of the word and uses it to refer to any religious practice centred on a particular God. These give you a bunch of skill bonuses, including an extra 20% and 15% to assign as well as some basic lore and ritual stuff, some suggested passions and access to Rune Magic. The actual spells depend on the cult, but everyone gets some important basics like Divination, Heal, a basic counterspell and some anti-spirit stuff. As a guy whoís played D&D, everyone having magic thatís balanced-ish and flavorful is one of the best parts of the game.Thereís 20 different gods so Iím just going to put up the most basic summary the book provides. Thereís more detail in the book later but I canít really discuss it without transcribing or taking forever with lore chat.


Next: The rest of Character Creation, and rolling up the Impala rider since this post is long enough

Wrestlepig fucked around with this message at 11:42 on Jun 19, 2018

Deptfordx
Dec 23, 2013

Pieces of Peace posted:

Germ warfare and even unintentional smallpox didnít really have time to do much for the Conquest of the Aztecs, though - that was more about the 2,000 conquistadores being backed up by 200,000 local levies from the neighboring state of Tlaxcala, that saw the arrival of these weird foreigners as a chance to get out from under the grip of Tenochtitlan.


Agreed, it's important to note that when you hear about the 'Aztec Empire,' don't think about it like 'The Roman Empire'. It's actually a hegemony, like the empires of the pre-alexandrian Greek city-states. E.g. You have numerous culturally similar city-states sharing a region. Then one of the big-dog city state rises to prominence, starts making alliances, installing client-kings in other cities and accepting their tribute etc etc. See Athens and the Delian League for example.

The Aztecs had plenty of defeated rivals just waiting for a chance of payback.

Deptfordx fucked around with this message at 18:55 on Jun 19, 2018

Freaking Crumbum
Apr 17, 2003

Too fuck to drunk


Mors Rattus posted:

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, a game called 7th Sea was produced. I wrote it up for the first iteration of this thread, in 2011. In 2015, AEG announced that they'd made a deal with John Wick Presents, transferring all publication rights to John Wick. In 2016, John Wick crowdfunded 7th Sea Secnd Edition to the tun of $1,316,813. The rules were delivered later that year, and since then, there have been a number of supplements, exanding the setting with more detail on places like the Not Caribbean, Not Middle East, Not South America and, more recently, Not Africa, with promises of delibery of an entire Not Asia-centered core book and supplements for later this year or next. It is time for me to return and see what's changed, and what's better, and what's not.

7th Sea 2nd Edition: Mors Rattus Returns



All of the covers, incidentally, resemble movie posters. It's kinda neat!

The opening prose story has also improved in quality, but that's hardly a high bar. Chapter 1 jumps us straight into the conflicts of the setting, most notably the swashbuckling, the power of magic that lies in noble blood, and the freedom of piracy and adventure, alongside intrigue and nationalism, romance, and...the Syrneth. This is a big change - we're addressing the Syrne right upfront. They were an ancient, ruined civilization with ancient secrets that are now all the rage to try and discover. They are not space aliens, as far as I've been able to tell. The entire space alien metaplot has been scrubbed from the book - as has much of the metaplot in general, honestly, in favor of the Eternal Now. The Vaticine Church and Objectionists are still around, as is the Inquisition, which has recently seized power still.

When we get the list of nations in Theah, you're going to note some changes. We still have Avalon (Not England), Castille (Not Spain), Eisen (Not Germany), Montaigne (Not France), Ussura (Not Russia), Vodacce (Not Italy) and the Vestenmennavenjar (new spelling, but sitll Not Scandinavia and Not Holland). The Highland Marches (Not Scotland) and Inismore (Not Irelend) are now being recognized as full nations, and we've added the Sarmatian Commonwealth (Not Eastern Europe). Secret societies still exist, but the intro chapter doesn't list them. We have new continents mentioned - Ifri, the Lands of Gold and Fire (Not Africa) and the New World (Not South America), along with a mention that there are a number of settled coloniues north of the New World, and of course the Crescent Empire still exists in the east. These will all, we are told, get their own sourcebooks. (And did, except for what is presumably Not North America, so far.)

That's the entirety of Chapter One - it's basically just an introduction to the setting. The adding of the Sarmatians does patch a hole that has been there for a long time, though, in that 7th Sea 1 had...no Eastern Europe at all.

Next time: Chapter 2 - Theah.

are inter-dimensional locusts still the "real" big bad of the setting this is v important

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Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018

Freaking Crumbum posted:

are inter-dimensional locusts still the "real" big bad of the setting this is v important

no

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