[Runequest] HeroQuests...

Simon Phipp soltakss at yahoo.com
Wed Nov 3 09:17:37 EST 2010

I couldn't stay away from this thread ...

Lev Lafayette:
> After a 3.5 year, 70 session plus RuneQuest (mainly III, a bit of AiG, a
> bit of MRQI/II) campaign I'm nearing the end... The PCs have collected
> the torches (c.f., Plunder) containing Yelmalio's Blood and are seeking
> ingress to Redstone Caverns where they will empty the torches into fire
> spirit and engage in the famous Hill of Gold HeroQuest, and regain said
> powers for Yelmalio...

Sounds good to me.

> Now I've read a few ways to conduct HeroQuests using RuneQuest... What
> are your recommendations?

1. Don't get too rules-heavy, HeroQuests should be fast and free-flowing
2. Concentrate on the Story/Myth not on the gaining of abilities/powers
3. Introduce weird stuff to throw the players off their game
4. Don't just stick to the myth - all myths have parts that few people know and 
many myths have several different forms
5. Don't be afraid to gross things up - no matter what you can think of the 
HeroPlane/GodPlane should be grosser
6. The stats on Nick's page, my page and those in Elder Secrets/Lords of Terror 
are good guidelines for powerful enemies/combatants, but there are also weaker 
foes on the Hero Plane.
7. Don't get too hung up on terms, they are useful in that they define things 
but can be too cumbersome
8. Don't say "You can't", say "You might be able to, but it could be tricky"
9. Decide on the power levels that you want to use. If you are making 
god-changing changes then the scenario/heroquest should be difficult and 
10. Allow special powers/abilities to be used creatively and inventively. If 
someone wants to use their Mighty Fart ability to fly over a wall then let them.
11. Have an idea of the scale of the reward at the end of the HeroQuest. If you 
are changing a god then you might want to create a subcult that houses the new 
powers rather than immediately granting them to the whole cult.

Hola Hallo:

> I've only recently run my first heroquest in my RQ3 campaign, and it was a
> "this-world heroquest", as described in the Sartar book (it was actually the
> River Ritual described in Sun County). That means that the power of the
> heroplane is invoked on the mundane plane, so everything happens in the
> mundane plane.

That's a good little Quest to do to start off with. The Myth is simple, the 
scope is limited and the rewards can vary. The River Voices in my campaign have 
done this 3 times as the Questors and once as enemies to Sun Domer Questors. 
They gained Kinope as a year-wife twice in a row and gained some more River 
Voice abilities the other time. By becoming more marital, they have empowered 
and armed the Zola Fel, thus changing the balance of the river folk.

> I'm still not sure how to handle a heroquest in the heroplane with RQ3, but
> I guess it shouldn't be that difficult. I'd say the magic that does not fit
> with the main character of the myth is harder to cast for PCs, and enemies
> are usually very powerful. In your case, you will have to decide who is more
> likely to play the part of Yelmalio and what part do the other PCs play. If
> they are not Yelmalio worshippers, they may have a penalty to their skills
> (maybe one can be Yelmalio's spear, another one his shield, etc.). When
> Zorak Zoran appears, of course his trolls will be able to cast all his magic
> normally, and the main character (Yelmalio) will have a penalizer to fight
> against Zorak Zoran, as in the myth he loses. I mean, it has to be hard to
> change the course of a myth, even more so in the case of the Hill of Gold
> within uz lands!

That is true, but PCs can be sneaky and devious, putting odd people in the roles 
to trick the trolls. They know that Yelmalio is going to lose, so the trolls 
will be over-confident. Stick a couple of Ever Burning Torches between their 
ribs and they'll soon change their tune.

> I once read on the Glorantha mailing list, that if one heroquester changes
> the usual course of a given myth does not mean that the myth changes for
> everyone in the world. Only when everyone starts reenacting the myth in
> another way does the myth change universally (in your case, Yelmalio regains
> his power over fire). However, that can change in your Glorantha, and it
> probably should (to make a more epic finale). :-)

Possibly, it depends on the HeroQuestor.

Gbaji changed the world instantly and permanently. The Trollkin Curse was a 
massive change that took hold immediately, but that was because he seriously 
injured a major deity. The Red Moon also had an instant effect on Glorantha.

But, normal HeroQuestors will make small changes.

The way I see it, these HeroQuestors make changes on the God Plane, but people 
can follow other paths instead. Following the new path will bring the new 
powers, following the old path will provide the old powers. It is only by 
destroying the old paths that the new paths become more attractive.

However, it is up to the Gm to decide how he wants this to work.

> At the very least, the player playing the part of Yelmalio would gain fire
> powers (and his companions would get some powers too).

Probably. Perhaps the Yelmalian would get access to the Amanstan cult of Zorak 
Zoran or could begin an Amanstan subcult of Yelmalio.

> Well, I've found some rules and even some stats. The stats are pretty
> scary!
> Rules Here
> http://soltakss.com/hero2.html

They are the rules that I use, too :-)

> We have, as YGWV, some vary strange variations. There is of course the
> Yelmalio Priest who is the head-honcho of the quest... But there is also
> a Agimori Lodril initiate who has come along to help... A rebellious
> trollkin shaman who has a highly distorted version of Black Sun worship
> (he understands that he has to protect his brother's back, where he
> can't see), plus his close supporter, an Adept Dark Elf, who thinks that
> the Hill of Gold (being a forest in the darkness) has lacked the input
> of mushrooms over the years..

Now, that's an interesting mix. 

The Black Sun trollkin is an interesting idea and could allow the PCs to tap 
into the mystical side of the Quest - the Shadow of Yelmalio is a mightily 
powerful thing.

> As an added twist, an Eurmal Priest (yes, as ordained by an Orlanthi
> Priest), is coming along to take over from the role of Orlanth!

Using the Eurmali as Orlanth is a typical trick - use a friend/ally as an 
opponent and that way the station can be staged/controlled. But, Eurmali are 
tricky and dangerous, so it's not without risk.

> That's correct, I read it that way as well. The HQ changes the present.
> The only people who had the ability to do major changes in the past were
> the Godlearners...

And Harmast, and Arkat, and Lokamayadon, and Gbaji, and the Seven Mothers, and 
the Red Goddess and ...

> At the very least indeed... They're aiming to return fire powers back to
> Yelmalio!

If you are comfortable with that then go for it. It should be very difficult, 
though. Don't forget that HeroQuesting is "Achieving the Impossible", so it 
might be that the PCs might have to perform some impossible tasks in order to 

See Ya

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