[Glorantha]Review: Gathering Thunder

From: David Dunham <david_at_a-sharp.com>
Date: Sat, 12 Jun 2004 15:14:17 -0700

My copy of Gathering Thunder: Sartar Rising volume 3 arrived today. A few comments, based on my reading of the penultimate version and skimming of the published work.

Gathering Thunder continues the Sartar Rising story from where Orlanth is Dead left off. It consists of six episodes, which are arranged in such a way that they can be run consecutively (though this isn't a requirement -- they each stand alone, and could have other stories interspersed).

"New Breathers" is fairly straightforward, and serves to convey parts
of the larger story.

"Sheep, Clouds, Thunder" is a sheep raid with a few twists.

I wrote "The Other Side of the Dragon," so I won't say much about it. It may be a bit harder to fit into a series, depending on your characters, and due to the fact that ostensibly requires a multi-season commitment.

"Final Days at Skullpoint" also struck me as hard to run, because
it's a more psychological episode. If it would work with your group, it should be rewarding.

"Orane's Spindle" was posted on the Issaries web site a while ago.
I'm not sure if it's been revised since, but I found it utterly confusing back then. The printed version, on the other hand, works just fine. (Amusingly, it's set in the Orlmarth clan, where we're currently playing; our narrator has had to make some minor changes to accommodate.)

"The Sky Ship" is an epic finale, where the heroes can accompany
Kallyr Starbrow into the sky world on a great quest. Gloranthaphiles will be amused at the coming together of several mythologies. There are also hints at how this episode could be run in other parts of Glorantha.

There are also handy narrator resources, including an article with details of how a hero band might get a guardian, assorted NPCs, and a new subcult of Orlanth: Ulanin the Rider.

The artwork ranges from acceptable to excellent. Production values are also good, and pretty much every typo or glitch I discovered in the draft was fixed for publication. Although the book feels thin, it actually has more pages (80) than Orlanth is Dead.

Due to its nature as a scenario book, I have to suggest that players steer clear. But it contains a number of strong scenarios, and a cult which should be popular with players. I recommend it to any HeroQuest narrator.


David Dunham
Glorantha/HQ/RQ page: http://www.pensee.com/dunham/glorantha.html
Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein

Received on Sun 13 Jun 2004 - 06:56:29 EEST

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