Gloranthan Civ and Yelmalio

From: Peter Metcalfe (
Date: Fri 03 Jan 1997 - 05:17:45 EET

Stephen Martin:

[more on gloranthan civ]

Me>>IMO We would run into problems with two different nations having the
>>same gods on both sides - Alakoring versus Orlanth Dragonfriend,
>>uniting Ralios and so forth.

>Except that most such "universal" deities, such as Orlanth, are only the
>sum of the various heroes, spirits, and deities which were amalgamated
>together. For example, I would pretty confidently state that Alakoring IS
>Orlanth Dragonslayer; Ingolf IS Orlanth Dragonfriend; etc.

This only reinforces my point. How do we handle the fact that the
God's worshippers start fighting amongst themselves? Which side
does the player get to control? I find it much less problematical
to assume that the player is controlling someone like the Red
Emperor, Zzabur, Godunya, Lokaymadon, the Pharoah or Siglat.

>>A better way to work it would be to have a pantheon/monomyth
>>for each country or culture. This would describe how well they
>>percieve the cosmos. Thus Sartar would have Orlanth in its
>>storm slot and Ernalda in its earth slot.

>This severely limits the usefulness of the game. I think most players
>would rather identify with a specific deity.

True. And this would be handled by making one god in the
pantheon the ruling god. Otherwise we would tie ourselves
in knots by wondering whether the player controlling Orlanth
also controls the Little Brother cult in Prax or is that
cult controlled by the Player playing Waha? Is Sartarite
Ernalda controlled by the Ernalda Player from her stronghold
of Esrola or by the Orlanth Player?

In most cases, IMO they are not and efforts to bend them to
the will of the god (ie the Orlanth player tries to make the
little brother cult ambush lunar caravans) should be considered
a magical attack rather than a normal action. There are
precedents for this in Glorantha - Lokaymadon's simultaneous
appearance in all the Orlanthi Temples is one.

Also there is the problem of Ruling God replacement. The most
obvious example is Yelm by the Red Goddess in Peloria. What
happens? Making it a pantheon taht the player controls
simplifies matters IMO.

>Civilization has each player
>associated with a given culture, as I recall, and things like various
>Religions can eventually develop. I think a different approach is called
>for in a Gloranthan version, where the Religions are a bit more "real"
>and, if I may venture so far, important, than in Civ.

This is a different issue than what I was addressing above. I've
no problem with the concept that a "religion's" prowess in using
the aspects of their god in changes over time. My comment was
against the idea of controlling only one god.

>> The cult considers the Hill of Gold, near the town of Bikhy
>> in Vanch, to be especially sacred for it was there that their
>> god was [blah blah blah]. This is a place of pilgrimage and
>> HeroQuest, although no temple exists here.

>This tells me that there is no Yelmalio Temple AT the HIll of Gold. I
>don't necessarily read into it that there is none in Vanch itself. Bikhy
>is not the only town in Vanch, is it?

I originally said that Yelmalio wasn't very popular in Vanch. There
may be a minor temple or many in Vanch but the absense of a Major
Temple to Yelmalio at Bikhy or at the Hills of Gold is strong proof
that Yelmalio is not very strong there IMO.

- --Peter Metcalfe


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