Shamans vs. Priests

From: Trent Di Renna (
Date: Wed 16 Apr 1997 - 02:55:59 EEST

Okay, let me jump in here on the shaman debate. The opinion has been
expressed that shamans were the first "priests", so to speak, since they
could go onto the spirit plane to commune with the gods. Then, acolytes
and true priests showed up to take over much of the shamans duties, and
shamans were relegated to "backwoods" tribes and other remote positions.

This whole debate is complicated by the fact that the different types of
magic tend to blend together, and that shamans sometimes even know a
little divine magic. I think it is a question of where the god resides.
If the god lives mostly in the Spirit Plane, then it is mostly worshipped
by shamans. If it lives in the more "distant" God/Hero Plane, then it is
too "far away" for a shaman to commune with, and can only be contacted via
the more indirect mode of divine magic.

Actually, I think the _real_ problem is reconciling the RQ3 magic system
and the structure of Gloranthan cults, which doesn't always seem to be a
perfect match. From what I've seen of the proposed RQ4 draft, it proposed
having "schools of magic" which taught some of the available skills, but
not all of them; creating diversity by limiting the types of magic that
any one player could use. It sounded quite interesting, but now we'll
never know. _Sigh_. :-)

Trent Di Renna


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