RE: Gloranthan products

From: Kaselov-Sandberg (
Date: Tue 31 Mar 1998 - 11:26:18 EEST

There has been some talk going on about the old RQ2 supplements.
As an owner of most of them I must say that the almost "mythic"
value they are said to represent is overrated.

Shannon wrote:

> * Saying you can't understand Glorantha without those books is
> false. Anything really important on a global level has
appeared in
> _Gods of Glorantha_ or _Genertela_.

This is absolutely true. Many of the new-comers could in fact
consider themselves better equipped with Glorantha Lore than I
ever was back in '84-85' when I GMed Pavis, Big Rubble,
Borderlands, Griffin Mtn and Troll Pak. Of course, we had the
River of Cradles which our PCs trudged up and down with an
occasional sidetrack to Dagori Inkarth. And yes, we even
vistited Gonn Orta in Griffin Mtn. But all those lands
surrounding the thin belt of River of Cradles/Dagori Inkarth,
what was that? Well, I had read the pages in CoP about Biturian
Varosh (now on, so I knew a little
about praxian nomads and their holy Prax. But I never had
descriptions of Praxian culture as detailed as those provided by
"Genertela", ToTRM # 14-15, Codex # 1, and Drastic-Prax. If I
had have access to those sources back then - what an epic
campaign couldn't have taken place! :-) You never gonna have
that exhaustive Glorantha campaign, and there's no reason to sob
and cry for those RQ2-products.

Choose an area of Glorantha that you are interested in; try to
collect as much material as possible, then make up the rest
yourself. That is what I have done with an area that still
doesn't have had a well-organized supplement dedicated to it:
Sartar and Dragon Pass. What would have happened if I had still
sat around waiting for Sartar Pack, promised in the RQ2 Rulebook
back in 1980!? Well not much. (Although, I advice you, if you
want to play Orlanthi - get KoS as soon as possible, then get
Enclosure and begin to play. No problem!)

We could go on a little more about what really was inside those
old supplements....

> * As Rick pointed out most of the important stuff (the
> material) *has* been reprinted under RQ3. The unimportant
stuff (the
> adventures and the stats books) have not. The only two
losses that
> are really of some note are _Griffin Mountain_

Well, maybe not even that. A huge mass of it is NPC stats, which
have to be redone if you are going to play there with RQ3. Apart

from the background material and some important locations (the
citadels and Giant land), I think Griffin Mtn shows its age. I
mean, there's almost no finished scenarios as such in it. But,
the history section (2 pages), the citadel descriptions, and the
Giant land article would be good stuff to put up on the web
pages. (As always, I volunteer for doing the typing and

What about the rest of the supplements? As has been pointed out,
99% of CoP and CoT are available in various RQ3 sources, or
Tales, or Drastic, or on "Glorantha-web".

What you would be missing from Pavis is some cult descriptions
(whose status would be questionable in current Glorantha in
either case - compare current discussion on the Digest recently
concerning Lanbril and Flintnail); a few pages of more detailed
descriptions on taverns and shopping outlets in Pavis; and of
course, the scenarios. Of those, "the Cradle" is good, if your
players like epic, but _pre-determined_ scenarios. The other is
a social-realistic "welcome to the city"-scenario you can do as
good yourself, and a one-player burglary scenario. So you don't
miss much.

In Big Rubble there is more info and descritions of the
different locations within the cyclopean walls. That info would
be perfect for the web-site. Of the scenarios two may survive to
meet todays standards: Devil's Playground and Puzzle Canal. As
shown by "Troubled Waters" in RoC it is perfectly possible to
place scenarios in Devil's Playground without having access to
the original one. Puzzle Canal? No problems. One of the
characteristics of this place is that it continually changes
itself and is filled with new grottos and encounters - make up
any weird things you can think of.

Borderlands: All the info you need to make your PCs mercenaries
of Duke Raus (the "plot" of Borderlands) is supplied by RoC.
Want to hear about the scenarios? (these are the "mythic" stuff
that have been talked about so much):
*Scouting the land. Yes, it is just that. About one paragraph of
description on each location...
*Outlaw hunt. Go into the one-room cave. Kill the duck pirates.
*Raus daughter have been kidnapped by Tusk Riders. Go into their
tower, kill the Tusk Riders. Save the daughter.
*Broos are spreading diseases in the village of Weis. Find their
cave and kill them.
*Dungeon-crawl the Five-Eyes temple, kill the newtlings and
solve the mystery of the missing mercenary captain.
*Condor Crags. A five-pages scenario with one page of extended
climbing rules. Climb a spire and get some eggs while killing
*To giantland. A nice little epic trip to meet Gonn Orta. Travel
through the Wastelands. The only scenarios I would choose to
re-run if I had a new group of players.

To sum up. You don't miss anything if you miss the classic RQ
2-stuff! Concentrate on getting Gloranthan RQ3-stuff while it is
still readily available. Even the scenarios are often better
than the old ones. And don't forget Tales and the other
magazines; providing you with so much material that you will be
able to do a more "Glorantha-correct" campaign than I was ever
able to do in the 80's - and I had those "mythic" supplements...

> I can tell you briefly that Issaries doesn't plan to revisit
> locales in the first few years of publication (instead you'll
get to
> travel to Orlanthi countries, the Lunar Empire, the homes of
the Elder
> Races, the hero plane, and the oceans),

Hurrah, hurrah, hurrah. After waiting for almost 20 years
(choking on Praxian dust and cheap Bison-burgers of Pavis), I
can soon see the raising sun of Sartar Pack peeping out of the
clouds with its blinding rays of light. (Hmm... maybe a little
bit too Yelmic, that metaphor.)




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