Running hard to catch up...

From: Entropy needs no maintenance (STEVEG@ARC.UG.EDS.COM)
Date: Mon 15 Feb 1993 - 04:49:09 EET


The Ministry of Truth bulletin:-

"The Yelmalio cult was imported intentionally by the rulers of Pavis in the
year 875 to help against barbarian raiders" -- Cults of Prax (Invader gods)

Sidestepping predestination

Comparing and contrasting Glorantha and the "official history" thereof, with another privately created world of similar long standing, and stature as an
"official campaign world" for a published RPG (though lacking the mythic
quality), with its own imposed history leads me to propose two ways of handling the dilemma posed by wanting to do your own thing and at the same time following the official material through significant historical events with widespread repurcussions. (Out of deference to those displaying delicate sensibilities, I refrain from mentioning specifics or drawing explicit parallels.)

  1. Accept it and stay close to the action -

Make Argrath the NPC about whom the characters gathered; but in your world he might be little more than a figurehead when the time came for the overthrow of the Lunar yoke - convenient because of his ancestry as a token in the power game, and in whose name the actions of the characters might be remembered - and in whose name the characters might act after his safe installation on the throne.

In fact, the need to keep Argrath safe until he can be kicked upstairs into the kingship provides a neat game-mechanical way to keep the PCs in the limelight : Argrath is too valuable to take troll-hunting (or whatever), stays at home, gathers skills & POW more slowly than his entourage - perhaps doesn't ever heroquest, lacking the level of abilities required.

2) The Hero Wars are someone else's problem (though they may trigger other troubles)

How might we apply this tack to the Hero Wars? Well, we can interpret some of the material from _King of Sartar_ quite narrowly, as referring to local (Pelorian and/or Manirian at broadest extent) disruptions - if Dragon Pass could remain shunned for centuries after the Dragonkill, so a larger area, centred on Dragon Pass might be after the fall of the Lunar Empire. All the chroniclers named in _KoS_ might well be from a small, isolated (perhaps by magical? Lunar? "fallout"(*)) pocket of civilsation in these shunned lands, the Illiteracy merely a local breakdown.

In this view of things, we follow the history of some other part of the world, to which the fall of some distant empire across the mountains is but a herald's rumour (**); and the passing of Argrath's entourage on his westfaring a significant episode - the characters interacting with this when their paths happen to require interaction with Lightbringer myth. There would be other mundane effects from the movement of peoples and armies in Dragon Pass that would affect the campaign area, but the focus might be any one of the other Hero Wars period events discussed in the Glorantha/Genertela box, and which would be regarded by the peoples of that area as the _real_ Hero Wars.

(*) Lunar fallout - given the chaos taint of the Red moon, if great chunks of this material (and many smaller fragments) fell to Earth, the effects of the bombardment might well resemble that of saturation nuclear warfare, at least locally (to which the 1950s-SF style of mutant can be added, by virtue of chaotic emanations.

(**) Spot the motivation for looking at other parts of the world than the distressingly uncivilised areas of Prax and Sartar, on which there has been altogether too much emphasis.

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