"PRAX AND HORSES (MOSTLY)

From: ngl28 (ngl28@rz.uni-kiel.d400.de)
Date: Mon 24 Jan 1994 - 20:52:13 EET



David Dunham in X-RQ-ID: 2875

>Joerg Baumgardner wrote:
>>Now the name Hyaloring seems to suggest Pentan or Dara Happan ancestry

>I've never been able to make any sense of the names Greg's come up with --
>and I've tried. In King of Sartar and beyond, he's at least making some
>attempt, but it still seems to be whatever sounds cool to Greg.

One consistent approach is to include the names of gods or heroes in personal names. In this case: Hyalor Horsebreaker, cultural hero of the Pentans much the same way Waha is for the Praxians.

>>From: prhine@wam.umd.edu (Philip Rhinelander)
>>Do they really need to hop the
>>pond back to Genertela just to refresh thier Rune magic?

>Yes, that's what the rules say. If they can't get to a temple, they can't
>renew. (Some "God Learner Equivalency" temples may work -- you could go to
>a Dendara temple to renew Ernalda spells -- but these are likely to be rare
>when you're real far from home.)

Unless they visit the Orlanthi tribes in Umathela.

But seriously: the same problem bugged me, too.

Sandy's notes on major powers give some excuse for worship of similar forces, but imply a certain God Learnerism (or naivity) on the side of the character.

This ties neatly with a recent question on the RQ4 list: which restrictions and duties are based on mundane hierarchy, which are based on divine will?

>>More basic to
>>this question (I think) is the question of proselytism; what does the
>>Compromise say about the ability of the Lightbringer pantheon to win new
>>followers?

>This is what I see as a problem with the RQ3 temple size rules. It's very
>hard to go elsewhere and be a missionary. Maybe that's true for Glorantha.

I found an interesting remark in Cults of Terror or RuneQuest Companion that the early Theyalan missionaries went about and "woke" the deities (or their worship) among the peoples they converted.

On my own gameworld, I have a religion with missionaries very similar to that, contacting local spirits or deities to include them as saints in their rather pantheistic creed. They are somewhat illuminated in their tolerance, or at least Roman in their pursuits of including deities into their bigger picture. Maybe God-Learnerish, too (does anybody have a better adjective form of God Learner?).

Don't the Lunar missionaries use similar techniques with their customary marrying of foreign gods?

Their philosophy of healing gods formerly not diseased remind me strongly of 1st Age Tanisor and Seshnela. Who said that Nysalor is dead? He just changed gender and colour and now rides a bat...


Sandy Petersen in X-RQ-ID: 2876

>Joerg Baumgartner wonders:

>>How do you coordinate spell attacks to avoid multiple action against
>>some of the attackers and letting others come unmolested?

>This is not a problem in a mass combat, in my opinion, though it can
>cause trouble in a small melee. Take an example of 100 Yara Aranis
>initiates casting ignite on 100 Pent archers. If the Yara dudes have
>a reasonable amount of encumbrance and no greater POW than average,
>only around 50% of the spells go off. If they're totally randomly
>arranged among the targets, almost 40% of them will get hit with the
>spell (some of them more than once), and that's enough to reduce the
>harm done to the defenders, especially as the guys in the front with
>the best shooting chance are the likeliest to get hit.

OK, the numbers aren't that bad. On the other hand, otherwise sensible people have been known to run into heavy enemy fire shouting hurrah and getting shot, with perhaps 20% of them arriving at the opponent, but slaughtering them like sheep. (or all of them collapsing before...)

Only problem with ignite without special backup is that you get shot twice before these guys come into range. More often if they just stay outside standard magic and thrown missile range, as could and did the Mongols.

>In real military fighting, most attacks are without effect. [impressive
examples deleted]

[Crimean War]
This is a very different style of fighting. No Fantasy or pre-firearms warrior would ever have thought of covering an advance or retreat with small missile fire (bows, slings). Neither would an archer who spent several hours on preparing his best arrows distribute these freely in the landscape.

Also, the desired result is not the kill, but the temporary crippling of the opponent, to use as slaves or sacrifices or to hold for ransom afterwards. Most actual killing occurred when the battle was decided.

>Also remember that not everyone has to be shot to break up an attack.
>If 35% of a group of Pent nomads suddenly lose the use of their main
>weapon, they'll be disheartened, and all but the best troops will be
>fearful and less effective. A sudden charge by opposing cavalry, or
>even infantry, may well send them into retreat.

I like to think of them as similar to Scythian or Persian knights, quite heavily armored and equipped with sabres, lances or similar as well. Stirrups were an invention of the great plains, and the Praxian lancers need them as much as the horse nomads'. (Who was the hero who introduced them?)

>Remember, Biturian only cast a Market spell -- it will only do 1d3
>damage to anyone it triggers against, hardly sufficient to dissuade
>Biturian or the temple guards. The purpose of the Market spell at the
>Paps was to act as an alarm, not to incapacitate or cripple the
>trolls (note that they and their Morokanth allies were not even
>slowed down by the spell).

There is no damage mentioned, and other rule-specific effects are stressed as well. And a market spell used as trigger to release a ghost seems not out of possibilities.

Anyway, what I really meant to say was that city defenses and town defenses might be explained with spirits who receive worship as well as with RQ3 rules enchantments. I like to think that 100 part time worshippers produce as much mana as the sacrifice of one point of permanent POW, if rules values are required. The two times seven times seve worshippers needed to regain (or cast?) a resurrection (without the Chalana Arroy priestess having to renew it?) in KoS gives a three times higher exchange rate, after all Resurrection is a three point spell.

>[I said]
>>>Horses are the Beast of Fire. The Galanini date from the First Age,

              ^^^ ^
>>I don't believe that.They are beasts of fire, yes, and as such
>>related to birds, griffons and other celestial animals, but not
>>particularly associated with fire.

>Perhaps I missed something in the translation. Could you say this
>again, slower? They are beasts of fire and related to other celestial
>animals, but NOT associated with fire?

Ok, so I jumped at the article before and the capital and singular of Beast. The only way the horse retained anything of fire is its temperament, even according to the Hippoi myth.

>>I have read a text (I think in Troll Pak) which stated that the 1st
>>Age Theyalans overthrew the horse nomads of Peloria with the help of
>>Praxian beast riders and Ralian non-Sun-worshipping horse riders.
>>These latter can only be the Galanini.

>There can be plenty of horse-riding non-Sun worshipers. Tarsh exiles
>ride horses. Malkioni ride horses. In any case, the Galanini do NOT
>worship the sun gods in the same manner as the Pelorians or Pentans.
>Their worship style would be no more acceptable to the Pure Horse
>People than was the Dara Happan faith.

I was inaccurate again: I meant horse nomads, non-sedentary peoples relying on their horses as essential to their way of life. Steal a knight's horses, and he still has his castle. Steal a nomad's horses, and watch him defend his tent...

>>IMO, the Praxian culture is a Hsunchen Culture with the specific
>>addendum of riding and herding their respective phylum, and a
>>tradition of a common earth-mother for the beasts.

>Wow. I can't agree with this less. I don't see any traces of Hsunchen
>among the Praxians at all, and I don't believe they ever were
>Hsunchen. Their animals are not their brothers, but their food. They
>have a complex pantheon

Let me switch into God Learner mode:

The Hsunchen worship their beast ancestor. Praxians worship the beast mother and her children (e.g. Sable-Founder, -Protectress), from whom they descended.

The Hsunchen worship the Hunter as main source of meat. Praxians worship Waha for slain herd beasts, Hunter for slain game.

The Hsunchen propitiate or venere predominant local forces of nature. The Praxians propitiate Storm Bull, Gagarth, and they worship Storm Bull, Zola Fel...

The Hsunchen worship a plethora of local spirits, summoned by the shamans at holy places.
The Praxians worship a plethora of local spirits, summoned by the shamans at the oasis altars in Prax. (e.g. Frog Woman)

Both practice ancestor worship to some extent.

Both consider outsiders as less than human.

Telmori consider their wolves as full members of their tribe. Praxians don't do so, since Waha's covenant made the herd beasts unintelligent.

Praxians were active participants in the Gods War. OK, we lack reports about the Hsunchen activities then. Given the Basmoli Empire in Dawn Age Tanisor, they did, too.

The Praxians have a solid holy place in the Paps. (They inherited it from the Golden Age people).
The Basmoli erected Hrelar Amali. (They developed this themselves, or had
Godtime experience with this. They built it themselves.)

The Praxians worshipped a whole pantheon in Godtime. These gods are dead now.
According to GL taxonomy, there exists a whole pantheon of beast ancestors who died during Godtime. Plus the Hsunchen acknowledge the local earth powers (proto-Grain goddesses, like Balazar Vyrope, or the goddess' aspects in tRathorell;a, Ramalia, etc.

Now where except in the covenant introduced because of the special power depletion in the Praxian chapparal do you see the great difference? Master Hunters and Khans are not that different.

God Learner mode off, flame-proof suit on.

>>While we're at it - how comes that Eiritha has no relation to horses
>>in Prax, when other beasts clearly of the sky - the ostrichs - are
>>one of her subjects/children.

>Why are ostriches one of her subjects? They're not part of the
>Covenant, though some folk believe they were adopted into it later
>on. I have my doubts about the efficacy of Release INT on an ostrich.
>In any case, they're among the least sky-oriented birds of all. Just
>because birds in general are sky entities doesn't mean they all are.
>Roosters are Earth birds, hawks are Fire birds, owls are Darkness
>birds, etc. Just as Horses are Sky beasts, Cattle are Storm beasts,
>Pigs are Earth beasts, etc.

Morokanth are darkness beasts - oops, creatures - according to Biturian's report from the Paps. Bison, aurochs and cattle surely are closely related Earth. Bolo Lizards are saurians, yet part of the covenant. And in the Pavis Common Knowledge booklet there is this picture in the wastes, where lots of beasts (including the zebra, a beast only quite recently adopted into the covenant) paid homage to Genert, a very conscious and intelligent act.

I really have problems with the reasons why Eiritha would not allow horses in Prax. She did so all the time between the Battles of Necklace Horse and Alavan Argay, and ever since Derek Pol Joni retrieved the Black Net, the horses are back in Prax, and thrive.

Is this all beast rider propaganda? The story about Joraz Kyrem's creation of the War Zebras mentions psychological reasons only.


Jonathan Eyre in X-RQ-ID: 2877

>LANDS of DAWN/DUSK...

>Where can I find info about these parts of Glorantha? Are they one of
>the places where the Hero Plane touches the real world?

Luathela and the lands of Dusk are part of the Lightbringers' Quest and described sketchily in KoS. They lie in the outer world, and are already part of the hero-plane like Glorantha.

>If Lunars=Romans, Orlanthi=Celts, and there are other "Earth
>equivilant" civilisations (the Orientals on the East coast, whom I
>can't for the life of me remember).

Sorry if my insistence on Celtic Orlanthi or other parallels lead to the impression the cultures are parallels. They aren't, only some people like Nick Brooke and me find it convenient to picture certain traits in analogs.

>Are there Aztec/Inca/Toltec equivilents, and where are they?
>Pamaltela?

Quite recently the western part of the Holy Country has been accused of being Egyptian, Aztec, Minoan and several other cultures. Regions like Porthomeka on the border between Esrolia and Caladraland might actually be like one of these, and all are somewhat like all of these.

The Pamaltelan urban societies are either coastal, i.e. God Learner tainted, or extinct, stemming from the Artmali Empire. (Fonrit actually qualifies for both.) These pre-darkness Lunars had a culture little is published about. The Doraddi have only recently developed city-like structures, the wagon cities of the Kresh.



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