Strangers in Prax Errata

Date: Sun 17 Apr 1994 - 15:40:06 EEST


I said, when answering Sandy's question: "How much is 'weird Australian-oid' material based on Australian culture?"

>No doubt John Hughes (if he's keeping up the RQ Daily at the moment) can
>elucidate further on his sources of inspiration if you like.

And elucidate he certainly did! (I loved your Gloranthan games stuff John. Is choral farting really a noble British art? Perhaps Dave and Nick could arrange a recital for Convulsion, preferably outside?)

Top Five Topics

Someone writes (sorry, I accidently chopped off the name when pasting to my WP program!):

>What I'd really like to hear is what areas other people on the
>Digest would like to see developed. Here's my own top 5 list.
> 1) The Arkat cults and Illumination in general
> 2) Dragonnewts
> 3) Lunar Empire
> 4) Sog City
> 5) Heroquesting

Tales of the Reaching Moon carried out a survey asking its readers what topics they were most interested in as special issues in future. The top five were: Lunars, Hero Wars, Magic, Prax, the Wastes.

Full results of the survey (including top 10 best and top 10 worst articles - some articles appeared on both lists!) are to be found in Tales #11. If you ain't a subber, ask me how to put you in touch with your local Reaching Moon Megacorp rep!

Strangers in Prax Errata

Devin Cutler (who had some nice things to say about Strangers in Prax and especially the Lunar Coders) also writes::

>Continuing on with Strangers in Prax.
>While I like the supplement a lot, is there any chance that the writers of
>these supplements can:
>1) Stop letting RQ2 anachronisms slip into the supplements
>2) Ever get the spell casting percentages of NPC's right?
>Frex, take the writeup of Count Julan on page 27:
>POW 18, INT 17, DEX 20
>This would seem to give a spirit magic spell casting percentage of Pow x5% =
>90% plus magic bonus of 25% for a total of 115% - ENC.
>However, the supplement lists Julan's casting % as 75% - ENC. This could make
>an extremely big deal in combat.
>RQ3 has never been able to get spell casting % correct. Every supplement that
>I have read (and I have them all) botches these. Why? It's really not that
>difficult of a mechanic to understand?
>Perhaps the above was a fluke? Nay. On page 29. Princess Anderida has POW 20,
>INT 16, DEX 15 for a total casting % of 129% - ENC. The supplement lists her
>% as 94%. Hey, only 35% off.
>Her allied spirit Vectis has POW x5% as his casting chance, with no mids for
>Magic Bonus.
>Maculus on page 30 has a POW of 16, INT of 18, DEX of 13 for a casting % of
>96%. Supplement lists it as 75%.
>#1 - Be consistent. Sometimes , even when figured correctly, Casting %
>includes magic bonusses, sometimes not. Which is it?
>#2 - It can't be that hard to edit the NPC stuff to weed out RQ2isms and
>botches like the above. Hell, I'll volunteer to do it at no charge!

OK Devin, I stand guilty as charged. The stuff-ups with the spirit magic casting percentages were my fault to start with (I didn't have the RQ3 Errata for one thing), and my goofs obviously slipped through the editors too (tut, tut Mike and Ken!).

Here, to set the record start is the official...

Strangers in Prax: Lunar Coders Errata 1.0:

SPIRIT MAGIC CASTING PERCENTAGES According to the official RQ3 Errata (available from Avalon Hill - write to 'em and they'll send it to you), the chance to cast spirit magic is equal to:

(POW x 5) +/- (magic skill modifier) - ENC.

Ergo, here's the correct spirit magic casting percentages of the Coders:

  1. Julan 115% - ENC 20 = 95% Armbreaker (allied spirit) 109%
  2. Anderida 129% - ENC 6 = 123% Anderida is particularly susceptible to the phases of the Red Moon. Her magic skills are affected. Alter spirit magic thusly: Dark/dying moon (halved)... 65% - ENC 6 = 59% Crescent/Half Moon (no change) Full Moon (increased by half again)...194% - ENC 6 = 188%

        Vectis (allied spirit) = 126%

3.      Maculus 96% - ENC 5 = 91%
        Seris (familiar) 107%
        Canus (familiar) 138%

4.      Nose Ring - doesn't use magic
        Moonflower (allied spirit) 123%

5.      Eslas 103% - ENC 12 = 91%

6.      Wyvern Mounts: 38% - ENC (rider)
        Reptus: POW 16, INT 12, DEX 13 Spirit Magic: 84% - ENC (rider)
        Albus: POW 15, INT 06, DEX 13 Spirit Magic: 73% - ENC (rider)

Julan's ENC is 20, not 36 as noted. His fatigue therefore is 37 - 20 ENC = 17.

Maculus's second familiar Canus's Magic Points are not included in Maculus's total. Add Canus's 24 to the total, giving a grand total of 111 for Maculus to play around with.

Red Goddess Magic

Curtis Shenton writes:
> Lunars and Lunar Sorcerors
>What ever happened to lunar magic from GoG? I thought the variant on
>spirit magic was much more interesting than the RQ3 rules for sorcerors
>but judging from the supplements it's not any where near as common as
>regualr sorceror in the Empire. I was at least expecting the Red Goddess
>initiate in Strangers to have Lunar Magic.

The Lunar Initiate, Maculus, does have Red Goddess magic skills - Amplify 100%, Combine 69%, Distance 81%, Prolong 55%. This is why he only knows all of his spirit magic spells at the minimum (1) - if he wants 'em bigger, he can try to Amplify/Prolong etc. 'em. The sort of thing he might do during a night operation is cast Light 1, Amplified x5 (50 meter radius) and Prolonged x12 (1 hour duration) for a cost of 19 magic points. Of course, on really dark nights (dark/dying moons) he can't use his spell manipulation abilities, so would have to use his Glow spell instead. On nights of the full moon Maculus's Red Goddess magic skills really come to the fore, as he can use his full Free Int (18) on each of the Lunar Magic Skills, eg Amplify 18, Distance 18, Prolong 18. Costly on MP's though, eg:

Maculus is on the roof of Hanufel's Magic Goods, where he lodges in the upper storey. He has come up to look at and commune with the Red Moon, for tonight is the Goddess's Night, and the Moon has risen in all its crimson glory. Maculus's reverie is disturbed however, by a fracas going on somewhere in an alley over in Suntown. He piously uses his Red Goddess magic skills to investigate. Spotting a large post near to where the noise is coming from, he uses Combine to cast Light 1, Distance x 9 to light the post (500 meters away) and Farsee 1, Amplified x18 and Prolonged x1 (10 minutes to then look around. This has cost him a hefty 30 magic points, with a 55% chance of success (his lowest skill of all the skills employed here - in this case Prolong). Maculus might spend a few moments in a worship Ceremony asking the Red Goddess to improve his chance of casting the spell (eg. spends a round or two using Ceremony).

Maculus's Light spell naturally bathes the area in a crimson glow and his incredibly powerful Farsee (which improves his Scan skill by 90%) enables him to spot the source of the trouble: a Badside thug taunting and beating up an old beggar, who desperately tries to fend off his blows with his walking stick.

Maculus is tempted to end the fracas with a low-intensity and long-range Smother spell, but decides to amuse himself and the Goddess above.

First he uses his Distance skill to cast a Protection 1, Amplifed x10 on the old geezer, so the bully's blows will just bounce off him. This costs 20 magic points (1 for the Protection, 9 for the Distance and 10 for the Amplify). The chance of successfully casting is equal to his skill % in his lowest skill of all the skills employed here, in this case his Distance, 81%.

He then uses his Combine skill to cast an Demoralize spell, Amplified x5 and a Slow, Amplified x3, and Distanced x9 on the thug. This costs another 20 magic points, but if successful, the thug will be virtually unable to move and thoroughly Demoralised (chance to hit reduced by 50%, and then a further -25%). Chance to cast equals Combine skill here, lowest of all at 69%. Maybe Mac uses Ceremony again?

The old geezer starts laying in to the cringing thug, rejoicing in his new-found miraculous powers. Maculus, somewhat drained (having expended 90 magic points!) watches on with wry amusement as the Sun Town watch show up, casting Light spells of their own, to drag off the thug. The old boy dances around them, telling them it must have the Red Moon herself who answered his plea for help. The new convert later checks in to the Teelo Norri doss house and, in between mouthfuls of potato bread and date mush, regales everyone with his story. Maculus returns to his devotions.

Note also, Eslas the Tracker also has a Speedart Matrix thumb ring that was created using Red Goddess magic. The Lunar College of Magic made it. The matrix casts a Speedart spell Amplified by 7 points (+40% to hit, +10 damage). Nasty!



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