I regularly attend my local gaming conventions held at the Garrison Hotel, an old Napoleonic era Barracks, Furnace in autumn and 7 Hills in spring. When I helped organise Furnace we always ended up with a Gloranthan Track of games, where you could come to the con and play Gloranthan games from the start of the convention to the end, in the first three years or so of the con. In fact there’s always been a bit of a smattering of Gloranthan games at Furnace/7Hills until the last couple of years when its kinda died off.
However this coming 7 Hills, 22nd-23rd April, Gloranthan gaming is making a bit of a comeback…
Winds of Chaos
System: Glorantha Powered by the Apocalypse
GM: Newt Newport
“It is the time of the HeroWars…
Over the distant Hills in northern Upper Karia, dark clouds gather over the Tombs of the Gods. In the settled south vigilant warriors of the Storm Tribe in the city of Watcharkat, prepare their swords for the corrupting winds of chaos that will blow down from the north. What will they bring? Hordes of beast headed Broo pouring out of the farmland? Monstrous, Krashtkids tunnelling underground and erupting from basements? Or perhaps something more vile? An enemy from within. Friends and family who have been corrupted by chaos, their hearts turned foul, their minds twisted turned to the worship of foul Chaos gods.“
I’ll be dusting off my 90s RuneQuest setting, Karia, and running it with a quick Dungeon World inspired Hack. No knowledge of Glorantha needed. I’m keeping it simple and beginner friendly. I’ve found that the Apocalypse World family of games really is the best way of introducing deep settings and letting the players discover it through play.
Mythras (Runequest 6) Glorantha
GM: Simon Beaver
Merchant caravans of all sizes are a common sight in Prax. Nomads, oasis people and city dwellers alike travel and trade across the wastes and the Long Dry, in order to reach the legendary city of Pavis.
The caravan of Joran Trailmaster is a typically cosmopolitan group, travelling from Pimper’s Block to Pavis. Merchants, refugees and wanderers banding together to take advantage of an expert guide and to find safety, and perhaps anonymity, in numbers. For there are many dangers in the wastes of Prax – nomad raiders, malign spirits, dark Chaos creatures and the ever-present patrols of the Lunar army and their local auxiliaries.
As members of this little wagon train, you will help Joran get everyone safe and sound to Pavis. In theory it should be an easy trip with a nice group of people, on a route well travelled by caravans such as yours. It remains to be seen what dangers will appear, either from without or within.
No previous knowledge of Runequest or Glorantha is required.
The Phoney Express
GM: Stuart Mousir-Harrison
System: Toon (set in Glorantha!)
Hippy Irrippi’s Same Day Courier Service face their biggest challenge yet, escorting The Baggage back to it’s (f)rightful owner – whether it wants to go or not – in the heart of the Uphill Swamp of Harshest Tarsh.
Sanity is entirely optional but humour essential in this outing of the classic 1980s cartoon role-playing game. Character generation will take place in the game slot.
Registration for the convention is still open if you fancy coming along.
I seem to be on sort of a break as far as running Glorantha is concerned. I think that’s due in part to me being busy writing other D101 Stuff (Crypts & Things esp) over the last six months, and I’m still taking in the sheer breath and depth of material in the Guide and the new HeroQuest Glorantha books.
Instead I’ve taken the opportunity to play in some games using very different systems from what I’m used to (HQ/RQ).
First off is Evil Gaz’s Savage Glorantha. Evil Gaz is one of the infamous Smart Party, a group of friends who collectively run convention games at UK cons, and now courtesy of Gaz and his mate Baz have a rather excellent pod cast “What Would the Smart Party Do?”. Now Gaz is a big fan of Glorantha from the RQ2 days, and the more direct play style of those days, before all the navel gazing mythological stuff that came after it. Savage Worlds is his go to system so he’s running a game using the old RQ2 Classics material specifically Borderlands and Beyond (I’m not paying too much attention to it, because its been long enough for me to remember the outlines but not the details which would spoil the game for me ) as the setting/adventure and Savage Worlds as the system. The conversion is very quick and on the fly but he’s paid enough attention so that RQ2’s magic systems (Battle and ]Divine) are in it, and the advantages and disadvantages (which do the main heavy lifting to make sure that one Fighter isn’t like another Fighter) make the characters fell Gloranthan. He’s running the game via quick two hour Google Hangouts sessions, and apart from myself the other three players are all new to Glorantha. Character gen was basically a suggest a concept to Gaz and he came up with a character. I pitched Morgan “Short beard” Gonch a rather adventurous Lankor Mhy student with a short scruffy beard, whose been taught a bit of swordplay by his local Humakti swordmaster, and is on an ongoing quest in Pavis/Prax to recover magical knowledge stolen by the villainous Lunars. This quest had lead to his capture by the Seven Mothers, and drafted into the service of Duke Raus, a local Lunar Noble with an estate out in the Praxian wastes. I was joining the rest of the party , a group comprising of a Humakti, Stormbull and an Orlanthi, a couple of adventures in, and the opening scene was literally Morgan walking up to the campfire, making introductions before the group set off to continue their patrol of Duke Raus’ ‘Grant Lands’. We encountered an ancient tower, with the sounds of squealing pigs. The Stormbull decided to charge his Rhino into the stone double doors to gain entry, and away we went. Given the nature of adventure, what followed was a tense two hour grindfest, but both Gaz and the other players kept it going a pace so that it never dragged or got boring. Savage Worlds worked well as the system for representing Glorantha. On one hand if you just swing your sword and hope for the best, its like RQ right down to its fragility of characters. However once you start spending ‘bennies’ (Savage’s equivalent of Hero/Fate points) or using the special combat moves, where you have to give an explanation of how you are pushing it, the game suddenly felt heroic, and up there with HeroQuest for that side of things. It was the best of both worlds. The adventure saw my wet behind the ears academic handle himself with enough bravery to be accepted into the group of warriors 🙂
The second Gloranthan game I played with a different system was Guy Milner’s 13th Age Glorantha game at Furnace just gone. I can’t go into to much detail about it, because the playtest packet is currently under NDA, but I can say that the game was a resounding success, despite my misgivings that as basically being a D20/D&D derived game (with a heavy dose of Narrativism). Like the Savage Worlds game, the basic rules played Glorantha to the system’s strengths, so it was all Class with Level based goodness that any player familiar with the World’s Favorite Roleplaying game in its D20 variant glory (feats although straightforward are still a big thing as push-button powers in combat). 13th Age’s Narrative elements really shone through in letting each character have their moment in the spot light and the use of the Runes (like HQ Glorantha each character has three to start with) within that framework (rather than the more rulesy Feats) was inspired, and allowed us to excitingly deal with situations within the game quickly and colourfully which might have otherwise been reduced to a series of bland dice roles. This alongside 13th Ages “One Unique Thing” really highlighted that even at 1st Level our characters where Gloranthan Heroes and Heroines 🙂
Six years ago Hearts in Glorantha issue 1 went on general sale via Lulu.
To celebrate this momentous day, I’m knocking 25% off the price of Hearts in Glorantha Collected, which collects the first five issues of Hearts in Glorantha, at both DriveThruRPG.com and Lulu.com until the end of August.
Last chance to buy The Book of Glorious Joy, Jamie ‘Trotsky’ Revell’s fan version of the Gloranthan West with a focus on the Kingdom of Loskalm.
As of the end of this month it will no longer be available.
Currrently heavily discounted in both print and pdf on DriveThruRpg.com. Grab it before its gone FOREVER!
$15 Softcover+pdf/$25 Hardcover +pdf/$5 Pdf
Swords of Malkion by Peter Town
Just so you know Lawrence Whitaker is retiring the old MRQ1/MRQ2 material that is available over in pdf form for mere $1s this coming weekend (17/18th Jan) , last chance to pick up some Gloranthan goodness (I’d recommend Dara Happa Stirs, Pavis Rises and Glorantha 2nd Age) before it goes for good.
Source: Loz over at the RPGsite.com
Just to let people know, we’ll be retiring the RQ Archives, which is where all the old $1 PDFs are available, this coming weekend (17/18th Jan). We’re looking at streamlining the RQ trademark which is currently split over MRQ, MRQ2 and RQ6. Although we could, in theory, keep these titles on DTRPG forever, this is part of a wider brand evaluation for both RQ and Glorantha.
So if you want to get these PDFs from the RQ Archives, do so now because they won’t be around for much longer.
Worth noting the Glorantha Forum over at the Tavern, which I’ve added to the links section in the sidebar. In comparison to the official forums/G+ community its a lot more laid back and focused on the detail of the setting.
I’m declaring it the Unofficial Forum of Hearts in Glorantha, mainly because I hang out there and occasionally start up a thread or two.
Check it out