This is the inaugural episode of the Glorantha Initiation series, where we talk to members of the tribe who recently joined the God Learner studies. The God Learner Podcast wants to investigate how people comparatively new to Glorantha experience the world, what are the rewards, what are the hurdles when approaching this setting.

To test the concept and the questionnaire we plan to use on our volunteers, Joerg interviews Ludovic, who actually only discovered Glorantha around the time the new RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha was released.

© Schmidt International

Ludovic’s first roleplaying game was The Dark Eye, also known as L’Oeil Noir in France.

The Havena city box also had a big early influence on him. For more nostalgia, see Ludovic’s “RPG DNA” article.

The French HeroWars and Glorantha books whose covers Ludovic talks about are visible above.

© 2021 Chaosium Inc.

The Broken Tower RuneQuest Quickstart is available in print and POD here. It’s also available for free in PDF here.

You can find Ludovic all around the interwebs. For more information, see his God Learner wizard profile.

Our guest for this episode is Drew Baker, author of a series of products on the Jonstown Compendium, including the QAD (Quick and Dirty) series (available as the omnibus edition “Pimper’s Block“), the Rubble Redux scenarios Insula of the Waning Moon and Insula of the Rising Sun, and Alogo’s Caravan – Riding Animals of Dragon Pass..

Announcement: The Gloranthan Initiation Interviews

Announcing a series of interviews with people comparatively new to Glorantha, sharing their experiences and their perspectives on the setting and the games surrounding it. We’ll be posting these between our main episodes.

News

Jörg boasts of his recent visit to the Kraken Convention, a gaming retreat held annually at Schloss Neuhausen, a chateau in the German state of Brandenburg,

The What is New About RuneQuest panel video is mentioned, as well as the fact that some copies of the Starter Set were available, something Jason Durall blogged about, too.

Jörg mentions a game he played – coincidentally with our Finnish fellow Dayzatarin Tähtien Alla podcaster Juha Rutila (Finnish language only). That game was Turning Point, by Phil Vecchione and Senda Linaugh. It is still in quickstart phase, but totally playable.

The release date of the Starter Set was announced – it is the 10th of November 21, or 11-10-21 which add up to a significant number.

Katrin Dirim received the 2021 Award.

Drew tells how Jeff putting out the definitive map both screwed up and bettered his Glorantha game, and gives a huge shout-out to Jeff’s preview notes.

Drew puts forward an idea how the changes in the Sartar Map may be blamed on the rise of “an eight kilometer long reptile” “swallowing half of the east part of Sartar”.

The Black Spear campaign by Nick Brooke, lavishly illustrated by Mike O’Connor, takes you on a highly mythical road trip into Prax towards Pavis.

Main Topic: The Travels of Biturian Varosh

Pavis (Pavis Cult)

We start with Ludo summarizing the sidebar stories in Cults of Prax and the previous travels of Biturian.

We start off with a theory why there are universal names for spirit magic spells – Ludo blames the God Learners, Drew blames mercantile standardization at the hands of the Issaries Cult, while Jörg points out that the God Learners promoted the cult of Issaries in the Second Age.

Drew turns our attention to the phases of the moon for Biturian’s interactions with the lunars at Moonbroth.

The perennial debate about pronunciation of the city of Pavis, and we get into the history of the place, including the mecha-battle between the Faceless Statue and Waha and the giants.

Drew points out that Biturian spends the Winter Solstice on fhe road, possibly in the neighborhood of Tada’s High Tumulus.

We talk about the best travel times in the Wastes, and how that assessment may vary between Praxians following their herds and travelers from Dragon Pass. Jörg sows confusion about Praxian seasons (checking this afterwards, yes, there are rains in winter, but summer fertility lasts into Fire Season, while Winter doesn’t provide for the herds yet.

We discuss raiders dropping down from bridges on boats going underneath, and we wonder about the falling damage for 25 meters in RuneQuest. Jörg suggests bungee jumping (Vanuatu style).

Drew is wondering about Biturian’s motivation for researching into Morak’s nature.

Biturian is getting a couple of apparently profitable opportunities in Sun County and Corflu, but with hindsight wisdom we speculate whether those were planted sabotage.

We get into almost a Clue situation about who ambushed who in that neighborhood ritual headed by a priest of Pavis.

We speculate about where exactly in Pavis this ambush would take place, and why it would be an auspicious day.

We also talk about the ale economy in Pavis, and how curfew could spoil a festival aftermath.

Sun County (Yelmalio Cult)

Biturian arrives at Sun County and gets coerced into the role of the Lightbringer for a deadly Yelmalio ritual, the Three Blows of Anger.

Drew badmouths the Yelmalio cult as petty for the non-marriage rules of the Yelmalio priesthood.

We discuss how this “this world” heroquest is set up, mention mythic identification, and we discuss how the preparation for that myth could have been done better, ignoring the HeroQuest Surprise element of such an undertaking.

We’re discussing the fate of Rurik, from his bad run as boxed text example character in RuneQuest first.

We discuss the problems of divine intervention landing a character at very low power, and how that can retire character.

Then we high-tail out of Sun County to the newest marketplace in Prax, the recently built port of Corflu.

Corflu (Issaries Cult)

The Corflu Issaries market is actually run by the Etyries cult, but still serves as the example of the Issaries cult.

We discuss the origin of the name Corflu and why Biturian had to sit out the entire season at that dismal market.

The arrival of a Wolf Pirate ship scares the entire port, and we speculate on the female pirate’s motivations and mode of transport, and how poor traders the Etyries priests are to shun away from her.

A gang of Baboons gets rich from removing the carcasses of the beasts of burden dying from that plague, and Jörg speculates whether these could be the same baboons showing up nearby at the start of the River Voices scenario in River of Cradles.

We discuss the (impossible?) task given to Garzeen to re-assemble Genert by the sister of Prince Hrestol, and how it is obeyed even by the Etyries priests.

We speculate about the red glow warnng off Kethaelan ships from the port of Corflu, and whether it may have had to do with the re.animation of the Watchdog of Corflu.

We then take an inventory of Biturian’s assets, and wonder why he wouldn’t sell off the slave bracelets on Norayeep which probably surpass the value of a slave by a magnitude.

Conclusions?

We discuss the impact of the example character stories, and how many of the episodes have an undercurrent of heroquests happening to Biturian – a heroquest magnet.

Credits

The intro music is “The Warbird” by Try-Tachion. Other music includes “Cinder and Smoke” and “Skyspeak“, along with audio from the FreeSound library.