Sunday, June 3, 2018

Returning to the Scene of the Crime...

A lot of water has flowed down the River Styx since I last posted. In particular, Mongoose Runequest 2 became The Design Mechanism's wonderful Runequest 6 (and I am the proud possessor of a slipcase edition from the Kickstarter). The incredible Guide to Glorantha also came out (which I also helped Kickstart) and for a brief, wonderful period, there was the possibility of these two giving birth to Runequest: Adventures in Glorantha. And the Elder Gods returned to Chaosium to rescue it from its own Call of Cthulhu Kickstarter oblivion. In the process yet another Kickstarter allowed for the reprint of the much-loved Runequest 2nd Edition as Runequest Classic (and a project to re-issue all the old 2nd Edition supplements and adventures in cleaned-up PDF format is ongoing).

Sadly, however, Runequest: Adventures in Glorantha was not to be. The creative decision was taken by the team at The Chaosium to bring Runequest back in house, and retool the rules set. Runequest 6 became Mythras, and spawned a host of excellent supplements and adventures, including providing a new home for Thennla, the splendid world of Mongoose's Age of Treason.

Mythras: A truly excellent rules set

Meanwhile, Chaosium and Pelgrane Press teamed up to create 13th Age in Glorantha, heretically bringing a d20 class-based system to Greg Stafford's world (I kid, I kid). Set later in time than previous Glorantha-based games, the heroes of a 13G game are facing a world where the Hero Wars have unleashed chaos back into the world, and the power levels of higher-level characters would put the days of Super-Runequest to shame.

13th Age in Glorantha: A new approach
Yet Gloranthan Grognards (Gloragnards?) were still left without the system they had been waiting for since the end of the 1990s "Runequest Revival" - a fully-supported modern edition of Runequest allowing them to play in the 3rd Age. A taste was given of what could be with the 2017 Free RPG Day Runequest: Roleplaying in Glorantha Quickstart (which you can pick up for free in PDF here). But the release date of the full game appeared to be like the old Chaosium Heroquest - any year now.

Finally, on June 1st, the Gloragnards' patience was rewarded when Chaosium released the full rule set of Runequest: Roleplaying in Glorantha. The new edition was intentionally designed to be compatible with the Runequest Classic line, meaning that those adventures and supplements could be used with minimal retooling from the gamesmaster.

It's here!!!
I will have a full review of RQ:RiG in the very near future, along the lines of my ancient review of Mongoose RQ2. My initial impressions are that this is a good system, with some excellent additions to the Runequest Classic rules, but that some enhancements to the old system made on the road to Mythras were ignored that could have made the rules even better. I imagine that GMs with experience in running Gloranthan adventures using MRQ2 or RQ6/Mythras will be doing a lot of house-ruling, and I'll be writing about my decisions along those lines here.

I'll also take the opportunity to tidy up this blog a bit, including the incredibly-out-of-date sidebar. Chaosium have kindly given permission to use some of the art from the new games in social media postings - and I hope a blog qualifies as well. I'll also try to throw in a few reviews of Design Mechanism games too.

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