HeroQuest musings

Just when you thought you were out….they drag you back in.

For various reasons I stopped focusing on HQ a couple of months ago. I thought I’ll tie up some loose ends and that is it.

However in the process of tying up those loose ends and my ongoing weekly (or near as damnit weekly ) HQ game set in Black Horse County, my love for the system has been rekindled.

Part of the frustration was an implosion of a book I was working on, called ‘New Beginnings’, which was intended as a set of starting adventures and advice articles for narrators new to Glorantha. Well the happy ending for this project is that the bits I finished have now got homes.

’10 tips for MGF’ and ‘A starting structure for gaming in Glorantha’  as well as the adventures ‘The Black Ziggurat’ and ‘The Fortress of Doors’ are now up on the Masters of Luck and Death website (www.molad.org).

The Men of the Sea adventure  “Dead Man’s  scrolls” and the Lunar  adventure “The Great  Egg Hunt’, along with a starting Lunar community the town of ‘Vastar ‘ have been submitted to those nice folks at the Unspoken Word magazine, along with my Troll Pak of Halikiv Homeland and adventure ‘The City of IronSmash’.  So sometime in the future I’ll have the satisfaction of all this in print 🙂

A relatively quick piece of work which has now gone to print, are my two contributions to the the Champions of the Reaching Moon supplement. The Goddess Index, a group of pedantic scholars who are out to find incarnations of the Red Goddess amongst the faiths of other cultures, and Cae & Moon a pair of lunars who seeking immortality. When this comes out this meansI’ll finally be proffessionally published RPG writer!!!

Since about feb I’ve been playing a campaign set in Black Horse County (see. here for background) with my mates Steve Elves, Rob and Mr C. All very different players. Steve is our schemer, Rob is the loud dramatist, and Mr C is our resident strategist. But HQ as a system really lets each shine and enjoy the game without clashing with one another. It lets them create the characters and game they want without very little input from me. Which is cool since I’ve not got all that much time to do a fully written up background like I have in the past. We are very much making it up as we are go. This sunday just gone we had a very memorable session 9,  and the players are really beginning to go for it as they know what they can do and get away with. This episode the characters started a war against the neighbouring Grazelanders and without much risk to themselves grabbed a new valley which their Lord as revenge (since it has disrupted peacefull relations, and there will be hell to pay later) has ordered the pcs to set up a fort to hold onto the land. Because of this game, admitly my first campaign I really understand the system and what its getting at. I no longer worry that there’s no HP or other such methods to give the players a sense of horror and loss, the contest system can quite easily do that (remember the players do not have to win every time : ) ).  I also am not bothered that the Heroes though a combination of manipulating the situation and through group augmentation will always eventually win. In fact I am cheering them on, eager to see were the game goes, occasionally putting obstacles in their way and but seeing them come up with their own difficulties for their characters to over come. Rob’s character for example is not your typical obedient BHC resident, Steve’s character is one of the demon horses of BHC, and Mr C although is your typical BHC obedient, loyal and pious  man who trains hard to be a knight that can cause its own problems when you are in the same group as Rob’s and Steve’s characters 🙂  In short I’m finally happy that HQ is not a traditional roleplaying game, but more a vehicle for a shared Storytelling experience akin to movies and books, than video games and wargames.

As a result I’m now toying with creating a setting, or Questworld, for the upcoming Generic version of HQ, and also planing to finish of the write up of the Epic of the Red Moon (A five scenario story arc set in the Lunar Empire) for publication in one form or another.

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