Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Discover the Legend RPG, Mongoose's fantasy game.
Urox
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 263
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 5:20 pm
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Postby Urox » Sat Aug 26, 2006 2:35 pm

Ralios PDF
Grade: B-
Gloranthaphiles: Must Own
Potential 2A GMs: Wait for Second Age book first
Players: Skip

Note: This is really a generic-system source material release, with no mechanics from RQ/MQ/HQ (not even any stats for unique and deadly encounters).

The best way I can describe the Ralios PDF as a post-modern HQ sourcebook. While it has a lot of details, it lacks the magic found in the better of the Chaosium and AH products. Rob Laws is the credited author, and it very much feels like his work on HQ.

I suspect that new visitors to Glorantha will this book very confusing as it does a lot of name dropping without building a foundation for them -- especially the references to the EWF and God Learners (which I suspect reference yet unrevealed information from the 2A book).

Some Gripes:

It prints out okay, but it looks to be ripped out of the 2A book, and the color backgrounds and maps didn't turn out so well on my HP Laserjet 4. The art didn't print well either, but the art is generally poor throw-away fantasy art (except for a trollkin and a very plant-like elf king).

The adventure hooks look to have been generated using a random hook generator, are are almost all of the formula A hires you to do B, and could be set anywhere. The suppliment throws a million NPCs at you, but none have quite enough information to be really interesting, and some are in an annoying teaser style -- "So and So comes across as a man with a secret, but what that secret is, only he knows."

Here's the big gripe -- almost all of the material is a Dragon Pass knock-off. With very little work, almost everything from 2A Ralios could be popped right in to a 3A campaign in Dragon Pass.

The Ralios PDF makes me skeptical about the 2A book, which may share some of the same drawbacks. If you were hoping for another Dorastor-style sourcepak, so far, this isn't it. If you were looking for light HQ material, this is more up your alley.

Nitpik: This Mistress Race troll that repeatedly bears trollkin...
zanshin
Mongoose
Posts: 134
Joined: Mon Aug 21, 2006 11:18 am

Postby zanshin » Sat Aug 26, 2006 4:42 pm

mmm

My review

B+

Printed on a colour laser the presentation is excellent. For £3.00 you get 41 pages of material - at price per page thats very good value compared to some Issaries stuff let alone trying to acquire older RQ stuff on ebay now. The pictures and maps are fine, though A4 maps would have been nice.

It does assume some knowledge of the wider background that we will get in the Glorantha book, but sets the scene in Ralios in broad brush strokes with thumbnail sketches of major characters. The writing is up to Robin Laws usual high standard , with some excellent descriptions. The depiction of the Halikkiv Trolls and their concentration camps is chilling indeed.

It is stat free, and it is to be hoped that further supplements will give us Sun County/Pavis level of detail for the different factions and places.

As an introduction to Ralios it is excellent, and a must buy if you are going to run a campaign there. Gloranthaphiles will not be disappointed.
Mac V
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 495
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 8:52 pm

I wonder

Postby Mac V » Sat Aug 26, 2006 6:51 pm

I wonder if the stats are in the main book. I hope so, it would be a big help.
JonGeere
Stoat
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 11:19 am
Location: Norwich

Ralios PDF

Postby JonGeere » Sat Aug 26, 2006 8:32 pm

Commendation to Robin Laws and Mongoose for this work. For a Gloranthan fan it is a must have (an at excellent value).

I share the worry that there is enough of an introduction in the Glorantha 3A book proper to make all these names understandable to newcomers. However, this worry is based on others failings in the past to do this than anything yet done by RL or Mongoose.

I'll give it a B+ (knowing the A's achieved by some past true classics).
Urox
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 263
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 5:20 pm
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Re: Ralios PDF

Postby Urox » Sun Aug 27, 2006 1:26 am

JonGeere wrote:I'll give it a B+ (knowing the A's achieved by some past true classics).
I'm surpised at some of the high marks, especially considering Ralios looks to be a leftover from the forthcoming Second Age book. Out of curiosity, how would you rate some of the past releases?

For me:

A+ Cults of Prax, RQ2 Trollpak
A Pavis/Big Rubble/Borderlands
A- Dorastor
B+ Sun County/Shadows/RoC
B Thunder Rebels (HQ)
C+ Storm Tribe (HQ)
C Sartar Rising campaign books (HQ)
D Judge's Guild RQ suppliments
Signy
Shrew
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Aug 09, 2006 3:38 pm

Re: Ralios PDF

Postby Signy » Sun Aug 27, 2006 6:43 am

Urox wrote:Out of curiosity, how would you rate some of the past releases?

For me:

A+ Cults of Prax, RQ2 Trollpak
A Pavis/Big Rubble/Borderlands
A- Dorastor
B+ Sun County/Shadows/RoC
B Thunder Rebels (HQ)
C+ Storm Tribe (HQ)
C Sartar Rising campaign books (HQ)
D Judge's Guild RQ suppliments
A+ RQ2 Trollpak, Griffin Mountain, Vikings
A Cults of Terror, Pavis + Big Rubble (as a set), Dorastor + LoT (as a set)
A- Cults of Prax, Borderlands, Sun County + RoC + Shadows (as a set), Gods of Glorantha
B+ Elder Secrets of Glorantha, Second Age - Ralios, Men of the Sea (HQ), Land of Ninja
B Snake Pipe Hollow (when merging the RQ2 and RQ3 versions), Imperial Lunar Handbook (HQ), HeroQuest Voices, the SoloQuest books
B- RQ3 Trollgods, Dragon Pass (HQ)
C+ Eldarad, Gloranthan Bestiary
C Daughters of Darkness
C- Questworld, Monster Coliseum
D The Gateway Bestiary
F The Judges Guild supplements
JonGeere
Stoat
Posts: 67
Joined: Tue Aug 01, 2006 11:19 am
Location: Norwich

Postby JonGeere » Sun Aug 27, 2006 7:55 am

Urox wrote:
Out of curiosity, how would you rate some of the past releases?
A+ RQ2 Trollpak, Griffin Mountain,
A Pavis/Big Rubble/Borderlands
A- Elder Secrets of Glorantha, RQ3 Glorantha (box set), Cults/Lords of Terror
B+ Dorastor, Cults of Prax,
B Sun County/Shadows/RoC
B- Most HQ stuff (bias alert: not an Orlanthi or Lunar fan)
C Judges Guild, Questworld,
D Daughters of Darkness

All subject to mood swings, not that role players have those sorts of things.
homerjsinnott
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 482
Joined: Fri Jun 02, 2006 11:54 pm

Postby homerjsinnott » Sun Aug 27, 2006 8:06 am

This one doesn't go up to eleven!


A. Tales of the Reaching Moon No11 (Palmaltela special). Cults of Prax. Lords/Cults of Terror. Runequest Companion.


A-
Troll Pak (tempted to only give it a B+ cause of the reprints of KL and ZZ). Tales No8 (The Chaos feature!). Pavis and the Big Rubble.
Griffin mountain (Could well be an A). Dragon Pass Gazetteer (did what it said on the tin and very well). Strangers in Prax (gotta love those Pirates!). Rainbow Mounds (just great fun.) The Book of Drastic Resolutions (Vol Chaos, should be a B+ but I like the style and idea.)


B+
Dorastor*. Shadows. Sun County (should be higher, but they were mean to yelmalions.) God of Glorantha (very mixed on this one).


B.
Tales no19 (Vampires and zombies and Duck, oh my!). Borderlands 1/2+.
Snake Pipe Hollow (again could well be higher). Soloquest 2+3. Vikings. Elder Secrets.


B-
Gloranthan Bestiary (higher with a lower price tag). Troll Gods (It's that Kygor Litor thing again!)


Part 2 later.
Member of the FESPA. Formally PESPAM (spliters!).

"I would rather be a Troll than a chimp brained pompous system bigot like you."
It's the system bigot bit I don't understand, and I like chimps.

I was a God Learner experiment.
Mac V
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 495
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 8:52 pm

Newbie

Postby Mac V » Sun Aug 27, 2006 12:33 pm

As a RQ newbie, a couple questions. I don't know anything about past products, but this Ralios PDF is awsome. The problem is there is SO much going on, it looks like it will be hard to grab hold of the whole setting. Do you older guys just focus on an area and go from there?

Also, what is this Troll Pack I keep hearing about from the old days?
Mac V
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 495
Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 8:52 pm

Newbie

Postby Mac V » Sun Aug 27, 2006 12:33 pm

As a RQ newbie, a couple questions. I don't know anything about past products, but this Ralios PDF is awsome. The problem is there is SO much going on, it looks like it will be hard to grab hold of the whole setting. Do you older guys just focus on an area and go from there?

Also, what is this Troll Pack I keep hearing about from the old days?
burdock
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 237
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2006 5:53 pm

Postby burdock » Sun Aug 27, 2006 12:54 pm

you are all grading the supplements with the most detail. I prefer the fun little ones with wildly imaginative features:

A+ Snakepipe Hollow (love the ancient Earth Temple frozen in time)

A Apple Lane (Love the concentric bands of colour emanating from the
Dragonnewt plyhth and permeating the rock).

A- Cults of Prax (travels of Biturian Varosh)

B+ Trollpak, Pavis, Rubble, etc


I like the Ralios supplement. I like the fact its not a list of dry facts but an array of suggestions and hints
User avatar
Adept
Lesser Spotted Mongoose
Posts: 495
Joined: Thu Jun 08, 2006 10:18 am
Location: Turku, Finland

Postby Adept » Sun Aug 27, 2006 1:14 pm

I'm not fluent with the letter based system you anglos use to grade students, but I'm very pleased with the Ralios pdf.

I'd be tempted to compare it with the best all around RQ-3 product, Lords of Terror. Now that was a good RQ product, even if they went with the sorcerous Vivamorti (a very dry approach).
Thinker, dreamer and adventurer
Enpeze
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 341
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 7:59 pm
Location: Vienna

Postby Enpeze » Sun Aug 27, 2006 1:28 pm

A - vikings
B - Thunder rebels
C and below - the rest of the glorantha books
E - Land of Ninja (a bad book)
F - monster coliseum (yuck)
kpmcdona
Weasel
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu May 25, 2006 3:04 pm
Location: North Carolina, USA
Contact:

Chaos from Dorastor?

Postby kpmcdona » Sun Aug 27, 2006 2:25 pm

I was just reading the Ralios PDF, and noticed the following line: "Incursions from Dorastor, via Karia, infest their hills with Chaos creatures." Isn't it a bit early for that? IIRC, the first broo raids from Dorastor were around 1120 ST. Before that Dorastor was a weird wasteland that was occasionally explored by the EWF (824 & 857) and Godlearners (852). I have heard that Godlearners awakened/released Ralzakark, but I don't know exactly when that happened. If awakened around 852, Ralzakark could have been developing the chaos of Dorastor and venting excess monstrosities into Ralios in order to keep the EWF from finding out about his activities. Getting them through Kartolin Pass wouldn't be all that easy, though.

Any other ideas?
Urox
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 263
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 5:20 pm
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Re: Chaos from Dorastor?

Postby Urox » Sun Aug 27, 2006 3:15 pm

kpmcdona wrote:I was just reading the Ralios PDF, and noticed the following line: "Incursions from Dorastor, via Karia, infest their hills with Chaos creatures." Isn't it a bit early for that? IIRC, the first broo raids from Dorastor were around 1120 ST. Before that Dorastor was a weird wasteland that was occasionally explored by the EWF (824 & 857) and Godlearners (852).
The whole entry on Karia is rather disappointing, especially Adventures in Karia:

"This is not a place of intrigue, mystery or complicated plot hooks. Aventurers in Karia find horrible monsters, fight them, kill them, and escape -- if they are not killed themselves"

Maybe Dorastor and Snakepipe Hollow have already done the chaos den to death, but Karia sounds less interesting than the Chaos Woods or even the Devil's Swamp (let alone the enigmatic Tunneled Hills or Plateau of Statues).
User avatar
atgxtg
Duck-Billed Mongoose
Posts: 2063
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 11:28 pm

Re: Newbie

Postby atgxtg » Sun Aug 27, 2006 3:46 pm

Mac V wrote:As a RQ newbie, a couple questions. I don't know anything about past products, but this Ralios PDF is awsome. The problem is there is SO much going on, it looks like it will be hard to grab hold of the whole setting. Do you older guys just focus on an area and go from there?
Generally, yeah. THat is why Dragon Pass and Prax featurered so prominently in RQ2 and RQ3 campaigns. THose areas were the most "fleshed out" for play. The older stuff, even some of the HeroQuest books, make good resocruce material for a GM.

Mac V wrote:Also, what is this Troll Pack I keep hearing about from the old days?
Trollpak, was a boxed supplement for RQ2 detailing the Troll race in RQ. Trolls, in RQ are not just dumb monsters, but in fact are an intelligent, agressive species with various sub-species and a fully developed culture and history. THe boxed set had rules for character generation, infomation on troll phsiology, culture, and religion, as welll as several adventures. The Trollpak was also repentined in a somewhat altered and updated version for RQ3.

You can still find copies of both editions if you are a big fan of Trolls.
Mark Mohrfield
Mongoose
Posts: 124
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 3:35 pm

Re: Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Postby Mark Mohrfield » Sun Aug 27, 2006 5:34 pm

Urox wrote:
Here's the big gripe -- almost all of the material is a Dragon Pass knock-off. With very little work, almost everything from 2A Ralios could be popped right in to a 3A campaign in Dragon Pass.


Huh? Much of it concerns the EWF and the God Learners, neither of which exist in the third age.
Urox wrote: Nitpik: This Mistress Race troll that repeatedly bears trollkin...
I noticed that one, too.
Urox
Banded Mongoose
Posts: 263
Joined: Fri Jun 09, 2006 5:20 pm
Location: San Francisco Bay Area

Re: Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Postby Urox » Sun Aug 27, 2006 8:14 pm

Mark Mohrfield wrote:
Urox wrote:Here's the big gripe -- almost all of the material is a Dragon Pass knock-off. With very little work, almost everything from 2A Ralios could be popped right in to a 3A campaign in Dragon Pass.

Huh? Much of it concerns the EWF and the God Learners, neither of which exist in the third age.
There was really very little about the God Learners/EWF themselves -- mostly just veiled references to the Emperor or Master Plan.

All of the Orlanthi stuff was just shades of what you find in Dragon Pass, with the different alliances -- instead of Pro-Lunar, Pro-Sarter and Don't Care, you get Pro-GL, Pro-EWF and don't care.

There are more similarities, not limited to:

Two separate troll clans (like Dagori Inkarth and Troll woods)
Chaos den
Knights just outside (like in Holy Country)
Reclisive Elf conclave (Ballid instead of Stinking Forest)
Dwarf Outpost
Telmori

I think that Safelster will be more original and interesting than Ralios

Hrm... wasn't the New Fens moved from Maniria to Ralios at some point? I was looking for them and didn't find them.
Mark Mohrfield
Mongoose
Posts: 124
Joined: Mon Jul 10, 2006 3:35 pm

Re: Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Postby Mark Mohrfield » Sun Aug 27, 2006 9:07 pm

Mark Mohrfield wrote:
Urox wrote:Here's the big gripe -- almost all of the material is a Dragon Pass knock-off. With very little work, almost everything from 2A Ralios could be popped right in to a 3A campaign in Dragon Pass.

Huh? Much of it concerns the EWF and the God Learners, neither of which exist in the third age.
There was really very little about the God Learners/EWF themselves -- mostly just veiled references to the Emperor or Master Plan.
I think you're underestimating their effect. The EWF is building new cities in Ormsland, forex, something the Lunars are not doing in 3rd age Sartar. .
All of the Orlanthi stuff was just shades of what you find in Dragon Pass, with the different alliances -- instead of Pro-Lunar, Pro-Sarter and Don't Care, you get Pro-GL, Pro-EWF and don't care.
But this is a difference, not a similiarity. The fact that there are two empires changes the equation immensely.
There are more similarities, not limited to:

Two separate troll clans (like Dagori Inkarth and Troll woods)
But Guhan and Halikiv are different from their DP relatives. DP has nothing like those Halikiv slave pens, forex.
Chaos den
Okay, but really we need one of those. :)
Knights just outside (like in Holy Country)
The Holy Country has just a small amount of mostly imported knights. Safelster is an entire Malkioni country.
Reclisive Elf conclave (Ballid instead of Stinking Forest)
Again much larger. Ballid has a Great Tree, unlike the SF.
Dwarf Outpost
Not an outpost! The largest Dwarf nation in Genertela, and they claim to be the rulers of all dwarfs, everywhere! Compare that to the tiny colony in Dragon Pass, which is ruled by a heretical Openhandedenist!
Telmori


Okay, I'll give you that one.

I think that Safelster will be more original and interesting than Ralios
Bear in mind that Safelster is a part of Ralios. We'll probably see alot more detail on it, though.
Hrm... wasn't the New Fens moved from Maniria to Ralios at some point? I was looking for them and didn't find them
I think that was the other way around. Actually, now that i think about it, I believe they moved where the term "Ralios" applied.
Signy
Shrew
Posts: 12
Joined: Wed Aug 09, 2006 3:38 pm

Re: Ralios PDF suppliment in a nutshell

Postby Signy » Thu Aug 31, 2006 12:06 pm

Urox wrote:Nitpik: This Mistress Race troll that repeatedly bears trollkin...
Robin Laws replied about this issue in his blog http://robin-d-laws.livejournal.com/161588.html:

(WARNING: spoiler!!!)












In a side note, questions have been raised about one of the characters described in the piece, a mistress race troll who gives birth to the occasional trollkin, as if this is some kind of inconsistency or something. C’mon, people! “The God Learners have discovered that the mistress race troll Toolani gives birth to trollkin. They wish to know why this is so. Does she bear the scars of direct contact with the dread Gbaji? If so, what can she tell us about this entity? You have been hired to journey to Guhan to subject her to an interview, and extract the truth from this ancient being.” Sheesh. And you call yourselves roleplayers. Tsk, tsk, and more tsk.

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 6 guests