Elric Demons

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pittel
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Elric Demons

Postby pittel » Sat Nov 13, 2010 12:34 pm

I m wondering how patient the Demons under the new rules are, eg the Protection Demons.

There is no Binding or I just didnt see it in the rules?

Could I summon a Demon and "park" it between the planes waiting for further instructions or do I have give him the orders directly after summoning?
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Re: Elric Demons

Postby Loz » Sun Nov 14, 2010 2:32 pm

pittel wrote:I m wondering how patient the Demons under the new rules are, eg the Protection Demons.

There is no Binding or I just didnt see it in the rules?

Could I summon a Demon and "park" it between the planes waiting for further instructions or do I have give him the orders directly after summoning?
Hi Pittel,

You're right, there's no binding. You summon the demon and command it; its hangs around for a little while and then goes. Demons and elementals cannot be bound into permanent service.

And no, you couldn't summon and park a demon, waiting to call it up when the occasion arises. When a demon is summoned, it arrives, does what it is commanded to do, and then goes.
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Postby hegan » Sun Nov 14, 2010 4:13 pm

"...does what it is commanded to do"

you've forgotten "sometimes" : before it does what it is commanded to do
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Postby havercake lad » Sun Nov 14, 2010 6:02 pm

To look at MM material, I assume the deamon that arrives quickly that Saxif D'aann summons is one from a known race using the rapid summoning rules rather than one 'on tap'.
Rules now mean Sorceror must think hard about bargains and rewards. Long service might be possible, a recent Elric story had a guardian demon serving one hundred and fifty years ( and counting ) though it had a spectacular treasure to guard, that presumably it enjoyed gazing at !
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Postby pittel » Sun Nov 14, 2010 6:03 pm

hmmm, no binding at all?!

This means there are no bound elementals and demons in Items, eg Udines who are enslaved to carry a black Pan Tangian War Galley?

Or the Demon Iron Gate of Hwamgaarl?

No Demon Daggers which must be cleaned with fresh garlic anymore?
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Postby Da Boss » Sun Nov 14, 2010 9:08 pm

As I understand it was a conscious decision to avoid the previous bound demon item rules as there is little evidence in the saga. No reason for you not to use them if you like them though :D

(I do use them although I prefer to make each item unique with a back story if possible)
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Postby Mongoose Pete » Sun Nov 14, 2010 11:29 pm

pittel wrote:hmmm, no binding at all?!

This means there are no bound elementals and demons in Items, eg Udines who are enslaved to carry a black Pan Tangian War Galley?

Or the Demon Iron Gate of Hwamgaarl?

No Demon Daggers which must be cleaned with fresh garlic anymore?
Hey Pittel. You can get gifts from the Higher Powers which are quasi-bound Elementals or Demon slaves that you can call upon once per adventure. I.e they are assigned to your personal service.

There's no reason the Captain of a Pang Tangian galley might not have a few his Lord of Chaos bound to the ship which he can call upon in times of necessity.
Nice to get a reminder that these rules were written assuming a quite different sort of campaign from the munchkin "It's in the rules so you have to let me do it, look at me buffing my character I'm going to go kill now arrgrgrgrh" approach. -dbhoward
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Postby Loz » Mon Nov 15, 2010 12:57 am

pittel wrote:hmmm, no binding at all?!

This means there are no bound elementals and demons in Items, eg Udines who are enslaved to carry a black Pan Tangian War Galley?

Or the Demon Iron Gate of Hwamgaarl?

No Demon Daggers which must be cleaned with fresh garlic anymore?
Nope. None at all. Bound demons and demon items are a hangover from the original Stormbringer game. They have little to no existence or representation in the Elric stories. I do agree that they can be fun, but as far as the canon goes, they just don't occur.

Now, bargaining with a demon for an extended service clearly does happen and there are certain unique artefacts like Stormbringer itself, but sorcerers don't create the kind of uber - often highly game unbalancing - demon weapons that previous versions of the game contained.

So it was a very conscious decision not to include binding rules. Pete and I have been through the Elric stories looking at the way magic works and what can be found. The magic systems in the rules represent, as faithfully as possible, the kind of magic seen in the saga.
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pittel
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Postby pittel » Mon Nov 15, 2010 7:06 am

Loz wrote: Nope. None at all. Bound demons and demon items are a hangover from the original Stormbringer game. They have little to no existence or representation in the Elric stories. I do agree that they can be fun, but as far as the canon goes, they just don't occur.
I easily agree with this, however, these bound Demons were alway big fun for a GM and it was a mechanic, unique to the Stormbringer games I ran.

The powers of the Lord of Chaos and the powers of a cruel GM are the same, they are not bound in rules. So I will do whatever I wanted, I just want to know if I missed it in the rules section.

Thx for your reply!
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"bound" demons in the Elric saga

Postby csx » Fri Feb 11, 2011 3:31 am

I have to disagree with Lawrence on this point. I think there is ample evidence in the Elric saga that demons, particularly guardian demons, could be bound for long periods or indefinitely. Theleb K'aarna's demon guarding Ashaneloon had obviously been there for some time -- days, if not months.

The demon that guards beggar-king Urish's treasure is in Nadsokor for several days, at least. More importantly, Elric makes it clear that this demon may be forced to remain guarding the beggar-king's treasure indefinitely:

From the Vanishing Tower, Book II, Chapter 4:

Elric bowed sardonically to the demon and returned his salute. "Farewell unlovely one. May your master not return to release you and thus ensure you squat in this filth forever!"

The demon slobbered in rage. "My master is Theleb K'aarna—one of the most powerful sorcerers amongst your kind."

Elric shook his head. "Not my kind. I shall be slaying him soon and you will be left there until I discover the means of destroying you."

Elric is as credible source on Young Kingdoms demonology that we can find in the saga. If he says that demons can be forced to guard something indefinitely, we should accept this as fact.

While I understand the issue of game-balance, I do not see a problem with allowing adventurers to bind guardian-demons for extended periods of time. The risks involved are significant. If adventurers want to sacrifice POW to have a demon bound to guard their treasure, I say let them. But the adventurer should word the guardian demon's instructions very carefully, or while the adventurer is off adventuring, tragedy may strike. What happens when the curious child of one of the adventurer's servants or friends wanders into the area the demon guards? Even if the demon doesn't attack the child (because of the adventurer's carefully worded instructions), the adventurer may return to find his or her home burned to the ground, and the city watch looking to question him about illegal sorcery.

-- Charlie
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Postby Loz » Fri Feb 11, 2011 4:28 am

I think there's a distinction to be drawn between binding and negotiating for an extended service - which in both the Asheneloon and Urish cases, you have here.

In neither case is the demon bound into an item or necessarily held against its will. Its compelled to do something, but that may be part of a bargain or negotiated agreement to achieve the service. There's nothing in the rules to prevent you from doing this and it may not even cost any MPs or POW either: simply the strength of the tactic used in negotiation.

However the kinds of binding found in previous editions of the game isn't in evidence. Cunning negotiations though, are a different matter.

Furthermore, whilst the demons in both the examples cited might appear to have been in place for a long time, is that really the case? To simulate such appearances using the game rules I think its quite allowable to have, as part of the demon's command, to appear and guard whenever a threat or challenge appears, with the amount of time the demon spends in doing that specific activity being governed by magic points expended as part of the summoning. So although the demon guarding Urish's treasure is present when Elric turns up, how do we know that it occupied his throne for days, week or months? Its appearance might be governed by a known approaching threat although the terms of its bargain might compel it to guard for only those instances which, cumulatively, add up to a period of hours governed by the extended magic points.

But, Your Elric Will Vary...
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Bound demons in the Elric saga

Postby csx » Fri Feb 11, 2011 11:55 am

We've disagreed on these matters previously, Lawrence. I think that especially in the case of the demon guarding Urish's treasure, we really have to defer to Elric's expertise on the matter of demons being forced into eternal servitude. When Elric, the exponent of 10,000 years of Melnibone's sorcerous knowledge says that a demon will "squat in this filth forever," I think we have to take him at his word -- the White Wolf is being entirely literal. Certainly, the demon's reaction -- slobbering in rage -- when Elric taunts it with the prospect of remaining indefinitely in Nadsokor -- strongly suggests that the demon is held very much against its will.

Interpreting Elric's statement to mean that the demon would only appear (and squat in filth) when Urish's hoard was at risk is certainly a creative way to apply the current Elric rules to the matter, I grant you.

But I think that very nuanced interpretation flies in the face of the Swords and Sorcery genre. The kind of magic that drags a demon -- one with a wardpact that would stand against Stormbringer itself -- to the Young Kingdoms is *not* subtle. The sorcerer conjuring such a demon is making a bold statement. I feel that tamping such a statement down with the caveat that the demon only appears when the hoard it guards is threatened diminishes something that is wonderful and terrible and unique to Moorcock's sorcery in the Young Kingdoms setting.

The Swords and Sorcery genre deals in absolutes like the eternal bindings found in the Stormbringer edition of the game. I certainly appreciate the efforts you and the other writers made to closely follow the very limited details Moorcock gave us in the Elric saga about sorcery and carry that into the current iteration of the Elric of Melnibone RPG. But I think that in this case, game balance was chosen over adherence to what we see in the saga. Moorcock doesn't mince words when describing Elric's encounter with the demon. I don't think the game system should do so out of game balance expediency on this matter.

-- Charlie
Last edited by csx on Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:08 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby Da Boss » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:02 pm

Personally I love the old Demon and Elemental binding rules - however the novels are (intentionally?) pretty vague on how the magic works. But then my YK varies quite considerably and has more magical legacies and activity (as well as crossovers) than perhaps the more mainstream ones!

I think the new magic system/s are very good - although there is certainly room for a recreation of the binding rules from previous editions - would make a good S+P article / fan made freebie......!?
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Postby Mongoose Pete » Fri Feb 11, 2011 12:35 pm

Da Boss wrote:I think the new magic system/s are very good - although there is certainly room for a recreation of the binding rules from previous editions - would make a good S+P article / fan made freebie......!?
I believe in our first version of the magic system we had a specific Gift called 'Slave' or something similar, which allowed the PC to have a Demon assigned in servitude to them and was designed to account for some of the inconsistent events in the saga. If I remember right the demon could be given one task or one request per adventure or something similar.

Not sure if it made it to the MRQ2 version, but you can easily recreate the servitude of King Urish's treasure guardian with just such a pact gift. Just tweak the conditions so that it is assigned a permanent task which cannot be changed once negotiated. It'll just cost a character the same amount of dedicated POW as the number of MPs normally used to summon it. No problem.
Nice to get a reminder that these rules were written assuming a quite different sort of campaign from the munchkin "It's in the rules so you have to let me do it, look at me buffing my character I'm going to go kill now arrgrgrgrh" approach. -dbhoward
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Postby Loz » Fri Feb 11, 2011 3:01 pm

I believe in our first version of the magic system we had a specific Gift called 'Slave' or something similar, which allowed the PC to have a Demon assigned in servitude to them and was designed to account for some of the inconsistent events in the saga. If I remember right the demon could be given one task or one request per adventure or something similar.
Yes, Slave is still in there, and it would fit the bill.
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Postby tarkhan bey » Sat Feb 12, 2011 5:43 pm

I believe that there are certain swords and other items in Magic of the Young Kingdoms for 1st Ed that contain bound demons. Have these not reappeared in the new edition?
I like the idea of PC's not being able to simply invent their own demon weapons but really liked the idea that other, older and wiser(?) entities had the capability.
One of my characters became a devotee of Mabelode and sacrificed a lot of his soul to the pact. His reward was the use(but not the possession) of one of the swords-'Fierce Swiftness' IIRC.
It still wasn't easy. He had to journey onto the Troosian plateau to get it and had to accept two compulsions, one of which was that within 666 days he must present the head of Meloric the Golden(champion of the Unrelenting Knights of Tovik) to the High Priest at Mabelode's temple in Gromoorva. :twisted:
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Postby danskmacabre » Sun Feb 13, 2011 2:50 am

I will probably add custom rules to allow players to "Bind" demons into weapons etc..
I still have my 1st Edition Strmbringer rules about somewhere and will add the demon weapons, armor etc in.
Since sorcerors will have to sacrifiice a permanent POW to do this, I can't see it being that common anyway.

Regarding whether it's true to the original novels, well personally I don't care, it's MY campaign loosely based on the Elric novels. I'm not trying to exactly emulate the novels.
Demon weapons and armor and stuff like that were good fun and added to the manicness of the game that Stormbringer was.
All the is IMO of course and I respect other people's views on the matter in whatever way they want to run their Elric campaign.
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Postby havercake lad » Sun Feb 13, 2011 10:42 am

It always seemed that POW sacrifice was no loss to many PC characters attemptinmg the binding entities in the old games.
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Postby Rurik » Sun Feb 13, 2011 1:42 pm

havercake lad wrote:It always seemed that POW sacrifice was no loss to many PC characters attemptinmg the binding entities in the old games.
But POW gain was much easier in previous editions. Permanent POW sacrifice is a lot more 'expensive' in MRQ.
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Postby DamonJynx » Thu Feb 17, 2011 10:20 pm

Never having played in the YK before, I was going to with DLOM D20 but couldn't entice my group, I think the bound demons, IMO, are unbalancing. Though, I seem to remember in the battle Elric has with Jagreen Lern in Stormbringer, that Lern's armour has some quality, I can't recall, that may have been a bound demon. I'll have to re-read that. It could just have easily been an inscribed rune, but it would have to be powerful to thwart Stormbringer, at least initially.

Use of inscribed runes can do similar things; inscribe the blade of a weapon with 4 or more MP of heat or cold and it will do additional damage. Stack that with Law, Chaos or some other runes and you have a handy weapon without the need for binding demons.

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