CHA4028 RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha – Chapter 01 Introduction Q&A

From the Editor’s Desk…(Part of Rune Fixes 2)

As publishers of RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha, it’s important for us to stress some things that shape our approach to game development in general and Glorantha in particular.

System Crash

First and foremost, it cannot be stressed enough that rules are guidelines for the gamemaster and must occasionally need to be interpreted when a question arises. These rules aren’t computer code, throwing an error and causing a system crash. No set of rules can accommodate every permutation and interaction between the various sub-systems, nor should they.

When there’s an potential conflict or unclear area, it is the gamemaster’s job to adjudicate, revising later if necessary. When in doubt, make a decision and move on.

The play is the thing, not getting it “right”.

Whose Glorantha is It Anyway?

On a second and related note, the phrase “Your Glorantha May Vary” comes up a lot, along with its variation, “Your Glorantha Will Vary.” These phrases emerged as a response to the players who had the fear of getting it wrong, of somehow misrepresenting Glorantha in a way that wasn’t “accurate”, the way that its creator, Greg Stafford, and later authors intended.

After 40 years of content development, there’s a lot of Glorantha, far more than anyone should have to try to keep in mind in order to run a game. This wall of content and sometimes complex rules can be daunting. There’s always a danger that big, detailed settings become monolithic, unchangeable, every printed word being treated as holy writ.

So “Your Glorantha May Vary” is both an acceptance and an assertion, as is “Your Glorantha Will Vary.” This freedom to make Glorantha one’s own is so important to us that it’s emphasized on page 10 of the core rules.

The upshot is that no matter what a gamemaster or player wants to do, it is perfectly all right and well within the realm of another important principle to remember, that of Maximum Game Fun, which is also so important to us that it’s presented even earlier in the core rulebook on page 6.

Let’s examine two phrases around for the moment in the mind and approach the issue from another angle.

We would like to propose that “your” Glorantha—the game being enjoyed by the players and gamemasters across the world—neither may or will vary, because for all intents and purposes, your Glorantha is the real Glorantha, and it’s everyone else’s Glorantha that varies.

Once you start playing games in Glorantha, or even imagining it, it becomes yours to dream about, a playground of thought and myth and adventure that you can shape, alter, and evoke however you’d like.

Your Glorantha is more real than anything you’re going to read about, even in print.

Take what you want, change what you’d like, and make it your own. We at Chaosium and our wonderful Jonstown Compendium contributors can make suggestions about how we think things are in Glorantha, but ultimately your Glorantha takes precedence over anything we have to say.

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