CHA4028 RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha – Chapter 06 Skills Q&A

Answers by Jason Durall, RuneQuest Line editor


Modifying Skill Rolls (page 163)

It’s probably second nature to experienced gamers but I don’t see anything about how the GM being able to apply arbitrary bonuses/penalties given circumstances? (like some bonus to Track because it rained recently and the ground is soft, or something) There’s a paragraph on p163, just under “Modifying Skill Rolls“, that probably addresses this, but it’s unclear since it can be read merely as an introduction to the augment rules. More importantly, it doesn’t give any hint as to what a proper range for those bonuses/penalties might be (should the Track example above be 10% or 40%?).

It’s intended that the guidelines for augmenting abilities with Passions/Runes/other skills provide guidance for such benefits, but that regretfully isn’t clear. 

Given that there’s a lot of grey area in how much a particular circumstance might truly influence a task, it could be anywhere from ±5 to ±75%. I personally tend to believe that if a modifier is less than ±20% it’s not worth applying, as the difference is something that should be taken into account with the adventurer’s facility with the ability. 


Skill Descriptions (page 164)

Second paragraph, “(Elder Race) Lore or (Homeland) Lore” replaced with “Elder Race Lore (Type) or Homeland Lore (Area)”. Later is same paragraph “(Elder Race) Lore” is replaced with “Elder Race Lore (Type)”. (Part of Second printing corrections)


Agility Skills (page 164)

Boat (page 164) & Shiphandling (page 182)

Boat provides the adventurer with a skill in handling oared or poled small boats such as rafts, canoes, and rowboats. Boat is primarily a physical activity, unlike Shiphandling, which is knowledge based.

Shiphandling allows an adventurer to successfully command a ship that needs a crew of more than two. For smaller vessels, use the Boat skill (page 164).

What about canoes/rafts suitable for seafaring that can be sailed double handed?

Canoes, rafts, kayaks, and smaller sea-craft all fall under Boat.

The currently-in-development RuneQuest Gamemaster Sourcebook includes rules for sea travel and combat, and identifies which skill goes with which vessel.


Jumping (page 166)

Not quite sure I got the difference between the falling with a normal success vs a special success (and this part doesn’t seem to be covered in the section on Falling, so I can’t easily verify this). The way the phrasing read to me initially was that, if I was supposed to roll 4D6 damage, I only roll 3D6 damage instead (reducing the damage by a “step”) and get to pick a hit location. But on a special success I roll my 4D6 damage, but then roll 1D6 and deduct the result from the damage rolled (and get to pick a hit location)? But I was sure that can be right, because it would actually make rolling a special worse than rolling a normal success.

Mechanically, picking what hit location gets hit in a fall is hugely better than reducing damage by 1D6. It determines whether you break an arm vs being knocked unconscious or dying (if head is rolled). 

So I am guessing what it really means is, if you get a success, either normal or special, you roll one less D6 than you would have (rather than actually subtracting the result of a 1D6 roll), meaning that for falling, it doesn’t really make a difference if you had a normal or special success, and that for a crit, you not only roll one D6 less, you also then halve whatever damage is left over. Is that interpretation correct?

See above. 


Ride (page 166)

Training Riding Animals

Page 167 says that mounts must be trained separately to; accept a rider, remain calm in battle, fight in battle and increase their three attack skills up to 50% below the trainer’s ride skill. Training to accept a rider is stated to take a week. How long do the other types of training take?

The other types of training takes many months, if not years. This can depend hugely on the culture, the environment, the amount of attention provided, and the facilities.  On 2/12/2019 at 1:49 PM, CBDunkerson said:

Also, does a war trained mount immediately get 50% below the trainer’s skill in attacks or does that have to be trained separately (or separately for each attack)?

Those are general guidelines. Assume that when a fully-trained warhorse is purchased it will be trained at those levels. If you for some reason desire more granularity, please ask your gamemaster. 


Knowledge Skills (page 175)

Battle (page 176)

Does armor count in Battle-skill result table damages?

No. It’s an abstract of many, many injuries. 


First Aid (Page 177)

First Aid is applied to each individual wound once, which necessitates keeping track of individual hits/wounds. So a limb with 3 separate hits could have first aid applied 3 times, once for each individual wound.

Blows to the limbs beyond the max x2 damage limit no longer register with the limb, but do however register with Total Hit points.

Is it intended that any further damage to Total Hit points received through subsequent hits to limbs (after x2 max dam limit ), will not be possible to heal with the First Aid skill?

Keep track of the individual injuries, not the hit point totals, and this isn’t a problem.

You can’t heal more HP to a particular wound through First Aid than was inflicted, whether that injury was inflicted to a specific wound or to total hit points.


Lores (page 178)

Celestial Lore (page 178)

Can you navigate with Celestial lore?

Yes, but you’ll be unaware of the condition and configuration of the terrain, and would be unable to do so without a clear view of the stars. 

For navigation on land, you would be better served using Survival, and use Boat or Shiphandling for navigating at sea. 

Celestial Lore would be better used as an augment for one of those other skills.


Martial Arts (page 181)

Is Martial Arts treated like a weapon for special and critical success purposes? That is, does a critical Martial Arts roll do max damage and bypass armor?

You don’t roll Martial Arts. It’s a threshold. 

If you have a Martial Arts skill of 30% and, say, Fist 75%, any roll of Fist equaling 01-30 triggers the benefits of Martial Arts, and any roll of 31-75 is just a normal Fist attack. 

If your original attack roll is a special/crit AND it is below your Martial Arts skill, then you apply the benefits of the Martial Arts skill (double damage, normal damage bonus). 

Similarly, anyone can parry with a limb, but if the Parry roll is less than the Martial Arts skill, then it blocks 6 points of damage. 


Sense Chaos (page 183)

Last paragraph “visible spirits” changed to “invisible spirits”. (Part of Second printing corrections)


Manipulation Skills (page 185)

Conceal (page 185)

It says “A special or critical result adjusts for the SIZ of the item.” I am not sure what that means. Is that referring to the previous line that says that you spend about one melee round per Point of SIZ, meaning if you roll a special or crit, you spend less time concealing the object, which is as if the object had a smaller SIZ?

Yes. 


Related Pages