Personalities of Glorantha – Blueface the Shaman (1999)

originally published in Griffin Mountain
Location: The Elder Wilds

Illustration by Dario Corallo

There are many shamans in Balazar, but there is only one Blueface. Balazarings say that shaman Blueface is centuries old. Obscure tales place Blueface at the founding of Elkoi and at other ancient events. It is known that the shaman was legendary even when the fathers and grandfathers of the current tribal elders were but children. He is rumored to be nearing godhood.

The truth of the matter is that Blueface, the original Blueface, was an unnamed son of Dykene who took the shaman path. The vigor of the gods ran in his veins and he had an extremely long life, aided by his shamanistic powers. To ensure that the qualities of long life and vigor remained in his offspring, Blueface always abandons his children (begat upon Balazaring tribeswomen) to the wilderness, unaided by humans. It is cruel, and most die, but any survivors unerringly grow in power and strength, and eventually seek out their father. One of these children eventually becomes a shaman and takes the place of his father when the older shaman joins the spirits. The average lifespan of the Blueface shamans is 100 years.

The current shaman bearing the name Blueface is the most powerful of the line since its founder. He is over 200 years old. He appears as an incredibly ancient, physically powerful man with a long white beard. His face is tattooed with stylized runic whorls and swirls, all in brilliant blue. Blueface has HeroQuested many times in his long life. Successful trips have gained him special abilities such as his Possession and Endurance powers, along with magic items like the Eubuck staff.

Blueface is above tribal bickering. He goes wherever special healing or curative powers are needed in Balazar, appearing only when he wishes; otherwise he cannot be found. He is highly respected and feared, even by the Lunars. He is likely to be found wherever some poor hunter is ill, doing his traditional curing for the tribe, Often he may employ others to do tasks for him.

The Priest of Tharkantus [Yelmalio] at Dykene, Sylvanthi Brighteyes, is a son of Blueface. He is ready to become a shaman like his father, but Blueface is not ready to pass on his title.


During an early HeroQuest, the original Blueface met and aided a great, unique creature known as Greyrunner Runefang. Greyrunner was a huge tiger with flashing fangs which protruded down from between his lips. After the quest, the two made many blood-pacts and declared each other friends and allies, and the pacts have extended to Blueface’s descendants. If Greyrunner should be slain, Blueface will hunt the slayers with undying hatred to avenge his friend.

Whenever Blueface wishes, he need only speak the great cat’s name aloud, and Greyrunner will appear within a few minutes. Blueface may then attempt to possess the body of Runefang, and can remain in that form for up to 24 hours at a time.

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