Trying to Wrap My Head Around Runequest: Roleplaying in Glorantha

So I dipped my toe into Runequest: Roleplaying in Glorantha. I’ve always wanted to check out Glorantha and this seemed like a good way to do so. The core mechanics are simple enough but the breadth of information I would need to know as a GM is intimidating. I am having a hard time wrapping my head around, “What do I need to know to run this game successfully?” Does anyone have experience with RQG?

I am poking around on Google and Reddit, but I decided I would ask the question here as well.

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I know so very little of Glorantha. Honestly, it seems incredibly daunting to dig into it.


If ever you don’t get a reply, you could check the Chaosium forum. I’m sure there’s lots of die hard Runequest fans that can help you and would love to have another recruit.

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Yeah, I had thought of that too but the chaosium forums are also intimidating. :smiley: Nothing is better than going to the source though, I guess.

I accidentally skewed the responses I am getting on reddit though. Everyone was talking about the setting and looking at my post (the same one I used here), I realize I accidentally made it sound like I was asking specifically about the setting.

However, I am okay with the setting. Going in, I decided to ignore the 40+ years of setting material from previous products. The only setting material I care about was the material in the core set which is all pretty easy to digest and really interesting. In fact, the setting is pretty awesome and I see why a lot of people are fans of it.

The place where I am getting stuck is… Well, the core mechanics are easy as I mentioned but there is so much crunch layered on top of it. The basic core of the game is d100, simple enough, but there are hundreds of tables and rules in addition to that. There is so much to it, I am not seeing an easy way into the game.

Since I posted this, I have been pointed to a Quickstart I overlooked on the Chaosium website and have suggestions for beginning adventures to check out as well. I’ve got my reading assignments for tonight. :slight_smile:

Oh, and they just announced a Starter Set. Well, there you go. LOL

I had minimal Glorantha experience when I did this review. I was looking at it, originally, as a 13th Age expansion. What I liked about this is the book defines a specific place and time where it expected a GM to run the game, so that you could get a feel about Glorantha without trying to drink from the firehose.


Adding this to my reading list.

My group played Runequest/Glorantha for a good year or so. I hear you - it’s hard to wrap your head around. Layer upon layer of complexity.

At the very least, I suggest you stay away from sorcery at first, so you don’t lose hope.

And top of the mechanics, there is the lore - which are linked.

To really get into Glorantha, you want to approach it with a mythic frame of mind - and I don’t mean fantasy. I mean myth in the sense of ‘mythos’ - mimicing patterns of the cosmos as they are reflected in grand stories. e.g. myth quests (or spirit quests? I forget what they’re called) - often your climactic events are trips to the spirit realm where you re-enact a Gloranthan myth, wrestling with how your opponents are trying to bend the myth to mean a victory for them, while you are trying to bend it the other way. It’s a very different way of thinking.

There are the ‘normal’ adventures too - fights with monsters and elves and rival tribes etc. TONS of magic and it’s absolutely built in (and get ready to chop off a lot of limbs - a LOT of limbs, and have them chopped off).

I’m sorry this is so abstract but it’s really hard to explain. I loved the mythic feel, but at the same time wasn’t quite into ubiquitous supernatural powers. I loved the crunch but was also afraid my teeth would break.