How to Carve Out a Setting in Glorantha

A guest article submitted by a RuneQuest Lister – Bjorn Are Stolen

The sourcebook Genertela must be one of the ultimate teasers ever published in the RPG milieu. It is stuffed with intriguing notes on cultures, people, history and places of interest. These notes were never complete sourcebooks as we know them in other RPG’s (like Warhammer) though. So the box set made people wait in excitement for the books covering parts of Genertela in detail. -They had to wait for 12 years…

What I have done, and what I guess others have done, is to “develop” regions on their own, based on the few notes given in the official books. What I plan to do on this site is to share some of those regions that I have “developed”, so others can use it if they want to. There are types of regions that I’m going to avoid; those developed by Avalon Hill (Dorastor, Dagori, Inkarth and the Zola Fel Valley), and the blank lands. There might be a miracle; Jesus might turn up and become a Heavy Metal Vocalist, Ariel Sharon and Arafat could start a RPG club and make peace in the Middle East, and new sourcebooks might be published for Genertela. In that case things I have made should of course yield.

Then we have the grey zones; very good material published in Tales of the Reaching Moon”magazines (the Palmatelan Praxian and Sartari regions), and some of the stuff made by Etyries and Issaries inc. I really like the stuff they’ve written, and I think I should buy the Lunar Empire sourcebooks and see if they can be used in a traditional Glorantha setting before making anything for the Dara Happa region myself. (I am optimistic, and think they will be worth buying.)

When I carve out settings in Genertela, I some times alter the geography a bit, and with good conscience. I think the maps in the original RQ publications were intentionally made not to fit each other for two reasons:

  • To simulate the Genertelan population’s ability to make accurate maps (maybe also because of the influence magic’s have on the world).
  • So that GM’s could make the geography fit into their settings; to avoid any curriculum.

You can feel free to choose how your geography should be like in my settings if you don’t like my altering of the Genertelan geography.

I have made settings in two Blank Lands; Retrint in Fronela and Balazar east of Peloria, and if someone is interested, I could share them, but I will stick to my principle that the Blank Lands are for any GM to decide what is.

My next article will cover a small area along the southern shores west of Corflu. The name of the setting is “Skoddeheimen” (Norwegian for “home of the fog”).

This article was originally published on X October MMII