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Old 09-28-2013, 05:59 PM   #81
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Default Re: Bronze-Age city-states and the gifts of their gods

I think perhaps we are drifting off a little into the abstract, and losing sight of the theme. Isolated anomalies are fine, but a long string of exceptions threatens to obscure the rule. To recap:

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  • The gods are quite real, though you can't find them when they don't want to be found
  • Each has a house in his or her city, they are known to lust, thirst, and hunger as we would all wish to if we were are as rich as gods.
  • Each of the gods has a gift to give, ... It is a simple gift, such as "health"
  • the gods don't get to link together an arbitrary set of advantages into a gift
  • The gods don't get to choose what their gifts are
Physical gods; animal appetites; simple gifts, not necessarily what the god would have chosen. These gods are not mythic allegories, personifications of natural or moral principles, abstract spirits, etc.

Also: early Bronze Age.
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:36 PM   #82
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Default Re: Bronze-Age city-states and the gifts of their gods

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I think perhaps we are drifting off a little into the abstract, and losing sight of the theme. Isolated anomalies are fine, but a long string of exceptions threatens to obscure the rule. To recap:



Physical gods; animal appetites; simple gifts, not necessarily what the god would have chosen. These gods are not mythic allegories, personifications of natural or moral principles, abstract spirits, etc.

Also: early Bronze Age.
I'm guessing that some of mine may be off-target. Let me know which ones and I will move them to a separate thread or file. I don't want to muddle the theme. Everything I have made can find a home someplace, I'm sure.
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:43 PM   #83
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Default Re: Bronze-Age city-states and the gifts of their gods

Hurtikō, goddess of the Hunt
Feckless Kunon, artless and carefree
Is yet the deer-park of dread Hurtikō

Kunon is barely a city at all. Twelve hundred souls in buckskin dwell in scattered staff-built lodges among the trees, eking out a savages' existence on a diet of venison, pork, small game, and nuts. Their goddess forbids them to clear land for fields, and thus they are denied the healthful benefits of drinking beer. Traders who dare the wrath of their goddess Hurtikō can buy hounds and hides and supple leathers very cheap by exchanging beer and barley with the simple Kunino. Cedar may be cut, but the goddess is prone to visit her wrath very dreadfully on people who fell any trees that bear nuts.

Hurtikō has the form of a lean woman, moderately tall, and goes in leather stockings, buskins, loincloth, and cloak like her folk. Apparently for comfort, she binds up her bosom in a bandeau of supple doeskin suede. As a matter of some perplexity to all, Hurtikō has the appearance of a women in early middle age, once very handsome but now growing lean and weathered and inclining to be stringy. This has been the case for as long as anyone whom anyone can remember could remember, but no-one dares to ask Hurtikō whether she was once a fair and strapping maiden: she might not like the implication that she is not.

Hurtikō's house is cluttered with trophies of the hunt, notably bear-skulls and furnishings of beautifully-tanned bear skins. Old people remember being told that her service used to involve the annual sacrifice and eating of a bear, but no-one remembers why. Her main pre-occupation now is with breeding and training dogs. She has established three lines: a vast and powerful liver-coloured staghound; a swift and dainty pale-coloured coursing hound; and a versatile black setter/retriever sort of thing. Diligently trained by the goddess herself, the dogs from Hurtikō's kennels are marvels of obedience and skill. Her culls she changes into pikas.

The gift of Hurtikō is to change people (and dogs, apparently — other animals possibly) into lagomorphs. This is not much of a gift for those who obey and please her; she 'gives' it to those who disobey and annoy. The extent of this power is perhaps untested; the Kunino are free of all tyranny but their goddess', their lands are un-annexed by more powerful neighbours, their forests un-despoiled, because on two occasions Hurtikō changed entire armies into swarms of rabbits and set her dogs on them. Timber-poachers who set axe to her trees, and whom she catches, she turns into hares.

There is no indication that Hurtikō can turn her victims back. Stories tell of her transforming favourite servitors into hares in passing anger and much regretting it afterwards. Each year the most beautiful unmarried youth and unmarried maiden in Kunon are chosen to attend the goddess for a year. They serve with a diligence and utter obedience born of trepidation.

To eat a rabbit, hare, or pika is distasteful to the people of Kunon, they abstain from such food except when it is served at the goddess's board, and use rabbits, pikas, and hares as dog-food.

Hurtikō has not born a child to her servant (nor to anyone else, for that matter) since times of legend: her youngest son is an ancient man of sixty-three.
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Old 09-28-2013, 06:59 PM   #84
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Default Re: Bronze-Age city-states and the gifts of their gods

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I'm guessing that some of mine may be off-target. Let me know which ones and I will move them to a separate thread or file. I don't want to muddle the theme. Everything I have made can find a home someplace, I'm sure.
Not necessary at all. That was a precautionary warning.

Watching how the thread goes is the charm of the game: editing would spoil it. Don't erase the construction lines. Besides, the "rules" are an armature to support creativity, not a mould to constrain it. It's just that if you build up clay where it isn't supported by the armature the sculpture will slump and lose its shape.
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Old 09-28-2013, 07:45 PM   #85
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Not necessary at all. That was a precautionary warning.
Ah, kewl beans.
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Old 09-28-2013, 08:06 PM   #86
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Ah, kewl beans.
I have not yet mastered the light touch on the tiller, but I can already work out which way the wind is blowing. The time to adjust the steering and trim the sails is before your keel touches bottom.
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Old 09-28-2013, 08:18 PM   #87
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I have not yet mastered the light touch on the tiller, but I can already work out which way the wind is blowing. The time to adjust the steering and trim the sails is before your keel touches bottom.
You are 100% correct.

I try to keep close to the guidelines, and to avoid munchkinism. But a few of my gods, like Krotek, were rather on the experimental side. They could be chalked up to travelers' tales.
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Old 09-28-2013, 08:38 PM   #88
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You are 100% correct.
Including the bit about not having a light touch on the tiller. ;)
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