Thursday, April 23, 2015

Secrets of Melanda Part 1: Runescience

"From my old website Dedicated to turning Melanda into a Herogames type game."

The following is an except from a Role Playing Game called Melanda. It defined a standard of
roleplaying for me and my friends. Ive played it successfully at cons and run it at home over the years.

Exact info: Melanda: land of mystery (c) 1991 John Corradin and Lee McCormic. If you find any info on Melanda on the web,, and thanks.

These rules dont have a Fantasy Hero (tm) equivalent. You will need to look through these rules and the Summoning Rules and come up with a Fantasy hero equivalent


Basic Rune Science

One of the most common science practiced by beginning players is BASIC RUNE SCIENCE.

Rune science is not magic. It is based on the science of the world. In our world we have power, lighting and cars, way too many cars, but in Melanda, the physical science also include Runes.  This is why we don't call it Rune magic. Simple enough

Everything has a rune. Every one is considered to have a rune or two. It's not as secretive as magic, but it does require training.  The rules them selves are pretty common, but they require a special sort of power training to activate. This is why the average person only knows a handful. That person usually only uses his rune in his occupation.  In a story telling heroic style game like Melanda, players are special and as such they can learn to excel at runescience.

Since it is a science, similar to the way biologists classify species and families, Runescience practioners name Runes.   Type name is important, (e.g. "tree".). Specific names enhance the power of such, (e.g."oak tree"). In a nutshell Rune science(RS) is the study of symbols and how combining them thru the power of names can cause the magical effect.

Course of study:

Runescience as with other skills in Melanda, are purchased as years of study.  You have a certain number slots you can fill during your years of study, and those study subjects are cleverly converted to STATS by your Game master  carefully guard behind a screen so as not to give away the secret of stat creation.  I ll get to that later on in the blog.

1st year: During this year of servitude the rune scholar is introduced to the basic precepts of rune magic.  Included is general information regard the systematic use of runes to alter reality. 25% success base. 1-6 runes

2nd year: This year is spend int serious study in which the student concentrates on becoming one with
himelf and the world. This is neccessary in order to tap the aurathat surrounds all and allows its  incorporation into a rune. 35% success base. 2-12 runes.

3rd year: Rune development and use highlight the 3rd and final year of study. It is here that the actual construction of runes is taught. 45% success base. 4 to 24 runes.

Use of Runes:  

Non combat situations

Player should indicate which runes, in what order, for what purpose, length of preparation, and any past successful experiences.

Combat situations

In the intention phase the rune scholar need only declare that he is going to attempt to apply his science and which runes he is going to use. Later, when the magical manifestation phase arrives he must announce the order in which he placed the runes, the intended purpose, the length of preparation and any previous successful experiences.

The character must visually display the runes used and he must concentrate on the runes, thinking about the stated manifestations intended. This must include at least a noun and a verb read from left to right.

CAUTION: The use of more than one verb or some other patterns of arrangement should not be attempted for it may prove disastrous.

human  dwarf  elf  forest  elf  water  elf 
animal  plant  flower  tree  spirit  earth  water
future  past  present  liquid  hand  sun  moon
star  life  death  wood  stone  flood  atir
fire  friend  enemy  oil  weapon  pain  disease
disunity  box  book  horse  house  road  apparel
rider  rock  river  mountain  shield  rain  bird
blood  sea fish beast 


abort  alter  animate  begin  bind  counter construct
decay  cure  disappear  drop  embody  encircle enchant
enlarge locate forget deter  ignite  cause  open
repel remember release remove strike
reduce  transmute  destry  hasten  understand  close  purify
dissipate change disrupt am  have  can(could)  will(would)
shall (should) move run walk diminish know discover


male  female  hot  cold  hard  soft  sharp
small  tall  short  first  last  black  white
beautiful  hideous  strong  quickly  slowly  here there
back  front  silent  noisy  now  blue  red
yellow  quietly  immediately  large  weak  unknown  dull

Transitional Words

and  above  below  besides  between  up  down
for  from  to  on  at  with  across
before  after  except  in  by  of  also
either  or  neither  nor  *pluralize

Runscience in action

A sea captain with 3 years of runscience study finds his vessel under attack by a vicious viper fish. He
announces his intention to apply his science using the following runs:

His 3 years of study give him a 55% success base plus 15% for 3 years as a practitioner plus 5 pecent for
5% of preparation. The gm awards a 10% bonus because he has used this combination before.

We will cover summoning in the next blog.