Get Started in RuneQuest with beautiful full-color hardcover!
RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha is an all-new edition of one of the world’s most influential and acclaimed fantasy roleplaying games. First appearing almost 40 years ago, RuneQuest is as dynamic and vital as ever. This all-new, deluxe edition introduces RuneQuest and its setting of Glorantha to new players everywhere.
Try out a skill-based percentile system that balances experience-based progression with deadly combat!
The core rules of RuneQuest are essential for players and gamemasters, as they contain all the rules for character creation, starting homelands, background history, professions, skills, starting Runes and magic, and the cults and gods whose influence will define your character’s activities. Further, the rules for character advancement are contained here, for the times between adventures.
Chaosium Unveiled: RuneQuest - Roleplaying in Glorantha
Watch the unveiling video to see the book for yourself. Remember that you get the PDF when getting the physical copy.
An RPG with a difference
RuneQuest is part of Chaosium’s D100 Basic Roleplaying system. It is intuitive and easy to play: virtually all rolls determining success or failure of a task are determined via the roll of percentile dice.
RuneQuest has no character classes or alignments; characters are defined by their culture, the gods they follow, and the Runes that inspire them.
Nor does the RuneQuest system use levels; instead, characters advance in skills and abilities by using them in course of play. Anyone can try to pick a lock, cast a spell, or decipher some ancient runic script.
Combat in RuneQuest is exciting, immersive, visceral and always potentially deadly; players should be mindful even the lowliest trollkin can take out an experienced warrior with a lucky blow.
Players will want this book to create their unique characters, diving into sorcery, picking their cult, or taking up shamanism to converse with mysterious spirits.
Gamemasters need this book, as it contains the core rules for the game, including task resolution, combat, and damage, as well as guidelines for special situations in combat, such as formations and chariots. These core rules are designed to be used in conjunction with the upcoming Glorantha Bestiary and the RuneQuest Gamemaster Pack and Screen.
Here are some useful downloads that are also included with your purchase:
For gamemasters wanting to jump right in, the RuneQuest Quickstart contains a complete adventure suitable for new characters, and a downloadable preview of monsters and creatures from the Glorantha Bestiary provides a few classic creatures.
Have you played Call of Cthulhu? You will pick up RuneQuest in no time thanks to our Basic Roleplaying System!
Take the battle to the foul minions of chaos!
Two Rules to Remember
You might be getting the feeling that with multiple editions and more than 40 years of existence, that RuneQuest and Glorantha are big! And they are. But Bigger than you can manage? A steep wall that can’t be climbed? Nothing could be further from the truth!
Over the years, Glorantha has existed in many incarnations — roleplaying games, boardgames, computer games, fiction, etc. — and many inconsistencies have crept in, or been deliberately introduced. That’s a good thing! Myths have many versions, and the mythic world of Glorantha is no different, with wildly divergent beliefs about how the world works, how history played out, the influence of groups and individuals, etc. This perfectly sets the stage for you, whether a player or gamemaster, to determine your own vision of the world and how things work for you and your fellow players.
Two important principles have developed among fans of the setting, and should always be kept in mind:
- Your Glorantha May Vary — This is the belief that you and your group are ultimately the ones who decide what the world is like. You can use or ignore published materials, change them as desired, and introduce your own elements to Glorantha. Think of it like a buffet: you can take what you want and leave the rest. Combine things to suit your own taste. You know better than anyone else what works for you.
- Maximum Game Fun — If an aspect of your game is fun, that’s a good thing. If something is not fun, whether it’s rules lawyering or excessive attention to background, then ignore it or de-emphasize it. The point of playing this game — or any other — is enjoyment, and anything that stands in the way of that experience should be carefully rejected.
This new edition has been explicitly written with the goal of approachability, reaching out to new players and gamemasters as well as returning fans, making sure that the game line remains vital and engaging for everyone.
These rules are backward-compatible with the previous versions of RuneQuest from Chaosium and the scenarios
Are you a fan of old-school RuneQuest? Use RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha to augment your current campaign.
Want to keep playing the classics with the new rules? Take advantage of our conversion guide, also included in the core rulebook.
Heroes take cross generations. The Old (Rurik) Meets the New (Vasana)
Order your copy today of this 446-page epic and begin your journey in Glorantha today!
It wouldn't be RuneQuest without Runes, now would it?
What The Critics Say
"Greg Stafford's supreme creation brought fully up to date with the presentation it deserves and tremendous added depth. A fitting memorial. STYLE - 5/5. SUBSTANCE - 5/5: Can it go higher than 5?"
—Paul StJohn MacIntosh, RPGNet review.
"One of the most stunning RPG books ever made"
"10 out of 10 - that's right, it is that good, it is fantastic, I love this tome!"
—Jeff McAleer, The Gaming Gang (video review).
"In a market stuffed to the gills with fantasy RPGs, RuneQuest offers something a little different from the heroic norm – something a little deadlier, rooted in a time of bronze and barbarians, where historic realism mixes with raw, primitive magic that hangs in the air like early morning mist."
— Tabletop Gaming review, Oct 2018.
"This iteration of RQ is going to redefine my view of what is role-playing... it seems to have everything I could wish to find in a game: smooth mechanics, different levels of gameplay, and a whole mythical world presented for the player to explore from within. It feels like the Chaosium of my twenties is back, there at the forefront of innovation in gaming. As a game designer I must say It will be hard to top that, but it feels good have a new mountain to climb!"
— Francesco Nepitello (lead designer, One Ring RPG).
It’s RQ2 on steroids!... Glorantha is baked in at every step and like the HeroQuest Glorantha book, it gives enough to robustly play in the setting."
"Like 2nd edition, but better...a really solid version of RuneQuest which should set the bar for BRP-based Gloranthan gaming for years to come."
— ‘RuneQuest Comes Home’, Refereeing and Reflection.
“…if you’re looking for a fantasy game that gives you a taste of something different, then check out RuneQuest.”
"A beautiful product and the beginning of a very promising re-birth or reinvigoration of a tabletop RPG classic... one of the best examples of using mechanics in a tabletop RPG to create and reinforce setting and tone... just let the game carry you along into the high-magic, mythology-focused, Bronze Age fantasy game you never knew you wanted to play."
"A game steeped in both real-world and fictional history, where wild myths meld with a realistic approach to rules… Ultimately, RuneQuest succeeds in carving out a powerful niche in the crowded world of fantasy roleplaying, building something that is truly unique."
"…a fascinating blend of wild heroism and ruthless simulation that goes to create a game that offers something utterly unique…[RuneQuest] breaks away from the core tropes of gleaming armour and codified magic that have come to dominate fantasy in recent decades and replaces it with something that feels closer to ancient myths and legends – more The Odyssey than Lord of the Rings."
"RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha is a landmark, and was even before it was written... it marks the return of one of the most influential and storied games in our hobby back to the house that built it... No other RuneQuest—and this is coming from a guy from whom you’d have to pry his Cults of Prax or Cults of Terror from his cold, dead hands—does Glorantha as well as RQG."
—Andrew Logan Montgomery, Exploring the Otherworlds of Fiction, Magic, and Gaming.
"RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha is a work of art. It is a gorgeous book and an engrossing game in one, the future of the RuneQuest system superimposed on the most detailed RPG setting of them all. The design dynamically delivers the impossible, turning crunch and fluff into one. Its capability to create stories even before the characters are presented to one another, and its crunchiness when the going gets tough and hard decisions are required, have already earned it a place in the pantheon of gaming. Veterans will feel right at home, while new fans will wonder how come a game like this didn't exist up to now. Everything the new Chaosium touches turns to gold. Buy and play, immediately!"
—Antonios S., RPGNet review.
"…this is a very impressive book. The art, binding and writing is all first rate. I would say it is the most attractive book I own. Looks are great, but the real value goes deeper than appearances. The content of RuneQuest: Roleplaying in Glorantha is up to the standards set by its appearance."
"There's a reason why (RuneQuest) has been out for 40 years... If it's not on your bookshelf, bottom line: then just go ahead and pick it up... you won't be disappointed at all."
—Logician Tim 'RPG Report Card' (YouTube video review).
"Second only to Dungeons & Dragons in the fantasy roleplaying pantheon, RuneQuest cemented Greg Stafford’s world of Glorantha as one of the tabletop’s most imaginative creations and introduced innovative mechanics that would go on to become staples of RPGs for decades to come, most significantly in other Basic Roleplaying titles. Its unique approach to advancing skills and the percentile system used to resolve attacks and actions are still as clever today, while the expansive Glorantha continues to draw in adventurers looking for an immersive and vibrant setting."
—Tabletop Gaming (UK) 150 Greatest Games of All Time (RuneQuest ranked #9)
"This book is a goddamn masterpiece."
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- 4th Edition Chaosium RuneQuest
- Year Released:
- Page Count:
- Full-color Hardback + PDF
- Greg Stafford, Jeff Richard, Jason Durall, Steve Perrin
- Contributing Writers:
- David Dunham, Steve Henderson, Warren James, Sven Lugar, Chris Klug, Rick Meints, Michael O'Brien, Sandy Petersen, Neil Robinson, Ken Rolston, and Ray Turney
- Cover Artist:
- Andrey Fetisov
- Rick Becker, Bernard Bittler, Simon Bray, William Church, Miguel Coronado, Gene Day, Andrey Fetisov, Piotr Foksowicz, Lisa Free, Merle Insigna, Tomasz Jedruszek, Kalin Kadiev, Roman Kisyov, Rachel Kahn, Jennifer Lange, Rhonda Libbey, Michelle Lockamy
- Artists (continued):
- Juha Makkonen, Mike Mignola, Christine Mitzuk, Luise Perrene, Kevin Ramos, Roger Raupp, Jakob Rebulka, Alex Ries, Naomi Robinson, Simon Roy, Olivier Sanfilippo, Luoto Sari, Tobias Tranell, Cory Trego-Erdner
- Olivier Sanfilippo, Darya Makarava, Colin Driver
- Design & Layout:
- Simeón Cogswell, Malcolm Wolter
Glorathna is an amazing setting and with this new edition of Runequest i think Chaosium have done an excellent job of weaving Greg Staffords world into the rules. If you like Runequest, Glorantha or RPGs do yourself a favour and buy this.
It's wonderful to have RQ back home at Chaosium, and it's wonderful to see them draw so much on the old RQ2 for inspiration with this present system. The integration of Runes and Passions at a mechanical level give an incredible opportunity for mechanically supported and meaningful roleplaying and character development, dovetailing perfectly with the deadly combat crunch. Visually the book is stunning, and thumbing through for the artwork alone proves to be a near endless wellspring of inspiration and ideas for game sessions and campaigns. There is one star removed because there are some organizational and information layout issues that I personally find odd, and have made it difficult for me and my players to quickly look up relevant information, or clearly see how the collection of parts that is the rules add up to a cohesive structure.
As a fan of the older editions of RQ, the new edition takes all the parts and pieces that I grew to enjoy and delivers a updated version with improved aspects, I am looking at you Passions & Runes! I highly recommend this book for any fan of Runequest and Glorantha specifically.
Glorantha is where RuneQuest belongs, and this book has brought the two back together. Beautiful cover, excellent art and layout, and kickass setting and rpg system.
This is the book that restarted my love affair with Glorantha. I've been a fan for years and years but getting groups interested in playing in this world was a struggle. Well it was. Since getting this book I have gone from not having run or played Rune Quest or Glorantha in years to having more games than I can shake a stick at. The new book really integrates the world with the rules. Runes and Passions are great additions. However the background history tables for characters really mean the players are grounded and in the setting. I've found it really does well for introducing new players to the background. The art is wonderful and most importantly, game correct!
A comprehensive read, beautifully put together