Runequest Thursday #204 - Trollmarket Goods, Food and Drink!

Clint Staples

In recent weeks, my Brightwater Company has been exploring (or shall we say running away from) the Troll Strongland of The Big Rubble (Pavis and the Big Rubble, © Chaosium). They entered the Rubble via the Troll Break, and briefly surveyed the rainsoaked shambles that were the Trollmarket there, but did not have much time to look around - since they were trying to sneak past the guards and merchants there, most of whom were less than diligent in the extended chilly downpour. 

Below are a selection of items and comestibles of interest, that the Trollmarket has for sale. Many are specific to trolls, or troll-friends, but other more typical market finds are likely too, especially such things are are likely to be found, scrounged, traded or raided for in and around the Big Rubble. Such things of particularly trollish interest like slaves, herd beasts, herd-men, looted or or salvaged wargear found in the Ruins, or occasional oddments that an enterprising troll might turn up in his foraging, and sure to be represented.

These lists below are intended to supplement the material in Pavis and the Big Rubble, as well as Trollpak (possibly the best sourcebook ever produced for an alternate race/species in an RPG) . Note also that, since this market is dominated by the Xaragang troll clan, there are a number of giant insect related goods and dishes on offer, that are otherwise much more exotic.


Prices are listed in Bolgs (for trolls). Non-trolls must pay in Clacks or Lunars.


The Trollmarket has a “No Money Back Guarantee”.  



Miscellaneous Goods:


Bolgers – The invention of Lead Belcher, an ambitious initiate of Argan Argar, who has sold his grand-dame (who also happens to be the leader of the Xaragang Clan) Kukudoom the Tall One, on their usefullness and saleability. Bolgers are essentially boulders made of lead bolgs, either melted down into a single large mass, or mashed together with repeated strikes from a maul into a crude mold. In either case, they are superior to normal throwing stones for impact, because of their greater mass per volume, but are of less use over longer range. The troll clans that make significant use of bolgers often find it worthwhile to place a single use enchantment upon them to enhance their effect. Common enchantments are Speedart, Darkwall. A Bolger gains a mass damage bonus of 1d6 over a normal boulder, but can be thrown only half as far. The thrower must have a STRength of at least 20 to effectively hurl a bolger.

Price: 1000 Bolgs, + the cost of any one-use enchantments. Bolgers sold at the Trollbreak Market bear the Xaragang Clan mark and are certified as redeemable – any troll (or troll-friend) returning a Bolger to the Xaragang Clan receives a 100 bolg credit toward future purchases from the clan.

NOTE: Lead Belcher has recently made a deal with the Loricek Clan to supply them with a number of Bolgers as part of the tribute the aggressive Loriceks demand from other trolls in the region. The reduced range of the Bolger is of no concern at all when they are dropped onto ships and barges attempting to pass under the Trollbridge. The Bridge Detail is said to be guardedly optimistic in regard to initial performance of this new weapon.


Darkseeds – These pebble-like “seeds” are actually the dried spores of giant mushrooms cultivated by the matrons of the Javis trolls. They are dried in salt from the salt mines near their stronghold and have been of use in defending their territory from ogre attacks as well as those of “adventurers”. A Darkseed can be struck or thrown (up to 30 feet), and bursts on impact, creating a cloud of Darkness in a 2 yard radius from the point of impact, which lasts for 2+1d6 Rounds. Light from any light sources within the radius are negated for the duration.

Price: 50 Bolgs


Bug Fans – Nothing beats the heat of a Rubble summer day like a fan made from the wing of an adolescent giant insect! At least that is the sales pitch for such implements, sold by Xaragangs who keep various giant flying insects.

Price: 20 Bolgs


Hard Hat – Guard Beetle Carapace, cut and shaped to your skull by our craftstrolls while you wait. Light armor, high fashion and sun-shade all in one! A Guard Beetle Hard Hat grants 2 Points of Armor to the Head (at the cost of 1 ENC), and may be worn in combination with other non-rigid head protections (like Mail).

Price: 120 Bolgs, engraving available on request; optional sun-flaps or brim extra.


Scorpionid Falx

Price: 900 Bolgs


Scorpionid Purse – Immature scorpionid skull carapace, hollowed, painted, and fitted with a handy and fetching shoulder strap. The mandibles are a great accent and function as both the purse-latch AND a theft deterrent! Ask our artizans about custom paintwork!

Price: 39 Bolgs


Zombrella – The latest from famed Zorak Zoran war-mistress and fascionistroll, Jazelka Loricek, a zombie,, made to order, modified to hold a Sunbrella on high. Each Zombrella is custom-raised, keyed to its owner’s commands, and will defend you until destroyed!

Price: Varies (Come talk to us!) Options include: Zombrella Armor, off-hand weapon, weaponized sunbrella. Base Creature upgrades often available: Ask for details, or provide your own! And make sure you check out our sample Jackobear Zombrella.



Food and Drink:

Most of these “delicacies” are available at the Thunderbreath’s Tavern in Trolltown. Some items, like Elf Crackers, are seasonal. Any of these might also be found in appropriate trollish homes and warrens. Other items are potentially fatal to non-trolls.


The Xaragang trolls who run Thunderbreaths and the Trollmarket include many who follow the trollish god of commerce Argan Argar, and have a good understanding of human foible, as well as their weak digestive systems. Generally these trolls are careful to warn lightweight diners of other species who might want to dabble in trollish cuisine (known troll-friends are assumed to already know what it safe however). If in doubt, a PC can make a Darktongue check, or a Luck check (POW x 3%) to be warned in time to avoid calamity, Poison checks and death. Note that trolls specifically do not warn of things that might be disgusting by human standards, but are not fatal.


Beetle Jus – The fermented ichor of ham beetle pupae, served on the halfshell with a tangy, spicy trollkin liver garnish.

Price: 6 Bolgs for a tray of six.


Elf Crackers – An Elf Cracker is made by eviscerating a Runner (a stunted elf-thing gotten by poaching on the outskirts of the Garden), drying the corpse thoroughly over course of Fire Season, then packing the belly cavity with small treats (usually, but not always, at least vaguely edible) that give a satisfyingly loud crunch or popping sound with the “cracker” is broken open or munched. Elf Crackers are particularly popular during Kagfeast – an event in deepest Dark Season that is particularly sacred to the Kaggroka Clan because it celebrates their ancestor Gerak Kag’s original occupation of what came to be the Troll Strongland several centuries ago.

Price: 3 Bolgs. Elf Crackers are often sold by the dozen at holiday time.


Elven Whine – This delightful sparkling wine is available only in the spring, when the elves are blooming. Our secret recipe combines elf essence, murky water directly from Puzzle Canal and dragonsnail acid for a light, refreshing beverage that empties the mind of worries about hectic nightly life. Served in half of an RoC giant clamshell that tenderizes as you drink for the perfect digestif!

Price: 18 Bolgs


Kerak Gargle – A Meal and a half, AND the drink – all in one cup! Our own Three-Seasons Hoom, to which we add gobbits of young, fatty dwarf, with a Walktapi tentacle garnish! A tentacletotaler can keep it the garnish regenerating all night!

Price: 13 Bolgs. 10 Bolgs for Kaggroka Rune levels.


Giant Bee Honeycakes – Originally created by the half-troll celebrity chef, Mrs. Bugworth, these “vegetarian” cakes combine elf-flour (a finely ground powder made from dried elves and dried flowers) with giant bee honey and scorpionid eggs for a light, fluffy cake that is terrific with elf-butter and more Giant Bee honey slathered overtop.

Price: 4 Bolgs


Gorakiki Chips – These slices of giant grub pupae are spiced and dried as a pleasant snack. Occasionally they are served as a side dish for other fare. A salty, deep-fried version is available at Thunderbreaths, along with your choice of Cat-sup (guaranteed to include genuine Alynx!) or Roach dipping sauce.

Price: 5 Bolgs


Ghoul-Aid – Steppes Ghoul blood and Three-Seasons Hoom, The rim of the cup is wetted with walktapi liquor and dipped in a blend of Elf Ash and rock-salt.

Price: 8 Bolgs


Mystery Meaterrine – A delightful combination dish of mystery meats and giant mushrooms, thinly sliced and layered into a large tub, soused with alcohol and fermented for no less than TWO WEEKS! It may seem expensive, but you save because you don't need to buy Hoom to go with it!!!

Price: 25 Bolgs


Whole Ruin-Mantis Claw – A true feast for a gourmand with a very large appetite, or several peckish Darktrolls, ruin mantis claw is served pre-cracked, with elf-butter for dipping. Bibs provided (Hint: take the bib home and let it ferment for a day or two for an extra treat).

Price: 50 Bolgs