View Full Version : Good Apocalypse Cult

White Blade
2010-04-17, 05:50 PM
Okay, so I've been working on a setting and in it, the religious system is heavily maltheistic. All of the good and neutral gods (and dissenting evil gods) were killed by the present pantheon. The story behind that is rather complicated, but the end result is that the standard hero/villain roles are inverted. Whereas the evil people simply want to maintain a stable, runnable world, the good guys are interested in overthrowing the system, desecrating the holy ground, killing the gods, hiding in ancient catacombs, crumbling towers and hopelessly outnumbered by people who are corrupt or stopped caring long ago.

One of the inversions is the standard "end-the-world" cult. This cult (the Word of Hope) intends to destroy the material plane and use that a fuel to banish the lower planes from within the reach of mortal kind, destroy the evil gods, and then start all over again. But I'm trying to figure out something fairly important, which is what exactly the Word of Hope teaches besides, "This world is beyond saving. We must make a new one." What sort of ideology would a good-aligned world destruction group have? What sort of advice would it have for its members? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Lord Loss
2010-04-17, 05:52 PM
Well this is probably obvious, but ideas such as

''for the greater good'' and ''the end justifies the means'' should be prevalent in the cult. Also, Paladins could sacrifice evil people to summon Good outsiders...

EDIT: Obviously, cultists are willing to sacrifice themselves (and others to acheive good)

2010-04-17, 05:54 PM
Well, a lot of real world examples (not naming any specific ones here) have the same ideology. The only difference is that in your setting, they're actually sane.

In a world where tyranny, mass slaughter and injustice is the status quo, it's pretty easy to promote ideas of love, peace and equality. It's sort of an attempt to overturn a WH40K-like cosmology where all the gods are evil and all anyone ever does is kill each other.

2010-04-17, 06:36 PM
I agree with the previous poster. While it cannot be discussed in detail here, you may find plenty of excellent inspiration from the initial teachings of most influential founders of large religions.

2010-04-18, 05:34 AM
Some obvious things come to mind:
1. The cult should probably be highly conspirational - secret gatherings, codes, fake organisations to cover the real thing, multi-layered initiation system and so on.
1.a) For their plan, they obviously need power and lots of it, so it's reasonable for the cult to engage in politics, trade and magical studies all Illumianti style. Having an espionage network and assains guild is a given.
2. Only the highest ranked members of the cult know the real plan (ending the world) - lower tier cultist will be fed with a more vague story about cleansing the world through less drastic measures.
3. They wouldn't view death as a very bad thing, since the world is a hellhole anyway and everyone would die eventually, so no harm done if you expediate someone a bit early. It's unpleasant, but you do, what you got to do. It would be amusing, if they stabbed people while saying to them thing like "rest my brother" or something. Generally a bit similar to Euthanatos (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Euthanatos#Euthanatos) from the old WoD. This is tied in with the apocalypse plan as well.
4. Material plane is just one of many planes of existance, so destroying it, won't end the whole universe - you can settle elswhere. This would additionally encourage cultists to have good contacts with various Outsiders.

2010-04-18, 05:42 AM
To make this plausible and resonating, what you really need to do is show how evil the whole world has gotten. 1984 may present some inspiration.

2010-04-18, 06:06 AM
"In destruction, both victim and villain may find forgiveness."

Whether you're the victim or the villain is intentionally left blank.

One way I can see it being structured is this. Obviously the evil churches and governments are the big, faceless, evil. Make the cult the small, personal evil. They think they're good, and they're fighting the big bad guys, but the whole place has gone so far downhill that now they're just CE fighting LE. They may still be useful to the PCs, their goals overlap to a degree. But the PCs, and maybe some of the smarter cultists, know that it'll come to blows eventually.

2010-04-19, 11:10 AM
I think that you can focus your Good-Guy Apocolypse cult on the Cybermen from Doctor Who. I mean, they are trying to do good by "upgrading" humanity by essentially killing them, in a spiritual sense. I mean, that's scary in thought.