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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    Ladies and gentlemen! Children of all ages! Outsiders (particularly those with Divine Rank) and Eldritch Abominations too!!

    So, what's this new homebrew I'm delivering? Could it be a retooled Cleric? Maybe some sort of divine-inspired PrC? Some odd mechanics dealing with religion?

    No, and this is entirely a fluff-laden homebrew. Yes; few, if no mechanics, will be shown here. Probably one or two things, items, domains and whatnot, but the idea is that what's here is basically fluff for some ideas I was working with.

    The thing is, some things are underrepresented. Other things may use some weird reinterpretations. And some are just there for the heck of it. Regardless of what is the inspiration behind each thing, there is a deity behind that thing, and I hope it is well-interpreted enough so as to have someone use it for their homebrewed campaigns.

    The first post will be the table with all the deities I expect to use, and the post afterwards will be the first of the deities I'll showcase. Afterwards, I'll just post a new deity every now and then (there are several which need some completion, after all) and link it to this first post, so as to provide easy access to the deities for consideration. All of the deities are posted as per the Complete Divine format, and have related relics (of which I haven't built any, so in a future you may see another thread with the deities' relics).

    Of course, this won't be without commentary. I'm sure you'll love the first of the deities, since it's built for a specific group in mind. Once I make the first post of the first deity, you may post your opinions about him and about further deities I post; I can't ensure a steady schedule of posting, and I could use some help fine-tuning most of them to be paragons of what they propose.

    Thus, without further ado, I present to you: the deities.

    {TABLE=head]Name|Portfolio|AL|Domains|Favored Weapon|Rank
    Myron Silverhand|Optimism, confidence, justice, valor, honor, chivalry|LG|Competition*, Courage*, Good, Law, Nobility*, Pride*, Renewal*, War|Bastard sword|I
    Zegfyld Stormbringer|Creation, dwarves, engineering, forge, golems|LG|Artifice*, Craft*, Creation*, Dwarf*, Good, Knowledge, Law, Metal*, Planning*, Protection, Storm*|Maul|G
    Hannatha|Life, nurturing, healing, breeding|NG|Animal, Charm*, Community*, Family*, Good, Healing, Renewal*|Dagger|G
    Fei Cui Huang-Di Zhi Jian|Technique, discipline, loyalty, nobility and royalty, ancestors|LN|Balance*, Celerity*, Law, Metal*, Mind*, Nobility*, Strength, War|Shortsword|L
    Nurién Maegloth|Chronicles, time, space, knowledge, writing, preservation|LN|Fate*, Force*, Knowledge, Law, Magic, Oracle*, Rune*, Time*|Quarterstaff|G
    Syrianna Terúnnantté|Magical combat, elves, evocation, females|N|Competition*, Destruction, Elf*, Glory*, Magic, Metal*, Pride*, War|Rapier (or elven longblade)|I|
    Akeurias||CN||||
    Gorgoroth Kravynne||LE||||
    Cletienne Hyde||NE||||
    Mychiara||CE||||
    Balitrios Celianis||N||||[/TABLE]

    *: non-core domains. Majority of the domains are in Spell Compendium.
    Last edited by T.G. Oskar; 2011-01-30 at 07:34 PM.

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    Default Myron Silverhand, god of the Principle of the Boiling Blood

    MYRON SILVERHAND
    Intermediate God (Lawful Good)

    Known by many epithets such as Sir Myron of the Silver Hand, the Hero of Justice, the Blade that Destroys Evil, the Holy White Knight, and others, Myron is a legendary hero amongst men during ancient ages. He is a mighty warrior that fought against injustice and evil eons ago, and whose legendary deeds owed him a seat within the gods. Myron is the reflection of the chivalric ideal, though he prefers people to be good rather than chivalrous. Myron’s followers face evil and despair with a passion, a zeal that urges others to follow in the same steps, often by shouting a loud and boisterous cry and raising the right fist. Myron’s doctrine is that of pushing the limits, of conquering evil through sheer force of will and drawing courage from nothing; most that follow this doctrine call it “the Principle of the Boiling Blood”, as most of his teachings speak of how the very existence of evil should boil the good soul’s blood into a desire to fix the maladies of this world, and inspire others to do the same. However, when not facing evil creatures, Myron’s followers are much like every other individual, differing only in the drive that pushes them to disregard physical limits.

    Myron usually appears as a young, unassuming man full to the brim of overconfidence, a veteran warrior with exquisite armor and several weapons at his disposal, or an old and wizened man with impossible confidence and trust in people. His young form usually has a glistening left hand, his warrior form has a magical gauntlet, and his old man visage has no left hand; this is because the epithet of “the Silver Handed” comes from the lack of his left hand and the silver gauntlet that replaced it.

    Portfolio: Optimism, Confidence, Justice, Valor, Honor, Chivalry
    Domains (Core): Good, Law, War
    Domains (Non-Core): Competition, Courage, Nobility, Pride, Renewal (choose two from this list)

    Cleric Training: Becoming a cleric of Myron is…bizarre, to say the least. Usually, they draw from a very select list of people, who can show willingness to ascribe to a life of justice, dignity, and the will to bypass all obstacles. To do so, aspirants are placed on a series of tests to determine how much they are willing to sacrifice to defend and promote justice in the entire Multiverse. Aspirants’ tests are brutally hard, and some may inspire despair for the sheer difficulty of the obstacles, but one thing is for certain; if the aspirant shows grim determination in succeeding, it gains as many tries as possible. An aspirant who has succeeded on all quests (reputed to be nearly 777 quests, although aspirants are placed on a much more limited amount of the quests ranging from 7 to 77) is indoctrinated as a cleric in the harshest of ways; in-battle, powerless as the aspirant may seem. Some people claim that Myron’s trials are pointless, but they promote in the aspirant the right mindset to essentially “unlock” their power. Once a cleric has shown the grace of Myron, it becomes ordained in a very special ceremony where they expect the cleric to achieve great victories.

    Quests: Myron’s quests are resumed as follows: do the impossible. Certainly, a follower of Myron is expected to vanquish evil even if it’s small, but more often than not they are sent to veritable deathtraps, relying only on their faith to push them ahead. A follower is expected to vanquish evil dragons and topple empires, but all followers are expected to suddenly find that the quest is to face unsurmountable odds: not just a dragon but an entire city of them, or vanquish an imperial army where the odds are a million to one (in Myron’s words, a “million-to-one” odd means that victory is on their grasp). High-level quests will almost always involve going to the Nine Hells or to the Abyss, routinely, as if it were practice, and slay demons by the thousands each day. The sheer difficulty of the quests wouldn’t be so much if it weren’t because, strangely enough, clerics and followers of Myron usually succeed on them unscathed. Certainly, a quest on behalf of Myron is not for the faint of heart, or for the coward.

    Prayers: Myron’s clerics do not pray; they boast. Myron’s clerics do not make mere oaths; they are exaggerate oaths, elaborate, and so striking that the enemy is left perplexed. Another favorite act of Myron’s followers is to scream their attacks so loudly, they seem to actually empower those: for example, a cleric of Myron is not merely casting flame strike, it is quite evidently doing something more, as they would usually claim “I UNLEASH UPON YE THE CONSUMING FLAMES OF MY SOUL’S PUREST JUSTICE!! MAY MY UNYIELDING SPIRIT CLEANSE YOUR FLESH WITH RIGHTEOUS ANGER!! FLAMES! OF! PURIFICATION!” More often than not, such boasts and claims are utterly exaggerate. Paladins of Myron are even greater offenders; they do not merely smite evil creatures, they actually “SMITE! EVIL!” with such fervor that evil is mercilessly crushed in body and in will. In fact, a “prayer” to Myron doesn’t even has to make sense, so as long as it’s loud, boisterous, and ridiculous enough but done with such spirit that bystanders have no other choice than to fist-pump in the air in sheer excitement.

    Temples: For all of the boisterous beliefs of the faith, temples to Myron are unusually simple…albeit they do are fortifications first and foremost. Temples to Myron are placed on cities with a very, very strong affiliation to good, or outside of the cruelest places on the land. Each of them is filled to the brim with extremely passionate priests, knights and followers that risk life and limb to protect those fortifications to the last. There is no documented temple of Myron that ends up being desecrated, if only because no evil deity wants the wrath (or some may say lunacy) of Myron’s followers to land upon their temples and raze them to the ground; partly that is because, albeit full of a grim determination, temples of Myron are constructed quite well. Considering that half of the temple seems quite impossible to exist and the other is the faith of the followers that keeps it aloft, one just but wonders how a temple of Myron can remain standing if it seems so blatantly wrong. One can find in the temples bards constantly singing of the impossible exploits of Myron’s followers (great favorites, though the bard’s greatest challenge is to evoke the sheer epicness of Myron’s followers’ quests, if not the absolute epicness of those from Myron’s quests themselves), as well as eager faithful desperate to vanquish impossible odds: whether it is a warrior that wishes to halt a demon invasion, or an architect that wishes to construct the most majestic castle in half a day, or even the humble baker that wishes to create bread as legendary as Myron’s quests.

    Rites: Much as Myron’s followers have no prayers (but boasts and oaths), they also have little rites. Two are of special note: whenever a follower vanquishes the notion of impossible, the entire congregation cheers for their successful boast; but when a follower perishes or otherwise fails on its quest, the entire congregation reunites to achieve what the follower has failed. Posthumous quests are done by willing followers who loudly chant “in the name of [person] who has fallen, we shall be victorious!”, while failed quests are done with larger groups, and with the promise that they shall not fail this time (even if it’s the 47th time they fail; a follower of Myron simply refuses to give up, and the church refuses to accept defeat).

    Heralds and Allies: Myron has no herald; he adopted the mantle of the deity that he followed once he was vanquished, so he seeks the hero that can succeed him on his quest. Myron counts asuras (see Book of Exalted Deeds), hound archon heroes and astral devas as allies, even if the first ones are usually chaotic in nature (it seems only Myron can understand them).

    Relics: silver gauntlet of Myron, sword of confidence.

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    Read his fluff. Read it very carefully.

    Done? Well, if you were suspecting it, it's true: Myron is the god of Hot Blood. His is a church that runs on pure, unadulterated Hot Blood. This may sound blasphemous to others, but if the entire cast of Super Robot shows, Kamina, and other heroes who ran in pure Hot Blood were to have a deity, Myron is one of them.

    Or...you may suspect he's an expy of Heironeous? In that case; yes. Or merely, a homage; that'd be the Invincible One after riding the Gurren Lagann. Or Guy Shishio taking the mantle of the Archpaladin after finishing his quest.

    Regardless of what happens, Myron is there for the good guys who are loud, boisterous, and that believe that there is nothing impossible (and the smarter ones would say "only highly improbable". Myron is also for the kind of character who believes in success through the most absurd of ways, yet they still have a huge amount of success. Hence, why confidence and optimism are part of his portfolio.

    Another thing would be the fact that it allows boasting as a form of prayer. If you're a follower of Myron, quite probably you've already done one of the quotes attributed to others: "Do the impossible and kick reason in the curb!" This, of course, is not a mere, hollow statement in the mind of a Myronite; it is a way of life. Paladins who follow him are expected to be literal glory-hounds, but not only do they DO their job, but do it in a way that's quite impossible to behold. Myronite paladins would be the kind of people who do something absurd in a Catch-22 and still win (as in, if the only chance of saving the world is killing an innocent, they don't, but instead catch the fiend before it possesses the creature and smites him with a kick in the nads. Myronite clerics are warriors first and foremost, but they prefer buffing to healing; their boasts are not without fundament, for when you have a deity who can grant you the ability to essentially not-die, you can boast all you want. Myronite monks are of the greatest adherents to the Doctrine of the Burning Blood (see what I did there?), and their idea of perfection is doing good because they can. Others, such as warblades, may take following Myron as a good idea because they'd be combining their glory-hound ways with the ways of the church; in fact, they could be some of their greatest champions.

    If you're playing a Myronite, you're someone who isn't entirely reckless; you simply disregard the idea of "failure" as possible. You don't believe in chances; if it has to be done, you do it, no questions asked. Of course, while that means you might bite off more than you can chew, that doesn't mean you are, again, reckless; discretion is the better part of valor, and it's perfectly reasonable to back off from doing something you consider out of your league. What you don't do, though, is break an oath; once you've sworn to do something, you do it, one way or another; hence, why you may see some "post-humous" quests. Basically, even after your death, someone will do it on your name, so you basically give others confidence. That's a big part of the power of Myron: he's not only a source of spiritual confidence, but the faithful are a source of real, tangible confidence. Breaking your oath, being a coward and running away without any reason, though, is considered disrespectful and even sinful to the church (since, when have you seen that someone with hot blood and a burning soul runs away?). Thus, a true Myronite (and what's expected of a player that uses Myron as a deity) only fights and does what he's confident in doing, and cares little if he exceeds a bit on his boast; after all, you have a deity and an entire community of like-minded people backing you off.

    So, why "Silverhand"? That's something drawn from a game. You see, in Romancing SaGa 3, there's a guy called Sharl; he has a crippled hand, but if you give him the Silver Hand gauntlet, you essentially power him up unfairly. However, if you use the item, you become ambidextrous; the item essentially gives great dexterity to the hand on which it is wielded, and thus while you may be truly ambidextrous, you will have two dominant hands instead of one. Myron's legend takes this one step further; he lost a hand (much like Tyr, the Norse god of courage and another inspiration for the deity) and got a gauntlet that further enhanced his dexterity on the lost hand, so he's basically ambidextrous. Since most of his adventures were done while he held the magical gauntlet, he's known as the "Silver-Handed" (also, because the gauntlet is made of silver and looks quite like an arm; think of Edward's auto-mail except it's hollow, able to hold a real hand AND it's made of silver). It also has some symbolism: if you lose a hand and still remain fighting, that not only shows courage, but grim determination even in the harshest of situations.

    There's yet another point to work here; the fact that he's an inheritor type of deity. Basically, the old god of justice and valor is dead, and Myron has just taken the mantle. He has some experience, but he's still full of youthful overconfidence. Again, he'd basically be Heironeous if he reincarnated into...say...Sanger Zonvolt, with some of the mentality of Guy Shishio. This may cause some conflict, since he represents a form of heroism that wildly contrasts the old form (epics, legendary acts); in a nutshell, he's not Herakles (though I feel Herakles, aka Hercules, would be a hot-blooded demigod as well), and he might resemble a bit the Nordic in how they were well-spoken, loud, boisterous and poetic in their words and their actions. Myron is best seen in the following way: his youthful side is the most overconfident one, and represents modern day fantasy hot-blooded heroism; the adult side would be the Nordic combination of poetry and grim confidence of the Nords; the old side would be the legendary, epic type of heroism of the ancient Greeks with a huge helping of confidence (even more when he has already seen he can do the impossible anyways). You may ask, thus, why Myron hasn't eradicated evil; of course, while Myron himself can pretty much do the impossible, he knows evil isn't defeated that easily, and he resorts to the Principle of the Boiling Blood.

    So, what's the Principle in a nutshell? What a LG hot-blooded old-school hero does: his blood boils at the sight of evil going unpunished, and does what he can in order to eradicate that evil; however, the biggest point of the Principle is inspiring others to do good and end the seed of evil, rather than the form of evil. LG followers are the heroic type: the trailblazers, the noble ones, the untarnished ones, the Knights in Shining Armor and wielding a Badass Frickin' Sword. The NG followers are the LG followers with even less inhibitions: they literally do whatever is necessary to advance the cause of Good. LN followers are the serious bunch of the group, and those whom go to the ultimate consequences to defeat evil; in that sense, they're like Cuthberites in that they punish evil, except they are more than confident that they will and believe their deity won't mind their methods (in a sense, they'd be what you have if you added Hot Blood to Knights Templar, and not the historical type).


    Requests: some opinions and comments about the deity, a proper holy symbol and someone who can do the favor of drawing it and that of the others.
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    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
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  3. - Top - End - #3
    Firbolg in the Playground
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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    I'm interested to see what other thing you consider 'underrepresented for a deity'
    You got Magic Mech in My Police Procedural!
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    The OTP in the playground.
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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    The Silverhand is an obvious candidate for a holy symbol, perhaps with some blood trickling from the base to the knuckles to show a willingness to sacrifice in the pursuit of victory.
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    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    Quote Originally Posted by Fri View Post
    I'm interested to see what other thing you consider 'underrepresented for a deity'
    Well, it may not be very obvious from the names, but probably from the portfolios.

    Two of the deities there aren't living. I'm experimenting with fluff about a deity based on intelligent items; basically, they are intelligent items that represent something people follow with such fervor that they gain unlikely divinity. Other is a god focused mostly on constructs, there's a god(dess) of assassins and the deserts, a chaotic god of the sea with a lawful sect that's almost strikingly different, and a nicer god of death which uses Tonberries as planar allies.

    From ALL of the deities, only Hannatha is by all means a cookie-cutter deity.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    The Silverhand is an obvious candidate for a holy symbol, perhaps with some blood trickling from the base to the knuckles to show a willingness to sacrifice in the pursuit of victory.
    I was willing to follow that, but I think that it should have something else. I'd say the blood burns with silvery-white and red flames, representing the sacrifice and the Principle of Boiling Blood (though, if the blood is actually boiling, the best example would be having the blood evaporate, though that may be a tad sinister).

    As promised; deity two of the list: Zegfyld!

    --

    ZEGFYLD STORMBRINGER
    Greater God (Lawful Good)

    Revered by many as the God of Creation, the Patron of Builders and the Lord of Machines, Zegfyld Stormbringer is the god of artisans, engineers, and the creative arts. Zegfyld is stated as the creator of this world and perhaps of many others, but he is credited only with the creation of the material; he is not credited with the creation of life, or the forefather of a race (though some dwarves believe that they were either created by him, or created by a creation of him, thus giving the god the epithet of “Creator amongst Creators”). He is, rather, the spirit of creativity and invention, and of the energy that moves the world. Followers of Zegfyld urge their followers to create works of both great art and great functionality, and to stave off the forces of destruction from ending creation; however, unlike other creator gods, he accepts the nature of destruction as a key entity in existence and does permit its function when necessary.

    Zegfyld’s appearance is shocking to behold: half of his is a very old and wrinkled man, with calluses in its fleshy hand, and the other half is comprised of clockwork machinery, muscle-shaped plating and intricate mechanisms working together. Both his flesh and his mechanical sides blend each other seamlessly, with part of his head, one arm and part of his torso, one of his legs, and other body parts completely replaced by machinery.

    Portfolio: Creation, Dwarves, Engineering, Golems, Forge
    Domains (Core): Good, Knowledge, Law, Protection
    Domains (Non-Core): Artifice, Craft, Creation, Dwarf, Metal, Planning, Storm

    Cleric Training: Clerics of Zegfyld are taught in many aspects of practical creation and knowledge: arithmetic, design, craftsmanship, magic, amongst others. During their training, each aspirant works to keep the intricate machinery working upon the temple in peak functioning, learning a lot about how even the inanimate can be considered living. Once they have earned enough experience and training, they are invested with the grace of Zegfyld, ready to spread the word of the Creator amongst Creators to the world. It usually takes little more than five years to complete the training, and sometimes even ten; any more than that, and Zegfyld’s clergy deem the aspirant inept for clergy (but if they show craftsmanship or inventive skills, they are trained in such arts).

    Quests: Zegfyld’s clergy is usually sent to protect and assist in massive works of creation, such as the defense of a fortification, the creation of a massive castle, the design of a protector construct, or even the recollection of a rare compound to create majestic items. More often than not, Zegfyld’s followers and those who wish to aid the faith are sent to assist dwarven strongholds, for they are the foremost craftsmen in the world. Higher-end quests see followers and assistants of Zegfyld’s faith traveling to Mechanus to observe, protect and repair the intricate mechanisms within the plane.

    Prayers: Prayers to Zegfyld are majestic compositions, intricate and complex as the design process is. Most prayers are repeated for their worth, and usually are done as instructions. One particular prayer goes “start the process, o Creator of Creators; begin with the process of repairing this world; aid me to execute the program that repairs this world; grant me the initiative to commence the process to repair this world; urge me to execute the sub-processes that will…” A prayer may last an hour, but some last for days at a time, and usually have a beginning and an end, carefully recited and heard; if the preacher makes a mistake, he must start the process all over again and rectify his mistake. Thus, the prayer is a very, very important part of the clergy and the faithful, and some take the task of learning the language of the Modron in order to truly please the deity. More often than not, this prayer is accompanied with the preacher working at the same time, as stopping work even for prayer is often seen as a bad idea.

    Temples: Temples of Zegfyld are called “factories”, and from them wonders of machinery emerge. The factory is self-sufficient, and priests observe and maintain the functions required on the temple. Usually, there are three crucial aspects to a factory of Zegfyld: the Song of Creation, which is a self-working mechanism that delivers a pleasant and mystifying song uninterrupted and cycling every time; the Forge of Creation which delivers the purified flames, the waves of divine energy and the water and food necessary for the priests to continue their work, and the Gear of Perpetual Motion (although it is not really perpetual, but a complex mechanism that must be maintained by various priests in rigid cycles) that powers up the entire factory, including the above-mentioned systems.

    Rites: Creating an item, a piece of machinery, a construct, or even a new life (as in, procreation and birth, not actual creation of life although followers of Zegfyld call it the “process of life”) is a rite for Zegfyld’s faithful. Usually coupled with a prayer, the creation process of a faithful is a very complex ritual, which has determined work, rest, and relaxation cycles rigidly intertwined within each other, and within the processes of others. One important rite is the consecration of a new factory of Zegfyld, which starts by the creation of the Gear, the activation of the Gear, and the secondary processes of creating the Song and the Forge before its eventual termination. Another is the rite of Life from None, which is the term they use to speak about creating constructs (animation from none, which leads to eventual development until the traits of life emerge within intricate machinery).

    Heralds and Allies:
    Zegfyld’s herald is as bizarre as him: a warforged (see Eberron Campaign Setting for more details) archivist 10/wizard 10/mystic theurge 10 with extensive alterations (see Heroes of Horror for details on the archivist). Zegfyld counts formian myrmarchs, awakened iron golems and quasars as allies (see Book of Exalted Deeds for details on the quasar).
    Relics: Gauntlets of repairing, maul of storms

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    A cyborg god? Yes, a cyborg god.

    Of course, this would be your typical "god of Creation" kind of person, but he kindly explains that he's not THE prime deity; considering the Evil deities wouldn't accept him. He's more of the hard-working, nice deity you'd like to have your stuff made with (as in, let him make them, of course).

    So, what's so special about him, aside from being Moradin's supposed creator and boss? Well, I found that most creatures have deities; humans get none but Zarus insists on being that, dwarves get Moradin, elves get Corellon, plants get Obad-Hai AND Ehlonna, undead get Nerull, even the aberrations get the mad gods such as Tharizdun and Mak Thum Ngatha (sp?). But constructs, of course, get none of this. Sure, you may say; constructs aren't intelligent most of the times. However, you have seen most constructs with an inch of intellect, and most importantly, self-awareness. Warforged ar an example, and they have no deities to speak of (notwithstanding the Lord of Blades' personality cult and the supposed "Becoming God"), and there are other constructs that have no deities of their own; mostly, inevitables.

    There's another thing, though, and that is that the concept of creation has changed ever so greatly. Now it's not great forges and divine fire, but machinery, divine electricity and part-conscious programming (so to speak; technology has no god anyways). Thus, what would happen in the eventual chance D&D was taken to its equivalent of the 20th century? Where magic, still existing, has to face the advent of technology? Well, most gods may fade from existence, but those whose portfolios may survive the zeitgeist will get great power. There must be a creator god that survives all that "gotterdammerung", right?

    ...Alright, alright...that wasn't the reason why I gave him electrical powers, so to speak. The thing is, most creator gods are associated with fire, but I wanted alternative means of working with them. One of them, a very long time ago, dealt with radiance; this time, I deal with electricity. Since constructs and electricity are somewhat associated, it's only natural that Zegfyld gets associated with it; while it still deals with forges and fire, he also can associate with electricity and storms; of course, that's the reason why he has Storm and not Air as part of his domains.

    One other thing was the devotion of dwarves. As usual, in games where Moradin is the chief deity of dwarves, you can expect Zegfyld to be minor deity at best. However, considering that both are creator deities and that Zegfyld is a non-dwarven deity (as in, he doesn't look nor act like a dwarf), it would be reasonable to think that both may be rivals, and their faithful would gather that rivalry at best. Hence, why the suggestion; while that may not be true, Zegfyld can be attributed to the creation of dwarves through the creation of their chief deity, Moradin; whether Moradin accepts him as a creator or as a very old and respectful master of the forge remains to be seen, and that's a part of the fluff I'd like to work with.

    Thing is, there is another reason why he's tied to dwarves. Tweaking with the races, I decided that dwarves weren't really humans at all, or anything resembling humanoids except superficially at best. While working with how to make dwarves unique, I stumbled upon the Warforged and decided they would make unique non-metallic living constructs, probably the first living constructs to ever exist (and since they propagate, there's a good chance they weren't treated as such by other beings who were puzzled by their unusual requirement of ale and hard work, as if they were some sort of logical machines or something). Naturally, that bit of homebrew may be used as it is; homebrew. However, what if it were published as a new type of campaign setting, or a new system altogether (albeit I wouldn't think it ends on that, what if it were?). Moradin is a copyrighted deity, and dwarves would be left orphans. Hence, Zegfyld takes them on his...well, he has no wings, so it would be "His mechanical hand"; in case Moradin dies, he could act as their chief deity, and they could exist as clay and stone living constructs, different from humans but also from golems.

    Thus, Zegfyld exists as a way to have a chief deity for dwarves, a creator god with a different focus, or even a proper "god of technology" if you wish to work with him. The fact that he favors the maul is another reason: I also wanted to experiment with allowing deities to have different weapons. Myron, above, uses a bastard sword instead of a longsword; other deities are expected to have different weapons as well, but mostly weapons that fit or suit their needs. And if a god of creation usually wields a hammer...
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    HANNATHA
    Greater Goddess (Neutral Good)

    Representing the aspects of life, growth and birth, Hannatha is a well-respected and beloved deity by many. Known by many as the Birthmaiden, the First Healer, and generally as the patron deity of all healers around the multiverse. Followers of Hannatha celebrate life in all aspects, and generally disdain violence for it leads to the antithesis of life, which is death. Hannatha understands the cycles of mortality, but teaches that death is but a process that all beings must follow; one must die in order to be reborn anew, based on the experiences of its former life. Hannatha, however, has an ardent belief in that death must happen at its fated date, and no individual must be slain or destroyed before its date, thus she promotes the arts of healing and breeding. She holds a special hatred for undead, for albeit she enjoys that death can be vanquished, she utterly disdains the desecration of the bodies that have transcended their mortal coil, and those whom insist on remaining futilely upon the mortal realm. Hannatha and Balitrios Celianis (see below), ironically, are good friends and usually do not mingle in the purposes of each other except for specific situations.
    Hannatha often appears as a young, beautiful maiden dressed in plain clothes, garbed in the clothes of a matron, but always with a cheerful and invigorating smile. Some say that a young and beautiful maiden that follows the path of a healer or birthmaiden may actually be Hannatha in disguise, especially if she infuses hope and warmth into the place she resides.

    Portfolio: Life, Healing, Nurturing, Breeding
    Domains (Core): Animal, Good, Healing
    Domains (Non-Core): Charm, Community, Family, Renewal

    Cleric Training: Clerics of Hannatha are chosen from those individuals with a deep respect for life. They are taught the healing arts in earnest, starting from mundane medicine and healing skills to the orisons of healing, and then to actual prayers and rites for greater healing. As well, they are trained in the skill of animal husbandry, slowly preparing them for the task of assisting births of various creatures. The end of the training consists in swearing the Annathan Oath, which forbids the cleric from viciously harming a creature and/or provoke its death, to respect life in all forms, to vanquish the undead, and to never deny healing to any creature, but also to retain great responsibility upon whom gets and does not get healed (those in their final days are treated, but never healed, as Hannathan clerics wouldn’t ever deny a creature the chance of natural death). Then, on a solemn rite, the cleric is imbued with the Annathan Exclusions (the only moments in which the cleric can violate his or her oath without incurring in the wrath of the goddess), and given the title of white mages (the lowest rung in the clergy of Hannatha).

    Prayers: Prayers to the goddess are melodical and soothing, almost like lullabies. They are always sung, most often when the cleric heals, or tries to remove the fears of those that confront death untimely. Usually all prayers end up with “there, there”, softly spoken so as to indicate the end of the prayer but also to grant confidence.

    Temples: Temples to Hannatha are small, closer to inns than to temples, where the sick are healed and the wounded are patched up. Aspirants and clerics are on constant move, providing both mundane and magical healing to the needed, and providing for other needs such as food and rest. A side of the temple is devoted to the needy, whom can trust to have a simple but warm room to rest and food to subsist upon. The size of the temple determines, however, the willingness to provide comfort to the needy; the largest temples, much to the disdain of the people, are quite elitist and rarely will provide comfort to the poor while charging exorbitantly to those who seek healing, while the smaller temples barely can contain the amount of people, be they poor, sick or wounded, that inhabit their installations. Of note is to say that the divide between the smaller temples and the larger temples (which find ways to bypass their sworn Annathan oath) is about to create a schism within the faithful, but it is the will of some clerics that allow them to still coexist.

    Rites: The birth of a creature is an extensive and elaborate ritual, in which the mother is comforted as she labors and the child is thoroughly observed during the first few days of its birth. This ritualistic ceremony of birth is crucial for Hannathan clerics, as part of the rituals are meant to protect the child from disease and harm for the remaining days; thoroughly cleansed and purified clothes, careful grooming and constant observation ensure the child may survive. Afterwards, the child is given to its mother, whom decides to choose a name that becomes inscribed in the Annals of Life, in a small ceremony in which the highest-ranking priest blesses the child by drawing sigils with fragrant oils, holy water and other components that create the unique anointment pigment. Children of aristocrats and important people are usually anointed with richer oleum and costly ingredients, and the children of kings in which Hannatha is an important deity anoint the princes as rightful heirs since their birth; a prince not anointed by Hannatha in their youth may not inherit the throne in such places. Most of the time, Hannathan rites deal with birth, but some also serve to bless the upcoming farming season, and bless the reaped harvest to remain fresh for very long.

    Heralds and Allies: Hannatha has a ursinal guardinal 20th level cleric (see Book of Exalted Deeds for information on the ursinal) as her herald. She counts xag-ya (see Manual of the Planes), celestial chargers and cervidal guardinals (see Monster Manual II) as her allies.
    Relics: White robe of the healer, hood of the devout

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    So...yay! A healer deity who's also a midwife deity! Meaning, she's the goddess of life and birth. So...what's so special about her?

    First and foremost, Hannatha draws a lot from other healer deities and deities of birth, most notably those in the Book of Exalted Deeds; she is akin to Estanna in that way. However, while Estanna is a low-rung deity which mostly tends to the hearth and family, Hannatha is a higher-tier deity whom deals with life, birth and healing, and the blessings behind it. Furthermore, I wanted to evoke the feeling of Final Fantasy and its White Mages, most notably the one depicted in Brian Clevinger's 8-Bit Theater, whom had an oath of non-violence which was constantly and utterly violated thanks to Black Mage.

    But really, I wanted a deity that dealt with healing without having to invoke Pelor. And a REAL goddess of healing, one that could be worshiped by the good races within the campaign setting. And I wanted a church rife with inner conflict stemming from social standing.

    You see, Hannatha is a good deity, and the closest you can expect to Stupid Good...being subverted, that is. The subversion, of course, is that she's so much into preventing her priests from harming anyone (or seeing others harm anyone) to a very vindictive level; harm someone, and you've just earned her wrath. The Exclusions? Of course, these are seeing someone harm another without a reason.

    Certainly, Hannatha is a greater goddess, and that implies having a great degree of power. However, she knows very well that she cannot stop the bloodshed and thus asks her priests to prevent this, in one way or another. If this implies beating someone to stop them, they will; if they have to use lethal force, they will. This, however, is no dark side of the goddess or anything along those lines; the reason is mostly because she's pretty serious about her job as a "goddess of life and healing" that she allows her priests to exert violent force towards that purpose (thus, making her less than Exalted).

    There is another reason why she's special, and that's the divide between the poor priests and the rich bishops. The poor priests are sacrificed, and are closer to Neutral Good than either Lawful or Chaotic; the rich ones are mostly Neutral and incline towards just payment for their services. Hannatha speaks that the gift of healing is free for anyone to seek, and it must be delivered to anyone whom seeks it; however, she seems to be oblivious to the fact that her own priests are violating her mandate. Truth be told; she's not oblivious, but she can't help doing so because the higher echelons of the church are notoriously corrupt in that regard, and removing the power of everyone in that regard would be tantamount to a genocide of the faith, as her standing relies mostly on her presence in large cities. While she does not tolerate that, she has no option but to do so.

    So, what's different about this goddess? Well, the fact that she's Good but not entirely Stupid (well, she's stupid in various other ways), the fact that she can't help that her priests are corrupt...oh, and that she's friends with the god of death. You see, life and death shouldn't be opposites; instead, life and death are just part of the same path. If the god of death claims a soul, Hannatha doesn't insist (albeit she negotiates; most of the resurrections are usually Hannatha pleading with the god of death for their souls, and most of the time she's successful). She cannot help the faithful of other gods (they have to deal with the god of death on their own), but she helps her faithful and those whom are faithless, so that they may have a chance to repent. It helps a lot the god of death is not evil (at least, the god of death I'll attempt to present, though).

    Thus, what I try to present here is a greater goddess of healing and life...and a flawed, yet effective goddess. She has her job just because, despite those obvious and blatant flaws, she's effective. Thus, the goal is to present someone who would be seen as inept, but that whenever the mantle is passed to another person, the receiver inevitably returns the power to her just because of the big troubles involving dealing with life. That should be the original take on the god/dess of healing, albeit a god/dess devoted to mostly healing and life was something somehow needed.


    Requests: opinions about the goddess, ideas about her holy symbol and drawings about it, and mostly how to show her as a goddess who's effective at what she does even if she doesn't appear like such. Also, a logical way to explain why she allows her high priests to be elitist and corrupt when she does not tolerate that attitude (and a good reason at that, so as to cause the sudden removal of all that power to her high priesthood tantamount to suicide in that regard).
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    Gah, Zegfyld slipped in while I wasn't looking!

    Reading him, I'm not seeing where he's benevolent. Lawful, certainly, with his ordered creations and rules, but I'm not sure how good he's supposed to be. He seems more Lawful Neutral to me.

    For Hannatha, I see her having either a cradle or a pair of open hands surrounded with a white glow as her holy symbol. I kinda like her as a sorta Stupid Good deity with faults of her own, though I'm not sure of a better method of showing the schism in her faith myself.
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    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    Gah, Zegfyld slipped in while I wasn't looking!
    Um...then you certainly didn't look for a long time. I mean, they have a week's worth of time between each other...

    Reading him, I'm not seeing where he's benevolent. Lawful, certainly, with his ordered creations and rules, but I'm not sure how good he's supposed to be. He seems more Lawful Neutral to me.
    Hmm...I'd be asking where Moradin enters into being a lawful good deity as well, since a lot is placed between being a creator deity and the god of the forge. Perhaps it's the defense of the dwarven community, I'd say.

    Then again, I've downplayed a bit the idea of how constructs would follow him. The Good part would be his patronage towards the arts, since at least he allows those who fail his trials to become artisans, as well as the idea of creation somewhat always related to good. Yet, that also works fine for Neutral people, so I guess I should get some ideas on how he seeks to protect things that don't necessarily worship him. The idea that he allows destruction to happen as it is "necessary" is a wiser side of him, one that might conflict with the idea of protection, but I feel there is a good way to showcase his innate goodness; he seeks to protect that which is useful, and thus leads his followers to protect that which serves to edify, while having no hard feelings for failures or for things whose purpose is only to destroy. Mostly, his goodness would be inherent to how things can be used to construct and edify.

    For Hannatha, I see her having either a cradle or a pair of open hands surrounded with a white glow as her holy symbol. I kinda like her as a sorta Stupid Good deity with faults of her own, though I'm not sure of a better method of showing the schism in her faith myself.
    Hmm...like the open hands. Interesting one.

    That was mostly the idea with her; being good to a fault, and perhaps having too many faults of her own, but still being the best at her job. She does offer boons to people that can aid her to do the job better, but she's...subtle to say the very least. She also is open to non-magical ways of healing, such as...say, the Sangehirn.

    Also, since it's been more than a week without a new deity, and to nudge one more deity before the year ends...

    --

    FEI CUI HUANG-DI ZHI JIAN (JADE SWORD OF THE EMPEROR)
    Lesser God (Lawful Neutral)

    A foreign deity from a far-away land, Fei Cui Huang-Di Zhi Jian (known by people of this land as Jade Sword) is a war god with a particular agenda. Jade Sword’s followers seek to refine themselves in the arts of combat, and include many monks, swordsages (see Tome of Battle), psychic warriors and soulknives (see Expanded Psionics Handbook) as part of his faithful. Jade Sword is a rather “peaceful” deity, as it teaches to refrain from combat whenever it is not needed, but to become the blade that slices all whenever the sword has to be drawn. Most specifically, Jade Sword’s followers urge people to practice discipline, and to master the most secret arts of combat (both the individual combat and the greater art of war) as a form of purification. Unbeknownst to most, Jade Sword was never born or even created as a god: in fact, it is only one of two mystical artifacts within the pantheon who gained consciousness and ascended to divinity (the other being Syrianna Terúnnantté), a small jade sword that belonged to an ancient deific dynasty and whose prowess allowed the blade, not the dynasty, to ascend. In a way, Jade Sword is the embodiment of the entire dynasty, and bits of each Emperor reside within the calm and disciplined mind of the awakened deific artifact.

    Jade Sword usually appears as a simple-dressed man with regal poise, always wielding an ornate sword with a blade constructed from jade. It is said that he has many forms, but that all of his forms are actually the ancient emperors who ruled the dynasty that ascended Jade Sword into power, and that the form he assumes actually influences his behavior; yet, he always shows a serene poise and a pose fit for a grandmaster of the blade.

    Portfolio: Technique, discipline, loyalty, nobility and royalty, ancestors.
    Domains (Core): Law, Strength, War
    Domains (Non-Core): Balance, Celerity, Metal, Mind, Nobility (choose one from this list)

    Cleric Training: Clerics of Jade Sword follow a singular master-disciple pattern. A wandering cleric, once it has meditated deeply into the concept of war, finds a disciple that requires his or her training. Usually, each cleric has its own requisite: some seek warriors who are already masters of the art, some seek the most undisciplined warrior ever, some seek a warrior that cannot control its desire for bloodlust, and some seek the odd, peaceful person who disdains the art of war. The master seeks to teach the disciple in the arts of war, slowly seeping the doctrine of Jade Sword into the training; this is done by means of sparring, uncanny tests that the master provides, and other unusual requirements. Regardless of the test, each cleric trains his or her disciple in a unique way, but an aspirant becomes a full-fledged cleric after a few points, which every cleric accepts by heart: one, when the disciple no longer questions the will of its master (for that means it will not question the orders of Jade Sword); second, when the disciple bests the master (be it at combat, or on non-combat, but usually it is a test in which the master will participate and the master will compete as if his or her own title is at risk), and finally when the master learns something from the disciple. Once that happens, the master bids farewell to the disciple, now a full-fledged cleric of Jade Sword’s faith, and promises that once they meet again, they may not be on the same terms as they are now. Former disciples may suddenly find themselves victims of their own masters, assisting their old masters, or even bypassing their old masters in a future, for there is no bond that binds master and disciple once Jade Sword has given his blessing.

    Prayers: A cleric of Jade Sword never prays, but some actions in their daily life are akin to prayers. A cleric of Jade Sword usually utters the name of the technique it executes, and a following thought that comes into the mind as it does. For example, a cleric that practices a closed-fist strike may very well say “Fist of Breaking Boulders! To stop the current, one does not halt; one pierces ahead!” Other prayer-like practices involve calligraphy meditations, in which they practice understanding the letters or runes that comprise their language: for example, a dwarven cleric of Jade Sword may meditate upon the rune that best resembles “stone”, while an elven cleric will attempt to practice the precise method to draw the glyph best related to “forest”.

    Temples: Temples to Jade Sword rarely exist, but they are best called monasteries than actual temples. Usually, these monasteries are secluded in the tallest mountain ranges, and their architecture is strikingly similar to the architecture of the original country upon which the faith emerged. Generally, there are three important things placed on the monastery: a replica of the Jade Sword, mounted upon a replica of the imperial throne of the ancient dynasty, and a massive parchment behind which relates the deepest principle behind the faith: There is no sword; there is only the Will and the Way. Roughly translated, that means that there is no right way to become a master of war, but that what is truly needed is a purpose to become a master, and a path to follow that purpose. Although monks, swordsages, psychic warriors and soulknives are the most common practitioners aside from the clerics, many other warriors hone their skills there; from rangers seeking to master the way of the bow, or paladins who seek improvement in their endless battle against evil.

    Rites: Very few rites are followed by the faithful of Jade Sword, but several days are respected. Usually, the faithful of Jade Sword honor the days of birth and death of each of the emperors of the ancient dynasty that culminated with the ascension of Jade Sword: in each of the days, the faithful meditate upon the deeds of the ruler, and draw strength from their virtues, while steeling their souls and their minds from their vices. For example, the Birth of the First Emperor is honored, and faithful are expected to meditate upon the great responsibility of founding a dynasty (or, in essence, founding anything: from a new dojo, a new knightly order, or even a new temple); it is on these days that consecrations of new temples are usually done. The Death of the Seventeenth Emperor, on the other hand, urges all faithful to meditate upon the sin of hubris, as the ruler perished by daring that he would vanquish a mighty enemy with a small force; faithful on those days meditate upon the dangers of overconfidence and the folly of pursuing actions for glory, when there is far too much to risk (the Seventeenth Emperor of the dynasty was regarded for driving the country to chaos and despair, and the Birth of the Eighteenth Emperor signals the restoration of the old ways).

    Heralds and Allies: Jade Sword always sends his most trusted herald; Crimson Lance, an intelligent artifact spear that belonged to the retainer of the Emperor, and whom was honored after Jade Sword ascended. Jade Sword counts doc cu’o’c, half-celestial tengu swordsages, and axiomatic naityan rakshasa as allies (see Oriental Adventures for doc cu’o’c and tengu, Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords for naityan rakshasa, and Planar Handbook for the axiomatic template)
    Relics: Jade sword of the Dragon Emperor, scroll of the manifold ways.

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    A sword!? As a deity?

    As you might have figured out, Jade Sword is an unique take on a specific idea; that of a deific dynasty. As you might have figured out, this is a deity with a very distinctive Asian feel; it is inspired by the dynasties of China, whom had the idea of divine rule taken a bit too far (yet, you can think of ancient Egypt as an occidental nation whom had similar ideas). Now, this would have meant the faith could simply be devoted to the emperors, a sort of mix between monotheism, animism and ancestral worshipping, but that would have been too easy. Thus, the idea: what if what was exalted was not the emperors, but the tool of their worship, or a great symbol of them? Thus, the idea of creating a deity composed of an intelligent item; this might differ quite a lot from the idea of a deity as commonly stated in-game, but it is one excellent way to play with the rules. Thus, Jade Sword is no god in the strictest sense of the word, but a faith. Now, this also means Jade Sword is an idol, which brings idolatry (and to the Western World, that's a very, very touchy aspect), but the trick is to look at it through a different lens; if the world you play in is polytheistic, animistic, and heck, loaded with pretty much every religious variant, why not play with it a way further and actually make a deity that's not corporeal, but rather material itself?

    Aside from that touchy point (do not discuss it, please; you may discuss other things but not take it too deep), Jade Sword was made to respond to one point: the lack of deities that support the Nine Swords. While there are few deities that support, say, truenaming or incarnum or binding (shadowcasting has Shar, mind you), there's no idea on how to truthfully deal with maneuvers. You might seek the warrior pantheon presented in Complete Warrior as a guideline, but the idea is quite accidental; CW was done in an early moment in 3.5, while ToB was done on a very late moment, and thus are quite hard to relate to. Jade Sword is a different take on a warrior deity, with a cleric that is aware and may actually practice the way of the Nine Swords, and gathering such different pathways to combat such as monks and soulknives (the usually unloved children) with psychic warriors and swordsages (their more beloved kindred), although you can also add paladins and samurai to the mix, and the odd warblade as well. Jade Sword implies great discipline and meditation upon what makes a ruler and a warrior, and it would do well to read Sun Tzu while playing a faithful of the Blade of Dynasties (a nickname for the "deity").

    Also, Jade Sword is not necessarily a warrior deity; he's also a monarchic deity, and thus he is great for campaigns involving political intrigue. While a few of the monarchs are established, the others are left open, and a savvy DM may use Jade Sword to explain virtually everything except a revolt (and even then, you might figure one of the monarchs was deposed and organized a retake of the crown, symbolizing how a Lawful individual can lead a rebellion). This might contrast with the idea of Jade Sword as a lesser deity, but there is one reason; for how widespread his ideas may be (in terms of portfolio), Jade Sword is mostly a regional faith that has recently begun its spread. You might decide whether Jade Sword works as an intermediate or greater god if you desire, but one key aspect is that Jade Sword has a feel that's almost intrinsically linked to certain traditions, and may be a bit odd to behold.


    Requests: an Adaptation to explain how Jade Sword (or what Jade Sword represents: an artifact item ascended to godhood through the faith poured by the followers of the monarchs that wielded it, representing war and rulership in small and large scale) can be reflavored to a less Asian feel. That way, one could use Jade Sword without having to create a Jade dynasty, or an Egyptian dynasty.
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
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    That's odd, you seem to have a typo. 'Eris' was misspelt as 'Akeurias.'

    Bizarre inside jokes aside, there's a lot of cool fluff here. Watching this thread!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dust View Post
    That's odd, you seem to have a typo. 'Eris' was misspelt as 'Akeurias.'

    Bizarre inside jokes aside, there's a lot of cool fluff here. Watching this thread!
    Well...that was actually quite, quite, quite lost. There are two chaotic gods in the list, and none of them are gods of Dischord, or pure Chaos, or let their followers go fnording, or have a self-defeating thing that cannot be called a rule because they hate Order or something...

    Still, you might see a few of them are a bit incomplete because I haven't finished with all of them (though rest assured, the general ideas for all of them are done, the full write-up is still missing. I have written up to Nurién, and I got a bit confounded because of what he represents and which herald he should have, but rest assured, in one moment I will finish them all. And then...maybe I could go with deities-by-petition, to complete a few ideas and alignments that are sorely underrepresented (I feel your pain, Chaotic Good).
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
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    I have 2 comments on Jade Sword: 1) Though perhaps not intended, I think that Kelanen, the Greyhawk Hero God of Swords, is probably one of the closest published deities to supporting the Sublime Way, from having his clerics travel and practice many martial arts to master the blade, to his holy symbol being 9 swords pointing out from a center point, he is one of the best candidates for Initiator's religious pursuits. 2) As for adapting Jade Sword, you could make him (it?) Nordic or really come from any society with a strong warrior tradition, as a weapon passed from father to son (or mother to daughter, parent to child or whatever way you feel), especially if the family line is one in a seat of leadership. The weapon may change, depending on the weapon favored, but the key is that the weapon is a symbol of that family's continued power and longevity or at least their continued hold on the reins of society.

    I look forward to further deities, definitely more of the freedom loving kind, as we've too long had to turn to CN or NG deities to follow or have to be elves *quiver* More freedom loving deities should be available. Not every CG character need worship Tritherion, y'know?
    Last edited by Cieyrin; 2011-01-02 at 04:38 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    I have 2 comments on Jade Sword: 1) Though perhaps not intended, I think that Kelanen, the Greyhawk Hero God of Swords, is probably one of the closest published deities to supporting the Sublime Way, from having his clerics travel and practice many martial arts to master the blade, to his holy symbol being 9 swords pointing out from a center point, he is one of the best candidates for Initiator's religious pursuits.
    Interesting...odd that they didn't mention Kelanen in the ToB supplement (or maybe it was better, because otherwise Clerics would have had a set of nine discipline-based domains that would have made the Cleric better than the Wizard :P). Then again, they haven't mentioned many deities (I mean, the only mention of gun-wielding paladin Murlynd is his arch-famous...spoon? The one with the "thick and flavorless gruel"?) once they placed them in Living Greyhawk Gazetteer; that's the love they had for fluff in the final books of the 3.5 run.

    Maybe reworking Kelanen (maybe Kelanen = Reshar apotheosized, except they're using his surname?) to be a deity related to the Nine Swords would be interesting, but that would be removing all that Kelanen represented (essentially, the way to bypass the restrictions on clerics wielding non-bladed weapons as ALL swords are bladed weapons...even rapiers which only do puncturing) and reworking the fluff to meet that of Reshar.

    2) As for adapting Jade Sword, you could make him (it?) Nordic or really come from any society with a strong warrior tradition, as a weapon passed from father to son (or mother to daughter, parent to child or whatever way you feel), especially if the family line is one in a seat of leadership. The weapon may change, depending on the weapon favored, but the key is that the weapon is a symbol of that family's continued power and longevity or at least their continued hold on the reins of society.
    It would be a striking difference to the fluff (changing from an imperial dynasty of warriors to a familial dynasty of warriors, which would make it lesser indeed in the territory but perhaps closer to demigod status everywhere else), but some ideas come from it. Amazons oddly strike as a good way to work with Jade Sword, and it would give a very feminine feel to an otherwise masculine fluff. Should be easier to deal with; mostly make it the dynastic weapon of a lineage related to divinity. In fact, there are several places that work under that idea (specifically the Chrysanthemum Throne and Ama-no-Murakumo).

    I look forward to further deities, definitely more of the freedom loving kind, as we've too long had to turn to CN or NG deities to follow or have to be elves *quiver* More freedom loving deities should be available. Not every CG character need worship Tritherion, y'know?
    That'd be hard, but a few working concepts might just make it. I feel that a CG deity could be related to wind and flight, sorta like the Raptoran gods, since the ability to fly has always been related to freedom and aspiration. But then it would be a bit too similar to the Raptoran deities (well, Tuilviel who's the chief deity and meets all of those requisites). Can't use a prankster god because Olidammara and Garl (and Chaav, if you use him) are mostly trickster deities that most CG characters and clerics may choose, but maybe if the general idea of CG trickster deities becomes clearer.

    Maybe if I rework the idea to make it different (such as adding Nekketsu to an otherwise unremarkable LG deity), it might just work. In the meanwhile, another deity, and afterwards I need to get in touch with the other deities.

    --

    NURIÉN MAEGLOTH
    Greater God (Lawful Neutral)
    Time passes and moves without end, but time has a clear beginning and a clear end. The passage of history, the epics and cataclysms, and even the minuscule details of every single individual that existed, exists, and will exist in a future are known by only one being; Nurién Maegloth. Known as the Chronicler of the Gods, Herald of Fate and Source of Eternal Knowledge, Nurién is a very ancient deity, perhaps the first deity that exists, albeit not the deity that created all races and certainly not the one that created the universe (Zegfyld Stormbringer counts as the creator deity in that particular aspect, while the main deities of all races count as the creators of their respective races). Rather, Nurién’s purpose is singular: to scribe the events of all history, up until the end of time. It is unknown whether Nurién will cease to exist afterwards, or whether he will be the last remaining survivor of the death of the multiverse, but one thing is certain: he knows all that happened in the past, he can uncannily predict all that will happen in the present, and knows all possible futures that may exist from a simple decision. Nurién teaches his faithful that the river of time is best left still, but that one may learn from the past to prevent the horrors of the future. Nurién also wards, and urges his followers to, the very notion of time and dimensions, and little is done that fails to notice his attention; in fact, nothing does, as he is effectively omniscient in every single aspect.
    Nurién Maegloth appears as a wizened old man in robes, wielding a massive bag with scrolls of all types and sizes, a magical golden quill, a sand clock that flows but never stops, and a fluid series of clothes that comprise every single period in existence, and even some. At times, Nurién may appear as a young singer, with a majestic lute, a friendly smile, and a blank scroll upon which he writes all that he sees.

    Portfolio: Chronicles, time, space, knowledge, writing, preservation
    Domains (Core): Knowledge, Law, Magic
    Domains (Non-Core): Fate, Force, Oracle, Portal, Rune, Time

    Cleric Training: Nurién’s clerics are chroniclers and scribes first and foremost, and they begin their training recollecting information throughout the land in which they live. Each aspirant then reports his findings to the elders of the faith, whom determine whom shall write the event within scrolls. As time passes, the territory they traverse becomes larger and larger, and they are expected to extract even the most minuscule detail of each event as possible, in order to progress. Aspirants are expected to learn at least two or more different languages, several alphabets, and several methods of recollecting information before being invested as clerics. The final test is to witness an event revealed by Nurién, and the outcome of said event; usually, this event will be one that the aspirant will be clearly related to, and which will test whether the aspirant seeks to change fate or to respect the flow of time. Those who succeed are immediately ordained, while those who don’t face immediate expulsion or punishment for tampering with fate. However, sometimes, the inverse is true: the aspirant may end up involved in tampering fate, only to find that it was by interfering that Nurién’s will was done. The chances of this happening are one in a million, but when it does happen, Nurién blesses the aspirant with a great gift.

    Prayers: Faithful of Nurién make their prayers right before they go to sleep, telling their deity all that they have seen, heard and experienced, no matter how private it may be. The prayer may seem like a conversation with someone else, and in most part clerics of Nurién feel they communicate with their deity. Requests to Nurién are done as part of that conversation, often as an act of contrition by questioning themselves: “At afternoon, my companions and I faced a band of roving orcs, all slain to the last one. The arcanist that followed us showed no remorse, but the warrior felt it was a shame that they perished without knowing the Light. Tell me, O Chronicler; was the hatred of the arcanist true, or should I felt as well the shame of the warrior?”

    Temples: Buildings consecrated to Nurién are great structures, immense libraries filled to the brim with scrolls and books detailing all aspects of existence. Clerics are petitioned for inscribing key events, official documents and scriptures, and translations from ancient languages to Common or other requested languages. Temples of Nurién also have small schools where languages and scripture are taught to the faithful and to the fortunate few who may enter, be they aspirants or common people. Followers of the Chronicler feel that ignorance is one fate that their deity wills them to face, and few ever deny others the bounty of learning, but are well aware that few are disciplined enough to retain all they learn.

    Rites: Nurién’s faithful have few rites, but they are well aware of the religious rites of every other faith, and make observations about them for the purpose of knowledge (even the rites of chaotic deities). Their rites mostly involve key moments in which a certain event is documented, such as the declaration of armistice between two countries, or the foundation of a new dynasty; those days are quietly celebrated, as they herald new pathways of history that the faithful may participate in. Two key ceremonies are observed by the faitihful: the beginning of the new yearly cycle, in which all followers meditate as they do their daily duties about the beginning of existence, and the end of the yearly cycle, in which they meditate upon the upcoming and inevitable end of existence itself. The two ceremonies have a day in-between, which is the Day of the Cycles; the faithful of Nurién are unaware of what may happen in the future and what happened before existence, but they believe that perhaps existence is a cycle, and once this cycle ends, Nurién will be reborn anew, ready to chronicle the new existence, with his followers as eternal chroniclers on this new cycle.

    Heralds and Allies: Nurién has an axiomatic warden archon diviner 10/loremaster 10 as his herald, and holds the mighty chronotyryn and quarut inevitables as allies.
    Relics: scroll of the neverending story, quill of remaking

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    I should add one more thing to Nurién (nooh-ri-EN): god of paradoxes.

    Why so? Nurién isn't an elf deity, but he has a distinctively elven name. He's a god of chronicles, but his alignment is lawful neutral; distant from the chaotic bent of bards whom would be the type of people whom would settle for a chronicle. He gives his flock spells and abilities to alter time and space (so to speak) but recommends his flock not to; yet, in occasions, that's exactly what he wants (to have his flock challenge that notion).

    But that's exactly what makes him interesting: Nurién is basically your typical omniscient deity, with powers off the scale of things, but one that knows the repercussions of events and people attempting to face them, and at the same time still willing to go against the flow. The biggest lesson taught to clerics of Nurién is that if they are going to fight against the flow, they should be ready to face the might of that flow, and understand what happens when they face that flow. If Boccob is the smartass deity who couldn't care if you do one thing or another, Nurién is basically the guy who says "no, not even then; you might wanna try if you want to though".

    Nurién is the remnant of a very old attempt to make a triad of deities for a very different game (GURPS, actually). The idea was to make a triad based on creation and destruction, and the conflicts in-between. One deity was a creator goddess made of actual light, whose main goal was to protect Creation (all kinds of creation, except things created only to destroy and even then), another was a chronicler god whose word made things exist, and another was a destroyer god whose sole purpose was to destroy what was worthless and what was an excess in his eyes; he was meant to be a destroyer god, a god of death, and someone whom was evil but not chaotic (a methodical kind of evil, actually). Nurién was basically that chronicler deity that made things exist (the creator goddess could create just about anything, but unless the chronicler deity gave it a name, it was just a construct of light), and basically the neutral arbiter between the parts. However, I wanted to change it a bit from the original incarnation, now free of the triad's existence. Hence, why the name "Nurién" was added to "Maegloth" (because the original deity's name was Maegloth).

    From that original incarnation the knowledge remained, but I made him a chronicler; I really like the idea of a deity whose sole purpose is to record what happens on a specific timeline, and the idea of a "true" or "prime" timeline to distance it from other parallel universes, thus allowing time travel and parallel dimensions in the first place. Thus, he would have an incredible amount of power in his hands, but a very difficult task; to ensure the inability of mortals to tamper in that timeline, as it could bring the end of the timeline faster or delay it needlessly. Everything that he writes is what happens, but it is a story that can change. His clergy basically prevents that from happening, but sometimes they need to nudge things a bit, given that fate and free will always fight each other. He's unwilling to nudge things towards good or evil, but sometimes he just needs to in order to keep the storyline fluid and worthwhile. The good and evil sects of Nurién, thus, exist to nudge things ever so slightly; if you can't fight the flow, go with it but make sure you move into a better position. Those whom are purely neutral (and which may include druids and bards) consider that free will cannot be restrained, while those who appeal to the deity's alignment consider that the timeline cannot be tampered, or are akin to the deity's idea of how the timeline should be written.

    Which while not paradoxic at first (after all, every deity has differences between its good and evil followers, or between its lawful and chaotic followers, and the neutral ones in-between), it's really a cause of trouble for the faith as it eventually causes bigger ripples in-between the timeline. And it works, because that "conflict" between stagnancy and change is what makes Nurién's work interesting. So essentially, he doesn't tamper within the timeline, but likes the conflict as a good writer likes what happens when he sees the story progress.


    Request: a herald and allies. It's really, really hard to find a herald related to knowledge AND time. Chronotyryn is great as a planar ally, though, but finding a specific herald is really difficult. So I could do with those. Also, ideas for relics, although one of them will certainly be a quarterstaff (or a rapier, what with the "quill" thing, but then again that would be weird). Thanks for the ideas, applying them now.
    Last edited by T.G. Oskar; 2011-01-30 at 04:33 PM. Reason: Added a somewhat fitting herald and very powerful planar allies; also relics.
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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    That god of paradox and its clergy reminds me on the monks of time from discworld. They have similar job, that is making sure that the timeline is the 'right' timeline.
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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    As regards the request..isn't there some kind of inevitable that deals with time and knowledge thereof...possibly in the fiend folio? Would one of those suit for a herald?

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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    Quote Originally Posted by T.G. Oskar View Post
    Interesting...odd that they didn't mention Kelanen in the ToB supplement (or maybe it was better, because otherwise Clerics would have had a set of nine discipline-based domains that would have made the Cleric better than the Wizard :P). Then again, they haven't mentioned many deities (I mean, the only mention of gun-wielding paladin Murlynd is his arch-famous...spoon? The one with the "thick and flavorless gruel"?) once they placed them in Living Greyhawk Gazetteer; that's the love they had for fluff in the final books of the 3.5 run.

    Maybe reworking Kelanen (maybe Kelanen = Reshar apotheosized, except they're using his surname?) to be a deity related to the Nine Swords would be interesting, but that would be removing all that Kelanen represented (essentially, the way to bypass the restrictions on clerics wielding non-bladed weapons as ALL swords are bladed weapons...even rapiers which only do puncturing) and reworking the fluff to meet that of Reshar.
    I think it has to do with the weird relations between WotC and their ownership of Greyhawk, as they didn't push a lot of Greyhawk material beyond LG.

    As for Kelanen apotheosizing from Reshar, I've always been of the thought that Reshar was an avatar of Kelanen and his mysterious appearance and disappearance were just Kelanen producing and taking back his divine power.

    Request: a herald and allies. It's really, really hard to find a herald related to knowledge AND time. Chronotyryn is great as a planar ally, though, but finding a specific herald is really difficult. So I could do with those. Also, ideas for relics, although one of them will certainly be a quarterstaff (or a rapier, what with the "quill" thing, but then again that would be weird).
    Quote Originally Posted by Ferreon View Post
    As regards the request..isn't there some kind of inevitable that deals with time and knowledge thereof...possibly in the fiend folio? Would one of those suit for a herald?
    The Quarut are indeed in the Fiend Folio and protect the integrity of time and space from those who'd abuse it, like those casting limited wish, time stop, miracle, wish, temporal stasis, etc. I think they'd make good planar allies, though, as opposed to a herald.

    I'm thinking an Archivist/Loremaster would make a good herald, possibly a Mechanitrix or maybe a Modron.
    Last edited by Cieyrin; 2011-01-08 at 02:44 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mulletmanalive View Post
    Damn you Cieyrin! Cieyrin!!!!!read as Khaaaaan!

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    Thanks Cie, as always, for the ideas. The quill will probably be a very powerful item, and probably the scroll will be as well, but they'll have very, very, very stringent requirements. Also, while warden archons are lawful by nature, making it axiomatic is not redundant by any means (it just means it adds the relatively useful axiomatic template to an already powerful creature).

    However, I was forgetting about the thread; hadn't worked on the fluff for the next character. Thus, the next entry will be written directly, not copied from an external document.

    --

    SYRIANNA TERÚNNANTÉ
    Intermediate Goddess (Neutral)

    From the dawn of civilization, elves have always been recognized as the foremost authority in both combat and the magical arts. Ancient elves were deftly skilled in the art of blending both combat styles, whether using bows or using their specialty blades. However, the power and skill of the elves has slowly faded over time, most simply seeking to enhance their skill with the magic arts as a boost to their martial prowess, or ignoring the arts of combat in pursuit of supreme magical ability. Amongst the elves, more and more arcanists are focusing in protective magic, or enhancement magic, specifically moving towards the schools of Abjuration, Conjuration and Transmutation, with some dabbling in the arts of Illusion as well. Evocation, once the most feared of all schools, is slowly fading from the elven world as few consider the importance of a well-landed blow as part of a seamless whole that magic is supposed to deal with. More and more elves consider the destructive power of Evocation as "rude and uncivilized", when a simple play of words or conjuring a much more powerful creature into the world solves most of the situations they face.

    Yet, few elves still remain close to the old arts of magical combat, where they could easily blend a devastating sphere of flames with a well landed set of strikes. Duskblades, some call them; bladesingers, others call themselves; those who still worship the blade call themselves arcane archers. Some follow darker teachings and become the feared hexblades. And some actually practice in the ancient arts of the Eldritch Knights, gaining a greater control over their magic. Even the warmages, magicians first and foremost, leap to the call of heated melee combat when the need arises. Amongst them leap a group of devoted elves, mastering the arts of destruction and the skill to vanquish their enemies with a mighty blow, following a long-forgotten goddess of the elves; Syrianna Terúnnantté, Sword-Maiden of Spell and Steel.

    Syrianna's story is unusual, in that few elves know about her, and certainly that is owing to the unusual form of her apotheosis; not a being of flesh and bone but a legendary magic sword that gained conscience, Syrianna is the symbol of the ancient elves' might. Syrianna's existence is older than the schism that separated the surface elves from their drow brethren, older than the enmity of the elves and the orcs, and possibly older than the elves. If the first sword was made by the goblins, or so they claim, Syrianna was the first artifact to achieve consciousness; whether it was her owner or perhaps an act of whim of the Multiverse, the fact that she has a defined gender and a defined legend. Still unsure is her creation myth: some say Syrianna was the sword of the first elf who bore spell and steel as a weapon, some say that she was forged by the mightiest elven arcanist ever existed for the mightiest of the elven warriors in their history, and some claim that Syrianna was the legendary first weapon of the chief elven deity, Corellon, given sentience and a purpose. Symbol of great importance is her identification as a woman, for spell and steel are usually symbols of men; a great deal of her followers are women because of this.

    Syrianna is usually envisioned as a floating blade, with the silhouette of an elven woman floating nearby. The silhouette is extremely hard to notice and is mostly an illusory effect (a successful Spot check against an invisible creature), and the True Seeing spell reveals nothing (thus revealing the sword itself is the presence). Occasionally, Syrianna assumes an illusory female elven form, usually that of great relevance to the person whom she speaks of; perhaps a member of his or her family, or even an acquaintance of an ancestor.

    Portfolio: Magical combat, elves, evocation, females
    Domains (Core): Destruction, Magic, War
    Domains (Non-Core): Competition, Elf, Glory, Metal, Pride (choose two from the list)

    Cleric Training: Syrianna's clergy isn't normally limited to females, but a great amount of them are. The clergy usually seeks a balance between magical knowledge and physical combat, and usually geared towards causing great damage: neutral good clerics teach that the best defense is a good offense, while rare evil followers revel upon the destructive nature of their goddess. Most usually end up as magicians or warriors with some degree of mastery on both sides (duskblades, warmages, fighter/wizard, occasionally hexblade) and aren't taught the dogma of the faith unless proving themselves willing to blend both arts. While it may seem an odd way to form clerics, those who do generally have great knowledge in the arcane arts (through ranks in Knowledge [Arcana]) and learn tactics that deal with seamless blending of both styles of combat (usually through Combat Casting, but also through Battlecaster Offense and Battlecaster Defense feats). The key component in cleric training is patience, as the true evoker cannot show impatience in destroying things, lest he or she ends up destroying himself or herself; also, it allows the cleric to use less destructive spells while the divine spells that rain devastation are granted (such as Flame Strike). Once the applicant has learned the value of patience and the nature of destructive magic, it is indentured into the service of the Spellblade.

    Quests: Syrianna's clergy and followers are often sent where destructive magic is needed. Being primarily elven females, followers of Syrianna are sent to protect elven communities (and by extension human communities unless they are the provoking group) by directly going over the enemy camp and raining as much destruction as the follower possibly can: anything from sabotage to burning the very earth the camp stands on is an acceptable task. On equal terms, they are sent to quell ongoing destruction when it has gone too far: halting evokers with even greater firepower or by pinpoint precise strikes, stopping wars with fire from the sky or violent lashes of thunderbolts, and so on. A follower of the Spellblade is a contained machine of destruction, calm and collected but willing to lash out if not careful.

    Prayers: Syrianna is properly worshipped in the midst of destruction, but the emotional state of the follower has great weight. When destruction is unneeded, followers pray in a very calm way, often refraining with "...and grant me the patience to withhold my fury." Yet, when they need to unleash their might upon the enemy, their prayers turn downright violent and offensive, a language so violent people are shaken (and usually, a follower or cleric of Syrianna engaged in destructive acts tends to take a moment to intimidate the enemy with a prayer to her deity) out of the sheer language. The fact that the cleric or follower may not seem so intimidating causes twice the concern. Prayers when raining destruction upon the enemy are intense and grow ever more intense, pleading for either "righteous wrath" or "purification through flames", although the alignment usually restricts some of the most foul language; good followers seek their enemy understands the reason and seeks surrender, generally going with "...grant them the wisdom to quell their wrath, lest thy flames seek to consume them!", while evil followers cackle with glee and boldly proclaim "...seize their bodies with thy flames, and tear their souls; let thine screams quell thy fury, for they have earned thy enmity!!". One thing is for certain; no two worshipers pray to Syrianna in the same way.

    Temples: Altars to the Spellblade are usually constructed with Elven architecture, and generally placed on arcane schools devoted to war magic or upon the workshops of craftsmen capable of forging weapons with destructive magic power. Very few temples to her exist, as she is a lesser elven deity and usually not recognized by the followers of the Seldarine, but a few followers still dare to place an altar upon her, usually close (and to the left) of Corellon's main temple and altar, symbolizing the myth that Syrianna was once Corellon's mightiest weapon.

    Rites: All followers of Syrianna behave like a storm, usually very meticulous in their waxing and waning regarding the fury of their magic (or their strikes). Generally, a follower takes the same time to awaken from their stupor and unleash their fury as the time they take to do the opposite; generally it follows a very elegant period, where mere strikes with steel or arrows give way to potent magic strikes, then to veritable forces of destruction, and then back to precise strikes and calm. Outside from their tendency to reach states of calmness and fury, few rites to her are known. Those who wield blades similar in shape to that of the Spellblade herself (and specifically those who can imbue magic into their weapons) take meticulous care of such weapons, as if they were holding the goddess themselves. Elven female clerics who can imbue magic into their weapons usually extend such devotion into themselves, seeing their unique bond with the goddess as unbreakable.

    Herald and Allies: Syrianna sends one of four female half-elemental elves, each a warmage 20 with the Elemental Substitution feat related to their element and wielding a replica of the deity (all four look exactly alike as well, and resemble the silhouette of the deity) as her heralds. She sends asuras and elemental monoliths as her allies.
    Relics: blade of arcane might, gauntlet of spellblade sigils

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    So yeah, as promised, this one was pretty much done "on the fly". So even I'm surprised: an elf with more dakka!? Really?

    That's just one of the many crazy ideas that flow into my mind. I really wanted to make the deity different from Jade Sword, because they were both artifacts that became deities for some strange reason: while the latter is the blade of a dynasty, the best way to see this is "even the deities' weapons are deities themselves". Thus, Syrianna was born.

    However, her core concept was dealing with the typical gish, and specifically the gish that goes with evocation as its favored school. Warmages, fighter/evoker/eldritch knight/spellswords, holy scourges and duskblades are good examples of what I seek; people who can blend magic and swordplay, in one way or another. Generally, what I wanted was something closer to the Mystic Knight or Mageknight from Final Fantasy, a character who doesn't directly use magic but rather imbues magic through their weapons to deal great quantities of damage.

    And...it evolved into an elf with more dakka. Because not all will be evoking gishes; some really want to bring destruction into the fray.

    Another thing that's important is the aspect of females. A female elf fighter/arcanist that becomes a gish and wields a rapier is just TOO specific to work out, but somehow it was the image that Syrianna brought to mind. While she wouldn't mind having non-females, non-elves, wizards with very little physical might or warriors whose access to magic is their magic weapons, those who fit her description think of themselves as very important to the faith.

    While I did intentionally blurred the creation myth, I really like the idea of "the sword of a deity given sentience, sapience and eventually divine power." Most of us don't know exactly which is Corellon's weapon (he has two, and his sword is called Sahandrian, in case you were curious), but the idea of adding some legacy and importance to the weapons of the deities made for an enticing choice. However, this doesn't has to be the choice for you; another thing I wanted to evoke was the feeling of the original elf, which had knowledge of spellcasting and martial prowess which other classes couldn't even replicate, and that later turned into fighter/magic user multiclassing. That feeling that survived within arcane archers and bladesingers (rather poorly, I might add), but that seems so iconic to the D&D elf.

    Regardless of her creation myth, Syrianna is a very specific deity meant for those hybrid gishes that go the path of destruction, and the flavor unmistakenly leads her to that path. That's a great reason why she was meant to be a female; not only to contrast with the "male" Jade Sword, but also because it gives more power to females. Thus far, aside from the rather nice but sometimes angry Hannatha, there's very little female representation. This will grow a bit (at least two other deities are females), in any case.

    There's one more thing I wanted to add: her favored weapon. While not noticeable in the write-up, she favors the rapier over the longsword or the scimitar, but in any case you have Complete Warrior or Races of the Wild, she actually grants proficiency with the elven longblade. Elven longblades are really cool, because they are somewhere between the longsword and the rapier in terms of stats, akin to "cut-and-thrust" weapons of late Middle Ages. It's your decision whether you want the lowly rapier or the mightier elven longblade as her favored weapon, but that's her shape and she won't go for anything else.


    Request: not much. Her symbol should be simple (the blade itself, with a silhouette holding it). But some critique would be nice, you know...
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    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
    T.G. Oskar profile by Specter.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Troll in the Playground
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    May 2009
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    Default Re: Deities of both the absurd and the awesome!

    It's been more than a year since I did this, and it's yet not over!?

    Something has to be done! And done shall be!

    Since it's been so long, I'll have to check once again all suggestions and see what it works by the time I finish the main deities. The remaining gods are mostly "dark" and some are plain evil, but I'll see how I handle this.

    This deity is unique because it represents a force of nature, and because it has a built-in schism that should be pretty interesting to behold. Once again, this will be done at the moment, with some of the ideas developed with time.

    --

    AKEURIAS
    Greater God (Chaotic Neutral)
    Nothing is as fickle as the sea. At a moment, it is calm, the horizon clearly showing how the sun hides from the plane, ready to do its magnificent voyage that ends on the other side of the world. In an instant, however, the sea becomes violent, a storm brewing on that very same horizon, or a cataclysm ready to absorb the sea.

    Those who live in the sea know of Akeurias, whom more than a god is the sea itself. One of the few "gods" whose domain encompasses the Material Plane and that can be seen at plain view, Akeurias is fickle upon those who dare defy his domain (and his body). It is unsure what pleases or angers him, as one day the bounty of the sea can be plentiful, and the next day a terrible storm engulfs those who were successful the day before. One day a large wave cripples the coast and ruins the lives of many, and despite the angry people cursing at the sea, the next day the sea is quiet and returns those whom it had engulfed. Plentiful sacrifices can be accepted one day, and the next one loathed.

    However, Akeurias isn't as fickle as people think. The domain of Akeurias is the sea, and the sea protects its inhabitants. All life on the sea belongs to Akeurias, and all sea life bow to his might. All sea life is bound to him; from the peaceful merfolk to the brutal sahuagin, to the docile fishes to the ferocious predators. Only a few inhabitants of the sea are loathed, and those who follow Akeurias are keen on hunting them; the dreaded aboleths are an abomination to Akeurias as the undead are to the land, and it is only the dread power of these foul beings that has ensured their survival in an environment that opposes them clearly. To those whom inhabit the land, Akeurias is ambivalent; one day the deity shows its kind face and provides the bounty of the land, and in others he seems to strike the land with his might, as if he wished the whole world was his own domain, with waves that threaten to flood the land forever in water.

    Much like the deity, images of Akeurias are largely unknown. All imagine him as the sea, as a male, wielding a mighty trident, but none can define his exact image. Some see him as a torrent of water that raises from the sea in humanoid form, others as a fierce monster which reunites all the traits of the sea, and others as living water. His epithets are the Lord of the Seas, the Sea-Father and the Living Water.

    Portfolio: the seas and oceans, sea life, storms, disasters.
    Domains (Core): Chaos, Destruction, Water
    Domains (Non-Core): Ocean, Retribution, Storm, Wrath

    Cleric Training: Those who devote to Akeurias seek to abandon the land and become one with the sea. Aspirants meditate upon the seas, tested by the Sea-Father, as the waves drag them into the seas. All aspirants learn to subsist on the bounty of the sea, and most learn the trades of fishing and seamanship, attempting to learn the ebb and flow of the god itself. The cleric becomes full-fledged when the sea, by means of the other clerics, recognizes him; this may take to the aspirant only a few months, or an entire lifetime, regardless of how devout or applied he or she is. However, even those who are not blessed by the Lord of the Seas still remain as fonts of wisdom, understanding that their goal is not to become one with the sea, but to lead those who do. Those who spend their lifetime following the tenets of the sea god but not partake of his blessing are taken with great respect, as they endure the apparent indifference of their god with faith, and because the sea god disapproves of those who berate his unblessed servants.

    Quests: Clerics of Akeurias are taken whenever adventurers must travel the oceans. It is them who may quell the storms and ensure the winds lead to their destination, so they are sought as navigators and "sea-charmers". Occasionally, clerics are ordered to attack lairs of aboleths, or to take the wrath of the oceans to the proud inhabitants of the land, but for the most part they travel in the seas. Any mission that extends beyond the great extensions of land and that require weeks of sea travel are considered quests by the faithful, as one may never know when their deity unleashes their wrath on them.

    Prayers: Followers of Akeurias do not pray. No amount of prayer pleases or angers Akeurias, although they spend their time on meditation. At times, a cleric may whisper to the seas, while within the piers or at the ship's bows, in hopes the sea listens to them, but they do this without reverence, as it is Akeurias' decision if he listens or ignores. Followers of Akeurias prefer to alert and counsel, active when the seas are calm and passive when the seas are rough. This serves as a form of prayer, as the faithful believe that when they act angry, their god remains calm, as the faithful utters words of caution to those who attempt to anger the seas; yet, when the seas are angered, they remain calm and passive, providing hope to the despaired, in expectation of the moment when the storm will calm. It is this "balance" that they respect more than just prayer and meditation.

    Temples: Temples to Akeurias serve as ports, with a side facing the land and another facing the sea. The best temples are natural formations within caves, accessible only from the sea, and which provide shelter whenever their god unleashes his anger upon the land. The temples usually have a submerged area where the sea-dwellers may offer their prayers and sacrifices (even if they know they may not be answered), and a series of floors where land-dwellers do the same; oftentimes, the temple assumes a slope with the same number of floors above and below sea level, in unusual symmetry.

    Rites: The most famous rite of the clerics of Akeurias is the "quelling of the storms". The clerics truly do not quell the storm, but attempt to appease their deity as they cross the storm, well aware of the calm areas within the storm which they must avoid. The ritual of the blessing of the dead performed by a cleric of Akeurias is particularly beautiful, as those who devote their lives to the sea are returned to their "father"; wrapped in linen and salt, the dead is ritually mummified to preserve the corpse, then taken to a place where the sea is "in mourning" (usually calm, at night). Then, the body is burnt, and the ashes in conjunction with the salt are placed aloft, so that the squalls blow the remnants into the sea itself. It is a moment of great wonder when the waves claim the ashes, for the faithful are aware Akeurias is claiming what's his own.

    Herald and Allies: Akeurias sends an elder water elemental druid 10/stormcaller 10 (see Stormwrack for more details), which fights with a magical trident. Water elementals, dragon turtles and krakens are sent by Akeurias as his allies.
    Relics: trident of sea command, orb of storms

    Spoiler
    Show
    So, by all means, this is a pretty typical sea god. However, what makes him different?

    For starters, he's a personification of the seas. This was pretty common in the Greek mythology, what with personifications of things such as strength, eroticity, retribution and others given human traits. Akeurias is meant to reflect that concept, even if it ends quite a bit like Poseidon (the Greek Lord of the Seas), but taken to its logical extreme. The idea of a fickle god of the seas reflects how deities were perceived by those who aren't learned in the ways of astrology and sciences; his personality is at times cyclical, much like the tides, which can be low or high. Trying to appease a deity's wrath was attempting to hold control over it, so it's natural that a concept such as the tides wasn't so easy to control when misunderstood. Thus, Akeurias isn't understood because he behaves according to the laws of nature...

    ...Or perhaps not. You see, Akeurias is an attempt to mingle something as natural as the misunderstanding of nature and its deification, but also respecting the idea that there MIGHT be a god that controls that. Thus, while further studies may shed light upon the nature of Akeurias (and hence, the seas), you can't really control them, and being a personified concept, there is a chance you might do a good prediction and somehow get things wrong. This is a bit more important when you consider that the personification of the sea can listen to prayers (and sometimes follow what his faithful desire), grants power to those who follow him, and may even manifest and show that he truly exists; much like the sea, Akeurias goes with the flow, and his followers are recommended to do the same.

    However, the most important thing is that Akeurias is one of the few deities that has a recognized schism, which is what you'll see just below.


    AKEURIAS DIKASTES
    Greater God (Lawful Neutral)
    Most of the followers of Akeurias treat the sea as uncontrollable, unsteady and unknown. One day the sea can be calm, the other rough. Those who follow the way of the Dikastes think distinctively; the sea is sovereign of itself, and exists in a balance that none are meant to comprehend, but when the laws of the sea are broken, retribution is at hand.

    A schism within the faith of Akeurias, the sect of Akeurias Dikastes (Akeurias the Judge) treat the Lord of the Seas as a more reasonable individual, one to which they swear fealty and reverence, and which responds in kind. Despite the philosophical differences between the two, the main sect of Akeurias and the splinter sect of the Dikastes are on amiable terms, as both respect and worship the same god, but often hold their disagreements. This does not mean that there may be serious differences: some followers of Akeurias are more than willing to draw blood against those of the Dikastes, whereas those who follow the Judge of the Seas wish to become the dominant sect.

    The followers of the Judge of Seas speak of Akeurias as harsh, but fair. When a storm brews, it is but a part of nature, one in which the land suffers through the purge of calamity, but renews with greater strength. The sea provides with food, and the rain grants life to the land; yet, when the sea is despoiled and devoid of its respect, the Dikastes brims with righteous fury and strikes the offenders. The followers of the Judge of the Seas preach to the land-dwellers respect for the sea, to partake of its bounty but to also return their due; they also teach that the destruction of the sea even when the faithful pay their dues is not an act of retribution, but an act of cleansing, from which those who survive and endure are rewarded.

    Portfolio: The seas and oceans, sea life, judgment, purging, cleansing, restoration
    Domains (Core): As Akeurias, but remove Chaos and add Law
    Domains (Non-Core): As Akeurias, but add Inquisition and Renewal, remove Wrath

    Cleric Training: Followers of the Dikastes sect follow a similar path as those of their Akeurian brothers, but are taught what they call the "laws of the sea". To become a cleric of the Judge of the Sea, one must be judged and proven worthy; thus, upon the sea, the aspirant is asked whether they truly wish to serve him and whether they are willing to follow the laws of the sea to the letter. If the aspirant survives the ordeal and proves worthiness, he is taught the ways of the Dikastes; an aspirant may have attempted against the sea once, but if they place their faith in the sea's judgment, they are granted the forgiveness of their god. Only when the sin is too grave that the sea claims him, its judgment passed.

    Quests: Followers of the Dikastes are called for many of the missions of their Akeurian brethren, but they are also sent to pursue sinners against the laws of the sea. A follower of the Judge of the Seas may pursue pirates who seek to benefit from the treasures of the sea without the approval of its Lord, or hunt a land-dweller who desires to wage war against the sea-dwellers. Lawful good followers of the Dikastes serve as emissaries between the good and the evil sea-dwelling races, and serve as their executioners if the latter abuse of the former, reminding them that they are equal in the eyes of the Lord of the Seas, and that an affront between them is not acceptable.

    Prayers: Followers of the Dikastes hold prayer in great regard, unlike their Akeurian brethren, and are quite meticulous with their requests. They often do their prayers as near to the sea as possible (if in land, pointing closest to the sea behind a source of water), and alternating between loud and soft phrases, as if waves. All prayers end up with "...but let be thy judgment what prevails, not mine desires...", recognizing the authority of their deity above themselves.

    Temples: There is no particular difference between the Akeurian temples and those devoted to the Dikastes. The biggest difference is the altar pointing to the sea, as well as their holy symbol.

    Rites: The followers of the Dikastes hold the same rites as those of their Akeurian brethren, but have other rites. Their most important is the Judgment of the Seas, for whenever they deem someone has violated the Laws of the Sea in a gross manner. With the back of the accused pointing to the sea, the cleric invokes the wrath of the sea as they speak the sins of the individual, and plead for their god with just retribution. Any sign that threatens the accused is considered sign of its sins and punished accordingly (more often than not with death). If the sea calms, then the god has judged that he is forgiven, and the sins are forgiven. If the sea attempts against the cleric and the others, then the accused individual is not just innocent, but that accusing him has angered the deity; usually, the cleric responds by attempting to appease the deity or seek the real culprit.

    Herald and Allies: Same as Akeurias
    Relics: Same as Akeurias

    Spoiler
    Show
    After seeing Complete Divine, it was natural that I attempted a schism to cover the lack of a Lawful Neutral deity within the "pantheon", as well as a lawful deity of the seas. I wanted to work with a deity that could hold paladins of the seas, as well. But, what really clicked is the earlier explanation; if you were to understand the sea and that the sea is not just alive, but one of the most powerful beings in existence, you'd attempt to reason with it.

    The schismatics are, officially, in good terms with the main sect because not all schisms have to have a cut-throat attitude towards the others. While some might be fundamentalists that want to espouse their vision of the deity as supreme, the thing is that both consider Akeurias as the supreme deity of the seas and hold many tenets in common, only differing in how they perceive the deity to be: one fickle and unpredictable, the other fair and just. And, if you see what happens to water gods (usually), the former usually supersedes the latter, so I wanted a different point of view that makes the sea more benevolent.
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    Now with a comprehensive guide for 3.5 Paladin players porting to Pathfinder. Also available for 5th Edition
    On Lawful Good:
    Quote Originally Posted by firebrandtoluc View Post
    My friend is currently playing a paladin. It's way outside his normal zone. I told him to try to channel Santa Claus, Mr. Rogers, and Kermit the Frog. Until someone refuses to try to get off the naughty list. Then become Optimus Prime.
    T.G. Oskar profile by Specter.

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