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There have been a lot of good ideas so far, but a lot of them have been just one or two gods at a time with no consideration for other gods. A god pantheon should have some consistency to it which binds the gods together yet lets each god have their own realm of influence.

 

Some of the gods suggested so far have only been of a single characteristic. However, gods should also have some level of duplicity to them to give them more depth. With more depth comes more story opportunities.

 

Mentioned several times already was an idea of a tier system such as Elder Gods and Younger Gods. This I like idea as well because it suggests that there may have been gods who did once exist, and perhaps still do, but who mortals will never see. Possibilities must also exist to bring new gods into being, or to ascend into godhood.

 

There should also be some things that are off limits to gods. Two things I would suggest leaving purely within the hands of mortals is Emotions and Technology.

1) Gods evoke emotions in mortals just by showing off their powers. They shouldn't embody a single emotion as fear to one mortal could be caused by a wolf ripping out a throat, but to another mortal they get satisfaction because that wolf was their pet doing their bidding during a fight.

2) Gods have powers to do what they will within their sphere of influence. Technology shouldn't be "a power". Technology is developed by mortals for mortals.

 

With that I bring you some abstract god concepts.

 

Hedonistic Elder Gods: These Elder Gods have been around for thousands of years. They have grown complicit and care little about the workings of the mortals so long as they go about their lives. They have already given their gifts to the world and now rest on their laurels enjoying the benefits of their works. However, they still have the ability to revoke or curse mortals and younger gods for their transgressions. These gods are credited with giving mortals their most basic of senses.

 

God of Flavor - Bakers, Cooks, and Brewers all pay homage to this god within their craft. They seek out the most flavorful ingredients and blend them together with skill to make them even more potent. When blessed by this god you will never make or eat a bad meal. When cursed you will serve up the most foul of concoctions. To those truly despised, their sense of taste is fully revoked which often leads to food poisoning and death.

 

God of Texture - Weavers and Tailors praise this god for the lavish sensations it has gifted to mortals. The silk worm and moth are cultivated In homage to this god. For their is the smoothest and softest touch possible. With this gods blessing every touch is an unfathomable pleasure. Yet when cursed even silk will chafe the skin and every foot step feels like needles of pain.

 

God of Appearance - Painters, Sculptors, and Masons take pride in their work because of this god. Vibrant colors, graceful curves, and strong edges are the purest form of worship. For with this gods blessing a thing or a person will radiate beauty and all will be attracted. A curse from this god is truly disfiguring and none will want to interact with you.

 

God of Sound - Musicians, Story Tellers, and even Politicians use the gifts of this god for trade. Music and words that let us mortals communicate our desires to one another can olny be used because of this god. Those blessed may have a sharp tongue or ear. Those cursed may stutter or have an unpleasing voice. While those who are hated may well be mute or deaf.

 

God of Aromas - Perfumers and Hunters work under the influence of this god. Smells are created using a wide verity of ingredients. With skill scent can be used to make oneself more appealing or even draw in creatures who would otherwise avoid a more natural smell that they've learned to avoid. Those blessed will have a more discerning nose. A curse from this god is perhaps the most devastating. Even the most resolute can only last so long when they only smell the foulest of things and no other creature will come near as they to will smell those things.

 

 

 

The Younger Gods: There are so many paths to look down that I will just try to group them together in some meaningful way.

 

 

Conceptual Gods

Organization - Clean/Dirty

Patterns - Shapes/Scribbles

Communication - Language/Gibberish

Agreements - Truth/Lies

Chance - Luck/Unlucky

Reliability - Consistent/Inconsistant

 

Physical Gods

Growth - Fertility/Death

Prosperity - Wealth/Poverty

Guardianship - Security/Vulnerability

 

Nature Gods

Of Swamps

Of Forests

Of Plains

Of Mountians

Of Seas

Of Rivers

 

Fame Gods *In this example all Gods are denoted as “Chuck” followed by their name

Norris - War

Testa - The Wild Hunt

Bartowski - Stealth

Garric - Music

Charles - The (un)Dead

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Hmmm...

 

Given the background in place so far, I think it might be interesting to have a deity of Inevitability that governs fixed events. This would NOT be the exact same thing as Fate, merely a subset of what fate is.

 

Fate can name both the cause and the event, and also implies that you can stop the event by preventing the cause from happening. (example: X is fated to kill Y, so killing X prevents Y from dying.)

 

Inevitability can only say that the event itself happens, so only the result is set in stone. (similar example: Y dies today). So a god of plot points, pretty much.

 

As a result, trying to actively stop the event from happening at all doesn't work well, because it would shift the cause of the event to more disastrous (and harder to stop) possibilities. It would be more favorable to eliminate causes that are unfavorable to you or use the fact that it will happen to try to take advantage of the situation.

 

This kind of deity would probably not give out a lot of events, however, and would probably focus on more world-wide issues, contrary to the examples.

 

Alternatively, have the deity of Inevitability also be the deity of Lies. This kind of deity is more likely to give out events, and the problem would be trying to tell which events are the real inevitable ones and which events are just to advance the deity's interests.

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Hmm. IT would be pretty cool to see an aspected god. Maybe a god of seasons that changes depending on the time of year.

 

Spring - The god appears as a child and represents new growth/rebirth and beginnings. The represent hope

Summer - The god appears as a man/woman in their prime. They represent the strength, potential realized and the glorious times.

Fall - The god is waning. They appear as a middle aged man/woman. They represent the harvest, among other things.

Winter - The god at the end of the cycle. An old man/woman. They represent endings, death.

 

It could be fleshed out but I think the base idea is there.

 

i had to like this, this idea is nice and from the brief description i could already start picturing it. It reminds me of an elemental or a plane walker type creature, by this i mean the art aspect of the god which would almost be a ghostly silhouette but the inside would just be like a pulsating color to represent the season, hard to describe what I Am visualizing :p

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I don't know how far you are willing to go, but I have a feeling you will accept some crazy and silly stuff.

  • I like the twin gods idea, but I would do it as twin sisters who think and act as one. They combine their powers, making them very strong. They're not utterly identical, but they are close enough that you can't tell without being extremely observant. They're the goddesses of dance, fencing (all three kinds), and bait fish.
  • I went to Pompeii once, and saw that picture of the guy with an arm size **** on a scale. That would be a pretty good god, as a god of fatherhood, and gigolos. Lesser known as the god of paternalism.
  • Neutron, the neutral god, of neutrality, and disinterest (but not uninterest). "I have no strong feelings about this." There are no order and chaos gods, only the god of neutrality. He would be annoying, but he never feels strongly about anything, so he doesn't have a wacky crusade to keep an arbitrary balance of power in the unviverse. Prayer and sacrifice can bring his favor, allowing a person's perception of neutrality influence the world, or to bring neutrality to their own thoughts, or the thoughts of others. That also makes him a meditation, and relaxation god, to a certain degree, beacuse you can't actually enjoy yourself, or feel good, but you won't feel bad either. It also makes him extremely useful for certain medical proffessionals, those possesed by inquery, and judges.
  • No death god, take the suprisingly practical approuch, with people giving it no mind beyond it being a natural part of the world, not to be worried about. If it has to be mystical, it can still be a natural system in theology, not actually controlled by a particular god. Doing that also avoids Santa syndrome, where he as to be everywhere at once, or super fast.
  • Annually, on the most ironic day of the year, this god gives surprisingly perceptive gifts to those who don't deserve them, as well as extremely generous gifts, which he thinks are ironic, to the needy, but which everyone loves. He laughs because no one understands the joke, which isn't any good anyway, but he doesn't care. He is also the messenger god, and theif god. He's not fast, just everywhere before anyone else.
  • This god is one of a species of land based, photo synthesizing, meat eating, plant cephelod which died off millennia ago. Breeding occurs by a male injecting a subject, leading to mental and physical alterations, which in the mortal form, drives the subject to seak out a female of the extinct species. If successful, the female uses an ovipositor to implant an egg, without killing the host, which has been driven to produce the male's sperm, in a process similar to how virii convert host cells to produce more virii. Once combined, a second mental and physical change occurs, driving the subject to find a hiding place, where it will eventually be consumed by the maturation process, and any remains are eaten by the young. Additionally, pheremones are produced to drive off predators. As the last remaining god of the species, breeding cannot occur, but the drive to breed cannot be contained... it will strike out at any creature within range, and because of its godly nature, the control and changes which occur are completely, and continuously, controllable by the forgotton god. It is possible to comunicate with the being, but extreme caution must be taken.

The more you split things, the more emphasis that activity has:

  • God of small boats.
  • Goose of rigging.
  • Goddess of large ships, and small trade ships.
  • Sister goddess, of warships, of independent action.
  • Third sister goddess, of warships, of combined action.
  • Brother god of sea melee, and inability to swim. Grants favor to those who can't swim, by either saving them after falling in the water, or preventing falling in at all.
  • The calking god.
  • Horse of sea salt.
  • Pig of swimming, and currents. Actively dislikes those who can swim.

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There have been a lot of good ideas so far, but a lot of them have been just one or two gods at a time with no consideration for other gods. A god pantheon should have some consistency to it which binds the gods together yet lets each god have their own realm of influence.

[...]

 

People only throw out one or two gods because the original request asked if people had any ideas for gods they wanted to volunteer, not entire pantheons.

 

Edit: For clarification, I'm not saying people can't or shouldn't throw out entire pantheons, just that people are only throwing out one or two because the original request didn't specify they want entire pantheons.

Edited by Somna

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The world is actually the playground of a secret higher god (the lesser gods being his servants). Where a series of Good races fight a series of Evil races (orcs, demons, etc.) to keep the ubergod entertained. Things like magic and Experience are constructs of the gods to keep a constant conflict, and the Choosen Heroes and Villains are just pawns to keep the balance. If one of the two factions achieves total victory and the world becomes peaceful the ubergod gets bored and resets (destroys) the system.

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I think folks should throw out whole pantheons if they want. Some people have proposed pretty big spreads. ...But the devs want to get some input from the community and they probably can't take a huge number of gods from this thread anyway. If they took an entire pantheon from one member, they'd probably have to leave out other potential contributers. That's conjecture on my part, so take it or leave it as you wish.

 

Now, the relationship between gods and worshippers and between each other is something I think we've kind of overlooked. Some folks have had pretty good insights, but it really falls down to the setting, and that leaves out a lot of information we don't know yet. The way I see it, we could have one essential pantheon because, if gods are an established reality, people know who the gods are. Maybe those gods have different names, but they'll be the same known entity. On the other hand, how much room is there for doubt? By that, I don't mean room for doubt in the gods. The demonstrable reality will lead the vast majority of people in the world to believe in gods in some manner. Some scholars might argue about true divinity and whether the gods are actually deities or simply extremely powerful entities. If there's an anti-god in the pantheon, his worshippers might deny the gods truly exist. ...But, in either case, these will be fringe elements within society.

 

However, there might be a notion of known gods that are identified through actions and works and other gods who, for a variety of reasons, don't openly do things in the world. That would leave a lot of room open for debate, speculative worship, and theological study.

 

I hope that the relative power of gods isn't determined by number of worshippers, although number of souls might be a factor. I also hope that, if they allow for so called hidden gods that they aren't necessarily less powerful. Like someone said above (and I apologize that I didn't remember all the names), no matter how anthropomorphized they make the gods, I hope they still retain that level of remoteness that makes them 'other-worldly.'

Edited by Cantousent

Fionavar's Holliday Wishes to all members of our online community:  Happy Holidays

 

Join the revelry at the Obsidian Plays channel:
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Remembering tarna, Phosphor, Metadigital, and Visceris.  Drink mead heartily in the halls of Valhalla, my friends!

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What about a devourer/sacrifice god that needs its hunger sustained. The god could be an evil god or god that had its worship outlawed. I think it would be cool if the person/people who were sacrificing others would get powers from said god. There could be situations where the followers attack a village to sacrifice all the people in it. Maybe not a major antagonist but I think the god would be a good antagonist for a string of side quests.

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Since I couldn't come up with a good concept for a god even if my life depended on it, I'll just say this:

 

Make sure your gods are memorable and distinctive from one another. Creating 50 gods that have almost no unique qualities or interactions will just assure that the memories of most of them drift into oblivion. On the other hand, creating less than 10 gods would be a waste of potential as you could surely create at least double that number of gods and make them all distinctive and memorable given enough effort.

 

And I'm not at all worried that you guys at Obsidian can't pull this off - quite the opposite.


Batman: [intimidate] "Let her go".

Joker: [Failure] "Very poor choice of words."

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Since it has been heavily implied that we cannot know for sure the role of souls or gods in the setting (or at least the general populace must rely on unsubstantiated beliefs), religions that play on that uncertainty would seem to fit very well.

 

The Maze of Dusk, also known as the Shadow Path, is a deity shrouded in uncertainty. Normally only encountered as a place rather than any, more anthropomorphic, form, the few times it or an avatar of it does appear in humanoid form that shape is a reflection of the deepest desires of the observer. Always shrouded in shadow or mist, with a dreamlike quality that leaves witnesses grasping to retain their memories of the encounter. Far more commonly the deity manifests it's presence in the shape of a maze or labyrinth that appears when the light is dim, in thick fog or the twilight hours. Wild and dangerous, sometimes the Shadow Path appears as a side corridor of some lost dungeon, or a hedge maze of rose bushes that have become massively overgrown. Sometimes the Maze of Dusk appears in dreams or visions, but always it looks both inviting and foreboding, lush but dangerous. Followers of the Maze of Dusk claim that walking it's twisting byways will strengthen the soul, allowing it to better survive what waits after death, and protecting it from outside tampering. There might be some truth to this, as those who claim to have done so either possess strong souls, or are proven to be lying. However, many who enter never emerge, and those who do refuse to tell what occurs within. Walkers of the Shadow Path cannot have their souls bound through necromancy, whether they emerge or not. Something believers point to as proof of divine protection, while enemies of the religion state that the simplest explanation for not being able to find something is that it simply doesn't exist anymore...

 

Fallow the Binder is a businessman at heart, always depicted as a merchant or lender, with a thin gold manacle held or clasped around one wrist. Offering her followers safety against the ravages of the underworld in a rather unique way. According to her clergy, after a person dies their souls pass into horrendous torment. This is the reason why so few strong souls exist anymore, because they are all slowly failing under the lash or burning in hellfire. The memories of these events are so traumatic that no soul can recall them, which is why a soul might feel a connection from a past life, but no such insight into what occurs after death. Exactly what causes this torment varies from place to place, some temples claim that the other gods are attempting to break down souls to use as fuel or food, other state that it is an implacable, unknowable force that is simply seeking to dissolve the universe whole and only inside a living body is a soul safe. In one particularly memorable instance the temples of Fallow in two warring states each said that powerful mages from the other state were working terrible magics to flay the souls of their enemies. Likewise the priests provide equally differing and improbable ways for souls to survive the afterlife intact. Pure asceticism, uninhibited indulgence, bathing in the blood of a thousand innocents, purging one's continent of all vaguely defined iniquity. For the average person they say, the only real way to protect oneself from the winnowing is to have one's soul bound to the earth, and only Fallow and her clergy are willing or able to do this.

 

Other examples might include a warrior god that demands followers of other gods be slaughtered in her name, that she might punish the souls of the unfaithful. Or a nature deity that claims those with fractured souls are some of the most sacred, because they are pieced together of the fragments of his subject plants and animals, newly minted. The god of thieves, who claims that if he is paid enough he will chain the souls of old worshipers to your own, granting the favored worshiper nine lives. Even the forging god, who states that any soul may become a strong soul, through a life lived true to oneself and enduring the tribulations of the world. (Endure. In enduring, grow strong.)

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There have been a lot of good ideas so far, but a lot of them have been just one or two gods at a time with no consideration for other gods. A god pantheon should have some consistency to it which binds the gods together yet lets each god have their own realm of influence.

 

Some of the gods suggested so far have only been of a single characteristic. However, gods should also have some level of duplicity to them to give them more depth. With more depth comes more story opportunities.

 

Mentioned several times already was an idea of a tier system such as Elder Gods and Younger Gods. This I like idea as well because it suggests that there may have been gods who did once exist, and perhaps still do, but who mortals will never see. Possibilities must also exist to bring new gods into being, or to ascend into godhood.

 

There should also be some things that are off limits to gods. Two things I would suggest leaving purely within the hands of mortals is Emotions and Technology.

1) Gods evoke emotions in mortals just by showing off their powers. They shouldn't embody a single emotion as fear to one mortal could be caused by a wolf ripping out a throat, but to another mortal they get satisfaction because that wolf was their pet doing their bidding during a fight.

2) Gods have powers to do what they will within their sphere of influence. Technology shouldn't be "a power". Technology is developed by mortals for mortals.

 

With that I bring you some abstract god concepts.

 

Hedonistic Elder Gods: These Elder Gods have been around for thousands of years. They have grown complicit and care little about the workings of the mortals so long as they go about their lives. They have already given their gifts to the world and now rest on their laurels enjoying the benefits of their works. However, they still have the ability to revoke or curse mortals and younger gods for their transgressions. These gods are credited with giving mortals their most basic of senses.

 

God of Flavor - Bakers, Cooks, and Brewers all pay homage to this god within their craft. They seek out the most flavorful ingredients and blend them together with skill to make them even more potent. When blessed by this god you will never make or eat a bad meal. When cursed you will serve up the most foul of concoctions. To those truly despised, their sense of taste is fully revoked which often leads to food poisoning and death.

 

God of Texture - Weavers and Tailors praise this god for the lavish sensations it has gifted to mortals. The silk worm and moth are cultivated In homage to this god. For their is the smoothest and softest touch possible. With this gods blessing every touch is an unfathomable pleasure. Yet when cursed even silk will chafe the skin and every foot step feels like needles of pain.

 

God of Appearance - Painters, Sculptors, and Masons take pride in their work because of this god. Vibrant colors, graceful curves, and strong edges are the purest form of worship. For with this gods blessing a thing or a person will radiate beauty and all will be attracted. A curse from this god is truly disfiguring and none will want to interact with you.

 

God of Sound - Musicians, Story Tellers, and even Politicians use the gifts of this god for trade. Music and words that let us mortals communicate our desires to one another can olny be used because of this god. Those blessed may have a sharp tongue or ear. Those cursed may stutter or have an unpleasing voice. While those who are hated may well be mute or deaf.

 

God of Aromas - Perfumers and Hunters work under the influence of this god. Smells are created using a wide verity of ingredients. With skill scent can be used to make oneself more appealing or even draw in creatures who would otherwise avoid a more natural smell that they've learned to avoid. Those blessed will have a more discerning nose. A curse from this god is perhaps the most devastating. Even the most resolute can only last so long when they only smell the foulest of things and no other creature will come near as they to will smell those things.

 

 

 

The Younger Gods: There are so many paths to look down that I will just try to group them together in some meaningful way.

 

 

Conceptual Gods

Organization - Clean/Dirty

Patterns - Shapes/Scribbles

Communication - Language/Gibberish

Agreements - Truth/Lies

Chance - Luck/Unlucky

Reliability - Consistent/Inconsistant

 

Physical Gods

Growth - Fertility/Death

Prosperity - Wealth/Poverty

Guardianship - Security/Vulnerability

 

Nature Gods

Of Swamps

Of Forests

Of Plains

Of Mountians

Of Seas

Of Rivers

 

Fame Gods *In this example all Gods are denoted as “Chuck” followed by their name

Norris - War

Testa - The Wild Hunt

Bartowski - Stealth

Garric - Music

Charles - The (un)Dead

 

 

 

Real world pantheons have been bound by the culture/s that worship them and typically a shared origin, not a shared theme to what they deify.

The Greco-Roman pantheon has a multitude of gods both major and minor, covering pretty much every area conceivable by Hellenes, unified primarily by a shared line of descent from Gaia and Uranus, not by any overarching concept like "nature" or "fame," (something I've never heard of a god of, much less a pantheon of gods of.) The Hellenic religion overlapped with other religions of the Mediterranean region, with gods from one pantheon being adopted by other religions and so on. Leaving things like emotions and technology out is folly, because there are gods and goddesses for emotions especially in all manner of religions.

 

For a different example, the native Japanese Shinto religion, as an animist religion, believes in theoretically infinite gods, aside from a base pantheon of creator/major gods, Shinto holds that there is a kami for everything, residing in everything. Kami means both "spirit" and "god" simultaneously, so these spirits can be regarded as gods, and if they are treated well or respected or worshiped they can become more powerful gods with more influence proportionally with how much reverence and faith they receive.

 

The phenomenon of gods overlapping in different pantheons tended to happen all over the world in ancient times, because in both China and Japan, Buddhist deities were frequently commandeered by the indigenous religions and worshiped by people who hadn't converted to Buddhism. And many Buddhist deities were, in turn, borrowed from Hinduism, and so on.

Edited by AGX-17
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A forgotten god who wants to be worshipped again? And since he/she is powerless he/she doesn't need to be a jerk, actally could be friendly.

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A forgotten god who wants to be worshipped again?

 

I liked how in BG2 one of the goddesses was "missing", i.e. there has been no sign of life from her in a long time, but the "true believers" still worship her and are certain that she is still alive somewhere and will return when the time is right. And a friendly neighbor goddess takes over her duties (like giving divine powers to her priests) in the meantime... :-

Edited by anek

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I'd like to have a god of stolen goods... Has anyone until now cared how they feel? Couldn't a god represent or even avenge them, if they exist in a world where nearly everything has a soul?

 

Another thought besides the Pantheon might be about the gods childs have, before they get accustomed to the common gods. Maybe such gods are at some times or in some cases very strong and want to join the league of the "older" gods.

 

At least I like it, when the strength of gods highly coheres with the number and the religios faith of their believers. For me, this is the most realistic version of how gods function. Panthen might establish after the creation of gods through the nature itself, but I don't believe in family structures between them.

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I must say I feel very uncomfortable when gods are being pigeon-holed into being patrons of some very specific concepts. One could say, for instance, that Shiva is a god of destruction, or Hermes is a god of wit, but that would be so incredibly narrow and limiting. Instead, all gods together comprise a nation's/culture's holistic model of the world, so ideally that's how they should be designed. This also means that overly wacky/incomprehensible gods would look wrong in any pantheon, since they can't realistically be a part of any culture, pretty much by definition. I suppose they can still be "supernatural creatures", though, known only to select few (who tend to indulge themselves on certain controlled substances perhaps).

 

I, too, would be interested too see a monotheistic religion as an alternative. It can worship either something almost completely depersonified (e.g. Akhenaten's Aten), or extremely possessive and vengeful (Yahweh). Hints of Gnosticism would be very welcome as well, with a "good" transcendent God who doesn't seem to care about the world much, and an ambitious and passionate, but sadly deeply misguided creator of the material world (demiurge), who is convinced that he alone is the supreme God.

 

There's also a great opportunity to explore what it means to be a god. Are gods more or less just humans with superpowers, or something entirely different? Do they actually have free will or even self-awareness the same way people do?

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(Yahweh)

 

Meh. Forgotten Realms already borrowed far too many ideas (down to actual names like 'Bhaal') from Biblical mythology. I always found that pretty lame and unimaginative. A fantasy universe's mythology should be able to stand on its own - keep real-world religion out if it.

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(Yahweh)

 

Meh. Forgotten Realms already borrowed far too many ideas (down to actual names like 'Bhaal') from Biblical mythology. I always found that pretty lame and unimaginative. A fantasy universe's mythology should be able to stand on its own - keep real-world religion out if it.

 

Those were used just as examples of "bottom-up" and "top-down" monotheism. The former is initiated by the society (or its leader, who's still a human though), and the latter by the deity himself, who just doesn't want to share his people with anyone else.

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I don't understand why folks are so fixated on the prowess of the gods being determined by the number of worshippers. Morgulon mentioned above that it was the most logical way to address the issue, but if there's any single point where a fantasy game can break away from 'realism,' shouldn't it be in regards to the supernatural? I don't mind the idea that the power of the gods is tied to worshippers because it's cliched. I don't even mind it because it's far too mechanical of an earthly construct to determine the nature of an idea that is inherently otherworldly. Sure, it's both of those things, but I don't even really mind all that. I don't like it because it's too limiting. There are so many possibilities that are automatically excluded if you tie the power of each god to the number of his or her followers. ...I want there to be the possibility of some unworshipped god who does not rely on worshippers.


Fionavar's Holliday Wishes to all members of our online community:  Happy Holidays

 

Join the revelry at the Obsidian Plays channel:
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Remembering tarna, Phosphor, Metadigital, and Visceris.  Drink mead heartily in the halls of Valhalla, my friends!

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I guess when you talk about gods you really need to define what makes something a “god”, I mean I remember watching something years ago about one of the first Greek Olympic games the man who won the boxing championship was so respected and his victory so conclusive that he was declared to be the god of boxing. Shrines where created in his honour and boxers prayed to him before fights both before and after he died, now in the context of this world where souls are real does doing something like this influence the dead persons soul giving it power to become something more and if so how would a god like that compare to a “true god”.

If more powerful gods control the cycle of souls could one of these choose to prevent the creation of this new god by taking the power of this worship from them before they reach the level of “god”.

If say one city declared someone to be the god of something and another rival city declared someone else to be a god of the same thing would worship of the two people create to gods of the same thing.

Would these gods fight over who was in charged of their particular power?

Would one have control over one area and one control of the other?

Would there be border areas where both have influence and battle over followers

Could a king force godhood by ordering people to worship him

 

Another question that could make things interesting in this world is whether gods have souls? What happens if one god kills another, do the fragments of that gods soul re-enter the cycle?

You could have a situation where the god of water kills the god of fire but the god of fires broken soul re-enters the cycle being reborn as several people. The cult that worships the fire god becomes aware of this and starts searching for these people bringing them together and awakening their souls so that when they are together they embody what remains of the god’s power and each generation the cult sets out to find those born with the pieces of their god so he can live on in this mortal hybrid form.

 

I know these are a bunch of random thoughts but I think the main point is that you really have to define what you mean by a god, because of our cultural bias we think our a god as an all powerful being but the Greek’s and the Romans had a lot of degrees to the word “god” from personal house gods all the way up to the powerful beings we are familiar with

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I don't understand why folks are so fixated on the prowess of the gods being determined by the number of worshippers. Morgulon mentioned above that it was the most logical way to address the issue, but if there's any single point where a fantasy game can break away from 'realism,' shouldn't it be in regards to the supernatural? I don't mind the idea that the power of the gods is tied to worshippers because it's cliched. I don't even mind it because it's far too mechanical of an earthly construct to determine the nature of an idea that is inherently otherworldly. Sure, it's both of those things, but I don't even really mind all that. I don't like it because it's too limiting. There are so many possibilities that are automatically excluded if you tie the power of each god to the number of his or her followers. ...I want there to be the possibility of some unworshipped god who does not rely on worshippers.

 

People are fixated on it because it's something that actually makes sense. Just because it makes sense doesn't mean it is about trying to stick to realism. I do agree that it shouldn't be the only possibility though.

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There are so many possibilities that are automatically excluded if you tie the power of each god to the number of his or her followers.

 

Well, there are also many interesting story and lore possibilities that become available thanks to this very mechanic. It opens up a huge (and credible) source of conflict between gods and between groups of believers, and conflict makes for good stories.

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I don't think it makes any more sense than saying that deities are inherently divine by nature. I mean, really, it makes sense that a bunch of people believing in something makes it true? How many atheists out there want to stipulate that idea? ...And I'm Catholic, so I'm not arguing from an atheist point of view anyway. I mean, belief could have made ships fall off the edge of the world at one point in our history, but they didn't, thus proving that mere belief on the part of the population does not, in fact, determine reality.

 

...And if we're forced with the same ol' tired cliched idea of power derived from worship, can it at least be stipulated that conviction rather than simple numerical value is the prime determinant? Otherwise, a good spreadsheet tells you everything you need to know about the gods. They're simply reduced down to the fantasy football league variety of the supernatural. Also, that means that gods who don't have this ridiculous 'portfolio' can still be powerful because the other gods belief in them. ...Or because they are so convinced of their own power that they are a redoubt of spiritual power built on the mountain of their own wills.

 

I just see the mathematical formula as limiting the mystery of the gods. They're nothing more than powerful beings who happen to gain a lot of followers. It strips them of their otherworldness and makes them as mundane as any other force in the world.

 

Anyhow, if the devs simply make it clear that the power of the gods is determined by the number of followers, I'll save my breath and other folks from having to hear me argue and let the matter drop.

 

Also, educated people at the time Columbus sailed knew the Earth was round, and they knew it because of observation and calculation. The earlier beliefs of humanity then, as now, bounded by reality. ...And a number of people still believed that the earth was flat even then, but it didn't mean a damn thing to the sailors.

 

EDIT:

There are so many possibilities that are automatically excluded if you tie the power of each god to the number of his or her followers.

 

Well, there are also many interesting story and lore possibilities that become available thanks to this very mechanic. It opens up a huge (and credible) source of conflict between gods and between groups of believers, and conflict makes for good stories.

And these things are automatically excluded because we remove a straightforward correlation between worshippers and power? Why can't some gods and some worshippers vie for more influence because it's a common motive. People with money still long for influence. The President of the United States isn't made superhuman by the number of votes he receives. He's made more powerful by his influence over the apperatus of government. Edited by Cantousent

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The narrative team is creating the world almanac which contains all the information about the people and history of Project Eternity. Right now they are fleshing out the pantheon of gods. Do you have any crazy or wacky ideas for gods? Share your ideas in this forum thread!

 

Some people have already mentioned the Discworld gods, but they mention being brought up again. They have pretty much anything you could want in terms of wacky variety. There's some inspiration you could draw from there.

 

I've always been rather fond of the god of evolution. I mean, an atheist god. How's that for craziness? It has already been brought up in the very first page of this thread, that's how awesome the concept is :biggrin:

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I don't think it makes any more sense than saying that deities are inherently divine by nature. I mean, really, it makes sense that a bunch of people believing in something makes it true? How many atheists out there want to stipulate that idea? ...And I'm Catholic, so I'm not arguing from an atheist point of view anyway. I mean, belief could have made ships fall off the edge of the world at one point in our history, but they didn't, thus proving that mere belief on the part of the population does not, in fact, determine reality.

 

...And if we're forced with the same ol' tired cliched idea of power derived from worship, can it at least be stipulated that conviction rather than simple numerical value is the prime determinant? Otherwise, a good spreadsheet tells you everything you need to know about the gods. They're simply reduced down to the fantasy football league variety of the supernatural. Also, that means that gods who don't have this ridiculous 'portfolio' can still be powerful because the other gods belief in them. ...Or because they are so convinced of their own power that they are a redoubt of spiritual power built on the mountain of their own wills.

 

I just see the mathematical formula as limiting the mystery of the gods. They're nothing more than powerful beings who happen to gain a lot of followers. It strips them of their otherworldness and makes them as mundane as any other force in the world.

 

Anyhow, if the devs simply make it clear that the power of the gods is determined by the number of followers, I'll save my breath and other folks from having to hear me argue and let the matter drop.

 

Also, educated people at the time Columbus sailed knew the Earth was round, and they knew it because of observation and calculation. The earlier beliefs of humanity then, as now, bounded by reality. ...And a number of people still believed that the earth was flat even then, but it didn't mean a damn thing to the sailors.

 

EDIT:

There are so many possibilities that are automatically excluded if you tie the power of each god to the number of his or her followers.

 

Well, there are also many interesting story and lore possibilities that become available thanks to this very mechanic. It opens up a huge (and credible) source of conflict between gods and between groups of believers, and conflict makes for good stories.

And these things are automatically excluded because we remove a straightforward correlation between worshippers and power? Why can't some gods and some worshippers vie for more influence because it's a common motive. People with money still long for influence. The President of the United States isn't made superhuman by the number of votes he receives. He's made more powerful by his influence over the apperatus of government.

Some people do like assigning numerical values to things as a unit of measurement because it makes more sense to them that way. So if you don't understand why More Worshippers = More Power makes sense for other people, I doubt anyone is going to be able to convince you why to any satisfaction because you're probably not in that set of people.

 

That being said, depending on the campaign setting involved, they do specify that PC character classes (Clerics, Specialty priests) DO count more than the generic layperson. Some may even give you numbers, like Clerics being 10x more and Specialty priests being 50x more, or something like that. It's a justification for why Clerics and Specialty Priests are favored with spells in the first place.

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