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Mathom / Re: Are you a member of Mathom's Guild Already
« Last post by Aramax on June 10, 2016, 08:23:29 AM »
I am VERY excited to join a guild! Eventually.......
The Occult Brotherhood / Re: The Many Faces of Ildus Amanithas
« Last post by valadaar on June 10, 2016, 08:12:36 AM »
Heh, 4-way. I think Caesar93 or somesuch got there first. Nope. He's the first 4th level - he did two in Cartographers.

So apparently so.  Now to declare for another one. Gotta get em all!
The Occult Brotherhood / Re: The Many Faces of Ildus Amanithas
« Last post by Strolen on June 10, 2016, 08:02:21 AM »
Awesome Val. Are you going to be one of the first to be into a 4-way????!!11!one!!1
Greetings Traveler / Re: Hello There
« Last post by Strolen on June 10, 2016, 07:55:49 AM »
Is shoehat101 a college class you did well in or does it have a story?

I personally think it is a trend that hasn't properly had its due yet.

Welcome to the site. Hope you find all that you could hope for and more!
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by EchoMirage on June 10, 2016, 03:16:36 AM »
That's a very good notion - the gods that are closest to man will by definition be the least divine. Any directive from above will filter through layers of divinity before it is simplified and diminished enough to be understood by mortals. You can't understand the god - and it might well break you if you tried.
The god you may be interacting with is a minor supernatural entity, and the mystery of the greater deity is not diminished, or is even increased, when that lesser supernatural tells you "I can't fathom him either".

This allows you to portray meetings with the lesser servants as somewhat human, because they're made to be so, to be able to talk to ants.

Portraying a chance encounter with a greater deity (we'll omit the variety "you are unmade by the presence of the divine") would have be done so that the sense of something utterly vast and incomprehensible comes across undiminished. Care to write a brief paragraph?
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by Scrasamax on June 09, 2016, 08:59:41 PM »
Drunken Writer's Guild Post

The biggest issue I have with RPing deities is that the deities always come across as entirely to humane, to close to us. When I think of something vast, powerful, and truly divine, I venture into the Lovecraft mythos. Yes, I know that is my bailiwick, but bear with me. Anything that lives above the human mortal level of existence isn't going to be magic Jesus in a toga, or wearing a winged helmet. These are the weak and whey blooded gods of Earth, the flimsy creations and caricatures of man.

To venture away from Lovecraft, the El Drazi from the Magic the Gathering Zendikar block and fantastic representations of the Divine.

They are absolutely not human, and if you were to interact with one, you would be destroyed. Insert the parable about whatever hoochie Zeus was banging who demanded that the leader of the gods show her his true appearance, so he picked his SMALLEST and LEAST impressive lightning bolt, manifested in front of her, and charred her to a Looney Tunes crisp.

So, in dealing with something truly divine, you are never actually going to interact with it directly, you will deal with an agent of an agent, possibly of several other orders of agents before you get to something small enough, and compact enough to interact with something as minuscule as a mortal being.

You there, ant-thing. You are the ant I have picked. I dont give a s**t what rationalization you come up with to explain why I picked you, I want you to go tell all the other ants in your nest to pack their stuff and get out of my yard. The HOA has a regulation against untreated ant mounds, and I don't like pouring poison on my yard.

Ant spreads gospel of the MegaSkyAntGod, is killed by the other ants for being insane.

Is proven right when six ant generations later, ant-icide poison rains from the heavens.

Ant religion is carried out by the survivors who barely survive to found a new mound a few dozen feet away in the treeline.

I think I was going somewhere with that, but it seems like a good place to stop.

Here, have a picture of Emrakul, the Aeons Torn (heh, EAT)
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by EchoMirage on June 09, 2016, 10:14:13 AM »
Val: excellent points. I see that my failure at portrayal can be traced to some of these very things.
As for personal appearance: the Greco-Roman mythos is ripe with appearances of deities, yet still - or even therefore - life is ripe with challenge for the heroes. I'm trying to distill the common denominator, and I arrive at the conclusion that this is made possible by the deities being fickle, and ultimately self-serving. They don't have the protagonists' best interest at heart. Now that I think of it, the "Timeo Danaos Et Dona Ferentes" applies to the gods themselves as well: "why is the deity helping me?", "am I a pawn too?", "where will this path take me?", "what do I gain; what do I lose?".

Further thoughts:
*A benevolent deity would have to be limited in the amount of intervention it can offer - by time, power, place, or agenda. There may be divine laws that the deity needs to circumvent to be able to help.
*It may be necessary to keep PCs in the dark. For example, to prevent information leaks - the fragile minds of mortals may not be the safest place to store ultimate truths.
*A mortal could have even a loving relationship with a deity; this would be akin to being married to a spy... sometimes they don't come home; they can't answer all questions; sometimes, you have to move and change your name and aura....
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by valadaar on June 09, 2016, 10:00:11 AM »
I haven't attempted this myself in a campaign, closest things to that was a powerful pocket oracle (the oracle stone) which I used as a starting GM to drag the pcs from one adventure to another, since the players needed to be hit over the head to follow plot hooks...

Most examples I have seen of such personal gods in fiction have been largely malevolent, somewhat indistinguishable from possession really. One good example might be from Thieves world where Tempus has a rather rocky relationship with his patron (father?) Vashanka.  Vashanka speaks to Tempus either through events or rarely in his mind. You never see Vashanka directly.

I think allowing a face-to-face meeting is a bad idea, expect perhaps with a heavily flawed avatar of some type.  You pretty much can't avoid Deus ex machina if your god can actually appear and fix things themselves.  I _might_ have them appear if the next thing that happened is something really bad happened to them.

As for don'ts, don't take away player agency, don't save them, and don't turn them into a virtual magic item :)
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by EchoMirage on June 09, 2016, 09:42:19 AM »
Well, "you can't have it" sort of ends the discussion, doesn't it? I'd like to explore possibilities how it *could* be done.
Sagely Advice / Re: Roleplaying a deity?
« Last post by Aramax on June 09, 2016, 09:26:55 AM »
I don't think you can have mystery and FTF, in part of my game I am using gods that basicly only have one cleric or paladin, it was hilarious as the very stupid PC could not understand the nature of his relationship with his own personal diety
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