An Undead Shield, Save the Children, and a Position of Power…

You can find the ever-growing list of “Better Than Nothing” items  over on the right. Read ’em, like ’em, share ’em, and comment.

Baneful Paerma

The camp was quiet, but the old paladin was not.

“You can come out.  I know it’s time… I’ve been waiting.”

The moon was new and the forest dark, had there been a fire it would have been helpless against the flowing night spilling out from the treelines.  Broadways was cinching his last gauntlet, breathing even and slow while sounds—inhuman and uneven—spat and hissed and shuffled around him.

There were… twenty.  Maybe more.  His old campaigner’s ears knew their business, and the things in the dark were waiting.  If they were autonomous, they’d either chatter or rush all together; if they were only minions of some central evil he’d be chiming in right about now…

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Worship Gone Wild: Nature Clerics & Reverent Druids

THIS IS PART OF A COLLECTION OF THOUGHTS ON FLESHING OUT THE USE OF GODS AND DIVINE POWER IN GAMES, SO YOU CAN PROVIDE MORE FLAVOR AND HOOKS FOR COMMON OR DEVOUT WORSHIPPERS.

Druids revere and protect nature. Clerics worship and are the servants of the gods. You think this would be a simple distinction, but it can start to look very confusing when you add in so-called “nature gods” and the fact that some Druid devote themselves to those same deities.

If a character is going to become the servant of the Old God of the Forest anyway, does the difference between a cleric and druid become nothing but which powers they get? No.

What’s the difference? Here are some thoughts on where they diverge, and suggestions on how to work clerics with such allegiances into your games.

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Unwords, Forever Changing, and Where Legends Come From…

You can find the ever-growing list of “Better Than Nothing” items  over on the right. Read ’em, like ’em, share ’em, and comment.

Voca Caparison

Mad Hanz stared at the goblet—finewiss crystal cupped at the base by a twisting silver stem. The cup was worth more than the entirety of Hanz’s earthly possessions. Even serving him a drink with it, as tattered and unkempt as he usually appeared, was an extraordinary act of either inattention or manipulation.

Given that the Duke was not known for foolish or careless error, Mad Hanz figured it was the latter.

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This Is What Dragons Actually Believe: A Draconic Creation Myth

Every intelligent creature will on occasion consider its place in the universe, and this is doubly true in a world where gods might walk the earth while mortal magicians can toy with the very forces of creation.

So what must dragons think of all these ridiculous humanoid beings claiming to be at the center of fate, divinity, and power?

An earlier post discussed one way of playing a dragon, and suggested that their perspective might grow from a deep-rooted confidence in their superiority. Dragons are ridiculously long-lived and may reach levels of individual power few other sapient beings can dream of, and might see themselves as expressions of a more primal sort of divinity than what you see in the mortal pantheons.

Below is a general creation myth that might be believed by dragons in a variety of different fantasy settings… and may even be more true than the one held by the gods.

Just don’t try to get in a religious debate with one of their fundamentalist types.

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A Robe of Good, a Robe of Neutral, a Robe That Is Likely To Make Some Enemies…

You can find the ever-growing list of “Better Than Nothing” items  over on the right. Read ’em, like ’em, share ’em, and comment.

Mantle of Charity

Sophia pulled her old leather boots off with all the groans and aches of an old woman lowering herself into a bath. She hadn’t seen her twentieth birthday, but she’d seen enough in the last year to make her friendly with a bottle on those nights the group camped with a fire rather than sleep through the cold.

Wendell was showing off his new warhammer to Teller and Broadways was already snoring in his small pavilion. Sophia pulled up her worn bedroll and settled back to count the coins they’d taken from the brigands that jumped them earlier today. Eight imperial silver, thick and heavy. Enough that there’d be threats. And, sure enough—right on que…

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Quicker Knives, A Man With No Name, and the Irresistible Arc of Heaven…

You can find the ever-growing list of “Better Than Nothing” items  over on the right. Read ’em, like ’em, share ’em, and comment.

Zephyr Spines

Rita leaned back against the straw, the wind howling outside made the inside of the old barn almost peacefully quiet by comparison. She’d outlived the Far Wars (robbing the weary refugees blind in the hills), stood her own against countless bounty-hunters and trackers. She liked to boast, when half-drunk with her gang, that there wasn’t a man fast enough to put a knife to her. As she slumped back, the smell of wet hay choking around her, she could hardly believe she’d been so wrong.

“Just who the hell are you, mister?”

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Harvesting That Nectar: How to Get the Most Out of Gods

This is part of a collection of thoughts on fleshing out the use of gods and divine power in games, so you can provide more flavor and hooks for common or devout worshippers.

The role of gods in many fantasy realms seems like it must be pretty boring.

Think about it for a moment. Your average Goddess of the Golden Crusade or Mistress of Darkness seems to exist only at a distant remove from the lives of most worshippers, at best a guiding power that blesses important servants, and acts as an eternal balance to whatever deity is on the opposite end of the alignment chart (until things go horribly awry, causing dramatically involved epic showdowns).

It doesn’t have to be that way.

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