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  1. #1
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    There, I think, three faiths that have a special interest in the

    encroachment of the SW: Nesirie, Avani, and Ruornil. But when designing

    powers, spells, or strategies, I see it this way: Nesirie is the strong on

    defence, and has little attack, Avani has a strong attack, but is weak on

    defence, Ruornil has a stong attack and defence.



    Its also possible that Kriesha would have spells or abilities that would

    help controlling or aiding the encroachment, depending on cosmological

    factors.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

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    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    I would have thought Eloele as well, as her dominion is night and shadow. She would have perhaps as much of an interest in the encrouchment of the SW as Ruornil, although she may not actively work to prevent it.
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    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Eloele might actually work towards the spread of the shadow world - that chaos thing of hers. Regardless, IMO, she would have a vested interest in the encroachment of the shadow world. She is actually the one god who has been hinted at as having 'interfered' with the humans directly.

    I don't know if I would have Nesirie focused towards stopping the encroachment of the shadow world, well not as actively as say Ruornil. She is more focused on the seas and grieving, IMO.

    Cuircean might take up the cause if seen from a preventing the encroachment of those who would enslave others. Again it all depends on how the political theology is handled.
    Duane Eggert

  4. #4
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    Eloéle may well have SW affinities, probably more so than Kriesha. Whether

    her priests just manipulate its powers of shadow, seeming, and chaos, or

    whether they encourage the encroachment probably depdens on campaign

    cosmology, but she definitly deserves to be on the list. This creates some

    interesting scenarios with Rournil, so I would tend to say that manipulation

    is the way to go unless Ruornil and Eloéle have had a falling out.



    Nesirie`s connection to the SW is largely through her role in grief and

    death. Scenes of great tradegy are said to weaken the barrier of the Sw

    from this world, and of course there is the issue of the dead becoming

    animated by SW energies. In general, Nesirie`s priestesses are going to

    protect the rest of us from this by spells and rituals that prevent the SW

    from expoiting these situations. The dead should rest in peace, not wander.

    Our grief should not cause us to draw the attention of malevolent SW beings.

    That`s why I would describe her priests as strong in protection from SW, but

    weak in offense. They ward a graveyard, solemnize a battlefield, and so

    forth.



    If we take a guide from those faiths that have a power of undead, we can

    construct three catagories in this regard.

    No Interest in SW

    Erik, Cuiraécen, Sera, Belinik

    Those who combat SW

    Haelyn, Nesirie, Rournil, Avani, Laerme

    Those who embrace SW power

    Kriesha, Eloéle



    Now, command, turning or no power over undead is only an aproximation of SW

    interest, since the SW and undead are not entirely overlapping. Its an

    imperfect proxy. I think Erik and Belinik tend to take more notice of the

    SW, in their own way, than Sera and Cuiraécen do. I think Haelyn has no

    specific interest in the SW, but is concerned with protecting his realm as a

    good lordly steward, and when the threat comes from the SW, he is willing

    and able to meet it, but otherwise has other fish to fry. Laerme is

    interested because he parents are, tough her core areas of concern are

    largely temporal (love and art).



    Since Nesirie can turn undead, since she is the protector of the dead (or at

    least their resting places), and strives to prevent grief from being

    manipulated by the Shadow, say as Sidhe grief was prior to Diesmaar, she is

    a protector from SW encroachment.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

  5. #5
    Site Moderator Fearless_Leader's Avatar
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    Originally posted by irdeggman@Apr 5 2004, 01:42 AM
    I don't know if I would have Nesirie focused towards stopping the encroachment of the shadow world, well not as actively as say Ruornil. She is more focused on the seas and grieving, IMO.
    As the goddess of grief, Nesirie is gradually gaining a new portfolio over offering solace and protection for the dead, this includes preventing the dead from falling victim to the Shadow World. Give it another few centuries and she'll be the goddess of death.

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    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    I'd probably say that Ruornil is the only one who really tries to fight the encroucment of the SW in Aebrynis and his priests are the only ones who actively work against this. Haelyn, Nesirie, Avani, and to a lesser extent Laerme's priest may have some power to fight the shadow, but I doubt either the gods, or their priests actively seek out instances of SW activity. After all, aren't Haelyn's priests able to summond undead? At least they were able to cast Undead Legion under 2E...

    With regard to Kriesha and Belinik, I doubt either has a lot to do with the Shadow World, never shown much interest in it as far as I can tell.

    Eloele is an interesting case. I have always ran her as a possible replacement for Azrai (as her portfolio seems to overlap with his old one in some places). So she actually became an opponent of Azrai's return and fought against agents of Azrai because his return would weaken her overall strength and she would loose followers and power if he returned from the dead. So if you equate the SW with Azrai (which I have always done, as the cold rider is Azrai after all) then rather than welcoming the SW, Eloele would help Ruornil to fight against its encrouchment, but just for entirely different reasons.
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  7. #7
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    While I do regard Ruornil as the number one faith to fight the Shadow World,

    mostly because they are alert to it and seek out the challenge. What to do

    with the other faiths depends on what you are doing with the SW. If the

    encroachment of the Shadow is important to a campaign, I think all of the

    gods will tend to take more notice, at least among Haelyn, Nesirie, Rournil,

    Avani, Laerme, Erik, Kriesha, Eloéle (everyone except Cuiraécen, Sera,

    Belinik). If the SW is not central to the campiagn, Ruornil may well be the

    only faith to take an interest anyway.



    In the second rank though, I clearly see Avani shining light into the

    Shadow. "She is the light-bringer, the giver of life." She is the opposite

    of the SW. So, my take here is that while Avini`s agents might not seek out

    encroachment, when confronted by it the attack it vigorously. I also think

    that the Basarji Five Oaths is not just a Ruornil thing (its not law in

    Medoere), its a combination of Avani and Ruornil`s teachings.



    Haelyn shouldn`t be summoning undead, but clearly Haelyn`s priests do

    communicate with the dead. The Chinese believed that as someone got older,

    they got wiser, why should that stop just because they died? So

    communicating with the ancestors for guidance was common. Are Haelynites

    Confucists in occidental garb? Maybe, maybe not, but let`s look at the

    Quest spells, the one listed for Haelyn grants communication with an advisor

    who is a dead champion of Haelyn. I think because of the way necromantic

    spells are organized as a sphere when we allow Haelyn to cure blindness,

    cast restoration, raise dead, and resurrection, we are granting him a

    necromantic sphere. Its also the case that the PHB list of necromantic

    priest spells, were mostly a power to restore life, not create or summon

    undead. Haelyn has the the ability to restore life as well as communicate

    with the dead to solve crimes or seek wisdom. Halyn`s priests probably

    confine the conflict with the SW to imminant threats to those protected by

    nobless oblige.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

  8. #8
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Kenneth, I think your focus on defending against SW encroachment is strongly tied into the memories of what happened at Deismaar. While the present deities may (or may not except for Ruornil) have an active interest in the SW they will perceive any encroachment as a return of Azrai and will unite in their defense against him (except for maybe Belnik and Kreisha, but even then I see a neutrality there since they too remember the devastation of Deismaar and really wouldn't want to see their new power bases weakened)
    Duane Eggert

  9. #9
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    Actually, it has nothing to do with Azrai. Personally, I think he`s gone.

    I associate the SW much more strongly with undead, fey, spitits, and really

    anything other-worldly. The materials I am looking at are things like a

    random event where zombies menace a town, where an infant is replaced by a

    changeling, or a local sorcerer has made a pact with a SW being for power.



    Actually, since I hold that gods are immortal, what the other gods did was

    to get Azrai in a headlock and the old gods have determined to hold him a

    permenant prisoner, but it takes all of their time holding him down, so to

    speak, so they passed on their portfolios so that someone would be able to

    attend to the physical world while they continued their eternal grapple.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

  10. #10
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Originally posted by kgauck@Apr 6 2004, 08:20 AM
    Actually, since I hold that gods are immortal, what the other gods did was

    to get Azrai in a headlock and the old gods have determined to hold him a

    permenant prisoner, but it takes all of their time holding him down, so to

    speak, so they passed on their portfolios so that someone would be able to

    attend to the physical world while they continued their eternal grapple.



    Kenneth Gauck

    kgauck@mchsi.com

    Interesting premise and explains a lot of the reasons for your opinions/take on certain things. It is always a matter of perspective.

    Now, per your premise of the gods being immortal - they didn't spill their blood and create scions then. I would assume you take the spilling the blood as more symbolic and that they actually gave up some of their divine essence in order to imbue scions with the things that made them scions.
    Duane Eggert

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