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  1. #1

    Of Divinity and Bloodlines...

    Hey all,

    Do you think that, if a scion commits enough bloodtheft, that they can eventually reach divine status? What do you think the threshold score would be? Or is this just a fallacy that scions have believed in since Deismaar?

    I'm more thinking along the lines of the Gorgon, and the awnsheghlien in general.

    My feeling is that this is possible, but do you think so?

    The true scions seem to have scores around 75-95, with the exception of the Gorgon, who, after many centuries of bloodtheft, has a higher score. I think the consensus within the 3e conversion is that his score is 120?

    Anyway, thoughts?

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by masterdaorin View Post
    Do you think that, if a scion commits enough bloodtheft, that they can eventually reach divine status? What do you think the threshold score would be? Or is this just a fallacy that scions have believed in since Deismaar?
    I think, regardless of whether it is possible or not, that the belief it is possible is a driving factor, particularly for very powerful awnsheghlien.

    My feeling is that this is possible, but do you think so?
    I think it must be possible, since it was the divine essence of the former gods that created the new. It's the same divine essence that exists in bloodlines- the same stuff- so if you can acquire enough of it, ascendency ought to be possible.

    The true scions seem to have scores around 75-95, with the exception of the Gorgon, who, after many centuries of bloodtheft, has a higher score. I think the consensus within the 3e conversion is that his score is 120?
    This is the tricky bit. While it might be possible, i'm not sure that anyone on Cerilia is anywhere near the required value yet. There is a huge difference in power between the Gorgon to even a minor deity. For example, the Gorgon can't hear prayers or grant spells to anyone. It just feels to me like there is so much more power required to reach deity-hood.

    That said, we do have the case of the Serpent, who can apparently grant spells, though it's never been confirmed how that works, or even if it genuinely is the Serpent doing the granting.

    -Fizz

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Fizz View Post
    I think, regardless of whether it is possible or not, that the belief it is possible is a driving factor, particularly for very powerful awnsheghlien.
    Totally agree on that point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fizz View Post
    I think it must be possible, since it was the divine essence of the former gods that created the new. It's the same divine essence that exists in bloodlines- the same stuff- so if you can acquire enough of it, ascendency ought to be possible.
    That's what I'm thinking, and I'm sure scions believe that too. So, it ought to be true.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fizz View Post
    This is the tricky bit. While it might be possible, i'm not sure that anyone on Cerilia is anywhere near the required value yet. There is a huge difference in power between the Gorgon to even a minor deity. For example, the Gorgon can't hear prayers or grant spells to anyone. It just feels to me like there is so much more power required to reach deity-hood.
    Now this is the million point question. While it's tempting to go for large numbers, I'm not so sure now that I've been pondering this question.

    At Deismaar, we have, shall we say, concentric circles of power absorption. The new gods were closest, so they got the most, but their champions, such as the Gorgon, were nearby to them.

    If those guys only got, say 75, to start with, then I'm thinking maybe it's not too much of a stretch to double that figure as a rough ballpark estimate for the "lesser" new deities, or perhaps slightly higher.

    I've been thinking of what score would it take to get all the blood abilities listed in the rulebook for each derivation, and give it a little boost for "deityhood", average it all out, and call that the threshold level.

    Thoughts?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fizz View Post
    That said, we do have the case of the Serpent, who can apparently grant spells, though it's never been confirmed how that works, or even if it genuinely is the Serpent doing the granting.
    Precisely.

    IMC, I just have his priests get their powers from the Cold Rider - with the Serpent just saying it comes from him... kinda seems like a "serpent" thing to do... and considering Azrai's totem is serpent... kinda fits...

    But that does beg the question... the Serpent only has a score of 77, IIRC, so...

  4. #4
    Site Moderator Sorontar's Avatar
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    There is the Faceless God, but that was not created exclusively for use in Birthright and never was given a blood abilities or scores when originally introduced.

    I would expect any new demigod to have had a True Bloodline. This would prevent most Anuireans ever achieving deity status.

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  5. #5
    Where was this Faceless God introduced? I don't remember that...

    I suspect that if a scion amassed enough bloodline to qualify for becoming a deity, their strength would become True. There is precedence for strength change...

    There has got to be a magic number for this... but what?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sorontar View Post
    There is the Faceless God, but that was not created exclusively for use in Birthright and never was given a blood abilities or scores when originally introduced.
    You must mean the Forgotten God, that seems to be the more common name in the source material, rather than "Faceless".

    Quote Originally Posted by masterdaorin
    Where was this Faceless God introduced? I don't remember that...
    It was from Dragon #241. It was an article about how to incorporate the Yak-Men from Al-Qadim (good setting btw) into other D&D settings, including Birthright.

    -Fizz
    Last edited by Fizz; 06-07-2023 at 10:52 PM.

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    I have a somewhat-different take.

    For all intents and purposes, the actions of the scions on Aebrynis do not happen in a vacuum. If any scion was increasing in bloodline strength enough to get close to true divinity, it would trigger some events (and likely well-before they were even close). Such as:

    1) the current/'new' god of that derivation might have issues with it, and would take action(s);
    2) other opposing current/'new' gods wouldn't want the playing field tilted in their opponents' direction, and would take action(s);
    3) even non-scion entities like large churches or guilds may react poorly if they believe that some 'upstart' is known to be pursuing/taking action towards divinity.
    4) the Gorgon would certainly become directly involved

    The closest thing (as has been discussed above) approaching demigod status in the game, regardless of edition, is the Gorgon. As powerful as it is, even it is far from the goal of demigodhood - but still closer than almost every other blooded creature on the planet.

    Thus, while the mechanics can probably be developed to where such a thing as increased-bloodline-strength-equals-demigod-status could be a reality, speaking personally, I'd never allow it in one of my games. Something (or multiple things) from the list above would put an end (and likely a very creative one) to any PC's aspirations of godhood. Plus, I liken the idea of PCs-attaining-godhood more to a Forgotten Realms game than a Birthright game. Not my cup of tea. YMMV.
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  8. #8
    Oh, I agree, but the point still stands that it seems to be possible. And, so, what is the threshold? I'm not so sure that it's so far out of reach that it isn't attainable... at least, no one (including the Gorgon) has realized where the goal posts really are...

    My take is, that this is precisely the reason why everyone else fears the Gorgon (and the other 'great' awnsheghlien). Could the threshold really be not that far off?

    On the contrary, perhaps this notion hasn't been stressed enough in Birthright...

    Having a lower threshold might just crank up the tension - more-so than it being un-attainable...

  9. #9
    Here is my take, It's a personal take built upon various stuff since AFAIK there is no "official" answer to if and how a blooded scion may become a god.

    2 Things I was inspired:
    1. The roman deification process;
    2. The fact that, despite what the Book of Priestcraft says, gods and their followers souls reside in the shadow world, not the planes, it could not make sense after all that was said about BR not having planar access.

    I was inspired by the concept of roman deification or greek apotheosis, the process of a mortal becoming a god. the TL;DR is that you need to die to become a god.

    In life, you may become a demigod or a saint by amounting enough blood points (I'd say at least 100 in 2E points); This will grant godlike powers in form of blood abilites, it seems. But you would also need enough people "linked" to your being, something I'd measure with regency points. I'd say 300 RP at least. Those numbers are totally arbitrary and inspired from The gorgon's alliance game.

    Although the blood will left the scion at the time of his death, with enough regency and influence upon his entering into the Shadow World he may have enough power to shape the Seeming and so the physical world just as any god would do.

    Another aspect that could be considered in greek apotheosis is that this process may require the intervention of a major god. This could be used in generating lesser gods, with smaller portfolios.

    This would give a linear explanation on some of the BR mythos: A lot of people were near the gods during Deiismaar, but only their leaders, the one most revered and spoken of, become gods upon their death. Maybe Raesene wasn't just liked enough or his betrayal has distanced the Andus from him. Also, ironically, the immortal Gorgon would need to die to become a god. I can see humanoids worship him as a god upon his death, maybe starting a religion war with Belinik and Demihuman worshippers.

    That is of course only my personal POV. I always thought that Anuireans would have worshipped Roele at a certain point in the Empire, since they already worship their ancient leaders as gods, maybe even the OG Dukes could have some lesser worship, Diem mostly.

  10. #10
    Interesting points, especially:

    Quote Originally Posted by Witness3 View Post
    This would give a linear explanation on some of the BR mythos: A lot of people were near the gods during Deiismaar, but only their leaders, the one most revered and spoken of, become gods upon their death. Maybe Raesene wasn't just liked enough or his betrayal has distanced the Andus from him. Also, ironically, the immortal Gorgon would need to die to become a god. I can see humanoids worship him as a god upon his death, maybe starting a religion war with Belinik and Demihuman worshippers.
    That a scion has to die in order to become a god... I like it!

    So, with a certain amount of blood, the willing act of death would transform the scion into a god.

    Which is precisely why no one has achieved it since Deismaar...

    I can work with those numbers, Witness... let me ponder...

    The score should be higher than 100, though, me thinks...

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