Limitless Worlds

Limitless Worlds

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Blood & Treasure - Godhood

I thought it would be interesting if B&T had a system to ascend to godhood, and so I wrote one! It's rough, vague and narrative, but I think it is cool and can be easily used in any other system.


Becoming a god is not the goal of every adventure, but sometimes their legend transcends them and they become something more than human. They may be mortal, but no mere mortal could have slayed a demon lord, could he? At times, the gods do take notice of a champion and decide to exalt them to that status of a god. If you are lucky enough for the gods to turn their eyes on you, here is how you become a celestial being.

Being Sponsored

You may have a loyal group of followers, and even some villagers who believe you to be a god due to your accomplishments. While you may feel divine, you aren't yet. The only way a mortal can become a god is if they are sponsored by another god. A god's sponsorship takes a lot out of your lord, so you best not dissapoint them.

There is no mechanical means to be sponsored. Sometimes a god will come to you, sometimes you will petition a god, or perhaps some artifact somewhere promises sponsorship for whoever retrieves it. Either way, you and the other players should discuss with the GM if godhood is right for you and the campaign's direction.

There are also no real requirements for sponsorship on the player's part. Though it is assumed the path to ascension begins at level 20, you could even begin as fledgling gods at level 1. Once again, talk to your GM about the details.

Your patron god will mold you, influence you and teach you the ways of godhood. You'll directly report to them, and they will hold you accountable for straying along the Path. The Purview you gain in the Flame step is usually related to your patron in some way; if your patron is the god of fire, you may gain a purview
of lava, or if you are ballsy, a purview of fire to directly compete with your teacher.

Divine Steps

The path to divinity is long and winding, and often called the Flaming Road. At the start of the Road, you are just a divine Spark eager to realize your true power. Eventually through hard work, you will reach full Radiance and become a true god. To proceed down this path, you need followers.


Followers are those mortals that believe that you are a god, or at least believe you can rise to the ranks of one. You can attract followers a number of ways, but the easiest way is by word of mouth to spread your Legend. Sometimes you'll do this by yourself, and other times allies or regular followers will spread your Legend.

Once a month, you will roll to see if your Legend has spread and how much. For every step on the Flaming Road, you have a base 5% chance, as well as a further 5% chance per 5 class levels you have. The GM will offer other modifiers, such as having witnesses to the event or physical proof. The Legend chance can never rise above 99%. If you roll equal to or under your Legend chance, your Legend has spread. This attracts 1d10 followers times a number depending on your step on the  Flaming Road (1 for Spark, 10 for Ember, 100 for Flame, 1000 for Inferno, 10,000 for Radiance).

Losing Followers

Just as you can gain followers, you can lose them. Perhaps you do an unfavorable deed, or a rival god steals away some of your followers. Losing followers should not be randomly rolled, though the amount lost should be. If losing followers ever dips a potential god down a step on the Flaming Road, they lose all the benefits
of the step they fell out of and must regain them once they reach enough followers.

Flaming Road Steps

The Flaming Road has 5 steps, and going along them requires you to have a certain number of followers. Followers empower you with their belief, tithes and ceremonies, and the more you have the more powerful you become. When you start out as a Spark, you do not need to have any followers, but becoming Radiant
requires recognition across the world. Below are the requirements to reach each step.

Spark - None, requires sponsorship
Ember - 100 followers
Flame - 1,000 followers
Inferno - 10,000 followers
Radiance - 100,000 followers

Even in modern times, a religion having 100,000 followers is nothing to scoff at. However, in countries with medieval level populations, having 100,000 followers could easily mean a huge majority follows you

Every step down the Flaming Road brings benefits, which are listed below. In addition, whenever you reach a new step, you can increase two of your attribute
scores by 1 point each. Each attribute can only be increased twice, however.

Spark - You gain a divine sense. If you concentrate for 10 minutes, you can hear any prayers from your followers. You can "zero in" on these prayers, allowing you to know where the prayer is coming from, no matter how distant. For example, you could sense a villager pleading for your help as he is being dragged into the wilderness by gnolls, and you could tell the general area he was in when he made the prayer.

Ember - You can twist fate, causing something to occur that was not supposed to. You can alter a minor event once a day, a major event once a week and a world-changing event once per year. A minor event would be something like not dropping a weapon or making a failed spell cast succesffully. A major event would be something like saving a life, preventing a building from being destroyed or curing an illness. A world changing event would be stopping the advance of an empire, striking down a lich lord and so on.

Flame - You have gained a purview, also called a domain, that you have control over. This could be something as broad as fire to something as narrow as dogs. You gain a new Heroic Task known as Purview that you are skilled in, and both the Save and Attribute modifier it requires should be discussed with your GM, as each Purview will be different. Your Purview should be related to your character; if your magic user was a fell necromancer and suddenly wanted to gain the Purview of Life, that should be a hard sell.

Whenever you want to do anything involving your Purview, you roll a Heroic Task with difficulty modifiers applied based on the complexity of the task. If a character with the Purview of Birds wanted to just speak with a bird, no modifier should be applied. However, if he wanted to summon a whole flock of griffins to attack a castle, he should expect a pretty hefty penalty. Gods on the Flaming Road are not meant to be all-powerful; they still have flaws and foibles, and they can't always do exactly what they want, or even have the ability to do it.

Inferno - You can invest your power in items and people. Investing your power in an item creates an artifact that you and the GM design jointly, and this is the only way for a character to create such a powerful magic item. Creating an artifact drains you, preventing you from making another artifact for at least a year, possibly longer if the artifact is especially dangerous.

Investing your power in a person gives them sponsorship, just like your patron gave you. You can only have one "student" at a time, and you can't get a new one until they reach the Flame step

Radiance - Your journey along the Flaming Path is complete, and you have become a god. You are effectively immortal; if you are killed, you will return after a week no worse for wear. You also gain a godhome, a celestial (or infernal) palace where your followers will dwell in the afterlife and you can rest at. You gain a cadre of angelic (or demonic) servants, usually 1 for every 100 followers you have. From your godhome, you can travel to any place on the planes where you can hear your follower's prayers. Groups of adventurers often form their own pantheon and share a godhome, but the mechanics are the same.

Alternatively, you can choose to ascend. You become a pure spiritual being who dwells forever in your godhome, but you become an NPC. If their is any "end game", you have reached it.

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