Saturday, October 20, 2018

Strange Gods, Strange Bedfellows

Rise up Comus, sing your song, bewitch the maiden, the day is long
Cast your spell, sweet music crack her virtuous shell

Enchanted damsel, curious ear, Comus music dispel all fear

Here are a smattering of additional cults using my rules from here and here. Use them to provide a bit of a different color for your clerics.

Cult of the Horned God
The druids worship the Archfey, the leader of the Wild Hunt, He who Dwells in Empty Places: the Horned God. When the aurora is shown in the sky, the Horned God rides with a host of the unliving through the trackless wilds. Woe be to any who cross his path on those nights. 

Commandments of the Horned God
  • Mete out justice and punish wrong doers; capture murderers and sacrifice them on holy days.
  • Wearing metal armor and carrying metal weapons makes you slow, lazy, and weak. 
  • Reading and writing make your mind weak and unable to memorize the laws and histories of the land. Do not indulge in the sloth of literacy. 
Favored Foe: None -- A druid does not have the Smite class feature
Miracles: Any spell from Elementalism (W&W p. 14)
Special: The Horned God has no favored foe, but is the Lord of the Hunt. Druids wear robes or cloaks made of dire beasts hunted in the name of the Horned God. By spending 1 Faith point, they may activate the magic of these robes and shapeshift into the form of the beast who gave its skin.

Druids begin the game at level 1 with one ceremonial garment: a robe of raven feathers, a wolf skin cloak, or a stag antler crown. (Or, you know, something else with GM approval.)

Each time a druid gains a level, they may go to the wilderness to seek a sign from the Horned God. The Horned God will loose from his herd one of his beasts. The Horned God's beasts are paragons of their kind (dire variants). The druid hunts* for the creature. If successful, he may take the beast's skin and make a garment from it, and add a new creature to his repertoire of shapeshifting.
* For hunting,  I'd use the Snakes and Ladders chase rules.

It is improper to wear more than one ceremonial garment at a time. Much less impractical. Additional garments must be kept in your pack.

Cult of the All-Father
The All-Father is known by many names: Böðgæðir (Battle-Enhancer), Faðr galdr (Father of Magic), Fjölsviðr (Very Wise), Geirtýr (Gore God), Hangadróttinn (Lord of the Hanged), Sigtýr (God of Victory) and Valkjosandi (Chooser of the Slain). These names hint at his nature: a god of death, a god of battle, a god of wisdom.

The All-Father hung himself as a sacrifice to himself. In his suffering, he gained wisdom.

Though warriors and wizards alike all pray to the All-Father for wisdom and victory, his priests have few men among them. Those who observe the rites of the All-father are mostly women, intersex, or third gender. In the northern lands, the practice of holy ritual is seen as "ergi," or "womanly work." The women who worship the All-Father are called valkyries.

The Commandments of the All-Father
  • Never make a wrongsome oath or break your troth
  • Remember the respect due those of great age
  • Give kind heed to dead people: straw dead, sea dead, or sword dead
  • Give mead and meat to all who ask you for it
  • Never break guest rite; give all due honor to your host
Favored Foe: Giants and Trolls
Miracles: Any spell from Spiritualism (W&W p. 28)

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