Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Gods of the Frost-Bitten Lands

There are various gods worshipped by the population of the Frost-Bitten lands, from the Lawful monotheistic god Svarog, through the triune Zorya to the numerous Lords of Chaos (AKA Demon Lords). Alignment is more important in matters of religion than in any other aspect; Lawful characters worship Svarog; Neutral characters can worship any god; and Chaotic characters worship the Lords of Chaos. Clerics must be of the same alignment as their god(s).

Svarog is the Lawful god, a smith-god who, according to legend, forged the world out of molten iron and rock. Is was originally a Dwarven monotheistic god, but Dwarven missionaries have brought this faith (as well as literacy and the knowledge of steel-working) to Humanity after Mankind was liberated by the Dwarves from the bondage of the Dark Elves. Clerics of Svarog admire craftmanship and technology, grudgingly accept the older Zorya worship and Lawful or Neutral Arcane magic, but must make an effort to root out the Lords of Chaos wherever their cult-worship emerges. All Dwarven Craftpriests worship Svarog and are, thus, Lawful.

The Zorya are three Neutral goddesses: Zorya Utrennyaya (Morning Star; the Maiden), Zorya Vechernyaya (Evening Star; the Mother) - and Zorya Polunochnaya (Midnight Star; the Crone). They are always worshipped together as three parts of the Cycle of Life. This faith is very tolerant - even outright supportive - of most Arcane magic, except for necromancy, grudgingly accepts the Svarog worship, dislikes the Lords of Chaos (but is far less zealous about destroying their worship compared to the Svarog clerics) and dislike technology when it interferes with the natural order. Most priests of the Zoriya are female, usually Bladedancers (ACKS Core) or Priestesses (ACKS Player's Companion) while priests of the Cleric class are rarer.

The Lords of Chaos are legion, all Chaotic to the core:
Berstuk - the mad god of Forests and Wild Beasts (think of a 'male' Shub-Niggurath).
Chernobog - the Black God; the Patriarch of Chaos (think of Cthulhu or Arioch).
Marzanna - the goddess of Death, Winter and Nightmares.
Baba Yaga - goddess of Sorcery; not as evil as the other Lords of Chaos.
Blud - god of Madness and Debauchery.
Chort - Lord of Demons; Master of Possession.
Koschei - god of Undeath.
Poludnitsa - goddess of Summer and Madness; sometimes sacrifices are made to her to bring solace in the harsh winter.
Likho - the one-eyed goddes of Misfortune.
Tryasavitsa - goddess of Plagues and Illnesses.

Each Chaotic Cleric worships one of the Lords of Chaos and does his or her utmost to spread Chaos in the world. The Evil Shrine of Chaos in B2: Keep on the Borderlands is dedicated to Marzanna.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Updated Campaign Map

Here is the updated Campaign Map, showing all the Class III Market Cities in Vorkono.