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Faith in Azlant

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Subscribers have already started thumbing through their copies of the third installment of the Ruins of Azlant Adventure Path as they arrived in the mail, and one of the first things I saw people talking about was the article on the gods of ancient Azlant. I'll talk a little more about that in a bit, but for now here's a look at some of the other exciting things in Pathfinder Adventure Path #123: The Flooded Cathedral.

Up until this point in the Adventure Path, the PCs have had to deal with only a few encounter locations that are submerged, but this one takes the water wings off and drops the adventurers into the deep end in—you guessed it—a flooded cathedral. Don't get scared off yet! The entire cathedral isn't flooded, and not all of the adventure takes place in that one location. This adventure reveals some of the secrets of Azlant as the heroes explore a temple of Amaznen on an island near Ancorato. While inside they get to see some of the amazing wonders engineered by that dead god's priesthood like clockwork winding stations, seismic power generators, intelligent clockworks, and an analytical engine.

This volume also contains an article about clockworks, which talks about their origin and places they are more common on Golarion. It also includes a number of new augmentations for clockwork creatures to keep them fresh in your games, including ioun memory nodes, which grant clockwork creatures a measure of sentience.

Illustrations by Hugh Pindur and Will O'Brien

I also got the chance to explore religion in ancient Azlant with a full pantheon of gods commonly worshiped during the height of the empire. With the utter destruction of Azlant, it's a wonder that any knowledge of these gods carried through to the current age. That many did is a testament to faith. Some of these gods are familiar faces that were worshiped slightly differently over 10,000 years ago, while others deities in the article are new and mostly unknown to the Inner Sea and current day Golarion. In this article you can learn about how Shelyn was depicted as being in mourning after her brother left for places unknown, and how Pharasmins during the height of Azlant still trusted in prophesy.

Some people who've already read this article have commented that the details on Nurgal don't exactly add up to what's mentioned in Pathfinder RPG Book of the Damned. Much of this is due to the focus of the pantheon article, where I was focusing on how things were close to the end of the Azlanti Empire. The ancient origin of Nurgal as presented in Book of the Damned happened long before the empire's collapse, and frankly an expansive origin story for that demon lord deserves to be in the Book of the Damned where it has more space than a single column in an Adventure Path.

Gods of Ancient Azlant

DeityALAreas of ConcernDomainsFavored Weapon
AbadarLNCities, merchants, wealthEarth, Law, Nobility, Protection, TravelLight crossbow
AcavnaCNCompanionship, defensive battle, the moonChaos, Darkness, Protection, Repose, WarSpear
AchaekekLEMonsters, murder, natural disastersDeath, Evil, Law, Trickery, WarSawtooth sabre
AesocarLGCreation of life, health, medicineArtifice, Good, Healing, Law, ProtectionMancatcher
AmaznenLNInvention, magic, secret knowledgeArtifice, Knowledge, Law, Magic, ProtectionLight hammer
DesnaCGDreams, luck, stars, travelersChaos, Good, Liberation, Luck, TravelStarknife
ElionCGColonization, discovery, explorationChaos, Community, Good, Travel, WeatherLongbow
GozrehNNature, the sea, weatherAir, Animal, Plant, Water, WeatherTrident
GroetusCNEmpty places, oblivion, ruinsChaos, Darkness, Destruction, Madness, VoidHeavy flail
JaidiNGAgriculture, hard work, self-sufficiencyAnimal, Glory, Good, Plant, SunScythe
LissalaLNDuty, fate, reward for service, runesKnowledge, Law, Nobility, RuneWhip
MyrLGCharity, lineage, physical perfectionGlory, Good, Law, Nobility, StrengthLongsword
NurgalCEDeserts, senseless warfare, the sunChaos, Evil, Fire, SunHeavy mace
OnosNElements, embassies, extraplanar travelAir, Earth, Fire, Travel, WaterChakram
PharasmaNBirth, death, fate, prophecyDeath, Healing, Knowledge, Repose, WaterDagger
ScalNEAnnihilation, catharsis, purityDestruction, Earth, Evil, Liberation, VoidMeteor hammer
ShelynNGArt, beauty, love, musicAir, Charm, Good, Luck, ProtectionDagger
SicvaLEDomination, invasive species, oppressionAnimal, Evil, Law, Nobility, StrengthLasso
UlonNEConspiracy, isolation, manipulationCharm, Community, Evil, Knowledge, TrickeryHand crossbow
ZuraCEBlood, cannibalism, vampiresChaos, Death, Evil, MadnessRapier

I hope everyone's been enjoying the Ruins of Azlant Adventure Path. There's still more to come!

Adam Daigle
Managing Developer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Pathfinder Adventure Path Ruins of Azlant

Really like them all, but I'm curious why Ulon has the Community domain when he's the god of isolation. Is this to show his role as the god of conspiracy as well? Trickery + Community = conspiracy?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
OmegaZ wrote:
Really like them all, but I'm curious why Ulon has the Community domain when he's the god of isolation. Is this to show his role as the god of conspiracy as well? Trickery + Community = conspiracy?

Also a deity of conspiracy and manipulation, both of which can thrive in a community. Perhaps he's a deity involved with creating increasingly isolated and withdrawn communities, unfriendly and untrusting with outsiders?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I actually like the Azlanti deities better than many of the modern Golarion crowd. Especially Ulon and Sicva. Is Sicva the first child of other deities that we know of, or am I missing someone?

As for Ulon and the Community domain, I could see it possibly being for the reasons Luthorne states- without a community, conspiracies don't really thrive. Like a pandemic, without a large group of people in close contact, such things would quickly die out. Also, to an extent, the cells that worshipped Ulon were small communities.

Grand Lodge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Acavna!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?

Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.

Grand Lodge

MythicFox wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?
Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.

I've seen that as a fan theory, but the only official thing I've seen is it being reaffirmed that she's always been LE.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Rysky wrote:
Acavna!

Seconded. My favorite dead deity of Golarion.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?

Not a typo; they go into slightly more detail in her entry, but the long and short of it is yes- she becomes evil later.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

All of gods in articles details their Azlanti worship versions. Like, Shelyn has dagger as favored weapon since at this point Dou-Bral hadn't returned yet as Zon-Kuthon. Thats also why some of them have different portfolios. Lissala also has only 4 domains because she used to be minor god before she embraced her faith's corruption and became true god.

Only mistake regarding the article is that Nurgal is detailed as Demon Lord even though Book of the Damned revealed he used to be god before he got cleaved into demon lord


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
CorvusMask wrote:

Only mistake regarding the article is that Nurgal is detailed as Demon Lord even though Book of the Damned revealed he used to be god before he got cleaved into demon lord

I'm not trying to be a smart-aleck, but let me bring your attention to...

The blog post you're commenting on wrote:
Some people who've already read this article have commented that the details on Nurgal don't exactly add up to what's mentioned in Pathfinder RPG Book of the Damned. Much of this is due to the focus of the pantheon article, where I was focusing on how things were close to the end of the Azlanti Empire. The ancient origin of Nurgal as presented in Book of the Damned happened long before the empire's collapse, and frankly an expansive origin story for that demon lord deserves to be in the Book of the Damned where it has more space than a single column in an Adventure Path.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Oops ^^; Well I did literally just wake up around time I wrote that post.

...Ya know, I really should stop having "post messages" be the literally first thing I do when I wake up, that can't be healthy xD

Paizo Employee Organized Play Lead Developer

23 people marked this as a favorite.
CorvusMask wrote:

Oops ^^; Well I did literally just wake up around time I wrote that post.

...Ya know, I really should stop having "post messages" be the literally first thing I do when I wake up, that can't be healthy xD

Though we're charmed that paizo.com is how you choose to start your day


The rows for Scal and Pharasma have cells shifted over by 1 column (but in different directions). Tried Firefox, Chrome, and Safari -- same results.


happy to see that some gods never change through the age—— from Azlant to pact world。
I mean, the end of the time is ALWAYS there.....

Scarab Sages

Paizo Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

What happened to the Peacock Spirit?

Silver Crusade

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Pretty sure that's more a Thassilon thing (and it's gonna be covered in Return of the Runelords I believe).


3 people marked this as a favorite.

If these become PFS legal, I may have to buy this AP volume... and if I have to buy this one volume, I may as well buy the others... the legacy of the Wallet-bane lives on at Paizo, it seems...

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 16

2 people marked this as a favorite.

At last, Acavna and Amaznen got write ups. Horray!

Silver Crusade

5 people marked this as a favorite.
david huang wrote:

happy to see that some gods never change through the age—— from Azlant to pact world。

I mean, the end of the time is ALWAYS there.....

In a way, it's almost comforting, isn't it? No matter how terrible things may be nor how joyous the future may become, at the end of it all, there's someone waiting to turn out the lights on Everything when the time comes. Rovagug may burst free from prison, or the Cult of the Devourer may feed everything into a supermassive black hole, or the inhabitants of Axis may freeze everything into a never-changing lattice of pure Order, or, or, or....

No matter what happens - Groetus will be there to wrap things up.

It's like a safety blanket, for all of creation.
...a big, chaotic, void-filled, safety blanket.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Cyrad wrote:
At last, Acavna and Amaznen got write ups. Horray!

Acavna!

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

7 people marked this as a favorite.
Charles Scholz wrote:

What happened to the Peacock Spirit?

The Peacock Spirit was not worshiped in Azlant. As indicted above, many, many more details about the PS and its cult can be found in next fall's AP, Return of the Runelords.

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
MythicFox wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?
Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.
I've seen that as a fan theory, but the only official thing I've seen is it being reaffirmed that she's always been LE.

Can you point to where this was officially reaffirmed?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Would it be too strong to let players play aquatic races in this AP? I wouldn't want some challenges to be easily mitigated or bypassed but some of those races in blood of the sea are so cool!

Grand Lodge

Mark Moreland wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
MythicFox wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?
Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.
I've seen that as a fan theory, but the only official thing I've seen is it being reaffirmed that she's always been LE.
Can you point to where this was officially reaffirmed?

Upon a closer look, nope. I'd seen a few forum posts by JJ saying she was but I suppose that's not official. My bad.

Definitely going to pick this up for that article as my interest has been piqued.

Shadow Lodge

John Compton wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:

Oops ^^; Well I did literally just wake up around time I wrote that post.

...Ya know, I really should stop having "post messages" be the literally first thing I do when I wake up, that can't be healthy xD

Though we're charmed that paizo.com is how you choose to start your day

>_>


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Wonder if Amaznen was the one to create Brigh, on purpose or accident aside.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Misko wrote:
Wonder if Amaznen was the one to create Brigh, on purpose or accident aside.

Or if she is secretly Amaznen with her body destroyed and her mind in an artificial one.

Silver Crusade

Which of these gods/goddesses are dead?

Will worshiping these non-dead deities grant those domains?

These are ancient versions of these gods so if I were to worship Shelyn, I use her modern favored weapon? or do I get to choose?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Laird IceCubez wrote:
Which of these gods/goddesses are dead?

Acavna's dead and Amaznen basically ended up getting evicted from reality- just about everybody else is supposedly still out there- might be one or two exceptions, but it's late and I'm not firing up the PDF to double-check.

Quote:
Will worshiping these non-dead deities grant those domains?

To my great delight, many of them are mentioned as having still-active worshipers in various places.

Quote:
These are ancient versions of these gods so if I were to worship Shelyn, I use her modern favored weapon? or do I get to choose?

Since the Dagger is a Simple weapon, safe to say modern Shelynites get the glaive proficiency, while anyone who predates the return of Dou-Bral probably has to make do.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I wonder if any of these deities are still worshipped in the Azlanti Star Empire?

Also, is Ulon a gender-neutral/nonbinary deity? Love their art!


Mark Moreland wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
MythicFox wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?
Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.
I've seen that as a fan theory, but the only official thing I've seen is it being reaffirmed that she's always been LE.
Can you point to where this was officially reaffirmed?

I do seem to recall James saying that at one point, during a discussion about her alignment.......

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Sicva is a very good candidate for continued worship in the Azlanti Star Empire IMO

I also happen to think that her picture looks very Kryptonian to me, which fits the arrogant uber-human space-faring culture trope

And I just noticed that her favored weapon is the lasso :-)

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
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nighttree wrote:
Mark Moreland wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
MythicFox wrote:
Jurassic Pratt wrote:
Is Lissala's Alignment a typo? Or did she change from LN to LE at some point in Golarion's history?
Don't quote me on this, as I'd have to look it up, but I think it's been said somewhere that she's been changed by the millennia having little more than sinful Runelord cultists as her worshippers.
I've seen that as a fan theory, but the only official thing I've seen is it being reaffirmed that she's always been LE.
Can you point to where this was officially reaffirmed?
I do seem to recall James saying that at one point, during a discussion about her alignment.......

Not sure how official it is :

James Jacobs wrote:
She's always been lawful evil... but more lawful THAN evil, whereas I'd say that Zon-Kuthon is more evil than lawful.

in the thread "Lissala" here

Lantern Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4

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Some fun inside commentary on this:

Back when I was working on Into the Shattered Continent I approached Adam with an idea about a cult of Desna/Pharasma worshippers who aligned their portfolios of stars and prophecy and formed a cabal of fortune-teller prophets. One of the fun side stories of that, which I'm not entirely sure made it in to the text of Shattered Continent as overtly as I'd intended, was suggesting that the priests were literally shipping Desna and Pharasma.

So, in my mind, Azlanti priests absolutely wrote romantic deity fanfiction.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It also makes Aroden look like a bit of a 'mooch' or alternatively one of the kinds of folks that tries to preserve EVERYTHING they know about their culture and can only grab certain bits of it?

Relevant Scenario Information, Season 5:
In PFS 5-08 'The Confirmation', it is hinted that Aroden had 10 aspects that he felt responsible for, though a lot of that was faded lost history over the ages.

Perhaps as a 'side-effect' of trying to preserve *any* knowledge or information they had, it kept other deities relevant, though a bit pissed off at the misappropriation of folios?

...could also go a long way to explain why Aroden went away, and why the Eye, etc, etc... unless it was a sacred duty of the Azlant Star Empire to send people along every few hundred years for a 'sacred rebirth' to take over?

...because the other thing Aroden's faith begins to look like is more a bureaucratic compromise from a society that's trying to get all their 'best' things in place while keeping their 'hooks' in for eventual take-over?

EDIT: On the Phasna shipping... It could also have been an echo of some of the Eldest from the First World, as well?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Robert Brookes wrote:
the priests were literally shipping Desna and Pharasma.

My two favorite deities. Guess I found my Azlanti sect of choice...

Lantern Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Some of the entries in the AP article mention that there are still pockets of worshippers.

We all get out own version of Golarion where the answers to these questions are up to us, but I was curious from the developer intent, do these deities still answer the call of their faithful (minus Acavna and Amaznen)?

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Brew Bird wrote:

I wonder if any of these deities are still worshipped in the Azlanti Star Empire?

Also, is Ulon a gender-neutral/nonbinary deity? Love their art!

There might be some still worshiped in the Azlanti Star Empire, but as of yet that is unrevealed.

As for Ulon the Web, yes and/or unrevealed.

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

5 people marked this as a favorite.
justaworm wrote:

Some of the entries in the AP article mention that there are still pockets of worshippers.

We all get out own version of Golarion where the answers to these questions are up to us, but I was curious from the developer intent, do these deities still answer the call of their faithful (minus Acavna and Amaznen)?

The living deities are still capable of granting spells to worshipers.


I wrote:
The rows for Scal and Pharasma have cells shifted over by 1 column (but in different directions). Tried Firefox, Chrome, and Safari -- same results.

It's fixed now!

Paizo Employee Customer Service Manager

Removed post.


Robert Brookes wrote:

Some fun inside commentary on this:

Back when I was working on Into the Shattered Continent I approached Adam with an idea about a cult of Desna/Pharasma worshippers who aligned their portfolios of stars and prophecy and formed a cabal of fortune-teller prophets. One of the fun side stories of that, which I'm not entirely sure made it in to the text of Shattered Continent as overtly as I'd intended, was suggesting that the priests were literally shipping Desna and Pharasma.

So, in my mind, Azlanti priests absolutely wrote romantic deity fanfiction.

This is super cool!

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