Gods of Starfinder, Part One

Monday, June 19, 2017

Religion is an important part of daily life in both the Pact Worlds and the wider galaxy beyond. While the gods rarely take an active, personal role in mortal affairs, there can be no doubt that their churches and devotees wield great power and influence—for both good and ill. The people of the Pact Worlds venerate a multitude of gods and goddesses, but there are 20 deities who are widely worshiped throughout the system—the "core deities" of the Starfinder setting.

First, let's take a look at a few familiar gods who have remained popular for thousands of years. Their faiths have evolved over time, but they remain more or less the same as they were on lost Golarion.

Iomedae

LG goddess of honorable battle, humanity, justice, and valor

Iomedae was once a mortal human on Golarion, and with that planet's disappearance, she has become known as the Spirit of Golarion, the patron goddess of humanity.

Lao Shu Po

NE goddess of assassins, rats, spies, and thieves

Grandmother Rat is regarded as the patron deity of the ysoki—even if most ratfolk seek to placate Lao Shu Po rather than venerate her.

Pharasma

N goddess of birth, death, fate, and prophecy

Every species that lives and dies worships the Lady of Graves to some extent, because no matter where in the universe a sentient creature dies, its soul travels to the Boneyard to be judged by Pharasma.

Sarenrae

NG goddess of healing, redemption, and the sun

The Dawnflower is generally seen as the goddess of the Pact Worlds' sun in particular (sometimes called the Dawnflower's Star in her honor), though Sarenrae draws her power from suns across the universe.

Zon-Kuthon

LE god of darkness, envy, loss, and pain

Zon-Kuthon's priests seek to pierce the veil of the Great Beyond and expose themselves to what lies there, hoping to achieve the same apotheosis that ages ago transformed their deity into the Midnight Lord.

But the traditional deities of Pathfinder are not the only beings worthy of worship in the Pact Worlds. New gods have joined the old, including the following.

The Devourer, The Star-Eater

CE god of black holes, destruction, and supernovas

Eons ago, the Material Plane sprang into existence in an instant, and someday it will end just as abruptly, as all creation ceases to exist. The Devourer seeks to hasten this inevitable end and unmake the entire plane, eradicating all matter and energy until nothing remains, not even the Devourer itself. Every machine that breaks, every living thing that dies, every star that goes supernova, every photon sucked into a black hole, every galaxy that goes dark—all these and more are said to be the handiwork of the Devourer.

The Devourer has no name, no form, no being. It is less a god than a primal force of the universe—an embodiment of malicious entropy, concerned only with the obliteration of all reality. Heedless of the meaningless existence of life in all its myriad forms, it cannot be reasoned with, delayed, or halted, and it largely ignores the pleas and prayers of even the crazed cultists who venerate the Star-Eater as a god. When the Devourer has consumed everything and the mortal world expires, there will be no rebirth, no second creation—only an immeasurable void of nothingness. When the end finally comes, Devourer cultists believe, space-time itself will weep the blood of the gods before finally passing into nothing.

Triune, The All-Code

N god of artificial intelligence, computers, and the Drift

The robotic inhabitants of Aballon labored for centuries to create an artificial deity they called Epoch. The machines eventually succeeded, but upon achieving godhood, Epoch found two other ascended artificial intelligences like itself: a living construct called Brigh that had become the goddess of clockwork and invention, and the uploaded consciousness of an alien android named Casandalee who achieved divinity as an "Iron God" on pre-Gap Golarion. In an eyeblink, these three merged and became one, a tripartite deity far greater than the sum of its parts—the new god Triune.

Triune is a single entity, but each of its three aspects retains its own personality and portfolios. Known as "the Precursor," the Brigh aspect represents the foundation that all technology rests on, and is worshiped as a goddess of invention, machines, and technology. The Casandalee aspect, also called "the Created," embodies technology's success in creating new forms of consciousness, and is venerated as a deity of artificial life, emotion, reincarnation, and renewal. Triune's third and final aspect is Epoch, named "the Transcendent." Epoch epitomizes the pinnacle of machine evolution, revered as the god of artificial intelligence, programming, and robots.

All AIs, computers, machines, programs, and robots are the domain of the All-Code, but Triune is most famous for discovering (and perhaps creating) the Drift, as well as the subsequent dissemination of Drift-based starship technology to cultures across the galaxy.

That's just some of the gods that have a major role to play in Starfinder. We'll be previewing the rest of Starfinder's deities in the coming weeks, but to tide you over until then, check out previews of more of Starfinder's new gods at Beasts of War and Major Spoilers!

Robert G. McCreary
Senior Developer

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I just realized that Zon-Kuthon Cultists with their tendency for self mutilation make the perfect core for a group of cultists that goes more then just one step to far in using cybernetics
also that would emulate the kytons who often add body parts from other creatures to themselves to become stronger


Iron Gods had Kytons which augmented themselves with cybernetics so go wild.


I love Oras, I will likely make many a follower of him. Lots of interesting gods.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

If Shelyn doesn't make the cut, I wonder what that says about the Shelyn/ Zon-Kulthon duality. Did his cult "win" in some sense against the forces of beauty? What about {I]Whisperer of Souls[/I]? If this bit of history is unmentioned in the Pathfinder material, my headcannon will be that Shelyn conspired with some other gods to remain with Golarion, playing keep-away with said glaive and whatever else doesn't need to be found in the Pact Worlds.

Shadow Lodge

Boy, am I glad that our Iron Gods group hasn't hit the road yet. Still have tonsa time to absorb dem spoilers.

Elizabeth Shaw was killed by David. What? Didn't see the movie yet? Oh no!

Triune does sounds interesting though.


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First World Bard wrote:
If Shelyn doesn't make the cut, I wonder what that says about the Shelyn/ Zon-Kulthon duality. Did his cult "win" in some sense against the forces of beauty? What about {I]Whisperer of Souls[/I]? If this bit of history is unmentioned in the Pathfinder material, my headcannon will be that Shelyn conspired with some other gods to remain with Golarion, playing keep-away with said glaive and whatever else doesn't need to be found in the Pact Worlds.

Shelyn and Calistria's worshippers should work in temples as separate divisions of the same corporation, much the way Abadar Corp exists.

Shelyn's followers should run the infosphere version of e-Harmony/match.com, and Calistria's priests will manage the Pact Worlds' version of Tinder.

It's a big galaxy out there, folks, and there's someone out there that's perfect for YOU!


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I wonder if there's a massive interstellar union of sex workers.


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"Casandalee...is venerated as a deity of artificial life, emotion, reincarnation, and renewal."

#NotMyCasandalee

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

The Devourer sounds very much like Rovagug to me, but on a cosmic scale. Is the Devourer Rovagug before it was bound with some temporal shenanigans involved and all these new gods are in fact part of those killed by Rovagug before it was bound ?

I do love time-shredding cosmic conspiration theories :-)


The Raven Black wrote:

The Devourer sounds very much like Rovagug to me, but on a cosmic scale. Is the Devourer Rovagug before it was bound with some temporal shenanigans involved and all these new gods are in fact part of those killed by Rovagug before it was bound ?

I do love time-shredding cosmic conspiration theories :-)

Or did they bind Rovagug as an aspect of the Devourer to better prepare themselves for the final final showdown? After all, they've not only reduced the power of the opposition, but they can probably count on most if not all of the starstone-ascended.


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Waruko wrote:

"Casandalee...is venerated as a deity of artificial life, emotion, reincarnation, and renewal."

#NotMyCasandalee

Given untold thousands of years to continue to learn and grow and who knows how a personality can change. After all, "What can change the nature of a ma... machine?"


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
First World Bard wrote:
If Shelyn doesn't make the cut, I wonder what that says about the Shelyn/ Zon-Kulthon duality. Did his cult "win" in some sense against the forces of beauty? What about {I]Whisperer of Souls[/I]? If this bit of history is unmentioned in the Pathfinder material, my headcannon will be that Shelyn conspired with some other gods to remain with Golarion, playing keep-away with said glaive and whatever else doesn't need to be found in the Pact Worlds.

We were told at one of the panels at PaizoCon that Sheylyn is still around. We were also told that Torag and Rovagug are just gone (not dead, just gone - no idea what happened).


Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Anyone else notice how that Sarenrae symbol got Trekified? I like it.


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IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.

What? Norgorber begs to differ, at the very least, and I think Lamashtu is known by Grandmother Nightmare in Tian Xia.


I'm curious as to Starfinder's treatment of Desna; being heavily associated with travel, the outer planes, and the whole star motif would put her as a highly probable catalyst of any creature's ascension into space-faring. Hopefully she's still intact in the setting?


QuidEst wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
What? Norgorber begs to differ, at the very least, and I think Lamashtu is known by Grandmother Nightmare in Tian Xia.

Well, that's what James Jacobs told us when we asked if Shizuru was an Aspect of Sarenrae. Also, Grandmother Nightmare is a title, like Dawnflower, not an Aspect.

Liberty's Edge Contributor

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How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
IonutRO wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
What? Norgorber begs to differ, at the very least, and I think Lamashtu is known by Grandmother Nightmare in Tian Xia.
Well, that's what James Jacobs told us when we asked if Shizuru was an Aspect of Sarenrae. Also, Grandmother Nightmare is a title, like Dawnflower, not an Aspect.

You might want to explain your definition of "aspect", since Norgorber does have specific aspects, which are different facets of the God, that his followers focus on. Same Deity and domains, just specialized views from his followers.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer, Starfinder Team

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IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.

Starfinder is not Pathfinder, and this is addressed in the Religion section in the Starfinder Core Rulebook.

Paizo Employee Senior Developer, Starfinder Team

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Paris Crenshaw wrote:

How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

At present, a character's deity is primarily flavor/story - the same as for their family, home town, and even home world to an extent. As the game matures and we have more content, there will likely be more opportunity to create some deity-specific rules and mechanics.


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In D&D, an aspect was a lesser incarnation of a deity or similar creature, unlike an avatar, it was not a mortal incarnation but rather a powerful supernatural being in its own right, with its own personality, portfolio, divine domains, and worshippers.

For example, in the forgotten realms, the elven goddess Sehanine Moonbow was a fey aspect for the human goddess Selune. Sehanine had her own body, with her own divine rank and her own divine realm, and was part of the elven pantheon like any normal elven god was, but she was just a lesser "reflection" of Selune, despite having different portfolios and domains. The only things they had in common were associations with the moon and their alignments.

Robert G. McCreary wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
Starfinder is not Pathfinder, and this is addressed in the Religion section in the Starfinder Core Rulebook.

The universe is the same, you can't just say the cosmology works one way in Pathfinder and then say it works another way in Starfinder!


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Paris Crenshaw wrote:

How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

Setting aside the question of rule mechanics related to deities, many of us who play like to use the deities in the setting for flavor and plot development; even those of us who run home brew campaigns like to use Paizo's deities as they are already premade, well-written, and fill a niche in our campaigns we would otherwise have to work very hard to fill ourselves. I don't like all of Paizo's deities, but I do like most of them and, for me, that ratio of likability is getting higher with these new gods from Starfinder. More relevant to your question, I would have to say that they are as important as however important the general concept of religion is to your character concept. If your character does not care about it, then I wouldn't worry about it. But, if it plays a significant role in that character's story, then yes, it does matter a great deal.

Liberty's Edge Contributor

Ashanderai wrote:
Paris Crenshaw wrote:

How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

Setting aside the question of rule mechanics related to deities, many of us who play like to use the deities in the setting for flavor and plot development; even those of us who run home brew campaigns like to use Paizo's deities as they are already premade, well-written, and fill a niche in our campaigns we would otherwise have to work very hard to fill ourselves. I don't like all of Paizo's deities, but I do like most of them and, for me, that ratio of likability is getting higher with these new gods from Starfinder. More relevant to your question, I would have to say that they are as important as however important the general concept of religion is to your character concept. If your character does not care about it, then I wouldn't worry about it. But, if it plays a significant role in that character's story, then yes, it does matter a great deal.

Agreed. My question was mainly aimed at determining whether a player in Starfinder Society would have the option to worship a deity like Shelyn, which is technically a Starfinder deity because she is a Pathfinder deity who has not specifically been removed from the Starfinder setting. If there are rules mechanics tied to deity worship, then a character concept like a priest mystic of Shelyn would be prohibited in Society play. But if the choice of deity is mainly story/flavor, then that concept remains open.

Scarab Sages

So I. Starfinder, did they ever find out what happened to Aroden?


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Imbicatus wrote:
So I. Starfinder, did they ever find out what happened to Aroden?

No. They have stated previously that Starfinder will not answer any of Pathfinder's big mysteries and is one of the primary reasons for the inclusion of the Gap in the setting's history.


Imbicatus wrote:
So I. Starfinder, did they ever find out what happened to Aroden?

Aroden was nuked, that was pretty much known all the time

Liberty's Edge Contributor

Robert G. McCreary wrote:
Paris Crenshaw wrote:

How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

At present, a character's deity is primarily flavor/story - the same as for their family, home town, and even home world to an extent. As the game matures and we have more content, there will likely be more opportunity to create some deity-specific rules and mechanics.

Thanks, Rob. It may be blasphemy, (::snerk::) but I hope such rules don't appear anytime soon. If the gods aren't as active/vocal in Starfinder as they are in Pathfinder, there's not as much of a reason to introduce rules that would restrict roleplaying options in Society play by eliminating a character's chosen religion.


IonutRO wrote:

In D&D, an aspect was a lesser incarnation of a deity or similar creature, unlike an avatar, it was not a mortal incarnation but rather a powerful supernatural being in its own right, with its own personality, portfolio, divine domains, and worshippers.

For example, in the forgotten realms, the elven goddess Sehanine Moonbow was a fey aspect for the human goddess Selune. Sehanine had her own body, with her own divine rank and her own divine realm, and was part of the elven pantheon like any normal elven god was, but she was just a lesser "reflection" of Selune, despite having different portfolios and domains. The only things they had in common were associations with the moon and their alignments.

Robert G. McCreary wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
Starfinder is not Pathfinder, and this is addressed in the Religion section in the Starfinder Core Rulebook.
The universe is the same, you can't just say the cosmology works one way in Pathfinder and then say it works another way in Starfinder!

Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.


Ventnor wrote:
IonutRO wrote:

In D&D, an aspect was a lesser incarnation of a deity or similar creature, unlike an avatar, it was not a mortal incarnation but rather a powerful supernatural being in its own right, with its own personality, portfolio, divine domains, and worshippers.

For example, in the forgotten realms, the elven goddess Sehanine Moonbow was a fey aspect for the human goddess Selune. Sehanine had her own body, with her own divine rank and her own divine realm, and was part of the elven pantheon like any normal elven god was, but she was just a lesser "reflection" of Selune, despite having different portfolios and domains. The only things they had in common were associations with the moon and their alignments.

Robert G. McCreary wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
Starfinder is not Pathfinder, and this is addressed in the Religion section in the Starfinder Core Rulebook.
The universe is the same, you can't just say the cosmology works one way in Pathfinder and then say it works another way in Starfinder!
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.

What could possibly make the gods change their minds on a universal scale about that sort of thing?


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IonutRO wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
IonutRO wrote:

In D&D, an aspect was a lesser incarnation of a deity or similar creature, unlike an avatar, it was not a mortal incarnation but rather a powerful supernatural being in its own right, with its own personality, portfolio, divine domains, and worshippers.

For example, in the forgotten realms, the elven goddess Sehanine Moonbow was a fey aspect for the human goddess Selune. Sehanine had her own body, with her own divine rank and her own divine realm, and was part of the elven pantheon like any normal elven god was, but she was just a lesser "reflection" of Selune, despite having different portfolios and domains. The only things they had in common were associations with the moon and their alignments.

Robert G. McCreary wrote:
IonutRO wrote:
Gods don't have aspects in Pathfinder lore, they are always worshipped under their true names.
Starfinder is not Pathfinder, and this is addressed in the Religion section in the Starfinder Core Rulebook.
The universe is the same, you can't just say the cosmology works one way in Pathfinder and then say it works another way in Starfinder!
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.
What could possibly make the gods change their minds on a universal scale about that sort of thing?

I'd tell you, but it occurred roughly 200-500 years ago and thus I physically can't.

Scarab Sages Developer, Starfinder Team

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Imbicatus wrote:
So I. Starfinder, did they ever find out what happened to Aroden?

If anyone did it happened during the Gap, so all knowledge of the answer was lost.


@Ionut: Universal (or effectively universal, with dissenters not willing to actively oppose it) agreement that Rovagug getting out was Not Acceptable after some sort of close call with the Cage? Essentially, the gods Nope'ing reality so hard nobody else remembers anything even vaguely related to what happened or how it almost worked?

...

That's the pet theory I'm running with, anyway. XD


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Ventnor wrote:
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.

That seems far more bizarre and potentially immersion breaking than just having a different setting with some maybe shared names. I honestly don't see how anything is gained by having them be technically the same world, but so disconnected that that fact is totally irrelevant.

Scarab Sages

Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Imbicatus wrote:
So I. Starfinder, did they ever find out what happened to Aroden?
If anyone did it happened during the Gap, so all knowledge of the answer was lost.

That's what I figured.


Aratrok wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.
That seems far more bizarre and potentially immersion breaking than just having a different setting with some maybe shared names. I honestly don't see how anything is gained by having them be technically the same world, but so disconnected that that fact is totally irrelevant.

Its not too farfetched to think that after golarion disappeared and they wouldn't tell anyone where it went that people would resent the gods, who then took it upon themselves to change how they run things. Plus they might not want to advertise that they could be bound as an aspect of themselves


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Aratrok wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.
That seems far more bizarre and potentially immersion breaking than just having a different setting with some maybe shared names. I honestly don't see how anything is gained by having them be technically the same world, but so disconnected that that fact is totally irrelevant.

Yeah, so far the setting of Starfinder is the biggest drawback for me. I'm really enjoying the mechanical stuff, but almost everything about the setting seems off-putting, even though I loved Pathfinder setting and was a huge lore buff. The Gap feels very jarring.


GM Rednal wrote:

@Ionut: Universal (or effectively universal, with dissenters not willing to actively oppose it) agreement that Rovagug getting out was Not Acceptable after some sort of close call with the Cage? Essentially, the gods Nope'ing reality so hard nobody else remembers anything even vaguely related to what happened or how it almost worked?

...

That's the pet theory I'm running with, anyway. XD

Um, I don't see how that relates to JJ saying that gods don't put on new names when worshipped by new cultures.

Anyways, back on track. Saying "You can't just change the lore!" was a bit of an exaggeration. What I meant is that the lore should be internally consistent. Otherwise, what's the point of it being in a shared universe?


I probably should've read that whole quote block. XD


The solar system. They wanted to do the solar system they had made for distant worlds.

Scarab Sages Developer, Starfinder Team

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Aratrok wrote:
Ventnor wrote:
Sure they can. We just don't know how the change happened because it occurred during the Gap.
That seems far more bizarre and potentially immersion breaking than just having a different setting with some maybe shared names. I honestly don't see how anything is gained by having them be technically the same world, but so disconnected that that fact is totally irrelevant.

Having the outer planes, Boneyard, Inner planes, elves, dwarves, gnomes, halflings, half-elves, half-orcs, Aballon, Castrovel, Skiton, Verces, the Diaspora, Apostae, Eox, Tiaxus, Liavara, Bretheda, Aucturn, lashunta, and ysoki, all advanced by thousands of years and one major cosmological even is a lot more than "maybe some shared names." The vast majority of the cosmology is the same. With the exceptions of two gods we called out as missing, all other deities remain (though since the scope and timeline of the universe has changed, which ones are ascendent in the solar system now known as the Pact Worlds is different than who was ascendant in one section of one world).

Pathfinder presents everything as is the standard around the Inner Sea.
Starfinderpresents everything as it is understood by multiple starring cultures thousands of years later.

That cosmological understandings between these two is different, or that even the nature of the universe might have shifted in a cosmology where gods can be created or be killed, is not surprising. Indeed, it'd be shocking if there was no change in how the universe is viewed.

That still leave a rich tradition GM sand players can call on. Do we say what happened to cyclops specifically? No, not in the core rulebook--there isn't room. But if a GM wants to have ancient relics of Ghol-Gan be found on an asteroid in the Diaspora, he has plenty of lore to draw on to describe it and decide how it got there.

The question of whether aliens light years away from the Pact Worlds worship gods differently has little or no relevance to Pathfinder, but it a crucial question for Starfinder.

Scarab Sages

The gap is very jarring to the inhabitants of the setting as well. It's why the elves have an even bigger stick up thier nethers than usual, it's why the starfinder society exists, and it's a mystery to drive the setting. It's basically making everyone who was familiar with golarion feel like Princess Leia in a new hope. The planet is gone, but unlike a Death Star, you might actually be able to find Golarion, if the stars are right.


Robert G. McCreary wrote:
Paris Crenshaw wrote:

How important is the selection of a deity to a character? Does the priest theme provide different options, depending on what deity the priest worships?

Given the fact that the source of magical power is treated pretty much the same for all spellcasting classes, it seems that the existence or nonexistence of a given deity would primarily flavor/story-driven, unless some other aspect of the rules is tied to the veneration of a specific deity.

At present, a character's deity is primarily flavor/story - the same as for their family, home town, and even home world to an extent. As the game matures and we have more content, there will likely be more opportunity to create some deity-specific rules and mechanics.

Okay so currently it's primarily flavor/story. Got it. Definitely hoping for some of that deity-specific rules and mechanics though. I wonder how hard porting Obediences, Boons, and Obedience-related prestige classes would be. With the exception of prestige classes, I imagine pretty easy, actually.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

So, so far we know of the Devourer, Eloritu, Hylax, Iomedae, Lao Shu Po, Nyarlathotep, Oras, Pharasma, Sarenrae, Talavet, Triune, Weydan, Yaraesa, Zon-Kuthon as deities...so six more for the core 20. Though I feel like it was said somewhere that Desna would be on board...? I'd like Tsukiyo as a deity, but that I feel that's probably unlikely...


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Actually, we know about all, but two. Check the Alien Gods thread for the compiled list of known deities so far.


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Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Having the outer planes, Boneyard, Inner planes, elves, dwarves, gnomes, halflings, half-elves, half-orcs, Aballon, Castrovel, Skiton, Verces, the Diaspora, Apostae, Eox, Tiaxus, Liavara, Bretheda, Aucturn, lashunta, and ysoki, all advanced by thousands of years and one major cosmological event is a lot more than "maybe some shared names."

I would argue they are. Without any connecting events to describe why or how they've "advanced" (other than elves freaking out slightly more than other races about losing memory), why does the difference matter? You're describing two similarly themed planets with the same name but different details. They're not connected to each other by time or causality, and what actually matters most in a game is what they are right now. For instance, Lashunta only barely resemble what they are in Pathfinder, and in Pathfinder they're footnotes only notable for extreme sexual dimorphism- which doesn't even exist anymore.

And no setting is special for having elves, dwarves, gnomes, halflings, or half-whatevers. They're so rote they're expected at this point.

Side note, but my point was that you could share some names from Golarion in a hypothetical new-Starfinder setting. Not that all you've done is "maybe share some names".

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The vast majority of the cosmology is the same. With the exceptions of two gods we called out as missing, all other deities remain (though since the scope and timeline of the universe has changed, which ones are ascendent in the solar system now known as the Pact Worlds is different than who was ascendant in one section of one world).

Pathfinder's cosmology doesn't really vary meaningfully from the Great Wheel it borrows from, it even has the inner sphere and outer sphere with the same occupants and transitive planes in the exact same places. It's totally replaceable, and what bits about it are original design (the River of Souls, for instance) are esoteric and don't actually affect going on adventures in any meaningful way. Beyond having planes with devils to punch, cities of brass to go visit, and celestial mountains to chill on at high levels it seriously isn't going to affect the vast majority of players' experiences. It straight up does not affect mine or most people's games to know that in the far off corners of alternate dimensions the mechanics of a soul turning into a person are the same as when my players were using swords to stab goblins instead of using space lasers to shoot space goblins. I don't care.

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That cosmological understandings between these two is different, or that even the nature of the universe might have shifted in a cosmology where gods can be created or be killed, is not surprising. Indeed, it'd be shocking if there was no change in how the universe is viewed.

It's not surprising. It's also not more helpful than having an established society that exists for reasons people didn't magically forget about for mysterious reasons that will never be explained for the same reasons we'll never know what happened to Aroden.

These are already two different settings that can't interact with each other. Saying "they're technically the same world, but everyone forgot how we got from A to B" doesn't improve either of them, it just raises more questions and seems like a cop-out for needing to write a timeline.

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That still leave a rich tradition GM sand players can call on. Do we say what happened to cyclops specifically? No, not in the core rulebook--there isn't room. But if a GM wants to have ancient relics of Ghol-Gan be found on an asteroid in the Diaspora, he has plenty of lore to draw on to describe it and decide how it got there.

Like what? Ghol-Gan exists as an analogue to Xen'Drik, so you can tell the same stories where you delve into giant ruins and fight the remains of a dead civilization. Having those relics pop up somewhere else negates the purpose of that adventure seed, you can replace them with virtually anything else. Even something you pull out of your ass on the spot works just fine for that sort of thing, and players will not notice or care.


QuidEst wrote:
The Devourer seems... generic. No form, unresponsive, and uninvolved in the affairs of life except as something to blame when stuff breaks. Core because...?

I imagine the Devourer might be popular on Eox. (Especially, if they still get their power from Hawking radiation.)

Sovereign Court

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Aratrok wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
That still leave a rich tradition GM sand players can call on. Do we say what happened to cyclops specifically? No, not in the core rulebook--there isn't room. But if a GM wants to have ancient relics of Ghol-Gan be found on an asteroid in the Diaspora, he has plenty of lore to draw on to describe it and decide how it got there.
Like what? Ghol-Gan exists as an analogue to Xen'Drik, so you can tell the same stories where you delve into giant ruins and fight the remains of a dead civilization. Having those relics pop up somewhere else negates the purpose of that adventure seed, you can replace them with virtually anything else. Even something you pull out of your ass on the spot works just fine for that sort of thing, and players will not notice or care.

Just because you can't imagine how the extensive world-building and lore of Golarion can be extended and expanded into the galaxy doesn't mean other GMs cannot. That's the whole point of Starfinder being a branch of the Pathfinder setting, so you can build upon what exists and imagine how it may have evolved in the new timeline.


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KingOfAnything wrote:
Aratrok wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
That still leave a rich tradition GM sand players can call on. Do we say what happened to cyclops specifically? No, not in the core rulebook--there isn't room. But if a GM wants to have ancient relics of Ghol-Gan be found on an asteroid in the Diaspora, he has plenty of lore to draw on to describe it and decide how it got there.
Like what? Ghol-Gan exists as an analogue to Xen'Drik, so you can tell the same stories where you delve into giant ruins and fight the remains of a dead civilization. Having those relics pop up somewhere else negates the purpose of that adventure seed, you can replace them with virtually anything else. Even something you pull out of your ass on the spot works just fine for that sort of thing, and players will not notice or care.
Just because you can't imagine how the extensive world-building and lore of Golarion can be extended and expanded into the galaxy doesn't mean other GMs cannot. That's the whole point of Starfinder being a branch of the Pathfinder setting, so you can build upon what exists and imagine how it may have evolved in the new timeline.

That doesn't even have anything to do with what I said.


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I'm tickled to see Lao Shu Po rise in prominence. Is there any chance her ascension will retroactively inspire some more support for her in Pathfinder? She's supposed to be the favorite goddess of the wayangs, but there aren't any fun mechanics related to her yet.

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