Eminent Domains

Friday, April 27, 2018

Deities and their domains are a big part of what makes clerics special. Logan set the stage with his cleric blog on Monday, so now let's get into the weeds and take a look at how we structured deities and domains.

Basic Deities

For each deity, we present some basic information, including areas of concern, titles, alignment, edicts, anathema, and favored weapon. Most of these are familiar or self-explanatory. One of the newer entries, anathema, is a concept Logan mentioned on Monday. This entry provides examples of actions that violate the deity's tenets. Let's take Shelyn as an example.

Shelyn

The Eternal Rose is the goddess of art, beauty, love, and music. She seeks to one day redeem her corrupted brother Zon-Kuthon.

Alignment NG
Edicts be peaceful, choose and perfect an art, lead by example, see the beauty in all things
Anathema destroy works of art or allow one to be destroyed except to save a life or in pursuit of greater art, refuse to accept surrender, strike first
Favored Weapon glaive

This entry gives you a good idea of how to play a Shelynite PC of any class. For example, a fighter faithful Shelyn might consider wielding her goddess's favored weapon, and even lay followers would likely feel terrible guilt at committing anathema acts even though they face no mechanical consequence for doing so. But what kind of cool stuff do you get if you're a cleric of a specific deity?

Clerics and Deities

Your choice of deity is essential when determining what type of cleric you play. A free-spirited and optimistic Desnan cleric, a tyrannical and scheming Asmodean, and a self-reliant perfectionist Iroran all relate to the world in different ways. We wanted to reflect this with a variety of character customization options based on deity! We've included a chart that indicates each deity's areas of concern, alignment (and the alignments allowed for their clerics), type of channeled energy (positive, negative, or either), signature skill, favored weapon, domains, and spells. For instance, here's Shelyn's entry on that table:

ShelynArt, beauty, love, and musicNG (LG, NG, CG)PositiveCraftingGlaiveCreation, family,
passion, protection
1st: color spray,
3rd: enthrall, 4th: creation

Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

The deity's areas of concern include a brief restatement of her titles.

You'll notice the alignment lists not only Shelyn's alignment of neutral good, but also all the alignments her clerics could have in parentheses. Listing it this way allows us (or you, for your own deities) to be more expressive when creating deities. For instance, Norgorber now has slightly different alignments permitted for his clerics depending on which aspect of the deity they worship! Or, you could create a new deity of balance through opposing extremes who accepts only neutral, lawful good, chaotic good, chaotic evil, and lawful evil clerics.

Listing the type of channeled energy the deity grants allows for some really exciting situations. For instance, Lamasthu may be an incredibly evil deity of nightmares, but she's also a deity of the wild fecundity of the Abyss, so she allows her clerics to choose negative or positive energy when channeling. You could even have a good deity that granted only negative energy (none of the core deities worshiped in the Inner Sea region of Golarion do so, but it could be possible for a deity like Tsukiyo, perhaps, as part of his dualism with Shizuru) or an evil deity that could grant only positive energy.

The deity's signature skill is in addition to those all clerics gain, so Shelynite clerics always have the ability to reach great heights in Crafting. Norgorberite clerics, in contrast, gain Stealth in order to blend into the shadows, allowing them to fit in well with clandestine groups.

What about those spells at the end? Those are three extra spells that all clerics of Shelyn can prepare and cast! These aren't in any sort of special "domain slots" like before; you can cast them as few or as many times as you want. Oh, and Sarenrae has fireball!

But wait, Mark, what about...

Domains

Pathfinder First Edition has a list of domains that cover a variety of basic concepts but miss others entirely, and they are fairly generic, which means they don't always convey the nuance of why your deity has that domain. A great example of this was the Death domain and all its undead spells not really fitting with Pharasma, the goddess of death who hates undead.

One of the earliest and coolest innovations to domains in Pathfinder appeared in the Advanced Player's Guide, where subdomains altered domains to add nuance. In the playtest, we're bringing in that sort of flexibility right away! Each domain has a basic power and an advanced power, and because domain powers work as spells, creating a new domain that's perfect for your world is as simple as adding two spells. This allowed us to include significantly more domains in the game and will allow us to expand to even more domains with ease. Here's the list of new domains that don't share a name with any of the old domains (some names you might recognize from subdomains):

  • Ambition
  • Cities
  • Confidence
  • Creation
  • Dreams
  • Family
  • Fate
  • Freedom
  • Indulgence
  • Light
  • Might
  • Moon
  • Nature
  • Nightmares
  • Pain
  • Passion
  • Perfection
  • Secrecy
  • Truth
  • Tyranny
  • Undeath
  • Wealth
  • Zeal

These domains allow for a variety of powers that can really give you the feel of playing a cleric of a specific deity, both in combat and out! For example, take a look at this fun noncombat basic power from the Indulgence domain:

Enhance Victuals (Transmutation) Power 1

Casting 1 minute (Material, Somatic, Verbal Casting)
Range touch; Target 1 nonmagical pint of water or pound of food

You transform the target into delicious fare, changing water into wine or another fine beverage or enhancing food's taste and ingredients to make it a gourmet treat. The transformation also attempts to counteract toxins in the food or water. If you have Spell Points, you can add an additional pint or pound for each additional Spell Point you spend. The feast vanishes if not consumed.

Heightened (+1) Increase initial and additional pints or pounds by 1.

So if you're a cleric of Cayden Cailean or Urgathoa, you're going to be able to party in style. Since powers are automatically heightened as you gain levels, that means for just 1 Spell Point, a 7th-level cleric can make enough gourmet food for her whole adventuring party to have a meal, and they'll be able to throw a banquet to serve an incredible number of guests if they pour plenty of Spell Points into it during downtime. That's all with only 1 minute to prepare, making them a wonderful host for any occasion!

Meanwhile, the Fate domain has an advanced power that might come in handy in a clutch. But I'll ask you before we dive in—are you feeling lucky?

Tempt Fate (divination, Fortune) Power 2

Casting [[F]] Somatic free action; Trigger You or an ally within range attempts a saving throw.
Range 120 feet; Target you or a willing ally in range

If the triggering saving throw's result is a success, it counts as a critical success. If it's a failure, it counts as a critical failure, and the critical failure can't be reduced by abilities that usually reduce critical failure, such as improved evasion. If the triggering ability did not have both a critical success and critical failure condition, tempt fate fails and your Spell Point is refunded.

With tempt fate, you take your fate into your own hands, promising either total vindication from your saving throw or total disaster! This was a favorite of Jason's cleric of Pharasma in one of our playtests, and needless to say, it's a better choice to use this for your strong saving throws than your weak ones.

But what about Shelyn? Let's close by taking a look at two of the powers from her granted domains, one for in combat and one for outside of combat:

Unity (Abjuration, Fortune) Power 2

Casting [[R]] Verbal reaction; Trigger You and one or more allies within range are targeted by a spell or ability that allows a saving throw.
Range 30 feet

You allow your allies within range to use your saving throw modifier instead of their own. Each ally decides individually which modifier to use.

Unity is really useful for a support cleric with good saving throw modifiers, and it's particularly great for those dangerous area effects that require Will saving throws like a harpy's song, since few allies will be able to match your cleric's Will modifier!

Artistic Flourish (Transmutation) Power 2

Casting 10 minutes (Material, Somatic, Verbal)
Range touch; Target one item or work of art
Duration 24 hours

You infuse the target with artisanal and artistic vision. Its quality increases to match your proficiency rank in Crafting, to a maximum of expert. The target is a beautiful and impressive piece for its new quality, but the effect is obviously temporary, so it can't be sold for more than normal. This doesn't allow you to use the target to Craft a magic item that requires the new quality or perform any other task requiring a permanent item of that quality.

Heightened (4th) If you spend 1 additional Spell Point, the maximum quality increases to master.
Heightened (8th) If you spend 2 additional Spell Points, the maximum quality increases to legendary.

Not only is artistic flourish a great way to express your character's inner artisan, but it can also be of great use in a pinch when you could really use a very specific tool or item of high quality. Legendary-quality items aren't cheap, after all! This is also a great example of one way that using Spell Points allows us to play around a bit more and make the spell more interesting by varying costs. You saw this a bit earlier with enhance victuals, but here it's more than just the ability to save extra castings for a large batch. These sorts of flourishes are possible to word under a "uses per day" system, but it's awkward, and they're straightforward to create and easy to understand with a Spell Point pool.

So who's your favorite deity? What sorts of new domains can you imagine with this new system? Let me know in the comments below!

Mark Seifter
Designer

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I'm enjoying this, though it's starting to make me worry some for the learning/balance curve.

I have a lot of custom content, in addition to and on top of PF1e materials.

...help? XD

Positives to the new domains:
* They can be used to differentiate different regional Cults/Temples of the same deity, presuming the deity's concept is broad enough for this.
* They can be used to represent specialized training within a faith. For example, not every cleric receives the specialized training in Exorcism. It's a dangerous learning, fraught with difficulty. Therefore, they need to travel to certain locales, but there's a reward/payoff, and story.


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Diego Rossi wrote:
Benjamin Harlow wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:

Imagine a cleric of Shelyn sees someone peacefully destroying art and can only stop them by striking first.

** spoiler omitted **

The hooligan destroying art has struck first thus I get to fulfill my righteous calling of destroying the ugly of this world.

Also can you peacefully destroy something?

"My religion say that worshiping idols is evil. destroy all images of gods, even our God." That is something that both Christians and Muslim have done.

That was done withing the boundary of the law and out of righteous indignation, not anger.

I know this might come as a surprise but Shelyn is not Yahweh.

Dark Archive

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Bruno Mares wrote:

Still not happy with spell points for powers activation...

Why not power points?!?

For what I saw, powers are spell-like, not exactly totally spells. Will obviously create confusions, it's not player-friendly.

“Arcane” or, alternately, “divine points,” works just as well.

Dark Archive

Diego Rossi wrote:
Benjamin Harlow wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:

Imagine a cleric of Shelyn sees someone peacefully destroying art and can only stop them by striking first.

** spoiler omitted **

The hooligan destroying art has struck first thus I get to fulfill my righteous calling of destroying the ugly of this world.

Also can you peacefully destroy something?

"My religion say that worshiping idols is evil. destroy all images of gods, even our God." That is something that both Christians and Muslim have done.

That was done withing the boundary of the law and out of righteous indignation, not anger.

We are not taking about lawfulness but a character following his deific mandates. (Not to let art be destroyed or strike first)

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

Liberty's Edge

Albatoonoe wrote:

To those worried about the 15 minute adventuring day, the cantrips seem to be an explicit counter to that problem. They are readily powerful at-will spells. The casters will always have something to do that isn't expendable.

If, after all that, your players are wasting spells and want to rest constantly, tell then to tough if out.

The reduction in number of spell slots is a good idea in fixing the 'caster/martial' disparity. The problem wasn't power, but versatility. At later levels, they could use spells for all variety of situations, allowing them to displace nearly any other class in a given situation. With few spell slots, you have to make an actual choice in what you use, rather than being able to use everything.

We know that cantrips will scale with level, but we don't know to what effect. If I have access to 4th level spells will a damaging cantrip deal 2d3 damage, 1d3 plus level, 4d6 damage, or what?

Cutting down the spellcasting that spellcasters do does not help caster/martial disparity. Addressing spells like Tenser's Transformation and save or suck spells. (Transformation may not be the worst offender, but it's an example of casting a spell to do what another class does.)

No, we have every spell potentially competing for your highest level slot, fewer slots per level, domain slots are gone and now those spells are competing with everything else for fewer slots, no spontaneous heal or harm. This is not choices that matter, this is fewer iconic abilities and as a result, fewer choices that matter. If I play a cleric, I expect to be able to cast spells. I expect to heal. With cleric healing being reduced from Channel energy plus spontaneous conversion of up to 4 spells per level plus potentially domain spells down to only channel energy plus what a prepare ahead of time up to 3 per level, I will be doing less of both. Maybe I prepared too many healing spells for day and lost precious spell slots or maybe I prepared too few. Either way, I will be less of a cleric and of what is left, I will have less of a choice.

These are not choices that matter, these are false choices that are predetermined by role, specifically the healer role, and was something 3.5 and Pathfinder improved, but 2e is apparently rolling back.


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Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
brad2411 wrote:

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

"The destruction of a sand mandala is also highly ceremonial. Even the deity syllables are removed in a specific order[1] along with the rest of the geometry until at last the mandala has been dismantled. The sand is collected in a jar which is then wrapped in silk and transported to a river (or any place with moving water), where it is released back into nature. This symbolizes the ephemerality of life and the world."

Frankly, in such a case, I'd argue that the destruction of the work of art is part of its creation. Performance art is a thing, after all.


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Yeah you guys have muddied the water so heavily I don't even knwo what sort of a point you were trying to make with this art thing anymore.

Dark Archive

Joana wrote:
brad2411 wrote:

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

Frankly, in such a case, I'd argue that the destruction of the work of art is part of its creation. Performance art is a thing, after all.

Does not change the fact that Destruction is not peaceful.

Dark Archive

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A bit late to this party, but I'll bite anyway! Hmmm... a lot of confusing words, had to look up what "victuals" are, since English is not my native language. Also, some of these new domains seem to be conceptually slightly...weird? I get it, it's meant to serve the needs and portfolios of the Golarion pantheon, but I find Indulgence and Zeal to be odd choices for "primary" domains. At least as domain names, if not for what they mechanically represent; aren't all adventuring clerics more or less zealous?

It's probably already been pointed out more than a few times, but if subdomains have been weeded out of the game mechanics (in the sense that they've become "actual" domains), doesn't all clerics of the same deity actually have *less* choice to differentiate themselves from their fellow brethren? We used to get 5 domains per deity, plus 6 subdomains, and now it's just 4 domains and that's it?

Lastly, as others have already pointed out, I too feel that "spell points" or "spell pool" is a poor name; "power points", "divine points", "domain points" or "zeal points" would IMO better describe what this pool is all about.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Asgetrion wrote:
but I find Indulgence and Zeal to be odd choices for "primary" domains. At least as domain names, if not for what they mechanically represent; aren't all adventuring clerics more or less zealous?

Clerics may generally be zealous, but there are deities that really focus on that. Iomedae will probably have more zealous clergy members than, say, the more laid-back Caydenites. Indulgence makes sense to me. You could call it Hedonism instead if you wanted, but that's a little more negative.

Asgetrion wrote:
It's probably already been pointed out more than a few times, but if subdomains have been weeded out of the game mechanics (in the sense that they've become "actual" domains), doesn't all clerics of the same deity actually have *less* choice to differentiate themselves from their fellow brethren? We used to get 5 domains per deity, plus 6 subdomains, and now it's just 4 domains and that's it?

Shelyn gets 4 to start, but she'll probably get more. Subdomains were a later addition, after all.

I'm pretty chill with spell points, personally.


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Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

Pretty sure it showed up in the Redwall novels, too. Or at least its cousin, "vittles".

Paizo Employee Designer

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QuidEst wrote:
graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

Pretty sure it showed up in the Redwall novels, too. Or at least its cousin, "vittles".

I wouldn't be surprised if it was in Redwall. I read those books as a kid and they were at least 10% food porn. Lots of good food words like truffles and cordials in there.


QuidEst wrote:
"vittles"

Now vittles you see quite often, especially if you watch old westerns. Operation Vittles was also the codename for the Berlin Airlift following world war two.

EDIT: I've never read Redwall so I'll take your word for that.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

"Victuals" might show up somewhere in the Chronicles of Narnia... that seems like the sort of place I'd have learned it. Lots of bizarre reading choices from my childhood that could have done it, though...


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brad2411 wrote:
Joana wrote:
brad2411 wrote:

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

Frankly, in such a case, I'd argue that the destruction of the work of art is part of its creation. Performance art is a thing, after all.
Does not change the fact that Destruction is not peaceful.

I don't know why you keep saying this.

I've never violently started a campfire (destroying the wood), and just today I calmly fed old invoices into a shredder, neatly destroying them. No violence involved at all.

A meal can be destroyed just by adding the wrong spices. Silence can be destroyed just by speaking. Repeating an idiomatic phrase despite numerous refutations seems pointless.

Dark Archive

Voss wrote:
brad2411 wrote:
Joana wrote:
brad2411 wrote:

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

Frankly, in such a case, I'd argue that the destruction of the work of art is part of its creation. Performance art is a thing, after all.
Does not change the fact that Destruction is not peaceful.

I don't know why you keep saying this.

I've never violently started a campfire (destroying the wood), and just today I calmly fed old invoices into a shredder, neatly destroying them. No violence involved at all.

A meal can be destroyed just by adding the wrong spices. Silence can be destroyed just by speaking. Repeating an idiomatic phrase despite numerous refutations seems pointless.

I keep saying it because it is true. Destroying something is still a violent act even if you are calm. Destroying the wood is an act of violence against the wood. Same with shredding the papers. The wrong spices is causing disharmony in the meal thus not peaceful. The point is that using the oxymoron peaceful destruction did not mean a cleric could not strike at someone when they see someone doing something that they would and should consider violent.

Also thanks I got to learn a new word, idiomatic, not a word I see used a lot.

Edit: I know I am being very semantic with this argument


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Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Learning is a destructive process.

By learning, one changes the unknowing Self of an earlier time to a knowing Self in a later time. This destroys the unknowing self from the earlier time.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Learning is a destructive process.

By learning, one changes the unknowing Self of an earlier time to a knowing Self in a later time. This destroys the unknowing self from the earlier time.

Learning destroys ignorance... ;)


graystone wrote:
Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Learning is a destructive process.

By learning, one changes the unknowing Self of an earlier time to a knowing Self in a later time. This destroys the unknowing self from the earlier time.

Learning destroys ignorance... ;)

Curious and pessimistic.


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brad2411 wrote:
Joana wrote:
brad2411 wrote:

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

Frankly, in such a case, I'd argue that the destruction of the work of art is part of its creation. Performance art is a thing, after all.
Does not change the fact that Destruction is not peaceful.

No wonder Hendrix only pulled the smashing your guitar and lighting it on fire bit once, at the Monterey Pop festival, and he only did it then because he was following The Who, that's gotta be rough...


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graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

And then for some non-native English speakers it's not an uncommon word at all. We have "viktualierum" (viktualie + rum, a room for victuals) in Danish. Which is basically a pantry.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Arachnofiend wrote:
Diego Rossi wrote:
Benjamin Harlow wrote:
Artificial 20 wrote:

Imagine a cleric of Shelyn sees someone peacefully destroying art and can only stop them by striking first.

** spoiler omitted **

The hooligan destroying art has struck first thus I get to fulfill my righteous calling of destroying the ugly of this world.

Also can you peacefully destroy something?

"My religion say that worshiping idols is evil. destroy all images of gods, even our God." That is something that both Christians and Muslim have done.

That was done withing the boundary of the law and out of righteous indignation, not anger.
I know this might come as a surprise but Shelyn is not Yahweh.

And? The comment was about "Also can you peacefully destroy something?".

brad2411 wrote:


We are not taking about lawfulness but a character following his deific mandates. (Not to let art be destroyed or strike first)

Destruction is an act of violence thus it can not be peaceful

So destroying a 1000 years old church after an earthquake because it was too unsafe to repair it was a act of violence?

Or calling it demolishing change what was done?


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brad2411 wrote:


Edit: I know I am being very semantic with this argument

I think if you replaced semantic with ridiculous, you'd be more accurate.


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Combat Monster wrote:
brad2411 wrote:


Edit: I know I am being very semantic with this argument
I think if you replaced semantic with ridiculous, you'd be more accurate.

It's the faux pride/shame that cracks me up.


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The whole peaceful destruction dilemma was silly to begin with. A cleric wouldn’t attack the peasant, they would help the peasant create new art out of the destroyed piece. Shelyn leads with the rose, not the blade.

Scarab Sages

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I am waiting to hear about the only god that matters. The Living God, Razmir.


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Maybe at the wizard's preview blog?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So I do have a question about how the rules will support non-Golarion homebrew settings. Very few homebrew settings have pantheons as large and diverse as Golarion's, and some don't even have traditional D&D-style polytheistic pantheons. In PF1 this wasn't really a problem for Clerics. The non-theistic cleric rules were perfectly fair in their own right, and even going so far as to just let your player design their own custom deity (free pick of domains and subdomains, any martial weapon as the favored weapon) wasn't going to break anything. This meant GM's didn't have to worry about prepping for every possible mechanical option a cleric PC might want to avail themselves of.

However, in PF2 the bonus spells known are now attached directly to the deities rather than the domains, which complicates matters. Completely eliminating this bonus is very draconian, but at the same time allowing free pick of any spells would be highly inappropriate. That doesn't exactly leave easy solutions without clamping down on player choice; I do not want to have to enter into negotiations with my players every time one of them wants to play a cleric, nor do I want to be obliged to homebrew the class for whatever setting I'm running. What support will there be for us non-Golarion players in this respect?

Silver Crusade

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Dasrak wrote:

So I do have a question about how the rules will support non-Golarion homebrew settings. Very few homebrew settings have pantheons as large and diverse as Golarion's, and some don't even have traditional D&D-style polytheistic pantheons. In PF1 this wasn't really a problem for Clerics. The non-theistic cleric rules were perfectly fair in their own right, and even going so far as to just let your player design their own custom deity (free pick of domains and subdomains, any martial weapon as the favored weapon) wasn't going to break anything. This meant GM's didn't have to worry about prepping for every possible mechanical option a cleric PC might want to avail themselves of.

However, in PF2 the bonus spells known are now attached directly to the deities rather than the domains, which complicates matters. Completely eliminating this bonus is very draconian, but at the same time allowing free pick of any spells would be highly inappropriate. That doesn't exactly leave easy solutions without clamping down on player choice; I do not want to have to enter into negotiations with my players every time one of them wants to play a cleric, nor do I want to be obliged to homebrew the class for whatever setting I'm running. What support will there be for us non-Golarion players in this respect?

In PF1e not all domains were equal, and letting players cherry pick domains and favoured weapons could very well lead to broken characters.

As a GM creating a custom setting, a lot of the fun is deity and pantheon design.

Maybe your setting has only two deities based on the Sun and the Moon, but both those deities have multiple religions that represent different aspects of their deities so for each religion pick appropriate domains, and three spells that represents the deities tenets.

The fact is as a GM if you’re going with a custom setting, or adapting an existing campaign setting from another game you are obliged to do some design work.


DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

In PF1e not all domains were equal, and letting players cherry pick domains and favoured weapons could very well lead to broken characters.

The fact is as a GM if you’re going with a custom setting, or adapting an existing campaign setting from another game you are obliged to do some design work.

Yup. And P1E had deity-specific Summons lists (which I assume would also apply in P2E since they're moving in that direction here) which would require design choice to resolve in non-Golarion setting.

I honestly see P2E being less inbalancing than P1E+Mix'N'Match Domains+Favored Weapons, mostly because now it doesn't matter what 4 Domains you picked for Deity, you are only getting 1 Domain Power to start with and can only Feat into some more later, as opposed to getting auto-scaling access to both (Sub) Domains you choose from Level 1. "Deity" Spells being somewhat distinct from Domains (it's hard to believe they will be that distinct, both are intended to follow Deity themes) also seems less a problem in P2E because you only get one apparently smaller list, not drawing from both (Sub) Domains you choose. So IMHO the net sum of entirety of changes doesn't look disruptively more disparate than P1E, compared to P1E style access to 2 (Sub) Domains of choice from hypothetical 5 for given Deity (up to 2 of which were set by Alignment, remember).

Like you say, that's what you deal with with custom setting. I mean, even P1E was not completely "generic", it was "vanilla D&D fantasy generic" which brings in some assumptions and plays very different to other game world-systems. "Generic" conflicts with MANY custom game worlds. EDIT: But what other poster was describing didn't really sound like "custom setting" with specific alternative Deities, it sounded like players making s**~ up for combos they wanted. If GM designates deities and their powers there isn't any arbitrary choices by players. With one less standard Domain, there isn't really increase in necesssary choices per Deity, instead of that 5th Domain the GM chooses spells independently, picking from Golarion Deity Spell lists if they want conveniently packaged option.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
In PF1e not all domains were equal, and letting players cherry pick domains and favoured weapons could very well lead to broken characters.

If it feels too strong for your tastes, you can always go with the non-theistic cleric rules (which is basically the same as just taking the Separatist archetype). I'm not here to argue what's right for your table, only that there were simple options that made handling this easy.

DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
As a GM creating a custom setting, a lot of the fun is deity and pantheon design.

The size of the pantheon necessary to cover every domain is massive. I once attempted this, and just getting every domain and subdomain in CRB + APG required twenty-three deities, which I found a bit excessive. Given the number of subdomains published today, you'd need closer to 50 deities to cover them all. Let me be clear: this is an unreasonably large amount of homebrew. We're talking multiple pages just to list the statblock of the deities (alignment, favored weapon, domains, subdomains). This is a huge amount of work that you could have spent on other parts of your campaign.

Moreover, this is incredibly wasteful for a homebrew world. Such a huge amount of deities (or religious sub-faiths, in the case of your Sun/Moon example) will never see significant use in a campaign. The number of deities should be driven by the narrative needs of your campaign and world, not the need to provide players with access to all the mechanical options. It takes time and creative energy away from where it's needed, and adds relatively little as most of them will just bland entries that exist solely to fill mechanical niches for clerics.

DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:
The fact is as a GM if you’re going with a custom setting, or adapting an existing campaign setting from another game you are obliged to do some design work.

Such designs should add to your campaign world, not be obligatory because some game mechanics demand them.

Quandary wrote:
And P1E had deity-specific Summons lists (which I assume would also apply in P2E since they're moving in that direction here) which would require design choice to resolve in non-Golarion setting.

To be fair, most of these were more thematic than powerful options. This was less of an issue than the deity-locked feats, to be honest, which were their own bag of worms.

Quandary wrote:
"Deity" Spells being somewhat distinct from Domains (it's hard to believe they will be that distinct, both are intended to follow Deity themes) also seems less a problem in P2E because you only get one apparently smaller list, not drawing from both (Sub) Domains you choose.

The point is that domains give a well-defined list of options that don't require any GM input. The player picks the domains, and that specifies their domain spells. I don't need to decide what spell combos are and are not appropriate; that's what the published material is for. With PF2, the deity spells are essentially arbitrary, and that means I'm stuck handling every cleric PC on a case-by-case basis if I'm not adventuring in Golarion.

Quandary wrote:
it sounded like players making s&!+ up for combos they wanted

Basically yes; I don't want to proactively design a deity that I have no intention of ever using on the off-chance that one of my players wants to use something like the Self-Realization subdomain. Better to just let them build the cleric, tell me what he's about, and I'll fit it into the setting.

What I do not want is to have to negotiate with my players over the nitpicky details. I just want to let them build the characters they want within the rules. And that's the problem with an arbitrary list of spells, there's simply no line in the sand for me to draw over what is and isn't appropriate, so I'm stuck negotiating with them and making judgement calls every time they want to make a cleric.

Silver Crusade

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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Dasrak, you're not obliged to include every domain in the game in your setting. In fact the core 20 deities of the assumed Pathfinder setting don't cover all domains/subdomain options available in PF1E.

Make the deities important to your setting, pick 3 spells for each and 4 domains for each and you're done. However many you think is necessary or important.

Heck, if you're doing a "design-as-you-go", campaign building then your players can assume the domains belong to some deity but they just haven't encountered their followers yet. It's not like players need perfect knowledge of the setting.

Paizo Employee Designer

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DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

Dasrak, you're not obliged to include every domain in the game in your setting. In fact the core 20 deities of the assumed Pathfinder setting don't cover all domains/subdomain options available in PF1E.

Make the deities important to your setting, pick 3 spells for each and 4 domains for each and you're done. However many you think is necessary or important.

Heck, if you're doing a "design-as-you-go", campaign building then your players can assume the domains belong to some deity but they just haven't encountered their followers yet. It's not like players need perfect knowledge of the setting.

To use your sun and moon deity example, I actually have a homebrew setting where there is a moon goddess, a sun being, and then eight archangels that serve the moon goddess and cover certain domains (and thirteen that Fell). Most deific beings other than the moon goddess have a severely limited scope and cover just a single domain. In PF2, I would probably give one domain to each of those minor deific beings and choose some appropriate spells, weapon, edicts, anathema, etc. Fortunately, many of them match one of the domains pretty well. The moon goddess would get more.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I'm definitely more in favor of the current direction they're taking the class. I'd much rather have a detailed system full of flavor, with clerics of individual deities feeling like servants of that specific deity, than strip that away just in case someone doesn't want to use the provided material and also doesn't want to spend the effort to replace it.

As someone who's done some homebrew in her time, I know it can take a bit of effort. But I'd rather have a flavorful and interesting core class. Even as a homebrewer, this allows me to really bring the flavor of my campaign's pantheon across to the players, in a way that "domains + favored weapon" never could. It's one of the most rewarding parts, and I'm glad to have the opportunity.

As for "negotiations and judgment calls"... I dunno. To me, that was always exactly the point of having a Game Master. You're what separates tabletop roleplaying games from video games. Doubly so when homebrewing... this stuff comes with the job of creating your own world.

That's just my perspective, though. ^_^

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

Since we're talking about specific details of homebrew... I won't go into full detail here (too lazy, mostly), but I'm really excited to update stuff from my homebrew world for this new system. There's stuff here that works perfectly for the setting's needs (which include a chaotic evil deity with a chaotic good sect), and the more intricate system will let me reinforce the flavor of the individual gods (while also motivating me to develop some of them further).


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

That's a neat idea. I had all the core domains covered (and added a few non-core options) in my 3.5 campaign from college, but I never updated the pantheon to pathfinder (second campaign took place after a purge of all non-philosophy clerics, and most other spellcasters, so it never came up). Might be an interesting project.

Kalindlara wrote:
There's stuff here that works perfectly for the setting's needs (which include a chaotic evil deity with a chaotic good sect), and the more intricate system will let me reinforce the flavor of the individual gods (while also motivating me to develop some of them further).

Funny enough, my chaotic evil god was the sole god with the healing domain, flavored as the god of escaping consequences, and was worshipped by any alignment.

Look the writers of the Book of Vile Darkness dared us to do it, I couldn't just NOT make an evil god of healing.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

Pretty sure it showed up in the Redwall novels, too. Or at least its cousin, "vittles".

I wouldn't be surprised if it was in Redwall. I read those books as a kid and they were at least 10% food porn. Lots of good food words like truffles and cordials in there.

You know that all those come from French right ?

Victuailles, truffes, cordial (which comes from coeur = heart in French) :-D

Paizo Employee Designer

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The Raven Black wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

Pretty sure it showed up in the Redwall novels, too. Or at least its cousin, "vittles".

I wouldn't be surprised if it was in Redwall. I read those books as a kid and they were at least 10% food porn. Lots of good food words like truffles and cordials in there.

You know that all those come from French right ?

Victuailles, truffes, cordial (which comes from coeur = heart in French) :-D

C'est ca. And so is the series author's last name Jacques, though I remember finding out in elementary school that he pronounces the surname "Jakes" with a long a and being very confused. C'est dommage qu'il soit francophone mais il prononce son nom comme "Franglais." Pardonnez-moi pour mon pauvre francais. Cela fait quinze ans.


Mark Seifter wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:
Mark Seifter wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
graystone wrote:
Asgetrion wrote:
"victuals"

Oh, I think most english speaking people had to look that up too. The only place I ever recall seeing before was in the bible.

"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. And when it was evening, his disciples came to him, saying, This is a desert place, and the time is now past; send the multitude away, that they may go into the villages, and buy themselves VICTUALS." Matthew 14:14-15

Pretty sure it showed up in the Redwall novels, too. Or at least its cousin, "vittles".

I wouldn't be surprised if it was in Redwall. I read those books as a kid and they were at least 10% food porn. Lots of good food words like truffles and cordials in there.

You know that all those come from French right ?

Victuailles, truffes, cordial (which comes from coeur = heart in French) :-D

C'est ca. And so is the series author's last name Jacques, though I remember finding out in elementary school that he pronounces the surname "Jakes" with a long a and being very confused. C'est dommage qu'il soit francophone mais il prononce son nom comme "Franglais." Pardonnez-moi pour mon pauvre francais. Cela fait quinze ans.

I heard all of this in John Cleese's outrageous French accent.

Scarab Sages

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If you don't feel like elaborating dozens of deities for a homebrew setting, you could allow a Cleric player to flesh out their own deity. As a player, I'd leap at that opportunity. :)

Silver Crusade

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So, I have realized that my choice to make Lyric (a PF1 character) deaf would have helped her play perfectly with the Shelynite anathema system. Her -4 initiative modifier was* LEGENDARY in local Minnesota play as I frequently rolled negative numbers for my initiative. As a result, I told people, “I never start fights. I finish them.”

So the whole thing about striking first... What’s this ‘striking first’ that you all speak of? By the time my turn rolled around, the bad guys had already shown their true colors and it was time to righteously smite their asses.

And yes, Lyric does sometimes use the phrase: ‘smite your ass.’

Hmm wrote:

My character, Lyric the Singing Paladin, had a situation akin to this recently. We were in a temple with an evil cult, tasked to remove it, when something evil kept pinging on my "paladar" (detect evil checks).

I shouted, "I know you're there. Show yourself or face the consequences."

[evil thing] "Um, you're not going to smite me, are you?"

Me: "That depends. I don't smite every evil thing I meet. What are you doing here?"

It was a quasit that needed help returning to its plane, and wanted to help us because we were going after its enemies, the aforementioned evil cult. It offered to serve as our guide so that we could clear its way to the portal home.

I thought this out.

"You want back to your plane, and I don't want you wreaking havoc here. So here's the deal. You commit evil acts, I smite your ass. You hurt an innocent, I smite your ass. You betray us, I smite your ass." Then I paused. "If you guide us as promised, and only fight against the cult, I'll send you home."

I temporarily allied with an evil creature against a greater evil. Because Shelyn is a redemptive god, I asked if it wanted to change course and start following a path of good. It in turn said, "You're smarter than the other paladins I've met. Have you considered the benefits of falling? You could make a really dashing anti-paladin!"

In the end, we both honored our agreements and I sent the quasit home. I did not fall.

There are circumstances where a paladin can be thoughtful about how it treats evil, parleys with it or even strikes a temporary alliance. Paladins have a variety of codes, and part of the joy of being a paladin lies in striking a balance, and finding a path where one can be true to one's vows in challenging circumstances.

_____

*Since she’s gotten into higher level play, her curse has ‘improved’ her initiative modifier to -2. Oddly, I miss the old initiative modifier these days, because her terrible initiative was such an iconic part of her build. With her life oracle levels, she was still able to keep the party alive until she patiently came into to the fray.

Dark Archive

Power Points are probably off the table here as they're already used by 3pp Psionics. Domain Spells instead of Domain Powers could work though, seeing as the old domain spells are now granted by deity instead of domains.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

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Removed some posts and replies to those posts.

Do not use alternative characters to bypass the profanity filter. Avoid the use of these words entirely.

Expressing your skepticism for choices made for PF2 by insulting or otherwise engaging in aggressive language toward Paizo employees or the development team is unacceptable. Paizo employees are members of our community and addressing them personally to express distaste with a decision is considered a personal attack on a member of our community. Address the specific mechanics with which you do not like, do not generalize this feeling to the people working to create these ideas.

Make sure to keep your discussions about the mechanics of the game and game related topics. Off topic derails, especially those which already contain questionable content will be removed from the thread in order to respect the core purpose of the discussion and preserve the quality of the ideas which are accurately discussing the original topic of the thread. Do not respond to content which you feel is detracting from the core conversation.


I'm not sure how I feel about Cleric alignments no longer being "within one step" of their Deity's alignment. I just hope I'll still be able to play my Chaotic Neutral Cleric of Lamashtu in PF2.

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