Worshipping An Evil God


In one game I'm in, a CN cleric has a CE god. In another, a N inquisitor has a NE god. Offhand, I can't remember either ever acting evil themselves, but I can't help but think maybe they should once in a while.

If a N barbarian worshiped Charon b/c he venerates death or something, that's fine by me. He doesn't need to serve or pray to the god. But for true divine worshipers granted spells & whatnot, it seems dishonest to your religion to not act evil once in a while despite having a neutral alignment. If you're a cleric of Charon I do think the god would demand you rob a grave once in a while or something. The advice I'd like is, does anyone agree that clerics/inquisitors of an evil god need to act evil sometimes?

btw I definitely don't want them to do evil things. Mainly cause I feel it'd screw the party over, or simply tick all us off. But as I stated, in my head I can't justify them having their deity's blessings if they never do evil. The DMs haven't considered it so far, it seems. Oh, also. Please take it easy on the - just cause they're such & such doesn't mean they're stupid. Or maybe they're biding their time. - kinda things. Those are either obvious or lazy... but that's just me.

So long as they don't contradict their gods they're okay really, but ideally they would have something in common at least. As GM you can ask for them to do more if you wanted. Can I ask what gods in particular?

One step away is within the rules, but I have always taken the view that if a divine spellcaster is being true to their deity's tenets their alignment will be pulled that way.

To put it another way, it's not just that clerics (etc) must be a certain alignment to worship a particular deity, the act of worshipping that deity reinforces their alignment. The rites of an evil church, by their very nature, should include an evil act (be it grave robbery or human sacrifice, as appropriate). Even if the priest does not *start* at their deity's alignment, most will drift towards it over the course of their careers.

Of course, that applies more to NPCs than PCs. And I can see the argument that a priest of a CE deity could emphasise the chaotic aspect over the evil (or vice versa), but generally if a character with an evil patron deity is going to balk at evil acts they need to find a more suitable deity - or their deity will find more suitable followers.

MrSin, I agree that by core that the players can get away with it with no special effort, if you wanna play that way. One of those things I disagree with personally, but accept as rules. And frankly I don't think I'll change anything but I wanted public opinion, so thank you. I'm not a hundred percent on what god the inquisitor has... Norgorber? I think. I do know it's a NE. Tho I probably shouldn't've said that god in particular cause now the "god of secrets" arguments will pop up all over defending the guy who never acts evil. The other character is a cleric who worships the Greek god Ares the god of war, which is for a homebrew. The DM stated the god is CE in his campaign.

Rod, I think your guidelines & conclusions are pretty reasonable, especially the initiation. It'd make for an interesting backstory. Neither balks at evil acts, but haven't done anything evil on their own. Or with the group. That said, I'd agree that the inquisitor would be better of with a different deity. In the meantime I fear he's just waiting for a big opening to get a zillion gold & get half the party killed. Then justify it by saying his god would approve or something. Paranoid me. Perhaps.

So... long as your fighting and doing whatever Norgorber wants your cool, who cares about alignment? Unless Aries or Norgorber in your world really like evil deeds being done.

The recent faiths and philosphies book covers this. Basically mortals are not able to fully grasp all of the gods message so the gods allow for them getting it wrong. The faiths of books also covered these Broader scope of beliefs.

Basically I really saw how neutral peoppe would find aspects of asmodeus urgathoa and norgerber appealing. Even lamashtu as a ferrility goddess has her appeal. After all not every culture has the samw views on beauty.

I did get the impression for the demon devil or daemon lords any neutral followers were there to just suck you in.

Don't forget player agency!

As in the player gets to play whatever they want, so don't force them to change if they haven't been going that way.

So yeah, can be one step away, can be moreso if some classes (a NG fighter can worship Zyphus).

I don't think you need necessarily be evil just because your god is. A deity, like a mortal, is more than just their alignment. But as someone already mentioned, there does need to be a kinship there...a unity of spirit, of purpose, even if methodology doesn't necessarily always coincide.

I once played a LE cleric of a CE deity, which is technically non-RAW, since it's 2 steps away on the Law-Chaos axis. The deity was the Devourer Wyrm, a being of total destruction.

My cleric absolutely wanted to cause death and destruction. He was a member of a small, heretical cult of the Devourer Wyrm that made their way in the world as mercenaries. They were cruel and merciless, but absolutely loyal to those who'd hired them (thus lawful), for as long as they'd been hired. As such, they were sure to find work in the middle of any conflict. Often on both sides.

My cleric used a wicked serrated greataxe in battle, and each time he felled a foe he would dedicate its soul to the Wyrm and suck out its remaining life force to empower him, giving him extra strength and temporary hp.

No, his violence and murder weren't as random as the more canonical followers of the Devourer Wyrm...but I'm willing to bet the Wyrm was pleased with him. :)

Ah. Well thanks all, it seems so far I'm outvoted by far. Mojorat has the most reasoned out explanations imo, though I'd argue that at about level 10 any character would know exactly what her god expects. The conclusion is I gotta suck it up & keep an eye on 'em lol.

MrSin, I'd think that Norgorber would want an inquisitor of his faith to do things other than simply survive. But again, by core & several other acceptable reasons, the inquisitor can get away with it.

Last, Immortal... that kind of reasoning I stongly dislike. If the party is more or less neutral, and one player makes a selfish decision from the start that may hurt all of his comrades, then no. I don't believe in player agency. I like to think it's an unwritten rule that yes, you can do or be anything you like, so long as you get along with the party. I don't want to be forced to play a wisdom-based class with max ranks in perception just cause there's a rogue who loves SoHing extra loot all the time, as an example. Some players love taking these bonuses, however... but I'm going off on a tangent, sorry.

As neither the cleric nor inquisitor in either game have totally screwed over either party by this point, guess I'm complaining mostly out of fear. Paranoid that at any given time the group can be betrayed or worse. That said the cleric did challenge a demon 4 CR higher than the party, in the name of his god Ares... but we survived, due to DM mercy imo. But just an example of something either might selfishly do & get the party hurt in some form.

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