[Insert your Deity here] is dead. How do you react?


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion

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Liberty's Edge

Scarablob wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:

Sorry, but I can't be on board with what you say.

The definition of holy is made in a single sentence, so it's short. Stating that holy is limited to altruism and helping others but can then be racist, sexist, murderous, manipulative, abusive, etc... seems very much a flawed reading. It is the good ol' Good as we know it. It's not a new version that only cares about helping others but can carry very problematic political or personal views in the name of "holy".

The problem with good/evil alignment was that "good" and "evil" was in itself an absolute moral statement. A "good" character or faith imply that this character is ultimately good beyond nuance, and thus anything they did was tacitally endorsed by the writer as good. Even in the cases where a writer wanted to have nuance and have bad side to good characters, the fact that the character itself was classified by the rules of reality itself as "fundamentaly good" clashed with this idea. This is what sparked a thousand debate on "wether Miko should have fallen earlier" and "wether so and so deity/character is actually good".

Holy/unholy meanwhile, don't imply such an absolute morality, but rather imply sides in a cosmic conflict. One tied to selfishness and one to altruism, as their description said, but it's not the absolute moral statement that naming the sides "good" and "evil" was before. The presence of less savory people and idea in the "holy" side is much more understandable. The common trope of the "end justify the mean" angel that we can see in Ragathiel for exemple was pretty hard to justify as good, but it's very understandable as "holy".

This is why IMO the lawfull/chaotic axis never sparked even a tenth of the debates that the good/evil one did. Because these aren't moral statment, and such it's far more understandable why a chaotic something have a somewhat orderly side, and why a lawfull something sometime have a twisted sense of order and protocol, when a good character exhibiting even a bit of evil...

I think Paizo went with Holy/Unholy for these people who liked the alignments.

Previously, you were somewhere on the Good/Evil axis (and Law/Chaos axis too) whoever you were and even if you did not care one bit about this classification, which was IMO what sparked most alignment debates.

Now, it is something you opt-in on a given PC level.

Liberty's Edge

If Torag died, Bran Noldo would very likely take oaths to follow another dwarven deity that would most resonate with his values.

If Ragathiel died, Cymrelle de la Loi would likely go berserk on any wrongdoers she could get in her sights until she is put down.

My other PFS characters are not that religious anyway. (Yea for Godless Healing).

As far as my PF1 characters are concerned, Berod Oyeghirn would work on finding Milani's reincarnation if she died, because hope springs eternal, as he very well knows.

My Halfling Sorceress would refuse to believe Shelyn is dead since she can still enjoy the wondrous colors of magical auras thanks to Detect Magic.

Had Pharasma died, Dame Adrielle would likely have tried to convince as many friends and Pharasmins as she could to commit ritual suicide together so as to go reinforce the forces protecting the River of Souls asap. The Black Blood in her veins would likely have changed them all into undead though, which could have created great moments of fun when they arrived to fight off Daemons side by side with Psychopomps.

Sir Felix would mourn for Erastil's passing and would likely focus on helping his Erastilian friends and charges deal with their own grief and keep the communities going.

And my Gorumite not-Conan Barbarian/Cleric would keep on fighting until he, or another worthy one, conquers the throne left empty with Gorum's death. And then he would keep on fighting too, inspiring others by example to never surrender.


Sy the Wizard would take Gozreh's death as a new academic challenge to be overcome. He would engage in ever more complicated and dangerous Wish rituals to bring them back, completely oblivious to the damage his failed rituals would unleash on Golarion. Eventually a band of 4 adventurers would need to go beat some sense into him.

Finnegan the Cleric would react one of 2 ways to Sarenrae's death. If she dies in some heroic self-sacrifice, then that would inspire him like never before. But if she died from being betrayed by someone she had forgiven, Finnegan would snap and slowly shift from a naively optimistic redeemer to a ruthless zealot of vengeance.

Mogrem the Bard/Barbarian would take Dranngvit's death as a something he should have seen coming in hindsight. After all, it was fitting that the Debt Minder should end up settling a debt with her own life. After a customary period of mourning, he would move on and try to reconcile with Torag, his former deity.


While my first thought was Erastil, since he's boring, I think (with hedged bets spread wide) that Torag is the most likely. Yes, there was the Dwarf AP action which highlighted him...which is exactly what you do before offing a character! (see most action/horror movies)

Add that James hates Dwarfs, yet they got an AP before the other races/Ancestries. Curious.

Killing Torag would be a great opportunity to revamp the Dwarf image as bigoted, stubborn oafs if a sociable deity became their figurehead. Torag had been problematic, yet his inception kinda arose from traditional fantasy Dwarf tropes. Paizo tempered/revised him, yet I could imagine Paizo cleaning house on the whole Ancestry. (Unless of course the AP already succeeded! Haven't read through.)

---
Separately, I wonder if the whole shakeup among the deities might see new ones, like from the Starstone adventures. As for Arazni, I'm not sure she's found her footing enough to promote, and it seems not long enough ago when James said it'd be awhile before they did more with her, and while it wouldn't be offscreen, they had no plans yet anyway.

Liberty's Edge

It has been confirmed that Arazni will be taking the vacant seat in the top 20.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
It's just kind of weird to me how Nethys's clerics are not wizards. It's sort of similar to how if nature is your thing, it probably makes more sense for you to be a Druid or a follower of the green faith than Gozreh worshipper.

I personally split it into mystery and mastery.

For a cleric of Nethys it isn't important, much less enough, to merely master the use of magic. Understanding the mystery of it matters.

Through practice and effort and research, anyone can master casting spells, applying arcane knowledge, or crafting magical items. But those same masters might never understand how or why they can manipulate these forces at all, or what their source is. They know how to cut the proverbial wood and form it into beautiful shapes, and even describe how the wood grows, but they can't tell you why the wood exists, what its purpose of existence is.

Faith in Nethys—like faith in many deities—is a focus on applying faith in that deity while pursuing answers to those questions. And faith specifically in Nethys is believing that a mortal can truly comprehend the answers, because one did, and the result of it was power over reality beyond the scope of every other spellcaster.

Someone who understands the metaphysical nature of the existence of a tree probably knows enough to be a passable woodworker but not a master like someone who focused on its application alone. Same with a cleric of Nethys. But they'll understand other things about magic that a wizard never can.


QuidEst wrote:

...Nethys is a god of magic but not the only one, and he's very, very new as a god on the timescale.

...

As a side-note, my favorite deity of magic is Yuelral. I'm hoping we'll get more info on her and the other elven deities as the remaster progresses.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

One of the main issues with Nethys is that if your character is super into magic, and you want to learn more about magic, so you can do more things with magic, and that magic is exciting and you love learning... your character is a Wizard who might worship Nethys, not anyone who actually receives divine power from Nethys.

It's just kind of weird to me how Nethys's clerics are not wizards. It's sort of similar to how if nature is your thing, it probably makes more sense for you to be a Druid or a follower of the green faith than Gozreh worshipper.

This is why I homebrew clerics of Nethys getting the arcane list and clerics of Gozreh getting the primal list.

Because "cleric of the god of rangers/paladins/wizards/druids" probably should resemble that class more than they should resemble the vanilla Sarenrae cleric.

But again this is why I think "the generic god of monks" or "the generic god of magic" who exists solely so that there is a "god of magic" is less likely to bite it than the god of BDSM. Because the god of monks by definition doesn't have a lot of drama going on.


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Gisher wrote:
QuidEst wrote:

...Nethys is a god of magic but not the only one, and he's very, very new as a god on the timescale.

...
As a side-note, my favorite deity of magic is Yuelral. I'm hoping we'll get more info on her and the other elven deities as the remaster progresses.

Yup.

She's so neat! And so special!


Castilliano wrote:
Separately, I wonder if the whole shakeup among the deities might see new ones, like from the Starstone adventures.

There's Dyrani of the Harvest that I'd like to see becoming an official new deity.


If Naderi died I'd be sad...but at the same time, I think depending on the circumstances it could be an appropriately tragic end to her story. Her and Shelyn make up only for her to die tragically...very apt.

Liberty's Edge

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I could see Gorum dying, or Iomedae, without it causing such an uproar / feeling of loss as long as their exit is a good one.

Silver Crusade

The Raven Black wrote:

I could see Gorum dying, or Iomedae, without it causing such an uproar / feeling of loss as long as their exit is a good one.

For some players, sure.

But don't forget that many players won't even get the story (or they'll get some very short version of it) since they won't buy the book (or read the blog if Paizo decides to publish that portion of the book). They'll just show up at the table one day and find that their favourite God is no more.

Not to mention that it is all but impossible to come up with an exit that EVERYBODY will think is good. Your "wow, that is a wonderful exit" is going to be somebody elses "Wow, was that lame/cliched/out of character/whatever". And vice versa.

And there are going to be players who are just very attached to a particular God (at least for a particular character). I've had divinely oriented characters who absolutely would NOT get over the death of their diety, no matter how well told the story. Just like I've had characters who wouldn't get over the death of their spouse, or children, no matter how good the story was. That kind of story is only good IF it is the story the reader wants to read.


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At the risk of elevating the Holy/Unholy conversation, I'm almost as much a non-fan of the Holy/Unholy concept as I was of Alignment. Just seeing the inability of folks to see the nuance apparent in Holy Racists shows me that any kind of prescriptive moral appellation just won't work. I understand the apparent desire for a mechanic to express the celestial war and provide bonuses/penalties for combatants, but as a...flavor or theme it's positively...medieval. Which I guess really underscores the tension of a role-playing game that has roll-playing for combat.

Apart from that, I still can't quite understand the mechanics of Holy/Unholy/Sanctified. Will have to go back and read the Cleric in the Remaster again...


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Castilliano wrote:

While my first thought was Erastil, since he's boring, I think (with hedged bets spread wide) that Torag is the most likely. Yes, there was the Dwarf AP action which highlighted him...which is exactly what you do before offing a character! (see most action/horror movies)

Add that James hates Dwarfs, yet they got an AP before the other races/Ancestries. Curious.

Killing Torag would be a great opportunity to revamp the Dwarf image as bigoted, stubborn oafs if a sociable deity became their figurehead. Torag had been problematic, yet his inception kinda arose from traditional fantasy Dwarf tropes. Paizo tempered/revised him, yet I could imagine Paizo cleaning house on the whole Ancestry. (Unless of course the AP already succeeded! Haven't read through.)...

Anything that can undo decades of ridwarfulous typecasting would be welcome. I know Golarion has the...taralu and mbe'ke, but the "core" dwarves suffer some serious stereotyping that gets less and less fun as times passes...I'm clearly a non-fan of Scottish-accented dour beer drinking beardy clan honor-bound orc-hating Dwarves. Move on folks. If you have to off Torag I'll pass you the requisite spear.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

To kind of give the holy unholy situation a thought.

A paladin is sanctified holy and their attacks are holy right?

A demon is a creature that would normally be sanctified as unholy and the paladin's strike will have the holy effect on them right?

What about a demon that loses its demonic nature like with a certain desna worshiping succubus from wrath of the righteous, would she still be unholy?
Maybe so because her nature is still there she just can now feel remorse and choose to fight against it?

I was thinking if the unholy bit is innate to a demon even one changed like her then it has little to do with morality at all and more to do with what things are.


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I'm working under the same impression. A demon working toward redemption, or an angel slipping toward evil would keep their unholy/holy trait up until the very moment where the "flip" is complete and the demon became an azata and the angel a devil (or whatever kind of fiend fit the now evil angel better), at which point they instantly go from their original trait from the opposite one.

My interpretation is that the only way for an outsider to shed such trait completely would be to turn into a neutral outsider or become mortal.


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OceanshieldwolPF 2.5 wrote:

At the risk of elevating the Holy/Unholy conversation, I'm almost as much a non-fan of the Holy/Unholy concept as I was of Alignment. Just seeing the inability of folks to see the nuance apparent in Holy Racists shows me that any kind of prescriptive moral appellation just won't work. I understand the apparent desire for a mechanic to express the celestial war and provide bonuses/penalties for combatants, but as a...flavor or theme it's positively...medieval. Which I guess really underscores the tension of a role-playing game that has roll-playing for combat.

Apart from that, I still can't quite understand the mechanics of Holy/Unholy/Sanctified. Will have to go back and read the Cleric in the Remaster again...

I don't think the point of removing alignment for holy/unholy was so unholy things could be good and evil thing could be holy. The moral ambiguity seems like it's for everyone else not directly signed up for the cosmic struggle. More to the point, I don't think "racists can be holy too" is really anuance that the game really needs much of. Except for the fact that characters don't have alignment written into their mechanics anymore, holy and unholy very much feel like the kind of element that would normally have been given Prerequisite: must be good. We don't really label all characters good or evil anymore, but the fantasy of holy characters being paragon of virtue doesn't really seem like it's changed to me? In fact, it seems more like it was intentionally kept the same, while freeing g every other character who didn't want to concern themselves with virtue or sin from needing a place on the grid.

--

As for how it works, my understanding may be incomplete, but you can only become holy or unholy with your deity's permission (so far, given its cleric exclusive as yet) and if you are sanctified, any spell that's listed as "sanctified" automatically becomes holy or unholy when you use it. Any spell that's already listed as holy or unholy doesn't change, and I'm pretty sure you're just not allowed to use the opposite trait. On its own holy or unholy doesn't change anything, but some creatures will be weak to one or other, while some spells will deal bonus damage to creatures with a trait regardless their personal weaknesses. Is there anything I'm missing?

Liberty's Edge

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Scarablob wrote:

I'm working under the same impression. A demon working toward redemption, or an angel slipping toward evil would keep their unholy/holy trait up until the very moment where the "flip" is complete and the demon became an azata and the angel a devil (or whatever kind of fiend fit the now evil angel better), at which point they instantly go from their original trait from the opposite one.

My interpretation is that the only way for an outsider to shed such trait completely would be to turn into a neutral outsider or become mortal.

That kind of an individual is such an exception that it is really writer's / GM's fiat.

Liberty's Edge

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FWIW I think we can have Holy racists through ignorance. But when you realize you were actually bigoted, you have to choose between keeping on being Holy (and very likely making amends) or keeping on being racist.

But then I would have considered Good racists the exact same way too.


The Raven Black wrote:

FWIW I think we can have Holy racists through ignorance. But when you realize you were actually bigoted, you have to choose between keeping on being Holy (and very likely making amends) or keeping on being racist.

But then I would have considered Good racists the exact same way too.

Yup I agree there.

Believe me when I say that I've seen what "good and evil are just hats we use for theming" looks like. And it's extremely gross. It's basically the 3.0 Book of Exalted Deeds version of good.

It's fairly decent up to a point and then it goes off the 1984 deep end with mind control.


The Raven Black wrote:

I could see Gorum dying, or Iomedae, without it causing such an uproar / feeling of loss as long as their exit is a good one.

Gorum is my current bet, while I think Iomedae is my current hope.


The Raven Black wrote:
That kind of an individual is such an exception that it is really writer's / GM's fiat.

There's a whole subtype of devil solely made out of fallen angel. My interpretation is that outsider changing "types" are rare, but "rare" is actually quite numerous in the near infinity of the outer spheres. And that the only reason we don't already have some angel/azata/whatever good outsider subset solely made of redeemed bad outsider is because the PC are unlikely to face good outsiders in the first place, so their ranks are quite a bit less fleshed out than the ones of the evil outsiders.

Dark Archive

My favorite Realms deity was Lleira, who died during the Time of Troubles because 3rd edition was phasing out Illusionists as their own class, and making them a sub-class of Wizard 'so they don't need their own god.'

(Same thing with assassins and Bhaal, I imagine.)

So I went through this already.

I'd be most intrigued by a Shelyn/Zon-Kuthon fusion.

But, statistically, the fact that there are two gods of every alignment but Neutral and Lawful Good triggers my OCD, and makes me want to prune one of the LG gods. (Since Neutral gods are more generally useful.)

And of them, Torag has always triggered my dislike of race-specific gods, and a dwarven people who followed a 'dwarfier' pantheon of Abadar (law, commerce, cities, community), Gorum (war, armor, weapons), Shelyn (art, storytelling, the quest for sky) and Iomedae (justice, honor) would intrigue me, with Gorum and Iomedae having a sort of Ares vs. Athena tussle over war, with her taking the Athena role of just war and strategy, and him being the more Ares-like god of bloody enthusiastic battle.

I'd totally bump Torag off, but there's a whole dwarven pantheon built around him and it doesn't really work for him to just die. I'd rather he never existed in the first place. :)

As for gods I like?

Desna's my favorite, but I don't have a Cleric of her, so it doesn't feel as personal to me.

Nethys is another favorite, and I do have a Cleric of him, but he'd shrug, as he respects Nethys' power and importance to the founding of Osirion, but also knows his gods tends to play with fire, and has already been burned badly. It's not a question of 'if Nethys dies' but when, and how much of the world he takes with him...

Sivanah, too much a repeat of Lleira being ganked off. I'd be both amused and annoyed and a bit bored by that. :)

Liberty's Edge

Iomedae as Athena vs Gorum as Ares as always been pretty obvious to me.

But it's OK. I really loved Marvel's take on Ares before he died and it helped me get an awesome feel for Gorum beyond him being not-Crom.


why would anyone kill Hanspur??? He's just a tiny rat dude????

If anything, they should off Charon (who is lame and not IP protected) and ascend Hanspur to ferrying souls.

I also kind of like Zyphus but I wouldn't mind him getting merc'd in lieu of a deeper, more interesting, souls-ferrying deity.

I also have a soft spot for Feronia because my favorite Cleric worshipped her, but even in Rage of the Elements, she didn't get much prime time.

Horizon Hunters

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Secret Wizard wrote:

I also kind of like Zyphus but I wouldn't mind him getting merc'd in lieu of a deeper, more interesting, souls-ferrying deity.

Zyphus would be interesting. My character is built on hunting down cultists of Zyphus - they'd be thrilled at the development, but "mission accomplished" ends the character's concept. Still, Zyphus is a niche tool that allows for places filled with traps that aren't otherwise justified in having them, so I don't see him leaving.


I am out of the loop is their something happing canon wise on April 16?


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The Thing From Another World wrote:
I am out of the loop is their something happing canon wise on April 16?

I believe that's when we find out which of the core 20 is going to die in the upcoming plot arc. (We already know that Arazni's going to be the replacement.)


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Aren't we supposed to know the next "safe" deity... a few hours ago?

Pray to Lam... for Lamashtu!

Dark Archive

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The Thing From Another World wrote:
I am out of the loop is their something happing canon wise on April 16?

As I understand it, they're planning a livestream on the 16th to give out a lot more information on the "War of Immortals" storyline, involving both the WoI book itself and an accompanying novel due out later this year.

Supposedly we should be getting the final confirmation of which of the core 20 will die, at a minimum.


Thanks went back and read the blog post

Honestly none I don’t like these type of events as imo it seems too arbitrary which Deity lives or dies.

Even then I want a good plausible in game reason. Not “ well we wanted to kill of some gods in our next AP or sourcebook and thought it would be cool”.

When the killed off a bunch of gods when FR 4E game out it soured me on any similar events from any rpg company. Elistraee was killed off so that we could make Loth a greater goddess no thanks.

Don’t touch Torag he is one of my favourite gods.


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You need big events for a setting to feel lively. And killing a god says that Paizo is ready to drastically alter the world of Golarion for story purposes. That's great, in my opinion. Especially because it's not at all drastic, it's just a small thing, even if I agree a small thing that can piss some players off.

Dark Archive

SuperBidi wrote:

Aren't we supposed to know the next "safe" deity... a few hours ago?

Pray to Lam... for Lamashtu!

I wouldn't expect the second Godsrain blog post to drop before this afternoon at the earliest. It's only just now hitting 8AM on the west coast of the US.


As long as we get a good reason I may not like it I can accept it. I may have liked the amount of gods that were killed off in FR 4E yet even I knew it was needed imo. Way too many goods and not enough worshippers, 6-7!pantheons if not more.

Killing gods off for the sake of it not interested and definitely won’t be canon in my campaigns. Leave Torag alone or at least make him go out in an blaze of glory taking 2-3 evil deities,


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The Thing From Another World wrote:

As long as we get a good reason I may not like it I can accept it. I may have liked the amount of gods that were killed off in FR 4E yet even I knew it was needed imo. Way too many goods and not enough worshippers, 6-7!pantheons if not more.

Killing gods off for the sake of it not interested and definitely won’t be canon in my campaigns. Leave Torag alone or at least make him go out in an blaze of glory taking 2-3 evil deities,

In the case of 4E, they killed gods in between editions with a rather lame explanation. It was something they felt was needed but definitely not good storytelling.

I expect Paizo to do a better job at killing a god.

Liberty's Edge

First rule of deicide : do not miss.


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The Thing From Another World wrote:

As long as we get a good reason I may not like it I can accept it. I may have liked the amount of gods that were killed off in FR 4E yet even I knew it was needed imo. Way too many goods and not enough worshippers, 6-7!pantheons if not more.

Killing gods off for the sake of it not interested and definitely won’t be canon in my campaigns. Leave Torag alone or at least make him go out in an blaze of glory taking 2-3 evil deities,

I believe Paizo has mentioned that some additional deities outside the core 20 will also be kicking the bucket, so a blaze of glory is not out of the question for whoever dies.


Snare Rhodiani wrote:
Secret Wizard wrote:

I also kind of like Zyphus but I wouldn't mind him getting merc'd in lieu of a deeper, more interesting, souls-ferrying deity.

Zyphus would be interesting. My character is built on hunting down cultists of Zyphus - they'd be thrilled at the development, but "mission accomplished" ends the character's concept. Still, Zyphus is a niche tool that allows for places filled with traps that aren't otherwise justified in having them, so I don't see him leaving.

That's the issue, it kinda feels one-note. Aren't deities more fun when they have a couple of twists to them?

Comparing Zyphus to Naderi...


From what I saw of him, Zyphus feel more like a demon lord/"demideity" that an actual deity usability-wise. He don't have much nuance, is area of focus is a bit narrow, his followers seems to be only a few sparce cultist...

Compared to other evil deities, he feel lacking. I can imagine a whole campaign with followers of any one evil god as the main villains, but I can't do the same for Zyphus, I don't see them "lasting" as long, they would get boring after a single module worth of adventuring. As thing are now at least, he could always get expanded and fleshed out further latter down the line.


OceanshieldwolPF 2.5 wrote:

So, it's April 16th. The day Paizo killed your favorite PC's god. Or your favorite god.

How will you proceed, and what does the death of this deity mean for your character (true believer or cleric etc) and your Golarion campaign

Since paizo/fantasy gods are really just powerful individuals, I don't really think it will effect much, or that I would care much. Most fantasy games have a very simplistic and ahistorical view of religion and belief.


SuperBidi wrote:
You need big events for a setting to feel lively. And killing a god says that Paizo is ready to drastically alter the world of Golarion for story purposes. That's great, in my opinion. Especially because it's not at all drastic, it's just a small thing, even if I agree a small thing that can piss some players off.

I do agree with this interpretation.

Again, my main caveat would be that it's unfortunate that because of publishing/OGL timelines (totally beyond Paizo's control, I know) they're going to be murdering a god from player core 1. And that events like these have a nasty tendency to build up and compound until world history reads like a nonstop barrage of dying gods, extinction-level events, world wars, and violent coups. Or the fantasy equivalent of "so what if world war 2 went on for 50 years rather than 6-8, and ended with multiple nuclear strikes?"

But the alternative is doing a big time skip and that's not really an option when you're publishing a shared setting and would prefer players don't have to deal with "and now your human fighter from last campaign is dead of old age".

Liberty's Edge

Calliope5431 wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
You need big events for a setting to feel lively. And killing a god says that Paizo is ready to drastically alter the world of Golarion for story purposes. That's great, in my opinion. Especially because it's not at all drastic, it's just a small thing, even if I agree a small thing that can piss some players off.

I do agree with this interpretation.

Again, my main caveat would be that it's unfortunate that because of publishing/OGL timelines (totally beyond Paizo's control, I know) they're going to be murdering a god from player core 1. And that events like these have a nasty tendency to build up and compound until world history reads like a nonstop barrage of dying gods, extinction-level events, world wars, and violent coups. Or the fantasy equivalent of "so what if world war 2 went on for 50 years rather than 6-8, and ended with multiple nuclear strikes?"

But the alternative is doing a big time skip and that's not really an option when you're publishing a shared setting and would prefer players don't have to deal with "and now your human fighter from last campaign is dead of old age".

Why is the alternative a big time skip ? I don't get it.

Way I see it, the death of a core 20 deity is to avoid the setting getting stale and has nothing to do with edition changes.


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The Raven Black wrote:

Why is the alternative a big time skip ? I don't get it.

Way I see it, the death of a core 20 deity is to avoid the setting getting stale and has nothing to do with edition changes.

I think the problem is that PC1 (and Gamemastery Core) is supposed to be an introduction to the setting, and to still be relevant years after their release for new player to pick up, presenting the "baseline setting" and options. And with it being released so close to the "big world shakeup", it mean that the introduction to the world will be outdated and present one no longer existant deity option less than a year after it's release. Had Paizo not been forced to scram and released an OGL free remastered version, the big shakeup would have been released 6 years after the core books, so them being outdated after so much time isn't quite as eggregious.

It's why big lore shakeup work best in the transition between edition. At that point, you don't have to worry about having to stick to the "baseline status quo" presented in the introductory book, as you're about to create an all new introductory book that will present the new status quo.


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The Raven Black wrote:
Calliope5431 wrote:
SuperBidi wrote:
You need big events for a setting to feel lively. And killing a god says that Paizo is ready to drastically alter the world of Golarion for story purposes. That's great, in my opinion. Especially because it's not at all drastic, it's just a small thing, even if I agree a small thing that can piss some players off.

I do agree with this interpretation.

Again, my main caveat would be that it's unfortunate that because of publishing/OGL timelines (totally beyond Paizo's control, I know) they're going to be murdering a god from player core 1. And that events like these have a nasty tendency to build up and compound until world history reads like a nonstop barrage of dying gods, extinction-level events, world wars, and violent coups. Or the fantasy equivalent of "so what if world war 2 went on for 50 years rather than 6-8, and ended with multiple nuclear strikes?"

But the alternative is doing a big time skip and that's not really an option when you're publishing a shared setting and would prefer players don't have to deal with "and now your human fighter from last campaign is dead of old age".

Why is the alternative a big time skip ? I don't get it.

Way I see it, the death of a core 20 deity is to avoid the setting getting stale and has nothing to do with edition changes.

Basically, my point is this: fantasy settings and worlds have a very nasty tendency to change dramatically very quickly when protagonists are involved. This is fine if you're only in the setting for a few years. For instance, the events of LotR take about a year in universe. The events of Wheel of Time take around 10. Your typical comic book arc takes a few years to resolve. And that's fine. You can have an action packed five years. It happens in real life all the time (see: WW2). You kill some gods, murder some Runelords, destroy an archlich or two, and have half a dozen coups. Sink a country into the sea. Good stuff.

But then you have to tell another story. You have to, as you say, "keep things from getting stale" (though I'll point out that Eberron hasn't changed in like 20 years and people still like it). So you come up with another grand arc. Another country sinks into the sea. Another half dozen countries have coups. You kill some more ancient wizards (where are all these wizards coming from anyway? Yeesh). Topple another dark lord.

This continues for a few more cycles, and assuming you don't do a continuity reboot (Mystra is alive again! The Joker didn't actually die! Voldemort is back! Again! For the third time!) suddenly you look around and you realize... nothing matters. The PCs saved Varisia in Rise of the Runelords...shame it fell into the sea like Atlantis. The PCs put their favored candidate on the throne of Taldor in War For the Crown... shame there was another war for said crown afterwards. Your cleric retired after Curse of the Crimson Throne, a faithful servant of (your god's name here). Shame that god just kicked the bucket.

That's why continuity reboots happen. It's because after 10-20 years, the authors have killed Superman, redeemed the Joker, and sent Robin off to college. The setting is unrecognizable.

It's not an issue for pathfinder yet, but it will be eventually.

I admit the time skip thing is really a separate issue, revolving around implausible PC leveling rates (if it takes three months to go from level 1 to level 20, why aren't there more level 20 characters around? Why are there so many thousand-year-old wizards who are level 12?) but it comes back to the same issue. Fantasy worlds can suffer from being"lived in" for too long, and you can only do so many "this arc will CHANGE THE WORLD" stories before you start getting jaded about anything actually changing the world.


Scarablob wrote:
The Raven Black wrote:

Why is the alternative a big time skip ? I don't get it.

Way I see it, the death of a core 20 deity is to avoid the setting getting stale and has nothing to do with edition changes.

I think the problem is that PC1 (and Gamemastery Core) is supposed to be an introduction to the setting, and to still be relevant years after their release for new player to pick up, presenting the "baseline setting" and options. And with it being released so close to the "big world shakeup", it mean that the introduction to the world will be outdated and present one no longer existant deity option less than a year after it's release. Had Paizo not been forced to scram and released an OGL free remastered version, the big shakeup would have been released 6 years after the core books, so them being outdated after so much time isn't quite as eggregious.

It's why big lore shakeup work best in the transition between edition. At that point, you don't have to worry about having to stick to the "baseline status quo" presented in the introductory book, as you're about to create an all new introductory book that will present the new status quo.

And yeah that's my point about player core 1. Hit the nail on the head.


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Calliope5431 wrote:

Basically, my point is this: fantasy settings and worlds have a very nasty tendency to change dramatically very quickly when protagonists are involved. This is fine if you're only in the setting for a few years. For instance, the events of LotR take about a year in universe. The events of Wheel of Time take around 10. Your typical comic book arc takes a few years to resolve. And that's fine. You can have an action packed five years. It happens in real life all the time (see: WW2). You kill some gods, murder some Runelords, destroy an archlich or two, and have half a dozen coups. Sink a country into the sea. Good stuff.

But then you have to tell another story. You have to, as you say, "keep things from getting stale" (though I'll point out that Eberron hasn't changed in like 20 years and people still like it). So you come up with another grand arc. Another country sinks into the sea. Another half dozen countries have coups. You kill some more ancient wizards (where are all these wizards coming from anyway? Yeesh). Topple another dark lord.

This continues for a few more cycles, and assuming you don't do a continuity reboot (Mystra is alive again! The Joker didn't actually die! Voldemort is back! Again! For the third time!) suddenly you look around and you realize... nothing matters. The PCs saved Varisia in Rise of the Runelords...shame it fell into the sea like Atlantis. The PCs put their favored candidate on the throne of Taldor in War For the Crown... shame there was another war for said crown afterwards. Your cleric retired after Curse of the Crimson Throne, a faithful servant of (your god's name here). Shame that god just kicked the bucket.

That's why continuity reboots happen. It's because after 10-20 years, the authors have killed Superman, redeemed the Joker, and sent Robin off to college. The setting is unrecognizable.

It's not an issue for pathfinder yet, but it will be eventually.

I admit the time skip thing is really a separate issue, revolving around implausible PC leveling rates (if it takes three months to go from level 1 to level 20, why aren't there more level 20 characters around? Why are there so many thousand-year-old wizards who are level 12?) but it comes back to the same issue. Fantasy worlds can suffer from being"lived in" for too long, and you can only do so many "this arc will CHANGE THE WORLD" stories before you start getting jaded about anything actually changing the world.

So I can see that as the general case, but it doesn't really seem to be as much of an issue for Pathfinder. Like, we've had "the results of this AP are canon" for just about as long as Golarion has been a thing, and the setting is still pretty recognizable, and the impact keeps being meaningful. I think the secret to that one is scope. Golarion is huge. So, for example, you can have a party of four adventurers go from level 1 to level 20 over in Osirion doing Osirion things, and the impact in Cheliax is that maybe some merchant heard some vague news of something happening over there. The adventures themselves tend to be at a somewhat smaller scale than you're suggesting (killing off a god is a Big Deal, and almost never happens) and between those two, the setting as a whole has a lot of ability to absorb campaigns without warping into "nothing matters" unrecognizability.

Now, the upcoming arc is apparently going to be a Big Deal, above and beyond the normal... but that doesn't mean that they all have to be like that. This is for the AP associated with the Epic Rules book. I expect that once this cycle is done, it'll subside again.


The Raven Black wrote:

Why is the alternative a big time skip ? I don't get it.

Way I see it, the death of a core 20 deity is to avoid the setting getting stale and has nothing to do with edition changes.

I think I am repeating Calliope5431. But anyway...

It isn't about the edition change, true. It also isn't necessarily about killing off a deity.

But something major has to happen in order to write stories about. Combine that with the synchronized time scale of Golarion and IRL and we only have a few options.

1) Have major setting-changing events happening on a much more frequent pace than we have here on Earth.

2) De-synchronize the time scale. The time skip option.

3) Not have major setting-changing events happening more than once or twice a decade.

4) ??????

Now, #3 is not good for business. If there aren't big stories to tell, what are the level 20 campaigns going to be doing? Researching space flight? Building and developing computers?

So that leaves the current state where Golarion is much more unstable of a society than IRL is. The alternative is time skip and desynchronize the setting from IRL time speed.

Unless you can come up with something concrete to fill in for option #4.

Liberty's Edge

We are in #3.

We had Wrath of the Righteous in 2013, Tyrant's Grasp in 2019 and we'll have War of the Immortals in 2024.

And that's it as far as truly setting-shaking events are concerned.


WotR and TG (and I would add Return of the Runelords in the same degree of impactfullness) all only really affected a single region of the setting, and background "lesser deities", so they are quite a bit less impactfull than what War of the Immortal promises to be if it shake up the core pantheon, and possibly larger part of golarion.

Not that it's inherently bad, it doesn't seems to be a comicbook level "the world will never be the same!!!" event, but it still promises to be the most impactfull event yet, so I can understand why people would be wary.

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