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Chapter 2: Tools / Building Worlds / Religion


Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 127
These immortal beings command vast power and influence fueled by the faith and souls of mortal worshippers. In Pathfinder, deities also dictate some of the abilities of those champions and clerics who channel their power. When designing deities, you’ll need to include the divine statistics and devotee benefits described below.

Divine Rank

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 127
Gods are usually ranked in a divine hierarchy, from newly ascended godlings to almighty creator gods of unfathomable power.

God: Taking a position atop the divine pyramid, gods command near unlimited power and resources. Their mortal congregations are large and (usually) well funded.

Demigod: Demigods still possess a great deal of power, though often in subservience to another god or simply inferior to the power of a full god.

Quasi Deity: The weakest rank of divinity, many quasi deities are recently ascended mortals who attained their deific powers through ritual apotheosis, or planar natives who have amassed divine power of their own.

Divine Statistics

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 128
In Pathfinder, deities are not only a narrative element of the world, but also a mechanical component of some classes.

Alignment: A deity’s alignment reflects their innate moral and ethical outlook. In the Lost Omens setting, most deities maintain realms tied to the Outer Plane that matches their alignment.

Areas of Concern: Each deity has one or more areas of concern they have divine influence over. These portfolios typically embrace universal concepts, such as honor, night, or tranquility. Deities with similar areas of concern may work in common cause or against each other, depending on their goals and divine rank.

Edicts: Every deity has edicts, which are those tenets they require their faithful—especially divinely empowered clergy like champions and clerics—to promote in the world. A deity usually has one to three simple and straightforward edicts.

Anathema: The opposite of edicts, anathema are those things a deity will not abide. Champions and clerics must avoid their deity’s anathema or risk losing their divine powers, and even lay worshippers usually feel guilty for performing such acts, as they will be weighed against them in the afterlife. Like edicts, a deity usually has two to three simple and straightforward elements to their anathema.

Follower Alignments: Champions and clerics can gain power from deities only if they share a compatible moral disposition. Usually these allowed alignments are chosen from those within one step of the deity’s alignments, with NG, LN, CN, or NE deities rarely allowing N champions and clerics. Less restrictive deities are rarer and occur most often when the deity has multiple aspects or a particularly wide view of things.

Devotee Benefits

Source Gamemastery Guide pg. 128
Deities grant favored status and special power to the most fervent and influential of their flock.

Divine Font: Clerics channel a deity’s divine power as a font of negative or positive energy. Most often, good‑aligned deities grant heal while evil deities grant harm, with neutral deities most often offering a choice between the two. However, there’s nothing inherently good about positive energy or evil about negative energy, so a specific deity’s divine font may vary based on their areas of concern.

Divine Skill: Champions and clerics automatically gain the trained proficiency rank in their deity’s divine skill. Assign the deity one skill that synergizes well with their areas of concern. For example, Intimidation would be appropriate for a god of tyranny, or Deception for a goddess of trickery.

Favored Weapon: Clerics gain access to their deity’s favored weapon as well as the trained proficiency rank with it; warpriest clerics gain additional benefits. Every deity has a favored weapon. Because the benefits of having an advanced favored weapon are very strong, you should assign simple or martial favored weapons unless a deity is so thematically linked with an advanced weapon that you need to give them one.

Domains: Each deity grants a number of domains that reflect their divine areas of concern. Champions and clerics can learn the domain spells from their deity’s domains. Pathfinder’s deities each have four domains, and many have one or more alternative domains. Though this number is usually enough to convey a deity’s portfolio and give players sufficient options, you can give your deities as many domains as you like.

Cleric Spells: When preparing spells, clerics can choose from specific spells granted by the deity, in addition to those available on the divine spell list. A deity always grants a 1st‑level spell and usually two others, all chosen from non‑divine spell lists. The exact number of spells a deity grants can vary—a magic-focused deity might grant one spell per level—though this shouldn’t exceed one spell per level.