Sunday, March 20, 2011

[The Realm] What You Need To Know As a Cleric of Law

A cleric of Law is a crusader for the Gods of Law. You follow one of the three Great Ways of Law (or perhaps others; the Outcasts being representative of a minor cult of Law):

Great Good Gods: The Twelve and Many are the patron gods of Men. Koram is the High King of Heaven and the Creator of Men; Qnath is the Lord of Starry Wisdom and the Eldest of the Gods; Andara is the Lady of Fortune and the Queen of Heaven. The other Nine Great Good Gods each has his or her own place in the pantheon watching over a particular sphere of influence. The Great Good Gods are known by many names by disparate peoples; the incarnations known in the Heartlands are those most familiar to the Southlanders (thus resembling Greco-Roman styles). The Temple of the Great Good Gods is the most popular of the three Temples of Law in the Heartlands. The symbol of the Great Good Gods is a twelve-spoke wheel, superimposed by the individual symbol of the patron god of the cleric.

Great Gold Dragon: The Great Gold Dragon is Krakentiri, the Son of the Dragon Primeval. Born from the Golden Dragon Orb, Krakentiri converted some of his cousins, the Firstborn Dragons, to the Way of Law, and thus tipped the scales of balance in the favor of Law during the War of Angels and Dragons. While Krakentiri and his court are usually revered in the distant lands of the Dawnlanders, millennia ago, the Great Dragon Prophet Sicago brought worship of the Great Gold Dragon into the West. The temple he built there was founded on the lines of that of the Westlanders, complete with bishops and clerics, though they also have a strong mystic tradition transplanted from the strange ways of the East. Other than this slight cultural infusion, and a predilection for philosophizing over action, the Temple of the Great Gold Dragon is Western in all ways. The holy symbol of the Temple of the Great Gold Dragon is a six-pointed star, representing the six Dragon Orbs of Creation; usually this has superimposed upon it the face of Krakentiri, or is bordered by dragon wings, or circled by a coiling gold dragon, or some other draconic representation, depending on the preference of the local temple and/or individual cleric.

Lords of Light: The Lords of Light were once the angelic servants of all the Gods of Law. Following the War of Angels and Demons, when the Pantheons of Law formed, most of the Angels that did not cleave to one or another of the pantheons of gods reformed as an independent hierarchy dedicated to the purest ideals of Law, unfettered by the ideals of any one or another of the gods. While the Lords of Light are primarily worshiped by Men, other races sometimes follow these beings and their zealous regard for Pure Law and Good. The Lords of Light are primarily worshiped in the Westlands; while the various Temples of the Lords of Light in the Heartlands are independent of the Great Temple in the Westlands (and usually, each other) they all tip a point of precedence to the Grand Patriarch of the West. The Temple of the Lords of Light is the second-most popular of the major temples of Law in the Heartlands. The Lords of Light use an upright pentagram as their holy symbol, representing the five Elder Gods who created the World from the Cosmic Egg (Szkarnadle, Elthonell, Shendon, Osgdagor, and Koram); each cleric’s holy symbol contains in the center the sigil or symbol of his patron Lord, High Sentinel, or Saint.

The Outcasts: When the Gods of Law signed the Compact with the Demons of Infernus after the War of Angels and Demons, a portion of the Angels of Heaven resisted the Compact, and sought to continue the fight directly, against the will of the Gods and the assembled hierarchy of Angels. Led by Basiam the Battle-Axe, this circle of five Angels was eventually brought to heel by their brethren; and though they were forced by the Gods of Law to give up their direct confrontation, when the Lords of Light formed their Hierarchy, they remained aloof, turned their backs on the Gods of Law and the Lords of Light alike, and formed their own loose brotherhood. The Outcasts, as they call themselves, chose their own way to seek to battle Chaos in the World, through their own mortal followers. The Outcasts have no temples, only shrines; their clerics and followers are expected to ever be on the move, seeking to root out Chaos, especially the taint of Infernus, wherever and whenever it rears its ugly head. The symbol of the Outcasts is the Battle-Axe of Basiam, a double-headed labrys. Clerics of the Outcasts are the only Lawful clerics allowed to wield bladed weapons, though they may (nay, must) use only the double-bladed labrys! [The labrys is a heavy axe.] The Outcasts were never a part of the Unified Church that existed prior to the Wizard War; they were considered marginal then, and most other temples of Law consider them heretical today, even though every cleric of their faith must be Lawful or Lawful Good!

You use 6-sided dice for Hit Dice. You get one HD per level up to and including level 9; you add your Constitution modifier to each die roll. At level 10 and above, you only gain 2 hit points per level (Constitution modifier no longer applies).

You get +5% XP if your Wisdom score is 13 to 15; you get +10% if your Wisdom score is 16 to 19.

A cleric of the Gods of Law must be Lawful Good, Lawful, or Neutral.

Clerics of Lawful Good sort are dedicated to the utmost to the tenets of Law; they are humble, kind, merciful, and generous to all save those who are naturally of Chaos or who willfully follow the Gods of Chaos.

Lawful clerics are not quite so dedicated to universal weal, mercy, or generosity, being more concerned with the order and maintenance of the civilization of Mankind overall, but corruption is still beneath their ken.

Neutral clerics of Law are the least dedicated to the ways of Law; they do not pay it lip service, as the Gods are not fools, but as the gods are also not omniscient, they are far less zealous, often more selfish, and never as ardent in their beliefs as their Lawful brethren. Even so, Neutral clerics of Law cannot oppose any of the basic concepts or rules of Law and Good, though they may ignore them, bend them, or turn a blind eye, when such sins are not egregious. As a Neutral cleric of Law, you cannot advance as a cleric beyond 6th level! At that point, you must more fully dedicate yourself to the cause of Law, if you wish to further advance in its power… at this point, no few Neutral clerics of Law fall into apostasy, and turn from the way of Law to the ways of Chaos!

A cleric can wear any kind of armor, however, he is only skilled at wearing padded, leather, studded leather, ring mail, scale mail, mail shirt, chain mail hauberk, banded mail, and half-plate. Plate mail, three-quarter plate, full plate, field plate, and jousting plate provide one point less protection than normal when the cleric is wearing it, and causes him to suffer a -2 penalty to all attacks and saving throws while wearing the armor. A cleric can wear any kind of helm without penalty. He can use a small shield normally; he can use a large shield but then suffers a -1 penalty to attacks and saving throws.

As a cleric of the Gods of Law, you cannot use any weapon with a sharp edge or pointed end, such as daggers, swords, morningstars, bows, or crossbows. This comes from the earliest philosophies of the Gods of Law, which are that “The Just should correct the Unjust not with the sword, but with the rod,” indicating a preference against slaying the unjust over attempting to correct their behavior. Remember, the soul of a slain enemy cannot be saved from Chaos for Law! Of course, against recalcitrant and relentless creatures and followers of Chaos, more thorough measures are required, and thus the full brunt of the weight of the weapon may fall… but still not edged or pointed, only blunt weapons.

Light Weapons: d4
Medium Weapons: d6
Heavy Weapons: d8

At 1st level you possess the ability to turn undead. Whenever you encounter a group of undead, you must present your holy symbol (in hand, upon your shield or as an amulet openly on your chest, etc.) and call upon the power of Law to counter the entropic Chaos that empowers the undead creatures. You then roll 2d6 and add your Charisma modifier; the result is then cross-indexed on an Equivalent Hit Dice chart the LL possesses. If you turn the undead creatures, 2d6 EHD of undead are affected; they will flee from you if possible, or cower and hide if not. If you or anyone in your party attacks the turned creatures, they are no longer affected by your holy power, and may attack you back! Note that lower-hit dice undead are affected first. Once you fail to turn any undead in a group with the turning check roll, you can no longer try to turn that group; however, if you fail to turn all of them because of a low EHD affected roll, you may continue to try to turn that group of undead until you fail a turn check roll.

At 1st level you can cast one 1st level spell per day; you might have a bonus of one or two spells per day if you have a high Wisdom score. As you advance in level, you gain more spells, many of higher level.

If you are Lawful Good, you can cast your spells miraculously; that is, you do not have to memorize your spells in the morning, and can choose the spells you cast when you need them! You still need to pray for one hour in the morning after eight hours of sleep in order to regain the spell-casting slots you expended the previous day.

If you are Lawful, you must memorize your spells each morning, but you may choose any spell from the list of spells of Clerics of Law; you do not need to read from a Prayer Book to memorize these spells, merely pray for one hour in the morning after eight hours of sleep.

If you are Neutral, you must maintain a Prayer Book, which is given to you by your temple. Your Prayer Book has the rituals needed for a number of spells equal to the number of spells you can cast each day; no more, no less. Usually, the spells you receive are determined by your superiors in the Temple; often they are revealed in a specific order to every cleric in the same temple. You may possess multiple Prayer Books but possession of such is considered impious, or even blasphemous; if the spells thereof are not of approved or even non-Lawful sort, it is considered heresy if not apostasy! You must pray for one hour each morning, after eight hours of sleep, before you can memorize your spells. It then takes you 15 minutes per spell level to memorize a spell, after your prayers are complete. You must have your Prayer Book with you to memorize any spell you do not still have memorized; if you do not have the spell still memorized from the previous day, or have the proper Prayer/Ritual Book, you cannot memorize that spell. If you have a spell memorized that you want to memorize a second or further time, you do not need the Prayer Book, but you must still take the time required to prepare your mind and spirit to properly embed the ritual of each spell for later casting.

Whenever casting a spell, you must have your holy symbol either in your hand, or openly presented. You cannot move in the same round while casting a spell. You must be able to chant, pray, or otherwise speak aloud and freely move your hands in the proper ritual passes and signs. Some spells may require additional components, such as holy water or special materials (some quite valuable and rare).

The following list includes the spells commonly known to clerics of Law; each temple and most gods also have additional spells that they can grant to their clerics. These are usually reserved for their great heroes. Once a god has revealed a special spell to you, you add that spell to the list of spells you can cast. If you are a Neutral cleric, you add it to your Prayer Book (it usually appears miraculously, as though written by the hand of your god, but sometimes you are required to write it yourself and no little expense in special materials).

Level 1
Cure Light Wounds
Detect Evil
Detect Magic
Protection from Evil
Purify Food and Water
Remove Fear

Level 2
Delay Poison
Find Traps
Hold Person
Resist Cold
Resist Fire

Level 3
Continual Light
Cure Blindness/Deafness/Muteness
Cure Disease
Cure Serious Wounds
Remove Curse
Locate Object

Level 4
Create Food and Water
Neutralize Poison
Protection from Evil 10’ Radius

Level 5
Cure Critical Wounds
Dispel Evil
Divine Strike
Raise Dead

Level 6
Heavenly Bridge
Summon Angelic Protector
Wall of Light

Level 7
Holy Word
Righteous Wrath

Clerical spells can be scribed onto scrolls, to be cast later by the scribe or by whatever cleric comes across the scroll. As the divine power of the magic is charged within the scroll, any cleric who can read the scroll, regardless of alignment, can use the scroll, even if of completely opposing alignments (i.e., Lawful Good scribed scroll read and used by a Chaotic Evil cleric).

It is through these scrolls that Neutral clerics of Law can be led into apostasy, as Chaotic clerical magic can readily be scribed from a scroll into a Prayer Book! The Gods of Chaos made it so, in order to tempt Neutral clerics of Law to fall to Chaos. However, this does not work in reverse; while a cleric of Chaos can use a scroll with a spell of Law, and can even scribe it in his Grimoire and memorize it, unless cast from a scroll, the cleric can never directly call upon the power of the Gods of Law to cast the spell… well, at least, not the way the cleric hoped. He might well invoke the personal interest of a God of Law, who might send an angel or other servitor to see who falsely seeks access to the power of Law!

A cleric of any level can scribe a scroll of any spell he knows for future use, requiring one week of time and 100 gp in materials, each per spell level, to scribe the scroll.

All Lawful faiths have Saints, who are mortals who have risen to semi-divinity in the name of Law; they are most common in the Temple of the Lords of Light, but are found in all Lawful faiths. Only those of Lawful Good alignment can become saints. As a Lawful Good cleric, you might aspire to Sainthood!

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