Saturday, 2 January 2016

Divine Aid Considerations

Divine Aid Considerations

I generally regard divine aid a bit differently from the core rulebook. While the core book does well to stress that calling upon divine aid should not be done lightly the examples in the core rulebook listed on Table 7-8: Divine Aid Check DCs tend to list mostly small physical manifestations or spell like effects.

I take a bit of a different approach, where I don't see divine aid as the cleric bugging their deity to do something for them. I see divine aid in many ways to be a costly but literal deus ex machina. Divine aid is not cast by the cleric, it is called upon or begged. Calling upon divine aid should always be done so as a reaction to a situation that the cleric finds himself him. Where he is calling upon his deity because he feels he is in great peril or wishes to manifest the will of the deity in accordance with its creed.

 Most importantly, the manifestation of the divine aid should take a form related to the essence of the deity and if the situation contradicts the essence, creed, or alignment of the deity it may very well fail. Such as calling upon the aid of the god of law and order to protect oneself from lawful execution or calling upon the god of the sea while far from any water and on the rim of a volcano.

While having the God intercede on the characters behalf may seem like a potentially unbalancing thing, after all deus ex machina are generally frowned upon in storytelling and often feels like a cheap trick. A Judge only has to remember the old proverb that God works in mysterious ways. The deity may intercede on behalf the cleric, but with their greater perspective beyond the ken of mortals, how they intercede may seem strange and bewildering to the cleric. They are interceding because the cleric is important to them, but are important because they fits into or have to play a part in a plan that only the deity can perceive.

I also require that the cleric immediately roll 1d10+10 on their deity's disapproval chart for successfully seeking divine aid and 1d10+5 if they fail the DC roll.

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