Hi all, been slammed so I apologize that this blog is coming in several days late. I deliberately limited myself to 4 parts, because frankly I’ve got several novels swimming around in my head about the gods, and quite a bit on paper, so I have to stop somewhere. That said, I’m going to cheat –– just a little, and make this Blog 4a and give you 4b tomorrow, since this has grown longish.
I have many topics to cover to give you a decent feel for what Cosmothea is (both as a game and huge campaign setting) and why it’s something that might be worth checking out when it comes on the market (if not before).
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed the ride so far. As always, please let me hear from you, to let me know how I’m doing, what I can do better, and if you have any comments or questions, would like to hear about a specific area of the game or setting, etc. Thanks much! Ok, if you are still with me, let’s move on!
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Raea defied the “No Artifacts” law by placing an artifact in the sky above Adara, a great tree called Aerys, claiming that she had neither given it to her followers nor technically placed it on the planet. This was tolerated for a time, until a magical cataclysm called a Briq Wave swept across Adara, and the colossal tree, hundreds of feet tall, began to grow long roots that threatened to come to rest upon the land below.
Years passed, and the roots of Aerys grew ever longer, until finally, they dangled just yards above the ground, and growing still. Her worshippers built a temple around the base of the tree and worshipped there, a town and eventually a nation springing up around it. Raea finally bartered a deal, knowing she would soon be in violation, and each of the High Celestials were allowed to place an artifact among the mortals. Soon, new champions were lifted up, great legends were born, and Adara was changed forever. On other worlds like Cathor, Forge, Revyn, Taeros and Morrah, similar events transpired.
Some of the gods either out of boredom, desperation, or obsession for power, assumed multiple identities among various cultures in order to increase the number of their followers, religions and realms of influence. Mortals that could not be swayed to worship a god of death were approached by the very same god in disguise, presenting himself as a god of order and truth. This sort of tactic was used by many gods and to good effect, however it sometimes left one struggling with identity issues and clarity of purpose.
More than once, Raea attempted suicide, and more than a few gods fell into depression and reckless lifestyles, having lost their perspective. The One Above All had sent angels numerous times to help correct their path, but the gods seemed hell bent on going their own way at all costs.
Artifacts of power became more abundant and the gods more aggressive; wars and backstabbing more commonplace, and excuses and loopholes were found in the laws which seemed almost intentionally placed, despite allegedly good intentions. Worlds were scarred with each battle –– the very universe groaned under the burden of epic powers gone unchecked.
The One Above All grieved that he had ever made the gods, yet stayed his hand, and eventually Chronus, his first born among gods, returned to him, refusing worship and sought to do the supreme being’s will.
Try as he might, Chronus found it difficult to shed his followers and at times felt sorry for their lot and continued to bless those that worshipped him. Chronus went into self-exile for a time to contemplate and consider the future and his role in it. During this time, for reasons unknown, the One Above All placed on his heart to investigate a dangerous corner of reality called the Void, a vast realm on the edges of existence that even the gods feared to enter, for they became weak, their powers unreliable, while inside, and some of their number had never returned upon entering.
Even so, Chronus felt compelled to investigate the phenomenon, despite the dangers, and vanished for a time. In his absence, Zuledragar made his move, opening a stargate on Adara and moving his forces in place. The gods prepared for war and a challenge was made to the High Council.
While some of the evil gods were rallying together behind Zuledragar to wipe out Mithra and the other self-proclaimed gods of good, Seth Baal despised and feared Zuledragar and refused to join forces. In a surprising move, Ranos met with Raea as she was on her way to Adara, to confront the dark Illuminarii with a host of elder elementals and cohorts. Ranos tried to reason with her. The goddess of nature and balance paused to consider his advice, for he warned her that Zuledragar was far too powerful and she had nothing to gain by confronting him. Further, he had come bearing a gift, a rare orb of power.
Careful not to touch the orb, Ranos presented the artifact, declaring that he had always cared for the goddess of nature and balance, though he had been too proud to admit it. Immediately upon touching it, she was flooded with power far beyond anything she could imagine, yet the artifact was corrupt and she found it difficult to think clearly, but there was no mistaking the intoxicating power flowing through her veins.
In her unstable state, Ranos was able to convince her that Seth Baal was consorting with Zuledragar and was himself becoming too powerful to ignore. While perhaps even in her present state, she could still not defeat Zuledragar, surely she could fix the balance of power by destroying Seth Baal. She agreed and attacked the High Celestial as he was on his way to investigate Zuledragar’s physical appearance on Adara.
Ranos followed the goddess at a distance. Raea wasted no time with words and assaulted Seth, surprising him with a quick and deadly blow. Seth’s essence dispersed and Ranos was quick to follow up. Raea was dizzy with power, and wondered if she might well be able to defeat even Zuledragar himself.
With great diplomacy, Ranos convinced her that Mithra was now the target, and was tilting the balance of power in the direction of the cause of good. In her confused and unstable state, Raea quickly set about correcting the perceived imbalance, ambushing and destroying Mithra before the power overwhelmed her and she went completely mad. Ranos then revealed that she had been the one all along, to upset the balance of power, not Seth or Mithra and the goddess of nature and balance, realizing her folly, committed suicide.
Zuledragar led the foulest of the lesser gods into battle with those that remained, searing a portion of Adara in their wake. With the High Council of the gods out of the way, Ranos saw no need to side with Zuledragar, whom he never trusted anyway, and he made his move, conquering the Shadow Realm and becoming a High Celestial while the others went off to war on the mortal plane. Wasting no time, Ranos formed a new Council of the Gods, opening it up to all of the gods, and gained many allies, while Zuledragar was chastised by the One Above All for disrupting life on Adara, and went into hiding.
Tomorrow I’ll post Part 4b, and then we’ll switch gears and take a look at the game system.