Realms of Acadecia
Aspects of Center
While nearly everyone in Acadecia worships Center (that is, the soul of reality supposedly seated at the center of the Multiverse; see the Character Creation page for more information), each person sees reality a little differently. Over time, like-minded people came together to found the churches of the various Aspects of Center. When you create your character, choose a faction from the Aspects listed below.
As is our nature, clashing ideologies often cause conflict. This is represented by your Opposed Factions. Just as each person sees Center in a different way, each person sees different factions as the enemy of their own. Choose three factions as your Opposed Factions. While it’s not impossible to get along with people from these factions, it’s certainly going to cause contention early on. These are great role-playing opportunities—just don’t let the arguments spill over into the real world!
As your character progresses and matures, it’s possible that his views on the world may change. This has little consequence for most characters, but for divine spellcasters, it can mean serious changes to their class abilities. When a character switches factions, follow the rules for changing deities in the core rulebook.
Most factions also have an Allied Faction. This is a faction that, while it doesn’t hold quite the same tenets, is similar enough that the factions remain on friendly terms. You cannot choose an Allied Faction as an Opposed Faction.
It’s also possible to change opposed factions. During your campaign, you might start out hating the Chainbreaker Faction, but after adventuring with one for many months or years, you begin to soften your harsh views on them. At the DM’s discretion, you may be allowed to switch out Chainbreaker for another opposed faction.
The various factions and their Aspects are listed below. Each Aspect also has a Patron. This is a legendary figure from history or myth who was believed to be a paragon of their faction’s virtues. They are not worshiped, but rather used as a model for behavior of a faction’s followers. (For real-world examples, think of the Saints in Catholicism. While not gods, they are considered paragons for the virtues upheld by the church and their example is generally expected to be followed to the best of their followers’ abilities.)
The Aspects of Center
The following are the most populous factions of Acadecia (though smaller, less popular factions are known to exist; consult your DM if you have an idea for a new faction). Each faction’s Aspect is also presented with a list of typical domains chosen by divine casters, as well as domains that are barred by that faction’s tenets.
* Denotes a new domain described on the Divine Magic page.
Favored Weapon: Warhammer.
Typical Domains: Artifice, Community, Faith*, Protection.
Barred Domains: Death, Liberation.
Typical Followers: Families, dwarves, halflings.
Beliefs: The hearth and home are the center of the world; the strength of blood is stronger than all other bonds. Followers defend clan or communal law to protect their families and drive back the chaos of the wild places. If a law is in direct harm of your family or clan’s well-being, it is your duty to petition its change. If a force threatens your family or clan, it is your duty to eradicate it. Such is the will of the All-Father.
Favored Weapon: Unarmed Strike.
Typical Domains: Healing, Knowledge, Magic, Travel.
Barred Domains: Destruction, Madness.
Typical Followers: Monks, spellcasters, sages.
Beliefs: Center is all, and all is Center. We are all Aspects of Center, and what we do to others, we do to the self. When we acquire knowledge, we learn about ourselves. When we gain power, we gain power over ourselves. When we subjugate others, we enslave our own souls. All forces seek to balance each other, and all forces inherently seek Center. Nearly all monks follow the Central Truth, though a few isolated monasteries’ teachings are based on other Aspects.
Allies: Sleeping Moon.
Favored Weapon: Greataxe.
Typical Domains: Liberation, Luck, Trickery, Travel.
Barred Domains: Community, Nobility.
Typical Followers: Dissidents, freedom fighters, bards.
Beliefs: Governments and law are built to shackle the free spirit of Man, and must be subverted or toppled whenever possible. All should be free to live and prosper as they please, provided their actions do not infringe on this right against others. Followers rarely stay in one place at a time, preferring instead to travel from land to land and strike small blows wherever they end up before disappearing into the horizon. Their hit-and-run tactics have caused no few headaches with nearly every ruler in Acadecia, though the rulers of the Grindel Territories and Volgan States are their most common targets.
Allies: Raging Spirit.
Favored Weapon: Shillelagh (club).
Typical Domans: Animal, Air, Earth, Fertility*, Fire, Water, Weather.
Barred Domains: Artifice, Nobility.
Typical Followers: Rangers, druids, naturalists.
Beliefs: All things come from the earth and rely upon it; industry and technology seek to destroy what created them. The call of the bird is the sweetest song, and the flow of the river the most sensual lover. Neither man nor machine can ever surpass these things, and must always remember to remain humble of them. The incomparable beauty, inherent balance, and unfathomable wrath of nature are to be imitated and respected.
Allies: None (May only choose two Opposed Factions).
Patron: Sir Ghalleone.
Favored Weapon: Longsword.
Typical Domains: Community, Faith*, Nobility, War.
Barred Domains: Darkness, Liberation, Madness.
Typical Followers: Nobility, royalty, knights, paladins.
Beliefs: The men and women who follow the tenets of the King’s Crown believe that leadership is the destiny of those born to royal or noble blood. It is their honor and duty to be servants to the people by ruling with a fair and steady hand. The power is not meant to be abused; every action must be made to benefit the most subjects. Of course, this statement is often misinterpreted for personal gain by more unscrupulous rulers.
Favored Weapon: Whip.
Typical Domains: Charm, Darkness, Madness, Trickery.
Barred Domains: Fertility*, Faith*.
Typical Followers: Hedonists.
Beliefs: Law, order, humility, and etiquette; all these things are bars in a prison, a prison from which the only escape is to revel in our own desires and urges. Prisoner followers are hedonists, delighting in whatever pleasures they choose: wine, food, money, even massive orgies. Prisoner followers always seek new and interesting thrills, and will usually try almost anything at least once.
Subfaction: The Vassagians
Favored Weapon: Spiked Chain.
Beliefs: There is a more secretive sect of Prisoner followers, known as the Vassagians, who take their hedonism to violent extremes. They regularly participate in rape, torture, and murder. The more despicable and horrific the act, the more pleasure they gain from it. They claim the name of their Aspect comes from their patron, Vassago, who is supposedly a powerful Demon Prince imprisoned on one of the infinite layers of the Abyss. The Church of Retribution is constantly hunting down members of this perverse Ordos.
Allies: None (May only choose two Opposed Factions).
Favored Weapon: Greatsword.
Typical Domains: Destruction, Glory, Fire, Strength, War.
Barred Domains: Darkness.
Typical Followers: Barbarians, fighters, mercenaries.
Beliefs: The greater races were designed for battle. Some to strike with stealth, some with brute force, others with a clever and agile mind. Yet all must bear in mind the one fundamental truth: every aspect of life is a conflict, for battle is the only truth. The blood of enemies cleanses sin, and the blood of allies fallen give us cause to celebrate and remember their valor, honoring their memory with song and heated blood.
Favored Weapon: Scythe.
Typical Domains: Death, Faith*, Knowledge, Repose, Sun.
Barred Domains: Healing, Fertility*, Madness.
Typical Followers: Cemetery groundskeepers.
Beliefs: Followers of the Reaver are rare, most of them being the keepers of mausoleums and cemeteries. The Church of the Reaver believes that all things have a natural beginning and end, and must be allowed to take their natural course. Disrupting this natural flow throws the multiverse ever so slightly off balance, but all these imbalances add up to maladies that can spread through the world and even other planes of existence. To Reaver followers, necromancy is the darkest form of perversion of the natural order, and seek the eradication of undead at all costs. Clerics of the Reaver also refuse to raise the fallen from the dead, as they believe it is against the will of Center’s natural flow.
Allies: King’s Crown, Waking Dawn.
Subfaction: The Azraelites
Favored Weapon: Scythe.
Barred Domains: Glory, Madness, Trickery.
Beliefs: A reformationist sect of the Aspect of the Reaver formed only a few centuries ago, over a particular faction tenet: the raising of the dead. Father Damien Credo postulated that since undead are a perversion of the natural order of beginnings and endings, those slain by undead were themselves ended before their natural time and aught to benefit from such magic. This simple argument caused a divide with the small group of agreeing followers and the greater orthodox viewpoint. This group came to call themselves Azraelites, and formed their own sub-faction of the Aspect of the Reaver. Some Azraelites formed a further hypothesis that the existence of resurrection magic at all suggests it was meant to be used, and anyone raised from the dead by it was meant to continue living. Most followers of the Reaver—both orthodox and reformationist—frown upon this particular idea, however, as they warn it can lead to even more radical thinking. As Brother Haestus so blatantly put it to one such postulator: “Next you’ll be telling me necromancy is fine simply because it exists.”
Allies: King’s Crown, Waking Dawn.
Patron: St. Cuthbert.
Favored Weapon: Heavy Mace.
Typical Domains: Community, Destruction, Faith*, Nobility, Strength.
Barred Domains: Charm, Liberation.
Typical Followers: Law enforcement, paladins, crusaders, nobility, merchants.
Beliefs: Law is what separates humans from monsters, what makes people civilized and prosperous. Followers of the Retribution uphold order, regardless of the human cost. These are necessary casualties; their suffering allows the greater masses to sleep in peace at night. Individual rights must give way to the Greater Good. Those who fall from the law are lost; they are a liability to the stability of civilized folk.
Allies: King’s Crown, All-Father.
Favored Weapon: Quarterstaff.
Typical Domains: Darkness, Knowledge, Magic, Travel.
Barred Domains: Fire, Sun.
Typical Followers: Druids, fey, gnomes, spellcasters.
Beliefs: The night is a time of mystery and shadow. In the quiet darkness all things are possible. Followers seek to penetrate the darkness and pry forth its countless secrets. Some do so for personal gain, others for the thrill of old knowledge re-awakened. Some do neither, and simply bask in the moon’s beauty and mystery.
Allies: Waking Dawn, Central Truth.
Favored Weapon: Dagger.
Typical Domains: Darkness, Glory, Luck, Travel, Trickery.
Barred Domains: Community, Sun.
Typical Followers: Rogues, thieves, pugilists.
Beliefs: The world is a treasure chest, ripe for the picking. Those who are strong or clever will prosper, and those who are not will fade away. If you can take it, it is yours. While not all followers believe in violence and mayhem, nearly all will take what liberties they deem necessary to get what they want.
Allies: Prisoner (but not Vassagians).
Favored Weapon: Chainblade.
Typical Domains: Faith*, Fertility*, Healing, Sun.
Barred Domains: Death, Darkness, Madness.
Typical Followers: Healers, paladins, philanthropists, elves, social workers.
Beliefs: The dawn is the true light of the world; its rays heal the most grievous wounds of the heart. So the dawn heals the heart, so must her followers strive to heal the body. Followers of the Dawn celebrate beauty both within and without, and strive to achieve both. They find undead to be hideous in both appearance and spirit, and seek their eradication mercilessly.
Allies: Reaver, Earthmother.