All this week we are looking at the deities of Shadowsfall. Monday we started with the design goals and philosophies that went into the deities. Yesterday we are looked at the lawful evil god of the kytons, Akaron. Today we are looking at the twin gods of law and good, Bendes and Ular.
From a design prospective, I always wanted a multi-person deity as a god. This can be seen in other game systems such as Exalted where the Sidereals are the chosen of the Five Maidens. The web comic The Order of the Stick has the paladins worship the 12 gods. But I could not think of many examples of a multi-personality deity in a d20 based game. So I wanted to include one front and center.
Bendes and Ular are the Twin Gods over three main areas: hunting, gathering and cooperation. Bendes being portrayed as the mighty hunter while Ular is the wise gatherer. However, they do not let their different contributions divide them. They command their followers, known as Peacemakers, to find a mutually beneficial outcome to any situation that emerges in a community. The Twin Gods do not care what divides a community, be it race, economic class, spellcaster or sword wielder; they command cooperation or they withhold prosperity from those causing problems. The reason being is that they see cooperation between different groups as being the surest way of surviving the harsh conditions of Shadowsfall and the undead hordes that roam the eternal night of the plane.
Clerics and oracles of Bendes and Ular are seen as negotiators while inquisitors and paladins are seen as enforcers of the peace. Followers that do not have a divine calling are expected to be reasonable in all circumstances, especially when working with followers of less reasonable deities.
The stronghold of Blackbat and Bastion remain the strongest centers of worship for the Twins Gods. Blackbat, because of its cosmopolitan nature and its internal strife, makes the stronghold an important center of the Peacemaker’s work. Despite the fact the stronghold’s vampires avoid the temple in the city proper, they frequently ask prominent Peacemakers to negotiate a fair price for the zombies they control. Peacemakers are one of the five founding religions of the Bastion stronghold. Even today, the other religions look to the Peacemakers to help keep the followers of the Slatchak inline, which they cannot always do.
Vole’s Deep is the only stronghold without any kind of structure dedicated to the Twin Gods. It is said that the internal strife forced the Twin Gods to negotiate with Calista a changing in the land, driving away much of the farms and good herds from the region. Because of the changed land near the stronghold, the various faction leaders finally agreed on one thing: to destroy the shrines to Bendes and Ular within the stronghold. Today, Vole’s Deep’s citizens curse the names of the Twin Gods.
We hope you enjoyed this look at one of Shadowsfall’s deities. Come back tomorrow when we look at Zyree, the male and female god of birth, life and death.