Tende altum, volare altius
An epic journey, a path to redemption, a quest that will bring the world out of darkness.
An epic journey, a path to redemption, a quest that will bring the world out of darkness.
art by Rainman Page
Our world was once beautiful. Our world was once blessed with divine rule, and it was perfect. So the gods would have us believe. Looking at the world as it is now; some lands ruthless, lawless and demon-ruled, others reclaimed by the forces of nature, there is beauty in it still. Perhaps it is foolish to hope that our gods will return...bring the demons to heel and restore order and peace, or...perhaps there is another way...
When the gods left the earth, chaos took over. Demons rose to power, enslaved humans, fought amongst each other, raided and warred without end. For a hundred years humans prayed, and for a hundred years, the great gods were silent. Then, the queen of gods made a choice: She descended to earth and used her elite force to subjugate the most powerful demons on earth. One by one she defeated them, and placed an enchanted sealing ornament on their bodies. Their powers now removed, they were given a choice: Flee, and let their power bleed from them until there was nothing left, or, join a quest, protect a band of humble humans on their perilous journey to the farthest reaches of the god kingdom to find the secret that will restore light to the world.
The dynamic here is going to be unique:
- You can play a human, dedicated to one or more deities, they can be fighters, but there needs to be a spiritual element to their profession, a paladin, priest, monk, healer etc. They will obtain divine powers as the story progresses.
- You can play one of the demons that has made the choice to join the quest and win their freedom. The demons were some of the most powerful, they aren’t anymore, their powers are sealed at the start of the game. They will regain them slowly as the story progresses.
- You can play as a neutral spirit who chose to join the quest, a lesser demon or minor deity who have decided to side with the God queen and help bring light to the world. They will also have power increases granted by the God Queen for helping in the quest, and they are not bound by the power-limiting torcs
**You cannot play: a demigod or half-demon. i.e. half god/demon/spirit and half human. They do not exist.
The line between demon and god is very fine: basically both entities begin as neutral spirits, and gain power through natural forces or human dedication. What they use that power for defines them as spirit, god or demon (neutral, benevolent or destructive respectively).
This concept is high fantasy, but this is pretty much a version of Journey to the West, the story of the Monkey King and it’s about redemption, reconciliation, responsibility and the nature of good an evil.
You can base your characters in any culture, this will not be limited to European or Asian concepts, but it will be embedded in a fantasy world, so no real places will be used and characters will all be completely fictional, not pulled directly from world mythology either.
Character Building Chat
To start things off: all spirits, gods and demons can be slain, they simply do not age. This is the meaning of immortal in this world. Even the most powerful gods can be overcome.
There is a single main pantheon of gods, centered around a king and queen. There are many other gods, from many different lands and cultures, but all defer to the king’s or queen’s judgement.
The king decreed that the gods should remove themselves from the affairs of mortals, but the queen subtly defies that order, and there are gods that side with each.
Besides the Great Gods, there are hundreds of minor gods of varying strength and presence. Most are little greater than spirits, guarding a place in nature, representing an animal, or a manifestation of a human concept or tool.
Each human character must have a god patron they serve, though it does not have to be one following the queen. They can worship one of the gods who has removed themselves, and they still get powers. Logically though, most of the gods actively being served by the mortals are among the queen’s forces, and haven’t forsaken the earth.
God powers can be nearly anything imaginable, there are gods of natural phenomena, land features, animals, gods of luck, wealth, theater etc. Your human character’s patron god can be any one but the king or queen (for plot reasons), and you will be in charge of describing what they are the god of, what powers they have and what power they can grant to a mortal.
- Art by Robs0n
Humans, although given divine powers when they pledge themselves to a god, are not as strong as demons, they can be granted powers but they are not immortal, and ultimately fairly squishy. Their bodies can channel some divine power, but they can’t use all of the god’s power, or they risk taking severe damage and/or dying.
They can channel some power into items or weapons, and infrequently they may have their god patron intervene in some cases (this will be determined with a dice roll, on whether or not the god will actually help them when they ask). Short of it is they are much more vulnerable than their demon companions, which is why they must be protected on the journey.
The humans are not free from divine scrutiny either. Their behaviour towards the demons and each other is being monitored by the God Queen as they are supposed to be paragons of their race.
- Art by
Demons and spirits are immortal, like gods, though their powers are less refined and not as strong. Demons are inherently wild, chaotic or destructive, though this isn’t a solid rule, some just want to be left alone. Spirits are generally neutral or benevolent under certain circumstances, they can be interpreted as budding gods, who have not achieved divine power yet.
The power types of these beings can range as wide as the powers of gods, but generally their powers are linked more closely to the earth and its creatures. Demons can refine their powers by learning specific techniques either from other demons or from gods. Some of them have stolen divine items to make themselves more powerful. Many demons can take several forms, and most have human forms, even if their true forms are completely different.
Spirits can border divine power types, like healing and purification, while demons cannot.
The demons you play can be quite powerful, but at the beginning, their powers have been dampened by the queen of the gods, each demon character has a divine piece of jewelry or adornment (your choice what) magically bound to their essence. The dampener is controlled by the God Queen. At the beginning your demon character will have only one ability, or, if they have a single elemental power, that power will be much weaker than it would otherwise have been.
Demons and spirits both have strength and sturdiness that surpass their human companions. They can fall from several stories and get smacked about and generally not take too much damage.
Their primary weakness is anything made of silver. This metal has the power to cut flesh as a normal human would be cut, and bonds made from silver sap a demon's strength to they cannot break free. To a lesser extent, this applies to spirits as well, and is based on true alignment. Basically the more demon you are the more silver hurts you. Demons that come from the Realm of Darkness are highly susceptible to silver.
If they try to defy the God Queen’s will or bring harm to the humans, the torque will tighten and cause them great pain while sapping their strength. You can have your character make the choice to defy orders, but you will need to remember this rule.
There are three main realms: The realm of gods, sitting high in the clouds at the edge of the world, the realm of humans, which encompasses everything on the earth and in the oceans, and then there is the realm of darkness, the “birthplace of demons” which resides in the darkest depths under the human world.
Note: this rp is set somewhere in the Middle Ages, the most complex weapon would be a crossbow. No gunpowder (but plenty of god and demons magic).
Realm of Gods
Art by 风格君
This realm exists in both a physical and spiritual state. It is a physical place, found through a single specific gateway in a vast land in the human realm called the Stone Forest. The journey to reach it is long and dangerous. The realm itself is shrouded in cloud, and it built upon the peaks of high mountains. The animals and plants and unlike anything in the realm of humans, they have unique and incredible auras that can grant mortals and demons special powers. One example is the elixir of immortality, which is drafted from celestial peaches cultivated by the god royals. The entrance to the realm of gods is guarded fiercely, and even if one gets past the gates, no mortal or demon can place their feet on the cloud stairway without a specific magic to help them.
The jewel of the god realm is the royal palace, a shimmering complex made of gold, marble and and precious stones. The complex is so vast it is said to take one full human year to traverse the entirety of it. The rarest and most powerful species in the god realm can be found in the royal gardens, and of course, this palace is home of most of the gods.
Realm of Humans
Art by Felipe Castro
The human world is much as you know, a land of vast forests, soaring mountains, rolling oceans, placid farmland and bustling cities., however great tracts of land have been destroyed by the workings of demons. Humans survive as best they can, but the warlords, emperors and nobles are most often demons, who subjugate and control their human vassals. It is not uncommon for a traveler to pass a thriving village, only to come back a season later to find it an ashy ruin. Things are far from perfect, however not even the demons’ terror can overcome the power of nature.
There are a myriad of customs and cultures in the human world, and our journey will take us through many of them. Your characters also can some from any world-inspired culture, though you will have to make up the names and histories yourself. Basically, a culture in this world can be inspired by any real world culture.
There are small pockets of peace here and there, where spirits and humans coexist or work together, defending borders from attack and welcoming peaceful travelers.
Realm of Darkness
Art by Inghi
One can only reach it by three special, hidden gateways scattered across the earth. There are now only very few demons who know where the gateways are, and even fewer gods. The gates have been almost completely forgotten by humans, and information about them is extremely rare. Despite the title “birthplace of demons”, not all demons are born there, but the most ruthless ones definitely were. It is a place of deep caverns, molten rock and creeping evil that will try to corrupt your very soul. Staying in the realm of darkness for too long can poison the purest heart.
The foulest beings have built their homes here, towering palaces of obsidian, decorated in the bones of humans and demons alike. Sprawling towns set into the shadows of great yawning caverns, or beneath the inky waters. The realm of darkness is dangerous even for the strongest demons, where the strong prey on the weak, and no human has ever entered and lived…
*There is a strict ban on mind-manipulation powers and sleep powers etc, anything OP or god-mod-y will not be accepted.
Is tied to the gods they worship, and can be elemental or divine. Often humans have channelers, like staves or wands or weapons made from silver.
Elemental magic taps into the powers of nature, and generally a deity can have a single elemental power. There are the common elements, like fire, earth, air and water, but there can also be more unusual elements: metal, gravity, space (teleportation) etc.
Divine abilities will have purification and healing aspects, and will be most potent weapons against demons from the realm of Darkness. It is possible for a human to have elemental abilities and divine abilities, though you will need to choose only one to start with.
Human abilities can be as diverse as the gods that grant them and ultimately, their powers will rival that of the demon companions they travel with. At the beginning, the powers will be weak, with only a single ability unlocked (out of a possible 4), and they will only be able to affect one single, human-sized target or area. Powers can be combined by two or more characters to overcome challenges a single player cannot beat alone, and the more creative the combination, the more successful it will be.
Demon, spirit and God magic
Is either tied to the forces of nature or human faith. This power can also be stored in divine objects, which can be stolen and used to boost abilities. Your demon or spirit characters will not start with any divine objects but they may be earned through the story.
Demon abilities can be elemental, physical enhancement powers, shape-shifting etc. and are directly related to that demon’s origin and identity. A bull demon might have increased strength, and bird demon the power of flight etc. At game start the demons and spirits will be granted their human form and one other form no larger than an elephant-sized creature and no smaller than a bee.
If the character's power is transformation however, they can start with 10 set forms.
If they have something like an elemental type, they can have advantages in that element: fire demons are fireproof, water demons can breath under water etc. but they are generally weakened by elements that oppose their type, fire demons are weak in water, water demons are vulnerable to electric attacks etc. These advantages and weaknesses should be described in your character sheet.
Their powers will have limitations similar to the humans, though they will be inherently stronger and sturdier, and they can pick two abilities in addition to their alternate forms mentioned above.
God and spirit magic can be elemental or divine in nature, and relates directly to what they are the god or spirit of. The spirit companions will also have their human form and one alternate form, and either a divine power or an elemental power to begin with. They also have an increased sturdiness, but not strength.
1. The ornaments cannot be removed or altered by anyone but the god queen
2. The ornaments limit power based on something unknown to the wearers and that power can be slowly restored provided the demons follow a redeeming path
3. The central directive, protecting the human pilgrims, must be followed at all times, and any (avoidable) harm that comes to the humans may also cause pain to the ornament bearers. unintended harm, or harm inflicted on the humans by their own hand does not elicit a response from the ornament. The ornaments can sense the intentions of the bearers and they react accordingly, getting heavy or warm as a warning before a bad action is taken.
In reality, it will be the players' best judgement as to when the rings activate, but basically inflicting harm intentionally or failing to protect the humans in the party intentionally will result in a punishment from the ornaments and the damage would mirror the harm they caused. Now, for the start of the thread, this protection is afforded to all the humans in the place where we’ll start, but after that village, the protection the ornaments afford will be only for the humans in our party. So if other humans wish our travelers harm, the demons can act without being punished. This will also open up the plot to moral choices, as the demons have the option to inflict harm on innocents as well. Keep in mind that karma could catch up to them if they make too many harmful choices…