This page is intended to be a re-iteration of the rules for building your characters, and a basic primer on stuff you’ll want to know:
Welcome to Level 27!
Let that sink in… Level 27… 3 levels away from the maximum… 96% of all monsters in those manuals are weaker than you… you’re the same level as a Balor (the toughest demon in the freakin’ Abyss!)
Individually, you are like a demi-god, and together, your group can shake the pillars of heaven – literally.
Here’s some rules I want you guys to follow when making your characters:
1. Get together and define the party’s roles. You should probably shoot for as good of a spread (1 Striker, 1 Defender, 1 Leader, 1 Controller, and 1 wildcard), but it’s up to you guys to decide if you want to use this ratio.
2. You are not allowed to choose from Forgotten Realms or Eberon stuff! Don’t even try it!
3. When choosing a Deity, you can ONLY CHOOSE GODS from the Player’s Handbook or the Dungeon Master’s Guide. (Scroll down to the bottom of the god’s description to see what source they come from.)
4. For your Equipment, you get one item of level 28, one of level 27, and one of level 26 FOR FREE!!! If you want to exchange any of these items for 2 items of 2 levels lower, go right ahead! Don’t be afraid to spend some of that million gold on other stuff, either!
5. When buying stuff – DO NOT AUTO-BUY. Take the time to spend your gold on the stuff you really want. If you want a bad-ass fire motif, buy some flaming stuff! Think of your character more like a super-hero, and outfit them to their strengths.
6. Once you’re done with your character, get familiar with what they can do. At level 27 there’s a LOT to remember! Come up with a few strategies for putting the hurt on some of those pansy level 24 creatures.
7. You need to have a good grasp of your character’s personality – ESPECIALLY how they feel towards the gods and the other characters. Try not to go TOO bizarre or extreme, unless the rest of the players are cool with it. (No baby-eating half-demon anti-paladins. I’m looking at you, Rusty.)
8. You need some kind of relation to the other characters. Maybe you’ve spent long years adventuring with each other, maybe you grew up in the same lands, maybe you found them in a dungeon and asked “can we keep him?”
9. You need a secret. A desire, goal, or dream that your character is following. This should be fairly personal and not well known to the other characters.
Time to learn stuff!
At this point in the game, your character is more than just a sack of stats and magic items. There’s stuff about the world(s) you need to be familiar with to understand the overall scope that you’re dealing with.
COSMOLGY OF THE PLANES
You’ve been around the block a few dozen times. You know more about the world and its cosmology than most sages. Heck, you’ve probably been there, defeated it’s ruler, looted the place, and bought the t-shirt. You should be familiar with the Cosmology of the Planes.
• The World: Yup, that’s its name. The World. It’s probably the place where you grew up, delved dungeons, defeated villains, overthrew empires, and moved on to better things.
• The Feywild: Kind of a mirror of the world where nature and emotions are wild. Lots of magic flows from this place.
• The Shadowfell: Another mirror world, but this one is all dark and angst-filled. When people die, their souls go here before they are sent to the great beyond. Undead draw their power from here.
• The Underdark: A great series of caves and tunnels that run beneath the world. It’s home to all manner of Drow, spiders, and yucky things.
• The Astral Sea: Where the gods live. It’s a celestial sea where crystalline spheres called Dominions drift around. The gods created those Domains, and furnished them to their liking.
• The Elemental Chaos: The home of the ancient Primordials, it is a swirling maelstrom of raw materials – fire, water, ice, lightning, stone, etc.
• The Abyss: The home of the demons lurking at the very bottom of the Elemental Chaos. Not a fun place to be.
• The Far Realm: A realm beyond the Astral Sea, filled with unimaginable madness and Cthulhu-esque critters.
GODS ’N STUFF
At level 27, the Gods are less like all-powerful distant entities, and more like your drinking-buddies. How do you feel towards these gods and powerful beings? Have you fought for them? Against them? Ticked them off?
• Bahamut: The god of truth, justice, and the American way. And dragons.
• Moradin: The god of dwarves, the forge, the earth, and shiny things. Loves his beer.
• Pellor: The god of sunshine, kittens, rainbows and unicorns. Seriously. He’s a people person.
• The Raven Queen: The goddess of death and general gothiness. She hangs out in the Shadowfell and mostly keeps to herself. Really hates Undead-thingies.
• Bane: The god of conquest, physical might and duchebaggery. He thinks might makes right, and he’s the strongest on the block. Wants to rule the world.
• Vecna: The god of secret knowledge. He was a lich that became a god. Wants to rule the world.
• Asmodeus: The god of power and tyranny. An angel who killed his god, he’s now the head-honcho of the Nine-Hells. Ruler of Devils, coveter of souls. Writer of contracts, player of fiddles. Wants to rule the world.
• Orcus: Not a god, but the massively powerful demon-lord of undeath. Mortal enemies with the Raven Queen. Wants to rule the world.
• Primordials: Ludicrously powerful beings from the Elemental Chaos that created the world, were defeated by the gods, and imprisoned. Want to destroy the world.
• Nature Spirits: Powerful spirits of the world itself. Primal, territorial, usually harsh, and don’t like to shower. They don’t like Gods or Primordials. They want the world to be left alone – you know, for them to rule.
EVEN MORE STUFF YOU NEED TO KNOW
• Astral Skiffs: Boats that sair the Astral Sea. They are used to transport people and goods between the Dominions, or to pirate the astral shipping lanes.
• Spelljammers: Amazing vessels that can not only fly, but also cross between the planes.
• Sigil: The City of Doors. It’s a pocket dimension that has hidden portals to anywhere you can think of.
• Exarch: A mortal being in service to a god who is ULTRA POWERFUL. Kinda like you.
• Angels: Servitors of the gods. Angels aren’t good or evil – but serve the wills of good and evil gods. They are tools – literally (and often figuratively).
• Mortal Death: When a mortal dies, his soul drifts to the Shadowfell (or becomes an undead). That soul drifts to the Raven Queen’s Palace to go to its Final Destination. However, other gods can pluck souls from the Shadowfull before they reach the Raven Queen. Gods like Pellor exalts his faithful to live with him in his Astral Dominion. Other Gods like Asmodeous grab souls that were dumb enough to make pacts with him. Souls are essentially the currency to supremely powerful beings.
• Killing a God: Gods are basically bound to their Dominions in the Astral Sea. However, they can create Avatars of themselves anywhere in the planes. Killing an Avatar usually does nothing more than tick-off the god and take away his Avatar rights for a short time. To truly kill a God, you have to go to their Dominion, find them, defeat their hordes of loyal followers and angels, and somehow slay them. Needless to say, It don’t happen very often.
• Mortals, Exalted and Outsiders: Mortals age and die. Exalted are souls that reform in a god’s Dominion. Outsiders are souls that reform outside of any god’s Dominion, and are unable to enter Dominions.
• The Dawn War: The Primordials wanted to destroy the world which they created. The Gods said no. The Primordials went to the Astral Sea and began smashing stuff. The Gods eventually won and imprisoned the Primordials deep within the Elemental Chaos.
Shew! I think that’s about all you need to know… for now.
If you really want to go crazy, take a peak through The Manual of the Planes – it talks in detail about most of this stuff too. You could even read the stuff in The Plane Above: The Astral Sea and The Plane below: The Elemental Chaos to get knowledgeable enough to be a know-it-all annoyance to the DM!
I think you guys will make this an awesome adventure! I’m hoping that this will be a campaign to remember!