Shedding Your Mortality (5e Variant Rule)
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Shedding Your Mortality
This ruleset is intended to give players the tools to ascend their players from feeble mortals into literal GODS!!! As such it is considered extremely overpowered and should be only used by DMs who are okay with their players being even more ridiculously overpowered than they already are in the 5e ruleset.
If you are such a crazy DM, then read on.....
So, You Want To Be A God?
Well thats all fine and dandy, but you have to be level 30 first! As implied by the preceding sentence, players now advance up to level 30 as their max, however they cannot level any class past 20. This makes multi-classed characters mandatory at high levels. Levels 21-30 represent the players becoming legendary, on par with great heroes like Odysseus and Hercules. At this point it would be wise for the DM to start offering harder challenges for the now god-like players, possibly inspired by ancient mythology?
- Note - When players level up they still receive ability score increases every four levels. However this time, they choose between an ability score increase or an Epic Boon. At these levels, the ability score maximum is raised to 30, so you can now have a strength 30 barbarian. Also you gain a +7 proficiency bonus at level 24, and a +8 at level 28, just like in the original beyond level 20 rules.
(Note: This is taken directly from the Beyond level 20 rules, this is not my own work. Credit due to FatalScythe, thanks buddy.)
The Divine Spark
The entire point of this intermediary period is for the player to obtain a "Divine Spark" a mark on their soul which will allow them to transcend from the mortal realm to the world of godhood. A Divine Spark is a challenging thing to obtain, usually requiring the player to do extraordinary feats that blur the line between man and god. Mechanically, this is represented as the player passing a "Trial" a challenge that ends in the reward of a Divine Spark. Some examples include.
- Killing an existing God.
- Venturing to the heart of a place humans were never meant to go. (Divine Plane, Negative/Positive energy plane)
- DM sanctioned trial*
- These exploits should take up an entire session or more to complete, and must be challenging.
After successfully completing such a trial, the player is rewarded with a Divine Spark, however only level 30 characters may use it to ascend.
After receiving a Divine Spark and reaching level 30, a player is ready to ascend to the form of a god. To do so the player must complete a ritual in which they kill their mortal self, and through the sheer application of their will, revive as a quasi-deity. This ritual is referred to as the ascension method.
Ascension methods are different for different people, but always involve the death of the players mortal form. To preform the ascension ritual the player must find a place of great magical power, or great significance to themselves. After the player is killed (Any way), they crumple to the ground and lay there for a few seconds. When the time is up they rise up from the ashes, fire in their eyes, skin as hard as iron.
The God Form
After finishing the ritual the player must make many important changes to both his vision of his player, and his actual character sheet. First off, Gods are the idealized version of characters. As such, they generally are tall, muscular, youthful, and attractive. Next, when a player ascends, they have no gear. Gods arise effectively "Naked", so keep that in mind.
Moving away from the "Thematic" changes, players change their character sheet in these ways.
- They change their race to "God" and remove any other racial features.
- They gain a new stat known as divine rank, currently at "0".
Currently gods are divided up into 21 ranks (rank 0-20). Rank 0 gods are quasi-deities or hero deities, rank 1-5 are demi-gods, 6-10 are lesser gods, 11-15 are intermediate gods and lastly 16-20 are the greater deities. This supplement takes those guidelines and gives a more defined set of rules for when a rank changes.
The defining characteristic of what makes a god more powerful is its Divine rank, that rank is determined by an amount of worshipers giving active prayer and faith to the god. Faith is a strange thing however, there are varying degrees of faith with varying levels of output yet all creatures capable of making the decision to worship are equal. For example 10 commoners who thoroughly believe in a god grant as much worship credit as 10 clerics who have equal faith to that god and should those commoners have a higher tier of faith they grant even more than the clerics.
|Rank||Worship Credit Needed|
|0||None, Divine Spark|
Worship comes in 4 main categories and 2 outlying categories. These are Passing Faith, Belief, True Belief and Blind Faith with Quick Prayer and True Zeal as outlying categories.
Each tier of faith grants an amount of worship credit which directly translates to Divine rank.
Quick Prayer: Tier 0, no credit gain, however should a mortal repeatedly pray to a deity and then choose a level of belief a one time bonus to credit is applied in addition to the credit now earned by the new level of faith.
The quick prayer is rated from 5 to 10 by the GM depending on the frequency before conversion, this is then multiplied by the new tier of faith, the result is the bonus acquired upon conversion.
For example if a faithless commoner prays repeatedly and one day decides that the god hes been praying to hes going to devote a nightly prayer, a simple passing belief. The commoner only prayed to this god when in need so the GM decides his Quick Prayer rating is only 5, the bonus gained from someone with passing faith (T1) and a 5 Quick Prayer rating would only grant 5 bonus credit. If this commoner had given up his life savings to the church and joined a monastery and took on a vow of poverty, taking on Blind Faith (T4) the bonus credit from this conversion, albeit strange, would be 20.
Passing Faith: Tier 1, followers grant 1 credit.
Belief: Tier 2, followers grant 2 credits.
True Belief: Tier 3, followers grant 3 credits.
Blind Faith: Tier 4, followers grant 4 credits.
True Zeal: Followers with True Zeal grant 6 credits, however they often find themselves at odds with unfaithful and lesser faithful (T1&2) and without direct assistance and relative seclusion are short lived. A Quick prayer follower can, through extreme circumstances, become a True Zealot for a massive bonus.
Once credit is earned it stays for as long as the faithful remain alive. Faithful that pass away expect to go to some form of afterlife, how they get there is up to their god. Once dead the faithful stop granting divine credit, the phenomenon of an afterlife is something deities maintain only to entice living followers, because without this promise no one would worship that deity.
Effects of Divine rank
Every time a deity moves up a "Divine Rank" certain things happen.
- The players "Level Cap" moves up 5. (Meaning they can go beyond even level 30!, multiarchclassing is a good rule to implement for this.)
- They gain one "Divine Ability" from this list (https://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/SRD:Divine_Abilities)
This is it, be very careful with these rules. DMs should probably move stories away from combat as the players cannot be reasonably killed by monsters anymore.
Gods can die, if any of these conditions are met than the god is considered "Dead".
- The God loses all believers, and is considered "mythological".
- The God dies a "Heroic" death, sacrificing himself for the greater good. (Inspired by Homestuck)
- The God dies a "Just" death, after committing evils against people and being slain by a righteous hero. (Hero gains a divine spark for this.)