Lords of Creation

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Hello everyone,

Lords of Creation is back with a dramatically changed ruleset.  We're hoping to start in the next week or so, but, as always, players are welcome to join us at any time.

Lords of Creation is a collaborative world-building game in which players play as the Gods of their world.  Through their interactions, they form the basis of a unique and ever-evolving campaign setting, complete with unique dungeons, nations, monsters and world-shattering threats.  Best of all, the history of the campaign setting is totally organic; every ancient war, long dead race and primordial event has been played through, not just made up.

Rules are in the sblock for your perusal, and the OOC thread is here: LoC OOC Thread 

Lords of Creation is a collaborative world building game. The idea is that, at the end, you'll have a fun campaign setting, complete unique dungeons, gods, and monsters (and more). The world starts empty, but players, in the role of gods, shape it until it is as interesting as Ravenloft or Spelljammers.

Joining the Game
Interested in joining? Great, we'd love to have you. Drop us a note in the OOC thread, suggest what kind of god you want to play (such as god of war), and read through the IC thread. We'll let you know when you can start (the wait is usually short).

Creating your deity
When it comes time to create your deity, you will need fill in the form below and post it to the OOC thread:

Holy Symbol:

Keep in mind, the domain you list may not be the domain you get (see the FAQ for more details). Under Misc, it can be helpful to give a few quick lines describing what kind of god you are aiming for. This helps other players interact with your god in a satisfying manner.

You will need to determine how you wish to enter the game: you can "self-ascend," or you can be "begotten."

Begotten gods are created by others. Once you get the go-ahead, a god already in game must perform a "Beget" action to create you. They'll create or assign you your starting domain (we try to be accomodating even then). The gods who performed the beget action are your "family" (estrangement is acceptable). Begetted gods start out at Divine Rank 2.

In contrast, self-ascended gods make themselves. They have no divine parents or family. In this situation, your starting domain is the one you feel the world is ready for or needs. Once you get the go-ahead, you can start posting immediately. Self-ascended gods start out at Divine Rank 1.

Divine Ranks
All gods have ranks, which gives a single number that helps illustrate how powerful two gods are in comparison to each other. Divine rank is increased upon reaching certain XP thresholds. Below is a list of these ranks, and it is arranged by Level, Title, base PP per turn, and amount of XP needed for 1 Ability Point.

Lvl1 Ancestral Spirit, 1PP/turn- 1XP/1AP*
Lvl2 House God, 2PP/turn- 1XP/1AP**
Lvl3 Demi God, 3PP/turn - 3XP/1AP
Lvl4 Lesser Deity, 4PP/turn -3XP/1AP
Lvl5 Greater Deity, 5PP/turn -5XP/1AP
Lvl6 Major God, 6PP/turn -5XP/1AP
Lvl7 Overdeity, 7PP/turn -7XP/1AP***

*Self-Ascended gods start here
**Begetted gods start here
***There can only be one overdeity at a time. If two or more gods occupy this level, only one gets the 7PP/turn bonus, but all must pay 7XP to get 1AP. Gods must fight for the title to claim the bonus.

Divine Attributes, Ability Points (AP) and XP
No two gods are alike. Some Gods may call up mountains from the deep seas, others may fill the woodland with creatures and still others might tirelessly labor to produce artifacts that do extraordinary things.

In this game, the more a god uses an action, the better he/she will become at performing that action in the future. XP is an attribute that is tied to PP spent for a class of actions. As XP is gained, it will produce an Ability Point (AP) that will 'level up' the associated attribute.

Combat is the one attribute which gains XP in a different manner. Gods gain 1 XP (a turn) whenever they attack, defend, or assist in combat.

There are two other ways of gaining XP. The admin may award extra XP at their discresion (such as for particularly good RPing). The second is by begetting another god. While Begetting counts towards the Empower attribute below, in addition, participating in begetting a god awards 1 XP, which the player may place in any attribute.

Domain - Gods are the patrons of various things, from the very large (Light, Fire) to the very small (Bards, Gnomes). Your domain forms the core of your deity's being. Each turn, a domain generates a single PP that can only be spent on an action related to that domain. Taking levels in this attribute allows a god to gain another domain for each level (e.g. 2 domains each with a 1 PP bonus) or to further empower a currently held domain (e.g. 1 domain with a 2 PP bonus). Note: You are still required to craft the domain you wish to place into this slot (see Actions, below).
Generate - The ability to create life and fantastical objects with your willpower.  For each AP you posess in this attribute, you gain 1 PP to be spent each turn on Shape, Spawn and Forge actions.
Impose - The ability to make bend the thinking and unthinking to your will. For each AP you posess in this attribute, you gain 1 PP to be spent each turn on Command, Guide and Craft actions.
Empower - The ability to take something and fill it with energy. For each AP you posess in this attribute, you gain 1 PP to be spent each turn on Nourish, Beget and Harm actions.
Combat - Taking levels in this attribute makes you more capable in combat situations. For each level, you gain a +1 modifier to your combat score (see Combat or FAQs, below)

Power Points
Power Points (PP) are what you use to perform divine acts, like making mountains or creating monsters. PP comes from two sources: your gods base PP level and your attributes.

Every god gets a few base PP, based on their divine rank. These can be used towards any and all actions.

Attributes give bonus PP each turn that can only be spent on actions related to that attribute (see above)

The following is a list of the divine actions that a deity can perform and their base cost. All actions can be modified to have an increased or decreased effect with an associated increased or decreased cost. Examples are given when the different tiers of power may not be clear.

Nourish (1 PP) - This promotes life. It can turn a desert into a forest or produce basic flora and fauna. At higher levels it either has a wider area of effect or it can create valuable resources (see Resources, below).

Harm (1 PP) - This creates disasters, like tornados or plagues or it can make environments harsher. It can also initiate divine conflict.

Command (2PP) - This bends part of the world to your will, thereby raising a mountain range, or commanding a great forest to uproot itself and travel across a continent. Different levels cover different sized regions.

Guide (2PP) - Guide actions subtly influences the behaviors of mortals. This can cause them to adopt a mundane technology, learn a new character class, or go to war. At a lesser level (1PP) it can influence benign cultural traits, like their popular entertainment. At greater levels (3PP) it can grant fantastical technologies, like flying ships (see below for details on technologies).

Spawn (2PP) - This action produces animals and monsters that provide a challenge to mortals, and which are relatively uncommon throughout the world. Lower levels produce more common but weaker beasts, while higher levels create rarer but more powerful ones.

Shape (3PP) - This creates a sentient race that is native to the plane and environment it was created in. For example, Angels created in the prime material plane are, for the purposes of this setting, normal, mundane creatures. At this level, races are relatively average. At lower levels, they tend towards having larger populations but are individually weaker, and vice versa at higher levels.

Beget (3PP) - This gives birth to a new deity. This deity will be the character for a new player. The deity's domain is taken from your own, free and pre-existing and availible for claiming, or is created on the spot. At lower levels it can produce exarchs (lesser characters for you to play) or legendary mortal heroes neither of which need domains.

Forge (2PP) - This action creates something that is part mundane and part divine, such as an artifact that shrouds a continent in an impassible storm, or a small demiplane defined and controlled by its creator. At a lower level, this creates legendary mortal artifacts. At a higher level it can produce full planes or powerful artifacts that can affect the gods.

Craft (2PP) - Creates or formalizes a concept fundamental to the universe. These can be claimed as domains, or they can be free floating concepts. At this level, the action produces fundamentals domains, like Fire. Lower levels produce more specific domains, while higher levels produce more generalized ones.

Resources and Technologies
Mortal races flourish based on the resources availible to them and the technology to properly harness those resources.  

While all populaces can utilize the technology of their day and age, some nations are known for their handiwork. If a god performs 2PP guide action, the race they bestow their blessing on is now an expert at that skill. Fantastical technologies, like creating airships, is a 3PP guide action.

Likewise, all races have some access to the resources necessary to go about their daily lives. A god may create a particularly rich resource, however, using a 2PP Nourish action (or a 3PP one for "fantastic" resources like mithril). All resources must be tied to a specific point in the world (mithral might be only found in the mines of Moria, for example).

Both 2+ PP techs and 2+ PP resources give the civilization a +1 bonus (each) to civilization strength (see the Combat section for more information). If a tech and a resource are paired together (iron-working with an iron deposit, for instance), an extra +1 Synergy bonus is added to the civilization strength as well. If a fantastical tech and resource are matched, it grants a +2 Synergy bonus.

The game is divided into three Ages, and each age lasts about 3 months of real time (about 12 turns in game). In the first age, Spawns are 1 PP less expensive than listed (although there is a minimum cost of 1 PP). After the first age, creating new full planes and parallel planes is doubled in cost. Afte the second age, creating continents is likewise doubled in cost.

Also, each age has an associated general "tech level." Players may, for free, define the specific tech level of a people-group as they wish. However, mortals who have had a tech specifically taught to them through a guide action are considered to be far better at it than those who have not. It is possible to teach technologies suited to future ages, but that takes a powerful Guide action (same with fantastical technologies).

The general tech levels of the ages are:
1st = Classical
2nd = Medieval
3rd = Renaissance/Enlightenment

These tech levels may change based on play and player preference.

Player Characters:
Players always control a deity. They can also create secondary player characters, such are mortals or Exarchs, but these do not produce PP. Keep in mind that the game represents time from a divine perspective, while mortals age and die, generally within a turn or two.

Divine combat occurs when two or more gods come into conflict. This can be a physical confrontation, a verbal debate, a trick, etc. Ideally, combat should be planned in the OOC, but if the conflict is necessary and players can't agree, then there are rules to arbitrate the matter (see the FAQ's below).

Here are a few suggestions for what might occur when a god wins/loses a conflict.
Trophy: Claim ownership of one artifact, or force into your service one exarch (still RP'ed by the original owner)
Domain: Gain dual-ownership of one domain from the loser (or, with original player's permission, sole ownership)
Inhibit: Prevent the loser from performing a specific sort of action (action cost increased by 1 for the loser)
Imprison: Confine the loser to a specific location, plane, etc. (does not prevent the prisoner from using PP)
Maime: Alter the loser's physical appearance through violence (take their eye, hand, etc)
Liberation: reclaim a lost artifact, exarch, domain, break an inhibition or a prison, or undo a maime.

Likewise, conflict can occur between two civilizations. This might be a war, a trade dispute, or cultural subversion. Rules arbitrating these conflicts are also found below. Note: You can only attack a specific nation once per turn. Attacking multiple turns in a row (regardless of target) results in war weariness, which increases the guide PP cost to start conflict by 1 (cumulative). War weariness recedes at the rate it accumulates.

Here are some suggestions for what might occur if a nation bests another nation.
Tribute: Receive the benefit from one resource that the losing nation possesses.
Annex: Take a chunk of land from the losing nation (size generally should scale with how much you won by) or convert the population there in to a particular belief system
Unrest: Cause the collapse of the current government in the losing nation
Knowledge: Steal a tech from the losing nation
Liberation: Remove the oppresion of past wars (stops tribute, regains annex, stills unrest)

FAQs and other details

Q1) Are there any restrictions on what sort of domains I can choose/create?
A2) Only minor ones. Generally, you can't take a domain that is already being held by someone else, and you can't take a domain that doesn't make sense for a specific god to have (for example, while there might be a god of arcane magic, it doesn't make much sense for there to be a god of divine magic). Generally, though, you'll rarely if ever bump up against these restrictions.

Q2) Can I save PP between turns?
A2) Yes! However, this is not automatic: you must post during the week and specificially state how much PP you are storing, and from where (are you saving your Base PP or an Attribute PP?)

Q3) Who are the admins?
A3) Topheh and Camu. Of particular note, Camu is an impartial admin in that he does not have a normal character in game, and thus has no invested interest in one outcome or another ingame.

Q4) What is this "Elder Thing"?
A4) That is Camu's character (I said he didn't have a normal character in game, not that he didn't have a character). The Elder Thing generally doesn't take actions, but serves as a way for Camu (and in turn, the admins) to do special things in game, like award bonus XP in a non-metagame way.

Q5) What are the rules for combat?
A5) So glad you asked:

divine combat

God 1's Total Combat Score v God 2's Total Combat Score, tie goes to the attacker.

Total Combat Score=Divine Rank+Combat Rank+2 for Demiplane Bonus (if any)+Related PP from appropriate domains+2 per god assisting

mortal combat

Nation 1's Total Combat Score v Nation 2's Total Combat Score, tie goes to the defender

Total Combat Score=Original Shape AP+Age Modifier (if any)+Techs+Resources+Synergy+Related PP from appropriately-domained Gods

Age modifier is for particularly powerful or numberous races.
Races created by a 3PP shape action are average and do not receive a benefit.
2PP races produce rapidly, and thus receive a +1 combat bonus per age in the game (thus, if a race is created in the 2nd age, in the third age they get a +1 combat bonus).
4PP races are powerful but reproduce poorly. In later ages they are outnumbers by other races and as such receive a -1 combat bonus per age in the game (thus, if created in the 2nd age, they have a -1 bonus in the third age).

Q6: How are levels actually determined?
A6: It is recommended that players don't actually look at this information (it leads to metagaming), but if you really really really want to know...

Divine Levels

PP/XP= how much PP has to be spent to earn 1 XP.
XP/AP= how many XP are needed ot earn 1 AP.
ReqAP= How many AP a god needs before they reach this level/

Lvl1 4 PP/XP, 1 XP/AP, 0 ReqAP (Self-Ascended gods start here)
Lvl2 5 PP/XP, 1 XP/AP, 0/1 ReqAP (Begetted gods start here, Self-Asceded gods need 1AP to reach this level).
Lvl3 6 PP/XP, 3 XP/AP, 3 ReqAP
Lvl4 7 PP/XP, 3 XP/AP, 5 ReqAP
Lvl5 8 PP/XP, 5 XP/AP, 7 ReqAP
Lvl6 9 PP/XP, 5 XP/AP, 9 ReqAP
Lvl7 10 PP/XP, 7 XP/AP, 11ReqAP *
*  There can only be one overdeity at a time.  All Gods which reach this level must pay 10 PP for 1 XP, and 7 XP for 1AP, but only one God may gain the PP/week bonus. Gods must fight for the title to claim it.