Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Nuts & Bolts #88 - Hacking the Cypher System - Perceiving the Divine

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Author's note: This is written as a Gods of the Fall piece, but I fully expect that people will be hacking the dominion rules in due time for other game uses, therefore this is presented as a "Hacking the Cypher System" article. 

Most every divine creature or being can recognize other divine creatures (and sometimes objects) by the presence of their divine aura. Normally invisible to mortals this aura is always visible to other creatures imbued with divine energy. This ensures that divine recognize divine and creates a means for creatures and characters to come into conflict or recognize artifacts and allies.

This naturally relies on sight or perhaps some kind of divine sense that most perceive as sight since Tarans are blind and yet are not mentioned as being unable to perceive divine auras. Given the controversial nature of the divine in the Afterworld it would seem that even among other divine beings some might wish to go unnoticed. It's probably not an easy task learning to hide one's aura, but doing so may well be worthwhile for some gods to be looking to avoid trouble with the Reconciliators and Nulumriel
Tier 3 Dominion Ability: Divest Divinity (3 pool points)
The character completely divests their divine nature for a time, during which any attempt to perceive their divine aura will automatically fail and the character will appear as a normal mortal. While so divested the character also loses access to all other Dominion Abilities and all of their Divine Shifts; for all intents and purposes they are mortal for as long as they choose to be so. 10 actions to initiate. 1 action per tier to deactivate.
 Of course while some gods are developing ways to hide themselves even from other divines others understand that restoring Elanehtar is not a one-deity job. Instead they work on expanding their ability to discern other divines and divinely touched objects and seek them out. For some this may come in the form of seeing trailing wisps of divine auras, for others it may involve literally scenting out divines, while others may hear phantom sounds that others cannot.
Tier 3 Dominion Ability: Aura Discernment (4 pool points)
The character's perceptions of divinity expand and allow other senses to detect traces of divinity. A divine creature or object will leave a trail of residue of their divine aura that the character can track. Tracking a divine aura is a level 4 task, increasing the older the trail is. Residue of a divine aura will fade after about one week. Action, to initiate, duration of 1 hour.
In addition studying the divine aura of a creature or object can reveal information like dominion, presence and type of divine shifts, and if their fate has been tied to another in the form of a pantheon or prophecy. Such discernment is a task equal to the level of the creature or object or the tier of the player character for most information. Action.
Those are just a couple of ideas for new dominion style abilities. Let me know if you like them and use them. If you have ideas of your own I'd love to hear them.