[RPG] god of hating tyrannical gods or a god of hating magic?


Are there any deities that my character would worship with his current beliefs? I am looking for any canon D&D 3.5e deity that hates other deities for abusing their power, or that hates the use of magic.

The character's beliefs

I just need a deity that my character would likely follow, in his current circumstances.

  • My character sees all combat magic as the ultimate insult to life — using what's something made to create to harm others — hence he has forsaken all spellcasting.
  • He believes that most (but not all) of the deities are corrupt and abuse their gift of power to further themselves instead of their followers or domain of responsibility. He believes that only the first deities, the overdeities, have the right to use their gift however they please.
  • He plans on becoming a deity himself eventually, one that keeps the others in check.

His hate stems from him being betrayed by his god, Alexia god of magic. Alexia claimed to be good, but acted good only in front of him and tricked him into furthering their desire for world domination.

At the time he was a paladin of Alexia. When he found out the truth, he confronted the god, at which point his wife and children were enslaved, part of his soul was taken, his body changed to a Humanoid beast, his title of paladin was stripped from him, and killed by the Alexia. Later on he was revived by what he assumes to be an overdeity. Ever since then, he’s sworn to destroy the god of magic he once worshiped.

The setting and game

The setting is a world my DM spent a lot of time creating; it's basically a mix of multiple settings. The god Alexia is a DMPC turned god, but we do have canon deities as well, so that’s why I ask if there’s a canon deity I can use.

We use any book as long as it aligns with 3.5. If a close enough deity can be found, I may be able to talk the DM into allowing them to exist in the world purely for my character to worship.

And for the record, this is an epic campaign.

I’m looking for a deity that has the same beliefs as my character does now, and that my character would be willing to worship.

What deity would my character worship? I’ve found nothing on any deities that align with his beliefs.

Best Answer

It seems very unlikely that this character worships a deity.

D&D deities are inherently tied to magic and spellcasting—granting divine spells to clerics and other divine spellcasters is a defining feature of a deity in D&D—as in, if you don’t do that, you aren’t a deity. Granting spells is part of the definition. If this character worships any deity, they would have to ignore that very important point.

By the same token, I do not believe there is any official deity who is opposed to all magic. Deities are magic in D&D, and so that would be a rather self-hating portfolio for a deity to have, and while self-hating deities are not unheard of in D&D, I am not aware of, and have been unable to find, any antimagic deity. I have done several searches and sought out the advice of one of the foremost D&D loremasters on the internet, to no avail.

I am not surprised at this lack of results.

Fundamentally, D&D 3.5e describes a monumentally high-magic world

Magic is everywhere in D&D 3.5e, and its effects are reliable, convenient, and immensely powerful. We tend to think of D&D in terms of our favorite fantasy novels, from Lord of the Rings up to the present, but in reality almost no fantasy novels (that I’m familiar with) have nearly so much magic available. Lord of the Rings certainly doesn’t. The works of Jack Vance, that D&D spellcasting is based on, also don’t (Vance’s spells are immensely powerful, it’s true, but they are also difficult to use and can only be used in tightly-limited amounts—those restrictions didn’t really make it into 3.5).

This is relevant because this is the world that the character lives in, one with convenient, reliable, powerful magic all around. This is the world that the first deities created, assuming they did, and even if not it’s the world they are part of, that they get all their power from. They are, presumably, entirely on board and in favor of this kind of high-magic world. It seems doubtful that these deities agree with the character about whether magic has been “misused,” since they are part and parcel with that use and the rules governing it. Typically, overdeities would be capable of not offering magic to any other creatures (eliminating deities along with the wizards), which would not be a world that runs well in the D&D 3.5e ruleset but narratively isn’t hard to imagine. The overdeities have not done this, and that’s telling.

So in addition to ignoring the magic and spells associated with any deity this character personally worships, they also have to ignore the fact that the presumed overdeity is also presumably tied into the setting’s magic and spells. In most settings, an overdeity is the ultimate source of all magic in the setting, which means that, ultimately, Alexia’s management of magic is a position delegated to her by this same overdeity. It’s not impossible, in many D&D settings, for a deity to act out in defiance of an overdeity, or for an overdeity to want to influence things indirectly, through agents like your character, but that character still has to reconcile their revulsion to magic with the fact that their patron literally embodies all magic in the world, along with everything else, and has chosen to share that magic with those the character considers unworthy.

The overdeity probably does not want the character to succeed, at least not fully

The overdeities are presumably not interested in having magic eliminated from the world. It may have a problem with the particular god of magic at the moment, but that implies that it wants a replacement, not to eliminate the position altogether. That also may not jive with the character’s beliefs. The overdeities chose to share their magic in the first place; they therefore do not seem to agree that only they should be allowed to use it.

Alternatives to a deity

Characters in D&D are not beholden to worship a deity, at least not in most settings (the Forgotten Realms is an exception here). Even divine spellcasters like clerics can worship an ideal rather than a deity—and that sounds more like this character, since the ideal of reserving magic only for the first deities seems far more motivating for this character than does the tenets of any particular deity (who would almost-by-definition oppose that goal).

D&D 3.5e is incredibly broad, though, so there are some options for mechanically benefiting from having a problem with the gods. Some of these may also offer useful narrative ideas for your character, even if you don’t pursue them mechanically:

  • Ironically, arcane magic. Arcane magic in D&D is typically understood to be characters directly interfacing with the, ahem, arcane rules of the cosmos they live in, weaving the magic that is all around them since they live in a high-magic world. This is, in a sense, one of the most direct ways for a mortal to use the magic given to him (and everyone else) by the creation of the setting. If a character objects to deities misusing their power, and favors the original deities over the others, using arcane magic is a way to bypass the offending deities and be closer to the original plan for magic in the world.

  • Psionics. Psionics are the power of the mind, of the self, rather than any external source. Potentially very appropriate for a character seeking to become a deity themselves under their own power—if your power must be yours, it should be psionic. I actually once wrote a homebrew psionic prestige class that ended in apotheosis.

  • Ur-priest. This prestige class from Complete Divine steals the divine spells that deities are intending to grant to their clerics, and is probably the ultimate anti-deity class in the game. One of my favorite characters of all time is an ex-paladin/ur-priest who was likewise betrayed by their church and faith.

    Also, as a neat bonus, ur means “first” and could represent a kind of closeness to the first gods. I am reminded of a fun character concept for subtly altering the ur-priest flavor:

    Cleric: In the name of Bane, I wield the lightning of Thor!

    Wizard: Wait what

    Cleric: Well, I like Bane. I'm not going to use up his lightning, I mean, then Bane would have less lightning. Seems like a bit of a jerk move, to use up all your god's lightning.

    An ur-priest could easily be fluffed as a champion of the first gods (whether they want that champion or not) stealing power back from Alexia.

  • Pact magic. Binders from Tome of Magic contract with vestiges, which are... spirits, kind of, except they don’t really exist. They have memories and personalities and awareness, but they have been shunted outside of reality (and not particularly into another reality à la the Far Realms), and allow binders to use their powers in exchange for the ability to ride along with the binder and experience existence again, albeit briefly and without control. The abilities they gain are supernatural, but not spells; in a sense they’re quite different. Probably more appropriate for a character that has a problem with all gods rather than one who likes a few of them.

  • For completeness’s sake, the forsaker exists. This prestige class from Masters of the Wild is about the only stridently anti-magic class in the game, and has a code of ethics that refuses to use them. It destroys magic items to fuel its powers. It is also really, really, really, really bad. D&D 3.5e is a system that relies on its extensive and commonplace magic to function. The forsaker does not fit within that system at all, and it shows. The class is barely functional, and makes not only the forsaker itself, but also its entire party, considerably weaker. Please do not play this class.