Friday, November 7, 2014


I remember having Chaotic Evil described to me as basically just being the criminally insane. Looking back, though, I think that was a gross misunderstanding. First of all, that's a terrible misrepresentation of mental illness: even psychopaths function well in a structured system they can manipulate. It seems like labeling Chaotic Evil people "raving lunatics" is just a convenient way of dismissing a group of people who might otherwise have a legitimate grief with their government and a Machiavellian approach to solving that problem. Revolution is a bloody affair.

That said, my Chaotic Evil deities are all about explosions and ending existence.
Banemae is the God of Destruction, formerly the God of Change. After all, what is an explosion if not rapid change?

He's the last God of Magic, completing the common naming scheme: Palindae, Neoindae, and Banemae. Their names were crafted to hint at their natures: "Palin-" sounds like "paladin," "Neoin" is kind of like "neutral" or something, and "Bane-" is spelled like the word "bane," though I pronounce is "BAH-neh-may."

As the only Chaotic God of Magic, Banemae is the first to fight back violently when the world inevitably begins to turn against magic users in the never-ending cycle of acceptance and rejection. Likewise, his preferred schools of magic are best suited to violence: Evocation and Enchantment. Enchantment is sort of Banemae's concession to diplomacy, as controlling people through magic is as close as Banemae comes to that skill. When that fails, explosions will have to suffice.

Banemae's followers dress in black robes, which among magicians is a sign of good taste and formality. His followers include both pyromaniacs and researchers with a genuine interest in studying the schools of Enchantment and Evocation. Both of those schools of which have many practical, non-destructive uses, by the way. Inappropriately violent and destructive mages are generally exiled from magical institutions shared by followers of Palindae and Neoindae.

Banemae was one of the three active deities in my second campaign, when all other deities had disappeared. Like Milana and Khan, Banemae's true nature was sort of diluted to suit whatever it needed to. Milana simply became The Goddess, Khan became simply The Forger, and Banemae became simply The Destroyer. As "The Destroyer," Banemae was the patron of all military and mercenary groups, including a sect of paladins. He was also technically the only remaining God of Magic, but that aspect was downplayed during that age, which was when the realm was at its least magical. In the age prior, mages had ruled the world with an iron fist, and the age ended when the people finally rose up, slew their rulers, and systematically destroyed as many magical artifacts in the realm as they could. By the time my second campaign began, institutional hatred of magic was only just beginning to wane.

The final deity in my pantheon is Zoc, the God of Nothingness, formerly the God of Purity. As it turns out, purity is an impossible standard. It's at best a goal to strive for internally, though Zoc eventually reached a different conclusion: the only purity is the Void, the absence of existence. All of creation, both material and spiritual, are destined to end. No world, no afterlife, no light, and no darkness. Nothingness. That is purity.

This puts Zoc at odds with every other deity, all of which are quite attached to existence. Even the ones who might only wish to watch the world burn generally want there to actually be a world to burn. However, most deities simply ignore Zoc, since he does not seem to be interested in fighting. He is simply patiently waiting for the inevitable.

Zoc has very few followers, as neither definition of purity is terribly palatable to the vast majority of people. Still, Zoc seems to have no problem with assisting people whose goal is to find personal purity of mind and body, no matter how futile the effort. Likewise, there are those who seek the "purify the world" on Zoc's behalf, a likewise futile gesture that Zoc is nonetheless amused by and willing to lend his support toward.

There was, in fact, a group that managed to create an artifact that could erase a person from existence, even from the memories of those who knew them. They were defeated, though, and only a few know what happened to that artifact, and even fewer know how many people ceased to exist because of it.

In any case, Zoc has never played an active part in any of my campaigns so far, though his actions have certainly been felt in subtle ways.

1 comment:

  1. Reading the Broken Empire series right now. Best execution of a chaotic evil protagonist I've seen.