Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Saxon Clerics

For clerics of Frea, Woden, Thunor, and the rest, see either the Germanic tables in Volume II or the rules provided below. Use whatever fits best for your campaign.

Saxon Clerics
Replace the Norse magical side-effects with Saxon ones while still using the other rules for the equivalent Norse divinity. For example, a cleric of Sceadu would use Saxon magical side-effects to cast her spells along with the tenets, allowed weapons, allowed armor, holy symbols, unholy creatures, mysteries, divine tests, and spell lists for Skadi.

The Saxons also had their own, unique divinities, including Seaxnot, their national god, Eostre, and others. These magical side-effects could apply to those clerics too.

Add the seax (short sword) to the list of weapons allowed and subtract another of your choice from the equivalent Norse divinity’s list. Armor can be the same, but note that unlike Norse helms, Saxon ones generally have cheek guards and animal imagery (especially boars) inscribed upon them. Some ceremonial ones can be quite ornate and feature full face masks, as pictured above.

In any case, here is what makes Saxon clerics unique:

Saxon Magical Side-Effects
Land and duty ring true, for it honors the gods and the wights too.

1. Weregild: The gods require either a sacrifice of an animal or 1d3 gold pieces per HD of the spell’s target. Therefore, helping or harming a 3rd level individual would require a 3d3 gold piece offering if no animal is given.  All must pay their fair share and show their worth, some much more than others.

2. Weoh: Be it one of the nine herbs, the proper leys, or the local wights, the magic requires the cleric be in a natural place. If not, then he or she is tasked to get to one by the next dawn, or else undergo a divine test.

3. Symbel: The same is said now, but for a mead hall or other place of drink. Where else to make oaths, boast, and rest between battles, and thereby honor the gods with spells?

4. Scildweall: Just as it wards Saxon warriors who band together, so too does the shield wall do the same for others. If the cleric has allies on either side, then he or she gains a +2 AC bonus until they fall or depart, and should likely bear his or her own shield as well.

5-8. Generic casting: The spell works without side-effect this time.

9. Aelf-Shot: The wights charm the magic for a 50% bonus to its effect, range, or duration, but if the cleric hasn’t been respectful of them (or even to demi-humans) then he or she suffers a -2 penalty to all rolls for the next 2d4 rounds. They are blessed by the gods after all.

10. Thegn’s Oath: If the spell is done in defense of the cleric’s land, burg, lord, or in the name of keeping one’s word, then its effect, range, or duration can be increased by 50%.

11. Hearg Cast: What better place to be than one sacred to your divinity? If the cleric is standing now or has already visited such a shrine or even landscape type that matches his or her god or goddess that day, then the spell works for double effect, range, or duration. For example, mighty (and lightning prone) single trees and rocks would correspond with Dunor, wooded places with good views of the sky would match Woden, and areas of exceeding beauty and wells would fit with Frea.

12. Rune Poem: If the cleric takes the time to scribe upon the spell’s target or even in the air the extra (and very much needed) Elder Futhork runes- taking 1d3 additional rounds, then the spell works for double its effect, range or duration, as well as it not being expended that day. In addition, if the spell is meant to help its target, then they gain a +2 bonus to any rolls that match the cleric’s divinity for the next hour. For instance, Woden would grant insight and wisdom; Thunor, strength and battle-might; Frea, love-prowess and bounty.

DCC RPG Conversion notes:
Spell not expended= +2 bonus to its spell check
Wisdom= use the optional rule detailed in Volume I or apply the bonus to spellchecks and Luck.

Next week: we turn east to Gothic clerics!