IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

2 Pages V   1 2 >  
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> Holy Drek, divinity in the shadows
Crimson Jack
post Jan 27 2005, 01:16 AM
Post #1


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



I recently played in my friend's game in which we ran into a priest/bounty hunter who was working for the Catholic church. Knowing what MitS states about the origin of power, being just another form of the same magic source that all magicians tap into, we all assumed that there was nothing particularly weird about his magic other than his trappings. It wasn't until we came into contact with these ethereal angelic guardians of his that things got a little strange. Having three magicians in our group (mage, wujen, and me the houngan), and each of our characters with a decent to above average knowledge base on spirits and elementals, we thought it would be a cinch to figure out what type of spirit this was.

Well, as it turns out, the GM was writing these creatures in the game as something outside of the rules. Non-canon, no biggie. They were described well and their powers weren't broken. They were just divine... not magical. It struck me that I've never introduced the divine into Shadowrun. Mainly because it doesn't seem like the place for it, despite the fact that religion plays a role in the game world.

So, I guess my question to all of you out there is have you run across or GM'ed in the divine, in any form? I don't necessarily just mean a Judeo-Chistian God, but any divine form at all (Allah, Krishna, Greek/Roman Mythos, Norse gods, etc.). And for that matter, have you run across or GM'ed anything having to do with demons and devils or Old Scratch himself? Keep in mind that I'm not asking whether you believe in such things; rather, have they ever played a role in your games?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
James McMurray
post Jan 27 2005, 01:35 AM
Post #2


Great Dragon
*********

Group: Members
Posts: 5,430
Joined: 10-January 05
From: Fort Worth, Texas
Member No.: 6,957



I've never been in a game that featured divine powers or their agents. At least none that the GM ever let me know about. :)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
kevyn668
post Jan 27 2005, 01:59 AM
Post #3


Runner
******

Group: Members
Posts: 2,751
Joined: 8-August 03
From: Neighbor of the Beast
Member No.: 5,375



I've never seen it but I figure you could introduce the "divine" w/o any home brew. Isn't there fluff text about elementals manifesting in whatever form the summoning mage "believes" they would manifest?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tanka
post Jan 27 2005, 02:56 AM
Post #4


Chrome to the Core
******

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 3,152
Joined: 14-October 03
From: ::1
Member No.: 5,715



QUOTE (kevyn668)
I've never seen it but I figure you could introduce the "divine" w/o any home brew. Isn't there fluff text about elementals manifesting in whatever form the summoning mage "believes" they would manifest?

Yep, especially noted in Threats 2 about "The Order of the Temple."
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
kevyn668
post Jan 27 2005, 03:04 AM
Post #5


Runner
******

Group: Members
Posts: 2,751
Joined: 8-August 03
From: Neighbor of the Beast
Member No.: 5,375



Sweet. Looks like its time to start summoning air elementals that look like Sydnee Steele...
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
hahnsoo
post Jan 27 2005, 03:12 AM
Post #6


Mr. Johnson
******

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 2,587
Joined: 25-January 05
From: Berkeley, CA
Member No.: 7,014



The scope of the game does not include questions of divinity or spirituality. Unless you base an entire gaming system around the divinity of beings (In Nomine, the pantheons of various RPG systems, etc.), it is difficult to introduce such elements into a game, especially a game like Shadowrun which is based on real world cultures and recognizes the legitimacy of religions and the divine in all its trappings.

My first reaction is to dismiss the non-canon "divine angel things" as part of someone's attempt to introduce elements of another RPG system into the game, one that the GM favors (DnD, In Nomine, etc.). But then I think about things that ARE canon that don't have stats (Immortal Elves, certain Great Dragons, Faeries, the Shasta Deer, Totems, Initiate Group Avatars), and I shrug and go "meh... whatever your GM wants. It's his game." It could be in reaction to the fact that your group is a walking background count (3 mages? Sheesh.)... the GM is trying to find ideas that will challenge your magic-heavy group.

Personally, I like respecting the diversity of the setting and my group's spirituality... I feel that personifying the divine in game stats cheapens the value of spirituality (in both real life and the context of roleplaying) and reduces it to "yet another Threat". Is Heaven simply a metaplane that you can find in an Astral Quest? If it is, my character is SO there...

This isn't to say that religion isn't a good enemy/ally/concept to use in a Shadowrun game... it's a great theme to use. There is a character in the Sam Verner novels who is a monk working for the Order of St. Sylvester, who personifies how religion works in the Sixth world... even in a world of magic, faith has a place, and it is still ineffable and wonderful. By the same token, there are always those who will die for what they believe in, more so in the Sixth World than ours. My current Shadowrun campaign has introduced the Danites (based off of a shadowtalk comment in "Shadows of North America" and the version that is in Arthur Conan Doyle's "A Study in Scarlet"), a militant sect of Mormons who believe they are above sin. In the past, we've used the "Idol" totems as the European/Egyptian/Middle Eastern gods (i.e. Athena is one of the many aliases of the Wise Warrior). On another note, I think the most difficult religions to separate from magic are the Native American religions, as there is an entire magical tradition based mostly on shamanistic magic... certainly it blurs the line between what is spiritual and what is magical.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
bitrunner
post Jan 27 2005, 03:15 AM
Post #7


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 496
Joined: 28-June 02
From: Orlando FL
Member No.: 2,915



the Gencon Indy tournament this last year dealt with the forces of the catholic church, IIRC...the title of the tourney was "Kyrie Elaison" (and it did not refer to a Mr. Mister song...)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
toturi
post Jan 27 2005, 03:25 AM
Post #8


Canon Companion
**********

Group: Members
Posts: 8,021
Joined: 2-March 03
From: The Morgue, Singapore LTG
Member No.: 4,187



QUOTE (hahnsoo)
But then I think about things that ARE canon that don't have stats (Immortal Elves, certain Great Dragons, Faeries, the Shasta Deer, Totems, Initiate Group Avatars), and I shrug and go "meh... whatever your GM wants. It's his game."

Shasta Deer have stats, just that the GM has the game developers' express consent to be vague about what the Shasta deer is exactly.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
FrostyNSO
post Jan 27 2005, 06:05 AM
Post #9


Resident Legionnaire
*****

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 2,136
Joined: 8-August 04
From: Usually Work
Member No.: 6,550



I used the Primal Order capsystem once on top of Shadowrun for a "throw away" session. It was a blast.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Paul
post Jan 27 2005, 06:15 AM
Post #10


Neophyte Runner
*****

Group: Members
Posts: 2,001
Joined: 26-February 02
From: Michigan
Member No.: 1,514



In my own game, as a smal inside joke, the Catholics are the BIG good guys. They have it all right, to a point-most of the Catholics in my game tend to always be cookie cutter nice people. We find it all rather humorus.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
nezumi
post Jan 27 2005, 05:21 PM
Post #11


Incertum est quo loco te mors expectet;
*********

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 6,546
Joined: 24-October 03
From: DeeCee, U.S.
Member No.: 5,760



My lovely bride is running a game now around demons, although the exact nature of them isn't clear.

I *LOVE* to put religious themes into my games. I tend to do a lot of Catholic/Pagan stuff especially. I also tend to draw heavily on other ancient religions (Sumerian, Mayan, Native American). After all, the Horrors are linked to the Aztec religion, and since I like the horrors, it's almost necessary to bring the religion in with it as a cultural basis. Thanks to my horribly fictional version of the necronomicon, I have enough information to bring in the Babylonian/Sumerian gods as well. Ancient magic and spells are almost ALWAYS religious in my game, somehow.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
hobgoblin
post Jan 27 2005, 05:50 PM
Post #12


panda!
**********

Group: Members
Posts: 10,331
Joined: 8-March 02
From: north of central europe
Member No.: 2,242



and the reason for that is that most any magic thats described in the old texts and storys are centerd on priests and so on, all the way back to ancient egypt. only in modern times have the philosopher mage shown its head, most recently in the harry potter series.

its an idea straight out of d&d, hell gandalf and his kind is the blueprint for that kind of magic. still, if you read sillmarillion there is a aftertaste of religion of much of it.

but still, can one realy have magic without it getting a aftertaste of religion? given that magic is often centerd around rituals and symbolism, and in essence belife in what a person is doing, how can one avoid it turning into a religion of sorts?

the hermetic tradition gets its name from the alcymists of europe right?
given that any form of technology will be seen as magic to someone that is religious and uneducated one can guess that the magicans where in reality alcymists that was walking around with small smokebombs and similar in secret pockets, and had trained themselfs in the art of palming items. basicly the forfather to todays illusionists. but in addition to useing their skills to entertain they used them to grant themselfs protection and mystery.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Gyro the Greek S...
post Jan 27 2005, 06:52 PM
Post #13


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 384
Joined: 18-August 03
From: North VA
Member No.: 5,519



Thankfully, I think the developers left a nice space for you to drop in divine elements, should you want, or not.

I just finished up a crossover WoD game that dealt with the 'end of the world' as it were, and the divine implications therein. I didn't choose Shadowrun as the setting because I would have had to do a lot more working and twisting to see how divinity interacted with magic and cybertech. Not to mention all the theological questions I would feel I would need to answer, if just for my own internal consistancy: why show up at the time of the campaign? Where has the divine been in the meantime? Why is it being so terribly subtle about things? Other systems provide a lot more usable information for the above. Shadowrun would have to be from scratch.

Though that would certainly be an interesting campaign to see. If anyone has/does run a Shadowrun game with heavy elements of divinity, I'd like to hear about it.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Crimson Jack
post Jan 27 2005, 07:17 PM
Post #14


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



Interesting. I think I've always stayed away from religious overtones due to the diversity of players in my group. I would hate for a kick ass game to have a sour note in it due to someone's beliefs, or lack thereof, conflicting with the game's story. So, while there is the inclusion of religious elements, I keep the divine out of the game, if that makes sense. Magic is magic is magic. Nothing is holy or evil as far as my game is concerned.

The game I play in however, tends to go the other direction. And yes, we are a magic heavy group. It makes for some hairy encounters, but normally the GM tailors the run to our fortes. Nothing is ever out of balance... really. ;)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
nezumi
post Jan 27 2005, 08:22 PM
Post #15


Incertum est quo loco te mors expectet;
*********

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 6,546
Joined: 24-October 03
From: DeeCee, U.S.
Member No.: 5,760



I've really not had anyone complain about religion in any of my games. The 'bad guy' religions are ancient ones no one practices, and the rest I do my research on beforehand. The Catholic priest is a good guy in his eyes. He knows his stuff, and he does well by Catholic standards. The gypsy is good in his eyes. He knows his stuff, and does well by the Romani standards. When they meet each other, they don't get along especially well, but I try not to portray either religion as better or worse than the other. I try to portray them as they try to portray themselves.

Of course, there are always fallen Catholics and reformed Romani, but that's a different story. Those are character flaws, and good players will recognize it's a reflection of the character and not the religion.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Crimson Jack
post Jan 27 2005, 08:40 PM
Post #16


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



Hmm, I don't know about the "good players" synopsis. I have one player who roleplays better than most people that I've run across, has the rules down tight, and almost always makes the game better just because of his presence. However, the guy hates God and any religion which requires its practitioners to be subserviant to an almight power. Thus, when deific elements are introduced into his fantasy time, he about busts a nut with his sighs and rolling of eyes. It detracts a bit from what would otherwise be a rockin' game.

This is the main reason why I sculpt my games towards the tastes of the group and not attempt for them to be okay with my lenient tastes towards an appreciation of all world religions. When a player's disgust of something is on par with the disdain that people might show towards other disturbing elements (rape comes to mind), its best just to not go there. I don't think less of him as a player, I just write around this hot button.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Req
post Jan 27 2005, 08:43 PM
Post #17


Avatar of Mediocrity
**

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 725
Joined: 26-February 02
From: Seattle, WA (err, UCAS)
Member No.: 277



If I ever end up playing again, I have a real hankerin' to play a young catholic priest who runs a small mission / soup kitchen in the barrens, who happens to be an conjurer adept. Banishin' demons and summonin' guardian angels. Plus it would be very, very interesting to have such a moral individual around, given the proclivities of my players...

If nothing else, he's sure to show up as an NPC at some point.

edit: when religious themes show up in my game, my players love it. We all kinda miss the mysticism and religious overrtones of a good fantasy game - not enough to go back to D&D for it, though. :)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Crimson Jack
post Jan 27 2005, 08:50 PM
Post #18


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



QUOTE (Req)
not enough to go back to D&D for it, though. :)

heh, no kidding.

By the way, Req, are you familiar with the Prime Runner Hoodlum Priest?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Lindt
post Jan 27 2005, 09:19 PM
Post #19


Man In The Machine
*****

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 2,264
Joined: 26-February 02
From: I-495 S
Member No.: 1,105



QUOTE (toturi)
Shasta Deer have stats, just that the GM has the game developers' express consent to be vague about what the Shasta deer is exactly.

*clueless newbie face* What ARE Shasta Deer exactly...another of SRs great mysteries? Something I missed?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Crimson Jack
post Jan 27 2005, 09:23 PM
Post #20


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



According to Critters, they resemble mule deer. Highly intelligent creatures and linked with the forest and her inhabitants. It says that they may be forest spirits, free spirits or shapechangers themselves, if the GM decides.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Cynic project
post Jan 27 2005, 11:05 PM
Post #21


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,032
Joined: 6-August 04
Member No.: 6,543



Well, let's think on this one rather deeply. If we were to say that one type of religion is right and the other is wrong, then what do we judge them by? I really have no problem with putting divine powers into any game, but you have to remember that it could be argued that that Bible is nothing but a set of fantasy stories, put together in the form of a book. That they are no more right or wrong than the other books about the Roman gods.

So, I would be asking your GM, why would the cult of Jesus have any more right to be divine than the fallower of Crow?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Req
post Jan 27 2005, 11:09 PM
Post #22


Avatar of Mediocrity
**

Group: Dumpshocked
Posts: 725
Joined: 26-February 02
From: Seattle, WA (err, UCAS)
Member No.: 277



QUOTE (Crimson Jack)
By the way, Req, are you familiar with the Prime Runner Hoodlum Priest?

I am now... Jeez, what an awesome character. Sometimes I forget just how much Prime Runners rocks.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Crimson Jack
post Jan 28 2005, 12:24 AM
Post #23


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,129
Joined: 11-June 03
From: Tir Tairngire
Member No.: 4,712



QUOTE (Cynic project)
Well, let's think on this one rather deeply. If we were to say that one type of religion is right and the other is wrong, then what do we judge them by? I really have no problem with putting divine powers into any game, but you have to remember that it could be argued that that Bible is nothing but a set of fantasy stories, put together in the form of a book. That they are no more right or wrong than the other books about the Roman gods.

So, I would be asking your GM, why would the cult of Jesus have any more right to be divine than the fallower of Crow?

I think I understand you're trying to say. I believe what the GM was trying to do was to introduce a different type of spirit-equivalent force into the game, not say that one was right and one was wrong. I think it would feel about the same as if an alien and crew appeared in a cloaked spaceship in the game. Not one of the playable races or anything we might see on a regular basis in the game world, but possessing skills and abilities that mirrored ours with possibly different special powers.

And for the record, he wasn't trying to make the angelic creatures seem divine... that's just what I extrapolated from the encounter. From the way they were unclassifiable, we all got the idea that there was something supernatural about them. He did something similar with a run he wrote involving Kali, so he isn't discriminating against anyone or any belief system.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
mattness pl
post Feb 6 2005, 03:15 PM
Post #24


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 216
Joined: 6-August 03
From: Polish Ghetto
Member No.: 5,342



Funny thing. I've just read[EDIT: WROTE] a SR short story (in polish only :(). I want to emerge Angels in similiar manner as in the movie "God's Army".
And Idea of free spirits in angel-like form is not that what I'm looking for. IMO in that matter SR cannon is too strict :cry:
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Smiley
post Feb 6 2005, 09:47 PM
Post #25


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,102
Joined: 23-March 04
From: The Grizzly Grunion, in a VIP room.
Member No.: 6,191



QUOTE (Cynic project)
If we were to say that one type of religion is right and the other is wrong, then what do we judge them by? I really have no problem with putting divine powers into any game, but you have to remember that it could be argued that that Bible is nothing but a set of fantasy stories, put together in the form of a book. That they are no more right or wrong than the other books about the Roman gods.

So, I would be asking your GM, why would the cult of Jesus have any more right to be divine than the fallower of Crow?

I'm so glad someone else on the planet shares similar beliefs.

Anyhoo, back in Shadowrun, if all the religions and totems and aspects are a means to tap into the same source of power, there already IS religion in the game, in one form or another. It also puts all the religions on the same level, so to speak, because if there's one source of power, the strength of the belief system is based solely on the strength of the one using it. An inter-faith duel wouldn't be won based on who REALLY has God on their side, but on which duelist is more in tune with his faith, and therefore able to call on more power from the one source.

...but perhaps I'm thinking waaaaaay too much into this.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

2 Pages V   1 2 >
Reply to this topicStart new topic

 



RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 14th April 2024 - 07:35 AM

Topps, Inc has sole ownership of the names, logo, artwork, marks, photographs, sounds, audio, video and/or any proprietary material used in connection with the game Shadowrun. Topps, Inc has granted permission to the Dumpshock Forums to use such names, logos, artwork, marks and/or any proprietary materials for promotional and informational purposes on its website but does not endorse, and is not affiliated with the Dumpshock Forums in any official capacity whatsoever.