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How strong should a City Father Deity Be?

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  • How strong should a City Father Deity Be?

    I'm currently running a Dynastic Dragonblooded Game in my version of Cherak and I'm currently doing write ups on the City Father and his pantheon of District and Monument gods. On a scale of demonic circles, how strong should the City Father and his District Gods be for a powerful and important regional city?

  • #2
    Just guessing here, but I think they might hover in the low-to-middle Second Circle, depending on the city. That's for large, powerful cities, mind you.

    Literally any gender pronoun is fine, don't worry about it in my case.


    • #3
      Does the city have a really long and important history? Is some kind of magical Working an important part of the city (like Whitewall's mandala?) How old is the City Father? Is he as old as the city or did he step in to replace the previous City Father within the last few centuries?

      As points of comparison to earlier editions, Gri-Fel, the City Father of the Imperial City (largest city in Creation) is Essence 5. Tien-Yu, the City Mother of Lookshy (the most powerful single city-state in Creation) is Essence 6. I think those remain as fairly reasonable standards of comparison in 3rd edition.

      So generally speaking most City Fathers are probably Essence 3. City Fathers of a major city with ~100,000 people are going to be around Essence 4 or so. If the city is old particularly old or important or large (like say, Chiaroscuro or if it has a population of around a half-million) I'd make the City Father Essence 5. I would only make them Essence 6 if the city had something really unique about it, to the degree that one could make a comparison to Lookshy, and I certainly would not have a City Father exceed Essence 6 save perhaps Ameru during the height of the First Age.

      So most likely the City Father for your city should be Essence 4 or 5. So I'd make him either as strong as a particularly powerful First Circle Demon or as weak as a very weak Second Circle Demon unless there is a particularly compelling reason why he should be stronger than that.

      *EDIT* That said, you could have any god serving as the City Father you want. Sijan's City Father is a Celestial Deity who took on the job because nobody else wants it - he works as Sijan's City Father and continues to fill his other Celestial duties. Meanwhile Whitewall's "official" City Father is the Unconquered Sun himself (though he likely does not ever take a direct hand in that role). This option allows you to have a much more powerful City Father than you would normally have, if you wanted.
      Last edited by AnubisXy; 03-11-2017, 02:08 AM.


      • #4
        Generic city god stats given in 2e have them at Essence 3 with a note to adjust based upon the character of the city and the influence of the god. So a 'regular' city in Creation is gonna have an Essence 3 City God, but the big ones are liable to be E4 and E5 and sometimes with a good reason E6.

        EDIT: Something else worth noting, the Essence score of a God seems to correlate with their power in a slightly different way than it might for Demons. That is to say that a Hound of the Unbroken Earth and a Blood Ape may both be Essence 2, but the Hound seems to be a more powerful entity in terms of its broad capabilities, while a Blood Ape is dangerous but really a sort of supernatural critter.
        Last edited by Leetsepeak; 03-11-2017, 01:55 AM.

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        • #5
          I'm not meaning to be glib, but as powerful or not as your story requires. Just figure out the story of the deity and go from there.

          Maybe your god is less than a first circle demon but it's really well connected or has blackmail on a powerful elemental that serves as its body guard.

          Or they are a near celestial level good who is serving time for some unknown offence.

          Or their power reflects some key defining aspect of the city rather than the city itself and so are stronger/weaker than one might expect.

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          • #6
            My take is, very powerful within their city, much less powerful outside it. Exceptions for related business like: defending and extending their city's interests outside the city (whether in the courts and parties of Heaven or the battlefields of Creation), dealing with people from the city who are living outside of it, places outside the city which are virtually part of the city (expat quarters and embassies for the city which are elsewhere are likely places of power for them) and so on.

            Forced to phrase it in demonic circle terms, I would say a City Father / Mother for a very major city, well established city could be roughly equivalent to a weaker Third Circle, when within their city, or at least to a strong Second Circle demon.

            This said, I think there is a distinction with how gods act in Creation from how demons act in Malfeas in that:

            a) Heaven generally prohibits the gods from going around exercising arbitrary supernatural power within their domain, and forces them to respect the Mandate of Heaven. So even if you're conquering a city god's domain, then it's not going to be "Suddenly, conflict!" with a powerful supernatural unless you're doing something really crazy and profane that risks the city entirely (but if you do, you'll have a quite significant antagonist against you!).

            b) divine power is often mostly rooted in maintaining the status quo for reality, and maintaining the ordained order of things, and they tend not to be as rampantly transformative and disruptive to their environment and reality as demons, ghosts, Wyld things of the same general power are. I see most gods as having a lot of "stopping power" against any equivalent demon / Exalt / etc, but , except in unusual circumstances much fewer in the way of actual miracles and blatant magic, outside Heaven and their sanctums, and outside of the intercession of the Exalted.


            • #7
              Would that be a matter of having Charms that only affect their city's buildings or people or institutions?

              ​Hmm, I was going to make an argument against territorial specificity, but... it's already something with an example in the field guardian, and I like the execution there well enough.

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              • #8
                I would recommend defaulting them to E4 and assuming an unremarkable city god is e3. That sets them up to be frightening in their domain and potentially derive an Excellency from it too.

                I am no longer participating in the community. Please do not contact me about my previous work.