Today I’ll start digging into the section of Gods of the Fall on Types; with four new-ish ones to go through, we certainly have the promise of some interesting things ahead of us. Of course, each of these also serves as the base of what kind of fledgling god you want your character to be.
First up we have the Champion, which is the head-on combat-focused Type according to the text. They’re physical, action-oriented, and likely aggressive types that can serve as leaders in combat and the living example of the best defense being a good offense. They’re liable to be gods related to warfare and combat, for obvious reasons, and draw the attention and veneration of soldiers, mercenaries, and generals.
An interesting quirk is that one ability comes pre-selected, it seems; for Champions, that ability is Extra Edge. Also present are samples from the Flavors from the Cypher System core book; Closed Mind from the Magic flavor, Danger Sense from the Stealth flaor, and Terrifying Presence, taken directly from the Speaker type in the core book. Tier Two brings with it the option to either take two Champion powers or one Champion power and one Dominion power.
Scratch that, each tier seems to come with an “Awaken a Dominion ability or take an extra Type ability at this tier” segment. Interesting; this means that on top of the shifts characters get, the fledgling gods have a significantly wider array of abilities than the average Cypher System character.
An important note here is that none of these abilities come with descriptions or explanations. This is where it gets driven home that this is definitely a setting book, not a complete game in and of itself. You need the Cypher System core book to play this, or else you’ll have no idea what these Champion abilities are. It’s almost certain that the other three types are the same on this.
All in all, a Champion seems to be the Type you want to pick if you want a character like Hercules or Beowulf – physically powerful, commanding of presence, and good in a fight. The last part is really the key, because much of the personality and presence of the character will be determined by your Descriptor and Focus. They’re mostly built off the Warrior type in the core book, but different enough to qualify as something new.
Shapers are definitely spellcasters; described as being the Type most like the vanished gods, they tend to draw fear and respect wherever they display their powers. As such, this is the kind of Type you might want to pick if you want to be overtly divine, or a sorcerer of some type. Whatever you do, however, shapers are different in that they have to pick and choose between Dominion powers and Type powers at new tiers, rather than gaining both. They still get divine shifts either way, but the nature of Shapers is to bend the world to their will in a divine way even without specifically divine powers. They’re built off the Adept, and remain truer to it than the Champion does to Warrior.
Destroyers, honestly, might have been better named Hunters or something similar. They track, hunt, and take down their targets, whether that target is a monster, a bounty, or a treasure. Odds are, before even looking at their ability list, that they’re built off the Explorer type from the Core book. They get the dominion power in addition to the regular, just like the Champion. Honestly, you could probably do a good campaign of an emerging pantheon of gods with dominion over thieves, bounty hunters, and the like with this Type alone.
Savior, the last of the Types, is almost certainly built using Speaker as a base. More than anything else, this Type could easily be a Messiah-style character, coming to lead nations with word and deed. If you want to play a god who can build an unstoppable faith that rouses even the most heartless to heed their words, Savior is the one you want.
All in all, the four types are definitely a more powerful take on the core versions, plainly intended to showcase the power of developing gods. With the variation offered by the different descriptors and foci you could easily make an entire campaign with an entire party of just one type, using that as a focus point for the campaign’s plots; Champions stepping up to confront the Hellmaw or the Nefar of the Verge, Destroyers assembling a pantheon of stealthy thief-gods to loot the halls of Nod or to hunt Nulumriel down to destroy her, Saviors gathering followers to lay claim to Nod and free the Nightland from darkness, and Shapers assembling a pantheon of primal might to go about literally rebuilding and remaking the world.
All in all, while none of these types are any use without the core book, they’ve done a decent job of getting the flavor of each Type across.
Come back tomorrow as we head into the next chapter, which covers descriptors and foci together. Learn about the two new races of the Afterworld, and the new foci on offer!