Sunday, March 5, 2017

The Cult of the Void

Here's another faction for use in a space fantasy campaign. Note, too, that the sample members are designed based on character sketches for their respective prestige classes, from pages 379 and 393 of the Pathfinder core rulebook.


Cult of the Void
Unlike most other religious groups throughout Known Space, this one operates in completely secrecy. Given its belief that all people and things in the galaxy are moving inevitably toward death and destruction, that should come as no surprise.

Goal: Acceptance and/or Promotion
Members of this cult are split fairly evenly between those who accept the end of all things as inevitable and simply wait for it to happen, and those who actively work to bring about that end. Clerics and shadow dancers form the bulk of the prior group, while assassins and some wizards make up the latter.

Alignment: CN
These cultists care little for popular morals, since they believe that the universe is ultimately a cold and uncaring place. They have no regard for the law, however, since they view it as a purely artificial and, in the end, ineffectual construct of society.

A mysterious figure known only as Crazy Ivan is believed to be the head of this organization, although it is not the most organized bunch. The difference of opinion and activity between its members is a good example of this, with some members (namely the assassins) using their faith as an excuse to conduct sabotage and even murder for hire.

The Cult of the Void maintains a series of clandestine meeting places throughout the Known Galaxy, usually individual homes or even rooms at various inns. The location of Crazy Ivan, if he really exists, is currently unknown.

Using the Cult of the Void in an Aetherial Adventures Campaign
This organization can provide plenty of plot elements for a space fantasy RPG campaign; presented here are a few of the possibilities.
  • When a terrible fire breaks out in port, local authorities are quick to blame local members from the Cult of the Void. Are they the true culprits, however, or just convenient scapegoats who've been framed by the real guilty party?
  • Indeed, this could lead to a system-wide crusade by groups such as the Church of Ptah or the Order of the Lion, aiming to eliminate the Cult once and for all.
  • During the investigation, the PCs could also find evidence of a real Cult-driven plot. Only some of the members are actually a part of it, however, and it's up to the PCs to determine who's guilty and who's innocent.
  • Given their penchant for making pilgrimages to the Asteroid Belt, Cult members could run into conflict with the Dwarven Mining Guild. Similarly, they could make an important discovery regarding just what power it was that destroyed that world. 

Sister Umbriel the Shadowdancer
CR 5
XP 1600
Female half-elf Rogue 5/Shadowdancer 1
CN medium humanoid
Init +4; Senses Perception +13; Low-light vision
AC 19, touch 14, flat-footed 14 (+4 armor, +1 Dodge, +4 Dex)
hp 42 (6d8+12)
Fort +4, Ref +10, Will +1
Resist Elven immunities
Spd 30 ft.
Melee short sword +8 (1d6+2)
Ranged throwing daggers +7 (1d4+1)
Special Attacks Sneak attack +3d6
Str 13, Dex 19, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 8, Cha 10
Base Atk +3; CMB +4; CMD 18
Feats Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Mobility, Skill Focus (Stealth), Weapon Finesse, Weapon Focus (shortsword)
Skills Acrobatics +13, Bluff +9, Climb +9, Disable Device +14, Escape Artist +13, Knowledge (local) +9, Perception +14, Perform (dance) +13, Sleight of Hand +13, Stealth +16
Languages Elven, Common
SQ Adaptability, elf blood, keen senses, multi-talented, trapfinding, evasion, rogue talents (combat trick, weapon training), trap sense +1, uncanny dodge, hide in plain sight
Combat Gear Studded leather armor +1, shortsword +1, masterwork thieves' tools, four throwing daggers, cloak of resistance +1, potion of invisibility

Sister Umbriel takes the notion of being a free spirit to an extreme; she follows whatever whim—or opportunity for profit—she might have and sees where it takes her. Some might describe her behavior as erratic, and others as psychotic. The truth probably lies somewhere in between those two adjectives.

Brother Mordechai the Assassin
CR 5
XP 1600
Male half-orc Rogue 5/Assassin 1
NE medium humanoid
Init +1; Senses Perception +8; Darkvision 60 ft.
AC 16, touch 13, flat-footed 14 (+4 armor, +1 Dex, +1 Dodge)
hp 48 (6d8+18)
Fort +3, Ref +6, Will +1
Resist None
Spd 30 ft.
Melee Longsword +9 (1d8+5)
Ranged Light crossbow +4 (1d8)
Special Attacks Sneak attack +4d6, death attack
Str 19, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 12, Wis 10, Cha 8
Base Atk +3; CMB +X; CMD X
Feats Dodge, Power Attack, Weapon Focus (longsword)
Skills Acrobatics +9, Bluff +7, Climb +13, Craft (poison) +9, Disable Device +9, Disguise +7, Escape Artist +9, Perception +8, Stealth +9
Languages Orcish, Common
SQ Intimidating, orc blood, orc ferocity, weapon familiarity trapfinding, evasion, rogue talents (combat trick, weapon training), trap sense +1, uncanny dodge, poison use
Combat Gear Studded leather armor +1, longsword +1, masterwork thieves' tools, masterwork light crossbow, case of 20 bolts, vial of purple worm poison

Brother Mordechai enjoys killing, pure and simple. Indeed, that act fills him with a feeling of power, much like he believes the Void feels when death and destruction occur. That is why he sells his service as an assassin, eliminating whomever a client wishes—for a price, of course.

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