D&D General Build the "Definitive Pantheon"

Marandahir

Crown-Forester (he/him)
It would need a good darkness god and an evil light god
Why?

Sehanine already serves as Moon God — so she’s sort of a “good” goddess of night.

But why an evil god of light? Unless you’re going the MtG route with Heliod as the villain? Are we talking about the standard archetypes? Evil god of light is a purposeful subversion.

Raven Queen serves also as a “good” goddess of Death, much like Wee Jas does in Greyhawk / 3e.
 

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Mind of tempest

(he/him)advocate for 5e psionics
Why?

Sehanine already serves as Moon God — so she’s sort of a “good” goddess of night.

But why an evil god of light? Unless you’re going the MtG route with Heliod as the villain? Are we talking about the standard archetypes? Evil god of light is a purposeful subversion.

Raven Queen serves also as a “good” goddess of Death, much like Wee Jas does in Greyhawk / 3e.
the moon is a giant mirror she is a night light god not the good parts of darkness, if we have three arcane gods why not a good darkness god and an evil light god for when you just want to laser everything to death.

death is a neutral and needed force I do not get the point of evil death gods.

it was also intended to be sort of funny, I am bad that funny writing
 

Staffan

Legend
the moon is a giant mirror she is a night light god not the good parts of darkness, if we have three arcane gods why not a good darkness god and an evil light god for when you just want to laser everything to death.
I don't have my books available, but the 5e/Exandria version of Sehanine says "she is considered to be the deity of love, protecting the trysts of lovers with shadows of her own making. Those who work in darkness and trickery often ask for her blessing.", and one of her commandments is "Let the shadows protect you from the burning light of fanatical good and the absolute darkness of evil."

death is a neutral and needed force I do not get the point of evil death gods.
Hel in Norse mythology is generally considered evil, as she is assembling the souls of those who don't die in battle for use somehow in Ragnarök, and she's also building a ship out of the uncut toenails of the dead that will herald the end of days. So not all gods of death in mythology are as benign as Hades.

But I think the causality generally works the other way in D&D: we need a god of something Evil, so let's make them the god of Death. And it's pretty easy to design an evil death god, just lean into wanting to take people before their time and/or the undeath aspects. A Neutral death god with benign tendencies is one of those "Yeah, that makes sense when you think about it" things, but not the obvious choice.
 

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
I don't have my books available, but the 5e/Exandria version of Sehanine says "she is considered to be the deity of love, protecting the trysts of lovers with shadows of her own making. Those who work in darkness and trickery often ask for her blessing.", and one of her commandments is "Let the shadows protect you from the burning light of fanatical good and the absolute darkness of evil."


Hel in Norse mythology is generally considered evil,
Hels association with evil only occurs after contact with Christianity, before that she was monstrous and depressed but otherwise treated her charges with courtesy and accommodated them in her cold domain without malice.
 

I know sufficiently on the monks basic metaphysical assumptions that it would be none of those as it descended from ideas of ascension by spiritual means and I know no gods who I know of well that fit let alone that I can spell
In the end I removed Monks, Luthic now gets Beasthearts (MCDM class, like Illigers) and Heliod gets Pugilists because he's partially based on Apollo, who was a patron of boxing.
 

pemerton

Legend
I don't have my books available, but the 5e/Exandria version of Sehanine says "she is considered to be the deity of love, protecting the trysts of lovers with shadows of her own making. Those who work in darkness and trickery often ask for her blessing.", and one of her commandments is "Let the shadows protect you from the burning light of fanatical good and the absolute darkness of evil."
From the 4e PHB, p 22:

Sehanine . . . is also the god of love, who sends shadows to cloak lovers’ trysts. Scouts and thieves ask for her blessing on their work. Her teachings are simple:
  • Follow your goals and seek your own destiny.
  • Keep to the shadows, avoiding the blazing light of zealous good and the utter darkness of evil.
  • Seek new horizons and new experiences, and let nothing tie you down.
The 5e quote looks like a pretty tight paraphrase.
 

Yaarel

🇮🇱He-Mage
Why?

Sehanine already serves as Moon God — so she’s sort of a “good” goddess of night.

But why an evil god of light? Unless you’re going the MtG route with Heliod as the villain? Are we talking about the standard archetypes? Evil god of light is a purposeful subversion.

Raven Queen serves also as a “good” goddess of Death, much like Wee Jas does in Greyhawk / 3e.

Evil Light is the misuse of good things, like dysfunctional family, extremist patriotism, exploitative money, and so on.

Good Darkness is things that are necessary but hidden away, such as social paradigms wrongly rejecting it. Also Good Darkness is self-restraint, allowing others to benefit as much as one can sustainable do.
 


Hriston

Dungeon Master of Middle-earth (He/him)
These are the portfolios I'd generally expect to be part of a pantheon in one of my games:
  • Air, sky, wind, poetry/song (usually having a "king of the gods" role) ~ Odin or Zeus
  • Light, stars/planets ~ Selûne
  • Water, oceans, rivers, music ~ Deep Sashelas
  • Growing, living things, plants, animals ~ Chauntea
  • Earth, hidden knowledge, craft ~ Moradin
  • Death, fate, doom/judgement ~ Istus
  • Loss, sorrow, mercy ~ Iallanis
  • Wilderness, the hunt, far travel ~ Solonor Thelandira
  • Story, tapestry ~ Labelas Enoreth
  • Sleep, dreams, visions, inspiration ~ Sehanine Moonbow
  • Youth, beauty ~ Lathander
  • Valor, bravery, bodily strength and prowess ~ Kord
  • Swiftness, dance ~ Lliira
  • Healing, rest ~ Berronar Truesilver
  • Corruption, necromancy ~ Kiaransalee
The bolded names of certain D&D gods are given as examples of how such a pantheon might be constructed. In practice, I'd use the deities chosen by the players for their characters to worship and slot them in as appropriate.
 

Voadam

Legend
For me this is a request for a greatest hits pantheon. :)

Lothian from Ptolus. Paladin who ascended when he was martyred after uncovering a demon masquerading as a sun god. The sun god bureaucracy switched to him and he became the patron of the henotheistic Holy Lothian empire which took over most of the main continent, so there is a big medieval church D&D analogue that works allowing crusades and cathedrals and inquisitions and tons of saints but also is henotheistic so there can be D&D pantheism as well alongside a familiar vast church structure. Allows both the paladin good and the excesses of lawful (good?). Works great for D&D in my opinion.

Odin. Cunning warrior mage Allfather with myths about adventuring to level up and multiclassing into mage and bard. Lots of different ways to interpret him as a figure of law or a trickster, a good guy or someone who screws others over. Lots of overlaps with Gruumsh, Talos, Moradin, etc.

Set. Conan Stygian snake god version. Very evocative for me.

Pelor is probably my favorite from 3e, mostly for the duality of the good sun god and the Burning Hate heresy which I built up in my own campaign as Pelor being a Nergal type demon of the sun's burning light who Orcus crushed but who in revenge created a good undead hating sun cult to fight Orcus which became super popular and its own thing. Also ties into the myth of Pelor cursing the Orcus servant vampire with sunlight death vulnerability.

Lolth 4e version. Goddess of fate and weaving seeing the Abyss as destroying everything if unchecked she web spins a container to constrain the Abyss knowing it will drive her mad and evil and cost her her core persona and turn her lover into her bitterest enemy and that she will be blamed as the betrayer and turn bitter and hate everyone she loves and turn against them. She does it knowing the full cost.
I would also add Poseidon. Greek God of the sea, earthquakes, and horses. Chaotic maker of monsters and older sibling of Zeus. I have always liked his mature bearded warrior image and he has appealed to me since I was a kid. I am a bit intrigued reading about older stories where he is the king of the Gods with Demeter as his queen. Today it has to be a Daulaire, Rick Riordan, Clash of the Titans view of him I would use and not all of his mythology, I don't want sexual assault stories like Medusa's origin story and the one about him and Demeter as part of my D&D.
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