Thoughts on Cleric Domains

Omand

Adventurer
Hello,

So, I have been working on the cosmology of my home-made campaign and have been thinking about portfolios of deities, etc.

This has, of course, brought on thoughts about cleric domains to match portfolios.

I am a conservative buyer of books compared to many on the boards here, so I am looking for some help/advice/ideas from others. Plus, I am just throwing out ideas for people to chew over.

To the point. Three questions, basically:
1) Which domain concepts do you feel really should have been in the core rules (general)? Supplemental to this, which domains should have been core that are not (from existing WotC or other products)?
2) Which domains should be consolidated in the upcoming Complete Divine to have a one stop shop for domain hunters like myself?
3) Which existing domains just don't really work, or need to be re-worked?


I'll start:

1) I think Darkness, Pain/Suffering, some form of Weather/Storm domain, some form of Skilled/Crafting domain, a good "Death" or Afterlife Domain, some form of Justice domain and some sort of Beauty/Charm type concept shoud have been core.

Now OK, most of those have been added in other products, but I hate flipping through three books to find them all.

In terms of what should have been core - Artifice from D&DG, Community from BoED (and other sources), Repose from D&DG.

2) I think the three I have just mentioned above should be consolidated in Complete Divine, along with concepts as listed at the top. I would also like to see some form of Plague/Disease domain, a Pain domain that does not rely on the Liquid Pain idea in BoVD, and one unified Darkness domain, as opposed to the three WotC versions currently in existence and who knows how many others (see FRCS, BoVD, D&DG).

3) Well, I think I have the most problem with the Pain domain in the BoVD. It just does not work for my campaign, but I do have a God of Pain and Suffering and would love to give him something more appropriate than Destruction or Strength.

Ok, lots of rambling there. Hopefully people can make sense of it all.

Cheers :)
 

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the Jester

Legend
Personally, I think all of the old 2e spheres should have at least been represented in the 3e domain system. Sure, maybe we wouldn't have a domain of Wards and another of Guardian, but there should be something (ok, arguably protection, but...)

I think the following are missing from the core rules: darkness, time, thought, charm, craftsmanship, civilization, love, hate, weather.

I think the following would be awful cool to have in the core rules: the FR racial domains, a good slime domain (not sure how the FR one is), fear, art, seals/wards/guardians.

I have a ton of custom domains for my campaign, btw.
 

ManicFuel

First Post
I haven't seen teh BoVD, but the only difference in the FR and D&DG versions of the Darkness domain is the 5th level spell. Of the domains I've seen reprinted by WotC, there have been few if any changes.

Glaring ommisions from core: Love/charm/beauty, music, art/crafts, weather/rain, community. These are core concepts of civilizations.

From a game mechanics perspective, I'm all for more domains of any sort. It makes it easy for a player to get a handle on what a deity is all about when you can be specific with the domains. The evil gods all seem to have Chaos, Evil and Destruction - I have to invent and explain the differences. Add Pain, Darkness, Torture, Deceit, and maybe Lolth will look different than Maglubiyet. I generally don't think there should be much difference between the portfolios and the domains, and the mecahnics should reflect that.

What I'd really like to see is a variant cleric that gets ALL its class abilities from the domains. I have a hard time picturing a priest of Amaterasu walking around in full plate clubbing things. Is that what the 2e "spheres" were all about? I skipped that edition.
 

Brennin Magalus

First Post
ManicFuel said:
What I'd really like to see is a variant cleric that gets ALL its class abilities from the domains. I have a hard time picturing a priest of Amaterasu walking around in full plate clubbing things. Is that what the 2e "spheres" were all about? I skipped that edition.

No, that was what specialty priests (priests of different mythoi) were all about. Spheres just determined which spells you had access to.
 


Omand

Adventurer
Hey all,

Thanks for all of the posts so far. Some interesting info in there.

ManicFuel,

The BoVD Darkness domain is quite different from the D&DG one. I do not have the FRCS, so I cannot compare things there (although I had been told there was a Darkness domain in the book).

All,

I cannot compare things to 2E, as I went from 1E to 3E with roughly a 12 year hiatus in between. From what I have read on boards, etc., however, spheres are not what I am looking for for flavour purposes.

I am agreeing with pretty much all I am seeing here, except for racial domains. That is a personal preference thing, however, as I use one pantheon for all races in my campaign (or two if you consider the good and evil deities separate).

Keep those ideas coming guys.

Cheers :)
 

maggot

First Post
Omand said:
1) Which domain concepts do you feel really should have been in the core rules (general)? Supplemental to this, which domains should have been core that are not (from existing WotC or other products)?

For my world, I needed Darkness, Pain/Suffering, AfterLife, Disease, Cold, Commerse, Justice, and Nobility. Weather/Storm would have been nice as well as some more specific Animal domains: Reptiles and Birds mainly, but maybe Fish as well.

2) Which domains should be consolidated in the upcoming Complete Divine to have a one stop shop for domain hunters like myself?

I'm hoping the consolidate them all and give us plenty of choises. Selfishly, I'd like all the above domains.

3) Which existing domains just don't really work, or need to be re-worked?

I need a Darkness/Night that is not evil, and an Death/AfterLife that is no tied into making undead. In 3.0, I needed a luck domain that was not tied into good, but that is fixed now. An Evil domain that does not involve the undead would be useful as well.
 

jerichothebard

First Post
Monte Cooke's Book of Eldritch Might II has a music domain, although I am not fond of it. The granted power (+1 caster level on all spells with verbal components) seems overly powerful to me. All spells w/ verbal components = almost every spell in the book.

And, since the spells in Song and Silence, which encompass a lot of music-based spells for bards, are not OGL content, a lot of spells that would/could/should otherwise be in there are missing.

Anyone know, offhand, if there is a music domain in some other source? I could use it for my campaign, and (to get back on topic) it should probably have been core. Correllon, the god of bards, without a music domain? For shame!


jtb
 

Omand

Adventurer
jerichothebard,

Music, yes definitely. Why didn't I put that on my list? I mean, my goddess of beauty/love is also the goddes of music. It should have twigged. :D

Thanks for the input.

Cheers :)
 

ManicFuel

First Post
Here is my house-ruled Music domain (with some spells from S&S), please season to taste:

Music Domain

Granted Power: Gain the bardic music ability, usable a number of times per day equal to one-half your cleric level, rounded down (minimum 1/day). These uses are in addition to any uses of bardic music you may have from actual bard levels. Perform is a class skill.


Music Domain Spells
1 - Joyful Noise (Song and Silence)
2 - Sound Burst
3 - Emotion
4 - Shout
5 - Song of Discord (Song and Silence)
6 - Fanfare (Song and Silence)
7 - Power Word, Stun
8 - Otto's Irresistible Dance
9 - Wail of the Banshee
 

ManicFuel

First Post
maggot said:
...as well as some more specific Animal domains: Reptiles and Birds mainly, but maybe Fish as well.

Here's the list of domains in Nyambe (a terrific supplement, BTW, well worth the price):

Birds
Confusion
Dance
Darkness
Exile
Fertility
Fish
Flesh
Greed
Hunting
Iron
Lightning
Love
Plague
Serpents
Wisdom

These are all OGC. Has anyone compiled a document with all the OGC domains and domain spells? If not, would anyone be interested in helping me piece one together?
 
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Spatula

Explorer
ManicFuel said:
From a game mechanics perspective, I'm all for more domains of any sort. It makes it easy for a player to get a handle on what a deity is all about when you can be specific with the domains. The evil gods all seem to have Chaos, Evil and Destruction
That's because dieties get the alignment domains that correspond to their own alignment, in addition to their normal portfolio-related domains. FRCS adds in racial domains as well, where every diety of a racial pantheon gets the appropriate racial domain.
Add Pain, Darkness, Torture, Deceit, and maybe Lolth will look different than Maglubiyet.
The difference is that clerics of Lloth can take the Destruction domain (plus the Drow, Darkness, and Spider domains in FR) and clerics of Maglubiyet can't. :)
 

ManicFuel

First Post
Spatula said:
The difference is that clerics of Lloth can take the Destruction domain (plus the Drow, Darkness, and Spider domains in FR) and clerics of Maglubiyet can't. :)

According to DotF, the domains for Lolth and Maglubiyet are the same (Chaos, Destruction, Evil, Trickery). The additional FR domains for Lolth is basically the direction we're going - finding more domains to help differentiate the deities. Actually, Lolth is the perfect "before and after" reasoning behind the idea that the core books need more domains. With the FR additions, she looks (mechanically) like the Drow Spider-queen of Darkness.
 

Omand

Adventurer
ManicFuel,

Thanks for the Music Domain stuff, I will have to look through my copy of S&S and check on those spells. I think the domain power might be a bit too powerful, but I have not seen it in play.

Also thanks for posting the Nyambe domains. Can't help you at present with compiling a list. Work is busy, and as I noted at the top of the thread, I buy few books, so I don;t have much to draw from.

Finally, my take on additional domains.

I like having the flexibility of adding domains to create the right flavour for a deity. That said, there is too much of agood thing. I fell that most gods only need four domains. By varying those domains among deities you differentiate portfolios. Only the most powerful deities get 7 or 8 domains, and even then you may be pushing things, depending on your campaign.

For Lolth, as an example, I can see her having Darkness, Spider, Chaos, Evil and Destruction domains. Trickery? maybe, but that is pushing it in my book. The Drow domain is out for me due to my lack of use for racial domains. If you do have a Drow domain, why not merge the Spider and Drow domains. They have much the same flavour, yes (I have not actual knowledge here of FR as I have mentioned).

Well, that's my view at the moment. A night's reflection may change things.

Cheers :)
 

MerricB

Eternal Optimist
Supporter
G'day, Omand!

Here's the list of Clerical Domains I've seen published in WotC books - there are probably more in the many FR books I don't own.

Clerical Domains

Air – PHb
Animal – PHb
Artifice – Dt&Dg
Beastial – BOVD
Cavern - FRCS
Celestial – BoED
Chaos – PHb
Charm – Dt&Dg, FRCS
Community – Dt&Dg, BoED
Corruption – BOVD
Courage – CW
Craft – FRCS
Creation – Dt&Dg
Darkness – BOVD, Dt&Dg, FRCS
Death - PHb
Demonic – BOVD
Destruction - PHb
Diabolic – BoVD
Drow – FRCS
Dwarf – FRCS
Earth – PHb, FRCS
Elf – FRCS
Endurance – BoED
Evil – PHb
Family – FRCS
Fate – CW, FRCS
Fey – BoED
Fire – PHb
Glory – Dt&Dg, BoED
Good – PHb
Gnome – FRCS
Greed – BoVD
Halfling – FRCS
Hatred – FRCS
Healing – PHb
Herald – BoED
Illusion – FRCS
Joy – BoED
Knowledge – PHb
Law – PHb
Liberation – Dt&Dg
Luck – PHb
Madness – Dt&Dg
Magic – PHb
Mentalistm – FRCS
Metal – FRCS
Moon – FRCS
Nobility – Dt&Dg, CW
Ocean – FRCS
Orc – FRCS
Pain – BoVD
Planning – CW, FRCS
Plant – PHb
Pleasure – BoED
Portal – FRCS
Protection – PHb
Renewal – FRCS
Repose – Dt&Dg
Retribution – FRCS
Rune – Dt&Dg, FRCS
Scalykind – Dt&Dg, FRCS
Slime – FRCS
Spell – FRCS
Spider – FRCS
Storm – FRCS
Strength – PHb
Suffering – FRCS
Sun – PHb
Time – FRCS
Trade – FRCS
Travel – PHb
Trickery – PHb
Tyranny – CW, FRCS
Undeath – FRCS
War – PHb
Water – PHb
Weather – Dt&Dg
Wrath – BoED

Cheers!
 

Omand

Adventurer
MerricB,

Thanks for all of that work. It will take me a bit of time to work through things there.

I think your list proves part of my initial point, however. While there are a large number of domains in print, if you want to use them you are flipping through many books at the gaming table.

Cheers :)
 

MerricB

Eternal Optimist
Supporter
Omand said:
I think your list proves part of my initial point, however. While there are a large number of domains in print, if you want to use them you are flipping through many books at the gaming table.

Pretty much. :) I get around that by copying them into a Word document and taking that with me around to sessions... at least, I would if I used many of the non-standard domains!

Cheers!
 

Omand

Adventurer
MerricB said:
Pretty much. :) I get around that by copying them into a Word document and taking that with me around to sessions... at least, I would if I used many of the non-standard domains!

Cheers!

Merric,

Yeah, I have considered doing that. The thing is, with non-standard domains that use non-standard spells you end up having to copy the spells out as well. That is just a pain and a waste of my time as a DM from my POV.

Cheers :)
 

Knightfall

World of Kulan DM
the Jester said:
I have a ton of custom domains for my campaign, btw.

Yep, Jester has some great domains, which can be found at his Cydra Yahoo Group. > Files > Religion in Cydra.doc

I have a similar document for my own homebrew, World of Kulan. Jester and I shared some domains so there is some overlapping. However, both documents are different enough to be useful.

Mine can be downloaded from my World of Kulan Yahoo Group. > Files > Spells and spell Lists > Cleric Domains List 3.5.doc

Cheers!

KF72
 


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