GM's Corner: Creating Your Own Hackmaster Basic Gods

Posted by Labyrinthian in , , ,

Creating a Pantheon is never an easy task for the GM. That is one reason why so many people opt to use pre-created pantheons no matter the gaming system. For those of us playing Hackmaster Basic the task is especially daunting because so little source material exists for which to use as a comparison. Putting Portfolio (the spheres of influence for which a god is responsible) aside, one of the main goals of the GM should be balancing the deities one another. To this end here are the most important factors one should consider when building a balanced pantheon.

  1. Proffered Weapon: Not all weapons are crated equal. Kenzerco who make HMB did an amazing job of providing a weapon list with a great deal of diversity. Most weapons have their ups and downs but some are clearly better than others. A deity whose preferred weapon is the Staff is clearly at a disadvantage against a deity whose favored weapon is the long sword.
  2. Armor Permitted: Most clerics are unrestricted in their choice of armor, however some deities are more selective. Those who offer fewer options convey a disadvantage to their clerics than do those who allow any armor type.
  3. Bonus Skills: A key area for balancing Clerics, skills can be deceiving. One should look a number of factors such as BP cost, relevant ability, and whether the skill is universal or not. Universal skills can have less value for no other reason than that anyone can attempt them. Relevant ability is important because most clerics have a high wisdom which grants them free BP to use on Wisdom based skills. Thus the value of wisdom based skills is less than a skill with a different relevant ability.
  4. Powers: This is probably the most important factor in determining potency. Powers vary greatly and can be just about anything. The powers described in the HMB handbook are extremely potent, particularly that of the Guardian.
  5. Sacrifices: Usually something minor, such as money once a month, one could use a very costly of difficult sacrifice to balance great powers or skills.

Keeping these five factors in mind you can balance your gods against one another. Now that isn't to say that you always want to have the deities be equal. Perhaps one god is more powerful and you want his clerics to show it. There is not necessarily anything wrong with that, but make sure you don't go overboard. Keep the five factors in mind and you'll always been mindful of how powerful each deity's clerics are.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 23, 2009 at Wednesday, September 23, 2009 and is filed under , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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