This is not atheism, but a universe in which no deities actually exist. There are no gods, no powers, nothing that watches over you but the terrifying things that go bump in your nightmares. Humans - and demi-humans - are alone, and are the height of advancement both social and technological (we're not playing the evolutionary levels game here). No devils, demons, daemons, or angels. There are no outer planes, inner planes, or alternate planes.
Oh sure, people still huddle together in the dark and worship things, but in the end, there's nothing there to hear them. This is it.
Of course, this creates a game that's a lot darker and more grim than your average D&D game. People who become badly injured tend to stay that way for a good long time, if they recover at all. People who get sick stay sick, or merely die due to lack of modern medicine. Of course, main casualties are the entire Cleric class, along with Druids and Paladins. Rangers take a glancing blow as they lose their ability to cast some cleric spells at higher levels, but that honestly doesn't bother me at all. In the interest of "balance" I suppose they could be given a few magic user spells to compensate, but in all honesty I don't see the need.
I'm growing more and more enamored of the whole concept, really, though I think it'll end up looking pretty damn terrifying in the end. Something not really suitable at all to standard D&D concepts of rascals with hearts of gold seeking adventure and fortune and so on. Not sure how that bothers me, but it does just a little. D&D always managed to have a positive, almost happy spin on things in my view and I'm not sure I can slice that out without killing some part of the game.
More Little Treasures
10 months ago