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Heart of God: Rules & Discussion
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 5:01 pm    Post subject: Heart of God: Rules & Discussion Reply with quote

RULES v1


I. GODHOOD


You are not God. Yet. Only one who claims the heart of God can truly wield His power.

This doesn't mean that you are powerless. The attention of your followers has given you a portion of strength mimicking that of God, allowing you to perform miracles, to speak through your idols, to command your people, and to manipulate the world - to a small degree.


I.i. FAITH

Through your worshippers, you gather the power of Faith. Sacrifice, prayer, and the everyday devotion of your people increase the amount of Faith you control. It is the strength of Faith that you use to interact with the world.

All idols begin the game with a Faith score of 15. You are new, and you are weak. Faith can be increased based on both your number of followers, and the strength of their devotion to you. There is only so much Faith available to use, however - the strength of a single follower can only go so far, and their numbers are not endless.

At times, events may occur outside of your control that can affect your Faith. Your followers are loyal and superstitious – they will blame their idol when bad things happen, and praise it when things go well. These effects are usually temporary.

If you wish to claim the heart and achieve true godhood, you will need to increase your Faith. There are obstacles between you and your goal that will be impassable if you do not control enough Faith.


I.ii. IDOLS

Crafted by your people to provide a target for their prayers, you are the idols, awakened into life by the strength of Faith that had no other place to go.

The forms that humans give to their idols are many, from graven images to the bodies of animals, or even embodied within human representatives such as oracles and prophets. The idols chosen by your people form an important part of how they think of you, and in turn delineate your nature.

Your awakening into power has granted you a presence in the world, and the ability to act within it. For some idols this comes as the ability to interact with the world at will, appearing wherever Faith in them is held – often taking the same forms ascribed them by their people. For others, it means a true emergence of their bodily presence in the world, a physical god-on-earth, to live among and direct their people.

Whatever the form you have taken – and there are as many different forms and methods as there are idols – you are enabled by the power of Faith to act upon the world. As well as acting directly upon the earth, you can call upon the Faith of your people to perform great feats of divine power, directing it into whatever task you require.

These feats are limited, however, by your form and your strength. (More on this in the Gameplay section.)


I.iii. FOLLOWERS

Your people are mortal, human. They have their faults and failures, but they are also your only source of Faith. Without them, you would be nothing more than a few clay dolls, or bundles of reeds, or the pelt of an animal raised upon a dais. Convince enough of them of your godhood, however, and you are capable of almost anything.

There are many people on the world, but not all can be drawn into worship. God is dead, and many humans know and accept this. The hidden land of the heart does have human inhabitants, some having entered after the awakening of the idols revealed its location, but the people of the outside world have little interest in finding a new God. For this struggle, you can rely only on those already within the hidden land, and those that have followed you and the other idols there.

The number of people who follow you is important, but so too is the fervour they show in their devotion. The stronger they feel toward you, the more Faith you will receive.



II. THE WORLD


As the legends tell, God once ruled the world, bending the laws of reality to His will. Millennia ago, however, God died. Now, with the awakening of the idols, the last remaining fragment of His power has been revealed - His heart, resting in a hidden land at the centre of the world. It is to this land that your people have brought you, and in this land that your struggle to claim the heart, and become God, will take place.


II.i. THE HIDDEN LAND OF THE HEART

The land that you have discovered is relatively large - a small country rather than a single valley. In the years it took for you to progress from your first awakening to the great pilgrimage of your people to this land, others have discovered it, and some small villages can already be found near its perimeter.

In the very centre of the hidden land lies the City of Angels.


II.ii. THE CITY OF ANGELS

The Angels were created by God to serve Him. Now, they serve as the stewards of His heart. Their great city surrounds the Temple of Light, where God's heart lies. No mortal has ever set foot within the City of Angels, and no Angel has been seen outside of its walls.

The Angels are a mystery, but it can be assumed that they will not welcome you into their halls.

Even if that were so, the heart has other defences.


II.iii. THE DEFENCES

It is clear from the beginning that to reach the heart is no simple feat. There are layers of defences preventing access to the Temple of Light, and though you cannot perceive them all, you know that each is greater than the last.

The first of these defences are the Towers of the Faithless.

The Tower of the Eclipsed Sun, the Tower of the Dark of the Moon, and the Tower of Fallen Stars - they encompass the City within their triangle, and your power is unable to penetrate this boundary. You have quickly discovered that any mortal of an idolatrous heart who attempts to pass the Towers toward the city is transformed into a pillar of salt.

Before you can attempt the City, you must first find a way to disable this barrier.



III. GAMEPLAY


If you have played Pantheon or Acropolis, you should have a good idea of how to play this game. You come up with a list of actions, based on your character's resources and Faith score, and submit them by email to maidenofstrife [AT] gmail [DOT] com. The game master then processes the turn and responds with the outcomes.

The form of your actions can be very flexible, but in the interests of keeping the game moving there are rules in place for how many actions you can make in a turn.


III.i. TURNS

Within the setting, each turn takes place over one month. Bear this in mind when planning your actions - some things take time.


III.ii. ACTIONS

A note on use of Faith:
- Though you have power over many things, your strength does not reach outside the earth. The heavens, for now, are beyond your control.
- While you may use your power to aid and cooperate with other idols, you cannot combine the Faith of two idols to perform a single action. The devotion of your followers is yours alone.

There are three kinds of action you can take in each turn: Divine action, Direct action, and Commands. You can only perform a limited number of Divine and Direct actions in each turn, but you can issue as many Commands as you like.

- Divine Action:
This is the most powerful way that you can act upon the world. Using your Faith, you can act in any part of the map to perform miracles and divine feats in an act of pure holy power. These acts are how you will use your Faith score throughout the game.

The use of Divine action requires the concentration of your Faith into whatever place you wish to act; you cannot act in all places at once. Each turn, you may perform a single Divine action using all of your Faith, or you may divide your Faith to act twice, each action only being as strong as the amount of Faith you choose to assign it.

- Direct Action:
Through Direct actions, you personally interact with your followers and the world. The forms an idol can take are many – in one turn, your presence might descend upon a stone idol and grant small blessings to followers who touch it; in the next, you might appear to someone in need and grant them some small boon. For an idol residing bodily upon the earth, these would be the feats accomplished in that physical form. There are few limits to how a god might present itself to the faithful – your limits are defined by your own natures.

In your Direct presence some small miracles are possible, but you cannot match the feats achieved through Divine action. What you can accomplish, however, will increase as your Faith grows. You may perform only a single Direct action each turn.

- Commands:
These are the simplest actions - commands issued to your followers. Your people are mortal, fallible and frail, but the faithful will do their best to obey. You may issue any number of Commands, but it is recommended that you restrain yourself to ordering only important tasks, and consider how much you are asking of individual followers to accomplish in a single turn.

Commands rely on mundane action and so do not use Faith, but you may choose to use Divine or Direct action to aid your followers.


III.iii. TURN SUBMISSION

Write up your actions as you like, but include notes specifying your use of Divine and Direct actions, and summarise the intent of your action below any prose submission. Clearly state whether you are using all of your Faith on a single Divine action, or dividing it between two actions – and what amount of Faith you are using on each.

Example turn submission.

As stated above, submissions should be emailed to maidenofstrife [AT] gmail [DOT] com
Clearly mark "Heart of God - Turn # - {Idol name}" in the title.

The Game Master will set a deadline for each turn submission, but players are encouraged to submit as early as possible. Turns are processed in random sequence, but the last player to submit a turn will always be the last processed (and this will occasionally have negative consequences). If you miss a deadline, you're out of luck.

Concessions can be made for players who make it known in advance that they cannot submit within the deadline.


III.iv. SECRECY

You can, if you wish, try to keep your actions secret from others. But for the most part, once you act, people will be aware of it, and able to respond. You will have more chance of having your followers move in secret than you would in trying to hide a Divine or Direct action.

It is the simple nature of this world, that miracles do not go unnoticed.


III.v. DEFEAT

As your Faith wanes, so does your ability to act upon the world and, ultimately, your self. Without enough followers to sustain you, you will once again become nothing more than the carved images and idols from which you began.

If your Faith score falls below 10, you will become unable to perform Divine action, and may only act Directly or issue Commands.

Should your Faith score fall as low as 1, you will be unable to perform Divine or Direct actions, and may only issue a single Command to your followers each turn.

Should your final followers be killed, or cease their worship of you, then this grace period will not apply.


III.vi. THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE

Victory: The wards of the city have been broken. The Angels have failed in their defence. The Temple of Light has been laid open. Now, the heart of God may be claimed, and you may take your rightful place as the true God.

Only one idol can take possession of God's heart and soul. In the rebirth of God, all idols will perish as the Faith finds its true home. Though you may work with other idols, forming alliances and partnerships, to increase your power or to break through the defences, in the end, there can be only one victor.


III.vii. WHERE'S THE RULE ABOUT X?

The aim in this game is to allow you to be fairly flexible in how you play your idol. There are no powerful prophets or high priests unless you choose to create them. The structure of your faith is up to you, as is the manner in which you communicate and interact with humans.

There are no domains - all the idols are on equal footing. It may be in your idol's nature to favour certain forms and methods, but none are limited in their capabilities - they seek to become the all-encompassing Almighty, after all.

Manifestation, as it appears in Pantheon, does not occur. Direct action is the equivalent, and it is your normal way of interacting with the world.

There is no permanent expenditure of Faith, only the rise and fall based on the number of your followers and the strength of their devotion.
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Last edited by I'm Murrin on Wed Aug 22, 2012 8:57 pm; edited 2 times in total
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know what the funny thing is? Right now I can't get out of my head the ideas for a completely different game that I want to try to build on the same basic model.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is registration in character or out? In case the latter, I'm just saying here that I'm in.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hope I can make it to round 1 Big Grin
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Honestly, Syl, it doesn't matter, since it's pretty much just saying you're in and giving your character's name.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm Murrin wrote:
You know what the funny thing is? Right now I can't get out of my head the ideas for a completely different game that I want to try to build on the same basic model.

LOL
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 7:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seriously. It's potentially awesome, mostly because it has nothing at all to do with gods. Players play as a single character, the timescale is much compressed (turns would be something like a few hours), and the setting would be an indoor dungeon type place. It was the power system of this game that got me thinking of it, as well as the goal-oriented form.

Since I mentioned timescale... I'm still debating with myself whether turns should be a month or a week in-game time. And I have no idea how I'm going to schedule real-time turns.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Can we perform a Divine Action and a Direct Action in the same turn?
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes. One or two Divine actions, one Direct action, and as many Commands as you need.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Cool. So we tell you how many points goes to Divine Action #1, to Divine Action #1, and the Direct Action?
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Direct actions don't use Faith points.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 9:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh. Okay. So they're like free, semi-powerful miracles?

I'm getting there. Very Happy
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2012 11:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The funny thing about having your first post return a server error, you end up with 0 posts. Makes me think my total post count might be somewhat deflated.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 12:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was wondering about that 0 posts action. Good trick, if you can hold on to it. Just make sure never to post in character again, and you'll be famous.

(Or, as Fist would say, just surrender now and save yourself the hassle.)
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Goatkiller666 wrote:
(Or, as Fist would say, just surrender now and save yourself the hassle.)

Recognizing that which is inevitable is a strength, not a weakness. Nothing any of you need to feel bad about.

Murrin wrote:
This is how magic was reborn in the world: An act of drawn out forgetfulness, a sham of meaning become meaning itself.

Excellent!
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've had relationships that started that way.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just bear it in mind while playing: You're not gods, there were just a bunch of gullible fools who managed to convince themselves you were. Razz
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If that's not the definition of "god", what is? Mr. Green
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just for future reference, please send PMs to me, rather than the alt. Switching accounts is a pain I'd rather avoid as much as possible.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2012 4:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Noted. That's why I use a different browser for alts, personally.
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