How To Make a Deity/Demigod
When you are a serious Homebrewer in the AD&D/OSRIC games, it's more fun to create your own things than it is to use things from a published collection. At least, most of the time it can be.
Sometimes the books are great at providing structures and content to be used to fill in the blanks. Sometimes, they just allude to something being able to be done but then don't provide much to help in the creation of those things.
When it comes to creating custom deities and demigods for a homebrew game, there's not a lot for DM's/GM's to use outside of getting access to some of the supplemental materials that get published.
This page will try to help out and provide some basic structure that homebrewers can customize for their own use.
This page is just for getting a basic outline going so as to be able to DM it. You, the creator of these, can opt to use all, some or none of these and insert your own information as you desire.
Though I do not personally consider it to be a "Core" book in 1E, the Monster Manual 2 does include some very good resources related to Monster creation on pages 6-7. Especially as related to creation of Monsters with Class abilities and those requiring Abilities such as Strength, etc.. that go beyond the typical Player Character.
How I Roll
In my own games, the stats for Deities really don't matter because Deities can't be killed. If a deity "appears" to a PC, it's not the "real" Deity, it's a simple physical construct, a manifestation or a shell so to speak. The shell can be destroyed, but the Deity isn't harmed at all.
It might get highly angry, frustrated or annoyed at the effort to destroy it's appearance, but it isn't actually harmed itself.
Deities seldom appear in my games outside of appearing in visions, dreams, via magical devices, etc... they send Demi-Gods to do their bidding if a "real" presence is called for.
While the stats for the physical construct for deities means little to nothing, the stats for a Demi-God are the real deal. For example, you haven't got a prayer of harming Zeus, but you might get to throw down with Hercules. Heck, if your PC is bad enough and high level enough, you might even be able to take him down.
Of course, the stats available here are for the physical constructs on the material Plane. If PC's somehow manage to meet a deity on it's own home plane, things get really ugly. The numbers get multiplied depending on their status. This includes ALL stats such as Hit Dice, Hit Points, abilities, levels, etc...
Greater Gods, x10
Lesser Gods, x7
All deities and demigods have these minimum spells as well as others specific to their ability and nature.
- Command: as the spell, but lasting 2 rounds for lesser gods and 3 rounds for greater gods. There is no saving throw vs. this divine ability.
- Comprehend languages: as the spell, except the deity also gains the ability to speak or write the language in question.
- Detect alignment: this ability enables the deity to detect the alignment of objects or creatures with no error.
- Gate: the deity can only attempt to gate in other beings of the same mythos.
- Geas: as the spell, but with a range of 9".
- Quest: as the spell, but with a range of 9", and no saving throw.
- Teleport: this is an inherent ability which allows the deity to teleport from place to place on the same plane or from plane to plane with no error.
Depending on what level of any given Class the Deity/Demigod has (see Class section below) will determine the number and level of spells available to them. Keep in mind the personality and nature of the Deity/Demigod when selecting spells for them.
- All gods have a saving throw in all categories of 2 (i.e., only on a 1 on a d20 will they miss their save). This is in addition to any other magic resistance, of course.
- All demigods have saves in all categories of 3.
- Gods' and demigods' saving throw numbers are irreducible regardless of magical aids and adjustments.
Hit Dice/Hit Points
All Deities and Demigods are broken up into 3 types, Greater Gods, Lesser Gods and Demigods.
"MP" = Material Plane. "HP" = Home Plane
Greater Gods have: MP= 400, HP=4000 H.P (Leader/King of gods) or MP= 400-5d10 HP= (400-5d10)x10 for other greater gods
Lesser Gods have: MP= 300 minimum H.P. HP= 3000 minimum (for lowest lesser gods but still higher than demigods) or MP= 300 +5d10 H.P., HP= 300 +5d10x10 for lesser Gods that have higher ability/status than lowest. most base.
Demigods have: 100 H.P. + 1d100 (Plane doesn't matter for Demi-Gods)
Greater Gods: -6 to -10 roll 1d6, 1= -5, 2= -6, 3= -7, 4= -8, 5= -9, 6= -10
Lesser Gods: -1 to -6 roll 1d6, 1= -1, 2= -2, 3= -3, 4= -4, 5= -5, 6= -6
Demigods: 0 to -5 roll 1d6, 1= 0, 2= -1, 3= -2, 4= -3, 5= -4, 6= -5
Classes and Levels
Deities and demigods are a little more relative in this area. A lot of how the God or Demigod ranks as a Cleric, Fighter, magic user, Thief, etc.. depends on the nature and personality. For example, both Thor and Loki are Greater Gods, but Loki is not near the class of fighter that Thor would be and Thor is not near the level of Thief that Loki should be.
Also keep in mind that some deities might tend toward a specific sub-class rather than the general class. For example, Thor might be more of a Fighter or even a Barbarian (if you use the classes introduced in UA (I don't)) and Loki might be a Ranger instead of a Fighter in general. It's possible they could be multiple of a set of classes and sub-classes as well. A deity might be a Magic User and an Illusionist at the same time. Perhaps with a higher level in one than the other.
A Deity/Demigod might have levels in all Classes or Class groups or they may not hold a certain Class or Classes at all.; Fighter and/or sub classes, Magic User/Illusionist, Thief/Assassin, Bard, Monk, Cleric/Druid.
This is only a general suggestion that you can obviously change at your own discretion based on the deity's nature, personality, etc...
Greater Gods: 15 to 25 (Roll 1d10)
Lesser Gods: 12 to 22 (Roll 1d10)
Demigods: 10 to 20 (Roll 1d10)
Greater God: 25 (leader/King/Ruler of Gods) 20 to 25 for other Greater Gods. (roll 1d6)
Lesser God: 18 to 24 (roll 1d6)
Demi-God: 3 to 18 (+7)
You can use Appendix 4: The Known Planes Of Existance (PHB pg. 120-121) to determine the Home Plane of the Deity you create. This can be important because it can affect how the Deity is able to interact with the Prime Material Plane
Deities usually have a "specialty". For example, Thor is the God of Thunder. Apollo is the God of the Sun. Some have more than one specialty or will have sub specialties related to the primary specialty. for example, as God of Thunder, Thor is also the God of Storms, weather in general and indirectly, Battle (storms are often symbolic of war and struggle).
What is your Deity's specialty(ies)? Depending on the level of the deity, might suggest more or greater responsibilities. Demi-gods are not so much in charge of larger things as much as they are champions and officers of things. Here is my suggestion..
Greater God: 1 to 4 greater specialties (1d4) and 1 to 8 sub-specialties (1d8)
Lesser God: 1 specialty and 1 to 4 sub-specialties (1d4)
Demi-God: 1 championed area and/or 1 official representing.
In regard to Demi-Gods, think of Hercules as a champion of strength and also as an envoy/representative of Zeus.