W is for that Which Was Taken

alphabet (w)

That Which Was Taken was the child of the supreme kami O-Kagachi, imprisoned by the daimyo Konda in a stone disc with the carving of a dragon. Trying to reclaim That Which Was Taken, the denizens of the spirit world attacked the physical world, and thus started the Kami War.

The spirit was later stolen from Eiganjo by Toshiro Umezawa, who ultimately performed a ritual with it to free the spirit trapped within. The spirit assumed a humanoid/draconic appearance similar to Michiko Konda, and took the name Kyodai. With Michiko, they defeated both Konda and O-Kagachi, and worked together to finally stop the war.

At his behest the Kami War began to regain That Which Was Taken.

The plane of Kamigawa was threatened as the spirits that are the essence of everything on it suddenly and inexplicably began to wage war with its mortal inhabitants. Michiko, daughter of the warlord Konda, abandons the shrinking safety of her father’s fortress to consult holy monks and the orochi, trying to decipher the cause of the Kamis’ rage. Yet when Michiko meets Toshi Umezawa, a thief and black magic user, she realizes that to avert the complete destruction of Kamigawa, she may have to make some unthinkable alliances.

Now in the employ of Princess Michiko and beholden to the Myojin of Night’s Reach, Toshi Umezawa tries to honor his commitments while pursuing his own ends. But as the Kami War threatens to engulf Kamigawa, an unimaginably powerful spirit beast threatens the world. And at the heart of the battle moves the figure of the Daimyo, whose impassive features conceal a sinister crime that gnaws at the world’s heart: years before, he had kidnapped and encased the child of a god to obtain spiritual powers that made him indestructible, and gave him foresight into the future.

Which Was Taken (that)In Dungeons & Dragons

When “Deities and Demigods” was published in 2002 it bore little resemblance to the previous printings of the book, but it brought the divine rank mechanic, representing how gods were more powerful depending on the number of worshippers they had (this was actually first explained in the Forgotten Realms sourcebook “Faiths and Pantheons”, which was published a few months later). Combining that mechanic along with the Kamigawa storyline and the infamous Bolas spell during War of the Spark, we came with this idea:

That Which Was Taken
Wondrous Item, legendary (requires attunement after casting the Elderspell)

That Which Was Taken is the physical result of a powerful spell that actually captures the divine essence of a deity. After finishing that spell, you can attune to it to gain the status and effects of the deity captured by the spell.

  • Greater deities include the head of a pantheon and its most popular members. You count as if rolled a natural 20, and automatically maximize all rolls. You can change traits like gravity and magic within the material plane.
  • Lesser deities are the ones who have hundreds of thousands of worshipers. You always get a natural 20 on any check and can raise buildings and change terrain at will within ten miles. You cannot be magically imprisoned or banished.
  • Quasi-deities include demigods with just a few hundred devoted worshipers. You are immune to electricity, cold, acid, disease, poison, stunning, sleep, death effects, and disintegration, and do not automatically fail on a roll of natural 1.

In Eberron

Canonically, the Elderspell is the spell Nicol Bolas used during the War of the Spark to harvest planeswalker’s sparks. It would grant him “ultimate power” and godhood. The origin of the spell is unknown, but Dack Fayden recognized it as a primal, elder magic.

We’re taking the concept (mainly the godhood part) to have it create a vast storm of magic, dropping an artificial night that is quickly punctuated by the stolen divinity around the spellcaster. For obvious reasons, this spell is more than a plot device than an actual mechanic spell, given the nature of the Sovereign Host and other deities in Eberron.

 


How are you planning to incorporate that Which Was Taken in your campaign? Why does the mastermind villain want to become a god in the first place? What god is he targeting? How are their followers reacting to the threat?

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