I was recently binging on the History Channel’s Vikings TV series with Jenn, and afterward, we came up with the idea of a campaign setting in which you play the gods rather than in a setting affected by the gods. During the discussion, I stated that in most stories, the gods are influencers, meddlers, and manipulators, but rarely do they actually engage in adventures of their own. But then I pondered a variant type of game in which one could play a god or gods that in fact meddle in the affairs of mortals. While exercising that idea, I realized that in some sense, that’s what the Adventure Deck for Savage Worlds does already.
The Adventure Deck is an optional accessory that can change the outcome or complete direction of a session, adventure, or even a campaign. You can play a card that can introduce reinforcements or an angry mob, grant a sudden surge of power points, or give you knowledge about something you might not have otherwise known.
Imagine a setting then where the gods are real. Imagine that when you play an adventure card, instead of rationalizing how realistically something happens, it’s instead a very real form of divine intervention. The gods manipulate events and outcomes. They speak to the player characters directly, bestow knowledge upon them, imbue magical power upon them.
Those reinforcements, a band of valkyrie or a flock of giant eagles coming to your aid. That sudden knowledge, a god bestows divine awareness and skill. An attack misses you, a spirit from the realm of the heavens stepped before you and deflected the blow.
With that in mind, I think there’s even room for a new player role as one who acts as a god or as the entire pantheon of gods.
A New Player Role
One player who isn’t playing a character or GMing the game draws one card per player per character rank and reveals the cards only to the GM. This player acts as a deity or an entire pantheon. At any point in time, they can play one card at a time as a form of divine intervention that serves as either a bane or a boon to the player characters. This player can play a card up to a number of times per session equal to the number of players.
This game references the Savage Worlds game system, available from Pinnacle Entertainment Group at www.peginc.com. Savage Worlds and all associated logos and trademarks are copyrights of Pinnacle Entertainment Group. Used with permission. Pinnacle makes no representation or warranty as to the quality, viability, or suitability for purpose of this product.