Revisionist Theology Pt. 2 – Apollo

As I mentioned in a previous post, I now regret replacing the classical Greek gods of Hyperborea (Apollo & Artemis) with their Empyrean equivalents from the Auran campaign setting (Ammonar & Ianna).

I’m considering a ret-con, swapping all previous references of Ammonar and Ianna with Apollo and Artemis instead. This will bring the religions in my campaign closer to the “baseline” AS&SH Hyperborea.

Originally, I treated Clerics of Ammonar/Apollo as standard ACKS Clerics. This revised interpretation emphasizes inspiration and prophecy, with less focus on melee combat and the undead.

So here’s my revised take on Apollo and his followers…

Hyperborea HR

This deity is associated with light, healing, archery, swordsmanship, music, poetry, and prophecy. He is the twin brother of Artemis and is said to walk amongst men, oft feigning mortality as a golden-haired youth whose wont is to join the common ranks.

When depicted with the lyre in hand, Apollo is identified with music, poetry, and dance; with a bow, he is identified with death, distance, terror, and awe. Some scholars posit that Apollo has taken many mortal women as his lovers and that his demigod progeny are scattered about Hyperborea.

Apollo is served by Clerics, Bards, and Priests. Veneration of Artemis alongside Apollo is common, and the two faiths often work closely together. The pair were esteemed by the Hyperboreans of Old Earth, before the race turned to Xathoqqua.

Hyperborea HR

Cleric of Apollo

Apollonian Clerics are similar to standard ACKS Clerics with the following modifications:

Requirements: INT, WIS, & CHR 9 or more. Lawful alignment; typically male.
Custom Weapon Selection: Bows/crossbows, swords/daggers, bolas/darts/nets/slings/saps/staffs. (“Narrow” weapon selection, plus one tradeoff from Broad Armour.)
Broad Armour Selection: Chain armour or lighter (including shields).
Two Fighting Styles: Weapon & shield, two-handed weapons.

Proficiencies: Alchemy, Apostasy, Art, Battle Magic, Command, Contemplation, Diplomacy, Divine Blessing, Divine Bloodline (as per Elven Bloodline), Divine Health, Healing, Knowledge, Language, Laying on Hands, Leadership, Loremastery, Magical Engineering, Magical Music, Mystic Aura, Naturalism, Performance, Profession, Quiet Magic, Seduction, Sensing Evil, Sensing Power, Theology, Unflappable Casting, White Lore.

Granted Powers: Apollonian Clerics cannot Turn Undead. Instead, they are granted the following powers:

  • Inspire Allies: Inspiring courage requires a few moments of ration before a battle (one round), and grants the Cleric’s allies within a 50′ radius a +1 bonus to attack throws, damage rolls, morale checks (for monsters or NPCS allied with the Cleric, and saving throws against magical fear. The bonus lasts for 10 minutes (1 turn).
  • Oracular Spectacular: Apollo is an oracular deity, and his Clerics are subject to premonitions and dreams of the past and future. The referee will make these visions both cryptic and useful. Once per week, the Cleric can commune (as the spell). (This is equivalent to the Prophecy proficiency.)

Spell List: Clerics of Apollo follow my house rules for divine casters, including the revised Divine 2 spell progression.

(Note that although Apollo is a Lawful deity, he grants his Clerics the ability to curse others with sickness (cause disease) and to rain poison arrows upon his foes.)

Hyperborea HR

Apollonian Bard

As the deity of music and poetry, many Bards venerate Apollo. They select Perform (lyre) as their performance type, but otherwise follow the standard rules for the Bard class.

Hyperborea HR

Priest of Apollo

Apollonian Priests are a variant of the Priestess class from the ACKS Player’s Companion. They are oft found in association with Priestesses of Artemis.

They follow the standard rules for Priestesses, with the following exceptions:

  • Priests of Apollo are typically male.
  • Class proficiencies are as per Priestess; minus Beast Friendship, Prestidigitation, and Prophecy; plus Art, Divine Bloodline, and Seduction.
  • Priests of Apollo cannot Turn Undead nor can they effectively wield two-handed weapons in combat (5 trade-offs). In return, they receive the granted powers of a Cleric of Apollo (Inspire Allies and Prophesy) plus one rank each in Art, Healing, and Performance (Lyre).
  • Their code of conduct requires Priests to maintain Apollo’s shrines and temples and to perform all necessary rites on his holy days. This ties Priests to a particular location and makes them generally unsuitable as adventuring PCs.

Apollonian Priests use the Priestess spell list and follow my house rules for divine casters, including the revised Divine 4 spell progression.

Hyperborea HR


About K-Slacker

Gamer and 5th-level magic-user.
This entry was posted in Astonishing ACKS, Campaign Setting, Classes, House Rules and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Revisionist Theology Pt. 2 – Apollo

  1. K-Slacker says:

    I might consider allowing Paladins of Apollo in my campaign. They would follow the class guidelines from the ACKS Player’s Companion, except as follows:

    Weapons Permitted: Bows (short, long, and composite), lance, mace, pole arm, spear, and swords (short, long, and two-handed).

    With my house rule for fighting value trade-offs, the base experience required for 2nd level would be 1,825XP.

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