Oath of the Postulant; A Priest of the Light

Oath of King John Casimir of Poland

It doesn’t have to be this impressive.

A Quest Oath can provide a character with a temporary bonus feat (six character points worth of abilities)  – at the price of possibly suffering a modest curse if they abandon their oath, rather than fulfilling it.

 There are quests perhaps more profound than defeating a monster, or rescuing a princess, or any of the  usual heroic missions. A postulant in many faiths – a cantidate for the priesthood, or at least as a lay  clergyman – is often asked to spend some time considering the ramifications of such a choice, and studying  the principles and ideals of the faith, and examining their own soul, before making such a grave decision.

 Preferably, of course, that’s done with the guidance of a mentor. Sadly, in troubled times – and when are the times not troubled in a d20 universe? – there may be no teacher to spare to spend months on guiding a  potential novice.

 A Postulant’s Oath asks that a cantidate accept the guidance of the light (or whatever powers the priest  administering the oath recognizes) as they consider the possibility of becoming a priest for the next few  months. After that, they may then make an informed decision as to whether or not it’s a path they wish to  pursue, whether they wish to swear more limited service to the Faith, or whether they wish to walk another  path entirely.

 In exchange they gain:

  •  Immunity/Unwanted Mental Influence (Common, Major, Trivial – providing immunity to level one effects and a  +2 on saves against more powerful ones) (3 CP).
  • A Companion (Familiar) with +1 Level Template, Specialized and Corrupted/has no physical existence and no  attributes other than Int (Equal to that of the priest administering the Oath), This is, in fact, merely a  sort of simulacrum of the oathgiver imprinted on the recepients mind as a guide and advisor. In effect,  the recepient has a shimmering spirit advisor that only he or she can see – but which can, within severe  limits – guide and support him or her, at least when it comes to the faith that he or she is considering  and in a few minor rituals and spells (3 CP).

Spiritual Guide Template (32 CP):

  • Blessing (6 CP). A Spiritual Guide can share it’s knowledge and abilities with the individual it’s  guiding. Sadly, they’re not very impressive when it comes to adventuring powers. When it comes to serving a small community however… they can be very useful indeed.
  • Adept/Specialized in Knowledge/Religion and Spellcraft (3 CP).
  • Knowledge/Religion at +(5 + Int Mod) (2 CP).
  • Spellcraft at +(5 + Int Mod) (2 CP).
  • A +3 Speciality/the Faith of the priest administering the oath (1 CP).
  • A +3 Speciality/Spellcraft/Ritual Magic (1 CP).
  • Specific Knowledge; Three major holy books of the Faith of the priest adminstering the oath (+15 to  knowledge/religion with regards to that particular Faith) (3 CP).
  • Specific Knowledge; 4x(Int Mod +3) Minor Priestly Rituals (4 CP). These will normally include curatives,  blessings for flocks, fields, and children, ceremonies that consecrate weddings, and so on.
  • Rune Magic/The White Light (Healing, Purification, and limited Protective Magics), Casting and Mastery at  +(1 + Int Mod). This normally only allows 0-Level effects, but – if the administering priest has Int 16+ –  can extend to first level effects (2 CP).
  • Rune Magic/Hearthcrafting (Small household and practical magics), Casting and Mastery at +(1 + Int Mod).  This normally only allows 0-Level effects, but – if the administering priest has Int 16+ – can extend to  first level effects (2 CP).
  • 1d6+2 Mana, Specialized/only for Rune Magic (4 CP).
  • Rite of Chi, Specialized and Corrupted/requires meditation on the state of the characters soul and on the  light – and then a good nights sleep (2 CP).

As a Familiar, a Spiritual Guide bestows six points worth of abilities directly – in this case:

  • Ritual Magic, Specialized/priestly rituals of the faith of the priest administering the vow only (3 CP)
  • Luck, with +2 bonus uses, Specialized and Corrupted/only for skills, only for spellcraft (rituals) and knowledge/religion (3 CP).

 Yes, this IS an appallingly over-optimized use of a mere six character points. On the other hand… what you’re actually GETTING is a religious advisor on speed dial, the ability to make a community a happier place, a couple of first level spells at caster level one or two each day, +2 versus mental effects, and a tendency to talk to yourself. Unless the big bad guy is basing his entire plan around Charm Person, this isn’t exactly game-breaking. Ergo, under the general rule of “it shouldn’t cost a lot if it doesn’t matter a lot”… I’d let it go – although I WOULD say that it only works for characters who are genuinely considering a religious dedication. Letting people pick this up just because they had six character points to spare from somewhere would sort of miss the point.

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One Response

  1. […] The Oath of the Postulant: Religious Training through Spiritual Guidance. Includes the +1 ECL Spiritual Guide template. […]

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