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Playing God

I’m going to preface this post with something completely irrelevant to the topic – a short story.

Estarra and I were sitting at Havens (this is very common), both terribly idle (also common), as I was in the other room watching Joan Rivers (ibid) because my poor dog (fun fact: Arco, the fae puppy, was designed to look and act like him) was feeling lonely (Uncommonly common!). I just came back to the computer, checked the scrollback, and saw this little gem:

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “It’s Friday, Friday!”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Which seat can I taaaaaaaaaaaaaake?”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Gotta eat cereal and go to the bus, but then ignore the bus and get a ride from some kiiiiiiiids.”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Then have a random middle aged rapper pop and sing about my front/back seat dilemma!”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “We we we so excited!”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Tomorrow is Saturday and Sunday comes after thaaaat.”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Estarra and Eventruuuuuu! Eventually you will have
to acknowledge meeeee! I can sing foreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeever!!!”

You exclaim, “I’m including a log of that singing in my next blog post!”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “….”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “Estarrrrrrraaaaa! Take away Eventru’s bloging privs before……”

(Nocht, the Silent) sings, “FRIDAY FRIDAY.”

Nocht hums a happy tune.

I’ll let that speak for itself.

On topic – Faragan asked that I write a bit about my experience in building and designing Eventru.

Let me begin with this note – I never, in my life, wanted to be a Celest God. The Light and what I perceived, as a player, to be its ideologies appealed to me about as much as Magnagora’s did. I found them boring and unexciting – the stories of the commune, the fae, the Spirits, were all the rage at the time – and boy was I sucked in. Every time the topic came up, I insisted I wanted to be Manteekan of the Sixth Circle (mind you, this was before Nocht was released, though we knew he was coming), a Traitor in Glomdoring. I thought it’d be an utterly fascinating ordeal – though with time, Estarra steered me away from it.

I’ll admit, it didn’t take much effort – in the turn of a conversation Estarra had me considering a Celest god. Of course, she likes to fill vacant roles – and kept pushing me toward Lyreth. I scoffed – no, I didn’t want a ‘used’ god, I wanted a god who was SERIOUS and not perceived as so… Whimsical. Well, most of New Celest from such a time can tell you how far I missed that mark! Yet still, I went ahead with Eventru, Elder God of the First Circle, who helped lead the Hamadhi.

The role of the Hamadhi was still pretty unknown, with only somewhat nebulous statements regarding their purpose having been put out at the time. Indeed, I had quite a lot of fun with then-Lisaera brainstorming – all I had to go one was that Estarra had a ‘Zeus-like’ idea of him, and away we went! We quickly expanded on the sense of ‘I am an Elder God, last of the First Circle (since Fain is a traitor!), and a Healer’ – we developed three key focuses for the role:

  • Royalty
  • Life
  • Faith

These were pretty easy topics to build on, and all very suitable for the role. Of course, being a God of Celest, Eventru should fit well with the existing dictum. With Terentia as a very strong-arm Goddess, it wasn’t necessary for Celest to have yet another ‘I am Fighter, hear me roar’ god – Eventru is, in fact, as near a pacifist as one could expect an entity in His position to be. From the start we rolled with the idea that he was a Healer, not a Fighter. It wasn’t that he wouldn’t fight, but his talents were in the more esoteric, the underlying flows of energies of the Elder Gods and the half-formed. The Soulless were something alien to Him – fighting then would be about as efficient as Murphy grabbing his flails and charging down to the Astral Plane and trying to beat Kethuru up by himself. Amusing, might last a minute or two, but give Kethuru the opportunity to break wind and the reality of the situation would quickly become apparent.

Of course, I’ve always abhorred the notion of ‘pacifist’ in Lusternia (it’s about as efficient in resolving problems as peaceful resistance in the heart of Viet Cong in the late ’50s), so it was important to me not to provide Celest with a god (who would be their only genuinely active god for some time) who abhorred fighting. No, Eventru does not disprove of fighting – he simply acknowledges it is not his strong suit. Play to everyone’s strengths, I suppose.

Enough ambling about on the topic, to the three focuses of Eventru:

Royalty – This was easily made manifest by the inclusion of the ‘Royal We’ in his speech pattern – it was most likely a conscious decision on his part (or perhaps a sub-conscious pull, but he is certainly aware of it) to speak to mortals with authority. It was later expanded into one of Eventru’s primary virtues, Pride. Ego, Pride, Self-Confidence, Self-Worth, Self-Esteem, whatever you wish to call it, it was the romantic notion of a just and good person who acted out of his own good nature because that was simply who he was – a fair and benevolent king, as an example. It was intended to encompass all people who accepted their role and acted accordingly – fighters fought, healers healed, leaders lead. Almost a calvinistic notion of predestination – this is who you are, you should be proud of it, not fight it. Of course, those who don’t act out of virtue but instead vice would be in a very poor place, indeed…

Life – I use the word ‘life’, but I really mean ‘healing’ and ‘spirituality’ – not so much healing the body, but the soul. Because in a world where mortals are reborn and so much revolves around the quality and state of one’s soul, the body can become a very mortal thing to be concerned about. So, obviously a strong topic for a Healer – being that it’s Celest, I wanted to focus on the very elysian fields mentality one can find in Celestia, that very empyreal atmosphere – Eventru’s mound continues to exist on the distant reaches of Celestia, and I eventually translated this motif into his godrealm and then expanded on it. I also gave a lot of focus to the inherent, elemental nature of Celest – water being a very purifying thing, clean, beautiful, pristine. From this we see Eventru’s godrealm – a palace (his temple) that sits atop a mountain, surrounded by wheat fields and olive trees, that is itself an island surrounded by a seemingly endless ocean speckled with islands.

Faith – Faith plays off of both of the previous points a bit, but expands on it. Indeed there’s a sense of ‘order’ and ‘purpose’, and people should conform to it – we all have our nature, we’re a product of our environment, and trying to change that can be a slow and with few rewards. Healers should heal – of course, a healer cornered should do their best to fight their way out. It’s certainly better than dying! Expanding on that, we draw into the ‘spirituality’ nature of Eventru – not just healing it, restoring what’s been broken and washing away the impure, but also encouraging it to grow, expanding on what exists and fanning it until it reaches its fullest potential. Indeed, if you ask Eventru, the greatest gift he was ever given was his soul, pure and true – and it’s a belief he extends to his followers, and expects them to extend onto others.

So with this three points defined, we had a pretty solid foundation for the nature of Eventru – of course, there’s a lot more to him than that. I’ve seen several order members in the past comment on him having a wise statement for every occasion – and it’s true. The final detail of Eventru, that was more or less pushed on him by mortals, was the idea of a ‘father figure’ god – I struggled a bit against it at first, but after some thought it made sense. I adapted to it quickly, and over time it’s very much who Eventru has become – a wise, generally gentle (don’t get him mad!) god, who doesn’t concern himself so much with the day-to-day battles but worries towards the long-term some.

Of course, there’s so much more to any character, god or mortal, than can be easily described in a blog post (and I already know when Estarra sees this, she’ll go “Oh wow! That’s so long!” – just know, she says this every time I post!) – for the past couple years I’ve made a genuine effort to transform Eventru’s godrealm into something more than just ‘oh look, a temple, very pretty. Some sand, cool – hey, water!’, but instead to also include quests.

I’ll not go on about it at length – and I’ll leave it at that I’ve found Eventru’s temple, and the quests within, an excellent opportunity to explore and expand upon Eventru and his nature. Of course, it’s slow going – Rome wasn’t built in a day – but over time it’s accumulated a total of four good quests, three of which have been used to add animals and life to the realm (because I think a good area needs some animal life!), and there’s a few special surprises planned for it down the road…

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