The Pantheon

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The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Tue Aug 12, 2008 5:34 pm

Guys, I'm looking at compiling a pantheon of Comix! deities, so as to be able to see if I can extract from the inevitable chaotic mess a more-or-less coherent mythology surrounding some of my own creations (mainly Tchernobog/Saint Anthony the Machinist, plus some additional ideas that are milling about). I know that if I go at this alone I'm inevitably going to miss out on some folks that have been mentioned, so if y'all could help me out on this that'd be mightily appreciated.

I'm mainly looking for name + <purpose here>, so for example if you were to mention 'Anubis' do me a favour and tell me what he's supposed to be the god of (and a brief rundown on his stuff would be nice as well!)
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Wed Aug 13, 2008 12:50 pm

Alexei Ross and his 'brothers' were apparently* responsible for creation. They're essentially irrelevant , however, simply because they're all locked up. Even Ross is still almost entirely locked up.

*My story is that it's intentionally vague.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Wed Aug 13, 2008 1:26 pm

Creation of what specifically though?
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:15 pm

Intentionally vague, Siege, intentionally vague.

Seriously for a moment, it was basically 'creation full stop'. It wasn't anything specific (it was only even implied in the original article), because they were never well-defined, but it started at the Big Bang and ended with everything. However, as time has gone on, I've not been particularly satisfied with a lot of my attempts at higher metaphysical meaning. I like the concept of Alexei Ross being some sort of creator god, yet at the same time I don't like the idea of him being a deific master of creation. I just don't think I've handled it well enough to justify it, given it's such a massively important role in OZ Comix! cosmology (which on the whole I don't like to think about if I can help it).
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Malchus » Wed Aug 13, 2008 2:18 pm

Well, I have sort of incorporated the Lovecraftian gods like the Great Old Ones and Outer Gods into my Crosspoints-related stuff. And their functions and roles are mostly described as they are in the Lovecraft Mythos except for the Great Old Ones all currently sleeping on R'lyeh (essentially just a pocket universe collective bedroom in my conception) and the Outer Gods mostly uninterested in the "normal" universe of Comix and currently poking around with the Dreamlands (in my conception, created from all the sleeping "gods" in R'lyeh).

My own original pseudo-Great Old One, B'rukthu, claims to be a servant of the Great Old Ones but has been implied to be Nyarlathotep. He mostly just dicks with various Great Old One cultists for the lulz.

EDIT: Before the Great Old Ones went to sleep and the Outer Gods became preoccupied with the Dreamlands, they too were cosmic dicks messing with mortals and each other mostly out of cosmic boredom.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Shroom Man 777 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:02 pm

Spider Simango is the mischievous trickster god of Africa, but his shtick is usually low-key Neil Gaimanish stuff... with Kalashnikovs and child soldiers.

General Tiger was the wrathful war god of Africa, but Spider Simango ruined his shit.

Leon Molefi would be some sort of 'not-so-righteous order' deity.

And... well, I think Africa should have Seven Lords of War :)


Of course, their shtick would be somewhat not so blatant and downright villainous as ole Colonel Crimson.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Invictus » Wed Aug 13, 2008 6:53 pm

It depends on your definition of 'deity', but Phaeton's kin, the thus far hazily conceived Star-Gods and their primordial enemies, the Cold Ones, may count. They are not the oldest nor the most powerful beings in the universe, but their actions have shaped a lot of the cosmos as we know it, and are certainly worshiped. There is of course also the Anti-Gods, their bastard children.

On the terrestrial side of things, the Dragon Court of the East in the New Ghosts article would count as well.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Shroom Man 777 » Wed Aug 13, 2008 7:02 pm

Oh, fuck yes - Giant Space Men!

The Anti-Gods!

Oh oh oh!

Mogar
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Wed Aug 13, 2008 9:18 pm

No, no, no; I'm not at all looking for 'epically strong dudes who got worshipped by ignorant natives of Planet Zod' - this particular universe is bound to be chock full of cargo-cult situations and I'm not particularly interested in those at this time.

Rather, I'm looking for gods. Not pretend-gods, but beings who qualify for the title by virtue of being more than just 'rar strong': they answer prayers, they actively created bits and pieces of the greater cosmos, they are the patron of a particular universal principle, or they've got some other funky metaphysical properties going on that would qualify them for godhood.

I guess that at some point the line between metahuman and god kind of blurs, but this is definitely a 'know it when I see it' situation and Mogar ain't a bleedin' god. If you regularly get your arse kicked by Archwind you don't qualify for godhood - no offense is meant to old Patrick, but them's the brakes.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Thu Aug 14, 2008 1:28 am

In this case, I would sugest that Phaeton and his ilk count - they did shape the entirety of the universe in their war with the Cold Ones. Even though Phaeton is by nature entirely material, but he is certainly at the bound where distinguishing between 'rar strong' and 'deity' seems mildly pointless.

In any case, what are your thoughts, Siege? I want to see your ideas.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Invictus » Thu Aug 14, 2008 7:45 am

Keep in mind that Phaeton can (and Mogar has) eat "proper" gods for breakfast, lunch and dinner. I can't help you on the metaphysical front, but I don't see how responding to a petitioner's plea by showing up to kick some ass doesn't qualify as 'answering a prayer'. As for Mogar, remember he was born on a planet of space gods and fucking killed all of them in the course of his dominion. The fact that he gets his ass regularly kicked by Archwind only means that Arch is also one of those people who can eat gods for breakfast. There might be something metaphysical about those two, as well.

(Shroom, did you repost the Mogar profile?)

On a less controversial note, there is the Tellurian. Empowered by the Earth as a defense mechanism, he certainly has metaphysical powers over the planet.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Thu Aug 14, 2008 10:32 am

Invictus wrote:There might be something metaphysical about those two, as well.
The canonicity is debateable because I came up with it using the Mogar article, but Archwind may well have been empowered by the residual cosmic energies of the Cosmic Weapon, which killed all of Mogar's deific opponents. It all sort of fits neatly together, though.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Thu Aug 14, 2008 10:46 am

Ford Prefect wrote:In this case, I would sugest that Phaeton and his ilk count - they did shape the entirety of the universe in their war with the Cold Ones. Even though Phaeton is by nature entirely material, but he is certainly at the bound where distinguishing between 'rar strong' and 'deity' seems mildly pointless.
Then Phaeton would qualify for the same reason Mr. Ross qualifies (although I haven't read the Star-Gods vs. Cold Ones bit in a while and I don't think it's up right now - can someone fill me in on the basic details?): he's not just a truckload of force packed into a handy body (there's obviously more of those around on Comix! earth), but he's actually done stuff worthy of a god (eg, create *stuff*).

I'm aware this is may seem arbitrary to some of you, but a mere statement of "he's from a planet of space gods" doesn't qualify someone as an actual god. Any old sucker can say that. What's Mogar ever done that's suitably deific? Kill a bunch of people? Blow up some planets? Is that really 'godlike' when you've also got an FTL spaceship?

Now if he were to do it with his bare fists because he were the avatar of the universal force of 'blowing shit up', then there would be a point to nominating him. Otherwise he's just another strong dude IMO.
In any case, what are your thoughts, Siege? I want to see your ideas.
Well, it's all fairly conceptual at this stage, I'd really rather not elaborate too much since obviously a lot of things are going to change depending on the input. But insofar as the mythos is involved I'm thinking that Tchernobog is essentially a manifestation of Yog-Sothoth or vice versa (their 'god at the gates' function is fairly similar). A connection between Ross and Saint Anthony seems obvious as well (creation/progress). There's a bunch of character ideas that I want to introduce depending on how the pantheon pans out as well.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Thu Aug 14, 2008 12:32 pm

Certainly the idea of Saint Anthony being the successor to Alexei Ross is interesting. One thing I am sure about is that Ross and his six siblings are pretty much the most primordial of entities out of the chaos from before the universe, but they have since been locked away, meaning their influence is now moot. Alexei Ross is just a shard of the actual creature (who has no actual name), and has no metaphysical rulership over creation and any longer.

I'll have to let Invictus fill you in on that war, because I can't remember how it was described in the Anti-God article, and Phaeton himself was very vague about in his interview with Earl Makeson. What I do remember is that the universe would have been a really different place if the Cold Ones had won - their influence would have completely shifted the balance in a different direction.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Thu Aug 14, 2008 2:02 pm

Ford Prefect wrote:Certainly the idea of Saint Anthony being the successor to Alexei Ross is interesting. One thing I am sure about is that Ross and his six siblings are pretty much the most primordial of entities out of the chaos from before the universe, but they have since been locked away, meaning their influence is now moot. Alexei Ross is just a shard of the actual creature (who has no actual name), and has no metaphysical rulership over creation and any longer.
Perhaps he is not a successor neccesarily... A refinement perhaps, or close acquaintance at the least. So far I'm leaning toward a rather Platonic view of Comix! universe: The universe as it is perceived by most ordinary creatures is a pale reflection of rather more abstract 'absolute forces' (I don't want to settle for Plato's 'absolute truth' because that's really rather too final a term to use). Tchernobog is the 'filter' through which these forces act upon the world/universe: Hence, Saint Anthony being an avatar of what he actually represents (progress, taking mainly the form of technological progress on our world).

Now, depending on factors I haven't worked out yet, Tchernobog could have a different attitude to certain of these forces, allowing them more or less influence on our reflection of reality than his precursors did. This *might* explain how the Ross Family got locked up and the key thrown out.

There is also an event in the past I've alluded to when a bunch of old gods (Anubis et al) packed up and moved on to Somewhere Else, to be replaced by the Dark God. I could conceivably tie this into Ross' imprisonment as well, but then I have the feeling he got locked up way before there was even life on Earth, let alone Egyptians -- so Tchernobog taking over from Anubis would have to be a fairly recent event. Though of course that doesn't neccesarily mean that ol' 'Bog wasn't around before that all went down.

At any rate, Tchernobog's taking over might have made reality more malleable, thus allowing for the rise of metahumans as rather more conceptual 'forces' gain more influence on the universe. More information, however, is required. As well as input on the Star Gods, and their degree of influence on creation and the cosmos at large.

By the by -- does the Ross family go by another name that I can use for their kind?
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Invictus » Thu Aug 14, 2008 2:18 pm

The Star-Shepherds are beings who on the whole embody heat and energy and light, as opposed to their opposite number who embody darkness and void. The Cold Ones are creatures whose very existences are extremely tenuous due to the very nature of their composition - their wills are barely manifest in the dance of transient virtual particles - but the forces which they embody are very concrete, nevertheless. Their war have largely decimated both sides, but let's say that if Phaeton's side hadn't pulled a win, stars wouldn't exist today, nor would carbon-based life. As a net result of the conflict, you can...almost say that today, the lights are less bright and shadows less sharp.

In any case, Phaeton is *not* a typical member of his kind.

The Greek gods also exist, given Shroom's Gladiators and Kamin's Immortal.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Thu Aug 14, 2008 2:50 pm

Invictus wrote:The Star-Shepherds are beings who on the whole embody heat and energy and light, as opposed to their opposite number who embody darkness and void. The Cold Ones are creatures whose very existences are extremely tenuous due to the very nature of their composition - their wills are barely manifest in the dance of transient virtual particles - but the forces which they embody are very concrete, nevertheless.
Are they purely physical beings though, or manifestations of something greater? I'm mainly looking for the latter at this point, though I'm not really opposed to including a category of 'reality shapers' who've had a significant impact on physical reality. Those would not classify for godhood on the level of the Ross Family though.

The Greek gods also exist, given Shroom's Gladiators and Kamin's Immortal.
Right; I'll treat them and the Egyptian pantheon (and any other 'real' gods) as multiple sides of the same coin (Anubis and Hades are both human attempts to capture an image of the true force those two names represent).
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Invictus » Thu Aug 14, 2008 3:03 pm

SiegeTank wrote:Are they purely physical beings though, or manifestations of something greater? I'm mainly looking for the latter at this point, though I'm not really opposed to including a category of 'reality shapers' who've had a significant impact on physical reality. Those would not classify for godhood on the level of the Ross Family though.
I'm personally not decided on this. Phaeton is definitely just physical, partly an effect of the current body he is...constrained in. Leave them out for now.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Mobius 1 » Thu Aug 14, 2008 3:12 pm

Elvis, God of Rock and Roll, gents.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Thu Aug 14, 2008 3:13 pm

SiegeTank wrote:By the by -- does the Ross family go by another name that I can use for their kind?
There's a fairly inaccurate book on earth which speaks vaguely of the Seven Dark Stars of Creation and Destruction, or words to that effect. Something they don't have is real names. Not even Daniel Stephensen can say much about them with any confidence; just that they exist. 'Alexei Ross' is not an accurate representation of what he really is; his humour and humanity isn't really real either, but he views himself with a sort of distant curiousity and confusion. Not even he could say much about himself, and he's the biggest expert in the entire universe.

I'm telling you it was done like this on purpose.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Siege » Thu Aug 14, 2008 3:54 pm

Ford Prefect wrote:There's a fairly inaccurate book on earth which speaks vaguely of the Seven Dark Stars of Creation and Destruction, or words to that effect.
Right; so a Necronomicon of sorts. That's okay, there seem to be a lot of those books around :). I'll roll with the Seven Dark Stars as a name for now.

Thusfar then:

Conceptual Forces
Seven Dark Stars of Creation and Destruction - forces of creation (and persumably destruction)
Saint Anthony the Machinist - force of progress
Elvis Presley, King of Rock - force of rock 'n' roll
Zeus - presumably the force of oiled up nudery, calisthenics and spectacles

All aspects of these glimpsed by mortals are just that - glimpses of a greater force. It is conceivable that certain metahuman abilities flow (directly or indirectly) from the presence of such a force (e.g. Wayward Son draws upon the power of Elvis, which would seem to jive quite well with established canon).
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Shroom Man 777 » Sat Aug 16, 2008 4:31 pm

I think Heracules should be the real God of Manliness.

Wait! Here me out!

Look, I think this sets an awesome precedent. Heracules was a mere mortal, half-god and shit, since Zeus just boinked some chick who gave birth to Herc. At least Zeus didn't do it while in the form of a moose, else the chick would've birthed a monster. Anyway...

Heracules became a god, as opposed to a demi-god or a mortal, by transcending the bounds of his mortalitude by sheer manliness. This was during the Age of Mystery, or the Age of Obscurity, in which he threw a sky at someone - and it sets up legal universal precedent of mundane beings becoming more than mere mortals!

So Archwind, Rock Stronggo, Toolverine, and a whole lot of our dudes... well, they sort of owe it to Herc for defying the bounds of reality and thus allowing the old blue-collar joe to throw skies at Space Mooses.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Malchus » Sat Aug 16, 2008 4:45 pm

Would that idea also make Doctor Thanatos some sort of demi-god of ressurection? With him "ascending" to another existence past death through sheer willpower and "bestowing" powers upon others, like he did with Nathan Blitz.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Shroom Man 777 » Sat Aug 16, 2008 4:55 pm

I doubt he's a real god... maybe a Messiah or a Prophet for an actual conceptual deity.
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Re: The Pantheon

Post by Ford Prefect » Sun Aug 17, 2008 7:30 am

Or maybe he's just unlocking the latent abilities of human willpower? Making him a 'mouthpiece', so to speak, of some deific force is frankly retarded, simply because it goes against the central theme and spirit of the entire character of Doctor Thanatos. I also do not like the idea of attributing the metahuman abilities of superhuman strength or speed or whatever to have been caused by Heracles setting 'universal precedent' by somehow transcending human limits, which is honestly ridiculous. Manliness and GAR has its place everywhere, even in OZ Comix!, but it should not be the central driving force of the entire setting.
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