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D&D Classics: Demihuman Deities (2E)
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D&D Classics: Demihuman Deities (2E)

This essential supplement is a companion to Faiths & Avatars and Powers & Pantheons, which detailed the rules by which deities function in the Realms.

Demihuman Deities describes the demihuman relgions and powers of the Realms: those of the elves (including the drow), the dwarves, the gnomes and the halflings. Each entry includes information about a deity's appearance, personality, worshipers, portfolio, aliases, domain name, superior, allies, foes, symbol, worshipers' alignments, avatar, manifestations, church, and specialty priests.

The information on these faiths includes their core dogma, day-to-day activities of priests, holy days and important ceremonies, major centers of worship, affiliated orders, and the priestly vestaments and adventuring garb of members of the clergy.

Finally, each entry contains spells specific to each of the faiths.

Demihuman Deities includes:

Suitable for all levels of play.

To use this product, ownership of Faiths & Avatars is recommended but not required.

Product History

Demihuman Deities(1998), by Eric L. Boyd, is the third deity book for the Forgotten Realms. It was published in November 1998.

Origins (I): Yet More Realms Deities. Faiths & Avatars(1996) detailed the majority of the major deities from the Realms, then Powers & Pantheons(1997) delved into demipowers and more far-flung faiths. So what do you do as an encore? The series returned with Demihuman Deities(1998), which reveals the pantheons for the drow, dwarves, elves, gnomes, and halflings.

Like the previous volume, this one is thanks to Eric L. Boyd; unlike the previous volume, it's largely unpadded, full of gods and not much else.

Origins (II): A History of Demihuman Deities. Demihuman deities didn't get any love in Supplement IV: Gods, Demi-Gods & Heroes(1976). That changed with D&D's first adventures: the Elder Elemental God of the drow was first mentioned in the "G" adventures (1978), then Lolth was similarly referenced in the "D" adventures (1978), before actually appearing in Q1: "Queen of the Demonweb Pits" (1980).

The deific floodgates broke in Advanced Dungeons & Dragons's Deities & Demigods(1980), which revealed numerous nonhuman deities for the first time ever. This included many evil humanoid's gods and revisited the drow's Lolth. Lawrence Schick also introduced several gods for the more socially acceptable demihuman races, including: the dwarves' Moradin; the elves' Correlon Larethian, Deep Sashelas, and Rillifane Rallathil; the gnomes' Garl Glittergold; and the halflings' Yondalla. Roger E. Moore then followed up with a pivotal series of articles running from Dragon #58(February 1982) to Dragon #63(July 1982), each of which investigated the "point of view" of a demihuman or humanoid race, then examined their gods as well. Moore's deity lists were muchexpansive than the Schick originals, usually adding four to six deities for each race.

In the AD&D 2e era (1989-2000), Legends & Lore(1990) omitted all the nonhuman deities, but supplements quickly made up for that lack. FR11: "Dwarves Deep" (1990) revealed the dwarf deities for the Realms, many of whom derived directly from Schick and Moore's work, though Greenwood supplied some of his own as well. Greenwood similarly created a few new drow deities for FOR2: The Drow of the Underdark(1991). However, the avatar rules were changing rapidly in those early days of AD&D 2e, so these supplements' crunch would soon be outdated by the upcoming biggest-ever look at nonhuman deities.

That was Carl Sargent's DMGR4: Monster Mythology(1992), which featured about 25 pages of demihuman deities (and many more monstrous nonhumans). Once again, Schick and Moore were the major sources, but Sargent also offered several demihuman newcomers. There was one more Realms racial splatbook of note, FOR5: Elves of Evermeet(1994). However, it largely revisited known deities from Monster Mythology, and its new deities were considered problematic enough that most were retconned in this volume.

Monster Mythology's25 pages remained the main reference for demihuman deities for the four years, until Demihuman Deitiessaw another vast expansion ...

NPCs of Note. Though this is a Realms deities manual, many of the featured characters have a longer history.

The major gods of the demihuman races, Correlon Larethian(elves), Deep Sashelas(sea elves), Garl Glittergold(gnomes), Moradin(dwarves), Rillifane Rallathil(wood elves), and Yondalla(halflings) came from Deities & Demigods(1980).

Two years later, four issues of Dragonmagazine vastly increased these deity rolls. Abbathor, Berronar Truesilver, Clanggedin Silverbeard, Dumathoin, and Vergadaindebuted in Roger E. Moore's "The Gods of the Dwarves" in Dragon #58(February 1982); Arvoreen, Brandobaris, Cyrrollalee, and Sheela Peryroylare from "The Gods of the Halflings" in Dragon #59(March 1982); Aerdrie Faenya, Erevan Ilesere, Hanali Celanil, Labelas Enoreth, and Solonor Thelandirasprang forth from "The Gods of the Elves" in Dragon #60(April 1982); and Baervan Wildwanderer, Flandal Steelskin, Segojan Earthcaller,and Urdlenwere discovered in Dragon #61(May 1982).

In other words, about half of the Realms demihuman deities were created by Lawrence Schick and Roger E. Moore five to seven years before the Forgotten Realms became an official AD&D setting! In fact, these two sources provided the exact lists of demihuman gods found in the original Forgotten Realms Campaign Set(1987).

However, new Realms-specific deities soon began to appear, especially in the two aformentioned sources for drow and dwarves. The dwarf gods Gorm Gulthyn, Haela Bright Axe, Marthammor Dain, Sharindlar, and Thard Harrall turned up in FR11: "Dwarves Deep" (1990) Then, Ed Greenwood invented three new drow deities for FOR2: The Drow of the Underdark(1991): Eilistraee, Ghaunadaur(a version of Gary Gygax's Elder Elemental God), and Vhaeraun.

The final clump of new, generic demihuman gods appeared in Carl Sargent's DMGR4: Monster Mythology: Baravar Cloakshadow(gnomes); Callarduran Smoothhands(Svirfnebli); Dugmaren Brightmantle(dwarves); Fenmarel Mestarine(elves); Gaerdal Ironhand(gnomes); Kiaransalee(drow); Muamman Duathal(dwarves), who is said here to be the same as Marthammor Dain; Laduguer(duergar); Nebelun(gnomes); Sehanine Moonbow(elf); and Urogalan(halflings).

Some of these deities had interesting antecedents: Sehanine Moonbow had been off-handedly mentioned in PHBR8: The Complete Book of Elves(1992) and Urogalan had been alluded to in both "The Gods of the Halflings" from Dragon #59March 1982) and Unearthed Arcana(1985); obviously, Sargent had been working hard to be inclusive! Meanwhile, Kiaransalee would go on to fame as the killer of Orcus in Planes of Chaos(1994)

The remaining deities have more varied origins:

About the Creators. Every major roleplaying book by software engineer Eric L. Boyd has been for the Forgotten Realms. He got his start two years earlier with Faith & Avatars(1996) and Volo's Guide to All Things Magical(1996) and was now finishing out his deity trilogy

Converted by:  Franklin Miller

Requires:An active subscription or a one time purchase of a Fantasy Grounds Full or Ultimate license and the included 2E ruleset.

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Released on September 10, 2019

Designed for Fantasy Grounds version 3.3.7 and higher.

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