Advanced Search

Divine Theory
Quick Preview
Full‑size Preview

Divine Theory

Watermarked PDF

Using Divine Magic to develop Characters, Worldbuilding, and Adventures

Divine magic is an element of tabletop fantasy with that’s seen a lot of changes. Originally intended to help emulate vampire hunters in Hammer Horror films (seriously) by allowing characters to turn and disrupt the undead, it’s grown to encompass a whole spectrum of real-world religious influences, mythology, and game design necessity. Most characters that tap into divine magic are either modified fighters, acting as an agent of their deity in the mortal world, or healers there to back up the rest of the adventuring party with handy utility spells.

Some systems skip over the notion of divine magic entirely, because it really doesn’t have many precedents in fantasy fiction. It’s there in novels and short stories after the release of First Edition, but you’d be hard pressed to find characters that align with the tabletop gaming classes prior to that. At the very least, there is no clear distinction between the arcane and divine in Tolkien. It’s completely absent from the Vancian magical canon. Robert E. Howard’s evil priests call upon demons for power, more akin to witch, but there’s no good equivalent there. A better can can be made for tapping into the Bible, with early spells that turned staves into snakes a la Moses in Cecil B. DeMille's film The Ten Commandments.

The existence of divine magic has a lot of implications for your worldbuilding. It requires extraplanar beings and deities willing to share their power in exchange for worship, sacrifices, and some degree of proselytizing. This means that they have interacted with the people of the setting in the past, at the very least, if not in an ongoing basis. Doctrine, dogma, and a whole set of religious practices will develop around a deity’s teachings, or at least how mortals interpret and assign meaning to their actions. There are institutions, cultural practices, and political influences that will grow out of religious beliefs. That part, at least, has historical precedence if not a body of fantasy fiction to back it up.

Because the divine is such an established element of tabletop fantasy, we often treat it as a given. We don’t spend enough time thinking about why it’s there, who uses it, and how it has shaped the setting. This book will dive into ways that you can use divine magic for character development, worldbuilding efforts, and adventure design. Hopefully you’ll come out of it with a greater appreciation of this influence, or set of influences, within your fantasy universe, and new ways to utilize it to make your campaign stand out.

Because the Foragers Guild Guide supplements are system-agnostic, this volume will delve more into the perceptions and archetypal racial capabilities of the arcane rather than their specific abilities. In places, some broad generalizations will be made. You should adapt the concepts to what best fits the mechanics, setting, and character that you’re working with inside the context of your campaign. 

 Customers Who Bought this Title also Purchased
Reviews (0)
Discussions (0)
Narrow Results
 Follow Your Favorites!
NotificationsSign in to get custom notifications of new products!
 Recent History

Product Information
Electrum seller
Publisher Stock #
File Size:
1.72 MB
Original electronic
Scanned image
These products were created by scanning an original printed edition. Most older books are in scanned image format because original digital layout files never existed or were no longer available from the publisher.

For PDF download editions, each page has been run through Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to attempt to decipher the printed text. The result of this OCR process is placed invisibly behind the picture of each scanned page, to allow for text searching. However, any text in a given book set on a graphical background or in handwritten fonts would most likely not be picked up by the OCR software, and is therefore not searchable. Also, a few larger books may be resampled to fit into the system, and may not have this searchable text background.

For printed books, we have performed high-resolution scans of an original hardcopy of the book. We essentially digitally re-master the book. Unfortunately, the resulting quality of these books is not as high. It's the problem of making a copy of a copy. The text is fine for reading, but illustration work starts to run dark, pixellating and/or losing shades of grey. Moiré patterns may develop in photos. We mark clearly which print titles come from scanned image books so that you can make an informed purchase decision about the quality of what you will receive.
Original electronic format
These ebooks were created from the original electronic layout files, and therefore are fully text searchable. Also, their file size tends to be smaller than scanned image books. Most newer books are in the original electronic format. Both download and print editions of such books should be high quality.
File Information
Watermarked PDF
Watermarked PDF

These PDF files are digitally watermarked to signify that you are the owner. A small message is added to the bottom of each page of the PDF containing your name and the order number of your purchase.

Warning: If any files bearing your information are found being distributed illegally, then your account will be suspended and legal action may be taken against you.

Here is a sample of a page from a watermarked title:

File Last Updated:
April 01, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on June 08, 2018.