I’m setting up a one shot next week, as I’ve posted. As part of that, I decided it would be important to set up some background for the players.
It was watching some recent documentaries on the dark ages and this video that lead me to a mashup of the Norse and medieval catholic church as background for the Labyrinth Lord-based one-shot. The following is almost verbatim from my intro text in the section for clerics:
The only sanctioned church in Nornland is The Church of the Aesir, known simply as “the Church.” Think of this church as similar to the medieval catholic church. The All-Father is the creator, his son Thor was created to protect and save man. Freya, Tyr and even Loki are like the saints. Giants and demons are evil and Jormungandr (the serpent) is the devil (aided by Fenris and Hel). Valhalla is for fighters, but there is a realm for good laypeople as well, overseen by Freya in her realm. Your holy symbol is a silver tree, Yggdrasil, with Odin hanging from it during his great ordeal.
The second most popular religion in Nornland is the outlawed and secretive Circle of All. The All is an energy field created by all living things, and is represented in its many faces by the many gods and spirits that mankind reveres. This religion comes from lands far south of Sudland, but is viewed by the church and persecuted by the king as a deception of the Serpent. Members of this faith are directed to use law or chaos as needed to create the greatest good for the greatest number of people. Those in the Circle have certain phrases and symbols known only to fellow initiates.
Clerics may choose to be a cleric of the Church or a cleric of the All posing as a cleric of the Church (or suggest something different before we play). Either way, clerics served as chaplains and healers in the war. They have chain mail armor provided by the church and a church-issued weapon +1. This may be any blunt weapon or a spear.
Option 1) Church Clerics
Because of your experience and close alignment with the Aesir, your healing spells do an extra +1 HP healing while in Nornland. You must be lawful in alignment to stay in favor of the All-father.
Option 2) Clerics of the All
Once per adventure (or week) you may re-use any one spell you have already cast for that day. You may use any weapon, including edged weapons, but you better have a good explanation if anyone asks. You are neutral in respect to law and chaos.
Title changed for greater accuracy plus a note.
From the Management: Let me note something that should be obvious: I have not researched the eddas of the vikings, nor have I read a great deal on medieval religions. I am shamelessly borrowing this and that and mashing it up. I will be doing more research on these later, and certainly refining it if I ever use it for more than my own gaming sessions and blogging.