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Gibbering Oracles (Part 1 of 4)

Angelo Bronzino, Allegory of the Triumph of VenusHow can a god be mad? Some sages claim all the gods are mad, and we are but the figments of their raving intellects. Yet madness does not just mean a disordered mind caught up in its own delusions and faux-reality.

If madness is one man’s illusion, perhaps sanity is also an illusion, but one shared by many instead of relegated to an individual. The psychotic simply perceives a different illusion or pierces the common delusion to reveal a deeper reality. Hence, the madness common to all gods.

Worshippers of madness attempt to spread the view of reality defined by their deity. Many are evil, or care not for the niceties of civilization, and enjoy the chaos and destruction they bring. A few might be called strange liberators, freeing creatures from oppressive realities, societies, or social stigmas…

A PC who embraces insanity, either refusing to participate in the collective mania or hastening the dissolution of the universe, can choose one of the divine paragon paths described below.

In rare cases, these paragon paths are open to creatures who worship a primordial instead of a god. These men and women gain their powers from the primordial’s nihilistic denial of creation.

Sanity’s Hunter

“Madness is the payment for your transgression.”

Prerequisite: Avenger.

Though feared, your god is not some chaos-creature bent on consuming the world. Madness is simply a tool, and like any tool, it has its uses. You have sworn to bring madness upon the deserving: men and women who violate the divine order, who offend your deity with their hubris, or who deserve a moment of humility.

You stalk a target’s mentality the way others hunt a creature for its pelt or horns. Your prize is not an object but a foaming and cackling foe writhing at your feet.

Maddening Action (11th): When you are adjacent to the target of your oath of enmity and you use an action point to take an extra action, your oath of enmity target takes psychic damage equal to 3 + your Wisdom modifier.

Lunatic’s Attack (11th): You may add a bonus equal to your Wisdom modifier to hit your oath of enmity target, but you grant combat advantage to all foes adjacent to you until the start of your next turn.

Raving Combatant (16th): If you score a critical hit against your oath of enmity target, add 1d10 + your Wisdom modifier to the damage.

Demented Strike (Sanity’s Hunter Attack 11)

Your ferocious attack leaves your opponent wounded and shaken.
Encounter • Divine, Fear, Weapon
Standard Action                               Melee
weapon
Target:
One creature.
Attack:
Wisdom vs. AC.
Hit:
2 [W] + Wisdom modifier damage, and the target is dazed until the end your next turn.
Special:
If the target is your oath of enmity target and both of the dice you roll result in a hit, the target is stunned instead of dazed.

Madman’s Fane (Sanity’s Hunter Utility 12)

Your dementia is your refuge and your weapon. Opponents beware.
Encounter • Divine, Psychic
Immediate Interrupt                      Personal
Trigger: You are attacked with a power with the fear or psychic keyword.
Effect: You gain a +2 power bonus to defenses. If the attack still hits, the attacking creature takes psychic damage equal to 5 + your Wisdom modifier.

The Left Hand of God (Sanity’s Hunter Attack 20)

With the power of your deity, you force your opponent into the madness it so richly deserves.
Daily • Divine, Psychic, Implement
Standard Action                               Ranged 10
Target: One creature.
Attack: Wisdom vs. Will.
Hit: 2d8 + Wisdom modifier psychic damage.
Special: If the target is your oath of enmity target, it takes 3d8 + Wisdom modifier psychic damage.
Effect: On its turn, the target makes a basic attack with a +2 power bonus against one creature of your choice. If the target hits with this attack, it must make another such attack on its next turn. It does this each round until it misses, and then the effect ends.
Special: If the target attacks your oath of enmity target, it gains a +4 power bonus on this attack.
Secondary Effect: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage (save ends).

Gibbering Oracles (Part 1 of 4)

By Stefen Styrsky

How can a god be mad? Some sages claim all the gods are mad, and we are but the figments of their raving intellects. Yet madness does not just mean a disordered mind caught up in its own delusions and faux-reality. If madness is one man’s illusion, perhaps sanity is also an illusion, but one shared by many instead of relegated to an individual. The psychotic simply perceives a different illusion or pierces the common delusion to reveal a deeper reality. Hence, the madness common to all gods.

Worshippers of madness attempt to spread the view of reality as defined by their deity. Many are evil, or care not for the niceties of civilization, and simply enjoy the chaos and destruction they bring. A few might be called liberators, freeing creatures from oppressive realities, societies, or social stigmas.

A PC who embraces insanity, either refusing to participate in the collective mania or desiring to hasten the dissolution of the universe, can choose one of the divine paragon paths described below.

In rare cases, these paragon paths are open to creatures who worship a primordial instead of a god. These men and women gain their powers from the primordial’s nihilistic denial of creation’s legitimacy.

Sanity’s Hunter

“Madness is the payment for your transgression.”

Prerequisite: Avenger.

Though feared, your god is not some chaos-creature bent on consuming the world. Madness is simply a tool, and like any tool, it has its uses. You have sworn to bring madness upon the deserving: men and women who violate the divine order, who offend your deity with their hubris, or who simply deserve a moment of humility.

You stalk a target’s mentality the way others hunt a creature for its pelt or horns. Your prize is not an object but a foaming and cackling foe writhing at your feet.

Maddening Action (11th): When you are adjacent to the target of your oath of enmity and you use an action point to take an extra action, your oath of enmity target takes psychic damage equal to 3 + your Wisdom modifier.

Lunatic’s Attack (11th): You may add a bonus equal to your Wisdom modifier to hit your oath of enmity target, but you grant combat advantage to all foes adjacent to you until the start of your next turn.

Raving Combatant (16th): If you score a critical hit against your oath of enmity target, add 1d10 + your Wisdom modifier to the damage.

Demented Strike Sanity’s Hunter Attack 11

Your ferocious attack leaves your opponent wounded and shaken.
Encounter • Divine, Fear, Weapon
Standard Action Melee
weapon
Target:
One creature.
Attack:
Wisdom vs. AC.
Hit:
2 [W] + Wisdom modifier damage, and the target is dazed until the end your next turn.
Special:
If the target is your oath of enmity target and both of the dice you roll result in a hit, the target is stunned instead of dazed.

Madman’s Fane Sanity’s Hunter Utility 12

Your dementia is your refuge and your weapon. Opponents beware.
Encounter • Divine, Psychic
Immediate Interrupt Personal
Trigger: You are attacked with a power possessing the fear or psychic keyword.
Effect: You gain a +2 power bonus to defenses. If the attack still hits, the attacking creature takes psychic damage equal to 5 + your Wisdom modifier.

The Left Hand of God Sanity’s Hunter Attack 20

With the power of your deity, you force your opponent into the madness it so richly deserves.
Daily • Divine, Psychic, Implement
Standard Action Ranged 10
Target: One creature.
Attack: Wisdom vs. Will.
Hit: 2d8 + Wisdom modifier psychic damage.
Special: If the target is your oath of enmity target, it takes 3d8 + Wisdom modifier psychic damage.
Effect: On its turn, the target makes a basic attack with a +2 power bonus against one creature of your choice. If the target hits with this attack, it must make another such attack on its next turn. It does this each round until it misses, at which time the effect ends.
Special: If the target attacks your oath of enmity target, it gains a +4 power bonus on this attack.
Secondary Effect: The target takes ongoing 10 psychic damage (save ends).

2 Replies to "Gibbering Oracles (Part 1 of 4)"

Aaronichi

March 23, 2011 at 4:10am

Sir, this is going to be a great series. Lately my 4e table has been toying with plot-lines that delve beneath the veil of sanity as well. Shifting what is positioned as evil makes for interesting heroes. We have taken the given class paths and maybe switched an occasional damage type to reflect the RP flavor we’ve developed, but nothing like this. This is inspirational.

I will have to say, though, splitting the powers for the path between weapon and implement is kinda on the dickish side. Just saying.

matthew

March 23, 2011 at 10:10am

I really like this Paragon path and the fluff that goes with it but I think the Lunatics Attack feature is way to powerful.

Being able to add your main stat to hit twice (for only giving up CA) I think is over the top especially for a class the mostly rolls two d20 to hit.

Possibly adding your Wis mod to damage for CA would be good or a flat power bonus such as +2 or +4.

Just my two cents. Great Article