Religion

In the decades leading up to the Strange Aeon, organized reli-
gion had not had a good time of it. Christianity had especially
taken a hit in the wake of corruption and scandals, and the vi-
olence of radical Islam had rocked the world for generations.
More and more people found that the answers they were looking
for and the comfort they sought was not to be found in the halls
of an organized faith. For the first time in thousands of years, the
churches of the world began to lose followers and their power
over the minds and moralities of society.

First came arcanotechnology and people had to accept the ex-
istence of magic. This magic wasn’t the unholy power spoken of
in religious tomes, but rather a quantifiable discipline accepted
as a sort of pseudo-science. Furthermore, its application greatly
benefitted the world. Then came the First Arcanotech War, a
war the likes of which the world had never seen. People were
now confronted with evidence that there were aliens and that
the Earth was not the center of the universe, metaphorically
speaking. People had questions and the religions of the world
didn’t have answers. Within a decade came the Second Arcano-
tech War and the world was confronted with real aliens. Not
long after that, dead gods began to awaken and monsters began
to roam the Earth. Most people, though they desired the peace
of mind many religions promised, came to the realization that
whatever “god” was, they’ve had it wrong all along. Organized
faiths and their dogmas simply were not designed to live in the
world that Humans had now entered into. In short, the day the
world discovered the larger universe was the day nearly all orga-
nized religion died.

These days, the force behind religion is the Universal Church.
It is a non-denominational spiritual community that crosses all
boundaries, designed to function in the complicated and fright-
ening world of the Strange Aeon. There is little dogma that is
part of the Universal Church and they use no holy book or body
of knowledge as part of their worship. While they have churches,
they are not ornate buildings filled with iconography and holy
symbols, nor do services involve the singing of religious songs or
other pomp and circumstance. Universal Churches are comfort-
able places of gathering and services are usually part of a pot
luck. A minister, someone who is required to have attained a
doctorate in philosophy and comparative religions, guides ser-
vices, which are usually spiritual discussions around a theme.
There is a group therapy aspect as current events and commu-
nity issues are often discussed, people seeking to process their
emotions or to find guidance. Community service is a big part of
the Universal Church and congregations plan and execute initia-
tives in their neighborhoods for the good of the people. All in
all, the Universal Church represents a contemporary, laid-back,
service-oriented approach to an organized faith.

The principles behind the Universal Church are simple. The basic
tenets include:
• There is a higher power in the universe and we are a part
of an intelligent design.
• All living things are part of a greater energy and that
energy always continues.
• Do what you want but hurt no one, including yourself,
in the process.
• We are all bound by spirit into a universal community
and it is an honor to give back to others.

Other than that, the Universal Church provides few prescrip-
tions. They let people be people and condemn only those who
prey on others. However, this loose framework provides people
with the spiritual answers they seek, or at least engages them in
an on-going guided spiritual inquiry. It connects them in fellow-
ship and helps provide hope that a brighter day is coming, or at
least helps them accept how things are. The church also provides
a moral compass, something that has often been the purview of
religion, though a loose one in which there is a lot of personal
freedom.

In the end, most people are simply spiritual. They don’t belong
to this church or that sect and instead have simply worked things
out for themselves. Some believe their own mutated version of
the organized faith of their forebears, while others go with what
is in their heart. Most would classify themselves as agnostic –
someone who believes there is something beyond their under-
standing but don’t know exactly what. The philosophy of Im-
manuel Kant is very appropriate for the people of the Strange
Aeon. There is a phenomenal world, which is the one we can see
and touch and understand. Then there is the noumenal world,
the world beyond us, and all we can do is acknowledge that this
is there. Trying to understand or quantify it is futile.

Pourtant avec la fin des religions organisés est venus une montée d’histoire de gens corrompus ou transformés spirituellement. Endommagé mentalement à jamais! Des rumeurs que le NEG dément rapidement comme étant des idées conspirationniste et
sans grand intérêt. Pourtant, la vérité est tout autre. Seule une poignée de gens à l’intérieur de l’église universelle et dans le gouvernement sont au courant. Les recherches de la Fondation Ashcroft ont permis de découvrir que l’influence des anciens dieux et des énergie euclidienne ont perturber l’équilibre naturelle et corrompe certains individus. Pourtant, toute pratiques dite scientifique non pas permis de résoudre le problème. Seule une immense foi semble protégé un individus ou permet de guérir quelqu’un d’atteint.
Pour cette raison, l’église universelle possède un regroupement de personnes spécifiquement entrainée dans des méthodes dites d’exorcise, protégés par une
unité d’élite de soldat paranormal.

Glossary

A short list of terms related to corruptions follows.

Catalyst: The inciting incident that corrupted you in the game’s story, combined with ways you can progress toward total corruption.

Corruption: A dark manifestation of evil and alien influence that changes you over time.

Corruption Stage: A measure of how close you are to falling to your corruption. Think of your corruption stage as how much your soul has been altered by your corruption. At corruption stage 3, you succumb and are no longer a PC.

Gift: A benefit granted by a manifestation of your corruption.

Manifestation: A manifestation is a way in which your corruption becomes more prominent. You gain manifestations roughly every 2 character levels you live with your corruption. Each manifestation has both a gift and a stain, although you might not get both.

Manifestation Level: This is a measure of how much your corruption has changed your body and mind. Your manifestation level equals the number of manifestations you have.

Stain: A negative effect granted by a manifestation of your corruption.

Contracting a Corruption

The catalyst section of each corruption offers a number of possible methods for contracting that corruption. Once you contract a corruption, you immediately gain a manifestation.

Your manifestation level becomes 1, and your number of manifestations and your manifestation level can increase as described in Manifestation Level. You also draw closer to losing your soul, as represented by your corruption stage. This is described under The Corruption’s Progress.

Manifestations

You gain a manifestation of your curse when you first contract a corruption, and gain more at later levels. Each manifestation includes both a gift and a stain

Many manifestations have prerequisites that limit them to characters farther along in their corruptions. A prerequisite marked with an asterisk (*) is another manifestation in the same section.

Unless stated otherwise, the DC for gifts that allow a saving throw is equal to 10 + 1/2 your level + your manifestation level (see below). You can have a maximum of nine manifestations.

Manifestation Level

Each creature with a corruption has a manifestation level, which is normally equal to the number of manifestations the corrupted creature has .

Sometimes gifts and stains become more extreme as a creature’s manifestation level increases.

You gain a new manifestation roughly every 2 levels. GMs can introduce corruptions as early as your 1st (character level. A standard rate of corruption starts with a PC gaining the first stain at 1st level, the second at 3rd level, and another at 5th, 7th, 9th, and so on. Because you are limited to nine manifestations, your manifestation level can’t exceed 9th.

This standard rate of acquisition is a guideline rather than a strict rule. Many corruptions feature story considerations that could speed up or slow down the process.

The Corruption’s Progress

Every corruption has an associated saving throw. Each time you fail it, your corruption progresses to the next corruption stage. Each stage causes a more significant change within you, until you become completely irredeemable at corruption stage 3. When you gain a corruption, you begin at what is effectively stage 0, with no direct penalties. You must attempt a saving throw when you are being pulled toward darkness, and these saves are usually spread over a long period of time (often weeks or months). As such, abilities that allow or force rerolls (or rolling twice and taking the higher or lower result) can never be used on these saving throws, and temporary bonuses don’t apply on the progression saving throw, even if they are long-lasting.

See the exemple above:

Return to Life in the Strange Aeon

Religion

D20 Cthulhutech LouisLapierre