This is a snapshot copy of Planewalker before our recent database crash. Please go to www.planewalker.com for the current site.

Alternative history of Aoskar

Announcement!

We have moved to new, and hopefully better hardware! Along with this move came a bunch of updates to our code base. Please let me know if you spot something wonky.

6 posts / 0 new
Last post
Palomides's picture
Offline
factotums
Joined: 2010-06-26
Alternative history of Aoskar

While this won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, I modified the story of Aoskar a bit:

In my mind, the conflict between Aoskar and the Lady of Pain happened BEFORE there was a Sigil.

Aoskar was the deity of portals, planar travel, and unraveling puzzles.
As planar travel is a VERY desirable portfolio, he got into conflict with a deity from Acheron who wanted the power to send his legions anywhere in the multiverse at will. For his assault against Aoskar, he recruited a proto-bladeling and imbued her with intense levels of divine power so that she could lead a second front against Aoskar.

In the resulting battle, the Acheron god was killed. But while Aoskar was preoccupied with finishing off this bellicose god, the proto-bladeling avatar struck from behind and was able to slay the weakened Aoskar (although she also died in the backlash of divine energy)

So like all dead gods, Aoskar appeared on the Astral. But because of the residual power, the people that visited his dead body found that very often portals would appear and allow visitors easy means of travel.
[This was in the days before Anubis set himself up as the protector of the dead gods or else, the exploitation of these portals would probably have come to naught]
Soon a trade community was settled on the dead god and was growing exponentially. Then something odd happened

What happened that while most had forgot who Aoskar was, the residents and visitors believe so strongly in the power of their trade city and its portals that the body changed shape and actually shifted to the Outlands.

**SIGIL IS THE BODY OF AOSKAR HIMSELF!

At first, the collective belief in the portals was enough to transform Aoska from being dead to a comatose state (he was “alive” enough to be shifted out of the Astral but not enough to revive him).
As the popularity and the power of “Sigil” grew, the next aspect of Aoskar to revive was an avatar.

Instead of a standard avatar, Aoskar’s avatar manifested in the body of the proto-bladeling that had struck him down (because of the backlash of divine energy that had been absorbed). This of course was our beloved Lady of Pain.

So now, the Lady found herself in an odd situation. If she drove off all the populace of Sigil (which she would LOVE to do), then Aoskar would be de-powered and, in turn, she would die again.
On the other hand, if Aoskar grew in power; then he would regain sentience and the ability to act for himself. But if that were to happen, one of the first things he would do would be to make his killer suffer.

So the Lady had to balance her need to keep the city thriving but also curtain any resurgence of religious belief in Aoskar. She needs to stay in the city to curtail any growth of Aoska's power (or perhaps her unusual avatar-nature means that she can't leave). So she is trapped in her own Cage.

My story explains a few things:
-Why can’t gods manifest inside Sigil? Because Sigil IS a god (albeit a comatose one) and gods can’t manifest inside each other.
-Why the Lady hates Aoskar so much
-Why the Lady creates Mazes – as the avatar of a god who had the portfolio of unraveling puzzles, she is able to create Mazes, which while difficult always have a solution
-What are dabus(es)? They are weaker avatar manifestations of Aoskar (and they are what his real avatar would look like if the Lady hadn’t absorbed most of the avatar power). This also explains why they speak in rebuses, which are a form of visual puzzle, which fits in with Aoskar’s portfolio
-Why is Sigil called Sigil? As he first stirred in his coma-like state (before he was strong enough to summon an avatar), Aoskar tried to communicate with the populace and this communication appeared as sigils found suddenly appearing throughout the city. (Similar to the rebus-speak of his avatars)

I think I had a few other connections that were explained by this but that’s all I can recall at the moment.

So is this an intriguing possibility or just garbage?

Palomides's picture
Offline
factotums
Joined: 2010-06-26
Re: Alternative history of Aoskar

If you like this idea, it also raises the interesting idea (or adventure campaign) of what would happen if Aoskar DID revive?
How would the multiverse change if Sigil was no more?
How would the multiverse change if a powerful (and probably much more self-protective now) god appeared that had complete control over planar travel?

ripvanwormer's picture
Offline
Factol
Joined: 2004-10-05
Re: Alternative history of Aoskar

It'd be an interesting rumor, at least. Some people might firmly believe it, and act (and provoke adventures) accordingly.

I'd prefer if the mystery of Sigil and the Lady of Pain was never fully solved. It seems like it lessens them to pin them down as definitely one thing and not any number of other things.

I prefer mysteries to answers.

Sigil might still be destroyed, though. Nothing's invulnerable.

Planes of Chaos mentions an ancient god known as the Phoenix that knew the secret of true planewalking, which was eventually destroyed, its corpse interred in Pandemonium. It might be that the Phoenix might one day be reborn.

sciborg2's picture
Offline
Factol
Joined: 2005-07-26
Re: Alternative history of Aoskar

Great stuff! I like the idea though as Rip says I never pin down the Lady's origin. But it definitely is a great way of thinking about the setting and would love to hear more on this.

__________________

Health Resources: Register family with 911 services, so providers will have info prior to emergency/disaster. Also mental health info & hotlines, articles, treatment assistance options, prescription assistance, special needs registries, legal aid, and more!

Palomides's picture
Offline
factotums
Joined: 2010-06-26
Re: Alternative history of Aoskar

I appreciate the feedback Sciborg.
Unfortunately, I don't have too much more regarding this.
I liked it as a personal explaination for a lot of the mysteries regarding Sigil and The Lady but as I never intended the PCs to learn the "true" history, I didn't expand on it much.

I had toyed with the idea of a series of adventures where the dormant Aoskar/Sigil was starting to stir.
This would cause the dabus to start performing a lot of seemingly odd tasks. And even more surprising, might put the dabus' actions at odds with The Lady.
I envisioned it as a mystery that would play in the background of a campaign with a variety of odd occurances like:
-Mysterious sigils appearing at spots around town
-The dabus acting clandestinely around The Lady
-The Lady reacting VERY violently against a few select individuals that were investigating the sigils (which would probably make most PCs stop right there)
-Maybe Fell would be re-powered
-Someone hiring the PCs to go into one of The Lady's mazes to find a scholar on ancient happenins in the Astral (namely, the disappearance of Aoskar's body)
-Maybe tie the Signers into it (as I always had trouble thinking of adventures involving them) where Aoskar starts implanting ideas in their heads and they start to act upon that belief

I don't have much more than vague ideas like that.

I hadn't considered the reverse angle that Wormer touched upon wherein the "true" history I came up with is malarky but a movement starts that actually believes it to be true.
-If enough people believed, would Sigil BECOME Aoskar?
-Would avatars or agents of Aoskar appear in the city?
-Could Aoskar (or at least his avatars - possibly led by Fell) defy the rule about gods appearing within Sigil?
-Would the city split into two interlocked rings (the original true Sigil of The Lady, and a second one that was the morphed form of Aoskar)? [If so, how would they interact? War? Migration to the "new" Sigil?)

If anyone wants to expand on either train of thought, please do so

link_the_hero's picture
Offline
Namer
Joined: 2006-06-28
Re: Alternative history of Aoskar

it sounds cool, but i say a thing as player.... my pj mage character and all party, dont are afarid of powers... "not at all" but they really really are afraud lady of pain, and i agree all the mistery and silent power of the lady is very cool. damm lady... i hate u, i need u, i love u!!!

cause this forum is for ideashere we go:

-.maybe sigil is splited.. in belief talking, the one tha belive in the powe of our beloved lady and in the other side the ones that want that aoskar be the ruler again.

what did the factions, maybe ones take a side and others stay neutral.
what do the pwerfull lower entities, maybe them try to take her own benefit of ot, maybe... that is a lie part of a plan of one of these powerfull lower being to take the power of control sigil.

what did the powers, you know even powers want to take this powerfull city, thing that the power himself canot go in a power corpse, but her legions proxies etc.. can do it, and can promote her belief in all multiverse.

another thing, remember where is sigil, yea on top of spire.

Planescape, Dungeons & Dragons, their logos, Wizards of the Coast, and the Wizards of the Coast logo are ©2008, Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro Inc. and used with permission.