Wednesday, February 24, 2021


A place of great waterfalls, green-blue jungle and wide, bloodstained savannah.

The Gods in Cesaire

All gods have visited Cesaire, but when they visit, they must walk on two legs. When in Cesaire the gods may only be the size of their worshippers. For this reason, many have died there. In death, they grow again, and mingle with the stone which makes up the Cube.

Currently the most widely-worshipped are:

  • Vorn, god of iron, rust and rain, who is known locally as Vorgun, and, when in Cesaire, is female.
  • The Leopard God.
  • Tiamat, The Glistening One.
  • Rangda, Queen of All Spiders.



As the gods walk among their worshippers, it is common for those on sacred business (the businesses of ritual, treasure-hunting, murder, great questing or war) to go about masked or in strange disguises, so that the gods may not know them. Conversely, sometimes costumes are worn to attract or enlist the aid of particular gods.

The Hour of Knives

Despite this, human lives may only be taken between the hours of 3 and 4 am, lest the dreaded Hybrid Curse of All Gods be summoned on the murderer. This prevents a great deal of open warfare.

Events and Calendar

Death’s Parade—Death, the Second God, visits Cesaire once per year, and takes a tour throughout the entire continent. His skull-face luridly painted, he walks in a tattered blue robe and carries a staff made from the bone of an unknown animal. The dead rise from their graves and follow, then follow. As the parade approaches their homes, the living paint their own faces white so as to be mistaken for the dead.

The Gleam Tide—Each summer, the tides bring in the cargo from sunken ships. Coastal villages and port cities open the Gleaming Season with a childrens’ festival dedicated luck and beach-scavenging.

Feast of All Heroes—Once per year, all civilized cities of Cesaire throw a feast, to which all the heroes who have rendered great service to the city-state or the nation are fed and feted.

Night of the Vampire—On the last day of the harvest, all cities and villages are visited by one vampire each. Lines of sacred salt are drawn around the perimeters of civilized areas, of every home, and around the cribs of all children. Bold boys and girls dare each other to challenge the vampire, though, tragically, more fail than succeed.

Days of Testing—Most human societies within Cesaire have Days of Testing, where those youths who wish to embark on dangerous life-paths are challenged. Those who succeed act as waitstaff at the Feast of All Heroes

  • The First Test of the Priest and Shaman: Typically involves taking something of value to a distant temple of the same faith.
  • The Second Test of the Priest and Shaman: Typically involves finding a god somewhere and asking them a question of importance to the local priesthood.
  • The First Test of All Thieves: Typically involves stealing something of great value from another nation.
  • The Second Test of All Thieves: Typically involves stealing something of great value from the gnolls, vervets or chameleon women.
  • The First Test of All Warriors: Typically involves hunting down an dangerous animal that has been plaguing the village or city.
  • The Second Test of All Warriors: Typically involves rescuing a prisoner of another faction.
  • The First Test of Wizards: Typically involves entering the Dream Jungle and surviving three sleep-cycles or a fixed number of hours of sleep (usually 24).
  • The Second Test of Wizards: Typically involves bringing back a rare item from the Dream Jungle or from a rival wizard.
  • The First Test of Warlords: Given to older warriors just before they are given troops to command, this test involves defeating defeating at least ten gnolls out on the open plains of The Place of Screaming with a force no larger than half their size.
  • The Second Test of Warlords: This test involves defeating at least ten chameleon women in the Dream Jungle with a force no larger than half their size.

Typical Adventures, Quests, and Assignments for Adventurers, Native and Local

  • Gnolls have enslaved an entire village and have them building a stronghold high in cliffs. Free the slaves and take vengeance.
  • A star has allegedly fallen deep within the Dream Jungle: investigate.
  • Find and defeat a platoon of enemies somewhere in the Dream Jungle during the Hour of Knives.
  • Enlist a distant group of rebels to aid a local faction against their enemies.
  • Find the leaders of an opposing faction and negotiate a temporary alliance with them against a horde of gnolls or foreigners.
  • Find an obscure god in the Dream Jungle and enlist their aid against another faction.
  • Something is making the animals around the Lake of Translucent Mist hostile—investigate.

*For foreigners only: A faction enlists you to pretend to make “first contact” with another faction, acting as merchants from another land. You will be asked to sabotage the target faction’s war efforts or liberate a prisoner or artifact.

Note on sourcing/appropriation/complaining etc:

You can have one of two opinions on African-inspired game stuff--

1-Nobody who isn't black or African should make it ever

2-Well, they can but only if they did their research.

On the first criteria, I obviously fail. On the second: if you insist I name-drop who I read and talked to before writing my game stuff I can, but it would be hard to name a hurdle I didn't jump. I am 100% sure I talked to more contemporary African artists than you think I did. And at least know where Cesaire got its name before asking.

This plus all the rest of a 17-page Cesaire module is available now in The Store for 20$ (25$ if you use Onlyfans).


Sean Whittaker said...

That gnoll. There's something terrifying and alluring about the illustration.

It's also very nice to have the current bestiary as part of the purchase. My favorite line descriptor is still from Fiendish Best Men: "They worship Tittivilla in a way she's not entirely comfortable with." Paints quite the picture, and reminds me it's probably time for my next therapy session...

Zak Sabbath said...

@Sean Whittaker

Hyenas and wolves are hard to draw because if you get just one tiny proportion off it just looks like a dog. For the gnolls I screencapped a bunch of action shots from david attenborough documentaries, trying to find faces that were just right.

As for Tittivilla--I have this idea that the fantasy religions might work more like real world ones where any given "ism" is actually infinitely malleable--at least morally. So just as there's hippie peace Christians and gun-toting Christians I figure there's PC cleric-healer flesh worshippers and disturbing pseudo-slaaneshi ones.

Sean Whittaker said...

Tittivillism. Sign me up.

Simon Tsevelev said...

Do you like flesh? Are you made of flesh? Then Tittivilla might be the goddess for you!