This book marks the start of a new wave of one of our favourite settings. In Deus Vult, players are members of a highly secretive order of the Church at the end of the 12th century, dedicated to fighting supernatural evils that would otherwise corrupt God’s divine plan for humanity. From hunting ghouls and werewolves in the forests of the Holy Roman Empire, from tracking down diabolic cults in Rouen, to quests across the Holy Land for powerful relics that may save humanity, there is much work ahead of them.
Following the Sacerdos Custos Training Guide (next week, all going well!) is the Games Masters Story Guide, a volume packed full of history, background and enough adventure ideas to keep a campaign running for months! As well as all the nasty supernatural beasties and diabolic magicks you would expect, the Story Guide includes a full cult creation system (which can be used to create anything from devil worshippers to covens of witches) and rules that allow you to chart how the cult detects the efforts of the players, and how it reacts to them.
So, what is coming next?
Well, we will be doing the same tweaks and revisions on the Ex Cathedra adventures, bringing them up to current spec, and breaking them down into three seperate, bite-size PDFs, making them cheaper and easier to dip into.
However, there is also a vertiable tome’s worth of brand new material on its way.
Sancturies has already been edited and is just awaiting layout (should be appearing a few days after the Story Guide), and includes a range of different Priories across Christendom – safe houses and bases the players can use when they start to travel across Europe and beyond.
Though the Order’s strength is greatest in northern Europe, its power and influence stretch far beyond the walls of the Mont St. Michel and the borders of France. Across the Holy Roman Empire and the kingdoms of the Mediterranean it maintains priories from which its members may pursue their struggle against the enemies of Christendom. Beyond these, in storied Egypt and mysterious Cyprus, lone outposts guard against the depredations of sorcery and blasphemies of the infidel, for monsters in the night never sleep, and there are but few who can stand against them.
Sanctuaries is a supplement that outlines four of the Order’s outposts to which guardian priests might travel in pursuit of a mission – or fall back to in times of need. Each is unique, offering the chance to encounter new supernatural threats and explore an unfamiliar region and culture. All four sections are packed with information that Games Masters and players alike can use to enrich their Deus Vult campaign. This includes new creatures, equipment and Preternatural Gifts, information on the local history, inhabitants and culture, and two complete adventures that explore the unique mythology of the local region.
This is a full ‘heavyweight’ supplement that will start to give your camapign a solid foundation, and one of the adventures has a strong tie to the introductory adventure in the Story Guide.
Hot on the heels of Sancturies will be Shadow Societies.
Presented within this book are details of some of the mysterious groups whose activities threaten not just Christendom but the world itself. Many of these organisations are centuries old, with schemes and ambitions set to play out in the years ahead. They can provide even experienced guardian priests with new and diverse challenges – and move the events of a Deus Vult campaign far beyond the relative safety of northern Europe to the Holy Lands and beyond. For, just as the Order is increasingly aware of these shadowy groups, so they too are taking a greater interest in the warriors of the Mont St Michel.
These include Malik Dhukan, the exiled King of the Djinn, strange were-races of the Scions of Zeus, and mysterious eastern sorcerers from far Cathay.
So, we will be taking a trip to the Holy Lands at last!
This is a good time to be a Deus Vult fan with all this new material coming out, but we are not resting on our laurels as there are already new books being prepared. We will be taking a trip to Rouen (yes, it is coming!), a hotbed of heresy and dark deeds, and a great place for players to root out evil while getting into trouble with the politics of medieval Europe. Little doubt can be given to the idea that we will be returning to the Holy Lands as well in future supplements…
There are also longer term plans to expand what players themselves can do in Deus Vult – look out for both the Inquisititor’s Training Guide and Witch-Hunter’s Training Guide. Thus far, we have posed these two groups as sometimes allies/mostly rivals/soon to become deadly enemies that come to blows in a three-way power struggle within the Church, but what really makes them tick? It is going to be interesting to see how the other parts of the Church charged with (or self-appointed…) tackling the supernatural deal with what the Order faces.
Finally, Matthew has been promising a revision/re-write of Sister Devout, the novel that kicked off the Deus Vult setting. He has promised a completely different ending, a struggle for the Order to get their hands on a sacred (and very well known) relic before the forces of evil can grab it, and the entire stroy told from a different perspective.
Should be good!
One way or another, the future looks bright for Deus Vult, which perhaps cannot be said for the Guardian Priests of the Order…