Shadow's Apex Part 4: Mythology (Continued Again)

Finally, we bring the mythology of the Shadow's Apex campaign to a close (at least for now) with the following topics: Who is Araleth Latheranil? How did Vhaeraun come to the forefront of the drow pantheon? Why were several staples of D&D mythology omitted?

Araleth Latheranil originally appeared in Dragon Magazine #155 in an article called "The Elfin Gods." Unfortunately, I don't have that issue. What I do have is Dragon #236, where he reappeared in "The Seldarine Revisited." The following is what I will be using in the Shadow's Apex campaign.

Araleth Latheranil
The Prince of Stars, The Twilight Rider

Araleth Latheranil is a good power of light, starlight, and twilight. He is known for his hatred of the forces of darkness and his rivalry with Vhaeraun that has been more violent, some say, than the that which existed between Lolth and Corellon before their fall.
Alignment: Good
Allies: Selune, Paladine, Azuth
Enemies: Vhaeraun, Shar
Symbol: A shaft of white light

Note: In my first mythology post, I mistakenly listed Araleth under unaligned powers. This has been fixed here and also on the original post.

The last two questions that we will answer today deal with how Vhaeraun gained so much power and why other powers were left out. The simple answer is that I wanted most of the powers of the campaign to feel familiar without falling back on too many of the "core" powers.

The long answer is a bit more complicated, and I don't want to reveal too much too soon for several reasons. For one, my players may read this, so I want some of this to remain a mystery for a while. Also, because this is all in my head and the campaign is still in the design stage, I want to make sure that I don't commit to too much just in case I decide to change it later. For now, we'll just go with the following:
  • Years ago, the world was thrown into chaos. A series of events threatened to destroy the world itself and very nearly did. The world as sages once knew it has changed drastically, and this time of chaos is known now as the Great Upheaval.
  • During the Great Upheaval, many of the world's powers were destroyed, banished, or relegated to demipower status.
  • Lolth, Corellon, and Elistraee are all gone, presumably dead. Their portfolios were absorbed by Shar, Araleth, and Selune respectively.
  • Paladine and Takhisis are new arrivals, taking the place of several other powers who disappeared.
This briefly explains some background on how the current pantheon came to be, as well as introducing a new concept to build upon: the Great Upheaval. I needed something to refer to as the time in which the world was thrown into turmoil and a "Points of Light" style setting was created.

Since the beginning of this process, we have had an "outside in" approach to designing this campaign. Next time, we'll zoom in to the campaign's starting point and talk about a semi-sandbox style campaign start.
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