Sunday, June 30, 2013

Regarding The Vicelords

Most residents of the frontier are aware that, amongst the ranks of godlings and devils, there exist a category of nebulous creatures called the Lords of Vice, who feed on human pleasure.  These Vicelords are numerous, and vary in power, but share certain common traits, according to scholars, priests, and wizards who study such things.  Vicelords, whatever their size, feed on some aspect of human emotion, typically pleasure, elation, sense of belonging, or regret - or some combination of these.  The manipulation of emotion at a distance is a common ability of Vicelords and their minions.  Often a vice-spirit will have the power to instill a certain emotion in its prey, confident that it will soon turn to a different emotion on which the spirit can feed (for example, providing a temporary 'high' which soon turns to sadness or depression).  The Vicelords are immortal, possibly eternal, and, with few exceptions, do not themselves travel on the material plane (although their minions, servitors, and cultists certainly do).

Although often confused with devils, it must be remembered that the Lords of Vice are not, properly speaking, diabolic, although they care little for human life and are happy to manipulate mortals.  Vicelords and their minions are, in some ways, spirit-creatures of emotion, as natural as fairykind.  Some mortals have taken to worshipping the Lords of Vice, directly or otherwise, and this has increased their power.  Clerics and wizards who pay homage to the Vicelords inevitably are granted some measure of vice-related power.  Generally, however, a given follower of the Vicelords will pay homage to multiple, known, Lords; they are considered a group or assemblage, a sort of parliament of godlings who each have their own goals, yet together represent something greater.

Most Lords and Ladies of Vice are affiliated with a single activity which mortals might consider a vice: consumption of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs; gambling and self-risk; or sexual hedonism.  It is these connections which differentiates a Vicelord from some lesser fairy correlated with chocolate, for example, but it is perhaps a continuum.  Are the Vicelords merely a category of fairy-kin?  Are they elemental spirits of overindulgence?  No one can say for sure, although their minions are not easily banished by priests.  Some scholars suggest that the Vicelords exist in Wampus Country because of the power of bazoul, that constant psychic field which connects all sentients and boosts fellowship around the campfire.  In a world such as ours, where we are all a part of this enchanted network, rogue intelligences might achieve sapience within that web of emotions, and grow in strength until claiming a seat within the parliament of Vice.

The Crimson Buccaneer, a Vicelord considered a patron of thieves.

The Wanderer is said to have multiple aspects which it projects into the mortal realm.

This gigantic fruit-bat is a traditional rival of the Crimson Buccaneer.  Its cult has made subtle inroads inside the Church of the White Mouse of late.

The Prince of Smoke has many traits of a bestial deity of disease.

Wampus Country is greatly in the sway of the Vicelord called "Ol' Red".

The Cyclops is an appealing patron to starving artists.


  1. Sometimes I think you're being too nice and OSR with the player driven Wampus adventures. I'm really curious to see where the Wampus County 'adventure path' leads. Vice Lords are certainly part of it - and now I want to roll up one of their Clerics...

  2. Hahaha the "cyclops" is brilliant.