The Kobold Pantheon
The kobold pantheon that is presented below has six gods. Kartmaok is the dominant god of this pantheon, and leads the kobold people as an ordered tool of domination. Tomanous, another major deity, helps the kobolds destroy their enemies from hiding. Tarazhmok is a follower of dragons and draconic power, and leads the kobolds in their sorcerous powers and dealings with dragons. Rakon is the last and least of the gods openly worshipped in most kobold tribes, a god of obsessive order and record keeping.
Outside the normal pantheon are two gods diametrically opposed to each other. Akronimous stands for selfless loyalty and protection of others. Souronous leads the kobolds to betray each other whenever it's in their own interest, and always protect themselves first. Like more usual PC races, kobolds vary in alignment and beliefs much more often then outsiders suspect.
God of kobolds, control, domination
Domain: Law, Evil, Nobility, War
Symbol: A kobold head with crossed spears below itFavored Weapon: Spear
Kartmaok is the main god of kobolds, and most kobolds and kobold leaders follow him. Kartmaok believes in the ultimate domination of the kobold race through discipline and control. He demands that social structures be strictly hierarchical, and that orders from above be followed without hesitation. While tribal leaders have unquestioned authority to plan tactically, priests of Kartmaok demand the right to set the goals of the tribe as they are told from above.
Kartmaok does not tolerate corruption; even the leaders and priests must subordinate their needs to that of the tribe. A leader or priest taking extra space or supplies that could be used to expand the tribe or increase its domination isn't acceptable.
Kartmaok accepts worshippers of Tomanous and Tarazhmok for bringing needed skills to the tribe. However, the priests of Kartmaok insist that they never challenge the supremacy of Kartmaok or that of his priests. Rakon is vaguely tolerated; his obsessive behavior is of little use in Kartmaok's opinion, but Rakon's worshippers are sometimes useful, and rarely a threat to his dominance. Souronous and Akronimous are hated enemies of Kartmaok, and their worshippers are destroyed upon discovery. Few other gods are permitted in kobold tribes by Kartmaok, although priests of gods with portfolios not covered by the kobold gods that pose no threat to Kartmaok's dominance are sometimes tolerated.
His worship is most common among tribes where kobolds have a significant population advantage and are not threatened by very powerful competition. Kartmaok does not accept non-kobold worshippers.
God of traps, destruction and stealthy killing
Domains: Evil, Death, Artifice, Trickery
Symbol: A set of sharp bloody spikes
Favored weapon: Long bow
Worshippers: Kobolds, trapmakers
Tomanous is a kobold god of stealthy death and destruction. He encourages his worshippers to deal with enemies by traps first, then at a distance, and then if all else fails by striking from the shadows and killing before they can strike back. Roughly five percent of kobold tribes are lead by worshippers of Tomanous, and worshippers and usually priests are found in all kobold tribes. It is Tomanous who gives kobolds their reputations as trapmakers.
Tomanous is a fairly tolerant god; so long as no other god infringes on his quota of worshippers, he accepts their worship in the tribe. He prefers Souronous to Kartmaok, and Tomanous's priests will often subtly help hide priests of Souronous. However, Tomanous's priests will avoid a direct conflict with Kartmaok's. Despite the alignment difference, he holds no particular dislike for Akronimous, as long as she doesn't threaten his priests.
Tomanous has a very small collection of non-kobold worshippers. Trapmakers of many races offer occasional prayers to Tomanous, and sometimes these worshippers erect small shrines. Goblins are the most common non-kobold worshippers, with halflings making up the largest group of worshippers among the normal PC races. Many thieves’ guilds will also at least pay lip service to Tomanous, particularly if they have kobold members, and it is not uncommon to find little altars to Tomanous set up in such places.
His worship is most common among kobold tribes that must compete against powerful races for resources.
Symbol: A dragon of indistinct race
Portfolio: Draconic power
Cleric Alignment: Any
Domains: Air, Luck, Magic, Scalykind
Favored Weapon: Dagger
Tarazhmok is the kobold god of draconic power. Tarazhmok encourages the kobolds to emulate the dragons in any way possible, usually via sorcery. Not only should they emulate the dragons, but should seek to form alliances with them at any opportunity.
Several kobold tribes are lead by followers of Tarazhmok, usually serving as proxies of some dragon. Many tribes have at least one priest of Tarazhmok, and almost every kobold sorcerer will offer an occasional prayer to Tarazhmok in the right situation. Generally, Tarazhmok's priests leave control of the tribe to more lawful people.
Tarazhmok is indifferent to the other kobold gods, though her priests will usually slant her public worship in the ethical direction of the prevailing leadership. Tarazhmok is fascinated with the draconic deities, and her priests will often follow the lead of any priests of these deities. He generally despises any deities that have a close connection to a non-reptilian race, although worshippers of gods of magic are often well treated for any magical information, especially that which would mimic draconic abilities.
Few non-kobolds worship her, but a few lizardmen and other reptilian creatures have adopted her worship. She doesn't accept the worship of any non-reptilian/non-draconic creature, although she might make an exception for one trying to become more draconic.
Symbol: Three nested equilateral triangles
Alignment: Lawful neutral
Portfolio: Mathematical order and record keeping
Worshippers: Kobolds, mathematicians, order freaks
Cleric Alignment: LG, LN, LE
Domains: Law, Knowledge, Rune
Favored Weapon: Quarterstaff (with a ruled edge)
Rakon is the kobold god of writing and pure mathematical order. He is the most minor of the kobold gods, and many tribes lack priests or even worshippers of him. A few tribes are lead by worshippers of Rakon; often, these are examples of a figurehead supported by a fragile compromise of competing worshippers of Akronimous and Kartmaok. Almost half of Rakon's worshippers are not kobolds, the highest proportion of any of these six gods.
Rakon's worshippers are incredibly anal and obsessive. Order is of the most importance to them, above anything include law. An army lead by Rakon's worshippers will have square orderly formations, clean shiny armor, and every action documented, but corruption isn't unlikely in the ranks.
Rakon is friendly with Tarazhmok, and blasé towards Akronimous and Kartmaok, although he enjoys the protection of both. Tomanous irks him and Souronous actively annoys him. In practice, he and his priests are too obsessed with order to worry about any other priests or gods that don't directly obstruct them.
Rakon has a huge number of non-kobold worshippers, frequently humans, halflings and dwarves, and frequently monks. Many of his worshippers are unaware that he is a kobold god, having discovered him through some collection of order obsessed worshippers of non-kobold species.
Symbol: A half moon
Alignment: Lawful good
Portfolio: Protection and selfless assistance from hiding
Worshippers: Kobolds, lawful good people in evil societies
Cleric Alignments: LG, NG, LN
Domains: Law, Good, Protection, Community
Favored Weapons: Spear (or favored weapon of local evil religion)
Akronimous is the kobold god of protection and selfless assistance. In the evil, Kartmaok-dominated environments of most tribes, her worshippers can't openly worship her, so Akronimous asks her worshippers who are forced to hide their worship to adopt two
identities. One is a day to day persona who openly worships Kartmaok or Rakon (or appropriate local lawful god), and one is a secret persona who acts under protection of day to protect the tribe and the innocent in the name of Akronimous. Both personas must behave
lawfully, and even the day-to-day persona should try and behave in a noble, good fashion where possible. Neither persona may speak of the other. Non-lawful, evil societies, like tribes run by Souronous, are beyond their abilities to tolerate; they must be faced head-on.
When her worshippers are in the good persona, they will use disguises or illusions to hide their identities. In this form, they will act to discourage attacks against non-threatening outsiders, protect good people and their tribe members, and find and bring to the law
criminals and those who would threaten the tribe. Even those not good have been known to turn a blind eye to her worshippers because of their assistance.
A small group of kobold tribes are lead by worshippers of Akronimous, as they will take power if lawfully made available. These tribes often disappear from the view of the outside world; disguise comes natural to her worshippers, and attempted friendship has turned out bad. Many kobold tribes have worshippers and often even priests of Akronimous; a large percentage of good kobolds worship her. They stay safe by staying incognito, and having no permanent temples.
Akronimous supports other lawful gods, especially lawful good ones. Akronimous accepts Rakon and tolerates Tarazhmok. She's unhappy with the works of Kartmaok, but will tolerate his worshippers in tribes controlled by her worshippers. She keeps a closer eye on Tomanous's priests, who tend to help out Souronous's priests, especially in these
tribes. Souronous's priests are to be hunted down and arrested (often to be executed for murder or exiled if no real crime can be found) at every turn.
She has a number of non-kobold worshippers, as one of the few lawful good gods that make living in an evil society feasible. The rules of her faith are much less tolerant of chaotic societies and behavior. Hobgoblins and members of other normally lawful evil species are
frequently worshippers, along with a number of humans and anyone living in an oppressive lawful evil society.
Symbol: A backstabbed kobold
Portfolio: Betrayal, self-protection and self-interest
Worshippers: Kobolds, traitors
Cleric Alignments: CN, CE, NE
Domains: Chaos, Evil, Death, Protection
Favored weapon: Club
Souronous is a kobold god of betrayal and self-protection. She encourages every kobold to abandon anyone who might lead them into dangerous situations, preferably when the dangerous situation will leave no witnesses to the betrayal. If there are witness, a discrete
clubbing or stabbing will leave the kobold the sole surviving hero. Every kobold should feel free to backstab his way to personal safety, which is often connected to power.
Very few tribes of kobolds are lead by worshippers of Souronous, and those that have been, have rarely been controlled after that worshipper of Souronous dies. Many kobold tribes have a priest or two of Souronous floating around the tribe and a few worshippers. The
priests survive by extorting misdirection and protection from those who would want the priest's help. Shrines are hidden some distance from the tribe's tunnels, and live sacrifice of enemies is always a great offering.
Souronous despises and hates all gods who believe in some greater cause that someone should die for. Gods of peace merely ask that people should die passively, and are despised even more by her. Tomanous gets grudging approval for protecting Souronous's priests, and some contempt for risking his own interests in the process. Souronous appreciates the power that Tarazhmok offers and tolerates her and similar gods for that reason. She hates Rakon and Akronimous, but reserves her most personal hatred for Kartmaok, and his worshippers
celebrate the death of one of Kartmaok's priests or the conversion of one of Kartmaok's followers as a great accomplishment.
Souronous has a wide variety of non-kobold worshippers, from the occasional worshipper in high politics, to a number of worshippers of chaotic humanoid races. Still, the vast majority of her worshippers are kobolds.
Kobolds have been known to worship a wide variety of other gods. Draconic gods are high on the list, even within the tribes. A kobold is more likely to worship a chaotic or good non-kobold god, as most lawful evil kobolds have been firmly attached to a kobold religion. Nature gods and elemental gods also see worship, as they offer power that no kobold god can compete with.