Gods and goddesses are beings of various races who have ascended beyond mortality and are unable to die from age or natural causes, unless an Elder Artefact or something similarly powerful is involved. Gods acquire very high amounts of power, upon ascension usually due to the use of Elder Artefacts, immensely powerful objects created by the Elder Gods. While most younger gods are capable of extremely potent magic, excel in combat and are able to accomplish tasks 'normal' mortals can only dream of, Elder Gods are much more powerful than regular gods, able to create sentient life and even entire realms. In addition, the Elder Gods were created, rather than having achieved godhood. While gods do not die of age (considered to be biologically immortal), they are certainly not completely immortal, but are not easy to kill; younger gods require the use of one or more Elder Artefacts to be slain, or something powerful enough to kill one, while Elder Gods are immortal in every sense and cannot be slain by any means. Almost every god has their own unique beliefs, character, history, followers, and domain. The gods are incredibly powerful beings, the oldest and most potent among them far exceeding the power of any other known class or race of beings, despite each one, even those on the highest tiers, having limits to their own power. They are able to alter their size, shape and form at will, although the variation is higher the more powerful the god is.
One fundamental difference between mortals and gods is when a god ascends, they forfeit any right to any form of an afterlife. A god's person will utterly cease to exist upon death. The death of a god causes the god's energy to be dispersed on the world they perished on. What remains of the god's body will turn to stone. The fallen god's energy can be harnessed by other gods to empower themselves further.
There are or have been at least twenty gods in Gielinor in one time or another, although many of them are unknown. This planet has attracted so many gods due to its perfection and the presence of Elder Artefacts (more than half of them are on Gielinor). The gods of Gielinor are most notable for their participation in the God Wars of the Third Age, a major conflict that nearly destroyed the entire world, and their daily role in the Prayer skill, which enables them to transfer small portions of their power temporarily to their worshippers for a variety of potent effects. Ages past, during and prior to the time of the Third Age, the RuneScape deities were capable of interacting freely upon Gielinor, which caused such unimaginable chaos that Guthix set his Edicts to prevent the gods from ever directly interfering in the world again, and preventing any other gods from entering. The gods could only influence events indirectly through their remaining followers, until the death of Guthix and subsequent shattering of the edicts. At this time the gods began to return to Gielinor and directly compete against each other for divine energy, while gathering followers to their causes.
Mortals can ascend to godhood through use of the Elder Artefacts. One way is to use an Elder Artefact to kill a god, as Guthix did to Skagaroth with the Elder Sword, and Zamorak to Zaros with the Staff of Armadyl, which allows the mortal to absorb the power of the slain god and ascend themselves. The other way is to spend enough time around the Artefacts, which leak divine energy that cause ascension, as is believed to have happened with Saradomin and Armadyl. It was discovered in Fate of the Gods, that there is a third way; Zaros and Seren were created as fully fledged gods by the Elder God, Mah. However this case seems to be unique, as Zaros stated that the Elder Gods created planets, but generally did not consciously create life.
Distribution of religion throughout GielinorEdit
Very little is known about the First Age. Guthix, the god of balance, discovered a blank plane, the last creation of the Elder Gods, which he named Gielinor and then shaped as he pleased using several Elder Artefacts he had found there. The goddess Seren arrived a little while later to Gielinor. She opened the World Gate and brought the elves to Gielinor from their ancestral homeland and led them to a massive clearing in the forest of Isafdar, where she had created the legendary Tower of Voices from elven crystal. This is where the elves built the city of Prifddinas, Gielinor's first and oldest surviving settlement, entirely from crystal. Guthix then used the same World Gate and allowed several peaceful races to inhabit Gielinor, making sure they would not wage war like what had happened in Guthix' own realm, which had been torn apart by the Naragi God Wars. Amongst these new races were fairies, gnomes, dwarves, humans, sheep and cabbages. Guthix told them to use their new world without abusing it or others.
He used the Stone of Jas to create runestones for the humans, with servants such as Misalionar distributing them, and thus magic was discovered. The humans named the planet "RuneScape" because of Guthix' gift. At around the year 4000, Guthix entered a deep slumber until approximately 6,000 years later, hoping to be forgotten by the world, for he did not wish to be worshipped as were the other gods he so despised. In his eagerness to create a mortal world free of gods, however, he had forgotten about the other gods that could ruin this. Before going to sleep, he asked Seren to leave with him and she promised in tears she would, but actually remained on Gielinor, unable to part from her elves. Guthix' retreat marked the end of the First Age.
During the Second Age, more gods found Gielinor. Saradomin, who had participated in the destruction of Guthix's realm, used his Crown Archival to discover that Gielinor had many Elder Artefacts he could use and arrived with a following of Icyene, a race of winged humanoids. Armadyl, avian god of justice, found a peaceful place for him and his aviantese to live on Gielinor. A group of gods known as the Menaphite Pantheon established their peaceful reign over the Kharidian Lands. The most present god, however, was Zaros, the god of fate. Occupying the second highest tier of godhood, he invaded Gielinor with an army of many wicked races, such as vampyres, demons, whom he bound to himself using a pact, and Dragon Riders. From the northern kingdom of Forinthry, he began expanding his empire into all directions, being feared by his fellow deities.
When Zaros attempted to invade the Kharidian Lands, the Menaphite god Icthlarin travelled to Freneskae to seek aid in defending his lands. He found this aid in the form of the Mahjarrat, with whom the Menaphites won the Kharidian-Zarosian War. The Mahjarrat soon joined Zaros' ranks however, due to a quarrel between Icthlarin and the Mahjarrat Sliske. Using them, Zaros was able to conquer more and more land. However, the Stone of Jas and Staff of Armadyl fell into the hands of the Mahjarrat general Zamorak at some point, which he used to rebel against Zaros with a reasonable following, having grown discontent with the god of fate's regime. Zamorak duelled his master and was on the losing hand, but due to an accident the staff transferred Zaros' power to Zamorak, forcing Zaros to abandon his body and flee elsewhere to avoid death. Zamorak declared himself to be a god but was supposedly 'banished' by the other gods, dragged away to fight a civil war in the Infernal Realms for nineteen years. Saradomin took the opportunity to steal the stone from Zamorak, but the latter returned, having actually ascended to godhood, and declared war on Saradomin in order to get the stone back. Saradomin quickly formed an alliance with some other gods to stop the threat of Zamorak, and thus the God Wars erupted.
The Third Age began when Zamorak returned from banishment, acquired most of Zaros' former followers and started a massive war between the gods, leading in mass loss of life and destruction of many settlements across Gielinor. Although the war was generally Zamorak versus others, he and Saradominists worked together on numerous occasions to complete the Zarosian Extermination; actions to wipe every trace of the Empty Lord off Gielinor. Thus the armies of Nex, who were defending the Mahjarrat Ritual Site, and Azzanadra, champion of Zaros, were imprisoned. Near the beginning of the age, the god of war, Bandos, was attracted to Gielinor. After robbing the thriving realm of Yu'biusk of its once peaceful races such as goblins and ogres and turning these into mindless soldiers of his own, he joined the battle on Gielinor, switching allegiances at a whim in an effort to prolong the war as much as possible. Other gods fought as well. Only Seren remained relatively safely in Tirannwn, although some elves, such as the Cadarn Clan, did fight to defend their territory. During the wars, most races nearly definitively came to follow their god, while most Guthixian races hid underground, as did the dwarves and gnomes (although some dwarves did join Saradomin).
Throughout the wars, which would last nearly four millennia, millions of soldiers met their end and dozens of cities were razed completely. Especially notable events are the invasion of the Hallowland by vampyre Lord Lowerniel Vergidiyad Drakan, eradication of Zarosian fortresses such as the Fall of Senntisten, the Kharidian Desert Campaign conducted by Zamorakian demon armies and the Battle for the Godsword. The latter was the effort of an alliance between Saradomin, Armadyl and Bandos; the gods had forged a mighty godsword to slay Zamorak. However, when a flock of aviantese were transporting the sword, Zamorakian demons ambushed them and the aviantese retreated into the Saradominist Temple of Lost Ancients, where the armies of the Zarosian general Nex had been imprisoned just after the start of the wars. Saradomin and Bandos sent troops to aid, but in the end everyone turned against each other and a massive battle to acquire the godsword erupted, releasing Nex at it due to a trick of the Zarosian Mahjarrat Sliske, who temporarily returned from hiding. The temple was frozen magically after a while, imprisoning all of its combatants within. It thawed out at the end of the Fifth Age, millennia later, and the armies fight for the godsword to this day, oblivious to time.
By the end of the wars, most Zarosians had either been killed, gone into hiding or switched allegiance. All once great Zarosian settlements had fallen, except for the fortress of Ghorrock, where a colony of Zarosians who had fled from Senntisten, the former capital, still lived. The war ended shortly after Zamorak found the Stone of Jas, stole it from Saradomin and used it to completely lay waste to Forinthry, hoping to rid the world of Zaros for good. The resulting wilderness had been scarred to such an extent that the Anima Mundi, the world's soul, cried out in agony and pain, awakening Guthix. He emerged from his refuge and immediately ended the war, crying that his world had been permanently damaged, banishing all the gods from Gielinor. He established the Edicts of Guthix, a powerful barrier that surrounds Gielinor keeping the gods out of Gielinor. He then appointed several Guardians of Guthix to fulfill certain duties, sat down and wept. Seren was not forced out by the edicts, and was instead visited by Guthix, she was forced to leave, as he gave her no other choice. She instead exploded into crystals so she can remain with her followers. Afterwards, Guthix saw Seren explode, wept thinking she had left, and returned to sleep. The other gods all reacted differently; Tumeken, head of the Menaphite Pantheon, went to sleep, akin to Guthix. Armadyl, thinking his beloved aviantese had been driven to extinction began wandering the cosmos in sadness. And Marimbo had a "party" as she wanted the war to stop. Thus ended the Third Age.
Fourth and Fifth AgesEdit
The previously dominant Zarosian religion had been completely overthrown by the Extermination. In addition, the departure of the gods signalled a great shift in the distribution of religion. In the Fourth and Fifth Ages, Zarosianism was confined to the Bandit Camp of the Kharidian Desert and, initially, Ghorrock. Armadyl ceased to be worshipped almost completely, with his sky citadels falling into disuse - only the Guardians of Armadyl remained loyal, and split into two factions; Corporealists and Incorporealists.
The gnomes, unlike the dwarves, who had built a subterranean civilisation, resurfaced and established a kingdom in the west. Guthix was worshipped in areas such as Taverley, the Seers' Village, the Fremennik Province (although the Fremennik also worship their own idols and gods) and the Tree Gnome Village and Stronghold. Bandosian races had been driven to (near) extinction for the greater part, with only ogres remaining dominant in the Feldip Hills and goblins having large settlements across the world. The uprising of humans drove the goblins back, however, until they resorted to living in small colonies, notable being the Goblin Village and the Temple of the Plain of Mud. In addition, the trolls built a very primitive society in the mountainous north, although they no longer actively worship the war god, if at all they know of him. Morytania was Zamorakian for the greater part, as were some parts of the Wilderness that had remained after the demise of Forinthry. In the late Fourth Age, the monkeys of Ape Atoll established the city of Marim, worshipping Marimbo. Karamja, which had seemingly remained untouched during the wars, continued worshipping its own god, while the cabbages remained loyal to Brassica Prime. The Kharidian Desert kept worshipping the Menaphite Pantheon for the greater part. Finally, the elves in the west remained loyal to Seren, who had shattered herself, although the Iorwerth Clan turned away from her and conquered Prifddinas when King Baxtorian and the Cadarn Clan temporarily departed.
The humans quickly recovered from the war and erected large kingdoms with huge cities throughout the Fourth Age, such as Ardougne, Avarrocka and Falador. It was clear that Saradomin had become much more powerful between the Second Age and the Third Age. As a result the Kingdoms of Misthalin, Asgarnia (excluding the Guthixian town of Taverley), Entrana, and most of Kandarin started to worship Saradomin, as well as cities, settlements and islands like Yanille, Mort'ton, Port Phasmatys, Harmony Island and Dragontooth Island. Many towns built in the late Fourth or Fifth Ages followed this pattern. The Saradominists were generally tolerant to Zamorakians, although this changed at some point, which has lead to many hostilities, such as the Great Battle of Ardougne. In Asgarnia, a political war began in the Fifth Age between the White Knights of Falador and the Kinshra, a Zamorakian organisation. Meanwhile, the far away Eastern Lands did not worship any deities at all.
In 169 of the Fifth Age, its final year, two gods of the Menaphite Pantheon - Apmeken and Scabaras - returned to the desert after having been incapacitated by Amascut the Devourer earlier. Meanwhile, Zamorak, at the bottom of the fortress of Daemonheim, kilometers deep, attempted to release himself by ordering the Mahjarrat Bilrach to launch a massive campaign to the depths of Daemonheim with a huge army by having voices in his head tell him to seek "The Rift". The same year, Bandos attempted to work around the Edicts and manifest himself on Gielinor to lead his followers into war, but this plot was foiled by his own "Chosen Commander" Zanik and her allies. The Mahjarrat Lucien began his hunt for powerful items, planning to ascend to godhood and succeed Zamorak as god of chaos. He acquired two Elder Artefacts and nearly succeeded, but was terminated by Dragonkin for misuse of the Stone of Jas.
At the end of the age, Guthix's refuge was discovered and armies of different gods stormed inside in an attempt to break the edicts and allow their respective god to return to Gielinor. All attempts were narrowly stopped by the Guardians of Guthix until Sliske appeared and used the Shadow Realm to get to the god of balance unseen before killing him with the Staff of Armadyl. With Guthix dead and his edicts broken, the other gods were able to return; Saradomin was the first of these.
With the death of Guthix, his remaining life force was spread around Gielinor, especially near important places such as the Tears of Guthix, and the 'edicts barrier' rained down as well, creating hubs of divine energy around the world. This would later become an important goal for several gods to achieve. An ex-druid from Taverley known as Biehn founded the Godless, a group who strive to free the world of all deities forever. Meanwhile, emissaries of multiple factions arrived to Asgarnia and Misthalin to gather followers for their respective god - the Godless also had one such emissary.
Saradomin returned to the Icyenic home world with his general, Commander Zilyana, to gather troops, and assembled a large army under General Padomenes. In the meantime, Zamorak, at the bottom of Daemonheim, began to claw at Gielinor's boundaries, eager to return and harness Guthix's divine energy; he succeeded within a few weeks and emerged through a portal near Lumbridge. He began destroying portions of the area to find the energy, but was stopped by Saradomin - the two launched powerful magic attacks that caused a massive explosion, devastating the forest and a large section of Lumbridge. The two summoned their armies and began the Battle of Lumbridge, the first battle of gods since the last God Wars. During this battle, Saradomin himself meets Sir Owen and an adventurer at Edgeville Monastery and tasks them with investigating the Kinshra base nearby.
Sliske, in an attempt to gain the attention of the god of the underworld Icthlarin, kidnaps Harold Death. Sliske invites the World Guardian and Icthlarin to his "Grand Ascendancy", which is also attended by Saradomin, Zamorak, Armadyl, Bandos, Brassica Prime and, possibly, Zaros, as well as their generals. Sliske tells the attendees that whoever kills the most other gods will gain the prize: the Stone of Jas, which he has gained possession of.
With the depletion of the rift in Lumbridge at the climax of the battle between Saradomin and Zamorak, the gods have been forced to find other sources of divine energy. Both Armadyl and Bandos have turned to the newly discovered skill of Divination, a human-led endeavour to harness the remnants of Guthix's energy that is leaking through wounds in the Anima Mundi, and caravans of their followers travel the world to bring the energy back to their mighty towers, harassed by the other side and by the Godless. Key points in Misthalin and Asgarnia are host to sites that the gods' armies fight to control, to aid their own endeavours or hamper the enemy's. After many weeks of relentless combat, Armadyl dealt a fatal blow to Bandos with his Divine Focus, knocking the God of War down from his tower, before smashing Bandos' head with his own mace.
Azzanadra meets the World Guardian and informs him that Zaros requires the World Guardian's aid to return to Gielinor. Sliske is summoned to bring the World Gate to the material realm so the World Guardian can travel to Freneskae, where Zaros resides. The World Guardian travelled through the hellish environment of Freneskae, and eventually met Zaros in his incorporeal form. Zaros enters the mind threshold of the World Guardian and answers any questions he might have had. Zaros reveals that Mah, an Elder God, resides on top of the volcano he was born in, and requires divine energy to create a corporeal body. The World Guardian chose either to fully restore him to power using a simulacrum weaved out of dark energy, or weaken him using a simulacrum weaved out of light energy. Regardless of choice Zaros enters the simulacrum and forms a new body. Right after, Mah awakens, sensing his presence and attempts to grab him. Zaros and the World Guardian manage to teleport before being captured, leaving an enraged Mah on Freneskae. Zaros then returns to Gielinor and meets with his loyal followers: Nex, Char, Azzanadra, and Sliske. No longer tolerating Sliske's actions, Zaros excommunicates Sliske, and tasks his followers various tasks, with the ultimate goal of ascending to elder godhood, awakening the elder gods and speaking to them on behalf of mortals.
Most gods have a set of strongly held core beliefs that serve as answers for important personal and societal questions, varying from purely practical to even existential in nature, about how to live one's life. These are often referred to as the god's (moral) alignment or their philosophy.
Sometimes gods are referred to "the god of [something]", for instance: "Bandos, the god of war". However, it is important to note that this is not a causal relationship, but should rather be seen as a relationship of affinity and association. This means that, for instance, if Bandos were to be killed, there could still be war. Furthermore, it is important to note that, while their philosophies are often expressed in a few words, this is a crude simplification of their views which are often more complicated. Some philosophies can be very similar, possibly differing only on some small points or emphasis.
Furthermore, since these alignments or philosophies are not causal or clearly unique in nature, these "titles" are basically subjective. They can and are often used as a basis for promoting gods and their ideals. These subjective notions are tools in the public relations of the gods to their own followers and other people, not just inhabitants of Gielinor, as gods often have travelled to many other planes.
It seems to be the case that gods and their followers have one or two primary terms to summarise or characterise their philosophy and a few secondary terms to elaborate on this. The primary term is mostly, if not always, used to describe the god's philosophy, while the secondary terms are used less frequently. For example, Armadyl's alignment is primarily characterised as 'justice' and secondarily described with terms such as 'liberty', and the god of avians and the sky. Saradomin is always referred to as the god of order, and to a lesser extent wisdom, pleasantry, purity/purification, and light.
Naturally, since these philosophies are subjective, they are also subject to change, as can be seen with Armadyl's often cited naivety in his dealings with other gods, which changed some time after the expected extinction of his beloved Aviansie by Zamorak. It should also be noted that a god's level of power is important to this, as it can very well change their goals, methods and appreciations.
The seven tiers of godhoodEdit
The tier system ranks gods by their general power and abilities. It was first mentioned by Mod Osborne, who also often refers to it as "god hierarchy". In this system of seven tiers, each one more powerful than the next, with one being the highest and seven the lowest, the Elder Gods occupy the highest tier, and have the ability to create life and planets with their divine magic. On the tier below are the most powerful of the younger gods, such as Guthix, who spent many years in the presence of multiple Elder Artefacts. Further down the list, on tier 6, demi-gods such as Amascut and Icthlarin may be found. The lowest tier, 7, contains only avatars of gods or beings that otherwise exercise divine power. It is worth noting that besides the beings that are traditionally called gods, namely the four desert "reflections" created by Tumeken using parts of his own essence, this lowest tier also is occupied by several other very powerful creatures, who are not referred to as actual deities. For instance, the Bandos avatar as well as those of creation and destruction occupy tier seven. These creatures, although on the same tier, are weaker than the desert gods.. Below is a list of gods known to occupy certain tiers.
It should be noted that the tiers are mostly a matter of mechanics and only their implications add to the canon; the actual tier system will not be referenced in-game.
Mod Edam has given a detailed description of the tier system, as well as how to use and interpret it:
|“|| I think it's important to remember that a god's power and tier is not always equal to their battle prowess, or the influence they have over the world.|
A weaker god with ambition and cunning could easily outwit a more powerful god. A popular god with vast support and huge armies could have more impact on the world than another god, even if they're on a lower tier. Some gods may be willing to do things that others aren't to obtain power... and of course two gods at the same tier may wield vastly different kinds of power.
So a god may have beaten another in the past, but that doesn't mean that they will in the future. The tier system is a good indicator of a god's power, but it's not as simple as "this god beats this god".
— Mod Edam
Elder gods (tier 1)Edit
Elder gods have a lot of abilities that include creating life and worlds from nothing. Can also create artefacts that focus and retain their power. Can choose to diminish and 'power down'. They cannot be killed.
- Known elder gods
Transcendent gods (tier 2)Edit
Transcendent gods are able to manipulate life to create mutations of that life. Able to escape from own body to become incorporeal. Able to manipulate the life-force (the Anima Mundi) of a world.
- Known transcendent gods
- Former transcendent gods
High gods (tier 3)Edit
High gods are able to destroy or construct on a huge continent wide scale. Able to magically manipulate immortals.
- Known high gods
- Former high gods
Experienced gods (tier 4)Edit
Experienced gods can riskily manipulate elements and magic on a large scale. Able to open large portals to other worlds.
- Known experienced gods
- Former experienced gods
- Skargaroth (before death)
- Saradomin (before Battle of Lumbridge)
- Zamorak (before Battle of Lumbridge)
- Bandos (after The Chosen Commander and before death)
Inexperienced gods (tier 5)Edit
Inexperienced gods have greater strength and magical fortitude. Largely affected by the Edicts. They are able to shrink or grow.
- Known inexperienced gods
Demigods (tier 6)Edit
Demigods are the sons or daughters of gods. They exhibit greater-than-human strength and magic and are able to open small portals to other worlds. They are not affected by the Edicts. Demigods are able to manipulate mortals against their will.
- Known demigods
Avatars and aspects (tier 7)Edit
Avatars and aspects of gods cannot be more powerful than the process that originally created them. They are immortal and not affected by the Edicts.
- Known avatars and aspects
- Former avatars and aspects
The Elder Gods are a quintet of gods that existed so long ago that even Guthix struggles to remember them. They occupy the highest possible tier of godhood, which enables them to create life and even whole planetary systems. However, they were created themselves by even older entitites. Only the Elder Gods, and their creators, are capable of creating life and even worlds, as such they are known to have created all the worlds in the Multiverse, in which too Gielinor is found. They managed to do all this through the use of their magical, divine power and Elder Artefacts, items they made to perfect their craft. Their goal was to create a perfect world, which ended up to be Gielinor. What happened to them afterwards is unknown though it can be assumed that they went into hibernation due to TzHaar-Ga'al-Kot translating an ancient book written by the TokHaar-Hok. The translation reads: "The masters lie still above us. We do not know if they will awaken.". Though it is commonly believed that Guthix created Gielinor, the god of balance himself is keen to point out that the plane already existed when he discovered it. Guthix only created Gielinor in the sense that he shaped the empty, lifeless plane it originally was into the world as it is today, adding life in the form of plants and animals as well as certain races such as gnomes and dwarves. The Elder Gods are exceedingly powerful, surpassing all of the younger gods. There are five, and some of them are currently on Gielinor, in unknown states of existence.
Jas is the elder goddess of time and is associated with sand as well - she is the most powerful of the Elder Gods, having created most of the Elder Artefacts using her stone. Before the revelations given by the translation of the 'TokHaar books' by TzHaar-Ga'al-Kot, little was known about her, except for the existence of the eponymous Stone of Jas. She is one of the three Elder Gods seen in Origins of Gielinor, although it is unknown which. Together the trio roughly created Gielinor and used the TokHaar and other Elder Artefacts to further shape the planet. She enslaved a race called the Dragonkin and tasked them to be the eternal guardians of the Stone of Jas.
Ful is the elder goddess of Constancy and is associated with fire and lava. She made the Elder Kiln and forged the TokHaar, who in turn, created and/or shaped mountains of Gielinor and other key features. She is also part the trio of Elder Gods seen in Origins of Gielinor motion-comic.
Mah is the youngest of the five Elder Gods. Her sisters, thinking her a stillborn, left Freneskae without realising that she was not dead. Mah is incredibly weak compared to the other Elder Gods, and is thought to be on the brink of death. She created Zaros and Seren consciously in order to keep her company on Freneskae. The Muspah, Mahjarrat and other creatures of Freneskae (Nihil excluded) are products of her dreams and nightmares.
Wen is the Elder God affiliated with ice and the cold.
Main article: Bik
She is the Elder God that is related to the forest and trees, and one of the four Elder Gods currently residing in the world of Gielinor. She also was one of the three Elder Gods that created Gielinor.
Elder god creationsEdit
Zaros is the mysterious god of control. Zaros is also known as the Empty Lord, associated with fate, and associated with the mastery of shadows. Zaros is one of the two known gods to be the creation of an Elder God, not an ascended mortal. At the peak of his power he was the strongest (aside from Guthix) god before being overthrown and banished by Zamorak in the late Second Age. Before being overthrown however, he ruled over most of the land in Gielinor, with numerous fortresses placed strategically throughout his lands, only one of which still stands. He is recognised to be very powerful, with his name striking fear into both Saradomin and Zamorak even after thousands of years of his passing. Zaros, along with Seren, are the two oldest of the ascendant gods, both of them being nearly as old as the universe. Nowadays, Zaros has few followers, since most of them defected to Zamorak or were exterminated, although he still has a faction of Mahjarrat that aided in his return. Until recently, he was incorporeal, having cast off his body to evade death at the hands of Zamorak. The few loyal followers of Zaros, along with the player, work to recreate a corporeal form for Zaros in Fate of the Gods. Zaros has claimed to be "cursed" by Mah, causing all those near him to worship him.
Seren is the crystal goddess of peace and growth as well as the divine aspect of the Anima Mundi. She is worshipped in Tirannwn, being the patron goddess of the elves. She is the only god, other than Guthix, who is known to have arrived on the realm of Gielinor in the First Age, and one of the only goddesses to have been on Gielinor outside the Desert Pantheon. She and Guthix had close relations during the First Age though it is unknown if it extended beyond a platonic relationship. Guthix had come to her homeworld before the First Age while he was looking for the perfect world. According to the Book of Seren, after he found Gielinor, he invited her and the elves to come with him to share it and she gladly accepted the chance to explore another world. By the end of the First Age, Guthix asked her to leave Gielinor to the elves and the other mortal races, but she loved the elves too much to comply though she promised Guthix she would not interfere with the mortals, and that she would join him in the future, when the time would come. When the Edicts of Guthix were set, he gave her no choice but to leave (so as to remove all the influence of the gods), and she decided to scatter herself across the forest of Isafdar to remain with her people. She has not been seen since. In the quest Fate of the Gods, it is revealed that she, along with Zaros, were created by Mah on Freneskae. She spent a period of time on Freneskae, trying to soothe her "mother"'s nightmares, but eventually left in search of the other Elder Gods, in the hopes that they might mend Mah. Seren is also known to be "cursed" by Mah, causing all those who spend time with her to adore her.
Guthix was the god of balance and the most powerful known ascendant god. He was also the discoverer of Gielinor after the Elder Gods created it. With the Stone of Jas and other artefacts Guthix created the runecrafting altars and the runes, and, using his sword, another artefact, he created the Portal of Life, the gateway which he used to allow the different races into Gielinor, starting with the humans, gnomes, fairies and dwarves. Although Guthix originally had no specific gender, he was referred to as male and appeared as a skull with tendrils on the scalp. It is now known that he was a Naragi.
He gained his powers when he was a mortal during wars that various gods fought over his homeworld. The gods Skargaroth and Tuska had just had an enormous fight with each other which ended with Skargaroth, knocked unconscious, crushing Guthix's house and his daughter Aagi, after which Guthix took his sword. He stabbed Tuska in her last remaining eye, blinding her and absorbing some of her power. He then stabbed Skargaroth in the back, killing him and absorbing his power. He later took the sword, and discovered that it could open portals between worlds. He discovered the Dwarven Homeworld, Zanaris, and Seren's Homeworld, along with many others. He gained the majority of his power when he was on Gielinor, where he discovered three Elder Artefacts. He shaped it and went into a slumber, hoping to be forgotten, fearing he would otherwise become as horrible as Tuska or Skargaroth.
He only awoke to end the God Wars, defeating and banishing multiple gods from the realm and keeping them out with the Sword of Edicts, which he created. He wept, appointed Guardians of Guthix and went to sleep again, with no god being able to interfere with life on Gielinor again due to the Edicts. He woke once more in the Fifth Age, when his refuge had been discovered, before being killed by the Zarosian Mahjarrat Sliske, a fate he gladly accepted.
Saradomin is the god of order and wisdom. He is often portrayed as an old, bald man with a long beard, a homage to his human heritage. Many Saradominist NPCs, such as Padomenes, claim that he is the god of good, despite his status, as confirmed by Jagex, as the god of order. His following consists mainly of humans and Icyene. His symbol is a four-tipped star, and the colours that represent him are blue, white, and sometimes gold. He is the owner of an Elder Artefact called the Crown Archival. Along with Zaros, he is one of the oldest of the ascendant gods and has played a major role in the history of many realms. Most notably, he invaded the Naragi realm and destroyed their city of Askroth. His crown later brought him to Gielinor, searching for more artefacts. He was the main adversary of Zamorak during the God Wars, which the latter declared because Saradomin had stolen the Stone of Jas from him. He is incredibly old, having been a god for well over ten millennia. After the death of Guthix and removal of the Edicts of Guthix, Saradomin was the first to return to Gielinor.
Saradomin was engaged in a battle with Zamorak outside of the town of Lumbridge, the location where Zamorak returned to Gielinor shortly after the Sixth Age began, over possession of a rift that contained a portion of the remnant of Guthix's powers. Saradomin and Zamorak, evenly matched, called upon their followers and adventurers to collect the exposed resources revealed after a large crater was blasted into the landscape forming the battlefield. After a two and one half month long struggle, Saradomin defeated Zamorak temporarily.
Despite his physical form being locked into magical battle with his rival god, Saradomin has demonstrated that he can still appear elsewhere to communicate directly with his followers.
Zamorak is the god of chaos and arguably the most infamous for being the initiator of the God Wars. He is often regarded as a god of evil by non-Zamorakian humans, however this is typically seen as bias. He was originally a Mahjarrat who rebelled against Zaros after years of service as a general due to the stagnation he saw in the Zarosian Empire. During this betrayal of Zaros, Zamorak managed to stab Zaros with the Staff of Armadyl and absorbed some of his powers, although the struggle with Zaros nearly killed him. After the battle at Zaros's palace, Zamorak, having defeated his former master by luck, achieved godhood shortly after. He then went to Pandemonium, the world of demons, to fulfill his promise to the Avernic demons by liberating them from the Chthonic demons, but returned and declared war against Saradomin and Armadyl to reclaim the Staff of Armadyl and Stone of Jas they stole from him after he left Gielinor starting the God Wars of the Third Age. Immediately after Zamorak returned after Guthix's death, he was defeated by Saradomin in the first divine battle of the Sixth Age, the Battle of Lumbridge. He narrowly escaped by being rescued by his general, Moia.
Armadyl is the god of justice who ruled the skies and the birds of Gielinor before leaving the planet after the God Wars. He was also an ally of Saradomin, and united with him during the God Wars. It is said that he wept and abandoned Gielinor to roam the multiverse after his 'precious children', the aviantese, a race to which he also belongs, were slain during the war, although a few of them still exist in the God Wars Dungeon. He doesn't have many followers in the current age and for that reason, has been forgotten by most of the individuals that live on Gielinor. The Staff of Armadyl was named after him and he derived his symbol from it. Until its theft in the Fifth Age, the staff was guarded by the Guardians of Armadyl, though the Aviantese had possession of it before. Upon his return in the Sixth Age, he has started regaining a number of followers. Armadyl has achieved a major victory over his longtime rival and enemy Bandos by killing him.
Bandos was the god of war with little other goal than to constantly revel in battle and bloodshed. Most of his followers were unintelligent races such as ogres, goblins, orks and hobgoblins. He was known to his followers as Big High War God and is usually only referred to as Bandos by his higher ranking followers. He arrived in Gielinor just after the God Wars commenced, eager to join the battle with his powerful followers (ourgs, raurgs and fayrgs). Apparently, the races that served him did not exist on Gielinor before his arrival and he brought them with him by force from Yu'biusk, a plane where most his followers originated, but he destroyed after he was banished. Bandos attempted to work around the Edicts and return to Gielinor in the Fifth Age, but his plans were thwarted. While many justifiably viewed Bandos as manipulative, selfish, and sadistic, Bandos believes that only the strong deserve to be rewarded and the weak can either serve as thoughtless weapons to the strong or fight to overthrow the strong, through which become strong themselves. This attitude extends to his followers who he claims he will not help nor feel empathy towards those he views as weak. Bandos returned shortly after the beginning of the Sixth age and was killed in a fierce battle with Armadyl, whom he had underestimated.
Marimbo is the patron goddess of the monkeys, worshipped on Ape Atoll. The monkey town of Marim is named after her, and she is also known to be cheeky and hedonistic. She ascended to godhood by having a drinking contest with an unknown god, which Marimbo won. Her opponent died of an overdose of alcohol. Marimbo then absorbed the god's divine power. Unlike the other gods, Marimbo was happy to leave when Guthix forced the gods out of Gielinor, as she disapproves of violent wars. However, a while after Sliske killed Guthix, she returned to Gielinor along with the other gods in the Sixth Age. Instead of warring, Marimbo was involved with a non-fatal contest with the god of cabbages and deliciousness, Brassica Prime.
Brassica Prime is the patron god of cabbages, but his alignment is otherwise unknown. He appears extremely weak for a god, since he is a vegetable. Brassica is larger than average cabbages and is able to bounce around and speak. April Fools' appears to be the cabbage holiday, as other cabbages begin bouncing and talking on that day, in worship of their god. Brassica Prime could originally be found in Oo'glog during 2009 April Fools event. Unlike other deities, Brassica does not appear to be power-hungry and only wants to make fun, and is not seen often, except for April Fools. He also makes an appearance in Missing, Presumed Death, where he is shown sitting on a podium in the Empyrean Citadel. During the Sixth Age, Brassica Prime had a contest with the goddess of the monkeys, Marimbo. However, unlike other battles in the Sixth Age, the two gods' aims weren't to kill one another.
Skargaroth is a long deceased deity (he was killed prior to the First Age) of unknown alignment. He was slain by Guthix near the end of the Naragi God Wars using his own sword when the latter was still mortal. After that, Guthix himself became a god and the Naragi race became extinct, as Guthix was the last Naragi.
Tuska is a currently blind bestial, boar-like and, most importantly, mindless goddess who participated in the Naragi God Wars, and was attacking on the Naragi plane against Saradomin, having forced Saradomin to leave the plane after a battle with him. She was blinded by Guthix during a fight between her and Skargaroth. Tuska is currently ravaging other dimensions.
Jododu Otoku is a long dead god who protected a planet from meteors until killed by Bandos. After his death the planet was devastated and Bandos was the only survivor.
The Karamjan god is a deity worshipped by the tribal people of Karamja, particularly those inhabiting the southern reaches of the island. The people of Karamja tell little of their god to outsiders since their origins and nature are a closely guarded secret. There may very well be multiple gods of the island, for the shaman Trufitus Shakaya performed a ritual in the Fifth Age to communicate with the island's "spirits".
The Fremennik gods are a number of gods, currently not released in game, but their existence is confirmed. They are affiliated to the Fremennik Province and unlikely to be very powerful. Although this area has their own set of gods, the majority of Fremennik, still seem to worship the god of balance, Guthix.
The Kendal is a god from the Mountain Tribe's legends. A man impersonated the Kendal in the late Fifth Age and killed the tribe chieftain's daughter Asleif because the Mountain Tribe were scared of their gods and magic. According to the imposter, The Kendal is the guardian of the mountain, god of the northern lands, able to move the earth and control the skies. The Mountain Tribe planted trees to block the entrance to the cave where the imposter lived because they think it is unwise to come too close to a god. It is unknown if the Kendal is a fairy tale, a Fremennik spirit or a real deity. The imposter was killed himself in 169.
The "Camel God" is an unofficial name given to a thus far unnamed deity worshipped by the people of the Kharidian Desert. The god's existence is implied by Aristarchus, a Menaphite historian from the city of Menaphos that is currently residing in Pollnivneach.
The Menaphite Pantheon are a group of gods to rule the Kharidian Desert. Their races are unknown, but they seem to all be hybrids of a humanoid species and an animal, the latter being expressed as the gods' heads. Only eight desert gods have been named. Four of these gods were created by Tumeken during his great desert journey in a dream. They are considered to be a "family" despite possibly not being related by blood. Many of them still walk on Gielinor.
Tumeken is the lord of light, god of the sun and head deity of the Kharidian Desert, and is worshipped by the Menaphites. He is the husband of Elidinis, and the father of Icthlarin and Amascut. He once departed on a long journey in his dream, creating the four demi-gods.
Elidinis is the goddess of fertility and growth, and the wife of Tumeken. Her children are Icthlarin and Amascut. The River Elid is named after her and it is said Tumeken first saw her beauteous visage at the river's spring.
Icthlarin is the god of the dead, and friendly with cats. His duty is to escort the souls of the deceased to the Grim Underworld. He is the son of Tumeken and Elidinis and the arch nemesis of his sister Amascut as of her warping of mind.
Amascut, "The Devourer"Edit
Amascut is the goddess of destruction, the sister of Icthlarin and the daughter of Tumeken and Elidinis. She was once goddess of rebirth, but the sight of the power of the Mahjarrat somehow corrupted her, turning her into the Devourer. She henceforth became intent on devouring the souls of the dead and living in an effort to impede her brother's duty, on whom she blamed the incident. She used to have priestesses - these attempted to stop her from her destruction spree after the conversion. In fury, she lashed her own curse against her old followers, making them the cats they are today.
Apmeken is the goddess of friendship and sociality, and is most unpredictable and playful of the desert gods. She tends to appeal to people who desire mental pleasures which are generally scholars and sometimes downright dishonest people. Apmeken can change her appearance at will, although she always has the head of a monkey, ape, or baboon, depending on the exact nature she is displaying. The monkey represents skillfulness, the ape is wise, and the baboon, in nearly all situations, is comical. According to Jex, Apmeken left the Kharidian Desert at some point, however, due to her going into hiding when Amascut massacred her followers using demons made from Apmeken's senses, which she had stolen. In the Fifth Age, she regained these senses and returned.
Crondis is the goddess of resourcefulness and modesty, known to have a crocodile-headed form. According to Jex her main area of interest is with things that provide physical pleasure - such as food, vestments, etc. She tends to be followed by skilled cooks and hunters and other lavish people.
Het is the god of strength and health, and tends to be quite popular with Menaphites because of this, most notably the pharaoh. He is known to have a human form. The defence mechanism of the Kharid-ib resembles Het. His warriors used to fight in the Duel Arena.
Scabaras is the beetle-headed god of wisdom and isolation. According to Jex, Scabaras was a god who fell from grace. Of all the gods of the Desert Pantheon, besides Icthlarin and Amascut, Scabaras has the most available information about him. After the end of the God Wars, he apparently defied the Edicts of Guthix by tunnelling under the River Elid and, in the ensuing battle and subsequent banishment, which Amascut is more than likely to have had a role in, he spilled his blood onto some scarabs, turning them into kalphites. He returned in the Fifth Age and attempted to rescue the Kharid-ib from Amascut, but failed.
Throughout the history of Gielinor, various being have been worshipped as gods due to the fraudulent claims of them or their followers and misinterpretations of history.
A shrine to Bob the Cat can be built inside a chapel inside Player-owned houses, although the altar itself is dedicated to Saradomin. Despite this, there is no evidence that he is actually a god. Nevertheless, when talking to him, Bob sometimes begins to say that he is "Zar..." before cutting himself off,, leading to speculation that he might actually be Zaros in disguise. This was disproven when it was revealed that he is a feline incarnation of the Fourth Age hero Robert the Strong. Furthermore, Azzanadra states that Bob is not Zaros, and that information from a talking cat should not be relied on.
In the Fifth Age, the Kinshra soldier Iban was revived from the dead - having been killed by Sir Owen during the Dawn Ascent - by the witch Kardia, who was living in a hut within the Underground Pass beneath the Galarpos Mountains. After returning, Iban gathered a cult of Zamorakian followers and claimed to be the godly son of Zamorak himself. Although never accepted as a god by any but his followers, Iban's divinity was completely disproven when he was yet again slain by an adventurer (or, rather, his soul was thrown into the Well of the Damned), and further supported by the Mahjarrat Enakhra, who confirms in a Postbag from the Hedge that Iban was not Zamorak's biological son.
Lucien was a Zamorakian Mahjarrat who had gained control of both the Staff of Armadyl and the Stone of Jas, and planned to succeed Zamorak as the god of chaos. His following consisted of the Kinshra, the Dagon'hai, Movario and his squad of the Khazard Army and a large network of spies and mercenaries, although it is unknown if they ever knew of his intention to become a god. During the 18th Ritual of Rejuvenation, Lucien repeatedly declared himself to be a god, but perished at the claws of a Dragonkin known as Sakirth shortly after the ritual ended.
Ocellus is a Guardian of Guthix and a virius, a subspecies of demon. He founded the Order of Ascension in hopes of creating humans who would not worship any gods. After two consecutive failures, during one of which the humans started worshipping him, he concluded that worship was inevitable. He was first worshipped by his early creation of the ascenion, but then punished them. With many of his plans failing, his newest plan to stop mortals worshipping gods is to make them worship himself instead.
Quin was a powerful siren and seasinger in the Wushanko Isles who obtained the Elder Horn and demanded that she be worshipped as a goddess. However, as easterners generally don't believe in gods, they rejected her claims, and she was ultimately assassinated.
Sliske is a devious Zarosian Mahjarrat currently most famous for his slaying of Guthix, which he did in order to allow Zaros to return to Gielinor. According to Relomia, an Ardougnese housemaid who somehow stumbled into and got stuck in the Shadow Realm for years, Sliske is the youngest of gods. She believes that he has achieved godhood after killing Guthix. Relomia describes him as the god of shadows and darkness: devious, mysterious, and dangerous. However, there is no proof of his godhood, and the other Zarosian Mahjarrat believe that Sliske is not a god. Sliske himself likewise confides in the World Guardian that he is not a god, and Jagex have confirmed that he was being truthful.
He organised a contest for the Stone of Jas between the gods in order to provide a distraction to allow Zaros to return unopposed, but was eventually excommunicated from Zaros's service. Nevertheless, he continues to run the contest, claiming that he keeps his promises, and still gains to benefit from it.
- According to Mod Osborne, the players are the only ones who cannot become a god, because the World Guardian powers granted by Guthix nullify the magic of gods.
- According to Mod Jack, Mahjarrat can probably be meaningfully considered low tier 7 divine beings.
- ^ Jagex. Above the Lore - episode 6: The Story behind the World Event Mods Osborne and Moltare Above the Lore podcast, 26 July 2013.
- ^ a b Mod Drebin. "Mod Osborne's Lore Answers!". 18 March 2013. Future Game Updates Forums.
- ^ Jack, Meeting History, RuneScape. "Yes, [Guthix]’s created countless numbers of [runes], storing them all over the place, so, soon after their discovery, the world was dubbed RuneScape. We were initially calling it Gielinor, but, like many things of importance, different people call it by different names."
- ^ Guthix, Guthixian Memories, RuneScape. "The stone had made me more powerful than them. It was easy for me to open portals and cast them out of my world. But it was my lack of foresight that had led to this. In my eagerness to let the mortals live without me, I had forgotten the other gods and their ambition."
- ^ Jagex. Above the Lore - episode 4: The Secrets of Sliske Mods Osborne and Raven : "Was Sliske the first Zarosian Mahjarrat?" -"See, this is what I'd like to say... Well, after, you know, the God Emissaries story, then, I'd like to say he was." (24:24) Above the Lore podcast, 20 June 2013.
- ^ Mod Emilee. "Game Update FAQ - 14/09/11". September 2011. Recent Game Updates Forums.
- ^ a b Jagex. Above the Lore - episode 6: The Story behind the World Event Mods Osborne, Raven and Moltare Above the Lore podcast, 26 July 2013.
- ^ a b Jagex. Above the Lore pilot - RuneRadio interview Mod Osborne (5:40) Above the Lore podcast, 25 April 2013.
- ^ Mod Osborne. RuneScape BTS 54: God Emissaries!. “We've taken a lot of time to decide what the philosophy of each is. To make sure they're viable, something you can really stand behind!”*
- ^ Mod Ollo. God Emissaries. “Eight factions are vying for your support, with eight different philosophies to proudly proclaim as your own. The choice is yours!”*
- ^ Mod Osborne. "Campfire - Answers". 27 June 2013. General Forums. Mod Osborne: "In many cases (Bandos, for example) they won't have come up with the title themselves, while other gods will have titled themselves (Saradomin). It's what they aspire to represent."
- ^ Jagex. Above the Lore - episode 12: The Joy of Zaros Mod John A : "I don't think it's helpful to say 'This god represents [single word concept in some absolute sense]'. I think ... we'd end up with lazy characterisation. Where mortal characters can have a back-story, but with gods, somehow, you've got to sum it up with one word." (3:00) Above the Lore podcast, 16 October 2013.
- ^ Mod Jack. "Is Zaros a Mary-Sue?". 22 August 2013. RuneScape Lore Discussion Forums. "I can also exclusively reveal that Zaros' followers tend to view and portray him in a more positive light than is necessarily the case. As do the followers of all the other gods..."
- ^ Mod Phoenix. "Q&A: The Death of Chivalry". 15 August 2013. Community Home Forums.
- ^ a b Mod Crow. "Declare your allegiance!". 9 July 2013. Community Home Forums.
- ^ Saradomin, God letters, RuneScape. "Strength through wisdom."
- ^ Julienne, Emissary of Saradomin, RuneScape. "Saradomin is the great protector - the god of light and order. He is first among the gods."
- ^ Garlandia, The Bird and the Beast, RuneScape. "Saradomin is no paragon of purity and order, as he maintains."
- ^ Jagex. Above the Lore - episode 11: Rite of Passage Mod Osborne Above the Lore podcast, 4 October 2013.
- ^ Armadyl, The Bird and the Beast, RuneScape. "Now I am as the phoenix: reborn, with new purpose. Some gods would never take the path of harmony. In earlier ages, I'd be persistent in arguing with them. ... War is distasteful, but there are those who would never accept a peaceful world. They must die."
- ^ Mod Jack. "Sliske's New Personality". 16 October 2013. RuneScape Lore Discussion Forums. "Power can change you. Most of the gods were mortal once. When they were, they weren't exactly the same people. How much of your personality is based on your fears, or your limitations? What if those fears and limitations were lifted? Who would you be then?"
- ^ a b c d e Mod Crow. "Campfire - Answers". 27 June 2013. General Forums.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j Mod Osborne. "The Seven Tiers of Godhood". 21 March 2013. Lore Discussion Forums.
- ^ a b Mod Edam. "The Seven Tiers of Godhood". 22 March 2013. RuneScape Lore Discussion Forums.
- ^ a b Jagex. Above the Lore pilot - RuneRadio interview Mod Osborne (08:43) Above the Lore podcast, 25 April 2013.
- ^ a b Jagex. Official lore livestream with Mod Osborne Official lore livestream, 2 August 2013.
- ^ Jagex. Above the Lore pilot - RuneRadio interview Mod Osborne Above the Lore podcast, 25 April 2013.
- ^ a b c d e f Jagex. Official lore livestream with Mod Osborne Official lore livestream, 21 August 2013.
- ^ Mod Phoenix. "Q&A: The Death of Chivalry". 15 August 2013. Community Home Forums.
- ^ a b c d e f g Jagex. RuneFest 2013 lore session: Celebrating Story Mod Ollie (01:11:45) RuneFest 3 recording, 2 November 2013.
- ^ Mod John A. "Gods ~ their Races and Species". 7 August 2013. RuneScape Lore Discussion Forums.
- ^ a b Jagex. Above the Lore Episode 10 - Missing Presumed Death Mod Osborne : "There are... five [Elder Gods]. They are all in various states of... stuff." (27:50) Above the Lore podcast, 23 September 2013.
- ^ Jagex. Official lore livestream with Mods Mark and Osborne Official lore livestream, 4 November 2012.
- ^ Bob the Jagex Cat, Icthlarin's Little Helper, RuneScape. "Well, I don't believe much really since I am Zar... erm, well, no, I erm, meow?"
- ^ Jagex. "The World Wakes - FAQ". RuneScape Forums.
- ^ Jagex. = Mod Jack"Mahjarrat Memories FAQ". RuneScape Forums.