Traditionally, In Nomine is a role playing game where Angels and Demons face off against each other in matters large and small. So what would happen if you removed the Demons?
Utopia is one possible result, but it would be a rather uninteresting environment for an RPG.
No, a game needs conflict if it’s to be interesting, which means that even in the absence of Hell something must be seeking to thwart or influence heaven:
- Mankind – perhaps humanity is attempting to throw off the yoke of heaven, or maybe the governments of the world have found ways to bend angels to their will. Either way, mankind itself is in opposition to the will of heaven.
- Pagan Gods – if there is no God but God, how can heaven tolerate the existence of other gods who do not bend knee to the lord above? To make such a setting work, Ethereals (especially those linked to pantheons) would need to be more powerful than currently presented.
- Cthulhu Mythos – if the power of heaven comes from the faith of man, what happens when humanity becomes infected with madness and dread? What strange and unknownable powers could be corrupting the very guardians of creation?
- Other Angels – as I have suggested elsewhere, one way to play the archangels as to have each consider itself to be the embodiment of God’s will (and as such, incapable of evil). While Hell exists, a certain degree of cooperation is necessary – but without hell, each faction is far more likely to see it’s approach to the treatment of creation is the one and only correct approach. This is the variation that I would likely use.
There are some other consequences that would need to be taken into consideration.
Dissonance and Discord
Without the threat of a Fall – you might wonder what would keep Angelic characters true to their Superior’s Word. And the truth of the matter is that Dissonance and Discord will still do it, just remember 3 things:
- Dissonance makes it harder to use resonance
- Discord reduces Celestial reactions
- Servitors of Dominic and Uriel will attack any celestial that allows either to get out of hand.
With no Hell to oppose, it’s likely that the Virtues will interpret the “evil” from their first vow as any deed which actively opposes their Superior’s word.
You don’t even need to get rid of Lucifer in a game without Hell. He would simply be another Archangel (albeit a particularly powerful one) – and for the most part his Choir Attunements would write themselves:
Seraphim – can use the Balseraph resonance
Cherubs – may chose to let their attunement dissipate (like a Djinn)
Ofanim – may use the Calabite resonance
Elohim – may use the Habbalite resonance
Malakim – may chose all four of their starting vows
Kyriotates – may chose to keep their hosts lucid, gaining their memories but potentially having to oppose their will.
Mercurians – may Charm or Drain Essence like an Impudite
Within this variation, Lilith would be something of an enigma. She likely enjoys the nominal protection of Lucifer, but he would not have been responsible for granting her Word. Her family would be comprised of the Lilim, Gorgons, and Nephalim alike.
Brights would be vanishingly rare. Instead, if one of the Lilim serves a celestial Superior, I would suggest giving them the attunement of the most similar Demon Prince from the core setting. e.g. Lilim of Dominic would gain 12 extra CP to spend on their role and could spot other Lilim at a glance.
Other Demon Princes
The disposition of the other demon princes I leave as an exercise to the readers. I would probably make Baal an Ethereal God who has allied himself with Lucifer, I expect I would remove Kronos altogether, but the rest would probably be kicking around heaven as angels with High Distinctions.