Reading the Dragonlance Legends trilogy,

Raistlin ascends to be a new god between The Queen of Darkness and The Hmmer of the Gods by opening a portal to hell, the plane of Tahksis, the dark Queen. There he challenged her in her weakest and won (several times?) until some time after the adventure started in 356. He then goes on to ravage the planet, having gained a starsign of an hourglass. (Hammer of the Gods; chapter 1-7)

He didn't finish Tarkisis off (her stars were still there but weak) till he had slain Paladine (Camaron and his Kender buddy were witness) and only then the last surviving mortal from that timeline - Par-Salian. Astinus the immortal chronist tried to close the last book of the History of Krynn at that moment and died. (Hammer of the Gods; chapter 8)

Note that this ascent to godhood was reversed/prevented later in the novel by time-travel shenaningans (that made the whole ascent possible in the first place).

How he achieved this is mainly hinted all over the books: He needed the help of a priest of Paladine to open the portal to hell and protect him in the descent. He needed to assimilate the power of Fistandantilus and read all of his night blue books. One of the tests/struggles/clashes is told in Hammer of the Gods chapter 8.

However, since Dragonlance also was a series of D&D supplements as well as its own game, this sparked one thought:

Is this inside the rules as presented by the relevant game supplements for Dragonlance (SAGA, AD&D 1st/2nd, etc.) ?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I made some edits to hide spoilers from those who may not have read the source material. If you feel it makes the question significantly harder to read or answer, feel free to revert. \$\endgroup\$
    – lithas
    Jul 25, 2018 at 18:57
  • \$\begingroup\$ I'm having a hard time figuring out the book titles in this. There's no “Legends of (the) Dragonlance” series. There is a Dragonlance Legends series, but it only has 3 books: there's no 4th and 5th book in Legends. Last, there's no Dragonlance book at all with the title Hammer of the Gods. Are these translations of titles from a different publishing that split up the trilogy differently? \$\endgroup\$ Jul 26, 2018 at 15:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie it is lost in translation I gues... they call it 6 books here. \$\endgroup\$
    – Trish
    Jul 26, 2018 at 19:43

2 Answers 2


Rules for divine ascension in D&D existed when this book was released, but not necessarily for ascension in this exact manner.

The version of the text I can find places this character's apparent divine ascension in Chapter 3 of The Hammer of the Gods, "Book" 1 of Test of the Twins, the third published book of the Dragonlance Legends trilogy:

"What does it mean?" asked Tas, rubbing his eyes and staring sleepily up at the stars, only half awake.

"It means Raistlin succeeded," Caramon answered with an odd mixture of fear, sorrow, and pride in his voice. "It means he entered the Abyss and challenged the Queen of Darkness and—defeated her!"

"Not defeated her, Caramon," said Tas, studying the sky intently and pointing. "There’s her constellation, but it’s in the wrong place. It’s over there when it should be over here.


"Raistlin won," Caramon said with a soft sigh. "He’s what he wanted to be—a god. And now he rules over a dead world."

That novel trilogy came out in 1986, which is the year before the first Dragonlance-specific sourcebooks were released (Dragonlance Adventures and Leaves from the Inn of the Last Home, neither of which mention rules for divine ascension).

The only edition of D&D at that time which specifically described ascension to divinity was Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 1st edition. In particular, Deities and Demigods (1980) included rules for divine ascension:

As study of the various mythologies will show, it is remotely possible for mortals to ascend into the ranks of the divine. However, there are certain requirements that must be fulfilled before such a thing could happen.

Those requirements are to be of exceptionally high character level, to have raised one's ability scores to be exceptionally high, to have a body of worshippers, and to be a faithful follower of one's patron deity.

However, the Dragonlance character in question does not appear to use this method or meet these requirements, suggesting that it was an original invention for that novel, although it may indeed have been inspired by Deities and Demigods.

BECMI Set 5: Immortals Rules was released in 1986, which includes rules on ascending to become an Immortal, although that is not specifically the same thing as a deity. The requirements for such ascension are vaguely defined: in one description, the player character must complete a challenge from an existing Immortal.

Later editions of Dungeons & Dragons, released after the novel series in question, did indeed include rules for ascending to divinity in various ways, including by defeating another deity.

D&D third edition's version of Deities and Demigods (2002), on p.219, opens up divine ascension to many possible methods. The DM chooses whether or not ascension is possible, and if so whether it is acquired through heroic death, earned by certain deeds, stolen from other deities, taken from slain deities, imparted willingly by existing deities, or taken from some source.

The D&D third edition Dragonlance sourcebook Legends of the Twins references Raistlin's ascension, although it does not provide rules for player characters to achieve the same.

Third Day, Fifthmonth, 356

Raistling emerges from the portal in the Tower of High Sourcery in Palanthas, followed by Tahksis. While the Battle of Palanthas rages outside, Raistlin slays the Dark Queen. Absorbing her power, he departs Krynn to do battle with the gods.


Twenty-Eighth Day, Seventhmonth, 356

Raistlinites appear for the first time, in Beacon on the north shores of Northern Ergoth.

Raistlin absorbing power from another deity and ascending before having any followers is inconsistent with the AD&D 1st edition Deities and Demigods rules which existed at the time the Dragonlance Legends were written.

Legends of the Twins also references the Kingpriest Beldinas Pilofiro's attempt to ascend to divinity:

By 40 PC, the last Kingpriest, Beldinas Pilofiro, had decided that as ruler of all Ansalon — and since he sat in judgement of over all men — he must therefore be a god. He began plotting his full ascension to godhood.

In an alternate history of Krynn, that book describes that character's ascension:

In binding the power of Paladine to his own spirit, the Kingpriest ascended to be come the Godpriest.


The Kingpriest summons Paladine and demands that the god grant him the power to complete the cleansing of the world. When Paladine refuses, the Kingpriest binds the god's spirit to his own, ascending to near-godhood and sparking the eternal Godspyre at the heart of the temple.

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    \$\begingroup\$ RE: "You appear to be referring to the Dragonlance Legends trilogy, which like many trilogies consists of only three books." Waiter, some water, please! This wit is so dry! \$\endgroup\$ Jul 25, 2018 at 22:28
  • \$\begingroup\$ "Raistlin absorbing power from another deity and ascending before having any followers" Didn't all classes gain followers? \$\endgroup\$
    – ShadowKras
    Jul 26, 2018 at 17:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ Worshippers, rather. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 26, 2018 at 17:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ The Master Set ('M' in BECMI) had specific rules for ascending to immortality, although none of these are a good fit. The closest (and this is a stretch) would be the 'Paragon' path, with Takhisis taking the place of 'eight magic users of 25th level or greater.' The apprentices would be Dalamar and <hand wave>. \$\endgroup\$
    – ucbpaladin
    Jan 1, 2019 at 3:04

There were rules for ascension to godhood, in either family of rules active at the time.

That character's ascent was published ca. 1986. This was an interesting time in D&D history, since there was an active fork of the ruleset being published by TSR. That is to say that regarding "the rules" at that time, it's unclear exactly what that means. (See also what are the differences between the various editions of D&D? or this excellent chart/timeline of D&D editions at wikipedia.)

Advanced Dungeons and Dragons, colloquially now known as "AD&D 1st edition" or "1e" is the system in which the Dragonlance modules were written (DL1-DL12). In that ruleset the supplement Deities & Demigods (ca. 1980) details in its section "Divine Ascension" how a character might transition to godhood.

Dungeons and Dragons, usually called D&D, was still going strong at that point, and was still being actively developed. Colloquially referred to usually either by an author's name ("Holmes(1981)," "Mentzer(1983)") or by acronyms ("B/X," "BECMI"), these were also "the rules" of D&D. Ascension to godhood was definitely a thing in D&D at the time. Pssst: the I in "BECMI" stands for Immortal

So whether one intends AD&D or D&D by "the rules" at the time of writing, ascension to godhood was definitely contemplated therein.

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    \$\begingroup\$ It may be useful also referencing this question. While I understand the spoilers may make addressing it challenging, can this answer explain if the means the question's character used to ascend were—in either edition—according to the rules as written? \$\endgroup\$ Jul 25, 2018 at 19:27

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