The Exalted Tyrant
The Exalted Tyrant


Upright red sword on the back of a gauntlet fist.

Home Plane



Lawful Evil


Fear, hatred, rulership, strife



Cleric Alignment



Destruction, Evil (Devil, Fear), Fire, Law (Inevitable, Tyranny), Nobility (Leadership), Strength (Resolve), War (Tactics)

Favored Weapon

Tyrant's Fist (gauntlet)

Lord of Power. Star Forger.
Greater Deity

The Exalted Tyrant, more commonly known as Zhao-Khan, is believed to be one of the three Creator Gods. According to myth, it was their power that both fueled and ignited the creation of reality as we know it. However, it was at the start of the Third Age that their philosophy solidified into its current form, a result of the Great Betrayal and the horrors of the Second Age. Since then, the Tyrant has sought dominion over Celesia and their fellow deities.

Twice they were the instigator of era-changing world events: the Fiend Soul War and the Tyrant's World War. The Tyrant was supposely slain at the end of the former event, and their worship faded to nearly nothing and was largely absent during the Fifth Age. It was the latter event that saw their return, now as a Divine Mortal. For decades, they plotted, quietly gathering their forces and resurrecting their worship until they were ready to claim the world. In a massive world war, they nearly succeeded had it not been for a few brave souls that stood against them. However, even in defeat the Tyrant gain some form of victory. The death of their mortal form triggered their apotheosis thanks to the groundwork they had established among their worshipers. At the beginning of the Sixth Age, the Exalted Tyrant reclaimed their original seat of power among the Masters of the Dark.

The Tyrant's time as a mortal seems to have left a mark on them. While their goal of complete dominance over all reality remains intact, they seem to have shifted their approach. In contrast to their overly ambitious and grand schemes in the Third and Fourth Ages, the Tyrant has thus far shown great patience and restraint, instructing their followers to act with more subtlety than ever before. How long this last, and how successfully this approach will be, remains to be seen.

The Exalted Tyrant is known to be extremely harsh and demanding. Failure in his service results in cruel punishments. However, loyalty means much to them, and success is greatly rewarded. They have an intense need to control everything, but they seem to have learned to be much more patient in the Sixth Age.

The Exalted Tyrant is the personification of power, pure and unfiltered. Power comes in many forms, but at its core, it is the ability to manifest your will into reality.

The Exalted Tyrant lives up to their name. They teach that control is both the goal and the source of power. Tied into their philosophy of power, the Tyrant teaches their followers the ways to crush and dominate the will of others.

Fear, hate, and strife are the three means the Tyrant employs to assert their dominance. They seek out divisions, no matter how inconsequential, and stoke the fear of difference in people. Subtly, they evolve that fear into actual hatred, leading to strife between groups. When all of their enemies and targets are busy fighting and weakening each other, the Tyrant steps in to claim control over all.

Black and red are the colours most used to decorate the Tyrant's adornments. Crowns, flames, rods, and heavy gauntlets are objects commonly used in their imagery. Lions, manticores, and vehonostonas are beasts generally used in their heraldry.

The Exalted Tyrant's domain are the Chambers of Laborious Conquests, a possibly infinite series of interconnected dungeons throughout the Seven Hells. Each chamber contains a unique and torturous training regimen designed to put a petitioner throughout excruciating pain not found in the Material plane. However, should the petitioner persist, and perhaps overcome, the chamber's hardships, they will have seize a new form of power for themselves. If they gain the means to do so, many petitioners choose to escape the Chambers to either reincarnate to the Material plane, or exploit their higher existence and new powers to indulge in their darkest desires throuhgout the Hells. However, there are those stubborn enough to continue overcoming each chamber with the belief that they will achieve ultimate power at its end, with the Exalted Tyrant waiting for them there as their final test.

Relations with Other Faiths

The Exalted Tyrant has no friends or permanent allies. Their relationship with the other deities is at best as a master to their servants, and deadly enemies at worst. Even those closest to their philosophy would be considered temporary allies of convenience. The Tyrant brooks no superior or even equal; all must serve them loyally.

Roles Within the Faith

The dream of every follower of the Tyrant is to have the power to bend the world to their desires. However, these ambitions are kept in check by a strict code of obedience to prevent mass chaos and self-destruction between competing aims.

A Priest's Role

Priests of the Exalted Tyrant serve by either advising tyrannical rulers or taking the position outright for themselves. In following the Tyrant's Sixth Age philosophy, Zhaokhanite priests lean towards the former than the latter, in contrast to the previous ages. In most cases, they act subtly and with subterfuge, but there are some places where they can act openly. The priests learned to use honeyed words and clever strategies to prop up leaders that support the Tyrant's ideals, as well as sow dissent among their enemies by stoking their fears and setting them agains each other. In this way, a priest's primary role is to act as lieutenants and agents of powers that follow the Tyrant's ways.

Temples and Shrines

Temples of the Exalted Tyrants are typically well-fortified, and provide services and amenities equal to that of an army's barracks.

Religious Orders

The church of the Exalted Tyrant is spread thin across the world, but even this meagre presence is significantly better than how it was in the previous age. However, despite their small numbers, the church can be considered more united than any other major church. This unity stems from its relatively reformation at the beginning of the recent age, and that it was directly led by the Exalted Tyrant during the last world war. In the run-up to the Tyrant's World War, the Tyrant forcefully absorbed all remaining cults that survived in hiding during the Fifth Age into the One True Order.

The One True Order—The main, orthodox church of the Exalted Tyrant may be small in number, but it is a tightly controlled hierarchal organisation. Its leadership remains mobile for security reason, but thanks to the grace of their god, they are able to retain direct command over their subordinates. The Order maintains several well-fortified strongholds across the world, but the majority of their people work to gain the patronage of other authorities. From this position, they advise and encourage their patrons to make choices in line with the Tyrant's philosophy. By helping their patron achieve their ambitions through the ways of the Tyrant, they ensnare them into their following.

Holy Texts

Tome of Hate

Relics of the Faith

Crown of Tyranny

Rod of Power


The sixth month of the Argent calendar, Zhaoren, is named in honour of the Exalted Tyrant.

Resurrection Day—The 30th day of Zhaoren is considered to be the Tyrant's holiest day of the year. In 5134 5A, the Tyrant's resurrection as a Divine Mortal occured on Zhaoren 30th. By coincidence or providence, the Tyrant announced to the world their reascendance among the prime pantheon on this day of the first year of the Sixth Age.

Mourning Day—A day of reflection and mourning as this was the day of the Tyrant's death that ended the Fiend Soul War at the end of the Fourth Age. It also marks the day that the Tyrant's Divine Mortal form was slain by the Mysthaven Mavericks at the climax of the Tyrant's World War of the Fifth Age.


Three Myths

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License