A portfolio was a list of things that all true deities possessed. The portfolio of a deity determined the area of interest that it both represented and had power over. Ideas, emotions, races of creatures, schools of magic, and other topics related to mortal existence could all become part of a deity's portfolio.
Nature of divine portfolios[edit | edit source]
Quasi-powers such as archfiends did not have a portfolio, and an entity had to have divine power equivalent to a demigod in order to gain one. Deities could only have a portfolio with things found on the portfolio of another deity in the same pantheon if either of those deities was a demigod. If this was the case, only one of those deities could become a god of greater power, and the other would remain a demigod until the greater rival was cast down, no matter the devotion or number of their worshipers. Gods in different pantheons were exempt from this restriction.
The gods of Toril were restricted to certain areas of influence. Outside of that area, different gods could reign with exactly the same portfolio topics as a god in another area. An example of this would be Zaltec and Tempus—both gods with a portfolio including war, but Zaltec was a god of Maztica while Tempus was a god of Faerûn.
Portfolios could usually only be altered upon the death, resurrection, or otherwise major disruption of the life of a deity of a certain pantheon, such as during the Time of Troubles. Many deities gained the portfolios of others that they had personally killed, though this was not always the case. Power-hungry deities frequently pretended to be dead gods who still had worshipers, in the hope of gaining their portfolio—an act known as 'subsuming'.
Powers granted by a portfolio[edit | edit source]
Gods gained more control over things related to their portfolio depending on their level of power.
A deity automatically sensed events occurring in relation to their portfolio, though the weaker the power of the deity, the more mortals had to be involved in the event for them to sense it. A god could then experience the event remotely without needing to send an avatar to get directly involved. They could also attempt to block the ability of another god to do the same, but only if that god was less powerful.
A deity was always more powerful when working to influence the world in relation to aspects of their portfolio—they could perform some tasks instantly, enact more powerful magic, and they found it easier to multitask.