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Mind Beasts Hunger for Your Dreams!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Gather close to learn a harrowing secret of the hidden world of Pathfinder Roleplaying Game development! One plan was to include occult monsters—psychic vampires, duergar, and advanced aboleths, among others—in the Pathfinder RPG Occult Adventures hardcover. During that book's development, however, we discovered that we wanted to explore more occult themes than would fit in a single book, and thus Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Occult Bestiary was born. Containing all the creatures originally intended for the pages of Occult Adventures as well as dozens more, Occult Bestiary provides GMs with nearly 50 new monsters with which to populate any occult-themed campaign, many of which use the new rules presented in Occult Adventures.

The monsters in the book can be easily broken into three categories. The first of these is the monsters that were going to appear in Occult Adventures—reimaginings of monsters that would have used psychic magic rules when they first appeared, had we had such rules at the time. These include aboleths, neothelids, seugathi, intellect devourers, and so forth. When they were going to appear in a hardcover rulebook, that seemed like a fine way to do it. But in a book set in the Pathfinder campaign setting, we needed to distinguish between a "normal" aboleth and a "psychic" aboleth. So instead of making an alternate aboleth, we created a new, CR 18 aberration in the same family: the omnipath.

Illustrations by Yigit Koroglu, Maichol Quinto, and Ben Wootten

The second type of monster in the book are those that come from real-world occult beliefs. Many of these are templates like the prana ghost (think Obi-Wan Kenobi in Empire and Jedi), the alter ego, and the psychic lich (whose phylactery is held safely within a mindscape). Others are standalone creatures like the boggart or the tattoo guardian. These were even more fun to concept than the first type of monster!

Illustrations by Audrey Hotte and Jason Juta

Finally, we have my favorite group: the monsters we just made up or that have existed in the Pathfinder campaign setting for years but that we never got to stat up. These include the potential familiar psyche serpent, the Lashunta's shotalashu mounts, new rakshasa and dark folk, and even Kalervo Oikarinen's RPG Superstar 2015 monster entry!

Illustrations by Yigit Koroglu, Kim Sokol, and Ben Wootten

I always know a bestiary is ready when reading the entry for a random monster within inspires a new adventure that would let me use it; every monster in Occult Bestiary had me champing at the bit to throw it at unsuspecting PCs! What occult horrors are you most excited to subject upon your players?

Mark Moreland

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Audrey Hotte Ben Wootten Jason Juta Kim Sokol Maichol Quinto Pathfinder Campaign Setting Yigit Koroglu
Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I wish I'd been able to subscribe for this line as well...

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Omnipath - the super sandworm!

Asura looks cool, and that fear eater is rather unsettling.

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Top row: marry, [expletive], kill
Middle row: kill, [expletive], marry
Bottom row: marry, kill, [expletive]

Shut up and take my money, Paizo.

How dependent on having the players be from the Occult Adventures is this Bestiary?

Force ghosts, alien beasties, and the Drowned God*? That's a definite purchase for me!

* Am I the only one to think that it looks like an aquatic sarlacc? :) Or is it the cause of the Eye of Abendego?

I'm curious about the Prana Ghost's alignment... and if we'll ever get non-evil undead, especially a non-evil undead PC race (no, not dhampir).

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Vundal wrote:
How dependent on having the players be from the Occult Adventures is this Bestiary?

I'm not sure I get your question. Several monsters have spells from the Occult Adventures hardback, so a GM will need access to that (or the free online version). But the player characters? They don't need to use anything from Occult Adventures to get the full experience from the monsters in this book.

jasonleeholm wrote:
I'm curious about the Prana Ghost's alignment... and if we'll ever get non-evil undead, especially a non-evil undead PC race (no, not dhampir).

The prana ghost is a template with no alignment restrictions. The example creature is neutral good, but the template description is careful to point out that evil creatures can become prana ghosts as well.

Oh, and prana ghost is a misnomer - they're actually outsiders with ghost-like traits.

Finally the illustration for my monster!

The image in my head was a bit more Gigeresque but I like it, very creepy.

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Rakshasa and asura and aboleths are my jaaaaaaaam

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Can we get a pawn set for this book, please?

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