lich phylactery


Pathfinder RPG General Discussion


I know it says the most common kind is a metal box but I always thought it would be cooler to have them look like heart shaped black gems with a glow (The lich's soul) inside. What do you guys think.


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Nothing wrong with that, if it suits the individual lich's personality. You could also make it a finally crafted gem and plop it on the end of a torch with continual flame (and concealed by nondetection or magic aura) so no one ever really notices and the PCs end up looting it and carrying it around with them and wondering how the lich always seem to appear in their vicinity so quickly while they're searching for the phylactery after destroying him.


Put the awesome gem inside of a lead box? XD The whole point is to make them as difficult to find as possible, which usually means looking mundane and being easily hidden.


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Pizza Lord wrote:
Nothing wrong with that, if it suits the individual lich's personality. You could also make it a finally crafted gem and plop it on the end of a torch with continual flame (and concealed by nondetection or magic aura) so no one ever really notices and the PCs end up looting it and carrying it around with them and wondering how the lich always seem to appear in their vicinity so quickly while they're searching for the phylactery after destroying him.

I think they might notice the lich body materializing "nearby" the torch over the course of 1d10 days. Particularly if they keep moving around and . . . huh. What happens if you move a phylactery while it's reforming the lich? Does the partially-formed corpse go with it, or does it leave bits of lich distributed over (average velocity / 1d10 days)?


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

A phylactery depends on the lich creating it. The oldest story (Koschei the Deathless) of a lich described it as being a needle in an egg in a duck in a rabbit in a chest buried on an island no-one could find. Azalin of Ravenloft had a golden dragon skull the size of a minivan. If you're thinking security, make the phylactery look like a heart made out of gold embedded with scribed gems, and put it inside of an iron golem. As long as the materials don't rot, it's up to your imagination.


Recently ran a campaign with a dread lich who made his phylactery an adamantine golem with some unique abilities. He wasn't the "hide my phylactery" kind of Lich. The players had a difficult fight with his group, but they finally took the bad guys down (the lich, a mythic vital strike Samurai, and a half orc, half troll Come And Get Me Barbarian), having lost two of their own in the process (as well as their necromancer's entire force of four skeletal megaraptors and a maralith), thought they could relax after a grueling battle that had seen the field getting nuked by both sides every round, and then the golem climbed out of the Lich's oversized portable hole.

Now this guy was special and maybe not actually a proper lich according to information I gave the party. My usual way of doing phylacteries is that the phylactery itself in some way carries the story of the lich's mortal life along with certain representative sacrifices that sort of trick their soul into going there instead of their body or the afterlife. I'm also fond of having the lich's true name hidden inside the phylactery.


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The party was clearing out an abandoned-then-resettled fortress of evil on their way to prevent the lich from coming out of stasis. Once they finally got there they found some inscriptions that, after a linguistics check, revealed the lich's name is an old old elven word for "Faithfulness". One intelligence check to remember details later, cue the looks of horror as they realized one of the first bits of loot they got off a low level cleric was a (the) Phylactery of Faithfulness. That they sold. Over a week ago. To a travelling merchant. Who's name they didn't get.


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This might be the oddest idea for a phylactery ever. Create a Simulacrum of a Green Hag Vampire. Use the Hag as the vessel for the phylactery. Create 5 more identical Simulacrum. Order the Simulacrum to use their coven ability to cast Mind Blank on themselves daily and remain invisible at all times. They are to avoid all conflict and to remain hidden in abandoned places. Use their coven abilities to gather information and elude all dangers. If you start to reform in their presence they are to cast Mind Blank on you and guard you.

Now you have an undetectable, invisible self-moving phylactery. Sure, its incredibly weak but you're enemies can't use magic or even divine intervention to find it. Even if they stumble upon the coven, True Sight or See Invisibility won't work on them. They are protected from ALL divination magic.

A different creature could be used for the phylactery itself. 3 Hags would provide the necessary number to use the coven abilities. Vampire to make them immortal. Side benefit of being immune to running water because they have a swim speed. The main thing is using some sort of non-mortal creature as your phylactery so it can be made permanently invisible and can have Mind Blank cast on it.


i had a lich put his in the very strong door that lead to his vault.(with lead around to prevent magic detection). the players kept going back and forth passing it while searching for it. the door was of course trapped but the soul-gem was far from it near the hinges.


Yqatuba wrote:
I know it says the most common kind is a metal box but I always thought it would be cooler to have them look like heart shaped black gems with a glow (The lich's soul) inside. What do you guys think.

Well, in my own campaigns, no two lich phylacteries look the same, because the lich does not want his phylactery to be readily identifiable as such, I've had gems, rings, magic items (like the glowing sapphire in the pommel of that rune carven Frost Brand sword) a golden coffer lined in red velvet (the velvet hiding the carvings on the inside of the coffer) a giant brass idol... the idea is to make the phylactery as something any lich slayers won't want to destroy, or think of doing so. Liches using the traditional box and sacred texts inside usually put en amphasis on clever hiding places.


blahpers wrote:
The planet.

The color Blue.

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