Walking the Way of the Wicked

Game Master divineshadow



Here are a Additional choices for the villains!

Archetypes: :

Few are willing to sign the contract, penned in their own blood, turning their immortal soul over to Asmodeus in return for power, but those that do find that the benefits are well worth the cost. While they can expect an eternity of torment in the afterlife, they gain untold power in their mortal lives, but each year brings them closer to damnation. It is then no surprise that they wield their gifts with almost reckless abandon, hoping to impress their dark lord with untold acts of cruelty and tyranny. It is a fool’s hope, however, since Asmodeus is not easily swayed by such acts, and there is a high price to pay for his favor.

Lord of Darkness (Antipaladin Archetype)

Antipaladins are known as the hand of evil, but those among their dark ranks who swear fealty to Asmodeus take on an even darker purpose, to bring the people under his unholy yoke. These lords of darkness are feared across the realms, where even the barest whisper of their name inspires dread.

Aura of Obedience (Su): At 3rd level, a lord of darkness radiates an aura that cows the weak into following his commands. He receives a +4 morale bonus on Intimidate checks made against living creatures within 10 feet.

In addition, if he demoralizes a living creature within 10 feet, and exceeds the DC by 10 or more, he may issue one command to the target, as per the spell. The target can resist this effect with successful Will save, with a DC of 10 + 1/2 the lord of darkness’ level + the lord of darkness’ Charisma modifier. A creature cannot be commanded in this way more than once per day. This ability replaces aura of cowardice.

Cruelty (Su): At 3rd level, a lord of darkness gains the cruelty class feature of the antipaladin. This functions just like that class feature with the following exception.

At 3rd level, he can select the following cruelty in place of the sickened cruelty.

Commanded: The target must obey one order from the lord of darkness, as per the command spell.

At 9th level, he can select the following cruelty in place of the nauseated cruelty.

Charmed: The target is charmed by the lord of darkness, as per the charm monster spell. This effect lasts 1 round per three levels of the lord of darkness. The lord of darkness must have the commanded cruelty before selecting this cruelty.

Domination (Su): At 11th level, a lord of darkness can expend two uses of his smite good to make one living humanoid creature within 30 feet into his thrall, as dominate person. The target receives a Will save to negate this effect, with a DC of 10 + 1/2 the lord of darkness’ level + the lord of darkness’ Charisma modifier. If the creature fails its save, it obeys whatever commands the lord of darkness makes. The duration of this effect is permanent, but the target receives a new saving throw each day to end the effect. A lord of darkness cannot have more than one thrall in this way at a time. If he ever dominates another creature, the previous thrall is immediately freed from this effect. This ability replaces aura of vengeance.

Unholy Barrister (Cleric Archetype) Will stack with Infernal Apostle

Wretched are the clerics that worship Asmodeus, but there are some among them that truly find a calling in the service of the unholy lord. These clerics, known as unholy barristers, are among the devil’s most powerful servants in the lands of the living, tirelessly working to enslave all who dare to oppose him.

Deity: The cleric must worship Asmodeus.

Domains: The cleric must have the Evil or Law domain.

Demanding Channel (Su): At 1st level, the unholy barrister gains the ability to channel energy like a cleric of his level. This functions just like channel negative energy, allowing the unholy barrister to deal damage to all living creatures within 30 feet. The unholy barrister cannot use this ability, however, to heal undead creatures.

Instead, the unholy barrister can spend two uses of his channel negative energy class feature to heal all evil living creatures within a 30 foot burst. To receive this bonus, the creatures must each spend an immediate action, swearing loyalty to Asmodeus. In addition to the damage healed, creatures that swear loyalty gain the Devil’s Pact feat for a number of minutes equal to the cleric’s level, but can only use that feat once during that time. If the creature already possesses that feat, they can use it one additional time per day, as long as they use it during the duration of the demanding channel. Regardless of when the power is used, the creature’s soul is bound to Asmodeus for the entire duration and if that creature dies during that time, it cannot be brought back to life by any means aside from a miracle or wish . Even if it is brought back to life, it gains three permanent negative levels (just as if it had the Devil’s Pact feat). This ability otherwise copies and replaces channel energy.

Soulbound Contract (Su): At 8th level, the unholy barrister can barter some of his power off to those who would serve Asmodeus. Using this ability is a standard action and it can only be used on a willing creature who is adjacent to the cleric. The creature must knowingly, and willingly, pledge his soul to Asmodeus to receive the benefits of this ability. The unholy barrister can grant the target a number of his spells, as if using imbue with spell ability , but without having to give up a 4th level spell slot. In addition, the cleric can transfer one use of his demanding channel to the target, regardless of the target’s total number of Hit Dice. Spells transferred and uses of demanding channel are lost by the cleric until used by the target and regained normally. As long as the target has any spells or uses of demanding channel remaining, it is surrounded by an aura of foul energy. It is treated as an evil creature for all spells and effects and if it dies while still possessing any spells or uses of demanding channel, its soul is bound by Asmodeus and it cannot be raised or resurrected by any mortal means. The unholy barrister cannot have more than one use of this ability active at a time and cannot use it again until the first target is slain or it uses up all of the granted spells and uses of emanding channel. The unholy barrister can use this ability once per day at 8th level, plus one additional time per day at 14th level. This ability replaces the 8th level ability gained by the Evil or Law domains. If the unholy barrister has both domains, he chooses with one to exchange for this ability.

Infernal Apostle (Cleric, Drow) Will stack with Unholy Barrister

The Infernal Apostle is an archetype of the cleric class, available to drow clerics who worship Asmodeus or an Arch Devil.

In order to survive the purgings in Talingarde, the drow threw in their lot with Arch Devils. Infernal Apostles gain magical insight from their diabolical lords to dominate enemies by channeling infernal energy.

Class Features

An Infernal Apostle has the following class features:

Infernal Magic

An Infernal Apostle must choose to channel negative energy, and must select either the Lawful or Evil domain or the Devil subdomain as their sole domain.

Infernal Familiar

At 1st level, an Infernal Apostle gains a familiar as a wizard equal to their cleric level, or if they already have a familiar, their cleric levels stack to determine the familiar's abilities.

At 3rd level, their familiar gains the fiendish template.

At 7th level, the Infernal Apostle exchanges their familiar for an Imp without the need to take the Improved Familiar feat.

Infernal Channel (Su)

At 1st level, an Infernal Apostle can channel energy infused with hellfire to damage creatures of chaotic and good alignment, or, at higher levels, bolster the abilities of lawful evil allies. Channeling this energy causes a 30-foot-radius burst centered on the cleric. Creatures within the burst that are chaotic or good take 1d6 points of damage, plus 1d6 points of damage for every two levels the cleric possesses beyond 1st (2d6 at 3rd, 3d6 at 5th, and so on). Creatures that take damage from the channeled infernal energy receive a Fortitude save to halve the damage. The DC of this save is equal to 10 + 1/2 the Infernal Apostle's level + the Infernal Apostle's Charisma modifier. Chaotic Good creatures take a –2 penalty on this saving throw.

At 5th level, lawful evil allies within the burst are affected as if targeted by a heroism spell with a duration of 1 round. While under the influence of the spell, your allies also gain fire resist of 5 and all unholy or silver weapons do an additional 1d6 damage.

At 9th level, chaotic or good enemies are also sickened for 1d6 rounds if they fail their saving throw against the infernal channel. Channeling infernal energy is a standard action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.

This ability replaces channel energy.

Torture Master (Inquistor Archetype)

Inquisitors are ruthless when it comes to rooting out traitors and the unfaithful, usually employing means that others find distasteful at best, but the torture master takes pleasure from his work. Learning their arts from blasphemous texts devoted to Asmodeus, these inquisitors specialize in causing pain, and using that pain to further the ends of their infernal lord. For them rooting out traitors is not just a duty, it is a sacred privilege and causing pain is the tool that they use to accomplish their goals.

Torture (Ex): At 3rd level, a torture master can spend one minute to cause a helpless target an extreme amount of pain and anguish. The torture master must have adequate tools on hand to use this ability, such as knives, fire, whips, and other grisly torture implements. At the end of this minute, the target takes 1 point of damage per level of the torture master and must make a Will save with a DC of 10 + 1/2 the torture master’s level + the torture master’s Wisdom modifier. The DC of this saving throw increases by +1 for each consecutive use of this ability. If the target fails his saving throw, he must truthfully answer any one question asked by the torture master that can be answered with a few words or less. If the save is successful, the target can refuse to answer the question or even give a false answer. This ability replaces solo tactics.

Lingering Pain (Ex): At 3rd level, whenever a torture master uses his torture ability on a target, that target gains a condition that lasts for a number of minutes equal to the torture master’s level. The torture master must select one of the following conditions at 3rd level and every three levels thereafter. Whenever he tortures a creature, he can select the condition he wants to apply to the target.

Fatigued: The target is fatigued.

Shaken: The target gains the shaken condition.

Sickened: The target gains the sickened condition.

At 9th level, he adds the following conditions to the list of those that can be selected.

Exhausted: The target is exhausted. The torture master must have selected the fatigued condition before selecting this condition.

Frightened: The target is frightened. The torture master must have selected the shaken condition before selecting this condition.

Nauseated: The target is nauseated. The torture master must have selected the fatigued condition before selecting this condition.

Staggered: The target is staggered.

This ability replaces any teamwork feat ability and all additional teamwork feats the torture master might gain.

Torture Touch (Su): At 14th level, a torture master gains the ability to use the torture ability in the middle of combat. Using this ability in this way is a standard action that requires a melee touch attack. If the attack hits, the target is treated as if he had been tortured for one minute, takes the normal amount of damage and must make a Will save to avoid answering a question as normal. This also allows the torture master to apply one of his conditions from lingering pain to the target, but the effects only last for 1 round per level of the torture master (instead of the usual 1 minute per level). The torture master can use this ability once per day at 14th level, plus one additional time per day for every two levels beyond 14th. This ability replaces exploit weakness.

Hand of Tyranny (Monk Archetype)

Those who find themselves heeding the call of self-perfection sometimes turn to Asmodeus to help the overcome their failings. Unfortunately, his dark gifts often twist the thoughts and goals of the wielder, turning them into an instrument of tyranny.

Unholy Command (Su): At 1st level, whenever a hand of tyranny makes an unarmed strike, he can decide to add an unholy command to the attack. If the attack hits, the target must make Will save, with a DC equal to 10 + 1/2 the hand of tyranny’s character level + the hand of tyranny’s Wisdom modifier. If the saving throw fails, the target must obey the order, as if a command spell was cast upon the target. The hand of tyranny can use this ability a number of times per day equal to his level. Using this ability is a free action. At 8th level, this order instead works like the spell suggestion . This ability replaces stunning fist.

Pain Touch (Su): At 7th level, a hand of tyranny can touch a living creature, causing it to become wracked with pain. Using this ability is a standard action that requires a melee touch attack. If successful the target is nauseated for 1 round and then sickened for a number of rounds equal to the hand of tyranny’s level. A successful Fortitude save, with a DC of 10 + 1/2 the hand of tyranny’s level + the hand of tyranny’s Wisdom modifier, reduces this effect to sickened for one round. Using this ability consumes 2 points from the hand of tyranny’s ki pool. This ability replaces wholeness of body.

Tongue of Lies (Ex): At 17th level, a hand of tyranny receives a +10 competence bonus on any Bluff skill check made to lie. Any lie he tells cannot be detected via detect lies , zone of truth , or similar spells. This ability replaces tongue of the sun and moon. 

Prestige classes: :

Assassin, Diabolist, Hellknight, Hellknight Signifier, and Red Mantis Assassin are all Prestige classes that could work with some lore tweaking.

Path of the Lich: :

Unlike Vampirism, lichdom is always a choice. No one has ever accidentally started down the road of lichdom.

The traditional road to lichdom is a three step process:

Step One: The Secret of Immortality

There is no such thing as a “typical lich”. Everyone who takes this journey does it on their own terms. The first step along this road is deciding that it is something the character wants and then finding the method.

In Way of the Wicked adventure path a method is provided to do this. In other campaigns, there may be divergent methods. Perhaps ancient moldering scrolls left behind by a malevolent witch-king related the method so that his minions may join him in wicked immortality.

Whatever the method, finding the secret of lichdom is always a plot moment. It never occurs accidentally but rather when a Game Master agrees that a lich would be appropriate to the campaign.

There are three ironclad requirements that must be met in addition to finding the secret. First, the seeker must be able to cast 5th level arcane or divine spells, they must not have necromancy as a prohibited school (if an arcane caster) or as an abomination of their faith (if a divine caster) and they must be evil. There is no such thing as a good or neutral lich. Why that is will become apparent soon.

Step Two: The Crafting of the Phylactery

Every lich needs a phylactery and this is by far the most time-consuming part of the ritual. The lich must possess the craft wondrous item feat or have an assistant with the feat willing to aid him. The phylactery takes 120 days and 120,000 gp in materials. There is a magical item that will decrease the time (see the onyx chalice) but nothing can decrease the cost.

Once the phylactery is crafted, it is a dangerous item for a wizard to possess. The phylactery counts as part of his own flesh for the purpose of scrying. Anyone who possesses the unfinished phylactery can cast spells against the maker with greater efficacy. The maker takes a -2 penalty to any such spell. Further if the phylactery is destroyed not only is all that work lost, but the maker takes 6d6 damage thanks to the close bond to the object.

Step Three: The Self-Excruciation Ritual

Finally the lich is ready to perform the ritual of self-excruciation. This long and arduous ritual takes 24 hours of elaborate chanting and invoking. It begins at midnight and ends at midnight the next day.

The great culmination of the ritual is the ritual suicide of the seeker. If everything has been done correctly, the seeker will rejuvenate and rise from his own death beside the phylactery. If there are any flaws in the phylactery then the ritual of self-excruciation is merely a particularly morbid and elaborate form of suicide.

Obviously this ritual is a moment of terrible vulnerability for the caster. They must have trusted agents and a base to carry out this ritual. The best time to destroy a ich is when it is first created. After that, they are almost indestructible.

Many versions of the lichdom ritual require that the caster not die alone. Some versions require the sacrifice of an immortal creature or a celestial. Some require the sacrifice of one whom the caster loved at some point in his life in order to cut his connection to mortality. Some require the sacrifice of one to three “escorts” who will, with their own deaths, distract the Harvester of Souls long enough for the lich’s soul to move into the phylactery. And some of the rituals are content merely for the caster cut out his own heart and place it within the phylactery itself.

One thing binds all lichdom rituals together – they are grisly, they are bloody and they are thoroughly evil. After 1d10 days the lich reforms and is reborn into undeath.

Once the ritual is finished, the lich must use of one its feats to gain the special feat “Lich”. If the caster has no free feats, then the next time they gain a feat slot, this one is used for this purpose.


You have undergone the rigorous and blasphemous ritual of lichdom and emerged as an undead creature of legend.

Prerequisites: You have completed the ritual of attaining lichdom, evil alignment, must be able to cast 5th level arcane or divine spells.

Benefits: You gain the template “lich”. 

The Path of the Vampire: :

It is not merely enough to be bitten by a vampire. The process of transforming into a true vampire is a long, painful and arduous road. Some are not up to this grueling task and instead the curse overwhelms them. Instead of transforming into a vampire, they instead merely sicken and die or worse, become an almost mindless spawn fit for little more than menial service to an undying master. However, our villains are made of sterner stuff.

To become a true vampire requires an investment of five feats – a major expenditure to be sure. However, the rewards of becoming a vampire are viewed by many as being worth the cost of this ascension.

The Bitten

You have been bitten by a vampire and infected with the curse of undeath. As you sicken, your senses heighten and you become profoundly aware that every day, you are changing into something both more and less than mortal. You have only begun your transformation into the living dead.

Prerequisites: You must be bitten by a vampire.

Benefits: You gain darkvision 30 ft. and the alertness feat, however your Constitution score is lowered by two permanently.

The Dying

You are dying. You can feel it in very core of your being. Your mortal blood is failing and the vampiric curse is overtaking you. Soon, you will die and rise again as a vampire.

Prerequisites: The Bitten, 3rd level

Benefits: Your natural armor improves +2, your dark-vision improves to 60 ft., you gain a +2 racial bonus to Perception and you gain the toughness feat. However your Constitution score is again lowered by two permanently, you now cast no shadow and have no reflection in a mirror. Further, in full daylight you are sickened.

The Risen

Vampirism has overtaken you and you have died. However after three days in the ground you have risen from your own death. You are now a fledglingvampire. However, you are still unsure of your powers and only begun to understand the full reprecussions of this dark gift. Still, you are fast as lightning and full of fury. You an barely restrain your thirst for living blood.

Prerequisites: The Bitten, The Dying, 5th level

Benefits: You gain the feats Dodge, Improved Initiative and Lightning Reflexes. Your Dex score is improved by +2. You are now an undead and have no Constitution score. You gain resistance to cold 10 and electricity 10 in addition to all the normal defensive abilities granted by being an undead. You also gain the special attack Blood Drain (as per the vampire template).

However, you must sleep in a coffin every night, you gain the vampiric weaknesses to daylight (this replaces being sickened by daylight) and running water, and if you ever go more than twenty four hours without feeding on living blood you become sickened until you feed. If you are sickened from lack of food and encounter a living creature with blood in their veins, you must make a DC 12 Will save or immediately try to drain their blood. If you succeed at such a save you do not have to check again for one hour.

If reduced to zero hit points, you fall dead, indistinguishable from a normal corpse. You will remain this way until either you are healed by negative energy or fed blood enough to heal you.

The Initiated

You have been a vampire long enough that you are beginning to be able to control your condition. You need to feed less frequently and you have begun to control your form turning into mist or climbing like a spider.

Prerequisites: The Bitten, The Dying, The Risen, 7th level

Benefits: You gain the feat Combat Reflexes. You gain a +4 racial bonus to Bluff, Perception, Sense Motive and Stealth Checks (the Perception bonus replaces the bonus from the Dying feat). You gain the gaseous form and spider climb special qualities of a vampire (see the vampire template). If reduced to zero hit points, you are still sickened if you do not feed but now you need only feed every three days. However, you now recoil from mirrors and strongly presented holy symbols.

True Vampirism

You have mastered your condition of vampirism and 
are now a true vampire in every sense.

Prerequisites: The Bitten, the Dying, the Risen, The Initiated, 9th level

Benefits: You gain the full benefit and weaknesses of the vampire template.


Aversion to sunlight is probably the most famous vampire weakness. Here is a magic item that can help a vampire participate during daylight hours. The Shroud of the Daywalker can help a vampire function during the day time.

The second problem all vampires must face is that they need to have a coffin readily at hand. They sleep within their coffin and must flee to it if reduced to zero hit points. Lugging around a coffin can be quite an obstacle but is likely a surmountable one. No doubt the vampire will either establish a lair or perhaps bring a carriage with them that contains their coffin and shields it from the light of the sun. Minions can be used for guard duty to secure the wagon when the vampire must be away from the coffin. Though not mentioned in the template, in traditional vampire lore, the coffin can be desecrated and rendered unusable by holy water or the blessings of a holy man.

The third disadvantage is one often forgotten about both in roleplaying games and fiction, but is perhaps one of the most interesting. A vampire cannot enter a private home or dwelling unless invited by someone with the authority to invite them in. It means that the vampire PC must find a way to, by trickery or guile, get invited into these places.

There is one more vampiric challenge – the creation of vampire spawn. An endlessly replenishable supply of CR 4 minions can be unbalancing. However, if you read the template carefully, this can be managed. First, the PC vampire can only control twice its hit dice in spawn. Any additional become free-willed vampires. Most newly created free-willed vampires will try to flee their creator and so will be of no use as minions. CR 4 spawn are unlikely to be terribly useful in combat at level 12 plus when the PCs are likely to actually have minions in their midst. What can you can do is allow minion organizations a one-time bonus of +2 to Ruthless checks made after dark after a vampire joins the party. 

Asmodeus Feats: 

The wicked have a variety of tools at their disposal to bring pain and misery to those around them. These feats are just some of the options they gain from their service to Asmodeus.

Contract Master

You are skilled at negotiating with outsiders for their services.

Prerequisites: Ability to cast lesser planar ally, lesser planar binding, or a greater version of these spells.

Benefit: Whenever you negotiate payment with an outsider to secure its services through planar ally, planar binding, or a similar spell, the cost of the payment is halved. In addition, receive a +4 bonus on any checks associated with such bargains or to compel service (such as with planar binding). This bonus also applies when testing the trap of a planar binding against the outsider’s spell resistance. Finally, whenever you use a spell to gain or compel service from an outsider, you can attempt a Diplomacy skill check opposed by the outsider’s Sense Motive. If you succeed in this check, the contract you form with the outsider is worded in such a way to prevent the outsider from taking intentional actions that are harmful to you and your cause (subject to the GM interpretation).

Deceiver’s Pact

You have dedicated your impressive skills to the service of Asmodeus.

Prerequisites: Devil’s Pact, sneak attack +3d6, evil alignment, you must sign a pact with Asmodeus or one of his agents.

Benefits: In addition to its normal use, you can spend one use of the Devil’s Pact whenever you make an attack against a foe that you flank, or that is flat-footed. If the attack hits, it deals damage as normal and the target is also staggered for one round. If the target is an outsider with the good subtype, it is instead staggered for 1d4+1 rounds. Creatures that are staggered by this feat take a –4 penalty on Perception and Sense Motive skill checks. In addition, you can use the Devil’s Pack one additional time per day.

Devil’s Pact

You have signed a pact with Asmodeus, pledging your soul in exchange for unholy power.

Prerequisites: Evil alignment, you must sign a pact with Asmodeus or one of his agents.

Benefit: Three times per day, you can call upon the power of the Devil’s Pact to grant you a +2 profane bonus to any one d20 roll. You must declare that you are using this ability before the roll is made.

Special: If you die, you cannot be brought back to life by any means aside from a wish or miracle spell. Even if such a spell is employed, you return to life with three permanent negative levels.

Firebrand (Combat)

You can make use of a torch as a deadly, macelike weapon.

Prerequisite: Worshiper of Asmodeus

Benefit: You treat a torch as a light weapon that deals bludgeoning damage equal to that of a light mace of its size, plus 1 point of fire damage, and you do not incur penalties as you would for using it as an improvised weapon.

Normal: A torch used in combat is treated as a one-handed improvised weapon that deals bludgeoning damage equal to that of a gauntlet of its size, plus 1 point of fire damage.

Ignore Pain

You are familiar with pain, and have become adept at ignoring when needed.

Prerequsite: Toughness

Benefit: Whenever you have the sickened condition, you only take a –1 penalty on attack rolls, weapon damage rolls, saving throws, skill checks, and ability checks. Whenever you have the nauseated condition, you can take a move action and a standard action, but take a –4 penalty on any check associated with an action that requires a standard to complete (such as attack rolls, weapon damage rolls, some skill checks, caster level checks, and so on). When nauseated, you cannot take full-round actions.

Mage’s Pact

You have sworn to use your arcane might to further the goals of Asmodeus.

Prerequisites: Devil’s Pact, ability to cast 3rd-level arcane spells, evil alignment, you must sign a pact with Asmodeus or one of his agents.

Benefits: In addition to its normal use, you can call upon the power of the Devil’s Pact feat to increase the DC of an arcane spell by +2. You must declare that you are using this ability before the spell is cast and any saving throw is made. If the target of the spell is an outsider with the good subtype, the spell automatically bypasses any spell resistance the target might have. In addition, you can use the Devil’s Pact one additional time per day.

Ordered Mind

Your study of Hell's laws improves your counterspells.

Prerequisites: Caster level 7th, lawful alignment, worshiper of Asmodeus.

Benefit: You are able to modify more of your spells to use as counterspells. The DC of the Spellcraft check you must succeed at to identify an opponent’s spell is equal to 20 + the spell level of the opponent’s spell (instead of 15 + the spell level), but you are able to cast as your counterspell any spell from the same school of the foe’s spell (instead of the same spell). The level of the spell used to counterspell must be of a level equal to or higher than your foe’s spell.

Priest’s Pact

You have devoted your divine talents to serve the will of Asmodeus.

Prerequisites: Devil’s Pact, ability to cast 3rd-level divine spells, evil alignment, you must sign a pact with Asmodeus or one of his agents.

Benefits: You can call on the power of the Devil’s Pact to enhance your divine spells, increasing your caster level by 2. You must declare you are using this ability before the spell is cast. If the target of the spell also worships Asmodeus, it gains a number of temporary hit points equal to the spell’s level for 1 minute. If the spell targets more than one creature, only one of the targets receives these temporary hit points (chosen by you). In addition, you can use the Devil’s Pact one additional time per day.

You can consume the soul of a dying creature to heal the unholy.

Prerequisites: Channel negative energy 2d6, evil alignment.

Benefit: Whenever you make a coup de grace against a living creature, you can spend one use of your channel negative energy class feature as a swift action. If the creature dies and has at least as many Hit Dice as the number of dice you roll for channel negative energy, the channel heals all evil creatures (living and undead) within a 30-foot burst instead of its normal effect. If the creature does not have enough Hit Dice, the channel energy attempt is wasted.

Unholy Spell (Metamagic)

You can enhance your spells with the power of Asmodeus, making them more deadly to those who oppose his infernal will.

Benefit: An unholy spell has a different function depending on the target. Good creature’s take a –2 penalty on any saving throws made against an unholy spell, while evil creatures gain a +2 bonus on such saving throws.

In addition, if the spell deals damage, half the damage is considered unholy damage, which bypasses any resistances the target might possess. If the saving throw reduces the damage, if halves the unholy damage and the normal damage. An unholy spell takes up a spell slot one level higher than the spell’s actual level.

Warrior’s Pact

You have pledged your martial skill to the service of Asmodeus.

Prerequisites: Devil’s Pact, base attack bonus +5, evil alignment, you must sign a pact with Asmodeus or one of his agents.

Benefits: Whenever you use your Devil’s Pact on an attack roll, you also add 1d6 points of fire damage to the damage roll and the damage is treated as evil for the purposes of overcoming damage reduction. The bonus fire damage is increased to 3d6 fire damage on a critical hit, but only if the Devil’s Pact was used on the initial attack roll, not the roll to confirm the critical hit. Finally, you can use the Devil’s Pact one additional time per day.

New Undead Feats: 

Become the Swarm

You may transform into a seething living swarm of small creatures.

Prerequisites: True Vampirism

Benefits: You gain a new supernatural ability – form of the swarm.

Form of the Swarm (Su): As a standard action, a vampire with this ability can change into a bat swarm, cen-tipede swarm, rat swarm, or spider swarm. The swarm has a number of hit points equal to the vampire, and any damage done to the swarm affects the vampire’s hit point total. While in swarm form, a vampire cannot use any of its natural or special attacks, although it gains the movement, natural weapons, and extraordinary special abilities of the swarm into which it has transformed.

The vampire also retains all of its usual special qualities. While in swarm form the vampire is still considered to be an undead creature. A vampire can remain in swarm form until it assumes another form or retakes it original form (a standard action), or until the next sunrise.

Blood of the Deep

Though you are a vampire, somewhere in your history there is a powerful connection to the sea. Running water is no threat to you.

Prerequisites: A vampire (the Risen or later)

Benefits: You are not harmed by running water as most vampires are. Further, you can “fly” through the water. You have a swim speed equal to your normal movement rate.

Creature of Darkness

You are particularly well attuned to conditions of utter darkness. Even the greatest of magical darkness does not hamper your ability to hunt.

Prerequisites: Darkvision 60 ft., Undead

Benefits: Your darkvision increases to 120 ft. You can also see perfectly in any darkness even that created by deeper darkness.

Dark Flight

You are able to fly without first transforming into a dire bat.

Prerequisites: True Vampirism

Benefits: You gain a fly speed 40 ft.(good).

Hasty Rebirth

So powerfully bound are you to your phylactery that 
you do not long linger before you are rejuvenated.

Prerequisites: lich

Normal: A lich takes 1d10 days to rejuvenate.

Benefits: You always rejuvenate in one day.

Lingering Spirit

The connection of your spirit to your physical form is particularly strong.

Prerequisites: A vampire (the Risen or later) or a lich

Normal: As a vampire or a lich you are immediately destroyed (or forced into gaseous form) at zero hit points.

Benefits: Instead of instantly being destroyed or forced into gaseous form at zero hit points, you instead remain intact until you are reduced to your negative Charisma score. Though you fall seemingly dead, you can be restored by negative energy (or blood in the case of vampires) as normal. However if you have not been healed after minutes equal to your level have passed, then you suffer the normal consequences of being reduced to zero hit points.

Master Vampire

You are truly a lord of the undead. You can create far more spawn than usual and use them as your puppets.

Prerequisites: True Vampirism

Benefits: Vampires with this ability can have a number of enslaved spawn totaling four times its total Hit Dice.

When this feat is taken, the vampire chooses one of the following three abilities: clairaudience, clairvoyance, or telepathy. Depending on the ability chosen, the vampire can hear what its spawn hears, see what it sees, or communicate telepathically with it. The vampire may exercise or end its use of this ability as a standard action and maintain its connection to its spawn for as long as it wishes. A vampire may only use this ability with one spawn at a time. The vampire and vampire spawn must be on the same plane for this ability to function. While using this ability, the vampire enters a catatonic state similar to its daily rest and is treated as helpless, though it is alerted to any jarring noises, the presence of any visible creature within 5 feet, or any damage that befalls its body.

If you are using the optional minion system from Book II, any bonuses you receive from vampire spawn minions are doubled.

Mortal Visage

The ritual of lichdom that you undertook did not transform you into an undead monstrousity. Instead, you appear much like a normal human and have mastered moving amongst the living. Only the closest of examination (for example, you have no heart beat) will reveal you for what you truly are.

Prerequisites: Lich

Benefits: You do not appear to be an undead. You gain a +10 bonus to Disguise skill checks to appear mortal and Bluff and Disguise are always class skills for you.

You can temporarily drop the disguise as a swift action and reveal your true nature. Only then does your fear aura special attack become active. Restoring the illusion of normality is a full-round action.

Red Feast

Blood is the life for all vampires, but you find it particularly invigorating and devour it greedily when given the chance.

Prerequisites: True Vampirism

Normal: A vampire does 1d4 Constitution damage and gains 5 hit points or 5 temporary hit points from their blood drain special attack.

Benefits: You do 1d6 Constitution damage and gain 10 hit points or 10 temporary hit points from your blood drain special attack.

Sunlight Resistance

The sun, though still your nemesis, is not as instantly destructive to you as it is to other vampires. You still feel its sting, but you may actually function briefly in the light of day.

Prerequisites: A vampire (the Risen or later)

Normal: Exposing any vampire to direct sunlight staggers it on the first round of exposure and destroys it utterly on the second consecutive round of exposure if it does not escape.

Benefits: For a number of rounds equal to your Charisma modifier you are only staggered in direct sunlight. After that period of grace is over, you remain staggered and on the next round take one third of your hit points in damage. No damage reduction can reduce this. The next you are utterly destroyed.

If you ever make it back to cover from the sun for one full round, your “count” of rounds of resistance resets.

Undead Overlord

Your arisen spirit is particularly potent. Other undead find you impressive and awe inspiring. Mortals rightly tremble before you. You have always had this potential within you but at last, you mastered your state of undeath enough to exploit its power.

Prerequisites: Lich, 15th level

Benefits: You gain a +2 bonus to all Diplomacy checks when dealing with the undead. Your channel resistance increases to +6 and your Fear Aura DC is increased by +2.

Unnatural Armor

Your undead flesh is astonishingly durable and almost as hard as plate mail.

Prerequisites: lich

Benefits: The natural armor bonus granted by the lich 
template is increased to +8.

Vampiric Nobility

You were sired by a vampire of a noble and exalted bloodline and at last you have claimed that heritage. Your blood is more powerful and resilient than others of your kind. Other undead can sense your ancient blood and respect you for it, even if grudgingly.

Prerequisites: True Vampirism, 15th level

Benefits: You gain a +2 bonus to all Diplomacy checks when dealing with the undead. Your channel resistance increases to +6 and your Dominate DC is increased by +2.

Withering Touch

Most liches rarely use their touch attack, instead preferring to rely upon their powerful spells. Not so for you. You have honed your touch into a fearsome weapon.Your touch attack channels negative energy with amazing efficiency, destroying life and restoring the undead.

Prerequisites: Lich

Normal: A lich’s touch attack uses negative energy to deal 1d8 points of damage to living creatures + 1 point of damage per 2 Hit Dice possessed by the lich.

Benefits: Your touch attack deals 2d8 points of negative energy damage +1 point of damage per Hit Dice of the lich.

If you use your touch attack to heal any undead (including yourself) it heals at this improved rate. 

Here is some information on Talingarde There is a map in the player's guide


Talingarde is the most virtuous, peaceful, noble nation in the world to-day. This land is ruled by King Markadian V called the Brave of House Darius. He has only one heir – the beautiful princess Bellinda. This benevolent monarchy is heavily intertwined with the Church of Mitra, the Shining Lord.

Talingarde is an archipelago consisting of more than a hundred islands. This archipelago may be divided into six regions each with their own unique character: The Cambrian Ports, The Heartland, The Borderlands, The Caer Bryr, The Savage North and The Land of the Yutak.

The Cambrian Ports

This is the center of the nation of Talingarde and the apex of its culture and power. This region is defined by three great metropolises – the capital Matharyn, the northern city of Ghastenhall, and the western port of Daveryn.

The Heartland

This is where most of the population of the nation of Talingarde lives and works. Seemingly one quaint village after another, this is a land of endless farmlands broken up only by small stretches of well-managed forest.

Those who truly understand the nation understand that the Heartland is Talingarde’s strength. The cities may create its riches and culture, but without the stalwart yeomanry, country knights and hearty folk of the field, Talingarde would be only a dream.

The Borderlands

Located between the Heartland and the Savage North, this border region represents the limits of Talirean power. Unable to fully conquer the north after centuries of incursion and brutal conflict, it was King Accarius IV of House Barca called the Architect who constructed the first version of the Watch Wall. In more educated circles it is still called the Accarian Line. Accarius constructed nine castles guarding the border. Later Markadian I, called the Victorious, would add three more. Whoever controlled these castles could effectively prohibit access to the Heartland from the North.

The Watch Wall was intended to contain the monsters and savages so that eventually the rest of the isle could be conquered and pacified. It was never meant to be the permanent measure it has become. The success of the Watch Wall has bred complacency. Why invade the north when the south is so prosperous? The Watch Wall does such a fine job of repulsing the assaults of the barbarous humanoid invaders. Thus today, the Watch Wall is little regarded as a pressing military concern. The twelve castles are garrisoned and maintained but little is done to capture the Savage North.

The Caer Bryr

The Western frontier of the island is dominated by the massive forest that gives this region its name. Small Talirean border towns flourish in the less wooded south, but the north remains a land of mists and legends.

The Caer Bryr is reputed to be haunted and filled with monsters. There are tales of dragons and ancient evils that still haunt the woods. The only ones who are able to travel here with impunity are the barbaric Iraen, a primitive halfling tribe that reveres the spirits of the woods. The Iraen neither revere Mitra nor pay homage to the king, instead preferring their own crude animistic faith and barbaric chieftains. Worse, in times of hardship the Iraen can be quick to turn to banditry against Talirean settlements. Thus their relationship with Talingarde is strained at best. Still, beside the occasional raid or skirmish, there has never been large-scale warfare between the Iraen and the Talireans.

The Savage North

Beyond the Watch Wall lays the Savage North. Often this land is said to be nothing but an empty waste of ice and monsters. This is a complete fiction. The north is dominated by forests and plains rich in life. Here dwell three peoples long demonized or ignored by the more civilized folk of the south – the brutal burabar (the name the bugbears call themselves), the naatanuk (intelligent polar bears) and the mysterious ice elves. Though little is known about the North, this is certain – it is largest unexplored region on the island. Many a Talirean king has dreamt of conquering the North. So far, those dreams remain unfulfilled.

The Land of the Yutak

This chain of islands is inhabited by the Yutak (Orcs and Half-Orcs). These islands are cold, inhospitable places unsuited to farming or grazing, so the Talireans have left the Yutak to their own devices. Where the southerners see wastelands, the Yutak see oceans teaming with fish and seals. In their one-man kayaks and larger umiaks, they ply the open oceans hunting for fur and blubber. Occasionally, several small bands will unite to hunt a whale. Rarely, an umiak will appear out of the mist loaded with ivory and furs. These Yutak umiaks will sail into one of the western ports (a few have made it as far south as Daveryn), conduct their business and then disappear once more. The Yutak never trade for gold instead prizing steel, leather and strong drink. Wise merchants keep a stock of steel harpoon heads in case they encounter a Yutak trader. The Yutak will trade much ivory for a finely made harpoon.

Few Talireans speak the strange musical Yutak tongue and few Yutak understand common. The Yutak, much like the savage Iraens of the Caer Bryr, have their own gods and their own way of life. Still, where the Iraen are secretive and xenophobic, the Yutak are a gregarious people. Travellers along the western coast tell tales of Yutak who without invitation join Talireans around a campfire. The Yutak share their seal meat and sing strange but beautiful songs with strangers with whom they share no tongue. It is said that if you are polite and share your own food, the Yutak may leave a gift to mark their passing. 

History of Talingarde: 

The Rise of House Darius

Talingarde may be a peaceful and prosperous kingdom now, but the nation has certainly had a troubled past. Only eighty years ago, the kingdom weathered a bitter war of succession fought between the largely half elven nobility of House Barca and the human dynasty of House Darius. Both had claim to the throne and their supporters amongst the fractured nobility of the isle. On the Plains of Tamberlyn just north of the capital city, two great armies met and decided the future of this dominion. One army was commanded by King Jaraad of House Barca, a great half-elven hero mounted on a griffon, the symbol of his house. The other was led by Markadian of House Darius, a young upstart paladin who would not bow before all the gods of the Talirean pantheon (in particular Asmodeus). The Battle of Tamberlyn remains the most famous conflict in all of Talingarde’s history.

House Darius was gravely outnumbered but far more fiercely committed to their holy cause. Much of House Barca’s army was paid mercenaries fighting for nothing more than gold. The Battle was fought between two large stone spires (the so-called Lords of Tamberlyn) that rise from otherwise level ground. A small brook splits the spires crossed only in one place by an ancient stone bridge. The brook is not deep but still would be difficult for men in armor to cross.

Markadian took to the field first, seizing the bridge with his knights and positioning infantry on both his right and left flank. The famed archers of Barrington and Embryl, with their mighty longbows of yew, were positioned behind the infantry. Outnumbering his foe many times, King Jaraad hoped for a quick victory and sent his mercenary crossbowmen forward to bombard the knights on the bridge. The hope was that a few volleys of crossbow shot would kill many of the knights and paladins of House Darius. Deprived of their leadership, the rest of the soldiery would likely flee from the battlefield when the king moved the bulk of Barca’s army forward. However, the crossbowmen advanced too close and the infantry on Darius’ right flank performed a surprise charge. The charge caught the mercenaries off guard and they fled with hardly a shot fired. So disgusted was the knight commander of Barca behind the mercenaries that he ordered his knights to charge forward through the “cowardly retreating rabble” to attack the relatively exposed Darian infantry. The result was a chaotic muddle of panicked mercenary and tangled knights.

It was then that the Darian archers begin to fire their volleys. The arrows rained down on the knights and took a princely toll on the Barcan force. King Jaraad saw the muddle that his left had become and ordered the other pincer of his army forward. They moved swiftly at first along the banks of the brook but soon found themselves equally bogged down in mud. They too began to receive a hail of arrows. Finally the Barcan left pushed through the mercenaries and charged the bridge. It was here that the heaviest fighting of the battle took place.

On the bridge of Tamberlyn the knights of Darius met the full might of the Barcan army and held the line. The Barcan army was packed in so tight trying to cross the bridge that there rear ranks were at the mercy of the Embryllian archers. King Jaraad could watch the slaughter no longer. He flew his elite personal command – a dozen knights on griffons to the other side of the bridge hoping to flank the defenders and break their line. What he encountered instead was the young Lord Markadian and his personal guard.

The battle between Markadian’s knights and the griffon riders has been immortalized in several songs and plays. Suffice to say that after a great battle, a dozen dead griffons littered the field and only Markadian of Darius and King Jaraad of Barca remained able to fight. They fought fiercely and in the end, Markadian slew Jaraad upon the banks of the Tamberlyn brook and claimed the throne of Talingarde. At the end of the day, the battle had proved to be a slaughter. The military might of House Barca was broken and House Darius came to power. It would have been easy then for House Darius to seek revenge against their former enemies but instead King Markadian I, called the Victorious, showed mercy. He allowed the nobles of House Barca to keep their lands if they would only swear loyalty to the new king and bow before the great god Mitra. The offer was accepted and peace once more came to Talingarde. The crisis of succession was over and the religion of the isle was decided. Mitra the Shining Lord became head of the Talirean pantheon.

The Victor upon the Throne

When Markadian I came to power there was great uncertainty of how capable a king he would prove. While he was a great warrior, he had never ruled and there was reason to doubt this young paladin could control this divided land. He soon put those doubts to rest. Markadian I called the Victorious (usually simply The Victor these days) was the sort of ruler that only comes once every thousand years. At the battle of Farholde he dealt the bugbears of the north a savage defeat and scattered them for a generation. He confronted the pirates who had made the western coast of Talingarde their stronghold and burnt them out. It seemed that the Victor was undefeatable upon the field of battle. So fearsome was his reputation that by the later years of his reign, he merely sent a letter to a rebellious warlord in the west that read, “Must we meet on the fields on war?” The warlord relented and became a loyal subject.

By the end of the Victor’s reign, almost the entire island south of the Watch Wall was firmly a part of Talingarde. Only a few parts of the great and trackless forest, the Caer Bryr, remained wild and unmapped. More than a soldier, he also proved a great builder and statesman. He raised the capital Matharyn from a small city into a great metropolis. He reinforced the watch wall, commissioning three new fortresses. He eased tariffs bringing merchants from the mainland to the oft-isolated isle once more. He personally visited the Lands of the Yutak tribesmen in the north and made peace with their great chiefs. And though the paladin spread the religion of Mitra and discouraged devotion to Asmodeus he tolerated the Prince of Nessus’ temples as long as they were discrete. For forty six years the Victor sat upon the throne bringing a golden age to Talingarde.

Today, his statues are to be found in almost every town and hamlet throughout the kingdom. He did have his faults though. Like so many great rulers – he was a great soldier and king but a poor father.

The Scholar and the Monster

After the death of the Victor, his oldest son Martius ascended to the throne as King Markadian II called the Learned. More a scholar than a king, Martius proved largely disinterested in affairs of state. He commissioned the great library at Matharyn and began renovation of an old family castle into the great palace known as the Adarium.

As the first wing of the Adarium was completed, he retreated there and was rarely seen in public. The other son, Prince Hallen, was not so reserved. Though he had no official power, he often ruled in the king’s absence and commanded great loyalty from the knights of the realm. This might have been an acceptable arrangement, after all Prince Hallen was a soldier and an heir of the Victor. He could have become the de facto ruler while the official king sat in his distant pleasure palace and library. Alas, Prince Hallen was also mad.

Prince Hallen became convinced that his mother, who had died in childbirth, was not the queen but an angel of Mitra. He believed himself a demigod and incapable of wrong. At first the Prince’s madness was subtle. He often dressed all in white and even had a magic set of wings made for himself that allowed him to soar over the capital. But in time the visions began. He communed with these so-called angels and they whispered that he should replace his brother and become the true and immortal master of Talingarde.

The king received disturbing reports of the prince’s madness and plots but refused to believe them. “My brother but jests,” is famously what Markadian II replied to the reports. Finally the “angel” prince would wait no longer. He flew to the Adarium and with a flaming sword slew his own brother amidst his books and proclaimed himself Markadian III, the Immortal. His brother’s six year reign was at an end.

For a brief time, it was possible that Markadian III’s claim of kingship might have been acknowledged. His brother after all was little loved and tongues wagged that getting rid of the absent king was a blessing. Maybe the new king was a divine messenger of Mitra’s will. But within days the mad decrees began from the Adarium. The king decreed that Mitra’s high holy day would no longer be the summer solstice but instead would become his own birthday.

He ordered the military to prepare to invade Hell and commanded his wizards to research opening a great gate. First, he explained to his flabbergasted advisors, the army would go through the gate to the shining realm of Mitra himself to call forth an army of angels. Then he personally would lead the host to invade the nine hells and overthrow Asmodeus himself. Finally the people had enough of this madness. Officially, the histories record that after only five months in power Markadian III called the Mad tried to fly from the highest spire of the Adarium without his magic wings. More likely, he was thrown from the spire by paladins who would tolerate no more of this madman’s blasphemies. Whatever the truth, his reign was over.

Blame the Devil

Fortunately for Talingarde, Martius (Markadian II) had a son -- Marcus. The grandson of the Victor was neither mad nor a recluse. He had been clever enough to avoid the Adarium and the capital during Prince Hallen’s angelic rampage. Marcus was a handsome knight twenty nine years of age and closely resembled his grandfather, the Victor. Thus was Talingarde spared another disastrous war of succession.

Marcus returned to the capital and was crowned Markadian IV, the Zealous. The new king quickly realized that he needed to solidify his power and explain away the difficulties of the last six and a half years. In short, he needed an enemy to unify this fractured Talirean nation. He found one – in the Temple of Asmodeus. King Markadian IV blamed the cult of Asmodeus for using their black magic to summon a devil to possess the former king thus driving him mad. It was a brilliant political solution, though an utter fiction. It removed blame from the royal house of Darius and instead placed guilt squarely upon a small, unpopular, marginalized cult.

This was the beginning of the Asmodean Purges. The Knights of the Alerion took the lead in destroying the temples. High priests were burned at the stake and the sect was driven underground. For twelve years, the Zealot sat upon the throne and during that time he did his best to annihilate the cult of Asmodeus. He very nearly succeeded.

Markadian IV died comparatively young, only 41 years old of a mysterious illness. There were rumors that the Cult of Asmodeus had placed a curse upon the king, which only fueled the purges further.

A Brave New King:

Markadian IV was followed by Markadian V, his son. Twenty-two when he took the throne (the same age as the Victor), he has ruled for sixteen years as a capable, energetic king who has done much to put bad memories in the past. Beloved by his people, he has proven again and again he is the true heir of the Victor.

Early in his reign, he personally led the army to relieve the Watch Wall after another bugbear incursion. It was on the watchtower walls that he earned himself the title The Brave Markadian V has continued the prohibition against the cult of Asmodeus but does not pursue the purges with the same vigor as his father. After all, that battle is largely won. No one has heard of an Asmodean cultist in Talingarde for years. Instead, he turns his attention to the west and the north hoping to be the king who brings the entire island of Talingarde under his dynasty’s dominion.

He has failed in one duty however. He has failed to yet produce a son. Instead, he has only one child -- a beautiful, brilliant young princess named Bellinda. Twenty years of age, she is already a prodigy of arcane magic. If her father produces no heir it is an open question whether the men of Talingarde will follow a queen instead of a king.