Help with "brain in a jar" variant.

Homebrew and House Rules

Brains in jars have been featured in a number of stories from H.P. Lovecraft's "Whisperer in the Dark," to the Brain in a Jar from 3.5's "Libris Mortis," and even the celebrity heads in jars from "Futurama."

The 3.5 version had one statted out but gave it offensive powers I don't want it to have. So I'm looking for something closer to the other two variations.

What I'm looking for help with is the game mechanics of making the thing such as spells, cost and time. This was lacking in the 3.5 entry. I'm thinking something on the order of "Magic Jar" but with a reduced cost of the gem because the brain itself would be required and the time spent harvesting it, the cost of the apparatus, etc.

I'd go with 25gp/HD like animate dead and probably use that spell depending on the powers etc it has.

Alternatively, you could go with create undead (50gp/HD) to make more powerful versions.

Cools you provide more information, such as desired HD, powers, and so on?

Thanks for the reply.

Powers? Basically none beyond speech and normal senses, though with some undead abilities like immunity to age, disease, poisons, etc. I suppose a spontaneous or divine caster might retain that ability, but since that goes against the intent of this version, such individuals wouldn't be subjected to this.

Since this version isn't supposed to be attacking, HD can be low. However, since it will use the brain of a living being, their HD could carry over for some things such as Will saves, skills, etc.

Hit points would mainly come from the container. The brain itself could be quite fragile, maybe a couple of hit points or it dies if the fluid is drained off.

The device would include a feature to put the brain to sleep until it was needed again.

The purpose of this would be to keep a brain handy for its particular knowledge or to keep an enemy for interrogation or as a kind of imprisonment. This brings up a design point. I don't want to be so cheap or widely known that it becomes commonplace for just about any enemy one might have or just any would-be scholar who wants a longer life but isn't powerful enough to become a lich, etc.

I'm also open to the idea of this not involving undead but that the machine is a kind of life support system that requires upkeep. Maybe a special kind of nutrient solution that needs to be replenished every month or so or the brain dies.

The pathfinder version of a brain in a jar.

Sweet. Bramble's solution is right on for what you need, looks like.

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