Custom Villian


I want to build a villain from the ground up. Where are the rules for this such as determining his EXP value? and how tough to make him? How much equipment to put on him?

For background info on the villain, He is a lich in disguise, (he is either a sorcerer or a wizard) that is going to become a mentor to the PC's. His goal is to literally undo his lichdom. He is going to send them on missions with lots of undead to destroy and old texts with necromantic theory in it. (he is also a librarian).

I plan on having the final showdown (if the PC's decide that they don't want to help him undo it) at level 12. There will be 5 PC's.

Any other info needed just post it.

Liberty's Edge

Okay, by default, NPCs are a CR equal to their level -1 and have a lot less wealth/gear than PCs. Giving them PC wealth will add +1 CR, giving them the Lich template adds +2 (as listed in the Lich entry).

For fighting a group of PCs solo, CR equal to the Average Party Level +3 or +4 (so CR 15 or 16) is recommended. So, if the PCs are going to be fighting him while hes alone, he should likely have PC wealth and be 13th-4th level, or be one level higher with a lot less gear.

However, having the PCs fight lone adversaries tends to result in said adversaries dying pretty quick, so you might drop him a level or two and give him some minions.

For example, if going CR 16 if you drop him one level, you could give him either a pair of CR 11 minions or four CR 9 minions, or eight CR 7s. Or one CR 11 and two CR 9s. Or whatever. If going CR 15, dropping him a level only gives half of that in minions. Other Undead and Outsiders are good thematic calls for this since he could've enabled their presence with his magic. There are even a number of Outsiders that can be invisible at-will he could have surrounding him at all times (Bone Devils spring immediately to mind).

You can also toss on as many mindless undead as he can control via Animate Dead, Unhallow, and Command Undead if he's got it, all without raising his CR, and I'd definitely do so if there's a way to do it without being obtrusive. Have them come up out of a secret passage when he says a code word or something.

If you have additional questions or want additional clarification, feel free to ask.

Dang that's more than I could have asked for. Ok so is there a table for npc gear somewhere?

And one last thing how do I determine appropriate EXP to award?

Liberty's Edge

NerdforChrist777 wrote:
Dang that's more than I could have asked for. Ok so is there a table for npc gear somewhere?

Sure. PC gear is here though down a bit, and NPC gear amounts are here.

Don't feel bound by the specific stat distributions found in that one...though, officially speaking, the 15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8 stats are required. Though if you give them PC wealth, I'd use whatever stat generation method you do for PCs.

NerdforChrist777 wrote:
And one last thing how do I determine appropriate EXP to award?

It's inherent in the CR system. Seen here, further up than PC wealth.

nice, and how do I create a poison?

Liberty's Edge

NerdforChrist777 wrote:
nice, and how do I create a poison?

As a GM? However you like. Probably assign it a cost based on it's similarity to the ones listed here.

If he is trying to undo his lichdom, then for flavor I would not give him undead minions.

Since he is a caster, I'd use some golems.

Basically, Pick the CR of the encounter. Probably APL +4 or +5 (since there are 5 pcs) so CR 16 or 17.

For CR 16 Id make the lich a 14th level Heroic NPC wizard with the lich template and give him two stone golem guards or 1 iron golem.

To increase the difficulty to CR 17 (brutally hard), I would either add 2 more stone golems, 1 iron golem, give the lich pc wealth, or give him one more level of wizard.

Basically, the golem(s) can be statues in the abode of the wizard that you can describe to the PCs when they first start off, and then never reveal that they are more than just statues unless they fight the lich.

Were I making the wizard, I would use this guy. -15

I would drop him down a level, and then apply the lich template. I might change his opposed schools to enchantment and evocation.

It is often easier to slightly modify something existing than to make something entirely new.

Or just use this lich necromancer

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