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Most elder evils have been imprisoned by great heroes, deities, or other powerful beings who fear their release. Yet they are not so easily forgotten: Whispers of. 4 IntroductionWhen elder evils stir, the world groans; when they awaken, the world nd I looked upon the Thing and I wept tears of blood, for I. Each "elder evil" featured in this tome comes with a detailed description, statistics blocks for the elder evil and its minions, tips for how to incorporate the elder.
They resist detection as if under the effect of a nondetection spell. Blades in the Dark. As the sign intensifies, water levels rise by the listed amount rather than fall. Since it is such a distant threat, you can assume the elder evil has been around for as long as your campaign set- ting has existed, and has been traveling toward your world for any number of years. Burning Empires. Nothing, not even the gods, can halt its relentless progress. Create Spawn Su A living creature of size Huge or smaller slain by the aspect of Atropus becomes an angel of decay see page 30 in 1d4 rounds.
On a failure, creatures with fewer Hit Dice than you are staggered for 1d10 rounds; those with as many or more Hit Dice are confused for 1 round.
This is a mind-affecting, supernatural effect. Whenever you use Dark Speech in this manner, you take 1 point of Charisma damage. Deformity Eyes [Vile, Deformity] You have either drilled a hole in your forehead trying to add a third eye, or you have supernaturally scarred one of your regular eyes. As a supernatural ability, you can use see invis- ibility for 1 minute per day. You take a —2 penalty on Spot and Search checks. Deformity Face [Vile, Deformity] Because of intentional self-mutilation, you have a hideous face.
Deformity Gaunt [Vile, Deformity] Through intentional starvation and macabre operations, you are grossly underweight. You have a skeletal appear- ance, and your weight is now half normal for creatures of your kind. Deformity Madness [Vile, Deformity] You revel in madness, embracing your hallucinations, erratic behavior,anddeviantcravings. You take a permanent —4 profane penalty to your Wisdomscoretobecomeimmunetoallmind-affectingspells and abilities. As an immediate action, you can derive clarity from your madness to add a bonus equal to one-half your character level to a single Will save.
Make this decision before determining theresultsofthesavingthrow. Youmustwait1minutebefore you can take this action again. Deformity Parasite [Vile, Deformity] You invite parasites into your body in exchange for a greater hardiness against diseases and poisons.
As an immediate action, you can negate any disease or poison affecting you. Enemy of Good [Vile] You draw power from your unholy devotion. Chosen of Evil, Evil Brand.
Whenever you cast a spell or use a spell-like ability against a creature of the good subtype or a creature that radiates an aura of good, the save DC, if any, increases by 2. Cha This bonus lasts for 5 rounds. During any round in which you deal at least 1 point of damage to a creature of the good subtype or a creature that radiates an aura of good, this bonus is doubled. As a swift action, you loose a blistering torrent of foul curses and wicked insults in the Dark Speech.
As long as an affected creature is deafened, it takes a —4 profane penalty on saving throws to resist evil spells or spell-like abilities. Whenever you use Dark Speech in this manner, you take 1d6 points of Charisma damage. Whenever you use the coup de grace action to kill a creature, that creature cannot be restored to life by any means short of a miracle or wish spell until you are slain. You gain 2 temporary hit points per Hit Die of the slain creature.
These temporary hit points last for up to 1 hour. Insane Defiance [Vile] You adopt insanity as a shield to turn effects that target your mind against those around you. The new target takes a —4 circumstance penalty on its saving throw, if any, against that effect. Lichloved [Vile] By repeatedly consorting with the undead, you gain dread powers.
Evil Brand. Mindless undead see you as an undead creature. Chosen of Evil or undead type, Evil Brand. As an immediate action, you can beseech the elder evil for assistance. Roll 1d If the result is even, you take 1 point of damage for each Hit Die or character level you possess. You must make the decision to use this ability before making an attack roll, save, or check. Choose one creature of a type or subtype you have selected as a favored enemy.
As a full-round action, you can make a single melee attack against the chosen creature. On a failure, it is overcome with dread and can take only a move action or a standard action on its next turn. Reflexive Psychosis [Vile, Deformity] In the face of adversity, you withdraw into the haunted cor- ridors of your mind. Deformity Madness. After using this ability, you are confused until the end of your next turn. Slave to Evil [Vile] You have pledged your soul to an elder evil.
Chosen of Evil. You gain an aura of evil as if you were an evil outsider see detect evil, PH Whenever you are the target of an evil spell, decrease all variable numeric effects of the spell to their minimum possible values. All effects are cumulative.
Ifyoualreadyhavespellresistance, it increases by 5 against divine magic. Thrall to Demon [Vile] You formally become a supplicant to a demon lord. Chaotic evil alignment.
Vile Ki Strike [Vile] You can focus evil power into your unarmed strike. Cha 15, Improved Unarmed Strike. Each time you deal damage with your unarmed strike, you deal an extra 1 point of vile damage. Vile Martial Strike [Vile] You can focus evil power into your weapon blows. You can take this feat more than once, selecting a different weapon each time. Vile Natural Attack [Vile] You can focus evil power into your natural attacks.
Each time you deal damage with your natural attack, you deal an extra 1 point of vile damage. They wield devastating magic and possess an arsenal of potent attacks to work their wickedness.
But such power alone offers little defenseagainstthegodsandtheirservants. Each elder evil has one additional malefic property, chosen from the list that follows, as appropriate to its nature.
The sample elder evils provided in this book can guide you in deciding on a suitable malefic property for one of your own design. Any divine spell of the divination school auto- matically fails when used to ascertain information about an elder evil. Divination spells that are also arcane function normally if they are cast by a nondivine spellcaster. This ability is always active. Discord and Woe The presence of an elder evil that has this property incites violence and suffering.
The raging creature takes 1 point of vile damage each round until it is killed or it manages to end the effect. An affected creature is entitled to a new Will save each roundtobreakfreefromtherage.
Ifitsucceeds,itsalignment reverts to normal, but the creature might suffer other conse- quences of the frenzy, such as violating a code of conduct. Divine Enervation An elder evil that has this property can destroy the link between a deity and its mortal followers. This interdiction does not interfere with spellcasting. Onceperday,as a swift action, the elder evil can unleash a deadly pulse throughout the area of this malefic property. All divine spellcasters and extraplanar creatures within the area become sickened for 1d4 hours.
Impervious to the Divine An elder evil that has this property cannot be affected by divine magic of any kind, regardless of the source. The elder evil is immune to all divine spells, whether from a spell- caster or a magic item. It is also immune to spell-like and supernatural abilities of extraplanar creatures and deities. True Death The presence of an elder evil that has this property weakens the souls of living creatures so that they are lost on death.
Its soul has not passed to the Outer Planes but has died with the body; the creature cannot be raised by any means. Ancient evil infests the world and daunts the holy Illus. There, cresting the horizon. Yes, that faint body is he, and he comes for me. Rejoice, for the end is near, and all life, all pain, all suffering shall be silenced in the perfect eternity of undeath. As the afterbirth of creation, it is committed to unmaking all things. Nothing, not even the gods, can halt its relentless progress.
Since it is a rare case when two myths are identical, scholars of the subject sift through the rhetoric for commonalities believed to be present in all legends. Complications arise due to regional variations, translation errors, and the simple scarcity of reliable sources, all making the process of divining the roots of creation a daunting task.
Certainscholarshavemadebreakthroughsbycomparing dwarf creation myths, the oral tradition of the gray elves, and the collected writings of the lich Acererak, recovered from a strange tower deep in the Plane of Shadow. Most scholars agree this entity must be the force behind the gods springing forth into existence from the primeval void. This force, idea, or being is called Atropus. DC 38 Some theologians believe the appearance of these divine agencies came with a dreadful price.
For life to exist, theremustbedeath. Atropusmusthavecauseditsowndeath and in that sense became the afterbirth of creation, the wasted materials left over from the formation of the gods. Furthermore,sincethegodsarelivingbeings,andsincelife relies upon energy gained from the Positive Energy Plane, Atropus must be their inversion: Perhaps atropals—thestillborn gods ELH —taketheirshapefromthesecast-offbits.
Atropusisbound to unmake living things, to absorb their souls in an orgy of violence. Itstouchisterrifyingtowitness,ascountlessbarren worlds crawling with restless dead mutely testify. The effects are terrifying. Knowledge [religion] DC 33 Atropus is self-aware, but not as mortals can conceive.
Its memory extends back to the one moment when it brought forth the gods, and it has lamented this decision for all time. DC 38 Tothisend,Atropusdevourslifeenergytoreplacewhatitgave.
Intothissuckingvacuum,itdrawspositiveenergyfromthose planetsitencounters,butthenegativeenergyconstitutingits existence instantly negates any life energy it takes. DC 43 Atropus knows this. As it drifts, it casts out with its senses, sampling the emptiness for signs of life. Once it detects a living thing, it moves toward the source. Since it is such a distant threat, you can assume the elder evil has been around for as long as your campaign set- ting has existed, and has been traveling toward your world for any number of years.
Once Atropus takes an interest in your world, place it in the heavens. It is indistinguishable from the other celestial bodies at the start, and as it comes closer it reveals its sinister character to coincide with the intensifying sign.
Caira Xasten, driven mad with grief at the loss of her husband,vowsrevengeonthegods. Havingheardwildrumors of the World Born Dead, she sends out her minions to steal a manuscript held in a vault beneath a cathedral in one of the largest cities in your setting good choices include Sharn, Waterdeep,andtheFreeCityofGreyhawk.
Herminionssuc- ceed and snatch the book, leaving scores of priests dead. The PCs manage to attain the book, but not before Caira has a chance to learn its mysteries. EL10 FaintSign: Havingdeciphered the old tome, the clerics suspect whoever sought the book intends to summon the World Born Dead. The manuscript offers few details, and the clerics have been unable to elicit any concrete answers from their god. They do uncover the name of another tome: The book of vile darkness.
Theyaskthecharacterstolocatethisbookbeforetheirenemy uncovers it. To make matters worse, the PCs hear reports from all over about how the dead have begun to rise from their graves.
EL15 ModerateSign: This strike plunges the Abyss into widespread war, with demon lords and princes lining up against one another to settle old scores. During the interplanar wars, Gorguth forswearshisallegiancetoOrcusandleadshisundeadarmies into the Material Plane through a gate created by cultists in the service of Atropus.
Meanwhile, Caira recovers the book of vile darkness and learns that the elder evil will come if a tragedy of terrible and pqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqrs pqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqqrs SIGN: In addition, the entire campaign setting is affected as if by a desecrate spell PH Even creatures that died before this sign manifested begin to rise as skeletons or zombies, depending on the condition of their corpses.
In addition, the campaign setting is affected as if by an unhallow spell PH As strong, but any creature that dies au- tomatically rises as a zombie 1 round after death. Previously dead creatures automatically animate as skeletons or zombies. All undead creatures gain an extra 2 hit points per Hit Die. This bonus stacks with any turn resistance a creature already possesses. Sheresearchestheapocalypse fromtheskyspell seethesidebar,page21 ,duringwhichtime shesendsoutherminionstocollectasampleofangeltearsshe intends to use to complete the casting of the spell.
EL 17 Strong Sign: The undead outnumber the living, spreading like a cancer. Gorguthmarchestowardthemetropo- lis where he intends to greet the elder evil when it arrives. Meanwhile, Caira completes her research and begins the day- longcastingfromherhiddenbasebeneaththecity.
Fromoneof her captured minions or another ally they met along the way, thePCslearnofherhorribleplanandmustdecidewhetherthey will stand against the fast-approaching undead army or seek out the ur-priest in the hope of halting her fell magic.
EL 20 Over- whelming Sign: If the PCs stop Cai- ra, it is a short-lived victory, for Gorguth approaches, and his hordes of demons andundeadspillinto the city, spreading death and destruc- tion throughout. This ca- lamity is enough to awakenAtropus,and the moonlet begins to descend toward theplanet.
In the millennia that followed, astronomers have commented on the passage of an anomalous comet that seems to appear whenever Dolurrh, Realm of the Dead, is coterminous with the Material Plane.
Some theorize this comet is in fact Atropus of legend, and one day the World Born Dead will visit Eberron again. If mortals knew the evil far above their heads, they would quake in their boots and seek refuge in the bowels of the earth. It is an odd thing moving through the Ring of Siberys. Some suspect magicalmanifestation,maybeaplanaranomaly,butafewknow the truth, and they do their best to push such thoughts from their minds,lesttheydrawits attention by dwelling on what many believe is the inevitable end of the world.
The moonlet is one of the drifting bodies forming the ring around the dull gray planet known as Glyth, one of the Five Wanderers that do not follow the ordinary paths of thestars. While the illithids wagedtheirinterminablewarsagainstthenativehumanoids, Atropus descended and wiped out all life, leaving Glyth an empty husk.
Itisasmallmoonlet spinning through the void, waiting to be ensnared by the pull of the planets it nears. To those on the surface of the chosen world, the elder evil appears as a speck in the sky. At night it is almost invisible, blending in with the darkness, but during twilight and dawn, it looks like a moving pinhole of darkness. It has the appearance of a huge chunk of black stone, but from certain angles, it looks like a great hairless head, black eyes glassy and soulless.
Atropushasnounderstandablepersonalityandnoinclina- tions other than craving the destruction of all living things. This rock is not uninhabited: Undead conjured from the darkest nightmares infest it. Languages telepathy 1, ft. Living creatures that have 5 or fewer Hit Dice are slain and rise as spectres after 1d4 rounds.
Tongues Su As the tongues spell; continuous; caster level 20th. On each such successful attack, the aspect of Atropus gains 5 temporary hit points. These temporary hit points last for up to 1 hour, and an aspect of Atropus can gain a maxi- mum number of temporary hit points equal to its normal hit point total.
The DC is 55 for the Fortitude save to remove a negative level. For each negative level bestowed, the aspect of Atropus gains 5 temporary hit points. There temporary hit points last for up to 1 hour, and an aspect of Atropus can gain a maximum number of temporary hit points equal to its full normal hit point total.
Create Spawn Su A living creature of size Huge or smaller slain by the aspect of Atropus becomes an angel of decay see page 30 in 1d4 rounds. Spawn are under the com- mand of the aspect of Atropus and remain enslaved until its death. They do not possess any of the abilities they had in life. Divine Scourge Su Once per day as a swift action, the aspect of Atropus can cause all divine spellcasters and extraplanar outsiders within a 1,mile radius to be- come sickened for 1d4 hours.
An affected creature must succeed on a DC 53 Fortitude save or take 66 points of vile damage. Anathematic Secrecy Su The aspect of Atropus is immune to all divine divination spell effects. Nondetection Su As the nondetection spell; continuous; caster level 20th. They took my love, my life, everything I am. I will punish them by taking from them what they most love: All your little lives that are so precious to them. Driven by an insane desire for revenge and emptied of compassion and mercy by the tragedies of her life, she seeks to lift the burden of her grief.
Years ago, her lover and col- league was struck down by a falling meteorite. The chances of such an accident were so slim that she blamed the gods. February Lords of Madness Wizards of the Coast, Supplement I: Greyhawk Supplement II: Blackmoor Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry Supplement IV: Conan Unchained!
Against the Giants: Dragondown Grotto Red Hand of Doom. Chromatic Dragons Draconomicon: Dragon Heist Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Dragon Dungeon. Dragonlance Forgotten Realms Greyhawk Ravenloft. Beholder Drow dark elf Githyanki Illithid mind flayer Lich. Dragonlance deities Forgotten Realms deities Greyhawk deities.
Video games. Treasure of Tarmin. Baldur's Gate: Please help rewrite it to explain the fiction more clearly and provide non-fictional perspective. December Learn how and when to remove this template message. This section is empty. You can help by adding to it. February Lords of Madness Wizards of the Coast, Supplement I: Greyhawk Supplement II: Blackmoor Supplement III: Eldritch Wizardry Supplement IV: Conan Unchained!
Against the Giants: Dragondown Grotto Red Hand of Doom. Chromatic Dragons Draconomicon: Dragon Heist Waterdeep: Dungeon of the Mad Mage Ghosts of Saltmarsh. Dragon Dungeon. Dragonlance Forgotten Realms Greyhawk Ravenloft. Beholder Drow dark elf Githyanki Illithid mind flayer Lich.