Archives of Nethys

Pathfinder 1E | Pathfinder 2E | Starfinder

All | Unique
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Families | Templates | Types | Subtypes | Universal Monster Rules


Angel

Source Pathfinder RPG Bestiary pg. 10
Angels are a race of celestials, beings who live on the good-aligned outer planes.

Angels can be of any good alignment. Lawful angels hail from Heaven, neutral angels from Nirvana, and chaotic angels from Elysium, though the majority serve one good deity or another and call their patron's realm their home. Most mortals assume that angels never lie, cheat, or steal, are impeccably honorable in all their dealings, and are the most trustworthy and diplomatic of all the celestials; while this is generally true, there are exceptions, especially as some angels serve good-aligned trickster gods and other chaotic entities.

The original and most powerful angels predate the mortal races. They were among the first creations of the gods of good, and those that survive to this day are among the more powerful non-divine beings in the multiverse. While new angels are still periodically created by the gods, most modern angels were once good mortals, their souls transforming into something greater upon reaching their destination in the planes. Often an angel's true form is reminiscent of its mortal self, only taller, brighter, and more powerful. The relationship between good mortal soul and angel is common knowledge, and many mortal religions assume that all members of the faith in good standing become angels of some type in the afterlife. Others confuse the issue by conflating famous mortals (such as saints and martyrs) with preexisting angels that have similar names, or suggesting that angels take human form to perform great deeds as mortals, returning to the heavens when their duties are over.

All angels are blessed with extraordinary beauty, though their actual appearances vary widely. Their natural shapechanging ability means they may appear to mortals as male or female, depending on their personal preference or the will of their deity. As they are spiritual creatures given a physical form rather than creatures of flesh born of other creatures, their gender is mutable; some angels always use a male form, some strictly a female one, and others use either or both, or prefer an androgynous or sexless shape.

Technically, the word “angel” refers to several types of humanoid angels—solars, planetars, and devas (of which the astral deva is the most common; other types exist as well)—though many mortals use the term loosely and apply it to any celestial, whether an angel, one of the guardian archons, fey-like azatas, beast-like agathions, or any other creature of the good planes. The angels do not take affront at this, as they have more important things to deal with than mortal nomenclature.

Angels speak Celestial, Draconic, and Infernal, though they can communicate with almost any creature because of their truespeech ability. All angels possess a number of similar traits. Most angels also have additional powers beyond these traits, depending on the role their deity assigns them. For example, an angelic guardian of volcanoes might have the fire subtype, or the protector of a sunken city might be aquatic, amphibious, and able to use her wings to swim.

Fallen Angels

Many religions include stories of angels rebelling against a creator or becoming corrupt and evil. Sadly, this is indeed possible, though thankfully rare, and only the proudest or weakest-willed angels succumb to this fate. Fallen angels are exiles of the good realms, hunted by their former brethren and easy targets for fiends as well. The fallen lose some of the grace and light of their untainted kin, though many are said to still be tragically beautiful. Rarer still are those fallen angels strong and clever enough to join the legions of Hell, and who are often transformed into some type of devil, or those who become demons of the Abyss and carve out a niche in that horrible realm or come to serve a greater demon.

Angelic Choirs

Whereas there are evil and cruel counterparts for all the other good races, the legions of fiends do not possess a clear analogue for the race of angels. Many scholars have debated the reasons for this strange lack of symmetry among the good and evil outsiders, and while most have come to believe that this is simply an example of good's inherent willingness to rise above specific alignments for everyone's benefit, the exact reason may never be known.

Since angels can be of any good alignment, they represent the needs and desires of all three major good outsider races. While some angels devote their energies to all three, most have a particular favorite among the races in keeping with that angel's particular alignment. While their true forms never vary between alignments, angels will often use their change shape ability to appear more like an archon, agathion, or azata as the situation and the angel's personality demands.

Angels are further subdivided into their own specific hierarchy known as the Triad of Choirs. The bulk of the angel race consists of the devas—these are the most common angels, and numerous different specialties exist, with the astral deva presented here merely the best known. Devas of the third choir have two wings. The second choir consists solely of the four-winged planetars, while the rulers of the angelic race are the six-winged solars. These are the mightiest of all angels, and the most powerful of them can directly oppose even the will of a demigod if the situation calls for it.

Angel Subtype

Angels are a race of celestials, or good outsiders, native to the good-aligned outer planes. An angel possesses the following traits (unless otherwise noted in a creature's entry).
  • Darkvision 60 feet and low-light vision.
  • Immunity to acid, cold, and petrification.
  • Resistance to electricity 10 and fire 10.
  • +4 racial bonus on saves against poison.
  • Protective Aura (Su) Against attacks made or effects created by evil creatures, this ability provides a +4 deflection bonus to AC and a +4 resistance bonus on saving throws to anyone within 20 feet of the angel. Otherwise, it functions as a magic circle against evil effect and a lesser globe of invulnerability, both with a radius of 20 feet (caster level equals angel's HD). The defensive benefits from the circle are not included in an angel's statistics block.
  • Truespeech (Su) All angels can speak with any creature that has a language, as though using a tongues spell (caster level equal to angel's Hit Dice). This ability is always active.

Creatures in "Angel" Category

NameCR
Astral Deva14
Balisse8
Cassisian2
Choral6
Dapsara4
Empyrean20
Erelim6
Iophanite4
Kuribu3
Monadic Deva12
Movanic Deva10
Ninkonda17
Planetar16
Solar23

Angel, Cassisian

This finely crafted golden helm is decorated with intricate filigree, and flutters gracefully through the air on feathered wings.

Cassisian CR 2

Source Bestiary 2 pg. 26
XP 600
NG Small outsider (angel, extraplanar, good)
Init +0; Senses darkvision 60 ft., detect evil, low-light vision; Perception +5
Aura lesser protective aura

Defense

AC 14, touch 11, flat-footed 14 (+3 natural, +1 size) (+2 deflection vs. evil)
hp 13 (2d10+2)
Fort +4, Ref +3, Will +2; +4 vs. poison
DR 5/cold iron or evil; Immune acid, cold, petrification; Resist electricity 10, fire 10

Offense

Speed fly 60 ft. (perfect)
Melee slam –1 (1d3–4)
Special Attacks breath weapon (15-ft. line, 1d6 cold or 1d6 fire, Reflex DC 12 half, usable every 1d4 rounds)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 3rd; concentration +3)
Constant—detect evil, know direction
1/day—aid, daylight
1/week—commune (six questions, CL 12th)

Statistics

Str 3, Dex 11, Con 12, Int 6, Wis 11, Cha 10
Base Atk +2; CMB –3; CMD 7 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Iron Will
Skills Diplomacy +2, Fly +10, Knowledge (planes) +2, Knowledge (religion) +2, Perception +5, Sense Motive +4, Stealth +8
Languages Celestial, Draconic, Infernal; truespeech
SQ change shape (2 of the following forms: Small human-like angel, dove, dog, or Tiny fish, polymorph), perfect memory

Ecology

Environment any good-aligned plane
Organization solitary, pair, or squad (3–6)
Treasure none

Special Abilities

Perfect Memory (Ex) Though they are not particularly intelligent, cassisians have perfect memories and remember everything they see or hear. They can faultlessly recite conversations they heard hundreds of years before. They also have the power to erase portions of their own memories, which they do (usually under orders from superior angels) to protect sensitive information.

Lesser Protective Aura (Su) A cassisian has a lesser form of the protective aura possessed by more powerful angels. This protective aura grants the cassisian a +2 deflection bonus to its AC against evil foes, and a +2 resistance bonus on all saving throws made against evil effects or spells cast by evil creatures. This aura extends to a radius of 5 feet, but can only benefit one additional creature other than the cassisian at any one time. A cassisian’s protective aura is fragile, and as soon as an evil creature successfully strikes the cassisian, or as soon as the cassisian fails a saving throw against an evil source, its protective aura fades away and is no longer applicable. The cassisian can reactivate its protective aura by spending 1 minute concentrating upon the task.

Description

Cassisians are the weakest sort of angel, but are absolutely dedicated to the cause of good. They serve as messengers for more powerful angels, and on the Material Plane they are often bound to good mortals to serve as familiars, acting as spiritual guides, reciting platitudes and quoting scripture from various benign faiths and philosophies (some forgotten for centuries). A 7th-level lawful good with the Improved Familiar feat can select a cassisian as a familiar.

A cassisian’s true form is a helmet possessing a pair of bird’s wings. The exact style of helmet varies by the deity the angel serves—most appear to be steel with angular cheek-plates, though some resemble bascinets, skullcaps, great helms, or even samurai helmets, and a few older cassisians appear to be bronze or even leather. Though cassisians can assume other forms (that of a child-sized angelic humanoid wearing a proportional helmet matching the cassisians’ true form, a dove, a dog, or a fish), they find it strange and rarely stay in that form for more than a few minutes.

Typically formed from the souls of trustworthy and pious soldiers, some cassisians arise spontaneously from the spiritual fragments of great angels destroyed while defending the celestial planes against fiendish incursions. In many cases, the lowly cassisian retains fragments of its previous life’s memories, and friends of that old soul may visit with the cassisian to reminisce with what remains. Unfortunately, the reincarnated angel’s memories are more like something memorized from a book, and lack the character and camaraderie the friends expect.