Archives of Nethys

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Archdevil

Source Bestiary 6 pg. 15
The greatest and most terrible of devils are the archdevils of Hell, powerful scions of law and evil, subtle and sophisticated demigods who each rule one of the eight vast planes of torment that form the layers of Hell. Each archdevil is a unique creature, and each fits into a specific role in the cosmic chain of corruption and oppression that devils use to bind the cosmos to their will. The first archdevils rose to power soon after their lord Asmodeus claimed Hell as his realm. Asmodeus has guided the rise of other archdevils, sometimes directly creating them as he did Belial and Mephistopheles. Others are older beings who pledged their allegiance to Asmodeus during heavenly rebellions, like Baalzebul and Dispater. Asmodeus has even been known, when in need of additional loyal viceroys, to grant archdevildom to creatures outside the diabolic race, as in the case of ascended mysteries like Barbatos and Geryon.

Below the ranks of true archdevils are Hell’s infernal dukes. These infernal nobles have the potential for power equal to some of the archdevils, but without a layer of Hell under their rule, they cannot truly be counted the equal of an archdevil. An infernal duke can rise in power by gaining class levels, advancing in Hit Dice, gaining mythic ranks, undertaking a vile ritual, amassing a sufficiently large and devoted following, or, rarely, at the leave of their blasphemous lords. However, until Asmodeus sees fit to award an infernal duke its own layer of Hell (to replace a fallen archdevil or one being punished via demotion to infernal duke), such a devil is not itself an archdevil. It should be noted that as scions of law, infernal dukes and archdevils remain loyal to Asmodeus and Hell, though they might resort to trickery and subterfuge to bolster their own resources and reputations. Those who are not loyal are quickly and inevitably revealed as traitors and punished accordingly by the Prince of Darkness. There can be any number of infernal dukes in Hell, but as Asmodeus himself rules the ninth layer of Hell, only eight archdevils can exist at any one time.

An archdevil can be contacted via commune or contact other plane, and can be conjured via a gate spell, but when so called, an archdevil is under no compulsion to come through the gate. Typically, an archdevil requires an enormous and significant offering or sacrifice before it deigns to answer a gate spell.

The Layers of Hell

Each archdevil rules one of the eight upper layers of Hell, with infernal dukes ruling fiefdoms within it. These layers are immense in size and composed of hundreds or even thousands of smaller subdomains, each of which may be the size of a continent or as small as a strange and secret city. The environments, themes, and traits of each layer are as unique as the archdevils themselves and can shift and change in response to the mood and intention of its archdevil master. An archdevil does not exert total control over its realm, though, and powerful adventurers can infiltrate a layer and accomplish various goals without arousing the anger of its archdevil overlord—if they are careful.

An archdevil gains the following additional powers while in its realm (the statistics presented on the following pages do not include these abilities):
  • Mythic: An archdevil functions as a 10th-rank mythic creature, including having the mythic power ability (10/day, surge +1d12). It can expend uses of mythic power to use the mythic versions of any spell-like ability denoted with a superscript “M,” as if the ability were a mythic spell.
  • Use of the following spell-like abilities at will—demand, discern location, fabricate, major creation, and polymorph any object (when used on objects or creatures that are native to the realm, the polymorph duration factor increases by 6).
  • Use of the following spell-like abilities once per day: binding and miracle (limited to physical effects that manipulate the realm or to effects that are relevant to the archdevil’s area of concern).
  • Heightened Awareness (Ex): An archdevil gains a +10 insight bonus on Sense Motive checks and Initiative checks.

Archdevils in a Campaign

Each archdevil is a unique creature ranging in power from CR 26 to CR 30. Their CRs have no impact on their standing or influence in Hell’s hierarchy. Between raw power, ingenious contingencies, and legions of servants, Asmodeus’s deputies share roughly similar potential for nefariousness and ruin. In any case, archdevils are generally beyond the reach of most mortal heroes, and should not be placed in an adventure without careful consideration. In most cases, they are best used as the final enemies of a long campaign—especially campaigns in which the PCs themselves are mythic characters—and even getting an audience with one should be a memorable event.

Yet while archdevils are beyond the abilities of most heroes to combat directly, they are perfect puppet masters and masterminds, inspiring and directing monsters, mortals, and entire cults at every level of a campaign. Halting a sinister ritual to unleash an archdevil on the world is a classic capstone, allowing a brief encounter with the archdevil and its minions before the ritual is halted and the archdevil forced back to Hell. Alternatively, the heroes can work to destroy an archdevil’s resources, imposing increasing penalties on it and gathering potent weapons to use against it, allowing PCs to face the archdevil at a diminished CR or with negative levels (even though they are normally immune to negative levels) to represent its reduced power... until the archdevil can rebuild and recover its strength.

Creatures in "Archdevil" Category

NameCR
Baalzebul30
Barbatos26
Belial28
Dispater27
Geryon29
Mammon28
Mephistopheles30
Moloch29

Archdevil, Dispater

This diabolic figure is draped in a kingly robe and crowned with iron horns. He bears a long, heavy mace of black metal.

Dispater CR 27

Source Bestiary 6 pg. 22
XP 3,276,800
LE Large outsider (devil, evil, extraplanar, lawful, shapechanger)
Init +13; Senses darkvision 60 ft., detect chaos, detect good, see in darkness, true seeing; Perception +46
Aura frightful presence (120 ft., DC 37), shield of law (DC 29)

Defense

AC 45, touch 35, flat-footed 35 (+4 deflection, +9 Dex, +1 dodge, +10 natural, +12 profane, –1 size)
hp 643 (33d10+462); regeneration 30 (deific or mythic)
Fort +29, Ref +31, Will +34; +8 vs. mind-affecting effects
Defensive Abilities infernal resurrection, mind blank; DR 20/epic, good, and silver; Immune ability damage, ability drain, charm, compulsion, death effects, energy drain, fire, petrification, poison; Resist acid 30, cold 30; SR 38

Offense

Speed 50 ft., fly 60 ft. (good)
Melee The Eclipsing Eye +49/+44/+39/+34 (2d6+22/19–20/×3), gore +39 (2d6+6)
Space 10 ft., Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks caustic wit, mortal gaze, sneak attack +6d6
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 27th; concentration +38)
Constant—detect chaos, detect good, fly, mind blank, shield of law (DC 29), true seeing
At will—astral projection, charm monster (DC 27), desecrateM, dictumM (DC 28), dominate person (DC 28), greater dispel magic, greater teleport, iron body, order’s wrathM (DC 25), unhallow, wall of iron
3/day—quickened blade barrierM (DC 27), forcecage (DC 28), geas/quest, summon devils, symbol of pain (DC 27)
1/day—imprisonment (DC 30), time stopM, wishM
M Dispater can use this ability’s mythic version in his realm.

Statistics

Str 34, Dex 29, Con 38, Int 33, Wis 30, Cha 33
Base Atk +33; CMB +46; CMD 82
Feats Combat Expertise, Combat Reflexes, Critical Focus, Dazzling Display, Dodge, Greater Feint, Improved Critical (heavy mace), Improved Feint, Improved Initiative, Improved Iron Will, Iron Will, Mobility, Power Attack, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (blade barrier), Shatter Defenses, Staggering Critical, Weapon Focus (heavy mace)
Skills Acrobatics +42, Bluff +47, Diplomacy +47, Fly +60, Intimidate +47, Know. (arcana, engineering, history, nobility, religion) +44, Know. (planes) +47, Linguistics +44, Perception +46, Sense Motive +46, Spellcraft +44, Stealth +41, Use Magic Device +44
Languages all (language mastery); telepathy 300 ft.
SQ change shape (any humanoid; alter self), lord of iron, voice of command

Ecology

Environment any (Hell)
Organization solitary (unique)
Treasure triple (The Eclipsing Eye, other treasure)

Special Abilities

Caustic Wit (Su) Dispater is a master of urbane insults and flippant dismissals. He can attempt a Bluff check once per round as a free action in place of an Intimidate check to demoralize a foe within 30 feet. In addition to becoming shaken, a creature demoralized by Dispater is so filled with shame and self-loathing that it takes 1d4 points of Charisma damage and becomes dazed. This additional effect can be negated with a successful DC 37 Will save. The insulted creature can attempt a new save each round at the beginning of its turn as a free action to end the effect, but any Charisma damage sustained remains until it is healed. This is a mind-affecting effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Lord of Iron (Ex) Rust effects (such as rusting grasp) do not function within 60 feet of Dispater unless he allows them to function. Dispater can command unintelligent iron cobras, iron golems, and any other construct made entirely out of iron as if he were the construct’s creator.
Mortal Gaze (Su) Dispater can level his gaze upon any one creature within 60 feet as a free action once per round. The creature he gazes upon gains 2 negative levels. Each of these negative levels requires a successful DC 37 Fortitude save to remove after 24 hours or it becomes permanent. Creatures slain by Dispater’s mortal gaze rise again 1d4 rounds later as zombie lords (Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 4 286) under Dispater’s control. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Voice of Command (Su) The saving throw DCs of Dispater’s charm monster and dominate person spell-like abilities include a +2 bonus; this is included in the statistics above. Creatures do not gain the usual +5 bonus on saves against charm monster if they are currently being threatened or attacked by Dispater or his allies. If Dispater commands a humanoid controlled via dominate person to take an action against its nature, the creature does not gain a new saving throw to resist the effect unless the order is self-destructive, in which case the creature gains a new save with a +2 bonus to resist the command.

Description

Dispater is one of Asmodeus’s oldest and most loyal allies, with a favored place in the hierarchy of Hell. He generally keeps his distance from the machinations of the other archdevils, and of all their number he cares least about the tedious and trivial affairs of the Material Plane. His focus is on building the eternal and glorious perfection of Hell, the model community and system upon which the universe should be modeled. He is calm, creative, careful, and deliberate, in some ways the picture of a just sovereign, yet he is also unforgiving, ruthless, manipulative, and arrogant in the extreme. The rules of rank, station, and courtly life are his meat and drink, and he is swift to deride any who violate the tiniest rule of etiquette, though he quickly discards decorum when necessary to further his elaborate schemes. Alone among the archdevils, he maintains a passing acquaintance with courtly love and marriage, conferring with his advisors on matters of state.

Dispater is every inch the image of a devil, 13 feet tall with rippling, rust-colored muscles and a refined and majestic style, eschewing the opulent grandiosity of some of his brethren.

Dispater's Cult

Dispater represents devotion to calming order, meticulous planning, and the dark majesty of Hell’s potential to bring peace and unity to the universe, despite the fact that such peace would be bought with blood, chains, and death. His sacred places are grandiose, typically found in palaces or grand monuments.

Dispater’s unholy symbol is a heavy black nail piercing a red crown. His favored weapon is the heavy mace. He grants access to the domains of Evil, Law, Nobility, and Trickery, and to the subdomains of Deception, Devil, Leadership, and Tyranny.