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Occult Rituals


Occult Rituals

It’s a common belief that only those initiated in the rites and practices of arcane, divine, or psychic magic can cast spells, but this is not strictly true. Hidden within dusty libraries and amid the ramblings of lunatics lie the mysteries of another form of spellcasting—occult ritual magic. These spells are rare, coveted by both those eager to gain their power and those wishing to hide their existence. Most traditional spellcasters consider these rituals dangerous and uncontrollable, something to be avoided or used as a last resort. They fear the power these ceremonies grant to the uninitiated, as the rituals allow those with only a glimmering of understanding the ability to interact with the underlying fabric of magic.

While anyone can attempt to cast occult rituals, the process is fraught with peril. The strange and intricate incantations are often challenging to perform with precision, and failure can weaken the casters or even unleash horrors upon the world. Even when successfully performed, each occult ritual has a price—a backlash that affects at least the caster leading the ritual, and often those assisting in its performance.
Click here for the full rules on Occult Rituals.

First Apotheosis

Source Book of the Damned pg. 190
School transmutation [evil]; Level 4
Casting Time 4 hours
Components V, S, M (exotic incense worth 500 gp)
Skill Checks Intimidate DC 18, 2 successes; Knowledge (planes or religion) DC 18, 2 successes
Range personal
Target caster
Duration instantaneous
Saving Throw none; SR no
Backlash The caster takes 4d6 points of damage and is exhausted.
Failure The caster is rendered unconscious for 2d4 hours and must wait 1 year before attempting the first apotheosis again.

Effect

The first ritual is the simplest and requires nothing more than for the caster’s alignment to become lawful evil, neutral evil, or chaotic evil (depending on the type of fiend the user wishes to transform into). To prepare for this ritual, the caster must undertake acts of a vile and destructive nature over the course of a year. The caster consigns her soul to Abaddon, the Abyss, or Hell even if she never finishes the subsequent rituals. The caster must select a powerful fiend at this point to serve as a demonic patron. The acts the caster must undertake can vary, but they should be of a nature that represents and honors the areas of interest of her chosen demonic patron—these acts are intended to attract the patron’s attention, after all. Even casters who begin the transformation ritual with an evil alignment must undergo this stage of the ritual, if only to select a fiendish patron.

On the day precisely 1 year after she began these evil acts, she must perform the 4-hour first apotheosis ritual to properly devote her previous year in the name of her chosen patron. Once she successfully completes the first apotheosis, she becomes eligible to undertake the second apotheosis.