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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.

Manifest Manifestation

Source Book of the Damned pg. 193
School divination; Level 9
Casting Time 90 minutes
Components S, F (the complete Book of the Damned or the diabolic Book of the Damned)
Skill Checks Knowledge (planes) DC 33, 3 successes; Linguistics DC 33, 4 successes; Perception DC 33, 2 successes (these checks take a –4 penalty if the diabolic Book of the Damned is used as the ritual’s focus)
Range touch
Duration instantaneous
Saving Throw none; SR no
Backlash The caster becomes exhausted.
Failure The caster’s own true name appears somewhere in a random document in a library located somewhere on Abaddon, in the Abyss, or in Hell. Once per year, at a time chosen by the GM (invariably at a time that is inconvenient to the caster), there is a percent chance equal to the number of times the caster’s true name has appeared in such a document (1% per failed attempt to perform the manifest manifestation) that some other force discovers the caster’s true name and uses it. Typically, this results in the caster being conjured elsewhere via powerful magic to perform services—at the GM’s discretion, this could be played out, or the caster could simply return to his point of origin 4d6 hours later with 1d6 points of ability drain, 1d3 negative levels, a strange curse, or some other affliction but with no memories of how this affliction came to be. Removing one’s name from these locations can be accomplished only via a significant quest.

Effect

When the caster begins the manifest manifestation ritual, he must have in mind a specific type of fiend to learn the true name of. If he seeks to learn the true name of a specific individual fiend or unique fiend, the DC of the skill checks for manifest manifestation increase by 5, and if he seeks to learn the true name of a fiendish demigod or quasi deity, all skill checks for manifest manifestation increase by 10. (In the latter case, the fiendish demigod or quasi deity’s true name changes once the caster learns it, so this information is useful only once, and in the event of a failure, the demigod or quasi deity learns the caster’s true name instead.) Once a creature’s true name is divulged by the manifestation of the Book of the Damned’s list of true names, the caster can use that information how he sees fit, but abuse of the information will likely have repercussions. For example, a caster who gains a reputation for spreading a powerful fiend’s true name far and wide could find himself hunted by a wide range of powerful fiends, all eager to see the caster destroyed. Such reprisals rise not out of any sort of familial devotion to the inconvenienced fiend but purely from self-defense, for who is to say which fiend’s true name might next be publicized by such a careless caster?