Archives of Nethys

Pathfinder | Starfinder

All Spells | Mythic | Custom Search

Adept | Alchemist | Antipaladin | Arcanist | Bard | Bloodrager | Cleric | Druid | Hunter | Inquisitor | Investigator | Magus | Medium | Mesmerist | Occultist | Oracle | Paladin | Psychic | Ranger | Red Mantis Assassin | Sahir-Afiyun | Shaman | Skald | Sorcerer | Spiritualist | Summoner | Summoner (Unchained) | Warpriest | Witch | Wizard

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.

Paired Suffering

Source Horror Adventures pg. 132
School necromancy; Level 6
Casting Time 6 hours
Components V, S, F (an ornate ceremonial dagger worth at least 1,000 gp)
Skill Checks Knowledge (planes) DC 30, 2 successes; Knowledge (religion) DC 30, 4 successes
Range touch; see text
Duration instantaneous; see text
Saving Throw none; SR no
Backlash The primary caster is staggered for the next 24 hours.
Failure The primary caster is affected by slay living (using the ritual’s save DC and caster level).

Effect

The caster prepares a ritual site no more than 100 feet long by 100 feet wide by 20 feet high, including sigils that prevent souls from escaping the perimeter. At the culmination of the ritual, the caster forces two spiritually close humanoid creatures experiencing a transitional state of their lives into ritual combat to the death. Among most humanoids, only teenage twins (fraternal or identical) young enough that they haven’t gained a level in a PC class can be targets of this ritual; other pairings work only at the GM’s discretion. One of the targets must slay the other with the ceremonial dagger focus for the ritual to succeed; even if all the checks succeed, if either target leaves the area while the other lives, or if someone else slays one of the targets, the ritual counts as a failure, and the primary caster suffers the failure effects.

If the ritual succeeds, the soul of the creature slain by the ritual dagger is trapped within the ritual site. The surviving target has a choice either to allow the soul into her body, or to bar it from doing so. If the surviving target allows the soul inside her, she becomes a spiritualist, with the slain target as her phantom. If the surviving target chooses not to allow the spirit entry, it instead becomes an unfettered phantom and eventually a malevolent ghost, haunting the ritual site. This ghost cannot directly attack the surviving target, but in order to overcome its rejuvenation, someone must provide proof of the surviving target’s death (false evidence is not sufficient; that target must actually be dead).