Vitageist (3.5e Template)
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When a strong soul meets a font of positive energy, a strange solidified ghost of positive energy may form.
Every so often rivers of positive energy flow through the world. From these gateways strange events occur. Mundane items animate into constructs. Living creatures are healed and in extreme cases, explode from the power. And when it strikes the spirit of one passed on, it may be reborn as a creature not quite alive and not quiet dead. This deathless ghost remains in the living and is continuously reborn by its fountain of life.
Creating a Vitageist
Size and Type
The type changes to Deathless with the augmented subtype, unless the subject was previously Undead, in which case they lose the Undead type completely. Deathless are Undead powered by positive energy. For all effects they are treated as undead, but the alignments of everything (positive and negative energy, turning and rebuking, and so forth) are reversed.
All current and future hit dice become d12.
A vitageist has a touch attack that it can use once per round. If the base creature can use weapons, the vitageist retains this ability. A creature with natural weapons retains those natural weapons. A vitageist fighting without weapons uses either its touch attack or its primary natural weapon (if it has any). A vitageist armed with a weapon uses its touch or a weapon, as it desires.
A vitageist fighting without weapons uses either its touch attack (see above) or its natural weapons (if it has any). If armed with a weapon, it usually uses the weapon as its primary attack along with a touch as a natural secondary attack, provided it has a way to make that attack (either a free hand or a natural weapon that it can use as a secondary attack).
A vitageist without natural weapons has a touch attack that uses disruptive positive energy to deal 1d6+5 points of damage to living creatures or 2d6+10 to undead creatures; a Will save (DC 10 + ½ vitageist’s HD + vitageist’s Cha modifier) halves the damage. A vitageist with natural weapons can use its touch attack or its natural weaponry, as it prefers. If it chooses the latter, it deals 2d6+5 or 2d6+10 points of extra damage on one natural weapon attack.
A vitageist retains all the base creature’s special attacks and gains those described below. Save DCs are equal to 10 + ½ vitageist’s HD + vitageist’s Cha modifier unless otherwise noted.
Unnatural Aura (Su): Vitageists are beings of positive energy, but their presence is still an unnatural one. Animals have a distinct sense of wrongness, and all animals in a 60-foot radius of the vitageist must make a Will save or become unable to attack the vitageist until directly attacked themselves, even if their allies are being attacked. A direct attack on the affected animal ends the effect, but the animal still takes a -2 morale penalty to attack, damage, and opposed skill checks against the vitageist. An animal which successfully saves against the aura becomes immune for 24 hours. Magical Beasts may also be affected, but they gain a +2 bonus on the saving throw against this ability. You also take a -6 penalty on all wild empathy checks.
Energizing Touch (Su): Any living creature a vitageist hits with its touch attack is released from effects which paralyze them as if Remove Paralysis had been cast. While a useful restorative tool by flushing their bodies with reanimating energy, it has a decidedly less kind effect on undead. Against undead with equal or less HD than the vitageist, they must make a Will save or be disintegrated as if by a Disrupting Weapon. Those with more HD than you are unaffected.
Spells: A vitageist can cast any spells it could cast while alive.
A vitageist retains all the base creature’s special qualities and gains those described below.
Turn Resistance (Ex): A vitageist has +4 turn resistance.
Damage Reduction (Su): A vitageist’s body of pseudoflesh is tough and rapidly heals over most wounds, giving the creature damage reduction 15/cold iron and magic. Its natural weapons are treated as magic weapons for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
Fast Healing (Su): Brimming with energy, a vitageist heals rapidly. A vitageist has fast healing equal to one quarter of their HD (maximum fast healing 5 at 20 HD).
Immunities (Ex): In addition to typical immunities associated with the undead, vitageists have immunity to fire, electricity, polymorph (though they can use polymorph effects on themselves), and mind-affecting attacks.
Respawn (Su): Similar to a lich, a vitageist is hard to keep down and will return in 1d10 rounds from where their body is encased. See below (The Crystal Coffin).
Increase from the base creature as follows: Int +2, Wis +2, Cha +2. Being deathless, a vitageist has no Constitution score.
Vitageists have a +8 racial bonus on Concentration, Heal, Listen, Search, Sense Motive, and Spot checks. Otherwise same as the base creature.
Nearby fonts of positive energy and the Positive Energy Plane.
Solitary or troupe (1 vitageist, plus 2-4 ravids and 5-8 animated objects).
Same as the base creature + 2.
Standard coins; double goods; double items.
Any. While typically positive energy is associated with goodness, the spirit of the reborn creature could be anything from a saint to a murderous psychopath.
By character class.
Same as base creature +3
Vitageists often form by accident, when a dying creature is plunged into the swirling miasma of positive energies from a nearby font of power. The creature perishes before the energy can heal them of their wounds, but sinking into the depths the body is healed and encased in a crystallized prison of energy, as the soul leaves the body and manifests out of pure willpower and life force. This prison is called a Crystal Coffin, which rarely forms in nature, and protects the original body of the vitageist, their soul now contained in a body of pseudoflesh crafted in an egoscopic projection of themselves.
Sometimes however someone who has discovered the means to create a vitageist will purposefully allow himself to undergo the transformation. It is considered a slightly less evil form of lichdom, and one which looks better as well bereft of the troubles of rotting and appearance. However, success rate is extremely low, though an epic spell (Vivacious Jar) ensures the successful transformation into a vitageist.
The Crystal Coffin
For characters seeking to purposefully become a vitageist, the Crystal Coffin must be crafted beforehand and energized. The crystal coffin is an integral part of becoming a vitageist as this determines where the character's memories remain and where they will respawn. As a rule, the only way to get rid of a vitageist for sure is to destroy its body which is safely protected in the crystal coffin. Unless its original body is located and destroyed, a vitageist reappears 1d10 days after its apparent death.
Each future vitageist must make its own crystal coffin, which requires the Craft Wondrous Item feat. The character must be able to cast spells (including the spell Magic Jar or the power Mind Switch) and have a caster level of 11th or higher. The crystal coffin costs 10,000 gp and 2,000 XP to create and has a caster level equal to that of its creator at the time of creation. It is composed of carved crystal which is magically or psionically hollowed out. The body is then teleported into the crystal and the coffin lowered into the positive energy stream. From here, the character must cast Magic Jar or Mind Switch, using the coffin as the focus/target. Imbued in powerful energies, the soul is given a massive burst of power and will transmigrate into a vitageist, forming from the positive energy in 1d4 days if successful.
Of course, this process is risky. There is a chance that the current of energy is redirected into the body as the soul joins the positive energy, causing the body to explode catastrophically, slaying the vitageist and destroying the coffin. For each HD the vitageist possesses, it has a 3% chance of manifesting as a vitageist successfully. For example, at 11 HD, the chance is 33%, while at 20 HD the chance is 60%.
The crystal coffin is a sealed crystal containing the original inert but otherwise healthy and preserved body of the vitageist. The body is visible but the crystal prevents line of sight and effect for spells on the body, but once the crystal coffin is destroyed the body is effectively doomed. The crystal is the same size as the base crystal and has 40 hit points, hardness 20, and a break DC of 40. It recovers 1 hp a round if damaged, and 3 hp a round if still in a positive energy source. Because of their size compared to a lich's phylactery, they are typically stored on the Positive Elemental Plane, hidden away in great floating towers.