Undead Arch enemies

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Hi there,

This thread is about recycling two arch enemies who were killed in the last encounter. (To those who have read the "pointed guns" thread - yes, the two villains I wanted to save.)

My PC's have managed to kill two major enemies  For the second time. We are playing a Forgotten Realms campaign with a lot of homegrown content and some Dragonlance mixed in (e.g. there has been a War of Dragons in the past). Both being high ranking elite Zhentarim (home grown characters) they have already been ressurrected once. I think that's enough. Even the Zhentarim's recources should have limits. After all, if you take the official material, only Fzoul Chembryl himself is capable of casting True Ressourrection.

But they have one direct superior (home grown) who is able to cast "create greater undead". That is how I would like them to have a final apperance on the stage.

First question: Is the list of undead given for "create greater undead" in the PHB definitive? Or are there additions by other sourcebooks.

I am looking for undead templates, because both characters were quite elaborate.

Were talking about

a female human wizard 4 / fighter 4/ spellsword 4 - clever leader and tactician, signature spell: lightning bolt, never brought home her channeled spell with her greatsword (pity!)
a male human fighter 6/ rogue 1 / blackguard 6 - ruthless brute, spiked chain with improved trip, improved disarm, combat reflexes, they hate him!

A hook to raise them as undead could be the grizly practice of one PC to cut off the heads of fallen arch enemies to prevent raise dead (thus forcing the use of ressurrection). I imagine the arch enemies headless or with borrowed heads of victims looking frantically for the one who stole their heads. I would like to have them return again and again - as long as they do not have their heads back. So, a "Revenant"-variant comes into question.

The "ghost"-template would work well in most respectr: Incorporeality would make multiple returns plausible. "Unfinished business" is also a good description of missing ones head. BUT: The current adventure is already hooked around a restless ghost. Too much repetition, I am afraid.

The female spellsword was the cohort of a Zhentarim leader with allegiance to Shar. Thus I would like to have her return as a shadow-like undead. I stumbled over the "Shadowslain" template, but I do not have any stats.

The blackguard was a detemined follower of Bane. I considered letting him return as Death Knight.

I am open to all suggestions and comments.
yes, are many more but are in many different guides like libris mortis, book of vile darkness, lost empires of faerun and more, maybe you can use the Curst template from lost empires of faerun pag 165 (saying that the superior was make a greater curse if the NPC fail in stop the players) this undead have the ability of unkilliable, the only two way to slay him is destroy the body (like with a desintegrate) or remove the curse.

the problem is that you need the head of the characters, if you not the undead you create can't be able to see, smell, listen, and think, but for the ghost will return with all her body only with a scar in her neck, but for the class of yours NPC maybe this not the best option, why you dont let a mage use a wish to recover the head.
Pepe pecas pica papas con un pico con un pico pepe pecas pica papas si pepe pecas pica papas con un pico donde esta el pico con que pepe pecas pica papas.
Dude, if you have that many home-grown rules and classes and what-not already, stop waffling!  lol, create your new "Greater Undead", mix and match, pick and choose abilities from All of the listed undead, add in the original bad guys' original powers (or augment them, sorta like a fallen-paladin blackguard, etc.) and do whatever you want with the NPC's.  Break the rules, make up more rules.  

In other words, challenge your players.  Make them scream "UNFAIR!" and pull their hair out!  When and if they vanquish the new & improved baddies, they will remember the stories forever.

Neue

(Case in point, see my thread from last week about the alteration I'm doing to the Dragon Disciple class for my NPC baddies)  I certainly would never allow a player to use the rules, but as DM, for the NPC's, if that's what it takes to spice up the gaming table, so be it!)
Dude, if you have that many home-grown rules and classes and what-not already, stop waffling!  lol, create your new "Greater Undead", mix and match, pick and choose abilities from All of the listed undead, add in the original bad guys' original powers (or augment them, sorta like a fallen-paladin blackguard, etc.) and do whatever you want with the NPC's.  Break the rules, make up more rules.  

In other words, challenge your players.  Make them scream "UNFAIR!" and pull their hair out!  When and if they vanquish the new & improved baddies, they will remember the stories forever.

Neue

(Case in point, see my thread from last week about the alteration I'm doing to the Dragon Disciple class for my NPC baddies)  I certainly would never allow a player to use the rules, but as DM, for the NPC's, if that's what it takes to spice up the gaming table, so be it!)



You got a point there. Though I must say that I not use home-grown rules. I invent characters, places, and adventures, mix different settings and campaign worlds - but I stick to the official rules, because I really like the clarity of 3.5 (in comparison to the wobbly 1E or 2E). But you got me convinced that a DM can always create new monsters, spells, classes etc. if this "takes the spice to the game table" without becoming wobbly - you just have to define what you have created. So I will have a go.

Savage Species has a lot of Templates like Umbral(shadow) and Wraith. Consider buying it while you can?

I will immediately report any Phishers or Lonely Hearts Scam Artists.

It's also Forgotten Realms. I forget which book it's from (Unapproachable East, perhaps?) but they have templates for greater undead that retain some semblance of their original combat ability (Create Undead Warrior, I think it's called). There's also Libris Mortis, with the Awaken Undead effect, which can create greater undead of their original forms and then re-awaken their old beings within these new bodies. (It's on the Deathbound domain, which is amazing in general and packs other spells which can create superior undead lieutenants.)

Some mixture of these might be a great place to start.

Cancer prognosis: I am now cancer-free.

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These are NOT all my creations! The lead authors are identified as follows: [TS] Tempest Stormwind, [AR] Andarious Rosethorn, [RT] Radical Taoist, [SN] Sionnis, [DH] DisposableHero_, [SH] Seishi.

[TS] The Pinball Brothers: Large And In Charge (Melee, Lockdown, Charge, Juggling)
[TS] Ashardalon Reborn: I Will Swallow Your Soul (Melee, Fear, Negative Levels, AoE, Theme)
[AR] "A"-Game Paladin: Play That Funky Music, Knight Boy! (Team Support, Melee, Theme, Single-Class)
[RT] Uncanny Trapsmith: Get in, make it look like an accident, get out. (Skillmonkey, Stealth/Scout/Infiltration, Unorthodox Methods, Theme)
[AR] Wizsassin: *Everything* is permitted. (Spellcaster, Support, Sneak Attack, Utility)
[TS] Phantom Rush: General Gish Gouda. (Gish, Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Early-Entry PrC)
[TS] Storm Knight: Another kind of gish. (Melee/"Gish", Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Unorthodox Methods)
[TS] Inevitable Nightmare: The weapon you only have to fire once. (Melee, "Unorthodox" Methods (no charging), Reliability)
[AR] Captain Constitution: The number one threat to America. (Melee, TOUGHTOUGHTOUGH, Defense, Theme)
[AR] Nuker: I casts the spells that makes the peoples fall down! (Spellcaster, damage, blasting, damage)
[TS] Dread Lord of the Dead: Let the Reaping Begin! (NPC-only, Variable (combat/casting/leadership), Iconic Villain, Theme)
[AR] Heavy Crusader: No Rest. No Mercy. No Matter What. (Melee, Damage (No charging), Variable, Theme).
[TS] Gun Fu: It's bullet time (Ranged, THEORETICAL, Twin weapons, Theme)
[RT] Face First: We should talk. (Psionic, social, mind-control, info-management)
[SN] Chaingun Porcupine: Never Enuff Dakka. (Ranged, Skirmishing, Spike Damage, Incarnum)
[RT] Always On Edge: The Mortal Draw deals death. (Melee, Generalist, Dungeoneering, Stunt)
[AR] Feral Druid: Real feral taste. Zero druid calories. (Melee, offense, damage, murder)
[RT] Rusty!: Man's Best Friend (Sentry, Support, Backup, Rearguard)
[RT] The T3 (Tashalatora Triple Threat): My Kung Fu is More Powerful (Hybrid, Flex-Function, Melee, Caster)
[RT] The #1 Snoipah: Boom. 'Eadshot. (Caster, Theme, Spike, Trapscout)
[AR] Dreamblade: Rest in Pieces. (Melee, Damage, Single-Class, Combo/Momentum)
[AR] Evasion Tank: “When fighting angry blind men, is best to stay out of the way.” (Melee, Tank, Unorthodox Methods (attack negation), Theme)
[DH] Psycarnum Warrior: ↑↑↓↓←→←→BA Start (Melee, Tank, Psionics, Incarnum, 1337 h4x)
[AR] Heavy Weapons Elf: WHO TOUCHED MY BOW? (Ranged, Cohort, Damage, Unorthodox Methods (ranged ToB))
[RT] Gnowhere Gnome: A little man who wasn't there (Caster, Stealth, Single-Class, Elusive)
[AR] Uberflank: I got your back. (Melee, support, stunt, teamwork)
[TS] Flip the Bird: Everyday I'm shuffling (Ranged, harrier, unorthodox methods (ranged ToB / off-turn movement), support)
[DH] Eat Sleep Gank: Real Ultimate Power (Stealth, Assassination, Spike, Magic Versatility)
[AR] Slash and Burn: Mind, Body, Blade, Flame / Aspects of a greater whole / which delivers death. (Melee, Theme (flex-style), Damage, Stunt)
[RT] Edge of the Light: Cut, Fade to Black (Melee, Defense/Offense, Momentum, Tactical)
[RT] Quiet Murder: Cut throats, not corners. (Melee, Stealth, Harrier, Tactical)
[TS] Wand Overdrive: Say Hello to my little friends. (Caster, support/artillery/variable, wand specialist)
[RT] God Hand: What did the five fingers say to the face? (Melee/Gish, Unarmed, SAD, Theme)
[AR] Zero Buff Time Gish: Try to keep up! (Gish, Speed, Movement, Opportunity)
[TS] Robo Tackle: I Am Iron Man. (Melee, setting-specific (Eberron), positioning, theme, stunt)

[TS] Holy Fire: Just getting warmed up! (Casting, damage, theme (fire), theme (sacred), blasting)

[TS] Groundhog Mage: ♪Let’s do the time warp again♪ (Casting, stunt, setting-specific (Faerun), spell stamina / versatility, spontaneous wizard)

[RT] Captain Charisma: All she wants to do is dance (Hybrid (melee/support), SAD, Theme (criticals), Theme (flex-style)

[TS] Assassin's Speed: A blade in the crowd (Melee (technical), iaijutsu, SAD, theme (Assassin's Creed), tutorial)

 

Want to see how the entire group rolls?
[All] Party Optimization Showcase: Dead for Nothing
[TS/RT/AR] Optimization Article: The Flash Step
[RT] Optimization Article: Kung Fu Witchcraft

 

Seishi: I think it might be fun to have a one-off [game] tuned fairly, but with the intention of wiping the party. 

DisposableHero_: if [my campaign] has taught me nothing else, it is that with this group, nothing tuned fairly will ever wipe the party

RadicalTaoist: I've been throwing **** at this group that's 5 levels over CRed in DFN, and have yet to wipe the party.

Some months have gone by. I have taken my time to browse over interesting undead templates.

These were my favourites:

- Tainted minion from Heroes of Horror
- Revenant from City of the Spider Queen

As there is a strong Sharran influence in the process, shadow has to play a role, but shadowslain and umbral creature did not please me. I decided to throw in some home-grown shadow.

I would like to hear your opinions on this. Especially: Do you think this template is worth CR+2 or would you say CR+1 is sufficient?

Headless shadow revenant

Acquired template. Worshiper of Shar casts Create Greater Undead on the body of a character  with evil patron deity who has been beheaded and his head removed to a place different from the body.

All HD turned to d12. Undead traits and immunities.

Shade Armor / Shade Weapons (Su): The dead characters favourite weapons and armor are replaced by weapons and armor from shadow stuff. Any opponent gets a Will Save DC 24 or weapon damage and armor bonus are reduced to 80% (see Shade spell).

Shadow Sight (Su): The characters missing head is replaced by two grey, misty floaing eyes. The eyes grant perfect sight in low light conditions. In bright light and complete darkness they grant 60 feet of shadowy sight (i.e. everything is effectively granted concealment from the headless shadow revenant).

Bonus Feats: Silent Spell, Sudden Silent. Effectively this lessens the impact of being headless on spellcasting. All spells with the v component but 1 (sudden silent) have to be prepared on 1 level higher. Thus, the character loses most spells of his/her highest level, but can still cast some of the others.

-- Comment: As you can see, these three abilities do not enhance the characer. They lessen the impact of having been defeated, plundered and beheaded. Now the qualities that effect story and role playing: --

Unkillable (Su): As long as the headless shadow revenant did not get hold of the remains of its head it cannot be destroyed. If its hp drop below 0 it dissolves into wisps of shadow - only to reform 48 hours later in the same place or a place within the distance of one shadow walk in the direction of at least one person who has stolen the headless shadow revenants head.

Find the Guilty (Su): The headless shadow revenant knows unerringly the direction in which to find the persons who have cut its head off and/or removed the head to an place other than the rest of the body.

Shadow walk (Sp): Once per day the headless shadow revenant can use shadow walk as a spell like ability at the Caster Level of its HD.

---Comment: The story effect of these abilities is that the arch enemies will return as tireless arch enemies. They will be defeated and return. The headless shadow revenants will learn that patience is the way to get their heads back. They will attack the party once more when the PC's are weakened by a previous fight. The characters should have trouble to defeat them once more. The PC's start to be worried about the next encounter with the headless shadow revenants. They finally understand that they can only destroy get rid of their enemies if they give the heads back. --

Now the combat capabilities. These are very similar to the tainted minion.

Skill Bonus Hide +8

Hide in Plain Sight (Su).

Abilities: Str +4, Dex +2, Cha +2

Natural Armor Bonus +4

DR 10/ good

Energy resistance 10 vs. fire and electricity

Fast Healing (Su):
3 hp per rd as long as 1 hp or up.

Aura of Fear (Su):
30 ft. range, Will DC 16+Cha or shaken.



What do you say? CR +2 ok? Too weak, too strong? Interesting? Other proposals?

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