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Undead Origins

Voadam

Adventurer
Elite Opponents Variant Unicorns
Monstrous Vampire Unicorn: ?

Vampire Spawn: A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by a monstrous vampire's energy drain rises as a vampire spawn 1d4 days after burial. If the monstrous vampire instead drains the victim's Constitution to 0 or lower, the victim returns as a spawn if it had 4 or less HD and was a humanoid or monstrous humanoid, and as a monstrous vampire if it had 5 or more HD and was an aberration, animal, dragon, fey, giant, humanoid, magical beast, monstrous humanoid, or vermin.
Monstrous Vampire: A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by a monstrous vampire's energy drain rises as a vampire spawn 1d4 days after burial. If the monstrous vampire instead drains the victim's Constitution to 0 or lower, the victim returns as a spawn if it had 4 or less HD and was a humanoid or monstrous humanoid, and as a monstrous vampire if it had 5 or more HD and was an aberration, animal, dragon, fey, giant, humanoid, magical beast, monstrous humanoid, or vermin.
 
Should look up the boneyard and the dream vestige. Both are undead with grade A potential and also both have interesting origins. Especially the dream vestige.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Should look up the boneyard and the dream vestige. Both are undead with grade A potential and also both have interesting origins. Especially the dream vestige.
Both are in 3.5 Libris Mortis.

Boneyards don't say much on their origins:

A boneyard is an undead creature made entirely from the bones of other dead creatures. However, unlike a skeleton or similar monster, a boneyard’s form is fluid in the sense that it can appear merely as a pile of bones, or as a serpent composed of bones, or some other form of its choice. Boneyards have been called by many names, depending upon where they are encountered, including bone weirds, dancing bones, and bonetakers.
Is there an origin I am not seeing?
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Pathfinder 2e Core Rulebook
Geb, Ghost: ?
Arazni: ?
Tar-Baphon, The Whispering Tyrant, Lich: ?
Walkena, Mummy: ?

Undead: With a haunting moan, shambling bodies rose up from the forgotten battlefield. Given foul unlife by the necromancy of the Whispering Tyrant, the corpses still wore the tattered raiment of their former lives. These crusaders had been the first to stand against the lich when he returned, and they were the first to fall in his rebirth.
Once living, these creatures were infused after death with negative energy and soul-corrupting evil magic.
Create Undead ritual.
Ghost: ?
Ghoul: Ghoulish Cravings spell.
Create Undead ritual.
Ghoul Fever disease.
Ghast: ?
Lich: Some forms of undead, such as liches, form using their own unique methods and can’t be created with a version of create undead.
Skeleton: Create Undead ritual.
Vampire: ?
Wraith: ?
Zombie: Create Undead ritual.

GHOULISH CRAVINGS SPELL 2
ATTACK DISEASE EVIL NECROMANCY
Traditions divine, occult
Cast [two-actions] somatic, verbal
Range touch; Targets 1 creature
Saving Throw Fortitude
You touch the target to afflict it with ghoul fever, infesting it with hunger and a steadily decreasing connection to positive energy; the target must attempt a Fortitude save.
Critical Success The target is unaffected.
Success The target is afflicted with ghoul fever at stage 1.
Failure The target is afflicted with ghoul fever at stage 2.
Critical Failure The target is afflicted with ghoul fever at stage 3.
Ghoul Fever (disease); Level 3; Stage 1 carrier with no ill effects (1 day); Stage 2 3d8 negative damage and the creature regains half as many Hit Points from all healing (1 day); Stage 3 as stage 2 (1 day); Stage 4 3d8 negative damage and the creature gains no benefit from healing (1 day); Stage 5 as stage 4 (1 day); Stage 6 the creature dies and rises as a ghoul at the next midnight.

CREATE UNDEAD RITUAL 2
UNCOMMON EVIL NECROMANCY
Cast 1 day; Cost black onyx, see Table 7–1; Secondary Casters 1
Primary Check Arcana (expert), Occultism (expert), or Religion (expert); Secondary Checks Religion
Range 10 feet; Target 1 dead creature
You transform the target into an undead creature with a level up to that allowed in Table 7–1. There are many versions of this ritual, each specific to a particular type of undead (one ritual for all zombies, one for skeletons, one for ghouls, and so on), and the rituals that create rare undead are also rare. Some forms of undead, such as liches, form using their own unique methods and can’t be created with a version of create undead.
Critical Success The target becomes an undead creature of the appropriate type. If it’s at least 4 levels lower than you, you can make it a minion. This gives it the minion trait, meaning it can use 2 actions when you command it, and commanding it is a single action that has the auditory and concentrate traits. You can have a maximum of four minions under your control. If it’s intelligent and doesn’t become a minion, the undead is helpful to you for awakening it, though it’s still a horrid and evil creature. If it’s unintelligent and doesn’t become a minion, you can give it one simple command. It pursues that goal single-mindedly, ignoring any of your subsequent commands.
Success As critical success, except an intelligent undead that doesn’t become your minion is only friendly to you, and an unintelligent undead that doesn’t become your minion leaves you alone unless you attack it. It marauds the local area rather than following your command.
Failure You fail to create the undead.
Critical Failure You create the undead, but its soul, tortured by your foul necromancy, is full of nothing but hatred for you. It attempts to destroy you.

TABLE 7–1: CREATURE CREATION RITUALS
Creature Level Spell Level Required Cost
–1 or 0 2 15 gp
1 2 60 gp
2 3 105 gp
3 3 180 gp
4 4 300 gp
5 4 480 gp
6 5 750 gp
7 5 1,080 gp
8 6 1,500 gp
9 6 2,100 gp
10 7 3,000 gp
11 7 4,200 gp
12 8 6,000 gp
13 8 9,000 gp
14 9 13,500 gp
15 9 19,500 gp
16 10 30,000 gp
17 10 45,000 gp

Ghoul Fever (disease); Level 3; Stage 1 carrier with no ill effects (1 day); Stage 2 3d8 negative damage and the creature regains half as many Hit Points from all healing (1 day); Stage 3 as stage 2 (1 day); Stage 4 3d8 negative damage and the creature gains no benefit from healing (1 day); Stage 5 as stage 4 (1 day); Stage 6 the creature dies and rises as a ghoul at the next midnight.
 
@Voadam huh...their origin was discussed at one point. Thought it was in libris mortis (which is where i first saw them) but i guess thats not where i saw said origin. Im pretty sure thats the first place i saw them mentioned though. Weird. Anyway, they seem to generally arise from a powerful spell caster creating them by some means. I thought i remembered it being a sort of binding enchantment kinda thing. Wish i remembered the particulars. It was neat. They are both in the same book though, yes. And the dream vestige says a bit about its origin there. Guess thats probably why i thought i remembered that also being the book where i found origins for the boneyard.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
The Nemesis Bestiary Volume Two
Pyre Legion: “No one soul forms a Pyre Legion. Instead, the Legion is the collective agony, dread and rage of multitudes condemned to death by immolation. I tell any executioner I meet that they must not burn more than one condemned with the same wood. They do that, the world will see fewer Pyre Legions. Few listen; you see the result.”-Rutger Goldspear, Dwarven inquisitor and monster hunter
“Leave any settlement plagued by a Pyre Legion to its fate, for they are guilty of a great sin. Such unquiet spirits only form when an innocent dies by judicial fire. Allow the Pyre Legion to have its vengeance.”-Raethelli legal codes concerning Pyre Legions
“Archeological excavation of the Hurnga Lakebed, now dried after the dam’s construction, found more than a dozen brass chests, each containing wood fragments and ash mixed with burnt human bones. The locals revealed the casks were the remains of burnt witches and their pyres, sunk into the lake to prevent fiery demons from rising from the remains.”-Adventurer’s Almanac, volume XXVII “The Dry Hurnga Lakebed and its Horrors”
Skull Soldier: A 12th level caster can create a Skull Soldier with the spell Create Undead. Additional Skull Soldiers created by Mutilation and Recruitment are considered undead under the caster’s control for the caster’s HD limit on control.
Skull Soldiers are created from the remains of muscular warriors ritually decapitated. Their powerful bodies are wrapped in the hides of black wolves. Each Skull Soldier has had its mortal head replaced with the defleshed skull of some fearsome beast- often a great raptor, panther, dire wolf, or nightmare.
“I had a comrade fall to a platoon of these laughing horrors. As he was dying, the things violated him, laughing the whole time. Then they cut his head from his corpse, and dragged it away to their lair. Made him one of them.”-Galanis, mercenary warrior
Mutilation and Recruitment power.

Mutilation and Recruitment (SU)
The Skull Soldier can hack the head from the (mostly intact) corpse of any recently slain humanoid or monstrous humanoid creature of Size Medium and affix a defleshed animal skull. The process takes an hour of effort. At the end of this time, the slain creature rises as a Skull Soldier, with none of the knowledge or abilities he had in life.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
The Nemesis Bestiary Volume Three
Lantern Lich: “Lantern Liches are what remains of wizards who felt the call to lichdom when they were still too young, too ignorant of magic, and of life to survive the transition into undeath. The corpses they hoped to ride into eternity disintegrated. The only options became two: the lantern, or the coffin. None of them realize the lantern is just another kind of coffin.”-Jonah the Starcloaked, chronicler of matters arcane
“Iron has always impeded magic; rare indeed is the wizard who goes about his business in field plate. But a handful of wizards, determined to cheat death and having less stomach for the corpse work of necromancy, build new iron bodies for themselves. To be sure, these iron shells are strong and durable, but every time a spell dies because the iron fingers were too clumsy to cast it properly, the soul inside the iron dies a little more. Soon, all that is left is rage and self loathing, expressed as flame.”-Wyl the Lich Queen
Taxidermy Revenant: Taxidermy Revenants are horrid composite undead created from a chimerical assortment of hunting trophies animated by malign intelligence.
“I knew a Druid once, claimed Taxidermy Revenants are nature’s punishment of trophy hunters, and those damn fool nobles who go traipsin’ into the wilderness with half an army behind ‘em to get a hart’s head for their wall. I don’t know if I agree or not, but unless it’s common folk hurt by one, I never pick up my blades against a Taxidermy Revenant. Let the damn nobles prove how great of hunters they are by taking one on.”-Tom Yorkshire, ranger
 
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Voadam

Adventurer
Dragon 367
Janus Gull, Esme, Tormenting Ghost:
Keener, Warforged Banshee, Wailing Ghost: Keener, a ranger, was Janus Gull’s sole warforged resident at the time of the catastrophe. Keener was killed by a savage lightning strike at the height of the storm.

Ghoul: ?
Ghost: The ghosts that haunt Janus Gull are those unfortunate souls who were killed during the storm, but whose souls did not escape before the demiplane was created.
Phantom Warrior: ?
Trap Haunt: ?
Undead: ?
Mummy Lord: ?
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Epic Insights Compiled and Updated
Skeleton: Horrible Army of the Dead epic spell.

HORRIBLE ARMY OF THE DEAD
Necromancy [Death, Evil]
Spellcraft DC: 112
Components: V, S
Casting Time: 1 full round
Range: 300 ft.
Area: 300-ft. radius
Target: One or more living creatures
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: Fortitude negates
Spell Resistance: Yes
To Develop: 1,008,000 gp; 21days; 40,320 XP. Seeds: animate dead (DC 23), slay (DC 25). Factors: reduce casting time by 9 rounds (+18 DC), create additional 60 HD of undead (+60 DC), create skeletons (-12 DC). Mitigating factor: burn 1,000 XP (-10 DC).
All living creatures within the area (to a maximum of 80 HD, no creature with more than 10 HD is affected) wither and die, their flesh falling to dust in seconds. The next round, these creatures rise as skeletons. You can naturally control 1 HD of undead per caster level; any undead beyond this number are uncontrolled (but since you’re probably creating them out of the middle of your enemy’s army, they’ll cause plenty of chaos on their own).
XP Cost: 1,000 XP.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Far Corners of the World Shadows of Glory Monsters of the Lost City
Golem Remnant: With the passage of countless ages, the majority of any guardians and sentinels that survived the ancient cataclysm long since died or moved to different regions. Yet one category of creature in particular remained at their posts: constructs. The golems and other animated guardians created by the ancients simply remained at their posts, patient and silent, awaiting new orders that would never come. Eventually, the elements wore down even these ancient constructs, and their bodies fell apart from disuse.
Yet so strong was the binding magic that anchored the animating elemental spirits to these ancient golems that when the bodies died, their elemental "souls" died as well -- yet they did not return to the elemental planes once their bodies wasted away. Still bound to a body that no longer existed, these disembodied elemental spirits transformed into strange undead known today as golem remnants.
A golem remnant is a particularly unusual undead creature. The elemental spirits that create them are no longer bound to the Material Plane, yet their ages of idle torment that ended with dissolution universally leave them insane, and once freed, they seek out other statues, suits of armor, even dead bodies to inhabit and animate.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Fight Club Chuladoal
Chuladoal Fiendish Gravetouched Ghoul Swarm-Shifter Troll: Too much flesh-eating in life resulted in his transformation to a gravetouched ghoul after death.
Chuladoal Fiendish Four-Headed Gravetouched Ghoul Swarm-Shifter Pyro-Troll: Too much flesh-eating in life resulted in his transformation to a gravetouched ghoul after death.
Chuladoal Fiendish Four-Headed Gravetouched Ghoul Swarm-Shifter Pyro-Troll Barbarian 4: Too much flesh-eating in life resulted in his transformation to a gravetouched ghoul after death.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Fight Club Drossang Tachlash
Drossang Tachlash, Redspawn Arcaniss Spectral Mage Rogue 1/Spellwarp Sniper 1: So, she began seeking out training in arts that are rare among her kind, and as she became more specialized with ray spells, she gained more notice. Not in a good way, though, because a wizard in the Cult of the Dragon captured her and turned her into a spectral mage.
Drossang Tachlash, Redspawn Arcaniss Spectral Mage Rogue 1/Spellwarp Sniper 5: So, she began seeking out training in arts that are rare among her kind, and as she became more specialized with ray spells, she gained more notice. Not in a good way, though, because a wizard in the Cult of the Dragon captured her and turned her into a spectral mage.
Drossang Tachlash, Redspawn Arcaniss Spectral Mage Rogue 1/Spellwarp Sniper 5/Incantatrix 4: So, she began seeking out training in arts that are rare among her kind, and as she became more specialized with ray spells, she gained more notice. Not in a good way, though, because a wizard in the Cult of the Dragon captured her and turned her into a spectral mage.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Fight Club Imbrudar
Imbrudar, Brain in a Jar Psion 2: Imbrudar was created in a lab long ago.
Imbrudar, Brain in a Jar Psion 9: Imbrudar was created in a lab long ago.
Imbrudar, Brain in a Jar Psion 13: Imbrudar was created in a lab long ago.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Fight Club The Vampire Werewolf
Nadezda Jilek, Orc Werewolf Vampire Scout 5: Among the colony of orc werewolves, Nadezda wasn't that special or even noticed. As one among many in the pack, she took her place like everyone else. She trained as a scout and hunted food for the tribe. On her last hunt, lycanthrope-hating paladins and clerics wiped out her whole tribe while she was away, and she returned to a burned village and piles of charred corpses. As she grieved and buried her kin that night, a vampire attacked her.
Nadezda Jilek, Orc Werewolf Vampire Scout 5/Rogue 1/Pious templar 4: After Nadezda's tribe was wiped out, she wandered the world for a while, and eventually fell in with a temple of Gruumsh. She trained as a temple guardian and served in that capacity for a few years before the temple was attacked by a vampire. She did her best to hold it at bay, but in the end she was overcome.
Nadezda Jilek, Orc Werewolf Vampire Scout 5/Rogue 1/Pious Templar 4/Shadowdancer 1/Warshaper 4: After years of serving a temple of Gruumsh as a pious templar, Nadezda became disillusioned with religion and wandered the world again. Along the way she met a druid and learned much from him about shapechanging and controlling her body. But wanderlust called again, and she was on the verge of departing when a vampire attacked them both.

Vampire Spawn: A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by Nadezda 's energy drain rises as a vampire spawn 1d4 days after burial. If Nadezda instead drains the victim's Constitution to 0 or lower, the victim returns as a spawn if it had 4 or less HD and was a humanoid or monstrous humanoid, and as a monstrous vampire if it had 5 or more HD and was an aberration, animal, dragon, fey, giant, humanoid, magical beast, monstrous humanoid, or vermin.
Monstrous Vampire: A humanoid or monstrous humanoid slain by Nadezda 's energy drain rises as a vampire spawn 1d4 days after burial. If Nadezda instead drains the victim's Constitution to 0 or lower, the victim returns as a spawn if it had 4 or less HD and was a humanoid or monstrous humanoid, and as a monstrous vampire if it had 5 or more HD and was an aberration, animal, dragon, fey, giant, humanoid, magical beast, monstrous humanoid, or vermin.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Fight Club Voidmind Rot Reaver
Sapphiraktar, Dracolich: ?

Zombie: As a standard action, the voidmind rot reaver can animate any dead creature within 60 feet that was affected by his wound rot ability within the last 24 hours. Creatures so animated rise as zombies. The voidmind rot reaver can animate 10 HD worth of undead at any one time, and these don't count against the Hit Dice of undead he can control using his rebuke undead ability.
As a standard action, the voidmind rot reaver can animate any dead creature within 60 feet that was affected by his wound rot ability within the last 24 hours. Creatures so animated rise as zombies. The voidmind rot reaver fighter 4 can animate 14 HD worth of undead at any one time, and these don't count against the Hit Dice of undead he can control using his rebuke undead ability.
As a standard action, the voidmind rot reaver fighter 8 can animate any dead creature within 60 feet that was affected by his wound rot ability within the last 24 hours. Creatures so animated rise as zombies. The voidmind rot reaver can animate 18 HD worth of undead at any one time, and these don't count against the Hit Dice of undead he can control using his rebuke undead ability.
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Forgotten Realms Adventure Locales The Haunted Glen
Haunted Glen: Some time ago, a fey nymph visited him, fell in love with him, and enticed him to fall in love with her. This love was his undoing, for his paramour was an evil fey from the Unseelie Court. She and a group of evil fey creatures came one night and captured the woodsman, and in a night-long dance ritual stole his soul, or at least a part of it. The ritual so affected the trees that they can no longer grow in the clearing. They carried the body into the forest and hid it; later, animals ate it. Part of his spirit remains, seeking wholeness or rest, but unable really to affect the world around him. (This is the darkness or sadness that presses upon the area.)
 

Voadam

Adventurer
Forgotten Realms Adventure Locales The Ruined Village Square
Fronn, Human Ghost Ranger 9: The three people who were lost from the village died (either due to the passing of time or unlucky mishaps with the portal), but only the farmer's son became a ghost and started haunting the ruins. This ghost is the form that one occasionally glimpses in the square, and he is restlessly trying to find a way home. He may choose to interact with the PCs if they stay in the ruins area for at least 2 hours. His name is Fronn, and he came to realize how he was transported via the fountain; though he died, his spirit remained behind at the site of the portal. Because of this, he tries to keep other people out of the fountain during the times that the portal is active.
 

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