• NOW LIVE! -- One-Page Adventures for D&D 5th Edition on Kickstarter! A booklet of colourful one-page adventures for D&D 5th Edition ranging from levels 1-9 and designed for a single session of play.
log in or register to remove this ad

 

Undead Origins


log in or register to remove this ad


Voadam

Legend
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Undead: Many undead also know an innate spell which they may use to replicate themselves.
Necromancy spell.
Raise Undead miracle.
Skeleton, Skeleton Warrior: ?
Zombie: ?
Vampire: ?
Plague Zombie: ?
Ghost: ?

NECROMANCY
Difficulty 5 per power level
Cost 4 per power level
Range 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 1(cumulative) corpse or spirit (depending on version of the spell) within range per power level. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control 1(cumulative) undead creature per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

RAISE UNDEAD
Time to Call Forth 1 action
Piety 5 or 5 cumulative per level of the undead
This miracle allows the priest to reanimate corpses into the walking dead. If the priest summons this miracle over the grave, a spirit might be summoned instead. The priest can only animate the bodies of her religion’s faithful. The priest pays half piety on holy ground. Any character raised in this manner has a chance of being free willed equal to their level times the number of milestones they have passed on a d20. The priest must touch either the corpse or the grave of the corpse.
 

Voadam

Legend
Down in Yon Forest
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Frozen Undead Creature: ?
Novgor the Nosferatu, Vampire: ?
Magwas, Elf Ghoul: The vampire Novgor uses the cauldron to resurrect the Elven thralls of The Winter King and drain their blood. Many of those have arisen again as ghoulish undead faeries known as Magwas.
Angry Ghost, Ghost Princess, Ghost: They were guests of The Winter King, princesses offered to (or more often kidnapped by) The Winter King from human kings. They spent their lives locked in this room until they died of age and a new princess was taken.
Angry Ghost, Ghost Princess, Wraith: They were guests of The Winter King, princesses offered to (or more often kidnapped by) The Winter King from human kings. They spent their lives locked in this room until they died of age and a new princess was taken.
Vampire: Curse of the Nosferatu spell.

Curse of the Nosferatu
(found by using sage of the body of Novgor)
Template: Necromancy
Diffculty: 5 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 1 corpse they have personally drained of blood as a vampire. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control 1 vampire per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

OSR
Frozen Undead Creature: ?
Novgor the Nosferatu, Vampire: ?
Magwas, Elf Ghoul: The vampire Novgor uses the cauldron to resurrect the Elven thralls of The Winter King and drain their blood. Many of those have arisen again as ghoulish undead faeries known as Magwas.
Angry Ghost, Ghost Princess, Ghost: They were guests of The Winter King, princesses offered to (or more often kidnapped by) The Winter King from human kings. They spent their lives locked in this room until they died of age and a new princess was taken.
Angry Ghost, Ghost Princess, Wraith: They were guests of The Winter King, princesses offered to (or more often kidnapped by) The Winter King from human kings. They spent their lives locked in this room until they died of age and a new princess was taken.
 

Voadam

Legend
Hark! A Wizard!
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Zombie: Necromancy – Zombie spell.
Vampire: Necromancy – Vampire spell.
Undead Carrion Beast: Carrion's Debt Foreclosed spell.
Undead: Legion of the Dead spell.

CARRION’S DEBT FORECLOSED
Template Necromancy
Difficulty 5 per power level
Cost 4 per power level
Range 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 5 (cumulative) corpses of carrion beasts (crows, vultures, and hyenas for example) per power level that are in range. A caster can control 1 (cumulative) undead creature per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

LEGION OF THE DEAD
Template Necromancy
Difficulty 5 per power level
Cost 4 per power level
Range 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 5 (cumulative) corpses within range per power level. The corpses must be the corporeal bodies of soldiers who fell on the field of battle. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control 1 (cumulative) undead creature per level per version of this spell memorized, but only after those raised slay either their killers or one of their killer’s descendants. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

NECROMANCY – VAMPIRE
Template Necromancy
Difficulty 5 per power level
Cost 4 per power level
Range 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 1 corpse they have personally drained of blood, as a vampire. Any heroes or villains who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control 1 vampire per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

NECROMANCY – ZOMBIE
Template Necromancy
Difficulty 5 per power level
Cost 4 per power level
Range 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 1 corpse they have personally injured in life, as a zombie. A caster cannot control undead created this way. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.
 

Voadam

Legend
Lost in the Wilderness
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Vampire: ?
Wraith: ?
Skeleton: ?
Ghoul: ?
Long Dead Warrior 4: ?
Ghost: ?
Undead Warrior Cultist: ?
Zombie: ?
Fungal Zombie Grizzly Bear: ?
Elven Spirit: ?
Human Ghost: ?
Skeletal Mariner: ?
Ghoul Undead Cultist, Priest 3: ?
Dwarven Ghost: ?
Lich Wizard 7: ?
Withered Animate Corpse: ?
Undead: ?
Undead Noble: ?
Mummy: ?
 

Voadam

Legend
Rampaging Monsters
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Gornak the Oozing: Once a powerful wizard he is now but a giant skull floating in a caustic pool of ectoplasm. Well, he was a wizard. Well he was a wizard’s apprentice. Ok, maybe he just broke into a wizard’s lab.

Undead: The hamlet is built within sight of an ancient burial mounds from before recorded history. Any unburied dead have a 1% chance per night of rising as the undead.
 

Voadam

Legend
The City of Tears
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Plague Zombie: The Plague Zombies found in the Sultan’s Basement are the civilian remnants of the towns elite. Merchants, nobility, children and the elderly. They were once in expensive finery, but they spend most of their time bobbing in an algae covered pool so their clothing is ruined, their bodies moist and bloated with a green sheen. They each still carry 2d6 golden coins or equivalent value of rings and necklaces. They were not turned into zombies by a plague, they cannot spread zombism, they are simply zombies who are also coated with plague infected material.
Ghost: Mother's Lament spell.
Vampire Harem Girl: ?
Skeletal Legionnaire, Legionnaire Skeleton: ?
Skeleton Swordsman: The skeleton swordsmen are former palace guards, serving still in death.
Invisible Ghost Wizard: Eternal Torment of the Wicked spell.
First Sultan: When the Caliphate first swept over the region, a lesser commander took a small detachment into the desert and swept aside the last of the string of petty tyrants who had ruled the City of Tears and installed his own dynasty. That commander had not fully bought into the views of the Caliph and still trucked with treacherous pagan sorcerers.
Imperial Commander: The Imperial Commander lead the now undead legionnaires in life and leads them still in death.
Undead Legionnaire: ?
The Mad Pharaoh, Pharaoh Mummy: Like all other Pharaohs, the Mad Pharaoh was still mummified and entombed (unless he was the first monotheist).
Turns out the Mad Pharaoh was aptly named. He seems to have been entombed not only with massive amounts of jewellery, golden cups, coins, and idols (70,000 silver pieces worth) but also a some 10,000 clay jars (similar to canopic jars) labelled with each of his bowel movements and the date. His actual canopic jars are mixed in among them. His mummified body rests in a golden sarcophagus (2000 gold pieces). If his tomb is robbed without destroying the mummy and all canopic jars (with fire and salt) he will arise and hunt down each piece of his treasure in a murderous decade spanning hunt.
Swamp Zombie: Necromancy – Swamp Zombie spell.
Desert Vampire: Necromancy – Desert Vampire spell.
Undead Soldier: Legion of the Dead spell.
Carrion Beast Undead: Carrion's Debt Foreclosed spell.
Undead Wolf: ?

Necromancy – Swamp Zombie
Template: NECROMANCY
Difficulty: 5 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate 1 (cumulative) waterlogged corpse within range per power level as a mindless shambling undead. The body cannot have died prior to the last full moon. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster cannot control these undead. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

Necromancy – Desert Vampire
Template: NECROMANCY
Difficulty: 5 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
This spell causes the caster to animate a single corpse of an individual who died of thirst within one week per power level. They are always free willed, but may not harm the caster for a number of years equal to the spell’s power level. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight. Desert Vampires innately know Invisibility of Reflections, Hypnotic Glamour, Blood Regeneration, and this spell.

Legion of the Dead
Template: Necromancy
Difficulty: 5 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
Complexity: 5
This spell causes the caster to animate 5 (cumulative) corpses within range per power level. The corpses must be the corporeal bodies of soldiers who fell on the field of battle. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control 1 (cumulative) undead creature per level per version of this spell memorized, but only after those raised slay either their killers or one of their killer’s descendants. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

Carrion’s Debt Foreclosed
Template: Necromancy
Difficulty: 5 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
Complexity: 5
This spell causes the caster to animate 5 (cumulative) corpses of carrion beasts (crows, vultures, and hyenas for example) per power level that are in range. A caster can control 1 (cumulative) undead creature per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

Mother’s Lament
Template: Necromancy
Difficulty: 1 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
Complexity: 5
This spell causes the caster to animate the spirit of a stillborn from their grave. Any who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20, If the roll is less than the mother’s level plus five, they become free willed. A caster can control 1 (cumulative) ghost per level per version of this spell memorized. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.

Eternal Torment of the Wicked
Template: Necromancy
Difficulty: 1 per power level
Cost: 4 per power level
Range: 1 meter (cumulative) per power level
Complexity: 5
This spell causes the caster to animate 1 spirit within range. The spirit must be that of a dead wizard whose talisman is in the caster’s possession. Any heroes or villains in this radius who are raised may become free willed undead. Roll a d20 per hero or villain. If the roll is less than double the character’s level times the number of milestones they’ve passed, they become free willed. A caster can control any number of undead of from this version of the spell. If the caster dies all of her undead are destroyed, though free willed undead may be allowed a saving throw. Undead created in this manner suffer 1 (cumulative) damage per round from direct sunlight.
 

Voadam

Legend
The Price of Evil
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Ghost: ?
Skeleton: ?
Relentless Killer Ghost: ?
Witch Spirit Ghost: ?
Headless Horseman Ghost: ?
Spiteful Miser Ghost, Wraith: A spiteful miser is always the ghost of an elderly man or woman consumed by greed and materialism, and almost always without any sense of self excess. It was a sickness of wealth for wealth’s sake.
White Lady Ghost: A white lady is a jilted lover, often betrayed by a fiance and driven to suicide by the powerful forces of societal pressure, depression, and bad cliche. They are usually young women, often in wedding dresses (hence the term).
Bogeyman Ghost: A Bogeyman is a ghost that exists primarily to terrorize children. In life it was the worst kind of person. Often they met their end through some kind of lynching, but the sheer terror they caused their victims has allowed them to manifest inside the house (or in other cases, sometimes an entire village).
Bloody Mary Ghost: Bloody Mary as a status of ghost, refers not only to the titular bloody Mary, but a number of different ghosts. All of them are the ghosts of cruel and vain people, envious of the world of the living and eager to cause harm.
Mad Spirit Ghost: A mad spirit is any ghost of no particular special nature. They died a malevolent death and have gone quite mad.

OSR
Ghost: ?
Skeleton: ?
Relentless Killer Ghost: ?
Witch Spirit Ghost: ?
Headless Horseman Ghost: ?
Spiteful Miser Ghost, Wraith: A spiteful miser is always the ghost of an elderly man or woman consumed by greed and materialism, and almost always without any sense of self excess. It was a sickness of wealth for wealth’s sake.
White Lady Ghost: A white lady is a jilted lover, often betrayed by a fiance and driven to suicide by the powerful forces of societal pressure, depression, and bad cliche. They are usually young women, often in wedding dresses (hence the term).
Bogeyman Ghost: A Bogeyman is a ghost that exists primarily to terrorize children. In life it was the worst kind of person. Often they met their end through some kind of lynching, but the sheer terror they caused their victims has allowed them to manifest inside the house (or in other cases, sometimes an entire village).
Bloody Mary Ghost: Bloody Mary as a status of ghost, refers not only to the titular bloody Mary, but a number of different ghosts. All of them are the ghosts of cruel and vain people, envious of the world of the living and eager to cause harm.
Mad Spirit Ghost: A mad spirit is any ghost of no particular special nature. They died a malevolent death and have gone quite mad.
 

Voadam

Legend
Under the Waterless Sea
Neoclassical Geek Revival
Undead Corpse of Strange Foreigner: ?
Skeleton: The ghost is a necromancer’s spirit and can raise the 11 barnacle encrusted skeletons as soldiers to slay the characters and add them to its collection.
Deep One Ghost: ?
Human Ghost: Two charred human corpses (you would guess children unfortunately) lie sprawled amidst the wreckage. One of them has a golden dagger implanted into their stomach, somehow having escaped unscathed from the fire. The ghosts of the two humans haunt the shrine.
Zombie: The zombies are all former soldiers of the King’s army, affected by the Blight of Ib cast by the Deep One sorcerer.

OSR
Undead Corpse of Strange Foreigner: ?
Skeleton: The ghost is a necromancer’s spirit and can raise the 11 barnacle encrusted skeletons as soldiers to slay the characters and add them to its collection.
Deep One Ghost: ?
Human Ghost: Two charred human corpses (you would guess children unfortunately) lie sprawled amidst the wreckage. One of them has a golden dagger implanted into their stomach, somehow having escaped unscathed from the fire. The ghosts of the two humans haunt the shrine.
Zombie: The zombies are all former soldiers of the King’s army, affected by the Blight of Ib cast by the Deep One sorcerer.
 
Last edited:

Voadam

Legend
A Magical Society Aggressive Ecology: The Undead Leviathan (OSRIC)
OSRIC
Undead Leviathan: Undead leviathans are whale corpses reanimated through negative energy sinks at the ocean’s floor.
A whale fall is an unusual event in and of itself, but occasionally these massive bounties of detrital material land in places that simply cannot sustain natural life of any sort: a negative energy sink. These strange negative energies infuse a whale carcass with unholy power, giving it unlife, mobility, and malevolence — creating an undead leviathan.
Occasionally, something goes terribly wrong in the whale fall natural process — a whale falls into a negative energy sink. After several days, the few specialized creatures that can survive in a negative energy sink “colonize” the whale carcass and prepare for the next step in their life cycle. Within a month, an undead leviathan rises with its accompanying ecosystem and swims away, bringing death where it goes.
Baleen Undead Leviathan: ?
Cachalot Undead Leviathan: ?
Orca Undead Leviathan: ?
Undead Leviathan Tyrant: Undead leviathan tyrants are massive undead leviathans that have gone through their metamorphosis stage i.e. they are fully advanced undead leviathans.
After two decades of feeding, the negative energy aura of the undead leviathan ceases working and it swims to the nearest shore and beaches itself. There it “dies” again and rots on the beach for the next two weeks. After that period of dormancy, it rises as an undead leviathan tyrant.
Perhaps the most terrifying aspect of an undead leviathan occurs towards the end of its “life” cycle. After roaming the seas for around 20 years, the undead leviathan undergoes a metamorphosis and takes to the air before returning to the water. At the appointed time, its negative energy aura ceases working, and it swims to the nearest shore and beaches itself. Once stranded on land, all its unlife functions stop and it is again merely a whale corpse. During the next week, the leviathan spiders within the carcass seek the deepest part of the whale and form calciferous shells around themselves. Once ensconced in their protective chamber (resembling ostrich eggs in size and color), the spiders cease all activity and wait for a subtle change in pressure before reemerging.
All the while, the beached whale carcass bloats and swells tremendously, and this pause for decomposition is vital for attracting scavenger birds to the site. Roughly two weeks after landing, the undead leviathan returns to unlife with an even more deadly negative energy aura.
Baleen Undead Leviathan Tyrant: ?
Cachalot Undead Leviathan Tyrant: ?
Orca Undead Leviathan Tyrant: ?
Skeletal Scavenger: Formed from combined carcasses of birds killed by the undead leviathan’s negative energy aura, skeletal scavengers are man-sized avian skeletons that magically fly as if they still possessed wings.
Roughly two weeks after landing, the undead leviathan returns to unlife with an even more deadly negative energy aura. Any scavenger birds killed in this burst of negative energy form the latest creature compliment to the ecology: the skeletal scavengers. The instant after death, their avian flesh begins to melt away, leaving only bony bird skeletons behind.
Skeletal scavengers are only created by an undead leviathan tyrant.

Zombie: For instance, if you’re in a particularly rat bastard mood and willing to really challenge your PCs, you could have the undead leviathan’s aura spawn undead. This would mean that any creature killed in the aura would rise as an undead (you’ll have to decide in what time frame—a day or two would be rough, but instantaneously would be terrifying).
Undead: For instance, if you’re in a particularly rat bastard mood and willing to really challenge your PCs, you could have the undead leviathan’s aura spawn undead. This would mean that any creature killed in the aura would rise as an undead (you’ll have to decide in what time frame—a day or two would be rough, but instantaneously would be terrifying).
Mummy: ?
Wraith: ?
 


Voadam

Legend
A2 Lost Treasure of Actzimotal
OSRIC
Stone Guardian Skeleton: ?
Mummy High Priest: This is in fact the high priest. Or it once was. He had himself mummified so he could serve the emperor eternally.
Kalikaltulizma: ?
Zombie: ?
Ghoul: ?

Altus Adventum 2e
Stone Guardian Skeleton: ?
Mummy: This is in fact the high priest. Or it once was. He had himself mummified so he could serve the emperor eternally.
Kalikaltulizma: ?
Zombie: ?
Ghoul: ?
 



Voadam

Legend
Death from Below: A World of Arkara adventure
OSRIC
Skeleton: ?
Zombie: This room contains an unholy font dedicated to Icarra, known to the Batrachians and Lizard Men as the Dark Goddess. This pool has two effects: any Batrachian baptized in the pool by a priest of the Dark Goddess gains the benefits of a Bless spell for the next 24 hours; any non-Batrachian drowned in the pool by a priest of the Dark Goddess rises as a Zombie under his control.
The pool can only perform one of these functions and only once per day. For the past week, the Batrachian shaman in S17 has been drowning one captured Buccaneer each day and converting them into zombies.
 


Voadam

Legend
Howler
OSRIC
Ancient Skeleton: ?
Zellula, Hill Mummy: ?
Ruella, Hill Mummy: ?
Allor, Hill Mummy: ?
Hill Mummy: Hill mummies are created by rural cults of various ancient deities in areas that lack the wealth and power necessary to create genuine mummies. These mummies can be worshiped and idolized or they can be used as guardians. If properly raised with the correct rites and rituals they maintain their original alignment and ability scores and can be consulted for wisdom or help. When raised in this manner they will only remain animated for 1 day per cleric level of the high priest or priestess that did the raising. After that point they return to their sarcophagus and slumber for at least one year before they can be raised again. If raised improperly by having their coffins unsealed or their true names recited aloud, they will rise as monstrous creatures bent on destroying everything around them, an unfortunate side-effect of the quality of magic used to create them.
 

Voadam

Legend
Ice Kingdoms: Into the Mournwood
OSRIC
Ghost: These are the incorporeal ghosts of the bodies on the ground.
They too lost their children and came into the woods to rescue them from the hags. Upon finding the hag responsible they discovered their children had been turned into bear cubs and consumed by the wood witch. One child was saved by having the bear cloak ripped from her hide, the child then ran into the woods. Before they could escape with the child the hag attacked and killed them and then cursed them to forever dwell in the cursed forest.
Zombie Mournwood: Mournwood Zombies are mindless animated corpses controlled by the vile curse of the forest. As the magic that animates them does not prevent their decay, Mournwood Zombies are often bloated, rotting, or desiccated, depending on their surrounding environment. Mournwood Zombies vary in size depending on the kind of corpses they are animated from, however, they all have the same basic characteristic of vines and roots growing through their bodies, as if the very forest were using the dead bodies as puppets.
In the middle of the night, the dead bodies turn into zombies and attack the middle of the camp.
There are 15 corpses in the pile. There is no evidence of what caused their deaths. If the characters come to search the corpses, the dead rise as zombies and attack.
Zombie: Mournwood Necromantic Strike curse.

Necromantic Strike curse
No matter what the character does short of turning dead bodies to ash; anything that the character kills rises in the middle of the night and attack as zombies. Theses undead creatures follow the character that killed them and eventually catch up to the character. In the Mournwood the sun is blocked by the huge forest cover and the zombies never rest during the day.
 

Voadam

Legend
Ice Kingdoms: Lair of the White Wyvern
OSRIC
Skeleton Ogre: Skeleton ogres are the reanimated skeletal remains of ogres, reinforced with negative energy.
A Skeleton ogre is an animated undead ogre comprised of bones.
If there are more characters of good alignment than evil, the evil contained in the room will raise a Wraith warrior and two large skeletons (the former orc champion and his two ogre followers).
Wraith Warrior: Warrior Wraiths are a type of undead created from warriors killed in battle, and kept from the dissolution of death by their desire to fight.
Warrior Wraiths inhabit the regions immediately surrounding their deaths and return to unlife on a regular basis, though the conditions of this return can be based on many different factors. Common factors include a certain time of day, a certain condition that is met (such as disturbing of their grave) or other activating incident.
If there are more characters of good alignment than evil, the evil contained in the room will raise a Wraith warrior and two large skeletons (the former orc champion and his two ogre followers).
 

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top