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michaeljearley
07-20-2008, 08:23 PM
Hello. Might be a dumb question but I've not found the answer elsewhere.


So far, this is the best I've found.
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/lich.htm


Anyone know of, or where to get, the rules for creating a lich?
Aside from oh, you have to be evil and spend gold.

agoraderek
07-20-2008, 08:44 PM
if you can find a copy, best of dragon, vol. II had two articles on lichdom and the rituals involved, iirc. they're from 1e, but fluff is fluff ;)

[edit] ok, it was just one article.

Engar
07-20-2008, 09:04 PM
Darksun had some good info on becoming undead, but I cannot remember if lich was one of them off the top of my head.

dalenvec
07-20-2008, 10:05 PM
Theres an article at wizards.com in the savage progression archives
home-archives-dnd-retired-savage progression

http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/sp/20031212a

dunno how usefull it is but hope it help or gives you an idea to make up a ritual

Engar
07-20-2008, 10:13 PM
2e:

prepare a phylactery: any object worth 1,500gp/level of the wizard then cast: enchant an item, magic jar, permanency, & reincarnation on it.

prepare a toxic poison then cast: wraithform, permanency, cone of cold, feign death and animate dead on it.

drink potion during a full moon, roll system shock and if you make it you are a lich, otherwise forever dead.

Check under lich in other monster manuals too.

michaeljearley
07-20-2008, 10:24 PM
I think that article is pretty good.

Only thing I saw really missing is a timeframe. How long does the actual craft take. For both the physical craft, as well alchemical makings.

agoraderek
07-20-2008, 10:29 PM
I think that article is pretty good.

Only thing I saw really missing is a timeframe. How long does the actual craft take. For both the physical craft, as well alchemical makings.

hmmm, i think you cold houserule that if you wanted to take the time to write it up. maybe one of the other guys has a link or info on that, but reading the dragon article, it isnt specific on the time issue. which system are you using? if it is 4e, i think you're going to have to houserule it; with 3x i think they have craft rules and times in the dmg (i can't remember off the top of my head, and, frankly, im too lazy to walk into the other room to get the book...)

nijineko
07-22-2008, 07:58 PM
in 3e, the crafting time is roughly 1day per 1000gp.

as far as becoming a lich, in 3rd edition you need to read this link (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/lich.htm), which you have already found. it has precise details on how it all works. since it is all open gaming content, i will summarize here for you.

the character must be evil and willing to undergo the ceremony of their own free will. you must be a spellcaster and have a caster level of 11th or higher. you must be able to craft a phylactery yourself (no one else can do it for you...) via the craft wonderous item feat. it costs 120,000gp and 4800xp. due to the cost it takes 120 days to craft.

additional notes for your benefit: =D

NOT in the srd, but commonly appearing in other d&d source material is the requirement of making a special expensive magical poison... (you could either include its cost in with the cost of the phylactery, or have it cost additional... supposedly the exact formula is a great secret and researching it is one of the big tasks occupying would-be liches) taking the poison and then making a roll based on your caster level (higher caster level equals better chance...) to succeed on converting yourself into a lich. failure means that your character is dead, and cannot be brought back by any mortal means, to boot. if you decide to make the poison cost extra, then you could also require the brew potion feat if you are feeling restrictive, and once you've decided the cost of the poison, then you would add its crafting time to the above time for the phylactery.

in addition to that, note that the level adjustment for a lich is +4. this will put a successful character in an unusual position of having a higher level than they have experience to justify! the end result of that is that they will have to "catch up" by earning four more levels worth of xp so that they equal their new level before they can take any more classes.

extra bonus:

the most evil and nasty version of a big bad guy becoming a lich that i've ever ever heard of was this one reoccuring villain who not only desired to become a lich but wanted to wreck havoc and revenge on the player character who destroyed the previous evil plans.... so the villain kidnapped one of the character's children, and hid the child long enough to convert the child's living skeleton into a phylactery.... heroes not being big on child-killing, they are now forced to wait until the child dies 'naturally'. of course, it will be a cremation ceremony....

michaeljearley
07-22-2008, 08:26 PM
That is freaking awesome.

And 120 days, that sucks, what kind of adventurer has that kind of time???

Dimthar
07-22-2008, 08:30 PM
Best source is "Van Ritchen's Guide to the Lich" is AD&D, but is designed specifically to enhance the Role-playing experience.

.

nijineko
07-22-2008, 08:37 PM
ah yes, the van richten's guides are great resources for this sort of thing. i was focusing on 3e so i forgot about mentioning them. *^^*

Caligula
07-22-2008, 08:58 PM
120 days seems a little lengthy, but considering the amount of power gained, I think it's at least reasonable.


the most evil and nasty version of a big bad guy becoming a lich that i've ever ever heard of was this one reoccuring villain who not only desired to become a lich but wanted to wreck havoc and revenge on the player character who destroyed the previous evil plans.... so the villain kidnapped one of the character's children, and hid the child long enough to convert the child's living skeleton into a phylactery.... heroes not being big on child-killing, they are now forced to wait until the child dies 'naturally'. of course, it will be a cremation ceremony....

As for this....I second what Michael said: that sure is freakin' awesome :D

nijineko
07-22-2008, 09:55 PM
i can't claim the credit for this one, but i am sure glad i never played under that dm! ^^

agoraderek
07-22-2008, 10:13 PM
i can't claim the credit for this one, but i am sure glad i never played under that dm! ^^

why? that sort of diabolical genius is a good thing! :biggrin:

Skunkape
07-23-2008, 07:26 AM
That is freaking awesome.

And 120 days, that sucks, what kind of adventurer has that kind of time???

A high level one who's ready to retire!:D

Caligula
07-23-2008, 08:15 AM
Haha! :D


i can't claim the credit for this one, but i am sure glad i never played under that dm! ^^


A high level one who's ready to retire!:D

Well, think about it. Look at the effects of lichdom, as well as being undead. If it were just a wave of a hand and poof you were undead, why isn't everyone doin' it nowadays? My opinion is that if you want to change so much, it'll take time, as well as the right materials, caster level, xp, etc. To quote one of my friends whenever he was asked by another PC to sell an item to them, "It aint cheap, fool!" :becky:

michaeljearley
07-23-2008, 05:23 PM
A high level one who's ready to retire!:D

Bah, retire?? at the height of power. Only logical speaking humans with family say things like that.

tesral
07-23-2008, 07:49 PM
I'm not too worried about the exact method, unless I have a party trying to stop a Lich from forming. Then the time factor comes into it.

If I have player that has a character that wants to be a Lich, that is another matter. New character time.

You are never going to find a Lich and his phylactery in the same county if the same country.

The Lich has his phylactery as the central medallion of a great bed that is used by the ner'do well. son of a far off noble. The son is kept in luxury with the only stipulation for the use of all this wealth is that he must sleep in the same bed every night. The bed in a far place amid the light and the comfort of an elegant manor, a bed that will take is life if the Lich is ever slain and give this new body to the rising Lich.

The best place to hide something isn't necessarily in a deep dark cave....

michaeljearley
07-23-2008, 07:54 PM
Oooo, nice idea.

nijineko
07-23-2008, 09:49 PM
the only way i'd let a player become a lich is if i was going to take away the character and then make everyone start over at level one with the lich character-now npc-as the new campaign's big bad evil guy.... muwahahahahah!

off hand, i'd take a lich's phylactery, coat it in lead or other detection dampening material, store it in a glove of storing, hide the glove of storing (made of really fine silk, a tiny delicate thing) folded up tight and hidden inside a really useful magic item... and then arrange to have it given to the pc's as a gift from a major patron or other good guy. then have a bunch of fake phylacteries (with big powerful magic and evil auras, lots of guards, traps, remote locations, the works... oh and handy maps to the "real" phylactery for them to find in each successive fortress) scattered all over just to keep them busy.... ;D

Genzodus Thoth
07-24-2008, 09:40 AM
off hand, i'd take a lich's phylactery, coat it in lead or other detection dampening material, store it in a glove of storing, hide the glove of storing (made of really fine silk, a tiny delicate thing) folded up tight and hidden inside a really useful magic item... and then arrange to have it given to the pc's as a gift from a major patron or other good guy. then have a bunch of fake phylacteries (with big powerful magic and evil auras, lots of guards, traps, remote locations, the works... oh and handy maps to the "real" phylactery for them to find in each successive fortress) scattered all over just to keep them busy.... ;D
A nice idea, but there's always the chance that the heroes break the item that you hid it in. Since the monster manual says that it can be a small box or a similar item, I would disguise the real phylactery as Generic Castle Doorknob #5.

michaeljearley
07-24-2008, 10:59 AM
What's the problem with having a lich on the team. Provided the levels balance and, obvisously, the party is evil oriented.

Skunkape
07-24-2008, 12:44 PM
Bah, retire?? at the height of power. Only logical speaking humans with family say things like that.

When I say ready to retire, I mean become a lich!:D

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
07-26-2008, 03:47 AM
I'm not too worried about the exact method, unless I have a party trying to stop a Lich from forming. Then the time factor comes into it.

If I have player that has a character that wants to be a Lich, that is another matter. New character time.

You are never going to find a Lich and his phylactery in the same county if the same country.

The Lich has his phylactery as the central medallion of a great bed that is used by the ner'do well. son of a far off noble. The son is kept in luxury with the only stipulation for the use of all this wealth is that he must sleep in the same bed every night. The bed in a far place amid the light and the comfort of an elegant manor, a bed that will take is life if the Lich is ever slain and give this new body to the rising Lich.

The best place to hide something isn't necessarily in a deep dark cave....
Very good. It gives me ideas.

Thoth-Amon

nijineko
07-27-2008, 10:02 PM
A nice idea, but there's always the chance that the heroes break the item that you hid it in. Since the monster manual says that it can be a small box or a similar item, I would disguise the real phylactery as Generic Castle Doorknob #5.

true, but such is the oversights of self-vaunting genius. with the number of door busters i've seen go through my castles/towers/dungeons i'd not go with the doorknob either. hmmmm, maybe a random torch sconce.

tesral
07-27-2008, 10:05 PM
true, but such is the oversights of self-vaunting genius. with the number of door busters i've seen go through my castles/towers/dungeons i'd not go with the doorknob either. hmmmm, maybe a random torch sconce.

It is also possible to outsmart one's self.


I try to keep in mind that the Antagonists seldom has a given set of "heroes" in mind designing their defenses. So I don't tailor to the capacities of the party.

The current Lick is trying to get her body killed. She picked an area not known for adventuring types just as some adventuring types show up. They are doing their research. She may get deader than she planned.

gdmcbride
07-28-2008, 02:51 AM
The Age of Worms Adventure Path (near the end) has a great bit of plot that centers around a (draco)lich's phylactery. Red Hand of Doom also gives a fine example of how a lich's phylactery can play a pivotal plot point.

Several points:

Why don't liches disguise their phylactery's as Random Door Knob #5 or whatever? First, a phylactery is a powerful tool for controlling a lich. Sympathetic magic can use it as a powerful arcane connection for scrying, long ranged attacks, etc. Second, if someone ever accidentally destroys Random Door Knob #5, it is basically impossible to make another one. Suddenly and forever, you can be killed.

So liches need to hide their phylacteries. Who do you trust to guard it? Who won't try to use it as leverage against you? Liches are notoriously devoid of trust and faith.

Even if you manage to pawn it off on some ignorant fool, he might have friends who are not so ignorant. In ten years, in a century, someone might figure out the truth. Remember liches are thinking long term.

So, how can you ensure you phylactery remains unbroken?

My favorite solution -- the honey pot. Enchant your phylactery so that whoever discovers it receives a potent magical benefit (a substantial bonus to physical characteristics sounds appropriate). People will die before they allow anyone to hurt their phylactery of +4 constitution and strength.

Another solution -- make your phylactery part of another undead or a golem. Bury it inside an iron golem. Shove it into the gullet of your favorite zombie monster.

And the classic -- build a trap-laden vault somewhere where deathless minions guard it forever. This is asking for trouble. PCs love trap-laden vaults. :)

Gary

fmitchell
07-28-2008, 03:18 AM
My favorite solution -- the honey pot. Enchant your phylactery so that whoever discovers it receives a potent magical benefit (a substantial bonus to physical characteristics sounds appropriate). People will die before they allow anyone to hurt their phylactery of +4 constitution and strength.

Another solution -- make your phylactery part of another undead or a golem. Bury it inside an iron golem. Shove it into the gullet of your favorite zombie monster.

And the classic -- build a trap-laden vault somewhere where deathless minions guard it forever. This is asking for trouble. PCs love trap-laden vaults.

Your first solution means that the lich has to do something good for somebody. Liches hate that. If possible, a lich would enchant the item so that it forced its owner to guard the item with its life, and for good measure allowed the lich to influence the owner. Perhaps the item could be a ring of invisibility ... nah, too small ...

Shoving the phylactery in another monster still raises the possibility that those meddling adventurers and their familiar could destroy the monster, and possibly the phylactery. Again that won't do. Instead, shove it in an adamantium statue that gives helpful advice. Not only is it heavy enough that the adventurers won't nick it, they won't dare destroy it because it's the key to destroying (snicker) that evil lich (BWAHAHAHAHA!)

The final solution is traditional, and very popular with genre-blind liches. However, an important improvement is to make the adventurers go through a death trap to find a FAKE phylactery. For extra points, you can also create a fake version of yourself that disintegrates the moment someone breaks its fake phylactery ... while you lay safe and sound in the ceiling, watching the proceedings below and trying not to laugh.

Engar
07-28-2008, 08:06 AM
If I recall correctly there is no alignment restricted to or imposed upon a lich, but creating undead is an evil act. I played a LN necromancer who walked that line (creating undead, not lichdom).

tesral
07-28-2008, 08:28 AM
Your first solution means that the lich has to do something good for somebody. Liches hate that. If possible, a lich would enchant the item so that it forced its owner to guard the item with its life, and for good measure allowed the lich to influence the owner. Perhaps the item could be a ring of invisibility ... nah, too small ...

I can just see the would be Lich now. "Na, can't do that, someone might benefit."

Not how I see most Lichs. Sure, selfish SOBs but old and wise enough to understand the greed is how you hook most beings. A near artifact stat boosting device would be the perfect thing. it benefits you, but only so long as you keep it and keep it safe.

How about a crown that grants the wearer a +8 Charisma. It makes the King all the glitzier and over time it would become the treasured heirloom of the kingdom, protected, valued. And if required the Lich can pull so strings. Strings they would only pull if required. Once you pull them they know the strings are there.

A Lich in general wouldn't care who or want benefits as long as they the Lich benefit more. I can even see a Lich King as a wise and draconianly beneficial ruler. Stay within the bounds, and you are protected, Break the order and you're magical experiment bait. Why? Being surrounded by an orderly and law abiding society that he controls is of great benefit to the Lich. That it benefits those that keep within the oder is also of benefit to the Lich because the people benefit they will protect that order. Dracoian laws see that those that break the order do not benefit and the lack of benefit is spread to those around you so that any deviance is punished first by those that would be harmed by your deviance. Less for the official law keepers to do.

Oh yes and the gallows would have some necromantic device that sucked your soul energy and made you a recruit for the undead army. "No point in being wasteful."

boulet
07-28-2008, 08:43 AM
Oh yes and the gallows would have some necromantic device that sucked your soul energy and made you a recruit for the undead army. "No point in being wasteful."

Makes me think of the order of the stick, similar humor here :biggrin:

michaeljearley
07-28-2008, 11:16 AM
A nation defended by the undead. There's a campaign here somewhere.

agoraderek
07-28-2008, 05:40 PM
A nation defended by the undead. There's a campaign here somewhere.

isn't there a nation in the eberron setting like that?

fmitchell
07-28-2008, 06:16 PM
Oh yes and the gallows would have some necromantic device that sucked your soul energy and made you a recruit for the undead army. "No point in being wasteful."

Gallows? How about execution by slow torture, with a device that also extracted your fear and agony to release upon your enemies? Now *that's* using the whole buffalo.

Dimthar
07-28-2008, 08:30 PM
Hmmm .... Isn't the "Real" purpose of the phylactery to "hold" the Lich' Spirit for an Eternity so he can become an "Undead". I can not imagine someone with the Ego to challenge death wanting his eternal soul to rest in a doorknob. Or to be to carried around by "Kings" that can be easily killed by some Orc arrows and end at the bottom of a river.

In the same line, when creating the phylactery he is not even thinking that he may be defeated in the future, or that some random adventurers will be powerful enough to challenge him. He is thinking in Immortality!, Power!, Godhood!, the last place for such a Being' Soul is a torch holder.

Still, the Lich understands the importance of his phylactery, so it will be protected by all kinds of spells and traps, and of course guarded by the only creature mighty enough to survive ages, Himself (a Pet Dragon may be a good choice too). He will keep it close, very close.

A new trap added every 10 years still means 30 traps to be defeated for a Lich of 300 years.

I know... is the typical Lich adventure, but it made sense to me.

-----------

I guess the best test is to think in terms of the name for an artifact:

"THE (Object Name here)_____________ of (Your Name Here) __________"

"The Faucet of Dimthar" ... just doesn't sound right .

.

gdmcbride
07-29-2008, 05:04 AM
I like the crown idea. Here's I think a great lich solution to hiding your phylactery.

Your phylactery is a crown you wear all the time. Wearing it means you have to trust no one ... NO ONE I TELL YOU! But in case you ever get defeated (HAH!) you have enchanted the crown so that it grants a massive artifact level bonus to charisma (besides that work's for you ... you always had trouble convincing the hot vampiresses to visit your lair). Its gold ... obviously valuable and fanastically well made so that merely melting it down will greatly decrease its value. It bears no evil holy symbols or skulls or anything grotesque. It appears to simply be a crown from a long dead civilization. It also enchanted with powerful anti-divination magic to detect as anything but your phylactery. You've even written a fake ancient tome in your lair hinting that this crown is the secret key to retrieving the lost treasure of King Kufu the Collosally Cash-Laden.

You also carry an amulet inside your chest where your heart used to be. Useless flesh! Who needs it?! That amulet is enchanted to identify as your phylactery (falsely). It also has preprogrammed illusion of your soul being dragged off to hell along side a pretty light show if it is ever broken. It also tags whoever broke it so that they are MUCH easier to scry from now on. You will have your revenge!

Once you reform.

Gary

dalenvec
07-29-2008, 03:16 PM
Instead of hiding it with the king, hide it in the kings forbearers, in their crypts, no party would dare be stupid enough to raid the royal tomb, and if they are they incure the wrath of the king, and will be swinging from the gallows shortly after.
Or you could hide it with a local hero/saint, someone of great influance among the local populace, or in a local monument....
that and those pescy paladins wont dare desicrate the holy remains of a saint :evil:
or you could do the classic fake one there and hide the phylactery somewhere else.
dunno possibilities are endless, have 20 fakes and one real one, let the party run around pissing the whole kingdom off... they raid 2 fakes and the locals will solve your problem for you..... ones hands must always remain clean

Genzodus Thoth
07-29-2008, 03:32 PM
Hiding it in a tomb, even the tomb of a saint, won't particularly help unless it's well-guarded. If it's just a tomb, Elric-type heroes will just waltz right in, smash it, and be on their merry way.

Dimthar
07-30-2008, 12:05 PM
What's the problem with having a lich on the team. Provided the levels balance and, obvisously, the party is evil oriented.

If a Player wanted his character to become a Lich, I will secretly let him pursue his desire with the understanding that the other PCs will find out about his “Evil” plans in the last minute and turn against him.

The Wizard needs to prepare in advance for his defense, I will offer that some “Time Travel Adventurers” came from the future to kill him and will attack the party (when the last adventurer is killed, he will reveal the Wizard’ secret), that way the overall Party resources will be diminished to make the “Party’s Wizard” Vs “Rest of the Party” battle more dramatic.

.

michaeljearley
07-30-2008, 12:22 PM
[quote=Dimthar;40227]If a Player wanted his character to become a Lich, I will secretly let him pursue his desire with the understanding that the other PCs will find out about his “Evil” plans in the last minute and turn against him.

Why must the other PC's turn aganist him. This is understandable if there's a paladin in the group, or a cleric of a Good God. But if its a bunch of Neutral or Evil characters I don't see the problem.
I'm a level 11 wizard who becomes a lich, 3.5 rules that makes me ECL 15. So if I'm adventuring with a lvl 12 werewolf blackguard, a level 15 (7rogue/8assassian) rogue, and a 14 tiefling cleric of Vecna. Where's the need to out the lich?

ryan973
07-30-2008, 01:23 PM
A phylactery is a wonderous item hence the requiment to be able to craft a wonderous item, the items worth must be of at least 300o gp in value. Hence it not being a doorknob. also if the lich is slain his body and soul usuall reforem near the filactery hence him not giving it to soem king. At kleast i think all that is true, i am not near any of my books right now.:confused:

Genzodus Thoth
07-30-2008, 01:48 PM
The magic nature of the phylactery is what makes it expensive, not necessarily the construction materials. Thus, a phylactery could really even be disguised as dog's chew toy. Hmm...perhaps a trojan horse strategy: arrange for it to be given to a paladin's dog as a gift...

tesral
07-30-2008, 04:37 PM
This thing does show evil. You would have to spend a lot more to make it not sown evil.

There is also the issue I have never had a dog chew toy last six months. Goodbye Lich.

Several limits. The Lich will reform near the phylactery, so locking it a box and tossing it int the deepest abyss of the Ocean is not an option, for the Lich at least.

It might be something to do to a Lich. Take phylactery, put into a heavy stone box, seal magically as one piece, toss in deep ocean trench. Kill Lich.

So you don't want it too near where your return will gain notice "Mommy, there is a man forming under my bed." You don't want it too near you lest some band of heroes gets both in one shot. You don't want it where it cannot be protected.

Personally the crypt of King Longsincedead sounds pretty good. The royal guard protects it, you form in the coffin, and teleport away. It continues to be guarded.

Of course you want heavy anti scrying magics and such. The longer it is undisturbed the better.