View Full Version : Alternate Rules: How to Sanctify the Wicked without exerting mind control!

T.G. Oskar
2013-03-05, 03:54 AM

Today, instead of a class (or a prestige class), I choose (due to odd timing) to take a piece of 'brew from one of my favorite books, though not everyone's favorite.

That being, of course, the Book of Exalted Deeds.

The book deals with a very...well, controversial vision on what's to follow the straight and narrow path. The examples are controversial due to the nature of the game: adventurers are often considered to have psychopathic behavior that is only tolerated because of their heroism, not because they intend to work in those terms but because the only way they can progress is through assassination of various monsters.

Just trying to speak of this politely can make a good orator sweat. Thus, you may imagine, if you've seen the book, how much sweat can be drawn from attempting to interpret the Vows, or this singular spell.

Sanctify the Wicked, as written, allows a creature to abandon its wicked ways and become a creature of Good...if necessary, against its will. It's no coincidence, then, that its common nickname is "Holy Mindrape", taken from its counterpart sourcebook, the Book of Vile Darkness, and its Mindrape spell. Both spells act in very different ways, but end up causing one creature to end up with a different alignment, often against its will (or else, they wouldn't be allowed a Will save). One of the big reasons this spell causes troubles is because it doesn't affect a willing creature.

Which led me to think: if the creature was willing, and the effect was detailed, would it lose its stigma? The act of redemption is core to the concept of Good, and having the ability to aid someone to surpass their own innate evil and become reborn as a creature of Good is one of the best storytelling tools a player or DM can have, or grant. However, this power should not be limited only to a few: thus, instead of making it require a spell slot, let's go with this method (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/magic/incantations.htm) instead! It turns this effect into a ritual, able to be done by just about anyone but having Clerics pull them off with little difficulty. It also has a backlash effect, which ranges between slight to brutal. And, finally, because this spell is tied to a template, that means the template is also improved!

Will it hit the mark, or will it be a "nice try"? We'll see as I present to you...

Necromancy [Good]
Effective Level: 9th
Skill Check: Diplomacy DC 26, 3 successes; Knowledge (religion) DC 26, 3 successes, Knowledge (the planes) DC 26, 3 successes
Failure: Betrayal
Components: V, S, F, Sacrifice
Casting Time: 18 minutes
Range: Close (70 ft.)
Target: One willing creature with the Evil subtype
Duration: See text
Saving Throw: None (see text)
Spell Resistance: No

The caster and the target enter a state of meditation, chanting a sacred prayer while grasping a large diamond. Before, during, and after the chant, the caster asks the target if it’s willing to change its ways permanently. Upon finishing the incantation, the soul of the target slowly flows into the diamond, where it has the ability to face all its evil with the aid of the forces of Good.

Sanctify the wicked is a powerful incantation that allows any form of evil, even innate, to purge its sins and redeem itself. A more powerful version of atonement, this incantation allows the soul of a willing evil creature to inhabit a special receptacle, where it may face its inner darkness with the promise of complete redemption.

To cast the incantation, the target must be willing to receive the incantation; the choice of redemption is never forced, but offered. If the caster or the target has second thoughts, the incantation immediately fails. Once the incantation is complete (and if successful), the creature’s soul becomes trapped in the diamond, from where it may not escape until it redeems.

While inside the diamond, the creature’s body turns into resilient stone, whereas its soul faces its own evil. The power of Good imbued within the diamond slowly purges the soul from evil, while it learns about the repercussions of its actions, the nature of Good and the purpose of altruism. The process is often hard, particularly for innately evil creatures. The soul remains within the receptacle for an amount of time determined by its type and subtype, its culture, and the nature of its evil:

Humanoid|1 month
Monstrous humanoid|2 months
Giant|3 months
Dragon|4 months
Outsider|1 month/Hit Dice
Alignment: usually evil|+1 month
Alignment: always evil|+2 months
Has [Evil] subtype|+1 month/Hit Dice
Is willing to follow a god of Good|-1 month
Has [Good] subtype|½ duration[/TABLE]

If the duration would otherwise reach less than 1 day, the duration lasts for 1 day.

At the end of the duration, the creature’s body and soul are reconstituted, adopting the good alignment of its choice (chaotic good, lawful good or neutral good). Creatures with the [Evil] subtype gain the [Good] subtype. An outsider with the [Evil] subtype undergoes a further transfiguration, acquiring the sanctified template (see post below). Characters with the half-fiend or fiendish subtypes become half-celestials or celestial creatures instead, respectively.

Because the journey towards redemption is often difficult, a creature may end up refusing the chance to change, essentially spoiling the process. The creature must succeed on a Will save against a DC of 19 + the caster’s Charisma modifier. Further modifiers to the save DC may apply:

{TABLE=head]Modifiers|DC increase
Per month|+1
Per saving throw failed by 5 or more|+1
Per saving throw failed by natural 1|+5
Caster is within 70 ft.|+2
Per creature with [Good] subtype within 30 ft.|+1
Receptacle is attacked|-1
Per evil creature within 30 ft spending more than 24 hours in area|-1
Per creature with [Evil] subtype within 30 ft.|-2[/TABLE]

If the creature succeeds on its Will save, the crystal immediately shatters, reuniting body and soul. The incantation is spoiled, and the caster takes a backlash effect (as indicated below). As a rule of thumb, if the effect is used in favor of a NPC, roll a d% and add the result of the highest Diplomacy check done; on a result of 01-50%, the creature attempts a Will save; else add 5 to subsequent checks. If the bonus result exceeds 99, the creature no longer attempts to escape and fully seeks to face its redemption. If done in favor of a PC, the player may attempt a saving throw once per week (although making a saving throw every week defeats the purpose of using the incantation for redemption).

The diamond receptacle, and the solidified body, is resilient to a variety of attacks. The diamond itself has a hardness of 100 and 1000 hit points; the body has a hardness of 20 and an amount of hit points equal to the creature’s own. If the diamond or the creature’s body must make a saving throw (against Fortitude or Reflex), the effect’s DC must exceed the incantation’s own, and both use the creature’s own saves, applying the modifiers of the save DC as a bonus. If the diamond is broken, the incantation immediately fails and the caster takes a backlash; if the body is destroyed, the creature’s soul is liberated and treated as if killed.

This incantation can be used on good-aligned creatures if they choose to adopt a path of exaltation. This effect allows a good-aligned creature to gain exalted feats, and even recover certain features (such as sainthood, if lost). The good creature may spend an amount of time equal to 2 days per character level.

The target of the spell becomes infuriated and immediately becomes hostile to the caster and its allies.

If the spell fails because of a successful Will save to willingly escape the diamond or a creature breaks it, the caster must succeed on a single Will save or immediately adopt the alignment of the creature. This is because of the psychic backlash of freeing an unredeemed soul.

A flawless diamond worth no less than 10,000 gold pieces.

1 character level, which is lost whether the incantation succeeds or not.

As you can see, this version of Sanctify the Wicked is an incantation, and anyone with the right skills can attempt it. Of the base classes in the PHB, the Cleric (naturally) and the Bard (impressively) can pull it off on their own; the others will need some serious boosts to their skills.

The second thing is that, and I insist on that fact because it's the main reason why the change is made, that the target must be willing. The increased casting time for the incantation precludes using this in combat, and the whole point of making it a ritual is to bypass this little problem outsiders have of being innately evil. In fact, the example I'll give of a sanctified creature does a noble job of trying to find redemption on her own, but I find she deserved the aid. I mean, she's going to nerf herself out of obstinacy!?

Anyways, as you can see, the effect is voluntary; it can't be done by means of coercion, because the spell would immediately fail. Think, for example, of Dominate Monster: as it acts just like Dominate Person, the idea of having a dominated demon or devil willingly accept the idea of the invitation would imply a brief instance of a second thought, which by definition RUINS the incantation IMMEDIATELY (well, the casting of the incantation. After being affected by it, things act differently). No ifs, buts or ands; incantation fails, you lose one level, you do not gain (n x 1000, where n is your current, or new, level) XP to level up.

The third thing is that the incantation is incredibly volatile. It's not a foolproof spell, it may, and WILL, fail. Speak with the DM when using this incantation, because while it's a challenge that the creature has second thoughts after accepting the incantation, allowing it to make Will saves each round definitely ruins the idea of casting the incantation in the first place (and will suggest that the creature really didn't want to repent, ergo it's willingly accepting that its rear ends will be smitten down to the Lower Planes ipso facto)

This might require an explanation. The idea is that, to prevent accusations of Holy Mindrape better represent the idea of redemption, the incantation works in two ways. The first allows the creature to reject redemption at the last minute, thus ruining the effort: perhaps it asks for more time, perhaps it has some doubts, but this makes it reject the effort, and thus the effect is ruined. Once the incantation is complete, the creature may have second thoughts, but because it's already on the process, it will take a strong amount of willpower to reject redemption, which as the darkness is completely purged, stops appearing like a bad idea at all. The modifiers exist to reflect the idea of how the process starts changing the subject.

The fourth thing is that others may attempt to sabotage the incantation once complete. A personal belief is that, when you redeem evil, good wins twice (alternatively; when a good person is tempted, evil wins twice): one, because there's one less evil person in the world, and another, because there's a new good person in the world. Because of this, Evil will take any chances to ruin the effort, and bring their partner once again to the cause. Again, this calls for DM's judgment and player strategy: will they remain days, weeks or even months securing the redemption of the creature on their own? Will they invoke the aid of the powers of Good? Will they move the statue to a safe place, probably within a temple devoted to a god of Good? Will they use their contacts to keep a watch on it? The DM can be just, fair or frank: just, in that once the incantation is complete, Evil won't bother them and the party will have ample time to prepare for any events where the forces of Evil strike; fair, if the DM decides to drop a challenge every now and then; or frank, and tell them outright "the spell fails because there's no possible way you can redeem this guy". There's also sadist, but that implies less seeking to protect the guy and more smacking the DM with its books.

Finally, once the effect is done, it's transcendental. If it acted just like Atonement, it'd be horribly boring. Good people reach exaltation because they've purged what little wickedness they have; Neutral people become Good, Evil people become Good but take more time, the innately Evil become entirely purged of their wickedness and become true agents of Good, and those who were once truly and absolutely VILE can, after some time, find themselves completely cleansed of their sins and turned into resilient agents of Good.

Oh, well, there's one more thing I need to say. The reason why the rolls have to be Diplomacy, Knowledge (religion) and Knowledge (the Planes)? Well, Knowledge (the Planes) implies finding the conduits within the area that are favorable to contact the Upper Planes; after all, the forces of Good will sponsor using their power to redeem the creature. Knowledge (religion) will ask the same of the gods of Good, in case a deity wishes to offer its aid. And Diplomacy, well...the act of redemption requires some diplomacy, using the right words, and each check represents the "are you really sure you want to accept this?" The fluff can be explained differently, but there are reasons why these three feats are chosen.

...And I guess there's one last thing. Notice there's both a failure AND a backlash? The failure represents failing two skill checks, as per the requisites for failure. The creature, thinking that the failure of the spell is an inability to be redeemed, will react violently out of frustration. Perhaps, in time, it'll attempt it again; there are ways to control its hostility, but you might figure how frustrations can affect people. The backlash is VERY specific: if someone breaks the crystal (or the Evil creature succeeds on its Will save to free itself), the caster of the incantation has a chance of falling into Evil. The risk is because of the intricate connection between the caster and the creature to be redeemed. It's a pretty harsh risk, but you're dealing with Evil, after all: it doesn't like to play fair.

Next: Sanctified Creatures, and a special surprise!

T.G. Oskar
2013-03-05, 04:14 AM
When a creature with the [Evil] subtype willingly subjects to the sanctify the wicked incantation, many of its powers no longer become effective. Certain spells, supernatural abilities and special qualities become reflections of their former, corrupted self. The creature may willingly forgo the use of such powers in its quest to redeem itself completely, but this may seem like a weakness. However, the power of the sanctify the wicked incantation is immense; it is the power of Good itself that cleanses the corruption within the body and the soul of the individual, and imbues them with holy power. As the soul changes to reflect the power of redemption but retains some of the key aspects of the creature’s self, so does the powers manifest differently. Former fiends may seek to redeem their brethren, whom hold no concerns about destroying them in response to their betrayal; depriving them of their powers will hinder them.

Sanctified creatures manifest powers comparable in many aspects with those of celestials, projecting an aura of pure good easily identifiable. The bulk of their powers is retained, but those with evil intents are modified towards more benign purposes, or replaced with good alternatives. Their connection with holy power manifests in its own ways as well. Sanctified creatures retain most of their traits, but their most obviously evil traits (red eyes, horns, etc.) are softened and often changed (such as eyes turning into golden or shining blue, goat-like horns turning into ram-like horns, black skin turning into deep blue skin, amongst others). Sanctified creatures almost always have a serene look in their faces.

Sanctified creatures’ powers are tied to their alignment. If their alignment ever falls into evil, the template is immediately and permanently lost (barring another application of sanctify the wicked).

Creating a Sanctified Creature
“Sanctified creature” is an acquired template that can be added to any creature (except undead) with the evil subtype (referred to hereafter as “base creature”), unless it gained these by means of a template. Creatures with a template that grant an evil subtype instead gain an equivalent template (for example, a half-fiend would gain the celestial template, whereas a fiendish creature would gain the fiendish template).

Size and Type: The creature loses the evil subtype and gains the good subtype. As well, certain subtypes are also lost: baatezu, loumara, obyrith, tanar’ri and yugoloth.

Attacks: The sanctified creature retains all of its natural weapons and attack bonuses. A sanctified creature’s natural weapons, and any weapons it wields, are considered good weapons for purposes of overcoming damage reduction.

Special Attacks: The sanctified creature retains most of its existing supernatural attacks and spell-like abilities, with some exceptions:

Any poison special attack is replaced by an equivalent ravage.
Any disease special attack is replaced by an equivalent affliction.
Any spell-like ability with the [evil] descriptor is lost, unless an equivalent spell with the [good] descriptor exists (such as protection from evil replacing protection from good, holy smite replacing unholy blight, and so forth).
The sanctified creature loses any spell from the necromancy school. Chaotic-aligned sanctified creatures also lose any spell with the compulsion subschool.
Any special attacks that deal vile damage instead deal that extra damage against evil creatures and evil outsiders. Against evil creatures, the attack deals 1 point of damage for every point (or dice) of damage it would otherwise deal, and against evil outsiders the attack deals 1d4 points of damage for every point (or its normal amount of damage, if expressed in dice).
The sanctified creature loses the ability to summon fiends and/or fiendish creatures, unless the creature’s summoning ability is based on the summon monster spell (in which case, it may summon celestial creatures and celestials of the same alignment).
Special attacks that only affect non-evil creatures (or that do not affect only a certain group of creatures, such as the hezrou’s stench) now affect only evil creatures.
Effects that cause ability damage, ability drain or energy drain (aside from poisons and diseases, explained above) only affect evil creatures; if they don’t allow a saving throw, they now allow a Fortitude (for physical ability damage/drain or energy drain) or Will (for mental ability damage/drain) save, which is based on Constitution or Charisma (whichever is higher).

As well, the sanctified creature gains one of the following special attacks, chosen by the creature:
Healing Touch (Su): a sanctified creature learns how to manifest positive energy by touch. As a standard action, the sanctified creature heals an amount of hit points equal to 1d8, plus 1 for every four Hit Dice. The sanctified creature deals this amount of damage to undead creatures with a successful melee touch attack roll.
Holy Weapons (Su): all of the sanctified creature’s natural attacks, plus any weapon it wields, deal an extra 2d6 points of damage against evil creatures, as if they had the holy weapon special quality. Projectile weapons bestow this benefit upon their ammunition.
Menacing Gaze (Su): A sanctified creature may, as a standard action, emit a menacing gaze. Anyone within a 30 ft. cone that observes the sanctified creature must make a Will saving throw (with a DC of 10 + ½ the creature’s HD + the creature’s Charisma modifier) or become shaken for as long as the sanctified creature is within range and for 1 round thereafter. A character affected by the sanctified creature’s menacing gaze cannot be affected by the same effect for 24 hours.
Ray of Purity (Sp): the sanctified creature may, once per round as a standard action, fire a ray of light from its eyes or hand. The ray is treated as a ranged touch attack and has a maximum range of 60 ft. Against evil creatures, the ray deals 1d6 points of damage per 2 HD of the sanctified creature. Against undead, the damage is instead 1d8 points of damage per 2 HD; against evil outsiders, the damage is instead 1d6 points of damage per HD. The light has no harmful effect on non-evil creatures.

Special Qualities: The sanctified creature retains all of its extraordinary qualities and most of its supernatural and spell-like abilities, with some exceptions:
Damage reduction remains as-is, but is now bypassed by weapons with evil alignment.

As well, the sanctified creature gains all of the following traits:
Aura of Good: the sanctified creature is treated as a good outsider (if not already) for purposes of the detect good spell. Any good creature that identifies the sanctified creature grants the latter a +4 circumstance bonus on all Diplomacy and Sense Motive checks and changes their attitude to friendly.
Detect Evil (Sp): the sanctified creature may detect evil, as the spell, at will as a standard action.
Resistances: the sanctified creature gains resistance 10 to acid, cold and electricity. If it already has resistance (but not immunity) to one of these resistances, it instead improves that resistance by 10.
Immunities: the sanctified creature gains immunity to petrifaction.

Finally, the sanctified creature gains one of the following special qualities, chosen by the creature:
Alternate Form (Su): The sanctified creature gains a luminous incorporeal form, which it can shift into (and back) as a standard action. In its base form, it has complete access to all its class features. In its luminous form, the creature becomes incorporeal, is considered as having no Strength score, its attacks only affect incorporeal creatures, the creature loses all natural armor bonuses (and armor or shield bonuses, if any) to AC but gains a deflection modifier equal to its Charisma score and may not use any of its supernatural class features other than the one acquired by means of this template (in the case of choosing the holy weapon special quality, the creature can make an incorporeal touch that deals 2d6 points of damage against evil creatures). Only chaotic sanctified creatures may choose this special quality; this grants the chaotic subtype to the creature.
Aura of Menace (Su): A righteous aura surrounds sanctified creatures that fight or get angry. Any hostile creature within a 20-ft. radius must succeed on a Will saving throw (DC 10 + ½ character’s HD + character’s Charisma modifier) or take a -2 penalty on all attacks, AC and saving throws for 24 hours or until they successfully hit the creature. A creature that has resisted the effect cannot be affected by the same sanctified creature’s aura for 24 hours. Only lawful sanctified creatures may choose this special quality; this grants the lawful subtype to the creature.
Lay on Hands (Su): As the paladin class feature, except that each day, the sanctified creature can heal an amount of damage equal to its full normal hit points. Only neutral sanctified creatures may choose this special quality.
Magic Circle against Evil (Su): A magic circle effect always surrounds the sanctified creature, as the magic circle against evil spell (caster level equals the sanctified creature’s Hit Dice).
Spellwarding Aura (Su): A spell negating effect always surrounds the sanctified creature, as per the lesser globe of invulnerability spell (caster level equals the sanctified creature’s Hit Dice).

Abilities: Increase from base creature as follows: Wis +2, Cha +2

Feats: The sanctified creature loses any feat that requires the evil subtype or an evil alignment. It may replace said feats as follows: any feat that requires the evil subtype may only be replaced by a feat that requires the good subtype; feats requiring an evil alignment may be replaced by feats that require good alignment, except for exalted feats, which may only replace vile feats.

Environment: Same as base creature, although the plane of residence usually changes to a good-aligned outer plane.

Challenge Rating: Same as base creature +1

Alignment: Always good. The sanctified creature chooses which alignment to adopt.

Level Adjustment: Same as base creature.

As you can see, the Sanctified Creature template is MUCH, MUCH better than before.

One of the key aspects in retooling the template was that it screwed the creature that got affected. Take, for example, a redeemed Pit Fiend or Balor; before, it lost ALL spell-like abilities, supernatural abilities and whatnot, only gaining a pitiful ray of light and some minor benefits in exchange. All in all, it was a complete reduction of the creature's CR, because it was now really, really weak.

Compare to now, where it gains a customized special attack, a special quality based on a celestial and retains pretty much ALL of its class features, and a redeemed Pit Fiend becomes a powerful warrior for Good. And when I mean powerful, I mean that thing's gonna crush Evil so hard, it might be capable of going toe-to-toe with Asmodeus and beat it within an inch of its life before granting it the chance for redemption (because its Good now, remember?) with little effort. As you can see, it's mostly meant for powerful evil creatures that would otherwise become weaklings with the change, but it reaches a point where it actually turns around and makes them stronger. That's no problem, as the idea is that Good creatures are often more powerful than Evil creatures but less numerous.

The special attacks imply the newly redeemed creature's focus in life: one that takes Ray of Purity will probably fight the Good fight, but remain on the sidelines; on the other hand, one that takes Holy Weapons will get up close and personal, ready to unleash righteous wrath upon the enemy. Menacing gaze is for the creature that prefers to disarm the enemy without violence, while Healing Touch works for the naturally peaceful. Likewise, the special qualities also define some inclinations: Aura of Menace makes the creature closer to an archon, Lay on Hands makes it closer to a guardinal, the Alternate Form makes it closer to an Eladrin, and the split Protective Aura (Magic Circle and Spellwarding Aura) make it a generic good outsider, or perhaps resemble an Angel. This allows a wide variety of different redeemed creatures; no two will ever be alike, what with their base powers and their newlyfound ones. Some may overlap: this is entirely intentional: specifically, Healing Touch and Lay on Hands overlap to make a pretty strong healer.

I know this can be broken so that all of a sudden you become a creature with the [Evil] subtype, become sanctified and get a free feat; in fact, it has no Level Adjustment for these same reasons. This is intentional, because trying to pull that off WILL be difficult, but as usual, if you go that way, you might as well deserve a frickin reward.

And, as promised, the sample creature...

Sample Sanctified Creature: Eludecia, the sanctified succubus paladin
Although she remains modest about the change, Eludecia is the ultimate example that Good redeems everything. During one of her trips to tempt the souls of men, Eludecia met a beautiful angel, a planetar who gave no name but that stood ready to destroy her. Eludecia, partly by cowardice and partly by curiosity, pleaded for mercy and spend some time around this angel, wondering if she had the skill to tempt it into falling from grace.

Instead, the time spent with him made her question her actions. The angel, one fully devoted to promote Good in all ways, was extremely generous and noble in word and deed. His act of mercy might have seemed as weakness for some, but it was a strong stand against Evil, compared to his earlier course of action. When the angel refused that warriors of Good harm Eludecia, she felt it was the moment to tempt him by casting the seeds of doubt; however, when it was the time to talk, she was the one upon which the seeds were sown.

Slowly but surely, Eludecia began to learn about the nature of Good, a nature which she found repulsive and weak. However, there was one emotion she understood well, albeit in a twisted way: love. Her lust for power and desire to tempt slowly gave way to an unusual feeling of true love, and after months of travel, Eludecia felt compelled to seek the angel’s companionship at all moments. The angel risked his state of grace by staying with her, but he did, complacently.

One day, the forces of Good befell upon the duo. The angel knew that associating with a demon would be his downfall, but what he saw he couldn’t expect. With teary eyes, Eludecia begged for mercy at the angel’s request, an act that surprised her and the celestials that hunted over her. By pleading for mercy and knowing the fruit of love, Eludecia’s seeds of doubt grew into a tiny, yet resplendent, light within her heart.

Eludecia, now desiring to redeem herself in the eyes of the angel and his companions, fought hard and long for a shaky redemption. The forces of Good were willing to help, and she was ordained a divine champion of Good, which made her former master, lord Xamganoth, bitter with anger. Despite her lack of understanding the nature of Good, Eludecia found it hard at first to behave in a good way, and she feared that every step she made would condemn her. However, her celestial companion assured her that she would find her own redemption. The angel promised her he would find a way to redeem her and purge her of her evil, but she sought to redeem herself on her own.

For years, Eludecia, under the guise of a fiery-haired human paladin, sought to achieve her redemption through good deeds, succeeding admirably in her goals. However, every day, her own evil nature accosted her, mocking her for the “selfish method in which she sought to attempt her reflection”, constantly reminding her that her actions were never selfless, but selfish as they only served for her redemption.

Tormented by her guilt, the angel pleaded day and day again to help her on her quest of redemption. One day, Eludecia felt very close to falling, as she was consumed by her anger after witnessing a betrayal by a companion with which she traveled, and one who was to her eyes a paragon of goodness. Shaken by the nagging feeling that she would end as her companion did, she agreed to the angel’s proposal. The angel made true to his promise, but requested a promise of his own; that she would accept his gift willingly.

Eludecia, still wanting to redeem herself on her own, doubted at first, to the angel’s sadness. In time, knowing that she would not redeem herself fully until she purged the evil within her very essence, Eludecia steeled her resolve to accept the angel’s proposal. The angel, knowing that her decision was true, began the ritual to purify her by sealing her soul within a flawless diamond, swearing he would protect her until she redeemed.

When Xamganoth realized this, he redoubled his efforts to reclaim his lost possession. Day and night, the demon lord sent fiends and evil mortals to accost the angel, but their efforts were rebuked by the planetar’s resolve. However, the assault was long and tiring, and the angel fell into despair, feeling that he would not fulfill Eludecia’s promise. The forces of Good, moved by the noble act of the planetar, sent as much aid as they could, but Xamganoth’s forces were numerous and fierce.

Finally, one long and arduous year and two months after the ritual, Xamganoth made one last, desperate assault. The planetar fought to the last of his strength, and vanquished all of the fiends and villains sent by the demon lord, but he was exhausted by the end of the day. Angered by their failure, Xamganoth itself, summoned to this world, fought himself against the weakened planetar, swiftly besting him. Before he could deal the final blow against the downtrodden angel, a flash of light filled the area.

Eludecia had finally achieved her redemption, and she did by taking the blow that would otherwise be fatal. Knowing that her redemption was complete, Xamganoth swore that he would return and see her kneeling before his feet as he slayed her love, and disappeared into his domain, his defeat complete. The angel and Eludecia were safe, but had made a fearsome enemy.

Now, imbued with the powers of Good, Eludecia makes a firm stand against the forces of evil. She is living proof that redemption is possible, and alongside her companion, the planetar Shinuiel, they fight for the redemption of all souls, no matter what kind.

Eludecia’s fiendish looks are a thing of the past. In her true form, Eludecia sports white bat-like wings, ram-like horns and long flowing red hair falling from her shoulders to her waist. She is now modest, although she retains her sensuality; however, her eyes instill a feeling of inner peace that warms anyone’s hearts.

Eludecia, the Redeemed
Female sanctified succubus paladin* 8
LG Medium outsider (chaotic, good, lawful, extraplanar)
Init. +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., Spot +, Listen +
Aura consecration, menace (DC 26)
Languages Abyssal, Celestial, Common, Draconic; telepathy 100 ft., tongues
__________________________________________________ _____________________________________________
AC 30 (+2 Dex, +7 armor, +9 natural, +2 deflection); Touch 14; Flat-Footed 28; Divine Shield
hp 119 (14 HD); DR 10/cold iron or evil
Resist acid 20, cold 20, fire 10; mettle
Immune electricity, poison, petrifaction
Fort +13, Ref +9, Will +14
__________________________________________________ _____________________________________________
Speed 30 ft. (6 squares); fly 50 ft. (average)
Melee +1 holy glaive +18/+13/+8 (1d10+4 plus 2d6 vs. evil creatures/x3) or
Melee +1 longsword +18/+13/+8 (1d8+3/19-20) or
Melee 2 claws +17 (1d6+2) or
Ranged +1 composite longbow (+4 Str bonus) +15/+10/+5 (1d10+3/x3)
Base Attack +14, Grp +16
__________________________________________________ _____________________________________________
Attack Options Power Attack; energy drain, merciful, protector’s might, smite evil 2/encounter (+9 attack, +13 damage, blinding DC 23)
Special Options lay on hands (117 points), turn undead 9/day (+11, 2d6+17, 8th)

Paladin Spells per Day (CL 8th)
2nd (2/day)—bull’s strength, heroism
1st (4/day)—bless weapon, cure light wounds, dispel magic
0 (4/day)—detect poison, guidance, resistance, virtue

Spell-like Abilities
At-will—charm monster (DC 23), detect good, detect thoughts (DC 21), ethereal jaunt (self plus 50 pounds of objects), polymorph (humanoid forms only, no limit on duration), teleport (self plus 50 pounds of objects)
__________________________________________________ _____________________________________________
Abilities Str 16 Dex 14 Con 14 Int 16 Wis 16 Cha 28
SQ divine punishment (11 points of damage)
Feats DiehardB, Divine MightB, Divine Shield, Dodge, Fly-by Attack, Mobility, Power AttackB
Skills Bluff +18, Concentration +19, Diplomacy +26, Disguise +18 (+20 when acting), Escape Artist +11, Hide +11, Intimidate +26, Knowledge (religion) +20, Listen +20, Move Silently +11, Ride +4, Search +12, Sense Motive +20, Spot +20, Survival +3 (+5 followinng tracks), Use Rope +2 (+4 with bindings)
Possessions combat gear plus +1 holy glaive, +1 longsword, +1 composite longbow (+4 Str bonus), +2 mithral breastplate, gauntlets of ogre power, ring of protection +2
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Divine Aura (Su): Eludecia emits an aura of consecration within 30 ft. of her. While projected, she and any allies in range gain a +2 bonus to turning checks and damage, a +6 bonus to damage rolls versus undead and evil outsiders. Undead within range of the aura have their turn resistance (if any) reduced by 2.
Energy Drain (Su): Eludecia can drain energy (Will DC 26) from an evil creature she touches.
Protector’s Might (Ex): If Eludecia wields a shield, she adds her Charisma modifier to her damage rolls with any weapon. If she wields a tower shield, she also adds her Charisma modifier to attack rolls.
*: Project Heretica (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=10687545&postcount=2) version.

Oh yes. I went there.

When thinking which would be the poster girl for the sanctified creature template, I thought "well, that Red Dragon won't show up anything important, so why not find an evil outsider that fought long and hard for her redemption?" And yes, I chose everyone's favorite walking contradiction, one of the winners of the D&D Creature Competition challenge (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dnd/20050510a) (alongside Taibo, the Ethereal Filcher Monk), and who got a write-up (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/fc/20050824a) in the D&D Fight Club column: Eludecia!

The story was charming, but it lacked the oomph!! to make it suitable, so I decided to make good use of my storywriting abilities (yes, I do some fiction, and if requested, I may post some of my works. They're self-indulgent, but I'm constantly working on that). Now, there's a reason why Eludecia made the change, and eventually accepted, and how she emerged triumphant as a champion of Good.

But of course, keeping her as a mere 3.5 Paladin wouldn't have worked. As well, I don't touch the PF Paladin even with a 10-ft. regulatory pole, so that's no option either. Thus, what kind of Paladin would be suitable for her? Why, of course, a shameless self-promotion taste of my finest 'brew! Thus, she has been upgraded to the Project Heretica version, which should make her far more dangerous than the norm. Between the holy glaive, the aura of consecration, the spell-like abilities and her immense Charisma, you bet she's more than a match. The magic items come pretty much straight from the column description, and she follows roughly the same stats as the SRD succubus and the column's 14th level snapshot. All in all, she's one dangerous opponent, more now that she plays with power.

By the way: kudos on whomever gets the pun.

So, as usual: questions? Comments? Do I make a good storyteller, or should I keep a 'brewer (or, should I drop both and do something better)? Is the incantation a fair representation of redemption, or is it still the victim of its bad reputation? Is the template awesome, fair, or rotten? You decide!

2013-03-05, 06:09 AM
This looks pretty good so far. Two minor points: the target of the spell shouldn't specify Evil subtype only, since it works on other targets quite well. And secondly, what happens to Regeneration/Good, like a pit fiend's?

2013-03-05, 06:16 AM
This is... only slightly more effective in its final effect than the alignment-changing effect of Atonement if I am reading it right EXCEPT when applied to a creature with the [Evil] subtype in which case it involves the template, which I haven't looked at yet.

OTOH you can at least TRY it at much lower levels. Which probably justifies its existence all by itself.

T.G. Oskar
2013-03-06, 12:38 AM
This looks pretty good so far. Two minor points: the target of the spell shouldn't specify Evil subtype only, since it works on other targets quite well. And secondly, what happens to Regeneration/Good, like a pit fiend's?

Yeah...as written, it should affect any creature. Thanks for pointing that out.

And the Regeneration thing as well. I was unsure if I had to add it because very few creatures have regeneration, and of those, even less have regeneration that requires good weapons to bypass. But, since the idea is to address the changes, it should act as per damage reduction.

This is... only slightly more effective in its final effect than the alignment-changing effect of Atonement if I am reading it right EXCEPT when applied to a creature with the [Evil] subtype in which case it involves the template, which I haven't looked at yet.

OTOH you can at least TRY it at much lower levels. Which probably justifies its existence all by itself.

Well, there are a few reasons why the incantation is worthwhile, if you look at it from various ways.

If using the typical incantation rules, the effect can't be more powerful than a pre-existing spell, because you're opening the effect to everyone. As it stands, it does only one-eighth of Atonement's general effect (only allows alignment change, and ONLY to good alignment, though the character can choose to be chaotic or lawful if it wishes), but it requires a focus 20 times more expensive than that of Atonement, and has a much more violent backlash. It has a faster casting time, but its effects may take much, much longer to complete, and there's several possibilities that it fails. Finally, the XP cost is much higher.

However, I don't use the incantation rules as they're meant to be. I find that both Atonement and Sanctify the Wicked should be rituals because expending a spell slot for an effect that you won't use in battle is asinine at best. It's a bit of 4e thinking backtracked to 3.5: most of the time, you'll be on quests, and it's better to prepare for these quests rather than for a very specific eventuality which can be resolved by waiting one day. I find that it works well as a ritual, and there's a 3.5 incarnation of the ritual concept through incantations, so I use that.

Finally, the idea is that Sanctify the Wicked works in an entirely different spectrum. Atonement allows you to restore powers, reverse alignment changes and even allow these changes to occur; Sanctify the Wicked does this and more (allows Good creatures to access Exalted feats or restore their Exaltation if the DM allows, and purifies Evil creatures of their innate Evil), but works only towards one side of the alignment spectrum instead of all of it.

Then again, I might be misinterpreting the question. Do you feel its redundant? I find it's necessary that a bit of redundancy exists, particularly if that redundancy allows for an expanded approach to a specific concept. Both spells can exist in the same continuum, with one working in one way and another in another way (sort of how cough medicines work: one's for cough, another for cold-based cough, and another for flu-based cough; a fourth one can be used for night-time cough).