View Full Version : Blood is Life - An Arcane Supplement [PEACH]

2013-11-22, 04:24 PM
Blood is Life

Many substances in nature carry magic. Unchanging gold and pure silver, cold steel and living wood. But none are as significant for the magic of living creatures as their own blood.
Blood carries much of what there is to know about a person's life and with it, a mage can do many wonderful and horrifying things. There are implacable curses, passed down in family lines for generations and oaths of terrible vengeance just as there are rituals of healing and divination.

A note from the designer: What follows are rituals written for my own homebrew Ritual Magic System. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=12769204&postcount=5) The short version for those who don't want to read it: powerful, permanent and utility spells require 10 minutes per spell level and skill checks to perform and have a chance of failing, with sometimes catastrophic consequences.
I've decided to put them in a new thread because the Arcane thread is pretty old at this point, because I don't want to do such a lot of editing and because they are thematically related and I think they should be put together in the same place.

These are a few general guidelines on how to handle blood for the purposes of the rituals below.

Blood and creature types:
While there are no general rules, the following can generally be assumed about creatures, unless otherwise noted:
Constructs, incorporeal creatures and the undead have no blood. An exception are undead animated from entire corpses that are less than a week old, these have dry blood (see below).
Creatures of the swarm subtype can not be targeted by blood rituals, as they are not a single creature.
Vermin, Plants and Oozes don't have blood, but they have other bodily fluids that serve similar functions. Performing blood rituals with these fluids is possible, buy increases spellcraft DCs by +5.
All other types have blood, unless otherwise noted in their description.

Harvesting Blood:
Drops of blood can be harvested in several ways: a willing or helpless creature can be wounded with any slashing or piercing weapon for one point of damage, producing enough fresh blood for one ritual.
A creature that is below 0 hit points and dying is assumed to be bleeding fresh blood.
In combat, every creature that takes significant damage from slashing or piercing weapons is assumed to lose spilt bloodthat can later be collected from the ground or any weapons that wound it. Since hit points are an abstraction, what is "significant" damage is up to the DM. Being below half maximum hit points can be assumed to be significant, unless a different ruling is made.
Finally, creatures that drink blood via some kind of attack, such as vampires or dire weasels can decide to use their attack to produce fresh blood.

Kinds of blood:
Depending on how blood was gathered, stored and how old it is, it has various degrees of magical potency, which changes the power of rituals cats with them.
Fresh blood is the most magically potent and as such, does not modify the ritual. Blood is considered fresh only if it is gathered on purpose from a bleeding creature and collected in a vessel of some kind. When in contact with air, blood stays fresh for five minutes. In a sealed flask or similar vessel, it can stay fresh for up to a week. A ritual of Gentle Repose can keep blood fresh indefinitely, just as it can a corpse.
Dried blood is blood that was gathered as fresh blood, which has then dried by being exposed to air for too long. It modifies all spellcraft checks made for rituals by +4.
Spilt Blood is blood that has spattered on the ground, clothes or some other substance and is mixed with it. With the exception of the Cry for Vengeance ritual, it increases all spellcraft checks made for rituals by +6.

Degrees of Family Relation:
Many blood rituals are more powerful when cast on family members or their blood. For the purposes of this ritual assume the following:
First degree relatives are all parents, children and full siblings.
Second degree relatives are uncles, aunts, grandparents, grandchildren, nieces, nephews and half siblings.
Third degree relatives are cousins, great uncles and aunts and great nephews and nieces.
All others are not considered to be directly related for the purpose of the ritual below.

Blood Rituals

Blood Siblings
Effective Level: 2nd
To learn: Knowledge: Nature 6 ranks
Ritual Time: 20 minutes
To perform: Spellcraft DC 16
Range: Touch
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: Yes
Failure Consequences: Blood poisoning

This ritual can only be performed between two willing subjects, one of which can be the one to perform the ritual. During the ritual, both participaints, which must be conscious, willing and able to move, must draw fresh blood from themselves with a silver knife, then mingle the blood in a bowl, from which both participants must then drink while swearing loyalty to each other.
For one year and a day after completing the ritual, the participants are then considered to be first degree blood relatives of each other.

Focus: A silver bowl and a silver knife

Failure Consequences: The ritual can not actually fail. Even if the performer fails his spellcraft check, the ritual succeeds. However, if the check is failed, both participants have to make a DC 15 fortitude save or contract Red Ache (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm#disease), as well as contracting any other diseases the other participaint suffers from.

Blood Never Lies
Effective Level: 2nd
To learn: Knowledge: Nature 6 ranks
Ritual Time: 20 minutes
To perform: Spellcraft DC 16
Range: Touch
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: See below
Spell Resistance: Yes
Failure Consequences: Misinformation, blood poisoning

By taking blood from a willing creature, the ritual performer can find out information about its identity. To do so, he must ingest the blood.
At the end of the ritual, the performer knows the creature's full name, the race and creature type it was born at and its biological sex, if it has one. This ritual even works if the creature is currently changed into a different form from its own.

This ritual may be performed with dried or spilt blood, with appropriate modifiers.

Family confirmation: instead of taking the blood of one willing creature, the performer takes the blood of two creatures. Instead of knowing their identities, they confirm whether the two creatures are related and to which degree.

Unwilling creature: this variant requires 12 ranks in Knowledge: nature. The ritual may be performed on the blood of an unwilling creature, which can make a will save (DC 20) to resist.

Failure Consequences:
If the performer's spellcraft check fails, they must make a DC 15 fortitude save or infect themselves with the Red Ache.
If they fail the spellcraft check by five points or more, they ritual additionally reveals a randomly generated false identity instead of the real one.

Blood Sacrifice
Effective Level: 1st
To learn: Knowledge: Religion 4 ranks
Ritual Time: 10 minutes
To perform: Spellcraft DC 13
Range: Touch
Duration: 2 hours
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No
Modification: Creature types, magical blood, size
Failure Consequences: Failure, Vengeance

The performer slays an animal and ritually drains it of its blood to fuel further magical rituals.
The creature to be sacrificed must be an animal of two HD or less, must be helpless during the entire ritual and must be killed by a coup de grace with a silver weapon. Only one coup de grace can be attempted during the ritual, if it fails, the ritual fails as well.
Upon completion of the ritual, the performer may immediately begin to cast any spell with an XP cost or perform a ritual with an XP cost. The spell or ritual must be completed during the ritual's 2 hour duration. It's XP cost is then reduced by 50 points.

The performer may sacrifice larger animals. For every two extra HD of the animal, the spellcraft DC increases by 3 points and the ritual produces extra 10 XP per two HD.
The performer may sacrifice any intelligent (Intelligence 4+) with blood instead of an animal. Doing so produces double the amount of XP for rituals and increases the spellcraft DC by 5 points. If the creature has any spell-like abilities or is of the outsider type, three times the normal amount of XP are produced instead and the DC is increased by 10 points.
Using an intelligent creature for the ritual gives it the [evil] descriptor.

If the modification to sacrifice intelligent creatures is used and the creature is of a second degree relation, the ritual produces another 100 XP and counts as [vile]. If the creature is of a first degree relation, it produces another 200 XP.

If the check is failed by 4 points or less, the ritual merely fails.
If the check is failed by between 5 and 8 points, the caster suffers 1 point of constitution drain per point he failed the check by and the ritual fails.
If he fails by 9 or more points, the ritual fails and a special wraith is summoned, as described in the cry for vengeance ritual.

Cry for Vengeance
Effective Level: 5th
To learn: Knowledge: Religion 12 ranks
Ritual Time: 50 minutes
To perform: Spellcraft DC 16
Range: Touch
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No
Failure Consequences: Wrath

This ritual can only be cast on the blood of a creature that was killed by another, on purpose and against its will. The creature can not have been resurrected or raised since it was killed. Unlike other rituals, it does not matter what condition the blood is in.
The performer calls the spirit of the dead creature from beyond to take vengeance on its killer. It manifests as a Wraith (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/monsters/wraith.htm), with the following changes:
-The Wraith is Lawful Neutral, instead of Lawful Evil.
-The Wraith will ignore all targets other than its killer, which it will pursue mercilessly unless either of them is slain. If it slays its killer, it is destroyed as well.
-The Wraith knows where its killer is, as if by a permanent Locate Creature (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/locateCreature.htm) spell, with a range of 500 miles.

Special: The slain creature's attitude towards you (at the point it was killed) modifes your spellcraft check:

Hostile: -6
Unfriendly: -3
Friendly or Helpful: +3

Additionally, if the slain creature was a first or second degree relative, you gain a +5 bonus on your check.

Failure Consequences:
If the performer fails their spellcraft check by four points or less, the ritual fails.
If the performer fails by five points or more, the wraith is summoned, but instead seeks to take vengeance on the one who performed the ritual.

To do:
Blood Bath
Blood Oath
Blood Trace
Blood of the Innocents
Essence Transfer
Bloody vengeance
Blood Sacrifice
Red Mirror