Wrapped from head to toe in ancient strips of moldering linen, this humanoid moves with a shuffling gait.
Speed 20 ft.
Melee slam +14 (1d8+10 plus mummy rot)
All creatures within a 30-foot radius that see a mummy must make a DC 16 Will save or be paralyzed by fear for 1d4 rounds. Whether or not the save is successful, that creature cannot be affected again by the same mummy’s despair ability for 24 hours. This is a paralysis and a mind-affecting fear affect. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Mummy rot is both a curse and disease and can only be cured if the curse is first removed, at which point the disease can be magically removed. Even after the curse element of mummy rot is lifted, a creature suffering from it cannot recover naturally over time. Anyone casting a conjuration (healing) spell on the afflicted creature must succeed on a DC 20 caster level check, or the spell is wasted and the healing has no effect. Anyone who dies from mummy rot turns to dust and cannot be raised without a resurrection or greater magic. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Organization solitary, warden squad (2–6), or guardian detail (7–12)
Created to guard the tombs of the honored dead, mummies are ever vigilant for those who would desecrate their sacred ground.
Mummies are created through a rather lengthy and gruesome embalming process, during which all of the body’s major organs are removed and replaced with dried herbs and flowers. After this process, the flesh is anointed with sacred oils and wrapped in purified linens. The creator then finishes the ritual with a create undead spell.
Although most mummies are created merely as guardians and remain loyal to their charge until their destruction, certain powerful mummies have much more free will. The majority are at least 10th-level clerics, and are often kings or pharaohs who have called upon dark gods or sinister necromancers to bind their souls to their bodies after death—usually as a means to extend their rule beyond the grave, but at times simply to escape what they fear will be an eternity of torment in their own afterlife.
Easily the most feared ability of mummies is their notorious curse: mummy rot. Both a disease and a curse, this affliction proves exceptionally difficult to cure, even for accomplished healers. Part of this blight’s infamy comes from the specifics of its symptoms. While many mummies cause a curse that gradually withers away its victims till nothing but desert sand remains, the affliction itself proves highly variable and unique to many atypical individuals. In each case, the effects prove the same, but the symptoms can be wildly distinctive.
Not just any corpse can spontaneously manifest as a mummy. GMs interested in creating mummies resurrected “naturally” (rather than by spells like create undead) should consider the passion and force of will of the would-be mummy. By and large, a corpse should be of a creature with a Charisma of 15 or higher and possessing at least 8 Hit Dice. In addition, it should have a reason for caring about the eternal sanctity of its remains in excess of normal mortal concern. As such, priests of deities with the Death or Repose domains, heroes expecting a champion’s burial, lords of cultures preoccupied with the afterlife, or individuals otherwise obsessed with death or their worldly possessions all make suitable candidates for resurrection as mummies—though countless other potential reasons for resurrection exist.
Not every preserved and animated corpse is a linen-wrapped tomb guardian. Some cultures preserve their dead in different ways, and the following suggestions can help GMs represent these variant mummies.
- Bog Mummy: A bog mummy’s DR changes to DR 10/ slashing and is vulnerable to cold instead of fire. A bog mummy causes grave ichor with its slam instead of mummy rot.
- Ice Mummy: An ice mummy, sometimes called a mountain mummy or a glacial mummy, lacks a mummy’s normal despair and mummy rot abilities, and instead gains the chilling touch and entangling wrappings variant mummy special abilities.
- Tomb Guardian: A tomb guardian is a mummy that lacks the typical despair and mummy rot abilities, and instead has the infested variant mummy special ability.
The abilities of a mummy reflect the circumstances of its creation. Mummies that arise from traditionally embalmed corpses usually exhibit standard abilities; those arising from natural mummification or more exotic embalming rituals may not.
Several variant mummy abilities replace a mummy’s basic despair or mummy rot abilities, as described in the ability, and do not alter its CR. Exceptional mummies may gain additional abilities instead of having their powers replaced. GMs modifying mummies with additional or variant abilities should check the final monster and adjust the CR appropriately.
These abilities can also be applied to undead with the mummified creature template.
For purposes of variant abilities, any ability that replaces despair can replace burst of vengeance, and any ability that replaces mummy rot can replace dust stroke. Optionally, to create a mummified creature with the same special abilities as a traditional mummy, simply replace the mummified creature’s burst of vengeance with despair, or replace its dust stroke with mummy rot.
Many variant abilities are described in terms of a standard, linen-wrapped mummy. Adjust the description appropriately for mummies with different origins. For example, an ice mummy grapples and constricts its victims by chilling them to the bone with waves of cold instead of by wrapping them in linen strips (as presented in the entangling wrappings ability).
This mummy’s touch carries the chill of glaciers and mountain heights. Its slam attack deals an additional 1d6 points of cold damage, and creatures struck by it are slowed for 1d4 rounds (Fort negates). The save DC is equal to 10 + 1/2 the mummy’s Hit Dice + the mummy’s Charisma modifier. This ability replaces mummy rot.
A mummy with entangling wrappings can unravel and detach some of its linen strips to make a grapple check against a creature up to 10 feet away (or twice the mummy’s reach for larger mummies). This attack doesn’t provoke an attack of opportunity. It can constrict for an amount of damage equal to its slam attack with a successful grapple check. The linen strips remain wrapped around the victim and attempt a grapple check to pin each round on the mummy’s turn. They continue to deal constrict damage on a successful grapple check. The wrappings cannot be damaged by any attack or effect while detached, but turn to dust if their victim escapes or dies, or if the mummy is destroyed. If the mummy still lives, its wrappings reappear at the end of its next turn.
The mummy is not inconvenienced in any way while its wrappings are detached and grappling, but it cannot use its wrappings to entangle again until they return. This ability replaces either despair or mummy rot.
An infested mummy carries a scarab swarm inside its body cavity. The mummy can release its swarm as a standard action, or it can do so as an immediate action after taking damage from a slashing weapon. The swarm is completely under the mummy’s control, and can’t be harmed while inside the mummy, though it streams out of the mummy’s body if the mummy is destroyed. If the swarm is destroyed, a new swarm grows to replace it in 24 hours. For variation, instead of carrying a scarab swarm, an infested mummy can hold any swarm of CR 3 or lower. An infested mummy’s CR is 1 higher than that of a normal mummy, or this ability can replace despair and mummy rot and not affect the mummy’s final CR.
When scrolls and magical texts are used in place of linen wrappings, the result is a spellscribed mummy. A spellscribed mummy has the complete text of up to three spells written on its wrappings. The total spell levels scribed cannot exceed the mummy’s Hit Dice, and the spells must be of a level no higher than half the mummy’s Hit Dice. This allows a standard 8 HD mummy spells of up to 4th level that add up to no more than 8 levels. The spells need not be from the same spell list, and arcane and divine spells can both be used in the creation of a spellscribed mummy. Individual spells cannot be repeated. The mummy can use each spell scribed in its wrappings once per day as a spell-like ability, with a caster level equal to its Hit Dice. Save DCs are Charisma-based. A spellscribed mummy’s CR is 1 higher than that of a normal mummy.
- Lesser: A lesser spellscribed mummy bears a single 1st or 2nd-level spell in its wrappings, usable once per day with a caster level equal to half its Hit Dice. Its CR does not increase.
- Greater: A greater spellscribed mummy operates as a normal spellscribed mummy, but its wrappings can hold as many spells as it has Hit Dice. The total spell levels scribed cannot exceed twice its Hit Dice, and the spells must be of a level no higher than half its Hit Dice. Spells cannot be repeated, but spells of a level no higher than one-quarter the mummy’s hit dice can be used 3 times per day instead of 1. (For example, a standard greater spellscribed mummy with 8 Hit Dice can have up to 8 different spells, of no higher than 4th level, and a total of not more than 16 spell levels. It can use spells of 2nd level or lower 3 times per day, and spells of higher levels once per day.)
Mummy from Pathfinder RPG Bestiary, © 2009, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Jason Bulmahn, based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.
Additional ecology and variant Mummy details from Pathfinder Adventure Path #81: Shifting Sands © 2014, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Richard Pett, with Benjamin Bruck, Adam Daigle, Thurston Hillman, Michael McCarthy, Patrick Renie, Amber E. Scott, and Russ Taylor.