Home >Gamemastering >Other Rule Systems >Corruption >

Shadowbound

Darkness and fear are all that guide you. As the shadow consumes you, you are becoming a gaunt caricature of your former self, emptied of life and color.

Catalyst

Shadowbound corruption occurs after a month or more of exposure to the Shadow Plane or shadow magic, or contact with cruel kytons, aberrations, undead, or shadowy fey.

Corruption sets in only if it is used to torment or disillusion you at least six times in a month in a deeply personal manner.

Progression

The corruption progresses when you’re tortured by shadow again, when you destroy a thing of beauty or joy because your melancholy makes it unbearable, or when you sow fear. Every month you must spend at least 2 entire days per manifestation level you have away from all light and other life. If you don’t, at the end of the month you must attempt a Will saving throw.

If you fail, sometime in the next 24 hours you go berserk and destroy something precious. You also need to attempt such a saving throw the first time each day you come across a being or object of great beauty, or a being or object with a strong or overwhelming aura of good (this includes yourself, so to avoid the save, you might need to ruin or tarnish your own beauty). The save DC is equal to 15 + your manifestation level. If allies are able to restrain you for 24 hours or otherwise prevent you from destroying anything precious during that time, your corruption doesn’t progress. However, the DC of the Will save to prevent your corruption from progressing increases by 2. These increases stack each time this occurs, and they last until your corruption reaches the next corruption stage.

The precious thing you destroy when you fail your save depends on your corruption stage, as noted below. If you voluntarily destroy a being or object related to a later corruption stage, you automatically progress to that stage (you might skip over intervening stages in this manner).

For example, the first time that you intentionally terrorize innocents or destroy an important object of beauty, you then immediately proceed to stage 2.

Repeating your actions doesn’t cause your corruption stage to progress further (if you terrorize innocents again, you don’t progress to stage 3).

Corruption Stage 1: The first time you fail the saving throw, you destroy a reliable source of light, joy, or beauty, such as a piece of art or bit of natural beauty.

Corruption Stage 2: The second time you fail the saving throw, you terrorize innocent people or destroy an important object of beauty, light, or joy.

Corruption Stage 3: The third time you fail the saving throw, you destroy one of the pillars that has helped you retain yourself in the face of the corruption, either by killing someone whose support has been essential or destroying an object of vital personal importance. You lose your identity entirely, becoming an NPC under the GM’s control.

Removing the Corruption

Undoing the corruption requires destroying the creature who first twisted you or restoring all the hope and joy that have fallen into darkness as a result of your corruption.

Manifestations

The following are manifestations of this corruption.

Eerie Perception

Your eyes change, adapting to a life in the shadows.

Gift: You gain darkvision to a range of 60 feet. If you already have darkvision, the range of your darkvision increases by 30 feet instead. You also gain a +2 bonus on Perception and Stealth checks. At manifestation level 3rd, the bonuses increase to +4.

Stain: Your eye color fades to a dull gray and your eyes overreact to light. You gain light sensitivity, causing you to be dazzled in areas of bright light.

Emptiness of the Void

Friends and allies are just people you can hurt more deeply.

Gift: The darkness in your soul can draw in the life force of allies. Once per day when you take ability damage, ability drain, or hit point damage, you can divide the damage or drain evenly between you and one ally within 30 feet.

You can do so only if the damage or drain would reduce your ability score or hit points to 0. The ally can attempt a Will save to resist the link. You can activate this ability as a free action, even if it isn’t your turn.

Stain: You struggle to remember the meaning of alliance and friendship. You can’t benefit from or use the aid another action.

Frightful

Fear lingers in your mind, and you can spread it to others.

Gift: You have a knack for guessing just how to scare others. You gain a +2 bonus on Intimidate checks and the DCs of fear effects you create increase by 1. At manifestation level 3rd, the bonus on Intimidate checks increases to +4 and the DC increases by 2 instead of 1.

Stain: Your hair loses its color and your sleep is interrupted by nightmares that never leave your mind.

You take a –2 penalty on saving throws against fear effects, and you lose any immunities to fear you might otherwise possess. You gain immunity to effects that would remove your fear (such as remove fear). At manifestation level 3rd, the penalty changes to –4.

Insubstantiality

Your body flickers occasionally into insubstantial shadow.

Prerequisite(s): Manifestation level 3rd.

Gift: Your body sometimes shifts or blurs momentarily before resuming the appearance of solidity. You gain a deflection bonus to your AC equal to half your manifestation level. You have a 20% chance to ignore (treat as a normal hit) confirmed critical hits and precision-based damage (such as sneak attack damage) from any weapon unless it has the ghost touch weapon special ability.

Stain: You take a –6 penalty on saving throws and to your CMD against attacks and effects that would move or trip you, as well as on all combat maneuver checks except those made to escape a grapple.

Refuge in Pain

Pain is your only solace from the emptiness of your existence.

Prerequisite(s): Manifestation level 4th, eerie perception*, wretched pain*.

Gift: Pain invigorates you. Whenever you take an amount of damage greater than or equal to three times your character level from a single attack, you gain a +2 morale bonus on attack rolls, damage rolls, saving throws, and skill checks for 1 round. If you have the stain from the weaver of lies manifestation, these bonuses are profane bonuses instead.

Stain: Whenever you take damage, increase the amount of damage you take by 1/2 your manifestation level.

Regretful Gaze

Your gaze carries your regret for wasted potential.

Prerequisite(s): Manifestation level 3rd, frightful*.

Gift: You gain a gaze attack that causes foes within 30 feet to become shaken for 1 round unless they succeed at a Will save. You can suppress this ability as a free action and cause it to resume as a swift action. A creature that succeeds at the saving throw is immune to your regretful gaze for 24 hours.

Stain: You are withered as if by age. Reduce your Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution scores by 1 point each, or by however much they would be reduced if you were one age category older, whichever is worse for you.

Touch of Ruin

You are infused with the ruin of the Shadow Plane.

Prerequisite(s): Manifestation level 4th, frightful*, regretful gaze*.

Gift: As a standard action a number of times per day equal to your manifestation level, you can make a melee touch attack that deals 1d10 points of damage per manifestation level you have. A creature touched this way takes 1 point of ability drain to the ability score of your choice unless it succeeds at a Fortitude save. Creatures immune to magical aging are immune to this touch attack.

Stain: Any clothing or gear you wear or carry seems strangely faded and timeworn as long as you wear or carry it.

Treat such items’ hardness as half the normal amount. You take a –4 penalty on saving throws to protect items in your possession from damage or destruction.

Weaver of Lies

Using shadows drawn from the Plane of Shadow, you can spin falsehoods into convincing imitations of reality.

Prerequisite(s): Manifestation level 2nd.

Gift: Once per day, you can use shadow conjuration as a spell-like ability, but only to emulate a sorcerer/wizard spell 1 spell level lower than your manifestation level. Your caster level is equal to your character level. The illusion is 10% real + another 10% real for every manifestation level you have beyond 2nd.

Stain: Joy and excitement have become foreign to you, leaving pain the only sensation of much interest. You can’t benefit from morale bonuses or bardic performances.

Wretched Pain

Inflicting pain is one of the few sensations that still stirs you.

Prerequisite(s): Eerie perception*.

Gift: Whenever you deal weapon damage to a creature that you are flanking or a creature that is denied its Dexterity bonus to its AC against you, you can inflict a painful wound as an immediate action. The target must succeed at a Fortitude saving throw or be nauseated by pain for 1 round. If the target succeeds at the save, it is sickened for 1 round and becomes immune to your further uses of this ability for 24 hours.

Stain: Your eyes turn a milky white, utter black, or pale yellow, making you appear blind although you can see normally in most circumstances. You gain light blindness, causing you to be blinded for 1 round whenever you are exposed to daylight or another source of bright light and dazzled for as long as you remain in bright light thereafter.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Horror Adventures © 2016, Paizo Inc.; Authors: John Bennett, Clinton J. Boomer, Logan Bonner, Robert Brookes, Jason Bulmahn, Ross Byers, Jim Groves, Steven Helt, Thurston Hillman, Eric Hindley, Brandon Hodge, Mikko Kallio, Jason Nelson, Tom Phillips, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Alistair Rigg, Alex Riggs, David N. Ross, F. Wesley Schneider, David Schwartz, Mark Seifter, and Linda Zayas-Palmer.