Emperor of Scales

The air fills with the sound of hissing snakes as a giant, severed snake’s head floats into view, with a gaping mouth and twin fangs dripping virulent poison. Its eyes are milky and blind, but its forked tongue constantly tests the air for fresh scents. Below the head, where a body should be, numerous hissing serpents thrash like tendrils of torn flesh. Blood drips from the severed head, sizzling as it burns like acid through anything it touches.

Emperor of scales CR 15

XP 51,200
CE Huge outsider (chaotic, evil, native)
Init +11; Senses all-around vision, darkvision 60 ft., scent; Perception +26; Aura frightful presence (60 ft., DC 25), maddening hiss (100 ft., DC 25)


AC 30, touch 15, flat-footed 23 (+7 Dex, +15 natural, –2 size)
hp 225 (18d10+126); regeneration 5 (electricity)
Fort +19, Ref +13, Will +15
DR 15/good and silver; Immune acid, fire, mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poison, vorpal weapons; SR 26


Speed 30 ft., climb 30 ft., fly 60 ft. (good)
Melee bite +24 (2d8+8/19–20 plus poison and grab), 8 snakebites +22 (1d6+4 plus poison)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 10 ft. (15 ft. with snakebites)
Special Attacks acidic gore, poison, swallow whole (2d8+12 plus poison, AC 17, 22 hp)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 15th; concentration +21)

At willpoison (DC 20), teleport
3/dayaccelerate poison (DC 18), blindness/deafness (DC 18), blur, dominate person (DC 21), major image (DC 19), mirror image, suggestion (DC 19)
1/daychaos hammer (DC 20), dream, mass suggestion (DC 22), nightmare (DC 21), unholy blight (DC 20)


Str 26, Dex 24, Con 23, Int 13, Wis 19, Cha 22
Base Atk +18; CMB +28 (+32 grapple); CMD 45 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Combat Reflexes, Great Fortitude, Hover, Improved Critical (bite), Improved Initiative, Multiattack, Power Attack, Snatch, Toughness
Skills Bluff +27, Climb +16, Escape Artist +22, Fly +20, Knowledge (history) +12, Knowledge (planes) +12, Knowledge (religion) +12, Perception +26, Sense Motive +22, Spellcraft +19, Stealth +16, Use Magic Device +21; Racial Modifiers +4 Escape Artist, +4 Perception, +4 Stealth, +4 Use Magic Device
Languages Abyssal, Aklo, +1 additional (does not speak), telepathy 100 ft.
SQ command snakes


Acidic gore (Su)

The Emperor of Scales’ giant severed head continually drips blood and gore that burn like acid. Any creature within 10 feet of the Emperor of Scales must make a DC 25 Reflex save or be sprayed by droplets of acidic blood, taking 2d6 points of acid damage. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Command Snakes (ex)

As a free action, the Emperor of Scales can command any snake or serpent with the animal or magical beast type, as the dominate animal spell. The target can resist the command with a DC 25 Will save.

Immunity to Vorpal Weapons (Ex)

The Emperor of Scales is essentially a giant head with no body. As a result, its head cannot be severed, and vorpal weapons have no additional effect on it.

Maddening Hiss (Su)

The Emperor of Scales’ numerous snake heads constantly hiss in a maddening cacophony as a free action. Any creature within 100 feet of the Emperor of Scales must make a DC 25 Will save or be confused for 1 round. This is a mind-affecting compulsion insanity effect. A creature that saves cannot be affected by the Emperor of Scales’ maddening hiss for 24 hours. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Poison (Ex)

Bite or swallow—injury; save Fort DC 25; frequency 1/round for 10 rounds; effect 2d6 acid and 1d4 Str; cure 2 consecutive saves;

Snakebite—injury; save Fort DC 20; frequency 1/round for 6 rounds; effect 1d2 Con; cure 2 consecutive saves.


Environment any
Organization solitary
Treasure standard

The first king of serpentfolk was the Emperor of Scales. The Emperor of Scales does not speak, but can communicate telepathically. Snakes and serpents of all kinds and sizes flock to the Emperor of Scales, who can enslave them to his will. The Emperor of Scales appears as a giant snake’s head about 20 feet long, and weighs close to 5 tons. His serpentine tendrils extend another 15 feet behind and around his head.

Section 15: Copyright Notice – Pathfinder Adventure Path #42

Pathfinder Adventure Path #42: Sanctum of the Serpent God. © 2011, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Neil Spicer.

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