This shambling humanoid’s taut gray skin shows signs of arcane symbols now faded with age and decay. Long, darkwood spikes riddle its body; every inch of flesh is staked and violated. A palpable aura of entropy and despair hangs over the sorry, perforated creature.
Voidstick Zombie CR 12
Str 12, Dex 11, Con —, Int 7, Wis 6, Cha 15
Base Atk +11; CMB +12; CMD 26
Feats Channel Smite, Great Fortitude, Improved Channel, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Skill Focus (Stealth), Toughness
Skills Climb +5, Perception +10, Stealth +11
The overwhelming entropic energies and the sheer number of voidsticks animating the voidstick zombie warp and augment negative and positive energy around the creature. As with all voidsticks, an aura of intense negative energy extends in a 30-foot radius from the zombie functioning as the spell desecrate. Undead within this aura receive a +1 profane bonus on attack and damage rolls and the DC to resist channeled negative energy increases by +3. The voidstick zombie constantly gains the benefits of this effect (the attack and damage bonuses are already incorporated into its statistics).
In addition, this miasma of void energies also interferes with wielding positive energy. Any creature attempting to use positive energy in this area—such as through a cleric’s channel energy ability, a paladin’s lay on hands, or any spell with the healing descriptor—must make a DC 25 concentration check. If this check fails, the effect is blocked, consuming one use of the ability, or the spell is lost.
Organization solitary, pair, or plague (3–9)
The voidstick zombie is the hateful creation of wicked shamans and necromancers, who use voidsticks to animate the dead. One voidstick is required for every Hit Die possessed by the base creature. These vile devices, each of which is 6 to 10 inches in length, are pierced through the living or dead body of a creature, pumping the dark energy of the void into its form. Packed with the bitter entropy of negative energy, the creature rises, seeking out the life force of others with endless sadness and insane determination. Its single goal is to extinguish life and smother any source of positive energy. Multiple voidsticks in a creature’s form feed one another, augmenting their standard abilities and imbuing the touch of the voidstick zombie with the power to drain life from anything it touches. The zombie becomes almost a sliver of the void itself, existing in a state of such negative power that its very proximity can tamper with other creatures’ abilities to summon the powers of the Positive Energy Plane, and with the perpetual sadness that numbs its own intellect it gains the power to enhance and influence other creatures that depend on negative energy.
These sad creatures, wracked with soulless negative energy, constantly hunger for destruction, delighted at every chance they get to snuff the spark of life from the living.
Since the rediscovery of voidsticks, those interested in necromancy and the creation of new undead have sent emissaries eager to buy them. These enterprising necromancers experiment with the devices and unleash voidstick zombies to fulfill their murderous intent.
In remote parts of the world, it is not always practical for the faithful to visit holy places with any regularity. In particular, the weak, the sick, and the dying may be in no position to trek across plains or risk dangerous water crossings to see their spiritual leaders. In response to this, the godstick was born—a crafted rod that serves as a portable shrine, carried by shamans and witchdoctors and pushed into the ground to focus devotion at any location. Ingenuity is not just the way of the benign, however, and just as often it is the way of evil. Before long, shamans who worshiped more hateful deities corrupted this notion; they created the voidsticks and drove them into bodies, living or dead, charging those bodies with the power of the endless void and creating rattling, hungry abominations.
Pathfinder Adventure Path #57: Tempest Rising © 2012, Paizo Publishing, LLC; Author: Matthew Goodall.