By James Wyatt
the usual familiars available to spellcasting characters become a little,
well, too familiar? To liven things up in your campaign, we're
offering three new familiar spells to finish out the year. Add them to
your heroes' repertoires and watch the double-takes these faithful friends
elicit! Our final spell of the trilogy, animate dead familiar,
enables you to keep that boon companion around a little longer.
V, S, XP
Casting Time: 1 round
to cast this spell, you must have a familiar, and that creature must be
dead. You animate the dead familiar as a zombielike undead, restoring
some measure of the bond you had with it while it lived.
not regain the experience points you lost when the familiar died. You
also lose the special benefits you gained based on the familiar's animal
type (such as the +2 bonus to Move Silently checks bestowed by a cat familiar).
Being undead, the creature has no Constitution score, which affects its
Fortitude saves but not its hit points. It retains its natural armor and
its preternatural Intelligence, as well as all of the special abilities
it had based on your level except for the ability to speak with animals
of its type. It still has effective Hit Dice equal to your level and hit
points equal to half your total hit points.
familiar resembles a zombie, but is not slow like a zombie. Its type changes
to Undead. As an undead creature, it is immune to mind-influencing effects,
poison, sleep, paralysis, stunning, and disease. It is not subject to
critical hits, subdual damage, ability damage, energy drain, or death
from massive damage. If you are within range of the familiar's empathic
link with you (one mile), it cannot be turned or rebuked. Beyond that
range, it is subject to turning and rebuking (as well as commanding and
destroying) as an undead of its effective Hit Dice.
the familiar gains a special attack delivered by a melee attack. The nature
of this attack depends on your caster level at the time you cast this
spell; it does not improve as your level increases. You may choose a lower-level
ability than your level indicates.
Those hit by the undead familiar's attack must succeed at a Fortitude
save (DC 14) or be paralyzed for 1d6+2 minutes. Elves are immune to
damage: The undead familiar's attack deals 1d6 points of temporary
Strength damage in addition to the normal damage.
Drain: Living creatures hit by the undead familiar's attack receive
one negative level. The Fortitude save to remove the negative level
has a DC of 16.
Drain: Living creatures hit by the undead familiar's attack must succeed
at a Fortitude save (DC 18) or suffer 1d6 points of permanent Constitution
If the undead familiar
is destroyed, you lose experience points as if you had lost a living familiar
(again). The corpse is utterly destroyed in this case, and cannot be animated
via this spell again, nor can it be restored to life with a raise dead
spell (resurrection will work, however).
cast this spell on another character's familiar.
Cost: 100 XP.