Orb of Dying Light

Minor Artifact from the Ruby Phoenix's Vault

Aura Strong Necromancy, Moderate Evocation, ?
Caster Level 20th
Type Minor artifact
Slot none
Origin Gastash, Thassilon
Affiliation Zutha, Runelord of Gluttony


A perfect apple-sized sphere of smooth inubrix, the Orb of Dying Light is a terrible necromantic artifact created by the Runelord of Gluttony, Zutha, to protect himself from the living, though he eventually eschewed its use in favor of his ioun stones and rings.

The inubrix orb itself is simply a container for the portion of the necromantic energy harvested from the Dying Star which powers it, and weighs 1 lb. A free hand is required to carry and utilize the orb. When wielded in a hand the orb comes to life, lit within by a sickly purple light which traces about the exterior in circuit-like lines when used. Using the orb to cast spells is a standard action, and it is a use-activated item which does not provoke attacks of opportunity in its use.

The orb contains many powerful spells within it, serving as a sort of arcane spellbook for its wielder to utilize. The wielder is made aware of the spells contained within the orb upon holding it, and may use any he could were he a spellcaster of a level high enough to cast them, using the character level of the wielder as the Caster Level of the spell, or his own Caster Level, whichever is higher. Any saves required by a spell may be made as though the wielder had an Intelligence score of 25 (resulting in a + 7 modifier) or by using the wielder’s Intelligence, whichever is higher, and Spell Resistance checks are made against the orb’s Caster Level (20th). Casting the spells with the sphere requires no verbal or somatic components, only that the sphere be held.

Spell Level Spells Alteration to Spell
2nd arcane disruption A single beam of barely-perceptible black light streaks from the orb to the target.
scorching ray Rays of black light lance out from the sphere in seemingly random directions, but sweep across their targets like lasers quickly thereafter.
3rd aura of cannibalism As normal.
blood salvation
call the void Wielder and victims’ eyes turn black while spell is active.
titanic anchoring Wielder’s body swells grotesquely, but does not inhibit them beyond the scope of the spell.
vampiric touch The purplish light within the orb flares with necromantic energy.
4th animate dead As normal.
5th slay living As normal.
6th antilife shield Edge of field is visible as a faint purple sheen containing howling faces of tortured souls within the affected area.
antimagic field
banshee blast As normal.
circle of death
contagious flame As scorching ray above. Secondary rays burst from the eyes of primary targets painfully.
8th bloatbomb Victim has a stream of necromantic energy forced into their mouth and nose by wielder until killed.
orb of the void An illusory double of the orb of dying light splits from it and flies about, behaving otherwise as per the spell.
9th ascension The wielder vomits forth pulsating, sickly-coloured energy, which flows into the mouths of those who ascend. The ascendants’ eyes glow with the energy for the duration.
canopic conversion As normal.

Despite the wonderful power of the orb, its gift comes from a vile source, and the Dying Light demands a terrible cost: the orb draws from the life force of the creature wielding it as the fuel for its spells, using this drained life energy as a material component. The use of any of the spells listed in the orb’s description require the user to take 1 Constitution drain per spell level, and the energy type of the spell is changed to negative energy (no matter what energy type the spell normally uses). If the spell to be cast possessed a costly material component, 1 Constitution drain must be supplied per 500g required, or the appropriate equivalent value in onyx.

Worse than this is the secondary ability granted by the sphere: if the wielder touches a living creature, he may instead choose to sacrifice that creature’s life energy to make use of the sphere’s magic. Likewise, if that creature is touching another living creature, both contribute their energy to the pool available for use; there is no limit on the number of creatures who may be linked together as the material components of the spells when using the sphere. In this way, Zutha had slain many of the bandits plaguing his kingdom’s abundance, sacrificing his subjects and enslaved enemies alike with little effort on his part, though he eventually delegated such work to his lieutenants, focusing instead on greater pursuits.

If the wielder is a Mythic being, they may expend 1 use of Mythic power to cast any level of spells from the Orb of Dying Light, reducing the resulting Constitution drain to a Constitution penalty, which goes away upon resting. The wielder may also cast Mythic variants of the spells within the orb as normal, as if they knew them.


The Orb of Dying Light must be bathed in the heart blood of a dying paladin, a dying metallic dragon, and a dying azata, agathion, and archon to destroy it. The slain creatures must all be pure of heart, of a minimum CR of 15, and willingly give their dying breaths to destroy the sphere. Upon their deaths, their souls are damned to the most horrifying pits of the Abyss, and these willing victims can’t be returned to life short of divine intervention.

Upon its destruction, the orb releases a flare of necromantic energy dealing 6d6+12 negative energy damage to all creatures within 200 feet; this conflagration would be witnessed as the inubrix shell melting around the dark light’s energy, which then shoots out tendrils of shadowy purple energy about the affected area as it rises into the sky, quickly being lost in the darkness between the stars.


not finished yet:

  • needs spell list
    • should be entirely necromancy or “gluttony”-esque spells (possibly including heroes’ feast, create food, etc?)
    • look at Urgathoa’s stuff for ideas
    • probably should stick to a few schools, like Necromancy, Abjuration, and maybe Evocation or Conjuration
  • needs aura nailed down
  • needs review

Orb of Dying Light

RoundTable Adventuring The_Social_Moth