Archives of Nethys

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Ancient Tradition

Source Blood of the Ancients pg. 6
You have devoted yourself to keeping the traditions of an ancient or lost culture alive and well, and you gain strength from your devotion to the old ways. Prerequisites: Knowledge (history) 3 ranks, must have a connection to a lost culture (see text).

Benefit: Each lost culture has its own daily ritual, but none of them take more than 1 hour per day to perform. Once you’ve performed the daily ritual, you gain the benefit of a special ability or resistance as indicated in the Daily Ritual entry for the culture in question. Specific cultures and their rituals are listed below.

If you have at least 12 Hit Dice, you also gain the first boon granted by your lost culture upon undertaking its daily ritual. If you have at least 16 Hit Dice, you also gain the lost culture’s second boon. If you have 20 Hit Dice or more, you also gain the lost culture’s third boon. Each boon is a spell-like ability that you can cast once per day. Your caster level for these boons is equal to your Hit Dice, and the saving throw DC is based on your Intelligence, Wisdom, or Charisma modifier (whichever is highest).

For the purposes of this feat, you are considered to have a connection to a lost culture if you have a relic or object from that civilization, have extensively researched that culture, or are descended—directly or culturally—from that culture’s people. Once you have chosen a lost culture, you cannot change it without your GM’s permission. At the GM’s discretion, other types of connections might also apply. Typically, you can have a connection to only one lost civilization. If you ever fail to perform a daily ritual, you lose all access to the benefits and boons granted by this feat until the time you next perform the daily ritual.

Lost Cultures

The following cultures have rich ancient traditions in which characters can invest.

Ancient Osirion

Founded by Azghaad, a prophet of Nethys who famously slew a Spawn of Rovagug and founded his capital within its carapace, Osirion is a nation with a long and proud history. The Ancient Osirians are best known today for their elaborate tombs, many of which have remained untouched for millennia.

Daily Ritual: Position yourself where you can watch the sun rise. As it does, briefly give thanks to each god in Ancient Osirion’s pantheon. Reflect on your notable Osirian ancestors or other ancient heroes and their accomplishments. Then, leave a small offering of cooked food on a wooden plate (or, if none is available, on a large leaf ). You gain a +4 bonus on saving throws to resist death effects.

Boons: 1: sepia snake sigil; 2: elemental body IV; 3: mage’s disjunction.

Azlant

Azlant is considered by many to have been the pinnacle of human society, though the ancient empire’s hubris brought about the calamity known as Earthfall.

Daily Ritual: Stand tall, with one arm outstretched, clutching a crystal, gem, or ioun stone in your fist. Keeping your arm outstretched, slowly turn three times in a counterclockwise circle, each time naming aloud one of your achievements or strengths. You gain a +2 bonus on Spellcraft and Use Magic Device checks.

Boons: 1: arcane sight; 2: reverse gravity; 3: overwhelming presence.

Jistka Imperium

One of the first human civilizations to emerge after the devastation of Earthfall, Jistka was known for its advanced technologies and mighty legions. The Imperium eventually fell before the rising might of Ancient Osirion and the Tekritanin League.

Daily Ritual: Read sections from the Poleiheira, the journals of Arustun, the ancient hero who founded the Jistka Imperium. If you do not have any portions of these journals, you can instead meditate on the nature of civilization, the importance of structure and discipline to society, and the ways in which technology can improve the lives of the people. You gain a +1 bonus on damage rolls for nonmagical masterwork weapons and a +2 bonus on Craft checks to create golems.

Boons: 1: keen edge; 2: control construct; 3: wooden phalanx.

Lung Wa

While not the largest empire in its region’s history, Lung Wa was perhaps the most prosperous—and certainly the most recent, collapsing only about a century ago. The empire’s reign is noted for its long periods of peace and stability, along with its state religion, which raised emperors to deities and banned the worship of other divine figures.

Daily Ritual: Carefully write your name in calligraphy in the center of a blank piece of parchment. Then, write around it the names of those to whom you have obligations: your family members, superiors, dependents, business partners, neighbors, and so on, mapping the personal connections in a wheel about yourself. If no paper is available, the writing can be performed in a patch of smooth sand or earth instead. You gain a +4 bonus on saving throws to resist emotion effects.

Boons: 1: tongues; 2: form of the dragon I; 3: resplendent mansion.

Ninshabur

Situated around the Pit of Gormuz, the nation of Ninshabur boasted a warlike people, whose phalanxes spread far and wide to lay siege to other nations. Though their armies are said to have successfully done battle against the Spawn of Rovagug on many occasions, they met their end facing the wicked Tarrasque.

Daily Ritual: Recall a battle with a magical beast you participated in that occurred within the last week. Meditate on your technique and identify ways to improve for your next combat. If you have not fought a magical beast recently, instead train for 1 hour, chanting the war cries of Ninshabur while you do. You gain a +2 bonus on damage rolls against magical beasts.

Boons: 1: monstrous physique I; 2: regenerate; 3: symbol of strife.

Sarkoris

The land that was once Sarkoris has always been unpredictable and wild—a place where borders between planes were naturally thin and whose ties to other planes of existence long predated the formation of the Worldwound. Before this land was invaded by demons and scoured of human life, it was home to a proud warrior culture ruled over by shamans.

Daily Ritual: With your back to the rising sun, travel directly westward (or as close to directly westward as you can manage). At the first signs of an animal you encounter, you must change your path to track it, and if you are able to catch up to it within an hour, you must attempt to slay or capture it. You gain a +2 bonus on Knowledge (planes) and Survival checks.

Boons: 1: summon nature’s ally III; 2: fairy ring retreat; 3: gate.

Shory

The aerial Shory Empire consisted of a collection of loosely aligned city-states that soared through the skies with the power of Shory’s advanced aeromancy techniques.

Daily Ritual: Climb to the highest point available to you, where you have a clear and unobstructed view of the sky. If you are able to fly, you should fly as high as you reasonably can instead. Spread your arms wide and reflect on the openness and freedom of the skies, and the power of flight. Speak a blessing to each of the four winds and ask that they bring only good fortune your way this day. You gain a +2 bonus on Fly checks and treat your caster level as 1 higher when determining the duration of spells you cast with the air descriptor.

Boons: 1: fly; 2: wind walk; 3: winds of vengeance.

Tar Taargadth

The dwarven empire of Tar Taargadth was the final product of the dwarves who undertook the Quest for Sky. The empire represented both the perseverance and the unity of the dwarves in ancient days.

Daily Ritual: Dig a hole that is at least 1 foot deep. Gather the dug up earth and create a small mound. Sit on the mound and meditate on the Quest for Sky. Reflect both on the life for those underground and the liberation granted to those above ground. Write a short prayer and bury it in the hole, covering it with the same earth. You gain a +2 bonus on Survival checks while underground and a +2 bonus on Fortitude saves.

Boons: 1: meld with stone; 2: rampart; 3: clashing rocks.

Thassilon

Ruled over by powerful mages and built on the backs of enslaved giants, Thassilon was one of the great powers of the ancient world.

Daily Ritual: Meditate on an action you performed the previous day that particularly corresponds with one of the seven sins celebrated by Thassilonian rune magic. If you cannot think of any sinful actions you performed the previous day, you are unable to complete the ritual. Once your meditation is complete, draw the rune corresponding to the chosen sin in a prominent place on your body, such as the palm, the back of the hand, the forehead, or the chest. Choose a school of magic from the following list: abjuration, conjuration, enchantment, evocation, illusion, necromancy, or transmutation. Once you choose a school of magic, it cannot be changed. You gain a +2 bonus on saves against spells of the chosen school.

Boons: 1: explosive runes; 2: symbol of stunning; 3: symbol of vulnerability.