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Occult Rituals

Shadow Barbs

Source Inner Sea Magic pg. 59
School illusion (shadow) [darkness]; Level arcanist 4, cleric 4, inquisitor 4, oracle 4, redmantisassassin 4, sorcerer 4, warpriest 4, wizard 4


Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, M (a single link from a spiked chain)


Range 0 ft.
Effect spiked chain-like shadowy weapon
Duration 1 round/level
Saving Throw Will negates (see text); Spell Resistance no


This spell, developed originally by priests of Zon-Kuthon in Nidal’s early years, has recently crossed the boundary between divine and arcane magic. Although it still bears some of the stigma of being associated with the Midnight Lord, it’s rapidly becoming a favorite spell of magi and other martially minded arcane spellcasters.

When you cast this spell, you create a shadowy spiked chain that shimmers and pulses with darkness. The chain exists as long as you carry it; if you ever drop the chain, give it to another, or are disarmed, it immediately vanishes and the spell’s duration ends.

The chain radiates darkness in a 10-foot-radius spread around you, reducing the illumination level in this area by one step, but not below the level of dim light.

You can wield the shadow barbs as a spiked chain as if you were fully proficient with spiked chains. Any additional abilities or feats that you possess that apply to spiked chains apply to the shadow barbs as well. The weapon functions as a +2 vicious spiked chain. Its enhancement bonus increases to +3 at caster level 11th, to +4 at caster level 15th, and finally to +5 at caster level 19th. When the spell effect ends, you can make a Will save against the spell—if successful, all of the damage caused to you by the shadow barbs’ vicious weapon quality vanishes, unless you are dead or unconscious at the time the spell ends, in which case you automatically fail this Will save and the vicious weapon damage remains.