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Orcus

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Orcus
The demonic rune of Orcus
(Deity)
Titles Prince of Undeath
Demon Lord of Necromancy and the Undead
Home Uligor, the Abyss
Alignment Chaotic evil
Portfolio Death
Necromancy
Wrath
undeath
Worshipers derros, necromancers, powerful undead (especially liches or mummies), thanatotic titans
Cleric Alignments
Domains Chaos, Death, Evil, Magic
Subdomains Demon, Divine, Murder, Undead
Favored Weapon heavy mace
Symbol Four-horned goat head
Sacred Animal Goat
Sacred Colors Ivory, red

Orcus (pronounced OHR-kuhs)[1] is the demon lord of the undead and those who practise vile necromancy,[2] but is also associated with the sin of wrath.[3] He is a major object of worship throughout the Material Plane, yet has a relatively small following on Golarion.[4] As the demon lord of necromancy, Orcus seems to call more to those who have chosen undeath freely, rather than those who acquired it by accident.[5]

Contents

Appearance

Orcus has a fearsome appearance, though he certainly looks more human than some of the other demon lords like Dagon and Zevgavizeb. Orcus takes the shape of a fat humanoid with the head and cloven feet of a demonic ram, the wings of a an enormous bat, and a tail ending in a stinger.[2][6][4] Orcus wields his infamous heavy mace called the Wand of Orcus.[2][4]

Home

Orcus' Abyssal realm is called Uligor—an entire world filled with undead, where Orcus is engaged in a war for supremacy of the realm against a number of thanatotic titans.[2][7]

Cult and worshipers

Orcus is one of the demon lords with the most aggressive intentions on the Material Plane, but his influence on Golarion is relatively small. The only places where Orcus has any real cults (rather than the lone madmen who typically turn to demon worship) is in Geb, and some of the isolated, backwater areas of shadowy Nidal. While his devout followers claim Orcus is merely biding his time before making some grand move on Golarion, a more realistic reason for the demon lord's lack of local popularity is the intense competition with the more popular cults of Zura, Kabriri, and Urgathoa.[2][6][4] The demon lord's followers are also always opposed by those of the goddess Pharasma, who seek to root out necromancy and undeath wherever they find it.[8] Orcus is known to have followers who claim the calling of the antipaladin.[9]

One of Orcus' most powerful followers is the lich Phaegia, a former priestess of Aroden who converted to the demon lord's worship towards the end of her life.[10]

Among other races, the derro are the most likely to venerate Orcus.[11][12]

Temples

Only two temples to Orcus are known to exist on Golarion. The first can be found in the Temple Row district of the ruined city of Xin-Shalast, high in the Kodar Mountains of northeatern Varisia. It is located alongside shrines to other demon lords and archdevils including Mammon, Pazuzu, and Lamashtu; it is not known whether the temple is ruined or active.[13] The second is located far to the south, below the ruined city of Saventh-Yhi in the Mwangi Jungle. Here, a more fetishistic form of the demon lord was venerated by an ancient zombie cult.[14] Rumors exist that a shrine to Orcus can be found within the Whispering Tyrant's prison of Gallowspire, although this has not been confirmed.[15]

Servants

In his Abyssal realm of Uligor, Orcus is served by strange demon-undead hybrids, powerful liches,[7] and lilitu demons.[3] His most powerful servant is the balor lord Goriath, the Soul Drinker, who has been ordered to retake a remote city-fortress in Uligor.[16] In the past, the powerful marilith Ylleshka also pledged fealty to the Prince of Undeath, although this is no longer the case.[17]

External links

References

  1. Erik Mona et al. (2008). Campaign Setting, p. 247. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-112-1
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 22. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  3. 3.0 3.1 James Jacobs et al. (2013). The Worldwound, p. 49. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-532-7
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 James Jacobs et al. (2011). The Inner Sea World Guide, p. 232. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-269-2
  5. Todd Stewart, Brandon Hodge, and Steve Kenson. (2011). Undead Revisited, p. 32. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-303-3
  6. 6.0 6.1 James Jacobs. (2009). Demon Lords of Golarion. Descent into Midnight, p. 61. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-131-2
  7. 7.0 7.1 Mike Shel. (2013). Gazetteer of the Abyss. The Midnight Isles, p. 68. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-585-3
  8. Colin McComb. (2011). Faiths of Balance, p. 17. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-316-3
  9. James Jacobs. (2010). Lords of Chaos, p. 43. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-250-0
  10. Todd Stewart, Brandon Hodge, and Steve Kenson. (2011). Undead Revisited, p. 26-27. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-303-3
  11. James Jacobs & Greg A. Vaughan. (2008). Into the Darklands, p. 20. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-140-4
  12. James Jacobs, Rob McCreary, and F. Wesley Schneider. (2010). Classic Horrors Revisited, p. 7. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-202-9
  13. Greg A. Vaughan. (2008). Spires of Xin-Shalast. Spires of Xin-Shalast, p. 30. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-041-4
  14. Greg A. Vaughan. (2010). Vaults of Madness. Vaults of Madness, p. 38. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-275-3
  15. Jason Bulmahn. (2011). Gallowspire. Dungeons of Golarion, p. 20. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-304-0
  16. James Jacobs. (2013). Demons Revisited, p. 13. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-552-5
  17. Wolfgang Baur. (2013). NPC Gallery. Herald of the Ivory Labyrinth, p. 61. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-586-0


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