Ixion worm

From PathfinderWiki
Ixion worm
Type Outsider
(evil, extraplanar, lawful)
CR 13
Environment Any (Hell)

Source: For Queen & Empire, pg(s). 90–91

Ixion worms resemble serpents made of bone, each with the identical fleshy face of a handsome male cyclops stretched around its grotesque form. They are formed in the forges of Phlegethon, a layer of Hell. These worm-like fiends can wrap themselves into the shape of a wheel and lull defiant or lazy petitioners into a compliant trance—or crush and absorb their essence in a twisted maw.[1][2]


Ixion worms are 5 feet wide and weigh 600 pounds. When serpentine, an ixion worm's body stretches up to 30 feet in length and its cyclops face is an indistinguishable skin sack. When rolled into wheel form, the result has a radius of nine feet and its face is stretched across the wheel's hub.[2]


Employed in Hell as motivational enforcers over the petitioners who toil in Phlegethon's mines and forges, ixion worms employ mesmerizing powers by rolling around a subject in their wheel form. These hypnotic movements cause those under an ixion worm's sway to envision Hell as a twisted, malformed paradise specific to their strongest vice.[1][2] If a petitioner still refuses to work, the worm crushes it and consumes what remains of its individuality in its warped, soul-absorbing mouth.[2]


Ixion worms are formed in the forges of Phlegethon from the souls of those who betrayed their families during their mortal lives. They roam their layer's crags searching for petitioners to goad and charm into working harder for Belial, and the most efficient among them are rewarded by becoming wheels and gears in Hell's carts and machinery.[2]


Ixion worms are named for an ancient cyclops mesmerist during the early years of Ghol-Gan. Ixion, an especially proud and handsome cyclops, used his psychic powers to take over a cyclops tribe and declare himself its king, then murdered his father out of lust for his mother-in-law.[2]

Sensing Ixion's brutal betrayal, Belial—archdevil of betrayal—sent agents to convince Ixion's wife and mother-in-law to avenge his father's death by killing him in turn. After stabbing Ixion repeatedly, they strapped his dying body to an oxcart wheel and plowed him to his death.[2]

Once Ixion's soul reached Phlegethon, Belial asked Ixion to choose between joining his harem in Idolisque or working in the layer's forges, but Ixion responded by disparaging the attractiveness of Belial's consorts. The archdevil ripped Ixion apart for his insolence, rebuilt him into the first ixion worm, and then cast the insolent king into the chasms below after the mangled Ixion continued to insult Belial. To further insult Ixion, Belial instructed his forges to shape every betrayer of families into an identical form.[2]

Ixion himself continues to anonymously roam Phlegethon in search of his wife and mother-in-law.[2]

On Golarion

Duergar in Nar-Voth claim that some ixion worms escaped their servitude and betrayed Belial by sharing Phlegethon's methods of binding souls to metal and stone with them, and idolize the creatures in hopes of more of the worms returning to bear additional secrets.[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 F. Wesley Schneider. (2009). Princes of Darkness, p. 12. Paizo Publishing, LLC. ISBN 978-1-60125-189-3
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 2.8 2.9 Garrett Guillotte, Steven T. Helt, Luis Loza, and Stephen Radney-MacFarland. (2016). Bestiary. For Queen & Empire, p. 90–91. Paizo Inc. ISBN 978-1-60125-836-6