To Fertile Cresent

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Mosaic pavement of a 6th century synagogue at Beit Alpha, Jezreel Valley, northern Israel. It was discovered in 1928. Signs of the zodiac surround the central chariot of the Sun (a Greek motif), while the corners depict the 4 "turning points" ("tekufot") of the year, solstices and equinoxes, each named for the month in which it occurs--tequfah of Tishrei, (tequfah of Tevet), tequfah of Ni(san), tequfah of Tamuz.

Mosaic pavement of a 6th century synagogue at Beit Alpha, Jezreel Valley, northern Israel. It was discovered in 1928. Signs of the zodiac surround the central chariot of the Sun (a Greek motif), while the corners depict the 4 "turning points" ("tekufot") of the year, solstices and equinoxes, each named for the month in which it occurs--tequfah of Tishrei, (tequfah of Tevet), tequfah of Ni(san), tequfah of Tamuz.

Occult Lore
Author Keith Baker, Adam Bank, Chris Jones, Scott Reeves, and Elton Robb
Series Lore
Publisher Atlas
Publish date 2002
Pages 240
ISBN 1-58978-021-3
OGL Section 15 occult-lore
Content Puller Mark Gedak

Netbook can be found on the following website

The Grand OGL Wiki

The material below is designated as Open Game Content

Interpreting Horoscopes

Interpreting another astrologer’s horoscopes can be a daunting task. It takes at least 30 minutes per class level of the creator, after which the interpreter makes a single Astrology check with a DC of 10 + creator’s class level. The going market price for horoscope interpretation is 5 x creator’s class level in gp, with raw materials costing one-third as much. A centuries-old horoscope, or a horoscope from a different tradition of astrology, may take longer and be more difficult to compute, at the GM’s discretion. The interpretation results depend upon the type of horoscope (this is discussed more in the detailed descriptions of the different types of horoscope, below).

You do not need to make an interpretation check for horoscopes you create yourself; you interpret them automatically, taking no additional time.

Prediction Horoscopes

Computing a prediction horoscope is requires a single Astrology check and the expenditure of 3 sp in raw materials (ink, parchment, wax tablets, etc.). If the check beats a DC of 25, the prediction is completed in one half-hour. If the check beats a DC of 20, the prediction takes one hour to compute. If the check beats a DC of 15, the prediction takes a full 3 hours to complete. A failure results in 3 hours of wasted activity and raw materials. The working of a prediction is considered an extraordinary ability, and a custom prediction has a market price of 1 gp.

A successful interpretation of a prediction horoscope reveals both the question/tidings asked and the computed response. See page 21 for more on interpreting horoscopes.

Predictions have two uses:


A prediction can mimic the effects on an Augury spell. An auguring prediction can tell the astrologer whether a particular action will bring good or bad results for one creature in the immediate future.

The base chance for receiving a meaningful auguring prediction is 70% + 1% per astrologer level; the GM makes the roll secretly. The GM may determine that the question is so straightforward that a successful result is automatic, or so vague as to have no chance of success. If the Augury succeeds, the character gets one of four results:

* “Weal,” if the action will probably bring good results.
* “Woe,” for bad results.
* “Weal and woe,” for both.
* “Nothing,” for actions that don’t have especially good or bad results.

If the secret roll fails, the character gets the “nothing” result. An astrologer who gets the “nothing” result has no way to tell whether it resulted from a failed or successful Augury. The prediction can see into the future only about half an hour after the prediction is complete, so anything that might happen after that does not affect the Augury. Thus, it might miss the long-term consequences of the contemplated action. All auguring predictions calculated by the same person about the same topic use the same dice result as the first prediction.


A prediction can be used to compute astrological tidings. To predict tidings, you must know the subject’s date of birth. Before computation, you must pick a particular house of tidings from the chart opposite. Once the computation is complete, the GM secretly roles a percentile die. If the result is less than or equal to 70% + 1% per class level, the GM provides the computer with a result of either “bad tidings,” “good tidings,” or “neutral tidings,” and incorporates those results into the story. If the percentile roll fails, the GM can pick randomly and need not incorporate the result into the story.

A GM has very wide latitude when dealing with the consequence of true tidings, particularly in terms of timing or how long those tidings take to “come true.” Some suggestions are provided on the chart, but GMs are encouraged to range far beyond them and use predictions as story and plot moving tools.

Interrogation Horoscopes

Creating an interrogation has a DC of 20, a market price of 140 gp, and a raw materials cost of 47 gp. To determine how much time it takes to make an interrogation, use the rules for making things found in the Craft skill description.
Interrogations mimic the results of a divination spell. Similar to an auguring prediction but more powerful, an interrogation can provide the character with a useful piece of advice in reply to a question concerning a specific goal, event, or activity that is to occur within 1 week of the horoscope’s completion. The advice can be as simple as a short phrase, or it might take the form of a cryptic rhyme or omen.

In all cases, the GM controls what information the character receives. Note that if the character’s party doesn’t act on the information, the conditions may change so that the information is no longer useful.

The base chance for a correct interrogation is 70% + 1% per class level. The GM adjusts the chance if unusual circumstances require it; for example, if unusual precautions against magical divination have been taken this might skew the percentage to 50% + 1% per class level or worse. If the dice roll fails, the character knows the interrogation failed, unless specific magic yielding false information is at work. As with Augury, multiple divinations about the same topic by the same caster use the same dice result as the first divination and yield the same answer each time.

The working of an interrogation is considered an extraordinary ability.

A successful interpretation of an interrogation horoscope reveals both the reveals both the question asked and the answer computed.

House of Tidings Examples
Personality Good: Good cheer cannot be denied (+1 morale bonus to one saving throw)
 Bad: A sour mood clouds judgment (–2 to one Spot check)
Lucre Good: A chancy business deal goes well (+2 luck bonus to one Profession check)

Bad: An empty treasure room (–2 to one Search check)
Family Good: A distant relative repays a favor.

Bad: A death in the family creates unexpected responsibilities.
Origins Good: A secret from youth is finally explained.

Bad: Ancestry causes an unjust prejudice against you (–2 to one Charisma check)
Fecundity Good: A new life joins a close circle of family or friends

Bad: Craftsmanship goes awry (–4 to one Craft check)
Livelihood Good: A hireling surprises with ingenuity (+2 luck bonus to one cohort’s check)

Bad: Nature turns against business interest (one day of overland movement halved)
Companionship Good: A new love interest appears (+2 to one Charisma check)
Mystery Good: Unexpected magical aid (+2 luck bonus to one Will saving throw)

Bad: A slip at a crucial moment (–2 to one Dexterity check)
Journeys Good: The path is clear and uneventful (one day of overland movement doubled)

Bad: A displeased god disrupts affairs in subtle ways (one day of overland movement halved)
Ambition Good: A challenge long sought is finally found (+2 to one opposed check)

Bad: A competitor reaches a goal first (–2 to one opposed check)
Community Good: Locals share the same ideals (+2 to one Diplomacy or Gather Information check)

Bad: War comes ever closer (–2 to one Diplomacy or Intimidation check)
Sorrow Good: Potential Contagion does not spread (+2 luck bonus to one Fortitutude saving throw)

Bad: Binds force inaction (–2 to one Escape Artist check)

Inception Horoscopes

The DCs of inceptions vary. Inceptions have a market price of 30 + (creator’s class level x 10) gp and a raw material cost of one-third that amount. To determine how much time it takes to compute an inception, use the rules for making things found in the Craft skill description.

When computing an inception, you first propose a question in the following form: “When is an auspicious time for [certain people] to [perform a certain task]?” You must have a specific, discrete future event in mind. Areas and persons involved cannot be left vague. For example, “When is an auspicious time to explore a dungeon?” is too broad, because it could be any dungeon or dungeon-delvers, whereas “When is the best time for Volcker and Arith to explore the catacombs beneath the Abbey of Broken Hill?” is sufficient.

The GM has final say on the sufficiency of a question. Only those people specified during the inception gain its benefits. Continuing the example, Volcker and Arith take Gunnar along with them to the catacombs below the Abbey of Broken Hill. Volcker and Arith gain bonuses, but Gunnar does not. You must know the birthday and birthplace of all participants specified in the inception. You must also possess a map that accurately conveys the geographical location of each birthplace. If you are given false or incomplete information, the inception provides no game benefit. The GM determines the sufficiency of the information you possess.

Alternatively, the GM can choose to increase the DC of the inception due to insufficient information. For example, Arith, a half-dragon of uncertain ancestry, only knows she is about 230 years old and was born somewhere atop the Greylock Mountains. The GM decides to allow calculation of an inception, but increases the DC by +10 (+5 for the vague birthday and +5 for the vague birthplace). Arith and Volcker will need a master computer!

Next, you must chose the time that will pass between the day the inception is finished and the day the event takes place. The difficulty of computing the horoscope increases with shorter delays.

Delay DC
1 year + 2d4 weeks 15
3 months (1 season) + 1d4 weeks 20
1 month + 2d4 days 25
1 week + 1d4 days 30

Once the horoscope is completed, follow the delay chart above and roll to determine the exact length of the delay. The participants do not need to possess the horoscope itself to receive the inception’s bonuses; the computer need only tell them the auspicious, delayed date. For example, Arith and Volcker go to Asphodel, a 9th-level astrologer, for their inception. Because of the uncertainty of Arith’s birth, Asphodel insists on a delay of at least a year. After 2 weeks (2 successful skill checks), the inception is complete. Asphodel’s player checks the delay chart and rolls 2d4 for a result of 3. The delay, therefore, is exactly 1 year and 3 weeks from the day the inception is finished.

A “day” can end either at sunrise or sunset, at the computer’s option, specified before the inception is completed. Continuing the example, Volcker insists on storming the Abbey in broad daylight, when the local spirits are at rest. Asphodel chooses the delayed date “day” to end at sundown. The complete delay, therefore, is 1 year and 3 weeks from the day the inception is finished, but before sundown. If the inception is successfully computed, beginning the ask on the delayed date gives the participants the following bonuses:

* All saving throws made in pursuit of the task gain a +1 luck bonus plus an additional +1 per every 3 full class levels of the computer.
* All attack rolls made in pursuit of the task gain a +1 luck bonus plus an additional +1 per every 3 full class levels of the computer.
* All damage rolls made in pursuit of the task gain a +1 luck bonus plus an additional +1 per every 3 full class levels of the computer.
* All skill checks made in pursuit of the task gain a +2 luck bonus plus an additional +1 per every 3 full class levels of the computer.

These bonuses apply only to a limited number of rolls equal to the level of the horoscope’s creator. The participants cannot choose which rolls to modify.

For example, Volcker and Arith went to a 9th-level astrologer for their inception, so between them they get 9 bonuses to the first 9 saving throws, attack rolls, skill checks, or any combination thereof, that they make when delving into the Broken Hill catacombs. While the bonuses last, Volcker and Arith gain +4 to their attack, saving throw, and damage rolls and +5 to their skill checks.

A successful interpretation of an inception horoscope reveals the task, the date the inception was finished, and the delayed date, but only provides vague information about the participants and the locations involved.

Compute Spell Inception [Item Creation]
Prerequisites: Ability to cast at least one spell with an XP component, 8+ ranks in the Astrology skill
Benefit: You can compute a spell inception horoscope to bypass the XP component requirement of a spell that you cast. You can only prepare spell inceptions for spells you intend to cast yourself. If your magic system permits spellcasting in a group, you must specify all the intended participants in the spell prior to computing the inception. If any of the intended participants fail to partake in the spell, or if other spellcasters partake, the spell inception provides no benefit. Other participants, however, do not need to possess the Spell Inception feat. Additionally, you must participate in the spellcasting yourself. Otherwise, a spell inception only benefits the computer of the horoscope.

You must specify the spell to be cast before the spell inception is computed. You must be capable of casting the spell when preparing the spell inception, although you do not need to actually cast it during preparation. If the spell’s effects are optional, such as the results of a wish spell, or variable, such as the spells subjected to a permanency spell, you must specify which options or variables you intend to take before the spell inception is computed.

For example, you must declare the contents of a wish at the start of computation. If you change your mind any time between the start of computation and the casting of the actual spell, you lose the benefit of the horoscope.

Spell inceptions do not cost XP to create — only funds, skill in Astrology, and time. To determine how much time it takes to make an inception, use the rules for making things found in the Craft skill description.

First, determine the DC of the spell inception. The DC of any spell inception is 10 + level of the intended spell + delay modifier. The delay modifier is determined by the chosen interval of time between the day the spell inception is completed and the day the spell is actually cast (a “day” can end either at sunrise or sunset at your option, but is specified before the spell inception is completed):

Delay Delay Modifier
1 year + 2d4 weeks +0 to DC
3 months (1 season) + 1d4 weeks +5 to DC
1 month + 2d4 days +10 to DC
1 week + 1d4 days +15 to DC

If you specify the exact spot on which you will stand when casting the spell, you gain a +10 bonus to each Astrology check required by the Craft rules. Likewise, by specifying the exact time (down to the minute) during which you plan to cast the spell, you gain a +5 bonus to each Astrology check. These modifiers are cumulative. If you eventually cast the spell standing at a different location or at a different time, the spell inception provides no benefit.

Next, compute the spell inception using the rules for making things found under the Craft skill description. For the purposes of determining the time, number of checks, and raw materials necessary to compute the horoscope, treat the spell inception as if it had a market price in gp equal to 100 gp + (XP cost of the spell/100). For example, wish has a XP component of at least 5000 XP; the effective market price of a spell inception for a wish spell is at least 150 gp, and it has a minimum raw material cost of 50 gp. According to the Craft rules, you must work toward a total of 1500 sp (the conversion of the 150 gp market price) by multiplying the result of each Astrology check by the DC and adding it to your weekly progress total.

Once the horoscope is complete, roll on the delay chart above to determine the exact length of the delay. You gain the benefits of spell inception by waiting to cast the spell until the delayed date. You do not need to possess the horoscope itself when casting; you need only remember the proper time.

Special: Successfully interpreting a spell inception reveals the delayed date, and (if specified) the exact time and place. To learn the intended spell (and any intended spell options), make a Spellcraft check with a DC equal to the spell inception’s creation DC.


CR 1; SZ D (construct); HD special; hp special; Init –5; Spd 1 ft. (twitchy crawl); AC 9 (+4 size, –5 Dexterity); Atk none; Face 1 ft. x 1 ft; Reach 1 ft.; SQ construct, supernatural abilities; AL N; SV Fort +0, Ref –5, Will +4; Strength 1, Dexterity 1, Constitution — , Intelligence 12, Wisdom 18, Charisma 1

Pangunculi are semi-living dolls made of wax, alchemical materials, and rotting fluid and tissue. They appear as foul, diminutive caricatures of their owners. They take in no sustenance, living on the science that birthed them. They are incapable of any significant movement or noise other than nervous twitching and crying. They cannot speak, and can only understand the spoken words of their owners. The mystical similarities between these pathetic creatures and their owners create magical interference that can “confuse” spells into targeting the pangunculus instead of its owner. As long as they live, and the “pangunculus taboos” (below) are obeyed, pangunculi grant the following supernatural abilities to their owners:

Spell Confusion (Su): The owner gains a qualified Spell Resistance equal to 12 + the pangunculus’ similarity bonus. This SR applies only to the following spells: spells cast against the owner with the range of “unlimited;” spells that require Scry checks; and any other spell cast against the owner when the owner is out of the spellcaster’s line of sight. If the spell is successfully resisted, the spell targets the pangunculus instead. If the pangunculus is outside the resisted spell’s range, the spell is effectively counterspelled.

Divination Trickery (Su): If Spell Confusion deflects a divination spell, the GM makes a secret Scry check for the spellcaster against a DC equal to the pangunculus’ SR. If the check fails, the spellcaster is fooled. The divination spell appears to be successful, but provides false yet convincing information or visions. A pangunculus can be instructed as to what kind of false information to give. Treat Spell Trickery as an illusion (phantasm).

Protection (Su): The owner gains a +2 resistance bonus to all saving throws against spells and spell-like effects.

Deny the Prying Eye (Su): The owner is invisible to arcane eye, Prying Eyes, or similar spells, although the pangunculus can still be seen.


The powers of pangunculi rely upon sympathetic magic to create the mystical dissonance that confuses spells. To keep those powers functioning, the following taboos must be maintained. None of the pangunculus’ supernatural abilities function during the violation of a taboo, but immediately return upon the taboo’s resumption.

Out of Sight: The owner must not physically or magically see the pangunculus. If the pangunculus is in the same room with its owner, it must be placed in an opaque container.
Out of Touch: The owner cannot be in direct physical contact with the pangunculus. The owner cannot carry the pangunculus in any way. The owner cannot ride on the same mount or in the same vehicle with the pangunculus.
In Mind: The pangunculus must be within 100 feet of the owner.


A pangunculus can be created either as an alchemical or magical construct. Using either method, the first step in creating a pangunculus is choosing its similarity bonus. You can create a pangunculus with a similarity bonus equal to your Wisdom modifier + Astrology rank or lower. Less similar pangunculi are easier and cheaper to make.

Before construction begins, you must designate its owner —the person or creature the pangunculus will protect. A pangunculus provides no protection to anyone other than its particular owner. Possessing another’s pangunculus, however, earns a +10 bonus to Scry rolls against its owner.

The most important ingredients when creating a pangunculus are the flesh and fluids of its owner. Drawing forth these materials is an unpleasant process, causing 2 hp of damage per owner’s hit die. The pangunculus has a number of d4 hit dice equal to the owner’s number of hit dice.

For example, the pangunculus of a 6th-level character has 6d4 hit dice. The owner can choose to increase the pangunculus’ hp total by donating more blood during creation. Each additional hp of damage to the owner raises the pancunculus’ hp total by +1. A pangunculus can be given a maximum of 10 + owner’s Constitution modifier additional hp.

Alchemical Pangunculi

To create a pangunculus as an alchemical project, you must possess a nativity horoscope of its owner for the duration of the creation processes. You must also interpret the nativity before beginning the project, which requires the Astrology skill. The nativity provides you with the clues to link the pangunculus with its intended owner. (See page 29 for more on nativity horoscopes.)

Creating an alchemical pangunculus is an Alchemy task. The DC of an alchemical pangunculus is 15 + the pangunculus’ similarity bonus. The market price is 100 + (pangunculus’ similarity bonus x 100) gp, rand the raw materials cost is one-third that amount. To determine how long it takes to make an alchemical pangunculus, use the rules for making things in the Craft skill description. The creation must take place in an alchemist’s laboratory or similar workshop.

Magical Construct Pangunculi

You cannot create a magical construct pangunculus for another creature. Although the creation process is less involved, pangunculi created this way can only protect the magician who performs the creation ritual. The Astrology skill is not required.

A magical construct pangunculus costs 20 x the similarity bonus in gp to create, plus 20 gp for the body. Unlike alchemical pangunculi, which grow from the tissue supplied by their owner, the magical construct’s body must be sculpted from wax compounds, requiring a Craft (sculpture) DC 12 check; at the time of its sculpting, the owner’s tissue is placed inside a hollow carved where the pangunculus’ heart would be.

Once the body is made, the creation ritual can begin. The ritual can only be conducted by a character of at least 7th level with the Craft Wondrous Item feat. Taking an entire, uninterrupted week, the creator must labor for 8 hours a day in a laboratory or workroom. If the creator is interrupted for any purpose besides eating, sleeping, or talking, the ritual fails and the body is ruined. Completing the ritual requires the casting of either Spell Resistance or spell turning and the expending of 50 XP. The creator can use scrolls for the spellcasting.

Secondary Pangunculi

The spell-like powers of pangunculi do not stack; you cannot be protected by multiple pangunculi at once. You can, however, create a pangunculus for another pangunculus — called a secondary pangunculus — but with considerable difficulty. First, magical construct pangunculi cannot serve as secondary pangunculi. The only method known for creating secondary pangunculi is through alchemy and astrology, discussed above.

The DC of a secondary alchemical pangunculus is +5 greater than the DC needed to create its primary. The market price for a secondary pangunculus is double the price of its primary pangunculus. The primary pangunculus must obey all of the taboos for the secondary pangunculus to function.

Nativity Horoscopes

Computing a nativity has a DC of 25. Nativities have a market price of 250 gp and a raw material cost of 83 gp. To determine how much time it takes to make a nativity, use the rules for making things found in the Craft skill description. A nativity can be computed for creatures, man-made objects, or buildings.

To compute a nativity for a creature, you must know the exact time and place the creature was born. For objects, you must know the exact time and place the object’s creation began. For buildings, you must know the exact time the building’s construction was begun and have an exact notion of the building’s location. People aware of the powers of nativities take great pains in making sure such information remains a secret.

This information can be gained through divination magic or physical investigation. The time must be known down to the minute. Determining location also requires careful astrological measurements. These measurements must be made at the exact spot of birth, creation, or construction with a DC 15 Astrology check. You do not need to make these measurements yourself to create the nativity.

Once complete, a nativity contains the sum of all astrological knowledge concerning its subject. The proper use of a nativity allows members of the astrologer PC class to create spell formulae (see page 32), or confers one of the following bonuses per use:

Complete Familiarity: For any spell requiring familiarity with the subject, the nativity provides the greatest familiarity possible.
Superior Scrying: All Scry checks involving the nativity’s subject gain a +10 bonus.
Exposed Weaknesses: The DCs of all the subject’s saving throws made against spells cast by the possessor of the nativity are equal to either: 10 + (caster level x 2) + caster’s Intelligence modifier; or the original DC, whichever is higher.
An Open Book: All the following skill checks against the subject are made with a +5 circumstance bonus (if the skills apply to the subject):

Skill Applicable SubjectExample
Alchemy Object Analyze a substance’s composition and properties
Animal Empathy Creature Becalm the griffon attacking the village
Appraise Object Price an antique vase
Bluff Creature “Search your feelings, you know I’m right!”
Climb Building Scale the outer bailey of Broken Hill Abbey
Craft Object Repairing the king’s sword
Decipher Script Object, Building “At last, these hieroglyphs make sense!”
Diplomacy Creature 
Disguise Creature Disguise yourself as the duke’s son
Forgery Object Replicate the deed to the duchy
Gather Information Creature, Building “Isn’t there a secret entrance in the moat?”
Handle Animal Creature Train a Griffin
Heal Creature “I know just the thing for you … ”
Hide Building Find the best spots in the Abbey’s crypts to hide
Intimidate Creature “Let me tell you something about your mother … ”
Knowledge Creature, Object, Building Trace every branch of the king’s family tree
Move Silently Building Sneak through the Abbey’s catacombs
Perform Object “Sing for me, my favorite harp!”
Search Building Find the secret moat entrance
Sense Motive Creature “What could she be thinking?”
Spellcraft Creature, Object Learn a spell from your master’s grimoire
Use Magic Device Object Get Asphodel’s scroll to work for you

Proper Use: You must be the creator of the nativity, or you must interpret it, to gain its benefits. Each use requires 5 minutes spent studying the nativity. The desired bonus (including the particular skill to be modified) must be specified before studying. You can only use a nativity for the above tasks a number of times equal to your character level per day; for the task of preparing spell formulae, members of the astrologer PC class are limited by the number of spell formulae they can create per day (see page 32). Two nativities of the same subject contain identical information, and thus cannot be used to “double up” uses. After studying, you can use the nativity any time before the next sunset or sunrise, whichever comes first. Uses do not stack on a single roll.

Interpreting a nativity allows you to use it as if you created it yourself.

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To Fertile Cresent

The Worlds of Mankind is owned and created by Mark John Goodwin

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