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Ghost Template (3.5e -> PF 1e)

A ghost is the semi-tangible soul of a creature that has died. Instead of a physical body made of muscle, bone, and blood, it has a ghost body made of transparent ectoplasm. Ghosts are not undead, although they are often mistaken for undead by the truly ignorant. They do not need to eat (although they can if they want to) or sleep as they did when alive. When a ghost is
wounded, it leaks ectoplasm like a living creature leaks blood.

In general, a ghost appears as it did at the moment its physical body died, although some ghosts learn how to reshape their ectoplasm and alter their appearance. A ghost body is made of transparent ectoplasm, and an alert observer can easily recognize the identity of the ghost and that the ghost is not a physical person. Most ghosts try to get their bodies raised from the dead (which causes the ghost to merge with the physical body) or search for whoever was responsible for their death, while others become ghosts willingly to pursue some goal or escape some terrible punishment. They otherwise have the same memories and personality they did when they were alive.


“Ghost” is a template that can be applied to any living humanoid creature (referred to hereafter as the character). The creature’s type changes to outsider (incorporeal).  It uses all the character’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.
Speed: When incorporeal, a ghost can fly at a speed of 30 ft. (good).

AC: When incorporeal, a ghost gains a deflection bonus to AC equal to its Charisma modifier (always at least +1, even if the creature’s Charisma score does not normally provide a bonus).

Attacks: An incorporeal ghost has no natural ability to affect material creatures. Certain feats can allow a ghost to manifest fully (and therefore use material weapons at the attack bonus it had as a character) or harm a material creature in various ways.

Special Qualities: A ghost retains all the special qualities of the character and gains those described below.

  • Low-Light Vision (Ex): A ghost can see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of poor illumination. It retains the ability to distinguish color (in a limited fashion; see Ectoplasmic Body, below) and detail under these circumstances.
  • Disembodied Soul (Ex): As a disembodied soul of a living creature, a ghost can be raised or resurrected if its physical body is present (this causes the ghost to merge with its physical body). A true resurrection, miracle, or wish spell can restore a ghost to life, even if its body is missing. A ghost counts as a living creature for the purpose of effects that affect living creatures. As an
    outsider, a ghost is subject to spells that affect outsiders and extraplanar creatures, such as banishment. A ghost’s native plane is beyond the Veil of Souls, and a ghost banished from the Material Plane is sent to the True Afterlife.
  • No Discernible Anatomy (Ex): A ghost has no discernible anatomy and is therefore immune to critical hits, sneak attacks, or bonuses such as a ranger’s favoured enemy bonus that do not work on creatures without discernible anatomy. It can be polymorphed, but a polymorphed ghost is still an ectoplasmic creature with no discernible anatomy. A ghost is unharmed by diseases or poison that would affect a physical body. Other diseases and poisons that affect only ghosts do exist. Ghosts do not need to eat, breathe, or sleep (although spellcaster ghosts still need to rest in order to prepare spells). Ghosts are subject to stunning effects that would affect living creatures.
  • Ectoplasmic Body (Ex): Because an ectoplasmic body is a poor imitation of a true living body, physical sensations for a ghost are somewhat muted. Ghosts cannot become fatigued or exhausted. Certain sensations, such as the taste of food or the feel of another person’s skin, cannot be detected by ghosts except in the most limited way, which drives many to find other ways to
    experience and remember the sensations of life. When killed, a ghost’s body reverts to raw ectoplasm, decaying into nothingness after 10 minutes. A gentle repose spell preserves a ghost’s body as if it were a normal corpse. A ghost’s body is the same temperature as its environment, unlike a physical body.
  • Incorporeal: A ghost has all the benefits and drawbacks of incorporeality as described in the DUNGEON MASTER’s Guide. Some ghosts learn feats that allow them to manifest fully and interact with the material world in a normal manner.
  • Sense Physical Body (Su): A ghost can attempt an Intuit Direction check (DC 15) once per round to determine the general direction of its physical body. If a ghost doesn’t have the Intuit Direction skill, it can attempt a Wisdom check (DC 15) for the same purpose.
  • Ghost Weakness (Ex): If a ghost is hit by a sneak attack or a critical hit from a silver weapon, it must make a Fortitude save (DC 15) or be stunned for 1 round. Other than this possible stunning effect, a critical hit
    or sneak attack does not deal any more damage than a normal hit from that weapon.
Abilities: A ghost retains all of its original ability scores. When the ghost is incorporeal, it has no Strength score.
Skills: A ghost receives a +4 racial bonus on Hide checks. Otherwise same as the character.
Climate/Terrain: Same as the character.
Organization: Same as the character.
Challenge Rating: Same as the character +1.
Treasure: Same as the character.
Alignment: Same as the character.
Advancement: By character class.

House Rule Section

As I am not running an entire Ghostwalk campaign, the convoluted process of levelling up a ghost class and then using raise dead to transfer levels to a normal class doesn’t make sense.  So I have moved the following options to the template as well:
  • Ghost Feats: At level 1, 5, 10, 15 and 20 a ghost gains bonus ghost feats.
Posted in Adventurer's Vault, Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder 1e, Races

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