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Detect Undead

Detect Undead, By Anonymous - Musées de la ville de Strasbourg, Mathieu Bertola, Public Domain,
By Anonymous – Musées de la ville de Strasbourg, Mathieu Bertola, Public Domain,

You can detect the aura that surrounds undead creatures. The amount of information revealed depends on how long you study a particular area.

Level Cleric 1, Paladin 1, Sorcerer/Wizard 1
Components V, S, M/DF
Casting Time 1 standard action
Range 60 ft.
Area Cone-shaped emanation
Duration Concentration, up to 1 minute/ level (D)
Saving Throw None
Spell Resistance No

  1. Round Presence or absence of undead auras.
  2. Round Number of undead auras in the area and the strength of the strongest undead aura present. If you are of good alignment, and the strongest undead aura’s strength is overwhelming (see below), and the creature has HD of at least twice your character level, you are stunned for 1 round and the spell ends.
  3. Round The strength and location of each undead aura. If an aura is outside your line of sight, then you discern its direction but not its exact location.

Aura Strength The strength of an undead aura is determined by the HD of the undead creature, as given on the following table

1 or lowerFaint
11 or higherOverwhelming

Lingering Aura An undead aura lingers after its original source is destroyed. If detect undead is cast and directed at such a location, the spell indicates an aura strength of dim (even weaker than a faint aura). How long the aura lingers at this dim level depends on its original power

Original StrengthDuration of Lingering Aura
Faint1d6 rounds
Moderate1d6 minutes
Strong1d6x10 minutes
Overwhelming1d6 days

Each round, you can turn to detect undead in a new area. The spell can penetrate barriers, but 1 foot of stone, 1 inch of common metal, a thin sheet of lead, or 3 feet of wood or dirt blocks it.

Arcane Material Component A bit of earth from a grave.

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