Saturday Sorcery - Ghouls

 A little horror themed Saturday sorcery this week.

I have a notebook dedicated to write ups for all the various undead monsters that lurk in the dark corners of my campaign world. The following is gathered from the notes I had on ghouls, or more precisely notes on how one becomes a ghoul.

Ghouls - The eaters of the dead
A ghoul is perhaps the most hideous of all the undead. In life this person was obsessed with death, usually exhibiting abnormal perversions such as the desire to drink blood, collecting corpses of animals or the recently deceased, and possibly necrophilia. When their unwholesome and unholy obsession finally reaches fevered pitch their desires can only be satiated by killing. At first it will just be simple murder, but this soon graduates to cannibalism, and finally to necrotic cannibalism.

Now the dark powers start to beckon, whispering terrible secrets in their deranged ear. The downward spiral into hellish oblivion is almost complete.

At some point the persons appetite will become absolutely ungovernable and the dark powers will step up and make an offer to help. Because of the persons exceeding wickedness the dark powers will invite them to join them, and be reborn as their servant - which to a completely deranged, death obsessed cannibalistic pervert, isn't all that bad of an idea. All they have to do is fulfill some simple requests.

They need to find a suitable sacrifice (often a wizard, priest or person exhibiting supernatural powers or is otherwise holy etc...) - sacrifice them using the ritual prescribed - eat of their dead flesh - and ritually commit suicide - and at last, they will be reborn.

Unfortunately they will be reborn as a ghoul.

Ghoulish Sacrifice
Casting Time: 2 hours
Range: N/A
Duration: Permanent
Save: N/A
Components: The spell casters blood.

The exact ritual for this spell can only be revealed by the dark powers. It's left to the GM to decide who or what dark powers these may be in their campaign.

Once a suitable sacrifice is found (see above) the ritual begins. It would be my suggestion that if you're the GM you should make this ritual as dark and fucked up as your players can handle. I won't bother with the details here, but I would suggest a healthy dose of twisted 80's satanic weirdness to set the scene.

Once the spell/ritual is cast and the final act of ritual suicide is completed, it takes one full turn before the final transformation to ghouldom is complete. If for any reason the ritual is interrupted, or not completed properly, the caster will die, become a ghost, and be tortured by the dark powers for all eternity - which is pretty much where they were headed anyways, so it's cool.


I used this idea in an adventure several years ago. It started out as a standard murder mystery, but then the ghoulish truth was revealed. It went pretty well, and scared the shit out of some of the players, which is always a good sign.


  1. CDGallant_KingApril 09, 2011

    Dude, that's some fucked up shit. We've spent years trying to convince people that D&D players aren't child-murdering satanists, and then you go and do this. You've personally set Gamer Rights back 20 years. I hope you're proud of yourself. >:-|

    Still, kewl beans.

  2. If you think this is bad, you should read Geoffrey McKinney's CARCOSA.

  3. Ghouls are not always undead. Sometimes, they are evil spirits or demons. They have extreme desire for rotting corpses.


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