At your core, you are a believer in things others dismiss. The signs abound if you know where to look.

Questions beget answers that spur further questions.

The cycle is endless as you uncover layer after layer of mystery and secrets.

Piercing the veil hiding beyond the surface of reality is an irresistible lure spurring you to delve into forgotten and dangerous places in the world. Perhaps you’ve always yearned toward the occult, or it could be that you encountered something or someone who opened your eyes to the possibilities. You may belong to some esoteric organization determined to uncover the mystery, a cult bent on using the secrets for a dark purpose, or you may be searching for answers on your own. As an occultist, you ask the questions reality doesn’t want to answer.

Skill Proficiencies: Arcana, Religion

Tool Proficiencies: Thieves’ tools

Languages: Two of your choice

Equipment: A book of obscure lore holding clues to an occult location, a bottle of black ink, a quill, a leather-bound journal in which you record your secrets, a bullseye lantern, a set of common clothes, and a belt pouch containing 5 gp

Feature: Strange Lore

Your passions for forbidden knowledge, esoteric religions, secretive cults, and terrible histories brought you into contact with a wide variety of interesting and unique individuals operating on the fringes of polite society. When you’re trying to find something that pertains to eldritch secrets or dark knowledge, you have a good idea of where to start looking. Usually, this information comes from information brokers, disgraced scholars, chaotic mages, dangerous cults, or insane priests. Your GM might rule that the knowledge you seek isn’t found with just one contact, but this feature provides a starting point.

Suggested Characteristics

Occultists can’t resist the lure of an ancient ruin, forgotten dungeon, or the lair of some mysterious cult. They eagerly follow odd rumors, folktales, and obscure clues found in dusty tomes. Some adventure with the hope of turning their discoveries into fame and fortune, while others consider the answers they uncover to be the true reward. Whatever their motivations, occultists combine elements of archaeologist, scholar, and fanatic.

d8 Personality Trait
1 I always ask questions, especially if I think I can learn something new.
2 I believe every superstition I hear and follow their rules fanatically.
3 The things I know give me nightmares, and not only when I sleep.
4 Nothing makes me happier than explaining some obscure lore to my friends.
5 I startle easily.
6 I perform a host of rituals throughout the day that I believe protect me from occult threats.
7 I never know when to give up.
8 The more someone refuses to believe me, the more I am determined to convince them.
d6 Ideal
1 Domination. With the power I will unearth, I will take my revenge on those who wronged me. (Evil)
2 Mettle. Each nugget of hidden knowledge I uncover proves my worth. (Any)
3 Lore. Knowledge is never good or evil; it is simply knowledge. (Neutral)
4 Redemption. This dark knowledge can be made good if it is used properly. (Good)
5 Truth. Nothing should be hidden. Truth is all that matters, no matter who it hurts. (Chaotic)
6 Responsibility. Only by bringing dark lore into the light can we eliminate its threat. (Lawful)
d6 Bond
1 One or more secret organizations are trying to stop me, which means I must be close to the truth.
2 My studies come before anything else.
3 No theory, however unbelievable, is worth abandoning without investigation.
4 I must uncover the truth behind a particular mystery, one my father died to protect.
5 I travel with my companions because I have reason to believe they are crucial to the future.
6 I once had a partner in my occult searches who vanished. I am determined to find them.
d6 Flaw
1 When stressed, I mutter theories to myself, sometimes connecting seemingly unconnected or random events, to explain my current predicament.
2 It’s not paranoia if they really are out to get me.
3 I have a habit of lying to hide my theories and discoveries.
4 I see secrets and mysteries in everything and everyone.
5 The world is full of dark secrets, and I’m the only one who can safely unearth them.
6 There is no law or social convention I won’t break to further my goals.
Section 15: Copyright Notice

Tome of Heroes ©2022 Open Design LLC; Authors: Celeste Conowitch, Jeff Lee, Sarah Madsen, Ben McFarland, Kelly Pawlik, Brian Suskind

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