Alchemical Protolich

Family: Lich

Medium undead, neutral evil

Armor Class 14 (chest plate)
Hit Points 45 (6d8+18)
Speed 40 ft.

10 (+0) 14 (+2) 16 (+3) 20 (+5) 15 (+2) 11 (+0)

Saving Throws Con +5, Int +7, Wis +4
Skills Arcana +7, History +7, Insight +4, Perception +4, Religion +7
Tools Alchemist’s Supplies
Damage Resistances acid, cold, fire, lightning, necrotic, thunder; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical weapons
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities poisoned
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 14
Languages Common (Greek), Aquan, Auran, Ignan, Nihilistan, Quidan, Terran
Challenge 3 (700 XP); CR 4 in lair (1,100)


  • Undead Fortitude. If damage reduces the Protolich to 0 hit points, it must make a Constitution saving throw with a DC of 5 + the damage taken, unless the damage is radiant or from a critical hit. On a success, the Protolich drops to 1 hit point instead.
  • Arcane Recovery. Once per day when it finishes a short rest, the Protolich can recover three levels of expended spell slots in any combination (e.g., one 3rd level, three 1st level).
  • Minor Alchemy. A Protolich can temporarily alter the physical properties of one nonmagical object, changing it from one substance into another. It performs a special alchemical procedure on one object composed entirely of wood, stone (but not a gemstone), iron, copper, or silver, transforming it into a different one of those materials. For each 10 minutes it spends performing the procedure, it can transform up to 1 cubic foot of material. This material reverts to its original substance after an hour or if the Protolich loses its concentration.
  • Spellcasting. A Protolich is a 6th-level spellcaster. Its spellcasting ability is Intelligence (spell save DC 15, +7 to hit with spell attacks). It has the following Wizard spells prepared:


  • Fire Bolt. Ranged Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (2d10) fire damage.
  • Shocking Grasp. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit (at advantage if the target is wearing armor made of metal), reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 9 (2d8) lightning damage.
  • Dagger +2. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d4+4) piercing damage.


  • Dispel Magic. As a bonus action on its turn the Protolich can expend a 3rd-level spell slot to cast Dispel Magic if it has it prepared. This is in addition to any other spells it might be able to cast that turn.


  • Counterspell (2/long Rest). As a reaction while in its lair, the Protolich can cast Counterspell without expending any spell slots and in addition to any other spells it might be able to cast that turn.


  • Regenerate Damage. While in the prepared environment of its lair, the Protolich can expend a spell slot to alchemically regenerate damage it has sustained, regaining a number of hit points equal to 5 plus 1d8 for each level of the spell slot.


An alchemical protolich is an alchemist whose attempts at eternal life have been achieved imperfectly, causing it to be transformed into an Undead monster. It is more powerful while in its lair and if forced to battle intruders will prefer to do so there.

Much of an alchemical protolich’s power is invested in a bronze chest plate that grants it +2 to its AC and is etched with arcane symbols and inset with eight magical stones. Each stone bestows a benefit that is reflected in the monster’s stat block, to include darkvision 60 ft., 10 ft. increase to speed if the monster is unencumbered, proficiency in Constitution saving throws, and resistance to acid, cold, fire, lightning, and thunder damage. This device can be used only by the monster but, if desired, those who destroy the alchemical protolich and take this item can remove the stones and receive the benefits from any to which they become attuned.

An alchemical protolich is also armed with an orb engraved with sigils that both functions as an arcane focus and allows its wielder to cast Sphere of Energy* without material components.

In combat, an alchemical protolich strives to fight entirely with magic, resorting to cantrips for ranged and melee attacks when it does not have more powerful spells left, and will use a physical weapon only if other means are ineffective. It is a highly intelligent and calculating monster, however, and if it can gain the service of creatures through threats, promises, or rewards, or misdirect them in some way, it will do so in lieu of battling them. Its eagerness to have followers and agents that can operate outside of the area where its lair is contained might, in fact, provide the basis of an alliance between the alchemical protolich and those it encounters.

If encountered by a 4th-level party the alchemical protolich will have a single Paragon Mephit of any sort attending it, and if encountered by a 5th-level party it will have four different Paragon Mephits with it.

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