Demon Lord, Orcus, Demon Prince of the Undead

Family: Demons

Huge fiend (demon), chaotic evil

Armor Class 25 (natural armor)
Hit Points 825 (50d12 + 500)
Speed 40 ft., fly 60 ft.

30 (+10) 21 (+5) 30 (+10) 27 (+8) 27 (+8) 30 (+10)

Saving Throws Dexterity +15, Constitution +20, Wisdom +18, Charisma +20
Skills History +18, Perception +18, Religion +18
Damage Resistances acid, cold, fire
Damage Immunities lightning, necrotic, poison; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical weapons
Condition Immunities charmed, exhaustion, frightened, poisoned
Senses truesight 120 ft., passive Perception 28
Languages all, telepathy 360 ft.
Challenge 35 (330,000 XP)

Special Traits

  • Special Equipment. Orcus wields its iconic rod, the Wand of Orcus.
  • Innate Spellcasting. Orcus’s spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 28, +20 to hit with spell attacks). Orcus can innately cast the following spells, requiring no material components:
  • Legendary Resistance (3/day). If Orcus fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead. Lord of the Grave. Orcus always casts animate dead or create undead at maximum level and without any restrictions. Creatures created by these spells remain under its control indefinitely.
  • Magic Resistance. Orcus has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.
  • Magic Weapons. Orcus’s attacks are magical.


  • Multiattack. Orcus makes two Wand of Orcus attacks.
  • Wand of Orcus. Melee Weapon Attack: +20 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 24 (4d6 + 10) bludgeoning damage and the target must make a DC 17 Charisma saving throw, dropping to 0 hit points on failure, or, on a success, the target takes 21 (6d6) necrotic damage.
  • Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +20 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 24 (4d6 + 10) piercing damage plus 22 (4d10) poison damage.
  • Aura of Death. Each non-undead creature that starts its turn within 20 feet of Orcus takes 17 (5d6) necrotic damage.
  • Aura of Enfeeblement (Recharge 5-6). Black beams of negative energy surround Orcus in a 20-foot radius centered on it. Each creature in this area must make a DC 24 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, the target deals only half damage with weapon attacks that use Strength for 1 minute. A weakened target can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a target’s saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the target is immune to Orcus’s Aura of Enfeeblement for the next 24 hours.
  • Teleport. Orcus magically teleports, along with any equipment it is wearing or carrying, up to 120 feet to an unoccupied space it can see.

Legendary Actions

Orcus can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. Orcus regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

  • Tail. Orcus makes one tail attack.
  • Devouring Darkness (Costs 2 Actions). Orcus chooses a point that it can see within 100 feet of it. A cloud of darkness erupts from that point and lasts for 1 minute. The area is heavily obscured and each creature in the area must make a DC 24 Constitution saving throw, taking 28 (8d6) necrotic damage on a failure, or half as much damage on a success. Creatures slain by the devouring darkness rise as ghouls under the command of Orcus within 1d4 rounds.
  • Charnel Wind (Costs 3 Actions). A putrid, carrion wind erupts from Orcus in a 30-foot radius centered on it and lasts until the end of Orcus’s next turn. All non-undead creatures within this area must succeed on a DC 24 Constitution saving throw against disease or be poisoned until the end of Orcus’s next turn. While poisoned in this way, the creature can take either an action or a bonus action on its turn, not both, and it can’t take reactions.

Lair Actions

On Initiative count 20 (losing initiative ties), Orcus can take a lair action to cause one of the following effects; it can’t use the same effect two rounds in a row:

  • Beckon Army of the Dead. While in its lair, Orcus can use the wand to summon an undead army. These undead magically rise up from the ground or otherwise form in unoccupied spaces within 100 feet of Orcus and obey its commands until they are destroyed or until it dismisses them as an action. Orcus can only use this lair action every 24 hours unless it is in the Palace of Bones on Thanatos, the level of the Abyss it rules. Orcus may use it on each subsequent initiative 20 at will if on that plane. That army consists of:
    • 10 skeletons
    • 5 zombies
    • 3 ghouls
    • 3 specters
    • 2 wights
    • 1 mummy
  • Bone Cage. Orcus causes all bones within the lair to form tight cages around two creatures of its choice. The cages can be attacked and destroyed (AC 15; hp 30; vulnerability to bludgeoning damage; resistance to piercing, poison, slashing, and psychic damage). While in a bone-cage, a creature is retrained.
  • Fountain of Blood. Orcus chooses a point on the ground that it can see within 100 feet of it. A geyser of caustic blood erupts from the ground at that point and rains down in a 40-foot high, 10-foot cylinder. Each creature in that area must make a DC 24 Dexterity saving throw, taking 24 (7d6) acid damage on a failure, or half as much damage on a successful one.

Regional Effects

The region containing Orcus’s lair is warped by its magic. If a creature within 10 miles of Orcus’ lair dies, roll a d20. On a 19 or 20, the creature rises as a zombie under Orcus’ control.

If Orcus dies, this effect fade over the course of 1d10 days.

Wand of Orcus

Rod, artifact (requires attunement)

The mighty Wand of Orcus is a huge, black, skull-tipped rod, fully 6-feet in length. Its head is an ancient, bleached jawless skull, whose eye sockets glow with ruddy, red light. It exudes an aura of primeval menace, chilling the soul and the body with the cold of the grave.

  • Aura of Death. Any living creature is unable to take short or long rests within 300 feet of the Wand of Orcus. If any creature who is not Orcus touches the Wand of Orcus, it must succeed on a DC 17 Charisma saving throw or drop to 0 hit points and begin dying. On a successful saving throw, the creature takes 6d6 necrotic damage. A creature who succeeds on the saving throw is immune to this effect for 24 hours. Orcus can suppress this effect from any locations.
  • Attunement. To attune to the artifact, you must bathe yourself and the Wand of Orcus in the blood of a Solar Angel.
  • Magic Weapon. The Wand of Orcus functions as a magic mace that has a +3 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with this weapon. It deals 4d6 bludgeoning damage on a hit. It also functions as a sword of wounding.
  • Spellcasting. You can use an action to cast the following spells at will: blight, darkness, or speak with dead. The Wand of Orcus has 20 charges, which can be used to cast the following spells: animate dead (3 or more charges), bestow curse (2 charges), circle of death (6 charges), contagion (5 charges), create undead (6 or more charges), finger of death (7 charges), harm (6 charges), or power word kill (9 charges). The Wand of Orcus recovers all charges each midnight.
  • Sentience. The Wand of Orcus is a sentient chaotic evil magic item, with an Intelligence of 20, a Wisdom of 18, and a Charisma of 23. It has truesight out to 120 feet and understands Abyssal and Infernal. It can communicate with its wielder telepathically. Its goal is the subjugation and destruction of all realms under the all-encompassing gaze of Orcus. It will attempt to sway or control an attuned creature to further the goals of Orcus. The Wand of Orcus is evil, wholly so. The wand’s telepathic messages are quiet and breathy, almost a wet wheeze through diseased lungs. It is not averse to assisting an attuned wielder’s temporary goals, as long as they are not inimical to its long-term goal of turning all planes of existence into fields of undead.
  • Destruction. The Wand of Orcus can only be destroyed if Orcus is truly slain and destroyed. If Orcus is permanently slain, the Wand of Orcus becomes brittle and can be easily smashed into dust.


This demonic humanoid is squat and bloated, standing nearly three times as tall as a normal human. His goat-like head sports large, spiraling ram horns. His legs are covered in thick brown fur and end in hooves.

Large powerful arms wield a wicked skull-tipped wand. Two large, black bat-like wings protrude from his back, and a long, snake-like tail, tipped with a sharpened barb, trails behind him.

Orcus is the Prince of the Undead, and it is said that he alone created the first undead that walked the worlds. Orcus is one of the strongest (if not the strongest) and most powerful of all demon lords. He fights a never-ending war against rival demon princes that spans several Abyssal layers. From his great bone palace, he commands his troops as they wage war across the smoldering and stinking planes of the Abyss. Orcus spends most of his days in his palace, rarely leaving its confines unless he decides to leads his troops into battle (which has happened on more than one occasion).

Most of the time though, he is content to let his generals and commanders lead the battles.

When not warring against rival demon princes, Orcus likes to travel the planes, particularly the Material Plane. Should a foolish spellcaster open a gate and speak his name, he is more than likely going to hear the call and step through to the Material Plane. What happens to the spellcaster that called him usually depends on the reason for the summons and the power of the spellcaster. Extremely powerful spellcasters are usually slain after a while and turned into undead soldiers or generals in his armies.

Orcus stands 15 feet tall and weighs nearly 6,000 pounds.

Orcus prefers to conduct battles using his Wand or natural weapons (tail and fists). Generally, he avoids direct combat with powerful foes preferring to hang back and pepper them with an array of spells and effects. If pressed into melee, he uses his tail sting against the strongest opponent while focusing his fear gaze on the spellcasters. When given the chance, he summons demons and undead to aid him. If combat goes against him, he uses his greater teleport ability to escape, leaving a retinue of demons and undead monsters to deal with the interlopers.

Servants of Orcus

The followers of the Prince of Undead are clerics and adepts that venerate death, sorcerers and wizards fascinated with death, and half-fiend variants of the aforementioned creatures. His followers are most often clerics, necromancers, and sorcerers. Followers of Orcus are known as Disciples of Orcus and must sign a pact of evil. Disciples of Orcus can receive spells from Orcus and are granted access to the domains of Chaos, Death, Destruction, Evil, and War (a cleric can choose any two of these domains).

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Tome of Horrors © 2018, Frog God Games, LLC; Authors: Kevin Baase, Erica Balsley, John “Pexx” Barnhouse, Christopher Bishop, Casey Christofferson, Jim Collura, Andrea Costantini, Jayson ‘Rocky' Gardner, Zach Glazar, Meghan Greene, Scott Greene, Lance Hawvermale, Travis Hawvermale, Ian S. Johnston, Bill Kenower, Patrick Lawinger, Rhiannon Louve, Ian McGarty, Edwin Nagy, James Patterson, Nathan Paul, Patrick N. Pilgrim, Clark Peterson, Anthony Pryor, Greg Ragland, Robert Schwalb, G. Scott Swift, Greg A. Vaughan, and Bill Webb

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