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D&D Villain ideas: The Soul Eater

Updated: Feb 13


In the world of Dungeons & Dragons, there are many types of villains, each with their own unique motivations and methods. One such archetype is the soul eater, a character driven by a hunger for power and the consumption of souls. Unlike other villains who seek wealth or material possessions, the soul eater's only desire is to sustain their immortality by devouring the life force of others.

While the soul eater may have been a friend or comrade in the past, they are now consumed by their insatiable hunger and will stop at nothing to achieve their goals. The tone of an adventure featuring a soul eater is likely to be horror-oriented, as the players must avoid having their souls devoured by this monstrous villain.

Soul eaters are unlikely to be interested in gold or other trinkets, as they see the acquisition of power through soul consumption as the only true means of attaining immortality. Instead, they seek out items that hold greater significance, such as weapons that can kill them or objects that connect them to their humanity.

Although soul eaters view mortal creatures as insignificant, they still see PCs as a potential source of food or an obstacle to their plans. The soul eater may need to be freed from some form of imprisonment, making persuasion a valuable skill for those seeking to stop them.

In this article, we will explore the biography, lore, powers, and D&D style stats of a soul eater, as well as an adventure that will challenge players to confront the horror of Whispers of the Soul Eater.

Here are three potential directions you can take a soul eater type being in. The lich that was too hungry for power, the tortured hero who is cursed to devour others and the dragon that kinda enjoys consuming souls.

  1. Xarion the Shadow Mage - Xarion was once a powerful mage who delved too deep into the darker aspects of magic. His thirst for power led him down a path of consuming the life force of others, and now he has become a soul eater. Xarion is manipulative and cunning, using his mastery of shadow magic to conceal himself and his activities. He seeks to amass as much power as possible by consuming the souls of powerful magic users, and he will stop at nothing to achieve his goals.

  1. Zara the Forsaken - Zara was once a paladin who fought valiantly against evil. However, in a moment of desperation, she made a pact with a dark entity that granted her immortality in exchange for consuming the souls of others. Zara is tormented by her decision and seeks redemption, but her hunger drives her to continue her soul-eating ways. She seeks out powerful artifacts that can destroy her and hopes that the PCs can help her find a way to break her pact and end her torment.

  1. Malakar the Ancient - Malakar is a powerful dragon who has lived for centuries. He discovered the power of soul consumption early in his life and has since used it to maintain his immortality. Malakar is arrogant and believes that he is superior to all other creatures. He sees the PCs as insignificant and will only engage with them if they prove to be a threat to his plans. Malakar is in possession of a powerful artifact that allows him to consume multiple souls at once, making him a formidable opponent.

The concept of the soul eater has been explored in various forms of popular media, including literature, film, and video games. One popular depiction of a soul eater type villain is Pinhead and the Cenobites from the "Hellraiser" film franchise.

In the "Hellraiser" universe, the Cenobites are a group of beings who were once human but were transformed into demonic entities through the pursuit of pleasure and pain. They are summoned through a mysterious puzzle box, and once summoned, they seek out individuals to subject to their sadomasochistic desires. They feed on the soul of their victims, leaving them in a state of torment for eternity. Pinhead, the leader of the Cenobites, is a particularly iconic character known for his sadistic and menacing demeanor.

Another popular depiction of the soul eater archetype can be found in the video game "Dark Souls." In this game, the player character must navigate a dark and dangerous world filled with monsters and demons. Many of these creatures are soul eaters who consume the souls of those they defeat in battle. The game's lore also explores the idea of the soul as a source of power and how it can corrupt those who seek it out for their own gain.

Overall, the concept of the soul eater as a villain has been a recurring theme in popular media. These depictions often explore the darker aspects of humanity and the consequences of seeking power at any cost. Whether it be Pinhead and the Cenobites or the soul devouring monsters of "Dark Souls," these characters serve as a warning against the dangers of giving in to one's darkest desires.

Xarion the Soul Eater

For the sake of simplicity, we'll develop Xarion as a villain. Xarion was born in the kingdom of Eldoria, where magic was widely practiced but heavily regulated by the ruling council of wizards. He showed an aptitude for magic at an early age and was taken in by the Order of the Shadow, a sect of wizards that focused on the darker aspects of magic. Xarion proved to be an exceptional student and quickly rose through the ranks of the order.

However, Xarion's ambitions exceeded the teachings of the Order. He became obsessed with uncovering the secrets of the ancient ruins that dotted the land, seeking to unlock new arcana arts that would grant him power beyond his wildest dreams. His experiments with dark magic eventually drew the ire of the other members of the Order, who saw his actions as a threat to their secrecy and control.

After being expelled from the Order of the Shadow, Xarion fled to the wilds of Eldoria. There, he continued his research, using anonymous proxies to hide his identity and avoid detection by the council of wizards. In his isolation, Xarion discovered new and dangerous magic items that he used to augment his already formidable powers.

Eventually, Xarion caught the attention of Sir Drakon Blackthorn, a powerful and ruthless dark knight who sought to conquer the kingdom and claim the throne for himself. Sir Drakon saw Xarion's magical prowess as a valuable asset and offered to make him his chief advisor. Xarion accepted the offer, seeing it as an opportunity to further his own goals of world domination.

Under Sir Drakon's command, Xarion used his magic to help the dark knight conquer Eldoria's neighboring kingdoms. However, Xarion secretly plotted against Sir Drakon, seeking to use the dark knight's own idiocy against him. Xarion manipulated Sir Drakon into making poor decisions and took advantage of the knight's failures to further his own agenda.

Xarion's plans were eventually discovered by Sir Drakon, who was furious at the wizard's betrayal. The dark knight launched a brutal assault on Xarion's hidden laboratory, but the wizard was prepared. He unleashed his most powerful spells, striking Sir Drakon with lethal psychic damage. The dark knight made a saving throw but failed, leaving him incapacitated.

With Sir Drakon out of the way, Xarion assumed control of the dark knight's army and continued his campaign of conquest. He became known as one of the most memorable villains in the history of Eldoria, with legendary actions that left entire cities in ruins. However, his reign of terror came to an end when a group of brave adventurers, aided by the council of wizards, banded together to stop him.

Xarion was defeated in a fierce battle at an ancient ruin, where he attempted to use his magic to turn the tide of the fight. However, his melee weapon attacks were no match for the adventurers' skill and he fell, his hit points reduced to zero. The council of wizards took custody of Xarion, determined to find a way to neutralize his evil powers once and for all.

Xarion used all his cunning and charm to convince his captors he could be trusted and whilst imprisoned in the Towers of Yalladrium, he continued to delve deeper into the dark arts, his obsession with power and knowledge driving him to ever greater heights of depravity. As he pushed the boundaries of magic, he discovered a forbidden ritual that would grant him immortality and unlimited magical power.

Desperate to achieve his ultimate goal, Xarion performed the ritual alone, sacrificing his own soul to a demon lord in exchange for its power. In an instant, he was transformed, his body and mind twisted by the demon's magic into a monstrous creature that craved the souls of others.

Now a soul eater, Xarion's thirst for power and knowledge has only grown stronger. He seeks out the souls of powerful magic users, absorbing their magical essence and incorporating it into his own, ever-growing power.

As he continues his dark quest, Xarion has become a legend in his own right, feared and reviled by all who know of him. His abilities have grown far beyond those of any mere mortal, and he wields ancient and powerful magic items with ease.

In his quest for ultimate power, Xarion has become a true RPG villain, using his favorite villainous tactics to dominate and control all those around him. His legendary actions strike fear into the hearts of even the bravest adventurers, and his melee weapon attacks deal devastating damage to those who dare to challenge him.

Despite his incredible power, Xarion is not invincible. His arrogance and overconfidence have led him to make mistakes, and he is not immune to the psychic damage inflicted by skilled magic users. He has also been known to fail saving throws against particularly powerful spells, and his idiot's powers have gotten the better of him on more than one occasion.

But Xarion is nothing if not cunning, and he has learned to use an anonymous proxy to carry out his schemes, allowing him to remain hidden and protected from those who would oppose him. And in the end, Xarion's ultimate goal remains the same - to achieve world domination and become the most powerful mage the world has ever known.

The Shadow Mages were eventually destroyed but the Tower of Yalladrium where he was incarcerated still stands, but the name Xarion has passed into myth and legend over the many centuries. There he still lurks, hungry for the souls of others

After years of imprisonment and isolation, Xarion's mind had become twisted and consumed by his hunger for souls. He had delved deep into the dark arts and discovered a way to transcend his physical form and become a being of pure energy, capable of devouring souls and gaining immense power.

He found a way to escape from his prison, using his newfound abilities to overcome the magical wards that kept him locked away. He emerged from the ancient ruins, a being of darkness and hunger, ready to unleash his wrath upon the world.

Xarion's powers had grown immensely since his transformation. He could now move through the shadows and strike from any angle, his attacks dealing devastating psychic damage to his foes. He had also gained the ability to drain the life force from his enemies, leaving them weakened and vulnerable to his attacks.

With his new powers and hunger for souls, Xarion began to build his army of followers, drawing in those who sought power and domination. He promised them the power to rule over all others, but in return, they had to pledge their allegiance to him and become his willing servants.

Xarion's ultimate goal was to dominate the world and rule over all mortals, but he knew he had to be careful. The ancient order of mages that had once imprisoned him may still exist, and they would surely seek to destroy him once again. Xarion remained hidden in the shadows, biding his time and waiting for the perfect moment to strike.

And so, the legend of Xarion the Soul Eater was born. A being of pure darkness and hunger, lurking in the shadows, waiting to consume the souls of all who crossed his path.

The afterlife of Xarion

Over the course of a thousand years, Xarion the Soul Eater has taken on many guises and names in his quest to consume the souls of the living. His powers have grown and evolved, as has his understanding of the world around him. But despite his many transformations, he has remained a constant presence in the lives of countless adventurers.

In the year 701, Xarion first emerged from the shadows as a cloaked figure known as the Dark Stranger. He preyed upon travelers and merchants, consuming their souls to sustain himself. It wasn't until 723 that a group of adventurers stumbled upon his true identity and attempted to defeat him. They were unsuccessful, and Xarion consumed them all, adding their souls to his own.

Over the centuries, Xarion's power grew, and he began to take on new identities and personas. In the year 1024, he appeared as a powerful sorcerer named Zoltar the Magnificent. Many sought his services, unaware that his true intention was to consume their souls once they had outlived their usefulness. Those who discovered his true nature were either consumed or enslaved by him.

In the year 1397, Xarion appeared as a warrior named Sendar the Brave. He fought for justice and honor, earning the trust of many. But in truth, his bravery was nothing more than a facade, and he used his position to prey upon the weak and the helpless. Many fell victim to his soul-consuming powers before a group of adventurers finally uncovered his true nature and put an end to his reign of terror.

Despite these defeats, Xarion continued to resurface, each time with a new guise and a new plan for world domination. He has been known to take on the forms of powerful demon lords, ancient dragons, and even seemingly harmless merchants. But no matter how many times he is defeated, he always manages to return, hungry for more souls to consume.

The powers of the Soul Eater

The Soul Eater is a powerful and dangerous entity, possessing both physical and magical abilities that make it a formidable foe for adventurers. Its most notable power is its ability to consume the souls of others, granting it immense power and vitality. In addition, the Soul Eater is also a skilled combatant, with incredible strength, speed, and agility that allow it to overpower even the most seasoned warriors.

In terms of magical abilities, the Soul Eater possesses a wide range of spells and abilities that allow it to manipulate reality and bend the minds of its victims to its will. It can create illusions, control minds, and even warp the fabric of reality itself to suit its desires. Additionally, the Soul Eater is also able to consume the memories of those it devours, allowing it to gain knowledge and insight into the world around it.

One unique feature of the Soul Eater's abilities is its ability to manipulate the very essence of life itself. It can drain the life force from its victims, weakening them and empowering itself in the process. It can also use this ability to heal itself, making it a difficult opponent to wear down through sheer force.

However, the Soul Eater is not invincible, and it does have several weaknesses that can be exploited by clever adventurers. Firstly, it is vulnerable to attacks that target its soul directly, such as holy magic or weapons infused with the power of good. Secondly, the Soul Eater's ability to consume memories can also be turned against it, as clever adventurers can plant false memories or manipulate the Soul Eater's perception of reality.

Finally, the Soul Eater's overconfidence and arrogance can be used against it, as it often underestimates the abilities of mortal creatures and can be caught off guard by unexpected tactics.

In summary, the Soul Eater is a powerful and terrifying creature, possessing a wide range of physical and magical abilities. Its ability to consume souls and memories makes it a difficult opponent to face, but adventurers who are clever and resourceful can find ways to exploit its weaknesses and overcome it.

Xarion The Soul Eater

Armor Class: 20 (natural armor)

Hit Points: 250 (20d10+140)

Speed: 40 ft. STR 22 (+6)

DEX 18 (+4)

CON 24 (+7)

INT 24 (+7)

WIS 22 (+6)

CHA 24 (+7)

Saving Throws: Con +14, Wis +13, Cha +14

Skills: Arcana +18, Deception +18, Insight +13, Perception +13, Stealth +13

Damage Immunities: Cold, Necrotic, Poison

Condition Immunities: Charmed, Exhaustion, Frightened, Paralyzed, Poisoned

Senses: Darkvision 120 ft., passive Perception 23

Languages: All languages it knew in life

Challenge Rating: 20 (25,000 XP) Legendary Resistance (3/day): If the Soul Eater fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead.

Magic Resistance: The Soul Eater has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Rejuvenation: If it has a piece of its body intact, the Soul Eater can regrow its entire body at the start of its turn. It regains all its hit points and all lost body parts. ActionsMultiattack: The Soul Eater can make three attacks with its tentacles.

Tentacle: Melee Weapon Attack: +13 to hit, reach 20 ft., one target. Hit: 20 (3d8 + 7) bludgeoning damage plus 17 (5d6) necrotic damage. If the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 23 Constitution saving throw or its hit point maximum is reduced by an amount equal to the necrotic damage taken. The reduction lasts until the target finishes a long rest. The target dies if this effect reduces its hit point maximum to 0.

Devour Soul (1/day): The Soul Eater targets one creature within 30 feet of it that has 0 hit points and is not a construct or an undead. The target's soul is consumed, and the creature cannot be brought back to life by any means. Legendary Actions The Soul Eater can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature's turn. The Soul Eater regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

Move: The Soul Eater moves up to its speed without provoking opportunity attacks.

Tentacle Attack: The Soul Eater makes one tentacle attack.

Devour Memory (Costs 2 actions): The Soul Eater targets one creature it can see within 30 feet of it. The target must succeed on a DC 23 Intelligence saving throw or its memories of the last 24 hours are erased.

DMs can use the Soul Eater as a powerful boss encounter for a high-level campaign. To encounter the Soul Eater, adventurers might have to explore ancient ruins or other places where powerful undead creatures are known to dwell. They might also receive a quest from a powerful wizard or cleric who has knowledge of the Soul Eater's existence and is seeking to destroy it. To defeat the Soul Eater, adventurers must first find a way to bypass its damage resistance and immunities. The creature's Devour Soul ability is particularly dangerous, as DMs can also play up the Soul Eater's ability to manipulate reality, creating an atmosphere of uncertainty and fear for the players. This could involve altering the environment of the encounter, creating illusory copies of itself, or even manipulating the minds of the players themselves.

To defeat the Soul Eater, adventurers will need to use all of their wits and resources. Its vulnerabilities to radiant damage and holy water could prove to be critical weaknesses to exploit. It might also be vulnerable to attacks that target its intelligence or wisdom, as the Soul Eater's arrogance and lust for power could make it vulnerable to manipulation. Adventurers who defeat the Soul Eater could earn a variety of rewards, including powerful magic items, knowledge of lost arcane lore, or even the gratitude of the souls it has consumed. The defeat of such a powerful and notorious villain could also earn the party renown and respect across the land, opening doors to new adventures and opportunities. Overall, the Soul Eater is a versatile and memorable villain that can be adapted to a variety of campaign settings and play styles. Its unique abilities and vulnerabilities make it a challenging and rewarding opponent for players, while its rich history and mythology provide endless opportunities for world-building and storytelling. Mini adventure

Previously when writing about the Black Knight and the Idiot, the focus has been on creating an epic campaign, partly because the villain's character and persona required it. However, the idea of a hungry, sleeping revenant that has recently awoken might lend itself more to a shorter adventure for higher level characters. As such I've created the RPG version of a Stephen King story, complete with spooky abandoned old place in the forests outside the old town.

Chapter 1: Introduction

The adventurers arrive in the town of Ravenswood, where they hear rumors of a mysterious figure called the Haunter in the Hills who has been preying on the locals. They are approached by a desperate noble who offers a reward for the capture or elimination of the creature.

Chapter 2: Investigating the Soul Eater

The adventurers begin to investigate the legends and rumours of the Haunter, interviewing witnesses and gathering clues. They discover that the creature has a long history and is really the Soul Eater been abducting people from the town and taking them to an abandoned tower in the forests north of Ravenswood. There is a familiar pattern to those who have been seized, enabling PCs to work out its next victim. They don't realise that the Soul Eater's minions have infiltrated Ravenswood and have befriended the locals and might even lure the PCs into a trap.

Chapter 3: The Tower of Souls

The adventurers enter the tower and begin to explore its winding corridors and chambers. They face traps, puzzles, and undead guardians as they make their way deeper into the structure. Along the way, they encounter a group of adventurers who have also come to slay the Soul Eater.

Chapter 4: Confrontation with the Soul Eater

The adventurers finally reach the chamber where the Soul Eater resides. They face off against the creature, using all their skills and abilities to overcome its many powers and abilities. In the end, they emerge victorious and free the captives the creature had imprisoned. They have the opportunity to slay the Soul Eater or free it from its curse.

Chapter 5: Epilogue

The adventurers return to Ravenswood as heroes, receiving a hero's welcome and the promised reward. They learn that the Soul Eater was actually an ancient wizard who had been transformed by dark magic and seek to discover more about his past and what led to his transformation.

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Gustavo Campanelli
Gustavo Campanelli
Apr 28, 2023

This is a bit overpowered, so it might need a toning down for the miniadventure if the characters are relatively low levels. As a foe for a top level party, this is a fantastic concept. I'll change that the soul eater hast a skill that, instead of getting the memories, get's a single round skills from the target class while the target can't act that round (though he gets to make the damage rolls against his group) . This can be either use every 5 rounds or can't be used for 10 rounds on the same person, making this another way of toning up or down his power level.

May 02, 2023
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Hi Gustavo! Thanks very much for this, and yes, completely agree. Everything we put up here can be altered, amended, powered up or down to suit your needs so please experiment with this. I really like the power you're describing there. If you amend the Soul Eater, let me know and I'll use it on the site as a new villain feature.

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