Taint Condition in Kobos | World Anvil


"She left town oh, about six weeks ago talking about exploring that big black library up north. Came stumbling back in with a smile full of dagger-teeth, wider than her face and rambling about all sorts of things. She almost butchered poor Sampsin before he realized she'd come down with the Taint. We sent her up to the Catamount Grassgrove, maybe they can fix her up or maybe she'll pass there and they can handle what comes next."   ~Ellayne Warbough, Sheriff of Alcedene

Transmission & Vectors

Taint is acquired from Tainted Places and evil magic. Long term exposure to bosetors can also cause taint.


Taint is a magical pollution caused by evil deeds, especially involving magical or supernatural forces.


The first sign of taint is usually gallows humor. While many people on Kobos have bleak senses of humor, being tainted causes one to grow darker and more vicious. Spitefulness and a descent into ever more sadistic behavior occurs as the symptoms deteriorate. Eventually, physical mutations can occur, then utter madness and finally death. A body that died while tainted is exponentially more likely to rise again as undead.
Taint Level Effect
1 Flaw: I have an offputting sense of schadenfreude
2 Flaw: I openly laugh at the misfortune of others.
3 Flaw: I am a sadist.
4 Flaw: I would rather torture someone to death than have a conversation with them.
5 Minor physical mutation (cosmetic, small horns, scales, or fangs)
6 Median physical mutation (Claw, Gore, Tentacle, or Bite attack)
7 Major physical mutation (Slime, Wings, Telepathy, Vampiric Touch)
8 You acquire the Gray Wasting


Holy ground such as druid groves, graveyards, and temples heal taint at a rate of 1 level for week spent in these places. If the entire day is spent in fasting and meditation, this becomes 1 level for each day spent in these places.   Radiant damage cures the taint as well, physically burning the infested areas with holy fire. For every ten points of Radiant damage received, one level of taint is removed.   Mutations may leave scars, but even the most tainted survivor can be brought back to humanity.


Once tainted, the condition remains static until the victim acts to improve the condition.


The only sure method of preventing Taint is to avoid Tainted Places and acts that might incur it. Otherwise, spells such as Magic Circle can provide temporary relief, as can anything that creates a null magic area.


Though it can't be transferred from one victim to another per se, a tainted person is more likely to commit the sorts of heinous acts that taint an area. It's considered a problem that starts out small, continues to be small, right up until it suddenly isn't.

Cultural Reception

A person showing visible signs of taint is almost universally avoided except by those who may be able to do something about it (priests, druids, etc.)


Please Login in order to comment!