Faceless Species in Scarterra | World Anvil


Faceless are incorporeal undead that look like greyish humanoids with no distinguishing characteristics, including no facial features at all though the lack of eyes and ears doesn’t impair their senses. Faceless glow when they are feeding on life energy and they fade when they take damage.   Faceless are the undead remnants of mortal souls destroyed by Void demons. Not every mortal killed in such a fashion becomes a faceless in death, but the majority do. Faceless can also spawn new faceless from their own victims. Roughly one in four mortals slain by a faceless become faceless themselves. A mortal who becomes faceless lose's soul forever. Only a tiny number of mortals killed by Faceless who did not become faceless avoided having their soul destroyed and these cases all involved the direct intervention of a powerful servant of one of the Nine.   Void demons and most undead with an energy draining attack will try to steal the physical vitality of the living. Faceless are different. They feed on the identity and force of personality of mortals. In other words, they drain social attributes. Faceless can only feed on mortals, they cannot feed on living creatures that do not have souls.   Left to their own devices, they can manage very simple ambushes and may try hit and run tactics if a foe is clearly powerful, but their tactics are never particularly sophisticated and their sense of self-preservation is low, primarily centered on getting to eat again.   Faceless are fairly easy for Void Demon necromancers to command, but are very difficult for mortal necromancers to command. They are impossible for a mortal necromancer to create. Most Void demons don't bother trying to coral the faceless they leave in their wake. They just let faceless haunt wherever they wish.   Since Faceless are incorporeal, they can only be harmed by magic or SIlverwood.   During the Second Unmaking, untold thousands of faceless roamed Scarterra killing almost as many people as the demons themselves. This is what prompted the Nine to create Silverwood in the first place.

Civilization and Culture


Demonologists have determined that in the Third Age, roughly four in ten mortals slain by a demon's life draining attack rise as Faceless undead. Roughly one in four mortals slain by a Faceless' life draining attack rise as Faceless undead. Scholars see no reason the ratio of slain rising as Faceless was not similar during the Second Unmaking.   A very small percentage of the time, an undead creature emerges from a demon's victims that is not a Faceless. This seemed to be more common during the Second Unmaking than it is now, so it's possible the rate of undead transformations was higher back then, or maybe it is simply that storytellers tend to be biased towards speaking of that which is rare and unusual more than that which is relatively common.   While not every mortal who perished before the demon hordes ended up joining them as undead auxilery troops, many did. It seems clear that more mortals were slain by Faceless than by actual demons.   A Faceless' draining attack is only fatal after multiple hits, but Faceless are incoporeal meaning they can only be harmed by magic or by Silverwood weapons. Silverwood trees are rare treasures now, but at the height of the Unmaking, through the Nine's blessing Silverwood trees were a lot more common.   Even then, I wouldn't want be fighting for my very soul with a club or a sharpened stick if I had better options. One trick the ancient elves figured out is to take a sharpened stick and put a steel or silver spear head over the pointy wood part. The metal is of course useless against Faceless but it lets the spear be used against a corporeal demon without breaking.   As dangerous as they are, Faceless seem to be truly mindless or at the very least their mental capacity is similar to very simple animals. Unless commanded to do otherwise by a necromancer, a Faceless will heedlessly charge charge the nearest mortal they detect. If there are no mortals nearby, they will wander aimlessly.   Faceless are difficult for mortal necromancers to command, but unsurprisingly, Void Demon necroamncers could command them fairly easily, but even then, they usually created more Faceless than they could command forcing them to cut large numbers of the Faceless loose.   While the Void Demon Armies usually kept a bound cadre of Faceless as their vanguard, most Faceless were wandering Scarterra in small bands acting on their own volition, meaning that even seemingly empty stretches of wilderness were never truly safe.   -Akeem of Magicland, professor Emeritus of History
Faceless Stats   Willpower 3 Lethal Soak 0   Strength 3/0, Dexterity 4, Stamina 3, Charisma 1, Manipulation 1, Appearance 0, Perception 2, Intelligence 1, Wits 2   Abilities: Alertness 1, Athletics 1, Brawl 2, Dodge 1, Stealth 3   Incorporeal.   Undead, subject to turning, immune to sleep and charm. Turn Resistance 3     Touch attack (difficulty 6) inflicts one level of social damage which cannot be soaked or saved.   Each dot of attribute damage inflicts and recovers or adds a health level to the Faceless. Health levels over a Faceless’ normal maximum disappear after Willpower hours.   Targets who lose every dot of social attribute are slain. Sapient creatures killed by Faceless’ energy drain sometimes become Faceless themselves. The higher the victim’s Willpower trait is, the better chances they have of become a Faceless post-Mortem. The odds of becoming a faceless are the victim’s Willpower x 10 as a percentage minus 10%   Health Levels: OK, OK, OK, OK, Destroyed

Cover image: Symbol of the Nine by Pendrake


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