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The Ip-Ara'dare Lifer isn't really something new, but has become more common since the outbreak of the War of Revenge. Lifers sell their lives to the Death Engine, riding the edge of oblivion and death, and by practicing their trade, by willingly manning the death engine, they are honed into some of the toughest SOBs that you'll ever meet.

A lifer, in simplest terms, uses their lifeforce to power a dreaded death engine, does so willingly, and even "gets off" on it. They spend as much as 12 hours in a death engine, wait until the fatigue wears off and do it again. Furthermore, they boost the TR of a death engine from 2/3 HD to their full HD, while they are piloting it, and can even be magically healed without breaking their connection.



To qualify as a Lifer, one must be a Goblin, usually an Ip-Ara'dare, and a Magus. A high Constitution score is essential, and one can't hurt for Intelligence either. Dexterity will affect the character's ability with siege weapons, and Charisma will help them to not be seen as freaky weird.

Payment & Reimbursement

A lifer can demand full pilot's pay as though they were a major spellcaster on any ship helmed by a death engine. Otherwise, they are a moderate spellcaster, and commands 2/3 full pay. Full pay for a pilot is 1 share or 100 gp per month per caster level

Other Benefits

The following are the benefits of the Lifer archetype;

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A lifer is proficient with all simple, goblin and siege weapons. A lifer is also proficient with light armor. He can cast magus spells while wearing light armor without incurring the normal arcane spell failure chance. Like any other arcane spellcaster, a lifer wearing medium armor, heavy armor, or a shield incurs a chance of arcane spell failure if the spell in question has a somatic component. A multiclass lifer still incurs the normal arcane spell failure chance for arcane spells received from other classes. This replaces the weapon and armor proficiencies of the magus class.

Natural Pilot: Unlike other living beings, the goblin lifer adds his full hit dice (instead of 2/3) when determining the tactical rating of the death engine he is piloting.

Spells: A lifer casts arcane spells drawn from the magus spell list presented on page 13 of Ultimate Magic. A lifer must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time.
To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, the lifer must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a lifer’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the lifer’s Constitution modifier.
A lifer can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on Table 1–1 (UM p.10). In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Constitution score (see Table 1–3 on page 17 of the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook).
A lifer may know any number of spells. He must choose and prepare his spells ahead of time by getting 8 hours of sleep and spending 1 hour studying his spellbook. While studying, the lifer decides which spells to prepare.
This modifies the spells ability of the magus class.

Lifer Arcane Pool (Su): At 1st level, the lifer gains a reservoir of mystical arcane energy that he can draw upon to fuel his powers and enhance his shipboard weapons. This arcane pool has a number of points equal to 1/2 his lifer level (minimum 1) + his Intelligence modifier. The pool refreshes once per day when the lifer prepares his spells.
At 1st level, a lifer can expend 1 point from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant any siege weapon he is manning, or any one siege weapon on a ship he is piloting., a +1-enhancement bonus for 1 minute. For every four levels beyond 1st, the siege weapon gains another +1-enhancement bonus, to a maximum of +5 at 17th level. These bonuses can be added to the weapon, stacking with existing weapon enhancement to a maximum of +5. Multiple uses of this ability do not stack with themselves.
At 5th level, these bonuses can be used to add any of the following weapon properties: flaming, flaming burst, frost, icy burst, keen, shock, shocking burst, speed, or vorpal. Adding these properties consumes an amount of bonus equal to the property’s base price modifier (see Table 15–9 on page 469 of the Core Rulebook). These properties are added to any the siege weapon already has, but duplicates do not stack. If the siege weapon is not magical, at least a +1-enhancement bonus must be added before any other properties can be added. These bonuses and properties are decided when the arcane pool point is spent and cannot be changed until the next time the magus uses this ability. These bonuses do not function if the weapon is wielded by anyone other than the lifer (and his team), unless the lifer is manning the helm.
A lifer can only enhance one siege weapon in this way at one time. If he uses this ability again, the first use immediately ends.
This ability alters the arcane pool ability of the magus class.

Unnatural Health (Ex): Repeated exposure to death engines allows the lifer an unnatural hardiness. So long as the lifer spends 1 hour per level per week exposed to a death engine, they receive a +4 bonus to Constitution. Furthermore, they become immune to all effects being caused by pain (including a +6 bonus to concentration checks made to cast spells after taking damage), as well as being immune to poison and disease. This ability replaces Spellstrike.

Lifer Arcana: As he gains levels, a lifer learns arcane secrets tailored to his specific way of blending martial puissance and magical skill. Starting at 3rd level, a lifer gains one magus arcana. He gains an additional magus arcana for every three levels of lifer attained after 3rd level. Unless specifically noted in a magus arcana’s description, a lifer cannot select a particular magus arcana more than once. Magus arcana that affect spells can only be used to modify spells from the magus spell list unless otherwise noted.
The following magus arcana are suitable to the lifer archetype; arcane accuracy, arcane edge, bane blade (siege*), circle of order, concentrate, devoted blade (siege*), dispelling strike, distant spellstrike, empowered magic, enduring blade (siege*), familiar, maximized magic, pool ray, quickened magic, reflection, silent magic, spellbinding, spell-scars, still magic.
(*) A variant of the ability that affects siege weapons in the same manner as Lifer Arcane Pool

The following are new lifer arcana available to lifer archetype;
Critical Siege Engine: When the lifer hits with a piece of siege ammunition, either personally from a weapon that he was manning, or a weapon affected by another of his lifer arcana, the lifer can deliver a touch spell through the piece of ammunition to whatever the ammunition last contacted. The lifer must be 12th level to take this arcana, and must expend 1 point of his arcane pool.
Hardiness: By expending 1 arcane pool, the lifer may raise his Constitution by 2 points for a number of minutes equal to his lifer level + his (new) Constitution modifier. The lifer may take this ability more than once, and the bonuses stack, but the duration does not. For example, a ninth level lifer, who has taken this ability three times, and naturally possesses a 16 Constitution, could raise their Constitution by + 6, to 22 for 9 + 6 (his new Constitution modifier) or 15 minutes, by expending 1 point of arcane pool.
Long Range: The lifer may cast a spell with a range of touch on a piece of siege ammunition, and have that spell delivered when the siege ammunition strikes its target. Only spells with a range of melee touch may be delivered by this arcana, and it costs a point of his arcane pool. He must have ranged spellstrike to take this arcana.
Ranged Spellstrike: Whenever a lifer casts a spell with a range of “touch” from the magus spell list, and spends 1 point of his arcane pool, he can deliver the spell through any weapon he is wielding as part of a ranged attack. Instead of the free melee touch attack normally allowed to deliver the spell, a lifer can make one free ranged attack with his weapon (at his highest base attack bonus) as part of casting this spell. If successful, this ranged attack deals its normal damage as well as the effects of the spell. This attack uses the weapon’s critical range (20, 19–20, or 18–20 and modified by the keen weapon property or similar effects), but the spell effect only deals ×2 damage on a successful critical hit, while the weapon damage uses its own critical modifier.
Ship Shield: By expending 1 point of his arcane pool, and the lifer may shield his ship from damage for one round. During this round, the ship gains an insight bonus to its AC equal to the lifer’s intelligence modifier.
Spellstrike: Whenever a lifer casts a spell with a range of “touch” from the magus spell list, and spends 1 point of his arcane pool, he can deliver the spell through any weapon he is wielding as part of a melee attack. Instead of the free melee touch attack normally allowed to deliver the spell, a lifer can make one free melee attack with his weapon (at his highest base attack bonus) as part of casting this spell. If successful, this melee attack deals its normal damage as well as the effects of the spell. If the lifer makes this attack in concert with spell combat, this melee attack takes all the penalties accrued by spell combat melee attacks. This attack uses the weapon’s critical range (20, 19–20, or 18–20 and modified by the keen weapon property or similar effects), but the spell effect only deals ×2 damage on a successful critical hit, while the weapon damage uses its own critical modifier.

Star-Pilot Exploits: The lifer may take any one of the Star-Pilot Arcane Exploits as a lifer arcana, using his arcane pool in place of arcane reservoir to power the abilities. He must be 12th level to take the Greater Exploits.
Engine Endurance: A Star-Pilot with this exploit, may continue piloting a vessel for many hours longer than usual. Though normally, an arcane caster can only about the ship for a matter of 12 hours, an arcanist with this exploit, may spend 1 point of his arcane reservoir to pilot the ship for a number of additional hours equal to his charisma modifier (minimum of one).
Instant Repair: The Star-Pilot can use this exploit while piloting the helm to repair the ship instantly. He can repair the ship by extending 1 point of arcane reservoir for each 1D6 he wants to heal. He may expend 1 point of arcane reservoir, for each 3 full levels of arcanist he possesses, minimum of one.
Overspeed: By spending 1 point of arcane reservoir, while piloting the helm, the Star-Pilot can improve the tactical rating of the ship by 2 points. This rating bonus is an unnamed bonus, and stacks with other similar bonuses.
Tight Turn: Using this exploit, a Star-Pilot can expend 1 point of arcane reservoir to improve the maneuverability class of the ship he is piloting by one grade (average becomes good, poor becomes average, etc.) for the current turn. To use this exploit, the Star-Pilot must be at the helm of the ship and must be currently piloting it.
Greater Star-Pilot Exploits: at 11th level and beyond, provided he meets the prerequisites, a Star-Pilot may take the following greater exploits;
Circlet of the Hero: The Star-Pilot who takes this exploit can, with a week’s work and a DC 10 appropriate craft check, create a circlet of the hero. This item, which can be any worn article, it is simply called a circlet of the hero because Elven Star-Pilots, who most commonly make use of it, tend to use circlets. The only requirement of the item type, is that it must take up a magical item slot. Once created, the item is permanent, though typically un-magical, unless activated. When activated, costing the Star-Pilot 2 points of arcane reservoir, it allows whoever wears it to activate the engine of a ship, without having to be attached to the helm. In other words, so long as he is on the ship, he can act as the pilot. It remains active, and thus magical, for 12 hours, and can be renewed once per day. As a further effect, the circlet of the hero allows the Star-Pilot to activate his ship exploits and greater ship exploits without having to be in a pilot position.
Greater Arcane Siege: If a Star-Pilot has the Arcane Siege exploit, then they can take this exploit when they qualify for it, and by expending 2 points of arcane reservoir, cause the Arcane Siege exploit to affect every siege engine on the ship of the same type (catapult, cannon, rail gun etc.). Each siege engine must be affected in the same way, so if he adds flaming burst, it is added to every siege engine affected. The effects last a number of rounds equal to the Arcanist’s Charisma modifier (minimum of 1 round.)
Greater Engine Endurance: A Star-Pilot with this exploit can pilot an engine for an extremely long time. By expending 2 points of arcane reservoir, the Star-pilot can continue operating any engine for an additional time equal to his arcanist level plus his charisma bonus. The Star-Pilot must have Engine Endurance to take this exploit.
Greater Overspeed: By expending an additional point of arcane reservoir, and using this exploit, a Star-Pilot at the helm and increase the tactical rating of his ship by an additional two points, over the two points granted by Overspeed. The Star-Pilot must possess and have used Overspeed before using this exploit.
Hairpin Turn: By expending 2 points of arcane reservoir, a Star-pilot with this exploit can cause her ship to make a single hairpin turn, turning 180° in its current hex, costing 3 points of TR, as though the ship had perfect maneuverability. This turn, otherwise, takes up the part of the move action of the ship that is normally taken up with turning. The ship can make no other turns this round and the Star-Pilot must be at the helm. The Star-pilot must have the Tight Turn exploit to take this exploit.
Regenerate: A Star-Pilot with the Instant Heal exploit, may take this exploit at 11th level or above, and use it by expending 2 points of arcane reservoir, to make a ship he is piloting regenerate hit points equal to his charisma bonus (minimum of 1), for a number of rounds equal to his arcanist level. Once enacted, the Star-Pilot does not have to concentrate on the power, it just continues until it runs out. The effects do not stack with itself, and another use of this exploit while the first one is still active will simply extend the duration again up to the arcanist’s level. The Star-Pilot can, however, use Instant Heal while this exploit is active.

Additional Health: at 8th, 14th and 16th level, a lifer gains an additional +2 Constitution under the same circumstances as his unnatural health ability. This ability replaces Improved Spell Combat, Greater Spell Combat and Counterstrike.

True Lifer: at 20th level, the lifer truly does become the epitome of pain resistance. At this point, is no longer capable of feeling pain (though pleasure is still a delightful feeling) and furthermore he is immune to energy drain, ability drain and Constitution damage and never need to make concentration checks for being struck while casting a spell. This ability replaces True Magus.



With magical power at a premium among Fomorians, it behooved the Fomorian Navy to utilize less moral means of powering their starships. The necromantic Death Engine was, at least in the short term, an answer to their problem. A prisoner (or slave) could be utilized to power the ship, though the constant screaming was hard on crew morale. The navy tried everything to cover up the tortured wails of the victims, but in the end, they relegated the death engines to emergency use. Then came the Goblin Lifer. When or how they came about seems to be organic with the usage of death engines, like an inevitable evolution. Lifers were goblin specialists who, like masochistic body builders subjected themselves to increasingly longer periods in the engine to build up tolerance and resistance. With that, the Fomorian Navy became a true power in space, as the cheap death engines were now viable to power even their largest warships.

Social Status

Lifers enjoy a sort of special status in the Fomorian Navy. On one hand, they are about 99% Ip-Ara'dare or Emm'Kevirda so goblins think they are mentally disabled and mentally ill. On the other hand, they are valued crewmen who selflessly give of themselves to aid their crewmates by piloting the starship. Lifer NCOs are not uncommon, though lieutenant is still the highest rank achieved by a lifer in the Navy.


Lifers make up 75% of the Ip-ara'dare in the Navy and Ip-ara'dare make up 5% of goblins, Lifers also account for roughly 20% of Emm'kevirda and a few Bela'Wani and Bar'Tor are also Lifers, so all in all about 5% of the goblins in the Navy are lifers.


The ability of lifers existed for almost as long as has existed death engines, though they were not really formalized until midway through The Second Interstellar War.



An impenetrable will and a death engine.

Dangers & Hazards

The goblin lifer runs the constant risk of Death Engine Shock
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Most Fomorian Captains wish every goblin in their employ were a Lifer
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