Often desperate (or perhaps foolish) individuals will make pacts with devil entities in exchange for a task they need carried out. While the spoken incantation varies from devil to devil, the general outline of performing such a ceremony shares a few commonalities. This was done on purpose since the devils decided mortals having access to all of them was more beneficial than having access to none of them.
The Ritual to summon a devil entity has a few basic components:
Typically this involves writing the terms of the proposed pact in one’s own blood and one’s own name. If an assassination attempt is the goal, then the targets name is also etched in the summoner’s own blood. Drawing one’s own blood is typically done with a silver handle that’s been blackened with a candle. The writing is then burned in the same candle that was used to blacken the blade while a verbal incantation is said aloud.
The would be summoner must offer up a valuable item in exchange for the devil’s service. Typically these items are valuable, but they can often be more emotionally than monetarily so. Upon arriving after a successful summoning, the devil then determines if the offering is acceptable.
If the offering is not satisfactory, the devil will often attack the summoner then is free to roam the world. Accepting the offering means the devil carries out the task then returns to its native plane upon completion. Accepting the offer has dire consequences. First, the summoner’s shadow fades for each summoning (until losing his shadow entirely upon the third summoning) which those well versed in demonic summoning may recognize (Knowledge (Religion) DC 20) the change in an individuals shadow. Further, the summoner permanently loses one point to either Strength, Dexterity or Constitution (summoner’s choice) which can never be reclaimed. The summoner’s soul is permanently tainted which can be seen by anyone using the spell Detect Evil. It’s also rumored that those that participate in devil summoning are not protected by their deities in the afterlife. Finally, the summoner’s alignment shifts one step toward evil if the summoner is not already evil. Attempting a devil summoning ceremony more than three times means the summoned devil has a 50% chance of outright attacking the summoner.
Just about any type of devil can be summoned using this ritual. Because they are lawful creatures, devils always keep their word an fulfill the bargain if they agree to the terms offered by the summoner. The most commonly summoned devils in the Iron Kingdoms that are summoned forth are Umbral Reavers, as their verbal incantation is most widely known. Knowing an incantation for a specific devil requires a Knowledge (Religion) check with a DC of the devil’s CR + 10. Attempting to summon an Umbral Reaver means the summoner can attempt the check untrained and receives a +5 circumstantial bonus to do so.