Is there a device or spell that records current events and stores this footage for playback?

I run a High Fantasy Pathfinder campaign. Characters in the campaign accept that one may Teleport or create a Wall Of Force. Spellcasters can create illusions with visual, auditory, olfactory (smell) and thermal components. Some illusions last only as long as concentration plus a few rounds while other illusions are permanent. So, footage may be displayed.

I'd like the game to include more intrigue. For example:

  • The villains want to record events for blackmail purposes
  • The Player Characters want to record evidence to display at a trial
  • Both sides want evidence to show a deed was done.
  • The Player Characters want a recorded history of their battles
    • They play these back at the tavern Sunday evenings and get into arguments with That Other Party about who "killed it better."

Is there a spell or device that would record events permanently?

Yes, essentially I am searching for a High Fantasy implementation of a smartphone or camcorder. (Olfactory and/or Thermal recording are bonus features but not necessary.)

Is there a variant rule or a device that allows a spellcaster to create a Major Image that is Permanent, Factually Accurate, and Difficult to Alter once made? Permanent Image almost fits the bill, but:

  • The effect essentially fills a room and stays there. There's no way to tie the image to an object for transport.
  • The caster creates the image based on his or her biases. The resulting image is not an objective recording of the facts.
  • It's not clear to me if any of Silent Image, Major Image or Permanent Image actually display events changing over time. The description for Silent Image implies that the visual can change over time if the caster wishes:

You can move the image within the limits of the size of the effect.

I have Ultimate Intrigue but I have not yet found what I'm looking for in that rule book.

My initial search was for a spell. A device usable by those who are not spellcasters would be even better.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Note that tags (like [spells] and [equipment]) are meant to describe what the question's about, not what you expect the answers to be. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Oct 29, 2018 at 0:17

3 Answers 3


A Clockwork Spy does part of what you want.

A clockwork spy can record nearby sounds as a swift action, archiving all sound within a 20-foot spread onto a small gemstone worth 50 gp embedded in its body. The clockwork spy can record up to 1 hour of sound per Hit Die it possesses. Starting and stopping playback of recorded sound is a swift action...

If you like, you can homerule a Clockwork Spy with Crafter's Eyes modification can also record video. (The original intent was to allow scrying through the construct). This method is slightly cost inhibitive at 1,250g (750 crafted) for the Spy and 8,000g for the modification.

Some creatures have an Eidetic memory.

If a perfect recounting suffices, you could hire certain creatures, such as a Cassisian Angel, to do so for you.

Though they are not particularly intelligent, cassisians have perfect memories and remember everything they see or hear. They can faultlessly recite conversations they heard hundreds of years before.

Some other possible candidates:

  • Kitsune have an alternate racial trait that says they have Eidetic memory. It only mechanically gives them a bonus to perception and sense motive.
  • Mindchemist Alchemist have an ability called Perfect Recall that allows them to add Intelligence mod twice when remembering things.
  • Mnemor Devil possess an Eidetic memory, but are more likely to help you forget things than remember

You haven't mentioned any hard prerequisites so...
the simplest way I can see is via the use of Share Memory (2nd) and Programmed Image (6th) (or any lesser illusion would do as well just varying the quality) you could recreate minute by minute chunks of an event anyone has personally experienced.

This comes with the disclaimer that the caster of Shared Memory AND the caster of the following illusion display have to be trusted by whatever authority your campaign's justice system uses.

It provides an interesting RP opportunity to have an organisation of trusted "special officers of the court".

Alternatively, there is the Mneumonic Repository from PathFinder #112.


There are some caveats, but you could potentially use an accuser devil (Bestiary 2). They record all they see, and can replay it for someone in contact with them. The main flaw is that the devil can only replay a particular period once. To combat this, you could have multiple accusers witness an event, enough to show any potential jurors (maybe another to prove to the person you're planning on blackmailing you have what you claim to have)

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ A chain of accuser devils witnessing for each other. The first one records the event. The second one witnesses the first replay, the first one witnesses the replay of the second devil, etc... However, where do those devils come from? Which book? \$\endgroup\$ Oct 29, 2018 at 0:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Baskakov_Dmitriy Added bestiary source. Unfortunately, I don't think the chain of Accusers works, since they can only replay for one person. \$\endgroup\$
    – StephenTG
    Oct 29, 2018 at 17:50

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