Thursday, April 4, 2013

Dread Kraken (Frightful Fridays! A-Z!)

Welcome to "D"-Day of Frightful Fridays! All April! I've been waiting for an appropriate time to do something with this monster, and a month-long blogging feature seemed like a better time than any. This is the highest-level monster featured in this series, and, fittingly, the longest entry. Included with the dread kraken is the staff of the waves that the creature usually crafts after the kraken undergoes its "rebirth" through a complex ritual.

I hope you like today's offering, and I'm "E"lated to bring you tomorrow's creature. See you then! 

This unholy abomination looks like a decaying, yet intelligent, octopus; a humanoid face emerging from within the creature’s flesh adds to the horrifying visage.
Dread Kraken CR 22
XP 614,400
NE Huge undead (aquatic)
Init +8; Senses darkvision 180 ft.; Perception +46
Aura frightful presence (90 ft., DC 35)


AC 40, touch 28, flat-footed 36 (+4 Dex, +8 insight, +12 natural, +8 profane, –2 size)

hp 432 (32d8+288); regeneration 20 (fire)

Fort +19, Ref +14, Will +25
Immune cold, electricity, undead traits; Resist acid 20; SR 33

Speed 10 ft., fly 30 ft. (average), swim 60 ft., jet 300 ft.
Melee 8 tentacles +28 (1d8+5 plus grab and 1d6 Con drain)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 15 ft. (30 ft. with tentacles)
Special Attacks constrict (1d8+5 plus 1d6 Con drain), create spawn, dual mind, ink cloud, staff of the waves
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th; concentration +29)
Constant—protection from good, true seeing
At will—cone of cold (DC 24), suffocation (DC 24)
3/day—blasphemy (DC 26), control weather, control winds, vortex (DC 26)
1/day—create greater undead, mage's disjunction (DC 28), transmute blood to acid (DC 28), tsunami (DC 28)

Str 32, Dex 19, Con —, Int 27, Wis 25, Cha 28
Base Atk +24; CMB +37 (+41 grapple, +39 trip); CMD 67 (can’t be tripped)
Feats Alertness, Bleeding Critical, Blind-Fight, Combat Expertise, Craft Staff, Critical Focus, Critical Mastery, Exhausting Critical, Greater Feint, Improved Feint, Improved Initiative, Improved Trip, Power Attack, Skill Focus (Intimidate), Skill Focus (Spellcraft), Tiring Critical
Skills Appraise +24, Bluff +25, Fly +19, Handle Animal +25, Intimidate +50, Knowledge (arcana) +43, Knowledge (geography) +24, Knowledge (history) +24, Knowledge (nature) +24, Knowledge (planes) +40, Knowledge (religion) +43, Perception +46, Sense Motive +46, Spellcraft +49, Swim +38, Use Magic Device +41
Languages Abyssal, Aklo, Aquan, Common, Draconic, Giant, Infernal, Undercommon; telepathy 180 ft.

Environment any aquatic
Organization solitary
Treasure double

Special Abilities
Create Spawn (Su) A dread kraken can create spawn from those it slays with its Con drain or ink cloud. The victim transforms into a draugr (for a victim with 10 or fewer Hit Dice) or a krakenwight (for a victim with more than 10 Hit Dice) in 24 hours. The new undead creature is under the dread kraken’s command, and remains that way until the kraken’s destruction. The dread kraken may have enslaved spawn totaling no more than three times its own Hit Dice; any spawn it creates that exceed this limit become free-willed undead. The kraken may free an enslaved creature in order to enslave a new creature, but the freed creature cannot be enslaved again.
Dual Mind (Ex) The dread kraken’s humanoid and kraken mind allow the creature to take two standard actions and a move action during its round. Both minds are immune to mind-affecting effects.
Ink Cloud (Su) A dread kraken’s ink cloud is formed from shadow-stuff and billows out in a 100-foot spread. The creature can emit this cloud once per minute as a free action while underwater; the cloud’s darkness is equivalent to deeper darkness. Additionally, each round a creature starts within the cloud, it must succeed at a DC 35 Fort save or take 1d8 Strength drain. The cloud persists for 1 minute before dispersing.
Staff of the Waves (Ex) See magic item description below. A dread kraken will never use the staff as a melee weapon.

Rarely, when a kraken nears the end of its lengthy lifespan, the creature finds a like-minded powerful humanoid egotist to share in a forsaken ritual where the two forge a literal bond, becoming a single unliving creature. The humanoid’s mind is almost utterly subsumed in the process, but grants the conglomerate creature with incredible spellcasting prowess. A dread kraken is smaller—but considerably more powerful—than a normal kraken, measuring 60 feet in length and weighing 2,000 pounds.

A dread kraken is a true terror of the seas and seeks nothing short of true dominion of its demesne. The creature allows ships to pass through its 50-mile radius of influence on the surface, if the crew offers considerable tribute (usually 5,000 gp or an item of equivalent value). A dread kraken uses its spawned undead to patrol the waters and dabbles in the creation of abominable creatures (such as the gullion) to augment its undead patrols. The kraken either immediately destroys ships that do not offer tribute, converting the dead crewmen to its undead army, or follows the ship to its port where it unleashes the full fury of its spell-like abilities to teach the inhabitants there a lesson.

If a dread kraken encounters resistance that it cannot easily overcome, the creature retreats to the depths of the sea where it can withstand the pressures of the deep. While supremely confident in its abilities, it does not allow an opponent to benefit from the advantage of attacking in shallower water. For persistent foes, a dread kraken sends waves of undead creatures to wear its opponents down, and then it will make its appearance to strike the finishing blow. A kraken will entertain diplomacy, but only with a single creature, and only when that creature proves it is a high-ranking member (royalty, head of state, etc.) of its nation. However, a dread kraken’s notion of diplomacy only concerns the amount of tribute it expects to receive from the nation in question.


Staff of the Waves
Aura strong varied; CL 17th
Slot none; Price 251,600 gp; Weight 15 lbs.
Made from coral and dyed blue, this staff is shaped like a trident and can be used to deal melee damage as if it were a +1 frost trident of the appropriate size. The staff also allows use of the following spells:
  • Hydraulic torrent (1 charge)
  • Summon monster III  (aquatic creatures only; 1 charge)
  • Water breathing (1 charge)
  • Echolocation (2 charges)
  • Fluid form (2 charges)
  • Elemental swarm (water elementals only; 3 charges)
  • Seamantle (3 charges)
A staff of the waves can be recharged each morning by taking the staff five miles below the water’s surface or to the Elemental Plane of Water.
Requirements Craft Staff, echolocation, elemental swarm, fluid form, hydraulic torrent, ice storm, seamantle, summon monster III, water breathing; Cost 125,800 gp


  1. What a Dreadfully Frightening creature! A true BBEG for any underwater campaign.

  2. Oofda! Yet another reason to be skeeert of the big blue! ;)