Friday, October 7, 2016

Frightful Fridays! Stubby Squid

Hello, and welcome to a beeelated Frightful Fridays! Life got extremely busy, and I missed working on new critters for the blog. But this little squid spoke to me, and I was compelled to return this week to put it out there.

I hope you enjoy the stubby squid, and I shall be back sooner than two month's time with another monster. Thanks for reading!

This miniature purple squid has large, expressive eyes. It waves its tentacles seemingly in greeting.
Stubby Squid    CR 4
XP 1,200
CN Diminutive aberration (aquatic)
Init +7; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +11
AC 19, touch 17, flat-footed 16 (+3 Dex, +2 natural, +4 size)
hp 42 (5d8+20); fast healing 2
Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +7
Defensive Abilities amorphous; Resist acid 10; SR 16
Speed 10 ft., swim 40 ft.
Melee 4 tentacles +10 (1d4–4 plus attach)
Space 1 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks attach, dehydrate, mind swap
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 5th; concentration +8)
   3/day—water breathing (other creatures only)
Str 3, Dex 16, Con 18, Int 13, Wis 17, Cha 16
Base Atk +3; CMB +2 (+6 grapple); CMD 8 (16 vs. grapple and trip)
Feats Go UnnoticedAPG, Improved Initiative, Skill Focus (Bluff), Weapon FinesseB
Skills Bluff +11, Escape Artist +11, Perception +11, Sense Motive +8, Stealth +20, Swim +17
Languages Aklo, Common
SQ amphibious, symbiosis
Environment temperate and warm oceans
Organization solitary, pair, or raft (3–12)
Treasure incidental
Attach (Ex) The suckers on a stubby squid’s tentacles latch onto a target with surprising tenacity. The squid gains a +4 racial bonus on combat maneuver checks to maintain a grapple, and a +8 racial bonus to CMD against grapples.
Dehydrate (Ex) A stubby squid attached to a creature halves the amount of time (12 hours plus 1/2 Constitution score) the creature can go without water. Additionally, the DC for the Constitution check to avoid nonlethal damage from dehydration increases by +2 for each previous check.
Fast Healing (Ex) A stubby squid loses fast healing when it is out of salt water.
Mind Swap (Su) As a full-round action, a stubby squid can trade minds with a creature to which it is attached. This functions as magic jar, except the two minds trade bodies. An unwilling target can resist this ability with a DC 15 Will save. The mind swap lasts for 1d4 hours or when the squid ends the effect as a free action, whichever is sooner. If a creature saves against the effect, this particular stubby squid cannot attempt it again with the creature for 24 hours The save DC is Charisma-based.
Symbiosis (Ex) While a stubby squid is attached to a creature, the creature gains the spell resistance and acid resistance possessed by the squid. The creature cannot voluntarily lower the spell resistance. Likewise, the squid enjoys energy resistances and immunities possessed by the creature.

Stubby squids are not animals despite their outward appearance. Instead, they are intelligent lifeforms with alien minds. They indulge in their curiosity by attaching themselves to fast-moving oceanic creatures or obviously non-aquatic specimens. If they feel they have approached friendly creatures, they attempt to convince the creatures to carry them along. They otherwise just attach themselves to their targets and hope for the best. Regardless, they entice potential hosts with their conveyed protection from acid and spells, as well as the ability to breathe water (typical stubby squids can provide water breathing to a single creature for a full day). Squids with a positive symbiotic relationship inform their hosts of their need for water when they leave the sea and the potential for dehydration as they drain water from their hosts.

In aquatic environments, stubby squids work together peacefully. Outside their watery homes, they become extremely competitive over precious water resources. The squids are instinctively aware of other squids, even those hidden on a host’s body. The squids assert their intelligences over their hosts, sequestering their hosts’ minds away in their bodies, to engage in proxy battles. When their hosts die in these bizarre combats, the squids find the nearest available creatures to possess and continue their conflicts. Warring stubby squids wipe out settlements ill-equipped to handle them, typically with only one squid-hosting “survivor” remaining.

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