Friday, April 13, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Crow Wraith

It's Friday, so it's time for another monster! Today's offering is a fey creature who crosses the gap between life and death. It also deals death (not so much with the life), but only for those it is contracted to kill. Most PCs, being quite unassuming, should never cross a crow wraith's path. Or maybe I've got that wrong...

I hope you enjoy the crow wraith. Thanks for reading!

This biped has a skeletal face and skin color in stark contrast between bone-white and a shadowy black. Immaterial crows peel away from the creature’s midsection, revealing its spine.
Crow Wraith      CR 14
XP 38,400
N Medium fey
Init +7; Senses low-light vision; Perception +27
AC 28, touch 18, flat-footed 20 (+7 Dex, +1 dodge, +10 natural)
hp 199 (21d6+126)
Fort +13, Ref +19, Will +15
Defensive Abilities evasion, improved uncanny dodge; DR 10/silver; Immune cold, mind-affecting effects
Speed 40 ft., fly 60 ft. (average)
Melee unarmed strike +22/+17/+12 (2d6+6)
Special Attacks death attack (DC 22), sneak attack +8d6, stunning fist (5/day, DC 23)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th; concentration +25)
   1/day—summon swarm (corvid swarm only; use stats for bat swarm)
Str 22, Dex 25, Con 23, Int 14, Wis 17, Cha 20
Base Atk +15; CMB +21; CMD 39
Feats Canny Tumble[ACG], Combat Expertise, Deflect Arrows, Dodge, Improved Feint, Improved Unarmed Strike, Mobility, Spring Attack, Stunning Fist, Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (unarmed strike)
Skills Acrobatics +31 (+35 to jump), Bluff +29, Climb +18, Escape Artist +31, Fly +18, Knowledge (religion) +18, Perception +27, Sleight of Hand +31, Stealth +31, Swim +18
Languages Aklo, Common, Sylvan; speak with animals (corvids only)
SQ corvid empathy +25, hide in plain sight, murder form
Environment any land
Organization solitary
Treasure standard
Corvid Empathy (Ex) This ability functions as a druid’s wild empathy, except it only works on corvids. A crow wraith is treated as a 20th-level druid for this ability.
Death Attack (Ex) A crow wraith can perform a death attack as a 10th-level assassin.
Hide in Plain Sight (Su) A crow wraith can use the Stealth skill even while being observed. As long as it is within 10 feet of some sort of shadow, it can hide itself from view in the open without having anything to actually hide behind. The crow wraith cannot hide in its own shadow.
Murder Form (Su) Once per day, as a standard action, a crow wraith can transform itself into a swarm of incorporeal crows. Its updated stats are included below. The crow wraith can remain in this form for up to 1 minute (returning to its normal form requires a standard action), but the transformation takes a toll on it, causing it to become fatigued for 1 hour afterwards.
Summon Swarm (Sp) When a crow wraith summons a corvid swarm with its spell-like ability, the swarm gains the wraith’s damage reduction (for cases where weapon damage may apply) and immunity to cold.

Crow Wraith (murder form)      CR 14
XP 38,400
N Medium fey (incorporeal, swarm)
AC 23, touch 23, flat-footed 15 (+5 deflection, +7 Dex, +1 dodge)
Defensive Abilities evasion, incorporeal, swarm traits; DR 10/silver; Immune cold, mind-affecting effects
Speed fly 60 ft. (perfect)
Melee swarm (5d6 plus 1d4 Cha drain and distraction)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks distraction (DC 26)
Str —, Dex 25, Con 23, Int 14, Wis 17, Cha 20
Base Atk +15; CMB —; CMD

Crow wraiths are unusual fey who are harbingers and bringers of death. They are created from the corpses of fey nobles fed to crows or other corvids. This bridge between life and death gives them a strangely balanced morality and allows them to usher fey, regardless of their affiliation, to their ultimate reward. They also serve as assassins for the fey courts, usually targeting mortals who have grievously offended fey nobles or represent a persistent obstacle to fey noble schemes. In rare cases, crow wraiths assassinate other fey, but this only occurs for grave breaches of contract.

Crow wraiths possess incredible physicality as well as the ability to dissolve into a swarm of ghostly corvids—crows, primarily, but ravens are a popular choice, while more flamboyant crow wraiths choose blue or green jays. They prefer to retain their corporeal, humanoid forms when carrying out assassinations, mostly because they enjoy the satisfaction of a well-placed nerve strike that incapacitates or outright kills their targets. Additionally, when they kill quarry in their murder form, the corpses are disfigured in an unnatural way, prompting more scrutiny by investigators looking into deaths wrought by crow wraiths. All the same, crow wraiths leave tokens of their claims of accountability for their murders, usually in the form of large white feathers held by their victims.

The wraiths fundamental ties to corvids grants them a rapport with the birds, and they often use corvids to scout targets or sites where they plan to carry out their deeds. Crow wraiths sometimes take favorite crows as companions. When engaged in pitched combat, they send the crows away to protect the birds. They have an innate ability to summon a swarm of corvids, but they only do so to create distractions when they face certain defeat against resolute foes.

A typical crow wraith stands just over 6 feet tall and weighs 150 pounds.

Friday, April 6, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Sidereal Tick

Hello, and welcome back to Frightful Fridays! I've got a more serious, albeit weird, monster this week. The sidereal tick rides along on colossal horrors from beyond the stars and jumps off to attack more palatable prey (like, say, PCs). To sustain itself, it drains its victim's physical blood and essence and pulls the husk into the void making up its stomach. As an added bonus, it's difficult to remove, just like non-Lovecraftian ticks.

I hope you enjoy the sidereal tick, and I'll see you next week with another monster.

This odd insectile creature has several legs sprouting from random locations on its body, clear eye-like organs covering its body, and a gaping, toothy maw opening up into darkness.
Sidereal Tick      CR 10
XP 9,600
CN Small aberration
Init +11; Senses blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +15
AC 23, touch 19, flat-footed 15 (+7 Dex, +1 dodge, +4 natural, +1 size)
hp 127 (15d8+60)
Fort +11, Ref +12, Will +8
Defensive Abilities all-around vision, amorphous; DR 10/cold iron; Immune cold, mind-affecting effects; Resist acid 20; SR 21
Weaknesses susceptibility to vermin spells
Speed 30 ft.
Melee bite +19 (1d62 plus attach and blood drain)
Special Attacks attach, blood drain (1d3 Con and 1d3 Cha), true and terrifying visage
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 15th; concentration +17)
   Constant—displacement, freedom of movement
   At will—dimension door
   3/day—quickened dimension door
Str 6, Dex 25, Con 18, Int 7, Wis 9, Cha 14
Base Atk +11; CMB +17 (+21 grapple); CMD 26 (can't be tripped)
Feats Agile Maneuvers, Dimensional Agility[UC], Disorienting Maneuver[UC], Dodge, Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (dimension door), Weapon Finesse
Skills Acrobatics +20, Escape Artist +20, Perception +15, Stealth +19; Racial Modifiers +8 Perception
Special Qualities no breath
Environment any
Organization solitary, pair, or infestation (310)
Treasure standard
Attach (Ex) A sidereal tick has a +4 racial bonus on combat maneuver checks made to start and maintain a grapple and to its CMD against attempts to break grapples it initiated. If the tick is attached to a creature, the creature moves with the tick when it uses its quickened dimension door spell-like ability. Additionally, the victim gains the tick’s spell resistance, which the victim cannot voluntarily lower.
Blood Drain (Su) A creature reduced to 0 Con or 0 Cha as a result of a sidereal tick’s blood drain is lost to the void constituting the tick’s interior. While the creature is in the void, it cannot be brought back to life short of a miracle or wish spell. If the tick is killed, it disgorges whatever portion of the void it touches; each creature consumed by the tick has a 25% chance of spilling out.
Susceptibility to Vermin Spells (Ex) A sidereal tick is affected by spells that target vermin as if it were a vermin. It loses the benefit of its spell resistance for such spells.
True and Terrifying Visage (Su) A sidereal tick’s true appearance is grotesque at a primal level. A creature using true seeing or similar magic to see things as they are in reality must attempt a DC 19 Will save. On a failed save, the creature becomes confused for 1d6 rounds and must succeed at a second Will save to avoid becoming permanently confused (as per the insanity spell). On a successful save, the victim is instead confused for 1 round. Regardless of the result of the saving throw, the creature can’t be affected by the same sidereal tick’s true and terrifying visage for 24 hours. This is a mind-affecting compulsion effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Sidereal ticks are pests that attach themselves to aberrant creatures from the far reaches of the universe. While the creatures are nuisances to the horrors from beyond the stars, they are devastating to victims unused to impossible geometries. Often, groups of the creatures dislodge themselves from their hosts and ravage worlds in advance of the more terrifying creatures. In this way, an invasion of sidereal ticks acts as an early warning for an apocalyptic threat to those knowledgeable about the weird vermin.

Sidereal ticks have voracious appetites they barely sate on their normal fare. When presented with food with fixed anatomies, they become insatiable. Once they attach themselves to such prey, they remain affixed until their prey is dead and consumed or they are killed or forcibly removed. Their strange relation to reality allows them to avoid many attacks and move with relative ease. They use their teleportation ability to escape with prey, especially when faced with armed resistance. Fortunately, while they have alien minds, they react to magic similarly to terrestrial vermin.

Sidereal ticks measure 3 feet in diameter and weighs 15 pounds. They have relatively short lifespans at 5 years but enter hibernative states that prolong their lives when traversing the stars with their hosts.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Sci-Fi Sunday (Delak)

Hello and welcome to another Starfinder edition of monster blogging. Don't worry if you think you've seen something like this before. You probably have. At any rate, I hope you enjoy the entirely "original" delak.

[Image not displayed...for reasons]

This construct looks like a metal-studded metallic salt shaker. It spins around on an axis and shouts, “Stop! Do not flee!” while firing its raygun indiscriminately.
XP 1,638,400
CE Medium construct (technological)
Init +10; Senses blindsight (thermal) 60 ft., darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +41
DEFENSE            HP 120
EAC 42; KAC 44
Fort +23; Ref +23; Will +19
Defensive Abilities delakantium; Immunities acid, cold, construct immunities, electricity, fire, sonic; Resist force 10
Weaknesses bull rush susceptibility
Speed 30 ft.; fly 30 ft. (Ex, poor)
Melee suction extension +37 (18d10+40 B; critical asphyxiation [DC28])
Ranged delak raygun +40 (13d10+25 F; critical disintegration [DC 30])
Offensive Abilities phrase of fear
Str +15; Dex +8; Con —; Int +4; Wis +1; Cha +12
Skills Computers +41, Intimidate +46, Sense Motive +41
Languages Delak
Environment any

Organization solitary, squad (2–12), devastation (13–200)
Asphyxiation (Ex) A creature affected by a delak’s asphyxiation is considered grappled (as is the delak) and reduced to 0 Hit Points on a failed Fortitude save. If the delak succeeds on a grapple combat maneuver check to renew the grapple with its suction extension, the target must attempt the DC 28 Fortitude save again.
Bull Rush Susceptibility (Ex) The DC for the melee attack to perform a bull rush combat maneuver against a delak is its KAC + 4. A successful bull rush combat maneuver against a delak pushes it back 10 feet, plus 10 additional feet for every 5 by which the result of attack roll exceeds the DC. The creature performing the bull rush can instead knock the delak prone if it exceeds the DC by at least 5. Standing from prone requires a full action for a delak.
Delakantium (Ex) A delak is covered in nigh-impenetrable plating, which grants it hardness 40. At the GM’s discretion, a delak raygun bypasses this hardness, and the delak's immunity to fire, fully or to a certain degree (typically in increments of 10).
Disintegration (Ex) If a delak scores a critical hit with its delak raygun, the raygun’s damage is rolled four times. Additionally, the target must succeed at a DC 30 Fortitude save or be reduced to ash (this also occurs if the damage from the raygun reduces the target to 0 Hit Points).
Phrase of Fear (Ex) A delak has a particular phrase it shouts ominously as it attacks (examples include “Expunge with impunity!” and “Dismantle forcefully!”). Creatures that can hear the delak must succeed at a DC 28 Will save or become frightened. Creatures with a proper name equating to a profession (such as “Lawyer”) are immune to this effect; and allies of such creatures gain a +4 morale bonus on their Will saves.

A delak can possess other abilities at the GM’s discretion. It can also lose any of the above abilities at the GM’s discretion.