Monday, July 31, 2017

Frightful Fridays! Redwood Golem

Hello and welcome to another edition of Frightful not-quite-so-Fridays! Work and car problems conspired against an on-time delivery last week, but I managed to rise to the challenged posed by my friend Jason to stat the redwood golem. This nature-themed golem normally takes the shape of a massive lion, but it can change shape at the whims of its creator or depending on the situation.

I hope you enjoy the redwood golem, and I'll be back again with another monster (hopefully on Friday). Thanks for reading!

This gigantic lion appears carved from a single, enormous chunk of wood. It has remarkable articulation and moves with grace belying its appearance.
Redwood Golem      CR 14
XP 38,400
N Huge construct
Init –2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +16
AC 30, touch 6, flat-footed 30 (–2 Dex, +24 natural, –2 size)
hp 163 (19d10+59)
Fort +6, Ref +4, Will +12
DR 15/adamantine and piercing; Immune construct traits, fire, magic
Speed 50 ft.
Melee bite +26 (4d6+8 plus grab), 2 claws +25 (3d6+8)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks pounce, rake (2 claws +25, 3d6+8)
Str 27, Dex 6, Con —, Int 3, Wis 23, Cha 18
Base Atk +19; CMB +29 (+31 bull rush, +33 grapple); CMD 37 (39 vs. bull rush, 41 vs. trip)
Feats Awesome Blow, Dazzling Display, Greater Vital Strike, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Vital Strike, Intimidating Prowess, Power Attack, Toughness, Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (bite)
Skills Intimidate +21, Perception +16, Stealth –10 (+6 in forests); Racial Modifiers +16 Stealth in forests
SQ freeze, reshape
Environment any (primarily forests)
Organization solitary, pair, stand (3–6)
Treasure none
Immunity to Magic (Ex) A redwood golem is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance. In addition, certain spells and effects function differently against a redwood golem, as noted below.
  • A diminish plants or warp wood spell slows a redwood golem (as the slow spell) for 3 rounds (no saving throw).
  • A plant growth spell ends any slow effect on the golem and gives it the giant creature template for 1 minute. It cannot benefit from the size increase from plant growth again for 1 hour (but the spell will end slow effects, regardless of the time between castings). A redwood golem gets no saving throw against plant growth.
  • A blight spell affects a redwood golem as if it were a plant creature. The golem receives a saving throw against the spell.
  • A magical attack that deals electricity damage ends any slow effect on the golem and heals 1 point of damage for each 3 points of damage the attack would otherwise deal. If the amount of healing would cause the golem to exceed its full normal hit points, it gains any excess as temporary hit points. A redwood golem gets no saving throw against electricity effects.

Reshape (Ex) A redwood golem’s default form is that of a feline creature, as reflected in its stat block. Three times per day as a swift action, the golem can change its animal form or densify its exterior. If it changes animal forms, it loses its current melee and special attacks and replaces them based on the new form. An elephantine form grants it 2 slam attacks (+25 attack bonus, 4d8+8) and trample (4d8+12, DC 27). If it takes the form of a rhinoceros, it gains a gore attack (+25 attack bonus, 4d8+12), powerful charge (gore, 4d8+16), and trample (4d6+12, DC 27). A serpentine form grants it a bite attack (+26 attack bonus, 4d6+12 plus grab), and constrict (4d6+12).
              A redwood golem choosing to densify its exterior increases its natural armor bonus by +2, but reduces its base speed by 10 ft. These changes last for 1 hour. The golem can choose this use of the ability more than once, but it cannot reduce its base speed below 10 ft.
              The golem can reshape itself more than three times per day, but after the third use of this ability, it must use a full-round action to reshape itself.

Druids (and other spellcasters allied with nature) typically create redwood golems to guard sacred groves or especially important forests. Creators enjoy the aesthetic of the fusion of fierce animal figures with plant material, so they fashion most golems into a predatory or other intimidating animal. The golems have rudimentary intelligence, which allows them to make tactical decisions in battle and use their reshape ability and feats for maximum effectiveness. Commands issued by the golems’ creators override the creations’ choices, however. A golem which loses its creator usually seeks revenge on its creator’s killers before retreating to deep woods where it continues to carry out its imperative to protect the forest.

The construction of a redwood golem requires a single redwood tree measuring at least 30 feet in height. The wood is treated with rare herbal solutions costing at least 40,000 gp.

Redwood Golem
CL 15th; Price 140,000 gp
Requirements Craft Construct, animal shapes, awaken, control plants, creator must be caster level 15th; Skill Craft (sculpture) DC 21; Cost 90.000 gp

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Frightful Fridays! Krakitten

Hello, and welcome to another Frightful Fridays! I'm going to say that jet lag still makes it Friday. The family trip to Europe was awesome, and I saw a lot of great art, great architecture, and beautiful mountains and countrysides. One of the things which provided inspiration for this feature was the image below, featured on a t-shirt (one of which I now own). The krakitten just wants to play, and its targets include sailing vessels. If the vessels would just sit still, the krakitten wouldn't even notice them.

I hope you enjoy this week's monster, and I'll see you again soon with another monster. Thanks for reading!

It's adorably causing a shipwreck

This tabby kitten towers over most seagoing vessels. It flails its paws in playful, yet deadly, exuberance.
Krakitten      CR 6
XP 2,400
N Colossal magical beast (aquatic)
Init +8; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent; Perception +8
AC 19, touch 7, flat-footed 14 (+4 Dex, +1 dodge, +12 natural, –8 size)
hp 84 (8d10+40)
Fort +11, Ref +10, Will +4
DR 5/magic; Immune electricity
Weaknesses distractible
Speed 30 ft., swim 60 ft.
Melee bite +9 (2d6+8 plus grab)
Ranged hairball +4 (2d4+8 plus entangling hairball)
Space 30 ft.; Reach 20 ft.
Special Attacks capsize, cornered rage, rake (2 claws +8, 2d6+8), structural damage
Str 26, Dex 19, Con 21, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 17
Base Atk +8; CMB +24 (+28 grapple); CMD 39 (43 vs. trip)
Feats Athletic, Dodge, Improved Initiative, Weapon Focus (bite)
Skills Acrobatics +11 (+19 to jump), Climb +14, Perception +8, Swim +18
Environment warm and temperate ocean
Organization solitary, pair, or clowder (3–8)
Treasure none
Cornered Rage (Ex) A krakitten always retreats when reduced to 15 hp or fewer. However, if it cannot retreat, it goes into a rage as a free action. It gains +2 Constitution and +2 Strength, but takes a –2 penalty to AC. The rage lasts for 1 minute or until it can retreat, whichever is shorter. It cannot end its rage voluntarily.
Distractible (Ex) A krakitten takes a –4 penalty on saves against illusion spells and effects. Additionally, pattern spells treat a krakitten as if it had 1/2 of its Hit Dice when determining the spells’ effects.
Entangling Hairball (Ex) If a krakitten’s hairball attack strikes a target, the target creature must succeed on a DC 19 Reflex save or become entangled. An entangled creature can break free of the hairball with a successful DC 19 Escape Artist check or Strength check. A krakitten’s entangling hairball can also affect a creature if the hairball hits the creature’s touch AC, but the affected creature receives a +4 bonus on the Reflex save to avoid becoming entangled and the checks to break free. The save and check DCs are Constitution-based.
Structural Damage (Ex) A krakitten's rake ignores up to 5 points of a target object’s hardness.

Many creatures protect their young by hiding them in well-protected locations, safe from the predations of larger creatures. Some young have inherent means of protection in the form of camouflage or other natural defenses. Oftentimes, one or more of the parent creatures remain with the young to drive off predators. In the case of at least one type of sea cat, the sea cats deposit their eggs near a source of wild arcane energy which has no affect on the adult creatures, but causes the immature sea cats to grow to prodigious size as krakittens.

Krakittens are terrors of the sea lanes, but this is an unfortunate and incidental side effect of their great size coupled with their playfulness. Fortunately, they are clumsy and rarely land direct hits on the objects of their attention. They are also prone to distraction and will follow figments which capture their notice and “play” with the illusory objects until they grow bored or finally realize the objects are not real. Dumping a load of fish in the water also keeps them from attacking ships. Finally, when they become severely injured, they return to their lairs where they can nurse their wounds and recover. Maritime wisdom warns sailors not to trap an injured krakitten, since it becomes enraged and even more destructive.

After a year, the arcane energy infusing krakittens fades, and the creatures mature into sea cats to begin the cycle anew. Oceanic druids have tried in vain to gain krakittens as companion creatures, but the best they can do is lure the overgrown kittens to ships they want destroyed.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Frightful Fridays! Phantom Charger

Hello and welcome to another Frightful Fridays! now with an actual trend of three monsters in a row on Friday. This week's monster is a macabre horse representing a herd of horses unjustly killed, either deliberately or through extreme negligence. So, it gets its revenge by splitting into four copies, lashing shackles around its victim's limbs and pulling its victim apart--a pretty nasty end for a nasty villain. Unfortunately, "vengeance mode" is always on for the horse, so it does this to every living creature it meets.

I hope the phantom charger proves suitably frightful for you, and I'll see you next week with another monster. Thanks for reading!

Green flame dances in the eyes of this ghostly horse. An ichor-dripping fetter trails behind the horse.
Phantom Charger      CR 8
XP 4,800
NE Large undead (incorporeal)
Init +5; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +11
AC 19, touch 19, flat-footed 13 (+4 deflection, +5 Dex, +1 dodge, –1 size)
hp 102 (12d8+48); fast healing 5
Fort +8, Ref +9, Will +11
Defensive Abilities incorporeal; Immune undead traits
Speed fly 60 ft. (perfect)
Melee 2 incorporeal touches +14 (3d6 plus 1d6 Strength drain and ghost shackle)
Ranged incorporeal touch +14 (1d6 plus ghost shackle)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks draw and quarter, ghost shackle, Strength drain
Str —, Dex 21, Con —, Int 3, Wis 16, Cha 19
Base Atk +9; CMB +15; CMD 30
Feats Dazzling Display, Dodge, Gory FinishUC, Mobility, Spring Attack, Weapon Focus (incorporeal touch)
Skills Fly +15, Intimidate +13, Perception +11
SQ solo herd
Environment any
Organization solitary
Treasure none
Draw and Quarter (Su) If a creature has four ghost shackles placed on it at the beginning of the phantom chargers’ turn, the attached horses pull in opposite directions from each other, threatening to tear the victim apart. This acts as the phantom killer spell (DC 18), except the killer cannot be turned upon the chargers. If the victim survives this attack, the ghost shackles loosen from the victim. However, if the victim dies as a result of this attack, the phantom chargers pull the victim apart and can apply the effects of the Gory Finish feat.
Ghost Shackle (Su) If a phantom charger successfully hits with its incorporeal touch attack either in melee or with a ranged attack (at a maximum of 30 feet), it can attempt a free grapple combat maneuever check. If this check is successful, it locks the shackle around one of the target’s limbs. The charger is tethered to the victim and gains the grappled condition. It can no longer use this ability until the shackle is removed. The victim does not gain the grappled condition, but the charger moves with it when it moves. To remove the shackle, remove curse or a similar spell must be cast on the victim, treating the caster level as the charger’s HD. This is a curse effect.
Solo Herd (Su) A single phantom charger can take a full-round action to create an additional three duplicates of itself. When it does so, all four chargers possess half the originating charger’s hit points. Additionally, the four chargers incur a –2 penalty on their attack rolls. Finally, all chargers lose the fast healing ability when split in this fashion. If one of the chargers is destroyed, the other horses immediately remerge, and the phantom charger cannot use this ability again until all its hit points are restored.
Strength Drain (Su) Creatures hit by a phantom charger’s melee touch attack must succeed at a DC 20 Fortitude save or take 1d6 points of Strength drain. If the target fails its save, the charger also gains 5 temporary hit points. The save DC is Charisma-based.

When a herd of horses is killed in a cruel manner or through an act of severe neglect, the terrible energies surrounding that act create a terrible gestalt version of the dead horses which seek revenge on those responsible for their deaths. The madness driving the implacable creature causes it to attack any living creature it encounters, however. A phantom charger splits into four component ghostly horses at the start of combat and all four attack the same target, weakening it with their hooves and shackling the victim with the fetters representing their tormented last moments. Once four of the victim’s limbs are chained, the horses attempt to draw and quarter it. The phantom charger repeats this process for every living creature it comes across, until it finally kills the person or people responsible for the herd’s death.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Frightful Fridays! Pilferer Dragon

Hello and welcome to the second Frightful Fridays! on its advertised day. I'm returning to the dragon well with this little fella, which likes to steal everything not nailed down and shove it all into its mouth. Of course, that leads to another plane where the dragon stores all its stolen goods.

I hope you enjoy the pilferer dragon (or making your players angry by having it rob them of all their valuables). See you next week with another monster. Thanks for reading!

Myriad colored bands cross the surface of this miniature draconic creature. The bands shift in color, making it difficult to keep an eye on the dragon.
Pilferer Dragon      CR 5
XP 1,600
CN Tiny dragon
Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +10
AC 18, touch 16, flat-footed 14 (+4 Dex, +2 natural, +2 size)
hp 57 (6d12+18)
Fort +8, Ref +9, Will +6
Immune paralysis, sleep; SR 16
Speed 15 ft., fly 50 ft. (good)
Melee bite +4 (1d3–4), 2 claws +4 (1d2–4)
Space 2½ ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks breath weapon
Str 2, Dex 19, Con 17, Int 15, Wis 12, Cha 16
Base Atk +6; CMB +8 (+12 steal); CMD 14 (16 vs. steal, 18 vs. trip)
Feats Combat Expertise, Greater StealAPG, Improved StealAPG
Skills Appraise +23, Bluff +12, Fly +12, Knowledge (arcana) +11, Knowledge (local) +9, Knowledge (nobility) +9, Perception +10, Spellcraft +10, Stealth +28, Use Magic Device +12; Racial Modifiers +12 Appraise, +8 Stealth
Languages Common, Draconic
SQ big mouth, chameleon, fast stealth
Environment any land
Organization solitary, pair, or crew (3–8)
Treasure (none or triple; see below)
Big Mouth (Su) A pilferer dragon mouth opens to a pocket dimension where it stores its treasure. When it succeeds at a steal combat maneuver, it can take a move action to stash the stolen item in its mouth.
If the dragon dies, the portal to the dimension collapses, cutting off access to the creature’s hoard.
Breath Weapon (Su) A pilferer dragon can temporarily redirect its portal to an elemental plane, allowing it to choose one of four possible breath weapons: 40-ft. line of acid for 4d6 points of acid damage; 30-ft. cone of cold for 4d6 points of cold damage; 40-ft. line of lightning for 4d6 points of electricity damage; or 30-ft. cone of fire for 4d6 points of fire damage. A successful DC 16 Reflex save halves the damage. The dragon can use its breath weapon every 1d4 rounds. The save DC is Constitution-based.
Chameleon (Su) A pilferer dragon gains a +8 racial bonus on Stealth checks and can hide in plain sight (as the ranger’s camouflage class feature). If the dragon’s background changes drastically (such as from a grassy field to snow-covered ground), it loses the benefits of this ability for 1 round.
Fast Stealth (Su) A pilferer dragon can move at full speed using the Stealth skill without penalty, as per the rogue talent.

Pilferer dragons are a strange evolutionary offshoot of dragon which popped in areas where more massive and powerful dragons were hunted to extinction. The resultant dragons are considerably weaker than their forebears, but they compensate for their minute sizes and subsequent inability to guard a massive hoard with an internal portal to a demi-plane. The dragons store all their ill-gotten loot in their own personal demi-plane—at least sages who have studied pilferer dragons have concluded there is no single plane where all this treasure goes. In a spiteful bit of supernatural physiology, a pilferer dragon’s portal deactivates when the dragon dies. Even if it were returned to life, it loses access to the old hoard and must start a new one in a different demi-plane. Because of this, pilferer dragons will offer to cough something up for (or, at the very least, return stolen items to) creatures presenting a credible threat.
Pilferer dragons enjoy working with each other and other larcenous creatures, especially to pull of large heists. When working with non-draconic creatures, the dragons take advantage of their nearly unparalleled eye for a value’s worth to come out ahead when splitting the take.