Friday, January 26, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Ghastig

Hello and welcome to this week's Frightful Fridays! Today's monster is a fey creature and an undead creature, but it's mostly undead, at least in its outlook (vengeance, killing others of its kind, etc.). It's got a combination of powers associated with ghasts and some of the smaller fey, plus the lovely ability to captivate one creature at a time (for protection and so it can devour its Charisma). In short, your PCs will enjoy* encountering this.

I hope you enjoy the ghastig, and I'll see you next week with another monster. Thanks for reading!

*Not a guarantee

This creature looks like a shrunken zombie to which someone applied equally decayed wings. Despite the state of its wings, it is capable of holding itself aloft.
Ghastig      CR 5
XP 1,600
NE Tiny undead
Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +11
AC 18, touch 16, flat-footed 14 (+4 Dex, +2 natural, +2 size)
hp 52 (7d8+21)
Fort +5, Ref +8, Will +7
Defensive Abilities channel resistance +4; DR 5/cold iron; Immune undead traits; SR 16
Speed 15 ft., fly 40 ft. (average)
Melee bite +11 (1d3–4 plus disease and paralysis), 2 claws +11 (1d2–4 plus disease and paralysis)
Space 2½ ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks captivating glance, charisma drain, disease, fey bane, paralysis (1d6+1 rounds, DC 16)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 7th; concentration +10)
   3/day—charm person (DC 14), color spray (DC 14)
   1/day—confusion (DC 17), crushing despair (DC 17)
Str 2, Dex 19, Con —, Int 13, Wis 14, Cha 17
Base Atk +5; CMB +7; CMD 13
Feats Deceitful, Lightning Reflexes, Taunt[APG], Weapon Finesse
Skills Bluff +12, Disguise +15, Fly +15, Perception +11, Sense Motive +11, Stealth +20
Languages Aklo, Common, Sylvan
SQ change shape (pixie or sprite, fey form III[UW])
Environment any (near concentrations of fey creatures)
Organization solitary, pair, or dance macabre (3–8)
Treasure none
Captivating Glance (Su) The target of a ghastig’s captivating glance must succeed at a DC 16 Will save or become captivated. A creature that successfully saves is not subject to the same ghastig’s ability for 24 hours. A victim under the effects of this ability moves toward the ghastig using the most direct means available. If the path leads the victim through a dangerous area, it receives a second saving throw to end the effect before moving into the danger. A captivated creature can take no action other than to defend itself. It offers no resistance to the ghastig’s attacks. This is a mind-affecting gaze effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Charisma Drain (Su) As a standard action, a ghastig can touch an immobile creature or one affected by its captivating glance and deal 1d4 points of Charisma drain to the target if it fails a DC 16 Will save. The ghastig gains 5 temporary hit points when it successfully uses this ability. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Disease (Su) Ghoul Fever: Bite or claw—injury; save Fort DC 16; onset 1 day; frequency 1/day; effect 1d4 Con and 1d4 Dex damage; cure 2 consecutive saves. The save DC is Charisma-based. A humanoid who dies of ghoul fever rises as a ghoul at the next midnight (a fey creature that dies of ghoul fever rises as a ghastig). The new undead creature retains none of the abilities it possessed in life. The creature is not under the control of any other creature.
Fey Bane (Su) A ghastig gains a +2 racial bonus to its attack and damage rolls against fey creatures. It also deals an extra 2d6 points of damage to fey creatures.

Ghastigs result from fey creatures that die as a result of treachery, usually directed by other fey. They return from the dead with vengeance in their shriveled hearts and seek to destroy those who wronged them. Along the way, of course, they find other prey to entertain them. Their preferred strategy is to use their guise as a pixie or sprite to give the initial impression of a relatively harmless opponent, and then they use their captivating glance ability to compel a victim to their side. If they have a choice of victims, they choose the toughest looking creature. They either use their newly captivated victims to protect them from the victims’ allies or as a food source. While their choice of victims in this case usually leaves something to be desired, ghastigs figure they will eventually drain the joy and beauty from every creature they encounter.

Ghastigs never work with humanoid undead, and they barely tolerate working with each other for an extended period. However, evil fey who make convincing promises of reversing the ghastigs’ condition gain the temporary alliance of the undead fey, at least until the ghastigs figure out the ruse or grow impatient with their “benefactors.”

Ghastigs are a mere 2 feet tall and their desiccated bodies weigh only 15 pounds.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Pyrrhamid

Hello and welcome to another edition of Frightful Fridays! Today's monster is a combination of construct and trap, because it is set to explode shortly after it begins combat. The pl ay on words actually came after I decided to make a self-destructing pyramid.

I hope you enjoy the pyrrhamid, and I'll see you next week with another monster. Thanks for reading!

This rapidly spinning and tumbling golden pyramid somehow always has a stylized eye watching in all directions at its top.
Pyrrhamid      CR 11
XP 12,800
N Small construct
Init +8; Senses darkvision 60 ft., diagnostic scan, low-light vision, true seeing, tremorsense 60 ft.; Perception +21
AC 26, touch 16, flat-footed 21 (+4 Dex, +1 dodge, +10 natural, +1 size)
hp 107 (15d10+20)
Fort +5, Ref +9, Will +7
DR 15/adamantine; Immune construct traits, magic
Speed 30 ft., fly 60 ft. (good)
Melee 3 slams +21 (2d4+5), 3 tethers +19 (1d4+2 plus grab)
Special Attacks adamantine tethers, countdown to destruction
Space 5 ft.; Reach 5 ft. (20 ft. with tethers)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 15th; concentration +21)
   Constant—true seeing
Str 21, Dex 18, Con —, Int 3, Wis 14, Cha 23
Base Atk +15; CMB +19 (+21 drag, +23 grapple); CMD 34 (36 vs. drag, can't be tripped)
Feats Dodge, Hover, Improved Drag[APG], Improved Initiative, Multiattack, Power Attack, Skill Focus (Perception), Toughness
Skills Fly +14, Perception +21, Spellcraft +9; Racial Modifiers +12 Spellcraft
Environment any (tombs and vaults)
Organization solitary
Treasure double (if the pyrrhamid is prevented from self-destructing)
Adamantine Tether (Ex) If a pyrrhamid begins its turn with a creature grappled in one of its tethers, it can spend a standard action to entangle the creature in the thin adamantine wire. The wire has hardness 20, 15 hp, and a break DC of 25. A pyrrhamid cannot attack with the tether it has a creature entangled in and cannot move more than 20 feet from that creature, but it is not considered grappled.
Countdown to Destruction (Su) On a pyrrhamid's turn during the first normal round of combat, it initiates a countdown timer, usually set by its owner or 1d4+1 rounds otherwise. At the end of the round where its countdown timer reaches 0, it duplicates the effect of a maximized detonate spell keyed to an energy type it has determined to be most effective based on its diagnostic scan (defaulting to fire).
Even if a pyrrhamid is destroyed, it still counts down to 0. Disabling a pyrrhamid requires it to be destroyed or otherwise immobilized and a successful DC 28 Disable Device check. Its owner can automatically terminate the timer, but the owner must issue a verbal command to do so. The check DC is Charisma-based and includes a +5 racial bonus.
Diagnostic Scan (Su) As a move action, a pyrrhamid can scan all creatures within 30 feet to determine if they have any resistances or immunities to energy from spells or magic items. It must succeed at a Spellcraft check (DC equals 10 + caster level of the spell or effect) for each source of protection. A pyrrhamid cannot discern protection related to a creature’s race (such as the resistances enjoyed by an aasimar).
Immunity to Magic (Ex) A pyrrhamid is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance. In addition, certain spells and effects function differently against the creature, as noted below.
  • A chill metal spell causes the pyrrhamid to delay its countdown timer for the spell’s duration, with no saving throw.
  • A heat metal spell reduces the pyrrhamid’s countdown timer by 1d4 rounds, with no saving throw.
  • Transmute metal to wood grants reduces the pyrrhamid’s damage resistance to DR 5/adamantine and grants a +5 enhancement bonus on attempts to disarm a destroyed pyrrhamid still in its countdown mode. The pyrrhamid receives no saving throw against this spell and is treated as a non-magic object for purposes of the spell.
  • A pyrrhamid takes full damage from its own maximized detonate spell-like ability.

Pyrrhamids are constructs with a single purpose: to detain and destroy intruders. Regrettably, unless their owners are nearby to shut them down, they destroy themselves along with their intended targets. Pyrrhamids are placed nearby by not within tombs and vaults containing valuable treasure; if they are placed with treasure, their owners set their energy type for the least impact to the treasure when they detonate. Pyrrhamids attempt to ensnare their victims, but give chase to those escaping their grasp. If they can’t detain their prey, they give chase or ensure they are present when their timers expire so they can maximize the damage done to their prey when they explode.

A pyrrhamid is constructed from a single block of gold and has three inset cat’s eye chrysoberyl gems. The entirety costs 10,000 gp.

CL 15th; Price 25,000 gp
Requirements Craft Construct, detonate, lesser geas, true seeing, caster must be at least 15th level; Skill Craft (sculpting) DC 20; Cost 17,500 gp

Friday, January 12, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Awful Aquatica

Hello and welcome back to another Frightful Fridays! (with extra alliteration) Today's monsters make aquatic adventuring even more of a challenge, but many players enjoy challenges, right? So, chuck on of these into the pool for an even better chance of a character's watery death.

I hope you enjoy these underwater horrors. See you next week with something else!

 This (im)pales in comparison to other fish

This mud-colored fish has a powerful jaw and a mouth filled with sword-like teeth.
Bubble Burster Fish      CR 9
XP 6,400
CN Large magical beast (aquatic)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., detect magic, low-light vision; Perception +10
AC 24, touch 12, flat-footed 21 (+2 Dex, +1 dodge, +12 natural, –1 size)
hp 114 (12d10+48)
Fort +12, Ref +10, Will +8
Speed 5 ft., swim 60 ft.
Melee bite +18 (3d6+7 plus grab and bleed), tail slap +13 (2d6+3)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks bleed (1d6), bubble burster, drag to the depths
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 12th; concentration +14)
   constant—detect magic
Environment temperate and warm water
Organization solitary or school (2–16)
Treasure indicental
Str 25, Dex 15, Con 18, Int 5, Wis 18, Cha 14
Base Atk +12; CMB +20 (+24 grapple, +24 sunder); CMD 33 (35 vs. sunder, can't be tripped)
Feats Dodge, Greater Sunder, Improved Sunder, Mobility, Power Attack, Spring Attack
Skills Perception +10, Spellcraft +9, Stealth +9, Swim +19; Racial Modifiers +12 Spellcraft
Bubble Burster (Su) If a bubble burster fish grapples a foe at the beginning of its turn, it can attempt to dispel magic (using its HD as its caster level) on all spells or effects that provide the foe with air bubbles or water breathing. It makes a single dispel check against all applicable spells and effects.
Drag to the Depths (Ex) If a bubble burster fish uses its Spring Attack feat and grabs a foe with its bit attack, it can carry the foe with it by succeeding on a second combat maneuver check to grapple the foe. On a failed check, the fish no longer grapples its opponent, but it can complete its movement per Spring Attack.

Bubble burster fish were bred by aquatic races specifically to thwart invasion attempts by land-dwelling creatures. They still serve that role, but many of the fish have escaped captivity and now roam the oceans, seas, and wide rivers where they were once employed. They have an instinctive ability to discern landbound prey from aquatic prey and they supplement this a sensitivity to magic which allows its recipients to survive underwater. While independent bubble burster fish prefer to attack prey originating from land, they have no qualms about attacking marine creatures. However, they find it enormously satisfying to render useless magic (through their dispel magic ability) or physical items (via sundering) sustaining trespassers with no ability to breathe water, so they attack such prey in preference to others.

A bubble burster fish measures 12 feet in length and weighs 350 pounds.


This gray marine mammal moves lazily through the water.
Meanatee      CR 7
XP 3,200
NE Large magical beast (aquatic)
Init –1; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +14
AC 20, touch 8, flat-footed 20 (–1 Dex, +12 natural, –1 size)
hp 85 (9d10+36)
Fort +10, Ref +5, Will +6
DR 10/piercing; Resist cold 10
Speed 10 ft., swim 40 ft.
Melee head butt +14 (2d8+5/19–20), 2 slams +13 (2d6+5)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
Special Attacks crushing embrace, nerve-rattling blow
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 9th; concentration +12)
   3/day—slow (DC 15)
Str 21, Dex 8, Con 19, Int 4, Wis 17, Cha 16
Base Atk +9; CMB +15 (+17 bull rush); CMD 24 (26 vs. bull rush)
Feats Improved Bull Rush, Improved Critical (head butt), Power Attack, Quick Bull Rush[UC], Weapon Focus (head butt)
Skills Bluff +3, Perception +14, Swim +17
SQ amphibious, playful antics
Environment temperate and warm rivers and lakes
Organization solitary, pair, or smash (3–12)
Treasure none
Crushing Embrace (Ex) If a meanatee hits the same target with both of its slam attacks, it can attempt a combat maneuver check to grapple its foe (with a +4 racial bonus to the attempt). If successful, it immediately deals damage per its slam attack to the target. If the meanatee begins its turn with an opponent grappled in this way, it deals damage per its slam attack, and it can move with its opponent during its turn.
Nerve-Rattling Blow (Ex) If a meanatee confirms a critical hit with its head butt attack, the target must succeed on a DC 18 Fortitude save or become stunned for 1d6 rounds. On a successful save, the target is instead staggered for 1 round. The save DC is Constitution-based.
Playful Antics (Ex) A meanatee can roll around and frolic, similarly to a manatee, in an attempt to lull its prey into a false sense of security. At the beginning of combat, if the meanatee is adjacent to an intelligent foe and succeeds on a Bluff check (with a +12 racial bonus), opposed by the adjacent foe’s Sense Motive check, it treats that opponent as flat-footed.

Meanatees originally resembled gray orcas, but the same wild surge of magic that granted them a modicum of arcane power also allowed to alter their appearance to the more benign form they wear. The creatures take advantage of this relatively harmless appearance to lure in and attack unsuspecting prey that might view them as “cute” or mistakenly as easy targets. They overcome their relative lack of speed on land and in the water with their own ability to make their prey sluggish. They attack with their surprisingly hard heads, capable of temporarily overwhelming their opponents’ nervous systems to paralyze them, and by using their powerful flipper to grab hold of opponents and drag them away, preferably into the depths.

Meanatees are typically 11 feet long and weigh close to 500 pounds.

Friday, January 5, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Shocking Pink Millipede

Hello and happy Friday! I'm back this week with a fun (not so) little vermin based on a real-life critter that sprays cyanide gas to deter predators. That already makes it a potential threat to adventurers, but I ratcheted it up to add a little blood drinking to add to its luscious pink coloration. There's also a swarm version of its young, just for added fun.

I hope you enjoy the shocking pink millipede (and its many, many young). I'll be back next week with another monster. Happy 2018!

This vibrant pink millipede is longer than most constrictor snakes. Its many segments and legs allow it to move in an unpredictably, undulating pattern.
Giant Shocking Pink Millipede      CR 6
XP 2,400
N Large vermin
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft.; Perception +8
AC 20, touch 12, flat-footed 17 (+2 Dex, +1 dodge, +8 natural, –1 size)
hp 76 (9d8+36)
Fort +10, Ref +5, Will +3
Defensive Abilities evasion; Immune mind-affecting effects, poison; Resist fire 5
Speed 40 ft., climb 30 ft.
Melee bite +12 (3d6+10 plus blood drain and grab)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 10 ft.
Special Attacks blood drain (1d4 Con), poison
Str 25, Dex 14, Con 18, Int —, Wis 11, Cha 7
Base Atk +6; CMB +14 (+18 grapple); CMD 27 (can't be tripped)
Feats Dodge[B]
Skills Climb +15, Perception +8; Racial Modifiers +8 Perception
Environment warm mountains and underground
Organization solitary or nest (3–8)
Treasure none
Poison (Ex) Once every 1d2 rounds, a giant shocking pink millipede can release a 20-foot radius cloud of cyanide gas, centered on the millipede, as a standard action or as part of a standard action to maintain a grapple. It can also deliver poison with its bite attack.
   Shocking Pink Millipede Poison: Inhaled or Bite—Injury; save Fort DC 18 (Fort DC 16 for inhaled poison); frequency 1/round for 6 rounds; effect 1d2 Str and 1d4 Con; cure 2 consecutive saves.


Hundreds of shiny pink millipedes crawl over each other in a writhing mass. An almond smell emanates from the crawling collective.
Shocking Pink Millipede Swarm      CR 4
XP 1,200
N Tiny vermin (swarm)
Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft.; Perception +4
AC 18, touch 16, flat-footed 14 (+4 Dex, +2 natural, +2 size)
hp 45 (6d8+18)
Fort +8, Ref +6, Will +2
Defensive Abilities swarm traits; Immune mind-affecting effects, poison; Resist fire 10
Speed 30 ft., climb 20 ft.
Melee swarm (2d6 plus distraction and poison)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks blood drain (1d2 Con), distraction (DC 16), poison
Str 7, Dex 19, Con 16, Int —, Wis 10, Cha 7
Base Atk +4; CMB —; CMD
Skills Climb +12
Environment warm mountains and underground
Organization solitary
Treasure none
Poison (Ex) Swarm—Injury; save Fort DC 16; frequency 1/round for 4 rounds; effect 1d2 Con; cure 1 save.

Shocking pink millipedes dwell in volcanic regions above ground and underground locations where lava flows. They get their name from the unique pink color they possess, indicative of both the blood they ingest and the danger they present even to creatures not within their reach. The poisonous gases in their habitats make them resistant to all toxic substances, and they evolved a means to store cyanide gas, which they inject into their bites and expel from their bodies. The millipedes use their poison to slow down their prey, making it easier to feed on the blood that provides them with sustenance. They also use it to deter creatures from freeing victims they have latched onto with their powerful bites.

Adult shocking pink millipedes are 15 feet in length and weigh 300 pounds. They produce young twice a year in secluded, volcanically active areas. The hundreds of eggs burst forth into a swarm of considerably smaller millipedes (measuring 2 feet in length). The first month of the swarm’s existence is its most dangerous as it seeks out any source of food, including the parent millipedes. Eventually, the swarm turns on itself, and only a handful of millipedes survive to reach adulthood.