Saturday, December 15, 2018

Frightful Fridays! Whiteout Swarm

Hello and welcome back for Frightful Fridays! (OK, yeah, it's Saturday) Lots of snow fell where I live, and that is unusual for this time of year, so it inspired me to create a snow-themed monster. Snow is a perfect vehicle for swarms, so you get the whiteout swarm, which stings, freezes, and potentially blinds those in its path. It also has a happy little poison it uses to make more whiteout swarms. Fun!

I hope you enjoy the whiteout swarm. I'll see you again soon with another wintry monster!

Thousands of snowflakes and ice crystals swirl about in a confined space, ignoring the wind (or lack thereof) around them.
Whiteout Swarm      CR 8
XP 4,800
NE Fine outsider (air, cold, elemental, swarm, water)
Init +8; Senses darkvision 60 ft., snow vision; Perception +13
AC 23, touch 23, flat-footed 18 (+4 Dex, +1 dodge, +8 size)
hp 105 (10d10+50); frost healing
Fort +10, Ref +11, Will +7
Defensive Abilities swarm traits; Immune cold
Weaknesses heat sluggishness, vulnerability to fire
Speed 5 ft., fly 60 ft. (good)
Melee swarm (2d6 plus 4d6 cold, distraction, eye sting, and poison)
Space 10 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks distraction (DC 20)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 10th; concentration +12)
   3/day—chill metal (DC 14), hold monster (DC 17)
   1/day—freezing sphere (DC 18)
Str 1, Dex 18, Con 21, Int 4, Wis 10, Cha 15
Base Atk +10; CMB —; CMD
Feats Dodge, Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Mobility, Wind Stance
Skills Fly +20, Knowledge (nature) +8, Perception +13, Stealth +24 (+32 in ice and snow), Survival +13; Racial Modifiers +8 Stealth in ice and snow
Languages Aquan, Auran (can’t speak)
Environment cold land
Organization solitary or snowsquall (28)
Treasure none
Eye Sting (Ex) When a whiteout swarm inflicts swarm damage, each creature damaged by the swarm must attempt a DC 20 Fortitude save. On a failed save, an affected creature is blinded for 1d4 rounds, otherwise, the creature is dazzled for 1 round. The save DC is Constitution-based.
Frost Healing (Su) In cold weather (below 40° Fahrenheit), a whiteout swarm gains fast healing 1. Severe cold (below 0° Fahrenheit) improves the swarm’s fast healing to 2, and extreme cold (below 20° Fahrenheit) improves its fast healing to 5.
Heat Sluggishness (Ex) In temperatures above 40° Fahrenheit, a whiteout swarm moves at half speed, and takes a 2 penalty to its Armor Class, skill checks, and saving throws.
Poison (Su) Swarm—injury; save Fort DC 20; frequency 1/round for 6 rounds; effect 1d4 Dex; cure 2 consecutive saves. Creatures with immunity to cold are immune to this poison. A Small or Medium creature reduced to 0 Dexterity as a result of this poison, or killed while afflicted with this poison, returns as a whiteout swarm in 1d4 rounds. A Large or Huge creature converts into 2 swarms, and a Gargantuan or Colossal creature converts into 4 swarms.
Snow Vision (Ex) A whiteout swarm can see perfectly well in snowy conditions and does not take any penalties on Perception checks while in snow.
Spell-Like Abilities A whiteout swarm infuses some of itself into the spell-like abilities it uses. When it does so, it takes damage equal to the spell-like ability’s spell level.

Whiteout swarms are considered nuisances in the intersections between the Plane of Air and the Plane of Water where they reside. They become parasitic when they fall into the Prime Material Plane, or when led to the Prime Material Plane by powerful ice elementals employing the swarms as a vanguard during an invasion. The swarms seek out body heat with the intent to extinguish it and convert the mass of creatures they kill into additional swarms. Thus, whiteout swarms attack living creatures in preference to undead, constructs, and other non-living targets. They also target larger creatures to ensure the creation of more swarms.

Other powerful cold creatures, such as ancient (or older) white dragons, and undead with arctic bases summon whiteout swarms to devastate their foes and reduce resistance when they launch their attacks. The swarms have rudimentary intelligence, so they follow orders, and they employ sound tactics with external guidance. On their own, they use their spell-like abilities to ensnare and otherwise hinder opponents. They despise warm temperatures and seek to retreat when the temperature becomes unbearable. They are also averse to fire, but they stand an equal chance to flee from opponents employing fire or to focus their attention on such opponents.