Freitag, 31. Oktober 2014

Absorber Imp


The Absorber Imp with DCC stats and familiar rules. The guest art is by +Noah Stevens - check out his blog The Hapless Henchman!

Artwork by Noah Stevens

An Absorber Imp is a very small demon, typically about one foot tall, with a pitch black hide, a set of leathery wings, often strangely colored eyes and a head like a miniature dragon. They possess child-like intelligence but cannot speak. Their reflexes are quick, they can sense magic and they are able to fly for short periods of time.

Absorber Imps are often used by more powerful demons as retainers, and fulfill simple tasks and services for them. Still, it is possible to encounter an Absorber Imp on its own, if it was lost, trapped, abandoned, or on a mission for or even fleeing from its master. It is very rare to face two or more Absorber Imps in the same place. They don't work well with each other.

Like a lot of imps, they are not truly evil but mischievous in nature and love to play pranks or otherwise annoy their chosen victims. These pranks are never intended to be life-threatening but can sometimes be dangerous. The favorite victims of Absorber Imps are those gifted with magic powers, because they feed on magical energies.

It is not known whether their name originally stemmed from their skin's property of absorbing all light or from their more fantastic ability to absorb pure magic power. These imps can absorb any magical spell or effect in their vicinity, regardless of the intended target, area of effect or power. The original magic effect is cancelled completely and is instead stored inside the imp. The imp can store the magic of up to three spells or other magic effects at the same time for as long as it wishes, potentially forever, but it can also unleash its powers whenever it wants to. Absorber Imps can also decide to devour a magic power that they previously stored. This destroys the magic completely.

When the Absorber Imp releases stored magic, it can choose all variable aspects of its effects, like targets, as if it were the original caster of the spell, or the original user of a magic scroll or wand. If the imp has already currently stored three magical powers, it can choose to absorb a new magic effect and release one of its stored ones as one action.

Absorber Imps are immune to magic weapons and can absorb magical effects of magic weapons hitting them, including all damage, like they can absorb other magic. They can release the stored effects from magic weapons by hitting the intended target with their otherwise not overly dangerous claws.

Due to their abilities to store spells and sense magic, Absorber Imps are rare but highly priced familiars for witches, warlocks and dark mages. Although not easy, they can be befriended, especially if they are well fed with magical energy. An Absorber Imp familiar is a double-edged sword, though, because no matter how well trained, they will never stop playing pranks.

Absorber Imps can be bound into shards of obsidian, if one knows the required ritual. They will stay bound until the word of release is spoken or the obsidian is shattered. Furthermore, magic effects or damage originating from magical obsidian objects or obsidian weapons cannot be absorbed and fully affects the imps. Any damage received from obsidian weapons is a perilous and grave incident for an Absorber Imp and one of the only sure ways to permanently destroy them instead of just sending them back to their shadow realm. For these reasons, most of them are afraid or even repelled by obsidian objects of any kind.

The Absorber Imp's eyes change with the kind of magic powers it has currently stored. An absorbed fireball might turn its eyes into a fiery inferno, a friendship enchantment can make them seem trustworthy and a portal spell might transform their eyes into actual windows into time and space. Often, but not necessarily always, the eyes adjust to the most powerful magic that is currently stored. Pitch black eyes can be a tell for an Absorber Imp with no stored magic whatsoever, or an alarming signal for devastating black magic.

Absorber Imp: Init +3; Atk Claws +1 melee (1d4 + potentially stored magic attack ability); AC 14; HD 2d8; MV 20’, fly 20’; Act 1d20; SP absorb magic, release magic, vulnerable to obsidian (double damage), immune to magic, invulnerable to magic weapons; SV Fort +2, Ref +3, Will +2; AL C.

Absorber Imps as familiars

Optionally, a Judge may allow a player character with the Find Familiar spell to bond with an Absorber Imp if the rolled familiar type is demonic or if an the imp is encountered by a neutral or chaotic spellcaster without a familiar (but the spell must be known). The Absorber Imp will have the abilities and stats described above instead of the usual demonic familiar traits. As a familiar, it can freely absorb spells from its wizard, but can only absorb spells from other casters up to it’s wizard’s caster level per hour (e.g. the familiar of a 5th level wizard could absorb one 3rd level and one 2nd level spell in the same hour). In the case of absorbed magical creature abilities, substitute the creature’s hit dice for spell level. The imp’s immunity to magic and magic weapons remains intact. Absorber Imps’ familiar personality trait is always prankful.

Donnerstag, 10. Juli 2014

Mire Man

In return for illustrating my brain sloth, I wrote up one of +Matthew Adams' wonderful creature designs and gave it some DCC stats, too.

Artwork by Matthew Adams

You might not believe it, but the mire man was once an elf. He still is, in a sense. A failed experiment of the elfin slime lords, a twisted hybrid of an elf and a slime. He has been an outcast for decades, dumped into the swampland surrounding the elfin slime lords' citadel, haunting the swamps and scaring away the few who dare to venture there. The mire man hates everything that has bones. His territory is marked by a countless number of strange sculptures made from the broken bones of creatures that crossed his path, from frogs to unwary travelers. He tolerates nothing but invertebrates. Worms and leeches are his only friends.

The mire man is immune to poison, charm, sleep, paralysis, stun, and polymorph. He ignores extra damage and effects from critical hits that normally damage limbs or bones. Piercing or slashing weapons only do half damage because his slime body just closes the cuts again. His limbs are extremely flexible and bendy, and can be stretched to a length of 10' each, although he usually keeps them from three to five foot long.

As a free action every three rounds, the mire man can try to call upon d20-8 leeches that automatically bite on to his foes that are standing in the mire. These start to drain blood at a rate of 1hp per round and leech. Characters can get rid of leeches by using an action to remove as many leeches from themselves as the result of an Agility check.

If the mire man is reduced to 0 hit points, his slime body explodes vigorously, splashing everybody inside of a 15' radius, requiring a DC 13 Fort save or doing 1d8 acid damage.

MIRE MAN: Init +2; Atk claw +4 melee (1d4 plus Fort DC 12 or paralyzed for 2 rounds) or bite +4 (2d4); AC 11; HD 6d10; MV 30’ in swamp only, otherwise 10'; Act 2d20; SP summon leeches (free d20-8 every 3 rounds), death splash (DC 13 Fort or 1d8 acid), stretching limbs, infravision, heightened senses, immunities: poison, charm, sleep, paralysis, stun, polymorph, critical hits on limbs and bones; SV Fort +2, Ref +2, Will +2; AL C.

Artwork by Matthew Adams

Montag, 7. Juli 2014

Brain Sloths

+Matthew Adams was kind enough to supply a rad illustration for my brain sloths. 
He blogs at Rumble City.

Artwork by Matthew Adams

Brain sloths cling to cave or dungeon ceilings, drop down on hapless adventurers, pierce their skulls and attach to their brains with tentacle-thingies. Then they guide the bodies into their breeding chamber where they are filled with eggs by the enormous brain sloth queen.

BRAIN SLOTH: Init -1; Atk claws +1 melee (2d4); AC 8; HD 1d6+3; MV 10’; Act 1d20; SP climb sheer surfaces, hide on ceilings (DC 1d20+10 Intelligence check or be surprised), piercing drop (+5 attack when dropping on a head from above), brain control (after successful hit to the head, DC 20 Will save or total mind control), immune to mind control and sleep; SV Fort +1, Ref +0, Will +5; AL N.

BRAIN SLOTH QUEEN: Init +1; Atk claws +2 melee (2d6) or stinger +4 (1d8 + insert 1d4 eggs in torso, or in limbs if DC 15 Ref save is made); AC 10; HD 6d8; MV 10’; Act 2d20; SP immune to mind control and sleep; SV Fort +5, Ref +1, Will +5; AL N.

The brain sloth eggs can be removed with a cleric's lay on hands; they are a 3 dice condition.

Alternatively any character can make a DC 10 medical skill check (remember that only characters with appropriate occupations may use a d20, all untrained characters use a d10). A success means the eggs are removed and the patient takes 1d4 damage (only 1 damage on a natural 20). A failure means the eggs are removed, but the patient suffers 1d10 damage (only 1d6 damage if eggs are in a limb). A fumble results in 1d10 damage (1d6 in limb) and all but one egg removed.

After 12 hours inside of a body, the eggs will attach growing tentacles to the nervous system of their host and cause paralyzation. The gestation period is 2d4+8 days, after which the baby brain sloths burst out of the host's body.

Montag, 16. Juni 2014

Yessir

Yessir, the god of following absurd orders, was originally written for the Expanded Petty Gods project by Gorgonmilk. There were a lot more chaotic godlings submitted at that time, so I tried to come up with a cool lawful petty god.


Name: Yessir
Symbol: A full visor helmet with a fist held to the temple
Alignment: Lawful
Movement: 120' (40')
Armor Class: By armor, reduced by 5 (for descending AC)
Hit Points (Hit Dice): 72 hp (16 HD)
Attacks: 1, see below
Damage: By weapon, see below
Save: F20
Morale: 12
Hoard Class: VI
XP: 6,000

Yessir is the god of following absurd orders and a favorite among soldiers of many armies. Out of the ordinary for a lawful god, he is only revered in secret, as openly worshipping him is usually treated as a major offense and punished accordingly. His covert followers are legion in both senses of the word, but they are unorganized. All veneration is clandestine and only shared with true comrades-in-arms.

Privates pray to Yessir every time they are given an order that is, in their opinion, pointless, ineffective or futile. The high art of quick prayer to Yessir consists of uttering his name while in the presence of superiors who have given the order, then mumbling a quiet rebuttal, and following it with touching their temple with their fist as soon as they feel unobserved. The faithful believe that the better the rebuttal and the more pronounced the gesture, the more help Yessir will provide as they fulfill the absurd order. There are untold legends of soldiers on a suicide mission miraculously surviving only through the divine intervention of Yessir.

Yessir appears as a soldier in armor customary to the world where he manifests. His armor is always of the highest quality, well-kept, and donned perfectly. His face remains ever hidden behind a helmet with a full visor. He wears military insignia of the lowest rank.

If Yessir is directly involved in a battle, he never breaks battle formation and always fights on the front line. He wields any weapon that a low-ranking soldier might carry with brutal efficiency. He always rolls an additional damage die and any 1s rolled for damage become the highest possible result for the die instead.

He can command allies and enemies alike within earshot. Yessir’s orders are usually extremely absurd but not lethal on their own. He can give one order per round, but he can never try to command a single target more than once per battle. If the target fails a saving throw against spells, he has to comply with the order.

If a soldier requests help or protection while following an order from a superior, there is a chance that Yessir will assist him. Roll a d20 and apply the soldier’s Wisdom modifier. Additional bonuses may be given at the GM’s discretion, based on how dutifully the soldier has followed orders recently (any disobedience should be punished with negative modifiers), how well the quick prayer was performed, and how absurd the order was. Yessir’s support will vary depending on the roll, but a result of 20 or higher is required to gain his attention. His help can range from minor protection (e.g. a small AC bonus) to a manifestation of Yessir himself. Yessir will never aid a soldier to fulfill a reasonable order or if the soldier does not intend to fully execute the order. Yessir only answers prayers from members of the military or decorated veterans.

Donnerstag, 29. Mai 2014

Dworfen Kaosmobile

+Luka Rejec asked me to "stat up the noble steed" he drew for his Dworfs of Anarchy, so I did (for the DCC RPG):

Dworfen Kaosmobile: Init as driver; Atk hit and run +2+INT modifier of driver (1d6 per 10' distance of acceleration (up to 10d6), every damage die showing a 6 results in a broken bone and losing a point of Strength or Agility); AC 18 (every passenger receives +2 to AC); HD 3d8+14 (any magical fire attack that does at least 8 damage to the Kaosmobile will make it explode, doing 2d6+8 damage to every passenger); MV 100’ (turning takes 1 round); Act n/a; SP breachcruisin'; SV Fort +8, Ref as driver, Will n/a; AL C.



"The Dworfs shall ride once more into the breach. For Kaos and Light." - illustration by Luka Rejec

Check out Luka's blog Cauldrons & Clerics.

Montag, 19. Mai 2014

More Magic Shields

As requested by +Joel Priddy and inspired by +Courtney Campbell's On a Magical Shield, here are some more magic shields.



Magnetus


This iron shield has a protrusion with a coiled wire around it. When activated by pressing a button on the handle, it creates a humming sound. Any attack with a metal weapon that misses to hit by one or two points results in the weapon clinging to the shield, requiring a complete action and successful strength check to free the weapon. Any attack on a fighter that is holding onto a weapon currently clinging to Magnetus receives a +1 to hit.


Ith-Narmant's Shadowshield Glove


When not in use, it looks like a pitch-black glove that does not reflect any light. When activated by clenching one's empty hand, a disk of magic shadow forms instantly at the back of the hand, protecting the wearer like a normal shield.

The shadowshield provides an additional +2 AC against attacks with any fire or light-based weapons as well as a +2 bonus on saving throws versus any fire or light-based magic or effect. The saving throw bonus also applies while the glove is just worn without the shield being active.

This glove is a given as a reward for extraordinary services to priests and champions of Ith-Narmant, the master of shadows, chill and solanaceae. Prolonged use by others might result in the visit of Ith-Narmant's agents.


Displacer Shield


A round shield covered in the dark blue pelt of a magical beast. The wielder of the shield appears to be one foot away from their actual location. In addition to the AC bonus of a normal shield, the displacement effect gives any attacker a -1 on their attack rolls.

Any other action that involves the need to know the location of the shield's wielder, like a cleric's healing touch or chucking a weapon to the displaced fighter, also either requires a successful perception roll at -1 or incurs a -1 on the roll for the action, as applicable.


Double Displacer Shield


As displacer shield, but combining pelts from two magical beasts, displacing the wielder two feet and resulting in -2 on all applicable rolls.


Paineater


Not a shield per se, this symbiotic magical bug can be implanted in the back of one's hand or forearm. In its dormant state, it looks like a big grey wart. When the host loses hit points, the wart quickly grows into a buckler sized shell and sprouts up to 4 chitinous tentacles that actively deflect further attacks.

The AC bonus is equal to the lost hit points, up to a maximum of +4. Each attack that does not hit the host reduces this AC bonus by 1. Further hit point loss increases it again (up to +4). Any healing of hit points also reduces the bonus AC.

The arm hosting a paineater bug cannot be used to wield a weapon or sword. Extracting the bug is only possible by cutting it out of the flesh, resulting in 4 damage.


Donnerstag, 8. Mai 2014

Batbanes

Sometimes called Batbane Women or simply Bat Women, some claim that these chimeras are the offspring of a single woman or group of women that were once human, but struck by a terrible curse for an evil deed they committed. Others suspect that they are the unfortunate results of forbidden experiments with devilish wizardry.

Batbane Women look like a hideous crossbreed of a human female and a bat. Most of their once human features are hidden under monstrous deformities. Leathery batwings stretch from the legs to their elongated arms, with hands and feet ending in long claws. Their mouths are full of sharp teeth and their ears are big and pointy. They are partially covered in a silky black fur, but have patches of bare skin. The hairless spots differ in size and position from one Batbane to the next, with the exposed skin often showing a sickly and pale appearance. Their faces are usually but not always hairless.

The Batbanes are capable of flying for short periods of time, and prefer to attack their prey with dives from above. They can use the claws on their feet to grab and carry away their victims, if those are not much heavier than themselves. Due to their ability to produce and perceive ultrasonic sounds, they can maneuver in absolute darkness and are almost impossible to surprise. Their instincts and behavior are very feral and although they can subsist purely on drinking blood, they tend to also rip apart and eat some of the flesh of their prey in the process of feeding. They get their main sustenance from wild animals, but prefer the more potent humanoid blood when the opportunity presents itself. They eschew the sun, sleep through the day in dark places and only come out to hunt at night.

The curse of the Bat Women is lifted during two nights per year, on the summer and winter solstice. In these nights, their bodies and minds transform back to their human origins, and they are driven to seek the companionship of other human beings. Though still feral in nature, they regain some intelligence and a rudimentary ability to speak. Some Batbanes even grow attached to certain individuals they meet during these nights and try to revisit them again at a later solstice. Usually, their new friends are totally oblivious to the Batbane's true nature. Although a Batbane in human form is generally in a friendly and social mood, they can still get very dangerous if they feel threatened. In very rare cases, when pushed too far, they may even transform back to their inhuman form before the night is over, with dire consequences for anyone nearby.

Some whisper that if a benevolent soul could unravel the original cause for their curse and redeem it, all of them would be saved from their fate, and could live free from the curse or at least die in peace.

DCC RPG stats:

Batbane: Init +2; Atk claws +1 melee (1d4); AC 12; HD 1d8; MV 30’ or fly 30’; Act 1d20; SP pick up opponents after a successful flying attack (avoid with DC 11 Fort save) and drop them from 10' (1d6 damage), never surprised; SV Fort +1, Ref +2, Will +1; AL N.

Dienstag, 29. April 2014

Ith-Narmant's Lantern

This black metal lantern was crafted by the artificer warlocks of Ith-Narmant, the master of shadows, chill, and solanaceae. It has a black leather hood made from humanoid skin, is always cold to the touch and never exudes heat even while burning. It shines an eerie, dim, unnatural bluish light in a radius of 50 feet.

The special oil used in Ith-Narmant's Lantern will burn for up to 4 hours or 24 turns and can only be made with an elaborate ritual, a sacrifice and the blessing of a cleric of Ith-Narmant. If utilizing this oil as a thrown weapon, it will inflict 1d8 cold heat damage on a successful hit and 1d4 cold heat damage on the following two rounds (this can only be prevented with resistance to both magical fire and magical cold).

Animals will never freely enter or stay in the light of Ith-Narmant's Lantern. Characters and monsters of non-chaotic alignment must make a saving throw against magic to enter or stay in the lantern's light. If they fail, they can still enter or stay inside the illuminated area, but will feel very uncomfortable, get -2 on all rolls and try to escape the light after a certain number of rounds (Wisdom score determines the maximum number of rounds for characters, double hit dice does the same for monsters). They cannot try to re-enter the light before one turn has passed.

Ith-Narmant's Lantern can be lit and used by any class. It grants the shadow tunnel ability to everyone in its light. Shadow tunneling allows entering a shadow and emerging from another shadow. Both shadows have to be cast by the blue rays of the lantern, so only shadows from objects or living things that are inside the light radius of the lantern qualify. The destination shadow has to be chosen at the time of entering. If this shadow does not qualify anymore when trying to emerge from it, the traveller is lost in the shadow realm (see table result 6). The complete shadow tunneling takes three rounds: one for entering, one for travelling, and one for emerging.

Shadow tunneling actually means travelling through the shadow realm of Ith-Narmant, and comes not without dangers. Every time when shadow tunneling, make an unmodified d20 roll. On a 1, there are complications (see table).

Shadow Tunneling Complications (1d6):

  1. Receive a demonsign of Ith-Narmant. This can take many forms, but most commonly results in a pitch black mark on the skin that does not reflect any light. These signs are recognized by demon hunters and inquisitors. 
  2. You lose a valuable item in the shadow realm.
  3. A Shadow emerges along with the traveller (see S&W Complete, page 112).
  4. Lose your own shadow for 1d6 days. During this time, you cannot regain lost hp.
  5. You are chilled to the bone and temporarily lose 1d6 Strength. If this brings your Strength to 0, you die and are transformed into a Shadow (see S&W Complete, page 112). Your lost Strength returns after 9 turns. If you die before that happens, you are also transformed into a Shadow.
  6. If you do not yet have a demonsign, you receive one and emerge normally. Otherwise, if you are already marked with a demonsign of Ith-Narmant, you do not emerge from, but are instead lost in the shadow realm of Ith-Narmant. Your friends might try to come and rescue you, if they are brave or foolish enough.


Originally written for the magic item contest over at Tenkar's Tavern, for use with Swords & Wizardry Complete - but of course you can easily use it with any other fantasy RPG. If you're using it with the DCC RPG, I'd suggest to roll on the corruption tables when a character receives a demonsign; and you'll find a Shadow monster on page 425 of the rulebook.

You can find a bit more information about Ith-Narmant in Crawl!#7, along with another of his magic items, the Shadowsword of Ith-Narmant, including DCC RPG stats. 

Freitag, 11. April 2014

Teratic Tome DCC: Onlooker

Dead Cyclops presents a DCC RPG conversion for a monster from +Rafael Chandler's Teratic Tome. If you like this, check out the Kickstarter for Rafael's new bestiary: Lusus Naturae.


The Onlooker belongs to a class of monsters called audiences, so let's talk about those first...


Audiences

Created by the Tenebrous Halflings of the Infinite Crypt, audiences were once among the most dreaded of monsters.

When several of the Tenebrous Halflings neared death, they would perform a necromantic ritual that transferred their souls into a monstrous body that had been stitched together by their chirurgeons. Within this new body, a floating sack of flesh adorned with tentacles, each audience was a collection of diverse personalities.

The audience then continued to stalk the silent corridors of the Infinite Crypt, gathering information, tormenting lesser beings, and assembling troves of forbidden knowledge.

Then Shauva Tiridan, the mad mage, took their eyes.

A wizard of unimaginable power, she hunted down every audience and carved out its eyes to create her legion of ambulators (q.v.).

Now blind and insane, the audiences still glide through dark tunnels, but their mutilator died years ago, so they have no one to vent their rage on save for the occasional adventurer who blunders into their path. Though eyeless, an audience is nonetheless acutely aware of its surroundings, and is not penalized for blindness -- nor is it affected by illusions, or spells such as darkness.

Each audience has the power (and the intellect, and the souls) of several ancient halfling mages, but much of that strength was blunted when the eyes were taken; still, an audience is a formidable foe.


Onlooker: Init +3; Atk tentacled mouth +8 melee (1d8+2) or central maw +8 melee (2d6); AC 18 (tentacles: AC 14); HD 12d8+30 (3hp per tentacle); MV 40’; Act 11d20; SP spellcasting +12, 1/day each: Magic missile, Dispel magic, Scare, Gust of wind, Slow, Force manipulation, Polymorph, Paralysis, Magic shield, Sleep, Spider web; SV Fort +4, Ref +4, Will +8; AL L.


The onlooker appears as a large sphere of greenish-blue tissue, from which dangle 10 tentacles of different lengths. An enormous mouth protrudes from the four-foot-wide central sphere, and each of the tentacles ends in a chattering mouth. The monster sweats a milky substances that reeks of fresh fruit.

Often found near crypts, ossuaries, or graveyards, the onlooker's eleven souls bicker and argue incessantly, debating the necromantic lore that once was their bailiwick. Now, eyeless and stripped of many powers, they float through dust-blanketed necropoleis in search of the interesting-tasting cadavers that sustain them (and occasionally serve as raw material for an experiment of some kind).

If approached, the onlooker will stop chattering long enough to bite with its tentacled mouths (3-10 points of damage) or its central maw (2-12 points); if it feels that the enemy is a dangerous enough to warrant it, the central maw can spit forth magic missiles (6d4+6, 180' range, once per day), and the ten other mouths can utter the following spells (once per day each):
  1. Dispel magic 
  2. Scare 
  3. Gust of wind 
  4. Slow 
  5. Force manipulation 
  6. Polymorph 
  7. Paralysis 
  8. Magic shield
  9. Sleep 
  10. Spider web


More Teratic Tome DCC goodness: 



All material from Teratic Tome used with permission.

Donnerstag, 10. April 2014

Teratic Tome DCC: Scavenger

Dead Cyclops presents a DCC RPG conversion for a monster from +Rafael Chandler's Teratic Tome. If you like this, check out the Kickstarter for Rafael's new bestiary: Lusus Naturae.


Scavenger: Init +1; Atk bone dagger +0 melee (1d3); AC 10; HD 1d8; MV 60' or fly 90’; Act 1d20; SV Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +0; AL N.

Winged humanoids with grey feathers and scabby pink faces, scavengers look like human-vulture hybrids. They reek of the carrion that they feed on.

Most scavengers cultivate symbiotic relationships with powerful predators, which can include carnivorous dinosaurs, giant spiders, or humanoids such as gnolls or bugbears.

Using its piercing caw, and taunting its targets with the few common-tongue obscenities that it knows, the scavenger tries to lure its prey towards the predator, which then attacks. After the other creature has killed the target, the scavenger picks the scraps of meat off the bones.

Though it carries no treasure, the ruqoloi itself is worth a decent amount, as its exoskeleton is valued by many apothecaries (who create various medicines from the material). A damaged corpse can fetch five hundred gold from a wealthy chemist, and an undamaged body can bring ten times that amount.

A scavenger may also attempt to lure a group of adventurers into a dangerous location, such as a trap-heavy dungeon, by dropping coins which it has looted from various corpses -- scavengers have no use for money, but do love shiny things, so these coins will usually be retrieved afterward.

In combat, scavengers use makeshift daggers wrought from bones (1-3) or any weapons they can pilfer. Their treetop nests are stuffed full of useless items (spoiled iron rations, moldy bread, a four-foot length of rope with a bloody frayed end) and a few bits of treasure.


More Teratic Tome DCC goodness: The AcronicalDreg-Stalker, Bothrian

All material from Teratic Tome used with permission.

Mittwoch, 9. April 2014

Teratic Tome DCC: Bothrian

Dead Cyclops presents a DCC RPG conversion for a monster from +Rafael Chandler's Teratic Tome. If you like this, check out the Kickstarter for Rafael's new bestiary: Lusus Naturae.



Bothrian: Init +2; Atk tentacles +5 melee (1d4 + poison) or weapon +5 melee; AC 13; HD 7d8+5; MV 120’; Act 3d20; SP poison (DC 15 Fort save or lose 1 Intelligence for 1d6 rounds and make a second check in next round; 10% chance that intelligence loss is permanent), spellcasting +7: ESP, Levitate, Phantasm, Wizard sense, Charm person (1/day), Forget (1/day), Scare (1/day), Word of command (1/day), Mindblade (3/day, 60' x 20' cone, DC 14 Ref save or Intelligence 1 for 1d6 rounds, no spellcasting possible); SV Fort +2, Ref +2, Will +5; AL L.


Elegant and formal, the bothrians are a mild-mannered race of beings that seek only to enjoy the good things in life -- to carefully slice flavorful meat and sip chilled wine while listening to music and watching their victims scream as the skin is carefully peeled away from the muscle.

Slender humanoids with octopoidal features, their smooth, moist skin ranges in hue from violet to bright green, and changes slightly with mood. Most bothrians favor damp climates, and are typically found near pools where they can soak when the mood arises. Their tentacles undulate while they speak, and many of them have pierced, tattooed, or otherwise decorated their appendages to indicate status.

If provoked, a bothrian typically tries to cause as much harm as possible, while amusing itself by using its abilities to manipulate and bewilder its intellectually-inferior foes. Bothrians have spent centuries honing their mental powers, and can use the following spelllike abilities at will: ESP, levitate, phantasm, wizard sense. In addition, it can use these abilities once per day: charm person, forget, scare, word of command.

Three times per day, the bothrian can employ mindblade, a magical attack which functions like a breath weapon with a 60 ft cone (5 ft at base and 20 ft at end); victims must succeed in a DC 14 Ref save or have their intelligence reduced to 1 for 1d6 rounds (no spellcasting possible). All abilities are performed at 7th-level mastery.

They can also attack with their tentacles; a successful hit inflicts 1-4 damage, and the victim must succeed in a DC 15 Fort save or lose 1 point of intelligence. The following round, the victim must make an additional saving throw or lose another point. Thus, a hit means that the target will lose 0-2 points of intelligence per hit. The effect is usually temporary (intelligence is restored in 1d6 rounds); however, in 10% of cases, this intelligence loss is permanent, and must be remedied somehow.


More Teratic Tome DCC goodness: The Acronical, Dreg-Stalker

All material from Teratic Tome used with permission.

Dienstag, 8. April 2014

Teratic Tome DCC: Dreg-Stalker

Dead Cyclops presents a DCC RPG conversion for a monster from +Rafael Chandler's Teratic Tome. If you like this, check out the Kickstarter for Rafael's new bestiary: Lusus Naturae.

Dreg-Stalker: Init +2; Atk claws +1 melee (1d8+1); AC 13; HD 2d10+2; MV 60’; Act 2d20; SP vermin; SV Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +0; AL C

Artwork by Metalhead

An amorphous blob of tissue with sensory organs that are little more than thick pores on its oily skin, the dreg-stalker is a predator that stalks sewers and alleys.

The monster lurks below the city, surfacing at night to feed upon solitary victims: vagrants, drunkards, prostitutes, and night watchmen. Its four muscular arms end in sharp claws, which it uses to eviscerate its victims. Then the corpse is stuffed into the pulpy wad of beige tissue that is the dreg-stalker's body.

If confronted, the creature will command the vermin that follow it to attack: giant fire beetles, rats, and other small creatures will defend the dreg-stalker to the death.

Because the dreg-stalker also absorbs its victims' memories, it is highly prized by interrogators, who feed accused persons to the beast, then ask it for information (as payment for the food).

Sometimes, of course, they learn that the person in question was telling the truth, and was innocent of the crimes in question.


More Teratic Tome DCC goodness: The Acronical

All material from Teratic Tome used with permission.

Montag, 7. April 2014

Teratic Tome DCC: Acronical

Dead Cyclops presents a DCC RPG conversion for a monster from +Rafael Chandler's Teratic Tome. If you like this, check out the Kickstarter for Rafael's new bestiary: Lusus Naturae.

Acronical: Init +4; Atk serrated hooks +3 melee (2d4+2 plus DC 10 Fort save or lose one point from random attribute until slain); AC 17; HD 5d10; MV 150’; Act 2d20; SV Fort +4, Ref +4, Will +1; AL N.

Artwork by Stan Morrison

The acronical is a large insectile predator that strides on six armored legs. Eight feet tall at the shoulder, it has a dark maroon exoskeleton and serrated black hooks at the end of both arms. It reeks of vomit.

Created by anhedonic priests many centuries ago, this nocturnal creature stalks and kills adulterers. It hunts married people who stray from the beds of their spouses, and it hunts those who fornicate with married people.

Acronicals are drawn to the scent of such persons, and can detect it from miles away. Hunting in small packs, the beasts crawl across walls and ceilings, silent and careful, closing in on their victims. They stalk everyone who was peripherally involved in the duplicity -- neighbors who turn a blind eye, innkeepers who knew exactly what was going on, and so forth. Those involved are tracked down, attacked while alone, hamstrung, and devoured by the acronicals while still alive.

Then the creatures will hunt the adulterers themselves. They will be captured, brought together, and given a chance to survive: a fight to the death, with the victor set free.

However, the creatures have no intention of living up to their end of the deal. After one has killed the other, the monster will amputate the victor's arms and legs, then sing songs of love while the fornicator bleeds to death.

Adventurers may encounter the acronical in the wild. It tends to favor caves or dungeons, where it can stage the fatal battle between lovers.

The creature leaves behind a watery orange stool, and when it is agitated, its chitin flakes off in small amounts. Heroes tracking the beast will find this evidence in its wake.

In combat, the acronical attacks with its scythe-like claws, which inflict 4-10 points of damage. Each time the monster hits, the target must make a saving throw against poison or lose a point from a random attribute (roll 1d6 to determine which attribute is affected). This loss can only be remedied when the acronical in question has been slain, at which point the attribute(s) will be restored.

All material from Teratic Tome used with permission.

Mittwoch, 5. März 2014

Belt of Facility

This rare belt is made with leather crafted from a special breed of horse that has traces of pegasus blood in their veins. Grants the ability to lift and carry heavy objects with ease (not to throw them), and worn armor counts as one type lighter for penalties. If worn without at least light armor or something of equivalent weight, the wearer floats straight up into the air. The magic of the belt stops working 30 feet above ground, until its wearer touches the ground again or dies. Or both.

Freitag, 28. Februar 2014

Duplicator Slime

Dead Cyclops is excited to showcase fantastic guest art by +Luka Rejec for the Duplicator Slime! Check out his blog Cauldrons & Clerics!
"Shoposh of Fyr had not expected a duplicator slime attack while putting up
the new cafeteria sign in the castle courtyard." - illustration by Luka Rejec

Depending on how well nourished it is, a typical specimen of this rare creature has about the mass of a horse or more, and consists of a thick, slithering puddle of green slime interspersed with lots of eyes, bones, and sharp teeth. These eyes, bones and teeth flow around chaotically in the slime and make it quite an unsettling sight that can strike fear into the heart of the boldest adventurer.

The slime itself is of sticky consistency and can easily cling to walls and ceilings, normally crawling at a slow pace, but moving at the speed of a snake in short bursts if agitated. Sometimes, the slime drags along objects that were in its way, but due to the corrosive nature of the slime, even non-organic matter erodes with time. Organic matter is corroded after a short period and imbibed into the mass of the slime, with the exception of any bones, teeth and eyes, which stay intact and are simply incorporated into the Duplicator Slime's body system.

The Duplicator Slime usually takes the form of a puddle, but can freely change its shape, forming tentacles or other limbs, stalk eyes, gaping mouths full of teeth, and even spikes or other weaponry formed out of bones. Combined with its cat-like intelligence, it is perfectly capable of using these abilities to hunt and overwhelm prey, and can even manipulate simple mechanical contraptions like doors. It is not so much malevolent as it is curious and hungry, which does not make it any less dangerous for anyone unfortunate enough to encounter it.

It takes its name from its mythical power and seemingly insatiable desire to duplicate any being it comes into contact with before assimilating its essence. All the Duplicator Slime needs to do is to bring any part of its body into direct contact with the body of its victim. In a few short moments, it rearranges its shape to mirror the appearance of its prey, with any excess mass forming a pool at the “feet” of its newly-sculpted frame. The creature tries to make the likeness as accurate as possible, even trying to shape any equipment or weapons the victim is carrying out of bone fragments or slime. Of course, even if it matches the shape closely, it still looks like a horrible green mass of slime, eyes and bones, albeit in the form of an animal or person.

Even more confusing and hotly debated by scholars of the arcane, is the slime's capability to not only duplicate the shape of a being, but also all of its physical abilities. Many a warrior has perished when faced with his terrifying slime monster clone and a mastery of the sword that matches his own.

DCC RPG stats:

Duplicator Slime: Init -5; Atk pseudopod or bite +3 melee (1d4 + duplicate foe), or melee attack of duplicated foe (dmg like duplicated weapon, max. 1d8+modifier); AC 12 (add agility modifier of duplicated foe); HD 3d10 (increase if well nourished); MV 10', if agitated 20’, climb 10'; Act 1d20 (plus additional action dice of duplicated foe); SP duplicate foe on successful hit or touch; SV Fort +4, Ref -5, Will +1; AL N.


Montag, 24. Februar 2014

Summoner Sanctuary

Summoner Sanctuary Close-up
This is my entry for +Dyson LogosDungeon of Lost Coppers cartography contest. Click the pic below for a downloadable high-resolution scan of the map.


Mittwoch, 19. Februar 2014

Barbarians and Fools

Two additional character classes for World of Dungeons:

BARBARIANS get Perseverance. Chose two special abilities: Berserk (+2 melee damage, +2 armor, needs to make a CON check to stop fighting once activated), Brawny (+1 melee and thrown weapons damage, can re-roll damage once per attack), Instinct (can re-roll DEX when reacting to dangerous situations), Rugged (+1 Hit Die, +3 HP).

FOOLS get Cunning. Chose two special abilities: Exasperation (once per day, convince fate to intervene), Defiance (+1 when defying danger or death), Tinker (you can attempt to quickly pick a lock, pick a pocket, or disarm a trap), Wunderkind (once per session, you can use a special ability of any class).


Fools inspired by +Zak Smith's Alice character class

You can download +John Harper's World of Dungeons for free here.

Mittwoch, 12. Februar 2014

The Last Resort Menu

What's on the menu at The Last Resort, the tavern at the crossroads between worlds?
(or just roll a d30 for a random magical food/drink)


1. Displacer Beef
Very difficult to eat piece of meat, often appears to be on the table next to your plate. Grants the displacer ability, usable once, for up to 4 days after consumption: -2 on all attacks on the eater for one turn.

2. Philter of Intoxicating Miasma
The more you drink the more people get drunk around you within a 10' radius. A soft yellow glow pervades the area, leaking from the imbiber's pores. 

3. Invisible Soup 
Does what it doesn't say on the invisible tin. 50gp a pop, tracking down those invisible asparagus and boiling all vestige of flavour and substance from it ain't easy you know. Makes your urine odourless, invisble and insubstantial.

4. Troll Cakes
Come in two flavours, sedimentary and igneous, and require a diamond edged cake knife to slice. Watch out though, the sedimentary ones might contain fossils that will reanimate in your gubbins, and the igneous type can cause the feldspar-intolerant to suffer from lava-belly. A rich and stodgy foodstuff, eat a slice of this and you won't want to move for a week and the weight will go straight to your waist. Beware of those cheapskate dwarven bakers who substitute concrete breezeblocks for the real ingredients.

5. Pixie Cocktails
All the rage at parties in the Despotate of Doom and among the fast set in the City of Dis, these are cocktails enlivened by decorating them with pixies impaled on a tiny plastic sword. Watch out. If you are proffered a drink with a pixie impaled with a wooden cocktail stick, you are being given a vampire pixie who will fang your face off and drink your blood once you reach the bottom of the glass.

6. Whine Gums
Gelatinous confections lettered and flavoured with various displeasures and whinges - such as 'Ennui', 'Weltschmerz', 'Disinclination', 'Peevishness' etc. No one really likes these and they are only bought as Christmas presents for relatives you don't get on with, probably because they bought a bag for you the year before.

7. PS
A nutritious but rather dull letter, served up boiled as an accompaniment to various more interesting dishes such as adverbs in aspic, mashed nouns and split infinitives. Can cause stuttering.

8. Multidimensional Borscht
Rainbow coloured as opposed to usual purple, and the flavours vary and mingle on your tongue, as the multidimensional beetroots transform into all the beet-equivalents they have evolved into in all the other planes of existence. Usually quite nice, but beware the possibility of your dinner transforming into a beard-snatching beet from probability seventeen-A, where a demented revolutionary concocted these demonic vegetables to drag the magnificently hirsute boyars of the Tsardom of all the Brassicas to their doom by drowning them in their favourite starter.

9. Water of Thirst 
Causes dehydration. The more you drink, the thirstier you get.

10. Orcish War Bread
Puts some punch into your kick and fire in your belly.

11. Obsidian Berries
Turn the eater as sharp and translucent as obsidian.

12. Lifenuts
Restore health, small chance they root themselves in intestine and a bloody mistletoe sprig starts growing from an orifice.

13. Banana of Yellow
Turns the eater yellow, fingers leave yellow stains.

14. Peach of levitation
A peach that levitates. Other effects unknown.

15. Holy Sunrise
A sweet looking but surprisingly bitter tasting drink, which gives you a warm glowing aura of holiness that harms unholy creatures. Lasts until sunrise, when the aura is touched by daylight.

16. Blue Mountains Gänseblümchen Sandwich
A sandwich made with Blue Mountains Daisies and goat butter. The goat butter must not come from Blue Mountains goats. Grants the ability to tell in which direction the Blue Mountains are and how long a goat would need to get there. Effects last until the sandwich has passed through your system.

17. Death of Pigs
A delicate mustard spread made from the rendered soul of a pig that grants a +3 bonus to the next save vs. Death.

18. Gwen's Carrot Soup
That’s it, the real thing, the reasons countless generations of children were forced to eat carrots, because “they are good for your eyes”. Eat this soup and your nightvision will improve considerably for up to 10 days.

19. Nexor's Really Hot Chili
Save vs. poison or take 1d4 fire damage while eating. Gain one-time fire breathing ability (10' ranged attack, 2d6 fire damage), expires after one week.

20. Hot Chocolate of Ith-Narmant
Made from chocolate and liquified shadows. A favorite with patrons arriving from the Frost Planes or Mount Chillblaine. In addition to making you all warm and fuzzy from the inside, it heals 3hp lost from cold damage, grants +2 on all rolls to hide in shadows/darkness, +2 on all saving throws vs cold, and +2 on all perception checks concerning things hidden in shadows/darkness for one week.

21. Magic Tongue Tea
Available in different flavors. During 10 minutes after consumption, you can taste the properties of a magic item. The amount of tasted information is based on a perception check. Afterwards, you lose your sense of taste and smell for up to one week, depending on the magic item's power.

22. Pancakes of the Gods
Served with your choice of lawful, neutral or chaotic syrup. Eater gains effects of Cure Light Wounds or Lay On Hands as if cast by the cook (depending on the cook's level). If consumed by a cleric, they grant +1 on any appropriate cleric ability or spell check for the rest of the day. They also taste absolutely delicious. Mandatory church donation not included.

23. Volatile Veggies
This bowl of fairy vegetables has to be consumed very quickly lest it disappears from the mortal realm (DEX check necessary). If successfully eaten, they grant a +3 on checks dealing with fairy magic or illusions, as well as the ability to see and use fairy portals, passageways and paths until next sunrise. As a side-effect, the eater becomes very ticklish during this time.

24. Death Cookies
Sweet, painless and instant death if willingly eaten. No effect if eater is not fully aware of the consequences and consenting. For all intents and purposes, your body is considered dead, but preserved at 0hp for up to one year and a day, after which it will rot away in a few hours. During this period, your spirit is free but cannot interact with the physical world. Magical healing of any amount of hp to the body by any means resurrects it.

25. Geas Casserole
Serves two or more. Oaths taken during consumption of this filling food are binding. If any such oath is broken, any agreed misfortunes come true.

26. Wheel of Fortune Cheese
Served with homemade bread. Allows you to re-roll your next critical miss/failure. Frequent consumption forces you to re-roll your next critical hit/success, too.

27. Purple Pudding
The favorite dessert of overambitious magic-users and would-be wizards. Highly hallucinogenic. Grants the ability to read and learn an additional spell of one level higher than usual to any spellcaster. The spell must be read from a scroll, grimoire or learned from another spellcaster in up to one hour after consumption. Non-spellcasters gain the spell Detect Magic and can cast it as a level 1 magic-user. During the following three days, the spell can be cast once, then all understanding of it is gone. Until it is cast, you experience a hallucination that you fully believe (and act accordingly), at the GM's discretion, whenever you roll a 1 on any die (even on damage rolls etc). All special effects aside, Purple Pudding is often used purely for recreational purposes and is highly addictive if consumed regularly.

28. Slow Jelly
A jelly cooked from black ooze and ochre jellies that hastes the eater and has a 1 in 1d6 chance of making him translucent.

29. Favorite Food
This illusionary dish looks, smells and tastes like your favorite food, prepared to perfection in your favorite way. It has only illusionary nutritional values, so you will feel hungry again after half an hour. No refunds if you disbelieve it.

30. Hook Hors d'oeuvres
Consisting of vulture meat wrapped in a chitinous exoskeleton, these are served prior to the main course. Those who partake are able to communicate with other guests through eerie clacking noises which are incomprehensible to others.

This is a collaborative random table from Dead Cyclops and these fine contributors:
Gary Bowerbank (2)
Bary Blatt (3-8)
Luka Rejec (9-14, 17, 28)
Regine Bernhardt (15, 16, 18)
Rafael Chandler (30)

Montag, 10. Februar 2014

Cult of the Skin Demon

This is my free, system-neutral, OSR dungeon adventure based on one of +Dyson Logos beautiful maps.

You can download it here:
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/12841658/Cult_of_the_Skin_Demon.pdf

Here's what people have been saying about it so far:

Very nice. I love that it's totally system-neutral, far as I can tell. -Adam Koebel
Thanks for the kick in the pants. -David Turner
Hell, yeah! Nice! -Edgar Johnson
Great looking map and really interesting dungeon. -Chris Geisel
This is awesome -Radek Drozdalski
Check this out and sing him accolades -Noah Stevens
My favourite thing about this (really excellent) dungeon is the editing. So very easy to navigate. -Alex Chalk

Freitag, 7. Februar 2014

Bazaelahr

Dead Cyclops proudly presents a guest post by +David Turner

FREQUENCY: Rare
NO. APPEARING: 2-5
ARMOR CLASS: 0/2
MOVE: 9”/9”
HIT DICE: 5 + 5
% IN LIAR: 15%
TREASURE TYPE: I
NO. OF ATTACKS: 2 or 1
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 1-8 / 2-12 or 3-18
SPECIAL ATTACKS: Constriction, hurled boulders – see below
SPECIAL DEFENCES: +1 or better weapons to hit and see below
MAGIC RESISTANCE: 25%
INTELLIGENCE:
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic evil
SIZE: L (10’ tall)
PSIONIC ABILITY: Nil
Attack/Defense Modes: Nil

Bazaelahr are the most feared soldiers in the army of Ragadash, The Devouring Jungle, Demon Lord of the Hell of Black-Iron Trees. Part shock-troops and part siege engines, the Bazaelahr batter Ragadash’s foes with fist, tail, and stone. Outside of combat, their scales and skin are off-white. They climb as quickly as they slither across open ground.

Bazaelahr smash foes with their fists and finish them off with their powerful tails shaped like morning stars. If both attacks hit the same target, the Bazaelahr wrap their snake bodies around their foe and squeeze for an additional 2-12 damage. If a large stone is available, a Bazaelahr can make one ranged attack for 3-18 damage instead of its usual melee attacks.

The skin of the Bazaelahr is demonically tough and requires +1 weapons to penetrate. Bazaelahr draw strength from the blood of their enemies. If they have inflicted damage on a foe in a combat round, their torsos, arms and heads turn blood-red and their tails become a mottled red-white. For the rest of that combat round and the next, the Bazaelahr’s Armor Class improves from 2 to 0. If a Bazaelahr fails to damage a foe, they lose the Armor Class bonus in subsequent rounds until they harm someone again.

Inspired by this artwork by Erol Otus, from Dragon Magazine #8, July 1977

Thanks to Keith Senkowski for digging up the picture and other interesting things from the early Dragon magazines.

Mittwoch, 5. Februar 2014

Dead Cyclops

The first entry in this blog encourages you to put a dead cyclops in your game. (Of course, you can use most of the tables even for non-dead or non-cyclopean inspiration.)

Gender of Dead Cyclops (d2)

1. Female
2. Male

Special Features of Dead Cyclops (d12)

1. The eye is where the mouth would usually be. It has two mouths above its nose.
2. Four arms.
3. Second eye! (d4: 1. in back of head, 2. palm, 3. chest, 4. above normal eye, but closed)
4. Chitin skin, mandibles, insect eye.
5. It is slowly shrinking down to human size.
6. Its hand is pointing in a certain direction.
7. Only skeleton left.
8. Its eye has been cut out.
9. Its eye is glowing and can be harvested for magical energy.
10. Unbearable stench (a check is necessary to approach, plus save vs. poison or take damage)
11. Two-headed cyclops (bi-cyclops!)
12. The head is not attached to its body anymore or completely missing (might not obviously be a cyclops at first glance).

Reason for Dead Cyclops' Demise (d8)

1. It is eaten alive from within, by (d4: 1. alien thing, 2. worm parasite, 3. giant wasp larvae, 4. planar rift)
2. Adventurers (d4: 1. gone, 2. nearby, 3. in ambush position, 4. also dead, nearby)
3. Another cyclops (d4: 1. gone, 2. nearby, 3. in ambush position, 4. also dead, nearby)
4. Goblin horde (d4: 1. gone, 2. nearby, 3. in ambush position, 4. also dead, nearby)
5. Dragon (d4: 1. gone, 2. nearby, 3. circling above, 4. also dead, nearby)
6. Plunged to death
7. Plague (visible, infectious)
8. Old age

Dead Cyclops Surprises (d8)

1. It is not dead, merely unconscious (please come up with something strange if you rolled a 12 on the special features table).
2. It is dead, but will rise as an undead cyclops in d12 rounds.
3. Something in its stomach is still alive! (d4: 1. human, 2. livestock, 3. monster, 4. zombie)
4. Strange mushrooms are growing all over its body. They contain cocoons that hatch 3d4 baby cyclopses.
5. A demon is currently trying to possess its body. Might be stopped by a cleric.
6. Dire vultures have spotted the corpse and will fight for their food.
7. The eye is still alive and looking at the characters. (If you rolled 7 on the special features table, the eye is in the skull, on an 8 or 12, the eye lies next to the cyclops.)
8. This cyclops is no more. It has ceased to be. It's expired and gone to meet its maker. (No surprises.)

Dead Cyclops Belongings (d12)

1. Human hostage
2. Hood of shrinking (shrinks cyclops to human size, or other wearer proportionately), normal sized thieves tools
3. Large rock (contains valuable ore, dwarves might notice)
4. Herd of goats
5. Herd of demon goats (roll initiative)
6. Club, +2 vs cyclops, ogres and giants, can be used by a humanoid with STR 16+ as a two-handed weapon, damage like a two-handed sword
7. Ring of polymorph into cyclops (ring and cyclops shrink to human size if pulled from its finger)
8. Grimoire with cyclopean spells
9. Breastplate made from dragon scales, could be used as a shield, grants resistance vs fire (half damage)
10. Map to the lost cyclopean city
11. Bag full of rations (feeds a whole adventuring party for a week, then goes moldy) and waterskin full of wine (enough for a lot of drinking binges)
12. Cyclopean-sized mount, domesticated

Dave Younce has put these tables into Abulafia, so you can generate a list of random results just by clicking here: http://www.random-generator.com/index.php?title=Dead_Cyclops