Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Bestiary – Gheirlock

by Tim Wallace and Adam Frank

This fungoid creature with six short legs, four arms and armor plated with stones attached to its body. Underneath the stone plates are slimy, semi-transparent flanges. As it moves a small dust cloud falls in its wake.

© Nicholas Cloister, Monsters by Email, licensed to Timothy Wallace

XP 4,800
N Medium plant
Init +4; Senses low-light vision, spell sight; Perception +17
AC 19, touch 14, flat-footed 15 (+4 Dex, +5 natural)
hp 94 (10d8+50)
Fort +11, Ref +7, Will +7
Immune plaint traits (mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poison, polymorph, sleep, stunning)
Weaknesses vulnerable to fire
Speed 50 ft.
Melee 4 claws +11 (1d4+2 plus spores)
Special Attacks spellstrike, spores (DC trample (2d6+3, DC 17)
Magus Spells Prepared (CL 8th; concentration +15)
   3rd—displacement, force hook charge[UM], force punch[UM] (DC 20), vampiric touch
   2nd—ablative barrier[UC], anticipate thoughts[OA] (DC 19), elemental touch[APG] (2), frigid touch[UM], spider climb
   1st—corrosive touch[UM], lock gaze[UC] (DC 18), long arm[ACG], shocking grasp (2), vanish[APG] (DC 18)
   0 (at will)—dancing lights, daze (DC 17), ghost sound (DC 17), light, mage hand
Str 14, Dex 19, Con 18, Int 25, Wis 19, Cha 16
Base Atk +7; CMB +11; CMD 23 (31 vs. trip)
Feats Agile Maneuvers, Arcane Strike, Blighted Critical[UM], Toughness, Weapon Finesse
Skills Acrobatics +9 (+17 to jump), Climb +7, Intimidate +13, Knowledge (arcana) +17, Knowledge (nature) +17, Perception +17, Sense Motive +14, Spellcraft +17, Stealth +17 (+21 Stealth in vegetation), Survival +9, Swim +7
Languages Boggard, Draconic, Dwarven, Elven, Gnome, Goblin, Sylvan, Terran
SQ adhesive
Adhesive (Ex) A gheirlock exudes a thick slime that acts as a powerful adhesive, holding fast any creatures or items that touch it. A weapon that strikes a gheirlock is stuck fast unless the wielder succeeds on a DC 16 Reflex save. A successful DC 16 Strength check is needed to pry off a stuck weapon. Strong alcohol or universal solvent dissolves the adhesive, but the gheirlock can still grapple normally. A gheirlock can dissolve its adhesive at will, and the substance breaks down 5 rounds after the creature dies. The save DC is Strength-based.
Arcane Strike As a swift action, add +1 damage, +1 per 5 caster levels and your weapons are treated as magic for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
Blighted Critical Confirm a critical hit with a spell or spell-like ability to inflict a random minor spellblight.
Spell Sight (Su) Eyes shine light in 15 ft. cone which causes magic to glow faintly.
Spellstrike (Su) Deliver spells with range of "touch" through claw gaining a free claw attack.
Spores (Ex) A creature damaged by a gheirlock’s claws must succeed at a DC 18 Fortitude save for be infected with gheirlock spores. Gheirlock spores quickly take root in their victims, inflicting 2 points of Constitution damage per round. A new Fortitude save can be attempted each round to halt the growth. Although immunity to disease won't protect against gheirlock spores, the growth can be halted by remove disease and similar effects. Exposure to sunlight also halts the spores' growth. Plants are immune to gheirlock spores.
Environment swamp, forest, and jungle (Material plane)
Organization solitary or colony (2-4)
Treasure standard

A large sentient fungus the gheirlock's primary goal is to breed. It wanders around looking for places its spores can spread. In order to take hold and grow, a gheirlock's spores must come into contact with a corpse or an open wound on a living being. The spores feed off their host until they consume it and become another gheirlock. This new gheirlock's face bears a passing resemblance to the creature that originally fed it. After it is fully grown, a gheirlock feeds off of any living creature it finds easy enough to catch. If it is not solitary it often brings its fresh kill to the others so they may feast together. A gheirlock excretes an incredibly powerful adhesive from the white tendrils that grow from it and it places stones on its body to act as armor. Each gheirlock has powerful innate magic. Instead of keeping a spell book, a gheirlock records its spells on the pieces of stone that make up its armor.

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (nature) can learn more about gheirlocks. When a character makes a successful skill check, the following lore is revealed, including the information from lower DCs.

DC 18 Gheirlocks are fungal creatures who feed upon living or recently living flesh. They command powerful magics that they wield together with their claws to destroy those they deem enemies.
DC 21 Gheirlocks primary drive is to create more gheirlocks by causing wounds on living creatures.
DC 24 As the primary desire of a gheirlock is to create more gheirlocks they are likely to flee from a combat where they have successfully infected one or more people though if chased they will defend themselves.
DC 27 A gheirlock is covered in spores and once it breaks the skin of its victim a person has almost certainly been exposed. If they do not receive proper medical attention within the next few days the infected individual with be consumed by and turned into a gheirlock.
DC 30 All gheirlocks have access to certain magics that can help spread their infection or cause a person to be an easier, more compliant subject for feeding or infecting.