Monday, January 3, 2011

General Rules: Monsters - Mire Wyrm

Mire Wyrm (from the Vigil Watch: Warrens of the Ratmen)
Huge Animal

Hit Dice: 10d8+50 (95 hit points)
Initiative: +1
Speed: 30 feet, swim 15 feet
Armor Class: 15 (-2 size, +1 Dexterity, +6 natural); touch 9, flat-footed 14
BAB/Grapple: +7/+23
Attack: Bite +13 melee (2d6+8, bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing, 20 x2) and slam +8 melee (1d6+4, bludgeoning, 20 x2)
Full Attack: Bite +13 melee (2d6+8, bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing, 20 x2) and slam +8 melee (1d6+4, bludgeoning, 20 x2)
Space/Reach: 10 feet by 20 feet/10 feet
Special Attacks: Amputate, death throes, caustic spit
Special Qualities: Blindsight, tremorsense
Saves: Fortitude +12, Reflex +8, Will +4
Abilities: Str 26, Int 2, Wis 12, Dex 12, Con 20, Cha 4
Skills: Hide +5, Move Silently +3, Survival +4, Swim +10
Feats: None
Environment: Temperate and warm marsh
Organization: Solitary or breeding clutch (3 - 12)
Challenge Rating: 9
Treasure: Standard (gems, metal, and stone only)
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 11 - 16 HD (Huge); 17 - 20 HD (Gargantuan)

Powerful and deadly, mire wyrms stalk the fens and bogs of the Polthian Swamp. These sightless predators track their prey using a variety of other means such as scent, heat, and sound. The adults grow to sizes of 15 to 20 feet long.

Ratmen consider the flesh of the mire wyrm a favored delicacy, so they hunt the beasts throughout the marshes. They also use mire wyrm hides to make fine leather worn exclusively by the priestly caste, and they carve the creature's teeth into intricate and valuable jewelry and ornaments.

Young wyrms are particularly desirable for their exquisite flavor and supple flesh. The hermaphroditic mire wyrm gestates inside the body of its parent until mature enough to fend for itself. It then emerges and immediately burrows into the muck, where it subsists by hunting small animals such as lizards, fish, and insects. Only when they begin to reach full size do mire wyrms emerge from the filth to hunt as adults. Thus pregnant wyrms - identifiable only by the indistinct grayish purple stripes that appear on their bodies while carrying young - are most sought after for their succulent bounty.

Mire wyrms keep no treasure, but often ingest it when consuming prey that does. Cutting open a mire wyrm can reveal a surprising reward.

Mire wyrms normally begin combat by spitting their caustic saliva at a target and closing to attack in melee once the prey is blinded or wracked with pain. They become no less dangerous in melee combat, delivering savage bites with their razor-edged, chisel-like teeth. It also writhes and twists wildly while attacking, delivering powerful slam attacks against its foes. It can only slam targets to its sides and rear, and cannot ordinarily bring a slam to bear against a foe it is biting.

The wyrms most fearsome aspect is its ability to bite the limbs, or even the head, off a target in combat. Even devouring limbs does not sate the beast - it continues to attack even after consuming a number of such gruesome snacks.

It is extremely foolish to fight a mire wyrm in melee combat. Anyone experienced with the beasts fights them from a distance or not at all. The exception to this rule comes from certain broods of ratmen who consider it a test of battle prowess and maturity to seek out mire wyrms and defeat them in melee combat, though they never attempt to do so in groups of less than half a dozen.

Blindsight (Ex): Mire wyrms are sightless, lacking any visual organs whatsoever. They sense their environment through a combination of thermal signatures, vibrations, and sound. They can use this ability to detect creatures within 240 feet.

Tremorsense (Ex): Like the blindsight ability, a mire wyrm can use its acute tremorsense to detect any creature within 120 feet that remains in contact with the ground.

Caustic Spit (Ex): In place of its melee attacks, a mire wyrm can spew forth a viscous gob of caustic saliva at any target within 120 feet. This ranged touch attack is made at a +6 bonus and deals 2d6 points of acid damage and a further 2d6 points of acid damage per round for five additional rounds unless the caustic spittle is somehow neutralized first. Anyone within 5 feet of the victim of the acid spittle attack must make a DC 16 Reflex saving throw or suffer 1d6 points of acid splash damage and 1d6 additional points of acid damage for the same five additional rounds. A mire wyrm may make this attack a number of times per day equal to half its Hit Dice, but no more frequently than once every three rounds.

1 - 5
Left Leg
6 - 10
Right Leg
11 - 14
Left Arm
15 - 18
Right Arm
19 - 20
Amputate (Ex): On a successful critical hit against any opponent that is both subject to critical hits and at least one size smaller than the mire wyrm, the wyrm may sever one of its victim's limbs. A successful DC 20 Reflex save allows victims to avoid the amputation, but they still suffer damage normally. Roll d20 and consult the table to the right to determine which limb is affected.

Decapitated victims die instantly. Other amputations stun the victim for one round. In addition to being unable to wield weapons, shields, and so on, victims who have lost an arm lose 1 hit point due to blood loss each round. Blood loss increases to 2 hit points per round if both arms are lost. A lost leg causes the victim to fall prone and reduces the victim's movement by one-half, and causes 2 hit points of blood loss each round. A victim who has lost both legs can move only 5 feet per round by crawling and his blood loss increases to 4 hit points per round. A successful DC 15 Heal check with stop the bleeding, as will magical healing.

Death Throes (Ex): Upon reaching 0 hit points or below, a mire wyrm begins to writhe and twist viciously as it expires. Anyone within 15 feet of it must make a successful DC 20 Reflex saving throw each round to avoid taking slam attack damage from the wyrm's tortuous contortions. This continues until the creature reaches -10 hit points, at which point it finally expires.

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