Monday, January 3, 2011

General Rules: Monsters - Rat Golem

Rat Golem (adapted from Vigil Watch: Warrens of the Ratmen)
Huge Construct

Hit Dice: 12d10+30 (96 hit points)
Initiative: -1
Speed: 40 feet, climb 40 feet, swim 40 feet
Armor Class: 13 (-2 size, -1 Dexterity, +6 natural); touch 7, flat-footed 13
BAB/Grapple: +8/+25
Attack: Slam +16 melee (2d6+9, bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing, 20 x2)
Full Attack: 2 slams +16 melee (2d6+9, bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing, 20 x2)
Space/Reach: 10 feet by 10 feet/15 feet
Special Attacks: Disease, swarm
Special Qualities: Construct, darkvision 60 feet, half damage from slashing and piercing weapons, low-light vision, morphosis
Saves: Fortitude +4, Reflex +3, Will +4
Abilities: Str 28, Int 1, Wis 10, Dex 8, Con -, Cha 2
Skills: -
Feats: -
Environment: Any land or underground
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 6
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 13 - 16 HD (Huge)

Rat golems are formed from a living, ever-moving swarm of rats. Though it holds a roughly humanoid shape, it possesses no physical features - the golem's body ripples and throbs with the unceasing movement of the thousands of rats that comprise it.

As a construct composed of living creatures, a rat golem gains a benefit normally denied constructs in that it actually has a very rudimentary intellect. This does not enable the golem to learn skills, train in a class, or employ language, but it does allow it to understand and obey somewhat more complex commands and function as part of a combat unit.

Rat golems are unexpectedly fast, swarming over obstacles and through water as rapidly as they traverse open terrain. The golem's main attacks consist of two separate slams with fistlike appendages. Dozens of the rats that make up the golem's body impact a target and deliver vicious bites and scratches.

While the rat golem does not enjoy the magical immunities of other constructs, it cannot be affected by spells that specifically target animals as the rats that make up the golem are no longer individual creatures, but part of he overall rat golem construct.

Disease (Ex): Filth fever - swarm attack, Fortitude DC 10, incubation period 1d3 days, damage 1d3 Dexterity and 1d3 Constitution. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Swarm (Ex): In place of its normal melee attacks, a rat golem may instead swarm a target, passing its body around it like a wave crashing over and around a rock. This attack surrounds the victim with thousands of ravenous, chittering rats all biting and clawing, hungry for blood. A swarm deals 5d6+9 points of damage on a successful hit. Anyone killed by this attack is striped completely of flesh, leaving behind only a bloody skeleton. A successful Reflex save reduces the swarm damage by half. Following a swarm, the rat golem must reconstitute itself and cannot swarm again for 1d3 rounds.

Morphosis (Ex): A huge humanoid rat golem is composed of thousands of tiny living creatures. As such, it can morph its body at will to fit into small openings or spaces. it can fit through any opening large enough to allow the passage of a rat and it also can fill any space able to accommodate thousands of rats such as the space beneath a floor or inside a ratmen tunnel.

Construct: Rat golems are immune to mind-influencing effects, poison, paralysis, stunning, disease, death effects, and necromancy effects. Rat golems cannot heal damage on their own, but often can be repaired through the use of the Craft Construct feat or arcane magic such as summon swarm, which heals 1d6 points of damage per caster level. Rat golems are not subject to critical hits, nonlethal damage, ability damage, ability drain, fatigue, exhaustion, or energy drain. They are immune to any effect that requires a Fortitude save (unless the effect also works on objects, or is harmless). Rat golems are not at risk of death from massive damage but are immediately destroyed when reduced to 0 hit points or less. Since it was never alive, a rat golem cannot be raised or resurrected.

Rat golems are extremely difficult to fight with physical attacks. They have a few special vulnerabilities as follows.

A lit torch swung as an improvised weapon deals 1d3 points of fire damage per hit.

A weapon with a special ability such as flaming or frost deals its full energy damage with each hit, even if the weapon's normal damage has reduced effect against the golem.

A lit lantern can be used as a thrown weapon, dealing 1d4 points of fire damage to all creatures in squares adjacent to where it breaks.

A rat golem's body is formed from a single pack of living rats numbering about 100 per Hit Dice. These rats must live together as a cohesive group for several weeks, consuming a potent food mixture enchanted and imbued with magical herbs and minerals.

A rat golem costs 50,000 shillings to create, 5,000 shillings of which pays for the special food while the rest goes toward the enchanted cages and runs that house the rats. The rats consume the food during the creation process, but the equipment can be used again. A successful DC 15 Handle Animal check is required each week to tend the rats during the course of the ritual. A failure means that too many have died and the process must begin again with new rats.

Caster Level: 16th; Prerequisites: Craft Construct, summon swarm, haste, geas/quest, limited wish; Market Price: 100,000 shillings; Cost to Create: 50,000 shillings and 1,600 experience points.

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