Friday, 26 September 2014

Mold-choked monsters from the mutant forest

I've been trying to kick out the sandbox area I made for a couple of weeks now and there's just so much stuff in a bunch of folders on my PC and some of it half-complete.
And I'm going off to South America for a month from Sunday and I've got to get Santicore finished before then.
So much to do!

So rather than try to kick everything out into one blog post, here's just one part of it.

The Forest of Moondine:
Once one of the most magically active forests in the world, the Forest of Moondine has long been suppressed by the anti-magic field of the wall. Now it's waking back up, stirring with dark magic and dangerous creatures. All the old tales are coming true.

The forest is most of the area to the right of the big wall in the middle. High quality scan, this.
So the main deal with the forest is that there's this mold which infests man and beast, warping them into new forms and taking over their minds. A large variety of Cordyceps fungi all keyed to a different creature.
The other main deal is that the anti-magic field of the wall has dropped recently due to events catalysed by a previous group of players. There are elves and dryads and stuff awakening after their sleep that lasted centuries.

My d30 random encounter grid for the Moondine Forest area can be found here.
Descriptions of the villages of the Gate and its Surrounds can be found here. If you're wondering why the villages have stats it's because I rolled them up like this. Really gets the gears turning.
Moondin is the largest town in the area and so isn't in my village doc, short version is that it's a walled town and ruled by the mad priest Moldus Vane who thinks he can turn all this mold stuff to his advantage.

The mold men were detailed in my first ever post.
Lots of the things in the forest are 0 level men equivalents.
The elves are these elves.
The mold animals have not been detailed. UNTIL NOW.
In my notes I always label creatures things like "guzzling beast" and "horrible beast" because it means I have to describe them better, I never let slip their actual nature ("ok the vampire attacks you for.. oh fuck I said vampire") and the players have to make up their own names for them just like they are indeed people seeing a creature for the first time.

All stats, as ever, in the LotFP mode where AC12 is unarmoured.

Creatures of the Mold:

Guzzler Beast:
The mold-corrupted form of a deer, its feet have been warped into blades. It leaps huge distances and seeks to guzzle upon the brains of foes, slurping their brain matter out through their ears.
Can leap huge distances as a charge for -2 AC but double damage.
If both its leg attacks hit it latches on with brain-suckers, hitting automatically on subsequent rounds for 1d12 damage. Sucking brains drains 1 point from a random mental stat of the victim and heals the beast for 1d6 HP.
HD 2, MV 120', AC 13, ATK 2 DMG 1d6/1d6 damage each + special, ML 8

Pouncing Beast:
Fluffy bunnies overtaken with ugly facial horns and with distended legs that make them crawl around like men on all fours. Climb on walls and ceiling as easily as the ground.
Jump haphazardly and on hit secrete a subtle toxin that gives victims -1 on all attacks if they fail a save vs paralyze. This stacks, and victims find themselves slowly overwhelmed by a bunch of creepy crawling rabbits they can't hit.
HD 1/2, MV 80', AC 10, ATK 1, DMG 1d4+special, ML 6

Scything Beast:
Squirrels whose arms are sharp like scythes. Piercer rodents, they prefer to drop from above and shank people on the way down. If they hit they grab on and hit automatically every round until dislodged. If they miss they have to spend a round getting back in position on a tree branch or what have you. Best protection is to get under a cover they can't climb although they will swiftly cut through roofs of hide or canvas.
HD 1/2, MV 100', AC 8, ATK 1, DMG 1d6 + special, ML 7

Bug-Filled Beast:
Pigs or boars who have become living hives for a variety of insects and biting flies of all kinds. Flesh pocked with endlessly weeping sores and holes which form the birthing pits and homes and food of the constantly birthing bugs.
The beast itself does not attack but is surrounded by a cloud of bugs which automatically damage all nearby for 1d4 damage and give them -2 to hit. Slow but bulky, hitting one is like smashing a beehive with a stick. Those firing from range will be chased by angry insects.
HD 6, MV 40', AC 15, ATK 0, ML12

Burrowing Beast:
Moles whose mold infestation has granted them sharply lashing tongues and a predatory nature.
When attacking they burrow the ground out underneath their victim, causing the ground to become soft and mushy and their victim to sink. Their presence may be telegraphed by a dead man half-sunk into the ground as in quicksand, pulling him out of the collapsing soil will reveal his legs and lower body picked clean of flesh and organs leaving only clean white bone.
Every round the ground becomes softer and harder to run in. Your encumbrance increases by one tier per round until you are immobile, at which point the moles lash at you with their barbed tongues. When you are dead they begin to feast upon you.
HD 1, MV 80' (burrow), AC 10 (when above ground), ATK 1, DMG 1d6, ML 6

A Horrible Beast:
A unique creature that is a slow but motile mass of mold. A big flat amoeboid the colour of moss and lichen. An ambush predator, its surface is squishy and soft like a carpet of mold but exudes moist beads of rank yellow fluid around points of pressure.
Popping spore-cannons fire chunks of oozing lichen at foes with the range of a shortbow, a splash of growth which crawls across the victim's body seeking any wound or orifice to crawl inside. Any who die to its attacks deflate rapidly, spraying chunks of stringy ooze from every orifice over creatures within 30'. Targets must save vs breath or get hit by the rapidly-reproducing growth.
HD 4, MV 40', AC13, ATK 1 (240'), DMG 1d10, ML 12

A Terrifying Beast:
A unique creature that is an enormous amphibious thing. Huge, many-eyed. Three or four times taller than a man, skinny arms and legs around a plump lizard body. Sickly pale skin, coated with vivid green pond slime. Bipedal with webbed hands. Scrambles along the ground faster than should be possible for a beast of its size. Tail like a tree trunk, but blunt and rubbery.
Bites those in front, swings tail at those behind. Grabs and throws and grabs and bites and tears. Devours the dead, then hunts those who remain.
Speaks like a parrot who's heard someone being eaten every morning.
"What is that thing? WHAT IS THAT THINGGG -"
"help me! help me help meeaaaaauughgh"
"Don't leave me! DON'T LEAVE ME!"
“Daddy! No!”
"Run! Run! I love you!"
HD 5, MV 120', AC 13, ATK 4, 1d6/1d6/2d6/2d4, ML 12

Glob of Shub-Niggurath:
Shub-Niggurath was released for its millennial bondage by a previous group who failed to complete the grisly ritual that would keep it underground.
It was Shub-Niggurath which exuded the mold from its heaving mass and it was Shub-Niggurath which breached the Wall and took down its anti-magic field. The Wall detonated when it was breached, throwing chunks of Shub-Niggurath's protoplasmic bulk far across the landscape.
These Globs ooze around the area, spreading the mold and seeking to reform. They attack with drifting acidic strands which eat through all but flesh. Their touch on bare skin overloads the victim's pain receptors causing them to judder into unconsciousness. Once pacified the glob belches mold into their lungs.
On hit the acidic strand stays in contact dealing automatic damage and giving armour one notch/-1 AC per round until severed. If it destroys the armour and touches bare flesh the victim must Save vs Paralyze or lose consciousness. It can attack with other strands in the meantime, potentially subduing a number of enemies at once.
HD 4, MV 60', AC 14, ATK 1 (60'), DMG 1d6 + special, ML 12

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

The Animal Arena - Beasts tearing each other apart for YOUR entertainment!

My players are getting close to the Twin City-States of Edge and Dwarrow, whose strange mutually-ignorant relationship I will detail another time.
Most importantly, Edge has a badass collosseum where they hold Gladiator fights and, on feast days at the end of every month, battles between creatures from across the known world.

Basically Telecanter made this years ago and I've finally found cause to use it.
Horde of koalas vs a crocodile? Great white shark vs hammerhead? It's the fight of the century!

The real reason for this post is that I have crafted an ODDS CALCULATOR to make it easy for YOU to mandate the payout bookies are offering on fights between creatures foul and fair.
The calculations are based on the average value of the dice roll, so 1d20 vs 3d6 is 1:1 odds because the average of both rolls is 10.5. This is not exact but it's close enough for some silly animal arena thing!

As in the original document, players can bet when the first creature is brought out (without knowing the odds, naturally), at the end of the first round, and at the end of the second round. They get the payout if their chosen beast wins the final bout.

Yes you have to roll real dice. Randbetween just doesn't feel the same, you know?

Excel version.
Google Drive version.


With thanks to Nadav Ben Dov for helping me work out how to compare 3d6 to 1d20 in odds terms (it was his idea to use average values).