LAND-WIGHTS

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Untitled, Zdzislaw Beksinski

Once, there were gods in the earth. Far past any mortal memory, they cavorted and roamed in the emerald dawn of the world. But they are gone now, and little evidence of their nature or their fate remains: cryptic pictograms, ruined megalithic structures, and the land-wights.

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“They Have Slept in the Forest Too Long,” by Max Ernst

Loyal servitors, each land-wight was invested with a fraction of their creators’ divine power. Some slumber, dutifully waiting for their makers’ return. Others ceaselessly carry out the last task appointed to them. A rare few, the verdighast, have gone rogue.

No. appearing: Solitary
Hit Dice: Medium-sized 3-5, Large-sized 6-9, Huge-sized 10-14, Colossal 15+; saves as fighter.
Movement: as normal human; land-wights can also burrow through the ground at their normal movement speed.
Armor: Heavy; non-magical physical and elemental attacks deal half-damage.
Attack: unarmed strike x 2 (Medium 1d6, Large 1d8, Huge 1d10, Colossal 1d12)
Morale: High
Special:

Earth-power: Land-wights can cast spells from the following list as a druid of a level equivalent to their hit dice:

    • 1st: create or destroy water, entangle, healing word, speak with animals
    • 2nd: animal messenger, gust of wind, heat metal, spike growth
    • 3rd: plant growth, speak with plants, water walk
    • 4th: control water, ice storm, stone shape
    • 5th: commune with nature, wall of stone
    • 6th: move earth, wall of thorns

VERDIGHAST

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“Vorstclaw,” by Lucas Graciano

While most land-wights are content to placidly abide the march of time, either dormant or in tireless labor, some succumb to despair, while others cast off their conditioning. The result is the same: a verdighast, a being that simultaneously holds the whole world in contempt and covets it as a birthright.

Verdighast have the same statistics as land-wights, but they use their power in different, more destructive ways. They cast spells from the following list as a druid of a level equivalent to their hit dice:

    • 1st: create or destroy water, entangle, inflict wounds, speak with animals
    • 2nd: flaming sphere, gust of wind, heat metal, shatter
    • 3rd: call lightning, sleet storm, wind wall
    • 4th: blight, dominate beast, wall of fire
    • 5th: contagion, insect plague
    • 6th: circle of death, sunbeam

NEW SPELL: Wrathstone

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Druid/Sorcerer (Evocation)

Tapping into your anger and aggression, you wrench a jagged shard of rock out of the ground and hurl it at a target you can see within 30 feet, plus 10 feet per caster level.

On a successful ranged spell attack, the wrathstone inflicts 1d6 bludgeoning damage per level and the target must succeed a Dexterity or Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

If the target had inflicted damage on you prior to casting the spell, you have Advantage on the ranged spell attack. When you cast this spell while you have less than half your maximum hit points, this spell inflicts 1d10 bludgeoning per caster level instead.

High Fantasy

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Jitterbud
Mildly addictive

The immature blossoms of the purple caladock, when roasted and steeped, produce a refreshingly tart beverage that helps stave off drowsiness.

Chewing raw caladock buds produces a burst of heightened alertness and focus (gain advantage on Initiative and Perception rolls), but causes uncontrollable twitching and fidgeting, and lavender-stained teeth (disadvantage on ability and skill rolls to perform tasks requiring patience or a steady hand).

Coldsap
Highly addictive

The sap of the icevine plant produces a cooling, analgesic effect useful for treating rashes and burns.

When the sap is boiled down to a waxy resin and smoked, it becomes a powerful anesthetic (reduce HP lost from injuries by 1d4), but causes numbness and flatness of affect (sufffer disadvantage on Charisma rolls). 

Thokka
Not addictive guatemalan_insanity_pepper

Rumor has it that orcs eat thokka to bring on berserker rages. This is false – the finger-length, red and orange striped fruits are smoked and dried, then pulverized. The resulting powder is snorted, which causes the aforementioned rage (as a barbarian), but the user loses their sense of smell for twice as the rage lasted.

As for eating a raw thokka, survivors have described the experience as “nightmarish.” Orcs joke that it burns you twice: “First fire comes out your mouth, later out your ass.”

Huff
Highly addictive

Also known as angel’s breath, huff is a potent hallucinogen made from grievous angel trumpet mushrooms. The fleshy, mottled gray fungi are mashed into a paste, which is heated, releasing a noxious vapor. When inhaled, the vapors induce a wide variety of psychedelic effects: audio-visual hallucinations, floating or levitating sensations, sometimes even catatonia.

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illustration by Kit Roebuck

Carried aloft on the vapor are infectious spores that settle in the lungs. On a failed Constitution saving throw, a user loses 1d4 Constitution as fungus begins to spread through out their body. From now on, they lose another 1d4 Constitution everytime they use huff (no save). At 0 Constitution, the infected person transforms into an ambulatory colony of mycelium.

AC: 8, HP: A quarter of what they had when alive, Move 20 ft., Atk unarmed strike +2 (1d6 damage)

 

Moon Jelly
Moderately addictive (highly addictive for magic-users)

A viscous, opalescent goo that amplifies psychic powers. When ingested, a person with no magical abilities can detect thoughts (as the spell) until the drug wears off in 1d4 hours. For magic-users, moon jelly can increase the potency of their spells (one dose increases effective caster level of their next spell by 1) and expand their capacity for arcane comprehension (one dose can restore a spell already cast in the last 24 hours).

A magic-user addicted to moon jelly must include the substance as a material component for all their spells.

Moon jelly is actually the excrement of a dream-feaster.

VASCULAR WRAITH

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“Bleeder,” Walter Oltmann

Floating silently, a vaguely humanoid network of blood vessels throbs in time to the pulsing organ at its center.

AC: 16, immune to bludgeoning damage, disease, and poison, and resistant to piercing damage
HP: 21 (6d6); saves as a magic-user
Movement: fly 60 ft.; a vascular wraith can squeeze through spaces as small as 1 square foot
Morale: High
Attack: can make 2 unarmed strikes, melee +6 (10 ft reach; 1d4 damage and the wraith regains an equal amount of HP)
Special:

 

  • Arterial Spray: Whenever a vascular wraith takes slashing damage, all creatures adjacent to it must succeed a Dexterity saving throw or be drenched in blood and suffer Disadvantage on all attack rolls, ability rolls, and skill checks for 1 round.
  • Exsanguinating Embrace: Instead of attacking, a vascular wraith can attempt to attach itself to an adjacent, living creature. The target must succeed an opposed Dexterity check or become enveloped by the wraith. While embracing a creature, the wraith drains 1d6 Constitution each round on its turn, but can take no other actions. The victim can move at half speed, has Disadvantage on all rolls, and deals half damage with their attacks. A successful opposed Strength check will remove the wraith, as will dropping it to 0 HP.
  • Grisly Sight: A character seeing a vascular wraith for the first time must succeed a Wisdom saving throw or be unable to act for 1 round.
  • Heart of the Matter: The still-beating heart of a vascular wraith is its weak point. Dealing damage equivalent to a quarter of the wraith’s total HP directly to the heart will instantly destroy the creature.

The origins of these gruesome entities are unknown. Most hypotheses tie them to vampires – that perhaps they are the vengeful shades of person killed by a vampire, or the ghost of a vampire itself. Another, more esoteric explanation is that they are some kind of ‘blood elemental.’

 

 

NEW SPELL: Gravel Blast

Evocation Cantrip
You cause a 5-foot-by-5-foot patch of ground within 30 feet to energetically erupt, tossing soil and stone into the air.

A creature standing in that area must succeed a Dexterity saving throw or takes 1d4 damage from flying debris and is thrown backwards 5 feet for every point of damage suffered. Creatures larger than Medium-size gain Advantage on their saving throw.

With each casting of the spell, you can cause one eruption plus an additional one for every 3 caster levels. Multiple eruptions occur simultaneously.

VARIATION: If you don’t like and/or use cantrips, you could make this a 1st-level spell by bumping up the number of eruptions to one per caster level.

Which Pissant Noble am I Talking To?

Normally, there are many layers of functionaries and factotums that prevent the aristocracy from getting within spitting distance of people as disreputable as adventurers. But, whether through dumb luck or deliberate shenanigans, the PCs may find themselves face to face with one or members of high society.

To generate an upper-class twit, roll 4d20.

D20 Roll

Female Male Noble House Rich Person Nonsense They Won’t Shut Up About

1

Alianor Auberic Asmodi Making miniature furniture for dioramas

2

Basilissa Bort Balagaga Falconry

3

Bruticia Bromulus Blumslow Experimenting with electricity

4

Citrinita Calastor Charivari Cocaine

5

Delephine Drystan Dunclop Erotic etchings

6

Dratlana Eephus Ermengard The latest canto of the epic poem they’re writing

7

Erzegund Fleurian Fitzwark Competitive orchid cultivation

8

Frangelique Gormsley Guisarme Their extensive wine-cellar

9

Gorgonetta Hinkard Hurdivant International finance

10

Hildegrine Indrid Kakarov Clockwork automata

11

Irlanis Jedward Le Bont The artist they’re patronizing

12

Javelinda Jobias Mackelay Their feud with another noble family

13

Lazuli Maldivio Nethersby Their feud with their own family

14

Lynira Niflas Ombrego Betting on bumfights

15

Marbeline Oxton Pleurgeron Why peasants deserve to be treated better

16

Nephilia Phinster Quence Why peasants are treated exactly as they deserve

17

Ornella Scarlon Slayle The ongoing renovations of their manor

18

Sibylis Theobald Tant The health benefits of their ridiculous diet

19

Tartine Vespio Utherelm Creating historical tableau with taxidermied animals 

20

Zinerva Weymund Vargulli A new, absurdly complex beauty regimen

 

THE VOID (WARLOCK PATRON (5E))

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When you tell others you serve Nothing, they regard you with incomprehension. It is difficult for a mortal mind to grasp the absence of existence. Nevertheless, you contemplate nullity and perhaps – beyond sensation, beyond thought – you will find something, or perhaps, something has already found you…

Patron Spells
1st: false life, sleep
2nd: blur, rope trick
3rd: blink, sending
4th: confusion, greater invisibility
5th: modify memory, passwall

Seeking Emptiness: Starting at 1st level, you can enter a state of suspended animation for up to 1 minute. While in this state, you do not need to eat, drink, or breathe, you do not age, and the progress of any disease or poison is halted. You remain aware of your immediate surroundings but cannot interact or communicate in any way. At any time before the duration expires, you can return to full consciousness instantly as a bonus action.

Every time you gain a level, the duration of this ability doubles.

Empty Mind: Starting at 6th level, you can use your reaction to automatically succeed a saving throw against a spell or ability that would detect your emotions or thoughts, or bestow the charmed condition. You must complete a short or long rest before you can use this ability again.

Ego Destruction: Beginning at 10th level, you gain resistance to psychic damage and have Advantage on Charisma based saving throws. Additionally, you can grant these benefits to another being with an Intelligence score of at least 3 by spending a round talking to them. A creature affected in this way has Disadvantage on Intelligence-based skill and ability checks. The effects last until the creature takes a short or long rest.

Total Annihilation: At 14th level, you can cast disintegrate once without expending a spell slot. You must complete a long rest before you can use this ability again.

WRACK-WRETCH

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Some people become so warped by the power of the wrack-glass that they can no longer stand upright. Far from being disabled, these wrack-wretches lope about on all fours like a predatory beast, albeit one augmented by a human intellect.

WRACK-WRETCH
Medium monstrosity (human), neutral evil


Armor Class: 15
Hit Points: 35 (6d6+14)
Speed 35 ft., climb 35 ft.


Str 17 | Dex  13 | Con 15 | Int 9 | Wis 13 | Cha 5

Skills: Athletics +8, Intimidate +6, Stealth +7, Perception +7; wrack-wretches understand Common, but can only speak in monosyllabic growls.
Passive Perception 17


Mirror Madness: A wrack-wretch that sees it’s own reflection flies into a mindless frenzy, unable to perform any actions except attack or move into attack range. The frenzy lasts until the wrack-wretch is incapacitated or it hasn’t made an attack in 1 minute.


Clutching Bite: melee attack +6 (1d4+3 piercing damage and target is grappled. Unless the wrack-wretch ends the grapple voluntarily, the target takes 1d4 damage when escaping from this grapple.)

Gnaw: A wrack-wretch can use its action to automatically deal 1d4+3 piercing damage to a creature it has grappled using clutching bite.

Sweeping Slam: melee attack +6 (1d6+3 bludgeoning damage and target must succeed a Strength or Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone.)

Lurching Pounce (recharge 5, 6): melee attack +8 (2d6+6 bludgeoning damage and the target is knocked prone. On a miss, the target is pushed back 5 feet and must succeed a Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone.) Before the attack, the wrack-wretch moves up to its speed, ignoring difficult terrain.

NEW SPELL: Grave Dagger

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Necromancy

This spell requires a dagger with a handle fashioned from human bone. As part of the casting, the magic-user invests the dagger with their own essence. By sacrificing at least one point of Charisma, the next attack made with the ritual dagger ignores non-magical armor and deals an additional 1d6 points of damage. Every additional point of Charisma spent adds another 1d6 extra damage. The dagger remains charged with the spell until a successful attack is made.

A creature slain with a grave dagger can only be reanimated, never resurrected.

Until the spell is discharged, the caster cannot regain the Charisma used to power it. Charisma expended to cast this spell in excess of the caster’s level is permanently lost.

ESOTERIC ARSENAL 2: Eclectic Bugaloo

More funky weapons to tantalize, or torment, adventurers.

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RAT-TOOTH
So long as a person holds this dagger between their teeth, they can crawl up, down, and across vertical surfaces and upside down along ceilings with a climb speed equal to their normal movement rate.

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ALONE-AGAINST-ALL
A stout shortsword of Dwarven manufacture. The wielder gains a bonus to attack rolls equal to the number of enemies adjacent to them.

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HOWLING HATCHET
This hand axe returns to the wielder’s hand when thrown and screams while in flight. The wielder has Advantage on attack rolls when throwing the weapon at a living target.

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BOLT-THROWER
This spiked gauntlet holds five charges. By expending one or more charges, the wearer can project a bolt of electricity as a ranged attack dealing 1d8 damage per charge expended to a range of 60 feet. Alternatively, the wearer can discharge the gauntlet directly into a creature they have grabbed, dealing 1d10 damage per charge used. Any spent charges are restored after 8 hours of inactivity.

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LONG ARM OF THE LAW
A larger-than-life-sized metal fist at the end of a 15-foot chain; equivalent to a flail. When wielded by a person of a lawful alignment, the fist can open and operate as a hand with Dexterity and Strength equal to the wielder.