NEW MONSTER: Kinder-corven

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Sculpture by Simon Schubert

Superstitious folk say that whenever a child dies suffering and alone, another kinder-corven is born.

They are small humanoids covered from the tops of their heads to the bottoms of their feet with glossy black feathers. These feathers hide the sharp, curved talons at the ends of their fingers and toes. While possessing some level of intelligence, kinder-corven ignore all attempts of communication with creatures other than their own kind. Kinder-corven cannot abide loneliness or isolation. If one is spotted, others are surely nearby. Should the rest of its companions perish, a kinder-corven will fight to death. No kinder-corven has ever survived in captivity.

Their territories, which kinder-corven jealously guard, are marked by small totems and charms woven from twigs and hung from the branches of trees. They are most active during day, and spend the nights roosting in the branches of the largest tree in their territory.

KINDER-CORVEN
Small fey


Armor Class 13
Hit Points 7 (2d6)
Speed 30 ft., climb 30 ft.


Str 8 (-1) | Dex 14 (+2) | Con 10 (+0) | Int 10 (+0) | Wis 12 (+1) | Cha 6 (-2)


Damage Resistance: Psychic
Skills: Stealth +4, Acrobatics +6
Senses: Darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 11


Strength in Numbers: A kinder-corven gains advantage on attack rollss and saving throws as long as another kinder-corven is within 5 feet of it and that kinder-corven is not incapacitated.

Psychic Feedback: A character attempting to contact a kinder-corven telepathically will fail automatically and must make a DC 13 Charisma save. On a failure, the character is stunned for one round, overwhelmed by intense feelings of sadness.


ACTIONS

Rake: Melee weapon attack +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 1d6 slashing damage + 1 slashing damage for every other kinder-corven adjacent to the target.

NEW SPELL: The Air Exits, The Sea Accepts Me

A magic-user wishing to avail themselves of this spell would be advised to cast it near a large body of water – as soon as the last syllable of its incantation is uttered, the caster’s form is altered to survive in an aquatic environment. The spell lasts for 1 hour per caster level.tumblr_phfkbsohtp1xxoebko1_500

The exact appearance of this new body is left up to the caster. No matter the shape they choose, for the duration of the spell they will gain ability to breathe and move unimpeded underwater. The caster will also become resistant to extreme cold and atmospheric pressure and suffer no impairment to their vision while submerged.

The caster also chooses one of the following enhancements:

  1. A natural melee attack (bite, claw, barbed tentacle, etc.) doing 1d6 damage.
  2. Chromatophoric skin that grants advantage on Stealth checks underwater.
  3. The ability to communicate with aquatic creatures (as the spell speak with animals).
  4. Cartilaginous body that can squeeze into or through spaces half as large as normal.
  5. Sensory organs that grant blindsight, 60 ft.
  6. A siphon-jet that expels water with great force (as the spell gust of wind).

However, the modifications to their body means that the caster cannot breathe air nor speak. When the spell ends, the caster immediately returns to their natural form (hopefully within sight of dry land). The caster will also change back if reduced to 0 hit points while transformed.

Miscast results (1d12):

1 – Continually vomit sea water whenever the subject tries to speak for the duration of spell.

2 – Lose ability to breathe air, follow rules for characters holding their breath

3 – Spell works too well – the caster is transformed into a fish (or some other harmless aquatic creature) for the duration of spell.

4 – Spell effects are permanent.

5 – X cubic feet of air around caster is replaced with sea water, where “X” equals the caster’s level.

6 – Summon a sea monster; it has hit dice equal to the caster’s level and all the abilities granted by the spell, including all six enhancements. It’s probably not pleased with being bothered by a land-shrimp like you.

7+ – Consult standard miscast table.

Inspired by the James Raggi method of writing new spells, which I first read about here, and has more recently been described in Vaginas are Magic!, the 2017 Free RPG Day offering from Lamentations of the Flame Princess. It’s currently available on RPGNow for pay-what-you-want, so you have very little to lose and potentially a lot to gain.

 

 

Inspiration & Admiration

Between travel, home improvement projects, and Fourth of July festivities, I haven’t had much time to devote to RPGery lately. So, a listicle – the last resort of the lazy blogger – a half-dozen of my favorite RPG-related websites.

  1. A Book of Creatures: A treasure-trove of monsters from around the world. Each entry is thoroughly researched (with citations, even!) and illustrated. Why settle for a bog-standard ogre when you could sic Bulgu on your PCs? Spice up maritime adventures with one of the many varieties of evil whale. No matter what kind of adversary you need to terrorize some murder-hobos, someone somewhere has already thought it up.
  2. Abulafia: A clearinghouse for random generators. Whether you’re completely out of ideas or you just need that one spark to get you going, there’s a generator that’ll spit out one, ten, one hundred things at you. Sometimes, I’ll just pick a random generator at random and see where it takes me.
  3. Last Gasp Grimoire: The repository of mad Australian Logan Knight. Come for his brilliant house rules, stay for the hilarious re-caps of his group’s (mis)adventures.
  4. Middenmurk: Another blog run by an Australian; sadly, Middenmurk and its attendant tumblr seem to be inactive. A real shame since Tom Fitzgerald is a great prose stylist – I don’t think there’s a more evocative depiction of a crapsack Medieval fantasy setting than his.
  5. The Oblique Strategies: Okay, this last one is kind of a cheat, since, while you can access the Oblique Strategies online, I have a physical deck of them sitting on my desk. They were original created to work through problems with writing music, but they can be applied to any creative endeavor, including role-playing games. I’ve not gone through all of them, but the one that has resonated with me the most as a DM has been “Gardening, not architecture.”

JOESKY TAX: The Dust of Fascination (wondrous item, uncommon) d42891fe428976f4b3eac6fbfaaeccdb

A creature that gets a fistful of this shimmering, iridescent powder thrown in its eyes must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature stares off into space as it becomes fixated on whimsical hallucinations, oblivious to goings-on around it for 1d4+1 rounds.

If the target succeeds the save, it has disadvantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks for 1 round and is pretty pissed off at you, since you just threw sand in its face.

The dust is contained in a crushed velvet pouch; there’s enough for 2d4 uses.