Swirling pools of quicksand recede as whipping tentacles rise from the earth, dragging up a monstrous, terrifying sight. Easily twenty feet or longer, it’s chitinous, pocked hide gleans in the harsh sunlight as it surges out of the ground, huge legs carrying forward a gnashing maw with surprising nimbleness.
Ollphéist CR 7 XP 3,200
N Gargantuan animal Init +5; Senses scent, tremorsense 120 ft.; Perception +6
DEFENSE AC 18, touch 8, flat-footed 12 (+1 Dex, +1 dodge, +6 natural, -4 size) hp 128 (10d8+83) fast healing 2 Fort +13, Ref +8, Will +5 DR 5/—; Resist fire 15
OFFENSE Speed 50 ft., burrow 40 ft. Melee bite +11 (2d8+8 plus grab), three tentacles +9 (2d6+4 plus grab) Space 20 ft.; Reach 15 ft. (tentacles 30 ft.) Special Attacks sand funnel
TACTICS Before Combat The ollphéist uses sand funnel to entrap creatures in patches of quicksand, hiding beneath the earth using it’s freeze ability (DC 30 Perception check to notice the tentacles writhing about in the ottom of the quicksand). During Combat An ollphéist isn’t mindless, but it’s not overly intelligent. Once it has sprung upon some prey, it attempts to grab and kill as many creatures as it can, all at once. Morale Reluctant to leave a meal unfinished, an ollphéist doesn’t retreat until reduced to 10 hit points or less, at which point it disappears beneath the ground and tunnels away at top speed..
STATISTICS Str 26, Dex 13, Con 22, Int 5, Wis 14, Cha 5 Base Atk +7; CMB +19 (+23 grapple); CMD 30 (34 grapple, cannot be tripped) Feats Dodge, Improved Initiative, Multiattack, Skill Focus (Stealth), Toughness (2) Skills Climb +12, Perception +6, Stealth +0 (+10 submerged); Racial Modifiers +10 Stealth while submerged; Size Modifiers -12 Stealth SQ freeze (underground only), no breath
SPECIAL ABILITIES Sand Funnel (Ex) An ollphéist can spend a full-round action to transform an area of sand within reach of its tentacles into quicksand. Once it has started a patch of quicksand, the ollphéist can maintain it as a swift action.
Corruption Blooms CR 5 A vast field of beautifully vibrant argent and carmine flowers. Type magical/living; Perception DC 25 / Knowledge (nature) DC 20; Disable Device special (destruction of plants, damaging the blooms triggers the trap) [hp 10 / 5 ft. square] Trigger location; Reset automatic
Each of the flowers has six pear-shaped petals that are deeply red in color with metallic silver specks erratically splashed throughout. The field is nearly 60 ft. wide and stretches from visible horizon-to-horizon. The verdant stalks of the blooms are tall, some standing as high as a halfling, and create an almost hypnotic pattern as they gently sway in the breeze.
Corruption Blooms are known to the people of the K’naghi tribe as “Soulweed” due to their ability to transform any creature that wanders into their field into a corruption bloom.
They are carnivorous plants and their bite is both venomous and magical, first paralyzing its prey before slowly mutating them into a plant type creature. Eventually, if left untreated, the mutating effect changes the victim into another corruption bloom.
Exceedingly rare in the wild, corruption blooms are magic plants (of true neutral alignment) that can grow in any climate from the icy abode of the arctic tundra to the harshest of deserts. Their only means to reproduce is through the mutating effects of their venom. They can have a lifespan of centuries.
The blooms are often planted by proprietors of sacred or secret sites to deter and prevent passage by unwanted visitors. This is the case with the K’naghi tribe who plant the “soulweed” as a defense around the far outskirts of their village. The members of the tribe have been bestowed with a supernatural protection from the blooms by their tribal god, and the plants do not attempt to attack them. However, this protection is afforded to them only when they travel within their ancestral homelands.
A field (or infestation) of corruption blooms does not immediately trigger with the presence of potential prey, instead waiting for creatures to wander into the center area of the field (at least 30 ft.) where they are surrounded.
Once a creature is near the center of the infestation, the trap triggers and all corruption blooms surrounding the creature lash out with gaping maws that were hidden beneath their large flowers.
To avoid the bite of the corruption blooms, a targeted creature must make an immediate DC 15 Reflex saving throw that repeats at the beginning of any turn they begin their turn in a square occupied by corruption blooms. Traveling through a square occupied by corruption blooms requires a DC 10 Reflex saving throw to avoid the reach of the trap.
A creature bitten by corruption blooms takes 1-2 damage and must make a DC 15 Fortitude saving throw or suffer from one of the effects listed on the table below. On a success the creature is not affected by the venom.
1d8 Venom Effect
1-5 Paralysis that lasts for 1d4 rounds. Slow (1d12/1d12 hours) mutating effect.
6-7 Paralysis that lasts for 1d4 minutes. Moderate (1d4/1d4 hours) mutating effect.
8 Paralysis that lasts for 1d4 hours. Fast (immediate; see below) mutating effect.
Once the corruption bloom venom effect has been determined, subsequent failures do not alter or augment the effects for that creature.
The affected creature begins a painful mutation process, turning from a creature of its type to a plant type creature. If left untreated, after the first increment of time the creature loses its ability to move, speak or communicate. After the second increment, it becomes a corruption bloom. A fast mutating effect takes hold immediately; after 1d10 minutes the affected creature begins to gestate, and 1d4 hours later is transformed into a corruption bloom.
The effects of this mutation, while in process, can only be mitigated by use of the antidote. Once the mutation process is complete, and the creature has been turned into a corruption bloom, it is permanent. Only a greater restoration spell (CL 20th) can reverse and negate the permanent mutation.
An antidote for the mutating effects caused by corruption blooms can be concocted from the petals of the flowers crowning the plants. With two dozen petals (each bloom has 6) the antidote can be created with a DC 20 Spellcraft check or DC 30 Knowledge (nature) check.
It takes 30-minutes of focused effort to create enough antidote to reverse and negate the mutating effects suffered by one Medium creature, half as long for a Smaller creature, and Twice as long for a larger creature. The antidote is applied topically. If the mutating process is completed, it provides no benefit.
The people of the K’naghi tribe keep a few doses of the antidote within their village, reserved for accidental triggering of the trap by friendly visitors. However, they are not willing to just hand over their stock of antidote without either ample compensation or until they are sufficiently convinced that the affected creature is worthy of saving from their botanical fate.
Precisely where I got the idea to make the AaWBlog a months-long, continuing plot is unknown to me. Fortunately it seems to be going well, and for that, a tip of the hat needs to be given to the most frequent of the AaWBlog crew: Brian Wiborg Monster, Justin Andrew Mason, Tim Snow, and Rory Toma!
This wild ambition began with Tribal Troubles. A mysterious creature appears and sweeps the PCs off to the Disputed Territories of Aventyr where they interact with three tribes of natives before breaching an ancient temple. Within they awaken a dangerous, timeless creature, along with a powerful sword that can sweep them away to Pradja, following a curious photograph that talks of the party’s death!
Definitely take a look at the summaries here and here!
The AaWBlog adventure path continues in the tundra of northern Aventyr, along the railways of gnomish engineers and laymen laborers. Our adventurers travel to Steamtown, embroiling themselves in a proletarian conflict centered around a strange, prophetic news sheet! Alligotonium, a mineral integral to the adventures to come, makes its appearance in these series of articles.
Destiny Derailed can be perused now here and here!