Blog Archive

Monday, 28 January 2013

Chaonaos - Orb of Magical Chaos

I normally use a lot of lawful archetype creatures:  well organized, low-level, working together under a specified leader, and usually willing to work with the PCs towards a mutually shared goal. When I do chaos, its crazy and destructive, so players cannot plan. They might kill you, talk to you, transform you, let you go, make you do a dance or lead you to places that will warp your fragile little mind!

Here is a version of the Chaos Orb from Necromancer's Game's Tome of Horror books, that I loved the second I saw it. Perfectly fit what I thought a typical chaos acting creature should be. Hope you drive your players a little further towards madness.

Chaonaos (Chaos Drift or Chaos Orb)

NE Large Sized Aberration
Init variable; Senses darkvision 60 ft.,low-light vision, Perception +15


AC 19, touch 12, flat-footed 16 (+7 Natural, +3 Dexterity)
hp 45 (10d8);
Fort +5, Ref +6, Will +7
Morale 19 (Fearless)


Speed 5 ft., Fly 40 ft
Melee +10 Bite (1d8+4), Pseudopod +13 (Varies)
SA Chaos strike


Str 18, Dex 16, Con 10, Int 15, Wis 10, Cha 13
Base Atk +8; CMB +12; CMD 25
Feats: Attack Focus (Pseudo-Pod), Skill Focus (Perception), Great Fortitude, Fly-By Attack, Spell Focus (Chaos Strike),
Skills Perception +15, Knowledge (Arcane) +15, Knowledge (Chaos) +15,Knowledge (Religion)+15, Fly +24
SQ  Spell Engine, Immune to mind spells, Resist 20 (all) elemental types, Damage Reduction 15/law


Environment mountains & underground
Organization solitary
Treasure Double standard
Advancement: Huge (11-18 HD)

At first glance, this creature appears as a ten foot large radius dull-gray skinned orb, without any visible organs of any kind. Its skin is constantly shifting, and flashes of colour and energy likewise skirt across its surface, at random intervals small obtrusions appear (pseudo-pods, eyes, tails, etc).  They have a capacity for capturing and throwing magical energy back at their opponents, using a chaos strike ability, but since they do not like to work with others or follow orders, little is known about their powers.

Little is known about the origins of a chaos drift but it is believed to originate on the outer planes, most likely in a chaotic domain. These beings usually end up on prime worlds either by being summoned or slipping through open portals. Their superb battlefield calculations indicate sentience but what if any goals it has on the prime worlds is little understood. Unlike lawful creatures, they do not serve Masters except when initially summoned, and never serve other agents of chaos.

They usually reside in remote locations, living solitary lives dedicated to a pursuits, usually one of an artistic or knowledge. They survive by using their pseudo-pods to kill small animals. Most care little about interaction with other creatures, especially other chaotic beings. When creatures invade "their space", they do their best to destroy them. They reproduce by splitting into four smaller versions of themselves when expiring naturally, these lessers act as a family uint for approximately three years until fully grown and separate from each other.


Every round is slightly different for a chaos drift, as it has differing possibilities that emerge, increasing its physical pseudopod attachs and increasing their chaos strike possibilities. It only needs to roll initiative every six rounds, on the first round it acts incredibly quick and then slows down.

It physically attacks via a pseudo-pod that emerges from its body – each round it inflicts different amount of damage. In addition, every round a spell is cast, a chaos strike is created, rolling on the table below for the effect. It can attack one creature in any cardinal direction (North, South, East, West, Above or Below).

Attack Mods: will not effect chaos strikes created by other spell casters (Roll)
1st round: +12 initiative, Slam 1d8, 100% chaos strike (roll d4 on chaos strike subtable)
2nd round: +8 initiative to original roll, Slam 1d12, 50% chaos strike (roll d6 on subtable)
3rd round: +4 initiative to original roll, Slam 2d10, 20% chaos strike (roll d8 on subtable)
4th round: +0 initiative to original roll, Slam 2d8, 100% chaos strike, 50% 2nd chaos strike (roll d10 on subtable)
5th round: -4 initiative to original roll, Slam 2d4, 100% chaos strike, 50% 2nd chaos strike, 50% 3rd chaos strike (roll d12 on subtable)
6th round: -8 initiative to original roll, Slam 5d10, 0% chaos strike (roll d12 on subtable)

Chaos Strike: Any round that a spell is cast within 100 ft of a Chaonaos (even if not directed towards the Orb) will have a 50% chance of generating a chaos strike.   This chaos strike appears as a sudden whirlwind of multi-colours, adjacent to the chaonaos, and will release the magical energy either towards the source generating the strike or as directed by the chaos drift. The other spell-caster must make a concentration check vs DC 19 to lose the spell if cast directly at the Orb. If the spell is not cast at or towards the Chaos Orb,the concentration check is only DC 12. This does not adjust the creature’s own chance for a chaos strike. Spell effects from magical items does not create a chaos strike.

Roll for each strike each time directed towards either the offending spellcaster or the largest deemed threat if generated by the orb itself. All spells are cast as a 12th level

1   Energy Rebound: spell energy returned to spell-caster, does not lose memorized spell; if fail concentration check cannot cast the spell anyway
2   Confusion (DC 16),  lasts 1d10 hours
3   3d10 blast as fireball, any elemental damage, (DC 16 to avoid)
4   Paralyzed (DC 16),  lasts 1d8 minutes
5   1d6 attribute drain (roll 1d6 to determine) DC 15 to avoid, lasts 1d10 hours
6   Lesser Confusion (DC 14),  lasts 1d12 minutes 
7   1d4 negative levels (DC 16) lasts 1d12 hours
8.  Blind (DC 14)  lasts 1d4 minutes
9.  3d10 sonic (include worn items)
10  5d10, any damage, DC 18
11  Petrifaction (DC 13) Permanent
12  Feeblemind (DC 18) lasts 1d12 hours

Note: This is a version of Chaos Orb which comes from one of the Necromancer Games Tome of Horror books, no copyright infringement intended, it's just a really cool idea for a creature that I love using in my dungeon games.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Nyssian Troll

Though not as strong as the standard trolls, these creatures represent a well-known threat to small villages and caravans of all size. Trolls are famous for two things in my game world, their capacity to regenerate and their horrible smell which never seems to get off an adventurers clothes. While this has been my default troll in my games for a long while, I am still not totally happy with it, I should find better feats or skills to suit it to my version of this beastie.

Nyssian Troll

A hunched humanoid covered in black-grayish scales, with small patches of green hair poking outside. It's over-sized yellow eyes glare at you as the creature drools an never-ending hunger. Even before you see it, the horrendous smell gives the creature away.

Nyssian Troll CR 5
N Medium Humanoid
Init -1; Senses darkvision 60 ft.,low-light vision,scent; Perception +11


AC 16, touch 9, flat-footed 16 (+4 Natural, -1 Dexterity)
hp 58 (4d8 + 40); regeneration 5 (acid or fire)
Fort +14, Ref +0, Will +3
Morale 19 (Fearless)


Speed 30 ft.
Melee 2 claws +7 (d8+4), Bite +3 (d4+3)
SA Locked Jaw (acts as an improved grapple on a critical hit)


Str 19, Dex 8, Con 30, Int 6, Wis 10, Cha 6
Base Atk +3; CMB +7; CMD 16
Feats: Intimidating Prowess, Iron Will, Skill Focus (Perception)
Skills Stealth +13, Perception +11
SQ  Horrific Odor


Environment cold mountains, underground or isolated forests
Organization solitary, pair or gang (3–6)
Treasure ¼ standard
Advancement: Large (5-10 HD), Huge (11-18 HD)

This creature is a hideous monstrous biped with a revolting smell and a legendary appetite. These repugnant beings have small tufts of brown fur growing up through their green scales, small sharp claws, and horrible mouth of misshapen fangs. Their large yellow eyes shine in darkness. If standing erect, they would be close to seven tall, but they are usually crouched over, hiding or waiting to attack their next victim.

These creatures have little society, gathering in groups merely to increase the effectiveness of combat. Their vile and unending appetites make it difficult for a troll to look upon anything else as something more than a potential meal. They are sexless beings, reproducing by budding on an infrequent and unknown time schedule. Though hideous and a never-ending source of combat, nyssian trolls are not actually evil, but their insidious hunger means that they attack most creatures they encounter. Due to their renown constitution many wizards seek out a trolls black congealed blood for use in their magical spells or items of regeneration.


Trolls throw themselves into combat without hesitation, trying to incapacitate foes and drag them off to devour. These trolls attack anything they believe they can kill and eat. Trolls always use their full attacks on the same creature, even if their first attack brings an opponent down, they are just not smart enough to realize it right away.

Regeneration: Trolls regenerate 5 hp per round except damage by fire and acid damage. They regenerate severed limbs in 1d2 minutes, or they may instantly reattach the appendage by holding the stump close to its body.

Locked Jaw: When they achieve a critical success with their bite, they lock their jaws onto their victim, grappling their opponent, automatically inflicting bite damage each round. In order to escape, an opponent must make a successful CMD check or a successful escape artist check. Trolls gain a +20 CMB on their grapple checks once they have locked their jaw.

Horrific Odor: A loathsome odor emanates from nyssian trolls that gives these creature a -3 charisma penalty to all of their charisma based skill checks. Even worse, it makes them incredibly easy to notice, as creatures within 150 feet can make a perception roll vs DC 12, to notice the horrific smell.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Pantheon of the Gods

Tsarin Pantheon of the Gods

Humans are perhaps the most interesting group on Nyssa as it relates to the gods in comparison to others as have found hundreds
entities worth of adulation, and these forces change by location and over time. While there are a few ideals, for most people, because they are pagan, they continually change who or what they worship. If a given aspect is needed (young maiden looking for love, a city facing starvation) petitioners will call out to the god that is controls that portfolio. It is considered unlucky not to provide a minimum offering to the god whose portfolio is involved. Lyrian grey-beards think humans are simply obsessed with superstitious rites, and the gods provide the best outlet for favour.

Alone among the races, humans worship many variations of each god, each group can take one aspect and more closely follow that idea over the others. So while the accepted view of a given Dwarven deity is the same from the various clans or towns, there is signficiant variations among the orthodoxies of each human sect.  

Virtually all civilized gods are hands-off with their followers, giving few if any mandatory requirements. Except for paladins, few followers are directly commanded by their god to take specific acts. All gods have a Divine Code, that is the ideal they must follow. However every deity has a differing code and interpretation is always left to the individual.  Most gods or at least the local churches do not accept direct tithing. Most churches prefer service by the faithful, prayers, patrol, helping to erect a building, serving in a soup kitchen, etc. Offerings are certainly accepted, but most faithful have anything to give anyway. Most of the the direct funding Obelisks receive come from services they offer (both magical and non-magical.) Lawful faiths usually have strong connections to the Nobility or Monarchies, and are funded by directly.

Clerics, while given more power directly to manipulate the magical frequency are given few direct directions or quests directly by the Divine. However, the local church organization have more considerable sway among the brethren so while the god does not elicit orders, churches with strong hierarchies (lawful) have assigned mandates and duties to obey. This is one reason why character power class level rarely matches the hierarchy structure. While a cleric or paladin may disobey the local church, all they must do is follow the Divine Code (as interpreted by themselves) to remain in favour with their patron or god.

There are gods who are so powerful and connected to specific roles, they are deemed to be the patron or originator of an ideal or class. Those who are that class are not obliged to follow, but many use the teachings as a way to learn about their destiny and possibility. so while not every Rogue or Finder need to pay tribute to Shion, they know there are lessons to be learned from the perfect example.

Elves, in their native state, do not follow gods; their spirit reincarnation gives them a unique view on life & death. They have no specific disrespect towards the heavenly beings, they just do not have the need to follow someone who does not walk or live with them. while some elves will argue the folly of belief, most let others do as they will without the need to incite anger. Nyssian Elves have many of the same stories about Elven heroes and their battles and conquests but simply believe they are tales, to tell their younglings about important ideas. Elves who live in human or mixed community settlements, often stray from the reincarnation cycle, and begin to follow an individual human version of a god as their ideal or patron.

Dwarves, Ogres, Lizard-men, Halflings, Horn-Kin all have a standard pantheon of gods which matches the overall human listing, but they claim it as their own, and have differing names for each of the same entities. The core stories told about each of the entities that inhabit the portfolio of bravery in combat, matches in almost every detail what humans tell about Japeth. The only unique Racial entity is the their Patron. Just as other patrons, the individuals even if they do not deliberately worship or follow him, have a connection anyway. All of these races have clerics in their communities. While there is very interaction between the races for those sharing a particular idea or viewpoint, but there is no animosity or violence either; each views their own view as the correct (or most correct) version of the truth.

The flame winged Phaetox are the most different out of the major civilized races, as they only follow their patron. But for them it is not a otherworldly being, it is the Great Mother Phoenix, a being from this world that is waiting rebirth. They do not have clerics among their kind. Each individual carries a spark of the divine, thus do not need a conduit.

Almost every other race tend to have their own individual pantheon of patrons, smaller and less powerful. Certainly evil races (ogres, gnolls, gargoryles) are obliged to greater servitude, faced with exacting requirements by their patron, either amount of kills, of coins, or number of raids in a given period of  time. But while their requirements are much more stringent, their rewards for completing these evil acts are also far greater that those of good forces.

Greater gods inhabit the Far Planes, and are unable to take a direct physical presence on a mortal plane, they have three ways of making their presence known: avatars, heralds and their faithful followers. They can directly communicate with their followers who are at an Obelisk dedicated to them or to anyone holding a holy symbol dedicated to them.

Demi-Powers inhabit either the Nether-Plane or a Side-Plane. Unlike the Greater Gods, they are able to have a physical presence on the mortal planes, but they do not have avatars or heralds, thus if they appear on a mortal plane, there are consequences. They are unable to directly contact their followers from their heavenly realm, they must always send a messenger if personal communication is needed.

Greater Gods
Quanna: Goddess of the Light, Mistress of Flight, LG, Weekly, (Often called the Lady)
Mathai: God of the Hunt, CG, Monthly, Green, Patron of Rangers
Darras: God of the Poor, NG, Weekly, Brown, Patron of Landless Knights & the Poor
Japeth: God of Courage, LG, Monthly, Orange, Patron of Paladins
Keran: God of the Night, Master of Fright; LE, Any, Monthly, Black.
Cush: God of Bloodshed & Murder, CE, Before Battle, Red, Assasins
Shion: (Shine) God of Greed, NE, Any, 3 coins arranged in a triangle, Patron of Finders (Thieves).
Faval: Lord of Destruction & Rebirth, CN, Non-Lawful, Flame / Teardrop
Casna: God of Justice, LN, Weekly, Purple, Patron of Monks
Holon: Earth Mother, Mistress of Druids, Neutral, Any, Seasonal

Rowena: Lady of the Cold, NE, White, Patron of Undead
Anubis: Defender of the Dead, LN, Patron of Jackalla
Crayos: Keeper of Secrets, N, Patron of Seers
Jubal: Lord of Shadows, CN, Patron of Spice (Drugs)
Fatanus: Lady Luck, CN, Gaming Wheel / Dice
Orelleo: Lord of Traveling, NG, Any, Patron of the Gypsies
Rosetti: Mistress of Beauty, Lady Love, CG, Patron of Sorcerers
Jamile: Lady of Suffering, CE, Any time when sick.
Jamine: Lady of the Plague, CE, Any time sick
Stradamia: Mistress of music, Patron of Bards, N
Shellonna: Lady of the Oceans, Patron of Sailors
Shi-Lo: Lord of Combat, N, Patron of Monks

Great Horned One: Patron of the Minotaur-kin
Father Stone/ Mother of the Mountains: Patron of the Dwarves
Tree Lord / Spirit Mother : Patron of the Fey
Phoenix: Lord of Flames, Patron of the Phaetox
Fenris: Beast Lord, NE, Any, Grey, Master of Lycanthropes,