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Converting Al-Qadim and Oriental Adventures creatures

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Shade

Monster Junkie
This thread continues my idea of “cooperative conversions”, converting a series of monsters from similar sources. For this thread, we will be focusing on monsters that first appeared in the Al-Qadim and Oriental Adventures (including Kara-Tur) settings.

What I will do is first post the creature’s original stats and flavor text. Then, I will post a basic outline of the things I think it needs, and then I will give you an opportunity to suggest stats and ideas on how powers and abilities should work. Then, I will add more to it and we will continue to discuss it until I feel it’s done and time to move on to the next. As we work on these creatures, they will be posted in this thread, and after 10 conversions are complete they will be added to the Creature Catalog. You may comment on monsters already finished, of course.
 

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Shade

Monster Junkie
Debbi
CLIMATE/TERRAIN: Tropical and subtropical/desert
FREQUENCY: Uncommon
ORGANIZATION: Pack
ACTIVITY CYCLE: Day
DIET: Scavenger
INTELLIGENCE: Low (7)
TREASURE: Nil
ALIGNMENT: Neutral evil
NO. APPEARING: 1-8
ARMOR CLASS: 7
MOVEMENT: 15, Cl 6
HIT DICE: 1+1
THAC0: 19
NO. OF ATTACKS: 1
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 1-4
SPECIAL ATTACKS: Induce fear
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Nil
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Nil
SIZE: S (2' tall)
MORALE: Unsteady (5-7)
LEVEL/XP VALUE: 65

The debbi is an unusual breed of desert scavenger capable of forcing creatures much larger than itself into flight from watering holes and from their prey because of its ability to instill magical fear. They are hateful and selfish creatures with not an ounce of mercy in them.

Smaller than most useful dogs, the two-foot tall debbi is a hairy creature halfway between a baboon and a hyena. It has the snout, head, and powerful jaws of a bone-cracking scavenger, with large ears and the body of a nimble monkey. They have sharp fangs but use them only for fierce grimacing displays, not for biting. Their small hands are capable of manipulating tools.

Combat: A debbi has the power to put all other animals and men around it to flight through its primitive magical abilities. The debbi can create fear by stamping its feet in a slow rhythm and calling down magical power which makes its fur crackle and spark. The chill in the air and the magical unease that it conjures up seep into all nearby animals. The result is that any creatures within 20 yards of a debbi when it begins its screeching and stamping are affected as per a fear spell once per turn. This fear lasts for two rounds per debbi in the pack. Usually all the debbi in a pack bring on their fear effects at the same time, forcing multiple saving throws by all nearby creatures and thus bettering their odds of driving every creature away. If a creature makes its saving throw versus a particular debbi, it will not be affected by its power for at least the next hour; thereafter, it must save again normally. The debbi uses this ability to drive other creatures away from recent kills and from watering holes so that it may eat and drink what they have worked for. All debbi are immune to all forms of magical fear, and they are very aware of when the effect of their magic wears off.

If forced into melee, a debbi uses a simple club, striking for 1-4 points of damage on a successful hit. Generally, however, they attempt to flee if faced with serious opposition. Almost all debbi are cowards at heart; their magic is bluster. They are excellent climbers and generally flee for the palms when in doubt. They throw rocks and other missile weapons from their treetop vantage point, but they don't have the strength to hurl anything large or dangerous enough to do damage to human-sized creatures. These missiles may distract a spell-caster, however.

Habitat/Society: All other desert creatures despise the debbi, for it takes what they have worked for and leaves them fleeing across the hot sands. Debbi live a precarious existence, however, because they have trouble defending themselves from predators at night, when the debbi rest. Although all might benefit from cooperation in watching for danger then, they are too selfish to look out for their fellow pack members, but they are also too weak to escape a determined stalker like a cheetah or lion. As a result, debbi are often slain at night, when they can be taken unawares by the predators they stole from during the day.

They will also harass campsites at dawn and dusk, trying to get mounts to scatter, searching packs for food, and even making off with meals left unattended for an instant when the campers flee the debbi's crackling magical fear aura. Even if there is no readily available food, the pack delights in tearing up anything it can before the owners return.

Debbi packs are regulated by a strict pecking order. The strong take what they want from the others and abuse them mercilessly. The young are often mistreated by their elders if their mothers are not constantly watchful.

Debbi are too barbaric to understand the value of treasure of any kind. They value nothing they can't eat. They can, however, sometimes be bribed with food.

Debbi who have taken over a rich hunting area or a clear watering hole then proceed to dirty their home with refuse, uneaten kills, and offal. Debbi always foul an oasis just before leaving. Drinking from these polluted waters forces characters to make a Constitution check at -4 or suffer from intestinal parasites.

Ecology: The hair of this creature may be made into a talisman and enchanted to cause others to fear the wielder as per a fear spell once per day. For this reason they are often hunted by desert shamans and even wizards from the great metropolises. The unblemished hide of a debbi can fetch up to 200 gp in the marketplace.

Originally appeared in Monstrous Compendium 13 (1992).
 
Last edited:



Shade

Monster Junkie
Since it is between a baboon and a hyena, here are their ability scores.

Baboon: Str 15, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 4
Hyena: Str 14, Dex 15, Con 15, Int 2, Wis 13, Cha 6

They seem more agile than strong, so I'd recommend the hyena's Str and Dex.

Int is Low (5-7).

So maybe Str 14, Dex 15, Con 15, Int 6, Wis 13, Cha 8?
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Magical beast it is, and those stats sound good.

Want to make the fear effect something like the shadow mastiff's or yeth hound's bay? (Those make you panicked for 2d4 rounds and are also sonic.) We can just reduce the range to 60ft.
 

demiurge1138

Inventor of Super-Toast
That sounds good. How about we make the weapon an actual club?

Also, a racial bonus to Intimidate sounds reasonable.

Demiurge out.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Club and Intimidate bonus sound about right.

Stamp (Su): When a debbi stamps its feet in a special rhythm, it calls upon a primitive magical energy. All creatures within a 60-foot spread must succeed on a DC X Will save or become panicked for 2d4 rounds. This is a sonic mind-affecting fear effect. Whether or not the save is successful, an affected creature is immune to the same debbi's stamp for 24 hours. The save DC is Charisma-based.
 

demiurge1138

Inventor of Super-Toast
I dunno if I like the negative Charisma score, since this creature is all about scaring the bejeezus out of people. The krenshar is pretty similar (hyena-like morphology, magical beast, fear effect), and it has a Cha of 13. So I think that we either need to give it a +1 Cha mod, or a racial bonus to the save DC.

Demiurge out.
 



Shade

Monster Junkie
Added to Homebrews.

They throw rocks and other missile weapons from their treetop vantage point, but they don't have the strength to hurl anything large or dangerous enough to do damage to human-sized creatures. These missiles may distract a spell-caster, however.
Suggestions?
 

demiurge1138

Inventor of Super-Toast
Option 1: They throw rocks. Forget this nonsense about nothing enough to damage people; ours are fairly strong. They shouldn't be that good of weapons, though. Maybe 1d3+Str. Mention in their tactics that, when working in groups, some may ready their actions to throw a rock at a spellcaster.

Option 2: Stick to the no damage doing; in this case they throw sand or excrement, aiming for the eyes. Creatures effected by this ranged touch attack must make a Reflex save or be dazzled for 1d4 rounds and have to make a Concentration check (DC 10+ spell level) to cast.

Demiurge out.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
While both look good and capture the spirit of the ability, I think I prefer #1.

Anyone else have a preference?
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I'd go with option 1 with 1d3+Str damage. I agree that they're just smart enough to target spellcasters, given their magical sensitivity.
 


freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Hi, talinthalas, welcome! Feel free to join in any conversions you like!

Do we want to add any more SAs? Should the bit about the hair being used as a fear talisman be an ability or just flavor text?
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
freyar said:
Hi, talinthalas, welcome! Feel free to join in any conversions you like!
Yeah, feel free to drop in any time.

freyar said:
Do we want to add any more SAs? Should the bit about the hair being used as a fear talisman be an ability or just flavor text?
The fear talisman can probably be flavor text.

A debbi has the power to put all other animals and men around it to flight through its primitive magical abilities. The debbi can create fear by stamping its feet in a slow rhythm and calling down magical power which makes its fur crackle and spark. The chill in the air and the magical unease that it conjures up seep into all nearby animals. The result is that any creatures within 20 yards of a debbi when it begins its screeching and stamping are affected as per a fear spell once per turn. This fear lasts for two rounds per debbi in the pack. Usually all the debbi in a pack bring on their fear effects at the same time, forcing multiple saving throws by all nearby creatures and thus bettering their odds of driving every creature away. If a creature makes its saving throw versus a particular debbi, it will not be affected by its power for at least the next hour; thereafter, it must save again normally. The debbi uses this ability to drive other creatures away from recent kills and from watering holes so that it may eat and drink what they have worked for. All debbi are immune to all forms of magical fear, and they are very aware of when the effect of their magic wears off.
It looks like we should increase the duration (and possibly the save DC) if multiple debbi stamp in unison.

Also, I'll add immunity to fear to the SQ line.

Debbi who have taken over a rich hunting area or a clear watering hole then proceed to dirty their home with refuse, uneaten kills, and offal. Debbi always foul an oasis just before leaving. Drinking from these polluted waters forces characters to make a Constitution check at -4 or suffer from intestinal parasites.
Should we write up intestinal parasites as a disease, or just say they befoul water with filth fever or another existing disease?
 


Shade

Monster Junkie
So just state in the flavor text that watering holes visited by debbis are often contaminated with a contact form of filth fever?

Any thoughts on increasing the duration (and possibly the save DC) if multiple debbi stamp in unison?
 

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