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Converting Creatures from Other Campaign Settings

Shade

Monster Junkie
Lost Souls
CLIMATE/TERRAIN: The Nightmare Lands
FREQUENCY: Uncommon
ORGANIZATION: Solitary
ACTIVITY CYCLE: Any
DIET: Special
INTELLIGENCE: Low (5)
TREASURE: O
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic evil
NO. APPEARING: 1
ARMOR CLASS: 7
MOVEMENT: 6
HIT DICE: 4+4
THAC0: 17
NO. OF ATTACKS: 4
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 1d4+4 x 4
SPECIAL ATTACKS: Bite, fear
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Regeneration
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Nil
SIZE: M (6-feet tall)
MORALE: Steady (12)
XP VALUE: 975

Lost souls are the animated mortal remains of wanderers who die in the Nightmare Lands. Different types of lost souls can be encountered in both the Terrain Between and in the dreamscapes.

When a wanderer dies in the Terrain Between, there is a chance (40%) that the innate power of the land will cause the remains to rise as a zombie-like being called a lost soul. Once a lost soul is created, it immediately searches for others of its undead kind. When it finds them, it merges with them to become a single entity made up of the tangled, rotting bodies of many dead wanderers. The faces of the dead wanderers peer out from the central mass, looking wretched and as pained as the moans they emit. Once merged, the individual wanderers are subsumed into the newly created lost soul. Physical lost souls cannot enter dreamscapes.

A wanderer who dies in a dreamscape has a chance (60%) to become a somewhat different type of lost soul. A lost soul animated in a dreamscape is more insubstantial, more ghostlike. Like the zombie lost soul, the dream lost soul seeks out others of its kind and merges to form a mass of writhing, moaning spirits. Insubstantial lost souls can move from one dreamscape to another, but they cannot survive in the Terrain Between. For every hour that an insubstantial lost soul remains in the Terrain Between, it must make a save vs. death magic to keep from waning away. Each hour beyond the first, a cumulative -2 penalty is applied to the save. Thus, after three hours the save would be made at -4.

These are the only differences between physical and insubstantial lost souls. They are the same in all other respects.

Lost souls do not communicate. A lost soul does produce an eerie groan that consists of many voices merged into one. These groans induce fear in those who hear them.

Combat: A lost soul fights with two claw attacks. If both claw attacks hit the same target in the same round, it makes a third attack roll to try to bite (ld6 damage). Physical lost souls cannot harm dreamers, and insubstantial lost souls cannot harm wanderers.

A lost soul regenerates hit points every round; 1 hit point is regained for every undead wanderer the lost soul consists of. As few as 2 or as many as 8 un dead can merge to form a single lost soul (2d4).

For each undead wanderer inside a lost soul, increase the Hit Dice by 1+1, damage by +1, AC by 1, THACO by 1, and number of attacks by 1. Therefore, the most powerful lost soul has 8+8 HD, inflicts 1d4+8 damage per attack, has an AC of 3, a THACO of 13, and makes 8 attacks.

Habitat/Society: Lost souls roam the Nightmare Lands, seeking living wanderers to add to their tangled masses until they reach their maximum expansion (8 wanderers). While each tortured member of a lost soul has a fleeting memory of its previous existence, the undead creature has a single mind full of chaotic images and hatred of the living.

Ecology: Lost souls have no place in the ecology. They go into a frenzy when they see living beings, seeking to reclaim the warm spark of life that they have lost. Physical lost souls are hunted by arcane heads, who require flesh to sustain themselves.

Originally appeared in Nightmare Lands (1995).
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Should we make both corporeal and incorporeal versions, or simply note one or the other as an underbar?
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Should we make both corporeal and incorporeal versions, or simply note one or the other as an underbar?
Since it says there's little difference between the two I'm OK with an underbar.

Since these things have a pretty big HD add I'm thinking Unholy Toughness, and maybe their Charisma increases as they merge more souls into the mass.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Corporeal Lost Soul Working Draft

Here's a rough draft. I'm giving the basic model 2 claw attacks even though the stats say it has 4, since the description says "A lost soul fights with two claw attacks". It also says the weakest versions have 2 Hit Dice, not 4.

Corporeal Lost Soul
Medium Undead
Hit Dice: 2d12+2 (15 hp)
Initiative: +0
Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares), climb 20 ft.
Armor Class: 13 (+3 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 13
Base Attack/Grapple: +1/+3
Attack: Claw +3 melee (1d4+2)
Full Attack: 2 claws +3 melee (1d4+2)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Fear, gnaw, improved grab
Special Qualities: Absorb corpse, all-around vision
, damage reduction 5/slashing?, darkvision 60 ft., fast healing 2, unholy toughness, undead traits
Saves: Fort +0, Ref +0, Will +3
Abilities: Str 15, Dex 10, Con —, Int 5, Wis 10, Cha 12
Skills: ---
Feats: ?
Environment: ?
Organization: Solitary?
Challenge Rating: x
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral evil
Advancement: 3-5 HD (Medium); 6-8 HD (Large)
Level Adjustment: —

Fear (Su):
?

Gnaw (Ex):
When a lost soul makes a full attack it can make an additional bite attack against any opponent it is grappling (+3 melee, 1d6+1 damage), in addition to its normal claw attacks. It can bite as many opponents as it can grapple. It can also bite a single grappled foe with a standard attack.

Improved Grab (Ex):
To use this ability, a lost soul must hit an opponent of any size with a claw attack. It can then attempt to start a grapple as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity. If it wins the grapple check, it establishes a hold and can gnaw. A lost soul can grapple as many opponents as it has claw attacks at the same time.

Absorb Corpse:
If a lost soul kills a humanoid or monstrous humanoid it merges the body with its own flesh, for every victim it absorbs in this fashion the lost soul gains 1 HD, an additional claw attack, and its fast healing increases by 1 point. The victim cannot be returned to life with a raise dead or resurrection spell without first destroying the Lost Soul it has become part of, although it can be brought back to life with a wish or true resurrection (this removes the HD, attack and fast healing advancement the absorbed victim gave the lost soul).

Furthermore, two or more lost souls can merge together into a single lost soul, the Hit Dice, number of attacks and fast healing of the resulting monster equals the sum of the individual lost souls'.

Unholy Toughness (Ex): A lost soul gains bonus hit points equal to its Charisma modifier times its Hit Dice.
 
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Shade

Monster Junkie
Whoa! <slams on brakes>

A Gargantuan creature with 2 HD? :eek::confused:

Oh, wait. <Sees Space/reach, calms down>
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
If we're going to call it Gargantuan, the space/reach should be bigger!

Frankly, I don't think these are so interesting as the small version, but I could see doing a "single zombie" and a Gargantuan lost soul. I'm not particularly fond of these as just being advancements of the same monster; they ought to be quite different (and I'm not sure advancement would work so well over such a large HD and size range anyway).

I feel like there are some other big agglomeration type undead we should look at for comparison.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Good points, freyar.

Perhaps we should stat out several sizes (like skeletons, zombies, elementals) to account for various combinations?
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Whoa! <slams on brakes>

A Gargantuan creature with 2 HD? :eek::confused:

Oh, wait. <Sees Space/reach, calms down>
Don't worry, as you've already realized I just forgot to change the size after copy-and-pasting the Undead Mass to use as a template.

Dang it, the basic model's also supposed to have 2 claws as a full attack.

I'll just go and fix that...

Fixed!

If we're going to call it Gargantuan, the space/reach should be bigger!

Frankly, I don't think these are so interesting as the small version, but I could see doing a "single zombie" and a Gargantuan lost soul. I'm not particularly fond of these as just being advancements of the same monster; they ought to be quite different (and I'm not sure advancement would work so well over such a large HD and size range anyway).

I feel like there are some other big agglomeration type undead we should look at for comparison.

Good points, freyar.

Perhaps we should stat out several sizes (like skeletons, zombies, elementals) to account for various combinations?
I did wonder about expanding the size Advancement so it went up to Huge or Gargantuan. I'd prefer a non-standard Advancement (assuming we keep them gaining Str and Cha per HD they advance), perhaps something like:

Advancement:
3-5 HD (Medium); 6-9 HD (Large); 10-14 HD (Huge); 15-20 HD (Gargantuan)
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I suppose we could do non-standard advancement, but I'd prefer separate statblocks for the "individuals" vs the "conglomerates."
 

Cleon

Adventurer
I suppose we could do non-standard advancement, but I'd prefer separate statblocks for the "individuals" vs the "conglomerates."
I'd rather just have them advance by merging. It would be less confusing than having "triple-merged Large lost souls" and the like.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
I'd rather just have them advance by merging. It would be less confusing than having "triple-merged Large lost souls" and the like.
That's alot of work for the DM. I think it best if we stat 'em out at different sizes, and find a way to make the assimilation fit that model.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
That's alot of work for the DM. I think it best if we stat 'em out at different sizes, and find a way to make the assimilation fit that model.
I feel like we've taken that approach successfully before, too.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
That's alot of work for the DM. I think it best if we stat 'em out at different sizes, and find a way to make the assimilation fit that model.
That's OK by me, although I'd still like them gaining HD and attacks as they merge with more lost souls, since that's easy to keep track of.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
That's OK by me, although I'd still like them gaining HD and attacks as they merge with more lost souls, since that's easy to keep track of.
Sure, that's fine.

A good example of blending both methods is the nabassu in Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Sure, that's fine.

A good example of blending both methods is the nabassu in Fiendish Codex I: Hordes of the Abyss.
Okay, I'll have a go at revising the current merge with the dead.

Incidentally I'm not happy with the name and would like something better - Undead Fusion? Assimilate Lost Soul? Necromantic Gestalt? Absorb Corpse? I don't know, nothing really sings to me, although Absorb Corpse is the least objectionable.

Revising...

Merge with the Dead: If a lost soul kills a humanoid or monstrous humanoid it merges the body with its own flesh, for every victim it absorbs in this fashion the lost soul gains 1 HD, an additional claw attack, and its fast healing increases by 1 point. The victim cannot be returned to life with a raise dead or resurrection spell without first destroying the Lost Soul it has become part of, although it can be brought back to life with a wish or true resurrection (this removes the HD, attack and fast healing advancement the absorbed victim gave the lost soul).

Furthermore, two or more lost souls can merge together into a single lost soul, the Hit Dice, number of attacks and fast healing of the resulting monster equals the sum of the individual lost souls'.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Fair enough.

Are we going to do the "single zombie" version or just say that they have normal zombie stats until they start to agglomerate?
 

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