Creature Catalog 3.5 Overhaul Project Conversions

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Creature Cataloguer
Welcome, folks! This thread exits to showcase the 3.5E upgrades to the Creature Catalog’s monsters as we’ve worked on them in this thread.

Always, the last monster posted here is the one we are currently working on. This thread will be closed, but discussion will take place in the thread linked to above (also featured in my signature below). Feel free to comment on any creature posted here in the discussion thread.
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Creature Cataloguer

Large Animal
Hit Dice: 7d8+35 (66 hp)
Initiative: +7
Speed: 30 ft (6 squares)
Armor Class: 16 (-1 size, +3 Dex, +4 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 13
Base Attack/Grapple: +5/+15
Attack: Claw +12 melee (1d8+8)
Full Attack: 2 claws +12 melee (1d8+8) and bite +8 melee (2d8+4/19-20/x2)
Space/Reach: 10 ft/5 ft
Special Attacks: Improved grab, pounce, rake 1d8+4
Special Qualities: Low-light vision, scent
Saves: Fort +10, Ref +10, Will +3
Abilities: Str 26, Dex 17, Con 20, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 6
Skills: Balance +6, Hide +8*, Listen +4, Move Silently +11, Spot +4
Feats: Alertness, Improved Critical (bite) (B), Improved Initiative, Lightning Reflexes, Weapon Focus (bite) (B)

Environment: Any forest
Organization: Solitary or pair
Challenge Rating: 6
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 8-14 HD (Large); 15-21 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment: ---

This animal looks much like a large cat, but has long, dagger-like fangs. The creature resembles an oversized lion with light brown fur and no mane, with markings of a darker color. It growls as it stalks you.

The smilodon, also known as the sabre-tooth tiger, is a large predator of the Pleistocene era. This beast was the most aggressive and fearsome predator of its time. Their six-inch long fangs inflict terrible wounds, and are responsible for the creature's deadly reputation. Though they are not truly tigers, they are otherwise very similar to modern tigers in most respects, but are slightly larger and tougher. These great beasts range between 8 to 12 feet in length.


These giant predators attack anything they think they can kill and eat, attacking with their powerful jaws and sharp teeth.

Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, a smilodon must hit with a claw or bite 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 rake.

Pounce (Ex): If a smilodon charges a foe, it can make a full attack, including two rake attacks.

Rake (Ex): Attack bonus +12 melee, damage 1d8+4.

Skills: Smilodons receive a +4 racial bonus to Balance, Hide, and Move Silently checks. *In areas of tall grass or heavy undergrowth, the Hide bonus improves to +8.

The smilodon first appeared in the first edition Monster Manual (1977, Gary Gygax), Monstrous Compendium MC1 (1989) and the Monstrous Manual (1993).
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Creature Cataloguer

Large Construct
HD: 7d10+30 (68 hp)
Init: +3
Speed: 20 ft (4 squares)
Armor Class: 20 (-1 size, +3 Dex, +8 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 17
Base Attack/Grapple: +5/+12
Attack: Claw +7 melee (1d12+3)
Full Attack: 2 claws +7 melee (1d12+3) and tail +2 melee (2d4+1 plus sting)
Space/Reach: 10 ft/5 ft
Special Attacks: Bludgeon, improved grab, squeeze, sting
Special Qualities: Absorb electricity, absorb magic missiles, construct traits, corrosion (vulnerability) , damage reduction 10/bludgeoning, detect magic, detect scaladar, immunities, resistance to fire 15, spell resistance 18
Saves: Fort +2 Ref +5 Will +2
Abilities: Str 17 Dex 16 Con --- Int --- Wis 11 Chr 1
Skills: Climb +7

Environment: Any warm land and underground
Organization: Solitary or patrol (1-4)
Challenge Rating: 07
Treasure: Standard (magic items only)
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 8-14 HD (Large); 15-21 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment: ---

This monstrous scorpion creature appears to be constructed from some strange metallic alloy. You notice that the monster’s stinger crackles with electrical energy.

The scaladar are scorpion-like automatons created to guard and horde magical treasure. These 12-foot long metal monstrosities are usually found in deep subterranean ruins and dungeons, but have been known to travel to the surface on the command of their creator, or in search of magic items.

Scaladar usually serve as guardians, programmed with a specific set of objectives, much like a golem. These cold, mindless killers are sometimes programmed to kill every creature they encounter. They are also usually commanded to seize all magic items they can find, swallowing them into their body.

The methods to create a scaladar are believed to be much more complex than a golem, and are completely unknown to anyone other than the archmage who originally created them.

Scaladar are the crowning achievement of the wizard Trobriand, a former apprentice of Halaster, the mad wizard of Undermountain. Trobriand created several rings to command his scaladar servitors (see below), and there is no other known way to control them other than the wish spell.

Scaladar quickly intimidate foes with their swift, smooth movements and sudden attacks. They can engage three foes at a time, or attempt to grab an opponent with their pincers and lash out with their electrified tail. Once a scaladar has a victim held, it will usually hold the victim until it is dead, unless a more dangerous target presents itself. Scaladar are excellent climbers, but cannot swim or float in water.

Bludgeon (Ex): A scaladar can use any being trapped in its claws as a bludgeoning weapon. The scaladar makes a normal attack roll against an opponent or object. If the attack is successful, the opponent takes 1d4 points of damage, and the victim being held takes 1d6 points of damage from the attack.

Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, a scaladar must hit with both of its claw attacks. 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 squeeze.

Squeeze (Ex): A scaladar deals automatic claw and sting damage on a successful grapple check.

Sting (Ex): Creatures hit by the scaladar's tail are subject to 1d12 points of electrical damage from the discharge of the stinger. The scaladar can only use this attack once per minute, and the scaladar must recharge it by absorbing electricity to be use it again (see text below). Underwater, the electrical tail sting discharges in a 30-foot radius when it strikes a victim, thereby affecting all within the area (except for the scaladar).

Absorb Electricity (Su): Any electrical attack directed at the scaladar (not area of effect spells or effects) is automatically absorbed. Each point of damage the attack would have otherwise dealt is absorbed and stored as electrical energy in the stinger. Once the scaladar stores at least 12 points, it can use its electrical stinger discharge again.

Absorb Magic Missiles (Su): Any successful hit by a magic missile immediately heals the scaladar as if through curative magic. Each point of damage a missile would have otherwise dealt is healed. Any excess energy is dissipated at the end of the round.

Corrosion (Ex): Scaladar can function temporarily underwater. These metal monsters begin to rust after 1d20 days of submersion, reducing their speed by half during this time. If they remain another 1d20 days after this point, their inner workings will rust completely, leaving the scaladar totally immobile. The scaladar is also vulnerable to rusting attacks such as that of a rust monster or a rusting grasp spell.

Detect Magic (Sp): A scaladar benefits from a continuous detect magic effect, as the spell cast by a 10th-level sorcerer. The effect can be dispelled, but the scaladar can resume the ability as a free action on its turn.

Detect Scaladar (Ex): Scaladar are always aware of each other as well as anyone with a ring of Trobriand, within a range of 100 feet. They are aware of danger to each other or a controller, and mentally able to receive commands in this range.

Immunities (Ex): Scaladar are immune to acid and cold, as well as disintegrate, maze, and shatter spells.

Skills: Scaladar receive a +4 racial bonus to Climb checks.

Rings of Trobriand were created by the same archmage that created the scaladars. These rings allow the wearer the same ability to detect and communicate with scaladars that the constructs themselves have. The rings also give the wearer complete protection from attack by any scaladar, no matter what its orders may be. Any scaladar that touches a character wearing one of these rings will immediately shut down for 1-2 hours, or until the character reawakens it mentally. This ring allows a character to override a scaladar's orders, if the character controlling it is not in range, and give new orders to it.

Trobriand has also created a Master Ring of the Scaladar, which can override any scaladar's orders and issue new ones, within a range of 500 feet. There is only one such ring in existence, and Trobriand wears it at all times.

1991 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.
Originally found in Ruins of Undermountain (1991, Ed Greenwood), and Monstrous Compendium Annual Two (1995) as an "automaton".

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Creature Cataloguer

Medium Monstrous Humanoid
Hit Dice: 4d8+4 (22 hp)
Initiative: +2 (Dex)
Speed: 20 ft (4 squares), fly 60 ft (good)
AC: 14 (+2 Dex, +2 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 12
Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+5
Attack: Claw +5 melee (1d4+1)
Full Attack: 2 claws +5 melee (1d4+1) and bite +0 melee (1d6+1)
Space/Reach: 5 ft/5 ft
Special Qualities: Astral travel, darkvision 120 ft, material projection
Saves: Fort +2, Ref +6, Will +5
Abilities: Str 13, Dex 15, Con 13, Int 12, Wis 12, Cha 13
Skills: Hide +8, Listen +7, Move Silently +6, Search +3, Spot +7
Feats: Dodge, Flyby Attack

Environment: Any land and underground
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 3
Treasure: Standard
Alignment: Always chaotic evil
Advancement: 5-12 HD (Medium)
Level Adjustment: +4

This humanoid has black, leathery skin and pale white eyes, and is carried by powerful wings like those of a demonic bat. Its clawed arms are folded across its chest as it leers at you menacingly.

The berbalang is a dark and evil creature that spends most of its life in a comatose state while its spirit wanders the Astral plane. When it returns to the Material plane, it does so only to feed on the flesh of humans who dwell near its lair.

The berbalang is a gaunt biped, ranging in size from four to seven feet tall, with black, leathery skin. Its wide glowing eyes are watery and white in color. Two broad, bat-like wings sprout from the creature's back.


A berbalang is usually only encountered in its true form when creatures stumble into its hiding place, and awaken it from its trance. If the material body of a berbalang traveling the Astral Plane is discovered or disturbed, the berbalang immediately attempts to return to its body and animate it. Because the berbalang wanders so far and wide, the return process takes 1d10 minutes for the astral form to find the material form.

The berbalang is able to create a solid mental projection of itself; this duplicate travels forth in search of food for the berbalang. If the projection is harmed significantly it will attempt to flee at once, as its death may mean the death of the berbalang, and any damage to the projection slows down the feeding process. In case of such an emergency, the berbalang guides its projection back to the resting place as quickly as possible.

A berbalang or its material projection forced into combat makes the most of its ability to fly. The berbalang’s powerful leathery wings enable it to fly even while carrying up to a Heavy load. A Medium load reduces its flying speed to 30 ft (poor), a Heavy load to 20 ft (clumsy). When the berbalang strikes, it rips at its opponents with its claws and attempts to bite with its needle-like teeth.

Astral Travel (Su): The berbalang is able to shift from the Material plane to the Astral Plane at will, as a full round action. This ability works similarly to the astral projection spell, with some significant differences. This ability does not enable the berbalang to bring any other creature to the Astral Plane, nor does it enable the berbalang to travel to any other plane through the Astral Plane. In order to return to the Material plane, the berbalang must return to the spot in the Astral Plane that it first entered through. If the berbalang’s helpless physical body is destroyed, its astral form is also slain.

Material Projection (Su): When the berbalang is not on the Astral Plane, it can create an exact duplicate of itself as a free action. Remaining in its trance state, the berbalang manifests its spirit into a solid form on the Material plane. This projection can travel up to a distance of three miles from its physical body. This material projection looks and acts as the true berbalang, and is under the direct control of its creator. It fights in exactly the same manner as the berbalang itself, and has all of the berbalang’s abilities save that it is not able to enter the Astral Plane or create another projection of itself. It is immune to all mind-affecting effects (including charms, compulsions, phantasms, patterns, and morale effects).

If the projection is slain, the material berbalang must succeed at a Will save (DC 15) or die as well. If the projection is wounded, the berbalang cannot produce another for a number of days equal to the total points of damage suffered. When the projection returns to its master, it dissipates, and the material berbalang awakens from its trance.

The highly unusual berbalang spends the vast majority of its life in a death-like trance that allows the monster's spirit to wander throughout the Astral Plane. Here the berbalang stalks creatures weaker than itself and engages in complex courtship and mating rituals with other berbalang. The Astral Plane is the only place where these creatures interact with each other, and they even build structures and form enclaves to talk, debate, and learn from one another.

Because the astral berbalang is slain if its body dies, the creature takes great care to seclude and protect the resting place of its physical body. It will move its lair every three or four months, usually from one well-hidden cave to another. This prevents its food supply from depleting, and from arousing alarm in local populations. It moves this way in the middle of the night to avoid confrontation. This is the only time when the berbalang physically leaves its lair.

Once per month, at the times of the full moon, the berbalang returns to the Material plane to send forth its material projection in search of food. Once the projection finds a slain human, or kills one, it flies off with the body. It can feast upon the body while it travels, leaving nothing but bones after one minute. As soon as the projection returns to the lair, the berbalang will awaken immediately, satisfied and refreshed.

A berbalang that is prevented from feeding will eventually seek revenge upon those that interfered with its feeding. Although there may be a lull while the body of the berbalang recovers from the shock of the attack on its projection, retribution is a certainty.

If the projection was forced back to its body or destroyed before it could find prey to feed upon, it will send forth another material projection as soon as it is able, in order to satisfy its hunger (regardless of the phase of the moon) before seeking its revenge.

How the berbalang is able to derive sustenance through its feeding and reproduce with other berbalangs through its projections is a mystery to even the most learned sages. This leads some scholars to believe that the berbalangs are not normal physical creatures at all.

The Berbalang first appeared in the first edition Fiend Folio (1981, Albie Fiore), and Monstrous Compendium MC3 – Forgotten Realms (1989). It originally appeared in White Dwarf #11 (February/March 1979).

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Creature Cataloguer
Astral Searcher

Astral Searcher
Medium Outsider (Extraplanar, Incorporeal)
HD: 2d8 (9 hp)
Init: +0
Speed: Fly 30 ft (perfect) (6 squares)
AC: 15 (+5 deflection), touch 15, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +2/---
Attack: Incorporeal touch +3 melee (1d6)
Full Attack: Incorporeal touch +3 melee (1d6)
Space/Reach: 5 ft /5 ft
Special Attacks: Possession, psyche touch
Special Qualities: Incorporeal traits, spell resistance 21
Saves: Fort +3 Ref +3 Will +5
Abilities: Str --- Dex 11 Con 11 Int --- Wis 14 Cha 20
Skills: None
Feats: Weapon Focus (Touch) (B)

Environment: Astral Plane
Organization: Solitary or swarm (4-24)
Challenge Rating: 3
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 3-6 HD (Medium-size)
Level Adjustment: ---

A phantasmal, gaseous shape hovers before you, bits of astral energy dancing and emanating from its body. You see no clear signs of eyes or a face, but nevertheless it seems to know just where you are.

Humanoid tragedy and dimensional travel sometimes have a bizarre effect on extraplanar energies that swirl and tumble through the dimensions of the multiverse. One of the stranger results of the disruption of planar energy is the astral searcher.

Thought to be the result of great anguish or combat in the Astral Plane, an astral searcher is a mindless humanoid-shaped cloud of Astral energy that has somehow taken on a semblance of life. Those who create astral searchers do so unintentionally, and are usually unaware that they have done so. The motives and movements of an astral searcher are pure instinct — it has no capacity for rational thought and is guided only by the sole driving need to possess a material body. No one is quite sure why astral searchers are so driven take hold of humanoid forms, but the most sensible suggestion is that they somehow “know” that they were generated by humanoid thought and are thus acting on some primal envy of their unwitting creators.

Like moths to a flame, these disconnected masses of emotion are drawn to points in the Astral Plane that might be weak enough to tear and allow them access to the Material Plane, and cluster there waiting for an opportunity. Any rift between the Astral and Material plane allows egress to the astral searchers gathering there, and they eagerly await such an occurrence. Astral travel has a very slight chance of causing a rift to remain open just long enough for astral searchers to pass through.


Astral searchers have no desire in life but to attach themselves to a living humanoid body. When a suitable host approaches, the searchers will swarm and attack. If a searcher is able to find its way to the Material plane or some other plane other than the Astral, it will make every effort to get there and search for a body. An astral searcher flails at its opponent with its arm-like tendrils of Astral energy. If reduced to 0 hit points, the creature’s will to exist is finally broken and it dissipates into a cloud of harmless vapor.

An astral searcher in possession of a body has its own will, and behaves as an individual, based on its new alignment and personality.

Psyche Touch (Su): The touch of an astral searcher reaches to the very core of its opponent’s existence. This damage is more mental than physical, however, and the attack only deals 1d6 points of subdual damage. Travelers from the Material plane on the Astral plane are immune to this attack, their silver cord acting as a sort of shield, though visitors from other planes who lack a silver cord are subject to this effect. If on the material plane, the astral searcher can affect any being with this attack. An opponent reduced to 0 hit points or less by the touch of an astral searcher falls into a deep coma. If left alone, the victim will heal from the damage and awaken upon reaching 1 hit point.

Possession (Su): As a full round action, an astral searcher can possess a humanoid body that has been reduced to 0 hit points or less by the psyche touch attack. If an astral searcher is able to possess a body, the psyche of that creature is destroyed and its mind dissipates into nothingness.

An astral searcher in possession of a body gains all the physical ability scores and Intelligence of the opponent’s body, and the body is restored to its full hit points. Possessing a humanoid body and gaining intelligence has a strange effect on the otherwise mindless astral searcher; in the moment of possession, it immediately gains a new personality and an alignment. The personality of the astral searcher is up to the discretion of the DM and little or nothing remains of the victim’s personality, but the alignment must be randomly determined. The possessing searcher’s mind is filled with the original emotion that caused it to come into being. If the possessed body is of a class that has alignment restrictions and its alignment changes, it suffers the appropriate penalty ascribed to that class for the alignment change. Skills and feats, languages, and class levels and abilities are temporarily lost at the moment of possession, but each will be regained in 1d6 hours. The astral searcher permanently loses the victim’s memories and the ability to gain levels.

Certain spells such as banishment can force an astral searcher out of a possessed body, but since the original psyche of the body has been destroyed it cannot be restored by any means short of a wish spell. The body is simply a soulless shell that is vulnerable to attack by other astral searchers or any entity capable of possessing a living form (such as ghosts and certain other outsiders). If the astral searcher is cast out of the body, it loses all the benefits of the possession, and becomes mindless again. If the body is killed while an astral searcher possesses it, the searcher is destroyed also.

1981 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.
Originally found in first edition Fiend Folio (1981, Tom Moldvay), and the Planescape Campaign Setting (1994).
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Creature Cataloguer
Elder Orb

Beholder, Elder Orb
Large Aberration
HD: 17d8+102 (178 hp)
Initiative: +6
Speed: 5 ft (1 square), fly 20 ft (good)
AC: 30 (-1 size, +2 Dex, +19 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 24
Base Attack/Grapple: +12/+16
Attack: Eye rays +13 ranged touch and bite +6 melee (2d4)
Full Attack: Eye rays +13 ranged touch and bite +6 melee (2d4)
Space/Reach: 10 ft/ 5 ft
Special Attacks: Eye rays, spells
Special Qualities: All-around vision, antimagic cone, darkvision 60 ft, flight, poison resistance, spell resistance 30
Saves: Fort +13 Ref +7 Will +18
Abilities: Str 10 Dex 14 Con 22 Int 24 Wis 22 Chr 23
Skills: Bluff +14, Concentration +25, Diplomacy +10, Hide +12, Intimidate +16, Knowledge (arcana) +29, Knowledge (any two) +16, Listen +28, Search +27, Sense Motive +13, Spellcraft +29, Spot +28, Survival +6 (+8 following tracks).
Feats: Alertness (B), Empower Spell, Extend Spell, Flyby Attack, Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Quicken Spell (B), Still Spell (B)

Environment: Any land and underground
Organization: Solitary or troupe (1 plus 2-8 beholders and 1-6 Death Tyrants)
Challenge Rating: 19
Treasure: Double Standard
Alignment: Usually lawful evil
Advancement: 18-34 HD (Large); 35-51 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment: +11

A large fleshy orb with a central eye and crowned by eyestalks floats before you. You can see that the creature is covered in the scars of battle and age. Its eyes glare at you as it begins to cast a spell.

The Elder Orb is a powerful beholder of advanced age, that has gained the ability to cast arcane spells. These orbs are almost indistinguishable from normal beholders, save that some of their eyestalks will be severed, or withered away into uselessness. These masterminds of the beholder race are the wisest, but the most cunning and ruthless of their kind.

Elder Orbs are sometimes seen as councilors and leaders to beholders and various factions within beholderkind. They see themselves as the pinnacle of their kind, working hard to maintain important positions in the supremacy of beholders. They are always seeking new information, resources, wealth, and magic. Their horde of magic spells, items, and magical knowledge makes them almost as tempting a target to adventurers as dragons.

An important resource common to Elder Orbs is the Death Tyrant, an undead beholder (see Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting, p 309). The Orbs have their own unique spells to create and control them, and use them in various capacities as guards, assassins, and tools for combat.

Elder Orbs fight in the same manner as common beholders, but with much more cunning, experience and strategy. These Orbs have typically lost the powers of some of its eyestalks, though their spellcasting ability usually makes up for this deficiency.

Elder Orbs are capable of learning arcane magic with verbal-only components. They develop their own spells, but are also likely to buy or steal spells from other beings, and guard their knowledge jealously. They can and do use magic items such as potions, scroll, and wizards' spellbooks, as well as any other item that is not worn like clothing (i.e., rings, boots, bracers, robes, etc.)

Eye Rays (Su): An Elder Orb's eye rays function in exactly the same manner as those of standard beholders (see Monster Manual, p 25-26). The only difference between a standard beholder's and an Elder Orb's eye rays is that the Orb will have permanently lost the powers of at least 1d4 eyes, and its remaining eyes do not regenerate.

Spells: Elder Orbs can learn an unlimited number of arcane spells, but may memorize only one spell per spell level at a time. They must study a spell to memorize it, as wizards do.

Spells commonly known among Elder Orbs include: darkness, dispel magic, detect thoughts, minor globe of invulnerability, move earth, power word blind, protection from arrows, see invisibility, and wall of force.

Elder Orbs also always have access to two spells of their own creation, control death tyrant and create death tyrant. These spells are of a unique sort, and the alien nature of the magic makes them unusable to non-beholder minds of less than 18 Intelligence. Elder Orbs usually have both of these spells memorized, to create a steady supply of servants, and as battlefield fodder.

Antimagic Cone (Su): A beholder's central eye continually produces a 150-foot cone of antimagic. This functions just like antimagic field (caster level 13th). All magical and supernatural powers and effects within the cone are suppressed - even the Elder Orb's own eye rays and spells. Once each round, during its turn, the Elder Orb decides whether the antimagic cone is active or not (the Elder Orb deactivates the cone by shutting its central eye).

All-Around Vision (Ex): Elder Orbs are exceptionally alert and circumspect. Their many eyes give them a +4 racial bonus on Spot and Search checks, and they can't be flanked.

Flight (Ex): An Elder Orb's body is naturally buoyant. This buoyancy allows it to fly at a speed of 20 feet. This buoyancy also grants it a permanent feather fall effect (as the spell) with personal range.

Poison Resistance (Ex): An Elder Orb is unusually resistant to poisons of all sorts, and receives a +4 racial bonus on saves against poison.


Control Death Tyrant
Level: Sor/Wiz 4
Components: V
Casting Time: 1 round
Range: 1 mile/level
Target: One Death Tyrant per point of Intelligence of caster
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: Yes

This spell allows the caster to control Death Tyrants in a manner similar to the charm monster spell. This spell always overrides any directives previously given to affected Death Tyrants, and they are powerless to resist the spell. This control can only be maintained on one Death Tyrant for every point of Intelligence that the caster has.
If there are a larger number of Death Tyrants within the spell's range than the caster's limit, the caster has the option of dropping control of one Tyrant in one round, and then assuming control of another Tyrant in the next round. The two Death Tyrants involved in such a switch take no action during those two rounds.

Create Death Tyrant
Necromancy [Evil]
Level: Sor/Wiz 8
Components: V
Casting Time: 3 rounds
Range: Close (25 ft + 5 ft/2 levels)
Target: One beholder corpse/level
Duration: Instantaneous
Saving Throw: None
Spell Resistance: No

This spell creates Death Tyrants from the corpses or empty shells of beholders. This spell also provides the caster with control over the undead beholders, but for a limited duration of 1d12 rounds plus one round per level or Hit Die of the caster. After this time, the control Death Tyrant spell is necessary to maintain control over the undead. Casting this spell is an act of inherent evil.

1991 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.
Originally found in the Ruins of Undermountain boxed set (1991, Ed Greenwood).
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Creature Cataloguer

Medium Fey
Hit Dice: 6d6+6 (27 hp)
Initiative: +5
Speed: 40 ft (8 squares)
AC: 18 (+5 Dex, +3 natural), touch 15, flat-footed 13
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+4
Attack: Slam +8 melee (1d3+1)
Full Attack: Slam +8 melee (1d3+1), or dagger +8 melee (1d4+1/19-20/x2)
Space/Reach: 5 ft /5 ft
Special Attacks: Spell-like abilities, strider’s charm
Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/cold iron, detect snares and pits, greater woodland stride, low-light vision, photosynthesis, plant sight, spell resistance 20, trackless step, tree dependant, wild empathy, woodland mastery
Saves: Fort +3 Ref +10 Will +9
Abilities: Str 12 Dex 21 Con 13 Int 14 Wis 15 Chr 19
Skills: Craft (any one) +7, Diplomacy +6, Escape Artist +13, Handle Animal +9, Hide +13, Knowledge (nature) +12, Listen +9, Move Silently +13, Ride +7, Search +7, Sense Motive +10, Spot +9, Survival +10 (+12 aboveground, +12 when following tracks), Swim +6, Use Rope +5 (+7 with bindings)
Feats: Ability Focus (strider’s charm) (B), Alertness, Iron Will, Weapon Finesse

Environment: Temperate and warm forest
Organization: Solitary or pair
Challenge Rating: 5
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 5-8 HD (Medium)
Level Adjustment: +3

A beautiful woman with ears like an elf’s, and long green hair emerges from behind a tree. She is naked, except for a long knife strapped to one knee. Her deep green eyes sparkle like the finest of emeralds.

The hamadryad is a woodland spirit that is linked to an individual oak tree. They appear as beautiful elven or human women, with startlingly deep green eyes and long green hair. They are peaceful and shy by nature, but quick-witted and polite to those they deal with. These noble creatures are friendly to all of the forest’s inhabitants, and often cooperate with rangers, druids, and beings that call upon them, in the pursuit of protecting their homes. They are quite fond of dryads and treants especially, and give them any treasure they find. Hamadryads are attracted to comely males, on whom they will often cast a charm spell and compel them to perform a special service.

Hamadryads live only in vast ancient forests far from civilized peoples, where they serve as guardians of the woodlands. Though they can leave the vicinity of their tree without harm, they are uncomfortable away from trees and never willingly leave the woodlands. They derive all of their sustenance by absorbing sunlight, and drinking mineral water or well water.

Hamadryads speak Elven and Sylvan, and can speak with plants. Nearly all hamadryads also know Druidic and the language of treants, and they usually learn Common from individuals they have charmed, if they get the opportunity.

Though hamadryads carry knives, daggers and such, they tend to shun physical combat in favor of using their magical abilities. Hamadryads have a tremendous advantage in the forest and make use of this at every opportunity. A hamadryad will use her charm person ability to take a creature out of a fight, compelling this creature to come away with her and perform some service for her, such as protecting trees from woodcutters. Once this service is completed, she will usually release the victim in the depths of a dryad grove, where he may be at the dryads’ mercy.

A favorite tactic against dangerous foes is to gather a cadre of charmed victims, animals, and other allies to beset the enemy. Meanwhile, the hamadryad will tree stride from tree to tree, using her entangle and charm person abilities to confuse and dishearten the attackers. Anyone attacking a hamadryad’s tree will be subject to her mad attack.

The touch of a hamadryad is said to cure nilbogism (see the Tome of Horrors from Necromancer Games), but truth of this rumor is as much a mystery as the condition itself.

Spell-Like Abilities: At will – entangle (DC 13), quench, speak with animals, speak with plants, tree stride; 3-day – charm person (DC 13); 1/day – command plants (DC 16), commune with nature. Caster level 11th. The save DCs are Wisdom-based.

Strider's Charm (Su): If a hamadryad enters a tree containing a spellcaster that is using tree stride or a similar spell, there always is room in the tree for the hamadryad. She has the ability to converse with the spellcaster normally, or she can attempt to charm the spellcaster (DC 19). These special charms can be used at will and do not count against the hamadryad's daily usage of her charm person spell-like ability. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Detect Snares and Pits (Su): Hamadryads have a continuous detect snares and pits ability, as the spell (caster level 20th).

Greater Woodland Stride (Ex): A hamadryad may move through any sort of undergrowth (such as natural thorns, briars, overgrown areas, and similar terrain) at her normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment. In addition, thorns, briars, and overgrown areas that have been magically manipulated to impede motion do not affect her.

Photosynthesis (Ex): A hamadryad does not need to eat food, but gains all of her nutrients by absorbing sunlight through the chlorophyll in her hair. If a hamadryad’s head is shaved and kept shorn, or if she is imprisoned indoors without at least one hour’s worth of exposure to the sun per day, she will begin to starve. The hamadryad will die of starvation in 10d2 days if kept this way.

Plant Sight (Sp): Hamadryads can see a plant in its true form, as if under a continuous true seeing effect. They can also automatically identify magically created vegetation, including spells such as hallucinatory terrain or tree shape. They recognize treants and treant-controlled trees for what they are on sight.

Trackless Step (Ex): A hamadryad leaves no trail in natural surroundings and cannot be tracked. She may choose to leave a trail if so desired.

Tree Dependent (Su): Each hamadryad is mystically bound to a single, enormous oak tree. Unlike a dryad, a hamadryad can leave the vicinity of the oak and travel any distance away from the tree. However, she will quickly die if the tree is destroyed. A hamadryad’s oak does not radiate magic or show other signs of its true nature, though careful questioning with a speak with plants spell probably will reveal the tree for what it is.

Wild Empathy (Ex): This power works like the druid’s wild empathy class feature, except that the hamadryad has a +6 racial bonus on the check (as well as a +2 synergy bonus for Handle Animal).

Woodland Mastery (Su): Hamadryads are in tune with their forest and the environment they live in, and have a significant advantage while in the woodlands. They have exact knowledge of their forest home, providing them with +20 to Knowledge (nature) and Survival checks. Hamadryads in the forest are immune to any sort of summoning spell, but are aware of the attempted summons and from where it originated. They can consume and process any type of water, even water fouled by human or animal wastes.

Originally found in Dragon Magazine #101 ("Creature Catalog III," September 1985, Ed Greenwood), Monstrous Compendium MC11 - Forgotten Realms Appendix II (1991), and Monstrous Compendium Annual Three (1996).

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Creature Cataloguer
Astral Energy Monster

Astral Energy Monster
Medium Outsider (Extraplanar, Fire, Incorporeal)
HD: 3d8+3 (16 hp)
Init: +2
Speed: 30 ft (6 squares), fly 50 ft (perfect)
AC: 14 (+2 Dex, +2 deflection), touch 14, flat-footed 12
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/---
Attack: Flame bolt +5 ranged touch (1d8 fire)
Full Attack: Flame bolt +5 ranged touch (1d8 fire)
Face/Reach: 5 ft /5 ft
Special Attacks: Flame bolt
Special Qualities: Energy absorption, immunity to fire, incorporeal traits, vulnerability to cold
Saves: Fort +4 Ref +5 Will +4
Abilities: Str - Dex 15 Con 13 Int 11 Wis 12 Chr 14
Skills: Hide +14, Listen +15, Search +12, Spot +15, Survival +1 (+3 following tracks)
Feats: Ability Focus (flame bolt), Alertness

Environment: Astral Plane
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 03
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 4-9 HD (Medium)
Level Adjustment: +6

This creature appears to be a fiery mass of glowing energy, formed roughly into the shape of a man. There are two small black spots on the thing’s head that might be its eyes.

The astral energy monster is a creature native to the Astral Plane. They are usually summoned to the Material Plane by spellcasters who use them as guardians or protectors.

An astral energy monster appears as a 6-foot tall humanoid composed of translucent white fire. Two dark black pinpoints can be seen where its eyes are located. It has no other discernable facial features.

The astral energy monster only attacks those creatures that attack it first. If it is not molested, it does not initiate combat. If attacked however, the astral energy monster can prove to be a formidable opponent especially to those unprepared. When struck by an energy attack, it reacts as if in pain, even though it is actually absorbing the energy of the attack.

Flame Bolt (Su): Once per round the astral energy monster can fire a bolt of flame at one opponent within 30 feet. The energy monster makes a ranged touch attack; if it hits, the target must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or suffer 1d8 points of fire damage. If the target succeeds at the save, it suffers half damage. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Energy Absorption (Ex): The astral energy monster absorbs any fire-, sonic-, electricity-, or acid-based attack directed at it (area-affecting spells and effects still affect it normally). Absorbed energy is converted into fire and released back at the original attacker (as a free action in the same round) in the form of a flame bolt. This bolt deals damage equal to the amount of damage it would have dealt to the astral energy monster.

1980 Wizards of the Coast, Inc.
Originally found in Dragon #34 (Doomkeep Tournament module, as an “Aura Energy Monster”, 1980, Brian Blume)
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Creature Cataloguer
Lightning Golem

Golem, Lightning
Large Construct
HD: 11d10+30 (90 hp)
Initiative: +6
Speed: 30 ft (6 squares)
Armor Class: 21 (-1 size, +2 Dex, +10 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 19
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+19
Attack: Slam +14 melee (2d8+10 plus shock touch)
Full Attack: Slam +14 melee (2d8+10 plus shock touch)
Space/Reach: 10 ft /10 ft
Special Attacks: Chain lightning, shock touch
Special Qualities: Construct traits, damage reduction 10/adamantine, darkvision 60 ft, immunity to magic and psionics, low-light vision
Saves: Fort +3 Ref +5 Will +4
Abilities: Str 24 Dex 14 Con --- Int 3 Wis 12 Chr 3
Skills: Listen +8, Spot +8
Feats: Ability Focus (shock touch), Dodge, Improved Initiative, Mobility

Environment: Any
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 10
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 12-22 HD (Large), 23-33 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment: +9

White and blue sparks ricochet from this golden creature, which is easily two feet taller than a man. Its eyes seem to glow with a strange, alien intelligence though that might just be a trick of the light.

A lightning golem is a golden construct about 8 feet in height. Its simple body consists of an articulated gold framework in a roughly humanoid shape that has the ability to move its arms and legs with as much as agility as a human. This skeleton-like structure is often favorably compared to a mannequin or doll that an artist might use in place of a human model.

Lightning golems are created in the same manner as other golems, but using a much more perilous ritual. It must be performed in an open area during the height of a terrible thunderstorm, and the spells cast when the storm reaches its peak. As the final spell is cast, a bolt of lightning strikes the body and brings it to life. Lightning golems are surrounded with the energies of their creation: brush discharges, arcs of electricity, and a continuous St. Elmo's fire dance around it in a rather human-like aura.

Lightning golems are barely intelligent and can understand and obey simple commands from their creators, but they cannot speak. Like other similar magically animated creations, those powerful enough to create a lightning golem often use it as a guard or ward.

The lightning golem moves much more quickly than other golems, and uses this speed to its advantage. When in close combat, the lightning golem lashes out with its metallic arms to release its shocking touch. If possible, it will begin combat by unleashing a powerful stroke of chain lightning.

Chain Lightning (Su): A lightning golem can unleash a chain lightning once per round. This attack functions as the spell cast by a 12th-level sorcerer (DC 15). The save DC is Constitution-based.

Shock Touch (Ex): Creatures hit by the golem's slam attack suffer an additional 2d8 points of electrical damage on a failed Fortitude save (DC 17). Characters who fail their saves may need to make saving throws for some or all of the items they are carrying. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Immunity to Magic and Psionics (Ex): A lightning golem is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance, or psionics that allow power resistance. Fire attacks, as well as those that affect metal have their normal effects upon the lightning golem.

A lightning golem's body is sculpted from 2,000 pounds of pure gold. Assembling the body requires a DC 18 Craft (sculpting) check or a DC 18 Craft (armorsmithing) check.

CL 18th; Craft Construct, chain lightning, geas/quest, permanency, wish, caster must be at least 18th level; Price 150,000 gp; Cost 80,000 gp + 5,600 XP.

Originally found in Monstrous Compendium MC11 - Forgotten Realms Appendix II (1991, David "Zeb" Cook).
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Creature Cataloguer
Golden Ammonite

Golden Ammonite
Large Magical Beast (Aquatic)
HD: 8d10+40 (84 hp)
Initiative: +2
Speed: Swim 5 ft (1 square)
AC: 18 (-1 size, -2 Dex, +11 natural), touch 7, flat-footed 18
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+14
Attack: Tentacle +9 melee (1d4+2)
Full Attack: 10 tentacles +9 melee (1d4+2)
Space/Reach: 10 ft/10 ft (15 ft with tentacle)
Special Attacks: Constrict 1d4+2, improved grab, lightball
Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/slashing or piercing, immunities, resistance to cold 15, spell resistance 29, tremorsense, withdraw
Saves: Fort +11 Ref +5 Will +1
Abilities: Str 14 Dex 8 Con 20 Int 4 Wis 8 Chr 6
Skills: Hide +1, Listen +2, Search +1, Swim +10
Feats: Alertness, Improved Initiative

Environment: Cold or temperate aquatic
Organization: Solitary or clutch (1-3)
Challenge Rating: 10
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 9-12 HD (Large), 13-16 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment: ---

This impressive golden coil-shelled mollusk creeps along the ocean floor. Its many long dark brown spotted tentacles grasp for anything it can reach.

The legendary golden ammonite is a deep-ocean dwelling octopoid mollusk that lives in a great, golden, coiled shell. The ammonite's soft body and ten long tentacles are dark brown with black spots. These twelve-foot long tentacles allow the monster to drag itself across the ocean floor as well as protect itself. Projecting just beyond the rim of the shell are two very nearsighted, fist-sized, multifaceted eyes, one on either side of the creature's body.

Golden ammonites are adapted to the crushing depths and the deepest, darkest, coldest marine trenches below 1,000 feet in depth. They live in dangerous regions, where all but the most savage and ghastly monsters fear to tread. Most monsters shun golden ammonites, although Eyes of the Deep will occasionally be found living near or working with them. The ammonites spend their days grazing for food, debris, and minerals on the sea floor. The life cycles of these creatures are difficult to calculate, as no young have ever been spotted and their shells have never been found abandoned, but it is estimated that they may live for hundreds or thousands of years.

The golden ammonites do not speak or make any sort of audio communication. Sages speculate that they must have a language based on touch, sound waves, tentacle sign language, or some other method, but there is no proof of such a thing.

Golden ammonites are scavengers, not hunters. They are not particularly hostile, but do protect their territory aggressively. They discourage approach by launching a lightball attack at any creature that approaches within 90 feet of the ammonite, targeting the largest creature in a group first. The ammonite’s eyes rotate independently, allowing it to see and target a creature in any direction if it has a line of sight. These eyes can only see light up to 30 feet away, but ammonites are able to detect heat and very bright light sources up to 120 feet away. These eyes are easily blinded with light spells, but the creature’s ability to sense its environment makes up for any lack of sight.

The ammonite is just as likely to fight an opponent, as it is to crawl into its shell and hide. It will grapple any beings that get to close, and can lash out with all ten tentacles at the same time. The ammonite will constrict until its foe is dead, or the ammonite has been slain or driven back into its shell. An opponent can make sunder attempts against a golden ammonite’s tentacles or eyes as if they were weapons. A golden ammonite’s tentacles have 10 hit points, and its eyes have 1 hit point each. If an ammonite is currently grappling a target with one tentacle, it usually uses another limb to make its attack of opportunity against the sunder attempt. Severing an ammonite’s tentacle deals 5 points of damage to the ammonite. An ammonite usually withdraws into its shell if it loses four tentacles or either of its eyes, and will hide in its shell until it regrows all missing parts. A golden ammonite regrows severed tentacles in 1d10+10 days and regrows its eyes completely in 4d6 hours.

Constrict (Ex): A golden ammonite deals automatic tentacle damage with a successful grapple check.

Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, a golden ammonite must hit with one or more tentacle 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 constrict.

Lightball (Su): Twice per round, once from each eye independently, a golden ammonite can launch a small globe of magical light, one foot in diameter at its chosen targets. The maximum range of this attack is 90 feet. Victims must succeed at a Reflex save (DC 19) or be struck in the face by the magically guided missile. Any creature hit by this attack is affected as if it were the target of a permanent daylight spell, and is instantly blinded if it has eyes. The save DC is Constitution-based.

The daylight effect can be removed by dispel magic or limited wish. A victim becomes permanently blinded if the effect persists for more than 12 minutes, but magical cures for blindness work normally, as would heal or wish.

Immunities (Ex): A golden ammonite's alien thought processes render it immune to all magical and psionic mind-influencing effects, detections, and illusions.

Tremorsense (Ex): The golden ammonite's fantastically pressure sensitive skin allows it to detect any motion on the ocean floor as well as the vibrations of sound within 600 feet of it instantly.

Withdraw (Ex): A golden ammonite can crawl back into its shell and seal the shell up, to protect itself from attack. This is a move equivalent action, and provokes an attack of opportunity. When sealed up in its shell, the ammonite’s natural armor class increases by +6. In this state, the ammonite is not subject to critical hits or flanking.

Note that any successful physical attack on a withdrawn golden ammonite strikes its shell first. The shell takes half of all damage sustained by the ammonite, and the ammonite itself takes the other half. If the ammonite survives the encounter, its shell will be repaired naturally at a rate of 3d4 hit points per full month.

Skills: A golden ammonite has a +8 racial bonus on any Swim check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard. It can always choose to take 10 on a Swim check, even if distracted or endangered. It can use the run action while swimming, provided it swims in a straight line.


The golden ammonite's shell is composed of pure solid gold, extracted from the sludgy silt of the ocean floor. Somehow, the ammonite deposits the gold on the coiled wonder that the beast is known for. Each shell is six to eight feet in diameter, and weighs between 1,200 and 1,800 pounds. Average shells are worth between 50,000 to 80,000 gp among surface dwellers, and the most rare and beautiful of specimens can fetch a price of up to 150,000 gp, if a buyer can afford it. Some undersea races consider these shells priceless. Damage to the shell causes a marked decrease in value (-1,000 gp to overall value per hit point of damage, unless the ammonite is allowed to repair the shell), to a minimum of 15,000 gp for the smashed up pieces of a totally wrecked shell.

Originally found in Dragon Magazine #48 (“Dragon’s Bestiary,” April 1981, Roger E. Moore), Monstrous Compendium MC11 - Forgotten Realms Appendix II (1991), and Monstrous Compendium Annual Four (1998).

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