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Medusa's Gaze Attack

Has anyone altered a medusa's gaze attack so that rather it being Save or Die it does something like dex damage or dex drain? Maybe something like 1d6 or 1d8 dex damage on a failed save? My players are going to come up on a covey of medusas and I'm thinking that forcing them to make four saves versus petrification every round is going to wind up with my players being statues.

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What about borrowing the 4e paradigm? For example, first failed save against the gaze attack could result in the immobilized condition (introduced in Tome of Magic I think, and used in later books too; essentially prevents the use of the 'move' function of the move action), representing your legs becoming stiff and stony. The following round the PC makes another save against the ability, which could result in the stunned condition on a failed save -- on success, the character shakes off the effect. A stunned character would then make a third save the following round, with failure resulting in being petrified -- success could either remove the gaze effect completely, or dial it back to immobilized (so you might need a couple of successes once stunned to remove the effect completely).

Another similar way to do it would be to require the medusa's gaze to be applied several times, rather than the affected PC having to make several saves against a single "application" of the gaze. Thus, a failed save would result in being immobilized (or stunned or something similar, maybe entangled?), but if the PC weren't subjected to another gaze attack, they wouldn't roll more saves and rather could remove the immobilized or other similar condition through other means -- maybe by just waiting for a minute or so.

By the way, the PCs could also just keep their eyes closed. Yeah, it's tougher to fight the medusas when they're essentially invisible, but there are ways to get around the penalties, plus it's not like it's impossible to hit enemies while blinded.



I made it S, S, S or D, with some humor.

Each time you save, one part of your body turns to stone (torso and head are last), roll 1d4 on each save.
1:Left Leg
2: left arm
3: right arm
4: right leg
-all with fitting attack and movement penalties.

If you succeed, the magic ends, but the petrified part of your body remains petrified until the appropriate undo spell is cast.


There are ways to deal with that problem. Darkness spells limit how many of the Medusae can attack a given PC. Same for Obscuring Mist, Fog Cloud, etc. Low level spells level the playing field.

Individual PCs can try to "Avert their gaze", use blindfolds or mirrors or a dozen other ways to deal with it.

Still, expect to lose some PCs.

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