Special Conversion Thread: Lycanthropes and their ilk

Cleon

Adventurer
A quick note on interprolation. I gave it Weapon Focus (bite) rather than the SRD Medium Shark's Weapon Finesse so it doesn't lose the benefit of its melee-boosting feat if it advances in size. The change doesn't affect its unadvanced bite attack after all.

Also, I put the odd skill point in Listen, since that follows the precedent of the SRD Large Shark's Listen +8, Spot +7. That Shark actually is short one SP so it should probably have Listen +8, Spot +8, but that's not our mistake! It's the SRD's Huge Shark that ought to have one of its skills a point different from the other, not the Large one.

The SRD's Huge Shark has one SP too many instead!
The Mako Shark Working Draft is only missing a description and tactics. How's this:

A lean shark somewhat longer than a human is tall.

Mako sharks are found in temperate and tropical seas. They are relatively common, and are a species known to occasionally attack humanoids. Makos are one of the fastest swimming sharks.

An average mako shark is from 7 to 10 feet long and weighs 125 and 300 pounds. Females are generally bigger than males. Exceptionally big makos can grow to Large size animals about 12 feet long. Large mako sharks are almost always female and are more stockily built than smaller specimens, typically weighing 600 to 800 pounds. Extraordinarily large makos can approach 15 feet in length and might weigh up to 1,300 pounds or possibly even more.

COMBAT
Makos fight like other sharks; circling potential prey to observe them before darting in to bite.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
In any case, we have the mechanical elements sorted out so I can start on a Weremako working draft.

I was uncertain whether to call these "Wereshark, Mako" or "Weremako" so have combined the options into "Wereshark, Mako (Weremako)".
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Weremako Working Draft

Wereshark, Mako (Weremako)

Weremako, Merfolk Form
Medium Humanoid (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 1d8+2 plus 4d8+12 (36 hp)
Initiative: +1
Speed: 5 ft. (1 squares), swim 50 ft.
Armor Class: 15 (+1 Dex, +2 natural, +2 leather), touch 11, flat-footed 14
Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+5
Attack: Trident +5 melee (1d8+1); or trident +5 ranged (1d8+1); or heavy crossbow +5 ranged (1d10/19-20)
Full Attack: Trident +5 melee (1d8+1); or trident +5 ranged (1d8+1); or heavy crossbow +5 ranged (1d10/19-20)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks:
Special Qualities: Alternate form, amphibious, blindsense, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +8, Ref +5, Will +3
Abilities: Str 13, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 11, Cha 10
Skills: Listen +8, Spot +8, Swim +9
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Weapon Focus (bite)

Weremako, Shark Form
Medium Humanoid (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 1d8+2 plus 4d8+12 (36 hp)
Initiative: +4
Speed: Swim 70 ft. (14 squares)
Armor Class: 19 (+4 Dex, +5 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+7
Attack: Bite +8 melee (1d8+4)
Full Attack: Bite +8 melee (1d8+4)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Curse of lycanthropy
Special Qualities: Alternate form, amphibious, blindsense, damage reduction 10/silver, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +9, Ref +8, Will +3
Abilities: Str 17, Dex 19, Con 16, Int 10, Wis 11, Cha 10
Skills: Listen +8, Spot +8, Swim +9
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Weapon Focus (bite)

Weremako, Hybrid Form
Medium Humanoid (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 1d8+2 plus 4d8+12 (36 hp)
Initiative: +4
Speed: 5 ft. (1 squares), swim 50 ft.
Armor Class: 19 (+4 Dex, +5 natural), touch 14, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+7
Attack: Bite +8 melee (1d6+3); or trident +5 melee (1d8+4); or trident +5 ranged (1d8+3); or heavy crossbow +8 ranged (1d10/19-20)
Full Attack: Bite +8 melee (1d6+3) and 2 claws +2 melee (1d4+1); or trident +5 melee (1d8+4) and bite +3 melee (1d6+1); or trident +5 ranged (1d8+3); or heavy crossbow +8 ranged (1d10/19-20)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Curse of lycanthropy
Special Qualities: Alternate form, amphibious, blindsense, damage reduction 10/silver, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +9, Ref +8, Will +3
Abilities: Str 17, Dex 19, Con 16, Int 10, Wis 11, Cha 10
Skills: Listen +8, Spot +8, Swim +9
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Weapon Focus (bite)

Environment: Temperate aquatic
Organization: Solitary, pair, pack (6-10), or troupe (2-5 plus 5-8 mako sharks)
Challenge Rating: 5
Treasure: Standard
Alignment: Always chaotic evil
Advancement: By character class
Level Adjustment: +3

A bestial figure that resembles a shark that can stand on two sturdy legs like a human. Its forelimbs are elongated fins that split into clawed fingers. The creature has a short tail and dorsal fin just like a shark's.

Weremakos are evil creatures who will kill for no other purpose than to sate their bloodlust. On nights of the full moon they roam and slaughter with as much abandon as the most vicious werewolves. A weremako in its humanoid form has no definite distinguishing traits. Its skin may be a bit rough, but no more than many normal people who have endured rough lives exposed to the sea's weather. A weremako will normally have a full set of sharp white teeth.

A weremako in shark form is usually about 50% longer and 50% heavier than they are in their humanoid form. However the most powerful weremakos tend to be much larger and more massive than that, up to twice as long and four or five times heavier than their humanoid form.

COMBAT
Weremakos favor hit-and-run tactics that exploit their high swimming speed. They are bloodthirsty and rarely stop attacking wounded opponents, pursue bleeding enemies who try to flee.

Alternate Form (Su): A weremako can assume a bipedal hybrid form or the form of a mako shark.

Blindsense (Ex): A weremako can locate creatures underwater within a 30-foot radius. This ability works only when the weremako is underwater.

Curse of Lycanthropy (Su): Any humanoid or giant hit by a weremako’s bite attack in animal or hybrid form must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or contract lycanthropy.

Keen Scent (Ex): A weremako can notice creatures by scent in a 180-foot radius and detect blood in the water at ranges of up to a mile.

Shark Empathy (Ex): Communicate with sharks, and +4 racial bonus on Charisma-based checks against sharks.

Skills: A weremako 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 weremako presented here is a 1st-level merfolk warrior and natural lycanthrope, using the following base ability scores: Str 13, Dex 11, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 9, Cha 8.


Aquatic Ogre Mako Weresharks

Giants can become weremakos, the most common examples are merrow aquatic ogres who turn into Large mako sharks.

Merrow Weremako
Merrow Weremako, Aquatic Ogre Form
Large Giant (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 4d8+11 plus 7d8+35 (95 hp)
Initiative: –1
Speed: 20 ft. in hide armor (4 squares), swim 30 ft.; base speed 30 ft., swim 40 ft.
Armor Class: 18 (–1 size, –1 Dex, +7 natural, +3 hide armor), touch 8, flat-footed 18
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+17
Attack: Longspear +13 melee (2d6+7/×3); or javelin +6 ranged (1d8+5)
Full Attack: Trident +13/+8 melee (1d8+1/×3); or javelin +6/+1 ranged (1d8+6)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./10 ft. (20 ft. with longspear)
Special Attacks:
Special Qualities: Alternate form, blindsense, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +11, Ref +5, Will +6
Abilities: Str 21, Dex 8, Con 15, Int 6, Wis 12, Cha 7
Skills: Climb +5*, Listen +9, Spot +8, Swim +7*
* includes –3 armor check penalty
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Toughness, Weapon Focus (bite), Weapon Focus (longspear)

Merrow Weremako, Shark Form
Large Giant (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 4d8+11 plus 7d8+35 (95 hp)
Initiative: +1
Speed: Swim 70 ft. (14 squares)
Armor Class: 17 (–1 size, +1 Dex, +7 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 16
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+23
Attack: Bite +19 melee (2d6+16)
Full Attack: Bite +19 melee (2d6+16)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Curse of lycanthropy
Special Qualities: Alternate form, blindsense, damage reduction 10/silver, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +14, Ref +7, Will +6
Abilities: Str 33, Dex 12, Con 21, Int 6, Wis 12, Cha 7
Skills: Climb +14, Listen +9, Spot +8, Swim +19
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Toughness, Weapon Focus (bite), Weapon Focus (longspear)

Merrow Weremako, Hybrid Form
Large Giant (Aquatic, Shapechanger)
Hit Dice: 4d8+11 plus 7d8+35 (95 hp)
Initiative: +1
Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares), swim 40 ft.
Armor Class: 17 (–1 size, +1 Dex, +7 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 16
Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+23
Attack: Bite +19 melee (1d8+11); or longspear +19 melee (2d6+16/×3); or javelin +9 ranged (1d9+11)
Full Attack: Bite +19 melee (1d8+11) and 2 claws +13 melee (1d6+5); or longspear +19/+14 melee (2d6+16/×3) and bite +14 melee (1d8+5); or javelin +9/+3 ranged (1d8+11)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./10 ft.
Special Attacks: Curse of lycanthropy
Special Qualities: Alternate form, blindsense, damage reduction 10/silver, keen scent, low-light vision, shark empathy
Saves: Fort +14, Ref +7, Will +6
Abilities: Str 33, Dex 12, Con 21, Int 6, Wis 12, Cha 7
Skills: Climb +14, Listen +9, Spot +8, Swim +19
Feats: Iron Will ᴮ, Alertness, Toughness, Weapon Focus (bite), Weapon Focus (longspear)


Environment: Temperate aquatic
Organization: Solitary, pair, pack (6-10), or troupe (2-5 plus 5-8 mako sharks)
Challenge Rating: 8
Treasure: Standard
Alignment: Always chaotic evil
Advancement: By character class
Level Adjustment: +3


In Mystara
Most if not all the weresharks in Mystara turn into mako sharks. These weremakos are a more magical breed than standard weresharks. They possess the ability to summon sharks or even afflicted weremakos they have created. Tritons can become Mystaran weremakos despite being native outsiders who would normally be immune to lycanthropy.

Air breathing creatures turned into Mystaran weremakos almost always die during their first transformation into a shark, either by suffocating as a fish out of water or by drowning far out to sea when the moon sets and they turn back into a air-breather.

Amphibious (Ex): A Mystaran weremako in hybrid form possesses lungs and gills so can breathe both air or water.

Gills (Ex): A Mystaran weremako in shark form has no lungs and must breathe through its gills. Even if the base creature is amphibious or an air breather a shark form weremako can only breathe water.

Summon Shark-kin (Su): Once per day, as a standard action, a Mystaran weremako can call forth 1d3 Medium sharks or 1 mako shark. These creatures arrive in 2d6 rounds and serve the weremako for up to 1 hour.

A weremako's summoning ability increases as it gains additional hit dice, allowing it to summon larger numbers of sharks. At 9 Hit Dice it gains the ability to summon afflicted weremakos. See the Weremako Summoning Table for details.

A weremako can only summon afflicted weremakos it personally created with its curse of lycanthropy ability. If no such weremakos exist, the weremako can only summon normal sharks.

Weremako Summoning Table
Hit DiceNormal SharksMako SharksAfflicted Weremakos
5-61d31
7-81d4+11d2
9-101d101d41
11-122d81d81d2
13-143d82d61d3
15-164d83d61d4+1
17+6d84d61d8

Originally appeared in X7 War Rafts of Kron (1984)


Skill Ranks:
Merfolk Warrior Skills: Listen 2 ranks (cross-class), Spot 2 ranks (cross-class)
Porpoise Skills:4 ranks in Listen, Spot

Merrow Weremako Skills: Climb 3 ranks, Listen 6 ranks, Spot 5 ranks.
 
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Cleon

Adventurer
I was uncertain whether to call these "Wereshark, Mako" or "Weremako" so have combined the options into "Wereshark, Mako (Weremako)".
Upon reflection I definitely prefer "Wereshark, Mako" since that puts it after "Wereshark" alphabetically.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
I've just copy-pasted the Wereporpoise for the outline of the Weremako Working Draft and we can change it from there.

Do you have a preference for the base humanoid?

It should be have the Aquatic subtype since the original subtext indicates Weremakos are almost always water-breathing humanoids (otherwise they risk drowning when they revert to their humanoid form).

The monster entry says they are usually Tritons or Merfolk, while FR7 adds Sea Elves and Merrow.

Tritons are excluded by the 3E version of Lycanthropy since it doesn't affect Outsiders.

Merrow are an interesting choice, although Aquatic Elf and Merfolk works as well.

Or we could go for Locathah if we're sticking to the SRD.

Hmm…

How about we use an Aquatic Elf as an "ordinary Weremako" since that'll involve the least work, and also stat up a Merrow Weremako that uses a 7 HD advanced Mako Shark as its base animal?

Just to have something a bit more interesting. We might want to put the Merrow Wereshark in an "In Mystara" subentry since standard Merrow are freshwater creatures.

If we do an In Mystara subentry we might mention Triton Weremakos as a possibility or rumour. I'd also be tempted to add Merfolk Weremako stats just to add to the variety.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
All that for the mako shark looks good. I agree with you that we should leave off the ram attack. There doesn't seem to be a basis for it in the real life mako, either.

I'd go with either the aquatic elf or merfolk for the base creature. We should probably stick to the elf for simplicity. But I wouldn't object to the extra merrow version in Mystara.
 

Cleon

Adventurer
All that for the mako shark looks good.
Updating the Mako Shark Working Draft.

I agree with you that we should leave off the ram attack. There doesn't seem to be a basis for it in the real life mako, either.
I guess we could mention it as an option for the "In Mystara" version of the Weremako since it was only the PC5 Wereshark that had it in the BECMI rules.

I'd go with either the aquatic elf or merfolk for the base creature. We should probably stick to the elf for simplicity. But I wouldn't object to the extra merrow version in Mystara.
Of those two I prefer the Aquatic Elf.

And I'm definitely game for the Merrow version.

Come to think of it, is the BECMI version of a Merrow a different creature to the AD&D version? I'd better check their stats. Let's see, they're in PC3 Sea People
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Come to think of it, is the BECMI version of a Merrow a different creature to the AD&D version? I'd better check their stats. Let's see, they're in PC3 Sea People
Yes, in PC3 Merrow are just standard Merfolk in PC3:

Sea People said:
Mermen and mermaids, or merrow as they call themselves, can be found throughout the warm waters of the world.
They're not aquatic ogres, which is kinda dull. :(

Still the idea of an ogre wereshark is just so tempting. Maybe we can do it anyway…
 

Cleon

Adventurer
After re-checking the BECMI versions of the Wereshark I could find no mention of sea elves being susceptible to the disease. The races described as turning into weresharks are tritons and mermen (aka merrow), plus "rumors of humans" in their War Rafts of Kron and Cyclopedia versions.

The only mention of elves I could find in any wereshark writeup is in the AD&D 2E Monstrous Compendium's Great White version, which says they attack almost any aquatic lifeform "including the intelligent races such as tritons, sea elves, and mermen".

Taken together, that leads me to changing my preferred base creature to Merfolk.

Might as well stat that up.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Merfolk does make sense as the base creature in that case. But I agree with doing the additional ogrish sample. :devil:

I'd be willing to add summoning to the Mystara version, but I still don't really like the ram attack.

As for the summoning table, why don't we start with the same progression as in the wereporpoise and adjust as necessary?
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Merfolk does make sense as the base creature in that case. But I agree with doing the additional ogrish sample. :devil:
Oh look, a Merrow Weremako has spontaneously appeared in the Weremako Working Draft.

It's a Christmas miracle!

I'd be willing to add summoning to the Mystara version, but I still don't really like the ram attack.
I'm fine dropping the Ram attack - it's only the PC4 version of the lycanthrope that has it, all the other BECMI wereshark just have the standard lycanthropic powers (which includes summon/control animals in that version of D&D).

As for the summoning table, why don't we start with the same progression as in the wereporpoise and adjust as necessary?
The porpoise table has a wider variety of CR - ½ for porpoises, 5 for orcas and 6 for baleen whales compared to 4 for the Wereporpoise.

This table's going to have CR 1 Medium Sharks, CR 2 Mako Sharks and CR 5 Afflicted Lycanthropes.

How about the following?:

Weremako Summoning Table
Hit DiceNormal SharksMako SharksAfflicted Weremakos
5-61d31
7-81d4+11d2
9-101d101d41
11-122d81d81d2
13-143d82d61d3
15-164d83d61d4+1
17+6d84d61d8
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Well, you've done a lot on this!

Yes, let's drop the ram attack.
Your suggested summoning table looks just fine.
Since the original monster makes a point that a shark-form weremako will suffocate on dry land, should we remove the amphibious SQ from the shark form?
Thoughts on tactics? What would be shark-like?
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Well, you've done a lot on this!

Yes, let's drop the ram attack.
Your suggested summoning table looks just fine.
Updating Weremako Working Draft.

Since the original monster makes a point that a shark-form weremako will suffocate on dry land, should we remove the amphibious SQ from the shark form?
The problem is removing the Merfolk's amphibious special quality would be contrary to the SRD Lycanthrope template.

We could add it as a special quality of the Mystaran weremako:

Water Breather (Ex): A Mystaran weremako in shark form can only breathe water. Even if the base creature is amphibious or an air breather a shark form weremako can only breathe through its gills. This limitation does not apply to a Mystaran weremako in humanoid or hybrid form.

Thoughts on tactics? What would be shark-like?
Hmm…

Weremakos favor hit-and-run tactics that exploit their high swimming speed. They are bloodthirsty and rarely stop attacking wounded opponents, pursue bleeding enemies who try to flee.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Ugh, get busy at work, and I'm suddenly a week further behind!

Hmmm, forgot that the merfolk are amphibious. Let's just leave it. That's just one of those older-edition exceptions that doesn't translate well, I think.

I like those tactics!

I see you have CE for the alignment. The original has them as N. Do you prefer the change to the "thematic" alignment, or do we want them as more N avatars of nature?
 

Cleon

Adventurer
Ugh, get busy at work, and I'm suddenly a week further behind!

Hmmm, forgot that the merfolk are amphibious. Let's just leave it. That's just one of those older-edition exceptions that doesn't translate well, I think.
I would rather include the idea in the Mystaran Weremako subentry. It seems thematically appropriate to have a creature in fish form be unable to breathe air.

Actually, under a strict interpretation of the SRD, since the Lycanthropy template only adds the shapechanger subtype a human wereshark would be unable to breathe water even in shark form since it doesn't gain the Aquatic subtype.

Come to think of it, Merrow are NOT amphibious. They only have the Aquatic subtype. I will correct that copy-paste holdover from the standard Weremako in the next update.

I wonder what the official version of the Wereshark has to say on the subject…

Well I checked the Lost Empires of Faerûn and Monsters of Faerûn versions and neither of them made any mention of breathing water or gills, so I guess they forgot about the issue too!

I like those tactics!
Updating Weremako Working Draft.

I see you have CE for the alignment. The original has them as N. Do you prefer the change to the "thematic" alignment, or do we want them as more N avatars of nature?
Actually, the Rules Cyclopedia (1991) version of the Wereshark is Chaotic. That's the most recent "monster" version of the creature so I'm inclined to follow that lead. The Night Howlers version is from 1992 but that's for "PC" Weresharks so I feel they'd be biased in favour of neutrality and even those are "insatiable killers" during involuntary transformations.

Admittedly the Companion Set (1984) and X7 War Rafts of Kron (1984) monster entries give them an alignment of "N" but I suspect that's a typo due to them appearing in the normally Neutral "Shark" entry rather than the normally Chaotic "Lycanthropy" entry.

The actual encounter writeups of War Rafts of Kron all list Weresharks as "C".

For example, in encounter 21 "THE SHARKS’ DEN":

X7 said:
Two rounds after the first round of combat, two mako sharks slip into the room from the secret door to room 20. These are weresharks in their shark form. Any character in melee or spell casting has only a 10% chance of noticing their entrance. Any other characters have a 25% chance of seeing them come in through the secret door.

Weresharks, mako (2): AC 4; HD 4; hp 20; MV 180’(60’); #AT 1 bite; D 2-12; Save F4; ML 9; AL C
 

Cleon

Adventurer
For example, in encounter 21 "THE SHARKS’ DEN":
Further evidence, the BECMI supplement PC3 The Sea People (1990) has Weresharks that are Chaotic.

In the mini-adventure "Sharks Were Here" it has some Merrow (aka Merfolk) Weresharks:

Wereshark wicca: AC 4; HD 6; hp 22; MV 180′ (60′); #AT 1 bite; Dmg 2-12; Save Magic-user 6; ML 7; AL Chaotic; XP 775.
Spells: Magic missile, sleep, phantasmal force, mirror image, dispel magic, haste.

12 Weresharks: AC 4; HD 4; hp 20; MV 180′ (60′); #AT 1 bite; Dmg 2-12; Save Fighter 2; ML 10; AL Chaotic; XP 75.
In merrow form: AC 6; HD 4, hp 20; MV 120′ (490′); #AT 1 trident; Dmg 1-6; Save Fighter 4.

There's also a Triton Mage who's afflicted with lycanthropy in the "Personalities" section:

Kitas, Baron of Noriens
(Triton Mage 16, and wereshark, St 14, In 17, Wi 11, Dx 13, Co 10, Ch 13; HD 7, AL Chaotic)
 

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