24 July 2016

Planar NPC: Trent Aubergine Svietlorob XIII

Trent Aubergine Svietlorob XIII

This purplish-brown anthropomorphic figure has strange, inhuman proportions. Too small head with googly eyes is flanked by oversized shoulder pads. The arms are very long and ending with three flexible fingers, while the two-toed legs are short, stubby, and dwarfed by barrel-like torso.


CR 10; XP 9,600

N Medium Construct (robot)
Init +6; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +3

Defense

AC 24, touch 12, flat-footed 22 (+2 Dex, +12 natural)
hp 86 (12d10+20), force field (50 hp, fast healing 10)
Fort +4, Ref +8, Will +9
Defensive Abilities hardness 10, reconstruction; Immune cold, construct traits; Resist acid 10, electricity 10, fire 10, sonic 10
Weakness vulnerable to critical hits, vulnerable to electricity

Offense
Speed 30 ft.
Melee 2 slams +18 (2d6+6)
Ranged x-laser +15 ranged touch (5d6 fire)
Special Attacks micro-missiles, x-laser

Statistics
Str 22, Dex 14, Con —Int 15, Wis 17, Cha 11
Base Atk +12; CMB +18; CMD 30
Feats Combat Reflexes, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Skill Focus (Profession [gardening]), Weapon Focus (x-laser)
Skills Knowledge (engineering) +14, Knowledge (nature) +14, Linguistics +14, Profession (gardening) +21
Language Abyssal, Aquan, Auran, Celestial, Common, Draconic, Giant, Ignan, Infernal, Protean, Sylvan, Terran
SQ holographic projector, universal translator

Ecology
Environment any
Organization unique
Treasure standard

Special Abilities


Holographic Projector (Ex) Trent can project a holographic image into an adjacent square that acts like a non-magical major image.

Micro-Missiles (Ex) Trent's left shoulder contains a launcher of micro-missiles. Launching or directing a missile is a swift action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity and the missile flies up to 100 feet per round. Only one micro-missile can be active at the same time. It can be detonated as a free action, when it reaches preset location, or when it is destroyed (AC 23, hardness 5, 2 hit points, Ref save +5, evasion). Trent can't launch another missile until the beginning of its turn following the detonation. Detonating micro-missile inflicts 4d6 fire and 4d6 bludgeoning damage within 30-ft. radius burst. A successful Reflex saving throw (DC 18) halves the damage for anyone except the creature that destroyed the micro-missile with a melee attack. Trent has a load of forty of micro-missiles, and its internal fabricator can replenish them at the rate of four missiles per hour as long as it has access to the raw materials. The saving throw DC is Constitution-based and includes +2 racial bonus.

Reconstruction (Ex) Trent has an extensive self-repair systems that allow it to heal a number of hit points equal to its HD each hour. When Trent is reduced to 0 or less hit points by an effect that does not utterly destroys its body (such as disintegrate), its reconstruction systems rebuild it in 1d10 days using available surrounding matter, though lack of suitable amount of metal and other minerals can slow down the process to weeks or years, while the effects that suppress technology or almost complete lack of surrounding solid matter (such as being suspended in void of space or a plane of air) can suspend reconstruction indefinitely. When a full reconstruction occurs, Trent may undergo significant personality changes, including exchange of some of its feats and its Knowledge (nature) and Profession (gardening) skill.

Universal Translator (Ex) After listening to a language for an hour, Trent can learn that language in place of one of his existing languages. It can know up to twelve languages at the same time (one per rank in Linguistics skill). Its native language was originally hard-coded in its read-only memory but it was lost during one of the reconstructions.

X-Laser (Ex) Trent has integrated x-laser with range increment of 200 feet in its right shoulder. This powerful weapon is not only capable of passing through transparent force effects (such as wall of force) but also burning through targets and hitting multiple targets in line unless it fails to penetrate hardness, fire resistance, or fire immunity of closer target.
Trent Aubergine Svietlorob XIII is an ancient automaton that found its true purpose in gardening. While it does not speak much of its past—as many of its memories were purged or lost during its many reconstructions—it can be inferred that it was created as a weapon of war, as it retains many of its original functions, even if it no longer desires to fight.

Despite its peaceful ways it can still be swayed to serve in military capacity, if reluctantly. It had participated in combat operations in the past, for a payment in land to garden, seeds of exotic plants, rare soils, and gardening tools. It has also been coerced by local authorities into "volunteering" when threatened with anti-gardening ordinances being enacted if it refused and provoked into a devastating rampage when its gardens were destroyed...

17 July 2016

Fantasy Races: Luminarian Language And Communication

Luminarian language is a deliberate creation, presumably of their dead god. It has a certain degree of simplicity and predictability that can be expected from artificial creation, though it has many glitches indicating that their deity wasn't a particularly talented linguist.

Luminarian language uses fifteen consonants (b, d, f, g, h, k, l, m, n, p, r, s, t, v, z) and five vowels (a, e, i, o, u). The basic unit of language is a syllable always composed of one consonant and one vowel, in that order. The classic luminarian vowels are always short, though certain dialects differ by length of pronunciation. There is no deliberate accent used—in fact classic luminarian speech is sometimes described as bland and toneless by foreign speakers, with stress and non-verbal components conveyed by deliberate gestures.

There are three fixed lengths of luminarian words. One-syllable words represent classes of entities (eg. ro refers to reptilian, ve arthropods, ta stone, za fire, sa light, su mind, etheric, tu personified, anthropomorphic). Majority of common words are composed of two syllables (kala pack predator or scavenger, kamo apex solitary predator, tava dirth, earth, sula can be translated as social life or mental grouping). Full names are composed of three syllable personal name, followed by a single syllable referring to one's regional group (which have assigned class syllables, so one can come from ro, "reptile region" or ta "earth region"), followed by three syllable family name. There is a specific name for the luminarian world, manata. It is used sometimes in place of family name, together with class name -tu- as polite way of declinig to reveal one's lineage.

Luminarian language uses lots of compound words as nouns, usually composed of the initial class-word followed by other words describing the subject, for example ro-kala-tava means "reptilian pack hunter (living in) earth" and refers to a specific animal species; ku-sumo-manata is "dead individuality of Manata", the luminarian creator deity, and was know as tu-sumo while alive; tu-sula originally meant luminars themselves and now is general reference to sapient, more or less humanoid people (though lizardmen would be ro-sula instead), tu-sula-tava means "people of earth" and was coined after the first contact with dwarves. Now, when luminars need to distinguish themselves from other sapient people, they call themselves tu-sula-manata, "people of Manata".

While there are currently around sixty types in use, luminarian philosophers are concerned about possibility of existence of more types, exceeding the inherent limitation of having only seventy five syllables in their language. There are obvious connections between many classes and related words (roda scale, veda chitin, plate, suda psychic aura), though many other words seem like arbitrary picks made by the dead deity (or the philosophers and linguists for words introduced after the deity's death). There is no distinction between singular or plural forms, but it is customary (though not required) to provide a non-verbal cue. A closed fist represent singe being, an open palm plural, while having one or more fingers extended usually representing specific number, up to four, or orders of magnitude when the context already conveys a significant number. However certain words imply uniqueness or solitude, such as kamo "apex predator" is expected to be solitary as opposed to kala "pack predator". Luminarian language has no homophones and generally lacks synonyms, at least when it comes to common words, though there are different compound words referring to the same specific subjects, especially the many compound words referring to the luminarian deity. In fact, luminars learning alien languages find both concept particularly hard to comprehend. On the other hand, the exact meaning of common words can be hard to translate as they might refer to wide phenomena, for example sula is sort of general term for social life/ Together with humanoid class it forms tu-sula, people, with mental class it is su-sula, the abstract concept of culture, and with the arthropodic class it becomes ve-sula, the hive. Many words also function as nouns, verbs, and possibly adjectives, depending upon context and position in the compound word, for example kala could mean hunt, while kamo is solitary hunting or killing.

Non-verbal cues used by luminarian language are rather pronounced and far from subtle, using primarily hand gestures—luminarian faces are not particularly expressive, nor are luminars keen on noticing subtle social hints. The gestures most commonly used used by luminars include covering one's mouth when speaking frivolously or in jest, merely brushing one's lips with finger to imply humorous aspect to the statement, speaking serious things one does not believe involves covering one's eyes, and touching one's temple when speaking things from memory notes possibility of less than perfect recall. If luminar actually doubts his memories he will be touching his forehead instead, with the exact placement of the hand between temple and the forehead being declaration of degree of uncertainty.

15 July 2016

Kemonomimi!

I have just received an email leading to kemonomimi on DrivethruRPG. It's another thing I wrote for Amora Game... This time it is a set of seven moe races: red panda, raccoon, cat, dog, fox, hare, and tanuki for incoming setting.

The introductory legend of kemonomimi was written by Greg LaRose.

Kemonomimi on Paizo website.

11 July 2016

Campaign Idea: The Many Voices Of Gaia

The political and economical pressure were driving the governments and corporations to pay less heed to environmental concerns across the world. The endangered species were dying out faster than they were even discovered. The biodiversity was diminishing and those who were calling for reasonable measures to protect the vanishing fauna and flora were ignored, mocked, or even silenced... Paving the way for the unreasonable measures...

The first sign was noticed by zoologist and veterinarians: a wave of mostly harmless flu-like epidemic among giant apes and elephants. Then, there was noticeable growth in the number of stillbirths and congenital abnormalities of those species. And then, the large number of healthy siblings of the stillborn ones started to show even greater cognitive capabilities than older apes and elephants, bordering those of human children...

Closer examination revealed even more starling revelation. The new generation developed physical qualities allowing them not only to understand human language but also use speech themselves. The cause was clear once biologist started looking for it. An extremely complex virus, or rather a set of viruses engineered to enhance simian and elephantine intelligence and ability to express it. When the news spread, a unheard before eco-terrorist group calling themselves Voices Of Gaia claimed responsibility for creation and initial spread of the virus, named Sapience-1A (simian), Sapience-1B (elephant), and Sapience-1C (cetacean). Indeed, when biologist started checking those claims, they confirmed that dolphins and whales were among the affected species, to a various degree. Voices proclaimed that the animals now will be able to join the fight for their rights and for the protection of Earth itself from human abuse. Many of the less fringe groups were less optimistic about the uplifted animals role in the world. Nevertheless they joined the fight for rights of the sapient animals, hoping that it will also open ways for improved legal standing of non-sapient creatures as well.

European Union, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Brasil,  was quick to adopt provisions for Non-human Personhood of apes, cetaceans, and elephants, with varying degree of approval of member states and proceeded to push for altering world-wide recognition of Human Rights into Personhood Rights. India and many African states were quick to join the convention as well, though restricting them only to actually sapient specimens, and while the basic protections were invoked, the struggle between promoters of full personal rights and proponents of limited personal rights started, with the later often claiming that sapient animals should be treated as wards of state or whatever corporation would take them under care...

The United States strayed behind when it came to granting personhood to sapient animals becoming another bone of contention between federal government and proponents of individual states right. Federalists stated that personhood rights were extension of basic human rights and as such were matter for congress to decide. Anti-federalists claimed that Constitution makes no provision for the animal rights and thus it falls to states to decide matter individual. Others proposed amending the Constitution with all its amendments to replace term human with term person and adding expanded definition of person—with certain lobbyists pushing for very generous one, that would extend corporate personhood even further.

Norway and Japan were very reluctant to grant personal rights to cetaceans because of their whalers. Both countries became targets of political and economical pressure from the states that approved the new conventions. China not only decided to write their own limited personal rights to sapient animals, it also proclaimed similar degree of protection from certain other animal species, the most prominent being pandas and tigers. They even went as far as to deem all the pandas Chinese citizens and request return of all the pandas home. This was mostly a public relations stunt, though, for they were more than willing to negotiate conditions for many zoos to keep their pandas. Russia made non-committing statements to the effect of supporting sapient animal rights but they also made certain overtures toward Norway and Japan trying to take advantage of pressure exerted by other countries on those two states.

Muslim countries mostly accepted personal rights of animals though they were reluctant to call them extension of "human" rights. Instead, they insisted on recognizing sapient animals as category of jinn. Some of the more radical clerics refrained from supporting that interpretation, claiming that as fruit of human hubris, they are corruption of divine creation instead of real people, while other radicals claimed that despite being created by human sin, they are, as a sapient beings capable of salvation by accepting faith in one true god. Christianity went through similar internal arguments, though unlike Islam, they lacked the existing scriptures supporting existence of non-human sapient beings capable of being saved by divine grace making the acceptance much slower. Many fundamental evangelic Christianity branches, particularly in United States, formed a strong opposition to acceptance of sapient animal rights, citing Bible giving humans dominion and use of animals as irreconcilable with notion of animal personhood.

Of course the matters could not remain that simple across the world. When everyone started thinking the situation is more or less under control, the virus spread to other animals... While some of the new strains might have been deliberate creation of the Sapience designers (or someone else who cracked the virus code and understood its mechanisms to a higher degree than mainstream biotechnologists), others were clearly the case of unpredictable mutation. Sapience-1D affected canids, Sapience-1E affected cats. Sapience-1A mutated into 1A1 infecting gibbons and Old World monkeys, 1A2 affecting New World Monkeys, and 1A3 series infecting lemurs and similar primates. The virus shocked scientist again when it started spreading beyond mammals: Sapience-2 family affected various groups of avians, mostly corvids, and Sapience-3 appeared among cephalopods...

The newly written laws were thrown in disarray, causing hasty corrections, changes, and extensions as well as even more opposition. The conspiracy theories grew abundant, fueled by the fact that Voices Of Gaia, beyond the revelation that cetaceans were recipients of the virus were either unwilling, or unable to provide more technical information about the virus, its development process, or the mechanisms of its workings, sparking the popular notion that they only jumped on opportunity present by the virus and weren't its creators... The lack of any concrete data supporting their existence before the spread of the virus muddled the matter more. How could a pro-ecological organization leave not a single a trace in the social medias?!

The popular explanations were a conspiracy of world governments planning to diminish human rights by diffusing them with animal rights, or to undermine democracy by creation of legions of new voters, loyal to their secret masters... The virus was divine providence of the benevolent god (or the god and the goddess as professed by some Wicca) tired of human abuse, possibly even with intent to replace humans completely, the virus was creation of the devil, the virus was creation of the aliens bent on conquering the humans (or making them better by having sapient companions...), the virus was sent from the future by sapient animals that completely replaced the humans, the virus merely awakened from dormancy after hundreds of thousands of years it passed since it enhanced cognitive abilities of early humans. Who knows the truth? Possibly only its creator, if there is one actually... The scientific research of the Sapience virus progresses but for every step forward, a two new complications arise... Will it affect more animals? How will the ecosystem cope with thousands of overly smart creature? Will it mutate to affect humans?

04 July 2016

Monster: Ro-Kala-Tava

Ro-Kala-Tava

This stocky reptilian beast is covered in rugged brown and yellow scales. 

CR 1; XP 400
N Small Animal
Init +0; Senses low-light vision, scent; Perception +6


Defense
AC 13, touch 11, flat-footed 12 (+2 natural, +1 size)
hp 15 (2d8+6)
Fort +6, Ref +3, Will +1

Offense
Speed 20 ft., burrow 10 ft.
Melee bite +2 (1d4), 2 claws +2 (1d4)


Statistics
Str 10, Dex 10, Con 16, Int 1, Wis 13, Cha 7

Base Atk +1; CMB +0; CMD 10
Feats
Skills Perception +6

SQ hibernate

Ecology
Environment tropical (luminarian homeworld)

Organization pack (3–12)
Treasure standard


Special Ablities

Hibernate (Ex) Ro-kala-tava can fall into a deep slumber when the food and water is scare, remaining in that state without need for food and water for up to half a circle (little less than half of a standard year).

Ro-kala-tava are one of animal species native to the luminarian homeworldRo identifies the entity as a scaly, reptilian one, kala means a predatory pack creature, and tava means dirt, earth.

Ro-kala-tava are neither particularly cunning, vicious, powerful, or fast predators. Yet, they can be quite dangerous as they are very tenacious, can burrow through sand and soft stone, and live in packs. In combat they can stand on the hind legs while biting and scratching with their front claws.

Ro-kala-tava animal companions

Starting Statistics: Size Small; Speed 20 ft., burrow 10 ft.; AC +2 natural armor; Attack bite (1d4), 2 claws (1d4); Ability Scores Str 10, Dex 10, Con 16, Int 1, Wis 13, Cha 7; Special Qualities low-light vision, scent.

4th level advancement: Size Medium; AC +1 natural armor; Attack bite (1d6), 2 claws (1d6); Ability Scores Str +4, Dex –2, Con +4.

26 June 2016

Monster: Steel Angel

Steel Angel

It is a slender figure made of polished steel, burnished brass, and golden light, its form reminiscent of a clockwork angel with wings made of long metal blades. Its left shoulder is burdened with a strange turret-like protrusion crackling with empyrean energies.

CR 12; XP 19,200
NG Huge Construct (extraplanar, good)
Init +6; Senses darkvision 60 ft., detect evil, low-light vision; Perception +18


Defense
AC 27, touch 11, flat-footed 24 (+2 Dex, +1 dodge, +16 natural, –2 size)
hp 128 (16d10+40)
Fort +5, Ref +7, Will +7
Defensive Abilities fall not to evil; DR 10/adamantine and evil; Immune construct traits, magic

Offense
Speed 30 ft., fly 60 ft. (good)
Melee 2 claws +21 (3d6+7) and 2 wings +16 (1d8+3)

Ranged rapture gun +17/+12/+7/+2 ranged touch (3d6)
Space 15 ft.; Reach 15 ft.
Special Attacks rapture gun
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th)
Constant—detect evil

Statistics
Str 24, Dex 14, Con —, Int 15, Wis 15, Cha 15

Base Atk +16; CMB +25; CMD 38
Feats Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Improved Critical (rapture gun), Improved Initiative, Point-Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Rapid Shot, Weapon Focus (rapture gun)
Skills Fly +18, Knowledge (planes) +18, Perception +18, Sense Motive +18

Language understands Celestial but does not speak

Ecology
Environment any

Organization solitary or pair
Treasure standard

Special Abilities

Fall Not To Evil (Su) A steel angel is strangely energized when fighting forces of evil. It gains a cumulative fast healing 1 for each creature with aura of evil or evil subtype within 60 feet.


Immunity To Magic (Ex) A steel angel is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance. In addition, certain spells and effects function differently against the creature, as noted below.

  • Spells and spell-like abilities with the evil descriptor deal 1 point of damage per spell level or their normal damage whichever is higher, though they cause no other effects on steel angels.
  • Spells and spell-like abilities with the good descriptor heal the steel angel for 1 point per spell level or their normal healing whichever is higher.
  • Disintegrate turns the steel angel incorporeal for one round, making it appear as a radiant version of oneself made of celestial energies. The incorporeal steel angel can still use its rapture gun to attack corporeal creatures without penalties.
  • Banishment, dismissal, and other effects that expel extraplanar creatures still work to abjure steel angels, though they have no other effects.
Rapture Gun (Su) A steel angel can fire bolts of holy energy from its built-in rapture gun. It has range increment of 100 feet, requires ranged touch attack to hit and deals 3d6 points of damage per hit. As a standard action, a steel angel can fire a massive beam of holy energy dealing 15d6 points of damage to all creatures within 100 feet line. A successful Reflex saving throw (DC 20) halves the damage. The saving throw DC is Charisma-based. After firing the beam, the steel angel cannot use its rapture gun for the next 1d4 rounds.

Steel angels are marvels of empyrean mechanics, divine constructs made of otherworldly materials powered by celestial spirits. They are powerful tools for good forces, capable of withstanding many of fiendish afflictions and powers while energized by mere presence of nearby evil.

20 June 2016

Monster: Oozeling

Oozeling

This little blob of rainbow-colored, semi-translucent slime oozes around vigorously.

CR 2; XP 600
N Tiny Ooze
Init +6; Senses blindsight 10 ft., scent; Perception +5


Defense
AC 14, touch 14, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +2 size)
hp 19 (3d8+6)
Fort +3, Ref +3, Will +3
Defensive Abilities ooze; Immune disease, fear, nausea, sickened

Offense
Speed 20 ft., climb 20 ft., swim 20 ft
Ranged boring acid +6 ranged touch (2d6 acid)

Space 2-1/2 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks 

Statistics
Str 4, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 11, Wis 15, Cha 11

Base Atk +2; CMB –3; CMD 9 (can't be tripped)
Feats Alertness, Improved Initiative
Skills Climb +5, Escape Artist +22, Perception +7, Sense Motive +7, Swim +5; Racial Modifiers +20 Escape Artist

Language can't speak
SQ compression

Ecology
Environment any

Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3-20)
Treasure incidental only

Special Abilities

Boring Acid (Ex) An oozeling can excrete and spit corrosive fluid dealing 2d6 points of acid damage to single creature or object within 20 feet on a successful ranged touch attack, and reducing acid resistance by 1 until the end of the oozeling's following turn. Resistance reduction from consecutive hits with this ability stack, to a maximum reduction of 10 with each hit resetting duration of the effect. When grappled, pinned or swallowed, an oozeling can excrete corrosive fluid from his whole surface as a standard action, inflicting 4d6 points of acid damage to the grappling, pinning or swallowing creature. Oozelings suffer nonlethal damage from other oozelings' boring acid but have no special resistances against acid damage from other sources.

Oozzlings are sentient, friendly blobs of motile protoplasm, almost certainly a byproduct of some magical or alchemical experiment. They are quite gregarious and curious beings with vigor and attention span of a young kitten. They can be also accidentally destructive due to their natural corrosive qualities and while they can't jump, they can move on almost any horizontal surfaces with ease.

A 3rd level spellcaster with Improved Familiar feat can take oozeling as a familiar.