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The Nebelis, Xenomorphic Scourge of Ironfall [Creature Design]


Suggestions/House Rules/Homebrew

Taldor

The oil lamps lining Vernissage Boulevard shined dimly against the hazy, smoke filled backdrop of Ironfall's Central Plaza. The night was young but the Iron Pact's recent riots had severely reduced the citizens' readiness to walk the streets of Ironfall past sundown... yet tonight of all nights, the Balcon Bleu was back in town and this was a show the crowd would not miss. As throngs of people filled the Central Plaza, each hoping to obtain one of the precious tickets to the show, a droning, buzzing noise filled the air... and seconds later, when the Nebelis burst forth from beneath the cobbled streets, carnage ensued.

The Nebelis

Origin
Their genetic material harvested from an extraplanar creature's corpse found in the wreckage of a fallen star vessel, the Nebelis were designed to be the perfect form of evolution... a creature capable of delving the oceans, mining the underworks and even harvesting space's infinite resources. Unfortunately, like all creatures designed to be mindless and dominated... the reality is much more bloody.

Statistics:

The insectile monster skitters out of the piping in front of you, with a maw dripping with acid and eerily glowing wings.

The Nebelis are unique in that they were designed to evolve to circumstances in order to overcome any obstacle. Therefore, they can't be considered as just a single creature, but as a base that is then modified to give the final version.

Nebelis Brood (CR 1)
XP 400
N Small abberation (xenomorph)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft; Perception +8
---
AC 18, touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+2 Dex, +5 natural, +1 size)
hp 8 (1d8+4)
Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +1
Immune acid, disease, poison
---
Speed 30 ft.
Melee bite +2 (1d6/x3)
Ranged --
Special Attacks --
---
Str 10, Dex 14, Con 17, Int 6, Wis 13, Cha 6
Base Atk +1; CMB +0; CMD 12 (20 vs. Trip)
Feats Skill Focus (Perception)
Skills Perception +8
SQ nascent hive mind, inherently xenomorphic (usually takes Improved Damage, Improved Natural Armor)

Nascent Hive Mind (Ex) As long as there are at least two Nebelis within 50 ft of each other, if one Nebelis is aware of danger, they all are. No Nebelis in the group is considered flanked or flat-footed unless they all are.

Inherently Xenomorphic (Ex) Nebelis gain a number of Evolution Points equal to their HD, up to a maximum of 3. These points are spent on evolutions, as if the base creature were the eidolon of a summoner with a level equal to the base creature's racial Hit Dice.
- Thanks to Epic Meepo for this idea (See his Hivespawn and Hybrid Template)

Advancing the Nebelis:

Designed to be the overarching enemy in "Clockspinning", my Steampunk/Sci-Fi/Post-Apocalyptic Pathfinder Campaign, the Nebelis naturally have ways of becoming much stronger and that much more horrific.

Templates and Class Levels
As they evolve, some Nebelis undertake strange mutations and gain templates to evolve.

As well, the High Nebelis (Nebelis with the Advanced creature template) can take class levels.

The Nebelis Voidcaste
The Voidcaste are the leaders of Nebelis "society". They are what amounts to leaders. The Voidcaste begin as High Nebelis and take levels in a spellcasting class.

More specifically, if a Voidcaste goes into an arcane spellcasting class that requires Intelligence or Charisma, they undergo a metamorphosis that essentially swaps their Wisdom score for their new spellcasting class.

Voidcaste use variants and archetypes:

Clerics
A Voidcaste Cleric usually uses the variant channeling (usually of the Harm Type) of Madness (Harm), Monsters (Heal), Murder (Harm), Poison (Harm), Tyranny (Harm) or Strategy (Harm).

As well, their Deity grants them access to the Chaos, Destruction, Madness and Void Domains.

Sorcerers
A Voidcaste Sorcerer usually take the Abberant, Protean or Starsoul Bloodlines. They also can choose the Wildblooded Anarchic, Voidborn or Warped Bloodlines.

Rarely do some choose the Crossblooded Archetype.

Wizard
Voidcaste Wizards use all the normal Schools and Sub-Schools except for those dealing with demons (and other such outsiders).

They have great love of the Primalist Archetype. (Some Voidcaste use the Siege Mage Archetype later on when bonding with Xenomorphic Siegeborn)

Oracle
Rare, the Voidcaste Oracles use the Dark Tapestry and Outer Rifts Mysteries and usually take the Clouded Vision or Haunted oracle curses.

They also sometimes take the Planar Oracle or Stargazer Archetype.

Epic Meepo's Hybrid Template:

This amazing template created by Epic Meepo and reprinted here for facility is often taken by the Nebelis to increase their Evolution Points.

Epic Meepo said wrote:

Creating a Hybrid

"Hybrid" is a template that can be added to any living, corporeal creature, hereafter referred to as the base creature.

CR As base creature +1.

Other Statistics The base creature gains a number of evolution points equal to its (newly modified) Challenge Rating, up to a maximum of 8 evolution points. These points are spent on evolutions, as if the base creature were the eidolon of a summoner with a level equal to the base creature's racial Hit Dice.

Criticism, Help and Anything Else
I'd really love finding a good way to enhance these creatures to truly amazing status, and finding new ways to mutate and evolve them is my final goal. I'm currently working on a plethora of options for the Nebelis and any contribution is welcomed with a hearty handshake and telepathically transmitted toffee.

Taldor

Xenoshifting Feats

Xenoshifting
Prerequisite: Xenomorph subtype or Hybrid Template
Benefit: Once per day, as a standard action, you may lose a evolution point's worth of evolutions and select a new evolution. This change lasts permanently.

Extra Xenoshifting
Prerequisite: Xenoshifting
Benefit: You may use the effects of the Xenomorph feat 2/day. At 10th level (or 10 HD), you may use the effects 3/day.

Greater Xenoshifting
Prerequisite: Xenoshifting
Benefit: You may now lose and replace up to 2 evolution points when you use your Xenoshiting ability. At 10th level (or 10 HD), you may lose and replace up to 3 evolution points.

Rapid Xenoshifting
Prerequisite: Xenoshifting
Benefit: You may now use your Xenoshifting abilities as a move action instead of standard action.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

So it is basically a monster akin to those from Alien. Of extraplanar origins. You should have chosen outsider as the type, aberration as the subtype. Looking at a few other CR 1 creatures, I would have lowered some of the ability scores, seeing the creature gets evolution points to play with.

Description should say it has 6 legs. And wings are described but non-funtional...

Needs more bold.

hp Should be +3, not +4.
Saves Aberations have good Will saves. Outsiders have 2 good saves and this creature has good Fort and Ref.
Melee Small creatures normally have a 1d4 bite. If the Improved Damage (Ex) evolution was used, should say so under the SQ.
Improving the critical rate improves the base damage of a CR 1 creature a little bit.
Base Attack Aberations use a 3/4 progression. Outsiders have fast progression, which this creature has.
Skills Only one skill listed? Aberrations have 4 + Int modifier. This guy has 1 skill point, not 2. Perception should be +6 {1 Skill Point + 1 Wisdom modifier + 3 Skill Focus (Perception)}, not +8.
SQ I would drop the usually bit... Say which evolutions the creature has. I think you may have used one evolution, but not sure. And if GMs don't like, they can change them.

I don't like the name Nascent Hive Mind. Just call it a Hive Mind (Ex) and denote the range limitation within the ability.

For the feats, changing an evolution as a standard action seems quick for the benefit the creature will be getting. Extra Xenoshifting would be better as 2 feats. Also why not a feat to add evolution points?

May I ask how you have been garnished? Lark's vomit is popular I have heard...

Taldor

Thanks Thomas, glad to see a Superstar Top helping me out. You are indeed correct on many of the points. What do you think of the creature's flavor though? (And yes, the wings are vestigial until they gain flight by some other means)

Here is the Nebelis Brood base v2.0

Nebelis Brood (CR 1)
XP 400
N Small outsider (abberation, xenomorph)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft; Perception +8
---
AC 18, touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+2 Dex, +5 natural, +1 size)
hp 6 (1d8+2)
Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +1
Immune acid, disease, poison
---
Speed 20 ft.
Melee bite +1 (1d4/x3)
Ranged --
Special Attacks --
---
Str 10, Dex 14, Con 15, Int 6, Wis 13, Cha 6
Base Atk +1; CMB +0; CMD 12 (20 vs. Trip)
Feats Skill Focus (Perception)
Skills Perception +5,
SQ hive mind, inherently xenomorphic (Improved Natural Armor)

Let me know if anything else I forgot...

And I'm garnished differently day to day... today happens to be Gateau Foret Noir glacage!


Did you mean abberation (extraplanar)?

Because both outsider and abberation are creature types, not subtypes, a creature cannot have both at once.

Sczarni RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Matt, I liked the origin blurb. Would make a great Dark Tapestry creature for Golarion. Including how you would advance the creature is also a nice touch. But what if the creature had advanced along a more physically intimidating evolutionary path?

Umbral Reaver wrote:

Did you mean abberation (extraplanar)?

Because both outsider and abberation are creature types, not subtypes, a creature cannot have both at once.

That's right, no creature type is a subtype. D'oh!

The arguement could go either way for aberration or outsider. Aberration (augmented) if you do not want to deal with any of the planar bits and the backstory just gives the origins of the creature the Nebelis are created from. And it would explain why the creature does not fit the normal aberration stats. I would stay away from the mention of planes in the type since it is not normally from a specific plane.

Matt, since xenomorph is not an official subtype, lets see you write one up. Purty please with todays garnishment of choice on top! {I will be happy with choco sprinkles.}


Augmented subtype doesn't actually do anything mechanically. It's nothing more than a reminder of what the creature used to be.

The usual example is undead (augmented humanoid), which lets you know that it used to be a humanoid. It has no humanoid abilities, nor do any abilities treat it as humanoid.

Taldor

Nebelis Brood (CR 1)
XP 400
N Small aberration (xenomorph)
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft; Perception +8
---
AC 18, touch 13, flat-footed 16 (+2 Dex, +5 natural, +1 size)
hp 6 (1d8+2)
Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +1
Immune acid, disease, poison
---
Speed 20 ft.
Melee bite +1 (1d4/x3)
Ranged --
Special Attacks --
---
Str 10, Dex 14, Con 15, Int 6, Wis 13, Cha 6
Base Atk +1; CMB +0; CMD 12 (20 vs. Trip)
Feats Skill Focus (Perception)
Skills Perception +5,
SQ hive mind, inherently xenomorphic (Improved Natural Armor)

Changes: Changed to back to its original aberration status.

As for the xenomorph subtype, I mainly just use it to denote the nebelis and their ilk for the purpose of feats and other effects in the campaign.

As for the more physically intimidating Nebelis, the Giant/Advanced simple templates and then additional HD would do it as well but the more brutal enemies in the game are going to be creatures from the Bestiary with the xenomorph subtype.

As always, comments and criticism is appreciated!

(And for today it is choco sprinkles... though they melt very quickly)

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