Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

Magic spiders


Suggestions/House Rules/Homebrew


The party is in a region where vermin are a real problem. In the past they have dealt with giant killer bees, phase spiders and giant ants eating them in cramped dungeon tunnels while they tried to crawl and climb out of the nest "my legs, aaah, my legs". That sort of thing.

Heading through a new region inside this vermin infested land, I wanted to throw in giant funnel web/trapdooor/mouse spiders. Since I just found a webbed hole in my backyard and purged it with cleansing burning water.

I want to give these spiders some spellcasting ability, not so dissimilar to the phase spider. What abilities/spells should they have?

The party will stumble across some burrows, be attacked and then find a village that is truly creeped out by the increased trapdoor spiders and really needs some help.

So, how would you make these spiders cool?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'd add ghost sound or some other siren effect used to lure prey. Alternatively, give them an ability to briefly animate corpses that also flushes the skin and mimics life; think wolf-in-sheep's-clothing. Villager sees a seemingly wounded deer, goes in to finish it off and collect the meat, gets tangled in web, and becomes an arachnid's snack.

Cheliax RPG Superstar 2013 Top 32

Give them the ability to switch from a single Large spider into a spider swarm (that fills the same squares) as a swift action. This provides a wealth of movement options and also seriously messes with melee classes. Maybe give it SR so long as it is in Large spider form. This way, when it's big, it's resistant to magic and when it's a swarm, it's resistant to weapons. Since it's a swift action to change, it can't change back and forth in the same round.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Necromancer wrote:
I'd add ghost sound or some other siren effect used to lure prey. Alternatively, give them an ability to briefly animate corpses that also flushes the skin and mimics life; think wolf-in-sheep's-clothing. Villager sees a seemingly wounded deer, goes in to finish it off and collect the meat, gets tangled in web, and becomes an arachnid's snack.

That is seriously messed up.

I vote for this.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Web? Hold Person?

Or possibly just giving them a few levels of Ninja and Vanishing Trick?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Create Pit and Clairvoyance

Andoran

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I had the idea of spiders that use the drained corpses of their prey like puppets to defend their webs and capture more food for the spider. Through some bizarre, psychic power, the spider would attach a strand of webbing to the exposed spine of a corpse hanging around in its lair. The strand would then allow the spider to animate the corpse, see through its eyes and treat it as an animated object so long as the web remained attached to the spider at the other end.

If you're feeling a little crass, you could always make one of your monsters an actual "barking wall spider."

barking wall spider:
For those who've never heard the term, a "barking wall spider" is a mythical arachnid often blamed for loud flatulence.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Now I have net back...

The idea was a trapdoor spider that used one of the create pit series (depending on level) to effectively "relocate" an extradimensional trap under targets. Should the target survive, they then web the top.
For best effect, use acid or hungry pit and describe as their actual digestive mechanism.

If possible, an ability to create a simple illusion of a floor over the pit could be very useful.

While the spider needs LOS to do all this, it itself can be hiding in a conventional (or extradimensional) trapdoor underground, peeping out. Most of the time it can be simply using clairvoyance to track where targets are. Rather than having to lure targets to its trap, it can relocate its trap to its targets.

Your goal here is a bit of "the floor is lava". Anyone standing on the floor is screwed. You have to be holding onto a wall, or on a bench, or on a long table or something.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Any spell with the word "Trap" in it as a spell-like ability.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Have them lay eggs in a host. The host can live on for some time before the young erupt - swarms based on host size. Outwardly there are no signs and hence no warnings - "talking to Joe the other day and Bam he erupted with spiders" no wonderthe villagers hate them. Perhaps the sipders can even affect behaviour like that parasite that infest ants and causes them to climb atop plats for birds to eat and ingest. Sort of spider infests deer, deers behaviour changes making it easy to catch, villager eats and gets infested. Would creep me out.

Could even have sifferent sizes based on the host size, so small to large.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Since blindingly-fast spiders scare people more than slow spiders, I'd suggest giving them a haste ability.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

If they have experienced spiders and other crawlies that live in the ground you could play with their expectations. Rather than some hole in the ground they do down to find the spiders let them enter a large barn with webs allover it and have the spiders descend from the beams in the ceiling and drag someone up with them.
Spiders get both walls and ceiling to move on while the players have only the webbed floor.

Osirion

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Use Aranea stats for the spellcasters, and have one set up a sand funnel like that of an ant lion, and transform itself to appear as a helpless person, trapped in quicksand or something. Someone comes near to try and pull them free, and BAM, she transforms and pulls them down into the warren of tunnels she's got beneath the sand.

She remains at a distance, hurling the occasional blob of silk like a bola, to hamper her prisoner, since she's teaching her babies to hunt, and the prey is intended for them to eat, horrid little half-spider / half-children, who lack any meaningful control over their Change Shape ability, and so appear as horrific creatures, like a spider with a baby's head and eight toddler arms and legs instead of spider legs.


Great suggestions. I am really pleased and impressed. Keep them coming.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Set wrote:

Use Aranea stats for the spellcasters, and have one set up a sand funnel like that of an ant lion, and transform itself to appear as a helpless person, trapped in quicksand or something. Someone comes near to try and pull them free, and BAM, she transforms and pulls them down into the warren of tunnels she's got beneath the sand.

She remains at a distance, hurling the occasional blob of silk like a bola, to hamper her prisoner, since she's teaching her babies to hunt, and the prey is intended for them to eat, horrid little half-spider / half-children, who lack any meaningful control over their Change Shape ability, and so appear as horrific creatures, like a spider with a baby's head and eight toddler arms and legs instead of spider legs.

Worse. Baby body covered in spider eyes, spider head, baby limbs but with spider legs protruding out of the ends of the limbs. Scutter scutter scutter!


Sereinái wrote:

If they have experienced spiders and other crawlies that live in the ground you could play with their expectations. Rather than some hole in the ground they do down to find the spiders let them enter a large barn with webs allover it and have the spiders descend from the beams in the ceiling and drag someone up with them.

Spiders get both walls and ceiling to move on while the players have only the webbed floor.

I've done the giant spiders in the barn things recently. They were creeped out by ettercaps in there.


Aranea using acid pits, collapsible floors, illusions, silken puppets; big trapdoor spiders using create pit, haste and spring attack.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Hmmm...
If the spiders are intelligent, you could do a quite scary spider that demands people work for it. Turn the whole town into a trap.

on the other hand...
Trapdoor spiders are really just very quick. The scariest way to do it might be Time Stop. Best of all (from a balance perspective and horror) is a variant time stop. For n rounds only it and the target can move. From an outside perspective, people are talking to you, then you simply vanish.
Suddenly the sky goes red and you are brutally attacked by a spider that webs you up and drags you away to its lair to eat later.

You bust into the spider's lair, it time stops, drags its stored prey away, restarts time.

I'd be tempted to give it a poison that slowly "ages" people.

You could probably do something similar with a teleport based power if time stop is too freaky.

If balance isn't an issue, draw the time stop out. Let players wander around a frozen timescape of their friends for hours, desperately hiding and running to survive until the power wears off and they can get help from their friends again. In this case the trapdoor is a trapdoor into time.

If you do do the temporal spider, bonus points if you have Hounds of Tindalos as a natural predator.


Well the trap spiders aren't that intelligent, they do however have spell like abilities and have been modified by shapeshifter fey (the areanea which I am modifying). The aranea are the leaders, the others the hunters.


Score, in the book Terrors of Athas I have found the psionic wall walker spider.


They can add +10 to their stealth with chameleon, but even scarier, they can use shadown body to creep out of their burrows, up any surface and into a great position. They have Dr and take half fire damage when this is activated. They also have a nasty bite and a paralysing stinger, so yeah, three types now.


Running two games, with no players in both, therefore these spiders are going into BOTH of my next games.


It went really well, but not too hard for them.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder RPG / Suggestions/House Rules/Homebrew / Magic spiders All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.