What monster is this?


Homebrew and House Rules


I need to custom design a monster for the next game. The plot involves a BBEG cursing a young girl that the PCs will try to save. Said curse turns the girl into a brute with low charisma and vermin empathy.

The PCs are APL 6. I thought about an Ash Giant but that's too big. I suppose I could go with a Mite and add a template, but it doesn't seem big enough. Anyone out there have an idea for me?


Ettercap?


Also possible is a scorpion woman.


Look to the gremlins. For they are squishy yet dangerous in mobs.

My suggestion, somehow convince them that she was turned into a gremlin (but maybe really wasn't) and have her (it?) blend in with some other gremlins.

Just a thought.


You talked about creating a custom creature, so why not just do that? You probably want something like 9-10 HD worth of, maybe Aberration? That seems right. Pick appropriate attributes. Obviously, you want high Strength and Con--I find it easiest to apply human type attributes then add stats for the race/size, so I'm not trying to apply 24s or whatever, I can stick to normal ranges that I know.

Then, you need some interesting abilities. Take a look at level 4-5 spells for a good idea of what stuff of that general level is capable of. Maybe the creature has a permanent Cape of Wasps kind of effect, where people hitting her take swarm damage and poison. Perhaps she can use Giant Vermin to get allies in a pinch (or she is just already encountered with giant vermin)? How about getting Insect Plague as a spell like ability?

Try going a little bit outside the box. Maybe when she takes slashing or piercing damage, swarms of bugs leak out of the wounds? Make it a supernatural ability and maybe treat it like an immediate action casting of Vomit Swarm?

Or get creative--perhaps she has a stinger or bite that inflicts a curse/poison that slowly transforms the PCs into vermin. I'm fond of the idea of a PC slowly becoming a Swarm, like they wake up the next day and they feel something moving under their flesh, when they get cut, there are already maggots in the wound, etc.

Oh, or give her levels of Blight Druid (probably 9-10 levels, to get a big boss type of challenge), except allow her to take on Vermin forms with Wild Shape rather than animals. And obviously give her more Strength to start, and focus on the wild-shaping/fighting aspect, more than the casting side.


MPL: those are all really great ideas. Ironically though this is a monster that will also be an NPC, some kind of tragic figure in the adventure.

The girl is cursed. She sold her beauty to a witch. I thought originally about making her a Thawn, but there's no vermin empathy there. I suppose I could just add that.

But she's not filled with bugs. Instead the curse made her hideous, such that only bugs will hang out with her. With a high influence of fey in the area as well as a kind of dark fairy tale theme here, I think I'll stay away from aberrations.

The setup to the encounter is that an NPC the characters know has a dance school. She calls on the PCs b/cause one of her girls has gone missing and at the same time there's been this strange brute skulking about. The PCs show up and spy the monster, cloaked in a shabby overcoat and fedora. As they approach the figure however the coat is writhing and there are giant vermin at hand in the shadows. The brute cries "Keep away from me!" and does her best to flee, using the giant vermin to cover her escape.

The players are big into RP. If however they murder the poor girl I have contingency plans to keep the action moving.

Still, I like the idea of SLAs instead of full class levels. She's not meant to be a powerhouse/BBEG so right now I'm thinking she's a custom fey creature, 7 HD, with DR 5/Cold Iron. Unlike other fey though her DR comes from the thick layer of both crawling vermin and hideous flesh on the outside of her body.

I'd give her vermin empathy, a summon swarm SLA and a movement based on bugs; either burrowing or a climb speed since flying is so cliché for the fey. Finally she'd have a horrifying appearance that's so ugly it... causes Nauseated as a gaze attack? IDK, still working on that one.


I'm not sure if this is what you're going for, but hey, maybe it'll help. I prefer to keep things simple:

She's just a girl (commoner levels). When the curse is active, she gains the vermin empathy of the mite (no CR increase), and the you apply the effects of the Rage Mutagen (+1 CR) of the Ragechemist archetype & Simple Template: Giant (+1 CR) to her.

Add: Summon Swarm (Sp), Climb (Ex) Butt-Ugly (Ex) (nauseated), & DR 5/cold iron = +2 CR.

She'd probably be more like a monstrous humanoid, however.


Da'ath wrote:

I'm not sure if this is what you're going for, but hey, maybe it'll help. I prefer to keep things simple:

She's just a girl (commoner levels). When the curse is active, she gains the vermin empathy of the mite (no CR increase), and the you apply the effects of the Rage Mutagen (+1 CR) of the Ragechemist archetype & Simple Template: Giant (+1 CR) to her.

Add: Summon Swarm (Sp), Climb (Ex) Butt-Ugly (Ex) (nauseated), & DR 5/cold iron = +2 CR.

She'd probably be more like a monstrous humanoid, however.

Sounds like it might be good to use the lycanthrope* template as, well, a template. In other words, don't make her a specific lycanthrope, but rather you can use that as the basis of what you do.

Like Da'ath said, use the Ragechemist archetype or even the Master Chymist as a basis for capabilities (kind of like getting a few free levels in the class, or something - but only when she's shifted).

Something like that?

* I find it hilarious that auto-correct is trying to tell me that Lycanthrope is supposed to be Misanthrope or Cantaloupe. :)

The Exchange

What about an Annis Hag. just swap the fog cloud ability for summon swarm


Fruits basket. Every member of the family, on the fathers side, turns into an animal when someone hugs them. They can summon a swarm of similar animals. If she sold her beauty to the witch to be a better dancer, the curse will activate when she tries to dance or there is music around.


Morlock might have some of what you're looking for. They're big on the "degenerate" scale.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Say, have you ever seen the anime, Ninja Scroll? It features as the antagonists, a band of outlandish assassins, each with their own bizarrely unique and often-times gruesome specialities and powers.

One of them was a gnarled hunchback covered in tunnels bored into the hulking mound of his lumpy back. A massive hive of wasps lived within the nest they burrowed into his porous back-flesh, and through vermin empathy he called them forth and controlled them to murder his foes.

I remember the D20 Rokugan (Legend of the Five Rings) monster compendium had a monster based on this concept. I still have it around... somewhere.

Another possibility, you could make her into a Korir-Kokembe, a creeping, crawling vermin-like dragon with powers to vomit swarms and summon creeping hordes of insects. It's CR 10, but you could apply the young template to bring her down to CR 9.

You could also create her by applying the Demonic Vermin template to a vermin of your choice & give her Vermin Empathy as a power instead of or in addition to one of the ones in the book.


@ Dr. A. K. Li: I have seen Ninja Scroll and know what you're describing, but I want the bugs near her, possibly on her...but not IN her. The point is that the PCs might still save her.

As to the Lycanthrope angle: This isn't something that comes and goes. She's sold her beauty and can't get back to normal til that's returned. It works like this:

1. Witch comes to girl and says "sell me your beauty, get gold for your starving family"
2. Girl agrees
3. Witch inflicts Fairy Curse; girl becomes hideous brute (not filled w/vermin, just hideous at this point)
4. Gold mysteriously delivered to family; they begin eating but they're daughter goes missing
5. Hideous girl slinks into sewer; gets to know some vermin (even rats are scared of her)
6. Finds vermin understand her; makes thousands of new friends
7. Hideous girl misses old life; skulks near old dance school chums
8. Gets on PCs radar

So again, this brings me back to a Monstrous Humanoid type creature.

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