View Full Version : Hunter Wasp (CR2)

2007-11-12, 02:21 PM
Hunter Wasps are night flying wasps that typically avoid humanoids. However when a female Hunter Wasp is ready to lay eggs they look for campfires, torches, or other night time light sources.

Once they have found a light source they creep near it looking for a sleeping creature. If they find one they sneak up on it and sting the creature while it sleeps poisoning it and attempting to geas it. They then fly immediately away and watch to see if the geas took hold.

If there are multiple creatures around the camp fire the Hunter Wasp may attempt to sting each creature one at a time through out the night if it can catch them asleep.

If the geas took hold then the wasp lays an egg in the hole thatís dug and flies away. If the geas didn't take hold then they follow the creature and attempt to sting them again the next night. If after 3 nights the geas hasn't taken hold they stop following the creature.

Name: Hunter Wasp
Size/Type: Small Vermin
Hit Dice: 2d8+2 (14)
Initiative: +3
Speed: 15ft. (3 squares), fly 40ft. (8 squares)
Armor Class 17 (+1 size, +3 natural, +3 Dex)
Damage Reduction: -
Base Attack/Grapple: +1 / -1
Attack: +3 Sting (1d2+1 and poison)
Full Attack: +3 Sting (1d2+1 and poison)
Space/Reach: 5ft. / 5ft.
Special Attacks: geas sting, poison
Special Qualities: Darkvision
Saves: Fort: 3, Ref: 3, Will: 1
Abilities: Str: 13, Dex: 16, Con: 12, Int: -, Wis: 13, Cha: 11
Skills: Hide +10*, Move Silently +10*, Spot +8*
Feats: -
Environment: Warm Forests
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 2
Treasure: -
Alignment: Neutral
Advancement: -
Equipment: -

Special Abilities:
Poison A Hunter Wasp can inject poison when it stings. Fort save DC 12; 1d6 Wis, secondary 1d6 Wis
Geas Sting A Hunter Wasp may attempt to Geas (as the spell Lesser Geas) a creature when it stings. Will save DC 12. The Geas lasts for 13 days.

The first two days the Geased creature must dig a hole at least 6 feet deep and 4 feet across. The remaining 11 days the Geased creature must give a small or medium sized slain creature to a grub within the hole.

Killing the Wasp or the Grub does not negate this requirement. This means that if the Grub is killed the Geased creature will start taking damage for being unable to fullfill the requirements of the Geas.

The Geased creature is aware of the terms of the Geas

Skills: A Hunter Wasp has a +7 racial bonus on hide, move silently, and spot checks.

2007-11-12, 04:16 PM
A Party of level 2's is going to have half of them affected by a high level spell that is nigh-impossible to stop at that level, and is going to possibly kill the characters if the allies that saved against the geas kill the grubs. In other words, up everything else and the CR, or get rid of the Geas, because as of right now, that is a way too powerful spell to use on a party like that, as they would fail the save half the time.

Also, POISON 1d6 Wis+1d6 Secondary! That'll put most of a level 2 party out of commission forever (Nightmare of doom/Coma). Not really what we want at this level.

2007-11-12, 04:33 PM
This isn't an encounter where if the players lose they are going to wind up dead. If they fail this encounter it keeps them in a particular spot for 14 days.

It is true that if your players wanted to kill the geased character it would be easy to do so by killing the grub but it seems unlikely that would happen since the geased character can tell them not to kill it.

As for the wisdom damage it at the longest knocks a character out for one day since the lowest your wisdom can go is 0.

Look at this less like an attempt to kill your characters and more as a way to give them a different encounter or to keep them in an area for a bit.

With all that in mind I don't think CR2 is inappropriate.

2007-11-12, 06:01 PM
But, a CR 2 monster should be able to be defeated with 1/4 of a level 2 party's resources, whereas this would be able to put at least half if not all of the party out of commission for at least a day, if not more. I think being unable to continue for the rest of the day counts as a little more than 1/4 of the party's resources.

2007-11-12, 08:25 PM
I based the poison DC and damage off of comparable vermin:

Large Monstrous Spider 1d6/1d6 Strength, 13 DC, CR 2. It also deals a lot more damage, has a lot more HPS and hits a more important stat. (1d8+3 and 22)

I am interested though what CR you'd put it at?

I could bump it up high enough where the party has spells that break a Lesser Geas and then up it's combat stats to match but I think then we just wind up with a standard fight that requires one of the casters to cast a few extra spells the next day. Not really what I'm looking for.

What would you do to keep the flavor (it makes you take care of it's grub and slows you down but that's it) and make it CR appropriate?

2007-11-12, 09:47 PM
Huh, I guess that my fear of poisons, (unreasonable I know) coupled with one too many visits to the gaming forum made me see this in a different (Overpowered, and incorrect) light. Maybe level 2 party members aren't as fragile as I thought?

The Geas power, however, is still a little much, but in this new light, is reasonable. Perhaps the Geas is done through a poison, in which case 20 points of magical healing (Roughly 4-5 castings of the 2nd level Cleric's best spell, Cure Light Wounds) or a successful DC 20 Heal check (Nearly impossible to do without taking 20, which would take a while anyway). This way, they can wait it out, expend 2-3 days worth of the Cleric's spells, or spend a good amount of time tending a probably unwilling subject. No matter what the choice, the victim of the Geas is safe, but with expenditure of a good chunk of party resources, they can get on the road easier.

Also, I should have said this earlier, but great monster, really good concept.

2007-11-13, 11:29 PM
I was surprised about the levels of ability damage as well.

Since I haven't gotten any other comments about it being unbalanced I'm going to say the Hunter Wasp is finished.

2007-11-16, 05:49 AM
This thing doesn't QUITE make sense from a biological perspective... I would make the damage non-lethal and/or reduce it. Also, PROBABLY say that it has a anesthetic effect so that the pain doesn't kick in for a minute or two. A dead creature is no use to it (although, actually, any ANIMAL that could dig a hole that big in that short a period of time can take a few points of damage... or does it only go for humanoids?). Anyway, my point is that a dead target is no use to it, and a target that wakes up from sudden massive pain (like getting stabbed with a paring knife...) an tries to crush it before it escape to observe (since they plausibly wouldn't stop to think through the terms of the geas before trying to kill something attacking them...), let alone lay the egg is also a failure from a biological competition perspective.

2007-11-17, 12:38 AM
It's biologically inspired but your right there are a few things that don't quite work biologically (but few things do in D&D). I tried to strike a balance between something that would make for an interesting encounter and yet keep the flavor of a real wasp.

As you noted the sting deals 2-3 points of damage which isn't likely to kill anything big enough to dig the hole. I figure it primarily targets humanoids but would probably hit a bear or other large animal that could burrow if it had to.

For the anesthetic bit I don't think most wasps, even when they lay eggs in a critter, use an anesthetic sting. They use carefully placed stings to deal minimal damage but nothing to take away the pain.

Then there is the fact that players are already going to be mad enough at this thing with out the DM saying it stung them 20 times before they noticed and to go ahead and make those 20 saves.

If you have an idea on how to get around the upsetting the players part I'd love to see it. I'm working on the idea for some more parasitic monsters.

2007-11-17, 05:49 AM
The wasps you describe probably don't go after social insects, or things that can individually fight on anything LIKE a par with them... they ESPECIALLY don't try to STICK AROUND after the fact.
As for the damage, all I was saying was knock it back to 1 point if you can.
Just because it doesn't HURT doesn't mean the don't feel PRESSURE at the VERY least... call it an untrained Slight of Hand skill check opposed by a Wisdom check with +2 if they have Alertness (since there isn't a FEEL skill to go with Listen and Spot) possible with a hefty minus for being asleep, but still. And that is on top of all the spot and listen checks the character(s) on watch get, and the Listen checks (albeit at -20 if I remember correctly) that the victim gets to hear it sneaking up on them as they sleep.
Besides which, (although this is something you might want to fix), the players can work off their aggression pin-cushioning the new wasp one round after the Geas ends and then mutilating the corpse (and same for mom the a round or two after she is done laying the egg if I understand correctly).