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    The Demented One's Avatar

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    Default Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Hollow Cadaver
    Medium Undead
    Hit Dice: 6d12+3 (42 hp)
    Initiative: +1
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 16 (+1 Dex, +5 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 15
    Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+7
    Attack: Slam +2 melee (1d4+2) or Bite +8 melee (1d6+4)
    Full Attack: 2 Slams +2 melee (1d4+2) and Bite +8 melee (1d6+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Create spawn, decapitating bite, improved grapple
    Special Qualities: Blindsight 60 ft., damage reduction 5/slashing, undead traits
    Saves: Fort +2, Ref +5, Will +6
    Abilities: Str 18, Dex 12, Con –, Int 8, Wis 12, Cha 8
    Skills: Climb +6, Hide +6, Listen +6, Move Silently +6, Spot +6, Tumble +6
    Feats: Weapon Focus (Bite), Lightning Reflexes, Toughness
    Environment: Any
    Organization: Solitary, pair, or hunt (4-6)
    Challenge Rating: 6
    Treasure: None
    Alignment: Usually Neutral Evil
    Advancement: 7-10 HD (Medium)
    Level Adjustment: –

    Hollow Cadavers the reanimated corpses of those who died violently of decapitation, with the fires of hatred burning in their heart. In undeath, they are reduced to savage, feral beasts driven by hatred and hunger. They are similar in appearance to humanoid zombies, but lack heads. Their wounded necks serve as jaws, lined with razor-sharp teeth and just as powerful as the jaws of a wild hound. Although humanoid in form, Hollow Cadavers prefer to lope along the ground on all fours like wild dogs. Hollow Cadavers are driven by an insatiable hunger, and will go to any ends to eat.

    Create Spawn (Ex)
    Any humanoid decapitated by a Hollow Cadaver’s decapitating bite ability rises as another Hollow Cadaver in 1d4 rounds. Spawn are under the command of the Hollow Cadaver that created them and remain enslaved until its destruction. They do not possess any of the abilities they had in life.

    Decapitating Bite (Ex)
    While grappling a creature, a Hollow Cadaver can clamp its head in between its jaws with a successful grapple check. Doing so automatically deals bite damage to that creature. A creature whose head is clamped between the Hollow Cadaver's jaws cannot see, and is treated as being blinded. It can still escape the cadaver's jaws by successfully escaping the grapple. With another successful grapple check, the Hollow Cadaver bites off the grappled creature's head. Some creatures, such as many aberrations and all oozes, have no heads, and thus immune to being decapitated. Others, such as creatures immune to critical hits, are not affected by being decapitated. Most other creatures, however, die when their heads are cut off.

    Improved Grapple (Ex)
    To use this ability, a Hollow Cadaver must hit a Medium or smaller opponent with a slam attack. It can then attempt to start a grapple as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity. If it wins the grapple check, it establishes a hold, and can attempt to clamp its foes head between its jaws on the next round.
    Last edited by The Demented One; 2007-06-09 at 07:36 PM.
    I no longer actively read the forums, and probably won't respond to any PMs. I'm fine with people using my homebrew in anything, including fan-compilations and wikis, as long as you credit me.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    interesting, similar to the famine beast, but with a more feral flavor to it. one thing I wonder about is decapitating strike. assuming it confirms the critical 50% of the time it will only decapitate on 1 out of 800 strikes. I understand that at level five you want it to be lower than normal, but it almost seems impossibly low.

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    Falrin's Avatar

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Personal Note: I'm absolutely no fan of instant kill moves. 1/800 a PC will die without being able to do anything about it.

    Suggestions:

    Make it a 18-20/*2 attack. Crits can easely be discribed as decapitation.

    Make it more like a swallow, improved grab, attach attack. When it hits with a bite it can start a grapple/opposed Str check/ Automaticly grabs a creatures head. The hollow cadavre is now Flat Footed. The targetted creature is blinded. On the next round the Cadavre can do grapple/opposed Str check/ Automaticly to bite the head of.
    Now if somebody can write my mess into common english with a better mechanic it would suite your creation.

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    A simpler way of stating decapating bite might be to say that its bite has the vorpal enchament...
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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Quote Originally Posted by jindra34 View Post
    A simpler way of stating decapating bite might be to say that its bite has the vorpal enchament...
    Unfortunately that makes it way too powerful. a level 10 character has, what 49,000 GP total? the Vorpal enchant alone is 50,000 gp, just as a rough estimator of CR.

    razor boars, admittedly far stronger in other respects, have such an ability that is limited to creatures one size catagory larger and are CR 10.

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    The Demented One's Avatar

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Quote Originally Posted by Falrin View Post
    Make it more like a swallow, improved grab, attach attack. When it hits with a bite it can start a grapple/opposed Str check/ Automaticly grabs a creatures head. The hollow cadavre is now Flat Footed. The targetted creature is blinded. On the next round the Cadavre can do grapple/opposed Str check/ Automaticly to bite the head of.
    Now if somebody can write my mess into common english with a better mechanic it would suite your creation.
    You know, I'm actually liking that a lot more than what I have right now. Maybe model it on the Illithid's extract brain ability.
    I no longer actively read the forums, and probably won't respond to any PMs. I'm fine with people using my homebrew in anything, including fan-compilations and wikis, as long as you credit me.

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    You forgot to change "Choker" to "Hollow Cadaver" in the "Improved Grab" text.
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    The Demented One's Avatar

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Quote Originally Posted by DracoDei View Post
    You forgot to change "Choker" to "Hollow Cadaver" in the "Improved Grab" text.
    Nice catch.
    I no longer actively read the forums, and probably won't respond to any PMs. I'm fine with people using my homebrew in anything, including fan-compilations and wikis, as long as you credit me.

    Homebrew by The Demented One.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    I just noticed that the creature has blindsense. Is it meant to be blind? (I mean, I know it has no head, but is it blind?) If so it should probably say explicitly. Also, why blindsense and not blind sight or at least tremorsense. If he is blind, the blindsight still leaves him with a 50% miss chance against, well, everyone (also loses that +1 dex to AC).


    EDIT: oh, and why not submit to MitP? I'd vote for it as I'm sure would others.
    Last edited by Poppatomus; 2007-06-09 at 07:08 PM.

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    Miraqariftsky's Avatar

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Does this beast have any particular weaknesses? How about a flare/daylight cast on somebody's helm? How about a crown of garlic? How about a readied holy longspear/ranseur/guisarme/lance?
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    PirateGirl

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    I liked it up to the special abilities: First, Improved Grapple is a feat not a special ability. It is unbalancing to give away feats as special abilities and should not be done. Regardless, I believe you meant to give it Improved Grab.

    From the SRD:

    Improved Grab
    If a creature with this special attack hits with a melee weapon (usually a claw or bite attack), it deals normal damage and attempts to start a grapple as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity. No initial touch attack is required.

    Unless otherwise noted, improved grab works only against opponents at least one size category smaller than the creature. The creature has the option to conduct the grapple normally, or simply use the part of its body it used in the improved grab to hold the opponent. If it chooses to do the latter, it takes a -20 penalty on grapple checks, but is not considered grappled itself; the creature does not lose its Dexterity bonus to AC, still threatens an area, and can use its remaining attacks against other opponents.

    A successful hold does not deal any extra damage unless the creature also has the constrict special attack. If the creature does not constrict, each successful grapple check it makes during successive rounds automatically deals the damage indicated for the attack that established the hold. Otherwise, it deals constriction damage as well (the amount is given in the creature’s descriptive text).

    When a creature gets a hold after an improved grab attack, it pulls the opponent into its space. This act does not provoke attacks of opportunity. It can even move (possibly carrying away the opponent), provided it can drag the opponent’s weight.



    Beyond that let's examine this critter. It is scurrying about on all fours, but has no Jump skill. That means it has to spend time going to an upright position in order to reach the head of its intended victim. Either that or it is only going after very small victims.

    Second, once it has a head in its tooth-lined throat, how exactly does it decapitate its victim? Does it bite through the head itself (spewing brains about) [pardon the graphic image] or does it suck down the head further and bite through the neck? If it has to engulf the entire head to get to the neck, then the blinding of the victim makes sense. Although looking down the neck of an undead would be a gruesome enough experience.

    The teeth of the HC must be incredibly sharp as previously mentioned. There's a reason for this. Heads, despite popular belief, are not easy to decapitate -- especially in one blow (or in this case one bite). This is the reason professional executioners existed. A prime example is in the book: The Three Musketeers.* This is reflected in the vorpal ability of swords and in razor back's teeth.

    Despite my misgivings, I think that this is still an interesting monster. It just needs to be tweaked to make it one that DMs would be able to use.

    Debby

    *BTW, the Disney 1993 version totally ruined this because DeWinter jumped off a cliff instead, although she did redeem herself first. If that is the only version you've seen, you are missing a lot. The Michael York movie is much better, but the book is superior [and you can even read it online].

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    Default Re: Don't Lose Your Head [Creature]

    Hey, it's a reason to play a lumi! Neato!

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