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Thread: Revised Unicorn

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Revised Unicorn

    A (slightly) less-broken version of the high-magic unicorn I posted a while back. This version still has very limited offensive abilities (but tremendous defensive stats); it works better as a quest goal where the party has to capture or kill it.

    Unicorn

    "If even one Unicorn walks the Earth, my power is not complete."- The Lord of Darkness

    LARGE MAGICAL BEAST
    Hit Dice 12d8+60 (114 HP)
    Speed 100 ft. (20 squares)
    Initiative: +9
    Armor Class: 25 (-1 size, +5 Dex, +5 deflection, +6 natural); touch 19; flat-footed 20
    Base Attack/Grapple: +12/+21
    Attack: Horn +16 melee (1d8+5)
    Full-Attack: Horn +16 melee (1d8+5) and 2 hooves melee +11 (1d4+2)
    Space 10 ft.; Reach: 10 ft.
    Special Attacks: Counter evil magic, enchanting beauty, magnificent charge
    Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., damage reduction 15/cold iron and evil, elusive, lay on horn, low-light vision, purity, scent, SR 17, wild empathy, unearthly grace
    Saves Fort +20 Ref +20 Will +16
    Abilities Str 20, Dex 21, Con 20, Int 21, Wis 21, Cha 20
    Skills Diplomacy +22, Heal +20, Hide +28*, Intimidate +20, Jump +32, Knowledge (nature) +22, Listen +28, Move Silently +28, Sense Motive +28, Spot +28, Survival +20 (+22 aboveground natural environments), Swim +20
    Feats Ability Focus (enchanting beauty), Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, TrackB
    Environment Any natural
    Organization Solitary, pair, or grace (3-6)
    Challenge Rating 12
    Treasure None
    Alignment Always chaotic good
    Advancement 13-24 HD (Large)
    Level Adjustment +8 (animal companion, cohort, or paladin mount)

    As enchanting as the fey and as glorious as a phoenix, unicorns are legendary for their benevolence and healing powers. A unicorn combines the musculature of a charger with the grace of a deer, the beard and cloven hooves of a goat, a lionís tail, a shining white coat and silken mane, and a single spiralling ivory horn. These forest guardians embody life, the moon, purity, and untamed nature.

    Unicorns are most often found in vast and wild temperate forests, but can dwell in almost any natural environment. They prefer to roam wild and free but occasionally accompany worthy heroes as mounts and companions. Evil creatures hunt them for sport and to obtain their magical horns, and desperate creatures seek them out for their curative powers. A unicorn is a noble ally and a fearsome foe.

    A typical adult unicorn grows to 8 feet in length, stands 5 feet high at the shoulder, and weighs 1,200 pounds. Unicorns do not suffer aging penalties and live forever unless killed.

    Unicorns speak Celestial, Common, Draconic, Elven, and Sylvan, and often learn the languages of any races neighbouring or sharing their forest domains as well.

    Combat
    Unicorns are elusive creatures by nature and are extremely difficult to capture or kill. They keep watch on creatures that enter their forests but avoid revealing themselves unless necessary, attacking only as a last resort to defend themselves or their realms. They favour wearing down foes with repeated swift charges, taking advantage of their incredible speed to strike and continue charging beyond reach.

    A unicorn's horn provides reach. It has hardness equal to 20 + the unicornís HD and hit points equal to one-quarter the unicornís normal maximum hit points. It overcomes damage reduction and regeneration of any type and ignores any hardness less than its own. Sundering a unicornís horn results in the immediate death of the unicorn.

    A unicornís natural weapons, as well as any weapons it wields, are treated as good-aligned for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.

    Counter Evil Magic (Su)
    As an immediate action a unicorn may counter or dispel [Evil] spells or spells cast by evil creatures as if by greater dispel magic (caster level 12th). This ability may also be used to counter and dispel the spell-like abilities and even supernatural abilities of evil creatures as though they were spells; the effective caster level of an evil creature's supernatural ability for this purpose is equal to the evil creature's HD. Once a unicorn uses this power, it must wait 1d4 rounds before using it again.

    Elusive (Ex)
    If a unicorn successfully saves against an effect with a partial effect on a successful save, it instead suffers no effects from the attack. If it fails the save, it instead suffer the partial effect. A unicorn does not treat a natural roll of 1 on a d20 as an automatic failure.

    Enchanting Beauty (Ex)
    A unicorn entrances creatures with its mere presence. Creatures within 30 feet must make a DC 23 Will save or be fascinated by the unicorn for as long as they are aware of it. A unicorn cannot suppress this ability, but may break the effect for an affected creature by speaking directly to that creature. This is a mind-affecting charm effect. A creature that successfully saves cannot be affected again by the same unicornís beauty for 24 hours. The save DC is Charisma-based.

    Lay on Horn (Su)
    As the paladin lay on hands class feature, except that each day, a unicorn can heal an amount of damage equal to its full normal hit points and any creature or object it touches gains the benefits of break enchantment, neutralise poison, purify food and drink, remove blindness/deafness, remove disease, and restoration. Caster level 12th for each of these effects. A unicorn may not use this power on itself and may not use it to harm undead.

    Magnificent Charge (Ex)
    A unicorn deals 3d8+15 points of damage when it makes a charge. Whenever it uses the charge action, it may move and attack as if with a standard charge and then move again (continuing the straight line of the charge). The unicorn's total movement for the round canít exceed double its speed. The unicorn does not provoke an attack of opportunity from the opponent that it attacks.

    Purity (Ex)
    Unicorns are immune to diseases, curses, poisons, charm and compulsion effects, fear effects, ability damage, ability drain, negative energy and death effects, energy drain, magical aging, and magical attempts to alter their alignment. Additionally, a unicorn benefits from a permanent freedom of movement effect (caster level 12th).

    Wild Empathy (Ex)
    This power works like the druidís wild empathy class feature, except that a unicorn has a +6 racial bonus on the check.

    Unearthly Grace (Su)
    A unicorn adds its Charisma modifier as a bonus on all its saving throws, and as a deflection bonus to its Armor Class. (The statistics block already reflects these bonuses).

    Skills
    Unicorns receive skills as though they were fey. A unicorn has a +8 racial bonus on Hide, Listen, Move Silently, Sense Motive, and Spot checks. *Due to their gleaming white coats a unicornís racial bonus to Hide checks increases to +20 in snowy areas.

    Variant Unicorns
    "I am the only Unicorn there is? The Last? Ö That cannot be. Why would I be the last? What do men know? Because they have seen no unicorns for a while does not mean we have all vanished. We do not vanish. Ö There has never been a time without unicorns. We live forever! We are as old as the sky, old as the moon! We can be hunted, trapped; we can even be killed if we leave our forests, but we do not vanish. Ö Am I truly the last?" - The Last Unicorn

    Epic Unicorns
    Some unicorns of exceptional age and wisdom gain the spellcasting abilities of druids or favoured souls of their Hit Dice.

    Undead Unicorns

    Living unicorns are incorruptible, but dead ones may be brought back as terribly evil undead creatures. These monsters resist all attempts at control by their creators and inhabit vast cursed forests, where all living things die and skeletons and incorporeal undead flit amongst the withered trees.

    Unicorn Horn
    "She had a unicorn to protect her. Now I have the unicorn's head, and I will bring it back with me, for it's long enough since we had fresh ground unicorn's horn in our arts." - The Witch-Queen

    Each unicornís horn is effectively a minor artifact that provides itís bearer with tremendous power over the forces of life and death. The possessor of such a horn ignores material and XP components of spells with the [Healing], [Death], [Good], [Evil], [Light], and [Darkness] descriptors and gains a +3 caster level bonus when casting such spells. Additionally, the horn may be used to cast neutralize poison and purify food and drink on touched objects and creatures at will.

    Unicorn Domains
    Older Hunter: "I mislike the feel of these woods. Creatures that live in a Unicorn's forest learn a little magic of their own in time... mainly concerned with disappearing."
    Younger Hunter: "Unicorns? I thought they only existed in fairy tales. This is a forest, like any other... isn't it?"
    Older Hunter: "Then why do the leaves never fall here? Or the snow? Why is it always spring here? I tell you there is one unicorn left in the world, and as long as it lives in this forest we'll find no game to hunt here."


    A unicornís forest realm is in a state of perpetual springtime unmarred by the ravages of time or natural and supernatural disasters. Detect magic and similar effects reveal that the forest radiates strong abjuration and conjuration (healing) magic throughout. The forest's flora and fauna are always healthy and in prime condition; furthermore creatures of the animal type in the forest gain a +10 competence bonus on Hide and Move Silently checks made to elude humanoids. Magical attempts specifically made to manipulate or harm the forest environs and its inhabitants (such as through the blight or control weather spells) require a caster level check (DC 11 + unicornís HD) to succeed and draw the unicornís attention to the instigator as if the unicorn had cast locate creature. Mundane disasters such as earthquakes, flash floods, or forest fires are automatically prevented. This ability functions for any forest or other natural environment regardless of size, so long as the unicorn has resided there for at least 1 year without leaving. A Knowledge (nature) or Survival check (DC 22) identifies such a forest as a unicornís domain.

    New Feats
    "The blood of a unicorn will keep you alive, even if you are an inch from death, but at a terrible price. You have slain something pure and defenceless to save yourself, and you will have but a half-life, a cursed life, from the moment the blood touches your lips." -Firenze

    "If you herald some turn in our fortunes, if you bring us some measure of grace ó thanks, unicorn Ö And even if you do not, thanks for the brightness of your company at a dark time." -Corwin of Amber

    Feast of the Unicorn
    You have tasted unicorn flesh, and thereby gained unnatural vitality.

    Prerequisites
    Must have knowingly and willingly consumed the flesh of a unicorn, evil alignment.

    Benefits
    You ignore aging penalties to your physical ability scores. Your maximum age is doubled.

    Special
    If you become a templated undead creature, your level adjustment (if any) is reduced by 1. Otherwise, when you die you rise as a ghoul or wight the next night.

    One Who Has Seen Unicorns
    You once saw a unicorn, and the memory of that event brings you comfort even in your darkest moments.

    Prerequisites
    Must have made peaceful contact with a unicorn, nonevil alignment.

    Benefits
    You are immune to magical and nonmagical fear and other negative morale effects.
    Last edited by rferries; 2018-04-20 at 11:14 AM.

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    PirateGirl

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    I like thed stat block until you made it an animal companion, cohort of paladin mount. That really doesn't fit the creature's personality. It has such a strong connection as an "elusive forest guardian." how likely is it to want to adventuring and especially dungeon-crawling? I think it would be offended at living in a stable instead of roaming free in the forest. I'm not saying it can't do those things, but as written, it wouldn't.

    Any paladin worth her salt who wanted one as a mount would just stop adventuring and go live in the unicorn's forest. It's great for an NPC but tougher to incorporate with PCs. I could see one leaving the forest if another forest guardian (like an advanced treant) would be able to take it's place but that still only strikes me as a temporary solution.

    This unicorn is smarter than most party members and it's twice as intelligent as a standard unicorn. That's gonna take the shine off the PCs real fast.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    With the LA it's a 20th-level character as an animal companion/cohort/mount, so it would definitely only be one in special circumstances (read: for epic characters). I envisioned it as serving an epic ranger, druid, or paladin of freedom; as you say the unicorn outclasses most non-epic characters with respect to mental abilities, healing powers, etc.

    Regardless of the level at which it serves, it definitely shouldn't be locked up in a stable! As an intelligent creature it would expect the same respect as any party member. Note also that even standard unicorns can serve as cohorts.

    Thanks as always for the comments - I like the treant idea!
    Last edited by rferries; 2017-08-15 at 02:08 PM.

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    AOKost's Avatar

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    Very nicely done! Though I would probably run them as a "royal" unicorn... Or more Advanced unicorns instead of changing them out completely :D

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    Quote Originally Posted by AOKost View Post
    Very nicely done! Though I would probably run them as a "royal" unicorn... Or more Advanced unicorns instead of changing them out completely :D
    Hmm I did intend them as a replacement for the standard unicorn. However the name "Royal Unicorn" is music to my ears!

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    I love the work you've done on both your unicorns!

    Umm... I thought a group of unicorns was called a glory?

    Personally, I'd be tempted to use the High(er) Magic version as the primary version of unicorns (remove the option to have them as animal companion, cohort, or paladin mount), use this version as an lesser/adolescent unicorn with the animal companion, cohort, or paladin mount options intact.

    I'd also be tempted to add two more varieties (This is not a request, just sharing ideas).
    1) An even fiercer/more powerful and proactive version - the High(er) Magic version is described as "driv[ing] off a chromatic dragon", this one would be able and willing to hunt down and destroying adult dragons.
    2) A NG (or maybe even LG) version that "Has the High Justice" - the legal right (and choice) to act as Judge and Jury (and executioner if need be) in cases of Murder, Rape, Treason, Poisoning with ill intent, and curse-spreading. Also, may act as divine justice to remove dangerous tyrants.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    Quote Originally Posted by Ranged Ranger View Post
    I love the work you've done on both your unicorns!

    Umm... I thought a group of unicorns was called a glory?

    Personally, I'd be tempted to use the High(er) Magic version as the primary version of unicorns (remove the option to have them as animal companion, cohort, or paladin mount), use this version as an lesser/adolescent unicorn with the animal companion, cohort, or paladin mount options intact.

    I'd also be tempted to add two more varieties (This is not a request, just sharing ideas).
    1) An even fiercer/more powerful and proactive version - the High(er) Magic version is described as "driv[ing] off a chromatic dragon", this one would be able and willing to hunt down and destroying adult dragons.
    2) A NG (or maybe even LG) version that "Has the High Justice" - the legal right (and choice) to act as Judge and Jury (and executioner if need be) in cases of Murder, Rape, Treason, Poisoning with ill intent, and curse-spreading. Also, may act as divine justice to remove dangerous tyrants.
    The SRD says a group of unicorns is a grace so I used that; glory is nice too though and google says the correct term is a blessing of unicorns.

    The other version I posted didn't attract much interest and it was even more overpowered than this version, so I think I'll abandon it.

    The versions you posted are interesting! The first could be one of the epic unicorns mentioned in this post (i.e. with advanced HD and equivaent favoured soul spellcasting); the second sounds quite specific! Did anything in particular inspire those concepts?

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    Depending on how you word the google search, you will get back either glory or blessing... Blessing seems to work better with the "fluffy rainbows and glitter" type unicorn than the high magic type in my opinion.

    The first is because I have seen numerous stories that mention combat between dragons and unicorns. Since they say the two combat one another rather than saying that one attacks the other, I extrapolate it as implied that a) they're fairly evenly matched and b) that at least sometimes the unicorn is starting the fight. Also since some dragons are more powerful and more aggressive than others, it seems likely that the same might be true of unicorns as well.

    The second is based on a number of stories that depict unicorns as the emissaries of divine justice, ensuring that the guilty are punished and the innocent are not, sometimes disposing an unjust tyrant to instate a better ruler. The term "has the High Justice" was derived from one such story by Garth Nix in the anthology Zombies Vs Unicorns (a book that you should definitely read or listen to on Audiobook).
    Last edited by Ranged Ranger; 2017-09-09 at 02:53 PM.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: Revised Unicorn

    Quote Originally Posted by Ranged Ranger View Post
    Depending on how you word the google search, you will get back either glory or blessing... Blessing seems to work better with the "fluffy rainbows and glitter" type unicorn than the high magic type in my opinion.

    The first is because I have seen numerous stories that mention combat between dragons and unicorns. Since they say the two combat one another rather than saying that one attacks the other, I extrapolate it as implied that a) they're fairly evenly matched and b) that at least sometimes the unicorn is starting the fight. Also since some dragons are more powerful and more aggressive than others, it seems likely that the same might be true of unicorns as well.

    The second is based on a number of stories that depict unicorns as the emissaries of divine justice, ensuring that the guilty are punished and the innocent are not, sometimes disposing an unjust tyrant to instate a better ruler. The term "has the High Justice" was derived from one such story by Garth Nix in the anthology Zombies Vs Unicorns (a book that you should definitely read or listen to on Audiobook).
    Yeah I prefer either grace or glory to blessing myself. I'll stick with grace to match the SRD (it has more of a "fey" feel, whereas glory would work better for celestials IMHO).

    Yes, unicorn vs. the poisonous serpent/dragon is a timeless theme, and was why I made my first unicorns so powerful! :)

    Ah cool, I was thinking more a lion vs unicorn theme for the second interpretation, didn't know about that book. I encourage you to homebrew your own conversion, then! :)

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