View Full Version : Statting out non-dinosaur prehistoric creatures (3.5 & 4E)

2009-10-07, 06:02 AM
Seeing as the dinosaur thread has been a bit quiet for a while, how about a non-dinosaur thread?

Beginning with listing the existing creatures, and the existing dire animals that could be customized slightly in name/external appearance to be prehistoric animals, and then going on describing what changes you think should be made to them, then going on to making up stats for animals not mentioned.

Existing ones:
Dire Hawk (rename as Harpagornis)
Forest Sloth
Grizzly Mastodon

Fiend Folio:
Dire Rhinoceros (rename as Elasmotherium)
Terror bird (rename as Brontornis)

Branta (remove the traits that make it a magical beast and rename as Brontothere)

Dire Hippo (rename)
Dire Vulture (rename as Argentavis)

Dragon Eel (possibly restat as animal, increase size to Huge, and rename as Dunkleosteus- it looks very like it)

2009-10-07, 08:26 PM
Harpagornis? Harpagornis was technically prehistoric, I suppose, in that it was extinct by the time people with writing arrived where it lived. But it became extinct less than a thousand years ago. It's pretty clear now that it's the bird identified in Maori legend as "Pouakai".

2009-10-07, 08:32 PM
Ooh. I'll have to do some stuff for this thread. I loves me some Ice Age mammals.

Violet Octopus
2009-10-08, 01:49 AM
What about animals from before the dinosaurs? I don't know much about them beyond what some abridged doco aimed at children told me, but there were some cool 4-pincered giant scorpions and interesting marine predators, not to mention the general weirdness of the Cambrian period.

2009-10-08, 04:29 AM
Eurypterids or "sea scorpions" while not closely related to true scorpions, could possible be represented by addding to Aquatic subtype to a Monstrous scorpion of up to Large size (even the biggest of them only barely qualifies).


Its not clear whether they could sting or not.

also, not all of them were aquatic.

Harpagornis (or Aquila moorei as it should probably be called now) I picked because it was extinct, has fossil material, and is possibly the largest member of Accipitridae (hawks and their allies).

It's about the only one that might qualify for Medium (its a little short, and a little light, but so is the Roc, for Gargantuan).

Violet Octopus
2009-10-08, 10:08 AM
It's D&D. Of course they sting.:smalltongue:

It is rather convenient D&D already has giant arthropods, even in core.

2009-10-08, 10:30 AM
Yes- the supplements do expand them a bit though- from just spiders and scorpions in MM, to whip scorpions, solfugids, etc in Lost Empires of Faerun, to giant crabs in Stormwrack.

Eurypterids would be new though :smallsmile:

2009-10-13, 03:52 PM
Seeing as no-one else has, I'll begin:


Huge Animal (aquatic)
Hit Dice: 20d8+83 (173 hp)
Initiative: +1
Speed: 40 ft (8 squares)
Armor Class: 25 (-2 size, +1 Dex, +16 natural), touch 9, flat footed 24
Base Attack/Grapple: +15/+30
Attack: Bite +21 melee (2d8+10/x3 or Powerful Charge 2d8+10/x3 plus 2d6)
Full Attack: Bite +21 melee (2d8+10/x3)
Space/Reach: 15 ft./10 ft
Special Attacks: Improved grab, swallow whole, crushing bite
Special Qualities: Keen scent
Saves: Fort +15, Ref +13, Will +13
Abilities: Str 24, Dex 13, Con 17, Int 1, Wis 12, Cha 10
Skills: Listen +12, Spot +13, Swim +15
Feats: Improved Natural Attack (bite) Weapon Focus (bite) Powerful Charge, Improved Sunder, Power Attack, Toughness, Improved Toughness
Environment: Warm aquatic
Organization: Solitary
Challenge Rating: 10
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 21-40 (Huge)
Level Adjustment: -

This prehistoric fish has a heavily armoured, massive body, and viciously sharp bony plates line its jaws.


Dunkleosteus bites with its powerful jaws, swallowing smaller prey whole. It uses its crushing bite to sunder anything that might pose a threat to it.

Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, Dunkleosteus must hit with its bite attack. It can then attempt to start a grapple as a free action without provoking attacks of opportunity. If it wins a grapple check, it establishes a hold and can try to swallow the foe in the following round.

Swallow Whole (Ex): Dunkleosteus can try to swallow a grappled opponent of up to one size smaller by making a successful grapple check. Once inside, the opponent takes 2d8+8 points of bludgeoning damage plus 1d10 +6 points of acid damage from the animal's digestive juices.
A swallowed animal can cut its way out using a light slashing or piercing weapon by dealing 30 points of damage to the animal's digestive tract (AC 15) Once the creature exits, muscular action closes the hole; another swallowed opponent must cut its own way out.

The gullet of Dunkleosteus can hold 2 Large, 8 Medium, 32 Tiny, 128 Diminuitive, or 512 Fine or smaller opponents.

Keen Scent (Ex): Dunkleosteus can notice creatures by scent in a 90-foot radius and can detect blood in the water at a range of up to half a mile.

Crushing Bite (Ex): Dunkleosteus deals bite damage as if its jaws were adamantine weapons for the purpose of bypassing the hardness of objects and overcoming damage reduction. On a critical hit, its bite deals triple damage.

Skills: Dunkleosteus has a +8 racial bonus on any Swim check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard. It can always choose to take 10 on a Swim check, even if distracted or endangered. It can use the Run attack while swimming, provided it swims in a straight line.