View Full Version : [Monster] Billowing Robes

2008-02-27, 02:14 AM
Billowing Robes
Medium Undead (Air, Evil, Incorporeal)
HD 18d12+18 (135hp)
Speed 10 ft. (2 squares); fly 80ft (perfect)
Init: +5
AC 26; touch 26; flat-footed 21
(+5 dex, +7 deflection, +4 luck)
BAB +9; Grp -
Attack Incorporeal Touch Attack +14 (3d6 plus Soul-Chilling Touch)
Full Attack Incorporeal Touch Attack +14 (3d6 plus Soul-Chilling Touch)
Space 5 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
Special Attacks Brushing Strikes, Eyes Toward the Soul, Soul-Chilling Touch
Special Qualities Beyond Tenacity, DR 10/slashing and good, Darkvision 120ft, Fast Healing 3, Incarnate, Frightful Presence, Immunity to Cold, Fire Vulnerability
Saves Fort +6 Ref +11 Will +15
Abilities Str -, Dex 21, Con -, Int 12, Wis 19, Cha 25
Skills Escape Artist +26, Hide +26, Listen +25, Move Silently +26, Spot +25
Feats Improved Toughness, Ability Focus (Eyes Toward the Soul), Mobility, Dodge, Flyby Attack, Improved Flyby Attack, Lifesense
Environment Mountains
Organization Solitary, Wing (2-5), Congregation (6+)
Challenge Rating 13
Treasure Standard
Alignment Usually Neutral Evil
Advancement 19+ HD (medium)
Level Adjustment -

In front of you is an odd sight; a set of marvelous black robes floating in the air, devoid of life as smoke courses through it, pouring out every opening, ebbing and flowing as if it were alive. Moving through the air with unearthly grace, it glides towards you, a frightening wail coming from seemingly everywhere at once.

Billowing Robes are the angered and lost spirits of the poor people who were unsuccessfully sacrificed in a ritual. Perhaps the cult sacrificing the poor soul was offering it to something that does not or no longer exists. Or perhaps someone interrupted the sacrifice, but were too late to stop the poor soul from being killed. Maybe the one to which the poor soul was sacrificed did not want it. Maybe the sacrificers just messed up the ritual, leaving the soul to wander around its dead body until it went mad. In any case, the soul will wander around its dead body (or the object upon which it was sacrificed) for a number of days equal to its wisdom score before it finally goes mad. The object upon which it was sacrificed begins cracking, and smoke pours from these cracks, until it crumbles open, revealing a set of black robes, which quickly fills with smoke and begins moving (if it was not sacrificed on any special object, or dragged itself away before dying, the floor simply cracks open on the spot it died).

After being animated, the Billowing Robes typically move somewhere isolated from other life, most commonly mountains. Some, however, may choose to linger at the site of their death. Either way, it will attack any life it sees, driven mad with jealousy and loneliness. Killing the monster is not even a guarantee that it will pass on; it has suffered too much to simply let its shred of life fall from its grasp.

Sometimes these beings congregate, finding comfort in that they are not alone in their fate. This is most common in unsuccessful mass sacrifices. However, such groups usually do not coordinate well, and will almost certainly dissolve after just a few months. Until then, they are a deadly threat, as they will generally cover the retreat of injured Billowing Robes.

Their robes are around 6 feet tall, and their robes generally weigh around 4 pounds. The smoke is incorporeal; its dimensions vary and is weightless.

The Billowing Robes usually attacks by rushing past its enemies and attacking one at a time, taking full advantage of its Flyby Attack to stay out of reach as much as possible. It uses its gaze as much as possible, and will generally always use its Frightful Presence. They commonly retreat after becoming tattered (see Incarnate ability), unless they are against a single target or small group.

In groups, they will often gang up on one creature, taking them down one at a time, in an order according to who attacked them first, or who is closest, if the Billowing Robes initiated combat. If one of the Billowing Robes becomes tattered (see Incarnate ability), at least one other Billowing Robes will use the Aid Another option to cover its retreat.

Brushing Strikes (Ex)
The Billowing Robes does not swing as hard as it can like most creatures. It merely brushes the ends of its sleeves upon those it wishes to be dead, their life energy flowing from them as they come into contact with the miserable being. Ghost Touch armor offers no extra protection against the Billowing Robes, though force-based effects can still hold it at bay, giving its full AC bonus.

Eyes Toward the Soul (Su)
The Billowing Robes can harm a creature simply by turning the opening of its hood at them. Its immaterial, invisible eyes peer straight through their flesh, right at the soul, and leave a taint upon it. Treat this as a gaze attack with a range of 30ft. Each turn, those within its range must make a will save (DC 28) or shiver as their very soul is overcome with loneliness. While affected by this, they receive a -2 moral penalty to their attack rolls, ability checks and skill rolls. The effects last for as long as they are within range of the gaze attack and for 1d4 rounds afterwards. Anyone who saves against this effect is immune to that particular Billowing Robes' Eyes Towards the Soul for 24 hours. The save DC is charisma-based.

Soul-Chilling Touch (Ex)
While its gaze can afflict the souls of living beings, its touch is even worse, draining a little bit of a poor being's soul with each brush of its sleeve. Anyone hit by the Billowing Robes' incorporeal touch attack must make a fortitude save (DC 26) or suffer 1d4 cold damage as they shiver uncontrollably, and receive a negative level. The save DC is charisma-based. The negative level does NOT become real level loss, but it does not fade until the cold damage is healed.

Beyond Tenacity (Su)
The Billowing Robes will not give up easily. Even when killed, it may attempt a level check (DC 25) for it to reform, smoke surrounding the remains of its robes and filling it the next time wind passes through the area, coming back to unlife with full hit points. The only way to permanently destroy it is to have the finishing blow deal at least 10 points of fire damage, reducing the robes to ashes. In this case, the next time wind blows through the area, the ashes are carried away, never to be seen again by any means.

Incarnate (Su)
The Billowing Robes, while incorporeal, is not without physical aspects. It must possess a set of robes, providing enemies with a physical entity to attack. Its full hit points are not its own, but are used for the robes. However, the robes themselves are reduced to tatters of its mere self once the creature is at only 1/5 of its original total. In this state, it loses its Fast Healing property (it regains 1 hit point per hour, however). However, since it is just tatters surrounded by smoke, its size changes to Tiny, and gains all benefits and drawbacks thereof, though its speed does not change. Once it goes over 1/5 of its total hit points (either from its energy drain or reduced healing), the robes are mended and it returns to its normal state. Furthermore, opponents do not require ghost touch weapons to hit the robes, for they are mere robes. Due to its lack of any muscle whatsoever, it cannot effectively grapple. Their robes can also fold and flatten themselves, allowing them to perform escape artist checks as if it were two sizes smaller.

Striking at the actual being, the smoke itself, is also possible. It has full hit points per HD, but must be attacked with a ghost touch weapon or force effect, and must be specifically targeted (taking a -3 penalty on any attack roll); otherwise, the robes get in the way. The smoke has DR 15/good instead of its normal DR, and has Fast Healing 5, and does not suffer any penalties for reduced hit points. It is also immune to fire, cold, electricity and acid. Destroying the smoke ends the creature, and imposes a -5 penalty on its level check to return. Both forms have a luck bonus to AC equal to its Wisdom modifier.

Frightful Presence (Ex)
The mere sight of the Billowing Robes and the sounds of its wailing is enough to disturb people. It takes effect automatically when the Billowing Robes moves, attacks or wails. Anyone within 60ft at the time must succeed on a will save (DC 26) or become shaken for 4d6 rounds. Anyone who successfully saves against this becomes immune to that Billowing Robe's Frightful Presence for 24 hours. The save DC is charisma-based.

Billowing Robes act as two sizes smaller for escape artist checks, conferring a +8 racial bonus.

Billowing Robes Lore
Characters with Knowledge (religion) can research Billowing Robes to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including the information from lower DCs.

DC 15: Billowing Robes are fearsome creatures that appear after a failed sacrifice. They can easily find living beings.
DC 20: The touch, or even gaze, of the Billowing Robes can affect a creature's soul. They must be destroyed with fire, for they can reappear even after their destruction.
DC 25: Billowing Robes are the souls of innocent creatures who have gone mad after a failed sacrifice.
DC 30: The smoke within the robes is the actual monster; not the robes themselves. While harder to kill than the robes themselves, it is a viable alternative if there is no fire nearby.

2008-02-27, 05:11 PM

I love how these creatures are made by failed sacrifices. I've never heard that before in a monster so kudos et original.

Could an evil (similarly lonely) lich or vampire wear one of these as a cloak, and then when threatened, toss his cloak at the PCs to distract them as a getaway scheme? Because if so, that's amazing.

2008-02-28, 11:32 PM
Yes, the robes can be worn, since the smoke is incorporeal. The problem is convincing it to stay still long enough to be worn as actual clothing, which can be accomplished by, say, casting Command Undead and succeeding on the Charisma check to convince it to stand still and hide its status even in the presence of living beings until you throw it at them.

As an added bonus, any such spellcaster wearing the robes could choose to be surrounded by ebbing and flowing smoke wherever they go.