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Thread: Call to Brew! [Crossroads]

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    Barbarian in the Playground
    Dracomortis's Avatar

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    Sep 2008
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    Default Re: Call to Brew! [Crossroads]

    I actually had this one on my to-do list already, and no one seems to have claimed it yet, so here we go.

    This small bird vaguely resembles a cross between an eagle and a goose. Its feathers are deep purple with green tips, and its beak is a bright crimson.

    Zhenniao CR 5
    XP 1,600
    N Small magical beast
    Init +3; Senses low-light vision, darkvision 60 ft.; Perception +11
    AC 16, touch 14, flat-footed 13 (+3 Dex, +2 natural, +1 size)
    hp 57 (6d10+24)
    Fort +9, Ref +8, Will +5
    Defensive Abilities poison feathers; Immune poison
    Speed 20 ft., fly 40 ft. (average)
    Melee bite +10 (1d4 plus poison), 2 talons +10 (1d3 plus poison), 2 wings +5 (1d3 plus poison)
    Space 5 ft.; Reach 5 ft.
    Special Attacks poison, talon or wing
    Str 10, Dex 17, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 17, Cha 9
    Base Atk +6; CMB +5; CMD 18
    Feats Flyby Attack, Nimble Moves, Weapon Finesse
    Skills Fly +9, Perception +11
    Environment temperate hills and mountains
    Organization solitary, pair, or flock (3-10)
    Treasure incidental
    Poison (Ex): Bite, talon, or wing—injury; save Fort DC 17; frequency 1/round for 6 rounds; effect 1d2 Con; cure 2 consecutive saves.

    Poison Feathers (Ex): A creature that strikes a zhenniao with an unarmed strike or natural weapon exposes itself to the bird’s poisonous feathers.
    Feathers—contact; save Fort DC 17; frequency 1/round for 4 rounds; effect 1d3 Dex; cure 1 save.

    Talon or Wing (Ex): A zhenniao cannot use its wing attacks while flying, and it cannot use its talon attacks while not flying.

    The zhenniao is a feared but relatively docile creature best known for its highly toxic feathers, which have earned it the nickname “poisonfeather bird” in some regions of the world. Ironically, zhenniao are not naturally poisonous, but instead gain their toxicity through their diet. They feed almost exclusively on venomous animals (particularly vipers) and then secrete the poison from their food through specialized pores in their skin. Unharmed by this process, the zhenniao then acquires a potent defense against would-be predators and will even use this poison to prey upon creatures that would normally be too large or too dangerous for it to take on normally.

    Curiously, the poison coating a zhenniao’s feathers seems to produce two completely different reactions depending on how it is delivered. A creature that merely touches a zhenniao experiences an unpleasant tingling that eventually leads to numbness, but isn’t at risk of death. Those pecked or clawed by the bird, on the other hand, experience a rapid weakening of the body that most often proves fatal. A grounded zhenniao can also slash at opponents with its wings, whose feathers are surprisingly sharp, to deliver the more lethal version of the toxin.
    Last edited by Dracomortis; 2014-02-10 at 03:12 AM.
    Sincerest thanks to Qwernt for the amazing avatar.