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Thread: Dread Willow.

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    Default Dread Willow.

    It has been years since my last Homebrew monsters. This is the first one I've posted on the Giant in the Playground Forums. So please don't tear it apart to badly. I'll post my other homebrews later on.

    My Girl friend had a nightmare and she told me about it. So naturally I made a monster out of it. The math might be off or some grammar. Please excuse that.

    Dread Willow
    Huge Plant (Extraplanar)
    Hit Dice: 16d8+175 (247 hp)
    Speed: 10 ft.
    Initiative: -2
    Armor Class: 26 (+20 Natural, -2 size, -2 dex); touch 6; flat-footed 28
    BAB/Grapple: +12/+27
    Attack: Slam +17 (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)
    Full Attack: 4 Slams +17 melee (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)
    Space/Reach: 30 ft./ 20 ft.
    Special Attacks: Alluring Scent, Blood Drain, Constriction (2d6+7), Improved Grab, Poison, Seeding
    Special Qualities: All-around vision, Low-light Vision, Fire Vulnerability, Natural Camouflage +20.
    Saves: Fort +20, Ref +3, Will +
    Abilities: Str 24, Dex 6, Con 30, Int 2, Wis 10, Cha 12
    Skills: Hide +9 (+11 in Swamp), Disguise +1 (+21 in Swamp), Spot +20
    Feats: Toughness x5, Improved Grapple
    Environment: Grey Waste or Swampy Marsh lands
    Organization: Solitary, Cluster 2-7 or, Orchard [1 Colossal, 4 Gargantuan, 12 Huge]
    Challenge Rating: 14
    Treasure: 1/10th coins, 1/2 Mundane items excluding art.
    Alignment: Neutral Evil
    Advancement: 17-32 HD (Gargantuan), 33-48 HD (Colossal)
    Level Adjustment:

    In the stinking marsh, the smell of rotting plant and animal matter becomes overwhelming during the sweltering summer months. Then you notice a sweet fragrance, something akin to sweet cherries and night blooming jasmine. Almost the best scent on the planet. Before you realize it, you're following your nose to the source. You see a strange tree, something like a willow, but it’s not like any on earth. It has thin wispy branches. On the ends of those same branches are apricot sized fruit. They are responsible for the smell. Then you notice the trunk, the strange gnarled bark. The roots are not in the ground, but above the ground. The strangest part is that the tree is bent at an obtuse angle. Then you notice the fruit, aren’t fruit but eyes, black eyes. The leaves aren’t leaves but hypodermic needles. Your feet won’t move as your brain says run and the tree lunges forward with great and frightening speed.

    Combat:

    The Dread Willow is an ambush predator. It will wait for months before even willfully moving a branch. When its prey comes close, it lets them walk under its branches. Then it attacks with everything it has.

    All-around Vision (Ex): A dread willow can see in all directions gaining a +20 racial bonus to Spot.

    Alluring Scent (Ex): The Dread Willow’s scent can be smelled for miles. However, when a creature gets within 50 feet, it must make a Will save (DC 28) or mindlessly approach the dread willow. The save is constitution-based. Upon being struck by the willow, the target is no longer under this effect. It can’t be affected by the same dread willow’s Alluring Scent Ability for the next 24 hours.

    Blood Drain (Ex): If the dread willow succeeds a constriction attack, it then begins to drain the blood of its victim and deals 1d4 points of damage on every round.

    Constriction (Ex): The dread willow uses its roots and wispy branches to drain blood from a grabbed opponent, dealing 2d6+7 points of damage each round it maintains the hold.

    Fire Vulnerability (Ex): A dread willow takes half again as much (+50%) damage as normal from fire, regardless of whether a saving throw is allowed, or if the save is a success or failure.

    Natural Camouflage (Ex): When is a swampy environment the dread willow gains +20 bonus to its Disguise skill to appear as a normal willow tree. It stays perfectly still, allowing the wind or rain to sway its branches. In this Environment, it also ignores the size penalty to Hide.

    Poison (Ex): Upon striking its prey, the dread willow injects its venom. This venom slows the prey’s ability to move. A victim must succeed on a Fortitude save (DC 28) or suffer 2d6 points of dexterity damage. The save is constitution-based. A second Fortitude save is needed or the prey suffers a Secondary Effect taking 2d6 points of dexterity. The ability damage heals at a rate of one point of Dexterity per day. The slow effect lasts 10 rounds.

    Seeding (Ex): Upon killing its prey, the dread willow produces a seed. The seed has a face on it—the face of the last kill, twisted in agony. The seed uses its root like protrusions to drag its self to the body, and then opens a hidden maw filled with needle like teeth. From there, it bites down and then the roots begin to bury its self and the body. In one year’s time, a new dread willow will emerge.

    A Knowledge (Nature) reveals the following information:

    {TABLE=head]DC|Lore
    26| The dread willow is a carnivorous plant. It is easy to tell the victims of a dread willow as the faces of its victims appear on its bark. This reveals Type and subtype.
    31| It attracts its prey via a great smell. This reveals all Special Abilities
    36| The Dread Willow comes from the Grey Waste. It uses poison and blood drain to subdue and gain sustenance from its prey. This reveals all Special Attacks. [/table]

    Monster edit thanks to Debihuman.
    Last edited by TheLash; 2010-02-18 at 10:16 PM.

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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Change the ^2 in the attack lines to x2

    Natural attacks don't get iterative BAB.


    The introductory flavor text implies it only attacks in summer, but none of the description matches that. You probably just made the flavor text too specific.

    What is the "+20" part of "All Around Vision" supposed to mean?

    The fire vulnerability mechanic you are using is non-standard, and requires rolling the damage separately if, for instance, you are in a situation where your fire-ball also has to hit an ally. I recommend the standard +50% damage mechanic, or, if you want something equivalent (on average) to what you have now, just say it takes +1 damage per die.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    This will make an awesome addition to my Ravenloft campaign. Thanks!

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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Before you get disheartened by all my corrections, I want to say that you have a great monster here. The mistakes you made are fairly common and as you said yourself, you hadn't homebrewed in a while.

    So without much ado, here are my corrections and a few suggestions though I tried to limit them to keep your vision of the creature as consistent as possible.

    Oh before I get to the creature itself: The online SRD would have been helpful to you as you have a number of errors in your statblock. SRD is here: www.d20srd.org.

    Now let's examine this creature...

    You don't use Outsider as a subtype. Outsider is a type and a creature cannot have two types. The proper subtype would be Extraplanar. Kudos for putting in the plane of existence in environment.

    Here is the pertinent information from the SRD, now in spoilers as this post is getting very long indeed:

    Spoiler
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    Plant Type:
    This type comprises vegetable creatures. Note that regular plants, such as one finds growing in gardens and fields, lack Wisdom and Charisma scores (see Nonabilities) and are not creatures, but objects, even though they are alive.

    Features

    A plant creature has the following features.

    * 8-sided Hit Dice.
    * Base attack bonus equal to ¾ total Hit Dice (as cleric).
    * Good Fortitude saves.
    * Skill points equal to (2 + Int modifier, minimum 1) per Hit Die, with quadruple skill points for the first Hit Die, if the plant creature has an Intelligence score. However, some plant creatures are mindless and gain no skill points or feats.

    Traits

    A plant creature possesses the following traits (unless otherwise noted in a creature’s entry).

    * Low-light vision.
    * Immunity to all mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, phantasms, patterns, and morale effects).
    * Immunity to poison, sleep effects, paralysis, polymorph, and stunning.
    * Not subject to critical hits.
    * Proficient with its natural weapons only.
    * Proficient with no armor.
    * Plants breathe and eat, but do not sleep.
    Extraplanar Subtype

    A subtype applied to any creature when it is on a plane other than its native plane. A creature that travels the planes can gain or lose this subtype as it goes from plane to plane. Monster entries assume that encounters with creatures take place on the Material Plane, and every creature whose native plane is not the Material Plane has the extraplanar subtype (but would not have when on its home plane). Every extraplanar creature in this book has a home plane mentioned in its description. Creatures not labeled as extraplanar are natives of the Material Plane, and they gain the extraplanar subtype if they leave the Material Plane. No creature has the extraplanar subtype when it is on a transitive plane, such as the Astral Plane, the Ethereal Plane, and the Plane of Shadow.


    Plants get BAB just like clerics so a 16 HD plant has a BAB of 12 not 16.

    Grapple is 27. Base attack bonus + Strength modifier + special size modifier= 12+7+8.

    Monsters get attacks based on how many limbs they can attack with not based on their BAB. Just like a treant, a dread willow should be able to attack with a Slam a number of times (you get to pick the number). Considering that this has twice the HD of the standard treant, 4 slams wouldn't be unreasonable.

    Melee Attack is Base attack bonus + Strength modifier + size modifier. Note that this size modifier is NOT the same as the grapple modifier. Huge creatures gain a bonus to grapple based on their size but have a penalty to attack due to their size. The number is 12+7-2= 17. Constriction numbers should be listed under Special Attack sas well as in the standard attack line. Constriction does not use a different melee attack number. However, in order to do constriction damage it must have the Improved Grab special ability. Just add Improved Grab to Special Attacks to resolve this.

    Attack: Slam +17 (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)
    Full Attack: 4 Slams +17 melee (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)

    Special Attacks: Alluring Scent, Blood Drain, Constrict (2d6+7), Improved Grab, Low-light Vision, Poison, Seeding

    Plants do not have darkvision but they do have low-light vision see Plant type above.

    For Natural Camouflage, it should be a bonus to Disguise (not to Hide) so that it appears as a normal willow tree. Even if you give it no ranks in Disguise, it could have the +20 bonus so you may want to rethink this.

    You need a section on All-around Vision since it appears you are giving this creature a +20 racial bonus on Spot checks. The +20 to Spot shouldn't be listed in the statblock but in the text block.

    You didn't give it any Saves. Plants only have Good Fort Saves. At 16 HD, a Good Save is +10 and a Poor Save is +5. You add Con modifier to a Fort save, Dex modifier to a Reflex save and Wis modifier to Will save.

    Saves: Fort +20, Ref +3, Will +5

    Also, why is its Charisma so low? With the alluring scent, its Charisma should be a lot higher. It should be at least 12.

    Feats: Improved Grab is not a feat; it is a Special Ability. Improved Grapple is a Feat. It should have 6 feats (it gains a feat for its 1st hd, and at 3rd, 6th, 9th, 12th and 15th). Why did you think this creature couldn't gain feats normally? However, giving Toughness x5 is perfectly acceptable.

    Skills: it has 4 skills at 1st HD and 1 skill for each additional hit die for a total 19 skill points. It can have a maximum of +19 skill ranks in any skill (not including modifiers).

    If you put all 19 skill points into Hide it would have the skill as follows +19 ranks, -2 Dex, -8 size for a total of +9 in Hide. Creatures this big are difficult to Hide.

    Advancement seems off. Normally creatures double their hit dice when they increase in size.

    Advancement: 17-32 HD (Gargantuan), 33-48 HD (Colossal)

    A Knowledge (Nature) would reveal the Lore information. However, the DC is 10 + creature's HD, so it should start at DC 26 and go up by 5. Stating that the dread willow is a fungus only in the lore section doesn't make a lot of sense to put it here as an afterthought; plus it doesn't add anything to the creature.

    Here is the Dread Willow with my suggestions (and edited and proofread):

    Spoiler
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    Dread Willow
    Huge Plant (Extraplanar)
    Hit Dice: 16d8+175 (247 hp)
    Speed: 10 ft.
    Initiative: -2
    Armor Class: 26 (+20 Natural, -2 size, -2 dex); touch 6; flat-footed 28
    BAB/Grapple: +12/+27
    Attack: Slam +17 (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)
    Full Attack: 4 Slams +17 melee (2d6+7/19-20 plus poison)
    Space/Reach: 30 ft./ 20 ft.
    Special Attacks: Alluring Scent, Blood Drain, Constriction (2d6+7), Improved Grab, Poison, Seeding
    Special Qualities: All-around vision, Low-light Vision, Fire Vulnerability, Natural Camouflage +20.
    Saves: Fort +20, Ref +3, Will +
    Abilities: Str 24, Dex 6, Con 30, Int 2, Wis 10, Cha 12
    Skills: Hide +9 (+11 in Swamp), Disguise +1 (+21 in Swamp), Spot +20
    Feats: Toughness x5, Improved Grapple
    Environment: Grey Waste or Swampy Marsh lands
    Organization: Solitary, Cluster 2-7 or, Orchard [1 Colossal, 4 Gargantuan, 12 Huge]
    Challenge Rating: 14
    Treasure: 1/10th coins, 1/2 Mundane items excluding art.
    Alignment: Neutral Evil
    Advancement: 17-32 HD (Gargantuan), 33-48 HD (Colossal)
    Level Adjustment:

    In the stinking marsh, the smell of rotting plant and animal matter becomes overwhelming during the sweltering summer months. Then you notice a sweet fragrance, something akin to sweet cherries and night blooming jasmine. Almost the best scent on the planet. Before you realize it, you're following your nose to the source. You see a strange tree, something like a willow, but it’s not like any on earth. It has thin wispy branches. On the ends of those same branches are apricot sized fruit. They are responsible for the smell. Then you notice the trunk, the strange gnarled bark. The roots are not in the ground, but above the ground. The strangest part is that the tree is bent at an obtuse angle. Then you notice the fruit, aren’t fruit but eyes, black eyes. The leaves aren’t leaves but hypodermic needles. Your feet won’t move as your brain says run and the tree lunges forward with great and frightening speed.

    Combat:

    The Dread Willow is an ambush predator. It will wait for months before even willfully moving a branch. When its prey comes close, it lets them walk under its branches. Then it attacks with everything it has.

    All-around Vision (Ex): A dread willow can see in all directions gaining a +20 racial bonus to Spot.

    Alluring Scent (Ex): The Dread Willow’s scent can be smelled for miles. However, when a creature gets within 50 feet, it must make a Will save (DC 28) or mindlessly approach the dread willow. The save is constitution-based. Upon being struck by the willow, the target is no longer under this effect. It can’t be affected by the same dread willow’s Alluring Scent Ability for the next 24 hours.

    Blood Drain (Ex): If the dread willow succeeds a constriction attack, it then begins to drain the blood of its victim and deals 1d4 points of damage on every round.

    Constriction (Ex): The dread willow uses its roots and wispy branches to drain blood from a grabbed opponent, dealing 2d6+7 points of damage each round it maintains the hold.

    Fire Vulnerability (Ex): A dread willow takes half again as much (+50%) damage as normal from fire, regardless of whether a saving throw is allowed, or if the save is a success or failure.

    Natural Camouflage (Ex): When is a swampy environment the dread willow gains +20 bonus to its Disguise skill to appear as a normal willow tree. It stays perfectly still, allowing the wind or rain to sway its branches. In this Environment, it also ignores the size penalty to Hide.

    Poison (Ex): Upon striking its prey, the dread willow injects its venom. This venom slows the prey’s ability to move. A victim must succeed on a Fortitude save (DC 28) or suffer 2d6 points of dexterity damage. The save is constitution-based. A second Fortitude save is needed or the prey suffers a Secondary Effect taking 2d6 points of dexterity. The ability damage heals at a rate of one point of Dexterity per day. The slow effect lasts 10 rounds.

    Seeding (Ex): Upon killing its prey, the dread willow produces a seed. The seed has a face on it—the face of the last kill, twisted in agony. The seed uses its root like protrusions to drag its self to the body, and then opens a hidden maw filled with needle like teeth. From there, it bites down and then the roots begin to bury its self and the body. In one year’s time, a new dread willow will emerge.

    A Knowledge (Nature) reveals the following information:

    {TABLE=head]DC|Lore
    26| The dread willow is a carnivorous plant. It is easy to tell the victims of a dread willow as the faces of its victims appear on its bark. This reveals Type and subtype.
    31| It attracts its prey via a great smell. This reveals all Special Abilities
    36| The Dread Willow comes from the Grey Waste. It uses poison and blood drain to subdue and gain sustenance from its prey. This reveals all Special Attacks. [/table]

    Debby
    Last edited by Debihuman; 2010-02-20 at 12:41 AM. Reason: Finally finished proofreading
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Bump to show that I've finally finished editing and proofreading. It's a very cool monster. I hope you find my corrections to your liking.

    Debby
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    Please, please, please when using non-core material, cite to the books. There are too many books to wade through to find the one with the feat, special ability or spell you use.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Thank you for the reviews and corrections everyone. I'll edit the first post soon. I have some home work to do before hand.

    Also the online SRD would have been a tremendous help to me. I'll be using that next time.

    Edit, Well I'll use your version Debi. Its great thank you so much.
    Some of the mistakes I've made are because of house rules that I made ages and ago and just wrote them in. Others were just bad a few bad choices like hide instead of disguise. Also I swear it had saves I must be going crazy. I am going to blame all the school work and the refrigerant that has been in class from lab work. As for the spot check I normally just put it in the stat block so when I run the monster I don't need to do any calculations. Just for faster game play.

    One more thing can someone teach me to make the charts? That would be great.
    Last edited by TheLash; 2010-02-18 at 10:14 PM.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheLash View Post
    Speed: 10 ft.
    Abilities: Dex 6

    Your feet won’t move as your brain says run and the tree lunges forward with great and frightening speed.
    hehehe... frighting speed.... hehehe

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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Actually a lunge would be made with the branches or at least that was how I envisioned it. This would be more in line with a grapple than with base movement. However, BigBadBugbear does have a point. Perhaps the dread willow could have a special ability which allows it to be hasted as per the spell three times a day.

    Debby
    P.E.A.C.H. Please Evaluate And Critique Honestly. Being nicer and kinder doesn't hurt either. Note I generally only critique 3.5 and Pathfinder material.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    That's an awesome monster. I really like it.

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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    You know I never thought of it having a haste like ability a few times per day.
    Perhaps the ability could be closer to the tarrasque rush ability but toned down?

    Maybe
    Rush(Ex):Three times per day the Dread Willow can move at a speed of 80 feet.

    When I wrote about its speed I was not thinking of how fast it could travel but how fast its limbs could hit you.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    In that case consider changing it to "Its limbs striking at you in a blur of motion" or "Its limbs striking at you from every direction." and leave out the Haste and Rush stuff.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Really cool creature. Somewhat frightening too. Give congratulations (or should it be condolences?) to your girlfriend for her inspiration.

    Keep posting cool stuff like this.
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Quote Originally Posted by Debihuman View Post
    *snip*
    Oh before I get to the creature itself: The online SRD would have been helpful to you as you have a number of errors in your statblock. SRD is here: www.srd.org.
    *snip*
    I fail to see how this would be helpful.

    This may be of slightly more use to you.
    (Unless, of course, you attend the University of Texas in Austin)

    EDIT:

    To make a table you use the following code
    Code:
    [t able=head]1|2|3
    a|b|c
    [/table]
    (w/o space)
    gets you:
    {table=head]1|2|3
    a|b|c
    [/table]
    Last edited by FoeHammer; 2010-02-19 at 08:55 PM. Reason: Answer question w/o double post
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    Default Re: Dread Willow.

    Quote Originally Posted by FoeHammer View Post
    I fail to see how this would be helpful.

    This may be of slightly more use to you.
    (Unless, of course, you attend the University of Texas in Austin)
    whoops. I left out the d20. It's in now. Thanks for catching that.


    Debby
    P.E.A.C.H. Please Evaluate And Critique Honestly. Being nicer and kinder doesn't hurt either. Note I generally only critique 3.5 and Pathfinder material.
    Please, please, please when using non-core material, cite to the books. There are too many books to wade through to find the one with the feat, special ability or spell you use.
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