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  1. - Top - End - #1
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    biggrin Ecology of the Flumph

    Ecology of the Flumph
    Flumphs are tiny intelligent floating cephalopods that closely resemble jellyfish. These bizarre creatures are native to a far away world, located deep in the airless void that makes up most of the Material Plane. These creatures are survivors of a massive planetary extinction, and have only recently reached this world. They live in the deepest sections of the Underdark, fighting off the Grell invasion and trying desperately to warn the native humanoids of the impending doomsday.

    History
    Flumphs originated on another world. This much is certain. No known living creature, Flumph or otherwise who witnessed to mass exodus is alive today. What is known is that there was a massive war the ravaged their planet. Flumphs were once enslaved by their evolutionary cousins, the Grell. It is unknown how long they lasted, exactly, but it is known that it was long enough for the Grell to consume all other sapient races on their world, and then start to do the same to the Flumphs.

    The Flumphs fought back, and a long and bloody war had begun. This war could have lasted for hundreds, or even thousands of years, but the exact length is unknown. What is known, though, is that the war left the entire planet decimated. The land was a wasteland, with all the native flora and fauna driven to extinction. The Flumph population went from several million to under one hundred thousand. The war was a pyrrhic victory for the Grells, but both had to flee to the Plane of Shadow to survive.

    Over the course of a few decades, both sides became little more than nomads, wandering through the Plane of Shadow to reach a new world to inhabit. The Grells continued to hunt and kill the Flumphs, diminishing their population even further. In a final desperate attempt to survive, the Flumphs planeshifted to the Underdark. Unfortunately, the Grells followed them to this world, and they started to carve out a new empire for themselves. The Flumphs were upset; by arriving at this new world, they had doomed its inhabitants to the same fate they suffered.

    For the most part, Flumphs are often confused as either animals or evil aberrations to be eliminated by the surface races. The Flumphs are attempting to contact brave adventurers to help curb the massing Grell threat before it is too late. Flumphs have established many communities in various caves close to the surface, and has so far made friendly contact with a couple of settlements.
    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-04-23 at 02:01 PM.
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    Default Physiology & Psychology

    Physiology
    Flumphs, being aberrations, have a very odd and complex autonomy. Their alien biology gives them many advantages, including defensive weapons, increased vision, and even the ability to fly. Being distantly related to Grells, Flumphs have many characteristics in common with them. There are, of course, several main differences between them as well.

    Unlike the Grell species, Flumphs have eyes. It is believed that their eyes evolved to better flee flying predators. In order to better see from three dimensions, the Flumph developed eyestalks. Each one is capable of moving independently, and all can move at a 180 degree angle in both directions. This allows for an extraordinary field of vision. This gave them an advantage over the blind Grell, as it allowed them to see the Grell long before their enemies could have detected them. Although Flumphs do not have true regeneration, eyestalks and tentacles that are severed do grow back. This process usually takes about a week.

    Flumphs were originally sea creatures, as evidenced by their lightweight cartilage-based skeleton and odd body shape. When Flumphs began to adapt as air-breathing creatures, it became apparent that their bodies were not suitable for walking on land. As they evolved, they developed dozens of small organs best described as air sacks. They are designed to hold small quantities of air, which they unconsciously heat and cold to adjust their height from the ground. To move, Flumphs breathe air in through their mouths, and expel them through the various tubules that line their saucer-like body. This air, when released, pushes them forward. Air is released through different tubules to push the Flumph in different directions. When a Flumph is flipped over, all air within the sacks are released, in an attempt to disorient any animal who attempts to bite into it. Unfortunately, this leaves the creature helpless. The air sacks slowly refill over the course of an hour.

    The Flumph has several natural weapons to better protect it. On its homeworld, the Flumph’s natural enemies all relied on scent to track enemies. In order to hide, they developed the ability to excrete and fire a smelly substance at enemies to nullify their smelling ability. Their other natural attack, bony spikes that excrete digestive acid, is actually part of their digestive system. Flumphs do not consume food through their mouth (that is purely for their respiratory system and their primary mode of transportation), but rather puncture their prey with these spikes and digest them from the inside out. Most prey on small animals, like frogs, rats, and the occasional dog. To supplement this carnivorous diet, most also consume salt. This can be bad in areas that rely on salt mining.

    {table]Kingdom | Animalia
    Phylum | Cnidaria
    Class | Cuboza
    Order | Chirodropida
    Family | Chirodropidae
    Genus | Grellitex
    Species | G. Flumpheri[/table]

    Psychology
    Unlike other aberrations, Flumphs both feel emotions and perceive its surroundings like humanoids. They tend to be relatable, with a very human-like world view. Despite all the terrible things that has happened to their race, Flumphs tend to be very optimistic individuals. They are very friendly, and rarely give up when they decide to do something.

    Flumphs absolutely despise the Grell. This seems understandable, as both are responsible for the endangerment of themselves and the destruction of their homeworld. While Flumphs genuinely believe that it is their duty to protect other races from their mistake. Many may consider it naïve, but they believe that if they can unite the surface races, the Grell can be extinguished once and for all. Their total dedication to their work and benevolent ideas means that most Flumphs are Lawful Good. Flumphs are more likely to stray from this alignment on the ethical axis rather than the moral axis.

    It seems that at one point, Flumphs had contact with celestials, as they have a deep reverence for Archons and have adopted Celestial as their primary tongue. They actually have Clerics dedicated to the Hebdomad. If they have any other gods, they are long forgotten.

    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-05-17 at 04:25 PM.
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    Default Advanced Flumph

    Most Flumphs take levels in sorcerer, their favored class. This specific Flumph is a paladin of the Hebdomad, a valiant protector of all that is good and opposed to the Grell. This Flumph can be either a temporary ally, a cohort, or even an enemy of the PCs. Instead of the Special Mount class feature, this statblock makes use of an ACF found in the Player's Handbook II, and utilizes the Abyssal Ripper from Planar Handbook (note that while developed in the Abyss, the weapon itself is not inherently evil).

    Flumph Protector
    Tiny Aberration
    Hit Dice:
    2d8+7d10+9 (56 hp)
    Initiative: +4
    Speed: 5 ft. (1 square), Fly 15 ft. (poor)
    Armor Class: 21 (+2 size, +1 natural, +4 Dex, +4 chain barding), touch 16, flatfooted 17
    Base Attack/Grapple: +8/+4
    Attack: Aberration-bane Ripper +9 melee (1d8/x3)
    Full Attack: Aberration-bane Ripper +9/+4 melee (1d8/x3) Tentacles +12 melee (1d4 plus 1d4 acid/19-20)
    Space/Reach: 2½ ft./0 ft.
    Special Attacks: Smite Evil 4/day, detect evil, turn undead, acidic tentacles, rancid spurt, plummeting charge
    Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., Helplessness, Resistance to acid 10, lay on hands, aura of courage, remove disease, divine grace, divine health
    Saves: Fort +8, Ref +8, Will +8
    Abilities: Str 10, Dex 19, Con 12, Int 11, Wis 15, Cha 12
    Skills: Diplomacy +11, Listen +12, Sense Motive +12, Spot +12
    Feats: Extra Smiting*, Great Fortitude, Hover(B), Improved Critical (Tentacle) Weapon Finesse(B), Weapon Focus (Ripper)
    Environment: Underground
    Organization: Solitary, or Grell-Slaying Party (1 plus 1-4 Flumphs)
    Challenge Rating: 8
    Treasure: Standard (including Aberration-bane Greatsword)
    Alignment: Lawful Good
    *Complete Warrior

    Acidic Tentacles (Ex): The acid damage dealt by the Flumph’s tentacles is treated as ongoing. For 1d4 rounds after the strike, the enemy hit by the tentacle suffers 1 point of acid damage each round. Full immersion in water, or a heal check (DC 18), negates this. The effects of multiple hits with the tentacles stack.

    Aura of Courage (Su): The Flumph is immune to fear (magical or otherwise). Each ally within 10 feet of it gains a +4 morale bonus on saving throws against fear effects. This ability functions while the Flumph is conscious, but not if it is unconscious or dead.

    Charging Smite (Su): If the Flumph successfully smites an evil creature as part of a charge, the extra damage dealt doubles (meaning it deals 14 extra points of damage).

    Detect Evil (Sp): At will, the Flumph can use detect evil, as the spell.

    Divine Grace (Su): The Flumph adds its Charisma bonus to all of its saves. This is already included in the statistic block.

    Divine Health (Ex): The Flumph is immune to all diseases, including supernatural and magical diseases.

    Helplessness (Ex): When successfully tripped, a Flumph is flipped over. When the Flumph is flipped over, it is helpless and disoriented, and falls to the ground. While flipped over, it cannot exude acid from its tentacles, and it can barely talk. It can attempt to flip itself over once per day by succeeding on a DC 20 escape artist check. Otherwise, it must rely on another creature to flip it back.

    Lay on Hands (Su): The Flumph can heal wounds (her own or those of others) by touch. Each day, it can heal 7 points of damage. The Flumph may choose to divide its healing among multiple recipients, and it doesn’t have to use it all at once. Using lay on hands is a standard action.
    Alternatively, the Flumph can use any or all of this healing power to deal damage to undead creatures. Using lay on hands in this way requires a successful melee touch attack and doesn’t provoke an attack of opportunity. The Flumph decides how many of its daily allotment of points to use as damage after successfully touching an undead creature.

    Plummeting Charge (Ex): A Flumph who charges an opponent from an initial position above the target can attack with a +2 bonus (from the charge). A successful hit with the tentacles increases damage from 1d4 to 1d8 (though the acid damage remains 1d4). This attack does not provoke an attack of opportunity. Immediately after the attack, the Flumph detaches and moves to the adjacent square of its choice.

    Smite Evil (Su): Four times per day, the Flumph may attempt to smite evil with one normal melee attack. The Flumph adds a +1 bonus to its attack roll, and deals 7 extra points of damage. If the Flumph accidentally smites a creature that is not evil, the smite has no effect, but the ability is still used up for that day.

    Spells: Because of the Flumph’s high wisdom score, it can cast two spells per day. Usually, the Flumph prepares Divine Favor and Cure Light Wounds.

    Rancid Spurt (Ex): Once per day, the Flumph can squirt a spray of foul smelling liquid in a 20 ft. cone. The liquid clings to skin and clothing, and reeks for 1d4 hours. Upon being struck with the fluid, creatures within the cone must make a Fortitude save (DC 15), or be nauseated for 2d4 rounds and sickened for another 2d4 rounds afterwards. The smell is so sickening that all creatures within 100 ft. must make a fortitude save (DC 15), or be sickened for 2d4 rounds. A creature that successfully saves is immune to the specific odor of this Flumph for 24 hours.

    Remove Disease (Sp): The Flumph can produce a remove disease effect, as the spell, once per week.

    Turn Undead (Su): The Flumph has the supernatural ability to turn undead. It may use this ability 4 times per day. It turns undead as 4th level Cleric.
    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-05-15 at 12:46 PM.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    I've got to say, I like what you are doing here. Turning one of the most famous 'joke creatures' into a serious entry is fine work.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Which book is the Flumph actually in?

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Icedaemon View Post
    I've got to say, I like what you are doing here. Turning one of the most famous 'joke creatures' into a serious entry is fine work.
    Thanks. I actually took some fluff from the Flumph from Pathfinder, and attempted to fuse it with the Grell fluff from Lords of Madness. I'm glad to see you like it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sydonai View Post
    Which book is the Flumph actually in?
    Dungeon #118.
    Last edited by LOTRfan; 2011-04-24 at 08:34 AM.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Should an Aberrant creature really be wielding an Aberration-bane weapon?

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Luzahn View Post
    Should an Aberrant creature really be wielding an Aberration-bane weapon?
    There aren't any rules against it. The weapon the Flumph is wielding may be extremely vulnerable to his own weapon, but so are his most hated enemy. Do you think it is thematically inappropriate?
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    I actually really love the Flumph, and I'm glad that you've done something like this.

    Bravo! Do other semi-obscure and/or joke monsters!
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Anyone have any specific monster they want for the next ecology article? Preferably, one that didn't have an ecology article for 3.X?
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    You really did a good job on the Flumph. I like it.

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    Anyone have any specific monster they want for the next ecology article? Preferably, one that didn't have an ecology article for 3.X?
    Up for a challenge? Perhaps some form of undead. I don't know how you'd get an ecology to work for them...

    Or, if you want a real challenge, make an ecology that makes the tarresque seem reasonable and appropriate
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    Default Re: Advanced Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    Instead of the Special Mount class feature, this statblock makes use of an ACF found in
    Found in?

    Anyway, lovely job. Maybe you could do something a little more mainstream for this next one.
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    Default Re: Advanced Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Melayl View Post
    You really did a good job on the Flumph. I like it.
    Thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by Melayl View Post
    Up for a challenge? Perhaps some form of undead. I don't know how you'd get an ecology to work for them...
    That could be interesting. Honestly, the only creature type I'm a little worried about are Outsiders. Anything else is fair game, but I have to think more about the Outsider type.

    Quote Originally Posted by Melayl View Post
    Or, if you want a real challenge, make an ecology that makes the tarresque seem reasonable and appropriate
    That could be interesting. I know that Dragon 359 had Ecology of the Tarrasque, but I don't have it with me, so I don't know how well it came out.

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlanteanTroll View Post
    Found in?
    My apologies, Player Handbook II.

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlanteanTroll View Post
    Anyway, lovely job. Maybe you could do something a little more mainstream for this next one.
    Sure. At the moment, I think I may be leaning towards the Devourer. It seems that they didn't get much love in 3.X. Of course, if you have another suggestion, I am more than willing to consider it.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    There aren't any rules against it. The weapon the Flumph is wielding may be extremely vulnerable to his own weapon, but so are his most hated enemy. Do you think it is thematically inappropriate?
    I am vulnerable to knives, bullets, & blunt objects, but so my enemies.

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    There aren't any rules against it. The weapon the Flumph is wielding may be extremely vulnerable to his own weapon, but so are his most hated enemy. Do you think it is thematically inappropriate?
    It probably should not be a greatsword, or any other kind of sword for that matter. The way I see it, even touching the flat of the blade of an Aberration Bane weapon will hurt an abomination. Something with a long shaft, like a polearm or greataxe, would make more sense.
    Last edited by Icedaemon; 2011-05-02 at 09:04 AM.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Icedaemon View Post
    It probably should not be a greatsword, or any other kind of sword for that matter. The way I see it, even touching the flat of the blade of an Aberration Bane weapon will hurt an abomination. Something with a long shaft, like a polearm or greataxe, would make more sense.
    Sure, I can see how that makes sense. I'll swap 'em, now.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    Anyone have any specific monster they want for the next ecology article? Preferably, one that didn't have an ecology article for 3.X?
    Owlbear. Though I'm pretty sure there will never be sufficient explanation or justification for the owlbear's existence.

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Treblain View Post
    Owlbear. Though I'm pretty sure there will never be sufficient explanation or justification for the owlbear's existence.
    For instance: I very nearly included Owlbears in Walufar, where they were to be a degenerate, less-magical version of the Griffin, with very vestigial wings.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    I think you should Try designing an ecology for purple worms.
    -why do their tunnels never collapse any building?
    -how, exactly, can ANY creature be that size and be supported by the ecosystem?

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Drynwyn View Post
    I think you should Try designing an ecology for purple worms.
    -why do their tunnels never collapse any building?
    -how, exactly, can ANY creature be that size and be supported by the ecosystem?
    They eat dirt most of the time; they only eat flesh when they are growing and need protein. This happens once every 10 years, when they wipe out the environment around their homes in order to grow a HD. A full sized Purple Worm is over 160 years old, and they reach colossal at 330 years old. There are roughly 1000 Purple Worms at any one time, but only 10-12 adults. When an adult dies the eggs inside of it hatch and eat the body in order to get the protein to get their first few HD.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Treblain View Post
    Owlbear. Though I'm pretty sure there will never be sufficient explanation or justification for the owlbear's existence.
    "Encyclopedia Arcane: Crossbreeding"

    It has an explanation for the Owlbear, but it is third-party.

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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    They eat dirt most of the time; they only eat flesh when they are growing and need protein. This happens once every 10 years, when they wipe out the environment around their homes in order to grow a HD. A full sized Purple Worm is over 160 years old, and they reach colossal at 330 years old. There are roughly 1000 Purple Worms at any one time, but only 10-12 adults. When an adult dies the eggs inside of it hatch and eat the body in order to get the protein to get their first few HD.
    Except a living creature does not only need to eat to grow bigger or tougher. Even moving (not to mention regaining health after taking a few wounds) costs energy, which needs to come from somewhere. Moving as large a body as that of the purple worms, let alone moving it through the dirt, will require a lot of nutrients. Unless the dirt is utterly filled with microflora/microfauna even at excessive depths, the purple worms would need some stable source of food.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    There's a bit of a discrepancy between the text and table for the Flumph paladin on how many smites it gets. I assume it's 4/day, given the Extra Smiting, but I just want to be sure here. Also, is the Aberration Bane Spear a normal spear or a longspear? The attack and full attack disagree and the treasure section still refers to it as a greatsword. The damage also doesn't agree between the two entries. Personally, I'd get the little guy a Ripper (PlH), which has the same stats as a greatsword except it's Piercing and a kick-ass spear, so that it does acceptable damage even while being tiny (d8/19-20). Otherwise, I'd trade Great Fortitude for Exotic Weapon Proficiency(Greatspear) and switch the Weapon Focus to it for the same damage, crit mod x3 and reach so that the little guy can actually threaten around him, since tiny critters have no natural reach.

    As for the next Ecology, I'd personally like to see either the Grey Render or the Spider Eater done. Even the Ettercap would be interesting, I think, and largely unnoticed part of the 3rd Ed era.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Icedaemon View Post
    Except a living creature does not only need to eat to grow bigger or tougher. Even moving (not to mention regaining health after taking a few wounds) costs energy, which needs to come from somewhere. Moving as large a body as that of the purple worms, let alone moving it through the dirt, will require a lot of nutrients. Unless the dirt is utterly filled with microflora/microfauna even at excessive depths, the purple worms would need some stable source of food.
    Your assuming they are fast moving and active between growth cycles; they are not. They move a few feet a day to keep their body filled with earth and suck the nutrients out of it, moving a few more feet the next day to make up for the earth finished digesting, and so on. Their only injuries would result from fighting other creatures, which the purple worms eat after the fight to make up for the energy.

    There are literally hundreds of thousands of purple worms, but only a few of real size are active at any one time anywhere on the planet. Any attempt to eradicate the purple worm would be in vain due to their numbers and hidden existence.

    Creatures that attempt to prey upon a purple worm/act as a standard form of subsistence are:
    Bulettes (difficult as they cannot be swallowed whole)
    ground dwelling humanoids
    Dire Badgers
    Dire Rats
    small creatures in the dirt, especially worms
    cattle/herd animals

    Basically the Purple Worm (int 1) is actually a gargantuan worm that needs to feed on meat from time to time to gain protein for growth. During those periods of growth it is very active however, eating several times its weight in a few weeks.

    An alternate Purple Worm ecology on the same vein is having them eat vegetable matter such as trees constantly, and eating meat on a more frequent basis then dirt eating worms but still only once every few months. The Purple Worm would be constantly active this way but not so active as to force everything to kill it/it runs out of food.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    Your assuming they are fast moving and active between growth cycles; they are not. They move a few feet a day to keep their body filled with earth and suck the nutrients out of it, moving a few more feet the next day to make up for the earth finished digesting, and so on. Their only injuries would result from fighting other creatures, which the purple worms eat after the fight to make up for the energy.
    Ah. Didn't think of that. Makes sense, yes.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    As for the next Ecology, I'd personally like to see either the Grey Render or the Spider Eater done. Even the Ettercap would be interesting, I think, and largely unnoticed part of the 3rd Ed era.
    Unless I'm mistaken, the Ettercap was already done in Dragon Magazine.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlanteanTroll View Post
    Unless I'm mistaken, the Ettercap was already done in Dragon Magazine.
    Yep, Dragon 343.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    There's a bit of a discrepancy between the text and table for the Flumph paladin on how many smites it gets. I assume it's 4/day, given the Extra Smiting, but I just want to be sure here. Also, is the Aberration Bane Spear a normal spear or a longspear? The attack and full attack disagree and the treasure section still refers to it as a greatsword. The damage also doesn't agree between the two entries. Personally, I'd get the little guy a Ripper (PlH), which has the same stats as a greatsword except it's Piercing and a kick-ass spear, so that it does acceptable damage even while being tiny (d8/19-20). Otherwise, I'd trade Great Fortitude for Exotic Weapon Proficiency(Greatspear) and switch the Weapon Focus to it for the same damage, crit mod x3 and reach so that the little guy can actually threaten around him, since tiny critters have no natural reach.

    As for the next Ecology, I'd personally like to see either the Grey Render or the Spider Eater done. Even the Ettercap would be interesting, I think, and largely unnoticed part of the 3rd Ed era.
    I meant Long spear. Where can the ripper be found, though? I'm not familiar with the acronym "PlH" (my first assumption is Player's Handbook, but I don't remember a weapon going by that name in it).
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by LOTRfan View Post
    I meant Long spear. Where can the ripper be found, though? I'm not familiar with the acronym "PlH" (my first assumption is Player's Handbook, but I don't remember a weapon going by that name in it).
    Planar Handbook. As I said, a Ripper is, stat-wise, a piercing greatsword. PlH has a bunch of other damage type swaps but that's the closest for what you're going for. Plus, I just like Rippers.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    For those in this thread who seem to be fans of Flumphs, I should mention that my own campaign setting -- should it ever actually get completed -- will likewise feature Flumphs as a non-joke race. A viable PC race. (The main PC races are Humans, Orcs, Kobolds, Gnomes, and Elves; and the secondary PC races are Tieflings, Aasimar, and Flumphs.)

    Mine will be a little different -- Small size, more aquatic than underdark. And not such a history with other aberrations, seeing as other aberrations (except Naga) aren't really a big part of the setting. But I still like what you've done here.
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    Default Re: Ecology of the Flumph

    Quote Originally Posted by Cieyrin View Post
    Planar Handbook. As I said, a Ripper is, stat-wise, a piercing greatsword. PlH has a bunch of other damage type swaps but that's the closest for what you're going for. Plus, I just like Rippers.
    Oh yes. I remember that.

    As fluff goes, it is something that hurts a bit going in and horribly when the serrated spearhead is pulled out, correct?
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