A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
You can get A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2 now at Gumroad
Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Vancouver <-> Dublin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Revised Skeletons (Animate Dead options, plus template)

    Here are some skeletons for an enterprising necromancer. They can all be created by animate dead, and count towards your limit of controllable undead for that spell.

    Skeleton
    A skeleton is the reanimated bones of a dead creature, given (un)life by necromantic magic. Although it is intelligent it has few memories (if any) of its past life, and obeys the orders of its creator without question.

    Skeletons vary in power. The standard skeleton might wear rotting rags (or nothing at all) and attack only with its bony claws, whereas more powerful versions are provided with arms and armour by their masters, and even imbue their equipment with their own unholy magic.

    Skeletons understand Common (or any one language known by their creator). They may be deathly silent themselves, or possessed of raucous laughter and morbid senses of humour at their creator's option.

    SKELETON, PEASANT
    MEDIUM UNDEAD
    Hit Dice: 1d12 (6 hp)
    Initiative: +5
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 14 (+1 Dex, +3 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 13
    Base Attack/Grapple: +0/+1
    Attack: +1 sickle +2 melee (1d6+2) or claw +1 melee (1d4+1)
    Full Attack: +1 sickle +2 melee (1d6+2) or 2 claws +1 melee (1d4+1)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: -
    Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/bludgeoning, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to cold, undead traits
    Saves: Fort +0, Ref +1, Will +3
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 12, Con -, Int 11, Wis 13, Cha 9
    Skills: Craft (any) +7, Handle Animal +3, Profession (any) +5, Use Rope +5
    Feats: EnchantedB, Improved InitiativeB, Skill Focus (Craft)
    Environment: Any
    Organization: Any
    Challenge Rating: 1/3
    Treasure: Standard
    Alignment: Always evil (any)
    Advancement: 2-5 HD (Medium)
    Level Adjustment: -

    The skeletal peasants make an eerie spectacle, labouring silently in the necromancer's orchard.

    Skeleton peasants serve as common labourers, cooks, merchants, smiths, and whatever else is required of them by their masters.

    Combat Abilities
    A skeleton peasant is not well-suited for battle, but it leaps into the fray all the same if so ordered. Some of the creatures might wield hammers, scythes, or other weapons appropriate to their assigned tasks.

    SKELETON, SAGE
    MEDIUM UNDEAD
    Hit Dice: 4d12 (26 hp)
    Initiative: +8
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 14 (+1 Dex, +3 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 13
    Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+2
    Attack: +1 quarterstaff +3 melee (1d6+1) or claw +3 melee (1d4+1)
    Full Attack: +1 quarterstaff +3 melee (1d6+1) or 2 claws +3 melee (1d4+1)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Spells
    Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/bludgeoning, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to cold, undead traits
    Saves: Fort +1, Ref +2, Will +8
    Abilities: Str 10, Dex 13, Con -, Int 12, Wis 14, Cha 9
    Skills: Concentration +6, Heal +9, Knowledge (any two) +8, Spellcraft +8
    Feats: Combat Casting, EnchantedB, Improved InitiativeB, Spell Penetration
    Environment: Any
    Organization: Any
    Challenge Rating: 3
    Treasure: Standard
    Alignment: Always evil (any)
    Advancement: 5-20 HD (Medium)
    Level Adjustment: -

    The skeletal acolyte gathers and arranges ancient tomes in the library, paying you no heed.

    Skeleton sages serve their masters as archivists, scribes, healers, and in other specialised roles.

    Combat Abilities
    A skeleton sage casts sleep spells from a distance, before closing to debilitate its remaining foes with touch of fatigue. It draws its quarterstaff only if forced into melee, and makes intelligent use of invisibility.

    Spells (Ex)
    A skeleton sage casts spells as a 4th-level adept.

    Typical Adept Spells Prepared (3/3/1; save DC 12 + spell level)
    0 - touch of fatigue (3); 1st - sleep (3); 2nd - invisibility

    Advanced Skeleton Sages
    A skeleton sage's adept spellcasting advances with its Hit Dice.

    SKELETON, ARCHER
    MEDIUM UNDEAD
    Hit Dice: 4d12 (26 hp)
    Initiative: +7
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 20 (+3 Dex, +5 +1 chain shirt, +2 natural), touch 13, flat-footed 17
    Base Attack/Grapple: +2/+3
    Attack: +1 longbow +6 ranged (1d8+1/×3) or claw +4 melee (1d4+2)
    Full Attack: +1 longbow +6 ranged (1d8+1/×3) or 2 claws +4 melee (1d4+2)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
    Special Attacks: Sneak attack +2d6
    Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/bludgeoning, darkvision 60 ft., immunity to cold, undead traits
    Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +7
    Abilities: Str 12, Dex 16, Con -, Int 9, Wis 12, Cha 10
    Skills: Hide +10, Search +6, Spot +8
    Feats: EnchantedB, Improved InitiativeB, Precise Shot, Point Blank Shot
    Environment: Any
    Organization: Any
    Challenge Rating: 3
    Treasure: Standard
    Alignment: Always evil (any)
    Advancement: 5-20 HD (Medium)
    Level Adjustment: -

    The archers are clad in ancient chain-mail armour, and they laugh raucously as they let loose their arrows.

    Skeleton archers serve as guards, escorts, patrols, and as part of larger armies.

    Combat Abilities
    A skeleton archer fires arrows and withdraws, careful to keep a safe distance away from its targets.

    Sneak Attack (Ex)
    As the rogue ability.

    Advanced Skeleton Archers
    In addition to the benefits of the Enchanted feat, some skeleton archers grant the frost, flaming, or other properties to bows they wield.

    SKELETON, KNIGHT
    MEDIUM UNDEAD
    Hit Dice: 8d12 (52 hp)
    Initiative: +5
    Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares)
    Armor Class: 27 (+1 Dex, +10 +2 full plate, +4 +2 heavy steel shield, +2 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 26
    Base Attack/Grapple: +4/+6
    Attack: +2 lance +8 melee (1d8+4/×3) or +2 longsword +8 melee (1d8+4/19-20/×3) or claw +8 melee (1d4+4)
    Full Attack: +2 lance +8 melee (1d8+4/×3) or +2 longsword +8 melee (1d8+4/19-20/×3) or 2 claws +8 melee (1d4+4)
    Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft. (10 ft. with lance)
    Special Attacks: -
    Special Qualities: Damage reduction 5/bludgeoning, darkvision 60 ft., enchanted, immunity to cold, undead traits
    Saves: Fort +2, Ref +3, Will +6
    Abilities: Str 15, Dex 12, Con -, Int 9, Wis 11, Cha 12
    Skills: Climb +9, Intimidate +12, Ride +12
    Feats: EnchantedB, Improved InitiativeB, Mounted Combat, Ride-By Attack, Spirited Charge
    Environment: Any (plus skeleton heavy warhorse mount)
    Organization: Any
    Challenge Rating: 4
    Treasure: Standard
    Alignment: Always evil (any)
    Advancement: 9-20 HD (Medium)
    Level Adjustment: -

    The knight is a fearsome spectacle - clad in black armour and astride a skeletal steed.

    Skeleton knights are the elite warriors of a necromancer's army.

    Combat Abilities
    A mounted skeleton knight runs down foes with its deadly lance. If forced to dismount (or if commanded to duel a particular foe) it draws its longsword and strides into the fray.

    Advanced Skeleton Knights
    In addition to the benefits of the Enchanted feat, some skeleton knights grant the frost, flaming, or other properties to weapons they wield.



    Bonus: A revised skeleton template, where Undead is a subtype rather than type. In this houserule, undead retain their Constitution and Intelligence scores. This solves two problems:

    1) Undead templates are nice for spellcasters (free d12 HD) but bad for martials (lose Constitution bonus hit points).

    2) The undead type (and construct type etc) really shouldn't give so many blanket immunities. Sleep and cloudkill are magical effects - why can't you compel a skeleton to sleep or harm it with a magical poison?

    Spoiler: Revised Skeleton Template
    Show
    Creating A Skeleton
    "Skeleton" is an acquired template that can be applied to any humanoid or animal (referred to hereafter as the base creature). It may be applied to other corporeal creatures with skeletal systems (e.g. dragons), subject to GM approval.

    Size & Type
    The creature's type is unchanged. It gains the [Augmented], [Evil], and [Undead] subtypes and retains all other subtypes except for alignment subtypes. It uses all the base creature’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.

    Hit Dice
    Unchanged.

    Speed
    Same as the base creature. A winged skeleton can fly even if its wings are reduced to mere bones.

    Armour Class
    Same as the base creature. A skeleton's natural armour bonus improves by +1 per four Hit Dice (to a maximum of +5 at 20 Hit Dice). A base creature without a natural armour bonus has a natural armour bonus of +0 for this purpose.

    Base Attack/Grapple
    Same as the base creature.

    Attacks
    Same as the base creature (save for those attacks that don't work without flesh).

    A humanoid skeleton gains two claw attacks as primary natural weapons. A humanoid skeleton that wields weapons may make a claw attack with each free hand as a secondary natural weapon.

    Damage
    Same as the base creature. A humanoid skeleton's claw attacks deal damage based on the skeleton’s size.

    Special Attacks
    Same as the base creature.

    Special Qualities
    A skeleton retains all the special qualities of the base creature, and also gains those described below.

    Damage Reduction (Ex)
    A skeleton gains damage reduction 5/bludgeoning.

    Discorporation (Ex)
    A skeleton is not permanently harmed by the loss of its skull or other bones. It continues to function after such an injury (albeit at appropriately reduced effectiveness), and can reattach a severed bone simply by holding it to the connecting bone.

    Enchanted (Su)
    Any weapon a skeleton wields becomes a magic weapon, with a +1 enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls per four Hit Dice of the creature (to a maximum of +5 at 20 Hit Dice).

    Similarly, any armour (including shields) used by a skeleton wields gains a +1 enhancement bonus to its Armour Class per four Hit Dice of the creature (to a maximum of +5 at 20 Hit Dice).

    Certain skeletons might gain additional benefits (e.g. the frost property for weapons they wield), at the GM's discretion.

    Undead Traits (Ex)
    Darkvision out to 60 feet.

    Immunity to nonmagical ability damage, ability drain, disease, exhaustion, fatigue, nonlethal damage (including from cold and hot environments), and poison. All magical versions of these effects function normally.

    Immunity to [Death] effects, negative levels & level drain, and are healed by negative energy rather than positive energy. Vulnerable to holy water, being turned or rebuked, and similar effects.

    Unless otherwise specified, does not need to breathe, eat, or sleep.

    Can be raised and reincarnated (losing any undead template in the process).

    Undead-Blooded (Ex)
    For all effects related to race, a skeleton is considered to be both the base creature and an [Undead] creature.

    Saves
    Same as the base creature.

    Abilities
    A skeleton gains +2 Constitution, +2 Dexterity, and +2 Strength.

    Skills
    Same as the base creature.

    Feats
    Same as the base creature.

    Environment
    Usually the same as the skeleton's creator; otherwise same as the base creature.

    Organization
    Usually alongside the skeleton's creator; otherwise same as the base creature.

    Challenge Rating
    As base creature +1.

    Treasure
    Whatever is granted by the skeleton's creator; otherwise same as the base creature.

    Alignment
    Usually the same as the skeleton's creator; otherwise evil (any). Some skeletons are neutral- or even good-aligned.

    Advancement
    By character class.

    Level Adjustment
    Same as the base creature +1.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    DracoDei's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Near Atlanta,GA USA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Revised Skeletons (Animate Dead options, plus template)

    Giving them Int scores is huge boost in 3.x.

    Also:
    Wikipedia-like cross indexing: Organ Undead (this is related by also adding options to Animate Dead.)
    [Public Service Announcement]P.E.A.C.H stands for Please Examine And Critique Honestly[/Public Service Announcement]
    Currently Running: Equestria Begins (A High Tactics campaign)
    Extended Signature
    My Homebrew is meant to be used, but, if you do, PLEASE tell me how it goes.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Orc in the Playground
     
    WhiteWizardGirl

    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    In a field of starlight
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: Revised Skeletons (Animate Dead options, plus template)

    Even though you say hitdice remain unchanged, all your example skeletons have d12s. Otherwise, I like it, elegant.
    Last edited by ShiningStarling; 2018-10-04 at 04:46 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    OldWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Vancouver <-> Dublin
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Revised Skeletons (Animate Dead options, plus template)

    Quote Originally Posted by DracoDei View Post
    Giving them Int scores is huge boost in 3.x.

    Also:
    Wikipedia-like cross indexing: Organ Undead (this is related by also adding options to Animate Dead.)
    I'm not sure about Int being too useful; mechanically it gives little benefit apart from skill points and a couple feats.

    I'm honoured this drew your attention, though! I saw some of your undead stuff a few years back, delightfully creepy! :D

    Quote Originally Posted by ShiningStarling View Post
    Even though you say hitdice remain unchanged, all your example skeletons have d12s. Otherwise, I like it, elegant.
    The sample skeletons don't actually use the template I provided. I should have made that clearer, my bad! And thanks! :)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •