Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Fight fire with fire?

All serious bestiaries must have a fire creature...no? I'm not sure, but I did one anyway. Also, I thought it was time to get something dragon-like into the pages. Perhaps this is the least original of the critters so far, but then originality isn't always king. Small changes can sometimes make for a new stew. I don't know if that is the case here, but at least it is hot... and hot is dangerous. Lava seems to remain ever popular in popular fiction. I might even say I'm tired of fire in fantasy contexts, but that didn't hinder me from having a great time as I wrought this beast out of the flames. And no, in the case of the Negga, fighting fire with fire isn't a very good idea.


TERRAIN: Volcanic mountains
FOOD: Carnivore
SIZE: 40 - 60 feet, (12-18 meters) long
NUMBERS: 1 (to 100)

(If stats of a human ranges from 3 to 18)

SPEED: Running(Crawling) x 1, Swimming x 2
(Multiple is times human speed)

(Ranges from 0-100)

(If a human commoner has about 11 hit points)

HEAD: 11
BODY: 12
ARMS: 11
(If Full Plate Armour is 10)

The natural armour of the Negga is among the strongest and most resilient in the world. It looks like partially polished lava rock, and is tougher than steel but not as rigid. It is unaffected by all natural and (weaker) magical fires, and as light as the exoskeleton of a crustacean. Producing armour of this material is an art long lost, but with the right kind of knowledge and skill, it can be done.

2 CLAWS: 2-6
1 BITE: 2-8
1 FIREWHIP: 3-18
(If a Long Sword makes a damage of 1-8)

The Negga Wyrm can produce and manoeuvre a whip of fire as an extension of its tongue, with the same ease as a human throws a fist. This natural weapon can be wielded for as long as the Negga lives. The whip can be up to half the length of the creature's body, and it may of course set flammable objects on fire.

FIREBORN: The Negga Wyrm is basically one with the element of fire. Though flesh on the inside it manages by some unknown supernatural means to stay submerged in lava and fire for any amount of time. It can produce and cast a wide variety of fire-related spells (Game Master's choice), and is unaffected by all but the most potent of magical fires.

MELT ROCK: By touch the Negga can heat up 950 cubic feet (27 cubic meters) of rock per round. The rock will swiftly turn to floating lava, and remain so until it naturally returns to cold and hard stone. The feat takes three rounds. At round two the heat will be enough to cause heat damage and melt boots. This is not the most common way of fighting for the Wyrm, which will use this ability only when it sees great use for it. The act of melting rock drains energy from the creature, and can be done no more than ten times per day. (This power can cause great harm to large stone structures if applied to the foundation of the architecture at hand.)

In those times and places where volcanoes and chasms throw out fire and smoke unto the lands, one can sometimes find great rocky ellipsoids scattered upon the slopes and and fields. In the wake of eruptions, as the earth quiets, these eggs of lava rock remain standing, as if spewed out with the fire from the deep bowels of the earth.

No one knows the depths where these eggs are produced, but they have been witnessed as they hatch, and as the great black Wyrms crawl out from inside of them. Usually these return to the caves and hollows of the mountainside, seeking the solace of the fiery pits, but occasionally they start wreaking havoc right away.

As the Negga move back into the earth they seek out lava streams or pools and submerge themselves in them. There they lie for centuries only to come out once in a while for a meal of flesh. It is believed that they somehow maintain life by drawing energy from the heat of the lava, and that they only rarely need to complement this diet with the proteins of meat.

It is further believed that the Wyrm is only a larvae state of some more advanced life-form, that might never have been spotted. The theory is based upon the undeveloped wings and the long worm-like body of this dragon-like creature.

In their rare hunt for flesh the Negga are intent and relentless. They will crawl out from the deepest of places and venture any distance over land until their hunger is satiated. This happens once every decade or so.

It is unusual to encounter more than a single Wyrm at once, but if one is there as the volcanic eggs hatch, up to one hundred beasts might be present at once. At the sight of meat many of these newborn discover hunger and postpone their search for heat and hiding.

The magic of the Negga is natural, and they have no need for voice, scrolls or other means to make use of their power. They do not seem to care about their brethren, and seem to have no interest in the affairs of others save as food. Their intelligence is greater than appearance reveal, which can be noticed in behaviour, but they display little or no signs of communication.

Water will not hinder these creatures, but will of course make futile the use of fire-related spells and the whip of the tongue

Nothing indicates that the Negga are bound to the lava for survival, if there is plenty of substitute energy (prey) around. They have never been spotted mating, and gender is impossible to make out. The teeth and fingers of these creatures make excellent arrow- and spearheads, but will not come loose easily. The beasts can live forever it seems, and millennia are probably needed for any eventual metamorphosis to set in.

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...or take a pick in the 'Archive' to the left.

© Copyright 2010 - Nicholas Cloister