Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Pneumonia delays gold delivery

The illustration of this creature has been ready for quite some time, but my daughter was stricken by pneumonia, which distracted me for a while. It seems every time a certain flow is built up some bump in the road comes along to break the current. I guess that's good in a way, since it reminds you of the way things are, and gives you some time to re-evaluate the priorities. Breathing is clearly more important than creature design and games, and gold less sparkling than the eyes of a three year old.

I'd like to give thanks to the following blogs, zines, and pages, for recommending and writing about RPG Creatures. If I forgot anyone, please remind me.

Ethereal Sunshine
The Secret DM
Greifenklaue's Blog
Storie Di Ruolo

Some treasures walk...


TERRAIN: Caves and mines
FOOD: Omnivore
SIZE: 5-6 feet tall (150 - 180 cm)
NUMBERS: 1- 20

CHARM: 2-4
(If stats of a human ranges from 3 to 18)

SPEED: Running x 1
(Multiple is times human speed)

(Ranges from 0-100)

HIT POINTS: 13 - 20
(If a human commoner has about 11 hit points)

AVERAGE: 2 (+ 1-8 of gold cover)
BODY: 2 (+ 1-8 of gold cover)
HEAD: 2 (+ 1-8 of gold cover)
LEGS: 2 (+ 1-8 of gold cover)
TAIL: 1 (+ 1-8 of gold cover)
(If Full Plate Armour is 10)

The Aegarim has a dark skin that slightly shifts in colour to blend with the rocks and minerals in the caves they inhabit. It gives little protection in itself, but is often strengthened by layers of gold (see 'Description')

2 CLAWS: 2 – 6
1 BITE: 1-4 (plus 1-2 of corrosion damage for 1-8 rounds)
(If a Long Sword makes a damage of 1-8)

The front claws of the Aegarim are strong and hard enough to scrape out the gold from veins and ores in the mountains. The bite is not very powerful in itself but the saliva of the creatures is corrosive to dissolve gold, and can cause serious damage to living tissue, as well as armour.

MELT GOLD: The Aegarim have the psionic ability to heat up, and even melt, gold from afar. They can use this power once per day. When undisturbed for two rounds they can psionically produce a field of molecular instability, with a diameter of 60 feet (20 m), in which the temperature of all gold increases dramatically. Rings, bracelets and other gold in direct contact with the body will cause 1-4 points of burn injury per round, and melt completely in another 2-4 rounds, if the Aegarim is left undisturbed and allowed to focus. (The power of magic items deformed by this ability may be lost or lessened.) The field begins 10 (25 cm) inches away from the creature, and doesn't affect its own layers of gold.

The Aegarim are highly intelligent creatures, but make no use of spoken languages or tools. They normally move about alone or in small groups but occasionally gather in larger numbers. Their main activity, apart from feeding, is to seek out and swallow gold. They are drawn to mines, ores, underground rivers and great treasures. Once consumed the gold enters the creatures and is transported to their skin where it is deposited in thin layers that grows into plates of natural armour.

Initially these deposits protect the creatures from outer harm, but as they thicken they burden the Aegarim and hinder their movement substantially. It is therefore believed that this process is a cultural expression rather than a purely biological one. The Aegarim, some say, believe that by leaving a permanent golden shell of themselves they attain immortality. Thus they continue to eat gold until they become fully immobile and perish from starvation. In later states, when all but the joints are covered in gold, the creatures look a lot like statues, and are known to pose as such, to avoid notice, or draw near to themselves wealthy merchants and successful adventurers.

Strange carvings and hieroglyphs have been found in caves where the Aegarim dwell. They are believed to have deep magical or symbolical meanings, rather than conveying a message. Attempts of translation speak of 'The thousand years of sleep', and 'The great resurrection', but the sages involved in this work stress the inadequacy of human concepts, and the high level of guess-work involved in the translations.

The Aegarim's urge for gold is great, and they have been known to gather in greater numbers to take on dragons and other formidable hoarders. When subterranean findings are scarce they may venture out of the caves and seek out gold in other places. Their eyes are sensitive to daylight and when possible they keep hidden during the day. It may take anything from 20 to 80 years for a Aegarim to cover itself close to fully in gold. If they fail in making themselves into a sculpture, they die naturally at about 100-120 years of age. Nothing but the double row of nipples distinguishes the females from the males.

© Copyright 2011 - Nicholas Cloister