Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Chased by Bad Balls of Magic.

Midsummer, a great festival here in Sweden, is soon upon us. But before I enter into the halls of herring, fresh potatoes, sour cream, chives, beer, snaps, and strawberries (typical Swedish Midsummer dish) I release the Gendrohka. Let it enter your imagination and allow it to shape some exciting new adventures. I see a lot of potentially entertaining, and perhaps even humorous situations coming about with their special kind of magic.

Perhaps it all starts with the rumours of a poor but charismatic healer, that roams the street of a desert town? Maybe the mayor of this place is sick and sees an opportunity to become well? Who could possibly have known the source of the healers power? Who could have foreseen his influence in the halls of power? Why was the Gendrohka later invited into the very midst of political schemes? How come the King himself was willing to bargain with these monsters? Why has he now locked himself into his heavy door chamber, frightened to emerge? Why are there hundreds of flying spheres encircling the palace? Did this all happen before the players got involved, or did they come into contact with the healer before it all started? What made that man meddle with the old magicians in the first place? Is his daughter still, at this moment, held prisoner beneath the sand... in the lowest pit of the inverted tower? Or was he perhaps only tempted by the power? After all, people were charmed beyond belief by his new-found piety. It shone, didn't it? It embraced him in a warm aura of healing light. To change the world for the better? Isn't it worth at least some kind of sacrifice?


TERRAIN: Deserts and dry areas
FOOD: Carnivore (barely eats)
AGGRESSION: Normal to high
SIZE: 5-6 feet (150-180 cm) tall

CHARM: 1-2
(If stats of a human ranges from 3 to 18)

SPEED: Running x 0,5
(Multiple is times human speed)

(Ranges from 0-100)

(If a human commoner has about 11 hit points)

BACK: 12
(If Full Plate Armour is 10)

The main body of the Gendrohka is covered by a thick iron-like shell, and the rest is reminiscent of a fish left to dry in the sun – a ridgy sort of skin, glimmering in some places, and pale dead in others. Its lower legs are strengthened by further segmented shell growth.

1 BITE: 1-6
1 KICK: 1-4
(If a Long Sword causes 1-8 points of damage)

The Gendrohka can kick, bite and claw, but usually avoid physical combat. In close encounters they try scratching and stabbing their enemies with their umbrella-like “hands”, but may also use their teeth.

HALO MAGIC: Though weak of intelligence, the Gendrohka possess the innate power of halo magic, and can produce a wide variety of spells which affects the “wearer” of the weakly luminous sphere(s). The halos are created in a field of energy between the pointy digits of the Gendrohka and released immediately into the air. Flying by themselves they seek to immerse the head of the intended target. They move swiftly but cannot keep up with a running human being. However, once created, a halo will not dissipate unless dispelled, and it will continue to chase its target for as long as it remains. A halo is unable to pass through walls, but thinner obstacles like armour and shields will not hinder it. It can sense the location of the designated being or creature wherever it is, and will move ceaselessly to attach itself to its head. Once the head is embraced, the halo stays in place until it has run out of energy, or is dispelled. The Gendrohka can produce halos that seek out the nearest possible life-form, and they often create halos for their own personal use. The number of spells/halos possible per day depends upon the power of the individual creature. Common spells are mind-warping, draining, protective, and strengthening halos, but all spells that affect a single being (the wearer) may be infused into a halo sphere of magical energy. Powerful halos tend to have negative effects upon the wearer's vision. Up to three halos may be operative at once. Further spheres will circle the target until any worn halo is drained.

GLOVES OF UNMAGIC: The strange anatomical constructions of elongated bones and membrane that are the Gendohka's hands are flexible and used to parry and disarm all forms of visible magic aimed at the creature. Like antenna these giant “gloves” attract and captures all bolts, balls, missiles, beams, breaths, and darts of magic aimed at the Gendrohka. All such low level spells are immediately dispelled. The effect of all mid-level spells are reduced by 50%, and high level spells are weakened by 30%. This applies to effect as well as range and duration. The creatures must be able to see the spell in order to parry it, but need to do little more than to raise a glove in order to capture and weaken all spells directed towards them. With appropriate spells the energy may be collected and reshaped into a halo sphere and thrown back towards the caster.

As the mystics and wizards of the old desert cultures invoked the powers of rain and water, something vile and hideous stumbled out of the sea in answer to their rituals. A strange species, made by the deities of the ocean, sat foot upon the dry lands, and brought a new kind of magic with them.

The Endrokk, later known as the Gendrohka (Sea Warlocks), produced for the people of the desert powerful spheres of magic. Like halos these surrounded the heads of the natives and made them immune to thirst and hunger. Immersed in the translucent orbs, their minds were eventually thrown off balance, and the Endrokk seized control over the lands. These new rulers from the sea were later overthrown, but some remain in hidden communities, in the remote and dry areas of the world.

The Gendrohka are immortal. Spawned from dark divine magic they cannot die by age. They may be weakened by lack of food, but need no water, and will go on living until physically destroyed. The small groups that remain cave out upside-down spiral towers in the sand or dry earth to protect themselves from undesired attention. What they want or seek is unknown, but once in a while they leave their lairs to attack caravans or remote villages. It is believed they search for opportunities to enslave and lay beneath them greater areas of culture, but in the meantime they surface now and then to investigate the state of the world, and to unleash some of their dark magic. Others claim they are just the sorry leftovers from an ancient plot, unable to retire or perish, and with no remaining purpose or aim to guide them.

The vertical horn on top of the creatures' shells is a spike of power which can pierce and destroy undesired halos directed towards the Gendrohka themselves, and other halos which they no longer desire. On two feet the creatures walk bent over like old men, often supporting themselves on their long digits. They have a vacant sort of look but are well aware of their surroundings. Always silent, and without speech, they produce halos of telepathy to communicate with other beings. Pitch black blood fills their veins, but hardly run at all, so the creatures barely bleed when wounded. A mysterious sort of air surrounds these creatures, which radiate a sense of antique magic and living death.

(Check out more creatures in the 'Creature Archive' menu to the left.)

© Copyright 2011 - Nicholas Cloister