Glossary of Special Abilities
Special abilities are extraordinary, spell-like, or supernatural.
Extraordinary Abilities (Ex): Extraordinary abilities are nonmagical. They are however, not something that just anyone can do or even learn to do without extensive training (which, in game terms, means to take a new character class). A monk's ability to evade attacks and a barbarians uncanny dodge are extraordinary. Effects or areas that negate or disrupt magic have no effect on extraordinary abilities.
Spell-Like Abilities (Sp): Spell-like abilities, as the name implies, are spells and magical abilities that are very much like spells. Spell-like abilities are subject to spell resistance and dispel magic. They do not function in areas where magic is suppressed or negated (such as an antimagic field).
Supernatural Abilities (Su): Supernatural abilities are magical but not spell-like. This far-reaching category includes the basilisk's petrifying stare, the monk's ki strike, and the ghoul's paralytic touch. Supernatural abilities are not subject to spell resistance or dispel magic. However, supernatural abilities still do not function in areas where magic is suppressed or negated (such as an antimagic field).
|Special Ability Types|
|Attack of Opportunity||No||No||Yes|
|Dispel: Can dispel magic and similar spells dispel the effects of abilities of that type?
Spell Resistance: Does spell resistance protect a creature from these abilities?
Antimagic Field: Does an antimagic field or similar magic suppress the ability?
Attack of Opportunity: Does using the ability provoke attacks of opportunity the way that casting a spell does?
Ability Score Loss
Various attacks cause ability score loss, either temporary ability damage or permanent ability drain. Points lost to temporary damage return at the rate of 1 point per day (or double that if the character gets total rest) to each damaged ability, and the spells lesser restoration and restoration offset temporary damage as well. Drains, however, are permanent, though restoration can restore even those lost ability score points.
While any loss is debilitating, losing all points in an ability score can be devastating.
- Strength 0 means that the character cannot move at all. He lies helpless on the ground.
- Dexterity 0 means that the character cannot move at all. He stands motionless, rigid, and helpless.
- Constitution 0 means that the character is dead.
- Intelligence 0 means that the character cannot think and is unconscious in a coma-like stupor, helpless.
- Wisdom 0 means that the character is withdrawn into a deep sleep filled with nightmares, helpless.
- Charisma 0 means that the character is withdrawn into a catatonic, coma-like stupor, helpless.
Keeping track of negative ability score points is never necessary. A character's ability score can't drop below 0.
Having a 0 score in an ability is different from having no ability score whatsoever. A wraith has no Strength score, not a Strength score of 0. A clay golem has no Intelligence, not an Intelligence score of 0. The wraith can move, it just can't act physically on other objects. The golem is not in a stupor or helpless, but it has no thoughts or memory.
Some spells or abilities impose an effective ability score reduction, which is different from ability score loss. Any such reduction disappears at the end of the spell's or ability's duration, and the ability score immediately returns to its former value.
If a character's Constitution score drops, then he loses 1 hit point per Hit Die for every point by which his Constitution modifier drops. For example, at 7th level, Tordek is hit by poison that causes his Constitution to drop from 16 to 13. His bonus falls from +3 to +1, so he loses 14 hit points (2 per level). A minute later, the poison deals another 8 points of temporary Constitution damage, dropping his score to 5 and his modifier from +1 to -3. He loses another 28 hit points - for a total of 42 hit points lost because of an overall 6-point drop in his Constitution modifier.
A full hit point score, however, can't drop to less than 1 hit point per Hit Die. At 7th level, Mialee has 22 hit points. Even if her Constitution score drops to 5 or below, she will still have at least 7 hit points (less any damage she's taken).
The ability that some creatures have to drain ability scores (such as shadows draining Strength or lamias draining Wisdom) is a supernatural one, requiring some sort of attack. Such creatures do not drain abilities from enemies when the enemies strike them, even with unarmed attacks or natural weapons.
An antimagic field spell or the main eye ray of a beholder cancels magic altogether. This spell-like effect is extremely powerful - the ultimate defense against magic.
- No supernatural ability, spell-like ability, or spell works in an area of antimagic (but extraordinary abilities still work).
- Antimagic does not dispel magic; it suppresses it. Once a magical effect is no longer affected by the antimagic (the antimagic fades, the center of the effect moves away, etc.), the magic returns. Spells that still have part of their duration left begin functioning again, magic items are once again useful, and so forth.
- Spell areas that include both an antimagic area and a normal area, but are not centered in the antimagic area, still function in the normal area. If the spell's center is in the antimagic area, then the spell is suppressed.
- Some artifacts are not hampered by antimagic. See the individual artifact descriptions in Magic Items.
- Golems and other magic constructs, elementals, outsiders, and corporeal undead, still function in an antimagic area (though the antimagic area suppresses their supernatural, spell-like, and spell abilities normally). If such creatures are summoned or conjured, however, see below.
- Summoned or conjured creatures of any type and incorporeal undead wink out if they enter an antimagic field. They reappear in the same spot once the field goes away
- Magic items with continuous effects, such as a bag of holding, do not function in the antimagic area, but their effects are not canceled (so the contents of the bag are unavailable, but do not spill out in an antimagic area, nor do they disappear forever).
- Two antimagic fields in the same place do not cancel each other out, nor do they stack.
- Wall of force, prismatic wall, and prismatic sphere are not affected by antimagic. Break enchantment, dispel magic, and greater dispelling, spells do not dispel antimagic. Mordenkainen's disjunction has a 1% chance per caster level of destroying an antimagic field. If the antimagic field survives the disjunction, no items within it are disjoined.
Using nonvisual senses, such as acute smell or hearing, a creature with blindsense notices things it cannot see. The creature usually does not need to make Spot or listen checks to pinpoint the location of a creature within range of its blind-sense ability, provided that it has line of effect to that creature. Any opponent the creature cannot see still has total concealment against the creature with blindsense, and the creature still has the normal miss chance when attacking foes that have concealment. Visibility still affects the movement of a creature with blindsense. A creature with blindsense is still denied its Dexterity bonus to Armor Class against attacks from creatures it cannot see.
This ability is similar to blindsense, but is far more discerning. Using nonvisual senses, such as sensitivity to vibrations, keen smell, acute hearing, or echolocation, a creature with blindsight maneuvers and fights as well as a sighted creature. Invisibility, darkness, and most kinds of concealment are irrelevant, though the creature must have line of effect to a creature or object to discern that creature or object. The ability's range is specified in the creature's descriptive text. The creature usually does not need to make Spot or Listen checks to notice creatures within range of its blindsight ability. Unless noted otherwise, blindsight is continuous, and the creature need do nothing to use it. Some forms of blindsight, however, must be triggered as a free action. If so, this is noted in the creature's description. If a creature must trigger its blindsight ability, the creature gains the benefits of blindsight only during its turn.
Breath Weapon (Su)
A breath weapon attack usually deals damage and is often based on some type of energy (such as fire). Such breath weapons allow a Reflex save for half damage (DC 10 + 1/2 breathing creature's racial HD + breathing creature's Con modifier; the exact DC is given in the creature's descriptive text). A creature is immune to its own breath weapon unless otherwise noted. Some breath weapons allow a Fortitude save or a Will save instead of a Reflex save.
Charm And Compulsion
Many abilities and spells can cloud the minds of characters and monsters, leaving them unable to tell friend from foe - or worse yet, deceiving them into thinking that their former friends are now their worst enemies. Two general types of enchantments affect characters and creatures: charm and compulsion.
Charming another creature gives the charming character the ability to befriend and suggest courses of actions to his minion, but the servitude is not absolute or mindless. Charms of this type include the various charm spells. Essentially, a charmed character retains free will but makes choices according to a skewed view of the world.
- The charmed creature doesn't gain any magical ability to understand his new friend.
- The charmed character retains his original alignment and allegiances, generally with the exception that he now regards the charming creature as a dear friend and will give great weight to his suggestions and directions.
- A charmed character fights his former allies only if they threaten his new friend, and even then he uses the least lethal means at his disposal as long as these tactics show any possibility of success (just as he would in a fight between two actual friends).
- A charmed character is entitled to an opposed Charisma check against his master in order to resist instructions or commands that would make him do something he wouldn't normally do even for a close friend. If he succeeds, he decides not to go along with that order but remains charmed.
- A charmed character never obeys a command that is obviously suicidal or immediately and grievously harmful to her.
- If the charming creature commands his minion to do something that the influenced character would be violently opposed to, the subject may attempt a new saving throw to break free of the influence altogether.
- Any charmed character who is openly attacked by the creature who charmed him or the charmer's apparent allies is automatically freed of the spell or effect.
Compulsion is a different matter altogether. A compulsion overrides the subject's free will in some way or simply changes the way the subject's mind works. A charm makes the subject a friend of the caster; a compulsion makes the subject obey the caster.
Regardless whether a character is charmed or compelled, he won't volunteer information or tactics that his master doesn't ask for. If a 1st-level wizard happens to have a wand of fire tucked into his boot, the vampire that is compelling him doesn't know that the wand is there and can't tell the wizard to give him the wand or use the wand on his former friends. The vampire, however, can say, "Hand over your most powerful magic item."
A "cold" creature, such as a frost giant, is immune to cold damage. It takes double damage from fire unless the fire attack allows a saving throw for half damage, in which case it takes half damage on a successful save and double damage on a failed save.
The arrow sticks into the vampire, but she just pulls it out and laughs as the wound instantly heals. "You'll need to do better than that," she hisses.
Some magic creatures have the supernatural ability to instantly heal damage from weapons or to ignore blows altogether as though they were invulnerable.
- The number in a creature's damage reduction is the amount of hit points the creature ignores from normal attacks. Thus, a creature with a damage reduction number of 5 struck for 8 points of damage ignores 5 points and takes only 3.
- Usually, a certain type of weapon - usually a magic weapon - can overcome this reduction. This information is separated from the damage reduction number by a slash. For example, a werewolf's damage reduction is 15/silver, meaning the werewolf ignores the first 15 points of damage from every normal attack unless the weapon is made of silver. If a dash follows the slash (as with the damage reduction that is a class feature of the barbarian), then the damage reduction is effective against any attack that does not ignore damage reduction.
- Any weapon more powerful than the type given after the slash also negates the ability, so a +1 longsword damages a werewolf normally, but a longsword made of some other special material won't work. For purposes of damage reduction, the power rankings are listed on Damage Reduction Rankings.
- Whenever damage reduction completely negates the damage from an attack, it also negates most special effects that accompany the attack, such as injury type poison, a monk's stunning, and injury type disease. Damage reduction does not negate touch attacks, energy damage dealt along with an attack (such as fire damage from a fire elemental), or energy drains. Nor does it affect poisons or diseases delivered by inhalation, ingestion, or contact. Attacks that deal no damage because of the target's damage reduction do not disrupt spells.
- Magical attacks and energy attacks (even mundane fire) ignore damage reduction.
- For purposes of harming other creatures with damage reduction, a creature's natural weapons count as weapons of the type that can ignore its own innate damage reduction. The amount of damage reduction is irrelevant. For example, a Large air elemental (damage reduction 10/+1) deals full damage to a werewolf, as if the elemental's attack were with a +1 weapon. However, damage reduction from spells, such as stoneskin, does not confer this ability.
- Sometimes damage reduction is instant healing. A sword slash across a demon's hide slices it open, but the open wound seals as fast as it's made. Sometimes damage reduction represents the creature's tough hide or body, such as with a gargoyle or iron golem. In either case, characters can see that conventional attacks don't work.
|Damage Reduction Rankings|
|Power Rank||Weapon Type|
|Best||+5 enhancement bonus|
|2nd best||+4 enhancement bonus|
|3rd best||+3 enhancement bonus|
|4th best||+2 enhancement bonus|
|5th best||+1 enhancement bonus|
|Weakest||Silver, mithral, or other special material|
Darkvision is the extraordinary ability to see with no light source at all, to a range specified for the creature.
- Darkvision is black and white only
- Darkvision does not allow characters to see anything that they could not see otherwise - invisible objects are still invisible, and illusions are still visible as what they seem to be. Likewise, darkvision subjects a creature to gaze attacks normally.
- The presence of light does not spoil darkvision. If a character has darkvision with a 60-foot range, and he stands within a 30-foot radius of light, the character can see normally in the light, and 30 feet beyond the light because of his darkvision.
The bodak's abyssal eyes kill with a glance. The dreaded power word, kill spell can slay without even allowing the victim a saving throw. A single arrow of slaying can fell a dragon. Even a fighter with 100 hit points can be killed by a single death attack. In most cases, death attacks allow the victim to make a Fortitude save to avoid the affect, but if the save fails the character dies instantly.
- Raise dead doesn't work on someone killed by a death attack.
- Death attacks slay instantly. There is no chance for a character to stabilize and thus stay alive.
- In case it matters, a dead character, no matter how she died, has -10 hit points.
- The spell death ward protects a character against these attacks.
When a character is injured by a contaminated attack, touches an item smeared with diseased matter, or consumes disease-tainted food or drink, he must make an immediate Fortitude saving throw. If he succeeds, the disease has no effect - his immune system fought off the infection. If he fails, he takes damage after an incubation period. Once per day afterward he must make a successful Fortitude saving throw to avoid repeated damage. Two successful saving throws in a row indicate that he has fought off the disease and recovers, taking no more damage.
You can roll these Fortitude saving throws for the player so that he doesn't know whether the disease has taken hold.
|Blinding sickness||Ingested||16||1d6 days||1d4 Str*-*|
|Cackle fever||Inhaled||16||1 day||1d6 Wis|
|Demon fever||Injury||18||1 day||1d6 Con**|
|Devil chills*||Injury||14||1d4 days||1d4 Str|
|Filth fever||Injury||12||1d3 days||1d3 Dex, 1d3 Con|
|Mindfire||Inhaled||12||1 day||1d4 Int|
|Mummy rot*||Contact||20||1 day||1d6 Con|
|Red ache||Injury||15||1d3 days||1d6 Str|
|Shakes||Contact||13||1 day||1d8 Dex|
|Slimy doom||Contact||14||1 day||1d4 Con**|
|*Successful saves do not allow the character to recover. Only magical healing can save the character.|
**When damaged, character must succeed at another saving throw or 1 point of temporary damage is permanent drain instead.
*-The victim must make three successful Fortitude saving throws in a row to recover from devil chills.
*-*Each time the victim takes 2 or more damage from the disease, he must make another Fortitude save or be permanently blinded.
Diseases have various symptoms and are spread through a number of vectors. The characteristics of several typical diseases are summarized on Diseases.
Disease: Diseases in italic are supernatural in nature. The rest are extraordinary.
Infection: The disease's method of delivery - ingested, inhaled, via injury, or contact. Keep in mind that some injury diseases may be transmitted by as small an injury as a flea bite and that most inhaled diseases can also be ingested (and vice versa).
DC: The DC for the saving throws to prevent infection (if the character has been infected), to prevent each instance of repeated damage, and to recover from the disease.
Incubation Period: The time before damage begins.
Damage: The damage the character takes after incubation and each day afterward. Ability score damage is temporary unless otherwise noted.
Types of Diseases: Typical diseases include the following:
Blinding Sickness: Spread in tainted water.
Cackle Fever: Symptoms include high fever, disorientation, and frequent bouts of hideous laughter. Also known as the "shrieks."
Demon Fever: Night hags spread it.
Devil Chills: Barbazu and pit fiends spread it. It takes three, not two, successful saves in a row to recover from devil chills.
Filth Fever: Dire rats and otyughs spread it. Those injured while in filthy surrounding might also catch it.
Mindfire: Feels like your brain is burning. Causes stupor.
Mummy Rot: Spread by mummies. Successful saving throws do not allow the character to recover (though they do prevent damage normally).
Red Ache: Skin turns red, bloated, and warm to the touch.
The Shakes: Causes involuntary twitches, tremors, and fits.
Slimy Doom: Victim turns into infectious goo from the inside out.
From the Book of Vile Darkness
While all diseases are terrible, these are particularly malign and vile, spawned from the corruption and influence of evil outsiders, gods, or evil emotions.
Characters who come into contact with one of these diseases (through proximity to someone who acts as a carrier, injury by a contaminated attack, touching an item smeared with diseased matter, or consuming tainted food or drink) must make an immediate Fortitude saving throw. On a success, the disease has no effect because the immune system fought off the infection. Characters who fail the save take the damage given on the table below after the disease's incubation period. Once per day afterward, a diseased character must succeed at a Fortitude saving throw to avoid repeated damage. Two successful saving throws in a row indicate that the character has fought off the disease and recovers, taking no more damage.
All the diseases below are supernatural. As such, none of them are available for use with the contagion spell.
|Acid fever||Injury||18||1d3 days||1d6 Str2|
|Blue guts||Special||14||1d3 days||1d4 Str|
|Deathsong||Contact||25||1 day||1d8 Str, 1d8 Dex, 1d8 Con|
|Faceless hate*||Injury||20||1d4 days||1d6 Str, 1d6 Con***|
|Fire taint||Inhaled||18||1 day||1d6 Wis**|
|Frigid ravaging||Injury||18||1 day||1d6 Con**|
|Iron corruption||Injury||24||1d3 days||1d4 Con|
|Life blindness||Inhaled||21||1 day||Special|
|Lightning curse||Contact||18||1 day||1d6 Int**|
|Melting fury||Contact||16||1d6 days||1d4 Str, 1d4 Dex, 1d4 Con|
|Misery's passage||Injury||15||Varies||1d6 Str|
|Possession Infection*||Contact||17||1 day||1d6 Wis, 1d8 Cha|
|Sound sickness||Contact||18||1d3 days||1d6 Dex**/****|
|Soul rot||Special||23||1d8 days||1d6 Wis, 1d8 Cha|
|Vile rigidity||Contact||19||1 day||Special|
|Warp touch 1||Contact||20||Immediate||Special|
|*Successful saves do not allow the character to recover. Only magical healing can save the character.
**When damaged, character must succeed at another saving throw or 1 point of temporary damage is permanent drain instead.
***The victim must makes three successful Fortitude saving throws to recover.
****With each failed saving throw, a second saving throw must be made. If at any time the second save fails, the victim becomes permanently deafened.
Acid Fever: When a character takes more than 30 points of acid damage and is at the same rime exposed to great evil (such as the presence of an evil outsider or a desecrated area), she risks contracting acid fever. Festering boils cover the victim's flesh, and the skin blackens and withers.
Blue Guts: This disease comes from eating the flesh of particularly disgusting creatures such as otyughs, gibbering mouthers, and gray oozes. It results in a bluish complexion, particularly around the creature's intestines (hence the name). Many (but not all) predatory magical beasts, aberrations, and other creatures are immune to this disease, but no humanoids are.
Deathsong: One of the worst diseases known, this terrible plague has laid waste to entire communities in less than a week. Victims of deathsong can do nothing but shriek and howl as their bodies wither and blacken. Once the incubation period expires, the progress of the disease is so fast that a victim can hear his skin crackle and his bones grow brittle and break.
Faceless Hate: When a victim of this disease takes enough Strength or Constitution damage to reduce the ability score to 0, the infection disappears. The character's ability scores are immediately restored to what they were before the onset of the disease, but he becomes a monster with no face. The character loses his ability to see (and scent, if he has that ability), but gains blindsight with a range of 60 feet. He loses the ability to speak, but gains the Silent Spell feat if a spellcaster. The victim's alignment changes to neutral evil, and he becomes intent on killing all those who were his friends and family. When the victim has hunted down everyone dear to him, he turns his ire against all other living things. These changes are permanent, and remove disease has no effect. A wish or miracle spell restores the character, but nothing else will. If the victim dies and a remove disease spell is then cast on the corpse, a resurrection or true resurrection spell restores the character to life and to his original form. Raise dead won't work.
Festering Anger: Brought upon by long-term, intense fury and hatred, this disease manifests as dark boils across the skin. The incubation period - in this case, the amount of time during which a character must be angry - varies, but it usually takes at least a year for festering anger to erupt. Each day after the onset of this malady, the character takes 1d3 points of Constitution damage, but she gains a cumulative +2 enhancement bonus to Strength.
Each day, the victim must succeed at an additional Will saving throw (DC 22) or attack whatever has made him so angry The victim is obsessed with taking action against the focus of his anger, but isn't completely heedless of danger. If the focus of the victim's anger isn't readily available, the victim will instead attack allies, minions, or symbols that remind him of the reason for his hate. For example, a farmer suffering from festering anger directed at the king won't necessarily match toward the palace after failing a Will save. He might instead attack the royal guards in the marketplace, pick a fight with the local tax collector, or vandalize the king's statue in the city square.
Fire Taint: When a character rakes more than 30 points of fire damage and is at the same time exposed to great evil (as with acid fever, above), she risks contracting fire taint. Her flesh reddens and her insides seem to burn. The victim vomits bile during the worst of the disease.
Frigid Ravaging: When a character takes more than 30 points of cold damage and is at the same time exposed to great evil (as with acid fever, above), she risks contracting frigid ravaging.
Iron Corruption: This disease comes from prolonged exposure to iron worked in conditions of extreme toil and misery. Iron corruption often spreads from a stab wound or an arrowhead lodged in one's flesh for too long. The victim is gripped with terrible chills. Her skin turns a dull metallic hue.
Life Blindness: The infected victim loses all ability to perceive living creatures, even plants. All such beings are treated as invisible, silent, and odorless. The loneliness and alienation eventually drive the victim to be completely antisocial, suffering effects similar to the emotion (despair) and emotion (hate) spells.
Lightning Curse: When a character rakes more than 30 points of electricity damage and is at the same time exposed to great evil (as with acid fever, above), she risks contracting lightning curse. As her blood vessels burst, the victim is covered in blue and black bruises. Her muscles ache and she cannot think straight.
Melting Fury: Caught by characters who handle undead flesh, this disease is as horrific to watch as it is to contract. The victim's flesh slowly liquefies and "melts" off his body until he is dead.
Misery's Passage: Brought upon by long-term, intense emotions of sadness and despair, this disease manifests as dark boils. The incubation period varies just as for festering anger. In addition to the damage, the victim must succeed at an additional Will saving throw (DC 15) every day or be treated as stunned for that day. Even moving takes too great an effort.
Possession Infection: This malady occurs only after an evil spirit, outsider, or other dominating force (including the effect of dominate person cast by an evil caster) has possessed the victim. The victim slowly becomes despondent and lethargic, apparently mentally affected by the alien presence that was within her soul.
Sound Sickness: When a character takes more than 30 points of sonic damage and is at the same time exposed to great evil (as with acid fever, above), he risks contracting sound sickness. Given to fits of shouting, the victim of this disease shows no visible illness, but he staggers about, barely able to keep to his feet.
Soul Rot: Creatures that eat the flesh of an evil outsider can contract this horrible malady. Soul rot eats at the victim's mind and soul until she dies a horrible, agonizing death full of pain and misery
Vile Rigidity: This infection at first seems a boon. The victim's skin roughens, granting a +1 natural armor bonus to AC 24 hours after the infection starts. On the second day, this becomes a +2 bonus. On the third day the natural armor bonus improves to +3, but the victim takes a -2 penalty to Dexterity. Each day thereafter, the victim's skin becomes thicker and thicker, adding a cumulative +1 natural armor bonus and a -2 penalty to Dexterity. This lasts until the victim's Dexterity reaches 0, indicating that his ever-thickening flesh has entrapped him. At this point, the victim dies of suffocation.
Warp Touch: One of the worst effects of raw chaos and dissolution, the malady known as warp touch has a random set of effects that manifest immediately. Once it takes hold, no more saving throws are needed: The malady gets neither better nor worse. A remove disease accomplishes nothing. When a character falls victim to this disease, roll on following table.
|01-10||Body turns to formless jelly; character dies.|
|11-15||One arm becomes useless; 1d6 Str, Con, and Dex drain.|
|16-20||One leg becomes useless; 1d6 Str, Con, and Dex drain.|
|21-23||Eyes fall out; permanent blindness.|
|24-28||Huge lump grows on head; 1d8 Int and Wis drain.|
|29-32||Fingers twist into tangles; 1d8 Dex drain.|
|33-36||Become very thin; 1d6 Str and Con drain.|
|37-38||Mouth seals forever; cannot speak.|
|39-40||Legs become snake tails; speed reduced by half.|
|41-42||Skin turns random color.|
|43-44||Eyes turn random color.|
|45-46||Hair turns random color.|
|47-48||Tongue grows very long.|
|49-50||Lose all hair.|
|51-52||Skin forms blotches of different colors.|
|53-54||Body covered with tufts of hair.|
|55-56||Grow vestigial wings.|
|57-58||Grow extra, useless arm.|
|59-60||Grow vestigial tail.|
|63-64||Back curves, grows hump.|
|65-66||Arms become tentacles; character cannot hold objects, but gains improved grab.|
|67-68||Grow extra eye; +2 deformity bonus on Spot checks.|
|69-70||Legs grow more muscular; speed increases by +10 ft.|
|71-72||Head swells; +4 deformity bonus to Int.|
|73-74||Grow claws that deal 1d8 points of damage.|
|75-76||Grow a very wide mouth; bite deals 1 d6 points of damage.|
|77-78||Grow snakelike arm; attacks of its own accord as Medium-size viper.|
|79-80||Grow horns; gore attack deals 2d4 points of damage.|
|81-82||Grow thick skin; +2 natural armor bonus.|
|83-84||Grow scales; +3 natural armor bonus.|
|85-86||Grow longer legs; +2 deformity bonus to Dex.|
|87-88||Arms grow freakishly muscular; +2 deformity bonus to Str.|
|89-90||Become freakishly stout; +2 deformity bonus to Con.|
|91||Grow working wings; fly 10 ft. (clumsy).|
|92||Petrifying eyes; gain gaze attack as medusa.|
|93||Form oozing pustules; uncontrollable poison touch; Fort DC 15; initial damage 1 Int, secondary damage 1d6 Int.|
|94||Form steaming pustules; uncontrollable stench in a 5-foot radius centered on victim; make Fort save (DC 15) or take -2 morale penalty on attacks, saves, and checks for 10 rounds.|
Use of the Heal skill can help a diseased character. Every time the diseased character makes a saving throw against disease effects, the healer makes a check. The diseased character can use the healer's result in place of his saving throw if the Heal result is higher. The diseased character must be in the healer's care and must spend most of each day resting.
Characters recover points lost to ability score damage at a rate of 1 per day, and this rule applies even while a disease is in progress. That means that a lucky character with a minor disease might be able to withstand it without accumulating any damage.
An undead wight bashes an adventurer, and she feels cold and weak, while the wight moves with greater vigor than before. When the wight strikes her again, she grows weaker, as if her life force were slipping away Her friends see her face drain of color and her flesh shrivel slightly With the third strike, the adventurer falls to the ground, a desiccated husk. A fellow adventurer, also struck by the wight, survives the encounter. Over the next day his spirit rallies, and he throws off the hungry force that clawed at his very soul. Some horrible creatures, especially undead monsters, possess a fearsome supernatural ability to drain levels from those they strike in combat. The creature making an energy drain attack draws a portion of its victim's life force from her.
- Most energy drains require a successful melee attack - mere physical contact is not enough. Monks, for instance, can pound such creatures with their fists without risking their life energy.
- Each successful energy draining attack bestows one or more negative levels on the opponent. A creature suffers the following penalties for each negative level it has gained:
-1 to all skill and ability checks
-1 to attacks
-1 to saving throws
-1 effective level (whenever the creature's level is used in a die roll or calculation, reduce it by one for each negative level)
- If the victim casts spells, she loses access to one spell as if she had cast her highest-level, currently available spell. (If she has more than one spell at her highest level, she chooses which she loses.) In addition, when she next prepares spells or regains spell slots, she gets one less spell slot at her highest spell level.
- Negative levels remain for 24 hours or until removed with a spell, such as restoration. After 24 hours, the afflicted creature must attempt a Fortitude save. The DC is 10 + one-half the attacker's Hit Dice + the attackers' Charisma modifier, (The DC is provided in the attacker's description.) If the saving throw succeeds, the negative level goes away with no harm to the creature. If the save fails, the negative level goes away, but the creature's level is also reduced by 1. The afflicted creature makes a separate saving throw for each negative level it has gained.
- A character who loses a level to an energy drain instantly loses one Hit Die. The character's base attack bonus, base saving throw bonuses, and special class abilities are now reduced to the new, lower level. A 2nd-level rogue, for example, normally has the evasion ability, but when she is drained to 1st level, she loses that ability Likewise, the character loses any ability score gain, skill ranks, and any feat associated with the level (if any). If the exact ability score or skill ranks increased from a level now lost is unknown (or the player has forgotten), lose a point from the highest ability score or ranks from the highest-ranked skills. If a familiar or companion creature (such as a paladin's mount) has abilities tied to a character who has lost a level, the creature's abilities are adjusted to fit the character's new level.
- The victim's experience point total is immediately set to the midpoint of the previous level. For example, a character drained from 2nd to 1st level would drop to 500 experience points.
- A character with negative levels at least equal to her current level, or drained below 1st level, is instantly slain. Depending on the creature that killed her, she may rise the next night as a monster of that kind. If not, she rises as a wight.
- A creature gains 5 temporary hit points for each negative level it inflicts (though not if the negative level is caused by a spell or similar effect).
Out of nowhere, a spider the size of a horse appears and bites Mialee. Lidda wheels to stab it, but it's gone. The adventurers know the phase spider is somewhere nearby lurking on the Ethereal Plane, watching them and waiting.
Phase spiders and certain other creatures can exist on the Ethereal Plane, which lies parallel to the Material Plane (the normal world). While on the Ethereal Plane, a creature is called ethereal.
- Ethereal creatures are invisible, inaudible, insubstantial, and scentless to creatures on the Material Plane (the normal world). Even most magical attacks have no effect on them. See invisibility and true seeing reveal ethereal creatures.
- An ethereal creature can see and hear into the Material Plane in a 60-foot radius, though material objects still block sight and sound. (An ethereal creature can't see through a material wall, for instance.) Things on the Material Plane, however, look gray, indistinct, and ghostly. An ethereal creature can't affect the Material Plane, not even magically. An ethereal creature, however, interacts with other ethereal creatures and objects the way material creatures interact with material creatures and objects.
- Ethereal creatures move in any direction (including up or down) at will. They do not need to walk on the ground, and material objects don't block them (though they can't see while their eyes are within solid material).
- Force effects are a special exception. A material force effect extends onto the Ethereal Plane, so that a wall of force blocks an ethereal creature, and a magic missile can strike one (provided the spellcaster can see the ethereal target). Gaze effects and abjurations also extend from the Material Plane to the Ethereal Plane. None of these effects extend from the Ethereal Plane to the Material Plane.
- Ghosts have a power called manifestation that allows them to appear on the Material Plane as incorporeal creatures. Still, they are on the Ethereal Plane, and another ethereal creature can interact normally with a manifesting ghost.
- Ethereal creatures pass through and operate in water as easily as air.
- Ethereal creatures do not fall or suffer falling damage.
Evasion & Improved Evasion
The blue dragon's lightning breath blasts Tordek, Mialee, and Lidda. They all twist and duck to escape the worst of the attack, but Tordek and Mialee are still burned. Lidda is merely sweaty.
These extraordinary abilities allow the target of an area attack to leap or twist out of the way Rogues and monks have evasion and improved evasion as class features, but certain other creatures have these abilities, too.
- If subjected to an attack that allows a Reflex save for half damage, a character with evasion takes no damage on a successful save.
- As with a Reflex save for any creature, a character must have room to move in order to evade. A bound character or one in a completely restrictive area (crawling through a 2 1/2-foot-wide shaft, for example) cannot use evasion.
- As with a Reflex save for any creature, evasion is a reflexive ability The character need not know that the attack is coming to use evasion.
- Rogues and monks cannot use evasion in medium or heavy armor. Some creatures with the innate evasion ability do not face this limitation.
- Improved evasion is like evasion, except that even on a failed saving throw the character takes only half damage.
As Tordek fights the red slaad, the wounds he has already given it heal before his eyes.
The creature has the extraordinary ability to regain hit points at an exceptional rate. Except for what is noted here, fast healing is just like natural healing.
- At the beginning of each of the creature's turns, it heals a certain number of hit points (defined in its description, usually 1 or 2).
- Unlike regeneration fast healing does not allow a creature to regrow or reattach lost body parts.
- A creature that has taken both subdual and normal damage heals the subdual damage first.
- Fast healing does not restore hit points lost from starvation, thirst, or suffocation.
- Fast healing does not increase the number of hit points regained when a creature polymorphs.
A young adult green dragon charges the adventurers. Tordek feels a twinge of fear but grits his teeth and ignores it. Lidda doesn't stand up as well to the charge. She holds her ground, but fear takes the edge off her skill. The cohort who had recently joined them, however, drops her sword and flees recklessly, her screams fading in the distance.
Spells, magic items, and certain monsters can affect characters with fear. In most cases, the character makes a Will saving throw to resist this effect, and a failed roll means that the character is shaken, frightened, or panicked.
Shaken: Characters who are shaken suffer a -2 morale penalty to attack rolls, saves, and checks.
Frightened: Characters who are frightened are shaken, and in addition they flee from the source of their fear as quickly as they can, although they can choose the path of their flight. Other than that stipulation, once they are our of sight (or hearing) of the source of their fear, they can act as they want. However, if the duration of their fear continues, characters can be forced to flee once more if the source of their fear presents itself again. Characters unable to flee can fight (though they are still shaken).
Panicked: Characters who are panicked are shaken, and in addition they have a 50% chance to drop what they're holding, and they run away from the source of their fear as quickly as they can. Other than running away from the source, their path is random. They flee from all other dangers that confront them rather than facing those dangers. Panicked characters cower if they are prevented from fleeing.
Becoming Even More Fearful: Fear effects are cumulative. A shaken character who is made shaken again becomes frightened, and a shaken character who is made frightened becomes panicked instead. A frightened character who is made shaken or frightened becomes panicked instead.
Red-hot boulders fly our of an inferno, striking the unexpecting adventurers. Looking closely, they can see the figure of a fire giant in the roaring flames, laughing.
A "fire" creature is immune to fire damage. It takes double damage from cold unless the cold attack allows a saving throw for half damage, in which case it rakes half damage on a successful save and double damage on a failed save.
The characters have the vampire cornered, when suddenly her form gets blurry. In an instant, she and her gear, including the signet ring that the adventurers need, have turned into a mist, which floats our through an arrow slit in the stone wall.
Some creatures have the supernatural or spell-like ability to take the form of a cloud of vapor or gas.
- Gaseous creatures can't run but can fly. A gaseous creature can move about and do the things that a cloud of gas can conceivably do, such as issue under the crack of a door. It can't, however, pass through solid matter.
- Gaseous creatures can't attack physically or cast spells with verbal, somatic, material, or focus components. They lose their supernatural abilities (except for the supernatural ability to assume gaseous form, of course),
- Creatures in gaseous form have damage reduction 20/+1. Spells, spell-like abilities, and supernatural abilities affect them normally. Creatures in gaseous form lose all benefit of material armor (including natural armor), though size, Dexterity, deflection bonuses, and armor bonuses from force armor (for example, from the mage armor spell) still apply.
- Gaseous creatures do not need to breathe and are immune to attacks involving breathing (troglodyte stench, poison gas, etc.).
- Gaseous creatures can't enter water or other liquid.
- Gaseous creatures are not ethereal or incorporeal.
- Gaseous creatures are affected by winds or other forms of moving air to the extent that the wind pushes them in the direction the wind is moving. However, even the strongest wind can't disperse or damage a creature in gaseous form.
- Discerning a creature in gaseous form from natural mist requires a Spot check (DC 15). Creatures in gaseous form attempting to hide in an area with mist, smoke, or other gas gain a +20 bonus.
The medusa looks around, throwing dangerous glances everywhere, and focusing its eyes on specific victims. Lidda closes her eyes and tries to aim her arrows by ear. Jozan averts his eyes but tries to watch the creature with peripheral vision so he knows where to project his searing light spell. Tordek trusts fate and looks the thing in the eye as he swings his mighty axe. Magic washes through him, and he shrugs it off. Jozan, however, accidentally catches the thing's eye, and he's not strong enough to resist. His body hardens and turns to stone.
While the medusa's gaze is well known, gaze attacks can also charm, curse, or even kill. Gaze attacks not produced by a spell (such as eyebite) are supernatural.
- Each character within range of a gaze attack must attempt a saving throw (usually Fortitude or Will) each round at the beginning of his turn.
- An opponent can avert his eyes from the creature's face, looking at the creature's body, watching its shadow, or tracking the creature in a reflective surface. Each round, the opponent has a 50% chance of not having to make a saving throw. The creature with the gaze attack gains one-half concealment against the opponent (so any attack the opponent makes against the creature has a 20% miss chance).
- An opponent can shut his eyes, turn his back on the creature, or wear a blindfold. In these cases, the opponent does not need to make a saving throw. The creature with the gaze attack gains total concealment against the opponent as if the creature were invisible. Thus, any attack the opponent makes against the creature has a 50% miss chance, and the opponent can't use sight to target attacks.
- A creature with a gaze attack can actively attempt to use its gaze as an attack action. The creature simply chooses a target within range, and that opponent must attempt a saving throw. If the target has chosen to defend against the gaze as discussed above, the opponent gets a chance to avoid the saving throw (either 50% chance for averting or 100% chance for shutting eyes). It is possible for an opponent to save against a creature's gaze twice during the same round, once before its own action and once during the creature's action.
- Looking at the creature's image (such as in a mirror or as part of an illusion) does not subject the viewer to a gaze attack.
- A creature is immune to its own gaze attack.
- If visibility is limited (by dim lighting, a fog, etc.) so that it results in concealment, there is a percentage chance equal to the normal miss chance for that amount of concealment that a character won't need to make a saving throw in a given round. This chance is not cumulative with chances to avoid the gaze, but instead is rolled separately
- Invisible creatures cannot use gaze attacks.
- Characters using darkvision in complete darkness are affected by a gaze attack normally.
- Unless specified otherwise, an intelligent creature with a gaze attack can control its gaze attack and "turn it off" when so desired.
Lidda spots a translucent face poking forth from a wall, but it's gone by the time she alerts her companions. The party starts to back out of the ruined throne room they're exploring, when suddenly several ghostly figures fly out of the walls toward them. Tordek raises his magic shield to fend off a spectre's attack, but the incorporeal hand passes through the shield and through his magic plate armor. It touches his heart, which grows suddenly cold.
Spectres, wraiths, and a few other creatures lack physical bodies. Such creatures are insubstantial and can't be touched by nonmagical matter or energy. Likewise, they cannot manipulate objects or exert physical force on objects. However, incorporeal beings have a tangible presence that sometimes seems like a physical attack (such as the touch of a spectre) against a corporeal creature.
- Incorporeal creatures can only be harmed by other incorporeal creatures, by +1 or better weapons, or by spells, spell-like effects, or supernatural effects. They are immune to all nonmagical attack forms. They are not burned by normal fires, affected by natural cold, or harmed by mundane acids.
- Even when struck by magic or magic weapons, an incorporeal creature has a 50% chance to ignore any damage from a corporeal source - except for a force effect, such as magic missile, or damage inflicted by a ghost touch weapon.
- Incorporeal creatures move in any direction (including up or down) at will. They do not need to walk on the ground.
- Incorporeal creatures can pass through solid objects at will, although they cannot see when their eyes are within solid matter.
- Incorporeal creatures are inaudible unless they decide to make noise.
- The physical attacks of incorporeal creatures ignore material armor, even magic armor, unless it is made of force (such as mage armor or bracers of defense) or has the ghost touch ability.
- Incorporeal creatures pass through and operate in water as easily as they do in air.
- Incorporeal creatures cannot fall or suffer falling damage.
- Corporeal creatures cannot trip or grapple incorporeal creatures.
- Incorporeal creatures have no weight and do not set off traps that are triggered by weight.
- Incorporeal creatures do not leave footprints, have no scent and make no noise unless they manifest, and even then they only make noise intentionally.
An invisible quasit is spying on the adventurers when Lidda gets a strange feeling. "There's something here," she whispers, and signals for silence as she tries to locate it by ear.
The ability to move about unseen is wonderful, but it's not fool-proof. While they can't be seen, invisible creatures can be heard, smelled, or felt.
- Invisibility makes a creature undetectable by vision, including darkvision.
- A creature can generally notice the presence of an active invisible creature within 30 feet with a Spot check (DC 20). The observer gains a hunch that "something's there" but can't see it or target it accurately with an attack. A creature who is holding still is practically impossible to notice (DC 30). An inanimate object, or an unliving creature holding still, or a completely immobile creature, is even harder to spot (DC 40). It's practically impossible (+20 DC) to pinpoint an invisible creature's location with a Spot check, and even if a character succeeds at such a check, the invisible creature still benefits from full concealment (50% miss chance).
- A creature can use hearing to find an invisible creature. A character can make a Listen check for this purpose as a free action each round. A Listen check result at least equal to the invisible creature's Move Silently check result reveals its presence. (A creature with no ranks in Move Silently makes a Move Silently check as a Dexterity check to which an armor check penalty applies.)
- A successful check lets a character hear an invisible creature "over there somewhere." It's practically impossible to pinpoint the exact location of an invisible creature. A Listen check that beats the DC by 20 reveals the invisible creature's location.
Listen Check DCs To Detect Invisible Creatures Invisible Creature Is: DC In combat or speaking 0 Moving at half speed Move Silently check Moving at full speed Move Silently check at -4 Running or charging Move Silently check at -20 Some distance away +1 per 10 feet Behind an obstacle (door) +5 Behind an obstacle (stone wall) +15
- A creature can grope about to find an invisible creature. A character can make a touch attack with his hands or a weapon into two adjacent 5-foot areas using a standard action. If an invisible target is in the designated area, there is a 50% miss chance on the touch attack. If successful, the groping character inflicts no damage but has successfully pinpointed the invisible creature's current location. (If the invisible creature moves, its location, obviously is once again unknown.)
- If an invisible creature strikes a character, the character struck still knows the location of the creature that struck him (until, of course, the invisible creature moves). The only exception is if the invisible creature has a reach greater than 5 feet. In this case, rho struck character knows the general location of the creature but has not pinpointed the exact location.
- If a character tries to attack an invisible creature whose location he has pinpointed, he attacks normally, but the invisible creature still benefits from full concealment (and thus a 50% miss chance). At your option, a particularly large and slow creature might get a smaller miss chance. If a wizard projects a disintegration ray into the center of an invisible Huge black pudding, you could reduce or ignore the miss chance; it's pretty hard to miss something that big.
- If a character tries to attack an invisible creature whose location he has not pinpointed, have the player choose the space where the character will direct the attack. If the invisible creature is there, conduct the attack normally. If the enemy's not there, roll the miss chance as if it were there, don't let the player see the result, and tell him that the character has missed. That way the player doesn't know whether the attack missed because the enemy's not there or because you successfully rolled the miss chance.
- If an invisible character picks up a visible object, the object remains visible. One could coat an invisible object with flour to at least keep track of its position (until the flour fell off or blew away). An invisible creature can pick up a small visible item and hide it on his person (tucked in a pocket or behind a cloak) and render it effectively invisible.
- Invisible creatures leave tracks. They can be tracked normally. Footprints in sand, mud, or other soft surfaces can give enemies clues to an invisible creature's location.
- An invisible creature in the water displaces water, revealing its location. The invisible creature, however, is still hard to see and benefits from one-half concealment (20% miss chance).
- A creature with the scent ability can detect invisible creatures as it would a visible one (see Scent, below).
- A creature with the Blind-Fight feat has a better chance to hit an invisible creature. Roll the miss chance twice, and he misses only if both rolls indicate a miss. (Alternatively, make one 25% miss roll rather than two 50% miss rolls.)
- A creature with blindsight can attack (and otherwise interact with) creatures regardless of invisibility.
- An invisible burning torch still gives off light, as does an invisible object with a light spell (or similar spell) cast upon it.
- Ethereal creatures are invisible. Since ethereal creatures are not materially present, Spot checks, Listen checks, Scent, Blind-Fight, and Blindsight don't help locate them. Incorporeal creatures are often invisible. Scent, Blind-Fight, and blindsight don't help creatures find or attack invisible, incorporeal creatures, but Spot checks and possibly Listen checks can help.
- Invisible creatures cannot use gaze attacks.
- Invisibility does not thwart detect spells.
- Since some creatures can detect or even see invisible creatures, it is helpful to be able to hide even when invisible.
A character who loses a level instantly loses one Hit Die. The characters base attack bonus, base saving throw bonuses, and special class abilities are now reduced to the new, lower level. A 2nd-level rogue, for example, normally has the evasion ability, but when she is drained to 1st level, she loses that ability. Likewise, the character loses any ability score gain, skill ranks, and any feat associated with the level (if applicable). If the exact ability score or skill ranks increased from a level now lost is unknown (or the player has forgotten), lose 1 point from the highest ability score or ranks from the highest-ranked skills. If a familiar or companion creature (such as a paladin's mount) has abilities tied to a character who has lost a level, the creature's abilities are adjusted to fit the character's new level.
The victim's experience point total is immediately set to the midpoint of the previous level. For example, a character drained from 2nd to 1st level would drop to 500 experience points.
Lidda hears something stalking through the trees beyond the circle of light thrown up by rho campfire, but she can't see it. She nudges Mialee and points. Mialee looks into the darkness and says, "Displacer beasts."
Characters with low-light vision have eyes that are so sensitive to light that they can see twice as far as normal in dim light. Thus, if a group of adventurers passes down a dark passage with a torch illuminating a 20-foot radius, an elf with low-light vision can see everything within 40 feet of the torch. Low-light vision is color vision. A spellcaster with low-light vision can read a scroll as long as even the tiniest candle flame is next to her as a source of light.
Characters with low-light vision can see outdoors on a moonlit night as well as they can during the day.
Paralysis And Hold
A cleric of Hextor brandishes his unholy symbol at Tordek, gestures with it, and speaks unintelligible words. Suddenly Tordek feels his body freeze up, and he can't will his limbs to obey. He stands rigid and helpless. He hears a fight raging around him and sees whatever passes in front of his eyes, but he can't turn to see how his friends are faring. The sound of his own breath and the beating of his heart fill his ears. Then he hears someone behind him, and all he can do is hope it's a friend.
Some monsters and spells have the supernatural or spell-like ability to paralyze or hold their victims, immobilizing them through magical means. (Paralysis from toxins is discussed in the Poison section below.)
- A paralyzed or held character cannot move, speak, or take any physical action. He is rooted to the spot, frozen and helpless. Not even friends can move his limbs. He may take purely mental actions, such as casting a spell with no components.
- Paralysis works on the body, and a character can usually resist it with a Fortitude saving throw. Hold is an enchantment, a mind-affecting compulsion. A character usually resists it with a Will save.
- A winged creature flying in the air at the time that it is held or paralyzed cannot flap its wings and falls. A swimmer can't swim and may drown.
A giant scorpion grabs Jozan in its pincers and stings him. The wound burns like fire, and pain spreads through his body, bringing a strange weakness with it. Jozan struggles to free himself from the pincers, but his arms have become weak, and the scorpion just stings him again. Mialee uses polymorph other to turn the scorpion into a carp, so Jozan is safe from further harm, but the poison still courses through his veins. Soon it overcomes him, and he falls helpless to the ground.
When a character takes damage from an attack with a poisoned weapon, touches an item smeared with contact poison, consumes poisoned food or drink, or is otherwise poisoned, he must make a Fortitude saving throw. If he fails, he suffers the poison's initial damage (usually ability damage). Even if he succeeds, he typically faces more damage 1 minute later, which he can also avoid with a successful Fortitude saving throw. One dose of poison smeared on a weapon or some other object affects just a single target. A poisoned weapon or object retains its venom until the weapon scores a hit or the object is touched (unless the poison is wiped off before a target comes in contact with it). Any poison smeared on an object or exposed to the elements in any way - if the vial containing it is left unstoppered, for instance - remains potent until it is touched or used. Although supernatural and spell-like poisons are possible, poisonous effects are almost always extraordinary Poisons are described on Poisons.
Perils of Using Poison
A character has a 5% chance to expose himself to a poison whenever he applies it to a weapon or otherwise readies it for use. Additionally, a character who rolls a 1 on an attack roll with a poisoned weapon must make a Reflex saving throw (DC 15) or accidentally poison himself with the weapon.
Wyverns, medusas, and other creatures with natural poison attacks are immune to their own poison. Nonliving creatures (constructs and undead) and creatures without metabolisms (such as elementals) are always immune to poison. Oozes, plants, and certain kinds of creatures (such as tanar'ri) are also immune to poison, although conceivably a special poison could be concocted specifically to harm them.
|Poison||Type||Initial Damage||Secondary Damage||Price|
|Small centipede poison||Injury DC 11||1d2 Dex||1d2 Dex||90 gp|
|Greenblood oil||Injury DC 13||1 Con||1d2 Con||100 gp|
|Medium-size spider venom||Injury DC 14||1d4 Str||1d6 Str||150 gp|
|Bloodroot||Injury DC 12||0||1d4 Con 5-1d3 Wis||100 gp|
|Purple worm poison||Injury DC 24||1d6 Str||1d6 Str||700 gp|
|Large scorpion venom||Injury DC 18||1d6 Str||1d6 Str||200 gp|
|Wyvern poison||Injury DC 17||2d6 Con||2d6 Con||3,000 gp|
|Blue whinnis||Injury DC 14||1 Con||Unconsciousness||120 gp|
|Giant wasp poison||Injury DC 18||1d6 Dex||1d6 Dex||210 gp|
|Shadow essence||Injury DC 17||1 Str 5||2d6 Str||250 gp|
|Black adder venom||Injury DC 12||0||1d6 Str||120 gp|
|Deathblade Injury||DC 20||1d6 Con||2d6 Con||1,800 gp|
|Malyss root paste||Contact DC 16||1 Dex||2d4 Dex||500 gp|
|Nitharit||Contact DC 13||0||3d6 Con||650 gp|
|Dragon bile||Contact DC 26||3d6 Str||0||1,500 gp|
|Sassone leaf residue||Contact DC 16||2d12 hp||1d6 Con||300 gp|
|Terinav root||Contact DC 16||1d6 Dex||2d6 Dex||750 gp|
|Carrion crawler brain juice||Contact DC 13||Paralysis||0||200 gp|
|Black lotus extract||Contact DC 20||3d6 Con||3d6 Con||2,500 gp|
|Oil of taggit||Ingested DC 15||0||Unconsciousness||90 gp|
|Id moss||Ingested DC 14||1d4 Int||2d6 Int||125 gp|
|Striped toadstool||Ingested DC 11||1 Wis||2d6 Wis + 1d4 Int||180 gp|
|Arsenic||Ingested DC 13||1 Con||1d5 Con||120 gp|
|Lich dust||Ingested DC 17||2d6 Str||1d6 Str||250 gp|
|Dark reaver powder||Ingested DC 18||2d6 Con||1d6 Con+1d6 Str||300 gp|
|Ungol dust||Inhaled DC 15||1 Cha||1d6 Cha + 1 Cha*||1,000 gp|
|Burnt othur fumes||Inhaled DC 18||1 Con*||3d6 Con||2,100 gp|
|Insanity mist||Inhaled DC 15||1d4 Wis||2d6 Wis||1,500 gp|
|Type: The poison's method of delivery - ingested, inhaled, via an injury, or contact - and the DC needed to save.
Initial Damage: The damage the character takes immediately upon failing his saving throw against this type of poison. Ability score damage is temporary unless marked with an asterisk (*), in which case the loss is a permanent drain. Paralysis lasts for 2d6 minutes.
Secondary Damage: The amount of damage the character takes 1 minute after exposure as a result of the poisoning, if he fails a second saving throw. Unconsciousness lasts for 1d3 hours. Loss marked with an asterisk is permanent drain instead of temporary damage.
Price: The cost of one dose (One vial) of the poison. It is not possible to use or apply poison in any quantity smaller than one dose. The purchase and possession of poison is always illegal, and even in big cities it can only be obtained from specialized, less than reputable sources.
Lidda thought that the captain of the guard was acting a little strangely but she put it down to stress. When she turned away, however, she heard a strange squishing sound behind her. She spun around to see that the man had turned into a 10-foot-tall blue-skinned monster, complete with a greatsword - an ogre mage.
Magic can cause creatures and characters to change their shapes - sometimes against their will, but usually to gain an advantage. Polymorphed creatures retain their own minds but have new physical forms.
- The polymorph other spell defines the general polymorph effect.
- Creatures that polymorph themselves with an ability (not a spell) do not suffer disorientation (as described in polymorph other).
- Since creatures do not change types, a slaying or bane weapon designed to kill or harm creatures of a specific type affects those creatures even if they are polymorphed. Likewise, a creature polymorphed into the form of a creature of a different type is not subject to slaying and bane effects directed at that type of creature.
- A ranger's favored enemy bonus is based on knowing what the foe is, so if a creature that is a ranger's favored enemy polymorphs into another form, the ranger is denied his bonus.
- A dwarf's bonus for fighting giants is based on shape and size, so he does not gain a bonus against a giant polymorphed into something else, but does gain the bonus against any creature polymorphed into a giant.
The mind flayer turns its alien visage toward the adventurers, and the air seems to ripple as a wave of psychic force cascades toward them. Mialee resists the attack, but her friends are stunned. She casts hold monster on the thing, and it becomes rigid. Nevertheless, she feels the creature's mind enter her own as it tries to win her allegiance by psychic force.
Telepathy mental combat and psychic powers-psionics is a catchall word that describes special mental abilities possessed by various creatures. These are spell-like abilities that a creature generates from the power of its mind alone - no other outside magical force or ritual is needed. The most well known of the psionic creatures is the dreaded mind flayer, which blasts its prey's mind and then devours the brain of the prey while it lies stunned. Each creature's description in the Monster Manual contains details on its psionic abilities (if it has any).
Psionic attacks almost always allow Will saving throws to resist them. However, not all psionic attacks are mental attacks. Some psionic abilities allow the psionic creature to reshape its own body, heal its wounds, or teleport great distances. Some psionic creatures can see into the future, the past, and the present (in far-off locales) as well as read the minds of others.
Variant: Nonmagical Psionics
Psionics aren't magical at all, but a different sort of extraordinary power altogether. Antimagic fields have no power over psionics (and likewise, most psionic abilities cannot interfere with magic). A creature's special immunities or resistances to magic do not protect it from psionic abilities.
The danger of this variant is that, without the traditional checks that exist for magic, psionic abilities quickly threaten to become overwhelmingly powerful. Since conventional magical defenses don't work, psionic defenses need to be added to the treasure tables and spells.
A thin, green beam leaps from one of the beholder's eyes and streaks across the chamber at Mialee. She twists to avoid it (as she would move to avoid an arrow or a sword), but the beam flies true and connects. Green energy encompasses her in a flash, trying to disintegrate her. Her face contorts as she struggles to resist the spell. In an instant, the green energy is gone, and Mialee is safe. The beholder then projects a second eye beam at her.
All ray attacks, whether from a ray of enfeeblement spell or a beholder's eye ray, require the attacker to make a successful ranged touch attack against the target. Rays have varying ranges, which are simple maximums. A ray's attack roll never suffers a range penalty. Even if a ray hits, it usually allows the target to make a saving throw (Fortitude or Will). Rays never require a Reflex saving throw, but if a character's Dexterity bonus to AC is high, it might be hard to hit her with the ray in the first place.
The trolls' wounds kept healing up as Tordek fought them, until Mialee dropped a fireball on all of them (and hoped that Tordek could take the heat).
Creatures with this extraordinary ability recover from wounds quickly and can even regrow or reattach severed body parts.
- Damage dealt to the creature is treated as subdual damage, and the creature automatically cures itself of subdual damage at a fixed rare (for example, 3 points per round for a troll).
- Certain attack forms, typically fire and acid, deal damage to the creature normally; that sort of damage doesn't convert to subdual damage and so doesn't go away. The creature's description includes the details.
- These creatures can regrow lost portions of their bodies and can reattach severed limbs or body parts. Severed parts die if they are not reattached.
- Regeneration does not restore hit points lost from starvation, thirst, or suffocation.
- Attack forms that don't deal hit point damage (for example, disintegration and most poisons) ignore regeneration.
- An attack that can cause instant death, such as a coup de grace, massive damage, or an assassin's death attack, only threatens the creature with death if it is delivered by weapons that deal it normal damage.
Resistance To Energy
Mialee's fireball singed the janni, but mostly the spell just made it angrier.
A creature with resistance to energy has the ability (usually extraordinary) to ignore some damage of a certain type (such as cold, electricity, or fire) each round, but it does not have total immunity
- Each ability is defined by what energy type it resists and how many points of damage are resisted. For example, a janni has fire resistance 30. A janni can ignore the first 30 points of fire damage it takes each round. It doesn't matter whether the damage has a mundane or magical source.
- The creature still makes saving throws normally. A janni, for example, makes a Reflex save against a 5d6 fireball even though the fireball can't hurt it; if the janni succeeds at the save and takes half damage, only that amount of damage counts toward its resistance that round.
- Count the creature's resistance from the start of its turn to the start of its turn the next round. Its resistance "resets" on its turn.
- When resistance completely negates the damage from an energy attack, the attack does not disrupt a spell.
- This resistance does not stack with the resistance that a spell, such as endure elements, might provide.
This extraordinary ability lets a creature detect approaching enemies, sniff out hidden foes, and track by sense of smell.
- The creature can detect opponents by sense of smell, generally within 30 feet. If the opponent is upwind, the range is 60 feet. If it is downwind, the range is 15 feet. Strong scents, such as smoke or rotting garbage, can be detected at twice the ranges noted above. Overpowering scents, such as skunk musk or troglodyte stench, can be detected at three times these ranges.
- The creature detects another creature's presence but not its specific location. Noting the direction of the scent is a standard action. If it moves within 5 feet of the scent's source, the creature can pinpoint that source.
- The creature with the Track feat and the scent ability can follow tracks by smell, making a Wisdom (or Survival) check to find or follow a track. The typical DC for a fresh trail is 10. The DC increases or decreases depending on how strong the quarry's odor is, the number of creatures, and the age of the trail. For each hour that the trail is cold, the DC increases by 2. The ability otherwise follows the rules for the Track feat. Creatures tracking by scent ignore the effects of surface conditions and poor visibility.
- Creatures with the scent ability can identify familiar odors just as humans do familiar sights.
- Water, particularly running water, ruins a trail for air-breathing creatures. Water-breathing creatures such as sharks, however, have the scent ability and can use it in the water easily.
- False, powerful odors (such as red herring) can easily mask other scents. The presence of such an odor completely spoils the ability to properly detect or identify creatures, and the base Survival DC to track becomes 20 rather than 10.
Variant Rule: Characters with Scent
Half-arcs and gnomes, as well as many types of NPC humanoids such as orcs and gnolls, can take Scent as a feat. The feat's prerequisite is Wisdom 11+. Scent is more powerful than many feats, however, and this option may make these characters and creatures too good.
Spell Resistance (Su)
Mialee's fireball engulfs the ogre mage. It flinches reflexively but it doesn't try to avoid the blast. When the flames dissipate, the ogre mage is untouched.
Spell resistance is the extraordinary ability to avoid being affected by spells. (Some spells also grant spell resistance.)
- To affect a creature that has spell resistance, a spellcaster must make a caster level check (1d20 + caster level) at least equal to the creature's spell resistance rating. (The defender's spell resistance rating is like a magical AC.) If the caster fails the check, the spell doesn't affect the creature. The possessor does not have to do anything special to use spell resistance. The creature need not even be aware of the threat for its spell resistance to operate.
- Only spells and spell-like abilities are subject to spell resistance. Extraordinary and supernatural abilities (including enhancement bonuses on magic weapons) are not. For example, the roar effect from a rod of lordly might is subject to spell resistance because it is a spell-like effect. The rod's combat bonuses (such as the +2 bonus from the rod's mace form) are not. A creature can have some abilities that are subject to spell resistance and some that are not. For example, an androsphinx's divine spells are subject to spell resistance, but its roar is not. (The roar is a supernatural ability.) A cleric's spells are subject to spell resistance, but his use of positive or negative energy is not. Even some spells ignore spell resistance; see When Spell Resistance Applies, below.
- A creature can voluntarily lower its spell resistance. Doing so is a standard action that does not provoke an attack of opportunity. Once a creature lowers its resistance, it remains down until tho creature's next turn. At the beginning of the creature's next turn, the creature's spell resistance automatically returns unless the creature intentionally keeps it down (also a standard action that does not provoke an attack of opportunity).
- A creature's spell resistance never interferes with its own spells, items, or abilities.
- A creature with spell resistance cannot impart this power to others by touching them or standing in their midst. Only the rarest of creatures and a few magic items have the ability to bestow spell resistance upon another.
- Spell resistance does not stack. It overlaps. If a cleric wearing +1 chainmail that grants him SR 15 casts holy aura, which grants SR 25 against evil spells and spells cast by evil creatures, he has SR 25 against the aforementioned spells and SR 15 against other spells and spell-like abilities.
When Spell Resistance Applies
Each spell described in the Player's Handbook includes an entry that indicates whether spell resistance applies to the spell. In general, whether spell resistance applies depends on what the spell does:
- Targeted Spells: Spell resistance applies if rho spell is targeted at the creature. Some individually targeted spells, such as magic missile when cast by a 3rd-level caster, can be directed at several creatures simultaneously. In such cases, a creature's spell resistance applies only to the portion of the spell actually targeted at that creature. If several different resistant creatures are subjected to such a spell, each checks its spell resistance separately.
- Area Spells: Spell resistance applies if the resistant creature is within the spell's area. It protects the resistant creature without affecting the spell itself.
- Effect Spells: Most effect spells summon or create something and are not subject to spell resistance. For instance, summon monster I summons a monster that can attack a creature with spell resistance normally. Sometimes, however, spell resistance applies to effect spells, usually to effect spells that affect a creature more or less directly such as web.
Spell resistance can protect a creature from a spell that's already been cast Check spell resistance when the creature is first affected by the spell. For example, if an ogre mage flies within 10 feet of a wall of fire, the caster must make a caster level check against the ogre mage's SR of 18. If the caster fails, the wall does not damage the ogre mage.
Check spell resistance only once for any particular casting of a spell or use of a spell-like ability. If spell resistance fails the first rime, it fails each time the creature encounters that same casting of the spell. Likewise, if the spell resistance succeeds the first time, it always succeeds. For example, a succubus encounters Jozan's blade barrier spell. If the cleric makes a successful roll to overcome the spell resistance of the succubus, the creature rakes damage from the spell. If the succubus survives and enters that particular blade barrier a second time, the creature will be damaged again. No second roll is needed. If the creature has voluntarily lowered its spell resistance and is then subjected to a spell, the creature still has a single chance to resist that spell later, when its spell resistance is up.
Spell resistance has no effect unless the energy created or released by the spell actually goes to work on the resistant creature's mind or body If the spell acts on anything else (the air, the ground, the room's light), and the creature is affected as a consequence, no roll is required. Creatures can be harmed by a spell without being directly affected. For example, a daylight spell harms a drow elf because draw are sensitive to light. Daylight, however, usually is cast on the area containing the drow, making it bright, not on the drow itself, so the effect is indirect. Spell resistance would only apply if someone tried to cast daylight on an object the drow was holding.
Spell resistance does not apply if an effect fools the creature's senses or reveals something about the creature, such as minor illusion or detect thoughts does.
Magic actually has to be working for spell resistance to apply. Spells that have instantaneous durations but lasting results aren't subject to spell resistance unless rho resistant creature is exposed to the spell the instant it is cast. For example, a creature with spell resistance can't undo a wall of stone that has already been cast.
When in doubt about whether a spell's effect is direct or indirect, consider the spell's school:
Abjuration: The target creature must be harmed, changed, or restricted in some manner for spell resistance to apply. Perception changes, such as nondetection, aren't subject to spell resistance. Abjurations that block or negate attacks are not subject to an attacker's spell resistance - it is the protected creature that is affected by the spell (becoming immune or resistant to the attack).
Conjuration: Those spells are usually not subject to spell resistance unless rho spell conjures some form of energy, such as Melf's acid arrow or power word, stun. Spells that summon creatures or produce effects that function like creatures are not subject to spell resistance.
Divination: These spells do not affect creatures directly and are not subject to spell resistance, even though what they reveal about a creature might be very damaging.
Enchantment: Since enchantment spells affect creatures minds, they are typically subject to spell resistance.
Evocation: If an evocation spell deals damage to the creature, it has a direct effect. If the spell damages something else, it has an indirect effect. For example, a lightning bolt cast at a resistant creature is subject to spell resistance (which would protect only the creature but would not affect the spell itself). If the lightning bolt is cast at a chamber's coiling, bringing down a rain of debris, it is not subject to spell resistance.
Illusion: These spells are almost never subject to spell resistance. Illusions that inflict a direct attack, such as phantasmal killer or shadow evocation, are exceptions.
Necromancy: Most of those spells alter the target creature's life force and are subject to spell resistance. Unusual necromancy spells, such as spectral hand, don't affect other creatures directly and are not subject to spell resistance.
Transmutation: These spells are subject to spell resistance if they transform rho target creature. Transmutation spells are not subject to spell resistance if they are targeted on a point in space instead of on a creature. Transmute rock to mud and entangle change a creature's surroundings, not the creature itself, and are not subject to spell resistance. Some transmutations make objects harmful (or more harmful), such as magic stone. Even these spells are not generally subject to spell resistance because they affect rho objects, not the creatures against which rho objects are used. Spell resistance works against magic stone only if the creature with spell resistance is holding the stones when the cleric casts magic stone on them.
Successful Spell Resistance
Spell resistance prevents a spell or a spell-like ability from affecting or harming the resistant creature, but it never removes a magical effect from another creature or negates a spell's effect on another creature. Spell resistance prevents a spell from disrupting another spell.
Against an ongoing spell that has already been cast, a failed check against spell resistance allows the resistant creature to ignore any effect the spell might have. The magic continues to affect others normally.
The red-hot thoqqua lunges unexpectedly from hiding, closing in unerringly on Tordek even though it couldn't see him before it attacked.
A creature with tremorsense locates other creatures by sensing vibrations in the ground.
- The creature automatically senses the location of anything that is in contact with rho ground and within range (such as 60 feet for the thoqqua).
- If no straight path exists through the ground from the creature to those that it's sensing, then the range defines the maximum distance of the shortest indirect path. It must itself be in contact with the ground, and the creatures must be moving.
- As long as the other creatures are taking physical actions, including casting spells with somatic components, they're considered moving; they don't have to move from place to place for a creature with tremorsense to detect them.
The cleric brandishes his holy symbol and commands a vampire to be gone, but the creature merely sneers and closes in for the kill.
By virtue of superior strength of will or just plain unholy power, some creatures (usually undead) are less easily affected by clerics or paladins.
Turn resistance is an extraordinary ability.
- When resolving a turn, rebuke, command, or bolster attempt, added the listed bonus to the creature's Hit Dice total. For example, a shadow has +2 turn resistance and 3 HD. Attempts to turn, rebuke, command, or bolster treated the shadow as though it had 5 HD, though it is a 3 HD creature for any other purpose.