Encounters: Cormanthor - The Starwood

Banshee (CR 17)

Medium Undead (Incorporeal)
Alignment: Usually neutral evil
Initiative: +7 (Dex); Senses: darkvision (60-foot range), Listen +33, and Spot +33
Languages: A banshee speaks the languages that it knew in life.

AC: 16 (+3 Dex, +3 deflection), touch 16, flat-footed 13
Hit Dice: 26d12 (169 hp)
Fort +8, Ref +11, Will +19

Speed: Fly 80 ft. (good)
Space: 5 ft./5 ft.
Base Attack +13; Grapple -
Attack: Incorporeal touch +16 melee
Full Attack: Incorporeal touch +16 melee
Damage: incorporeal touch 1d8/19-20 plus 1d4 Charisma drain
Special Attacks: Charisma drain, horrific appearance, wail

Abilities: Str -, Dex 17, Con -, Int 16, Wis 15, Cha 17
Special Qualities: Detect living, incorporeal subtype, SR 28, stunt plants, undead traits
Feats: Alertness; Blind-fight; Combat Expertise,Combat Reflexes; Dodge; Improved Critical (incorporeal touch); Improved Initiative; Iron Will; Mobility; Spring Attack
Skills: Balance +5, Hide +32, Jump +2, Knowledge (nature) +32, Knowledge (religion) +32, Listen +33, Search +32, Spot +33, and Tumble +32
Advancement: 27-52 HD (Medium-size)

Climate/Terrain: Any land and underground
Organization: Solitary, pair, or brood (3-4)
Treasure: Double standard

Source: Monster Manual II

Charisma Drain (Su): An individual struck by a banshee must make a Fortitude save (DC 26) or permanently lose 1d4 points of Charisma (or 2d4 points on a critical hit). The banshee heals 5 points of damage (10 on a critical hit) whenever it drains Charisma, gaining any excess as temporary hit points.

Horrific Appearance (Su): Any living creature within 60 feet that views a banshee must make a successful Fortitude save (DC 26) or permanently lose 1d4 points of Strength, 1d4 points of Dexterity, and 1d4 points of Constitution. A creature that successfully saves against this effect cannot be affected by the same banshee's horrific appearance for 24 hours.

Wail (Su): During the night, a banshee can loose a deadly wail. This attack can slay up to eighteen living creatures within a 30-foot spread centered on the banshee, or within a 60-foot cone extending from the banshee, at the creature's option. A successful Fortitude save (DC 26) negates the effect. Once a banshee wails, it must wait 1d4 rounds before it can do so again, and it can wail no more than three times per day.

Detect Living (Sp): This ability functions like the commune with nature spell, except that it detects only living creatures and the range is one-half mile. The banshee can use detect living up to three times per day.

Stunt Plants (Su): Once per day, a banshee can stunt all normal plants within a one-half mile radius. This ability otherwise functions like the stunt version of a diminish plants spell (caster level 18th).

Banshees hate all living things with an unholy fury, and they readily attack anyone foolish enough to trespasses within their territories. A banshee typically uses its horrific appearance to drive off less powerful foes, then employs its howling wail one or more times to damage any who remain. Finally, it finishes off the intruders with its Charisma drain in melee. If overmatched, the creature flees into the earth, usually to grave-like lair that it maintains beneath the surface.

A banshee is the spirit of a strong-willed, selfish individual of a humanoid race. Because of its rage at the loss of its own life, it delights in bringing death to any living creature it encounters.

This creature appears as a translucent image of the form it held in life. With the passage of time, the banshee's image tends to become blurred and indistinct, though the creature remains recognizable as a humanoid.

The very presence of a banshee creates a pall over the landscape. Its ability to stunt the growth of plants combined with its deadly wail eventually reduces the surrounding territory to blasted heath and wasteland. Largely for this reason, many cultures consider a sudden blight upon the land to be an omen of death.

Faerûnian Random Encounters by Region and Locale