Bone-Rattling Skeleton Variants  

Posted by Michael Donaldson in , ,

To some, raising the skeletal remains of the dead is nothing but business. They are but minions, serving their masters thoughtlessly and generically, and the necromancer thinks nothing of these servants. To others, however, these skeletons are a grisly canvass - a blank slate - for a morbid art little have the dark knowledge to take part in. The following skeleton variants can be raised by players by sacrificing a spell slot or prepared spell detailed in the variant along with a casting of Animate Dead. (For example, the "Dry Bones" variant requires a spell with the fire descriptor. A wizard casts Animated Dead and sacrifices a prepared scorching ray, and creates a Dry Bones skeleton that had Fire Resistance 10 and deals 2 extra fire damage with natural attacks.) (continued after the jump)

Dry Bones (Fire): These skeletons seem as if they have been baked by the sun, and their bones are dusty and tanned by constant exposure. The air around them is constantly dry and smells vaguely of burnt flesh. Dry Bones can be created by spells with the Fire descriptor, and gain Fire Resistance equal to five times the spell level, and deal an extra point of fire damage with their natural attacks per spell level.

Iron Cage (Earth): This type of skeleton seems sturdier than a jail cell, with their bones taking on a slightly metallic sheen. These skeletons tend to have overgrown ribcages, and often times necromancers will place valuables within it for safekeeping. Iron Cages can be created by spells with the Earth descriptor, and their DR is increased by 1 per spell level and becomes DR/adamantine instead of DR/bludgeoning.

Tweak Creakers (Electricity): These skeletons seem unable to stop moving, their normal slow gait replaced with an almost hyperactive restlessness. Popping and crackling intermittently, Tweak Creakers can be created by spells with the Electricity descriptor, and deal 1 point of electricity damage per spell level to anyone who strikes them with a natural or melee weapon. Additionally, for every two spell levels these skeletons gain a +5 inherent bonus to their speed.

Nightmare Rattler (Fear): These skeletons are known for their pitch-black bones and surprisingly noiseless shuffle, coupled with a fear-inducing rattle right before they strike. Nightmare Rattlers are created by spells that cause a fear effect, and give the skeleton a +2 bonus to stealth checks per spell level. In addition, once a day the Nightmare Rattler can suddenly rattle it's otherwise quiet bones ominously (often right before combat), causing any creature within 60' that can hear the rattling to make a save (DC equal to the sacrificed spell's DC) or be shaken.

Turnmarrow (Healing): This type of skeleton is the betrayer of its kind, a unique undead infused with the positive energies that would otherwise destroy those of it's kind. Using the bone itself to protect the dark energies that animate it, necromancers infuse positive energy into the bone marrow of these skeletons and delight in using them to destroy other skeletons or heal their allies. Turnmarrow skeletons are created by spells of the Conjuration (Healing) type, and deal an extra 1 point of positive energy damage per spell level to creatures that take damage from positive energy. When destroyed, these skeletons explode in a 15' burst of healing light, dealing 1d8 per two spell levels of positive energy damage and healing normal creatures. (The save for this damage/healing is equal to the spell that was used to create it.)

This entry was posted on March 21, 2012 at Wednesday, March 21, 2012 and is filed under , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


Perfect for those Tristram Inspired minions!

January 22, 2016 at 4:28 AM

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