Merciless Monsters 4: Telecanter’s Three Spider Terrors

Spider Bro Cares About YouAs the title notes, full credit for the creative parts of this post has to go to Telecanter, of Telecanter’s Receding Rules. To be frank, I’ve contributed nothing of value. I’m just taking care of the legwork that any halfway competent Pathfinder GM could handle on their own. If you don’t read TRR, then you’ve made some fundamental mistakes in your choice of which blogs deserve your attention. But hey, I won’t complain about the traffic.

Recently, Telecanter put up a post entitled “Three Spider Terrors,” where he created three types of deadly spiders which were meant to evoke the kind of terror giant spiders once instilled in us, before we became completely desensitized to fantasy creatures. All three connected with me, and I decided I would really like to use them in Pathfinder. And that’s exactly what I’ve done below: taken Telecanter’s spiders, and given them Pathfinder stats. Telecanter’s original descriptions of the spiders are also reproduced below as blockquotes, and all of this is done under Telecanter’s Creative Common’s License. The Pathfinder stats are based off of the Giant Spider and Spider Swarm stats on page 258 of the Pathfinder Bestiary.

Pale Spider

Telecanter's Pale Spider depicted by a white Flower SpiderA skittering noise hovers around the edge of the torch’s flickering light.
Pale Spiders live in the dark, and they feed on those who don’t belong there. They are attracted to sources of light as a means of procuring food, but prefer to bide their time, waiting just outside the outside edge of the light source’s radius. A quick party might see, at most, a white leg just as it disappears back into the darkness. Pale spiders like to wait until one of their intended victims is rendered incapacitated before they venture into the light to feed on the creature’s soul using their Soul Drain attack.


Pale Spider; CR 1; [Vermin] [Underground / Dungeon] [Damp & Dark Climate] [Any Activity Cycle]


XP: 400
N Tiny Vermin (Cat sized)
Init +3; Senses darkvision 60ft, tremorsense 60 ft.,Perception +4


DEFENSE


AC 15, touch 14, flat-footed 12 [10 + Dex(3) + Size(2)]
HP 5 (1d8 + 0)
Fort +2 Ref +4 Will +1;
Immunities mind-affecting effects


OFFENSE


Speed 30 ft., Climb 30ft.
Melee bite +5 (1d6 – 2 plus Soul Drain)


STATISTICS


Str 6 Dex 17 Con 12 Int Wis 10 Cha 2
Base Attack +2; CMB -2; CMD 11 (15 vs. trip)
Skills Climb (+16), Perception +4 (+8 in webs), Stealth +11 (+27 in webs)
Feats Weapon Finesse (Bite Attack)


ECOLOGY


Environment Any
Organization Hunting Party (6-12), or Swarm (13-24)
Activity Cycle Any
Treasure Incidental


SPECIAL ABILITIES


Soul Drain(Ex) Bite–Injury; save Fort DC 14; frequency 1; effect 1d6 Charisma damage; Cha damage is maximized (6) on a character who is at -1 HP or lower. Any creature whose Charisma is reduced to 0 by this ability cannot be healed or resurrected.


TELECANTER’S ORIGINAL TEXT


These cat-sized spiders follow just at the edge of light, wait for a death, then swarm in.   Never fewer than six, they prod and clamber over a body in order to steal a soul.  They prove to be vicious fighters if an attempt is made to keep them from a body.  Corpses pale spiders have fed on can not be revived.

Grey Mugger

A brief glimpse of fleeing grey legs moves quickly out of sight.
A young Grey Mugger is most often just looking for a safe place to rest. Most end up under a rock, or in a fallen log. However, when travelers are not careful with their discarded boots or open bags, these can seem like a perfect place to rest for a Grey Mugger. And when the creature’s rest is interrupted, they strike with surprising lethality, and use their remarkable speed to escape.


Grey Mugger; CR 1; [Vermin] [Dry, Warm Places] [Temperate Climate] [Any Activity Cycle]


XP: 400
N Diminutive Vermin
Init +3; Senses darkvision 60ft, tremorsense 60 ft.,Perception +4


DEFENSE


AC 17, touch 17, flat-footed 14 [10 + Dex(3) + Size(4)]
HP 2 (1d8 + 0)
Fort +2 Ref +4 Will +1;
Immunities mind-affecting effects


OFFENSE


Speed 50 ft., Climb 50ft.
Melee Touch Attack bite +2 (1 damage, plus Life Link)


STATISTICS


Str 6 Dex 17 Con 12 IntWis 10 Cha 2
Base Attack +2; CMB -4; CMD 9 (11 vs. trip)
Skills Climb (+16), Perception +4 (+8 in webs), Stealth +11 (+27 in webs)
Feats Weapon Finesse (Bite Attack)


ECOLOGY


Environment Any
Organization Solitary, pair, or colony (3-8)
Activity Cycle Any
Treasure Incidental


SPECIAL ABILITIES


Life Link(Su) Bite–Injury; save Fort DC 22; effect the target of the life link receives no benefit from any form of healing, regardless of its source. Instead, all magical, divine, natural, and mundane healing goes to the Grey Mugger. Every 8 hit points gives the spider an additional HD, increasing its maximum HP. Every 3 HD gained, the Grey Mugger grows one size category, and with each size category the damage dealt by the creature’s bite attack increases (1d4, 1d6, 1d8, 1d10, 2d6, and so on). In order for the Life Link to be broken, the Grey Mugger must be hunted down and killed. Until then, the victim can receive no healing whatsoever. A single Grey Mugger may establish a Life Link with any number of victims. In some rare cases, Grey Muggers have been known to absorb enough energy to gain Intelligence, sending out “drone” Grey Muggers, and devouring them to gain their Life Links.


TELECANTER’S ORIGINAL TEXT


A tiny reclusive spider that often catches explorers unaware as they probe old bags and chests.  The bite of the grey mugger is but a sting (1 hit point) but thereafter the healing of the victim with serve to feed the spider (each hit point the victim heals, whether by magic, divine aid, or naturally, will go to the spider– every 8 hit points will grow the spider and give it an additional hit die making it more fierce).  The spider must be found and slain to sever the link.

Jerky Man

Telecanter's Jerky ManWhat appears to be a human man moves with jerky, sudden movements, as though he is controlled by an inexperienced puppeteer.
They were once human, or at least, their bodies once contained a human. Their internal organs have been replaced by a swarm of deadly spiders, and their nervous system and musculature has been replaced with an elaborate tangle of webs. The once-human creatures stagger about in a poor imitation of a human walk. They attempt to mime the desire for physical contact–and embrace or a kiss…


Jerky Man; CR 5; [Vermin] [Caves] [Temperate Climate] [Any Activity Cycle]


XP: 2,400
N Medium Vermin
Init -1; Senses darkvision 60ft.,Perception +0


DEFENSE


AC 11, touch 10, flat-footed 11 [10 + Natural(1)]
HP 14 (3d8 + 0)
Fort +0 Ref +0 Will +3;
Immunities mind-affecting effects


OFFENSE


Speed 20 ft.
Melee slam + 2 (1d6 plus infect)


STATISTICS


Str 12 Dex 10 Con 10 Int Wis 10 Cha 2
Base Attack +1; CMB +2; CMD 12


ECOLOGY


Environment Near Caves
Organization Solitary
Activity Cycle Any
Treasure Incidental


SPECIAL ABILITIES


Infect(Ex) Any touch from a Jerky Man requires a DC: 14 fortitude save. Failure indicates that the target has become infected by the spiders which control the Jerky man from within. The spiders immediately begin laying eggs and spreading themselves throughout the body of the host, dealing Con damage each day equal to the number of days which the host has been infected. (On the first day 1 Con damage is dealt, on the second day 2 Con damage is dealt, and so on) This ability damage cannot be healed unless the infection is cured. If the host reaches 0 Constitution, then the host dies, and their body becomes a new Jerky Man.
Cure It is exceedingly difficult to cure the Jerky Man Infection. Most who know its effects resort to self-amputation of the affected limb without hesitation. The clerical spell “Heal” can be used to cure the infection as well, if a cleric of sufficient level can be found.

Last Ditch Leap(Ex) Upon its destruction, the skin of a Jerky Man will rip open to reveal cobwebs roiling with spiders. The round following the creature’s destruction, the spiders will leap free from the ruined corpse in every direction, and quickly skitter towards the nearest viable host. Anyone standing within 5ft of the creature’s body must make a fortitude save as though they have been touched. Those with the evasion ability are entitled to a reflex save (DC: 16) to avoid the spiders altogether. The spiders will move about the battlefield as a Spider Swarm (Pathfinder Bestiary Pg. 258) for 3 rounds or until destroyed. After three rounds, spiders without a host die. Any who come in contact with the swarm during this juncture must make a fortitude save against infection.


TELECANTER’S ORIGINAL TEXT


They are said to come staggering out of caves or old mines and motion for passersby to come close.  An embrace and a kiss is all they wish.  But they are not men.  A kiss from a jerky man, or just a touch, will infect the victim and the flesh near the bite will begin turning to tiny spiders (an inch per day) unless something is done.

If a jerky man is killed in combat its thin skin will rip open to reveal cobwebs roiling with spiders.  The round after one dies, the person that killed them will be covered with spiders and begin taking one point of damage per round.  Upon death the victim will become a jerky man themselves.  (DMs can adjudicate how successful various means of removing the spiders are).

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