Excerpts 04/08/2005

Lords of Madness Excerpt
By Bruce R. Cordell, Jennifer Clarke-Wilkes, JD Wiker

Aberrations and more await you within the pages of Lords of Madness! With this D&D accessory, you can learn more about aboleths, beholders, mind flayers, neogi, grell, Tsochari, and more. Additionally, PCs who wish to hunt these creatures can add new feats, spells, magic items, and grafts to their list of options. (Plenty of choices abound, so be prepared to start making even tougher decisions on what your character should do or get next!) Our sneak peek of this book includes a look at chuuls, beholder magic, mind flayer goals, neogi defilers, grell anatomy, Tsochari, half-farspawn, some sample feats, and a couple of prestige classes.

Neogi Defiler

Neogi raid

Certain neogi develop a more virulent poison and learn to spit this poison as a ranged attack. These neogi gain levels as rogues and are called neogi defilers. Visually, nothing distinguishes these neogi from their ordinary kin. Within neogi society, defilers are valued for their capability, but they are not held in the high regard that is reserved for sorcerers and slavemasters. In fact, they are rather mistrusted. Along with their more potent poison and spitting ability, they have strong chaotic tendencies. This unpredictability makes defilers seem unbalanced to other neogi and frightens them.

The sample neogi defiler shown below has applied the Ability Focus feat to its poison, which increases its poison save DC from 14 (normal for a neogi with its Constitution score) to 16.

Neogi Defiler: Neogi rogue 1; CR 4; Small aberration; HD 5d8+5 plus 1d6+1; hp 31; Init +8; Spd 30 ft., climb 20 ft.; AC 20, touch 15, flat-footed 16; Base Atk +3; Grp -1; Atk +8 melee (1d4 plus poison, bite), or +8 ranged touch (0, spit poison), or +9 ranged (1d6+1/19-20, +1 light crossbow); Full Atk +8 melee (1d4 plus poison, bite) and +3/+3 melee (1d3, 2 claws), or +8 ranged touch (0, spit poison), or +9 ranged (1d6+1/19-20, +1 light crossbow); SA enslave, poison, sneak attack +1d6; SQ darkvision 60 ft., neogi traits, trapfinding; AL CE; SV Fort +2, Ref +7, Will +7; Str 10, Dex 19, Con 13, Int 15, Wis 16, Cha 14.

Skills and Feats: Appraise +6, Balance +8, Climb +12, Disable Device +8, Hide +12, Intimidate +6, Jump +8, Move Silently +10, Search +6, Spot +7, Tumble +8; Ability Focus (poison), Improved Initiative, Spit Poison*, Weapon Finesse[B].

* New feat described in sidebar.

Languages: Common, Undercommon, Terran, Abyssal.

Enslave (Su): Three times a day, a neogi defiler can try to enslave any one living creature within 30 feet. This ability functions similarly to a dominate monster spell (caster level 16th; Will DC 14). For more details, see the enslave ability description on page 91.

Poison (Ex): Injury, Fortitude DC 16 (14 when spit), initial damage 1d4 Dex, secondary damage 1d4 Wis.

Sneak Attack (Ex): A neogi defiler deals an extra 1d6 points of damage on any successful attack against flat-footed or flanked targets, or against a target that has been denied its Dexterity bonus for any reason. This damage also applies to ranged attacks against targets up to 30 feet away. Creatures with concealment, creatures without discernible anatomies, and creatures immune to extra damage from critical hits are all immune to sneak attacks. The defiler can choose to deliver nonlethal damage with its sneak attack, but only when using a weapon designed for that purpose, such as a sap (blackjack).

Trapfinding (Ex): A neogi defiler can find, disarm, or bypass traps with a DC of 20 or higher. It can use the Search skill to find, and the Disable Device skill to disarm, magic traps (DC 25 + the level of the spell used to create it). If its Disable Device result exceeds the trap's DC by 10 or more, the defiler discovers how to bypass the trap without triggering or disarming it.

Possessions: bracers of armor +2, +1 light crossbow with 20 bolts, potion of cure moderate wounds.

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