Sunday, July 14, 2013

Beastmen of Thule!

Hi all!

We're coming up on the halfway point of our Primeval Thule Campaign Setting Kickstarter, so as you can imagine, I have a lot of Thule on the brain these days. By the way, in case you're curious, it turns out it's supposed to be pronounced something like TOO-lay. Just about everybody I know just calls the place THOOL, and that sounds OK to me, so I'm not going to correct 'em!

If you've backed the Kickstarter already, then thanks! We're very excited to bring you this world and we think it's going to be a ton of fun. Please, please, please spread the word -- post our link on your social media, tell your friends, let folks know what we're doing! Fighting the awareness battle is harder than I thought it was going to be.

If you haven't backed the Kickstarter, then I invite you to go take a look at Rich's Secret Project of the last few months. Here's a link:

Anyway, here's a little bonus for you Pathfinder/3rd Edition fans out there: The beastman monster stats. I used these in my PaizoCon playtest/demo of the game. We don't have 4e or 13th Age versions of this stat block available yet, but this should be a nice taste of one of the more prevalent monsters you might encounter in the jungles of Thule.

Nasty, Brutish, and Hairy: Beastmen of Thule

Many dangerous beasts roam the forests and jungle of primeval Thule, but none are more dangerous than the sort that walk on two legs and possess the wickedness and cunning of a human—or nearly human—mind. Whether Thule’s beastmen are a degenerate branch of humanity slowly returning to the unthinking apes of their distant ancestry or a separate evolution of humankind altogether, only the wisest of sages could say. But anyone who runs across these violent and greedy creatures quickly discovers that they are the most monstrous and savage of Thule’s barbaric jungle tribes. The warriors of Lomar say that it would be better to kill oneself rather than to fall into the clutches of the beastmen alive—and they’re right.

Tall, hairy, and thickly built, this warrior appears to be more ape than human, and wears nothing but crude animal skins—but humanlike cunning glints in his dark eyes.
Beastman                         CR 1
XP 400
CE Medium humanoid (human)
Init +1; Senses scent; Perception +2
AC 13, touch 11, flat-footed 12 (+1 Dex, +2 shield)
hp 16 (2d8 + 7)
Fort +5, Ref +1, Will +0
Speed 30 ft.
Melee stone morningstar +4 (1d8+3) or slam +4 (1d4+3)
Ranged bolas +2 (1d4+3 and trip or entangle)
Special Attacks fury, bolas expertise
Str 16, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 7, Wis 10, Cha 7
Base Atk +1; CMB +4; CMD 15
Feats Toughness
Skills Climb +1+3+3, Perception +0+2, Stealth +1+1+3; Racial Modifiers +2 Perception
Language Common
Environment temperate forest
Organization band (2–4), hunting party (2–5 beastmen and 1–2 gray wolves), raiding party (7–16 beastmen, 2–4 dire wolves, and a subchief of 2nd–4th level), or tribe (20–120 adults plus 50% noncombatant children, 11–30 gray wolves, 2–12 dire wolves, one subchief of 2nd level per 10 adults, 1–2 warchiefs of 3rd to 5th level, and 1 chief of 5th–8th level.)
Treasure NPC gear (large wooden shield, morningstar, 2 javelins)

Fury (Ex) On the first round of an encounter, a beastman gains a +2 bonus to melee attack and damage rolls.
Bolas Expertise (Ex) Beastmen are experts with bolas and can choose whether to deal lethal or nonlethal damage with bolas attacks. Instead of making a ranged trip attack with bolas, a beastman can choose to entangle the target on a hit. An entangled target can escape with a DC 15 Escape Artist check (a full-round action), burst the bolas with a DC 25 Strength check, or attack the bolas cords with a type S weapon (5 hit points).

Beastmen are a primitive branch of humankind. Brutal, cruel, short-tempered, and contemptuous of anyone weaker than themselves, they are fierce warriors and raiders who pose a great threat to anyone traveling abroad in the wild lands of Thule. Beastmen are especially notorious for seizing captives and dragging them back to their lairs to be put to work as drudges, sacrificed to their bloodthirsty gods, or simply tortured to death in horrible ways for their amusement.

Beastmen hate humans (and most other intelligent races for that matter). They see all other peoples as enemies, and do not hesitate to kill any they cannot carry off into captivity. They have been known to engage in cannibalism, although this is considered a sacred ritual among their kind and requires the appropriate ritual preparations—eating their foes is an act of dominance, not sustenance.

Beastman leaders are usually barbarians, rangers, or druids. They fear divine and arcane magic, and usually put captive spellcasters to death in peculiar and horrible ritual murders to ensure that the “bad magic” dies with its users.

Beastman Characters

Beastmen are not normally PCs, but if the GM wishes to create unique beastman villains, then beastmen can be advanced by adding class levels. All beastmen have the following racial traits.
        +4 Strength, +2 Constitution, –4 Intelligence, –2 Charisma: Beastmen are strong and hardy, but tend to be cunning rather than bright.
        Scent: Beastmen posses the scent special ability.
        Bolas Expertise: Beastmen are proficient with bolas and gain the benefits described above.
        Language: Beastmen begin play speaking a debased form of Common.

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