Thursday, February 21, 2019

Ogmodon

Description


The boulder adjacent to the path uncoils itself, revealing a large snake made from living rock.

An ogmodon is a large largely sedentary predator about the size of a pony found in wet forests. They are most often encountered while sleeping, where they look and feel like a large moss-covered rock. While active, an ogmodon instead looks and acts like a large constricting snake.

The skin of an ogmodon is made of a porous dark gray substance appearing very similar to wet stone and is of one large piece, unlike the scaled skin of the snakes it shares its shape with. The majority of their back is a patch of dark green lichen, the pattern of growth of which is unique to each member of the species. Its stomach is made of interlocking plates made of pale gray stone which grind together as it moves across the ground, making a sound not dissimilar to a grindstone. 

An ogmodon has depressions in their face where eyes once were and tracks other creatures mainly by their smell and vibrations they feel through the ground via their belly stones. Their mouths are toothless maws, looking more like a hole in the earth than an orifice of a living creature. Older members sometimes have gems instead of eyes, with size of the gem typically indicating age.

The lichen on their back is actually a living entity which shares a partnership with the larger snake form. The lichen provides a long lifespan and access to limited earth magic in return for the snake giving them good spreading grounds in the form of its waste. The name 'ogmodon' actually refers to the pair as a whole, who communicate at a telepathic level and generally act as a single entity anyway. Once the lichen has spread to a new host, it begins gathering rocks to form a new snake and the two lichen patches split mentally into two entities.

You can tell if an ogmodon is in the area by the long, smooth paths that it leaves, often leading straight toward its resting place. They never sleep in the same place twice but are creatures of habit, so multiple large circular areas of flattened dirt and plants are also a telltale sign. Their skin always resembles wet rock, so a wet rock in a patch of dry boulders might also tip off a passing forester.



Behavior


The creature nods its head up and down in small circles, its mouth agape, looking the very picture of an old toothless man you once knew.

An ogmodon is not inherently hostile and usually doesn't mean harm to the creatures it meets, though  it will frankly notify them if its hungry and it thinks they'd understand it. They are intelligent and like bad jokes, though they only speak the languages of the old stones and trees (Druidic, Dwarven, Elven are all good contenders if your system has them, in that order). They're interested in hearing about earthquakes and natural disasters, and listen politely but disinterestedly to mortal affairs.

Ogmodons value raw meat in large quantities of any variety, though they usually feel like they don't have much to offer in return. They know the local terrain very well, especially the layout of water and rock. They can move large quantities of dirt and stone in a day, the equivalent of 4 laborers working hard. They can reach out to other ogmodons far away via the lichen on their back, though none closer than 250 miles and its likely that one doesn't know a whole lot about goings on either. They're unwilling to fight on behalf of other creatures except to defend their territory.

Ogmodons hunt and fight by crushing foes against their coils of stone. They prefer to track their prey as it moves through its territory by following their vibrations, then trapping them with earth magic when they bed down to sleep. It swallows creatures whole, not even bothering to kill if it isn't necessary. Anything that goes down an ogmodon's throat will get swiftly crushed by the creature's belly stones as it moves away to hide once again. When surprised or facing the prospect of multiple foes, it hinders as many foes as it can with its earth magic and flees. If it is pursued, it tries to isolate its pursuers and kill them one at a time.


The diet of an ogmodon consists of deer, rabbits, and other small woodland creatures. They are able to take on groups of sentient humanoids, but avoid situations where they would need to endanger themselves fighting multiple foes. Ogmodons are not adverse to scavenging, and will happily swallow a carcass, thinking themselves to be cleaning their territory. 

To kill an ogmodon, one must eradicate both the stone snake form and the lichen atop it. If only the snake form dies, the lichen will remain on the corpse until it can grow and form a new snake. If only the lichen dies, the snake will gradually go mad and lose its intelligence, eventually driving itself to insanity. Neither the snake nor the lichen possess any special defense other than the stony exterior of the snake's body.



Stats (OSR)

Ogmodon
HD: 4 DMG: 1d6 slam, 1d4 constrict AC: As plate Abilities: Trap Feet, Constrict 

Trap Feet: As a bear trap vs creature in 30'
Constrict: Grab creature human size or smaller in coils and crush each turn, dealing automatic constrict damage. Neither ogmodon nor creature can move while Constrict in place. 

Allow saves to avoid abilities as normal for system.



Stats (5E)

Ogmodon
Huge Monstrosity, Neutral

Armor Class 15
Hit Points 65 (10d12)
Speed 30 ft., Burrow 10 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
19 (+4) 13 (+1) 16 (+3) 09 (-1) 16 (+3) 05 (-3)

Skills Perception +5
Senses Tremorsense 60 ft., no sight, passive Perception 15
Languages Druidic, Dwarven, Elven
Challenge 3 (700 XP)

Keen Smell. The ogmodon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on smell.

Spellcasting. The ogmodon is a 2nd level spellcaster. Its spellcasting ability is Wisdom (spell save 13, +5 to hit with spell attacks). The ogmodon has the following druid spells prepared:

Cantrips (at will): mold earth
1st level (3 slots): entangle, earth tremor

Actions

Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 17 (3d8+4) bludgeoning damage.
Constrict. Melee Weapon Attack. +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (2d6+4) bludgeoning damage and the target is grappled (escape DC 15). Until this grapple ends, the creature is restrained, and the ogmodon can't constrict another target.


Sample Encounters

D6 Reaction
1 Hostile (Hungry)
2 Neutral (Asleep, Disguised)
3 Neutral (Eating a deer)
4 Neutral (Moving to a new sleeping spot)
5 Friendly (Speaking to a local forester)
6 Friendly (Cooling itself off by rolling in the mud)


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