New Mutant Monday #7 - Ambusher

Chris Van Deelen

No. Enc: 1 (1d8)
Alignment:  Neutral
Movement: 90’ (30’)
AC:  3 (5)
HD: 12 (4)
Attacks:  1-4 tentacles (or more, see below) 1 bite.
Damage: 1d8+2 / 1d8+2 / 1d8+2 / 1d8+2, 3d4+4
Save: L12 (4)
Morale: See below
Hoard Class: N/A

 

These creatures are mutant Octopus, which have adapted to life on the land. They are never far from the ocean, however. The water is not needed for their immediate survival, and as such it is speculated these creatures stay close to the ocean due to genetic memory or to be able to reproduce.

These mutants can grow to truly monstrous proportions. Some can grow to be as large as twenty feet, with tentacles that can reach out an additional 15 feet from their body to ensnare prey. They still look almost identical to their un-mutated cousins, having eight tentacles, a large, bulbous body, and a parrot-like beak for eating.

In combat, they will attack with 1-4 tentacles, lashing out and attempting to grab hold of a target. The tentacles will grapple, and unless severed or a successful grapple check is made, will automatically inflict additional damage every round, until the prey has stopped struggling. At that point, the creature will drag the prey towards their mouth to consume. It can and will use additional tentacles, if the prey proves to be ‘difficult’. The creature can also attack multiple targets. For example, if there are three targets available, it can use three tentacles on two, and two on the last. Each tentacle can be severed, but this requires doing at least 10% of the creature’s total hit-points to do so.

Once the creature has its prey within biting distance, if the prey is of small size or less, the prey will be swallowed on a natural 18-20. The prey will then suffer 3d6 points of acid damage per round until it is fully digested or has escaped. A target can escape by cutting their way out of the creature’s stomach, but this requires using a bladed weapon and inflicting at least 25% of the creature’s total hit-points to do so.

The creature gets its name from its ability to burrow or hide in ground, undergrowth or even ruins. They also have a strange version of metamorph, which allows the creature to change one of its tentacles so it appears to be a large fish, typically a salmon or similar fish. They use this to lure prey close enough to attack.  The creature also possesses a powerful chameleon-like ability to blend into its surroundings, ensuring it will gain surprise on a 1-3.

If the creature suffers more than 50% of its total hit points in damage, it will try to escape. It shoots out a fine mist of black ink, which coats everything and is impossible to remove. It will fade off within 3d12 days, but during the time it is coating the target’s flesh and hair, any predators within 500 feet will be attracted to the target. These predators must make a saving throw versus energy or move at their maximum rate towards the target.

Every spring the creatures return to the ocean, where the females lay clusters of 10d100 eggs, which are then fertilized by the males. This period of breeding occurs over 7 days and once they are finished, they will return to the land. At this time the creatures are also sociable, so as many as 2d8 will be encountered at one time. The rest of the year they are solitary and have carved out their own territory, and will fight to the death to defend it from others of their own species. Note the second number in parenthesis for AC and HD indicated juvenile versions of these creatures.

Mutations: Chameleon epidermis, gigantism, metamorph (modified), toxic weapon