Friday, July 2, 2010

The Furzhogge: A Spike-Covered Potion Maker

I seem to be in an anthromorphic phase of monster design lately, so expect a lot of the creatures I offer up over the next few days to be animal-folk of one variety or another.
While randomly rolling up treasures, I began to wonder why it is that so many potions seem to be floating around. Mages in the borderlands are rare, and one who has reached 9th level is even harder to find. To explain why their are so many potions, especially in the hands of the various savage humanoids, I introduce the peaceful Furzhogge:


Climate/Terrain: Any Land
Frequency: Rare
Organization: Solitary or Family Unit
Activity Cycle: Nocturnal
Diet: Omnivore
Intelligence: Very to High: 11-14
Treasure: S(x1d12)(x20 in lair)
Alignment: Neutral
No. Appearing: 1(2-4)
AC: 7
Mv: 6
HD: 1
Thac0: 20
#AT: 1
Dmg:By weapon
Special Attacks:
Special Defenses: Spines
Size: M(4.5 feet tall and about as wide)
Magic Resistance: 25%(against non-potions)
Morale: Unsteady(5)
XP: 35

In appearance, a Furzehogge looks a bit like a fat anthropomorphic hedgehog with a shuffling, waddling gait. The Furzehogge - for whatever reason - is extremely adept at making potions. It's because of this fact, and that they do not interfere with the machinations of others, that the Furzehogges have become something of a neutral culture that is generally considered "off limits" for raiding attacks and the like by every race but humanity and dwarves.
A Furzehogge speaks it's own language in addition to Common and any languages spoken be creatures dwelling near their lairs.
Combat: A Furzehogge is not an adept combatant, and will rarely attempt to do anything more than flee if aggression is shown towards them. If cornered, A Furzehogge will attempt to curl up in a ball. This ball grants the Furzehogge AC 4, and anyone who attacks(with any weapon size Small or smaller) or attempts to touch the Furzehogge while it's in his ball runs the risk of being damaged themselves by 1d4 spikes for 1d2 damage per spike. Additionally, while curled up in such a way, the Furzehogge's MR jumps to 90%
When confronted with an enemy that rolling into a ball will not stop and it can't escape from, the Furzehogge will attack with its potions, weapons(typically A wooden staff or dagger made from its own quills), or Spells. A Furzehogge casts spells as a Mage of level 1d4+1, but has access to Druid Spells in addition to standard Mage spells. Furzehogges have no need of spellbooks, and use various strange potion-like concoctions instead of most spell components.
Habitat/Society: The Furzehogge is generally a solitary creature, dwelling alone in deep woodland thickets where they gather their strange Fungi and herbs to make their potions. Other races generally leave them alone and respect their privacy. Furzehogges go out of their territories each year to trade, traditionally in the late fall before winter sets in. They trade with other races, from orcs to humans for things they need in trade for their potions. The only sentient race a Furzehogge will not have dealings with is the Dwarves. It's unknown as to why this animosity exists(at least to the dwarves), but some believe that in ages past, the dwarves somehow slighted the Furzehogge people. During these yearly wanderings, the male Furzehogges seek out female Furzehogges to mate with them(only a 1:20 chance that the mating is successful. During the winter the Female gives birth to 1-3 Furze-lets(as the babies are called). The mother looks after the young for about 5 years, teaching them magic and potion making before forcing them off of her territory. Furzehogges are believed to live for about 120 years on average without the aid of magic or potions of Longevity.
Ecology: Furzehogges have very little impact on the ecology around them, preferring to merely be left alone. They predominately subsist on roots and berries, but their favorite food is bugs. Giant Insect meat of all non-poisonous varieties are considered a delicacy by the Furzehogges. Furzehogges are adept gardeners and herbalists, and as such, the thickets in which they live will often be incredibly healthy and robust in comparison to other parts of the forest. The Furzehogge has no known natural predators.

Furzehogge Potion Creation
In order to create a potion, the Furzehogge must search in its woodland territory for 1d4 days for every 50 xp of a potion's value for the appropriate herbs and fungus. The Furzehogge then brews the potion over a period of another 1d10 days. This process usually creates 1d8 potions of the same type. A Furzehogge without a territory, or one not in his own territory only has a 25% chance of finding the right supplies after searching for 2d4 days for every 50 xp of a potion's value.

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