Skull Catcher

Published November 18, 2014 by


Description

This creature is a staple of children stories meant to frighten them into never leaving the house at night. A Skull Catcher would probably ignore the weaker bones of a child anyway, but that doesn’t stop it from being a terrifying image to the young ones. The Skull Catcher hunts its prey (anything organic with bones) for not just the meat, but to line its body with the hard skeletons of its previous meals. The Skull Catcher, once having amassed a suit of these remnants, is a formidable foe with very few weak points to exploit. Underneath the suit of bone, however, the flesh is weak and susceptible to damage. This does not mean that their constitution is weak though. Nearly all mundane poisons have no effect on the creature and that is assuming you were able to bypass the armor in the first place. Its two long arms have whip-like ends that can lacerate flesh with ease and separate the flesh from bone in a single swipe. Skull Catchers can also see perfectly well in the dark, but the light hurts their eyes and so it is suggested to any that face them to bring a source of bright illumination with you. A Skull Catcher is smart enough to try and extinguish any such light source before attacking its foes. This is further accentuated by the fact that a Skull Catcher is extremely stealthy for its size of nearly 8 feet tall. Sneaking through the dark of a cave to attack unwary travelers is no task for a Skull Catcher.

Details

Level:
6 (18)
Motive:
Collection of bones for its collection
Environment:
Usually within a days walk of a village, or within a hidden cave. Always somewhere where hunting for anything organic with bones is plentiful.
Health:
18
Damage:
7
Armor:
4
Movement:
Short
Modifications:

Perception as level 8 in dim light or lower and level 2 in normal light or higher. Might Defense as level 7. Speed Defense as level 5 due to size. Stealth as level 7.

Combat:

A typical encounter with a Skull Catcher is usually unforeseen. A band of adventurers will lay down for the night in a convenient cave nearby and fall asleep, maybe with a sentry on duty. The small fire keeping them warm will suddenly extinguish as a whip of bone fragments smashes it to pieces. The party bunches together weapons at the ready when a pair of glowing, blue eyes floats towards the back of the now dark cave. A sound like gravel being churned sounds and they are suddenly caught in a flurry of blows against a half-glimpsed foe.

A Skull Catcher will try to extinguish any light before it attacks its prey and even then will try to stay concealed as much as possible. Striking from the shadows and slowly whittling down its prey. A Skull Catcher is nearly blind in normal light though, so it will flee if it cannot see its target.

Interaction:

Many think that the Skull Catcher can’t be reasoned with, but an offering of freshly hunted meat can usually appease a Skull Catcher. So long as the portions are big enough.

Use:

A Skull Catcher, or even a mated pair could make for an interesting (and dangerous) encounter when the party falls asleep for the night in the wilderness. Or maybe a village has become the hunting ground of a Skull Catcher and it seeks strong men and women to fight the beast in its lair.

Loot:

A Skull Catcher’s bone horde (its most prized (and only) possession) will probably contain 2d6-1 cyphers and maybe one artifact from the creatures and people it has slain.