Saturday, January 2, 2010

In the silent forest night, beware the Lampeye!


Frequency: Very Rare
No. Appearing: 1-3
Armor Class: 6
Move: 18"(180 feet)
Hit Dice: 5
% in lair: Encountered in lair during the day only
Treasure Type: Special, see below
No. of Attacks: 3
Damage/Attack: 2-8/2-8/1-6
Special Attacks: Initial attack does double damage if successful
Special Defenses: Nil
Magic Resistance: Standard
Intelligence: Animal
Alignment: Neutral
Size: L, 8' tall, 500 lbs
Psionic Ability: Nil

The Lampeye is the name the fearful peasants give to the Great Striding Owl. A giant, flightless predator of the night, the lampeye is also sometimes referred to as a Scythe-Owl, so called because of the huge sickle-like talons it bears on the ends of its long, powerful legs.

A deadly and efficient nocturnal hunter, the lampeye has only tiny vestigial wings and searches for prey by striding silently through the night forests and fields in short segments, stopping often to look and listen. The lampeye sees with perfect clarity in pitchy darkness, and not even the smallest sounds escape it's keen hearing.

A scythe-Owl will surprise on 1-4 on a d6. A roll of 5-6 indicates the party has seen the owl before it can attack. In this instance, it is likely the owl's presence was given away by the party's torch light reflecting in it's golden, plate-sized eyes. The owl will never itself be surprised while active at night, though it will be torpid and sluggish if discovered during the day.

When a striding owl has identified a potential meal, it's attack will take the form of a soundless rush out of the darkness, ending in a thirty foot leap which will bring it down on top of the prey with both feet. This initial attack will do double damage if successful, (2-8+2-8x2). The owl's great sickle-claws will usually do enough damage to kill outright with this first attack, the sorts of prey the creature prefers, such as deer, wild goats, goblins, and halflings.

The lampeye does not deliberately collect treasure. However, valuables may sometimes be found in the area about the owl's daytime resting spots.
In the same manner as do it's smaller, flying cousins, the striding owl devours prey whole and later regurgitates indigestible materials in the form of pellets.
Anyone sufficiently treasure-hungry enough to sort through and break apart a pile of the fist-sized pellets may find coins, jewelery, gems, teeth, etc... along with the compressed hair and bone fragments of the lampeye's victims.


Timeshadows said...

Ooh, this is very cool. :D

Rusty said...

I concur. Very cool.

E.G.Palmer said...

Well, I was flipping throught the channels last night, and I caught a bit of 10,000 BC. The part with the terror birds, and a bit later, I heard a pair of great horned owls hooting in the woods outside.
And then I though, "Hmmmmm, terror owls. hmmm".