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Monday, April 12, 2010

Man-eater Spirits

These bestial undead creatures are created when man-eating predators are slain without the proper rites and rituals being observed to placate their victim's souls. Driven by a predator's endless hunger, the Man-eater Spirit haunts the wilds where its origin creature was killed, possessing other creatures to satisfy a hunger that only the flesh of man can satisfy.

Man-eater Spirits appear as large predators, their exact shape determined by their creature of origin. All Spirits have pale white fur, tinted blood-red around claws and fangs. Their eyes gleam with faint greenish light, and a faint odor of carrion surrounds them. Their bodies are translucent, reflecting their partially insubstantial nature. They are constrained to the area surrounding the site of their death, never straying more than a dozen miles from this point.

These undead creatures are driven by a never-ending desire for blood and slaughter. Though they are completely insubstantial during daylight hours, at night they will stalk and kill any living creature that enters their territory, their preferred prey being man. Man-eaters possess a fierce cunning and knowledge of their home terrain. Their typical tactics include using their abilities to divide groups into scattered individuals, then isolating and cutting down individual targets. After drinking the blood of their victim, the Spirit will often drag the remains into an obvious spot to cause further terror.

Man-eater Spirits have the following characteristics:
  • As undead spirits the creatures appear only at night, becoming completely insubstantial between dawn and dusk.
  • Each Man-eater inherits the physical capabilities of its creature of origin. For example a tiger-based Spirit would have claw and bite attacks as well as the ability to climb and move quietly. Any attack or defense abilities possessed in life gain one rank of improvement due to the creature's magical nature.
  • Man-eaters are immune to mundane weaponry. Normal weapons simply pass through their insubstantial bodies. Even a simple blessing will neutralize this power.
  • Because of their insubstantial nature, all Man-eaters have Superb stealth and hiding abilities.
  • Terrorizing Growl - Six times per day the Man-eater can emit a terrible growl, which causes fear to anyone within a 100 foot radius. Mundane animals automatically flee in terror, though intelligent beings can make an Average test of willpower to resist the effects.
  • Shadow Eyes - Man-eaters can project glowing, illusionary eyes that seem to hover in the shadows on the edge of vision. They can maintain three sets of Shadow Eyes at will. The Man-eater Spirit can shift their point of view to any set of Eyes at will.
  • Predatory Possession - Any mundane predator that crosses a Man-eater Spirit's territory is subject to possession by the Spirit (a Good test of will allows the predator to escape unharmed). Possessed predators are driven to stalk and kill any creature that crosses their path, their normal instincts overridden by the Spirit's never-ending need for slaughter. A single Spirit can possess up to three predators at a time. The possessed creature hut ceaselessly, day or night, until slain, or exorcised with a Great test of exorcism magic.

Man-eaters slain by magical weapons or spells dissipate until the rising of the next full moon, when they are returned to their unliving doom. To permanently destroy a Man-eater, a ritual must be performed at the site of their origin creature's death. This ritual must be performed on the night of the new moon beginning at midnight and requires a tooth or claw from the original creature's remains and a bone or token from at least one of their victims. Researching the ritual is a Good test of ritual lore. Performing the ritual is a Great test of ritual magic. During the ritual the Man-eater is summoned to the site, and the ritualist must be protected for the six rounds required to complete the ritual.
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