Thursday, November 21, 2019

OSR: Oblex

                                                  from Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes
                                                   Original idea from Nolan Whale

So let's say you're an artificer or an Alchemist.  You want an Ooze, but unfortunately, you don't have the components, information or talent to build an Ooze Egg.  All you have is a bunch of alchemical components, a sharp objects, a few people you have a serious grudge against and no moral compass.  Well do not despair, for there is actually a solution to your highly specific problem.  It just happens to be a bit, messy.

Oblex are created first by mixing together a special Slime base that is non-acidic and includes a few special ingredients, such as frankincense, bone meal and alcohol.  You will also need some knowledge of necromancy and a fresh corpse, the less damaged the better.  Once you have obtained the corpse, mark it with the arcane runes to guide the power of the Negative energy that you will channel through this body.

<Note>  This is a Wizard's explanation of how corpses are animated.  In reality, as this is a lesser Undead, what is really being done is the creation of a lesser Undead, which is done through the summoning of the spiteful Dead from the Netherworld and luring them into corpses.   

Greater, or Demonic, Undead are created through summoning a malignant Spirit of violence, something too weak to be a proper Outsider, or the Soul of an especially powerful or wicked individual from the Netherworld and inviting it into a corpse, to allow it to feast on and torture the lesser souls that remained in the body.

The lesser souls are the Mineral, Vegetative and Animal souls, as described here.  </Note> 

If you have done it correctly, the energy will flow into the corpse and back out through it, into your Slime base.  This will animate it, allowing you to control it as if it was an Undead.  This means that you don't have to worry about losing an Ooze Egg, but it does necessitate the usual safety precautions when dealing with Undead.  However, unlike lesser Undead, Ooblexes are much more useful.

For starters, assuming your corpse was somewhat fresh, it will be able to tell you certain pieces of information that the corpse's former would know. 

Secondly, the Slime base will preserve the corpse as long as the corpse is inside the Ooze, allowing it to appear to be alive. 

Thirdly, you can have the corpse move away from the Ooze or even the Slime base and still function normally, as a lesser Undead.  You can also add other Undead to the same Ooblex, which can enhance an Ooblex's lethality, but make it easier to damage.

This makes the Oblex a cheap and efficient option in comparison to mere Undead servants (Skeletons or Zombies), plus it cuts down on the smell of rot.  They are also more useful than Oozes, as a controllable blob of acid is only good for a few things. 

                                                source unknown


Oblex Corpse
HD 1d4  AC as armor (base 10)  Atk as weapon (base Dagger (+0, 1d6))
Mor Stand and fight on a 20 or less  Saves 8 or less is a success

Undead: Undead do not feel pain or get tired.  They are immune to poison and disease.  They do not need to eat, sleep or breathe.  Any spell that says "Undead" in its title or description is talking about something like this.

Sunlight Vulnerability: Undead take 1d6 radiant damage for every round they spend in sunlight.

Already Dead: Unless decapitated, cut to pieces, burnt to ashes by sunlight or reduced to zero HP by a magical attack or weapon, the Undead has an X-in-6 chance of their body knitting itself back together and recovering from the damage they took, where X is equal to the number of HD they have.

Ooze Repair: These corpses can, as an action, cause the Ooblex Ooze to heal 1d6 HP and recover lost bits of itself.  The Undead can heal all types of damage except that which obliterates the Ooze, evaporates water, or is caused by salt.  If an Ooblex Ooze is destroyed through other means than evaporation, salting or magic such as disintegrate, the Ooblex Corpses can "resurrect" it. 

- Always obey orders
- Pretend to be a normal human
- Retreat into the Ooze to protect yourself
- Grapple opponents and pull them into the Ooze

Oblex Ooze:
HD 1d6+1  AC 12 (-1 per Undead inside it)  Atk Pseudopod + Engulf (+X, no damage)
Mor Stand and fight on a 20 or less   Saves 7 or less is a success

Corpse-Linked: The Ooblex Ooze must have an Ooblex Corpse connected to it via a slime tendril or inside it to function.  If it does not have this, or all the Ooblex Corpses are destroyed, it collapses into a thick slurry.

Hard to hurt: Oozes take no blunt, electrical or acid damage.  They take half damage from fire, ice and sharp damage.  Anything that dehydrates can hurt them severely, however, and salt damages them as well.   

Gelatinous Body: Oozes can fit through incredibly narrow spaces, such as under doors, through cracks, pipes and etc.

Engulf: If a creature is struck by an Ooze's pseudopod he or she is grappled.  That creature must then contest the Ooze in a contest of STR.  The Ooze has a STR score equal to 10+HD.  If the creature wins, nothing happens, and on his turn, he can take an action to try and free himself with a STR check.  If the Ooze wins the contest, the creature is sucked inside it.  Creatures inside an Ooze take 1d6 CON damage a round, as they cannot breathe inside the Ooze, and each Corpse within the Ooblex Ooze can make an attack against any other creature trapped in the Ooblex, doing 1d6 damage automatically.  The trapped creature can still attack the Ooblex or the Corpses inside, though any damage done by non-Quick weapons will receive a -4 penalty.  If an Ooze is killed, he can rescued. 

- Always obey orders
- Use Corpses to lure enemies close
- Protect the Corpses

Ooblex Plot Hooks:

1- The party comes across an isolated inn surrounded by many rumors.  A group of cold-eyed, strangely stiff locals run the inn and seem reluctant to let them stay.  There's something very odd about them.  The locals say they're cultists, or cannibals, or they are all insane.  If investigated, it is revealed that an Alchemist has taken over this inn to use as his base.  His Ooblex killed the family that owned this inn and he has been using their corpses to keep up appearances while he enacts his sinister plan.
2- The local Constable asks the players to investigate reports of naked people dripping slime spotted traipsing around on the edges of town.  He thinks its Folk activity, but no, it's just a perverted Wizard and his zombie concubines.  And if you want something to actually stop, this Necromancer is interested in expanding his collection.
3- A local man of the lower classes has recently hauled himself out of poverty.  He had been living a comfortable lifestyle when he suddenly vanished one night, never to be seen again.  If investigated, the players will find that this man was a grave-robber and that he interrupted a Necromancer who was looking to commit a very different type of grave robbery.  See also: Resurrection Man.
4- A small village recently suffered a tragic loss when their local Alchemist, Wizard or Magic-User recently died.  Secretly, this Magic-User also had many Undead under his control. When he died, those Undead were freed and immediately went on a rampage.  They've been tormenting the village at night, while hiding during the day.  And unfortunately for you, the center-piece of this Magic-User's Undead Creations was an Ooblex full to bursting with ooze-slick skeletons.

                                              by henry peters

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