Archives of Nethys

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Template Grafts | Universal Monster Rules


Ellicoth

Source Alien Archive pg. 48

Ellicoth CR 9

XP 6,400
N Gargantuan magical beast
Init +0; Senses blindsense (life) 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +22

Defense

HP 145
EAC 22; KAC 24
Fort +13; Ref +13; Will +8

Offense

Speed 50 ft.
Melee gore +22 (2d10+15 P) or soul drain +22 (see below)

Statistics

STR +6; DEX +0; CON +4; INT -3; WIS +3; CHA +2
Skills Athletics +17, Intimidate +17, Survival +17
Languages Eoxian (can’t speak any language)
Other Abilities no breath

Ecology

Environment any plains or deserts (Eox)
Organization solitary, pair, or herd (3-6)

Special Abilities

Aura of Radiation (Ex) Due to the environments in which they live, ellicoths absorb extreme levels of radiation, and have evolved the ability to store and redirect this energy without being harmed by it. An ellicoth emanates medium radiation out to 15 feet and low radiation for an additional 15 feet.

Soul Drain (Su) As a standard action, an ellicoth can make an attack with its trunks against the KAC of a single living or undead target within its reach. If struck, the target takes 3d6+9 bludgeoning damage and is staggered for 1 round; the target can attempt a DC 16 Fortitude save to halve the damage and negate the staggered condition. If the target takes Hit Point damage, the ellicoth regains a number of Hit Points equal to that amount, up to its maximum.

Description

Standing 50 feet tall and weighing upward of 30 tons, an ellicoth resembles a strange two-trunked elephant perched on incongruously narrow, stilt-like legs. Its stocky body is covered with horns and growths, and its skin is heavily blistered and cracked from the radiation it absorbs and stores within itself, making it appear perpetually raw and burned. While some of this radiation comes from the cosmic rays that bombard Eox’s surface due to its lack of a protective atmosphere, even more of it is absorbed from Eox’s wastelands, as the creatures seem mysteriously drawn to those regions still heavily radioactive from the cataclysm that ravaged Eox ages ago.

Records from the bone sages report that ellicoths predate the nuclear disaster that befell Eox, indicating that at one point ellicoths were gentle herbivores whose long legs and lithe trunks allowed them to safely reach the luscious fruits atop tall spike-trunked jicobalan trees. During the disaster, however, several herds were caught in the backlash of magical energy, causing them to mutate. Today, the mournful ellicoths no longer eat vegetation or even breathe like normal animals. Instead, they siphon vital energy directly from other creatures and use it to sustain their own agonized existences. Ellicoths can survive just as easily on the necromantic energies that animate undead as on the soul energy of living creatures, and most of their diet consists of ghosts, zombies, and other spontaneously generated undead in Eox’s wastelands. Occasionally, however, a stampede of desperate or enraged ellicoths will crash through the protective walls around Eoxian settlements and gorge in a feeding frenzy until the local military can mobilize to bring them down. While the bone sages are thus careful to keep local ellicoth populations in check, driving the most aggressive populations out into the distant wastes, most see the advantage of keeping a few around to remind citizens that even the undead need the protection of a strong government.

Not all bone sages are content to let ellicoths remain wild, however. Continuing a tradition that stretches back even before the Gap, several bone sages still employ fearsome ellicoth cavalries in their militias. From armored howdahs built onto and around the horns atop the creatures’ broad backs, undead soldiers immune to ellicoths’ aura of radiation rain destruction down on their opponents, guiding the beasts through magic or direct neurotech linkages. Despite the expense of keeping the creatures and the advantages presented by more conventional vehicles, ellicoths’ ability to completely devour an opponent’s life force doubles as a useful psychological weapon, and their spindly legs can support a surprising amount of weight, allowing for thick armor plates to be affixed to their hide or heavy weapons to be mounted on their horns.

Ellicoths are mammalian and give birth to live young one at a time, which mature to full size within a few years and can live for centuries. Rather than having a designated leader, each herd tends to follow whichever adult member is moving with the most purpose at any given time, leading to chaotic and unpredictable movements when threatened. Ellicoth corpses are extremely rare; when an ellicoth grows old and its internal organs begin to fail, it instinctively leaves the herd and heads for the most powerful source of radiation in the area—usually the center of a radioactive waste—and proceeds to lie down and sing its dirges loudly and continually until its body finally gives out. Once it does, unknown processes within its cells, possibly related to the storage of radiation, cause the corpse to suddenly and dramatically break down, transforming the creature into a puddle of radioactive ooze within hours.

While their docile wandering punctuated by occasional feeding frenzies leads people to dismiss ellicoths as brutes, they’re significantly smarter than most give them credit for. Although unable to speak, they still manage to understand rudimentary language when exposed to it regularly, and those few naturalists or trainers who’ve interacted extensively with them believe them to have significantly more complicated inner lives than ordinary animals. Attempts to decipher their haunting bellows, which rumble through the ground and the planet’s poisoned remnants of an atmosphere, have so far failed to reveal any natural language among the creatures, but ellicoths instructed in Eoxian and presented with words and pictograms to point at with their trunks have revealed a startling discovery. Though lacking the consciousness necessary for even an oral history, ellicoths maintain a racial memory of the planet’s destruction and the time before it, describing a deep-seated sadness at the way things are and a longing for a time of green fields and tall trees—a time no living ellicoth has ever known. How exactly this memory has been passed down remains a mystery, and the ellicoths themselves have no sense of what it means, other than to repeatedly point to the word “waiting.”