02 June 2015

Earthdawn 4E: Anatomy of a Creature 02 - Mounts, Part 2 (Flying Mounts)

This is the second 4E Anatomy of a Creature, an ongoing series about Earthdawn Fourth Edition. Introduction and Index.

Everything contained here is the work of a fan and not associated with FASA Games.

This is the second entry in the Anatomy of a Creature series for Earthdawn Fourth Edition (ED4). The overall goal here is to present new material to the community as a whole and get feedback on the various creatures and new development directions. Popular entries may one day see publication, while those which are less so will not clutter precious page count.


Based on comments and requests, the first series will focus on introducing some new mounts to the game. This set of mounts can all fly. The traditional flying mount has been the griffin and they have not been unseated in terms for ferocity, but these add some different, lower investment options. One is for windlings (who will almost certainly need their own entry at some point) and the other three introduce classic flying mounts to Barsaive.

If there is something you do (or do not) like, let me know in the comments.


Hawk, War
War hawks are rare and specially bred mounts used windling cavalry. They require significant handling and training to allow a harness and rider. Despite this, war hawk cavalry is prized by mountain windling communities for their speed and range. While not unheard of in forest communities, the difficulty of raising war hawks and inability to fully take advantage of their enhanced senses makes them much less popular than kues and even zoaks.
War hawks are suitable as mounts for windlings and as animal companions.

Challenge: Novice (Third Circle)
DEX:    7          Initiative                11        Unconsciousness:   27
STR:    5          Physical Defense:   12        Death Rating:           31
TOU:   4          Mystic Defense:       11        Wound Threshold: 6
PER:    7          Social Defense:        11        Knockdown:             5
WIL:    6          Physical Armor:       1          Recovery Tests:      1
CHA:   6          Mystic Armor:          2
Movement:   2 (Flying 20)
Actions: 1; Claws 14 (11)
Powers:
Dive (5): The war hawk may move up to twice its Movement and make a single attack. If the creature moves over its base Movement, it gains a +5 bonus to the Attack and Damage test. This ability may not be used if the war hawk has a rider.
Enhanced Sense [Sight] (4): War hawks do not suffer penalties from distance to vision-based Awareness tests.
Willful (1): Talents and abilities used to control, tame, or train a war hawk require an additional success.
Swooping Attack: The war hawk may split its movement and not suffer any penalty. This ability may not be used if the war hawk has a rider.
Special Maneuvers:
Clip the Wing (Opponent): The attacker may spend two additional successes on an attack test to remove the war hawk’s ability to fly until the end of the next round. If the attack causes a Wound, the war hawk cannot fly until the Wound is healed. If the war hawk is in flight, this will cause them to fall, taking damage for half of the distance fallen.

Hippogriff
These four-legged creatures combine a horses’s body with the head, legs, and wings of a large eagle. Like an eagle, a hippogriff’s front legs are covered in feathers and end in sharp talons; its hind legs resemble those of a horse, covered in short fur and ending in hoofs. The hippogriff stands about five feet tall at the shoulder, is six feet long, and has a wingspan averaging ten feet.
Hippogriffs prefer plains regions, particularly near forests and foothills. They are social prefer to gather in groups, the most common of which is a harem. Composed of up to six females and one male, this is the basic family unit for hippogriffs. Males will either be solitary, or with other males until they challenge for position in the harem. While they are social, hippogriffs are also very protective of their group, in particular if there are any young present.
Hippogriffs can be a popular alternative to a griffin because they are considered easier to train to be a mount. While it is best to capture them while young and train them as they age, it is not unheard of for a bond to be formed with a male hippogriff without a harem.
Hippogriffs are suitable as mounts for elves, humans, orks, and t’skrang, and as animal companions.

Challenge: Journeyman (Fourth Circle)
DEX:    7          Initiative:                 9          Unconsciousness:   44
STR:    8          Physical Defense:   12        Death Rating:           52
TOU:   8          Mystic Defense:       10        Wound Threshold: 12
PER:    6          Social Defense:        11        Knockdown:             12
WIL:    7          Physical Armor:       4          Recovery Tests:      3
CHA:   6          Mystic Armor:          4
Movement: 16 (Flying 16)
Actions: 1; Bite: 12 (14), Claws x2: 13 (13), Kick: 11 (15), Trample: 12 (10)
Powers:
Dive (5): The hippogriff move up to twice its Movement and make a single attack. If the creature moves over its base Movement, it gains a +5 bonus to the Attack and Damage test. This ability may not be used if the hippogriff has a rider.
Enhanced Sense [Hearing] (2)
Enhanced Sense [Sight] (2): Hippogriffs do not suffer penalties from distance to vision-based Awareness tests.
Swooping Attack: Hippogriff may split movement without penalty. This ability may not be used if the hippogriff has a rider.
Special Maneuvers:
Clip the Wing (Opponent): The attacker may spend two additional successes on an attack test to remove the hippogriff’s ability to fly until the end of the next round. If the attack causes a Wound, the hippogriff cannot fly until the Wound is healed. If the hippogriff is in flight, this will cause them to fall, taking damage for half of the distance fallen.
Overrun (Hippogriff, Trample): The hippogriff may spend an additional success to cause a Knockdown test against the target if the target has a lower Strength Step. The Difficulty Number is the Attack test result.

Pegasus
These creatures were created as an experiment by Therans looking for an aerial mount to use on kilas and behemoths. The end result is a majestic looking creature which can operate both in the skies and on the land. They are somewhat ungainly flyers compared to the fierce griffin, but this is easily overlooked by their significantly reduced operating costs and ease to handle.
Pegai are not sturdy enough to wear barding and are thus favored by wealthy Therans as leisure animals or used by scouts for their speed and versatility. They were introduced to Barsaive following the landing of Triumph, but have become much more common after the taking of Sky Point and Vivane.
They come in a variety of colors, but chestnut and white are by far the most common.
Pegai are suitable as mounts for elves, humans, orks, and t’skrang, and as animal companions.

Challenge: Novice (Second Circle)
DEX:    6          Initiative:                 8          Unconsciousness:   34
STR:    7          Physical Defense:   9          Death Rating:           42
TOU:   8          Mystic Defense:       9          Wound Threshold: 13
PER:    5          Social Defense:        9          Knockdown:             11
WIL:    6          Physical Armor:       1          Recovery Tests:      3
CHA:   6          Mystic Armor:          3
Movement:   18 (Flying 14)
Actions: 1; Kick: 10 (12), Trample: 10 (10)
Powers:
Enhanced Sense [Hearing] (2)
Enhanced Sense [Sight] (2)
Special Maneuvers:
Clip the Wing (Opponent): The attacker may spend two additional successes on an attack test to remove the pegasus’s ability to fly until the end of the next round. If the attack causes a Wound, the pegasus cannot fly until the Wound is healed. If the pegasus is in flight, this will cause them to fall, taking damage for half of the distance fallen.
Overrun (Pegasus, Trample): The pegasus may spend an additional success to cause a Knockdown test against the target if the target has a lower Strength Step. The Difficulty Number is the Attack test result.

Pegasus, War
Larger and stronger than normal pegai, war pegai are bred to carry heavy loads while flying and galloping. War pegai are often used by Theran units operating out of kilas and behemoths as shock troops and for the increased maneuverability they can bring to any cavalry unit. While they were not employed during the initial Theran invasion of Barsaive, many were in use at Sky Point and have spread since its taking. These pegai are more likely to come in bay and black coats than their smaller cousins.
They may wear barding, which provides the equivalent protection as the type of armor. For example, hardened leather barding provides 5 points of Physical Armor. They may not wear barding with an Initiative Penalty greater than 3 and retain the ability to fly.
War pegai are suitable as mounts for elves, humans, orks, and t’skrang, and as animal companions.

Challenge: Novice (Third Circle)
DEX:    7          Initiative:                 9          Unconsciousness:   42
STR:    8          Physical Defense:   10          Death Rating:           51
TOU:   9          Mystic Defense:       10        Wound Threshold: 13
PER:    6          Social Defense:        10        Knockdown:             12
WIL:    7          Physical Armor:       2          Recovery Tests:      3
CHA:   6          Mystic Armor:          4
Movement:   16 (Flying 14)
Actions: 1; Kick: 13 (14), Trample: 12 (12)3
Powers:
Enhanced Sense [Hearing] (2)
Enhanced Sense [Sight] (2)
Special Maneuvers:
Clip the Wing (Opponent): The attacker may spend two additional successes on an attack test to remove the war pegasus’s ability to fly until the end of the next round. If the attack causes a Wound, the war pegasus cannot fly until the Wound is healed. If the war pegasus is in flight, this will cause them to fall, taking damage for half of the distance fallen.
Overrun (War Pegasus, Trample): The war pegasus may spend an additional success to cause a Knockdown test against the target if the target has a lower Strength Step. The Difficulty Number is the Attack test result.