15 December 2021

Earthdawn 4E: Rogues' Gallery 57 — Insect Thrall (Mantis)


This is the fifty-seventh 4E Rogues' Gallery, 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.

Like other entries in the Rogues' Gallery [Alt] series, this presents NPCs in a different fashion easier to use in combat. Essentially, these are disposable opponents who don't need to have skills referenced. They are also written to be more appropriate as combat challenges for the given Circle. The exception here is this isn't technically an alternative presentation as this NPC doesn't exist as a player option. Nor will it ever. Including being presented in that fashion just to build NPCs.

This particular entry presents a Warden (Tenth Circle) insect thrall. This is a spellcaster who summoned and bargained with an invae and it went entirely predictably as they're now under the sway of it, but they probably think it's totally fine because it likes to hunt other invae and that means we're totally on the same side. While they may fully believe they're acting freely, they aren't. Their contact with the invae hasn't just affected their mind, but also their body. Chitin is forming under their skin, along with their eyes splitting up to replicate compound eyes, and a couple new arms folded up. These features can be concealed, but they're decidedly on the unsettling side of potential features.

They have a few attack options, a broadsword and claws at close and Invoke Grasping Claws to reach out and touch someone. Their claws also have some reach, but their bite is comparatively ineffectual and used only for gnawing on prey already in their grasp. In all, they don't have a lot of tricks, but the riders for Invoke Grasping Claws and Gain Surprise are pretty good tricks. They also give the insect thrall some evasion to escape and maybe earn a name, becoming a recurring villain.

This opponent makes a splash and if it can be locked down after that, it shouldn't be too bad. But if it's allowed to dictate terms and control the battlefield, things are going to become grim.

Insect Thrall (Mantis)

Challenge: Warden (Tenth Circle)

DEX: 10 Initiative: 14 Unconsciousness: 80

STR: 9 Physical Defense: 22 Death Rating: 90

TOU: 10 Mystic Defense: 19 Wound Threshold: 15

PER: 9 Social Defense: 14 Knockdown: 15

WIL: 8 Physical Armor: 13 Recovery Tests: 3

CHA: 5 Mystic Armor: 10 Karma: 4 (8)

Movement: 16 (12 Flying)

Actions: 3; Bite: 20 (28), Broadsword: 26 (26), Claws ×2: 30 (22), Invoke Grasping Claws (10 yards): 27 (20)
Ambush (15)
Astral Sight (20): As the talent, Player’s Guide, p. 129.
Awareness (20): As the talent, Player’s Guide, p. 129.
Enhanced Sense [Sight] (4)
Fearless (5): The insect thrall has +5 to Defenses against fear-based effects.
Gain Surprise (20, Standard): Illusion. The insect thrall makes a Gain Surprise test and compares the result against the Mystic Defense of each opponent who can detect it. Any targets the test is successful against cannot detect the insect thrall and are surprised if they’re attacked. Once an attack is made, this effect ends. The Sensing Difficulty is the result. This power cannot be used in the following round.
Great Leap (12)
Invoke Grasping Claws: Spell. The insect thrall summons a mantis spirit, which grabs the target. This attack is made against Mystic Defense. The target is Harried until the end of the next round. This attack can be used once per round.
Lifesight (20): As the talent, Player’s Guide, p. 156.

Long Arm of the Claw: The insect thrall can reach up to 4 yards with their claws.
Omnivision: The insect thrall can effectively see in all directions and cannot be Blindsided due to positioning.
Resist Pain (2)
Stealthy Stride (22, Simple): As the talent, Player’s Guide, p. 170.
Special Maneuvers:
Armor Cutter (Insect Thrall): The insect thrall may spend additional successes to give the target -1 Physical Armor per success. This may not destroy thread armor.
Clip the Wing (Opponent)

Grab and Bite (Insect Thrall, Claws)

Personal Space Invader (Insect Thrall, Invoke Grasping Claws): The insect thrall may spend additional successes to give the target -4 Movement Rate per success until the end of the next round.
Pounce (Insect Thrall)
Pry Loose (Opponent, Close Combat)

Equipment: Broadsword

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