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Thirteenth Age Monster Creation


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No articles on the cover at all, so I will pick some and see what I can riff off the cover.

But first, a man with one of the most absolutely STUPID names I have ever seen. Clark Ashton Smith, who could give us evocative names like Tsathoggua, created one of the worst fantasy names I have ever seen.

That can mean only one thing.

Inevitably, the D Company (I did posts on the D Company here and here with their archfoes here. ) is going to have to face this man.


This name is so bad, I think it probably shortens your lifespan.

Worse, he's supposed to be a scary, evil badguy. A sorceror who is bored out of his mind from living too long, so he does terrible things just because they're new and he's never turned an entire city into a turnip yet. In the story he's from, he kidnaps women and turns them to stone, then when people come to rescue them, he watches them navigate his dungeon, then turns them into beasts who become the guard monsters of his dungeon.

In other words, while his name is stupid beyond belief, he can make a suitable nemesis for the Company of D, or actual player characters. Manipulating Erac's Other Cousin, Twice Removed and Warduck into doing his bidding would likely be easy for him, and having some real foes to deal with would relieve his endless boredom.

Possibly he changed their name just to amuse himself. He certainly would mess with your PCs just to experience something other than boredom.

So here are his stats for when inevitably the PCs want to hack him into hamburger.

Maal Dweb
In a distant age, Maal Dweb was born and learned magic. He has lived for ages and is now *bored out of his mind*. He spends his time and vast arcane might screwing with people because he has nothing better left to do he hasn't already done a hundred times. He regards everyone around him as a tool to be used and manipulated, because he sees everyone, including the Icons, as beneath him. PCs who do some completely insane thing he hasn't seen before may well be spared as 'payment' for entertaining him. If you are careful and cautious and wise... he regards you as boring trash. (The Company of D, who can't do anything the normal way, are thus a good source of entertainment for him.) He likes to build death mazes, then watch adventurers blunder around in them.
Double-Strength 11th level Caster [humanoid]
Initiative: +15

Poison Dagger +16 vs. AC—100 damage and 15 ongoing poison damage (save ends)
C: Gaze Upon Daoloth +16 vs. PD (vs. 1 target up to faraway)-- 140 psychic damage and stuck (save ends)
If the target fails the first save: The target is also hampered (save ends)​
If the target fails the second save: The target is also weakened (save ends)​
If the target fails the third save: The target turns to stone and will require ritual magic to turn back.​
C: Spiral into Madness +16 vs MD (vs. 1d3 targets up to faraway) -- 70 psychic damage and confused (save ends)
C: Breath of the Void +16 vs PD (once per battle against 1 target up to faraway) --140 Necrotic and reduce their initiative rating for the fight by 2d6.
Open the Secret Highways of Azaranthus: As a quick action, once per battle, he and up to four allies can teleport away to any location he has ever seen in the Overworld, Underworld, or the normal surface world. He uses this to run away if he is close to death. A campaign victory can be used to block this after the first time, or ritual magic. A wizard with Teleport can make a DC 30 Intelligence check to trace the jump and take the party to him.
Potent Mind: He has resist Psychic 16+
King of the Maze: As a quick action, he can command one of his followers to move or make a basic attack.
AC 25
PD 21 HP 576
MD 27

Maal has intelligent iron golems who serve him and lesser golems as well. He can also use rituals to summon and bind a variety of horrors.


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The Items of Orlow the Indolent

It is entirely possible that Orlow the Indolent was the laziest wizard ever to sit still and not move much. To be fair, he did study magic enough to create a great array of magical items, some of which required spending hundreds of gold coins to do something that could be done by something you could buy for coppers, if you were willing to get up and go buy it.

He was not.

Items Found in Orlow's Den:
  • Match of Many Lights: This match can be used over and over and over and over; it otherwise functions like a normal match.
  • Brush of Colors: Who needs paint when this painter's brush paints any color you wish, whenever you wish. You still have to actually move the brush yourself.
  • Lasting Pipe: Once you put a little tobacco in, you can smoke it until the end of time.
  • Torch of Control: By clapping your hands, you turn this torch on and off and it's never consumed.
  • Boots of Comfortableness: Resizing to fit any wearer, man, these are some comfortable boots.
  • Quill of Longwriting: Who needs ink when you have a quill which can write until your hand cramps?
  • Enlarging Glass: Historians continue to debate whether this is magical at all, because it appears to just be a magnifying glass.
  • Obedient Hourglass: Like the Torch of Control, it claps on and off; it also can be set to a timer of any length up to 10 days, adjusting its flow rate.
  • Potion of Housecat Control: Adventurer-Tier consumable. It allows you to control any housecat for 1d6 + your Int Bonus hours. It obeys any orders to the limit of a housecat's understanding.
  • Scroll of Erasing: Clap your hands over and the scroll goes blank. In other words, reusable paper. Orlow used this to compose, then used a rite to transfer it to permanent storage if it was good enough.

Items Created for Orlow's Wife, Franchesca
  • Spoon of Stirring: Clapping on and off, this spoon stirs a pot until you tell it to stop.
  • Spoon of Tasting: Unlike most of Orlow's items, this actually requires you to attune to it. Thrust into food, it gives you the sensation of tasting it without having to eat any of it. This also alerts you if the food is poisoned! (Quirk: You won't eat anything unless you taste it with the spoon first.)
  • Sweet Onion Seed: Placed into food, it conjures forth slivers of onion to the needs of the recipe. Be careful not to eat it, or it will get stuck in your stomach, conjuring onion slivers whenever you eat.
  • Bottle of Pleasant Odors: Claps on and off; it fills a 20 by 20 by 20 foot area with pleasant scents. This doesn't eliminate things like poison gas; it just makes them hard to smell.
  • Rag of Drying: Any spilled liquid can be sopped up by this; the liquid is then teleported to the nearest ocean. It does require you to move around to sop it all up.
  • Mug of Warming: This keeps hot liquids hot and actually also keeps cold liquids cold. It cannot of itself warm or cool something, however.
  • Box of Chocolate Coating: This coats whatever you put in it with chocolate when you clap your hands. It is a 1 foot cube.
  • Jug of Dyeing (Red, Blue, or Yellow): This one gallon jug comes in one of three colors and when you clap your hand, it dyes anything you put into it that color. If you have all three, you can make things Orange, Purple, or Green by using the appropriate jugs in a row; something dyed in all three turns white.
  • Broom of Sweeping: When you clap your hands, it begins sweeping the room you are in; it is as fast as a normal sweeper.
  • Eternal Salt Shaker: A salt shaker which never runs out of salt; it is dispensed like a normal shaker.
  • Endless Pepper Grinder: You can keep cranking out pepper with this thing forever.
  • Semi-Endless Peanut Bag: This small bag is about the size of a dice bag; it fills with peanuts once an hour. If full, it waits for the next hour tick and checks again.
  • Ever-Damp Sponge: Did you know that sponges survived all five Great Extinctions and will probably survive the Sixth, outliving humanity? Bastards. This small square of sponge is always damp and useful to wipe up messes.
  • Cloth of Polishing: Place this on something that needs polishing. Clap your hands and it will polish the item.
  • Ever-Clean Towel: This towel never gets filthy. It is rumored that Jubliex is terrified of it, but I wouldn't count on that.
  • Needle of Sewing: This gives +10 per tier of the user to any Sewing-related test. It only works on cloth or leather and cannot be used for medical purposes.


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Like the previous, short on cover words.

But I'll start with this cover, which is very evocative.

The ruins of Bar-Shazar

In what is now the land of Eld, there once stood the great city of Bar-Shazar, founded by rebels against the Empire in a past age. Religious disagreement led its peoples to flee out of the Empire and found their own state for a time. The Empire was not strong enough to conquer them despite their proximity and for a time, they flourished. Bar-Shazar traded especialy with Santa Cora, up and down the Grandfather River. Those too heretical for Santa Cora fled to Bar-Shazar. Eventually, however, the sects fought each other for power and with the city weakened, it fell to the Owlbear Riders, who descended from the Owl Barrens and plundered the city. Many of its temples still stand, but the land is abandoned and avoided by the current masters of Eld.

The Cup of Bar-Shazar (Artifact)
The Cup of Bar-Shazar was forged by Bar-Shazar himself, the founder of the sect which created the city and state. Bar-Shazar rejected the distinction between gods of light and darkness in favor of concepts of law and chaos. He endorsed both light and dark gods he saw as aligned to law. Capricious gods of both light and dark were banned. His cup, used in worship ceremonies, thus carries the power of Law within it. The Crusader, who embodies both Law and the Dark, wants it. The Priestess wants it as well, for it is holy.
Adventurer Tier Power: Establish Order (Refresh 11+): Any magic item used by you or an ally with a random benefit always provides the average benefit. This lasts the entire battle. (Quirk: You are bothered by both really bad luck and really good luck. )
Champion Tier Power: Return to Normalcy (Refresh 16+): The bearer and all allies immediately save against all ongoing conditions as a free action. If the bearer is epic tier, everyone adds +4 to the save. (Quirk: You become agitated when you have a condition you can't get rid of. )
Epic Tier Power: Smite Chaos (Refresh 11+): For the duration of the battle, you can use a move action to add +4d8 holy damage to all of your attacks for the round; this is only against creatures which are Chaotic (such as demons). (Quirk: You can't retreat from Chaotics unless very badly outnumbered or down to only a few HP )

The Bowl of Bar-Shazar (Artifact)
The Bowl of Bar-Shazar was forged by Bar-Shazar himself, the founder of the sect which created the city and state. Bar-Shazar rejected the distinction between gods of light and darkness in favor of concepts of law and chaos. He endorsed both light and dark gods he saw as aligned to law. Capricious gods of both light and dark were banned. His bowl, used in worship ceremonies, thus carries the power of Law within it. The Crusader, who embodies both Law and the Dark, wants it. The Priestess wants it as well, for it is holy.
Adventurer Tier Power: Heal the Worthy (Refresh 11+): Once a battle, as a quick action, you can enable all your allies to burn a recovery to heal, adding +1d6/2d6/4d6, depending on the tier. This only works on those aligned with law. (Quirk: You worry a lot about people's morality. )
Champion Tier Power: Smite the Wicked (Refresh 16+): For the duration of the battle, all your attacks also impose the condition Vulnerable (save ends). This does not work on those aligned with law. (Quirk: Once you start fighting someone, you find it hard to stop until they lose. Even if it's unwise to stand your ground. )
Epic Tier Power: Feed the Worthy (Refresh 11+): Once a week, you can produce enough food from the bowl to feed 100 * your Wisdom bonus worth of people (a minimum of 100) for a week. This food only sustains those who are aligned with law. (Quirk: You don't like sharing food with anyone who isn't up to your moral standards )

Priest Specter
Once a holy person, now you are an evil ghost who views all intruders as more of the damnable owlbear-riders, worthy only to be PUNISHED.
Double-strength 6th level spoiler [undead]

Initiative: +9
Icy, life-draining touch +10 vs. PD—30 negative energy damage
Natural even hit or miss: Each enemy engaged with the specter (including the target) takes 4 negative energy damage.​
R: Crisis of Faith +10 vs. MD—30 negative energy damage and the target's MD drops by 4 and the target takes 12 points of damage every time they use anything other than a basic attack against any foe (save ends both)
Punishing aura: When an enemy attacks the specter and misses, it takes 8 negative energy damage.
Wrack and ruin: While a specter is in the battle, the PCs don’t add the escalation die to attack rolls, but it does. In the presence of a specter, mortals feel as though they are about to die, and they’re generally right.
Healing drain: When an enemy engaged with a specter heals, it heals only half the normal hit points, and the specter heals the other half (round down).

AC 19
PD 15 HP 160
MD 19


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The Owlbear Riders are now, thankfully, extinct, but things from past ages often show up by a combination of time travel, things held in stasis, or idiots reinventing things means you may encounter some.

Trained Riding Owlbear
In a past age, aided by the High Druid, a tribe of barbarians tamed owlbears and trained them for riding.
Large 4th level wrecker [beast]
Initiative: +8

Claws +9 vs. AC (vs 2 targets, or one target twice)—18 damage
If both claws hit: The target is stuck (save ends)​
Owl Beak: The Owlbear can make a Beak attack if a foe is stuck.
Beak +9 vs PD -- 30 damage and 5 ongoing damage (save ends)​
On an Even Roll: 10 psychic damage (from the fear of being pecked)​
Feed the cubs: An owlbear that scores a critical hit against a stuck enemy tears a piece of the creature off (GM chooses a limb) and will subsequently attempt to retreat with the prize to feed its cubs. The torn-up enemy is stunned until the end of its next turn.
Silent hunter: Owlbears are nearly silent until they strike. Checks to hear them approaching take a –5 penalty.
Night Hunter: It only suffers penalties in absolute darkness.

AC 18
PD 16 HP 100
MD 12

Owlbear Rider

In a past age, aided by the High Druid, a tribe of barbarians tamed owlbears and trained them for riding.
4th level leader [humanoid]
Initiative: +8

Sword Swipe +9 vs. AC -- 14 damage and their mount gains +2 to hit the target on its next attack.
Strike From Above: While mounted, they can make an Overhand Swipe
Overhand Swipe +12 vs AC --14 damage and their mount gains +4 to hit the target on its next attack
16+: The target is vulnerable (save ends)​
Stay Mounted: Any power which applies forced movement to the Rider takes his mount with him, if he is mounted.
Silent Rider: While mounted, they benefit from the Silent Hunter power of their Owlbear.
Night Hunter: It only suffers penalties in absolute darkness.

AC 20
PD 18 HP 54
MD 14

Battle Owl

Flocks of trained fighting owls accompanied the Owlbear Riders, serving the same roll dogs have for many hunters.
4th level mook [beast]
Initiative: +10

Wing Buffet +9 vs. AC -- 7 damage
16+: They latch onto the foe, requiring a DC 20 Strength check to knock them loose. If the foe is tiny, they carry them off, otherwise... they try and remain latched on, trying.​
Bite +9 vs PD (on a foe they have latched onto) -- 7 damage and 3 ongoing damage (save ends)
Diving Pass: If not engaged with a foe, they can move, attack with a Wing Buffet, then move again.
Trained to Mob: +1 to hit per Owl engaged with the foe
Flight: They fly like a real world owl.
Silent hunter: Owls are nearly silent until they strike. Checks to hear them approaching take a –5 penalty.
Night Hunter: It only suffers penalties in absolute darkness.

AC 20
PD 18 HP 14
MD 14
Kill one Battle Owl for every 14 damage you deal to the mob.


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That's rather some kind of awesome!

Are the Barbarian riders Bears?
Bears who ride owlbears would be kind of hilarious.

Lesser Treasures of Bar-Shazar

Belt of Concealment

This dragon-leather belt is hand-crafted with a silver buckle.
Default bonus: Increase your maximum recoveries: by 1 (adventurer); by 2 (champion); by 3 (epic).
Power: This has three pouches per tier of the wearer; you can store one hand-holdable object in each pouch and call it to your hand with a quick action. You can also put clothing/armor items in it and don them with a quick action, storing your current clothing in the pouch.
Quirk: You spend twice as much time packing as you dither over how to fill your pouches.

Carpet of Greeting
This is a beautiful woolen carpet decorated with geometric shapes.
Default bonus: +1 bonus per tier when trying to show good manners.
Minor Power: It shrinks to the size of a handkerchief for transport as a quick action and turns back to normal as a quick action.
Power: (Refresh 11+) For one scene, you know the proper way to greet anyone if they can be negotiated with at all and gain all the proper manners. You must both sit on the carpet. This grants a +4 bonus to make a good impression and follow proper etiquette. This stacks with the default bonus.
Quirk: You put a strong emphasis on good manners.

Holy Arrow of Demon Slaying
This arrow is marked with tiny gold runes.
Default bonus: This inflicts holy damage instead of its normal level.
Power: Against any evil creature from another plane, you inflict 5 ongoing holy damage per tier (save ends)

Holy Cup of Healing
This is a golden cup; when filled with wine, it begins to glow softly.
Default bonus: Attack and damage with a divine spell or attack: +1 (adventurer); +2 (champion); +3 (epic).
Power: (Refresh 11+) As a quick action, you can heal an ally within nearby of you, letting them spend a recovery + 1d6/2d6/4d6 depending on tier.
Quirk: You are uncomfortable drinking from any other cup.

Mask of Sanctuary
This is a golden mask of the goddess of peace.
Default bonus: Mental defense: +1 MD (adventurer); +2 MD (champion); +3 MD (epic).
Power: (Refresh 11+) As a quick action, you can activate the Sanctuary power. As long as you don't attack anyone and avoid interacting with things you don't own, anyone wanting to attack you must make a hard save to do so. You can use powers like healing your allies.
Quirk: You can't start a fight.

Slippers of Graceful Movement
This is a pair of green silken slippers.
Default bonus: Disengage checks and other checks involving fancy footwork: +1 bonus (adventurer); +2 bonus (champion); +3 bonus (epic).
Power: (Refresh 11+) They grant a +4 bonus to any kind of graceful movement, such as dance. You can also trigger them to try to avoid a trap. This stacks with the default bonus.
Quirk: You are offended by rough, crude motions.

Tunic of Comfort
This tunic changes into clothing appropriate for any weather when needed.
Default bonus: Armor class: +1 AC (adventurer); +2 AC (champion); +3 AC (epic).
Power: You ignore all penalties for climate within the range humans can normally survive.
Quirk: You forget others cannot survive the places you can go as easily as you can.
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