Saturday, April 7, 2018

Pudding (black)

Found in subterranean complexes, where each creature of the number appearing may never encounter one another, the black pudding may serve to form a barrier across a particular passage or it may "hunt" by moving forward with a steady approach, catching a creature sleeping or one that is otherwise helpless. The pudding has no intelligence, though many continue to believe that the pudding's habit of making a pest of itself is done with conscious intent.

The monster attacks by forming a pseudopod from its body, which it can then whip at a defender with a likely chance of hitting. The pseudopod will then be absorbed again by the body, with time for a new one to form for its next attack. Only one pseudopod can be formed by the creature each round, but it may be on any side of the creature. The black pudding has no "back" so it cannot be flanked.

As well, the creature cannot be stunned, for though it can be attacked by normal weapons, no part of the body is made off balance by another part being attacked. This is true of all jellies, slimes and oozes.

Corrosion

The monster has a corrosive effect against metal or wood. It can eat through a 1 in. thick door in 5 rounds; an iron door will require twice that much time. It can be affected with normal weapons, but each time it is touched with either a wooden or a metal weapon, the weapon will thereafter subtract 1 from the damage that it does, due to being eaten away by the pudding. It will have a similar effect against metal and wooden magical items.

In turn, each time the monster hits metal or wooden armor instead of flesh (by hitting AC 10 but not the actual defender), the armor will be reduced by 1 armor class. Chain mail, for example, which provides an armor class of 5, will be reduced to providing an armor class of 7 within just a few hits. Once reduced to AC 10, the chain mail will be considered to have fallen off and become worthless.

There is no saving throw for normal items against this corrosive effect. Magic, however, will give some protection for metal and wooden items. Each time a magic item is struck, the item is entitled to a saving throw against acid (with the magic's bonus added, for weapons and armor only). If the roll succeeds, the item is not destroyed, but survives the blow. Otherwise, the magic item may be destroyed; even a weapon will suffer the effects described for normal items.

The corrosive effect of black puddings has no special effect against cloth, ceramic, glass or stone.

Physical Properties

Rumors that black puddings can be broken up with weapons or with lightning have proven to be false. No known way to split a black pudding in pieces has been discovered, though the creature does reproduce by biological fission. Puddings are immune to cold and lightning, but are affected by fire.

Like other oozes, the black pudding can pass through a hole smaller than the diameter of a gold coin (about a ¼ in.), though it can take 21-30 rounds to fit through a hole this size. Because of this, it can be dreadfully difficult to deny entry to these creatures. The black pudding can move over any surface ~ floor, walls and ceiling ~ and may not be observed in darkness until it flows from the ceiling onto someone walking beneath. The black pudding produces no appreciable light and will not be detected by infravision; normal light may reveal it as nothing but a large black surface, as when the black pudding is not moving it can be easily mistaken for natural rock.

Depending upon the clime, a black pudding may be differently colored. The white variety inhabits ice and snow caves. A grey-blue variety is known to inhabit underwater subterranean grottos, preferring to conceal itself in sand. A brown variety prefers active and semi-active volcanic tunnels.

See Bestiary

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