Thursday, July 3, 2014

Apocalypse Locust

Locusts are bad.  Intelligent, human-sized locusts are worse.  Once you add mythic power on top of that, you’re pretty much gilding the lily.  But the really terrible thing about apocalypse locusts is that a) they are more dangerous in groups (setting up a confusion-causing maddening drone) and b) their breath weapons are so unholy that they actually brand their victims, who then suffer visions and temptations so vile as to strip the class benefits from lawful and good characters.  After all, why mess around with contracts and seduction like some pompous devil when you can skip straight to the damnation—even if only for 24 hours?

So meeting an apocalypse locust should already be a faith-shattering experience all on its own. And that’s not even mentioning the fact that locust plagues are one of those pretty reliable signs of some kind of Revelation/Armageddon/Very Bad Time. 

Taxonomists of evil will note that while apocalypse locusts are chaotic evil and serve the demon lord Deskari in Golarion’s Abyss, the Bestiary 4 never goes so far as to give them the demon subtype.  Perhaps in your Abyss they are crafted by insectile qlippoths as a way to keep those polluting sinful souls away from the ranks of demonkind…or perhaps apocalypse locusts are simply a new branch of the Abyss’s ever-expanding family tree…

In Talin Head the neighborhood firehouses are all staffed by paladins and clerics of Surial, in her aspect as the Rescuer.  A series of arsons has left several firefighters burned and complaining of visions, and many of those have refused to return to duty or abandoned the order entirely.  An apocalypse locust is lighting the fires, using the conflagrations as cover while it brands the unsuspecting paladins, who then find their faith cruelly shaken.

A trade delegation to the Plane of Shadow is disrupted by demonic attacks.  A colony of apocalypse locusts has managed to hide themselves inside a d’ziriak hive city, and they come boiling out to drive away Material Plane intruders who might sniff out their long-term plans.

Preaching revelation, a pitborn tiefling prophesies a plague of locusts will descend upon the land…helped along by him, of course.  Adventurers rush to stop his machinations, but he always seems one step ahead of them.  When he finally does summon some apocalypse locusts, the pitborn discovers the fiends are not at all impressed by his demon-tainted blood.  They devour him first before they spread out to cause more devastation.

Pathfinder Bestiary 4 12

I’m on Cape Cod for the long weekend!  It’s time for more blogging from the beach!

Obviously, more locust-friendly fun can be found in the recently completed Wrath of the Righteous Adventure Path.

Speaking of apocalypse locusts, the life of a rodeo clown is a painful and solitary existence.  I know…FOR I AM A RODEO CLOWN.

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