Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Lava Drake

One of the most powerful drake species, lava drakes know exactly how dangerous they and their environments are.  It’s no wonder they are so arrogant in their dealings with humanoids and crave worship from beings like kobolds.  When you can bathe in lava that reduces other creatures to ash, of course you’re going to have a superiority complex.

Lava drakes should always attack from surprise, and ideally land right in the middle of the party—spewing pyroclastic vomit, shaking magma off itself like a dog after a bath, and generally causing as much damage as possible.

Lava drakes are hunting dwarves in the southwest passages of Dunatar.  They seem to be holed up in a particularly treacherous set of tunnels on the seventh level.  The only way to circle about and flush them out would be via the locked chambers used by the embalmers’ guild, but strangely they refuse entry to all, even in this time of crisis.

A lava drake “gardener” tends a collection of magma oozes in his tropical volcano home.  Once they grow to a sufficient size, he waits for a rainstorm and then lures the oozes aboveground to be petrified.  Storing their stony forms in various pools and hot springs near his lair, he releases the ravenous magma oozes to harry the flanks of anyone who he deems a threat.

Drake racing, using beasts with clipped wings, is a dangerous but intoxicating sport.  Heats are run according to size, typically featuring shadow, river, and forest drakes.  Scandal erupts when a new racing concern enters lava drakes in the forest drake class, particularly as that stable’s hands have also not been shy about throwing their weight around.

Pathfinder Bestiary 4 78

I’m showing my Baltimore pride with a secretly Preakness-inspired adventure seed there.

By sheer coincidence Pathfinder Adventure Path #92: The Hill Giant’s Pledge showed up at work today, featuring Russ Taylor’s “Ecology of the Drake,” an overview of all the drake species. 

A small but passionate crowd of pulp fans dig the lashunta.  Filby hooked us up with their inspiration:

Quick note that the lashuntas (or at least their women) are based on the Cupians from Ralph Milne Farley’s 1948 novel, The Radio Man. The Cupians were basically humans from Venus with antennae that let them communicate telepathically via radio waves. They were also oppressed by the ant-like Formians, which were lifted wholesale into D&D and made the transition to Pathfinder relatively unchanged.

Have you seen this Old Venus compilation, edited by George R. R. Martin and Gardner Dozois? Looks like a lot of people are giving the genre some love right now.

I have now—thanks!

Also, heads up!  I am going to have a contest!  Where you can win a free RPG hardcover!  Keep an eye on these posts over the next few days!  I’m not saying that to draw out the suspense; I just haven’t decided what the contest will be yet!  Exclamation marks are fun!

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