This brutish, one-eyed giant carries a large, well-made axe and wears a simple tunic. He has a head of shaggy hair, and the lower half of his face is obscured by a bristly, dark beard.
Ohancanu CR 5
Str 23, Dex 14, Con 19, Int 7, Wis 14, Cha 8
Base Atk +3; CMB +10; CMD 22
Feats Improved Initiative, Intimidating Prowess, Power Attack, Weapon Focus (greataxe)
Skills Climb +16, Intimidate +12, Perception +12, Swim +16
Languages Aklo, Common, Sylvan
White Hairs (Su)
An ohancanu has 2d4 white hairs that connect not only to its head, but to its essence. If one of these hairs is plucked with a successful steal combat maneuver, the ohancanu gains 2 negative levels. The ohancanu automatically regrows the lost white hair and recovers the negative levels after 24 hours.
Environment temperate forests
Organization solitary or hunting party (2–6)
Treasure standard (mwk greataxe, other treasure)
Ohancanus are massive, brutal forest creatures that delight in destruction. Appearing as giant humanoids, ohancanus are thick and powerfully muscled, with simian arms that reach nearly to the ground. Although ohancanus have a single eye in the center of their foreheads, they are fey creatures and unrelated to the ancient cyclops race.
Ohancanus have wide noses and large mouths filled with blunt teeth. All ohancanus are hirsute; males have full, thick beards and the rare females (called ohancanas) have long, unruly hair on their heads. All ohancanus have dark hair with a few white strands; on males, these white strands grow in their beards, while on females, they sprout from their heads. The white strands anchor the ohancanu’s essence, so pulling out these strands causes the fey to weaken and die.
An ohancanu stands 10 feet tall and weighs about 800 pounds.
Ohancanus are rapacious and destructive, befouling the forests in which they live. They block up streams in order to grab trapped fish, cause rockslides to wound prey, and hew down healthy trees just for the joy of killing. Ohancanus like to hunt, but they don’t have the patience to set traps or wait in ambush; instead, they charge at their prey with their axes held high.
Ohancanus kill far more game than they eat and leave the carcasses to rot.
Ohancanus often live for centuries, spending their years ranging throughout large forests. They prefer to keep on the move and rarely stay in one location for more than a few days unless a need arises, such as manufacturing a new axe or waiting out a fierce and lengthy storm. Because they are so long-lived, ohancanus develop good instincts for where to find the easiest prey and how to avoid the few predators they can’t simply slaughter.
Despite their brutal disregard for the forest and its creatures, ohancanus’ life cycle is inherently tied to old trees in deep forests. Ohancanus do not conceive or bear young. Instead, they murder the old and feeble among their kind and carve out their organs to bury among the roots of the oldest tree they can find. A year later, a young ohancanu bursts free from the earth in the same spot. If the burial tree is particularly vigorous, it might spawn twin or triplet ohancanus. Ohancanus emerge with rudimentary survival skills and the ability to speak; most dimly recall learning these skills from the spirit of their butchered “parent” while developing underground.
Ohancanus are born with a full head of hair (and, for males, a beard), including the white hairs that are so debilitating when plucked. Ohancanus emerge with only a few white hairs, but an ohancanu that survives a nearfatal experience (such as a long fall or a lightning strike) might sprout an additional white hair. An ohancanu with many white hairs is called a “death dodger” by admiring companions. Pulling out an ohancanu’s white hair is not only enervating, but also painful and demoralizing; an ohancanu with a plucked hair is likely to flee to a place of safety until the white hair regrows.
Ohancanus are surprisingly nimble, given their great size, and are naturally athletic. They are agile climbers, can swim well, and can walk at a constant, plodding pace for days without tiring.
Habitat and Society
Ohancanus inhabit old-growth forests and wander throughout their lives, searching for civilized structures to destroy, creatures to terrorize, and food to sate their prodigious appetites. Ohancanus prefer a diet of nuts, berries, and fresh meat (particularly humanoids and game animals such as deer and rabbits), but they can draw sustenance from most organic matter, including bark and carrion.
Though they wander too much to establish true lairs, ohancanus sometimes form campsites in shallow caves or on small islands. These sites are marked by years of occasional occupation by wandering ohancanus and often contain old bones, forgotten trinkets, and simple whetstones to keep axes sharp. A traveler discovering an unoccupied ohancanu campsite is well advised to move on, as one of these itinerant brutes might return to the campsite at any time.
Ohancanus take great joy in destroying things, particularly things built by humanoids. They eagerly demolish bridges, cottages, fences, and other structures with a compulsion that borders on fanaticism. They gleefully attack humanoid defenders as well, in order to fill their bellies after the effort of wanton destruction.
If a structure is too well defended for an ohancanu to overcome alone, he retreats only long enough to gather allies before returning to attack again.
Despite their brutish malevolence, ohancanus are social creatures and enjoy the company of their own kind. Ohancanus often congregate to form small hunting groups, although such groups rarely work well together. If the group corners appetizing prey, such as a large deer or a plump gnome, the ohancanus often fall to bickering over who claims it. Wily prey can turn the greedy ohancanus against each other long enough to flee. In the face of serious danger, ohancanus value their own lives over all other concerns, trampling their companions in a rush to escape. The only time ohancanus collaborate well is when destroying a large structure such as a dam, fort, or small settlement.
Once every 4 years, the ohancanus of a forest gather in a large moot to exchange information, settle grudges, butcher the elderly, and participate in brutal sports. Although wrestling and sparring are popular pastimes, no ohancanu will pull the beard or hair of another. Pulling out the white hair of another ohancanu, even by accident, is one of the few taboos among these brutal fey.
Ohancanus are not religious, but they have a deep respect for dramatic natural phenomena such as thunderstorms, tornadoes, and forest fires. When a storm approaches, ohancanus collect prisoners to “sacrifice” to the storm by lashing them to the tops of windblown trees or pinning them beneath boulders in the path of flash floods.
Ohancanus particularly enjoy riddles, although their limited intellect means that they have difficulty making up new riddles and that even their hardest riddles would be generally considered quite simple. Ohancanus typically see other creatures as prey to consume or predators to avoid, but a canny traveler can offer a riddle to an ohancanu to quell its bloodlust. Ohancanus’ patience for exchanging riddles only extends so far, though, as they get frustrated when they cannot answer a riddle and angry when their simple riddles are easily answered. Most travelers seek to distract an ohancanu just long enough to plan an escape or lure the creature into squatting low enough to yank out one of his white hairs and send him fleeing. Discovering just the right level of difficulty to appease ohancanus without frustrating them enough to trigger their attacks is a puzzle of a higher order than most riddles!
Pathfinder Adventure Path #116: Fangs of War © 2017, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Ron Lundeen, with John Compton, Adam Daigle, Crystal Frasier, Michelle Jones, and Mark Moreland.