This watery puddle reflects a distorted image of its surroundings, as though it were a window to another reality.
Warpglass Ooze CR 2
Speed 20 ft.
Melee 2 slams +4 (1d4+2 plus 1d4 acid)
Special Attacks compelling reflection
Any creature that touches a warpglass ooze or strikes it with a natural attack or unarmed strike takes 1d4 points of acid damage unless it succeeds at a DC 15 Reflex save. A creature that strikes a warpglass ooze with a melee weapon must succeed at a DC 15 Reflex save, or that weapon takes 1d4 points of acid damage. Ammunition that strikes a warpglass ooze is automatically destroyed after it inflicts its damage. The save DC is Constitution-based.
A warpglass ooze can move on the surface of water-based liquids as if using water walk.
Compelling Reflection (Su)
A warpglass ooze displays supernaturally captivating images of nearby creatures. A creature within 30 feet of a warpglass ooze must succeed at a DC 13 Will save at the beginning of its turn or be compelled to move toward the ooze and take no other actions for 1 round, avoiding any other dangers along its path (including any movement that would provoke attacks of opportunity). A creature can avoid the need to make the saving throw by not looking at the warpglass ooze, as with a gaze attack. If an affected creature ends its turn adjacent to the ooze, it touches the ooze and takes a –1 penalty on all Wisdom– and Charisma-based checks from the harrowing images it sees. This penalty stacks, up to a total of –4. The penalty is a curse effect that slowly fades with time, reducing the penalty by 1 every 24 hours until it reaches 0. A creature that successfully saves against this effect can’t be affected again by the same warpglass ooze’s compelling reflection for 24 hours. Sightless creatures can’t be affected by this ability, nor can creatures that cast no reflection (such as vampires). This is a mind-affecting compulsion effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.
Organization solitary, pair, or pool (3–8)
Warpglass oozes lurk in marshes and forests, masquerading as a simple puddle or stretching across the surface of a larger body of water. Tales say that a traveler can indeed see her future in the reflections of a warpglass ooze… if she can survive the creature’s enchanting magic and acidic caress. In fact, creatures that look upon these ambush predators do see a warped reflection of themselves—possibly dressed as a regal knight, weeping over an open grave, or holding aloft a valuable bauble—though there is no evidence the images are founded in reality.
Warpglass oozes aren’t particularly intelligent, but they are patient, favoring subtlety over brute combat.
The oozes enthrall their prey with fanciful images, compelling their victims to touch its acidic surface so the ooze can break down and digest the victim’s flesh. A warpglass ooze’s images might be whimsical or terrifying, but they always feature the viewing creature reflected in the ooze’s surface. Creatures that shake off the ooze’s compulsion find their minds lingering on the distorted reflections as they attempt to meet—or avoid—the fate they witnessed. If attacked, warpglass oozes extrude knots of protoplasm to bludgeon foes, but they often retreat in the face of powerful opposition. Warpglass oozes typically don’t pursue escaping prey as long as other food sources remain available, but if hungry enough, an ooze may follow a solitary creature.
A typical warpglass ooze is about 4 feet in diameter and a few inches thick, and it weighs about 250 pounds.
Barely sentient, warpglass oozes primarily concern themselves with the basics of survival. A warpglass ooze seeks out a spot where it can hide in plain sight, but with sufficient traffic to keep them sated. Warpglass oozes can subsist on nearly any sort of organic material, but they strongly prefer fresh meat to vegetation or carrion. As their preferred prey are animals and humanoids, both of whom are affected by their compelling reflection, warpglass oozes are usually found in well-used watering holes, ditches alongside well-traveled trails, and ponds near busy settlements. They generally avoid lairs near swift-moving water, as they aren’t skilled swimmers and can mimic only still water. Warpglass oozes remain in their selected location as long as food remains plentiful, moving on only if prey becomes scarce or if they are harassed or threatened.
Warpglass oozes reproduce asexually, splitting into two separate oozes after gaining sufficient mass through feeding (an ooze preparing to split might have the giant creature simple template). A pool of several warpglass oozes may form in particularly favorable areas where enough food allows them to frequently split.
Sages disagree on the origins of these strange oozes.
Habitat and Society
Though warpglass oozes thrive in nearly any environment, they frequently drift toward rural, stony areas where standing water is common. They are not unheard of in urban areas, but they rarely survive long there; larger cities don’t provide the time and privacy the oozes need to lure, slay, and digest prey, while smaller villages become alarmed more quickly at missing residents and seek out threats. Warpglass oozes can survive in arctic or desert climates, although they grow sluggish in such conditions. In cold environments, warpglass oozes learn to stiffen their surface to more closely resemble a sheet of ice. Desert denizens are frequently protective of watering holes and suspicious of small, clear puddles, so warpglass oozes often lurk under stony overhangs or amid enticing hot springs.
Warpglass oozes aren’t intelligent enough to form true societies, although pools of oozes sometimes work together. These pools often position one or two warpglass oozes to draw in prey, while the others slowly slink around behind their victims to cut off escape.
Few creatures have much use for the dangerous oozes except as near-mindless guardians. Nevertheless, some reclusive families of cliff giants keep and breed warpglass oozes. Able to safely handle the oozes due to their careful, patient training and resistance to the oozes’ acid, these giants believe they can divine a person’s fate by interpreting the reflected images and matching them with omens in the natural world.
Pathfinder Adventure Path #133: Secrets of Roderic’s Cove © 2018, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Adam Daigle, with James Jacobs, Mikko Kallio, Luis Loza, Jacob W. Michaels, and Conor J. Owens.