As the fiends are to evil, and the angels to good, the ei’risai (both singular and plural) are to pure, primal chaos. Found on many of the wildest planes, they bask in the churning forces and bursts of energy that are chaos and madness incarnate.No two are precisely alike, for nothing in their biology is ordered or predictable. That said, they can be divided into five general types. While physical appearance varies widely — even within a given category — these types represent specific stages in ei’risai development. Oddly, ei’risai do not “age” with the passage of time, but rather based entirely on how many offspring they have spawned. The precise number of offspring required before an ei’risai advances to the next type is unknown, assuming any true pattern even exists to be detected.
Although not evil in the most technical terms, the ei’risai live for disorder and turmoil, and their presence on the material plane almost always ends in violence, pain and death. They are fearsome creatures, whose chaotic natures belie their intelligence, their cunning and their ability to plan.
Ei’risai normally stand between 8 and 12 feet tall, and weigh anywhere from 700 to 1,200 pounds. They speak their own language. Greater, master, and ancestor ei’risai also speak Common, and ancestor ei’risai can communicate telepathically.
Ei’risai are relatively straightforward combatants, attacking with whichever natural weapons their particular biology offers. They thrill in the chaos of battle and prefer to melee where possible, but they are intelligent enough to use their special abilities tactically, and not to engage in blatantly suicidal conflicts. An ei’risai’s natural weapons, and any weapons it wields, are treated as chaotic-aligned for purposes of overcoming damage reduction.
All ei’risai are immune to one specific energy type (acid, cold, electricity, fire, or sonic), and have resistance 5 to all other types. The specific energy to which a given ei’risai is immune is determined on a case-by-case basis. (See below.)
Any ei’risai can attempt to summon another ei’risai, as if casting a summon monster spell, but with limited chance of success. Success or failure is determined by rolling d%, and varies based on the type of ei’risai. Summoned creatures automatically return whence they came after 1 hour. An ei’risai that has just been summoned cannot use its own summon ability for 1 hour. Ei’risai rarely use this ability, as they do not trust one another anymore than they trust other creatures. Only in a life-or-death situation will an ei’risai even consider calling on another for aid.
The ei’risai do not reproduce through normal means. Rather, they infect their victims with a supernatural substance, somewhere between a poison and a plague. Any time someone is injured by an ei’risai’s natural attacks, he must attempt a Fortitude save (DC varies by type, and is Constitution-based). If he succeeds, the injected substances does not take hold in his system, and he is immune to the Pandemoniac corruption of that particular ei’risai for 24 hours.
If the victim fails, a faint oil secreted by all ei’risai works its way into his bloodstream. The victim appears perfectly normal and healthy for 3d6 days. Once that time expires, the victim suddenly grows deathly ill. He develops open lesions all over his body, which slowly leak a strange, dull gray fluid. His eyes glaze over with a green film, and he begins to cough up mucus tainted with blood and that same gray sludge. He suffers a penalty of 1d10+5 to all ability scores (roll separately for each), minimum 1. At any point in the process, even before symptoms are visible, a remove disease spell destroys the substance in the bloodstream. Once symptoms are visible, a DC 25 Heal check can also save the victim. Because this requires various herbs and substances that are toxic in their own right, however, each Heal attempt (successful or not) requires that the victim make a Fortitude save or suffer 1 point of Constitution damage.
The victim dies 3d12 hours after symptoms first appear, unless he has been cured. The corpse immediately bursts open in a cloud of corruption and decay, and a new ei’risai emerges. This is normally a lesser ei’risai, but if the victim was a spellcaster who drew on extraplanar sources for his magics (such as a cleric who called on a specific deity, or a wizard specialized in conjuration spells), the emergent ei’risai is of the medial variety.
No two ei’risai are exactly the same. When preparing to use an ei’risai, the DM should roll once on each of the following charts, or select the traits she prefers. Note that these physical features have little mechanical impact on game play,except where otherwise noted; they are primarily cosmetic alterations, displaying the truly chaotic nature of these creatures. Note that all ei’risai are at least vaguely humanoid in shape, unless the results on the chart make that utterly impossible.
Because of their varied appearance, no physical descriptions are given in the entries for individual types of ei’risai, as presented below. It is almost impossible to tell one type from another without close examination of their abilities. Determining an ei’risai’s type on sight requires a DC 25 Knowledge (the planes) check.
|1||Frog or toad|
|3||Great cat (such as a lion or a panther)|
|8||Raptor (such as a hawk or an owl)|
|1||Paws (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are claws.The paws may be canine, feline, lupine, ursine, or anything else desired; the type of paw usually matches the head, in terms of species, but it need not.)|
|2||Wings (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are slams. The wings do not allow flight.)|
|3||Tentacles (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are slams.)|
|4||Primate hands (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are slams. Alternatively, a few such ei’risai may choose to wield weapons instead.)|
|5||Humanoid hands (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are slams. Alternatively, a few such ei’risai may choose to wield weapons instead.)|
|6||Hooves (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are slams.)|
|7||Pincers (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are claws. The pincers may be scorpion-like, lobster-like, or any other possibility.)|
|8||Reptilian claws. (Ei’risai’s secondary attacks are claws.)|
|9||No arms. (The ei’risai may have no secondary attack, unless it gains it from some other feature, such as a tail.)|
|10||Roll twice, ignoring future results of 9 or 10, and apply one result to each arm.|
|1||Frog/toad (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Acrobatics checks)|
|2||Hound (The ei’risai gains an additional +5 ft. to base speed)|
|3||Great cat (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Stealth checks)|
|4||Ram (The ei’risai gains an additional +2 bonus to hit when making a charge attack or bull rush)|
|5||Wolf (The ei’risai gains an additional +5 ft. to base speed)|
|6||Snake (The ei’risai has no legs, but has the lower body of a serpent; +4 bonus to resist being tripped or bull rushed)|
|7||Squid (The ei’risai’s land speed is reduced by half, but it gains a swim speed of 30 ft.)|
|8||Raptor (The ei’risai’s land speed is reduced by 5 ft., but it gains a +4 racial bonus to Acrobatics checks)|
|9||Horse (The ei’risai gains an additional +10 ft. to base speed, but suffers a –5 to Acrobatics checks)|
|10||Bull (The ei’risai gains an additional +2 bonus to hit when making a charge attack or bull rush)|
|11||Baboon (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Climb checks)|
|12||Weasel (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Climb checks)|
|13||Bear (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Acrobatics checks)|
|14||Goat (The ei’risai gains an additional +2 bonus to hit when making a charge attack or bull rush)|
|15||Alligator (The ei’risai gains a Swim speed of 20 ft.)|
|16||Lizard (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Climb checks)|
|17||Hyena (The ei’risai gains an additional +5 ft. to base speed)|
|18||Ape (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Acrobatics checks)|
|19||Rat (The ei’risai gains an additional +4 racial bonus to Stealth checks)|
|20||Boar (The ei’risai gains an additional +2 bonus to hit when making a charge attack or bull rush)|
|5–6||Cosmetic (dog, cat, rat, etc.)|
|7||Heavy (The ei’risai can make a slam attack with its tail in place of one of its secondary attacks; this slam deals damage equal to the ei’risai’s bite, but gains only one-half Strength. The tail can resemble an alligator’s tail, a squid’s tentacle, or the like)|
|8||Stinging (The ei’risai can make a sting attack with its tail in place of its secondary attacks; this sting deals damage equal to the ei’risai’s bite, but gains only one-half Strength. The tail can resemble a scorpion’s tail, a jellyfish tendril, or the like.)|
|9||Prehensile (The ei’risai cannot attack with its tail, but it can lift and manipulate small objects. The tail can resemble a monkey’s tail, a small tentacle, or the like.)|
|10||Roll twice, ignoring any results of 1–4, or 10.The ei’risai has two tails, but can only make use of one in any given round.|
|1||Scaly, like a snake or lizard|
|2||Rough and leathery, like a toad|
|3||Hairy, like a horse or bull|
|4||Furry, like a dog or cat|
|6||Heavy scales, like an alligator (The ei’risai’s movement is reduced by 10 ft., but it gains an additional +4 bonus to natural armor)|
|7||Rubbery, like a squid|
|9||Sandy, rocky, or made of some other hard and apparently inorganic material|
|10||Roll twice, ignoring any further results of 10. The ei’risai has both types of skin, one fading into the other over the length of its body. (If it is covered in part with heavy scales, it suffers –5 ft. to movement and gains +2 to natural armor.)|
|5||Apparently diseased (mange, lesions, etc.)|
|6||Bony protrusions at various points along the body (The ei’risai does an additional +2 points of damage when attempting to injure a foe during a grapple.)|
|7||Limbs or features off-center|
|8||Joints bend backwards|
|9||Extra eyes (The ei’risai suffers only a –1 penalty to AC when flanked, rather than the standard –2. May bite with its second head in place of its normal secondary attacks.)|
|11||Secretes slime (The ei’risai gains +4 bonus to Escape Artist checks.)|
|13||Mouth opens vertically, not horizontally|
|14||Lizard-like tongue constantly flicks in and out|
|15||Has very rough, raspy, and even wet breathing|
|17||Has an extra limb (Either non-functional, or only functional if the ei’risai does not use one of its standard limbs that round; in other words, this does not grant any extra attacks or actions)|
|18||Has an extra head (The ei’risai suffers only a –1 penalty to AC when flanked, rather than the standard –2. May bite with its second head in place of its normal secondary attacks.)|
|19||Roll twice; do not ignore any further results of 19 or 20.|
|20||Roll three times; do not ignore any further results of 19 or 20.|
Remember that all ei’risai have resistance 5 against all types of energy to which they are not immune.
The Iconic Bestiary: Classics of Fantasy Copyright 2005, Lions Den Press; Author Ari Marmell