This wolf-like beast has a charred and blackened hide, its flesh split in places and seeping a fiery red ooze. The slaving creature stalks closer, snarling gutturally as cinders flicker from its maw.
Cinder Wolf CR 2
Speed 50 ft.
Melee bite +5 (1d6+4 plus 1d4 fire)
Special Attacks Trip
When encountered alone, a cinder wolf attempts to run down its prey, attacking only once its victim is too tired to put up a fight. In packs, they circle prey, trapping their victims between multiple pack members. Once the prey slows down, the cinder wolves surround their target and close in, setting themselves up to receive flanking bonuses. When fighting an opponent of its size or larger, a cinder wolf tries to trip its foe and attack it on the ground, giving itself and any pack members a better chance to bite.
An individual cinder wolf breaks off the attack if reduced to fewer than 5 hit points. A group of cinder wolves retreats if more than 75% of their original number are slain or have already fled.
Str 17, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 10
Base Atk +2; CMB +5; CMD 16 (20 vs trip)
Feats Skill Focus (Perception)
Skills Perception +10, Survival +7 (+11 to follow tracks); Racial Modifiers +2 Perception, +2 Survival (+6 to follow tracks)
SQ fiery body
A cinderwolf inflicts 1d4 points of fire damage when it bites a foe in addition to the normal bite damage. In any round that the cinderwolf resists at least one point of fire damage, it gains fast healing 3.
Environment temperate or warm deserts
Organization solitary/pair/pack (5-24)
Vicious predators and tireless trackers, cinder wolves are a relentless threat to travelers and native tribes. Ravenous creatures that endlessly hunt to fuel their fiery metabolisms, cinder wolves attack nearly any creature, from well-armored ember scorpions to barbarians and even stone giant warriors. Fleet footed and fearsome in appearance, these tenacious pack hunters thrive. An adult cinder wolf stands just over 3 feet tall and weighs up to 200 pounds. What little fur they have is often singed and black, but can also be ash-gray. Their eyes are frequently bloodshot red with yellow irises.
The hides of cinder wolves prove exceptionally useful in the creation of heat resilient armors. By making a DC 16 Survival check, one can successfully skin a cinder wolf, leaving its coarse pelt in quality good enough to work into armor or other goods. Should this pelt be used later in the creation of a suit of hide armor (in addition to all the normal materials, DC 13 Craft [armorsmithing]), that armor can be enhanced with the fire resistance, improved fire resistance, or greater fire resistance special abilities at 75% of the normal price. A cinder wolf pelt is an uncommon commodity and can rarely be found for sale, the bristly fur being uncomfortable and hard to work with and the demand—despite their usefulness in magic—is limited. Even when found in markets, the cost is typically upwards of 600 gp. Thus, most who desire a cinder wolf pelt are forced to either find and skin a cinder wolf himself, or trade with natives.
A typical cinder wolf den might have as many as a dozen adults, with as many as double that number adolescents and cubs. When threatened, all but the cubs fight, the older wolves doing all they can to bring down or lead off danger.
Cinder wolves build their lairs in hot places: near gas fields, on the edges of cinder cones, and within rocky outcroppings exposed to the midday heat and frequent emberstorms. The predators favor such lairs as they suffer near constant pain from their skin splitting and rupturing in cool air. Aside from finding smoldering dens, their only relief from this pain comes from licking themselves—thus exposing their skin to their fiery breath—but it is a very small comfort at best.
The constant hunger and pain cinder wolves endure make them hard to manage and even more difficult to tame. Taming a cinder wolf requires 6 weeks of work and a DC 25 Handle Animal check. This DC decreases to 20 if the beast is trained in an area that is constantly 100 degrees or hotter. Even after this initial training, though, the DCs of all attempts to further train a cinder wolf are 5 higher, unless they’re again made in areas of extreme heat. Although difficult to teach and quick to disobey, cinder wolves make excellent trackers and are widely coveted by hunters.
Pathfinder 10: A History of Ashes. Copyright 2008, Paizo Publishing LLC. Author: Michael Kortes