S is for Shandalar

This article is part of a series for both the April 2020 RPG Blog Carnival and the 2020 Blogging A to Z Challenge.

Shandalar

Abnormally mana-rich, Shandalar is a place where magic flows freely: from the wilds of Kalonia and the kingdom of Thune to the shadows of Xathrid, the peak of Valkas, and the remote Evos Isle. It was once home to the Onakke, an ogre civilization adept at using the plane’s abundant mana to craft artifacts of terrible power. Now the inhabitants of this unusual plane must combat the growing hive mind of the slivers, an ever-evolving race that threatens to consume their world.

Shandalar is a rogue plane, drifting through the multiverse instead of retaining a steady position or course. It is a relatively small plane and incredibly rich in mana.[2] The magical energy is so prevalent that it all is sentient, and the common people use minor spells as an everyday convenience.

Unlike other planes, Shandalar does not have a fixed location in the Multiverse: it forever drifts through the Blind Eternities, the space between the planes. Abnormally mana-rich, Shandalar is a place where magic flows freely, from the wilds of Kalonia and the kingdom of Thune to the shadows of Xathrid, the peak of Valkas, and the remote Evos Isle. It was once home to the Onakke, an ogre civilization adept at using the plane’s abundant mana to craft artifacts of terrible power. Now the inhabitants of this unusual plane must combat the growing hive mind of the slivers, an ever-evolving race that threatens to consume their world.

“Hunt bigger.”

Sliver Hive

For your campaign

Slivers are creatures that share a hive mind, which allows them to share their abilities with other nearby slivers. The creature type was introduced in the Tempest set and were depicted as reptiles, with variations in accordance with the abilities each has to offer to the hive. An evolved form of slivers from Shandalar has humanoid features, but I never liked them, so I stuck with the classic version. D&D has no official version for the slivers, so I created one back in 4e (I’m sorry, but the article was written in Spanish). And since I still had pending creating one for the 5e rules… you can guess what’s coming.

New creature: Sliver

Slivers have an armored vertebrate body, a long, bifurcated whip-like tail, one arm with a single talon for a hand, and a head with an armored crest and no eyes. A sliver’s anatomy often reflects the adaptation that it transfers to the other members of its species. Telekinetic Sliver, for example, shows brainy lobes. To reflect its added wiliness in battle, Watcher Sliver has evolved rows of eyes along its head, where most slivers have none. In a subtle approach, Bonesplitter Sliver carry around bonesplitters; it has a special adaptation to its blood. Its blood rages with bioluminescent blood. Spinneret Sliver sports organs referred to in its name: organs that let it spin webs like a spider, and it also makes arachnid-like clicking sounds.

SliverStyleguide-1

(Basic) Sliver

Small monstrosity, unaligned
Armor Class
15 (natural armor)
Hit Points 46 (7d6 + 21)
Speed 20ft.

STR
15 (+2)

DEX
13 (+1)
CON
16 (+3)
INT
3 (-4)
WIS
13 (+1)

CHA
3 (-4)

Skills Athletics +5
Condition Immunities blinded, deafened, prone
Senses tremorsense 60ft. passive Perception 11
Languages
Challenge 7 (2,900 XP)
Hive Mind. Slivers share the abilities listed in this feature with other slivers within reach of their tremorsense.
ACTIONS

Multiattack. The sliver makes two attacks: one with its tail and one with its talon.
Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 10ft., one target. Hit: 16 (4d6 + 2) bludgeoning damage.
Talon. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5ft., one target. Hit: 21 (4d8 + 3) piercing damage. If the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 14 Constitution saving throw or start bleeding. Bleeding deals 1d8 damage at the start of its turn until the creature regains at least 1 hit point.


As hinted in the Hive Mind ablity, particular slivers have and grant special features to other slivers. A different sliver stat block may look like this:

Venomous Sliver

virulent-sliver

As basic sliver, plus:
Hit Points +12 (+ 1d6 + 8)
CON
18 (+4)
Condition Immunities poisoned
Challenge +1
Hive Mind. Venomous slivers share their condition immunities and their Venom Talon attack.
ACTIONS

Venom Talon. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5ft., one target. Hit: 10 (2d8 + 1) piercing damage and 11 (2d8 + 2) poison damage. If the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 14 Constitution saving throw or become poisoned and start bleeding. Bleeding deals 1d8 damage at the start of its turn until the creature regains at least 1 hit point.

 


I’m pretty sure you’ll find new fun ways to improve your slivers. When was the last time you created a creature for your campaign? What did you need these for that no other monster could accomplish?

3 Comments Add yours

  1. Frédérique says:

    Hmm, I can say I don’t like Slivers ;))
    S is for Scherenschnitte

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