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Arnrach Creature
Aranea are natural arcane spellcasters, and sometimes they come into conflict with each other over matters of honor, property, or territory. Averse to outright slaying their own kind, the victors in these mage battles often cast feeblemind on the loser and drive them away. These nearly-mindless aranea naturally gravitate to places where monstrous spiders or scorpionsmake their lairs, and sometimes crossbreeds occur. The result of these matings are called arnrach, monstrous spiders or scorpions with superior intelligence and a few magical powers.

Arnrach are hunters and use their limited intelligence and magic to improve further upon their already keen hunting prowess. They are unconcerned with morality or other issues of civilized creatures and don’t consider themselves any different than other monstrous vermin. For example, arnrach have been seen performing typical territorial and mating posturing with common monstrous spiders.

Appearance Changes
An arnrach spider resembles an arachnid of its size except for a small hump on its back. The mandibles and small legs near the head are larger than normal and have tiny delicate digits capable of manipulating small objects.

Creating an Arnrach
“Arnrach” is an inherited template that can be added onto any spider-like or scorpion-like creature from Small to Huge size (referred to hereafter as the “base creature”). An arnrach uses all the base creature’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.

CR: Base creature +1

Type: The creature’s type changes to magical beast. Do not recalculate the creature’s Hit Dice, base attack bonus, or saves. Unlike a monstrous spider, an arnrach is not mindless, and it gains skill points and feats normally.

Armor Class: Increase natural armor by +2.

Special Attacks: An arnrach retains all of the special attacks of the base creature and gains the following:

  • Spell-Like Abilities: 1/day—alarm, ghost sound, silent image, true strike. Effective caster level by hit dice. The save DCs are Charisma-based. An arnrach uses its illusion spell-like abilities to confuse or distract its prey (usually by making the sounds of a predator in the opposite direction, or blocking an exit with an illusory wall. It

uses alarm to alert it to potential prey and true strike on its first attack on a creature. Its low intelligence limits its creativity when using illusions, and the results are rarely good enough to fool an intelligent observer.

Special Qualities: An arnrach has an Intelligence score, and therefore is no longer mindless or immune to mind-affecting effects. It otherwise retains all of the special qualities of the base creature and gains the following:

  • Camouflage (Su): Though it cannot change shape like its aranea parent, an arnrach can change the color and texture of its body, allowing it to blend with its surroundings. An arnrach gains a +8 racial bonus to Stealth checks when using this ability, which operates continuously and does not require an action to activate. Because it is a supernatural effect, the camouflage ends in an antimagic field or other places where magic does not function.

Abilities: Raise to Int 3 (minimum), Cha 10 (minimum)

Skills: Unlike common vermin, an arnrach has an Intelligence score, and therefore has skill points equal to 2 + Intelligence modifier, Class skills are the skills of the base creature, or Acrobatics, Climb, Escape Artist, Perception, Stealth if the base creature has no class skills.

Feats: As with skills, an arnrach has feats based on its hit dice, even though the base creature may not. Most choose Improved Initiative and Iron Will.


Sample Arnrach
This sample uses the cave scorpion as its base creature.

Arnach Cave Scorpion (CR 1; XP 600)
N Medium magical beast
Init +4; Senses darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft.; Perception +4
Defense
AC 14, touch 10, flat-footed 14
(+4 natural)
hp 16 (3d8+3)
Fort +4, Ref +1, Will +3
Offense
Speed 60 ft., climb 40 ft.
Melee 2 claws +2 (1d4), sting +2 (1d4 plus poison)
Special Attacks rend (2 claws, 2d4)
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 3rd; concentration +3)
1/day—alarm, ghost sound (Wd-DC 10), silent image(Wd-DC 11), true strike
Statistics
Str 11, Dex 10, Con 13, Int 3, Wis 10, Cha 10
Base Atk +2; CMB +2; CMD 12 (24 vs. trip)
Feats Improved Initiative, Iron Will
Skills Climb +8, Perception +10, Stealth +8 (+20 in caves); Racial Modifiers +4 Perception, +8 Stealth, +12 Stealth in caves
SQ camouflage
Ecology
Environment underground
Organization solitary, pair, or swarm (3–12)
Treasure none
Special Abilities
Poison (Ex) Sting—injury; save Fort DC 12; frequency 1/round for 4 rounds; effect 1d2 Str; cure 1 save.

On Porphyra
The Haunted Sea is no stranger to shapeshifters and halfbreeds. The jungle covered islands in the Cannibal Island chain are the home to many aranea and their kin.