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Ratfolk Mercenary

With filthy tunics and well-kept leathers, ratfolk slink through fights, always looking to flank, turn, or strike from behind. Their ability to work in large groups leads dwarves to despise them as a “lowly swarm of guttersnipes”—but they are effective.

Small humanoid (ratfolk), neutral

Armor Class 15 (leather armor)
Hit Points 45 (13d6)
Speed 25 ft., swim 10 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
7 (–2) 18 (+4) 11 (+0) 14 (+2) 10 (+0) 10 (+0)

Saving Throws Dexterity +6, Intelligence +4
Skills Acrobatics +8, Deception +2, Intimidation +2, Perception +2, Stealth +8
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 12
Languages Common
Challenge 2 (450 XP)

Special Traits

  • Chopper Squad. The ratfolk mercenary’s melee weapon attacks deal one extra die of damage if at least one of the mercenary’s allies is within 5 feet of the creature and the ally isn’t incapacitated.
  • Nimbleness. The ratfolk mercenary can move through the space of any Medium or larger creature.
  • Pack Tactics. The ratfolk has advantage on attack rolls against a creature if at least one of the ratfolk’s allies is within 5 feet of the creature and the ally isn’t incapacitated.
  • Packing Heat. If the ratfolk mercenary moves at least 10 feet straight toward a target and then hits it with a shortsword attack on the same turn, the mercenary can make one dart attack against another target within 20 feet as a bonus action without disadvantage.

Actions

  • Multiattack. The ratfolk mercenary makes two attacks with its shortsword or dart. If both shortsword attacks hit the same target, the ratfolk mercenary can use its bonus action to automatically deal an extra 4 (1d8) piercing damage as it bites the target.
  • Shortsword. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) piercing damage.
  • Dart. Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, range 20/60 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d4 + 4) piercing damage.

Reactions

  • Guard the Big Cheese. When a creature makes an attack against the ratfolk mercenary’s current employer, the mercenary grants a +2 bonus to the employer’s AC if the mercenary is within 5 feet of the employer.

About

Ratfolk survive by their wits and bargains. They are notorious for their willingness to work as mercenaries in large dungeon complexes and to strike pacts with far greater powers than themselves. Ratfolk mercenaries often work in tandem with warlocks acting as captains or sergeants for their employers.

Mercenary Flexibility. Ratfolk mercenaries can be bribed and corrupted with a large enough payment, but they like to say that they “stay bought until payday comes.” Usually their loyalty is strong until matters turn against their current master—in some cases they have been known to offer their services to a foe mid-fight! Night and Tunnel Specialists. Ratfolk mercenaries excel at work in dark, tight quarters, against cavern monsters, and in old dwarven holds. They also enjoy city kidnappings, guarding towers or dungeons, or silent moonlight scouting in hills or forests. They prefer to avoid working in full sun on open fields, though they are professional enough that they can create an effective ambush on riverbanks, in forest shadow, or elsewhere.

Overbold and Full of Themselves. Ratfolk warlocks tend to serve dark powers of shadow or diabolism, though sometimes they simply find the first power willing to make a pact for power (fey or genie-infused ratfolk warlocks are not unknown). The influx of power generally makes ratfolk warlocks insufferably bold, snide, and arrogant—they are convinced that their arcane power makes them the smartest, strongest, and handsomest ratfolk ever to slink through a darkened alley.

Staves and Amulets. As tokens of their pact, ratfolk warlocks always carry or display a profusion of decorated staves, gilded amulets, or clinking silver sigils and rune-encrusted bells. They are notably less stealthy than most ratfolk.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Creature Codex. © 2018 Open Design LLC; Authors Wolfgang Baur, Dan Dillon, Richard Green, James Haeck, Chris Harris, Jeremy Hochhalter, James Introcaso, Chris Lockey, Shawn Merwin, and Jon Sawatsky.