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Ghoulsteed

The ghouls create horrific, intelligent, undead mounts for their most worthy soldiers and priests. Although they’re large, run on all fours, and can be ridden as mounts, ghoulsteeds are the undead remains of humanoids. They’re created when a humanoid is killed by massive amounts of necrotic energy.

Large undead, neutral evil

Armor Class 13 (natural armor)
Hit Points 85 (10d10 + 30)
Speed 30 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
18 (+4) 10 (+0) 16 (+3) 6 (–2) 10 (+0) 6 (–2)

Skills Perception +2
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities poisoned
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 12
Languages Common, Darakhul
Challenge 3 (700 XP)

Special Traits

  • Pounce. If the ghoulsteed moves at least 20 feet straight toward a creature and then hits it with a bite attack on the same turn, that target must succeed on a DC 14 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone. If the target is prone, the ghoulsteed can make one bite attack against it as a bonus action.
  • Sprint (3/day). When the ghoulsteed uses the Dash action, it can Dash again as a bonus action.
  • Undead Fortitude. If damage reduces the ghoulsteed to 0 hp, it makes a Constitution saving throw with a DC of 5 + the damage taken, unless the damage is radiant or from a critical hit. On a success, the ghoulsteed drops to 1 hp instead.
  • Undead Nature. The ghoulsteed doesn’t require air, food, drink, or sleep.

Actions

  • Multiattack. A ghoulsteed makes two bite attacks.
  • Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) piercing damage and the ghoulsteed gains 5 (1d10) temporary hp. These temporary hp stack with each other, but the ghoulsteed can only have a maximum of 10 temporary hp at one time. While ghoulsteeds serve the undead without overmuch complaint, the same cannot be said for living riders. A living creature who wishes to ride a ghoulsteed must make a DC 13 Charisma ability check before each long rest. On a failure, that ghoulsteed attempts to kill and devour its rider while the rider rests. On a success, the ghoulsteed attempts no attack that day.

About

Hideous Mounts. Darakhul prize these undead creatures as mounts. They’re ridden during war and hunts, but they are sometimes also trained as guardians for households, businesses, or temples.

Often Mute. Ghoulsteeds aren’t quite as intelligent as ghouls, but they’re cannier than most creatures give them credit for being. Certainly, unlike most creatures used as mounts, they are somewhat intelligent and capable of speech, but they prefer to remain mute as much as possible to avoid drawing attention to themselves. This makes them useful as gossips, spies, and informers among the darakhul, who have a tendency to forget their mounts’ intelligences.

Prone to Biting. Ghoulsteeds are notorious for nibbling, nipping, or outright biting their riders, creatures passing by them, or the like.

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.