Shadow River Lord

The figure rising from the water appears to wear a cloak made of stars, but the moonlight reveals a watery garment of black liquid. The form beneath the water is as fluid as the cloak. A blue-white skull grins from atop the body, and the staff it holds glows with green fire.

Medium undead, neutral evil

Armor Class 16 (natural armor)
Hit Points 135 (18d8 + 54)
Speed 30 ft., swim 60 ft.

14 (+2) 18 (+4) 16 (+3) 12 (+1) 16 (+3) 18 (+4)

Damage Resistances cold, fire, necrotic; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical attacks
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities charmed, exhaustion, grappled, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 13
Languages Common
Challenge 9 (5,000 XP)

Special Traits

  • Amorphous. The shadow river lord can move through a space as narrow as one inch wide without squeezing.
  • Undead Nature. A shadow river lord doesn’t require air, food, drink, or sleep.


  • Multiattack. The shadow river lord makes two greenfire staff or two shadowfrost bolt attacks. If two attacks hit the same target, the target must make a DC 16 Constitution saving throw or be blinded until the end of its next turn.
  • Greenfire Staff. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) bludgeoning damage plus 7 (2d6) fire damage.
  • Shadowfrost Bolt. Ranged Spell Attack: +8 to hit, range 150 ft., one target. Hit: 9 (2d8) necrotic damage plus 7 (2d6) cold damage.
  • Shadow Geyser (Recharge 6). The shadow river lord expels a geyser of shadowy water from its staff in a 30-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC 16 Dexterity saving throw, taking 21 (6d6) necrotic damage and 21 (6d6) cold damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.


Undead Fey Spirits. Shadow river lords make their homes where dangerous rivers wear away the barrier between the mortal world and the dark fey lands. These dangerous creatures prey upon those who travel or reside near the river. A creature that dies in the river forfeits its soul to the local shadow river lord, who whisks the soul away to the fey realm to be used as currency or as a means to gain further power.

Shadow Skeleton Servants. While the souls of the victims of a shadow river lord are lost, the flesh is devoured by the river’s denizens, leaving only bones. These bones are reanimated as shadow skeletons, which lurk beneath the river’s surface, waiting for their master’s call to action. The shadow skeletons hide within rapids or at the deepest parts of a river, hoping to pull victims down to a watery demise.

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.

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