Skeleton, Shadow

Family: Skeletons

The skeleton’s ribs are filled with shadow essence, which slithers in constant motion like the writhing of eels in a carcass. The whole sight is disquieting as it moves itself with a gliding, almost liquid step.

Medium undead, neutral evil

Armor Class 13
Hit Points 52 (8d8 + 16)
Speed 30 ft., swim 40 ft.

10 (+0) 16 (+3) 15 (+2) 9 (-1) 11 (+0) 9 (-1)

Damage Resistances fire, piercing, slashing
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities exhaustion, poisoned
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10
Languages understands all languages it knew in life but can’t speak
Challenge 2 (450 XP)

Special Traits

  • Undead Nature. The shadow skeleton doesn’t require air, food, drink, or sleep.


  • Multiattack. The shadow skeleton makes two scimitar attacks.
  • Scimitar. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one creature. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 3) slashing damage.
  • Finger Darts. Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, range 30 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d4 + 3) piercing damage plus 3 (1d6) necrotic damage. If the target is a creature other than an undead or a construct, it must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, the target is surrounded by a shadowy aura for 1 minute. While surrounded by the aura, the target takes an extra 7 (2d6) necrotic damage when hit by the scimitar attack of a shadow skeleton. Any creature can take an action to extinguish the shadow with a successful DC 12 Intelligence (Arcana) check. The shadow also extinguishes if the target receives magical healing.


Shadow Realms and Rivers. Shadow skeletons are often servants to shadow river lords or other powerful creatures of shadow. Their writhing purple hearts generate a small amount of light-just enough to cast a shadow, never more.

Malign Intent. Unlike ordinary skeletons, shadow skeletons have been known to display some cunning and a certain depth of cruelty. They sometimes chase small living animals or fling bits of bone and shadow at birds or bats.

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.