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Gargoyle

Clergy of many denominations share common stories of the Gargoyles of yore. Not the twisted monsters most have come to know and loathe, but their parent race, known as the Agalma. Creatures of elemental earth and divine spark, conjoined in a species dedicated to protection of the holy places of this world.

In the dark days of the Primordial Epoch a conclave of divinities reached an accord that their temples and places of worship should be protected by guardians of more than merely mortal stature. To this end each offered up a divine spark to animate beings of the purest elemental earth. Cleaving to their creators in both spirit and philosophy these creatures of newly minted stonelike flesh were the first of the Agalma, or gargoyle as they have come to be known in the present day.

Throughout the millennia, gargoyles have been the hidden guardians of the world’s hold places, often without the knowledge of the resident clergy.

As religions splintered into sects even more tribes differentiate themselves, both good and dastardly evil.

Rarely accepted by mortals most gargoyles never leave the grounds of their temples. It is there, rarely moving, they lie in wait for those who would desecrate their charge.

Humanoids, Animals, And Grotesqueries

Gargoyles are possessed of flesh not unlike that of mortals, but possessed of a rock-like visual aspect, often resembling speckled granite but rarely with the aspect of purest alabaster.

Stocky in appearance and usually possessed of horns and wings, they are differentiated by their heads. The majority of gargoyles present a human face, albeit usually graced with horns, but not all of them do. There are tribes of gargoyle With the heads or faces of animals, often blended with other bestail aspects. There are still others whose aspect is so completely non-human as to give them their name – The Grotesque.

It is said that no two gargoyles are exactly alike, even those spawned by the same temple have small differences.

Purest Spirit, Purest Substance

Gargoyles are inextricably linked to the plane of elemental earth, the very quintessence of substance.

Injected with raw divine energy, this ur substance lightens and assumes the qualities of flesh, but incorruptible by the passage of time. This is why gargoyles never age. Of course, like most guards and guardians they usually die in battle.

Gargoyle Names

Gargoyles carry names that are rooted in their elemental heritage.

Male Names

Akka, Binro, Creve, Froj, Gannam, Ibrid, Juluk, Karrak, Lim, Moxo, Nev, Ok, Qis, Rebek, Suva, Trig, Uvva, Wix, Yerza, Zox

Female Names

Asara, Berika, Cedda, Darkala, Eppa, Frabara, Gista, Haridda, Ibbas, Jocent, Karrida, Lotara, Minda, Narra, Opatara, Pruda, Quirra, Sattan, Umbada, Vissa, Xirtala, Zeeta

Society & Lands

Gargoyles all have ancestral lands, the holy ground of the temple their individual bloodline was born into. The vast majority of their race never leave these grounds, their endless lives spent looming from the cornices, eyes peeled for threats to their charges.

There are a few who venture beyond their birth temples, often to fight opposing ideologies in the wild lands neither holy nor unholy.

Religion

Gargoyles as a species do not embrace a single religion or cult, but rather adhere to the faith they are born into. family lines originate in the service of many faiths and so they tend to adopt the faith and religion of the temples they grow up guarding.

Adventurers

Gargoyles rarely become adventurers, their ties to their native temples being too close and ingrained. Those who do are often on missions for their temple, survivors of destroyed temples, or heretics.

Adventure Seed

While visiting a country church (or city temple) the adventurers are nearly brained by a falling rock. The curious rock bears a scrawled message indicating a need for help, along with a plea to look upwards. Keen eyes will notice a gargoyle perched high on a ledge above. Once it has the party’s attention the gargoyle flies off indicating the adventurers should follow.

The creature shares that a number of other gargoyles have gone missing from their perches and rumors are circulating about diminutive, shadowy figures climbing the walls under dappled moonlight. Witnesses report a crackling noise and an accompanying green glow at the site of each disappearance. The gargoyle eyes the adventurers nervously and intones, “I found this last night below my own perch…”. He pauses and opens one large claw revealing a hammer and chisel of gnomish construction.

Gargoyle Traits

Gargoyles have common racial traits as well as their own subrace traits as Animal Headed, Grotesque and Winglings.

Subraces

The baseline Gargoyles are Human headed, usually sporting minor animal or devilish seeming details. They use the base stats above. There are however, three other subraces.

Animal Headed

Usually neutral in alignment, animal-headed gargoyles usually have the head of a wolf, lion, goat, or monkey.

Ability Score Increase: Your Strength score increases by 1.

Stone Savagery: When you score a critical hit with a melee weapon attack, you can roll one of the weapon’s damage dice one additional time and add it to the extra damage of the critical hit.

Claws and Talons. You may have talons, claws or even dangerous horns. You might possibly even have a tail capable of dealing damage. You may choose to use any of these in place of an Unarmed Attack. If you successfully hit with your unarmed attack, you deal slashing damage equal to 1d6 + your Strength modifier. Other damage types may be appropriate to your form (bludgeoning or piercing), get permission from your game master.

Psychic Resistance. You have resistance to psychic damage.

Grotesque

Ability Score Increase: Your Charisma score increases by 1.

Fearsome Aspect: You gain proficiency on Charisma (Intimidate) checks.

Reasons For Adventuring
d8 Effects
1 You have the ancestral holy ground to walk the world, eradicating enemies of the faith wherever they may roam.
2 The idea of spending millennia within the confines of the temple grounds is anathema to you. You are consumed with the need to explore the distant reaches of creation.
3 You are the survivor of a demolished temple, driven to redeem yourself for failing to guard it in it’s moment of need.
4 You dared to question the tenets of the tribe’s faith or the temple’s god and were cast out as a heretic.
5 You have been chosen to do that which you least desire. You are being sent forth into the outer world on a mission for the faith. Whether sent by the elders or by the gods themselves, your trepidation at the outside world is palpable.
6 Your deep study of your faith over the millennia has brought you to conclusions that brand you as a heretic to the temple orthodoxy. And it proved expedient to leave.
7 The ancient god of your faith has died and it’s followers are dispersed. Now you wander in search of purpose.
8 You have rejected all gods and powers, your tie to forces holy or unholy is more a matter of magical biology than belief.

Racial Traits

Ability Score Increase: Your Constitution score increases by 2.

Age: Ageless. Gargoyles suffer no penalties and gain no bonuses from advancing age.

Alignment: Gargoyles can be of any alignment, but it must match that of the temple or religion of their origin.

Size: Gargoyles are possessed of extremely dense flesh. They stand between 4 and 8 feet tall and average between 300 – 800 pounds. Your size is Medium.

Speed: Your base walking speed is 25 feet.

Languages: You can speak, read, and write Common, Primordial, and either Celestial or Infernal depending on your alignment (neutral alignments must choose at first level and this choice cannot change).

Darkvision: Your darkvision has a radius of 60 feet. You can see in dim light within 60 feet of you as if it were bright light, and in darkness as if it were dim light. You can’t discern color in darkness, only shades of gray.

Elemental Fortification: Your skin becomes harder and more rocklike, your Ac without armor is equal to 15 + your Dexterity modifier.

Tie to the Temple: All Gargoyle must choose the religion of their home temple and have the same alignment restrictions as clerics of that faith. They also have a link to positive or negative energy, the same choice as clerics of the faith.

Statuesque: When unmoving, you are indiscernible from a normal statue.

Wings of Stone: You may use your wings to glide in a spiral down any distance safely. Due to your weight, true flight is difficult. You must spend a hit die in order to gain a flying speed of 20 feet that lasts for a number of minutes equal to your Constitution modifier. When you reach 3rd level, your fly speed increases to 40 feet. When you reach 5th level, your fly speed increases to 60 feet.

Claws and Talons. You may have talons, claws or even dangerous horns. You might possibly even have a tail capable of dealing damage. You may choose to use any of these in place of an Unarmed Attack. If you successfully hit with your unarmed attack, you deal slashing damage equal to 1d6 + your Strength modifier. Other damage types may be appropriate to your form (bludgeoning or piercing), get permission from your game master.

Winglings

Not all gargoyles are medium sized, many are much smaller, often serving as scouts or spies. Adjust the stats of small sized gargoyles accordingly:

Ability Score Increase: Your Dexterity score increases by 1.

Size: Small gargoyles average about 3-4 feet tall and weigh about 200-300 pounds. Your size is Small.

Speed: Your base walking speed is 20 feet.

Tiny Wings of Stone: As the Wings of Stone racial ability, but reduce the speed by 10 feet. However, you do not need to spend a hit die to fly at the appropriate level. You may do so at-will.

Moving Target: You add half your proficiency bonus on Dexterity saving throws while flying.

Claws and Talons. You may have talons, claws or even dangerous horns. You might possibly even have a tail capable of dealing damage. You may choose to use any of these in place of an Unarmed Attack. If you successfully hit with your unarmed attack, you deal slashing damage equal to 1d4 + your Strength modifier. Other damage types may be appropriate to your form (bludgeoning or piercing), get permission from your game master.

Gargoyle Relations

Gargoyles have little formal relations, and the ones that they do have are oriented around belief. They relate best to dwarves, genomes, and creatures who have kinship with stone. Their allies and enemies tend to be the same as those of the faith that spawned them. For instance, good aligned gargoyles get along well with aasimar and evil ones relate better to tieflings.

The following are presented assuming a gargoyle of good or neutral alignment. For evil gargoyles swap all Friendly/Unfriendly and Helpful/Unhelpful labels.

Gargoyle Quirks
d8 Effects
1 You are obsessed with the ways of mortals, and try to learn as much as you can about their ephemeral lives.
2 You get fixated on small details, some times at the expense of your main objectives.
3 When not actively speaking or engaged in other activity you are as still as the statue most mortals assume you to be. Unblinking, unmoving, unnerving.
4 You seek out holy / unholy ground at every opportunity and feel mild discomfort when not on your chosen ground.
5 You have a secured cache of holy documents (possibly heretical) that are your prized possessions.
6 You view short lived mortals the way humans view their pets, and have “raised “ generations of them.
7 You have an unhealthy fascination with mortality, and with the corruption of bodies after death. You can easily be distracted by rotting corpses or the gasps of the dying.
8 You carve the names of those you kill into your stonelike flesh as a reminder of your victories for the faith.
Section 15: Copyright Notice

Book of Monstrous Might: Ecology of the Gargoyles © 2021 Total Party Kill Games. Authors: Brian Berg, George “Loki” Williams.