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Formian Worker

Medium aberration, lawful neutral

Armor Class 14 (natural armor)
Hit Points 21 (4d8 + 3)
Speed 40 ft., burrow 10 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
14 (+2) 12 (+1) 13 (+1) 8 (–1) 10 (+0) 10 (+0)

Skills Perception +2
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities poisoned
Senses blindsight 30 ft., darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 12
Languages Common, telepathy 60 ft.
Challenge 1/2 (100 XP)

Special Traits

  • Swarm Tactics. The formian has advantage on an attack roll against a creature if at least one other formian ally is within 5 feet of the creature and the ally is not incapacitated. If a formian makes an attack with advantage and hits, the target must succeed on a DC 12 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.
  • Surefooted. The formian has advantage on saving throws versus being knocked prone.
  • Loadbearer. The formian can carry up to 400 pounds without being encumbered. It can push or drag up to 800 pounds, but its speed drops to 20 ft. When moving with a grappled creature, the formian’s speed is not halved.

Actions

  • Multiattack. The formian makes one Bite attack and one Sting attack.
  • Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d6 + 2) slashing damage.
  • Sting. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d6 + 2) piercing damage and the target must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, the target takes 4 (1d8) acid damage and becomes poisoned until the end of its next turn. If the saving throw is successful, the target takes half as much damage and is not poisoned.

About

These lowest-caste formians stand a little taller than a large dog, and their small mandibles are better equipped for slicing leaves and cutting fruit from the vine than carving into flesh. Regardless, many humanoids find the sight of these centaurlike ant creatures intimidating. Their iridescent chitin is nearly featureless, marked only by small scarring as they age and a series of markings on their chest. A few more accomplished formian workers bear small gems proudly glued to their carapace, tokens granted them by taskmasters for particularly impressive accomplishments.

Formian workers are the backbone of the hive. They produce and harvest all food, perform all mining and tunneling, aid the taskmasters in the crafting of goods, and perform all other menial labor. Formian workers grow fast and learn quickly within the hive mind. Shortly after it leaves its larval stage, a formian is assigned to a senior worker who teaches it a trade, and by the end of the second year, a formian worker is a productive member of the hive. Workers live 20–30 years, and older workers are assigned lighter or more skilled work in order to give them capacity to train the young formian workers.

Workers are hatched in large batches and given a clutch name, usually based on a well-regarded formian of the previous generation. Only when they leave their larval stage are workers given a unique number carved into their carapaces, which is used in place of an individual name. Workers parrot the taskmasters in many things; they denote accomplishments on their carapaces and even have duels (though duels among workers almost never involve death). Rarely, a particularly remarkable worker will be called out for special attention by their taskmaster, and these workers are presented to the queen and given a proper name of their own.

Workers flee from combat unless they are ordered by a taskmaster or myrmarch to attack intruders. If a hive is invaded, formian workers might be used as diversions or to undermine or collapse tunnels on invading enemies. If forced into a direct fight, they usually spend most of their efforts assisting a warrior or myrmarch, though they make good use of mining picks or alchemist’s fire if they are cornered.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

City of Brass ©2018 Frog God Games; Authors: Casey Christofferson and Scott Greene