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Ghoul, Bonepowder (3PP)

Distilled to nothing but dry, whispering sand and a full set of teeth, a bonepowder ghoul still hungers for flesh and blood. Its dusty mass is perfected corruption, entirely animated by foul energy.

Small undead, neutral evil

Armor Class 18 (natural armor)
Hit Points 195 (26d6 + 104)
Speed 30 ft.

10 (+0) 20 (+5) 18 (+4) 19 (+4) 15 (+2) 18 (+4)

Saving Throws Dex +9, Con +8, Wis +6, Cha +8
Skills Perception +6, Stealth +9
Damage Resistances cold, lightning; bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing from nonmagical weapons
Damage Immunities necrotic, poison
Condition Immunities charmed, exhaustion, frightened, paralyzed, poisoned
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 16
Languages Common, Darakhul, Draconic, Dwarvish
Challenge 12 (8,400 XP)

Special Traits

  • Amorphous. The bonepowder ghoul can move through a space as narrow as 1 inch wide without squeezing.
  • Coalesce. Whenever a bonepowder ghoul drains life force from victims with Gravedust, it can use that energy transform its shape into a more solid form and maintain it. The new form is small and semi-transparent but roughly the shape of a normal ghoul. In this form, the ghoul isn’t amorphous and can’t form a whirlwind, but it can speak normally and manipulate objects. The altered form lasts for 1 minute for every point of necrotic damage it delivered against living foes.
  • Turning Defiance. The bonepowder ghoul and any other ghouls within 30 feet of it have advantage on saving throws against effects that turn undead.
  • Innate Spellcasting. The bonepowder ghoul’s innate spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 18, +10 to hit with spell attacks). It can innately cast the following spells, requiring no material components:


  • Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 18 (3d8 + 5) plus 1d4 Strength damage, and the target must succeed on a DC 17 Constitution saving throw or be paralyzed for 1d4 + 1 rounds. If the target creature is humanoid, it must succeed on a second DC 19 Constitution saving throw or contract darakhul fever (see below).
  • Gravedust. A bonepowder ghoul can project a 40-ft. cone of grave dust. All targets within the area must make a DC 19 Dexterity saving throw to avoid taking 4d8 necrotic damage, and must make a second DC 17 Constitution saving throw to avoid being infected with darakhul fever.
  • Whirlwind (Recharge 5-6). A bonepowder ghoul can generate a whirlwind of bones and teeth. All creatures within a 20-foot cube take 66 (12d10) slashing damage and are drained of 1d6 Strength; a successful DC 17 Dexterity saving throw reduces damage to half and negates the Strength loss. The whirlwind dissipates after one round.

Darakhul Fever

Spread mainly through bite wounds, this rare disease makes itself known within 24 hours by swiftly debilitating the infected. A creature so afflicted must make a DC 17 Constitution saving throw after every long rest. Failure costs the victim 1d6 Constitution damage and 1d4 Dexterity damage. The victim recovers from the disease by making successful saving throws on two consecutive days, but the accumulating Constitution damage makes this less likely with each passing day. Greater restoration cures the disease; cure disease allows the victim to make the daily Constitution check with advantage. Once the disease is cured, the victim recovers 2 Dexterity points per day naturally, but only magic can restore the lost Constitution.

Primarily spread among humanoids, the disease can affect ogres, and therefore other giants may be susceptible.

If the infected creature dies while infected with darakhul fever, roll 1d20, add the character’s current Constitution modifier, and find the result on the Adjustment Table to determine what undead form the victim’s body rises in.

Adjustment Table
Roll Result
1-9 None; victim is simply dead
10-16 Ghoul
17-20 Ghast
21+ Darakhul


Starved Into Dust. The bonepowder ghoul is small and unassuming, a pile of dust and bone fragments that resemble a pile of mummy dust or the remnants of a vampire burned by sunlight. Ghouls can achieve this powdery form through long starvation. The process invariably takes decades, which is why so few bonepowder ghouls exist-few ghouls can show such self-restraint. Even among imperial ghouls, using hunger as a form of torture is considered offensive and is quite rare. A bonepowder ghoul may rise from the remnants of a starved prisoner or a ghoul trapped in a sealed-off cavern, leaving behind its remnant flesh and becoming animated almost purely by hunger, hatred, and the bitter wisdom of long centuries.

Mocking and Hateful. Bonepowder ghouls are creatures of pure evil, seeking to devour, corrupt, and destroy all living things. The only creatures they treat with some affinity are ghouls. Even in that case, their attitude is often mocking, hateful, or condescending. They have some mild respect for darakhul nobles.

Whispering Voices. Most bonepowder ghouls speak at least 4 languages, but their voices are very faint. Just to hear one speaking normally requires a DC 15 Perception check. Undead gain a +8 competence bonus to this check.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Tome of Beasts. Copyright 2016, Open Design; Authors Chris Harris, Dan Dillon, Rodrigo Garcia Carmona, and Wolfgang Baur.