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Beowulf

Medium humanoid (human), lawful good barbarian (berserker) 20

Armor Class 18 (Constitution or scale mail, shield)
Hit Points 250 (20d12+120)
Speed 40 ft.

STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
24 (+7) 14 (+2) 22 (+6) 11 (+0) 12 (+1) 10 (+0)

Saving Throws Str +13, Con +12
Skills Athletics +13, Insight +7, Perception +7, Survival +7
Damage Resistances bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing (while raging)
Condition Immunities charmed, frightened (while raging)
Senses passive Perception 17
Languages Olde English
Challenge 17 (18,000 XP)

Special Traits

  • Brutal Critical. Beowulf can roll three additional weapon damage dice when determining the extra damage for a critical hit with a melee attack.
  • Danger Sense. Beowulf has advantage on Dexterity saving throws against effects that he can see, such as traps and spells. To gain this benefit, he can’t be blinded, deafened, or incapacitated.
  • Feral Instinct. Beowulf has advantage on initiative rolls. Additionally, if he is surprised at the beginning of combat and isn’t incapacitated, he can act normally on his first turn, but only if he enters his rage before doing anything else on that turn.
  • Indomitable Might. If Beowulf’s total for a Strength check is less than 20, he can use 24 in place of the total.
  • Intimidating Presence. Beowulf can use his action to frighten someone with his menacing presence. When he does so, he chooses one creature within 30 feet that he can see. If the creature can see or hear Beowulf, it must succeed on a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw or be frightened of Beowulf until the end of his next turn. On subsequent turns, Beowulf can use his action to extend the duration of this effect on the frightened creature until the end of his next turn. This effect ends if the creature ends its turn out of line of sight or more than 60 feet away from Beowulf. If the creature succeeds on its saving throw, Beowulf can’t use this feature on that creature again for 24 hours.
  • Mindless Rage. Beowulf can’t be charmed or frightened while raging. If he is charmed or frightened when he enters his rage, the effect is suspended for the duration of the rage.
  • Rage. On his turn, Beowulf can enter a rage as a bonus action. His rage lasts until Beowulf is knocked unconscious. Beowulf can also end his rage on his turn as a bonus action. Beowulf can go into a frenzy when he rages. If he does so, for the duration of his rage he can make a single melee weapon attack as a bonus action on each of his turns after his first turn raging. When his frenzied rage ends, he suffers one level of exhaustion. While raging, he gains the following benefits:
    • Advantage on Strength checks and Strength saving throws
    • When he makes a melee weapon attack using Strength he gains a +4 bonus to the damage roll
    • He has resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.
  • Reckless Attack. When Beowulf makes his first attack on his turn, he can decide to attack recklessly. Doing so gives him advantage on melee weapon attack rolls using Strength during this turn, but attack rolls against him have advantage until his next turn.
  • Relentless Rage. If Beowulf drops to 0 hit points while he’s raging and doesn’t die outright, he can make a DC 10 Constitution saving throw. If he succeeds, he drops to 1 hit point instead. Each time he uses this feature after the first, the DC increases by 5. When he finishes a short or long rest, the DC resets to 10.
  • Power Attack. When Beowulf makes his first melee weapon attack in a turn using a heavy weapon, he can choose to take a –5 penalty to his melee weapon attack rolls in exchange for a +10 bonus to melee weapon damage. In addition, Beowulf can use a bonus action to make one melee weapon attack after he uses a melee weapon to reduce a creature to 0 hit points or scores a critical hit with it. Beowulf can only use this feature on his turn.

Actions

  • Multiattack. Beowulf attacks twice when he takes the Attack action (and can use a bonus action to attack a third time if both raging and frenzied).
  • Unarmed. Melee Weapon Attack: +13 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 8 bludgeoning damage.
  • Hrunting. Melee Weapon Attack: +14 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (1d8+8) magical slashing damage or 13 (1d10+8) magical slashing damage if wielded in two hands.
  • Giant’s Sword. Melee Weapon Attack: +13 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 14 (2d6+7) slashing damage.

Reactions

  • Retaliation. When Beowulf takes damage from a creature that is within 5 feet of him, he can use his reaction to make a melee weapon attack against that creature

About

Beowulf is always able to rely on the hospitality of commoners to help him hide or rest provided he poses no danger in doing so, going so far as to shield him from being discovered (though not at the cost of their lives).

If you somehow missed the 2007 CGI film or forget learning about this fellow in English class, here’s the breakdown. Hrothgar, king of the Danes, makes the great hall Heorot for his warriors to drink and revel in, but when the monstrous Grendel (a descendant of Cain) overhears their joy he is so pained by it that he goes to wreck the place as the revelers sleep, eating the men that he kills. Hrothgar beseeches the aid of Beowulf who waits in the mead hall for Grendel’s next attack and proceeds to beat the monster to death with his bare hands, ripping off one of the monster’s arms.

Grendel’s mother is enraged that her son was killed in such a way and she comes the next night, killing Hrothgar’s favorite warrior Æschere while Beowulf is elsewhere. Upon Beowulf’s return they track the monster to a lake and, armed with a magical sword called Hrunting, the hero jumps in after her, discovering her cave lair at the bottom. Unfortunately the weapon proves ineffective so he throws it away until after the fight, taking up a giant’s sword and hacking the monster to death with that instead. Hrunting is used to decapitate Grendel but dissolves in the creature’s toxic blood, and the hero returns to gain many gifts from Hrothgar—including another magical sword, this one called Nægling.

Half a century later and Beowulf is the wise king of Geatland—part of what modern Sweden is now – when a dragon starts burning and killing his subjects indiscriminately after somebody steals a golden cup from its hoard. Beowulf, of course, goes out to meet it in single combat but Nægling shatters in his hands and he is only saved from defeat by the bravery of his ally Wiglaf. While victorious, Beowulf suffers mortal wounds and passes soon after, his remains burned away on a pyre.

It’s of interest that this might be the earliest known depiction of an actual fire-breathing dragon (Fáfnir breathed poison); this tale influenced Tolkien, who felt European literature featured only two significant dragons: “…we have but the dragon of the Völsungs, Fáfnir, and Beowulf’s bane.”

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters Copyright 2020 EN Publishing. Authors Mike Myler, Russ Morrissey. www.enpublishingrpg.com