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"Lycanthrope" is a template that can be added to any humanoid creature (referred to hereafter as the "character"). The creature’s type changes to "shapechanger." The lycanthrope takes on the characteristics of some type of carnivorous animal (referred to hereafter as the "animal"). This can be any predator between the size of a small dog and a large bear. The most common are listed in the table below. Some kinds of lycanthropes can also adopt a hybrid shape that combines features of the character and the animal.
A lycanthrope uses either the character’s or the animal’s statistics and special abilities in addition to those set out below.
Hit Dice: Same as the character or animal, whichever produces the higher hit point total. If the lycanthrope’s number of Hit Dice is important, as with a sleep spell, use the character’s or animal’s number of Hit Dice, whichever is greater.
Speed: Same as the character or animal, depending on which form the lycanthrope is using.
AC: The character’s or animal’s natural armor increases by +2, depending on which form the lycanthrope is using. (A wererat in hybrid form is an exception; see the entry below.)
Attacks: Same as the character or animal, depending on which form the lycanthrope is using. (A wererat in hybrid form is an exception; see the entry below.)
Damage: Same as the character or animal, depending on which form the lycanthrope is using.
Special Attacks: A lycanthrope retains all the special attacks of the character or animal, depending on which form it is using, and also gains those listed below.
Lycanthropic Empathy (Ex): Lycanthropes can communicate and empathize with normal or dire animals of their animal form. This gives them a +4 racial bonus to checks when influencing the animal’s attitude and allows the communication of simple concepts and (if the animal is friendly) commands, such as "friend," "foe," "flee," and "attack."
Curse of Lycanthropy (Su): Any humanoid hit by a lycanthrope’s bite attack in animal form must succeed at a Fortitude save (DC 15) or contract lycanthropy. A wererat can spread lycanthropy with its bite or by hitting with a piercing or slashing weapon. Bludgeoning or nonpenetrating attacks do not transmit the condition.
Special Qualities: A lycanthrope retains all the special qualities of the character or animal and also gains those listed below.
Alternate Form (Su): All lycanthropes can shift into animal form as though using the polymorph self spell (though their gear does not change). Wererats, weretigers, and werewolves also can assume a bipedal hybrid form with prehensile hands and animalistic features. Changing to or from animal or hybrid form is a standard action. Upon assuming either form, the lycanthrope regains hit points as if having rested for a day. A slain lycanthrope reverts to its humanoid form, although it remains dead. Separated body parts retains their animal form, however. This shapeshifting ability can be difficult to control (see Lycanthropy as an Affliction, below).
Damage Reduction (Ex): A lycanthrope in animal or hybrid form gains damage reduction 15/silver.
Base Saves: The base saves are as for the character or animal, whichever is better. In addition, lycanthropes receive a +2 racial bonus to Fortitude and Will saves.
Abilities: For a lycanthrope in humanoid form, ability scores are unchanged. In animal or hybrid form, a lycanthrope’s ability scores improve by type, as set out in the table below.
Skills: Lycanthropes receive a +4 racial bonus to Search, Spot, and Listen checks when in humanoid form. In animal or hybrid form, these bonuses increase to +8. A lycanthrope in hybrid or animal form gains the same skills as a normal animal of its form in addition to the character’s skills. If a lycanthrope has a skill in both its humanoid and animal forms, use the better score. Afflicted lycanthropes also can learn the Control Shape skill (see the sidebar) as a class skill.
Feats: Same as the character. When in hybrid or animal form, the lycanthrope gains any feats a normal animal of its form has. A natural lycanthrope has the Improved Control Shape feat as a bonus feat (see below). Lycanthropes in hybrid or animal form have additional feats as set out in the table below.
Climate/Terrain: Same as either the character or animal
Organization: Solitary or pair, sometimes family (2-4), pack (6-10), or troupe (family plus related animals)
Challenge Rating: Same as animal +2, plus any class levels.
Alignment: Any; see examples below
Advancement: By character class
|Name||Animal Form||Ability Score Adjustments||Feats|
|Werebear||Brown bear||Str +16, Dex +2, Con +8||Blind-Fight, Multiattack, Power Attack|
|Wereboar||Boar||Str +4, Con +6||Blind-Fight, Improved Initiative|
|Wererat||Dire rat||Dex +6, Con +2||Multiattack (despite only one natural waepon), Weapon Finesse (bite), Weapon Finesse (any)|
|Weretiger||Tiger||Str +12, Dex +4, Con +6||Blind-Fight, Multiattack, Power Attack|
|Werewolf||Wolf||Str +2, Dex +4, Con +4||Blind-Fight, Improved Initiative, Weapon Finesse (bite)|
Lycanthropy as an Affliction
When a character contracts lycanthropy through a lycanthrope’s attack (see above), no symptoms appear until the first night of the next full moon. On that night, the afflicted character involuntarily assumes animal form and becomes a ravening beast, forgetting his or her own identity. The character remains in animal form, assuming the appropriate alignment, until dawn and remembers nothing about the incident.
Thereafter, the character is subject to involuntary transformation under the full moon and whenever damaged in combat. He or she feels an overwhelming rage building up and must succeed at a Control Shape check to resist changing into animal form (see the sidebar).
Many lycanthropes are born, not made, and are sometimes called "natural lycanthropes" to distinguish them from those who have contracted lycanthropy ("afflicted lycanthropes").
Control Shape (Wis)
Any character who has contracted lycanthropy and is aware of his or her condition can learn Control Shape as a class skill. This determines whether the afflicted lycanthrope can voluntarily control his or her shape. Natural lycanthropes instead have the Improved Control Shape feat, which gives them full control over their shapeshifting abilities.
Check: The afflicted character must make a check at moonrise each night of the full moon to resist involuntarily assuming animal form. An injured character must also check for an involuntary change after accumulating enough damage to reduce his or her hit points by one-quarter and again after each additional one-quarter lost (save DC same as for full moon).
|Resist involuntary change||25|
|Return to humanoid form (full moon*)||25|
|Return to humanoid form (not full moon)||20|
|Voluntary change (full moon)||10|
|Voluntary change (not full moon)||15|
|*For game purposes, the full moon lasts three days every month.|
Retry: Check for an involuntary change once each time a triggering event occurs.
On a failed check to return to humanoid form (see below), the character must remain in animal or hybrid form until the next dawn, when he or she automatically returns to humanoid form.
Special: An involuntary change to animal or hybrid form ruins the character’s armor and clothing if the new form is larger than the character’s natural form. Characters can hastily doff clothing while changing, but not armor. Magic armor survives the change if it succeeds at a Fortitude save (DC 15).
When returning to normal form after an involuntary change, the character attempts a Wisdom check (DC 15) to realize what has happened. If the check succeeds, the character becomes aware of the affliction and can now voluntarily attempt to change to animal or hybrid form, using the appropriate DC. An attempt is a standard action and can be made each round. Any voluntary change to animal or hybrid form immediately and permanently changes the character’s alignment to that of the appropriate lycanthrope.
An afflicted character who is aware of his or her condition can also try to return to humanoid from after assuming animal or hybrid form, using the appropriate DC. Only one attempt is allowed, however, as described above.
An afflicted character who eats a sprig of belladonna (also called wolfsbane) within an hour of a lycanthrope’s attack can attempt a Fortitude save (DC 20) to shake off the affliction. If a healer administers the herb, use the character’s save or the healer’s Heal check, whichever is higher. The character gets only one chance, no matter how much belladonna is consumed. The belladonna must be reasonably fresh (picked within the last week).
However, fresh or not, belladonna is toxic. The character must succeed at a Fortitude save (DC 13) or take initial damage of 1d6 points of temporary Strength. One minute later, the character must succeed at a second save or take an additional 2d6 points of temporary Strength damage.
A remove disease or heal spell cast by a cleric of at least 12th level also cures the affliction, provided the character receives the spell within three days of the lycanthrope’s attack.
The only other way to remove the affliction is to cast remove curse or break enchantment on the character during one of the three days of the full moon. After receiving the spell, the character must succeed at a Will save (DC 20) to break the curse (the caster knows if the spell works). Otherwise the process must be repeated. Characters undergoing this cure are often kept bound or confined in cages until the cure takes effect. Only afflicted lycanthropes can be cured of lycanthropy.
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