Thursday, 4 September 2008

The Fighting Fantasy Cover Monster Bestiary (II)

An occasional series which stats-out and re-imagines the creatures found on Fighting Fantasy book covers.

Number 2: The Red Eyed Cat-Apes of Xarg-Jobba

On the barren peak of Spiderclaw there is a monastery to the God of Waiting, Uncle Kafalat. The monastery's name is Xarg-Jobba, and its monks have long experimented with the mystical arts of spirit-summoning, selective-breeding, and enforced mutation. One of their most successful (although in a certain way their least successful) projects has been the Red Eyed Cat-Ape, a creature bred originally for defense of the monastery but which is now spreading across the continent with astonishing rapidity after a number escaped some decades ago.

The Red Eyed Cat-Ape is a cross between a particularly ferocious breed of carnivorous ape (summoned up by a member of the order from Uncle-Kafalat-knows-where) and a jaguar; its glowing red eyes are an accidental bi-product of the enforced mutation process. (A bi-product with mysterious effects, however.) It is astonishingly aggressive and rapacious, will eat essentially anything, and breeds with rabbit-like rapidity. Worse, its unnatural ancestry has endowed it with strange and unintended powers.

Red Eyed Cat-Ape of Xarg-Jobba

No. Appearing: 1-6
AC: 5
THAC0: 16
HD: 4+1
No. of Attacks: 3
Damage per Attack: 1-6/3-6/3-6 (bite/scratch/scratch)
Morale: Elite (13-14)
Intelligence: Low (5-7)
Treasure: None
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Special Attacks: If a Red Eyed Cat-Ape's scratch attacks both hit, then it has succeeded in grabbing its target and its bit then automatically hits for double damage. Also see below.
Special Defenses: See below.
Magic Resistance: 25%

Three times per day a Red Eyed Cat-Ape can use its eyes to fire ball-like missiles of magical energy at opponents. There are three kinds of missile, determined randomly; the DM should roll a d3 to determine what type is fired. The first kind is equivalent to a weakness spell; the second is equivalent to fear; the third causes slowness. To be effective the missile has to hit its target (+3 bonus to the 'to hit' roll).

If a Red Eyed Cat-Ape loses 75% of its hit points it can immediately cast a blink spell to escape. This is a special use of its eyes, and it is unable to use them for a round afterwards (equivalent to blindness).


  1. By the by, and since you don't seem to answer your Facebook messages this is as good a place as any to ask: do I remember you recommending "The Wizard Knight" by Gene Wolfe? I'm sure you told me ages ago that it was totally amazing. Almost picked it up when I was in the library next week.

  2. This is a neat, old school monster. Very cool.

    Not to be a whinger, but it would have been nice to see what you'd do with the later Ian Miller cover.

  3. I think I may soon discover this "Xarg-Jobba" in the Traveller subsector I'm rolling up. Random generation is dandy, but now and again I like to mix in a little blatant thievery. Good stuff.