Archives of Nethys

Pathfinder 1E | Pathfinder 2E | Starfinder

All | Unique
A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z
Families | Templates | Types | Subtypes | Universal Monster Rules


Ashen Forgemaster

This hulking, serpentine creature resembles an oversized salamander devoid of color. Its flesh is pockmarked with coal-like scales and metallic piercings, and it carries a fearsome spear.

Ashen Forgemaster CR 17

Source Pathfinder #138: Rise of New Thassilon pg. 84
XP 102,400
CE Large undead (extraplanar, fire)
Init +9; Senses darkvision 60 ft., smoke vision; Perception +28
Aura fire aura (5 ft.)

Defense

AC 32, touch 14, flat-footed 27 (+5 Dex, +18 natural, –1 size)
hp 290 (20d8+200); regeneration 15 (cold)
Fort +16, Ref +11, Will +13
Defensive Abilities ashen cloud, channel resistance +4, rejuvenation; DR 15/good; Immune fire, undead traits; SR 28
Weaknesses vulnerability to cold

Offense

Speed 40 ft.
Melee +2 impervious transformative spear +28/+23/+18 (2d6+17/×3 plus 2d6 fire), tail slap +20 (3d6+5 plus 2d6 fire and grab)
Space 10 ft., Reach 10 ft. (20 ft. with tail)
Special Attacks constrict (3d6+15 plus 2d6 fire), heat (2d6 fire), lava trail
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th; concentration +30)
At will—fire shield, mending, produce flame
3/day—quickened detonate (DC 24), greater dispel magic, make whole
1/day—blade barrier (DC 26), flame strike (DC 25), wall of iron

Statistics

Str 30, Dex 21, Con —, Int 23, Wis 8, Cha 31
Base Atk +15; CMB +26 (+30 grapple); CMD 41
Feats Cleave, Combat Reflexes, Craft Magic Arms and ArmorB, Improved Initiative, Improved Vital Strike, Iron Will, Power Attack, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (detonate), Skill Focus (Perception), Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (spear)
Skills Bluff +20, Craft (armorsmithing) +34, Craft (blacksmithing) +34, Craft (weaponsmithing) +34, Intimidate +23, Knowledge (engineering, planes) +26, Perception +28, Spellcraft +29; Racial Modifiers +8 Craft (armorsmithing, blacksmithing, and weaponsmithing)
Languages Common, Ignan
SQ prison forge

Ecology

Environment any land
Organization solitary, pair, or cluster (3–5)
Treasure double (+2 impervious transformative spear, other nonflammable treasure)

Special Abilities

Ashen Cloud (Ex) When an ashen forgemaster is struck in combat, some of its scales crumble off to create a noxious cloud of ash, smoke, and rotting flesh that lingers for 1 round in all adjacent squares. Any creature that starts its turn in this cloud is sickened for 1 round (Fortitude DC 30 negates). The cloud obscures all sight beyond 5 feet, providing total concealment. A creature within 5 feet has concealment. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Fire Aura (Su) An ashen forgemaster is surrounded by an aura of intense heat. All creatures within 5 feet take 1d6 points of fire damage at the beginning of the forgemaster’s turn.

Lava Trail (Su) At the start of the forgemaster’s turn, any square it occupies melts or catches fire from the intense heat of its body. These squares become difficult terrain for all creatures other than the ashen forgemaster. Each creature that enters or begins its turn within the affected squares takes 10d6 points of fire damage. The squares cool and return to normal after 1 round.

Prison Forge (Su) An ashen forgemaster is bound to a monolithic forge and cannot stray more than 500 feet from it. A forgemaster that moves more than 500 feet from its prison forge is staggered until it returns. A forgemaster that remains more than 500 feet from its forge for 24 hours takes 2d6 points of Charisma damage, and an additional 2d6 points of Charisma damage every day it remains out of range of its forge. When the total Charisma damage equals or exceeds the forgemaster’s Charisma score, it is destroyed and rejuvenated in its prison forge once again (see below).

Rejuvenation (Su) One day after an ashen forgemaster is destroyed, its forge begins to rebuild the undead creature’s body. This process takes 2d6 days—if the body is destroyed before that time passes, the forge merely starts the process anew. After this time passes, the forgemaster awakens fully healed. It does not have any of the gear left behind on its old body, but it can forge a new weapon or simply select one from the many weapons it has previously made.

Smoke Vision (Ex) An ashen forgemaster can see perfectly in smoky conditions (such as those created by pyrotechnics or its own ashen cloud ability).

Description

Ashen forgemasters are massive, undead salamanders tasked with eternally toiling at a forge, crafting armor and weapons. They begin their lives as living salamanders but are bound to a forge, continuing their work eternally, long into their undeath. Centuries spent in seclusion erodes their personality, and they eventually grow into paranoid, violent, and sadistic creatures. Forgemasters surround themselves with the weapons and armor they have crafted over the years, the designs and shapes of which grow more bizarre as the forgemaster’s delusions grow.

An ashen forgemaster stands between 9 and 12 feet tall and weighs about 5,000 pounds.

Ecology

Throughout history, those with the power to control salamanders have used them for their metalworking prowess. Such powerful beings sometimes bind a salamander to a forge to keep it in servitude. These salamanders might be imprisoned for decades, tasked with performing whatever their captors require of them. An ashen forgemaster is created when a salamander dies while bound to a forge. These salamanders are reborn as undead, forced by the binding spells to continue their work.

Early in their unlife, ashen forgemasters retain the appearance of flames, as a live salamander might have. As it continues to exist, however, an ashen forgemaster’s flesh gradually dulls to gray and then white, until it looks like a statue of its former self. Despite their burnt-up exteriors, ashen forgemasters smolder with all the heat of the Plane of Fire. As their bodies decay and crumble away into dust, they periodically collect the remains, mix them with molten metal, rebuild themselves, and continue their eternal work.

The forge used to bind a salamander is generally covered in ritual runes that strengthen the binding and protect the forge from harm, preventing the salamander from destroying its prison to escape. A single forge cannot host more than one salamander in this way, though some spellcasters will link multiple forges at once to enslave many salamanders simultaneously.

Habitat and Society

Most forgemasters rarely see other creatures after their transformation, as they interact with only their captors. Spellcasters willing to bind a salamander to eternally work its forge seldom care about the salamander’s wellbeing and see the creature as a mere tool to be used when necessary, ignoring it for years at a time.

A forgemaster’s weakened mental state makes interaction with it dangerous. A forgemaster lashes out against those it sees as interfering with its work or attempting to steal its creations. In cases where a forgemaster is not abandoned, or when its task can actually be completed, it might retain its sense of self. These forgemasters are fiercely driven to accomplish whatever is necessary for their release, even making deals with their hated efreet enemies. Multiple salamanders bound to nearby forges often form close bonds with each other.

Forgemasters litter the area in their vicinity with weaponry and sculptures in a feeble attempt to remain grounded in reality. Many chain themselves to their forge to symbolize their slavery and measure out the distance they can safely roam.

Prison Forge

An ashen forgemaster’s soul is bound to a massive forge similar to the way a dryad is bound to its tree or a lich to its phylactery. As long as the forge burns, the forgemaster is rejuvenated after it is destroyed. The ritual that originally binds the salamander also directly connects the forge to the Plane of Fire, so extraordinary measures are necessary to extinguish it. Powerful water- or cold-based abilities, such as the breath weapon of an ancient or older silver dragon or the drench ability of an elder water elemental, can suppress or sever this connection long enough to douse the forge’s flames. The forge then becomes mundane and can be dismantled to prevent the forgemaster from rejuvenating.