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The ground shudders and the seabirds take to wing with piercing cries of alarm. What once appeared to be a small, rocky island reveals itself to be a creature of titanic proportions as an enormous tail lifts ominously from the water. With a thunderous crash, it slams down, sending the island plunging beneath the waves.

Aspidochelone CR 17

Source Pathfinder #27: What Lies in Dust pg. 78
XP 102,400
N Colossal magical beast (aquatic)
Init -3; Senses darkvision 120 ft., low-light vision; Perception -2


AC 27, touch -1, flat-footed 27 (+28 armor, -3 Dex, -8 size)
hp 297 (22d10+176)
Fort +23, Ref +10, Will +7


Speed 0 ft., swim 120 ft.
Melee bite +25 (4d6+11 plus grab), tail slap +20 (4d6+5)
Space 150 ft., Reach 20 ft.
Special Attacks capsize, swallow whole (4d6 acid damage, AC 24, 29 hp), watery grave


Str 32, Dex 5, Con 27, Int 3, Wis 7, Cha 12
Base Atk +22; CMB +41; CMD 48
Feats Diehard, Endurance, Great Fortitude, Greater Bull Rush, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Great Fortitude, Improved Iron Will, Improved Overrun, Iron Will, Power Attack, Stealthy
Skills Stealth –1, Swim +33; Racial Modifiers +10 Stealth to appear as an island
SQ deep sea denizen, hibernate, hibernation of ages


Environment ocean
Organization solitary
Treasure incidental

Special Abilities

Capsize (Ex) A aspidochelone can attempt to capsize a boat or ship of Gargantuan size or smaller by merely passing through its space and making a CMB check as a free action. The DC the aspidochelone must exceed is 25, or the result of the boat captain’s Profession (sailor) check, whichever is higher.

Captivating Scent (Ex) An aspidochelone exudes intoxicating pheromones from its skin, causing nearby creatures to seek it out. Anyone within a 1-mile radius must succeed on a DC 12 Will save or feel inexplicably drawn toward the aspidochelone by the most direct route possible. This effect is not an overwhelming compulsion, but more a subtle suggestion. The save DC is Charisma-based with a –10 penalty.

Deep Sea Denizen (Ex) An aspidochelone can travel to extraordinary depths, and has adapted to the intense darkness and water pressure of the deep. It possesses darkvision with a range of 120 ft. and is immune to damage from water pressure.

Hibernate (Ex) After gorging itself on innumerable tons of deep sea life and unfortunate travelers, an aspidochelone floats to the surface and goes into a deep hibernation with only its mottled back jutting from the waves. While hibernating, it appears to be little more than a rocky outcropping or, in the cases of the largest aspidochelone, an entire island. A hibernating aspidochelone is considered to have taken 20 on its Stealth check to hide in plain sight as a rock or island.

An aspidochelone rouses from its hibernation for one of two reasons: hunger or disturbance. After entering its hibernation, a aspidochelone sleeps for 2d10×10 years, rousing naturally after this time has elapsed. An aspidochelone about to awaken usually sleeps fitfully for the last year of its rest, quivering with tremors that feel like earthquakes to creatures upon it. These tremors are treated as a minor version of the earthquake spell that affects the entire island, forcing creatures on the ground to make a DC 29 Reflex save to avoid falling down and causing 30 points of damage to all structures. An aspidochelone might be awakened immediately if it takes 100 or more points of damage in a single day. If awakened in this manner, an aspidochelone typically dives to escape its attacker, then rises again to consume it. The save DC is Constituiton-based.

Hibernation of Ages (Ex) An aspidochelone in hibernation continues to exude its captivating scent. Over time, birds attracted by the aspidochelone’s pheromones come to roost on the whale, inadvertently bringing the seeds of small plants and shrubbery to grow in the cracks upon the aspidochelone’s thick hide. The preponderance of plants, seabirds, and even other beasts gives the creature the appearance of a rocky but natural island. Thus, any aspidochelone who has spent more than 10 years hibernating gains an addition +10 bonus on its Stealth check to look like a natural island.

Watery Grave (Ex) A startled aspidochelone descends rapidly into the depths of the sea, creating an undertow in the water that pulls creatures above the whale down with it. Anyone standing on or swimming within 100 feet of the aspidochelone when it dives must make a DC 29 Reflex save or take 10d6 points of damage from the crushing waves and pressure, and be pulled 100 feet below the water. Even if a creature escapes the undertow, the water within 100 feet of a passing aspidochelone is treated as rough water, requiring a DC 20 Swim check to move at half speed. The save DC is Constitution-based.


A legendary creature of the sea, aspidochelones are eldritch whales of titanic size. When floating near the surface of the water, aspidochelones have frequently been mistaken by desperate sailors for small islands due to the craggy, mottled flesh of their steeply humped backs. Yet, upon tethering their boats to the whale’s tough hide and lighting a fire to ward off the cold, many castaways discover to their horror that the spur of land they have beached upon is in fact an enormous creature. This realization comes too late for many unfortunate souls as the creature plunges beneath the waves, dragging trespassers down with it.

An aspidochelone appears to be a huge whale with an extraordinarily thick, rock-like hide. From tail to snout, the creature generally measures more than 500 feet in length, and weighs upward of 100,000 tons. Few ever see an aspidochelone for what it actually is, however, having only glimpsed the pitted and uneven skin of its topside. As seabirds and other creatures come to rest upon the hibernating creature, they carry with them plant seeds and dirt. Over time, the accumulated plants and wildlife gives an aspidochelone the appearance of a small, densely inhabited island.