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Iron Rhinoceros

Dangling chains cover the riveted iron body of this massive rhinoceros like thick, woolly fur. Its hollow eyes glow—windows into a mighty furnace—and smoke that smells suspiciously like burning flesh billows from its smokestack horns.

Iron Rhinoceros CR 11

Source Pathfinder #95: Anvil of Fire pg. 86
XP 12,800
N Huge construct
Init +1; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +14


AC 25, touch 9, flat-footed 24 (+1 Dex, +16 natural, –2 size)
hp 131 (14d10+54)
Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +4
DR 10/adamantine; Immune construct traits, fire


Speed 40 ft.
Melee gore +21 (3d8+9/19–20), 2 chains +19 (2d6+4 plus grab)
Space 15 ft., Reach 10 ft. (20 ft. with chains)
Special Attacks grasping chains, powerful charge (gore, 6d8+16 or scooping charge), powerful drag, swallow whole (2d6 fire damage, AC 18, 13 hp), trample (2d6+8 plus grasping chains, DC 26)


Str 28, Dex 12, Con —, Int 1, Wis 11, Cha 5
Base Atk +14; CMB +25 (+29 grapple); CMD 36 (40 vs. trip)
Feats Great Fortitude, Improved Critical (gore), Intimidating Prowess, Lightning Reflexes, Multiattack, Power Attack, Toughness
Skills Intimidation +4, Perception +14


Environment warm mountains or underground
Organization solitary
Treasure none

Special Abilities

Grasping Chains (Ex) An iron rhinoceros is covered in animated chains that grasp at its enemies. It doesn’t gain the grappled condition when using its chains to grapple enemies, and can maintain a grapple using its chains as a free action, though doing so prevents it from attacking with that chain. An iron rhinoceros may have up to two creatures grappled in its chains at a time. Additionally, the chains seek to ensnare creatures the rhino tramples. The chains entangle any creature that fails its saving throw against the rhinoceros’s trample attack, or that chooses to forgo its save in order to make an attack of opportunity against the rhinoceros. An entangled creature can escape from the chains as a standard action by succeeding on a DC 26 Strength check or a DC 20 Escape Artist check. Each chain has AC 12, hardness 10, and 15 hit points. Creatures entangled in the chains can’t move farther than 20 feet away from the rhinoceros. If the rhinoceros moves farther than 20 feet from an entangled target, the tethering chain breaks, but the target remains entangled.

Powerful Drag (Ex) An iron rhinoceros can use the dragAPG combat maneuver to savagely scrape its foes across the ground. As a full-round action, an iron rhinoceros can attempt a single drag combat maneuver against every creature currently tethered to its grasping chains. This deals 1d6 points of damage for every 5 feet dragged, and the chains tethered to any creature more than 20 feet away break. The dragging damage may increase depending on the terrain, at the GM’s discretion. Creatures dragged any distance are knocked prone.

Scooping Charge (Ex) An iron rhinoceros can unhinge its snout in order to scoop enemies into the furnace-like cavity within its belly. When making a powerful charge, the iron rhinoceros can forgo dealing damage in order to gain the grab and fast swallow abilities with its gore attack. The rhinoceros must make this choice at the beginning of its charge.

Swallow Whole (Ex) An iron rhinoceros’s belly functions as a furnace, dealing 2d6 points of fire damage to swallowed creatures. Hatches on the rhinoceros’s sides allow it to swallow creatures grappled in its chains. In order to take swallowed creatures prisoner without dealing fire damage, the rhinoceros can suppress (or activate) the flames within its furnace as a swift action. When the rhinoceros is suppressing the flames, the furnace instead fills with smoke, forcing swallowed creatures to succeed at a DC 17 Fortitude save each round or be sickened for as long as they remain in the rhinoceros’s belly. This save DC is Constitutionbased. Creatures attempting to cut their way out of the iron rhinoceros’s belly must overcome the durability of the thick furnace walls (hardness 10).


The brutality of fire giants is matched only by their ingenuity at crafting devices of war. Of all their creations, however, few match the ruthless efficiency or raw power of the iron rhinoceros. Built to sate the fire giants’ endless desire for slaves, iron rhinoceroses serve as both tireless mounts for giant warlords campaigning against lesser races and as temporary prisons for troublesome captives.

An iron rhinoceros measures 18 feet long from snout to tail and stands 12 feet tall at the shoulder.


It is a quirk of fate that fire giants, the most rigid and militaristic of the giant races, created a construct as willful and obstinate as the iron rhinoceros. Early prototypes for the creature borrowed techniques from golem manufacturing and relied on bound elementals to provide the construct’s animating force. The results were initially promising, as these unintelligent creatures obeyed without hesitation and executed their orders with mechanical precision. However, they also inherited their golem forebears’ tendency to go berserk in battle. Few generals were willing to ride a mount that might turn on its rider, and so these first creations were deemed unreliable and most were broken down for scrap.

For the second generation of iron rhinoceroses, fire giant blacksmiths bound the spirits of animals rather than elementals into the construct’s frame. The results were surprisingly lifelike. When not in use as mounts or engines of war, these new iron rhinoceroses rest and graze as normal rhinoceroses do, even without the need for food or sleep. They “eat” combustible materials, such as wood and coal, to fuel their internal furnaces, and seek warm places to lie down. They also share their living cousins’ aggressive tendencies, and attack unfamiliar creatures on sight.

An iron rhinoceros is only truly loyal to its maker, or to an individual whom its maker designates at the time of its creation. At best, it tolerates the presence of other creatures, and more often displays barely constrained hostility toward its master’s servants. An iron rhinoceros prefers not to allow riders other than its master, and such riders take a –4 penalty on Ride checks to control it in battle.

Habitat & Society

Iron rhinoceroses are rarely found outside of fire giant camps. Although any sufficiently experienced and equipped spellcaster can create one, something in the mechanical beasts’ construction predisposes them to favor giants over other creatures. While they might remain loyal to their creator, iron rhinoceroses display aggression toward any other non-giant creature they meet. These tendencies, combined with the creatures’ immense size and strength, make them dangerous to keep in even lightly civilized areas.

Among some fire giant communities, iron rhinoceroses are a mark of status and power. Many fire giants assume that a general who possesses and commands one has been successful enough at war to afford the exorbitant cost of the beast’s creation. Because iron rhinoceroses cannot (or will not) bond with a new master after their creation, elders rarely pass them down along family lines or to successors. Up-and-coming fire giant generals are expected to produce their own iron rhinoceroses to prove their worth as military commanders. In truth, few iron rhinoceroses survive their masters, as both tend to fall in battle against more powerful enemies. On the rare occasion when an iron rhinoceros does outlast its owner, the construct is placed within its master’s tomb to serve as a guardian for his body and grave goods. Desperate or foolish young commanders sometimes attempt to steal iron rhinoceroses from the tombs of their ancestors, hoping to gain the prestige that comes with ownership without first proving themselves in war. These young generals more often than not end up impaled, making their attempted theft readily apparent to whatever unfortunate giants must clean up the mess.


An iron rhinoceros is made of 6,000 pounds of forgehardened iron and steel that costs 5,000 gp.

Iron Rhinoceros

CL 15th; Price 117,500 gp


Requirements Craft Construct, geas/quest, limited wish, resist energy, summon nature’s ally V, creator must be caster level 15th; Skill Craft (armor) or Craft (weapons) DC 25; Cost 61,250 gp