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Nightshade

Source Bestiary 2 pg. 199
The malevolent nightshades are a mysterious form of necrotic abominations composed of equal parts darkness and ineffable evil. They are living wells of hatred and death, their mere presence sapping the light, heat, and life from all around them, leaving nothing but the heavy, hanging pallor of an open grave in their passing. To nightshades, life is a corruption and a blight. Creation must be purged of this disruption, so that all existence can be welcomed into the sweet embrace of darkness and death. To this end, nightshades seek nothing less than the annihilation of all that is, that was, and that will be.

Nightshades call to themselves legions of undead and shadow-spirits­—those who hate the burning sun and the sweet spark of life as much as they themselves do. They rarely ally with living beings who share their vision of extinguishing the sun and exterminating all who stand before them, though such alliances do, at times, occur. Adapting the forms of their kind to pursue the cause of death in every environment and situation, upon the land, in the sky and the sea, and even in the deep places of the world beneath, nightshades marshal their unliving armies. Yet for all their singleness of purpose, they are no mindless beasts. They are clever and patient planners, willing to grant favors to allies or minions as long as they prove themselves useful, and equally willing to turn on them and destroy them the moment their usefulness has been exhausted, rendering their tortured and murdered spirits into deathless slaves.

Nightshades originate in the deepest voids at the planar juncture of the Plane of Shadow and the Negative Energy Plane, where reality itself ends. Here lies a vast adumbral gulf where the weight of infinite existence compresses the null-stuff of unlife and the tenebrous webs of shadow-reality into matte, crystalline plates and shards of condensed entropy. Many fiends seeking the power of ultimate destruction have sought this place, hoping to harness its power for their own ends, but the majority discover the power of distilled entropy is far greater than they bargained for. Their petty designs are washed away as they become one with the nothing, with first their minds and then their bodies being remade, forged no longer of living flesh but of the lifeless, deathless matter of pure darkness incarnate. Recast into one of a handful of perfected entropic forms (some whisper, forged by a dark being long imprisoned at the uttermost end of reality), these immortal fiendish spirits still burn with the freezing fire of insensate evil, but are now distilled and refined through the turning of ages to serve entropy alone. To say that nightshades form from the necrotic flesh and transformed souls of powerful fiends is technically correct, but the transformation that these foolish paragons of evil undergo is even more hideous than such words might suggest.

While the majority of nightshades are the product of such fiendish arrogance, this is by no means the only source for these powerful undead creatures. Many nightshades commit themselves to the harvesting of immortal souls of every race and loyalty, casting their broken and shattered bodies into the negative voidspace, where the residue of their divine essence slowly precipitates and congeals in the nighted gulf. Whatever their origin, in this heart of darkness all souls embrace destruction. When a critical mass of immortal soul energy is reached, a new nightshade is spawned. The souls of mortals lost to the negative plane are drawn up and reborn as undead long before becoming co-opted within the gulf; mortal spirits are the servants of the nightshades, but only the essence of immortality can provide the spiritual fuel to ignite the fire of their unlife.

The most common nightshades are the nightwalkers, long-striding giant fiends often found at the head of undead armies. They are the generals of the nightshade army, the commanders of legions and the organizers of the deaths of worlds.

Yet in places the nightwalkers cannot easily reach, the vast gulfs of the sea and the soaring heights of the clouds above, other nightshades rule. Above flop the immense bat-like nightwings, deadly in their own right yet content to serve at the behest of their stronger cousins. When these monstrosities come to the Material Plane, they swoop down in the dawn to take shelter in abandoned necropolises or vast crypts, emerging at dusk to prey upon nations.

As above, so do the realms below quake from the passage of nightshades. Here, immense nightcrawlers slither and creep. These umbral worms do not often venture forth from the deep, forgotten caverns they dwell in, but when they do, entire kingdoms die as their nighted coils writhe and work their inevitable way through the population.

But for all of the nightmare potential posed by these undead paragons, they all pale in comparison to the mightiest nightshades of all—the shark-like nightwave. This monstrosity prowls the lightless depths of ocean trenches, gathering the souls of the countless drowned dead or preying upon deep aquatic races. Yet those who cleave to the shallows or ply the surface of the seas are not safe from the ravenous nightwaves either, for in the darkest night, these undead monsters rise up to harvest souls from ships and shore as well.

Yet even the dreaded nightwaves are not enough to fill the nightmares of great heroes. Rumors of more powerful nightshades are whispered fearfully in certain circles—creatures of such immense power that their mere existence can drain entire planets of life in a matter of weeks. If such monstrosities truly exist, then all life may be but a fleeting spark in the dark folds of a forever-doomed future.

Creatures in "Nightshade" Category

NameCR
Nightcrawler18
Nightprowler10
Nightwalker16
Nightwave20
Nightwing14

Nightshade, Nightwalker

This towering, night-black giant has demonic features, including a huge pair of ram-like horns. Its arms end in massive blades.

Nightwalker CR 16

Source Bestiary 2 pg. 201
XP 76,800
CE Huge undead (extraplanar, nightshade)
Init +2; Senses darksense, darkvision 60 ft., detect magic, low-light vision; Perception +29
Aura desecrating aura (30 ft.)

Defense

AC 31, touch 10, flat-footed 29 (+2 Dex, +21 natural, –2 size)
hp 241 (21d8+147)
Fort +14, Ref +11, Will +19
DR 15/good and silver; Immune cold, undead traits; SR 27
Weaknesses light aversion

Offense

Speed 40 ft.
Melee 2 claws +28 (3d6+15/19–20 plus 4d6 cold)
Space 15 ft., Reach 15 ft.
Special Attacks channel energy (8d6, DC 29, 8/day), fear gaze, swift sundering
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 16th; concentration +21)
Constant—air walk, detect magic, magic fang
At will—contagion (DC 19), deeper darkness, greater dispel magic, unholy blight (DC 19)
3/day—confusion (DC 19), haste, hold monster (DC 20), invisibility, quickened unholy blight (DC 19)
1/day—cone of cold (DC 20), finger of death (DC 22), plane shift (DC 22), summon (level 7, 4 greater shadows)

Statistics

Str 35, Dex 14, Con —, Int 20, Wis 21, Cha 21
Base Atk +15; CMB +29; CMD 41
Feats Combat Expertise, Command Undead, Greater Sunder, Greater Vital Strike, Improved Critical (claws), Improved Disarm, Improved Sunder, Improved Vital Strike, Power Attack, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (unholy blight), Vital Strike
Skills Intimidate +29, Knowledge (arcana) +29, Knowledge (planes) +26, Knowledge (religion) +29, Perception +29, Sense Motive +29, Spellcraft +29, Stealth +18 (+26 in darkness), Swim +33; Racial Modifiers +8 Stealth in dim light and darkness
Languages Abyssal, Common, Infernal; telepathy 100 ft.

Ecology

Environment any (Negative Energy Plane)
Organization solitary, pair, or gang (3–4)
Treasure standard

Special Abilities

Fear Gaze (Su) Cower in fear for 1 round, 30 feet, Will DC 25 negates. This is a mind-affecting fear effect. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Swift Sundering (Su) A nightwalker can make a sunder attempt as a swift action with one of its claws.

Description

The most commonly encountered nightshade is the giant-like nightwalker. This powerful foe leads armies of undead against the living, but unlike most mortal generals the nightwalker is not content to stand back and observe the battles from safety. The undead creature is ever eager to put its tactics and plans to the test itself, and takes part in battles in every possible occurrence save for those that the creature has determined are self-destructive. This is not to say that the nightwalker never sacrifices its troops to gain a tactical advantage—just that these attacks are the only ones the monster feels no urge to participate in directly.

Nightwalkers enjoy inflicting despair before death, particularly by destroying valued objects or murdering loved ones before delivering the final blow to a foe.

A nightwalker is 20 feet tall and weighs 5,000 pounds.