Enemies in Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire are covered on this page.
Beetles are not quite man-sized, but they still strike a sufficiently intimidating form to frighten off most travelers. The largely uninhabited swathes of the Deadfire Archipelago give beetles plenty of room to multiply. The most successful species of large beetle have evolved to not only camouflage themselves in the surrounding environment, but also to grow carapaces made out of common and hardy materials such as wood, stone, and adra.
Despite all appearances to the contrary, there is an underlying complexity to the common beetle. When they choose a material with which to develop their shell, they do so with a level of intention that borders on artistry. Wood beetles will often bore intricate holes in their carapaces. By blowing air through these makeshift pipes, they play an eerie music to attract mates. Stone beetles fashion rudimentary tusks and horns that help them to defend themselves and to attack prey. The intricacies of adra beetles are as of yet not well understood, save that they are notoriously difficult to kill.
Phantoms are souls that did not properly separate from the body after death. This usually happens as a result of severe trauma, particularly in the case of a violent death. Unlike lost souls, which are incapable of interacting with or being detected by normal mortals, phantoms (like shadows and cean gŵla) maintain a connection to the physical world. They will attack other life forms without discrimination.
Phantoms can also manifest from kith who lived particularly chaotic lives, including violent criminals and the insane. Anyone can become a phantom under the right circumstances, but the fear of phantoms – and their association with the mentally ill – can result in vulnerable populations being shunned across many communities.
Ogres are large, thick-skinned creatures, standing between ten and twelve feet tall. They are heavily muscled and typically attired in the furs or skins of their prey. Clubs, axes and maces made of bone or wood are their preferred weapons.
Despite their natural intelligence, ogres' volatile temperaments have historically prevented them from concentrating long enough to create anything of significant cultural value. Most live semi-nomadic, secluded lives in the wilderness, where they are less likely to encounter others. The only time they reliably come together is during the mating season, which often does almost as much to reduce their numbers as it does to replenish them. Ogres with a more "peaceful" streak take particular pains to avoid contact with others of their kind.
On the rare occasions that ogres are found working together, they are almost always operating under the direction of an ogre matron. Ogre matrons are even larger than male ogres, but tend to be less aggressive toward their own kind. Where ogres have banded together, they have often represented an insurmountable threat to other kith.
Shadows are created when creatures with heavily fractured souls die without re-entering the cycle of rebirth. Because these souls are damaged, they drain essence from other creatures in a futile attempt to repair themselves. The more essence they steal, the more powerful and dangerous shadows become. As they devour essence, they pick up pieces of corporeal matter, giving them a visible, if indistinct, form. Luckily, shadows can only draw a small bit of spiritual energy from souls still attached to a body or bound to an object. They mainly rely on creatures like the pŵgra, who can draw souls out of their physical form, to help them obtain the essence they crave.
Shadows have been known to draw spiritual energy from people while they sleep when their souls are not bound as strongly to their bodies. This results in horrible nightmares that leave the person in an exhausted state the next day. If an entire town suddenly begins to suffer nightmares, it is highly probable that a strong shadow has taken up residence there.
Since shadows absorb spiritual energy, they appear invisible to creatures that rely on spiritual sight. This has led to experiments in binding shadows to armor or other objects to act as a cloak to obscure those who do not wish to be seen by such creatures.
Young dragons begin their life cycle as wurms, though most never develop beyond that stage. Wurms are clever and sly, if not especially intelligent. To develop into a drake - and eventually a dragon - a wurm must have ample space and resources. They will not develop if they live near existing drakes and dragons. They must seek out a habitat that has not already been claimed by a larger counterpart.
Since the chances of further development are low, most wurms will band together in covens for survival. They are bold and highly aggressive creatures, if not particularly intelligent.
Enormous and hostile spiders come in a terrifying array of shapes, sizes, and colors throughout the islands of the Deadfire. Much more aggressive than their tiny kin, these giants actively seek out human and animal prey. Even the weakest of them, the spear spider, can easily kill a grown kith if the victim is unprepared. Though the spear spider lacks a poisonous bite, its piercing legs, from which its name is derived, can inflict terrible wounds, even through armor.
More deadly than spear spiders are ivory spinners and widowmakers, both of which possess horrific, poisonous bites. The ivory spinner also has the ability to fire webbing at its prey, slowing it down. Widowmakers do not cast webs, but their poison is extraordinarily toxic.
Seldom seen outside of the most remote locations, the fabled crystal-eaters are enormous and powerful, possessing magical abilities some wizards believe have been developed through the consumption of adra and enchanted gemstones. In addition to their ability to raise a field of deadly crystal spikes, the venom of a crystal-eater will temporarily turn a victim's flesh and blood to stone. Subsequent attacks by the crystal-eater on a petrified foe are quickly fatal.
Lurkers are comprised of a colony of several different species of parasitic, carnivorous plants and fungi working together to hunt a common prey. As a whole, they stand nearly ten feet tall in a vaguely anthropomorphic "body" comprised of vines, leaves, roots and earth. The coexistence of so many separate organisms makes them hardy and difficult to eradicate - it is usually best to sever the parts that enable locomotion or, should their victim possess fuel and lack finesse, to simply light the entire colony on fire.
While the means by which lurkers form remains something of a mystery, some speculate that they form when certain species of flesh-eating plants come together on a common host, such as the hollowed-out victims of dank spores, and that they achieve locomotion once sufficiently colonized. This theory is supported by the fact that many lurkers contain bones and other remains riddled with roots and spores when cut open.
Lurkers are notorious for hiding in plain sight, often waiting motionless amongst the trees and underbrush to ambush their prey. They appear to hold a rudimentary intelligence and are at least sophisticated enough to store food. It is not uncommon to see several unconscious victims tangled in a lurker's vines to be saved for a later feeding.
Lions thrive in the lush forests of the Deadfire, particularly in the more arid regions of the archipelago. More populous than their peers in the Eastern Reach, Deadfire lions nonetheless struggle to maintain a foothold in region due primarily to recent incursions by colonial forces, who hunt them for sport.
In addition to their great power, lions are known for their roar, a terrifying sound that can strike fear even into the hearts of the bravest kith.
These giant mushrooms stand nearly as tall as adult aumaua and are topped by a broad and colorful cap. Their enormous weight is only held upright by the dozens of roots surrounding their base.
Dank spores are unique among their kind in their appetite for the souls of living creatures. They often grow and move in groups along the forest floor, searching for weakened or exhausted travelers who are unable to fend off their attacks. Once they find a host, they bind to it and supply it with the basic nutrients required to keep it alive while they absorb its essence. Dank spores are extremely hostile once they find a host - they will attack anything that gets close to their meal with their poisonous, barbed roots.
Dank spores feed on the most corrupt and splintered energy of a soul first, continuing until the host is nothing but a soulless husk. This makes dank spore flesh useful to experienced apothecaries as a cleansing agent in soul purification medicines and techniques. Improperly applied, however, this treatment can lead to amnesia and, in extreme cases, soul fracturing.
Sporelings are the larval form of dank spores. While more mobile and agile than their mature counterparts, these humanoid-shaped creatures are also far weaker. They spawn from dank spores and use their heightened mobility to seek nourishment. Like dank spores, sporelings feed off of both decaying organic matter and soul essence, and they must bulk up on a sufficient amount of both before maturing into dank spores themselves.
These gangly giants stand twice the height of average humans. Their bodies are covered in large fungal growths that leak foul-smelling, pus-like fluid. Their oversized hands and feet extend to giant claws capable of rending a kith in two. Dozens of slimy tendrils hang loosely from atop their oversized heads, and their vast maws are filled with jagged, razor-sharp teeth. They have never been observed to use weapons, tools, or clothing, likely because they do not need them.
Looking at a troll, it can be difficult to tell whether they've evolved in harmony with lichen, moss, and fungi, or whether they've been overtaken by them. A troll's naturally clammy flesh provides the ideal growing environment for these plants. They provide camouflage as well as some protection from the elements, and the enzymes they produce also offers limited sustenance for trolls in lean times.
Because of their symbiosis with these plants, trolls generally dwell in heavily-wooded areas, although some may occasionally be seen in damp underground environments that also house an abundance of lichen and fungi.
The vithrack are extremely rare and dangerous creatures with natural cipher abilities. They are mostly humanoid in shape - though slightly taller and thinner than humans - and boast fanged, spider-like heads. Similarly to spiders, they are capable of spinning silk. Rather than creating webs, they use this skill to fashion complex hive structures along with their own very intricate and fine robes.
Male and female vithrack are indistinguishable from one another. They are primarily spellcasters and mental manipulators, like ciphers, though they will also attack with their fangs when forced into close quarters. A vithrack's psionic powers allow it to communicate mentally with others of its kind. Like many social insectoids, their society includes a variety of specific roles, including scouts and defenders.
Despite their intelligence and power, vithrack are not a major force in the world due to their low birth rates. While their difficulty conceiving is likely responsible for their famed hostility toward other races, it have also made the vithrack highly altruistic when it comes to young of their own kind. They will defend their nests to the death.
These amorphous clouds roil and swirl with violent energies. Within the maelstrom, dozens of humanoid shapes materialize and vanish within an instant. Faces scream in silent agony while hands desperately clutch and claw at the air around them.
Bîaŵacs, known as spirit winds, often create blights. If souls are ripped free of their bodies and caught in the center of the storm, they may stick together and become bonded with available elemental substances in the maelstrom. They are beings of pure chaos and confusion, and destroying them is considered a mercy to the souls trapped within.
Experimenting with blight creation is yet another questionable activity that has earned animancers a bad reputation in many circles. Some see it as dangerous and inhumane, others as a means to an end. The creation of blights is an accusation many fearful kith level at animancers.
A delempŵgra ("rotten leaf"), more typically called pŵgra ("rotten"), is a delemgan that has been corrupted by the destruction of their home tree or adra stone. They are as ugly as delemgan are beautiful, spindly and emaciated with cool tones to their skin. Their hair is dead, dark, and slimy, their facial features contorted, and their teeth long and sharp. Unlike delemgan, they are not surrounded by motes of light, and they are more than willing to attack unfortunate travelers with their long talons. Pŵgra decorate themselves with the skulls, skins, and feathers of animals they've killed.
Just as delemgan seek to maintain the health of their forests, pŵgra seek to corrupt them, making the two species mortal enemies. The rot that infects them endows their attacks with a ghastly poison, but it also makes their bodies weak and brittle, leaving them vulnerable to piercing and crushing attacks.
Since they can no longer draw essence from a healthy forest, they must survive by drawing energy and essence out of plants, animals, and kith. This makes them natural allies of shadows, which feed by similar means and enjoy the benefits of a shared hunt.
They are hostile toward all life, but rangers and druids are their most common foes.
The delemgan are forest spirits bound to adra monuments or ancient - often petrified - trees. They appear to have mostly elven-shaped bodies, but their skin is made of wood and their hair is long and plantlike. As their name sugggests, adragans, or "adra-born" as they are sometimes known, appear to have skin made of adra. Delemgan glow slightly and often have tiny motes of light around them.
Delemgan are entirely magical beings and as such do not use physical weapons to attack. They retain the overall shape of humanoids, but do not wear clothes and lack sexual organs. Their attractiveness is used in tandem with their magic, typically to mesmerize attackers or lure them to their deaths.
These creatures draw their essence from their surroundings. While they have physical bodies and can be killed if those bodies are destroyed, their survival is inextricably linked to the health of their environment. They feel no natural animosity toward other beings, but they will defend their territories with a surprising ferocity.
Delemgan may individually be more or less hostile depending on the well-being of their locale and on whether kith they're previously encountered have proven to be dangerous or benign. They are traditionally friendly toward rangers and druids. Their spiritual link with trees has led to greater understanding of the link between rangers and their animal companions, though a definitive connection has yet to be made.
Delemgan are a natural hindrance to large-scale development. While they usually live peacefully alongside rural communities, towns and cities with an eye toward expansion may find themselves beset by hostile delemgan. While rural kith usually oppose the destruction of delemgan habitats, city-dwellers often support the notion, believing that the delemgans' souls will simply reincarnate in other forests or back into kith.
Dragon is both the name for the creature and the short title for the mature stage of its lifecycle. Dragons are remarkably long-lived, persisting for hundreds, if not thousands of years, and go through three stages of growth before reaching their final adult form - egg, wurm, drake, dragon.
Dragons become larger, stronger and more intelligent as they grow older. Adult dragons are powerful and impressive creatures, often dozens of feet long with commensurate wingspans. Their intelligence frequently surpasses that of most other sentient beings, including humans.
Despite dragons' solitary nature, they are revered as deities by xaurips, who often build their communities around a dragon's lair, aiding in the much larger creature's defense and sustenance.
Like drakes, mature dragons adapt to suit their environment, but do so much more extensively. Their coloration, ornamentation - and, to a limited degree, body structure - will reflect their chosen territory, as will some of their attacks and defenses. Because they have already claimed territory and rarely face a threat from other dragons or drakes, they are more conservative in nature and will not seek unnecessary conflict.
Only dragons can mate. This is generally the only occasion that will cause a dragon to leave its lands or seek out others of its kind. Upon reaching the dragon stage, these creatures will assume a sex. However, if surrounding populations are too heavily skewed one way or the other, individual dragons are capable of changing their sex. As creatures that reach this stage are so rare, this ability is critical to the survival of the species.
Drakes represent the middle stage of a dragon's life cycle. They have developed from wurms, but have not yet reached - and may never reach - the dragon stage. Drakes will aggressively defend their territory and seek to expand it as much as possible. Drakes are actively hostile against other drakes, as they represent competition for scarce resources.
Their coloration reflects the territory they have claimed. A drake living in a swamp, for instance, may be shades of green, brown and black, and possess nictitating membranes, a flat snout, and raised nostrils. While all drakes can breathe fire, many also develop alternate breath attacks, incorporating other elements.
An ooze is a mobile, carnivorous mold that develops in secluded, dark, and dank places. Oozes feed off of ambient bacteria, fungi, and small insects as they grow. They begin to seek larger prey, including humans, once they reach the size of a dog.
Like all living creatures, they have a measure of soul essence, but their lack of intelligence and a true nervous system makes them mindlessly aggressive and thus difficult to deter. Their viscosity and mobility enable them to perform surprisingly nimble attacks, and they are capable of "spitting" corrosive enzymes to break down flesh and armor.
Some of the more dangerous variants of the species are disease vectors, making any confrontation with them especially perilous.
Wisps primarily inhabit abandoned ruins and other such forgotten places. They are thought of as curious creatures, for they sometimes follow travelers for short distances for reasons known only to themselves. While typically peaceful, wisps are notoriously aggressive if provoked and will viciously defend their territories if they perceive them to be under threat. As a result, wisps are often described as the weeds of the spirit world - small, quick to regenerate, and nearly unstoppable in large numbers.
Animats were initially created to serve as guardians for royal tombs. Their earliest creators bound the souls of their strongest warriors and servants to intricate sculptures, which were made of various materials in accordance to the rank of the soul captured within. As the knowledge of the technique for this process became more widespread, powerful animancers started creating their own animats to serve as personal guardians, using whatever weapons and materials lay at hand.
Animats can only be created through the use of loyal souls that hold a powerful dedication to protecting their charges. While the ritual to create them can still be performed upon unwilling subjects, a lack of resolve in a participant's soul can result in abominations which immediately attempt to destroy themselves in a violent manner, often inflicting collateral damage in the process. Even successful creations remain vulnerable to the onset of doubt, and most animat creators take great care not to allow such doubts to manifest.
Darguls represent the first stage in the irreversible decay of a dead body that is sustained only by soul energy. In this state, darguls have lost some portion of their memories and mental abilities, but still retain enough self-awareness to recognize their own decline.
Their hunger for living flesh is so insatiable as to make them reckless. They are more aggressive in their pursuit of kith than even fampyrs, yet crave secret and secluded environments where they can eat their prey without inciting the wrath of civilized communities.
Some fampyrs dread this stage more than those that follow, for they know they will likely possess enough of their faculties to fully appreciate losing of them.
Fampyrs are kith that have had their lives unnaturally extended. Though they retain most of a normal humanoid appearance, they are merely a few missed meals away from devolving into mindless monstrosities, and they know it. As fampyrs maintain individual personalities and memories, this morbid knowledge may manifest itself in a number of ways. Some may become reclusive and cautious, avoiding any threats that could prematurely weaken or destroy them, and others become outgoing hedonists, seeking to enjoy every pleasure the world has to offer while they can. Sooner or later, every fampyr will inevitably succumb to decay unless killed.
Because fampyrs require living essence in order to stay alive and the blood of kith provides the richest and most immediate source of it, they are shunned by most civilized communities. As a result, fampyrs tend to live at the fringes of society, if they participate in it at all.
Like animats, flesh constructs are created by animancers and powered by a captive soul. Unlike animats, they are not dependent on the will and loyalty of the bound soul. Flesh constructs, therefore, cannot be undone by doubt, but they are only capable of following simple instructions. They also tend to be shorter-lived than animats. Whereas the energy and faith in an animat's soul can sustain it for decades, even centuries, the soul bound to a flesh construct will gradually fade away from its physical form, and the body will eventually stop responding to the soul's energy. Opponents of animancy in general and soul constructs in particular see this as a soul's rejection of an improper body, and as evidence that flesh constructs are an abomination.
Even among animancers, the creation of flesh constructs is controversial. Some see the process as a "soul lobotomy" and believe that a soul should be allowed to pass on to the next life rather than be used as mindless fuel for a body.
It is generally understood that guls retain enough cunning to make dangerous hunters and adversaries, but not enough to be concerned about their rapid deterioration. Like darguls, they are drawn to secluded environments, though some gravitate towards cemeteries in search of readily available flesh. The meat of dead kith satisfies some of a gul's hunger, but it does little to sate their need for soul essence. Inhabiting a graveyard may actually hasten a gul's decay, as it reduces their incentive to seek out living sources of food.
Revenants are undead that have devolved beyond even the relative intelligence of a gul. Revenants retain their instinctive hunger, but they don't have the will or intelligence to reliably satisfy it. They are drawn to any environment where dead or dying bodies can be found.
Skuldrs are large, mammalian creatures that dwell in caves in total or near-total darkness. As a result, they have poor vision and rely on their sense of hearing to navigate and find prey. The protrusions and hairs on their ears allow them to detect airflow, which is key to telling direction in an underground environment. They communicate through screeches and clicks, and use these vocalizations in a form of echolocation. They are communal creatures who will nest and raise young together.
Xaurips are reptilian humanoids about the size of orlans. They adorn themselves with the bones of fallen enemies - mostly xaurips from rival tribes. They also have an affinity for large feathers, which they hang and pin to their attire. Xaurip skin tones can vary from light green to a rustic brown. Their elongated snouts - which make speech impossible - and overly-aggressive behavior have hindered them from communicating with the more docile races of the world. They live in secluded, tribal territories and are known for ruthlessly attacking anyone foolish enough to cross their path.
Xaurips revere dragons as deities and build their communities around the lairs of these powerful creatures. It is not uncommon for a small tribe to wander nomadically until it has found a drake or dragon to worship. Once a tribe dedicates itself to a dragon, they will defend it at all costs.
Elaborate rituals, in which the dragon consumes xaurip sacrifices, are a normal practice. As a dragon grows in age and size, these sacrifices become large religious events that cost the lives of hundreds of xaurips.
The power and prestige of a xaurip tribe directly correlates with the age of its dragon. The most powerful tribes have existed for hundreds, if not thousands of years. Warriors and shamans of these large tribes typically paint their bodies to resemble the coloring of their draconic gods.
Wild boars are considered a nuisance and danger in the areas where most colonists settle. Aggressive and fearless, boars have killed many human and elven children as well as fully grown orlans. Packs of boars can be a threat to any traveler or explorer. They are notoriously difficult to put down, but their tusks are valued by traders and enchanters.
Wild boars are deemed pests by most communities, as wherever they are introduced, they are likely to out-compete the local fauna. Their uncanny adapability has made them difficult to eradicate.
Extraordinarily rare, death guards are sometimes created upon the demise of a particularly determined individual who refuses to leave the physical world for the Beyond. Paladins are most susceptible to this terrible transformation, but priests and other exceptional zealots often suffer the same fate.
Death guards occupy their former bodies, but the energy that allows the soul to remain in the physical world rapidly consumes the flesh, leaving only bone behind. They are often driven mad by their state and are terrifying foes to behold, striking fear into those unlucky few who encounter them.
When fampyrs wish to avoid the gradual decay associated with their condition, they can engage in a risky, expensive, and extremely painful process that separates their tissues from bone and leaves a perfectly aware skeleton behind. In this case, essence does not decay in the flesh and instead resides in bone, a much hardier substance. Since the newly created death guard requires virtually nothing to survive and will not naturally decay further, it can "live" until it is killed.
Their limited connection to the Beyond allows them to summon fearsome balls of flame, summon shadows, and even slay the living with a word.
Lagufaeth are territorial, four-armed amphibians. Though their thick skin protects them from the cold climate of the White March, their native land, they tend to favor hot springs and consequently feel right at home in the sultry waters of the Deadfire Archipelago. Lagufaeth are communal wilder with rudimentary weapons but a natural aptitude for magic. They are especially dangerous in the mountains, where storms and snowfall may hide their presence from travelers until it's too late. They can remain under ice for extended periods of time and have been known to surprise unwary fishermen.
A lagufaeth redfin is a dominant, mature lagufaeth. They may be male or female. A lagufaeth that transitions into a redfin develops a reddish-brown tint to its skin and a bony crest atop its head. They are rarely the oldest member of a group, but they are the most aggressive, and they are typically responsible for defending a nest or group. When a lagufaeth redfin loses status, its crest falls off and its skin returns to a shade of blue, green, or purple.
Wraiths are spirits that have remained behind after an especially violent life or death. The widespread violence endemic to the Deadfire Archipelgo - warfare, constant raiding - propagates them at an alarming pace.
Wraiths hunger for living essence, and they will attack any kith near at hand to acquire it. Though seemingly mindless in their aggression, they are clever enough to fragment groups, snatching up and isolating their victims so they can feed upon them one at a time.
Alguls are guls whose physical deterioration has been halted by a wizard's ritual. The number of wizards who have successfully converted a gul to an algul are few - the ritual is complex, and it is rumored that the ingredients required in the ritual are both unsavory and difficult to acquire. Sages believe that the ritual is the first step for a cure for undeath.
Whatever reasoning behind the ritual, alguls are fearsomely powerful and intelligent. Though their bodies no longer decay, their eternal hunger for kith flesh remains.
Animancers, necromancers, and other unscrupulous spellcasters who experiment with the bodies of kith have been known to create all sorts of constructs and vessels. Some exist as subjects for study, and others as sources of amusement.
Void seers are skulls filled with essence. The first accounts of void seers come from Old Vailia, where a now-infamous necromancer created them as a diversion for court. Since then, they've been used as patrols, guards, and attendants. Their small size makes them easier to create and direct.
Skeletons make formidable and persistent warriors, though their exposed bones can be vulnerable. Armor can mitigate this somewhat, though plate, chain, and scale mail gradually wear away at bones. Various solutions have been sought to prevent this, including the coating of bones in protective sheaths or resins. The challenge is to cover the bones without impeding their movement. It's a difficult task that, when successful, creates incredibly strong and durable skeletons.
Nāga are a species of large, intelligent reptile. Though they bear some humanoid characteristics, that is where the comparison ends. Their society is complex enough to make interactions with other kith a possibility, but the Nāga have never entertained cooperation as a viable alternative to violence. Nāga adhere to a strict religious doctrine that mirrors the Wheel in many aspects, though focuses prominently on the Nāga's superiority above all other creatures.
Within Nāga society, they divide up individual roles around a mixture of born traits, cunning, and ambition. Nāga possessing few talents above the ability to grip a sword are consigned to the warrior class. The most venomous and keen-eyed Nāga are trained as skirmishers or elite commanders. The spiritual and intellectual Nāga are either instructed into the role of shaman - or fight their way into it - likely spending much of their career defending this status against competitors.
Grubs are burrowers and scavengers capable of subsisting on little more than the moisture leeched from rocks for their entire lifespans. Hunting larger prey only serves the most basic need of storing energy for the expenditure it takes to carve out vast networks of tunnels and colonies for nesting. However imposing, these creatures leave most of the backbreaking labor of expanding the colony to grublings. Mature grubs tend to retire from outward expansion, instead taking on the task of maintaining and protecting the heart of a colony and the grounds reserved for breeding. Their corrosive saliva is used as a tool of construction and predation, numbering cave grubs among Eora's most efficient and adaptable hunters.
Cave grublings represent their species' developmental mid-point and the status they will hold for much of their life. The hardest workers, and therefore the most voracious eaters, cave grublings are not above devouring each other (or submitting to be devoured) to serve a colony in need. The latter stage of their life cycle is typically reserved for breeding and defense - comforts and honors reserved for only those strong enough to endure this challenging and frenetic phase of growth.
Typically observed in arid climes, sand grubs are well-adapted to the harshest of environments. Their thick, rock-hard carapaces provide protection, and specialized tissues between their scales collect and store humidity, limiting water loss.
Though adapted to survive long periods without water, sand grubs will frequently build their nests in close proximity to streams, ponds, and oases where prey is plentiful.
Sandworms are ambush hunters, prepared to wait extended periods of time beneath the sands for a hapless meal to wander by. Their diet is limited only by their size - given a robust supply of prey, sandworms can grow to be truly formidable.
Rarely sighted and even less often survived, this cave grub of monumental maturation and size requires a pocket of at least 50 leagues high by 35 leagues wide in order to easily maneuver around. Aqueous sacs in the cranial cavity allow this enlarged animal to emit a biosonar lure that can attract other cave grubs to its precise location.
Imps are troublemakers and vagabonds. As they neither protect a den for long nor concern themselves overmuch with feeding, they prefer to spend their days seeking out passing adventurers or animals to satisfy their amusement. This is where the imp's nefarious character comes into play, as "amusement" covers a broad variety of potential nuisances: exuding toxic gasses, creating apparitions of other kith, teleporting, stealing and generally doing harm to the unlucky victim. Wizards and other intellectuals have managed to bind imps to their service with mixed results. They can serve as spies, thieves, or in rare cases assassins, though their loyalty may go no further than recognizing an opportunity to do what they do best.
Lured by the essence that magical items possess, Brine Imps commonly nest in sea caves or among the islands that pepper frequent shipping routes. To avoid a raiding flock, it is advised that ships transporting magical items anchor at least five leagues from any Imp-inhabited island during nightfall. Elsewise, the crew may find their sails shredded and the hull carved up, come morning.
Constructs were developed by animancers to serve a variety of intents and purposes, chief among them to be bodyguards and instruments of war.
Due to recent advancements in construct creation, most animancers have divested themselves of their earlier models by auctioning them off to new owners who are rarely schooled in the maintenance of their complicated inner workings.
If not serviced reguarlarly, constructs are prone to rusting.
Eotens feature in the most grotesque of folk tales. Once merely the most aggressive and unstable of ogres, eotens have since developed into massive monstrosities that are both larger and far less intelligent than their cousins. Eotens have two heads, one notably smaller than the other, and when the larger of these is incapacitated, the smaller retains just enough brute cunning to keep an eoten fighting until either it - or its prey - is dead. It's common to encounter their kind with rotting skulls dangling from their neck.
An eotan's unpredictable temper and total inability to conform to ogre society brand it an outcast. Ogre males or females who produce eotan offspring are forbidden from breeding again, and their unfortunate progeny are either killed on the spot or left to the mercy of the wilderness. The latter is undoubtedly what has led to mature eotans being found in rural areas, much to the detriment of easily preyed upon livestock.
Sailors across Eora tell stories of the beasts that haunt the deep. Of these, few are more feared than the kraken.
Krakens rarely venture to the surface, and they almost never leave survivors in their wake. They are massive, tentacled beasts, capable of crushing small ships and plucking sailors from their decks. Despite their size, krakens' soft, flexible bodies allow them to squeeze through tight spaces in search of prey or shelter. Thankfully, they prefer dark, quiet spaces to open water.
They are cunning hunters and, according to legend, Ondra's terrible servants.
Skeletons are creatures who no longer require flesh or essence, but whose drive to kill has been instilled over many stages of progressive decay. As a result, they will attack anything that approaches them, but they won't attempt to consume it after it is slain. The essence that animates them is energy at its most basic level, as the skeleton has lost all measure of will, intelligence, or personality. If not killed, a skeleton may eventually grind itself into bone dust, or its essence may finally evaporate into the ether.
Skeletal savants are the remains of warriors, wizards, and other adventurous types. They are similar in overall properties to other skeletons, but they are more capable in combat and often retain rudimentary skills from their adventuring lives.
Magma dragons are found most commonly in areas boasting both active volcanoes and isolation, as they would otherwise be hunted for trophies at early to mid-stages of their maturity. Left to their own devices, clusters of drakes will vie for dominance over habitats in high demand, naturally culling the weak and leaving only the strongest and most intimidating examples of their species to thrive for centuries, if not millennia. Suitable nests are therefore hot spots of conflict and competition, and magma dragons are fiercely territorial by necessity. Their scales radiate heat and wisps of smoke. As they move, the orientation of their plates seems to shift in the pattern of flowing lava.
Contrary to popular belief, sea dragons don't spend their entire lives underwater. Before reaching their full maturity, sea dragons will roost in seaside caves or rocky outcroppings with access to their native waters. From these private and easily-defended structures, dragons can feed or rest with minimal concern for their safety. These accomplished swimmers dive under the waves to hunt - either picking off aquatic prey or using the water as a staging ground to ambush fishing boats (graduating only to military or mercantile vessels when their size allows for it) - but they don't tarry in the sea for long or risk attracting predators of the deep. As they grow older and more confident, sea dragons will test their limitations by spending more of their time underwater, carving out a broad territory by challenging the most intimidating leviathans they encounter and arranging their bones to decorate the sea floor. It is not beyond the realm of possibility that elder sea dragons carve out secondary dens in the lightless depths, but such activity has never been conclusively documented.
An effigy of Skaen is a horrific creature called into being only by those most desperately oppressed who are willing to commit unspeakable acts to set themselves free.
Worshipers must choose one of their number to serve as the effigy, shaving this person's hair and removing all signs and symbols of gender or identity. The person is then scourged bloody over every inch of their body, their ears and nose cut off, their eyes gouged out and replaced with shiny black stones. Finally, they are made to drink the "privileged blood" of a person of wealth or high birth. This blood must be fresh, and the effigy must consume every drop.
If the offering is accepted by the god - which is not guaranteed - Skaen will manifest in the effigy and become an utterly unstoppable and pitiless vessel of the god's power, immune to pain and imbued with a monstrous strength. As soon as the target oppressors are slain - usually in a gruesome manner - the effigy falls dead.
True appearances of the effigy are vanishingly rare. In the most recent recorded case, about a century before the present day, an effigy reportedly led a backwoods peasant rebellion during which an entire noble family was captured, flayed alive, and nailed to the roof of their estate to be devoured by birds and flies.
The scourge of the jungle, panthers are master of the silent kill. Though they prefer swamp and rainforests, they have been known to roam across scrublands and desert. Consequently, they are widespread in the Deadfire Archipelago.
Fiercely independent, they thrive in the underbrush where their dark coats provide them ample camouflage, and eschew interacting with kith unless they perceive a territorial threat. Their impressive musculature and bone structure make these cats lethal pouncers, and the strength of their bite is such that they can pierce the shells of armored reptiles. Even a halfhearted strike from their paw is enough to stagger an unprepared opponent.
Tigers are solitary, silent hunters who stalk the fauna of their native lands, the Deadfire Archipelago. The largest of Eora's feline species, tigers have long, muscular frames and powerful forelimbs. Their preferred mode of attack is to leap upon prey from behind, knock it to the ground, and snap its neck with their jaws. The few kith who have lived to recount their tale of a tiger's attack report that were not even aware they were being hunted.
As increasingly larger populations of kith have settled in Deadfire, attacks by tigers have grown more frequent and widespread. Though they prefer deer, antelope, and other similar creatures, tigers will hunt kith when their habitat is threatened and their favored prey is subsequently unavailable. Some tigers who attack kith develop a preference for their flesh and become the terror of entire villages.
Tigers are the subject of many local myths and legends, one of which credits them with the ability to turn into mist to better stalk their prey.
Significantly larger than their more diminuitive brethren, the Deadfire's giant bats have traded in a docile herbivorous diet for a strictly carnivorous one. They are aggressive and clever, making them a scourge of local populations - while they rarely attack towns and villages, they won't hesitate to descend upon the lone traveler outside of settled areas. In recent years, there have been scattered reports by colonial settlers of giant bats unlatching windows and, in one bizarre incident, an armory door.
Giant bats are, as their name implies, quite large. Though their wingspans are remarkable - nearly six feet from thumb to thumb - the weight of their long, muscular bodies curtails their ability to fly between islands. Consequently, giant bats are highly specialized to their home island environments, resulting in a truly remarkable variety of bat types.
The way giant bats hunt is somewhat unusual. They do not echolocate but instead crash into their intended prey, hoping to knock the prey to the ground where it can be more easily subdued. Compounding their threat, giant bats are also a natural disease reservoir, capabable of transmitting several fatal illnesses - like jungle rot and the pox - through their saliva. Due to their long association with giants bats, the Huana are largely immune to this manner of disease transmission. Colonists, unfortunately, are not.