Wizard War is notable perhaps most for its use of the Super Friends sound effect between scenes that consisted of two stars hurtling at the viewer. This sounds is burned somewhere into the far recesses of my brain.
Fred Flintstone is back at the voice of a giant talking head named Skullus. He is carried two cloaked servants and defended by battle droids, four-armed large robots, the two lower arms ending in pincers.
Illusionary Battle Droids
The bots themselves have three eyes. As usual, the third eye shoots laser (everything with a third eye shoots laser). Even their pincers shoot lasers. It turns out that the robots aren’t actually robots at all, but summoned magical creatures that disappear when destroyed.
- Illusionary Battle Droids (CR 1, HD 1d10)
- N Medium Robot
- Init +2 Spd 30
- Senses | Listen +4, Spot +4
- AC 18 (FF 16, Touch 12)
- hp 15 (Disabled 0/Dying —/Injury –)
- Saves: Fort +0, Ref +2, Will +0
- Atk +2 base melee, +2 base ranged; Grapple +2;
- +2 Melee (4 Arm 1d4/crit 20/x2);
- +2 Ranged (Third Eye 1d6 fire/crit 20/x2) and +2 Ranged (Pincer Lasers 1d6 fire/crit 20/x2);
- SQ: Robot Locomotion: Legs (Pair), Robot Manipulators: Hand, Robot Armor: Resilium, Robot Sensors: Class VI System, Robot Skillware: Skill Progit
- Abilities STR 14, DEX 14, CON –, INT –, WIS 10, CHA 1
- Skills: Climb + 6, Hide + 6, Jump + 6, Listen + 4, Move Silently + 6, Spot + 4.
- Magic: Dexterity Upgrade.
- Shadow Conjuration (Sp): Shadow conjurations are actually three-fifths (60%) as strong as the real things, though creatures who believe the shadow conjurations to be real are affected by them at full strength. Any creature that interacts with the conjured robot can make a Will save to recognize its true nature. A shadow creature has three-fifths the hit points of a normal creature of its kind (regardless of whether it’s recognized as shadowy). It deals normal damage and has all normal abilities and weaknesses. Against a creature that recognizes it as a shadow creature, however, the shadow creature’s damage is three-fifths (60%) normal, and all special abilities that do not deal lethal damage are only 60% likely to work. (Roll for each use and each affected character separately.) Furthermore, the shadow creature’s AC bonuses are three-fifths as large. These numbers are calculated into the stat block.
Skullus has the ability to instantly hypnotize any touched by his gaze, turning them into his mind slaves. When Skullus bring his war machine down over an abandoned oil field and lights the place on fire, Thundarr makes a daring escape on horseback.
A giant talking head.
- Skullus (CR 5, HD 9d12)
- NE Large Undead
- Init -1 Spd 0
- Senses Blindsight (Ex): 60 ft.; Darkvision (Ex): 60 ft.; | Listen +15, Spot +15
- AC 11 (FF 11, Touch 9)
- hp 58 (Disabled 0/Dying —/Injury –)
- Saves: Fort +3, Ref +2, Will +9
- Resistance: Turn (Ex): +4, Immunity: Reincarnate (Ex), Immunity: Critical hits (Ex), Immunity: Paralysis (Ex), Immunity: Ability Drain (Ex), Immunity: Stun (Ex), Immunity: Exhaustion (Ex), Immunity: Death Effects (Ex), Immunity: Sleep Effects (Ex), Immunity: Fatigue (Ex), Immunity: Fortitude Save-Based Attacks (Ex), Immunity: Nonlethal Damage (Ex), Immunity: Poison (Ex), Immunity: Mind-Affecting Attacks (Ex), Immunity: Disease (Ex), Immunity: Death from Massive Damage (Ex), Immunity: Energy Drain (Ex), Immunity: Ability Damage (Physical Scores), Immunity: Raise Dead (Ex)
- Atk +2 base melee, +2 base ranged; Grapple +7; Face 1’x1′; Reach 0′;
- SA: Spell-Like Abilities (Suggestion, CL 10, 3/day; Telekinesis, CL 10, 3/day; Dominate Person, CL 10, 1/day) , Mind Thrust (Su)
- SQ: Racial Traits: Undead, Rebuke Undead 6/day (Su), Telepathy (Su): 100 ft., Madness (Su), No Natural Healing (Ex),
- Abilities STR –, DEX 8, CON –, INT 16, WIS 12, CHA 16
- Feats: Alertness, Iron Will, Warped Mind, Wild Talent.
- Skills: Bluff + 15, Diplomacy + 17, Knowledge (Arcana) + 7, Knowledge (History) + 15, Knowledge (Psionics) + 15, Knowledge (Religion) + 9, Listen + 15, Sense Motive + 2, Spot + 15.
- Mind Thrust (Su): Skullus can spend a standard action to deliver a massive assault on the thought pathways of any one creature, undermining its intellect. This mind thrust deals 2d10 points of damage to any target creature that fails a DC 14 Will save. The save DC is Charisma-based.
- Madness (Su): Anyone targeting Skullus with a thought detection, mind control, or any sort of telepathic or psionic ability that makes direct contact with its tortured mind takes 1d4 points of Wisdom damage.
Skullus flees into the Desert of Demons along with his hostages, which is a great way to really tick off Thundarr. Ariel explains the origin of skyscrapers and, as they ride beneath the arch, points out that it used to be the ancient city of St. Louis.
Meanwhile, Jawa-like midgets called Desert People are asked by Skullus to make sure that our heroes never leave the Desert of Demons alive. They do this by throwing a rope around Ariel, kidnapping her with distressing ease.
- Desert People (CR 3, HD 1d8+1)
- CN Small Humanoid
- Init +3 Spd 30
- Senses Blindsight (Ex): 60 ft. | Listen +3, Spot +3
- AC 17 (FF 14, Touch 14)
- hp 5 (Disabled -1/Dying -13/Injury 5)
- Saves: Fort +3, Ref +5, Will +2
- Atk +2 base melee, +4 base ranged; Grapple -3;
- +2 Melee (Dagger 1d3+1/crit 19-20/x2);
- SA: Shadow Cloak (Su) , Sneak Attack (Ex)
- SQ: Evasion (Ex), Light Sensitivity (Ex),
- Abilities STR 12, DEX 17, CON 13, INT 10, WIS 15, CHA 10
- Feats: Lightning Reflexes, Simple Weapon Proficiency.
- Skills: Hide + 8, Listen + 3, Move Silently + 4, Sleight of Hand + 4, Spot + 3, Tumble + 6.
- Weapons: Dagger. Armor: Leather.
- Desert Cloak (Su): Three times per day, a desert person can wrap itself in a cloak of sand that grants it concealment from its foes. In brightly lit desert areas, the desert cloak gives the creature nine-tenths concealment (40% miss chance for attackers). In shadowy light, the desert cloak provides only one-half concealment (20% miss chance).
- Sneak Attack (Ex): Anytime a desert person’s target is denied a Dexterity bonus, or when a target is flanked by a desert person, the desert person deals additional damage on a successful melee attack. Desert people deal an additional 2d6 points of damage.
- Skills: When in desert areas, a desert person has a +8 racial bonus on Hide checks and a +4 racial bonus on Move Silently checks.
Ariel gets tied up with another hottie named Jeel, only to discover that a “ton of concrete is coming down on our pretty little heads!” That an exact quote from Ariel. Later she exclaims, “good thing I’ve got magic as well as beauty, eh Thundarr?” Oh Ariel dear, you’re very insecure, aren’t you?
Thundarr and Ookla eventually catch a Desert Person, who explains to Ookla where Ariel and Jeel are hidden. Thundarr arrives just in time, chastising Ariel that he “finds no humor in her peril,” which is the first time Thundarr recognized that his sorceress sidekick is constantly making jokes at his expense.
After escaping a water trap and climbing to safety, Thundarr discovers Skullus is planning to duel against another wizard named Octagon. Does he know martial arts?
Now we know why Skullus wants hypnotized slaves…he needs an army to defeat Octagon. Octagon, as it turns out, is more like Doc Ock. Tentacles defend his observatory-like building, and within Octagon doesn’t seem to have any arms, just mechanical tentacles. He uses it to summon a magical fish-man who is immune to Thundarr’s sword and Ariel’s magic.
Summoned and immune to most magic.
- Fish Mutant (CR 5, HD 10d8+50)
- LE Large Monstrous Humanoid (Aquatic)
- Init +1 Spd 30 or Swim 60
- Senses Underwater Sense (Ex); Blindsense (Ex): 30 ft.; Darkvision (Ex): 60 ft.; | Listen +14, Spot +14
- AC 19 (FF 18, Touch 10)
- hp 95 (Disabled -5/Dying -20/Injury 20)
- Saves: Fort +14, Ref +4, Will +4
- Spell Resistance (Ex): 21
- Atk +17/+12 base melee, +10/+5 base ranged; Grapple +22;
- +17 Melee (2 Talon 1d8+8/crit 20/x2) and +15 Melee (Bite 1d8+4/crit 20/x2);
- +17 Melee (Bite 1d8+12/crit 20/x2);
- SA: Blood Frenzy
- SQ: Spell Absorption (Su),
- Abilities STR 26, DEX 13, CON 20, INT 18, WIS 13, CHA 9
- Feats: Great Fortitude, Improved Natural Attack: Bite, Improved Natural Attack: Talon, Multiattack, Power Attack, Simple Weapon Proficiency.
- Skills: Handle Animal + 9, Hide + 8, Listen + 14, Spot + 14, Survival + 6.
- Blood Frenzy: Once per day a fish mutant that takes damage in combat can fly into a frenzy the following round, clawing and biting madly until either it or its opponent is dead. It gains +2 Constitution and +2 Strength, and suffers a -2 AC penalty. The fish mutant cannot end its frenzy voluntarily.
- Spell Absorption (Su): Whenever a spell fails to penetrate the fish mutant’s spell resistance, the creature gains temporary hit points equal to 5 x the level of the failed spell.
Fortunately Thundarr kicks the magical monster into the magical battery, which shorts the fortress out. Octagon breathes fire at Thundarr to make good his escape (good’s a relative term, he falls nearly to his death first and is probably saved only by the censors).
- Octagon (CR 12, HD 10d10+60)
- CE Medium Magical Beast
- Init +9 Spd 10
- Senses Darkvision (Ex): 60 ft.; Low-light Vision (Ex); | Listen +14, Spot +14
- AC 32 (FF 27, Touch 15)
- hp 115 (Disabled -6/Dying -23/Injury 23)
- Saves: Fort +13, Ref +12, Will +9
- Immunity: Electricity (Ex), Resistance: Cold (Ex): 10, Spell Resistance (Ex): 30
- Atk +15/+10 base melee, +15/+10 base ranged; Grapple +15; Face 10’x10′; Reach 10′;
- +16 Ranged (touch) (6 Tentacles/crit 20/x2);
- SA: Tentacles (Ex) , Drag (Ex) , Breath Weapon Type: 15 ft. Cone of Fire
- Abilities STR 21, DEX 21, CON 23, INT 14, WIS 18, CHA 16
- Feats: Alertness, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Multiattack, Weapon Focus: Tentacle.
- Skills: Climb + 13, Hide + 18, Listen + 14, Spot + 14.
- Tentacles (Ex): Most encounters with Octagon begin when it fires his tentacles. He has six such members that can strike up to 50 feet away (no range increment).
- Drag (Ex): If Octagon hits with a tentacle attack, the tentacle latches onto the opponent’s body. This deals no damage but draws the stuck opponent 10 feet closer each subsequent round (no attack of opportunity) unless that creature breaks free, which requires a successful Escape Artist check (DC 23) or Strength check (DC 19). Octagon can draw in a creature within 10 feet of itself and bite with a +4 attack bonus, in that round. A single attack with a slashing weapon that deals at least 10 points of damage severs a tentacle (AC 20).
- Breath Weapon (Su): Breath Weapon every 1d4 rounds. (3d6 fire damage) Reflex save (DC 28) for half damage.
Ariel discovers a tunnel underneath the desert, which Thundarr uses to infiltrate Skullus’ war machine. When he faces down the giant head, Skullus eyebeams are reflected back at him, which results in his helmet exploding and then his head crumbling. The censors didn’t kill off Octagon but we watched Skullus’ head explode. Ick.
When Thundarr asks if the wizard survived, Ariel leaves things on an ominous note: “With a wizard so powerful, there’s just no telling.” Or to put it another way…sure his giant head cracked in half but don’t worry kids, he’s okay!
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