Nigh Invulnerable Creature (CR +2)

Some creatures cannot be killed simply. They have the truly nasty tendency to either not be affected and/or merely recover from anything. Cut off their head, and it grows back. Cut them to pieces, and they just reassemble themselves. Turn them to ashes, and scatter them to the four corners of the earth, and they reform themselves out of nothing. Merely fighting these monstrosities won’t make them go away; their defeat requires one to figure out their Achilles’ heel, which can often be a fabled quest unto itself.

Creating a Nigh-Invulnerable Creature

“Nigh-invulnerable” is an acquired template that can be added to any living creature. A nigh-invulnerable creature uses all the base creature’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.

CR: +2

Armor Class: +20 natural armor

Defenses/Qualities: regeneration (see below); DR 20/epic; Immune ability damage, ability drain, acid, blindness, cold, deafness, death effects, disease, electricity, energy drain, fire, mind-affecting effects, nausea, negative energy, paralysis, permanent wounds, petrification, poison, polymorph, stunning, sonic; Weakness vulnerable point (see below)

Special Abilities: A nigh-invulnerable creature retains all the special abilities of the base creature, and gains the special abilities as described below.

Regeneration (Ex): A nigh-invulnerable creature’s rate of regeneration is equal to its normal total hit point total. No form of attack, except upon its vulnerable point, can suppress the nigh-invulnerable creature’s regeneration— it regenerates even if disintegrated, drown, or starved.

If the nigh-invulnerable creature fails a save against an effect that would kill or destroy it instantly, it rises from death 3 rounds later with its full hit point total. It can be banished or otherwise transported, but the method to truly kill it or destroy it is only available via its vulnerable point (see below).

Vulnerable Point (Su): A nigh-invulnerable creature has a specific point on its body that if significantly injured by the correct type (slashing, bludgeoning, or piercing) kills it (severing a tail, piecing its heel, stabbing it in its open mouth). A nigh-invulnerable creature loses any immunity, resistance, or damage reduction to this special attack when it is made against this point. Any attack that is not an attempt to damage this point affects some other part of its body, including area attacks or attacks that do not cause the correct damage type.

To attack the vulnerable point, an opponent must make a sunder attempt with an attack that deals the correct type of damage targeting the chosen point on the creature’s body. Unlike normal sunder attempts, ranged weapons, spells, and effects that require an attack roll may be used in this attempt though they still require a combat maneuver check (though for ranged attacks the opponent applies her Dex modifier instead of her Str modifier to her CMB). The vulnerable point is considered a separate weapon with hardness 0 and hit points equal to the creature’s HD, this hardness increases by 5 for every 6 HD the nigh-invulnerable creature possesses.

To injure the point, the opponent must inflict enough damage on a single attack to reduce the vulnerable point’s hit points to 0 or less. A nigh-invulnerable creature can’t attack with its vulnerable point reduced to 0 or less, its regeneration is suppressed, as are its defensive abilities, damage reduction, immunities, resistances and SR; in addition it suffers a penalty to its AC equal to its HD. It also thereafter automatically suffers 1d6 points of bleed damage for every 5 HD it possesses, each round until it dies. Only natural healing can heal damage done to a creature’s vulnerable point.

A creature’s vulnerable point should be relevant to its history and/or species. An example of a vulnerable point would be to pierce its heart through a missing scale (requiring piercing damage); severing a specific appendage such as a head, or the creature’s tail (requiring slashing damage); or crushing an item embedded inside its body (requiring bludgeoning damage).

The Knowledge DC to learn the creature’s vulnerable point is DC + double the nigh-invulnerable creature’s CR; the nigh-invulnerable creature does not know its own weakness unless it has made this check. GMs are encouraged to make this knowledge difficult to obtain and often the result of a special quest. It could only have been written on a long lost scroll, or known only to a sage banished form the kingdom, or perhaps a man recently executed whose body must now be found so someone can speak to the dead.


Nigh-Invulnerable Constructs and Undead

A GM could modify this template to affect constructs or undead creatures, replacing Regeneration with Fast Healing and Rejuvenation (as a ghost, see Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary) with the listed amount of fast healing being based on its hit point total. Its rejuvenation is always successful and it happens in one round; this fast healing and rejuvenation is suppressed if its vulnerable point is reduced to 0 hp or less.

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