Red Jester Creature (CR +2)

Red jester creatures are the undying remnants of court jesters who were executed by their ruler, but beware: humans are not the only race to employ fools. Some legends tell that Orcus, Demon Prince of the Undead creates them to serve as his court fools, though he often takes them out once he grows bored with them. Red jesters appear as horrid walking corpses. When they die, their skin and bodies change to appear like brightly colored clothes, floppy shoes, jingling bells, and a jester’s hat, the rigor mortis permanently pulling the creature’s face into a broad and horrific grin. Some red jesters, in an effort to disguise their undead nature, don masks or other costumes.

Creating a Red Jester Creature

“Red Jester” is an acquired template that can be added to any creature with an Intelligence of 13 or higher and the ability to draw cards from a deck of many things (referred to hereafter as the base creature). This usually means it is corporeal and has a humanoid figure of some kind along with the wit to amuse folk, though this is not always the case. A red jester creature uses all the base creature’s statistics and special abilities except as noted here.

CR: +2

Alignment: Changes to Chaotic Evil.

Size and Type: The creature’s type changes to undead with the appropriate augmented subtype. Do not recalculate HD, base attack bonuses, saves, or skill points. Size is unchanged.

Defensive Abilities: channel resistance +4, DR 5/good (if the red jester’s CR is 6 or higher increase to DR 10/good, if 12 or higher increase to 15/good); Immune undead traits; SR 11 + the red jester’s CR.

Special Abilities: A red jester creature retains all the special abilities of the base creature, plus the special abilities as described below:

Fear Cackle (Su): A red jester creature can unleash a fear-inducing cackle as a free action. All creatures within 60 feet that hear it must make a successful Will save (DC 10 +1/2 the red jester’s HD + its Cha modifier) or gain a fear condition based on the red jester’s Challenge Rating (see below). If a subject makes its saving throw it is shaken for one round. Whether or not the save is successful, an affected creature is immune to that red jester’s fear cackle for one day. This is a sonic, mind-affecting fear effect.

CR Fear Effect Duration
1-5 Shaken 1d4+1 rounds
6-10 Frightened 2d4 rounds
11-15 Panicked 2d6 rounds
16+ Cowered 2d8 rounds

Jester’s Deck (Su): The red jester uses a deck of playing cards in combat that functions as a deck of many things. Once per round, as a standard action, the red jester can draw a single card and throw it at an opponent to a range of 20 feet. This requires a successful ranged touch attack. If successful, the card takes effect that round and affects the target just as if he had drawn a card from a deck of many things. A red jester can draw the same card more than once. The playing cards only function in the hands of a red jester. To anyone else, they are merely normal playing cards. If a red jester is CR 11 or higher he can draw and throw a card as a swift action to a range of 40 ft.

Merriment Strike (Su): If a red jester strikes an opponent with a melee attack, the creature must make a successful Will save (DC 10 +1/2 the red jester’s HD + its Cha modifier) or fall to the ground laughing for 1d3 rounds. The opponent is not helpless, but is unable to move or act for the duration (similar to the dazed condition).

Unassailable Mind (Ex): The mind of a red jester is a twisted and dangerous place to journey. Being undead, it is immune to all mind-influencing effects but should a creature target the mind of a red jester with such an effect (including psionics, telepathy, or the like), the creature attempting to invade the red jester’s mind must make a successful Will save (DC 10 +1/2 the red jester’s HD + its Cha modifier) or suffer the effects of a lesser confusion spell (caster level equal to the base creature’s HD). If the red jester’s CR is 11 or higher, this effect becomes an insanity spell.

Abilities: Increase from the base creature as follows: Str +4 (+2 to attack and damage, +2 to Climb and Swim skill checks, +2 to Strength, and CMB checks, +2 to CMD), Dex +8 ( +4 to Ranged attack rolls; AC and touch AC, Initiative, and Ref saves. +4 to Acrobatics, Disable Device, Escape Artist, Fly, Ride, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth checks, add +4 to any of the base creature’s Dexterity-based DCs), Int +4 (add 2 bonus languages, add 2 skill points per HD, +2 to Appraise, Craft, Knowledge, Linguistics, and Spellcraft checks +2 to any of the base creature’s Intelligence-based DCs), Wis +4 (+2 to Will saves, -2 to Heal, Perception, Profession, Sense Motive and Survival checks, add -2 to any of the base creature’s Wisdom-based DCs), Cha +6 (+3 to Bluff, Diplomacy, Disguise, Handle Animal, Intimidate, Perform, and Use Magic Device; attempts to influence others, and Channel Energy DCs, +3 to any of the base creature’s Charisma-based DCs). Being undead, a red jester has no Constitution score (and uses Charisma instead).

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