The nightmare, plastic column of fetid black iridescence, oozed tightly onward through its fifteen-foot sinus, gathering unholy speed and driving before it a spiral, rethickening cloud of pallid abyss vapor. It was a terrible, indescribable thing vaster than any subway train a shapeless congeries of protoplasmic bubbles, faintly self-luminous, and with myriads of temporary eyes forming and unforming as pustules of greenish light all over the tunnel-filling front that bore down on us, crushing the frantic penguins and slithering over the glistening floor that it and its kind had swept so evilly free of all litter. Still came that eldritch, mocking cry: ‘Tekeli-li! Tekeli-li!’
– H. P. Lovecraft, “At The Mountains of Madness”
The following character guide details an average sized shoggoth, approximately 15 feet in diameter when underwater, spreading out to cover more area when on land.
Character Guide: a Typical Shoggoth
Magic Might: 20 (Corpus)
Characteristics: Cun +1, Per 0, Pre -5, Com -6, Str +8, Sta +6, Dex +5, Qik -1*
*purchased as per an Elemental, see Realms of Power: Magic page 139, adjusted for Size
Confidence: 1 (3)
Virtues and Flaws: Magic Thing; Ways of the Cavern or Ways of the Sea; Poor Memory, Short Attention Span, Simple-Minded.
Magical Qualities and Inferiorities: Greater Power (Crush), Greater Power (Engulf), Greater Power (Multiple Limbs); Improved Abilities x2, Improved Damage x2, Improved Powers, Improved Soak x3, Major Virtue (Greater Immunity to Fire); Minor Virtue (Ferocity), Minor Virtue (Lesser Immunity to Lightning), Minor Virtue (Lesser Immunity to Piercing Weapons), Minor Virtue (Tough); Major Flaw (No Hands), Limited Speech
Personality Traits: Amoeba +3*
Bludgeon (tentacle)*: Init: +2, Attack +13, Defense +7, Damage +14
Constriction*: Init: +3, Attack +14, Defense +7, Damage special
*Includes bonus from Ways of the Cavern or Ways of the Sea
Wound Penalties: –1 (1-8), –3 (9-16), –5 (17-24), Incapacitated (25–32), Dead (33+)
Fatigue Levels: na
Abilities: Athletics 5 (pursuit), Awareness 2 (interlopers), Brawl 5 (grapple), Ry’leh Speech 1 (screaming), Swim 4 (speed).
Crush, 0 points, Init x, Corpus. As the Earth Elemental power of the same name.
Constriction (non-magical): the shoggoth can only constrict a victim with its tentacles whose Size is less than its own. Constriction is based on the grappling rules (see ArM5, page 174). As long as the shoggoth maintains the grapple, its opponent is deprived of air (see ArM5, page 180). The victim must make a Stamina check every five rounds, or suffer the effects of Deprivation. Once the shoggoth has successfully grappled an opponent (and begun constricting) with one pair of tentacles, on subsequent rounds it can continue constricting and use one of its powers on the victim or instead attack with another pairs of tentacles (see the Multiple Limbs power below). These attacks may be directed at the grappled victim, or at another opponent.
Engulf, 0 points, Init x, Corpus. Similar to Drown, see below for details.
Multiple Limbs, 1 or more points, Init x+3, Animal: the shoggoth can produce additional pairs of tentacles, each one allowing the creature an extra attack. The shoggoth can produce an extra pair of tentacles for every additional 1 Might points spent. The shoggoth acts as a trained group of as many individuals as it has pairs of tentacles (2 for 4 tentacles, 3 for 6 tentacles and so on), and there is no Leadership limit for the total group bonus. Note that physical attacks made while using this power must Penetrate any Magic Resistance. MuAn 40 (Base 25, +2 Sun, +1 Size): Greater Power (50 levels, -4 Might cost and +3 Initiative with Improved Powers).
Vis: 4 pawns of Corpus, residual iridescent ichor and fetid slime
Appearance: a protoplasmic spherical mass of iridescent black slime with multiple eyes “floating” on its surface that forms and reforms pairs of blunt tentacles as required.
Larger shoggoth may have one or more of the following additional powers:
Consume, 0 points, Init x, Ignem. As the Fire Elemental power Burn, page 139.
Fascination, 3 points, Init x, Mentem. As the Fire elemental power, page 139.