Saturday, June 25, 2016

The Shadows of the Scream


They are the fossilized forms of oppression itself. Art by: Zdzislaw Beksinski

The Shadows of the Scream
They are heralded by sighs and shuffled footsteps, moving with the gate of a prisoner traveling to the gallows. Their form is vague, a man or woman, hunched shoulders and downturned face. Its edges are smoothed over like a weathered statue, possessing an indication of clothes over an emaciated and broken form. Colored gray, the hues of life had been washed from this form long ago. Around the humanoid figure reality boils in a haze of umber and vermilion. Sharply outlined shapes of weapons, fists, and sneering faces flash from the miasma in whip-crack succession. Yells of archetypal captors cascade out of the bloodied cloud to cry out, “Halt, prisoner.”

As the Grey Folk are the residue of uncaring and soulless bureaucracies, the Shadows of the Scream are the residue of their actions. They are silhouettes, outlines created on the surface of reality, shaped like victims. Each victim, encapsulated by the violence visited upon them, fades in an affirmation of their mortality, but the hollow space in the world left by their passing, continues in the wake of bureaucratic progress. These spaces are the spot in reality a victim took up as violence crashed upon them. Shadows of the Scream are not the victims themselves, they are merely islands of natural reality surrounded by a wasteland created through continued violence. The human shapes are not the monsters, they are merely the hollow core of a bruised reality moved about by the true substance of their exterior. Found in places where death was casual and ever present, they wander their spawning ground, perpetuating the very acts of their creation.

OSR
Type: Magical Creature (Not Undead, since undeath requires a previous life, for which they never had)
Activity Cycle: All times, the torment of injustice never ends.
Diet: The rust flaking from chains, and water from leaking prison cells.
Intelligence: Low, violence and subjugation contain little in the way of intelligence.
Treasure: None
Alignment: Neutral (Evil)
No. Appearing: 1D10 (Can be summoned by Grey Folk. Grey folk may summon instead of attacking, the next round 1D6+2 appear.)
Armor Class: 15 / 5 (They are the masses, easily broken under the boots of power.)
Movement: 30 ft.
Hit Dice: 2
To-Hit: +2
No. of Attacks: 1
Damage: 1D4 w/ Prisoner's Burden
Special Attacks:
Prisoner's Burden – Each time a character is struck, a character must make a save vs. Paralysis. A failed save results in a character's movement being reduced by ½ for 1 round. Multiple failed saves in a round increases the duration of the effect by 1 round per fail. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)
Guard's Command – Instead of attacking, the miasma surrounding the Shadow of the Scream takes the form of numerous sneering faces that cry out 'HALT'. The effect may only target one character, that character must make a save vs. Paralysis. A failed save results in the character being unable to move for 1 round, though they may engage in any other action not associated with moving (attacking, spell casting, defense). Multiple failed saves in a round increase the duration by 1 round per failed save. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)
Special Defenses: They are immune to suggestion, charm, command, or any other spell that gives authority over the monster. (Only the guards have such authority)
Magic Resistance: 10% (Magic use is forbidden by the guards.)
Size: Medium (5' to 6' tall)
All Saves: 15

Crimson Dragon Slayer
Activity Cycle: All times, the torment of injustice never ends.
Diet: The rust flaking from chains, and water from leaking prison cells.
Intelligence: Low, violence and subjugation contain little in the way of intelligence.
Treasure: None
Alignment: Neutral (Evil)
No. Appearing: 1D10 (Can be summoned by Grey Folk. Grey folk may summon instead of attacking, the next round 1D6+2 appear.)
Armor Class: 2 (They are the masses, easily broken under the boots of power.)
Movement: 50 ft.
Hit Dice: 2
Action-Dice: 1D6
No. of Attacks: 1 -
Damage: 1D4 (Exploding) w/ Prisoner's Burden
Special Attacks:
Prisoner's Burden – Each time a character is struck, a character must make a save. A failed save results in a character's movement being reduced by ½ for 1 round. Multiple failed saves in a round increases the duration of the effect by 1 round per fail. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)
Guard's Command – Instead of attacking, the miasma surrounding the Shadow of the Scream takes the form of numerous sneering faces that cry out 'HALT'. The effect may only target one character, that character must make a save. A failed save results in the character being unable to move for 1 round, though they may engage in any other action not associated with moving (attacking, spell casting, defense). Multiple failed saves in a round increase the duration by 1 round per failed save. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)
Special Defenses: They are immune to suggestion, charm, command, or any other spell that gives authority over the monster.
Magic Resistance: 10% (Magic use is forbidden by guards)
Size: Medium (5' to 6' tall)

Dungeon World
Grouping: Group or Single
Armor: 1
Hit-Points: 4
Damage: Unarmed - [1D4+2]

Prisoner's Burden – The aura of hopelessness the Shadows of the Scream exude seep into the souls of those around them. While close to the monster take a -1 ongoing to actions involving escape or avoidance.
Guards' Command – The miasma surrounding the Shadows forms into the sneering faces of guards shouting “HALT”. A person caught in the roiling shock-wave created by the shout are compelled to stand still, though they can engage in other actions such as physically attacking, parrying, spell casting, etc.

Instinct: To reenact the tortures that created them.

Moves: Add to their tortured population. Obey the commands of the Grey Folk. Alert the Grey Folk of intruders. Prisoner's Burden. Guards' Command.

Into the Odd
Str 6, Dex 6, Wil 6, 4 hp.
(May be summoned by the Grey Folk)
Driven to recreate the horrors that made them. Attacks with fists (1D4). Those hit by the unarmed attack must make a Will save. A failed save results in a character's movement being reduced by ½ for 1 round. Multiple failed saves in a round increases the duration of the effect by 1 round per fail. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)
Also attacks with Guard's Commend. Instead of attacking, the miasma surrounding the Shadow of the Scream takes the form of numerous sneering faces that cry out 'HALT'. The effect may only target one character, that character must make a WILL save. A failed save results in the character being unable to move for 1 round, though they may engage in any other action not associated with moving (attacking, arcana use, defense). Multiple failed saves in a round increase the duration by 1 round per failed save. (The effect is ended, or the rounds of effect reduced from multiple hits from different attackers, if the attacker creating the effect is destroyed)