A roper resembles a rocky outcropping. The creature's hide is yellowish gray
and rough, and its body very malleable. They are usually pillar-like in shape, 9
feet tall, about 3 feet in diameter at the base, and about 1 foot in diameter
at the top. The roper has a single yellow eye, and a maw ringed with sharp
teeth. Halfway up its body are small bumps which are the sources of the strands it
fires at opponents (see below). Ropers have the same body temperature as their
Combat: A roper can stand upright to resemble a stalagmite, lie on the ground to
imitate a boulder, or even flatten itself to look like a lump on a cavern floor.
They can change color a little, enough to blend into rocky backgrounds. Opponents
suffer a -2 penalty to surprise rolls when faced by a roper.
Ropers attack by shooting strong, sticky strands at opponents. They can shoot
a total of six strands, one per round, as far as 50 feet; each strand can
extend (1d4+1) x 10 feet and pull up to 750 pounds. Each time a strand hits
(requiring a normal attack roll), the victim must make a successful saving throw vs.
poison or lose half its Strength (round fractions down). Strength loss occurs 1d3
round after a hit, is cumulative for multiple hits, and lasts for 2d4 turns.
If a roper's prey cannot break free, it is pulled 10 feet closer per round;
when it reaches the roper, the creature bites the victim for 5d4 points of damage
(automatic hit against a victim held by a strand). A strand can be pulled off
or broken by a character who makes a successful open doors roll. A strand can
also be cut; it is AC 0, and it must take at least 6 points damage from a single
hit of an edged weapon to be severed.
Ropers are unaffected by lightning and take only half damage from cold-based
attacks. They have a -4 penalty to saving throws vs. fire.
Habitat/Society: Ropers are not social and rarely cooperate with one another, though a group of
them may be found in a good hunting spot. A group of ropers has been named a
"cluster" by scholars with nothing better to do.
Ropers reproduce asexually by shedding some of their material in the form of a
seed. Drawing nutrients from the cavern floor (and perhaps siphoning magical
energies from deep within the earth), the infant roper grows to maturity in 2d4
weeks. Until that time has passed, the roper is indistinguishable from a
Ropers move using large, cilia-like appendages on their undersides, which also
allow them to cling to walls and ceilings. They seldom leave the caverns, but
may migrate to a new feeding ground when prey population drops too low in its
current home. Migration usually occurs through underground tunnels, but when
this is not possible, ropers travel late at night, sometimes giving rise to
stories of walking stones.
Ecology: Ropers eat any meat but prefer demihumans and humans. Gnomes, dwarves, and
other mining races often serve as prey for ropers.
A roper has a gizzard-like organ which often holds undigested treasure.
Platinum and gems cannot be digested by a roper, so its gizzard holds 3d6 platinum
pieces, and has a 35% chance of holding 5d4 gems. The glue from a roper's strands
is prized by alchemists, as are its digestive acids, which must be stored in
A "stone-roper" is a roper with a more stony, less flexible exterior; it
resembles a statue of a roper. Its rocky tentacles are always extended at least 20
feet, and can shoot to 50 feet to attack prey. The storoper can attack with all
its tentacles at the same time, preferring to attack two victims with three
tentacles each. Twice per day, the storoper can inject venom through its
tentacles. Victims must make a successful saving throw vs. poison or be paralyzed for
one round, then fight to aid the storoper; the venom lasts for 10 turns.
Storopers' stony exteriors give them total protection from normal missiles. Storopers
have 6 HD, but have all the other abilities and statistics of a 10 HD roper.
||10 HD: 11
||11-12 HD: 9
|NO. OF ATTACKS:
||Strands, strength drain
||L (9' long)
||10 HD: 10,000
||11 HD: 11,000
||12 HD: 12,000