“What’s that, Strider? It don’t look like a cloud,” said Sam in a whisper to Aragorn. He made no answer, he was gazing intently at the sky; but before long Sam could see for himself what was approaching. Flocks of birds, flying at great speed, were wheeling and circling, and traversing all the land as if they were searching for something; and they were steadily drawing nearer…


From THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING
by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Birds

No. Enc.: 0 (1)
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: 10 (3)
     Fly: 150 (50)
Armor Class: 5 [14]
Hit Dice: N/A
Attacks: 1 per target within area of effect (beaks and claws)
Damage: 1d6
Save: F8 (for the flock)
Morale: 12
Hoard Class: None
XP: N/A

This represents a huge flock of aggressive birds intent on attacking. Every target within the flock’s area of effect (see below) is subject to one attack per round.

The relentless, amorphous nature of the birds can overwhelm those who fall victim to it. Targets within the flock must make ineffective attacks against the birds, allowing only combat movement rate, unless they make a successful save vs. paralyzation. A roll of ‘1’ on this save means the character panics and stops in place and must successfully save to get moving again. A character’s saving throw adjustment for wisdom applies to these rolls.

Area of effect for each size of flock:
Small: 100 + 1d100 (101-200) birds in a flock roughly 50′ across
Medium: 250 + 2d100 (252-450) birds in a flock roughly 100′ across
Large: 500 + 5d100 (505-1000) birds in a flock roughly 300′ across
Huge: 750 + 1d100x10 birds (760-1750) in a flock roughly 500′ across
Gargantuan: 2500 + 1d20x100 (2600-4500) or more birds in a flock roughly 1000′ across or more
Hitchcockian: 5000 + 5d100x100 (5500-55000) birds in a flock a mile across or more

Attacks against the flock will kill some individual birds but have no measurable effect on the flock. Area effect (fireball, cone of cold, breath weapon, etc.) attacks are an exception. The flock is constantly moving with a group mentality, which will make effective combat against it very difficult.

(White Box) The Birds: HD: N/A; AC 5 [14]; Atk Claws and Beaks (1d6); Move 1 (Fly 15); Save 9; XP N/A

You do not want to run into The Birds.

I just pulled the numbers for flock size out of the air. If anyone has suggestions for improvement, chime in.

UPDATE: Get your own flock: Muster The Birds.

4 Comments to “The Birds
–Monday Monster”

  1. bat says:

    Yikes! Well done and creepy.
    Toss those at a group of adventurers about to enter a spooky forest.

    • Kilgore says:

      A couple rounds of The Birds and the spooky forest will look like a walk in the park.

      Though I wonder if 1d6 damage isn’t excessive. I want them to be deadly and scary, but I also don’t want them wiping out whole parties of low level PCs. I want the lethality to enter if the characters cannot find cover

      Just think of what that street in the movie would have looked like if that flock did 1d6 damage to those school children…

  2. bat says:

    I think that 1d6 is very kind. A flock of angry pecking and clawing birds? Gah! I shiver just thinking about it.

  3. […] caster gathers a huge flock of The Birds and can control them mentally until the spell expires. The Birds can be mustered anywhere within […]