Human, Lunatic

Book of Sorrows

Frequency:Very rare
Activity Cycle:Any
Intelligence:Average (8-10)
Alignment:Chaotic neutral
No. Appearing:1
Armor Class:10
Hit Dice:1+1
No. of Attacks:1
Damage/Attack:1d3 or by weapon
Special Attacks:Surprise
Special Defenses:Mental immunity
Magic Resistance:Nil
Size:M (5-6’ tall)
Morale:Unsteady (5-7)
XP Value:35

The horrors of Ravenloft take their toll upon the poor mortals who live there in many ways. Some find their minds shattered and become “lost ones”. Others have their minds twisted and warped until they become madmen, murderous fiends who stalk innocent prey in the darkened streets. Still others find their sense of reality hopelessly shattered, and become as erratic and unpredictable as the dark land itself. These strange folk are known as lunatics.

Combat: Lunatics usually wear the tattered rags of their former clothes and little more. They have few worldly possessions, and fewer weapons. However, lunatics are highly unpredictable combatants, even from one round to the next. For example, a lunatic armed with a knife may stab with it one round, then turn it around and strike with the pommel. He might also drop the knife to draw out a longbow, which he may either string with an arrow or swing as a melee weapon, or even pluck on it as if he were playing a mandolin. DMs running lunatics are encouraged to roll a morale check every round; a failed check means that the lunatic takes an action which makes no sense at all (and probably does little or no damage in the process). Take the Chaotic Neutral alignment seriously, but remember that not all lunatics are violent by nature; they’re just plain crazy!

Each round that a lunatic acts in an insane fashion, any intelligent character or creature fighting him must roll a surprise check or else stand still in wide-eyed amazement for the remainder of the round (repeated exposure to the lunatic’s behavior may reduce or eliminate the surprise rolls over time at the DM’s discretion).

The lunatic’s unbalanced mind is well-protected from further mental tampering. All mind-controlling and mind-altering spells or psionics used upon a lunatic automatically fail, and mental attacks (such as psionics) only cause half damage. If anyone actually tries to contact a lunatic’s mind (via telepathy or mindlink), that character must make an immediate madness check. The attempt fails regardless of the result of this check.

Habitat/Society: Unlike madmen, lunatics cannot even begin to pass themselves off as ordinary people (and they rarely try). They lead a bizarre, erratic life of solitary hermitage, usually because they are driven out of settled areas by saner folk (the DM may opt to roll random reactions on Table 59: Encounter Reactions on page 103 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide to determine the lunatic’s mental state and reactions each round). They pay little attention to personal hygiene or health and so tend to look like skinny, rag-clad wild men and women.

It should be noted that while lunatics are erratic and unpredictable, they are not stupid. Among their rants and ramblings may be found the occasional pearl of wisdom, or a vital clue for the current adventure. They are known to occasionally attach themselves to passersby, especially those who show them kindness (until they change their minds, which can happen at any time).

Ecology: Lunatics rarely have the presence of mind to produce anything of real value. Some may dabble with an art or craft, but their efforts will invariably be for naught. Their writings and paintings are incomprehensible to others, and their creations and inventions are ill-conceived and pointless. One notable lunatic, Marlo DaVucci, became almost legendary, putting even gnome tinkers to shame. His greatest achievement before his untimely death was a large, steam-driven device that exploded every time it was turned on.

Last Modified: March 01, 2014, 12:42:05 GMT

Advanced Dungeons & Dragons 2nd Edition

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