Life sometimes just tries to knock you out. It can make completing volunteer things tough to do sometimes. This article is now on its third idea of what it should be. Originally, it should’ve been the final installment of my Corruption series on my schedule, but because of the Evolutionist playtest, I was going to make some changes. I was going to compare the Evolutionist to Everybody Games’ Shapechange class because in my mind they fill a similar story niche. However, just as with the corruptions, I want to really present the 3rd party publisher material in an accessible manner. With everything that has been going on in my life, I just haven’t had the time to put together a website that I’d like to be consumed publically yet. I’m hopeful that the next two weeks will give me the chance to put together this website so that I can properly compare the two classes and finish my corruption series! With all of that being said, that means today’s article is hopefully going to be something short and sweet! I’m going to be putting together a little entry for a potential creature companion!
Creature Companion rules were launched in Starfinder with Alien Archive 3. It included basic rules for both using an animal companion as both a combatant and/or a mount. I’m not going to go too much into detail about what I consider the feat taxes associated with using Creature Companions (although I might make an archetype or alternate class feature to lessen it in the future!). What is really smooth about the system though, is that just like in alien creation, the basics are all on a table. Essentially all creature companions are the same at their core, and then specific creatures will make changes to that core in a variety of ways!
Now, I haven’t followed Starfinder Society much since mid-Season 2, but in a Season 1 adventure SFS 1-23: Return to Sender by Natalie Kertzner you come across this really cute creature that has been tortured and experimented on by the bad guys (booo jinsul!). This cute thing looks like a cute shark mixed with an octopus. At least back when it was new, there was some speculation that it might’ve been a relatively newborn Besmaran Whelp (a starship-sized creature encountered earlier in Season 1). Whether or not that is true, I’m going to run with this idea and make a creature companion that has some randomness in it, just like the whelps!
Composition of the Companion
Size & Type.
One thing that I’ll need to think about when putting this together is the size of the creature. When it’s introduced in SFS 1-23, it is tiny-sized, but it is also pretty beaten up. I’m thinking for ease, we’ll probably make the companion small or medium. If it is based on the Besmaran Whelp, then that means its type is an aberration.
As an aberration, it should have Darkvision 60ft, and thanks to its shark-like appearance I feel pretty safe giving it blindsense(scent) 60ft. as well.
All companions have 1 good save and two poor saves, this little Besmaran Whelp Larva will have a good Reflex save and the other two will be its poor saves.
Modes of movement
It is likely ungainly on land, but because one day it’ll be a Starship-sized creature when it “grows up”, I want it to have a fly speed. It has an obvious aquatic nature to it, so a swim speed makes sense as well. I’m thinking a base speed of 10ft, fly 40ft (Ex, good), swim 40ft. It isn’t going to be the best at flying or swimming, but it can make a pretty good showing.
Its default Melee Attack will be a bite (Piercing), but look below when we get to special abilities, as I’m thinking this little Whelp Larva will occasionally have some trick up its sleeves!
This Whelp Larva will have good Dexterity and good Constitution
It seems that most, if not all of the Creature Companions have two special abilities. I actually wanted to have some randomness to one of the abilities, thanks to the randomness of the Besmaran Whelp in the repeatable adventure that it’s in. Luckily I have something that I can base that randomness on! The klikharp creature companion’s mutations ability will work wonderfully for me. I might not use all of the abilities presented there, but I will likely use a lot of them. For the second ability, I might give it void adaptation.
Putting it Together.
Besmaran Whelp Larvae were experimented on by the Jinsul. Released by adventurers, they have multiplied to the point that some people have taken these seemingly cute creatures as companions. Every day there is something new about them, and those that train them must adjust to all of these changes quickly!
Besmaran Whelp Larva Levels 3-20
Senses blindsense(scent) 60 ft., darkvision 60ft
Good Save Ref; Poor Saves Fort, Will
Defenseive Abilities void adaptation
Speed 10 ft., fly 40ft. (Ex, good), swim 40ft.
Melee Attack bite (P) or tentacle (B)
Space 5 ft. Reach 5ft.
Ability Modifiers Dex, Con
Cosmic Chaos (Su): The besmaran whelp larva has not fully stabilized in its formation yet, and changes its form daily. At the beginning of each day, roll a 1d6 and the whelp gains the listed ability for the day. At 7th level, the whelp may roll twice, if the 2nd roll is the same as the 1st, simply re-roll until it has two different abilities.
The result is 1 – Bioluminescent: As a move action, the besmaran whelp larva can increase the light level two steps (to a maximum of bright light) in a 10-foot radius centered on itself for 1 minute.
The result is 2 – Burrowing: The besmaran whelp larva gains a burrow speed of 30 feet.
The result is 3 – Energy Ray: The besmaran whelp larva gains an energy ray attack. This attack targets EAC and has a range increment of 30 feet. To determine the energy type, roll a 1d6. On a 1 it’s acid damage. On a 2 it’s fire damage. On a 3 it’s electricity damage. On a 4 it’s cold damage. On a 5 it’s sonic damage. And on a 6 it is force damage.
The result is 4 – Hardened Skin: The besmaran whelp larva’s skin grows tough, it gains a +2 bonus to EAC and KAC.
The result is 5 – Quick: The besmaran whelp larva’s moves quickly. Increase all movement speeds by 10ft.
The result is 6 – Breath Weapon: The besmaran whelp gains a breath weapon. It can use it every 1d4 rounds. It is a 30-foot cone and has the blast weapon special property. The attack targets EAC. To determine the energy type, roll a 1d6. On a 1 it’s acid damage. On a 2 it’s fire damage. On a 3 it’s electricity damage. On a 4 it’s cold damage. On a 5 it’s sonic damage. And on a 6 it is force damage.
Growth Spurt(Ex, 6th Level) Upon reaching 6th level, a besmaran whelp larva can choose to become Medium. If it remains Small, each time it gains a new level it can choose to become Medium.
This may not have been the article I originally intended to do today, but it had me smiling by the time I finished writing it up. Smiles are something that I’m needing right now so I don’t feel bad putting this together for folks! Hopefully in two weeks, I’ll have a website to show off AND an article comparing two classes to on another!