Submitted by: Stewart Moyer
Thrypsalodaemon CR 12 (Expert)
NE tiny outsider
Init +8 Senses darkvision 60 ft. Perception +22
Defenses HP 185
EAC 23 KAC 30
Fort +11 Ref +11 Will +17
Immunities acid, construct form, death effects, disease, poison Resistances cold 10, fire 10, electricity 10 SR 17
Speed 60 ft., 60 ft. climb, 120 ft. fly (perfect)
Melee bite +23 (2d12+16 plus disease), 4 claws +21 (1d12+16 fire and electricity damage)
Offensive Abilities disease, welding renders
Spell–Like Abilities (CL 17th)
1/day – greater invisibility, rewire flesh (DC 26), summon allies (1 fiendish assassin robot, 35%)
3/day – handy junkbot, instant virus (DC 25), nondetection
At-will – make whole, security seal
Str +4 Dex +8 Con +4 Int +8 Wis +5 Cha +5
Skills Bluff +27, Computers +27, Engineering +27, Fly +22, Stealth +22
Other Abilities comm corruptor, construct form, telepathy (100 ft.)
Languages Abyssal, Common, Infernal
Comm Corruptor (Ex) Thrypsalodaemons are internally capable of wireless communication at system-wide ranges, but can communicate with daemonic systems at an unlimited range.
Additionally, thrypsalodaemons can perform computer and engineering checks on any computer within 30 feet of them. This does not require any sort of kit, but the thrypsalodaemon is must remain within 30 feet of the computer while making the check.
Construct Form (Ex)
Despite being true daemons, thrypsalodaemons possess several common construct immunities. Thrypsalodaemons are immune to ability damage, ability drain, energy drain, exhaustion, fatigue, necromancy effects, negative levels, nonlethal damage, paralysis, sleep, and stunning.
Type Disease (Injury) Save Will DC 21
Track both Frequency 1/minute
Effect 1 Constitution and Intelligence damage. If the victim’s Constitution or Intelligence score reaches 0, they become completely subservient machines to the thrypsalodaemon. Their type changes to construct with the fiendish simple graft. If the victim’s Intelligence reaches zero before their Constitution score does, the victim also gains mindless.
This disease can also infect constructs, but only damages Intelligence and causes subservience once their Intelligence score reaches 0. If the construct does not have an Intelligence score, the construct automatically become subservient.
Cure 2 consecutive saves
Welding Renders (Ex)
The traces of the thrypsalodaemon’s circuitry are coursing with searing electricity. This gives them four claw attacks energy damage instead of slashing damage. This energy damage is half fire and half electricity.
Environment any (Abaddon)
Organization solitary, pair, circuit (3—6), or black web (7—12, accompanied by 12—144 fiendish constructs)
Many mortals have sought to pervert the scientific process in search of immoral gains, whether it be through transferring their consciousness into supercomputers at a bid for immortality or creating superweapons to use on their envied rivals. But just as the liches of yore could fail with their phylacteries and be utterly destroyed, so too could these evil geniuses with their technological travesties. Invariably, many of the selfish souls find themselves tossed into Abaddon, forced to outwit each other for the chance of survival via daemonhood.
Thrypsalodaemons are formed from the souls of those that perished in technological accidents. Their appearances mock the discoveries of other technological advancements: rusted piles of scrap resembling androids or other constructs covered in chitinous feelers. Poking out of the chassis, the errant traces and wires of circuit boards twitch and claw at the air, hoisting themselves into bastardized flight.
Thrypsalodaemons run multiple jobs across the planes: tapping into comm links to confuse enemies and lead them into traps while also sabotaging their equipment. These skills allows them to manage the computers and other systems of daemonic warships, making them capable pilots. However, they are also aware that every ship needs a staff on hand, and every now and then, they leave the safety of their ships to kidnap more fresh bodies for their galleys. They don’t care whether they be living, dead or otherwise; the thrypsalodaemon will work them to death regardless until the last stars burn out.
I love the integration of RPG classic concepts with sci-fi material, and the thrypsalodaemon does this wonderfully in looking at how technology abuse interacts with the planes. The descriptive text itself could us a little more connective tissue—we’re assuming there are daemonic… starships? … but it’s not stated, and a bit of clarity here would help. Build-wise, I’m not sure if expert is the best array given that it’s got a full suite of spells; I’d recommend either trimming down to a smaller spell set or switching over to a spellcaster array. There are a few other places where the creature diverges from Starfinder standards, such as a lack of a daemon subtype, the difference between CR and caster level, the multiattack listed on the melee line without the appropriate multiattack penalty, etc. None of these are things that couldn’t be easily cleaned up with a careful read of the rules involved in this monster’s creation.
Jacob W. Michaels:
First of all, congrats on making the Top 5 of the fifth Here Be Monsters contest, our first challenge using the Starfinder Roleplaying Game rules. I’m a big fan of the concept of this monster, finding a way to marry the sci-fi feel of the game and the theme for this contest with classic fantasy RPG monsters like daemons. Great job there and the process for how they become a daemon works well. I do wish there had been just a bit more about their goals; daemons seek only to consume mortal life itself, so I think we need a little bit more of their niche (I think you hinted at it with the idea of tapping into comm links, but I think it just needed a bit more explicitness. I don’t know that as a GM I would know completely how to use this in a game based on what’s in this write-up. The other judges have talked a bit about the stat block, so I’m going to try to avoid duplicating what they’ve said. Attention to detail is important — you’ve missed the subtype for daemon, for example, which is important because it brings other rules into effect. Also, while I really like your names for the creature’s organization, you want to use en-dashes there, not the em-dashes that you have.
Welcome to the top 5!
The thrypsalodaemon has an intriguing technology-oriented concept, and it fits the established lore for daemons. Its appearance is suitably horrifying, and its disease equally horrifying, reinforcing its disregard for who or what crews its galley. The stat block looks good overall (and I appreciate you indicating the array you used). EAC and KAC seem pretty far out of band. They more or less even out, but it could have done with a special ability describing the reason for the changes. The base spell DC for a CR 12 expert is 17, so the DCs for rewire flesh and instant virus are much higher than they should be. Starfinder attacks have a somewhat different format to Pathfinder; its claws (along with its bite) would be listed in a separate “Multiattack” line. Some quibbles: “Tiny” should be capitalized, the distance should follow the movement mode (“climb 60 ft.”), resistances and SR should be preceded by semicolons, and the thrypsalodaemon should use its CR as its caster level. Additionally, its SR should be 23 (CR + 11).
Good luck in the voting!