Prism-Finned Sturgeon

Prism-Finned Sturgeon
Size/Type: Medium Magical Beast (Aquatic)
Hit Dice: 3d10+3 (19 hp)
Initiative: +1
Speed: Swim 60 ft. (12 squares)
Armor Class: 15 (+1 Dex, +4 natural), touch 11, flat-footed 14
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+5
Attack: Tail slap +6 melee (1d6+2)
Full Attack: Tail slap +6 melee (1d6+2)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Enthralling shimmer (DC 10), hypnotic pattern (DC 13)
Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent
Saves: Fort +4, Ref +4, Will +2
Abilities: Str 15, Dex 13, Con 13, Int 3, Wis 12, Cha 8
Skills: Listen +8, Spot +7, Swim +12
Feats: Alertness, Weapon Finesse
Environment: Temperate and cold aquatic
Organization: Solitary, school (2-5), or shoal (6-11)
Challenge Rating: 1
Advancement: 4-6 HD (Medium)
Level Adjustment:

Greater Prism-Finned Sturgeon
Size/Type: Large Magical Beast (Aquatic)
Hit Dice: 7d10+14 (52 hp)
Initiative: +5
Speed: Swim 60 ft. (12 squares)
Armor Class: 15 (-1 size, +1 Dex, +5 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 14
Base Attack/Grapple: +7/+15
Attack: Tail slap +10 melee (1d8+6)
Full Attack: Tail slap +10 melee (1d8+6)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Enthralling shimmer (DC 12), hypnotic pattern (DC 13)
Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent
Saves: Fort +8, Ref +6, Will +3
Abilities: Str 19, Dex 13, Con 14, Int 3, Wis 12, Cha 8
Skills: Listen +6, Spot +6, Swim +10
Feats: Alertness, Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative
Environment: Temperate and cold aquatic
Organization: Solitary, school (2-5), or shoal (6-11)
Challenge Rating: 2
Advancement: 8-9 HD (Large)
Level Adjustment:

Elder Prism-Finned Sturgeon
Size/Type: Huge Magical Beast (Aquatic)
Hit Dice: 10d10+30 (85 hp)
Initiative: +5
Speed: Swim 60 ft. (12 squares)
Armor Class: 15 (-2 size, +2 Dex, +5 natural), touch 10, flat-footed 13
Base Attack/Grapple: +10/+24
Attack: Tail slap +14 melee (2d6+9)
Full
Attack: Tail slap +14 melee (2d6+9)
Space/Reach: 15 ft./10 ft.
Special Attacks: Enthralling shimmer (DC 19), hypnotic pattern (DC 13)
Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision, scent
Saves: Fort +11, Ref +8, Will +6
Abilities: Str 23, Dex 13, Con 16, Int 4, Wis 12, Cha 8
Skills: Listen +10, Spot +10, Swim +14
Feats: Alertness, Great Fortitude, Improved Initiative, Iron Will
Environment: Temperate and cold aquatic
Organization: Solitary, school (2-5), or shoal (6-11)
Challenge Rating: 4
Advancement: 11-17 HD (Huge)
Level Adjustment:

These magical fish are attractive and peaceful despite having the general shape of a sturgeon, with scales that show a coruscating pattern of light, often with a rainbow effect. The creature’s translucent, shining fins are the basis for its name, but ironically the fins are only noticeable when the sturgeon employs its supernatural enthralling shimmer ability.

Prism-finned sturgeon usually are harmless except towards the smaller fish and shrimp which are their favorite foods. Smaller prism-finned sturgeons, from fifteen years of age up to an age of approximately 20 years, are 5 to 7 feet long and usually are not dangerous to creatures other than their prey.

Greater prism-finned sturgeons are specimens aged twenty to fifty years may reach 15 feet in length and present a serious danger if threatened.

Elder prism-finned sturgeons can exceed 20 feet in length and weigh more than 2 tons at an age of fifty to two hundred years.

All sizes are highly prized for their exceptionally valuable caviar, which has magical properties that make it sought after as a food product for the wealthy and powerful. Because of the exceptional value of their caviar, killing prism-finned sturgeons less than 4 feet in length is grounds for a hefty penalty in their common fisheries.

These creatures have similar breeding and habitat requirements as normal sturgeons. They live in fresh water, and prefer to spawn in rivers.

Combat

In general, prism-finned sturgeons do not attack anything that isn’t a preferred food. Instead they use their enthralling shimmer ability to convince creatures not to attack, or (if caught by more conventional fishing techniques) to let them go. As a last resort they use their hypnotic pattern ability to escape.

Enthralling Shimmer (Su): This ability functions similarly to the hypnosis spell, except that on a failed Will save the victim must refrain from attacking or let the prism-finned sturgeon escape from battle unharmed. Direct communication, such as by speech, is not necessary; the suggestion is implicit. Unlike the hypnosis spell, this ability affects a number of Hit Dice of creatures equal to the Hit Dice of the prism-finned sturgeon. The save DC is equal to 10 + the prismatic sturgeon’s Hit Dice + the sturgeon’s Charisma modifier.

Fishermen use the rank-smelling Fisherman’s Unguent (below) to help counteract this effect, but it still is not uncommon for a fisherman to come home empty-handed because he has thrown back all of his catch.

Spell-like Abilties: Once per day, a prism-finned sturgeon can duplicate the effect of the hypnotic pattern spell, with a caster level equal to its Hit Dice. The save DC is equal to 12 + the sturgeon’s Wisdom modifier.
Skills: A prism-finned Sturgeon has a +8 racial bonus on any Swim check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard. It can always choose to take 10 on a Swim check, even if distracted or endangered. It can use the run action while swimming, provided it swims in a straight line.

Prism-Finned Sturgeon Caviar

This supernatural substance is among the most expensive foods in the world because it tastes supernaturally perfect, without respect to the individual preferences of the eater. Someone who tastes it once is able to recognize it if he has it again, although the taste varies to complement the food preparation. Even a little of the caviar makes any dish taste better, and it is normal for common people in the areas where it is fished to use a pinch of it for this purpose. However, the most valued food preparations are those using an ounce or more of the caviar.

Because of the nature of prism-finned sturgeon caviar, the exact manner of presentation has little effect on how good the meal tastes. Expert chefs using this product focus instead on the visual presentation of their prism-finned sturgeon caviar dishes by plating it appropriately in any course of the meal, as desired by the host. The prices listed are accurate only when the caviar is in season and fished locally. Out of season or at a great distance from a fishery, the caviar must be magically preserved, and this (as well as its rarity) can significantly increase the cost.

When a sentient creature ingests at least one ounce of caviar, it is filled with such a feeling of sensual taste satisfaction that it is naturally inclined to view the world in a more friendly fashion. For one hour, the creature is affected as if by the charm monster spell, except that he or she treats all other creatures within sight as the caster of the effect (all creatures affected by the caviar are mutually charmed, but unaffected creatures interact normally with each other and the affected creatures). A creature may resist this effect with a Will save against DC 17. It is easy to recognize the taste of prism-finned sturgeon caviar, particularly if a creature has had it before, but it tastes so good that if a creature has started to consume the dish, it must succeed on a Will save against DC 17 to stop eating.

The caviar is acquired from the roe of female prism-finned sturgeons. In general, a prism-finned sturgeon has roughly a 7% chance of being a gravid female. In places where spawning prism-finned sturgeons congregate, this chance rises to 20%. A gravid prism-finned sturgeon yields 1d12 x 16 ounces of caviar. A greater prism-finned sturgeon yields 20d20 x 16 ounces caviar. An elder prism-finned sturgeon yields 100d20 x 16 ounces of caviar.

Market Price: 100 gp per ounce (fresh, in season); 400 gp per ounce (preserved).

Fisherman’s Unguent

This alchemical substance is treasured by prism-finned sturgeon fishermen as a means of resisting the urge to throw back their catch. It is also one of the rankest smelling substances in existence. One ounce of the unguent is applied to a creature’s eyelids to dull the senses, imposing a -2 penalty to Spot and Listen checks. In addition to these penalties, the utterly disgusting smell causes a -4 penalty to all Charisma-based skill checks. The unguent grants a +4 alchemical bonus to saves against the hypnosis and hypnotic pattern spells and the enthralling shimmer ability of the prism-finned sturgeon.

Creating an ounce of fisherman’s unguent requires a Craft (alchemy) check at a DC of 25.

Market Price: 100 gp per ounce.

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