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Denizens of Black Mesa d20. Part 1: Headcrab!

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Anonymous
June 21, 2005 9:15:26 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Headcrab
Tiny Abberation
Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
Initiative: +3
Speed: 20 feet (4 squares)
Armor Class: 15 (+2 size, +3 dex), touch 15, flat-footed 12
Base Attack/Grapple: +2/ -1
Attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
Full attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft/ 0 ft.
Special Attacks: Leap, Couple
Special Qualities: Flammable
Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +4
Abilities: Str 5, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 7
Skills: Hide +4 Jump +10* Spot +2
Feats: Weapon Finesse, Improved Grapple
Enviornment: Xen/Any
Organization: Solitary, Brood (2-8), or Colony (8-16)
Challenge Rating: 2
Treasure: None
Advancement: None, but see notes.
Level Adjustment: -

This tiny quadroped has a yellow and/or tan mottled body. Both the fore
and aft limbs are a deep crimson red. There are 6 short, tentacle-like
growths at the front of the headcrab, two of which conceal wicked fangs
that inject a paralytic poison.

A low level predator in its native xen, the headcrab proves to be more
dangerous to humanoid lifeforms. While not particularly well equipped
with natural weaponry, or any more intelligent than a typical animal,
the headcrab's notorious and feared symbiotic abilities make them
threats out of proportion to their size.

The typical adult headcrab grows to be about 2 feet long and 2 feet
wide. They typically stand about 1 foot tall.

On its native xen, the headcrab preys on other small mammals and does
not reproduce until it reaches the massive gonarch stage of development.
On our world, it typically attempts to couple with an intelligent
humanoid so that it can advance to the zombie stage. Once it achieves
that level of development, it is capable of reproducing. As a result,
headcrabs are a much greater nuisance on our world than on their native xen.

While headcrabs are known to prefer flesh, it has been shown that they
will eat vegetable matter such as watermelons. They have also been
known to attack birds and other small animals for sustinence.

In spite of their alien biology, headcrabs are edible, and are reported
to taste like chicken.

Headcrabs do not speak, although they often coo to attract others of
their kind. When they see potential prey they make a high pitched
gurgling sound, and screech as they attack.

Combat

Headcrabs typically lie in ambush. They instinctively do so, but lack
the intelligence to retreat should their attack fail. Sometimes the
terrain isn't suitable for attacking from ambush, but a headcrab will
still attack should it detect potential prey. This is not due to a lack
of intelligence (for what is essentially an alien animal), but rather
because its native terrain is so different from its current location
that it simply doesn't understand the environment.
At the start of combat, a headcrab with do one of two things, it will
either leap at its prey, or if the target is out of range, it will
slowly waddle closer until it is within range and then leap. On
subsequent rounds, the head crab will hop at its target and attempt to
latch onto it with a grapple check.
Should a target be immune to the coupling attack, the headcrab
instinctively knows this. It will either try to escape, or attack if
the target is size small or smaller or escape isn't possible.
Leap* (Ex): An adult headcrab leaps to attack if it is within range to
do so. Despite their sedate walking pace, they can make an astonishing
20 foot leap. It is not unheard of for a headcrab to jump 10-15 feet
high. Should a foe attempt to escape, a headcrab will leap at it to
pursue. A headcrab may attack at the end of a leap. This counts as a
charge in every respect and does not trigger an attack of opportunity.
Couple (Ex): On earth, a headcrab's primary objective is to couple
with an intelligent humanoid so that it can enter its next stage of
development. It achieves this by coupling with the head of its victim.
If a headcrab scores a successful critical on a leap attack, it
automatically couples with its victim during its action in the next round.
Otherwise, a headcrab in melee will jump at its opponent's head and
initiate a grapple check. If it succeeds, on a successful pin check in
any subsequent round it will latch onto the head. If there is any
protective head gear, the headcrab must make another successful check to
either penetrate or remove it. Otherwise, coupling is automatic on the
headcrab's next action.
Once a headcrab successfully couples, its victim is paralyzed and falls
to the floor. Zombification begins immediately. Although rapid, the
process takes about 30 minutes before the zombie is ambulatory. During
this period, a coup de grace action against the headcrab kills both the
victim and the headcrab.
If the person being attacked has friends nearby, they can attempt to
remove a latched on headcrab in the first round of the coupling. A
strength check (DC 15+ vicim's CON bonus) is required to remove the
headcrab. This causes 1d8 points of damage to the victim, who must pass
a DC 11 Fort save or be unable to breathe on his own due to the
headcrab's paralytic poison. This save DC is based on the headcrab's
Constitution. Removing the headcrab in this manner does not harm it,
and it may immediately resume its attack.
Flammable: A headcrab's pale green blood is exceptionally combustible.
Furthermore, headcrabs did not evolve in an environment where fires
existed, and as such are incapable of knowing that they shouldn't move
through it. As such, if a fire is between a headcrab and its intended
target, it will move through it and continue to attack.
Should a headcrab come into contact with any sort of flame source, it
will immediately catch fire. This fire will persist until either the
headcrab is submerged in water (which it doesn't know to do) or it dies.
Skills: A headcrab has a +10 racial bonus to jump checks and may
always take 10 on such checks.
Anonymous
June 21, 2005 10:36:44 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Raphael Russell wrote:
> Headcrab
> Tiny Abberation
> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
> Initiative: +3
> Speed: 20 feet (4 squares)
> Armor Class: 15 (+2 size, +3 dex), touch 15, flat-footed 12
> Base Attack/Grapple: +2/ -1
> Attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
> Full attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
> Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft/ 0 ft.
> Special Attacks: Leap, Couple
> Special Qualities: Flammable
> Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +4
> Abilities: Str 5, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 7
> Skills: Hide +4 Jump +10* Spot +2
> Feats: Weapon Finesse, Improved Grapple

Very good, but...

I got the distinct impression, after playing the game far too many times,
that the Head Crabs, and probably the zombies as well, don't actually see.

I couldn't ever decide if they tracked by scent, movement, sound, or some
odd n-ray vision, but light/dark didn't seem to affect them, and they
couldn't seem to avoid obvious visible dangers.

Also, on Xen, I think the very tiny things that the Gonarch "laid" were baby
head crabs. Don't know if you want to account for that here, or write them
up separate though.

--
Reginald Blue
"I have always wished that my computer would be as easy to use as my
telephone. My wish has come true. I no longer know how to use my
telephone."
- Bjarne Stroustrup (originator of C++) [quoted at the 2003
International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces]
Anonymous
June 21, 2005 10:36:45 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Reginald Blue wrote:
> Raphael Russell wrote:
>
>>Headcrab
>>Tiny Abberation
>>Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
>>Initiative: +3
>>Speed: 20 feet (4 squares)
>>Armor Class: 15 (+2 size, +3 dex), touch 15, flat-footed 12
>>Base Attack/Grapple: +2/ -1
>>Attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
>>Full attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
>>Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft/ 0 ft.
>>Special Attacks: Leap, Couple
>>Special Qualities: Flammable
>>Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +4
>>Abilities: Str 5, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 7
>>Skills: Hide +4 Jump +10* Spot +2
>>Feats: Weapon Finesse, Improved Grapple
>
>
> Very good, but...
>
> I got the distinct impression, after playing the game far too many times,
> that the Head Crabs, and probably the zombies as well, don't actually see.
>
> I couldn't ever decide if they tracked by scent, movement, sound, or some
> odd n-ray vision, but light/dark didn't seem to affect them, and they
> couldn't seem to avoid obvious visible dangers.
>
> Also, on Xen, I think the very tiny things that the Gonarch "laid" were baby
> head crabs. Don't know if you want to account for that here, or write them
> up separate though.
>

As an abberation, headcrabs have 60 foot darkvision. Furthermore, I
don't think that they should have tremorsense, since you can sneak up on
them.

Yes, of course the gonarch produced baby headcrabs. However, as of HL2,
there probably aren't any Gonarchs on Earth. It is also shown that
there are plenty of headcrabs, and the poison headcrabs definitely
reproduce via zombies. So basically I inferred that the zombie was a
means for the headcrabs to reproduce without the gonarch stage.
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Anonymous
June 21, 2005 11:26:11 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Raphael Russell wrote:
> Reginald Blue wrote:
>> I got the distinct impression, after playing the game far too many
>> times, that the Head Crabs, and probably the zombies as well, don't
>> actually see.
>>
>> I couldn't ever decide if they tracked by scent, movement, sound, or
>> some odd n-ray vision, but light/dark didn't seem to affect them,
>> and they couldn't seem to avoid obvious visible dangers.
>>
>
> As an abberation, headcrabs have 60 foot darkvision. Furthermore, I
> don't think that they should have tremorsense, since you can sneak up
> on them.

Hmmm... would Blindsense be a better choice? Even (or perhaps especially)
with darkvision they should be able to avoid dangers that the didn't seem to
in the game.


Blindsense (Ex): Using nonvisual senses, such as acute smell or hearing, a
creature with blindsense notices things it cannot see. The creature usually
does not need to make Spot or Listen checks to pinpoint the location of a
creature within range of its blindsense ability, provided that it has line
of effect to that creature.

Any opponent the creature cannot see still has total concealment (50% miss
chance) against the creature with blindsense, and the creature still has the
normal miss chance when attacking foes that have concealment. Visibility
still affects the movement of a creature with blindsense. A creature with
blindsense is still denied its Dexterity bonus to Armor Class against
attacks from creatures it cannot see.


(Haven't played HL2, yet. My system isn't powerful enough to run it.
:-( )

--
Reginald Blue
"I have always wished that my computer would be as easy to use as my
telephone. My wish has come true. I no longer know how to use my
telephone."
- Bjarne Stroustrup (originator of C++) [quoted at the 2003
International Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces]
Anonymous
June 21, 2005 11:26:12 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Reginald Blue wrote:

>
> Hmmm... would Blindsense be a better choice? Even (or perhaps especially)
> with darkvision they should be able to avoid dangers that the didn't seem to
> in the game.
>
>
> Blindsense (Ex): Using nonvisual senses, such as acute smell or hearing, a
> creature with blindsense notices things it cannot see. The creature usually
> does not need to make Spot or Listen checks to pinpoint the location of a
> creature within range of its blindsense ability, provided that it has line
> of effect to that creature.
>
> Any opponent the creature cannot see still has total concealment (50% miss
> chance) against the creature with blindsense, and the creature still has the
> normal miss chance when attacking foes that have concealment. Visibility
> still affects the movement of a creature with blindsense. A creature with
> blindsense is still denied its Dexterity bonus to Armor Class against
> attacks from creatures it cannot see.
>
>
> (Haven't played HL2, yet. My system isn't powerful enough to run it.
> :-( )
>
Headcrabs shouldn't have blindsense, since having it would mean that
they'd automatically notice you when you tried to sneak up on them.
They might not have eyes, but that doesn't mean that they wouldn't have
some xen equivalent. Headcrabs never struck me as being particularly
efficient trackers.
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 7:14:58 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 18:36:44 -0400, "Reginald Blue" <Reginald_Blue@hotmail.com>
wrote:

>Raphael Russell wrote:
>> Headcrab
>> Tiny Abberation
>> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
>> Initiative: +3
>> Speed: 20 feet (4 squares)
>> Armor Class: 15 (+2 size, +3 dex), touch 15, flat-footed 12
>> Base Attack/Grapple: +2/ -1
>> Attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
>> Full attack: Claw +5 (1d2-3)
>> Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft/ 0 ft.
>> Special Attacks: Leap, Couple
>> Special Qualities: Flammable
>> Saves: Fort +1, Ref +4, Will +4
>> Abilities: Str 5, Dex 17, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 7
>> Skills: Hide +4 Jump +10* Spot +2
>> Feats: Weapon Finesse, Improved Grapple
>
>Very good, but...

There ought to be a Fortitude save to resist the paralyzation.


>I got the distinct impression, after playing the game far too many times,
>that the Head Crabs, and probably the zombies as well, don't actually see.
>
>I couldn't ever decide if they tracked by scent, movement, sound, or some
>odd n-ray vision, but light/dark didn't seem to affect them, and they
>couldn't seem to avoid obvious visible dangers.

My money is on primitive psionic vibrations. In any case, in game terms it would
translate to Blindsight, since headcrabs are not affected by darkness at all.


>Also, on Xen, I think the very tiny things that the Gonarch "laid" were baby
>head crabs. Don't know if you want to account for that here, or write them
>up separate though.

They were.
--

Matthias (matthias_mls@yahoo.com)

"Scientists tend to do philosophy about as well as you'd expect philosophers to
do science, the difference being that at least the philosophers usually *know*
when they're out of their depth."
-Jeff Heikkinen
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 11:20:19 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Some very good points were raised about the stats and abilities, and so
I've made some changes to the headcrab. Give it a read.

Raphael Russell wrote:
> Headcrab
> Tiny Abberation
> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)

Initiative: +4

> Speed: 20 feet (4 squares)

Armor Class: 14 (+2 size, +2 dex), touch 12, flat-footed 14

> Base Attack/Grapple: +2/ -1

Attack: Claw -1 (1d2-3)

Full attack: Claw -1 (1d2-3)

> Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft/ 0 ft.
> Special Attacks: Leap, Couple
> Special Qualities: Flammable

Saves: Fort +1, Ref +1, Will +4
Abilities: Str 5, Dex 10, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 12, Cha 7

> Skills: Hide +4 Jump +10* Spot +2

Feats: Improved Initiative, Improved Grapple

> Enviornment: Xen/Any
> Organization: Solitary, Brood (2-8), or Colony (8-16)
> Challenge Rating: 2
> Treasure: None
> Advancement: None, but see notes.
> Level Adjustment: -
>
> This tiny quadroped has a yellow and/or tan mottled body. Both the fore
> and aft limbs are a deep crimson red. There are 6 short, tentacle-like
> growths at the front of the headcrab, two of which conceal wicked fangs
> that inject a paralytic poison.
>
> A low level predator in its native xen, the headcrab proves to be more
> dangerous to humanoid lifeforms. While not particularly well equipped
> with natural weaponry, or any more intelligent than a typical animal,
> the headcrab's notorious and feared symbiotic abilities make them
> threats out of proportion to their size.
>
> The typical adult headcrab grows to be about 2 feet long and 2 feet
> wide. They typically stand about 1 foot tall.
>
> On its native xen, the headcrab preys on other small mammals and does
> not reproduce until it reaches the massive gonarch stage of development.
> On our world, it typically attempts to couple with an intelligent
> humanoid so that it can advance to the zombie stage. Once it achieves
> that level of development, it is capable of reproducing. As a result,
> headcrabs are a much greater nuisance on our world than on their native
> xen.
>
> While headcrabs are known to prefer flesh, it has been shown that they
> will eat vegetable matter such as watermelons. They have also been
> known to attack birds and other small animals for sustinence.
>
> In spite of their alien biology, headcrabs are edible, and are reported
> to taste like chicken.
>
> Headcrabs do not speak, although they often coo to attract others of
> their kind. When they see potential prey they make a high pitched
> gurgling sound, and screech as they attack.
>
> Combat
>
> Headcrabs typically lie in ambush. They instinctively do so, but lack
> the intelligence to retreat should their attack fail. Sometimes the
> terrain isn't suitable for attacking from ambush, but a headcrab will
> still attack should it detect potential prey. This is not due to a lack
> of intelligence (for what is essentially an alien animal), but rather
> because its native terrain is so different from its current location
> that it simply doesn't understand the environment.
> At the start of combat, a headcrab with do one of two things, it
> will either leap at its prey, or if the target is out of range, it will
> slowly waddle closer until it is within range and then leap. On
> subsequent rounds, the head crab will hop at its target and attempt to
> latch onto it with a grapple check.
> Should a target be immune to the coupling attack, the headcrab
> instinctively knows this. It will either try to escape, or attack if
> the target is size small or smaller or escape isn't possible.
> Leap* (Ex): An adult headcrab leaps to attack if it is within range
> to do so. Despite their sedate walking pace, they can make an
> astonishing 20 foot leap. It is not unheard of for a headcrab to jump
> 10-15 feet high. Should a foe attempt to escape, a headcrab will leap
> at it to pursue. A headcrab may attack at the end of a leap. This
> counts as a charge in every respect and does not trigger an attack of
> opportunity.
> Couple (Ex): On earth, a headcrab's primary objective is to couple
> with an intelligent humanoid so that it can enter its next stage of

development. It achieves this by attatching to the top of the head of its
victim.

> If a headcrab scores a successful critical on a leap attack, it
> automatically couples with its victim during its action in the next round.
> Otherwise, a headcrab in melee will jump at its opponent's head and
> initiate a grapple check. If it succeeds, on a successful pin check in
> any subsequent round it will latch onto the head. If there is any
> protective head gear, the headcrab must make another successful check to
> either penetrate or remove it. Otherwise, coupling is automatic on the
> headcrab's next action.

Once a headcrab successfully couples, it immediately begins the
Zombification process. Although rapid, the process takes about 30 minutes
before the zombie is ambulatory. Once the coupling begins, the victim takes
2d4 points of Con Drain every round. Once the victim's Constitution
reaches zero, they are not truly dead, but cannot be raised short of a
wish, miracle, or true ressurrection due the the rapid changes already
occuring to their physiology. During this period, a coup de grace
action against the headcrab kills both the victim and the headcrab.
Once the headcrab is attached, a victim's friends may attempt to remove
the headcrab. At this point, a headcrab gains a +12 racial bonus to its
grapple checks to resist being removed. If the victim's constitution is
above 0, removing the headcrab causes 1d8 points of damage. If the
victim's constitution is at 0, this kills the victim.

> Flammable: A headcrab's pale green blood is exceptionally
> combustible. Furthermore, headcrabs did not evolve in an environment
> where fires existed, and as such are incapable of knowing that they
> shouldn't move through it. As such, if a fire is between a headcrab and
> its intended target, it will move through it and continue to attack.
> Should a headcrab come into contact with any sort of flame source,
> it will immediately catch fire. This fire will persist until either the
> headcrab is submerged in water (which it doesn't know to do) or it dies.

Skills: A headcrab has a +10 racial bonus to jump checks and may
always take 10 on such checks. A head crab has a +12 bonus to grapple
checks
once it has successfully coupled with someone.

That should address some of the (quite valid) criticisms of the original
incarnation. A quick list of changes includes:

Dexterity: Recalling the opening of HL 2, Lamarr was none too graceful.
Instead of a high dex, it seems better to model off of their small
size and unearthly toughness.

Improved initiative instead of weapon finesse: To better give them the
first action should they be striking from ambush. Also, since they no
longer have a high dex, finesse becomes pointless.


Couple: Changed how coupling works. Instead of automatic
zombification, I added a pretty steep con drain. 2d4 will have a pretty
good chance of instantly immobilizing a weedy scientist (HL 1), but will
take a few rounds to take down a healthier person (Route Kanal, HL 2).
No, I haven't included any saves, but then, there are two grapple checks
involved against a creature that isn't a very good grappler. If you're
a combat type and you're wearing a helmet, you're guaranteed at least
one grapple check, and more likely, you're going to get three of them
before the coupling can begin.

As for the argument that the headcrab is too tough, it takes 3 or 4
shots with the pistol to neutralize one in HL. The 1d6 model accurately
reflects this. Sure, it only takes a couple of crowbar whacks from a
theoretical physicist, but remember that physicist is wearing a
state-of-the art strength augmenting environmental suit.
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 5:12:59 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 17:15:26 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
carved upon a tablet of ether:

> Headcrab
> Tiny Abberation
> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)

That's a lot of HP for something that dies from a couple of hits with
a crowbar wielded by a scientist.

Their Dex seems pretty high, too - they aren't hard to hit except in
mid-flight. I'd give them no more than +2 Natural AC, Dex 10 (+0), and
then give them Mobility or Spring Attack as a bonus feat.

> If the person being attacked has friends nearby, they can attempt to
> remove a latched on headcrab in the first round of the coupling. A
> strength check (DC 15+ vicim's CON bonus) is required to remove the
> headcrab.

That seems wierd. Why would a head-humper be harder to remove from a
tough guy than from a weed?

> This causes 1d8 points of damage to the victim, who must pass
> a DC 11 Fort save or be unable to breathe on his own due to the
> headcrab's paralytic poison. This save DC is based on the headcrab's
> Constitution. Removing the headcrab in this manner does not harm it,
> and it may immediately resume its attack.

A d8 damage is the same as the base damage of a large creature's bite
attack. That's pretty hefty.

> Should a headcrab come into contact with any sort of flame source, it
> will immediately catch fire. This fire will persist until either the
> headcrab is submerged in water (which it doesn't know to do) or it dies.

They don't seem to be able to swim anyway, so that wouldn't help them
much.


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 5:13:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Rupert Boleyn wrote:
> On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 17:15:26 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
> carved upon a tablet of ether:
>
>
>>Headcrab
>>Tiny Abberation
>>Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
>
>
> That's a lot of HP for something that dies from a couple of hits with
> a crowbar wielded by a scientist.
>
> Their Dex seems pretty high, too - they aren't hard to hit except in
> mid-flight. I'd give them no more than +2 Natural AC, Dex 10 (+0), and
> then give them Mobility or Spring Attack as a bonus feat.
>
>
>> If the person being attacked has friends nearby, they can attempt to
>>remove a latched on headcrab in the first round of the coupling. A
>>strength check (DC 15+ vicim's CON bonus) is required to remove the
>>headcrab.
>
>
> That seems wierd. Why would a head-humper be harder to remove from a
> tough guy than from a weed?
>
>
>>This causes 1d8 points of damage to the victim, who must pass
>>a DC 11 Fort save or be unable to breathe on his own due to the
>>headcrab's paralytic poison. This save DC is based on the headcrab's
>>Constitution. Removing the headcrab in this manner does not harm it,
>>and it may immediately resume its attack.
>
>
> A d8 damage is the same as the base damage of a large creature's bite
> attack. That's pretty hefty.
>
>
>> Should a headcrab come into contact with any sort of flame source, it
>>will immediately catch fire. This fire will persist until either the
>>headcrab is submerged in water (which it doesn't know to do) or it dies.
>
>
> They don't seem to be able to swim anyway, so that wouldn't help them
> much.
>
>

The reason for the damage in tearing the headcrab off and for the
difficulty is because at this point, the headcrab has physically
attached itself to its victim. It's modeling the fact that you're
literally tearing those pointy legs out of the victims body. As for the
victim's con making it harder, well, if you're literally tearing
something out of someone's flesh, wouldn't someone having a tougher body
make things a bit more difficult?
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 5:13:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 13:12:59 +1200, Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
wrote:

>On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 17:15:26 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
>carved upon a tablet of ether:
>
>> Headcrab
>> Tiny Abberation
>> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
>
>That's a lot of HP for something that dies from a couple of hits with
>a crowbar wielded by a scientist.

with 100 hit points :)  If Freeman is an Expert, that makes him 13th-15th level
(assuming a Constitution score of 14-18). If memory serves, Headcrabs took three
or four handgun shots to kill. This infers 1d6 for the handgun's damage if you
accept the above HD value, which is not unreasonable.


>Their Dex seems pretty high, too - they aren't hard to hit except in
>mid-flight. I'd give them no more than +2 Natural AC, Dex 10 (+0), and
>then give them Mobility or Spring Attack as a bonus feat.

>> If the person being attacked has friends nearby, they can attempt to
>> remove a latched on headcrab in the first round of the coupling. A
>> strength check (DC 15+ vicim's CON bonus) is required to remove the
>> headcrab.
>
>That seems wierd. Why would a head-humper be harder to remove from a
>tough guy than from a weed?

If anything, it should go off the parasite's Constitution.


>> This causes 1d8 points of damage to the victim, who must pass
>> a DC 11 Fort save or be unable to breathe on his own due to the
>> headcrab's paralytic poison. This save DC is based on the headcrab's
>> Constitution. Removing the headcrab in this manner does not harm it,
>> and it may immediately resume its attack.
>
>A d8 damage is the same as the base damage of a large creature's bite
>attack. That's pretty hefty.

Then again, the head crab doesn't have a mouth, it /is/ a mouth. Grappling is
its modus operandi.


>> Should a headcrab come into contact with any sort of flame source, it
>> will immediately catch fire. This fire will persist until either the
>> headcrab is submerged in water (which it doesn't know to do) or it dies.
>
>They don't seem to be able to swim anyway, so that wouldn't help them
>much.

--

Matthias (matthias_mls@yahoo.com)

"Scientists tend to do philosophy about as well as you'd expect philosophers to
do science, the difference being that at least the philosophers usually *know*
when they're out of their depth."
-Jeff Heikkinen
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 5:14:56 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 19:15:51 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
carved upon a tablet of ether:

> Headcrabs shouldn't have blindsense, since having it would mean that
> they'd automatically notice you when you tried to sneak up on them.
> They might not have eyes, but that doesn't mean that they wouldn't have
> some xen equivalent. Headcrabs never struck me as being particularly
> efficient trackers.

They're bloody hopeless, actually. Luring them into traps tends to
involve moving towards them until they notice you, and then running
away, but not too fast.


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 5:14:57 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 13:14:56 +1200, Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
wrote:

>On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 19:15:51 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
>carved upon a tablet of ether:
>
>> Headcrabs shouldn't have blindsense, since having it would mean that
>> they'd automatically notice you when you tried to sneak up on them.
>> They might not have eyes, but that doesn't mean that they wouldn't have
>> some xen equivalent. Headcrabs never struck me as being particularly
>> efficient trackers.
>
>They're bloody hopeless, actually. Luring them into traps tends to
>involve moving towards them until they notice you, and then running
>away, but not too fast.

Even dodging at the right time works ... remember the descending platform from
Blue Shift?

--

Matthias (matthias_mls@yahoo.com)

"Scientists tend to do philosophy about as well as you'd expect philosophers to
do science, the difference being that at least the philosophers usually *know*
when they're out of their depth."
-Jeff Heikkinen
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 7:43:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 03:28:45 GMT, Steven Howell
<showell@donteventhinkaboutit.com> carved upon a tablet of ether:

> Even dodging at the right time works ... remember the descending platform from
> Blue Shift?

Nope.


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 22, 2005 8:05:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 03:26:45 GMT, Steven Howell
<showell@donteventhinkaboutit.com> carved upon a tablet of ether:

> with 100 hit points :)  If Freeman is an Expert, that makes him 13th-15th level
> (assuming a Constitution score of 14-18). If memory serves, Headcrabs took three
> or four handgun shots to kill. This infers 1d6 for the handgun's damage if you
> accept the above HD value, which is not unreasonable.

They take a couple of hits with a crowbar, no more.

> If anything, it should go off the parasite's Constitution.

That sounds reasonable, though maybe off its Str, obviously with a
higher base DC.


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 3:20:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Steven Howell wrote:
> On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 13:12:59 +1200, Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
> wrote:
>
>>On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 17:15:26 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
>>carved upon a tablet of ether:
>>
>>> If the person being attacked has friends nearby, they can attempt to
>>>remove a latched on headcrab in the first round of the coupling. A
>>>strength check (DC 15+ vicim's CON bonus) is required to remove the
>>>headcrab.
>>
>>That seems wierd. Why would a head-humper be harder to remove from a
>>tough guy than from a weed?
>
> If anything, it should go off the parasite's Constitution.

Or just the regular grappling rules for removing an attached
creature. Modelling it off the Strirge, with it's +12 racial grapple
bonus, and you'd be about right.

Give it a Con drain special or somesuch when it's attached too, to
represent the ongoing unavoidable damage.

--
tussock

Aspie at work, sorry in advance.
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 4:37:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 07:20:19 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
carved upon a tablet of ether:

> As for the argument that the headcrab is too tough, it takes 3 or 4
> shots with the pistol to neutralize one in HL. The 1d6 model accurately
> reflects this. Sure, it only takes a couple of crowbar whacks from a
> theoretical physicist, but remember that physicist is wearing a
> state-of-the art strength augmenting environmental suit.

What I want to know is: If the suit boosts my strength so much, why
can't I just kick civil protection goons in the 'nads and not have to
switch weapons?


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 4:37:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Rupert Boleyn wrote:
> On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 07:20:19 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
> carved upon a tablet of ether:
>
>
>>As for the argument that the headcrab is too tough, it takes 3 or 4
>>shots with the pistol to neutralize one in HL. The 1d6 model accurately
>>reflects this. Sure, it only takes a couple of crowbar whacks from a
>>theoretical physicist, but remember that physicist is wearing a
>>state-of-the art strength augmenting environmental suit.
>
>
> What I want to know is: If the suit boosts my strength so much, why
> can't I just kick civil protection goons in the 'nads and not have to
> switch weapons?
>
>
It only takes a couple of crowbar whacks to put CPs down as well.
Remember how you get your first USP pistol?
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 5:04:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 07:45:48 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
carved upon a tablet of ether:

> Rupert Boleyn wrote:
> > On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 07:20:19 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
> > carved upon a tablet of ether:
> >
> >
> >>As for the argument that the headcrab is too tough, it takes 3 or 4
> >>shots with the pistol to neutralize one in HL. The 1d6 model accurately
> >>reflects this. Sure, it only takes a couple of crowbar whacks from a
> >>theoretical physicist, but remember that physicist is wearing a
> >>state-of-the art strength augmenting environmental suit.
> >
> >
> > What I want to know is: If the suit boosts my strength so much, why
> > can't I just kick civil protection goons in the 'nads and not have to
> > switch weapons?
> >
> >
> It only takes a couple of crowbar whacks to put CPs down as well.
> Remember how you get your first USP pistol?

Yeah, I know. I just find it a real pain having to switch from gun to
crowbar. They get to use the rifle butt, so why can't Gordon?


--
Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
"Just because the truth will set you free doesn't mean the truth itself
should be free."
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 7:03:16 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Mere moments before death, Reginald Blue hastily scrawled:
>
>Haven't played HL2, yet. My system isn't powerful enough to run it.

Buy a new one. It will be totally worth it.



Ed Chauvin IV

--
DISCLAIMER : WARNING: RULE # 196 is X-rated in that to calculate L,
use X = [(C2/10)^2], and RULE # 193 which is NOT meant to be read by
kids, since RULE # 187 EXPLAINS homosexuality mathematically, using
modifier G @ 11.

"I always feel left out when someone *else* gets killfiled."
--Terry Austin
Anonymous
June 23, 2005 7:03:17 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Mere moments before death, Steven Howell hastily scrawled:
>On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 13:12:59 +1200, Rupert Boleyn <rboleyn@paradise.net.nz>
>wrote:
>
>>On Tue, 21 Jun 2005 17:15:26 -0500, Raphael Russell <aod1@cox.net>
>>carved upon a tablet of ether:
>>
>>> Headcrab
>>> Tiny Abberation
>>> Hit Dice: 3D8 (13 hit points)
>>
>>That's a lot of HP for something that dies from a couple of hits with
>>a crowbar wielded by a scientist.
>
>with 100 hit points :) 

In power armor.

>If Freeman is an Expert, that makes him 13th-15th level
>(assuming a Constitution score of 14-18).

That seems about right, but he's a 13th level Expert.

>If memory serves, Headcrabs took three
>or four handgun shots to kill.

2 at most with the 9mm, 1 with the magnum.

>This infers 1d6 for the handgun's damage if you
>accept the above HD value, which is not unreasonable.



Ed Chauvin IV

--
DISCLAIMER : WARNING: RULE # 196 is X-rated in that to calculate L,
use X = [(C2/10)^2], and RULE # 193 which is NOT meant to be read by
kids, since RULE # 187 EXPLAINS homosexuality mathematically, using
modifier G @ 11.

"I always feel left out when someone *else* gets killfiled."
--Terry Austin
Anonymous
June 24, 2005 8:30:50 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Reginald Blue wrote:
> Raphael Russell wrote:
>> Reginald Blue wrote:
>>> I got the distinct impression, after playing the game far too many
>>> times, that the Head Crabs, and probably the zombies as well, don't
>>> actually see.
>>>
>>> I couldn't ever decide if they tracked by scent, movement, sound, or
>>> some odd n-ray vision, but light/dark didn't seem to affect them,
>>> and they couldn't seem to avoid obvious visible dangers.
>>>
>>
>> As an abberation, headcrabs have 60 foot darkvision. Furthermore, I
>> don't think that they should have tremorsense, since you can sneak up
>> on them.
>
> Hmmm... would Blindsense be a better choice? Even (or perhaps
> especially) with darkvision they should be able to avoid dangers that
> the didn't seem to in the game.

The "unfamiliar environment" part of the description has that covered - they
simply don't know which aspects of our environment are dangerous.

--
Mark.
!