Bring the jungle alive!
Ever been busy designing an evening's gaming for your players and needed to
populate an area with a variety of new and exciting creatures which make sense?
A whole slew of unique critters which perfectly suit the environment?
E.N. Critters - Ruins of the Pale Jungle is the first in a line of themed
d20 monster books from E.N.
Publishing. When you need a selection of new monsters to surprise your players
with, look no further! This first book in the line provides you with 40 pages
crammed with jungle themed monsters - from plants to animals, from humanoids
to outsiders, from fey to insects, from spirits to hostile avians. Each entry
comes with a Notes & Game Balance entry, which provides advice and tips
for the GM when using the creature.
The jungle may be pale and appear potentially sickly, but the inhabitants are
as healthy and interesting as ever. The usual array of fauna can be found here:
apes, bats, monkeys, rats and plenty of snakes. There are also two new species
of deadly snakes here, the Quick Death and the Spitting Asp. Lastly,
statistics have been provided for the ocelot and the peccary just to add a little
The flora, not to be outdone, has adapted in a few interesting ways. The Leechvine
and Sand Trapper both vie for live prey, while the Earthbound
is actually a plant template that propagates itself not by eating the animals,
but by instead taking them over entirely to provide itself with mobility.
On the less predatory side of things, although not a plant but pretty close,
is the Banyaba, a fey relative to the dryad and very protective of her
A step up from the regular animals of this place can be found those who have
developed special adaptations for survival. The Creeper Cat is hardly
ever seen due to its considerable camouflage, unless you happen to be its current
victim. The Root Roper appears as part of the foliage waiting for unsuspecting
prey. The lizard-rat or Scrimp while not hard to see, is easy to underestimate
until its poison stinger sinks into your foot.
of the smaller creatures, the Pale Jungle is home to several swarms and a unique
version of arachnid. In the canopy are the Piranha Bird and the Vermiliant
Swarms, while closer to the ground and fetid pools of water are the Delerium
Swarms. Covering both of these levels of the jungle are the Colony Spiders,
working together in cunning fashion to feed not only on the swarms but also
on many much larger creatures that happen into their webs.
Humanoid races native to the region include the evil spider folk or Arachs,
the kinder, gentler bird folk or Parryns and finally, dwelling amidst
the ancient ruins and performing obscure rites are the Leaflings. Often
cults of these humanoids or of more common humanoid races choosing to live in
the jungle will develop around the sacrificial rituals to their godlike Balam
Chac or the foul Bloodhunter Devil.
Other outsiders who make the Pale Jungle their home are both the Pashinor
Demon and the Kithrotto. While the Kithrotto stick to their rank
pools, the Pashinor wanders near and far seeking the most difficult of prey
to hunt, often including players foolhardy enough to cross its path.
Primarily in and around the ruins is where the guardians and spirits of those
left behind dwell. These include the lost spirits known as the Animus,
the long entombed Revered Ancestors and the guardian constructs written
on the wall called the Engraved. Close to the ruins but often ranging
further afield is the dreaded Haze Horror. To round out the undead and
vengeful spirits are two creatures that fit very well in this environment. First
there is the Baya Tumbili, an undying spirit of anger manifesting itself
as a dread ape with a troupe of minions. Second, and also in the semi simian
category are the Shetani, or zombie monkeys, though they are anything
but slow and shambling.
To complete this assembly of critters are a pair that can be found anywhere
in the Pale Jungle, both widely known, feared and avoided. The Jungle Drake
is the master of this realm, opposed perhaps only by the Balam Chac, and then
only in the rarest occurrences. It eats with impunity and watches the ruins
in its territory carefully in case anything of value should turn up to
be claimed. Sometimes a Pashinor will grow bold enough to try and hunt a Jungle
Drake, but it often ends badly. The other beast falling under the most feared
category is the Detritus Lurker, more because of its insatiable
hunger as well as having no chance to negotiate with it and almost the same
chance of escaping it.