A horde of cats appear, what do you do?

Most animals may not need stats, but that doesn’t mean they may not have a few gameplay-related statistics. Small critters are like living traps: if you fail a check, something bad happens. A small poisonous spider you failed to spot may bite and inject you with a bone-splitting poison (yeah, I don’t know much about poisons,) a swarm of rats may eat your rations while you sleep, or a cat may be startled by your skulking attempts, alerting the whole castle. These may not be your standard encounters, but they add a little variety or, even, realism. Whatever annoyance you can imagine, most of these problems can be presented as ability, proficiency, or skill checks.

wizards-cats

‘What? I can’t kill level 1 wizards with carefully concealed stray cats anymore?’  Well, you can, but you probably shouldn’t. In any event, so nobody says cats can’t be useful anymore, and in honor of Minno, a cat who saved its master from a rapist, I present you a new spell:

Minno’s Feline Onslaught.

(conjuration/summoning) level 1

Range:  60 yds.

Duration: Special

Area of Effect: 1 creature/special

Components: V, S.

Casting Time: 1

Saving Throw: Special

With this spell, the caster calls forth small feline creature (like house or stray cats) to pounce upon a designated target. If there are cats around, like in the same house, the effect is immediate. If there aren’t, you must wait 1d3 rounds for the cats to arrive (the cats appear at the beginning of the round.)

The spell can “control”  up to 1d6 cats plus 1 more per level of the wizard (so an 8th-level wizard would be helped by 1d6 + 8 cats.) These cats try to overwhelm the target, and up to 6 cats can pounce on a normal-sized character. Any extra cat can be directed to another target as long as that creature isn’t outside a 30-ft radius from the original target. The victim of the feline onslaught gets a penalty of -1 to the saving throw for every cat above three attacking him (-1 for four cats, -2 for five, and -3 for six.) If he fails, the creature flees at maximum speed for two rounds, with the cats still holding onto him. If he succeeds, the cats will still annoy him for two rounds and he will suffer the same penalty but to attack rolls. That penalty is also added to the initiative rolls if the individual initiative rule is used. After these two rounds have passed, the cats scamper away, their heroic mission already accomplished.

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