Flying Fighting Squirrel [creature]

Discussion on game mastering Earthdawn. May contain spoilers; caution is recommended!
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ragbasti
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 5:09 pm

Flying Fighting Squirrel [creature]

Post by ragbasti » Tue Jan 12, 2021 4:08 pm

The wilderness of Barsaive is full of wonders, some large and some small. Whether it is a landmark, a plant or an animal, scholars regularly make new discoveries or rediscover lost lore in every corner of the province. One such wonder are the Flying Fighting Squirrels of the Throalic Mountains. They are fairly large, about two feet in length, but surprisingly light and agile for their size. Their coat is of light russet color with a darker chestnut-brown saddle on their back and their underbelly is a light-grey, off-white color. The untrained eye will probably mistake them for a very large specimen of their more peaceful brethren.

While they are well known to us K’stulaami of the House of the Spirit Wind, you may have run into them in the forested flanks of the various connected mountain ranges. Once you enter their territory, there’ll be chittering in nearby tree crowns or other hiding spots, and shortly afterwards you will know where they got their namesake. Any Namegiver who was unfortunate enough to enter their territory will be viciously and aggressively defended against. Airborne K’stulaami are in fact one of the rare exceptions that will not immediately be set upon, unless they get too close to a den with pups in which case the adult’s instinct to defend their young kicks in. I’ve heard some of your scholarly friends claim that the Flying Fighting Squirrel’s aerial display was the inspiration for the Dance we K’stulaamoyna perform, however, I can neither confirm nor deny these claims for you. Still, it is not uncommon to see a Tail Dancer performing a similar display alongside them.

Their diet consists of pretty much anything smaller than them: nuts, fruits, grubs and insects; rarely smaller birds, lizards or other mammals. And if left undisturbed, they can be seen jumping and gliding through the air, collecting food, or caring for their young. It’s a truly wonderful sight to behold, bringing a smile to the face of even the grumpiest instructor at the War College. But don’t be deceived by their merry ways, for their eyes are sharp and always on the lookout for intruders. Their aerial display is not just impressive, they can remain airborne much longer than one would expect, often to the surprise of unsuspecting travelers or unwise Scholars, who thought they were far enough away to observe them safely.

While most often seen in pairs, larger groups are also seen when several mating pairs cooperate to deal with a larger threat. Only rarely will you meet a lone squirrel and when you do, run! A lone Flying Fighting Squirrel can only mean one thing, that their mate has died. Once they lose their mate, these creatures will go completely wild. They will leave their territory and assault anything they come across, neither eating nor resting. Most of the time they will succumb to their injuries or eventually starve to death. Many Beastmasters have tried to catch and calm them but to no avail, the outcome is always the same. Flying Fighting Squirrels are not suitable as Animal Companions.

Link to Document with stats:
https://www.dropbox.com/s/irwejq83ou5io ... l.pdf?dl=0

Slimcreeper
Posts: 1009
Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:44 pm

Re: Flying Fighting Squirrel [creature]

Post by Slimcreeper » Tue Jan 12, 2021 10:02 pm

I like how you incorporated the pairs, that's quite nice. Would you consider a reasonable encounter one pair per adept?

ragbasti
Posts: 97
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2017 5:09 pm

Re: Flying Fighting Squirrel [creature]

Post by ragbasti » Wed Jan 13, 2021 11:35 am

That'll really depend on the group.
A single pair, using swooping attacks, could keep multiple adepts busy/running, if they cannot reliably go before them. Once you have a couple characters with ranged attacks, the story quickly changes.
The Intention is that the FFS will use Swooping Attacks as their main means of combat.

Another fun thing is to have a lower circle group run into an enraged one. Then it'll fight less strategically and can really scare the hell out of them.

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