Don’t let its beautiful baby smooth skin fool you, the Nightwalker takes no prisoners.
What is a nightwalker?
This week we’re kicking off Monster Of The Weekwith a more well-known creature of the night – and the living embodiment of death itself. Nightwalkers appear to be comprised of shadow, but these colossal humanoid-shaped terrors are actually undead. And they’ll stop at nothing to eliminate your players.
Where do nightwalkers come from?
There’s much more to their origin than there is for the typical shambling undead. Nightwalkers are born from a failed ritual created by those who try to inhabit powers of the Negative Energy plane. You can think of the Negative Energy plane as a sort of alternate dimension where almost no living creature can safely travel. Why? Because it contains such high amounts of (living? dead? hungry? all of the above?) darkness. Think of Stephen Hawking’s description of Black Holes, but instead of going through the fun that is spaghettification you’ll just slowly shrivel into cold dusty shadow, as all hope, light, and laughter drains away. The plane of existence where Nightwalkers originate is a sinister plane indeed. Nightwalkers fall under the evil alignment. Allegedly, Nightwalkers consist of the same shadowy darkness as the negative energy plane. Being undead, they have no problem surviving this dread domain.
Did we mention, they’re really, really big? Despite their 20 ft stature, Nightwalkers are capable of hiding from the players’ sight by camouflaging into darker environments such as fallow farm fields, dark forests, and the abandoned backlot of Disney’s Hollywood Studios… *gulp*.
Ok, so just like the nightmares I still have about that backlot tour, the Nightwalker is capable of stunning its prey within a 30 ft radius by using their evil gaze. They become literally paralyzed with fear. Fear isn’t their only weapon. Like many evil beings in real life, Nightwalkers are extremely charismatic. Because they have such high charisma, they’re extremely capable of intimidating players without having to flex a muscle. Although a large part of that has to do with the Nightwalker’s physical stature, it’s fear of the unknown that you want to emphasize to keep your players sweating. Or you can just focus on the fear of a gigantic malevolent creature that harnesses the powers of the Negative Energy plane. That works too.
So who’s your candidate for a Monster of The Week?
Is it a monster? Is it a plant? No, The Singing Tree is both!
We’re kicking off our first-everMonster of The Week post with a fairly unusual choice: The Singing Tree. If you’re thinking “what a silly choice to start with,” then golly, we’ve lulled you into a sense of false expectation – much like this week’s botanical abomination.
Reminiscent of Randy Newman’s character the Singing Bush seen in the 80s classic The Three Amigos, they call it the singing tree because each one of its leaves emits a high pitched sound. If all leaves play together, they sound like a calming harmonic choir that’ll put even the most frenzied woodland critter to slumber. That is the point after all. But this sleep isn’t restful or kind. The Singing Tree relies on the blood of its victims to replenish itself. Similar to how the roots of a normal tree pull in nutrients and support microbes for decomposition, the Singing Tree just wants to include you in the circle of life by draining you of all your blood and nutrients. It plays calming lullaby to soothe its prey into napping beside it. If, for example, Mr. Squirrel (my OC for this post) were to take a nap by the singing tree, he’d become a raisin in no time as the tree drinks up all his juicy goodness and covers him in leaves. Despite its lack of sentience and inability to feel paranoia, the tree will still slowly coat a body in leaves to hide it from sight. This way future prey are not alerted by the sight of Mr. Squirrel’s untimely demise, preserving this beautiful tree’s friendly facade. Death is natural (even your character’s death), so the Singing Tree is not considered an inherently evil creature; it’s alignment falls under the neutral category.
The Singing Tree can be domesticated, but because it’s bloodthirsty (literally) the odds of it going feral run high. They tend to live in areas distant from civilization, and primarily thrive off of those hapless enough to stumble close. If kept hungry for extended periods of time, the Tree will stop at nothing to consume the nearest creature. Unfortunately, the Tree doesn’t have much in the way of defending itself if attacked. It dies like any normal tree if treated roughly.
One more fun anecdote worth mentioning is that Singing Trees cannot live in a pack, since they rely on chance encounters as their primary food source.
I can only imagine how different the film Three Amigos would’ve been if Randy Newman had been a Singing Tree. Perhaps a 2020s gritty reboot could be centered on this new concept!
Is there a monster that you’d like to see discussed in the next Monster Of The Week? Feel free to write us in the comments below!
We have a very special update to share with all of our friends and fans!
After polls on Twitter, Facebook, and to our email subscribers, we heard you loud and clear. It seems like nearly everyone wants to try out one of the basic features of the platform/app ASAP. So, we’ve moved our Kickstarter launch date to June 12th. Why? So we can premiere our super awesome character builder right away (like you asked us to do)!
We know that once you test it, you’ll be hooked and want to help us bring you more and better features by backing us on Kickstarter! Our character builder will let you customize facial features, hair, body type, and the outfit – so you can create a unique character portrait. It won’t have ALL the bells and whistles (or options) of the final version – but you get to try it for FREE!
Expect to see it on the site, prior to June 12th. We had an overwhelmingly positive response to this idea, so we hope to see you testing and playing with our character builder as soon as it’s available!
With our Kickstarter fast approaching, we want to ensure people are actually interested in the platform. One way to gauge interest is how many people join our Pre-Kickstarter Email List.
Because we want THE happiest fans, we’re doing a giveaway! (*shouts* *hoots* *whistles*)
For the next 2 weeks, we’ll do a drawing when we hit the following email subscriber milestones: 50, 100, 200, 300, 500, 700, 1000.
What are we giving away? SO MUCH!
We have a Reaper mini: Sister Hazel, Plague Doctor
The D&D Bestiary Mini Notebooks
Multiple miniature boosters: Pathfinder Battles: The Rusty Dragon Inn, Icons of the Realms: Tomb of Annihilation, and Icons of the Realms: Descent into Avernus
Plus so many healing potions for your table!
Given the odds (and the cool loot) the faster you sign up, the better! Not to mention the deadline to hit milestones for the giveaway is April 21, 2020.
Additionally, if you share a post on Twitter or Facebook about the giveaway, tag us, and email us a link to your post, you’ll be entered into a separate drawing for a super cool, extra special giveaway.
What is this “super cool, extra special giveaway” you ask? Shhhhhhh. It’s a Secret. We’ll let you know once we hit our second milestone of 100 email subscribers.