The third in a series about fungoid critters for D&D. This week's creature is the...
NO. APPEARING: 4-16
ARMOR CLASS: 7
HIT DICE: 1
% IN LAIR: 5%
TREASURE TYPE: Nil
NO. OF ATTACKS: 1
SPECIAL ATTACKS: See below
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Nil
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Standard
PSIONIC ABILITY: Nil
Attack/Defense Modes: Nil
Liar's Caps are a motile species of fungus-like creature that also possesses the power of flight. They are usually encountered in mountainous places or within the roofs of large caves, and are considered both a blessing and a curse by dwarves and gnomes. These creatures are adept at locating seams bearing precious metals which they readily consume, and their presence usually denotes that such metals are nearby.
However, they much prefer to feed upon both living flesh and refined metals of any kind, and because of this they will not hesitate to attack parties of adventurers. The creatures can sense the heat generated by torches and living creatures out to a distance of 100' and possess the ability to hide in shadows and move silently as if they were an 8th level thief. They lure the unwary and avaricious by excreting pellets that strongly resemble nuggets of gold and scatter them below the places where they wait in ambush. They then attack by either dropping down on their victims or by flying at them from wherever they are hiding.
When attacking, they use a powerful acid which inflicts 1-6 points of damage to any exposed flesh. This acid will also consume wood, leather and cloth in 2 melee rounds, chainmail in 3 melee rounds, plate mail in 5, and precious metals at a rate equivalent to 5 gold pieces per melee round. Any Liar's Cap that consumes more than the equivalent of 15 gold pieces will quickly seek to escape by flying away, albeit at half their normal flying speed. Fortunately, their acid seems to have no effect on metallic magical items. The remains of any victims will be quickly consumed (8-24 melee rounds).
Should a lair be found - usually deep within a cave system - this will be a large (3' tall) individual that is bright yellow in colour, defended by 4-16 Liar's Caps. It has but one stalk and this will contain nuggets of gold, silver and electrum equivalent to 5d10 x 20 gold pieces in value. It has no means of attack in the normal sense, but should it be cut or struck with any non-magical weapons or items it will explode in a cloud of acid. This will inflict 3-30 points of damage to anyone within 10' and completely dissolve the stalk's contents.
Description: Liar's Caps resemble large mushrooms whose stalks are tentacle-like tendrils that are dark grey on the outside and yellow-orange on the inside. Numerous small claw-like objects are situated at the tip of each tendril and these exert a powerful grip. The cap itself is also a dark grey but with a slight golden or silvery tint. When moving they appear quite ungainly but in flight these creatures are much more agile and move with a spinning, undulating motion.