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December 9, 2005, 1:41 am

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They are the result of the magical merging between a goblin and a bull shark. Zabans are a classic example of a wizard’s tinkering with life gone horribly wrong; a warning to those who would meddle with life.

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Zabans are a classic example of a wizard\‘s tinkering with life gone horribly wrong,a warning to those who would meddle with life. A century ago,the wizard Hlatar of Astaroph was given the task of creating an elite army of aquatic beings for the amphibious assault by the king of the island city state he lived in. These warriors when created,would be sent against a rival located on the mainland. Though armed with a powerful fleet to guard its coast against such assaults,the admirals of that nation would be helpless against forces that would simply swim across the strait separating them from their arch foes on the island city state. And so it was that the ambitious but foolish king ordered his court wizard,the equally ambitious and foolish Hlatar to design troops that could breathe both out of water and in it.
To Hlatar the answer was obvious. Cross the ocean’s most dangerous predator with one of the most cunning foes known to humanity. Thus it was that in a giant tank in his lab, the Zaban were born. The result of the magical merging between a orc and a bull shark, these creatures were vicious and deadly. Sufficient numbers were created and they were moved to a pen built along the coast of a rocky isle,where they were to await their training. But before this could happen,disaster struck. A massive storm hit the island and the creatures escaped into the wide ocean. 
  The Zaban are truly the stuff of nightmares. Measuring ten feet from head to tail,these beings have a shark’s ugly head and scythed tail but the straggly mane and powerful arms and legs of an orc,albeit limbs that are streamlined and equipped with webbing between their respective appendages for easier movement through water. Armed with both lungs and gills,they can move at will out of the water. And they are drawn to a single drop of blood. Many fishermen and swimmers have been devoured by these bestial things and many a costal villages has found itself having to fend off a small group of Zaben. To make matters worse,the Zaben can survive in rivers as easily as it can in the ocean,thanks to it\‘s bull shark heritage. Zaben will kill and eat anything smaller then them that they find,including each other. A younger Zaben that happens to run into a ravenous adult,would be advised to make a quick escape,lest it end up in the belly of its elder. The only time you can find them congregating in large numbers is during a feeding frenzy,when all of them are too busy filling their bellies with shipwrecked sailors or the inhabitants of a fishing village. Even then,wounded Zaben end up becoming part of the meal.

But there are times when the Zaben break from this pattern to surprise their quarries. When attacking a well defended fishing village,the Zaben bring their blood lust under control and actually work together to take down any warriors or fighters guarding the village,sometimes even wielding primitive weapons made of the bones of their victims. Sadly,this spirit of intelligent cooperation lasts only as long as it takes to dispatch the guardians. After that the usual feeding frenzy takes place. A race with the potential to become sentient, is held back by its shark heritage.

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Comments ( 3 )
Commenters gain extra XP from Author votes.

Voted MoonHunter
November 6, 2005, 0:59
One Paw
Voted Zylithan
November 17, 2005, 1:00
I think the back story adds a lot to this post. The actual creatures remind me vaguely of Sahaugin.
Voted valadaar
January 20, 2014, 11:42
A good, generic nautical enemy. Easily could be adapted into a minion race for an appropriate villain.

Random Idea Seed View All Idea Seeds

       By: tinypoisonousfish

Bag on a Stick

Very simple gag but a great one, since it can be used multiple times over, even in the same adventure. Great for tribal natives gone restless and humanoids, but anyone can have set this up. Just what the header says, a simple bag over a stick stuck in the ground or floor.

As GM you can place the bag on a stick anywhere, in a floor crack the heroes have passed before, outdoors in a clearing or path, or at the edge of the PCs' encampment the following morning, what have you. Place anything on the stick - a coiled yellow viper angered by the bag removal, mini crossbow w/poison, transdermal hallucinatory drug dusted on the bag, yellow mold colony, an NPC ally's head, a weapon, scroll tube or satchel, what have you.

The idea is to build tension and/or stall for time/distract the party. Provided it's used properly, you'll be amazed at how paranoid players will get from this simple gag.

Ideas  ( Items ) | December 31, 2009 | View | UpVote 5xp

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