Ghostly pooka

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Ghostly pooka
Ghostly Pooka Colored.jpg
Level 33
Family Horse family creatures
Body Type Quadruped
Classification(s) Non-corporeal undead
Area(s) Found Shadow Valley
BCS Yes
HP 260
Speed  ?
Attack Attributes
Physical Attacks
Bite +237 AS
Warding Attacks
Slow (504) +177 CS
Offensive Spells & Abilities
Depression
Defense Attributes
Melee +125 to +275 DS
Ranged <N/A> DS
Bolt <N/A> DS
Bard Base +105 to +111 TD
Ranger Base <N/A> TD
Sorcerer Base +110 to +128 TD
Wizard Base <N/A> TD
Cleric Base +103 to +118TD
Empath Base <N/A> TD
Paladin Base <N/A> TD
Major Elemental +128 TD
Minor Elemental +128 TD
Major Spiritual <N/A> TD
Minor Spiritual <N/A> TD
Major Mental <N/A> TD
Minor Mental <N/A> TD
Defensive Spells & Abilities
Spirit Warding I (101)
Spirit Shield (202)
Treasure Attributes
Coins No
Gems Yes
Magic Items No
Boxes Yes
Skin None
Other Alchemy (common)

The most stunning thing about the appearance of a ghostly pooka is the odd illusion surrounding this pitiful equine which seems to absorb all the color from everything around it. The ghostly horse appears to be weighed down by some heavy chains which cover its entire body. The sight of its obvious torment tears at the souls of all who lay eyes upon it.

Hunting strategies

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Other information

Ghostly pookas have a depression maneuver that affects those who use defensive stances in their presence. This maneuver is also level based. Offensive stances will help avoid this maneuver. This maneuver can be prevented with the use of Corrupt Essence (703).

Two examples of a ghostly pooka's depression ability:

A ghostly pooka stares straight into your eyes.
A wave of sadness washes over you as you stare at a ghostly pooka.
You are stunned for 2 rounds!
A ghostly pooka stares straight into your eyes.
The sight of a ghostly pooka touches you somewhere deep in your soul.  Your arms and legs feel leaden and your eyes begin to well up with tears.

Behind the Scenes

Pookas are shape shifters who in Rolemaster usually take the form of smaller animals and are not undead. However, the trickster pookas of Celtic folklore are sometimes represented as black horses covered in heavy chains, which is where their premise originates for Shadow Valley. Pookas and knockers (the spectral miners) originated in fairy mythology, which is a connecting theme to related areas such as Castle Anwyn. Their Slow (504) warding attack works by making the air more viscous, which is related to the strange dark mist of the valley. The valley also has a subtle theme of temporal distortions. Their sorrowful state is likely tied thematically to other allusions to "The Fall of the House of Usher" by Edgar Allan Poe. The shape shifting is relevant because of the heavy basis on "The Mound" by H.P. Lovecraft, which had a telepathic race of phasers who synthetically morphed life-forms as they wished. These would be in fantastic shapes for their own amusement, or as beasts of burden out of conquered races.

The color draining illusion in their creature description (and the skeletons by the well near the old shrine) comes from "The Colour Out of Space", where the ground-water is contaminated by an alien life form, which causes everything to glow but eventually become grey and disintegrate into a powder. This story features stampeding and dead horses, explains the mist color variations, and has "the colour" on an anvil like the Glaes Caverns.

This unnatural mist of the valley has a basis in multiple stories, but also appears once in "The Colour Out of Space": "He could not but wonder at his gleaning of the same impression from a vapour glimpsed in the daytime, against a window opening on the morning sky, and from a nocturnal exhalation seen as a phosphorescent mist against the black and blasted landscape. It wasn’t right—it was against Nature—and he thought of those terrible last words of his stricken friend, 'It come from some place whar things ain’t as they is here . . . one o’ them professors said so. . . .'"

References

Near-level creatures - edit
Level 31 Level 32 Level 33


Level 34 Level 35
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