||17 or 15 (see below)
|No. of Attacks:
||2-8 (2d4)/2-8 (2d4)
||M (7' long)
The cave fisher is a large insectoid that has adapted to life below ground. It
combines many of the characteristics of a spider and a lobster.
The cave fisher has a hard, chitinous shell of overlapping plates and eight
legs. The 6 rear legs are used for movement and traction on stony walls and
corridors. Because of these limbs, the fisher has no difficulty in moving up and
down vertical walls. The front pair of legs are equipped with powerful pincers,
which are used for killing and dismembering prey. The most unusual feature of the
cave fisher is its long snout, which can fire a strong, adhesive filament. The
monster can also use its adhesive to anchor itself in place on walls and
The cave fisher has two ways of hunting. Its preferred method is to string its
long filament in the vicinity of its lair. The filaments are thin and strong,
making them exceedingly difficult to detect or cut. There is only a 20% chance
of noticing the strand at 10', and no chance at all of seeing them at a greater
distance. A detect snares and pits
spell will reveal a strand. The filament is coated with an adhesive which can
only be dissolved by liquids with a high alcohol content (such as the cave
fisher's blood). The filaments can only be cut by +1 or better edged weapons.
The fisher's favorite food are small, flying creatures like bats. Ever
opportunistic, they are constantly trying to vary their diet by trapping a careless
adventurer, foolish goblin, or orc (provided that they think that they can get
away with it). If more than one fisher inhabits a lair, they will frequently pool
their resources to catch larger prey. Once the victim is trapped in the
filament, the cave fisher draws its prey in, reeling its filament in like a fishing
Should a tempting target escape the monster's neatly laid traps, the cave
fisher will try another mode of attack. It will spend one round drawing its
filament in and then shoot it at the prey, striking as a 6 Hit Die monster. It will
try to snare its prey in this manner so long as it remains within the fisher's
established territory. If the prey is hit by the filament, the monster can pull a
weight of up to 400 pounds at a movement rate of 15' per round. In the event
that a “tug of war” breaks out, the fisher has a strength of 18/00 with its
Cave fishers prefer living on ledges and caves located above well-traveled
paths, sharing their lairs with others of their kind. No more than four cave
fishers will be found in one lair. Their filaments are always strung before their
lair, and they attempt to kill anything they trap, often storing food for future
Their territories are very small, and never larger than about 300 feet to
either side of the lair. Anything man-sized or smaller is considered fair game by
the cave fisher and halflings are thought to be tasty treats. A single cave
fisher would never attack a large, well armed party for the sake of a single meal.
Still, they are cunning, and a group of the monsters might reel in their
filaments and attempt an ambush if they thought they could get away with it. If
hunting in one area becomes scarce, the cave fisher will simply find a new area to
hunt, where the small game is more plentiful and careless.
Like all predators, the cave fisher is interested in survival. This means a
steady supply of food and a mate. Females lay eggs in the vicinity of the lair,
which they protect from predators. The young scatter when the eggs hatch,
seeking lairs of their own.
Although the cave fisher does not collect treasure, its lair is often strewn
with the possessions of its former victims.
The cave fisher preys primarily on small flying game, and in the subterranean
world this frequently means a diet of bats. It is not the top predator in its
ecological niche, and has learned caution in dealing with other monsters. The
cave fisher is sufficiently intelligent to know the dangers of preying on large,
well-organized groups, who might grow tired of its depredations and hunt it to
extinction. The monster instinctively picks the easiest route for survival, and
relies on stealth and cunning to trap its prey and avoid being eaten itself.
The filaments of the cave fisher are highly prized by many thieves' guilds,
for they can be made into thin and very strong rope which is nearly invisible.
The filaments are wound onto reels and then specially treated to dilute the
adhesive. The resulting strands are made into ropes, while the diluted adhesive is
turned into a special solution, which when applied to gloves and boots, greatly
increases traction for climbing.