Monday, August 7, 2017

A Huge, Slimy Leprous Gray Mass: The Giant Slug

The giant slug is a classic monster that goes all the way back to the original Greyhawk supplement (1974), and was included in the AD&D Monster Manual (1977).

The origin of the slug can be traced directly to L. Sprague de Camp, who expanded a Robert E. Howard fragment into the Conan short story “The Hall of the Dead,” which appeared in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, February 1967 issue. The slug in de Camp’s story is a dead ringer for the D&D version, complete with the acid spit.

The slug made it into the 2nd Edition Monstrous Compendium Volume Two (1989), but does not appear to have made the leap to 3e or beyond. Fortuantely Necromancer Games salvaged the slug in their indispensable Tome of Horrors (2002), giving us a nice OGL base to work with.

And Otherworld Miniatures makes not one, but two giant slug miniatures in resin. As with all Otherworld stuff, these cleave pretty closely to the old AD&D illustrations. I painted the one shown to the right, which is a really nice sculpt. I based my color scheme on Duke of the Blood Keep, who did an amazing speckling design on the slug’s hood that far exceeds my skill or patience.

The following text is Open Game Content.

Slug, Giant

Though many times larger, this creature appears to be an enormous grayish slug. A large slime trail marks the ground as it moves.

Scavengers and Predators. Giant slugs are found in moist or wet environments such as swamps, marshes, rain forests, and dungeons. They feed on both plants and animals.

Nocturnal Creatures. Giant slugs spend the daylight hours away from the heat of the sun. On extremely hot days, giant slugs bury themselves in debris where they secrete a thick coating of mucus that covers their entire body and protects them from the heat.

Larger Versions of Normal Slugs. Giant slugs are pale gray in color with a dull white underbelly. They have a single pair of long, thin tentacles or antennae. The giant slug uses them to sense brightness, heat, and to smell.

A typical giant slug is 20 feet long but can grow to twice that length.


Giant Slug CL 13 (2,300 XP)

These tremendously large masses of slimy, rubbery flesh are completely immune to blunt weapons. In addition to their powerful bite, giant slugs can spit their acidic saliva at one target at a time. The base range for spitting is 60 feet, and within this range the slug’s spittle will be 50% likely to hit (no other to-hit roll required). For every additional 10 feet of range, the chance to hit decreases by 10%. On its first spitting attack, the slug only has a 10% chance to hit within 60 feet, and no chance of hitting beyond that range.

HD 12; AC 8 [11]; Atk bite (1d12) or acid; Move 6; Save 3; AL N; Special: spit acid (6d6)


Giant Slug CR 8

Always N Huge vermin

Init +0; Senses blindsight 60 ft.; Listen +0, Spot +0


AC 16, touch 8, flat-footed 16
(+8 natural, -2 size)

hp 102 (12d8+48 HD); DR 10/slashing or piercing

Fort +12, Ref +4, Will +4

Defensive Abilities vermin traits; Immune critical hits

Weakness vulnerability to salt


Spd 20 ft., burrow 10 ft.

Melee bite +15 (2d6+8 plus 1d8 acid)

Ranged acid spit +7 (4d8 acid)

Space 15 ft.; Reach 10 ft.

Special Attacks acid, spit acid


During Combat A giant slug begins combat by spitting a line of corrosive saliva at an opponent. It then moves into combat and uses its bite attack.


Str 27, Dex 10, Con 18, Int –, Wis 10, Cha 2

Base Atk +9; Grp +25

SQ rubbery hide, malleable


Environment temperate and warm marshes and underground

Organization solitary

Treasure none

Advancement 13–21 HD (Huge); 22–36 HD (Gargantuan)

Special Abilities

Acid (Ex) A giant slug’s saliva is highly caustic. Any melee hit deals acid damage.

Blindsight (Ex) Giant slugs have no visual organs but can ascertain all foes within 60 feet using sound, scent, and vibration.

Malleable (Ex) A giant slug can squeeze its body through openings it normally could not pass through (up to Medium sized openings).

Rubbery Hide (Ex) A giant slug’s rubbery hide grants it immunity to critical hits.

Spit Acid (Ex) Every 1d4 rounds, a giant slug can spit a line of acid at an opponent within 60 feet (no range increment). A successful ranged touch attack is required to hit. If struck, a target takes 4d8 points of acid damage.

Vulnerability to Salt (Ex) A giant slug is highly susceptible to salt and takes 1d6 points of damage per pound of salt it contacts.


Giant Slug Challenge 7 (2,900 XP)

Unaligned Huge beast

Init +0; Senses blindsight 60 ft., passive Perception 10


Armor Class 15 (natural)

Hit Points 161 (14d12 + 70)

Immune bludgeoning damage


Speed 20 ft., burrow 10 ft.

Bite. +7 melee weapon attack, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 22 (4d8 + 4) piercing damage plus 28 (8d6) acid damage.

Acid Breath (Recharge 5–6). The slug exhales acid in a 30-foot line that is 5 feet wide. Each creature in that line must make a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw, taking 49 (11d8) acid damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.


Str 19 (+4), Dex 10, Con 21 (+5), Int 1 (-5), Wis 10, Cha 2 (-4)


The following text is the property of Wizards of the Coast, Inc. and is Copyright 2000 Wizards of the Coast, Inc (“Wizards”). All Rights Reserved.

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