||Carnivore (see below)
||9, Br 3
|No. of Attacks:
||2-8 claws for 2-8 each
||S (3' long)
Despite being only the size of a large badger, the aurumvorax, or "golden
gorger," is an incredibly dangerous creature. The animal is covered with coarse
golden hair and has small silver eyes with golden pupils. It has eight powerful
legs that end in 3-inch-long copper claws. The aurumvorax's shoulders are
massively muscled while its heavy jaw is full of coppery teeth.
The creature weighs over 500 pounds. This incredible density provides the
animal with much of its natural protection. This, combined with its speed, power,
and sheer viciousness, makes it one of the most dangerous species yet known.
The aurumvorax charges any creature that enters its territory, causing a -3 to
opponents' surprise rolls if attacking from its den. A female of the species
receives a +2 bonus to attack rolls when guarding her young.
The creature bites at its prey until it hits, clamping its massive jaws onto
the victim and doing 2-8 hit points of damage. After it hits, the aurumvorax
locks its jaws and hangs on, doing an additional 8 points of damage per round
until either the aurumvorax or its enemy is dead. Only death will cause the
aurumvorax to relax its grip.
Once its jaws lock, the golden gorger also rakes its victim with 2-8 of its
legs, causing 2-8 hit points of damage per additional hit. An opponent who is
held by an aurumvorax receives no dexterity adjustment to Armor Class.
Due to its incredibly dense hide and bones, the aurumvorax takes only half
damage from blunt weapons. It is immune to the effects of small, normal fires and
takes only half damage from magical fires. Neither poison nor gasses have any
effect on the sturdy creature.
The aurumvorax makes its solitary home in light forests, hills, and at the
timberline on mountainsides. An aurumvorax chooses a likely spot and then uses its
powerfully clawed legs to create a burrow, sometimes into solid rock.
Due to their unusual dietary needs, aurumvorae make their lairs in spots that
either contain rich veins of gold ore or are very near to an area where gold is
The aurumvorax is a solitary creature which jealously guards its territory,
even from others of its kind. The only time adult aurumvorae willingly meet is
during mating season, which occurs approximately every eight years.
The pair will stay together for a week or two before the male returns to his
territory and the female prepares for the birth of her kits. A litter of 1d6+2
kits is born four months after mating.
For the first two weeks of life, the kits are blind and hairless. They must be
fed both meat and precious ores, including gold, in order to survive. It is
unusual for more than 1-2 of the strongest kits to survive. If a kit is found and
"adopted" before its eyes are open, it can be tamed and trained.
Dwarves tend to dislike aurumvorae, though some communities have been known to
raise one or more of the beasts for use in sniffing out veins of ore.
In order to survive, the aurumvorax supplements its carnivorous diet with
quantities of gold. The ability to digest and utilize gold and other ores makes it
possible for the creature to develop the dense fur, hide, and bones that
protect it so well.
If an aurumvorax is killed with a minimum of cutting damage to its hide, the
hide may be turned into a garment of incredible strength and beauty worth
15,000-20,000 gold pieces. The garment will also protect its wearer as armor, the
specific Armor Class depending on the size of the aurumvorax. A garment with AC 2
weighs 50 pounds, one with AC 3 weighs 40 pounds, and one with AC 4 weighs 30
The wearer also receives a +4 bonus on saving throws vs. normal fires and a +2
bonus on saving throws vs. magical fire.
If an aurumvorax is burned in a forge, approximately 150-200 pounds of gold
are left behind. This burning process is very difficult and usually takes between
one and two weeks to perform. Of course, the hide may be removed before the
creature is burned; if burned at the same time, the hide will provide an
additional 21-40 (1d20+20) pounds of gold.
The aurumvorax's teeth and claws are also prized for decoration, and can bring
up to 1 gp each on the open market.