||Tropical/Swamps and jungles
||Very to high (11-14)
||9, leap 15
|No. of Attacks:
||-3 penalty to opponents' surprise
||S (2½' tall)
||Tribe mother: 270
Grippli resemble small, intelligent, humanoid tree frogs. They are have a
primitive culture and are nonaggressive.
They stand 2½ feet tall and weigh 25 to 30 pounds. Their bodies are shaped
like those of frogs, except for the human-like hands and hand-like feet. Their
eyes are yellow with vertical slit pupils. Their skin is gray-green with
camouflage stripes and swirling patterns. Although their skin looks wet and shiny, it is
actually dry to the touch. Grippli smell of old, wet vegetation.
They love bright colors and eagerly acquire any such items. They wear clothing
only for decoration or for a particular functional purpose, such as for
pockets. A normal encounter with grippli outside of the village finds them wearing
only thin belts or loin cloths to hold weapons or acquired items.
They speak a language of croaks, groans, clicks, and squeaks. In a tribe there
is usually at least one member that can speak either common, elvish, or some
other jungle humanoids' language. When speaking any language but their own, they
are barely understandable because of the croaking resonances in their speech.
Because of the grippli's coloring, opponents suffer a -3 penalty to their
surprise rolls. Grippli defend themselves with snares, nets, poisoned darts, and
the occasional sword or dagger. Any metal weapons must be manufactured elsewhere
for the grippli, so swords are rare. They can adapt to use any weapons, and
they have been known to use spears and blowguns on rare occasions. They never wear
armor. Generally speaking the grippli prefer small weapons that don't get in
the way of climbing.
A grippli can climb trees or non-sheer rock at its normal movement rate,
thanks to its unusual hands and feet. When keeping still among vegetation, a
grippli's natural camouflage causes a -3 penalty to its opponents' surprise rolls.
They have infravision good up to 10 yards, which means they can operate at night
almost as well as during the day.
They are very capable of formulating strategies and tactics to overcome a
larger, more powerful force. Grippli prefer ambushes and traps to most other
strategies. By trapping their opponents in snares and nets, they can hurl darts at
them safely from high in the trees. If unprovoked, they attack only to steal
various brightly colored baubles.
A grippli tribal village is made of small huts of wood and mud built on the
ground, in the deep shadows of large trees. On rare occasions, a grippli village
is found in the strong limbs of the trees. Each village is led by a tribe
mother (AC 7, HD 3, 1d6+1 points of damage with a weapon). Once per day the tribe
mother can emit a musk cloud, which is treated as a stinking cloud
spell. She looks like any other grippli, except for being almost four feet
tall. She has 1d3 mates of larger than normal size (AC 8, HD 2, 1d4+1 points of
damage with poisoned weapons), standing three to three-and-a-half feet tall. The
tribe mother is supposed to have a touch of the blood of their god in her.
A typical village has 5d6 males capable of defending it. There are an equal
number of noncombatant females and 1d6 offspring, also noncombatants. They have
basic family units, just like humans, and each family has its own hut. The tribe
mother's hut doubles as a temple to their small, frog-like deity. Other
deities in the pantheon include evil snake gods and spider goddesses.
Their natural high intelligence enables them to learn new devices and weapons
quickly and easily. As a race they have no desire to manufacture such items
themselves. However, they will trade for them with other races. Trade items
usually include rare fruits or other hard-to-get jungle specimens. They are extremely
cautious and only develop trade relations with groups that they trust
completely, such as good elves or the rare village of good humans in their area.
Grippli eat fruit and insects. They trap small insects in large quantities and
hunt the giant varieties like humans hunt stags. They are in turn hunted by
most large, ground- and tree-based predators. Giant snakes and spiders in
particular are fond of grippli as meals.
Grippli are rare in the world, mostly because of their low birthrate. They
live to be 700 years old, but give birth to only six or so young in that time.
Because of this, the grippli defend their young ferociously.