Alternate Traits and Actions
The following changes allow GMs to alter a flame-scourged scion without modifying its challenge rating.
Blight Burst (Recharge 6). The flame-scourged scion showers the area around itself with the ooze leaking from its skin. Each creature within 10 feet of the flame-scourged scion must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw, taking 27 (6d8) necrotic damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one. Plant creatures make this saving throw with disadvantage, and nonmagical plants that aren’t creatures wither and die without a saving throw.
The flame-scourged scion loses its Embers action.
Fiery Rage. When a flame-scourged scion takes fire damage, it inflicts an additional 1d6 fire damage with its melee weapon attacks. If it takes more than 5 fire damage, it instead inflicts an additional 1d10 fire damage. The flame-scourged scion gains this extra damage until the end of its next turn.
The flame-scourged scion loses its Burning Rage trait.
Kick. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 14 (3d6 + 4) bludgeoning damage. The target must succeed on a DC 16 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.
A flame-scourged scion with a kick attack makes two tentacle attacks and one kick attack when taking the Multiattack action.
Variant: Frostbitten Scion
A frostbitten scion has similar origins to a flame-scourged scion, except those who destroyed its grove used powerful cold magic. It gains resistance to cold, loses resistance to fire, loses its Burning Rage and Firesight traits, loses its Embers action, and gains the following traits and action:
Frosty Vengeance. When a frostbitten scion takes cold damage, it has advantage on its attack rolls until the end of its next turn. If it takes more than 5 cold damage, it has advantage on its attack rolls for 2 rounds.
Stinging Ice (Recharge 6). The frostbitten scion fills the area with a cloud of ice shards. Each creature within 10 feet of the frostbitten scion must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw, taking 14 (4d6) cold damage and 14 (4d6) piercing damage on a failed save or half as much damage on a successful one. The ice melts within moments.
Wintersight. A frostbitten scion can see through areas obscured by ice, snow, and fog without penalty.
New Magic Items and Spells
The following magic items and spell are inspired by abilities possessed by a flame-scourged scion.
Goggles of Firesight
Wondrous item, uncommon (requires attunement)
The lenses of these combination fleshy and plantlike goggles extend a few inches away from the goggles on a pair of tentacles. While wearing these lenses, you can see through areas obscured by fire, smoke, and fog without penalty.
As a reaction when you are the target of an effect that blinds you, you can force the goggles to intercept the effect, giving you immunity to it. If you do so, you cannot use any of the goggle’s functions until the next dawn.
Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)
This stiff, vaguely uncomfortable coat covers your torso. It smells like ash and oozes a sap-like substance. While wearing this coat, you are resistant to slashing damage from nonmagical attacks.
At dawn, you can choose one of the following damage types: acid, cold, fire, lightning, or thunder. If you take damage matching the chosen type, you have advantage on your attack rolls until the end of your next turn. If you take more than 10 damage matching the chosen type, you have advantage on your attack rolls for 2 rounds.
As a reaction when you are the target of an effect that inflicts damage of the chosen type, you can gain resistance to that damage. The coat grants you advantage on your attack rolls as above and then becomes nonfunctional until the next dawn.
2nd-level evocation (druid, sorcerer, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Self (10-foot radius)
Components: V, M (charred bark from a flame-scourged scion)
You create a momentary cloud of embers that engulf all creatures within 10 feet of you before disappearing. Each creature you choose within 10 feet of you must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or take 4d6 fire damage and become blinded for 1 round. A creature that succeeds on its saving throw takes half as much damage and isn’t blinded.
At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 3rd level or higher, the damage increases by 1d6 for each slot level above 3rd. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 5th level or higher, the blinded duration increases to 1 minute, and when you cast this spell using a spell slot of 8th level or higher, the blinded duration increases to 1 hour.
Flame-Scourged Scion Adventure Hooks
- Once per week, another cow from one rancher’s herd goes missing. He claims he’d seen a strange tree looming at the edge of his ranch just as the sun set before one of his cows disappeared. Though he hasn’t got the physical might to take on the flame-scourged scion preying on his cattle, and no one believes him, he offers a large sum to travelers who might take on his plight.
- A coterie of flame-scourged scions has infiltrated a deep-forest’s glade situated on a ley line. They intend to restore their dark goddess to her former might, but they require humanoid cultists as well as humanoid sacrifices to enact the necessary ritual. Fortunately for the flame-scourged scions, a schism among a nature deity’s followers has befallen a nearby village, allowing the creatures to lure potential acolytes to their glade. The nature deity’s remaining followers implore adventurers to locate their wayward cohort.
If you have any requests for monsters from the Creature Codex for future installments, please let me know in the comments or elsewhere in the Kobold warrens, and I’ll make sure to add them to the queue.
The Expanding Codex series fleshes out monsters from the Creature Codex, giving GMs ways to modify the existing monsters to surprise well-prepared players or to introduce monsters to a campaign.