Tome Unbound: Tetomatli

Tome Unbound: Tetomatli

Alternate Traits and Actions

The following changes allow GMs to alter a tetomatli without modifying its challenge rating.

Immolating Strike (Recharge 5–6). If the tetomatli hits a target with its Head Slam, it can immolate that target as a bonus action. The target must make a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw. On a failure, the target takes 10 (3d6) acid damage and 10 (3d6) fire damage, plus the target catches on fire, taking 3 (1d6) fire damage at the start of each of the target’s turns. On a success, the target takes half the damage and does not catch on fire. A creature can use an action to extinguish a fire on itself or on another creature within 5 feet.

The tetomatli loses its Magic Weapons trait.

Jackhammer (Recharge 6). The tetomatli repeatedly slams its head into a target within 5 feet of it. The target must make a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw. On a failure, the creature takes 49 (9d10) bludgeoning damage, is stunned for 1 minute, and is knocked prone. On a success, the creature takes half the damage, is incapacitated for 1 round, and isn’t knocked prone. A stunned creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the stunned condition on itself on a success.

If the creature fails the initial saving throw by 5 or more and is wearing metal armor, the creature must succeed on a DC 15 Strength saving throw, or its armor is destroyed. A creature wearing magical armor has advantage on this saving throw. A creature wearing adamantine armor is unaffected.

The tetomatli loses its Tremor action. Also, its Diving Head Slam trait is modified to allow it to use Jackhammer as a bonus action, if it is available. Alternatively, it retains its Tremor action, and both actions instead recharge after a short or long rest.

Knockdown Wing Buffet. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit reach 5 ft., one target. Hit 7 (1d4 + 5) bludgeoning damage, and the target must succeed on a DC 15 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

The tetomatli loses its Wing Buffet attack, and the Knockdown Wing Buffet attack replaces it in the Multiattack action.

New Magic Items and Spells

The following magic items and spells are inspired by the tetomatli.

Buffeting Wings

2nd-level transmutation (druid, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Touch
Components: V, S, M (a tetomatli wing membrane)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

You touch a willing creature. The target grows a pair of heavy wings that do not grant the target flight. If the target has wings that provide flight, its flying speed is reduced by 10 feet for the duration. As a bonus action, the target can make an unarmed strike with the wings that deals 2d6 bludgeoning damage. The target is proficient with this unarmed strike.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 3rd level or higher, you can target one additional creature for each slot level above 2nd. The damage increases by 1d6 for every two slot levels above 2nd.

Leaden Wings

1st-level transmutation (druid, ranger, sorcerer, wizard)
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 60 feet
Components: V, S, M (a tetomatli wing claw)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

Choose a flying creature that you can see within range. The target must succeed on a Constitution saving throw, or its flying speed is reduced to 30 feet. Additionally, the target must end its movement on a solid surface. If it is flying at the end of its turn, it falls to the ground and takes falling damage.

At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 2nd level or higher, you can target one additional creature for each slot level above 1st. The creatures must be within 30 feet of each other when you target them.

Tremor Boots

Wondrous item, uncommon (requires attunement)

These stone-toe boots incorporate pieces from a tetomatli’s head. While you wear the boots, you have advantage on saving throws against spells and effects that would knock you prone. The boots have 3 charges. You can expend 1 charge as an action, while wearing them and standing on solid ground, to stomp your feet repeatedly. Each creature within 20 feet of you must succeed on a DC 15 Dexterity check or be knocked prone and have disadvantage on attack rolls and Dexterity checks until the end of your next turn.

The boots regain 1d3 expended charges daily at dawn.

Wings of Battering

Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)

While wearing this cloak fashioned from a tetomatli’s batlike wings, you can use an action to speak its command word. The cloak extends into a full set of tetomatli wings and attaches to your back for 10 minutes or until you repeat the command word as an action. The wings give you a flying speed of 30 feet, but you must start and end your movement on a solid surface. If you are flying at the end of your turn, you fall to the ground and take falling damage.

While the wings are active, you can make an unarmed attack with them. You gain a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with these magic weapons. On a hit, you deal 2d6 bludgeoning damage. This damage is doubled if you hit an object or structure.

Once you use the wings, their magic ceases to function until you finish a long rest.

Tetomatli Adventure Hooks

  • A demon cult terrorizing a region fell into infighting, which caused their temple complex to cave in on itself. Though all the humanoid cultists perished, the tetomatli guardian didn’t, and it prevents any meaningful exploration.
  • A powerful wizard desires the secrets to creating a tetomatli and promises considerable wealth to a group that can obtain these secrets. The wizard shares as little as possible about the tetomatli’s origins and tries to present it as a benign guardian. If the wizard learns how to create a tetomatli, the creature becomes functional a month later.

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The Tome Unbound series fleshes out monsters from Tome of Beasts 2, giving GMs ways to modify the existing monsters to surprise well-prepared players or to introduce monsters to a campaign.

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