Welcome to Creature Feature Starjammer! Today we present the Messenger of Gehenna, the ultimate result of an unpurged messenger pollen infection.
Messenger of Gehenna CR 20
The dark yellow cloud blots out the horizon, consuming everything within reach.
Speed 5 ft., fly 120 ft. (good), minimal starflight
Melee swarm (8d10 bludgeoning and 8d10 acid)
Space 200 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks weather control
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 20th; concentration +25)
Str 1, Dex 18, Con 23, Int 3, Wis 19, Cha 21
Base Atk +34; CMB +37 (+41 overrun); CMD 42 (44 vs overrun)
Feats Agile Maneuvers, Dodge, Greater Overrun, Improved Initiative, Improved Iron Will, Improved Lightning Reflexes, Improved Overrun, Iron Will, Lightning Reflexes, Mobility, Power Attack, Skill Focus Fly, Skill Focus Perception
Skills Fly +21, Perception +26;
SQ weather control
Weather Control (Sp)
The Gehenna swarm is able to manipulate local weather patterns by flying in specific patterns, effectively casting control weather and other spells through manipulating a planet’s atmosphere.
The Gehenna swarm is usually surrounded by a hurricane out to a radius of two miles. In the hurricane normal ranged attacks are impossible, and siege and vehicle weapons take a -8 penalty on attack rolls. As it controls the hurricane, the Gehenna swarm does not need to make fly checks to remain aloft or concentration checks to cast control weather or other weather-based spells.
A macroswarm is a collection of Fine, Diminutive or Tiny creatures that acts as a single creature. A macroswarm has the characteristics of a swarm, except as noted here. For the purposes of size categories and how they interact with other creatures, spells, and effects, macroswarms are colossal sized. A single macroswarm occupies a square or cube of at least 60 feet on a side.
Macroswarms are more resistant to high winds, such as those created by a gust of wind spell. For purposes of determining the effects of wind on a macroswarm, treat the swarm as a colossal sized creature.
Environment Void and infected planets
In small amounts, messenger pollen can be easily destroyed and even successfully contained, but if it gathers in a high enough concentration, it becomes considerably deadlier. At a critical mass, the pollen can self-replicate faster than it can be destroyed, starting to grow exponentially. These larger swarms of pollen have become known as the Messengers of Gehenna.
The Messengers scour planets clean in their wake, digesting all available biological material and using it to endlessly self-replicate, moving methodically across the surface of a world until the entire biosphere is consumed and converted.
After reaching enough mass the pollen itself is able to start to manipulate the local weather, shifting it to cause massive storms across the planet. It is theorized that this is largely a defensive reaction, to help keep the Messenger safe from orbital bombardment, but it also helps with digestion, using the hurricane force winds to rip apart cities and forests alike for easier digestion.
The best defense so far against an active Messenger has been the setting of defensive firestorms to try and keep the Messenger at bay. Usually, the Messenger tries to use its hurricane to put out such fires and enable its further passage, but such attempts can be countered by powerful enough spellcasters with storm control methods of their own.
While smaller swarms of messenger pollen have been successfully loaded into missiles and bombs and dropped as biological weapons on planets, nobody yet has been able to successfully harvest a swarm of Gehenna size. The most recent attempt resulted in a rupture of the containment compartments and the entire ship becoming swiftly consumed before the now even stronger swarm sought out nearby stations and ships to consume.
Fortunately, in the void of space, the Messengers lack their usual atmospheric defenses and are much easier for ship weapons to target, so usually the pollen can be largely contained within an infected planet if a quarantine is set up in time. However, if any of the pollen manages to reach the inside of a vessel, it can quickly mean the doom of every living creature on board.