Goll CR 4
This muscled figure has long barbed tentacles in place or arms, with a head like an insect’s with fanged mandibles.
DEFENSE HP 50 RP 1
EAC 16; KAC 18
Fort +6; Ref +6; Will +3
Defensive Abilities fast healing 3/cold
Speed 30 ft., climb 30 ft.
Melee tentacle lash +12 (1d6+9 Bl & P)
Ranged rubble projectiles +9 (1d4+2 Bl, range 30 ft.)
Offensive Abilities stretching tentacles, tangling limbs
Stretching Tentacles (Ex)
The muscular tentacles of a goll are deceptively compact, capable of extending out to greater lengths without sacrificing strength. For purposes of attack rolls and the grapple, disarm, trip, and sunder combat maneuvers, a goll has a reach of ten feet with no penalty. By spending one resolve point as a swift action, it can extend this reach to 15 feet for one minute.
Tangling Limbs (Ex)
A goll is particularly adept at using its tentacles to seize and incapacitate prey. A goll can grapple two creatures at once, can maintain a grapple as a free action, and does not gain the grappled condition unless it is grappling two creatures. Additionally, the barbs of a goll’s tentacles make it difficult for creatures to wriggle free and any failed attempt to break a goll’s grapple inflicts 2d4 slashing damage to the creature being grappled.
Environment swamps, jungles
Organization single, hoot (2-7)
Goll are natives to a warm jungle world, originating from a vast swath of marshy jungles on one of the southern continents. They originally evolved from a species of tentacled eel-like creatures that took to climbing trees to escape predators. Over millennia, these creatures adapted into primarily tree-bound chimp-like creatures, avoiding aquatic predators by climbing upward and avoiding airborne predators by retreating into the waters of the swamp. While several species of these creatures remain today, the goll are a genus that further evolved to be bigger and stronger than what hunted them, eventually becoming fully land-bound predators.
A goll stands between seven and ten feet tall on average, with healthy specimens weighing between 300 and 400 pounds. Their hides are typically a greenish-grey or pale brown in color, though their pigmentation has a tendency to subtly shift to match surrounding colors and shadows. Studies have determined this to be a vestigial mechanism from their prey ancestors, and while it’s not drastic enough to do more than tint their skin or precise enough to even attempt complex patterns, it goes a way to making them stealthier than creatures of their size tend to be. A goll’s head has a superficial resemblance to some form of jawed insect, with wide eyes and a mandibular mouth. However, rather than compound eyes, a goll has bulging eyes more akin to those of a fish and its mandibles sports fangs for tearing into flesh. A goll’s feet end in clawed feet to aid in climbing, and rather than arms a goll sports two bunches of tentacles. Males have six tentacles on each side, while females have eight. This lack of skeletal limbs results in a rather unique design to the skeletal and muscular structure or their torsos, which form a complex net of powerful muscles linked to jutting bone pegs, granting them incredible strength. This also leads to a peculiar shambling walk, as a goll must use its long tentacles to help it walk, typically by draping them to the ground for use as extra legs or by clinging to nearby trees for support.
Goll traditionally live solitary lives, coming together only to mate. During mating season, males develop a webbing between two of their tentacles on each side. This webbing shows a bring array of colors and patterns, attempting to entice a mate. After copulation, the female takes the fertilized eggs and entwine four of her tentacles to hold them against her stomach. The tentacles then secrete a mucus, fusing together into a protective pouch for several months while the eggs incubate. However, as the goll take their first steps to a stone age society, this practice has become far less common. As goll now gather in larger social groups for protection and aid in food gathering, a practice of designating an egg holder has arisen. Rather than each female carrying her eggs, a few of them will develop multiple egg pouches to hold the eggs of the entire group. Each clutch of eggs is held in a separate pouch in order to keep track of which are related and the biological parents instead serve as caretakers for the egg holder, bringing her food and protecting her as she is unable to do so on her own. Under this system, the egg holders are viewed as the only true parents, raising the various clutches of eggs as familial pods with the biological parents serving only to support the whole without even knowing which young are theirs.
Due to this development in their family structures, goll society revolves around the egg holders as leaders and teachers. An egg holder is free to bring up her clutches as she sees fit, creating large social subgroups that may compete with one another for influence. Egg holders maintain their power through alliances with breeders, as more eggs bestowed to her means more loyal goll in the future. As a side effect, though goll may conflict with one another it is unheard of to actually kill an egg holder, as doing so would be seen as sterilizing the population. Technically nothing would stop goll from simply raising their own eggs, but their society now views such things as taboo, with egg holders outright forbidden from reproducing themselves.
The goll worship numerous gods, which they split into the pantheons of the Sky, the Trees, and the Water. They believe that these gods are constantly at odds but maintain a delicate balance, as the destruction of any one would cause the others to sour. Their religious rites are centered around maintaining this balance, such as ritually dunking their heads in the water and exhaling to return air to the water, or burning certain trees to give them to the sky. More threateningly, they view alien visitors as agents of the sky who seek to threaten the balance, ritually drowning them or impaling them on tree branches to thwart the divine agents. However, they only do this when they know their visitors are from the sky, such as seeing their ship landing or speaking with them and being told that the aliens are from the stars. Those who know of the goll’s culture will recognize the trick questions that ask about their origins and can avoid declaring themselves as coming from one pantheon’s realm or another, as the goll will not risk killing them without knowing the right way to do so in accordance with the godly balance.