Tactic Table: Ghouls

Ghouls have descended on the party! Their bodies reek of rot and corruption. Claws rake an adventurer’s flesh — paralysis! A victim falls prone, frozen but conscious.

What do the ghouls do next? Roll on the following table!

* * * * *

Roll 1d6 the first time any member of a group of ghouls paralyzes a party member. Apply an impromptu penalty if the ghouls feel outmatched, or a bonus if the ghouls feel they outmatch the party.

Less than 1: The ghouls flee for safety, hoping the other adventurers will tend to their paralyzed comrades instead of pursuing.
1: The ghouls flee in hopes of luring the party after them (possibly into a trap), then double back to seize the paralyzed adventurers.
2: The ghouls tear out the throats of paralyzed adventurers to ensure that they stay down. This coup de grace takes one round.
3-4: Whenever an adventurer is paralyzed, a ghoul will pick up the adventurer on the next round and carry him or her off to the lair.
5-6: The ghouls ignore the paralyzed adventurers, leaving them alone until the battle is over so they can feed on their still-living bodies at leisure.
More than 6: Any ghouls not engaged in melee spend the rest of the combat glutting themselves on the flesh and blood of paralyzed adventurers, stopping only if attacked.

11 Responses to “Tactic Table: Ghouls”

  1. 1 bat
    June 16, 2010 at 6:25 pm

    Excellent table! I love throwing ghouls at players, these are just creepy enough monsters. Here is one more reason to use them!

  2. June 16, 2010 at 9:12 pm

    Nice! I like the way you provide entries for less than 1 and more than 6 – that really anchors the more-likely results.

  3. 3 Invincible Overlord
    June 16, 2010 at 9:33 pm

    Nice how the more extreme results could be better for the party. This is one of the fine contributions that make this OSR go. I’d be happy to see more typical reaction tables appended to common monster descriptions — though of course this table will do for a carrion crawler also until The Compleat Crawler is released.

  4. 4 Greengoat
    June 16, 2010 at 9:35 pm

    There should be a roll modifier depending on if the paralyzed slob is an NPC or PC. Then you could really start putting red shirts on the torch-bearers and hirelings and put the fear in the PCS as they see their cohort torn apart Dawn-of-the-dead style. Hooray for undead.

  5. 5 Naked.
    June 17, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    As a previous and current adventurer with copious experience battling ghouls and ghoul-hybrids, here is my draft suggestion for a better ghoul rxn table:

    Less than 1 to 4: Ghouls in a fit of earthly panick and doom slit their own throats, trace in the dust with their own blood the speediest route to the nearest dungeon treasure.

    5-6: Gibbering with their elongated tongues and hideously deformed larynxes, the monsters cease their operations and insist on bondage to the party and use as decoys/hireling dread beasts until such time as they are destroyed.

    Over 6: The ghouls, somehow, fight on. But wearing gloves and caps on their teeth/novelty rubber lips in an attempt to ‘subdue’ the party members instead of actually paralyzing them.

  6. June 18, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    Last night’s guest DM attacked us with ghouls, and he rolled a 2 on the table: tear out the throats of the victims! Fortunately, a fumble left our first paralyzed party member covered with holy water, while the last of the ghouls died before they could tear out the second paralyzed PC’s throat. Whew!

  7. 7 Naked.
    June 18, 2010 at 6:30 pm

    New character special ability: sweat holy water.

  8. June 24, 2010 at 5:32 pm

    Can I put this table on my tables website (www.apolitical.info/webgame/tables)?

    If so I’ll credit you and link to this entry.

  9. July 2, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    Thanks! I’ve added it.

  10. 11 Dyson Logos
    March 2, 2011 at 12:05 am

    Great table. GREAT.

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Past Adventures of the Mule

June 2010

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