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Aboleth Ruler

These huge, bloated monstrosities are the largest and most intelligent of all aboleths. Each rules an aboleth city and is never encountered anywhere else. They possess powerful enslaving mind powers.

Originally Posted by Shade of the En World forums.
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Resembling a primeval fish over forty feet long, this bloated monstrosity has an oversized bulbous head and crescent-shaped tail. Bony ridges protect its three slit-shaped eyes, stacked horizontally on the front of its head. Long tentacles writhe about its body, dripping mucus.

Ruler aboleths, as their name implies, command entire cities of lesser aboleths. These huge, bloated monstrosities are second only to the grand aboleth in intellect and power. A ruler aboleth’s telepathic link with its subjects grants it near-omniscience of the goings-on within its domain.

A ruler aboleth has a pink belly. Four pulsating blue-black orifices line the bottom of its body and secrete gray slime that smells like rancid grease. It uses its tail for propulsion in the water and drags itself along with its tentacles on land. A ruler aboleth is over 40 feet long and weighs several tons.

Aboleths speak their own language, as well as Undercommon and Aquan.

Aboleth, Ruler
Gargantuan aberration (Aquatic)
Hit Dice21d8+168 (262 hp)
Speed10 ft. (2 squares), Swim 60 ft.
Armor Class20 (-4 size, +1 Dexterity, +13 natural), touch 7, flat-footed 19
Base Attack/Grapple+15/+41
AttackTentacle +25 melee (3d8+14 plus slime)
Full Attack4 tentacles +25 melee (3d8+14 plus slime)
Space/Reach20 ft./15 ft.
Special AttacksBite, enslave, frightful presence, psionics, slime, spells
Special QualitiesAmphibious, Darkvision 60 ft., knowledgeable, mucus cloud, telepathy 60 ft., telepathic overmind
SavesFort +15, Ref +8, Will +22
AbilitiesStrength 38, Dexterity 12, Constitution 26, Intelligence 29, Wisdom 27, Charisma 27
SkillsBluff +32, Concentration +32, Diplomacy +36, Disguise +8 (+10 acting), Intimidate +34, Knowledge (any 3) +33, Listen +34, Sense Motive +32, Spellcraft +33, Spot +34
FeatsAbility Focus (enslave), Alertness, Combat Casting, Extend spell, Iron Will, Improved Initiative, Quicken Spell-Like Ability (telekinesis), Spell Stowaway (time stop)
OrganizationSolitary or city (1 plus 3-8 noble aboleths, 7-12 greater aboleths, 35-60 Aboleths or saltwater aboleths and 60-160 skum)
Challenge Rating21
TreasureDouble standard
AlignmentUsually lawful evil
Advancement22-39 HD (Gargantuan)
Level Adjustment


A ruler aboleth attacks by flailing with its long, slimy tentacles, though it prefers to fight from a distance using its illusion powers.

Astral Caravan (Sp): Once per day, a ruler aboleth can lead an expedition through the Astral Plane. This functions exactly as the psionic power of the same name, with augmentation.

Bite (Ex): Although a ruler aboleth’s mouth is relatively small, it can still deliver a nasty bite. An aboleth’s bite attack is considered an unarmed strike, not a natural attack, and without the Improved Unarmed Strike feat, it provokes attacks of opportunity. Likewise, the act of extruding its feeding stalks and rearing back to bite is a clumsy move for most aboleths, so a bite attack is a full-round action. An aboleth can’t attack with its tentacles at the same time as it bites. On a successful hit, a ruler aboleth’s bite deals 1d6+7 points of damage.

Enslave (Su): At will, a ruler aboleth can attempt to enslave any one living creature within 60 feet. The target must succeed on a DC 33 Will save or be affected as though by a dominate person spell (caster level 20th). An enslaved creature obeys the aboleth’s telepathic commands until freed by break enchantment (remove curse has no effect), and can attempt a new Will save every 24 hours to break free. The control is also broken if the aboleth dies or travels more than 5 miles from its slave. The save DC is Charisma-based and includes a +3 racial bonus.

Frightful Presence (Su): A ruler aboleth can inspire terror by charging or attacking. Affected creatures must succeed on a DC 28 Will save or become shaken, remaining in that condition as long as they remain with 60 feet of the ruler aboleth. The save DC is Charisma-based.

Knowledgeable (Ex): A ruler aboleth makes Knowledge checks for any Knowledge skills as if it had a minimum of 10 ranks in that skill. To surpass the 10-rank minimum, it must assign more than 10 ranks to the skill as normal. Additionally, a ruler aboleth gains a racial bonus on all Knowledge checks equal to half its Hit Dice (+10 for a typical ruler aboleth).

Mucus Cloud (Ex): A ruler aboleth underwater surrounds itself with a viscous cloud of mucus roughly 5 feet thick. Any creature coming into contact with and inhaling this substance must succeed on a DC 28 Fortitude save or lose the ability to breathe air for the next 3 hours. An affected creature suffocates in 2d6 minutes if removed from the water. Renewed contact with the mucus cloud and failing another Fortitude save continues the effect for another 3 hours. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Psionics (Sp):

Effective caster level 20th. The save DCs are Charisma-based.

Slime (Ex): A blow from an aboleth’s tentacle can cause a terrible affliction. A creature hit by a tentacle must succeed on a DC 28 Fortitude save or begin to transform over the next 1d4+1 minutes, the skin gradually becoming a clear, slimy membrane. An afflicted creature must remain moistened with cool, fresh water or take 1d12 points of damage every 10 minutes. The slime reduces the creature’s natural armor bonus by 1 (but never to less than 0). The save DC is Constitution-based.

A remove disease spell cast before the transformation is complete will restore an afflicted creature to normal. Afterward, however, only a heal or mass heal spell can reverse the affliction.

Spells: A ruler aboleth casts spells as a 20th-level sorcerer.

sorcerer Spells Known (6/8/8/8/8/7/7/7/7/6, save DC 18 + spell level):

Telepathic Overmind (Su): A ruler aboleth’s telepathy extends to a range of 5 miles when it communicates with its slaves and subject aboleths.

Skills: An aboleth has a +8 racial bonus on any Swim check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard. It can always choose to take 10 on a Swim check, even if distracted or endangered. It can use the run action while swimming, provided it swims in a straight line.

Ruler Aboleths and Lords of Madness

If you are using Lords of Madness in your campaign, ruler aboleths may qualify for a number of the aboleth specific feats.

A ruler aboleth that takes the Powerful Bite feat may qualify for the following new feat.

Oversized Maw [General]

An aboleth with this feat develops jaws large enough to swallow smaller creatures whole.

  • Prerequisite: Aboleth, Huge or larger, Strength 30, Powerful Bite, Weapon Focus (bite).
  • Benefit: An aboleth with this may attempt to swallow a creature up to two size categories smaller than itself by making a successful grapple check. Once inside, the opponent takes piercing and slashing damage from the aboleth’s tooth-lined esophagus. The amount of damage is based on size: 2d8+Strength for Huge, 3d8+Strength for Gargantuan, and 4d8+Strength for Colossal. A swallowed creature can cut its way out by using a light slashing or piercing weapon to deal 25 points of damage to the esophagus (AC equals 10 + 1/2 aboleth’s natural armor bonus). Once the creature exits, muscular action closes the hole; another swallowed opponent must cut its own way out. An aboleth’s interior can hold 1 creature of two size categories smaller, 4 creatures of three size categories smaller, 16 creatures of four size categories smaller, and 64 creatures of five or more size categories smaller than itself.

Originally appeared in Dragon Magazine #131 (1988).

See Also Aboleth

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