(Monster) Ogrochs

A rare creature found in the wastes west of Old Zahar, it is believed that these were created as heavy cavalry during the Empyrean War, after it was found that human and elf infantry were capable of outmaneuvering the heavy infantry provided by ogres. It is believed that sorcerers of great power took a company of the heavy infantry and crossbred them with a large (and now mostly extinct) herd animal known as the aurochs. This provided the ogrish forces with a heavy cavalry capable of keeping up with any enemy mounted on a normal horse. The modern ogrochs live a nomadic lifestyle, rarely settling down in one place for more than a day or two, since their large bodies and carnivorous proclivities mean even a small tribe will quickly hunt out a given area of wasteland.

% in lair: None
Dungeon Enc: Gang (1d6)
Wilderness Enc: Herd (3d10)
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement: 240’ (80’)
Armor Class: 4
Hit Dice: 4 + 1*
Attacks: 1 (large club or weapon)
Damage: 1d10 or by weapon +3
Save: F4
Morale: +2
Treasure Type: L (per herd)
XP: 215

Design notes: This is a crossbreed of Ogre and Herd Animal. Even though it uses the Herd Animal movement, the asterisk is to also invisibly use the Ogre movement for the AC boost from 2 to 4. It was also a way of getting some monstrous cavalry other than centaurs. They’re no tougher than an ogre, but the speed makes them very dangerous. And for those curious, the name is a blend of ogre and aurochs.

Hmmm… I like it. Now I want cyclopophant superheavy hybrid cavalry, too.

Hill giants work better, size-wise. Humans and horses are both close to 6’ tall, while hill giants are 12’ tall and elephants 11-13’ at the shoulder. There would be little reason to cross a hill giant with an elephant (it would gain 1 hit die), but crossing a hill giant with a mastodon gets you something very nasty:

% in lair: 25%
Dungeon Enc: Gang (1d4) / Lair (2d4)
Wilderness Enc: Warband (2d4) / Herd (2d8)
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement: 120’ (40’)
Armor Class: 6
Hit Dice: 15*
Attacks: 1 or 1 (weapon or trample)
Damage: 3d10 or 4d8
Save: F14
Morale: 0
Treasure Type: N
XP: 3,000

Like hill giants, hill mastomen may throw rocks to a range of 200’, dealing 3d6 damage. Like mastodons, they may trample targets in melee, with a +4 to hit man-sized targets. If they start with enough distance and are wielding a pointed weapon, they may charge targets with their weapons for double damage.

The weakness here is morale. Hill mastomen have very good saves. They’re only as fast as a human, but tough (an average of 67.5 hit points) and incredibly potent in combat, with an attack throw of 0+ and 16.5 damage per round with a weapon or an attack throw of -4+ and 18 damage per round against human-sized targets when trampling. They’re weakest at range, with average damage dropping to 10.5, but only the arbalest, crossbow, composite bow, and longbow have as much range as their rock-throwing, and that at a -5 to attack throws until within 180’, 160’, or 140’. At such long ranges, even a 14th-level fighter will only hit on a 12+, and would need plate armor plus another 6 points of AC bonuses (through magic armor or rings and cloaks of protection) to be hit on a 12+.