By George Pratt
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Extra info for Berlin by Night (Vampire: The Masquerade)
In a high-level game, multiple medusas attacking simultaneously constitute a legitimate threat, as they are immune to each other’s gazes, while PCs must continue to save every round for every medusa as long as they are within range. Their humanoid forms and ability to blend in with more mundane societies make medusas particularly viable monstrous candidates for adding class levels and developing interesting backstories. Medusas with class levels are excellent high-level opponents, especially as rogues who sneak attack enemies averting their gaze, or as foes with levels in a Charisma-based class such as bard, oracle, sorcerer, or cleric, since their higher ability scores and access to powerful magic items and spells make their Charisma-based gaze weapon even more potent.
Customers who pay adequate homage to a fortunetelling medusa are often rewarded with valuable advice, while those who either overtly or inadvertently insult such monstrous sages quickly f ind themselves among the numerous statues of previous insolent customers decorating the medusa’s parlor. Medusas can mate with any race capable of propagation with humans, though their children are always female and always carry their mother’s curse. A medusa typically chooses the finest breeding stock for her pleasures and for reproduction, manipulating her subjects with trickery and disguise while driving them into poverty with her incessant desires for expensive material goods.
In Ustalav, grave hydras are particularly prevalent, with one such being, dubbed Yargouth the Ebon Fury by the locals, having plagued the forests and groves of Varno for some time. The Ebon Fury is thought to enjoy the taste of undead in particular, and legend says that the foul slime it leaves in its wake causes the grass to wither into ash. Though few have ever even seen the beast—leading many to believe it nothing more than an urban legend—those who have claim that it resides in a sinkhole in the Forest of Veils to the west, and that its hair-raising howls can be heard at night in early autumn, especially when the Harvest Moon pours its ruby light over the rolling vales of the sleepy county.