New Monster – Grinning Ghost (for D&D 5E)

26 October, 2022

Grinning Ghost

What a winning smileThe old mill was said to be haunted but those who ventured there only reported odd things happening, if they talked about it at all, but no one ever seemed harmed directly by the spirits.  Perhaps by their reaction to them if they ran away in a panic and crashed into, or through, something.  They seemed more to enjoy scaring people and watching the comedy that was created by terrified people at least, that was my analysis of the situation.

Grinning Ghost
Medium unbound (undead), usually chaotic

Armor Class 13

Hit Points 45 (10D8)

Speed Walk 0 ft., Fly 45 ft (hover)

STR 7 (-2) DEX 14 (+2) CON 10 (+0) INT 10 (+0) WIS 10 (+0) CHA 17 (+3)

Saving Throws Wis +3

Skills Deception +6, Stealth +3, Proficiency with basic traps

Damage Resistances fire, lightning, thunder, bludgeoning, piercing and slashing from non-magic weapons

Damage Immunities cold, necrotic, poison

Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10

Languages any languages it knew in life

Challenge 4 (1,100 XP)

Incorporeal Movement. The grinning ghost can move through other creatures and objects as if they were difficult terrain. It takes 5 (1d10) force damage if it ends its turn inside an object.

Lurker If the grinning ghost has not attacked anyone in a group, everyone in that group is at disadvantage to perceive the grinning ghost even through magical effects,

Poltergeist The grinning ghost may manipulate small objects, up to 10 lbs (4.5kg) at will, as long as they are within 60′ of the grinning ghost.  If the idea is held or worn, the person may make a Charisma saving throw (DC 14) to prevent it from moving.

Selective Invisibility a grinning ghost is invisible by nature but can choose to reveal itself to one, or more, people.  Once it attacks, it is revealed and the invisibility cannot be restored until the grinning ghost has been out of sight of living people for a minute or more.

Attack. A grinning ghost may make two attacks split between chilling caress and poltergeist throw as it wishes or use its terrifying apparition power.

Chilling Caress. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5  ft., one target. Hit: 7 (2d6) cold damage + 7 (2d6) psychic damage.

Terrifying Apparition (recharge 6) the grinning ghost manifests the inner fears of those watching it and all with 30′ who can see the grinning ghost must make a Wisdom saving throw (DC 14) or be frightened, and for each five points the save is failed by, they gain a level of exhaustion as well.  At the end of each of their turns, the frightened person may make another save to break the effect but this save is made at disadvantage if they can still see the grinning ghost.  If a target’s saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the target is immune to this ginning ghost’s Terrifying Apparition power until the next sunset.

Poltergeist Throw. Missile Weapon Attack: +5 to hit,, range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d8+2) bludgeoning damage.  Note that the object thrown must be within 60′ and it does not have to originate from the grinning ghost’s location.

Grinning ghosts are spirits that remain behind, just because, really, they are mostly harmless pranksters seeking to frighten and scare not kill.  However, they have a wicked and often cruel sense of humor and their pranks can cause real harm as they no longer remember how fragile people can be.

While not in and of themselves terribly dangerous, their presence often attracts other forms of the unbound and unliving to an area.  They are bound to a single location, which may be as small as a house or as large as a city, and cannot travel beyond those confines.

Before Combat: The grinning ghost is all about pranks and jump scares, the pranks are usually more to cause embarrassment than damage (water pails on doors, chairs with the legs sawed through so it collapses when someone sits on it, stuff like that).  It will know the area it is haunting completely so that it can use the environment to its advantage.

During Combat: The grinning ghost will open with its Terrifying Apparition power if it can catch most of its enemies in the area, then use hit-and-run tactics in an attempt to chase its enemies away.

Morale: The grinning ghost will flee to recover (“This isn’t fun anymore!”) if reduced to one-third or fewer hit points.

Notes: Wanted to have at least one actual monster this month!  And something that could be used for more humorous, while still haunting, scenarios.  Naturally, this is also inspired by the Haunted Mansion at the Disney parks, easily my favorite attraction.

Image photo of the Hatbox Ghost found on WikiMedia Commons by HarshLight is used under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

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