Saturday, September 6, 2014
An Ioun Behelder appears as a floating crystalline orb circled by multi-hued ioun stones that trace orbit around the central sphere.
Source: Creature Collection II: Dark Menagerie 3.0
Cool Factor: The iconic ioun stone meets the Beholder. A pretty interesting combination. The Ioun Beholder is essentially a crystal ball with eight ioun stones floating around it. If the Ioun Beholder is encountered without eight ioun stones it remains dormant and acts like a crystal hypnosis ball with the ability to make a suggestion. This mental suggestion forces the players characters on a quest. A quest to find more ioun stones and to activate the beholder.
Imagine delving into a dungeon to find a crystal ball on an altar. It is dormant. Then it invades your mind and makes a suggestion. Find me ioun Stones. I need eight of them to be activated. Right there is an campaign. You have your players character searching the world for ioun stones to activate the Beholder while enchanted.
Combat: In the 3.X system the Ioun Beholder is an intelligent construct. Once it has acquire all eight Ioun Stone it is a fully active creature. It uses the ioun stones as secondary eyes similar to a typical Beholder eyestalk.
-Its a CR7 creature in D&D 3.0 with relatively low Hit Points but a very high AC.
-The floating stones create an rainbow pattern. It mimics the arcane spell. Able to fascinate creatures who view it.
-Eye Rays: Similar to the Beholder Eyestalks. Each of the eight ioun stones can create a ray. The ray has up to 16 different variations. It can do ability damage, blindness, fast heal, absorb spells, etc. A very versatile ability.
Verdict: I have never used the Ioun Beholder. I love the concept behind it. It tends to dwell inside ancient ruins of civilization that have long vanished. An intelligent crystal ball pulling the strings. Maybe sending out minions to search the world for ioun stones. You can have the group encounter goblins raiding a wizard academy. Once questioned they reveal that some being of crystal has clouded their minds with dreams of floating stones.
The whole mastermind angle works well for the Ioun Beholder. It can be a background threat for a few levels while the group tries to piece together clues. Once all the clues are assembled it leads to buried vault in the dark corner of the world. A very cool creature indeed.