Snurfs - ROM, 16/Jul/88

MOVE: 6"
HIT DICE: varies (usually 3-4)
% IN LAIR: 90%
TREASURE TYPE: individual J, K, M, Q; lair R
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 1-4 or by weapon
ALLIGNMENT: Lawful 5% evil, 25% good
SIZE: S(4')
Attack/Defense Modes: Nil

Requisites: Str15-, Int13+, Dex13+, Char10+

Level  Age(yrs)           Rank          Experience  HD
  0    Baby  (0-5)        none                -750   -
  1    Young (5-6)        Young                  0  1D8
  2    Young (6-7)        Young              1,500   2
  3    Adult (7-11)       Parent             3,000   3
  4    Adult(12-16)       Parent             6,000   4
  5    Old  (16-20)       Grandparent       12,000   5
  6    Old  (21-25)       Grandparent       25,000   6
  7    Ancient(25+)       Great G.parent    50,000   7
  8    Ancient(25+)       Great G.parent   100,000  +2
  9    Very Ancient(30+)* Great G.parent   200,000  +2

*probably extended lifespan

Usually met in groups of at least four snurfs are plump, blue gnome-like creatures that embody Law. Almost always friendly they like to help people, but insist on payment. Very skilled craftsman and artisans but they sing while they work which causes fear or berserk hatred. Their very presence causes things to be less disorganised or chaotic around them. Most snurfs met are adults (3-4HD) but communities will contain all ages.

Snurfs consider customs and rituals to be very important and tend to be naturally conservative. They act in a apparently disorganised but really highly co-ordinated fashion. They hate practical jokes but like puns.

DMs may rule that the reason snurfs always wear hats is that they have concealed small horns, which are the means by which their mental powers (see below) work. DMs may also rule that for unknown historical reasons female snurfs while as bald as the males always wear blonde wigs, grandfather snurfs wear short false beards, and great grandfather snurfs long white false beards. Snurfs who have their hats, wigs or beards removed can get very upset.

Snurf song

Effects as many levels/HD as the sum of levels of snurfs singing, +1 for every snurf above the first, closest first. +/-2 save per level above/below that of the song; Silence or earplugs give +4 save and no ill effects if save.

Song has range 12". Unless save V magic are as if feared, if save attack with ferocity (+2,+2) until all snurfs within 6" are unconscious or dead (attacker's choice).

For example a single 3rd level snurf sings, which can effect up to 3HD of creatures, or a single creature of more than 3HD, who gets a bonus to save. Three 4th level snurfs sing together, which effects up to 12HD of creatures, and if there was, say, only a single 6HD creature then its save would be at -12.

In general the snurfs want the sum of their levels, i.e. the level of the song, to be as high as possible compared with the level/HD of the listeners, which gives the maximum chance of fear rather than being attacked.

Group Mind

It is not commonly known but all snurf communities have an powerful unconscious Group Mind. This co-ordinates the community and stores all the knowledge of its members as well as educating the young. This is also why snurf song upsets non-snurfs; someone with good mental defences will likely not be effected.

Baby Snurfs are non-intelligent and are part of the group mind of the adults of the community. Each community will usually have at least 8 adults, and an absolute minimum of 4, for babies to develop properly, if not they will usually become Evil (with low empathy and poor socialisation).

All communities will have at least one main skill of a 'technical' nature at which they will be very adept, eg: weaving, pottery, smithing, tinkering, book-making etc; and usually at least three other or related skills. While working they will usually sing to better co-ordinate themselves with the group mind which holds all the knowledge of the community. Even if one or more adults are lost, up to half of the community, no group knowledge will be lost. A year is required for an outsider snurf to join a community and one will usually be very carefully considered.

Snurfs commonly mate for life, even with no children, and any differences are resolved by song. Unless part of a complete community (ie: 8+) fertility is very low and rarely matches between partners, as it is induced by and co-ordinated by the group mind. A common community would be 4 grandparents (2 from different communities), 4 parents and 4 young or babies. Snurfs can choose when to have young in a complete community, usually arranged so there will be two of the same age and capable of later mating without inbreeding.

Technological Rules:

1) Function as a Technologist of three levels greater in all respects bar the chance of meddling (at least double hire fee).

2) If a have seen a particular machine working it can always (99%) be repaired subject to availability of parts (if a major repair then must throw Repair Machine chance not to introduce a latent fault).

(c) Rory O. McLean, Jul. 1988
    Permission granted to use for non-profit making purposes