Underworld Lore: Purple Pig

Underworld Lore - Purple Pig (for Gorgonmilk!)

No. Enc.:  1d6 (1d6)
Alignment: Neutral
Movement: 150' (50')
Armor Class: 7
Hit Dice: 4
Attacks: 1 (tusk)
Damage: 2d4 + 1
Save: F2
Morale: 9
Hoard Class: None
XP: 100

Purple pigs have been part of the underworld ecosystem for only a few hundred years and are the descendants of normal pigs that were trapped in a large cavern complex after having been trapped in a rockslide during the Hellands Upheaval of 302.  These porcines have developed into sightless, pale lavender beasts that rely on their superior sense of smell to navigate their underworld habitats.

In fact, these pigs have the uncanny ability to ALWAYS choose the shortest and least dangerous (for them) route through a cavern complex despite being 100% blind.  However, due to their superior sense of smell, they gain a +1 for attacks.

No one knows why they have developed their particular color; some underground adventurers have noted that in caverns where purple pigs have been found there are no fungal growths or spoor of any beast.

In most respects, purple pigs resemble their above-ground brethren in temperament, strength, and taste.  Most adventurers, however, would eat a purple pig as a last resort, as they are known to carry a rather nasty strain of intestinal parasites and/or other dungeon-borne diseases.

Dwarves and rock gnomes treasure purple pigs for their ability to sniff out veins of precious metals. Attempts have been made by some gnomish clans to adapt the purple pig as battle mounts; these have been highly unsuccessful, as the pigs cannot stand to be near each other. If two or more pigs encounter each other outside of mating season, they will fight to the death.

During mating season (which lasts roughly two weeks twice a year), purple pigs lose their sense of smell, gather in a large empty cavern, and engage in unending rutting activity with either sex for 72 hours (thus the origin of the dwarvish curse "May yer mother fall into an orgy of pigs!").

Perhaps the strangest side-effect of the pigs' estrangement from their above-ground brethren is not their mating ritual but their "musical" communication. Purple pigs have developed a high-pitched pattern of communication that relies on simple repetition of a few musical notes relayed in varying intensities and tempos. As they are solitary creatures outside of rutting season, recent scholars suggest that the pigs use this "music" to alert other pigs of their location to avoid confrontation and/or frighten would-be predators.

The snout music of the purple pig has been known to drive underworld explorers insane (Save vs. Insanity; failure means 20% chance of suicide if exposed to the music for more than 1d6 turns; 75% chance if in mating season). Captured purples pigs often have one nasal passage cauterized shut to stifle the music, but this often creates a highly temperamental and unruly pig.

The music was transcribed by one intrepid bard, who upon playing the music in a tavern was immediately attacked and torn to pieces by his audience. Luckily, a snippet of his manuscript survived and can be heard here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JNJJ-QkZ8cM

Goblins are highly afraid of the purple pig, as the pig music has the ability to liquify their brains.

FYI, for your reference:


Tim Knight said…
Wow! That's way more information than I ever thought I'd need on a purple pig. Pure genius, thank you ;)
Greg Gorgonmilk said…
"Snout music"!! These pigs are definitely going into UNDERWORLD LORE, Matt.
Matthew Schmeer said…
@Tim: Thanks!

@Gorgonmilk: Great! I've got more ideas floating around in my skull that I hope will make in, too.
Anonymous said…
Ha, these are great! They are bound to appear at my gaming table at some point. Lavender is such an under-used colour for minis.