by Christopher Perkins (Dragon #312)
This man-sized mastiff strongly resembles a wolf hound with a shaggy, deep-black coat. It bears some striking humanlike characteristics, including front paws with opposable digits. Its haunting eyes resemble lustrous amber orbs.
Moon dogs have frequently been confused with the evil yeth hounds, but these creatures are actually natives of Elysium and powerful champions of good. They prefer to walk on all fours, but moon dogs can walk (at half speed) on their hind legs and their front paws even have some capacity for manipulation.
Moon dogs are roughly the size of a large man in body mass. Although they can speak, they prefer to communicate telepathically.
Making a Moon Dog Character
Outsider (Extraplanar, Good)
As devoted warriors of good, moon dogs come to the aid of other good-aligned champions in need. Thus, they often become involved with bands of crusading adventurers.
A moon dog character begins play with modest ability score bonuses, keen senses, and racial bonuses to saving throws. As it advances in level, its ability scores increase, and it gains powerful spell-like and supernatural abilities.
- Starting Ability Score Adjustments: +2 Str, +2 Wis. Moon dogs are powerful and wise.
- Medium size.
- Speed: A moon dog's base land speed is 30 feet. This speed increases as it gains levels.
- Darkvision out to 60 feet.
- Keen Senses: A moon dog sees four times as well as a human in low-light conditions and twice as well in normal light.
- Luck: +2 luck bonus on all saving throws.
- +4 racial bonus on Hide and Move Silently checks.
- Automatic Languages: Celestial, Common, and Infernal.
- Favored Class: Moon dog. The best multiclassing choice for a moon dog is fighter, although ranger is another good option.
The moon dog's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Concentration (Con), Diplomacy (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (the planes) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), and Spot (Wis).
All the following are class features of the moon dog monster class*.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Moon dogs are proficient with all simple weapons and all light martial weapons. They are not proficient with any type of armor or shield.
Feats: A moon dog receives 1 feat at 1st level and an additional feat at 4th, 10th, and 16th level. After 17th level, it gains feats normally according to its character level, as shown in Experience and Level-Dependent Benefits.
Bite: A moon dog has a bite attack that is a natural weapon dealing 1d8 points of damage plus Strength bonus.
Innate Spell-Like Abilities: Moon dogs have acute magical perception. They possess the following spell-like abilities, which are always active: arcane sight, blessed sight* [prayer], detect snares and pits, and see invisibility. The moon dog's caster level is equal to its class level (maximum 12th).
Speak with Canines (Sp): A moon dog can use speak with animals (as cast by a 12th-level druid) to communicate with any canine animal, including dogs and wolves. This ability functions at will.
Telepathy (Su): A moon dog can communicate telepathically with any creature within 50 feet that has a language.
Evasion (Ex): At 2nd level or higher, if the moon dog makes a Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, it instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the moon dog is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless moon dog does not gain the benefit of evasion.
Lesser Spell-like Abilities: At 3rd level, a moon dog can use the following spell-like abilities each once per day: disguise self, dancing lights, darkness, light, mirror image, and fog cloud. At 5th level, it can use each of these abilities three times per day. At 7th level, it can use each of these abilities except disguise self and mirror image at will. The moon dog's caster level is equal to its class level (maximum 12th; save DC to + spell level + moon dog's Charisma modifier).
Scent (Ex): A moon dog of 3rd level or higher can detect approaching enemies, sniff out hidden foes, and track by sense of smell.
Soothing Ministrations (Su): By licking a wound, a moon dog of 5th level or higher can create any of the following effects, one time each per individual per day: cure light wounds, remove disease, and slow poison. The caster level is the moon dog's class level (maximum 12th).
Spell Resistance (Ex): Starting at 5th level, a moon dog gains spell resistance equal to 6 + class level.
Improved Evasion (Ex): The moon dog gains this ability at 6th level. This works like evasion, except that while the moon dog still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw, henceforth it takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless moon dog does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.
Bay (Su): Starting at 7th level, a moon dog can bay as a standard action. Its baying has the effect of a fear spell from a caster of the moon dog's class level (maximum 12th; save DC 10 + 1/2 class level + moon dog's Charisma modifier). It affects only evil creatures within an 80-foot radius of the moon dog. A creature that makes a successful Will save is immune to that particular moon dog's baying for 24 hours. This is a sonic, mind-affecting effect.
Bark (Su): Beginning at 8th level, a moon dog can bark as a standard action and create a dispel evil effect from a caster of the moon dog's class level (maximum 12th).
Shadow Pattern (Su): When in shadowy light, a moon dog of 10th level or higher can move itself and manipulate the shadows around itself to create a special shadow pattern. Creating the pattern is a full-round action, and the pattern lasts only as long as the moon dog concentrates to maintain it, plus an additional 2 rounds. The pattern emanates in a 50-foot radius around the moon dog. Evil creatures within this effect are fascinated as though by a hypnotic pattern spell from a 10th-level caster (Will save DC 10 + 1/2 class level + moon dog's Charisma modifier). Good creatures within the effect are warded by a protection from evil effect and a remove fear effect for the duration of the pattern.
Greater Spell-like Abilities: At 11th level, a moon dog can use the following spell-like abilities each once per day: astral projection (self only), ethereal jaunt, greater invisibility, nondetection, and greater shadow conjuration. At 14th level, it can use all these abilities except greater shadow conjuration three times per day. At 17th level, it can use all these abilities except greater shadow conjuration at will. The moon dog's caster level is equal to its class level (maximum 12th; save DC 10 + spell level + moon dog's Charisma modifier).
Howl (Su): At 12th level, when a moon dog howls, evil creatures within 40 feet of the moon dog take 1d4+4 points of damage per round, in addition to the fear effect of its baying. Evil extraplanar creatures within 40 feet of a howling moon dog are targeted by a dismissal effect from a 12th-level caster (save DC 15 + moon dog's Charisma modifier). If more than one moon dog is howling within 40 feet of such a creature, the creature receives only one saving throw, and the effective caster level of the dismissal effect is increased by +2 for each additional moon dog beyond the first.
Whine (Su): Starting at 15th level, a moon dog can whine as a standard action to automatically dispel any illusion effect within 50 feet.
|1st||1d8||+1||+2||+2||+2||(8 + Int mod) x 4||1||Feat, subtypes (extraplanar, good), bite 1d8, innate spell-like abilities, speak with canines, telepathy|
|2nd||2d8||+2||+3||+3||+3||8 + Int mod||2||+2 Dex, evasion, damage reduction 5/cold iron or evil|
|3rd||2d8||+2||+3||+3||+3||-||2||Scent, lesser spell-like abilities 1/day|
|4th||3d8||+3||+3||+3||+3||8 + Int mod||3||+2 Str, +2 Wis, feat, spd 40 ft.|
|5th||3d8||+3||+3||+3||+3||-||4||Soothing ministrations, lesser spell-like abilities 3/day, spell resistance 11|
|6th||4d8||+4||+4||+4||+4||8 + Int mod||4||Improved evasion, spell resistance 12|
|7th||4d8||+4||+4||+4||+4||-||5||+2 Cha, bay, dancing lights, darkness, light, and fog cloud at will, spell resistance 13|
|8th||5d8||+5||+4||+4||+4||8 + Int mod||6||+2 Dex, spd 50 ft., bark, spell resistance 14|
|9th||5d8||+5||+4||+4||+4||-||7||Damage reduction to/cold iron or evil, spell resistance 15|
|10th||6d8||+6/+1||+5||+5||+5||8 + Int mod||7||+2 Int, feat, shadow pattern, spell resistance 16|
|11th||6d8||+6/+1||+5||+5||+5||-||8||Greater spell-like abilities 1/day, spell resistance 17|
|12th||7d8||+7/+2||+5||+5||+5||8 + Int mod||9||+2 Cha, howl, spell resistance 18|
|13th||7d8||+7/+2||+5||+5||+5||-||9||+2 Con, spell resistance 19|
|14th||8d8||+8/+3||+6||+6||+6||8 + Int mod||10||Astral projection, ethereal jaunt, greater invisibility, and nondetection 3/day, spell resistance 20|
|15th||8d8||+8/+3||+6||+6||+6||-||11||Whine, spell resistance 21|
|16th||9d8||+9/+4||+6||+6||+6||8 + Int mod||11||+2 Str, +2 Wis, feat, spell resistance 22|
|17th||9d8||+9/+4||+6||+6||+6||-||12||+2 Int, +2 Cha, astral projection, ethereal jaunt, greater invisibility, and nondetection at will, spell resistance 23|
*For information on Monster Classes see Savage Species