Kobold Press

Trapsmith: Clinching Corpse Trap


“Master Kiro?”

Gavin’s voice echoed throughout the cavern that Master Kiro used as his workshop. The kobold had invited him to see a new creation, and although Gavin valued innovation, he dreaded the journey. He always felt like an adventurer, just one step away from disaster, whenever he entered Kiro’s workshop.

Gavin carefully made his way into the cavern, and as he did so, he spotted and avoided a few “go away” traps, which were vicious traps meant to dissuade further entry. Inching his way forward, Gavin circumvented a couple of what he labelled as being “serious” traps, which were meant to stop further entry—permanently. Cold sweat covered his body by now.

He must have been distracted, because the kobold came at him from nowhere. Its small body slammed into him, and its tiny talons raked into him, grabbing hold. Gavin tried to break free, but the kobold held fast. The kobold was heaving yellowish bits upon him in great convulsions. Disease! The kobold must be mad from disease.

“Get off me!” he shouted at the kobold.

With a great shove, Gavin pushed the kobold away, but the kobold’s claws drew blood as he did so.

Unsheathing his daggers, Gavin went for the kill, but stopped in his tracks as he noticed that the kobold was already dead.

“Do you like it, Gavin?” Kiro yipped from the shadows.

Steadying himself, Gavin replied, “Yes, it is a very interesting design. Tell me more about it.”

Trapsmithing is all about delving deep into the primal part of one’s brain—the ancient reptilian part that governs flight or fight. This probably explains why kobolds are so good at trapsmithing: they access the reptilian parts of their brains continuously.

The clinching corpse trap is all about violating personal space and hygiene. Humans generally fear disease, and the trap exploits that. The original design used a kobold corpse, but further experimentation discovered that childlike halflings create a much better response in humans. The corpse is stuffed with cornmeal, which spews from the corpse after impact and during the struggle, triggering disease avoidance instincts. A set of lockpicks is used to puncture the target, simulating a grabbing effect. A block-and-tackle system is used to heave the corpse into position.

Clinching Corpse Trap    CR 6
Type mechanical; Perception DC 27; Disable Device DC 20
Trigger location; Reset none
Effect corpse rush; Atk +15 melee (1d6+2 damage plus corpse clinch and cornmeal convulsions)
Effect corpse clinch (the target gains the grappled condition; overcoming the trap’s CMD of 26 frees the target from the grapple; freeing oneself deals 2d6 damage)
Effect cornmeal convulsions (for each round that the target remains grappled, it must make a DC 17 Will save or become shaken; fear effects are cumulative)

Next Installment

What can Gavin do with a smokestick, a vial of blue dye, a set of manacles, and an empty barrel?

The Challenge

Name four adventuring items and receive a murderous trap in return.

(This post is Product Identity.)

5 Replies to "Trapsmith: Clinching Corpse Trap"

Hecknoshow

September 12, 2012 at 12:42am

That is gross, I love it.
I think you’re getting better at this.

Can’t think of any items right now, I shall chime in if/when I do.

Michael Holland

September 12, 2012 at 3:56am

10′ pole
glass cutter
parasol
leeching kit

Robert

September 12, 2012 at 6:59am

a bedroll
an empty potion vial
rations
a spyglass

Newcomer

September 12, 2012 at 8:12am

You are a master at your craft, sir. I aimed at items that could not possibly make a trap. Not only did you overcome that, seemingly slight, problem but you did so while weaving a captivating story.

Darkjoy

September 12, 2012 at 10:19am

@Hecknoshow: you’ll think of something :-)

@Michael & Robert: thanks for the items

@Newcomer: the cornmeal did pose a problem, but a dead weight, some sticky things and something to move everything were very convenient. :-)

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