RavenloftCampaign Setting Logo

Climate/Terrain:Populated areas
Frequency:Very rare
Activity Cycle:Night
Intelligence:Exceptional (15-16)
Alignment:Chaotic evil
No. Appearing:1
Armor Class:5
Hit Dice:1+2
No. of Attacks:2
Special Attacks:Rake, Spells
Special Defenses:Invisibility
Magic Resistance:20%
Morale:Unsteady (5)
XP Value:975

The day the cat spoke to me, I thought I was mad. Now I know that if I am mad, it's because I listened to its lies.

Laura Graibley

A doomcat is a manipulative little creature with potent powers at its disposal. It forces itself into households and demands favors with the threat of dire prophecies. When displeased, it can unleash a terrible retribtution.

Doomcats appear perfectly benign. They look like ordinary - if worse-for-wear - housecats. They come in a variety of breeds and colors, but are usully quite ugly as domestic felines go. Their ears are ragged and their fur is patchy and flea-ridden. Often, a doomcat will have a deformity of some kind, such as a missing tail or leg. Their eyes, however, are always clear and bright, and usually two different colors.

Doomcats do not appear to speak - at first. When conversing with their “owners”, they communicate in an appropriate language. It is not known if they can read as well.

Combat: Superficially, doomcats have little ability to protect themselves. Indeed, their combat statistics are similar to a normal housecat's. They may bite for 1 point of damage, and scratch with both front claws for 1-2 points of damage combined. If its front claws hit, a doomcat may rake with is rear claws for an additional 1-2 damage. They are slightly quicker and more agile than a typical cat, as reflected in their Armor Class. A doomcat can also become invisible at will.

The true power of a doomcat lies in its terrifying spell-like abilities. The creature rarely uses these powers, as they cannot be used often, and have the possibility of harming the doomcat itself. Nevertheless, if the creature's invisibility has failed to protect it, and it feels threatened, it will resort to these abilities. A doomcat may use the following priest spells as if it were a 16th-level priest: animal summoning III, cause blindness or deafness, cause disease, confusion, control weather, control winds, earthquake, insect plague, transmute water to dust, weather summoning. The doomcat may use spells with a range of “touch” at a range of 5 yards. A doomcat may not use more than three spells per day.

Doomcats are notoriously cowardly. They will only fight as a last resort. Doomcats know that they are relatively weak creatures, without much going for them other than their cunning and a handful of supernatural abilities. If the disposition in a particular town becomes too aggressive, they will leave, usually unleashing a spectacular cataclysm on the doomed hamlet out of sheer spite as they depart.

Habitat/Society: Doomcats wander from town to town, adopting themselves into households. It is not known how they are created, but it is often speculated that a doomcat may be a witch somehow trapped in the form of a cat. Conversely, there is a theory that doomcats are normal cats which lived near evil religious sites, and somehow acquired their remarkable abilities through long-term exposure to unholy energies.

A doomcat is an incredibly selfish creature. It sees humans as idiots to be manipulated into giving the doomcat anything it wants. The doomcat accomplishes this through an elaborate scheme that normally takes a very typical pattern. The doomcat singles out a family, usually with an animal-lover among its members - children do nicely. Before revealing itself, the doomcat uses its spell abilities to inflict some calamity on the household, such as a disease or spurt of foul weather. After a time, the creature approaches the family as a normal housecat. It plays up the part of the affectionate stray, showering its newfound “owners” with leg-rubbing, purring, and hungry mewling. Inevitably, the doomcat is taken in by the unsuspecting family. The doomcat allows itself to be pampered for a time, before revealing its “secret”.

Eventually, the doomcat begins speaking to the most mentally unstable member of the family. It tells this individual that it has the power to prevent more horrible calamities from befalling the family, if only they can provide it with a meal or two of fine fish, and perhaps a soft bed. The doomcat is purposely vague about how it could possibly have such power, usually referring to some connection between felines and good fortune. Though astonished, the individual will usually comply, fearful as they are of further misfortune. After all, the poor cat doesn't ask for much in return, does he?The situation rapidly sprials out of control for the unfortunate victim, however. The doomcat begins asking for more and more luxuries, and eventually becomes the most well-off individual in the household. The creature's attitude quickly changes from that of a benificent savior to a demanding brat. Eventually, the relationship decays into one of sheer blackmail, with the doomcat holding disaster over the heads of its “owner”. If the family becomes suspicious, the doomcat may give a moderate display of power, just to reestablish who is in control. In most cases, the “owners” will eventually have had enough of the doomcat, and attempt to harm the monster physically. The doomcat will then usually move on to another unsuspecting owner, unleashing some final horror as it flees.

Ecology: Doomcats have a carnivorous diet, like other domestic cats, and will eat just about anything if hungry enough. However, they are spoiled creatures with a taste for luxury, and will go to great lengths to procure finer food.

Doomcats often wreak a great deal of havoc on their surrounding. A village can be taxed of all its resources, as family after family falls for the doomcat's ruse. Eventually, a mob complete with torches and pitchforks may come looking to kill the “devil-cat” in their midst. Tales speak of one such village in Arkandale, where the entire town was swallowed up by an earthquake in mere moments.

The Lonesome Road