RavenloftCampaign Setting Logo

Activity Cycle:Night
Intelligence:Average (8-10)
Alignment:Chaotic evil
No. Appearing:1
Armor Class:4
Movement:Fl 18 (A)
Hit Dice:6
No. of Attacks:1
Special Attacks:Ignition
Special Defenses:Spell resistance
Magic Resistance:30%
Size:S (2' diameter)
Morale:Steady (11-12)
XP Value:1,400

Rushlights are malevolent spirits of the pyre that escape their burning beds to spread fire and death to the denizens of Ravenloft.

Rushlights are invisible most of the time. When spotted they appear as flickering globes of flame. Inside the near-transparent ball are the face and hands of an evil, tortured spirit.

Rushlights cannot speak. However, they seem to be able to understand the languages that they knew in life.

Combat: Rushlights can only be seen from the corner of the eye. Anyone who attempts to look right at one sees nothing, though they may soon feel its fiery touch. Only if a player announces that his character will attempt to use his peripheral vision will the creature be fairly visible. Even this is difficult, and attackers suffer a -2 penalty on their attack rolls. Certain spells, as detect invisibility for instance, can make the creature fully visible.

The rushlight attacks by slamming into the victim and his belongings, often setting the latter alight. Although the flame of a rushlight emits little light and no perceived heat, it is one of the most deadly things a character is likely to encounter. A successful Attack Roll by the rushlight indicates that it has struck its target, inflicting 3d4 points of damage. In addition, every item the character is carrying must make a saving throw vs. magical fire or be utterly destroyed.

Once a character has been hit by a rushlight, his very flesh will smoulder and burn. Each turn after the successful attack the character will take 2d4 points of damage. Extinguishing the magical fire of the rushlight is no easy matter, requiring a dispel magic or similar enchantment. Normal means of fire fighting, such as immersion in water or attempting to smother the flames with a leather cloak, will prove ineffective.

Rushlights can only be hit by magical weapons or creatures with 4+1 Hit Dice. They are immune to any spells that affect the body or the mind, as well as spells of cold or fire.

Although they might be technically classed as undead, rushlights cannot be turned. Curiously, however, they are very vulnerable to holy water and suffer 2d6 points of damage per flask that strikes them.

Habitat/Society: Rushlights are formed when an evil being is burned alive on a funeral pyre. The soul flees the smoldering shell and attempts to escape into the night. Before the spirit can break free of its earthly bonds, it merges with the all-consuming fires and acquires their power.

When not active, the thing sinks into the earth near the site of its death. At night, it roams up to twenty miles from its “lair” searching for travelers to torture and kill. Something in the tortured psyche of these creatures tells them that by destroying living things, they will ease their own suffering.

Ecology: A rushlight seems to feed on the fear and pain it creates. After the first few victims have been ignited, the thing moves more energetically. Though they do not rest, the rushlight must remain buried in the earth where its body was cremated during the daylight hours.