Red Steel (Mystara)Campaign Setting Logo

Activity Cycle:Night
Intelligence:Semi- (2-4)
Alignment:Neutral (evil)
No. Appearing:5d10
Armor Class:7
Movement:12, Sw 6
Hit Dice:1d4 hp
No. of Attacks:1
Special Attacks:Disease
Special Defenses:Legacy
Magic Resistance:Nil
Size:T (1-2' long)
Morale:Unsteady (5-7)
XP Value:65

The voat is a nocturnal ratlike creature about the size of a cat that exists throughout the Savage Coast. Voats are aggressive, insatiable scavengers, found wherever food is stored. They are a bane for vessels carrying foodstuffs or warehouses storing grain and other perishables. Many a ship captain has cursed the voats upon finding that all the foodstuffs in the cargo have been devoured or spoiled. A voat can eat vast amounts of food or refuse (as much as ten times its weight every day), fouling and destroying far more.

Voats have coarse, greasy, gray fur, grizzled with black and sooty white. They have disgustingly pink scaly tails that flick about constantly. These creatures have large ears, pointed snouts, and extremely powerful teeth, which they use to gnaw through wooden planks to get at stores of food.

The Red Curse: All voats have a Legacy, and most suffer the Affliction caused by that Legacy. Many voats tend to acquire the Phase Legacy. For this reason, most of them have soft, puffy flesh with grotesquely distorted form and features. This distortion makes them even more repulsive than they would otherwise be. These voats tend to sink into solid matter if they spend more than a moment in any one place.

Voats do not usually wear cinnabryl, so they are either Afflicted or they pick up what little they need from the trace amounts present in scarlet pimpernel.

Combat: Voats are typically much more aggressive than their giant rat cousins. They will attack small farm animals and domestic animals, such as poultry and cats. They will even attack humanoids given the opportunity. Their tremendous appetites cause them to regard just about anything as food. To a voat, two things exist in the world: things it can eat and rocks.

Voats carry diseases just like rats, so their bites have a 5% chance of infecting victims with a serious disease (such as the plague or typhus fever) unless a successful saving throw vs. poison is made.

Voats, like giant rats, are excellent swimmers and can attack in water as well as on land.

Habitat/Society: Voats exist to eat. They even eat in their sleep. Most voats use the Phase Legacy to enter buildings or ships containing foodstuffs or remote caves containing scarlet pimpernels, where they will make a nest for a short time before moving on.

A voat nest may contain some treasure. Voats collect bright and shiny objects, and sometimes their victims have belongings.

Ecology: Voats are as prolific as rats, breeding three to five times a year, with anywhere from eight to twelve offspring per litter. Voats have a life span of two to four years.

Voats particularly love to eat scarlet pimpernels. A nearly a foolproof way to tell the difference between crimson delight and scarlet pimpernel is to release a voat near a patch of the plants and observe which plants the voat tries to eat. Any plant that the voat tries to eat is a most assuredly a scarlet pimpernel. The only difficulty is then getting the voat off the scarlet pimpernel before it consumes the whole plant.

Cardinal ticks often infest these creatures. As a result, swarms of voats will often form symbiotic relationships with one or more Saragón lyra birds.

Voats can be controlled by the use of traps or poison. However, most voat poisons are extremely toxic to humans and demihumans and should be used with caution.