Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there. Today I thought I would share another beast from the recent pages of Dr. Strange, stat'd up for the ACKS system. Enjoy!
% In Lair: 10%
Dungeon Enc: Pack (1d4) / Den (2d4)
Wilderness Enc: Route (2d4) / Den (2d4)
Movement: 120' (40')
Armor Class: 4 (boney plating, this plating has made them slower than normal Dire Wolves)
Hit Dice: 4 + 2
Attacks: 1 (bite) Damage: 2d4
Treasure Type: None
Witchfinder Wolves are a rare breed of Dire Wolf, believed to have been specially bred during ancient times to hunt down enemy spellcasters. Witchfinder Wolves have the Sensing Power ability. Like the proficiency they can detect spellcasters within 60', and can get a vague sense of the power level of the spellcaster. Sensing a high level spellcaster will cause them to send out a wide-ranging howl, summoning other packs of Witchfinder Wolves to join in on the hunt. Witchfinder Wolves can "smell" the recent use of arcane magic, within the last 24 hours within their vicinity. The wolves cannot determine if a specific item is magical, however, they will sense magic on the item if it has been used within the past 24 hours. When they are actively sensing magic their eyes glow with an eerie green eldritch glow.
Since the collapse of the Empire that first bred them, Witchfinder Wolves have found their way into the wilds and have spread to other regions. Certain brave (some would say foolhardy) individuals have relearned the means to tame and train these ferocious predators, although even in the hands of the best animal trainer a Witchfinder Wolf can be an unpredictable beast at best. Unlike Dire Wolves, Witchfinder Wolves will not tolerate a rider (goblin or otherwise).
Witchfinder Wolves have the intelligence and viciousness of Dire Wolves but are even more cunning and display an almost malicious nature, especially when on the hunt for a spellcaster. They don't derive any special benefit or extra sustenance from preying upon spellcasters, but it is so ingrained into their nature to hunt mages, that even those living in the wild, engage in an almost vicious glee when they get the "scent" of an arcane spellcaster. In the wild they prefer to live in wooded and mountainous areas, but like Dire Wolves they are even more likely enter into caverns or dungeons in search of prey, especially spellcasters. When a Witchfinder wolf den is encountered, there is a 25% chance that 1d3 cubs are present. Witchfinder wolf cubs may be kept and trained in the same manner as dogs, but are difficult to train and control. However, if cubs are present the pack will fight ferociously to protect the cubs (Morale +3).
*If using these with the core ACKS Campaign, have them date back to the Empyrean War, possibly being bred by the Zaharans to hunt down enemy spellcasters.