Steelhide Crocodile

by Jason D
 Climate/Terrain: Swamp
 Frequency: Common (65% chance)
 Organization: Solitary
 Activity Cycle: Day
 Diet: Carnivore
 Intelligence: Low Intelligence (5-7)
 Treasure: Steelhide skin
 Alignment: Lawful Evil

 No. Appearing: 250
 Armor Class: +30
 Movement: Walk/swim
 Hit Dice: 4d6
 No. of Attacks: 6
 Damage/Attack: Bite =100, Claw= 40, Constrict:with tail= 25, with
 Special Attack: Swallow whole, improved grab, constrict,
 Special Defences: Fast healing, regeneration, damage resistance, sce
 Magic Resistance: None
 Size: Titanic
 Morale: high
 XP Value: Very high
General Introduction: A steelhide crocodile is a titanic creature. It can swallow whole 1 colossal creature (such as a T. Rex), 2 gargantuan creatures (such as certain dragons), 4 huge creatures (such as smaller dragons), 8 large creatures (such as bears), 16 medium creatures (such as humans), 32 fine creatures (such as small elves), 64 small creatures (such as halflings,) 128 tiny creatures (such as gnomes), 256 dimunitive creatures (such as fairies), and 512 miniscule creatures (such as pixies.) A steelhide crocodile is 120-180 feet long, with more of them leaning to the 180 side. They have a layer of bony armor over thier skin, 21 layers of tough, scaly skin underneath that armor, another layer of bony plates embedded beneath that skin, and over 100 more layers of leathery hide underneath that. This gives thier hides a steel-like hardness, and can actually be harder than some steel if scar tissue develops. Steelhide crocodile can heal very fast. For example, if they have suffered a wound that goes down just before hitting thier brain, they can simply press the two sides of skin separated by the wound together, hold it for a few seconds, and the bleeding will coagulate, and a long scab will form. Steelhide crocodiles can also regrow limbs. If they lose a leg, a toe, thier tail, or almost any other part of thier body (they CANNOT regrow thier entire head, although theyt can regrow a lost jaw), it will grow back. A toe will regrow in a matter of hours, a foot will regernate a a few days, the entire tail will regenerate in a few weeks. This regeneration has led some to believe that steelhide crocodiles' skin is impenetrable. It isn't, but is VERY hard, and will heal so fast that it is "effectively imepentrable" in certain situations.

Combat: Steelhide crocodile fight in a fast and furious manner. They usually overwhelm thier opponents in seconds, almost always killing them. Their primary attack is biting and swallowing. A steelhide crocodile will eat nearly any creature there is. Once inside the stomach, a swallowed creature will be unable to exit until the steelhide crocodile is dead. The hide and organs are very tough and as one layer is cut away, another behind will regrow, so trying to cut out isn't an option. Muscular action from the esophagus and intestinal tract prohibits escape until the steelhide is dead. Then a swallowed character can leave via the mouth of excretory tract. In addition to biting, steelhide crocdiles also claw at thier opponents. One random claw swipe can cut an elf in two. They also will try to smash thier opponents to a bloody pulp with thier tails (which are like a huge steel beam.) Also, steelhide crocodiles will try to constrict thier opponents and suffocate them. Sometimes they will try to drown them, but mostly they will try to crush them in between thier huge toes (a steelhide crocodile has more strength and muscle in its weakest, smallest toe than an elf has in its entire body) or try to crush them with thier tail (wrap thier tail around an opponent and crush them.)They also try to stomp opponents with thier huge feet and may even try to body slam thier opponents.

Habitat/Society: You may be surprised to know that steelhide crocodiles can speak common, and that common is their primary language (although many of them can speak the crocodile language also.)The steelhide crocodiles are very arrogant, believing that they are the chosen race to inherit the world. They THINK they are the strongest (they're not far off), and as such, think that the worlds' resources rightfully belong to them. To them, all other creatures are evil. Even other crocodiles. If they see ANY other creature, even a frog, they are expected to kill it in order to save resources which "rightfully" belong to them. Steelhide crocodiles are uncivilized, and as such are both polygamous and polygynus (there are multiple mates on both the male and female side.)They are quite evil in many ways. For example, if a hatchling (which is already 8 feet long!) has a birth defect or mental condition, it is crushed by the foot of its mother and left to rot, beliving that "weak" members of thier species will "taint" thier blood.

Ecology: Steelhide crocodiles are becoming more numerous and at an alarming rate. They can mate at the age of 35 (they live to be 250 on average), can continue to mate until they die, and have a very low hatchling mortality rate. The mothers also protect thier hatchlings in a very odd way; (before I continue, I want you to know that the following ideas are NOT mine, but are the work of my friend, "Non name7" who came up with the basic premise for this monster)the mothers will lick thier hatchlings, putting thier saliva over thier hatchlings entire body. This will protect the hatchlings from the acid in their mother's stomach, as the mother will then proceed to swallow her children whole, but keep them alive inside of her. Once inside of thier mother, the hatchlings will eat food from thier mothers stomach, and when the stomach becomes too full for the children (such as when the mother swallows a fully grown T. Rex), the children can hide in a pouch in thier mothers' mouth beneath her tongue. Also, mother steelhide crocodiles will manpulate the muscles of thier stomach and esophagus in order to stimulate the muscles of thier hatchlings and make the hatchlings stronger (by massaging the muscles of thier children , a steelhide crocodile mother will strengthen her children, without having to risk losing them in the outside world. The children also enjoy the feeling of it.)The children often sleep for the first 25 years of thier lives, and will be fed by thier mother the entire time from inside of her. She controls wheather they stay inside of her, or leave, as her muscles dictate thier fates (her muscles can massage them, move them through the stomach or esophagas, give them food and water from the intestine, and even open pores in the stomach to let in some air for the children.)Steelhide mothers will almost NEVER let thier children go until the children are big enough to swallow an elf whole. When this happens, the steelhide crocodiles are approaching the limit of being comfortable inside of thier mothers' stomach. Another facet of steelhide crocodiles is thier vulnerability to lactic acidosis. Lactic acidosis occurs when the body relies on anerobic respiration, rather than aerobic respiration. When this happens, lactic acid builds up in the muscles. For humans, this is easily solved by catching ones breath, but for crocodiles, it isn't that simple. When a crocodile is exerting itself or is under stress, lactic acid builds up. Unlike humans, lactic acid does NOT simply leave thier muscles. In fact, the lactic acid may build up so much in a short time that it will get into the crocodiles' bloodstream and kill it. The larger the crocodile, the more vunerable it is to lactic acidosis. Steelhide crocodiles know this and have a way of solving the problem. They know which plants can be mixed to cure lactic acid. They will eat these plants. If one steelhide sees his/her mate suffering for lactic acidosis, he/she will chew up the plants, mix it with his/her digestive juices/saliva, and then regurgitate it into the mouth of the afflicted steelhide crocodile. Then he/she will massage the feet of their afflicted mate in order to restore his/her mobility in the shortest time possible. It takes a minumum of 2 hours for a steelhide crocodile to even partially recover from lactic acidosis. This partial recovery simply means that they have regained conscoiusness, and it can take hours more to regain mobility. Steelhide crocodiles cosider physical confort very important. Steelhide crocodiles have such strong salt glands (which excrete excess salt) that they can drink salt water with no ill effects whatsoever. Steelhide crocodiles have fully webbed feet. They have five toes on thier front feet and four toes on their back feet. To prove thier "superiority" over other creatures, they will often boast of thier ability to cruch creatures between their toes, or to swallow almost anything whole.

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