Umbral Cat (3.5e Monster)

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Author: Eiji-kun (talk)
Co-Authors: Spanambula
Date Created: 7-23-10
Status: Complete
Editing: Clarity edits only please
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Umbral Cat
Size/Type: Tiny Magical Beast (Extraplanar, Incorporeal)
Hit Dice: 1d10 (5 hp)
Initiative: +2
Speed: 40 ft. (8 squares)
Armor Class: 20 (+2 size, +2 dex, +2 deflection, +4 dodge), touch 20, flat-footed 18
Base Attack/Grapple: +1/-11
Attack: Claw or Tentacle or Bite +4 melee (1d2-4, 20/x2)
Full Attack: Claw or Tentacle or Bite +4 melee (1d2-4, 20/x2)
Space/Reach: 2 1/2 ft./0 ft.
Special Attacks:
Special Qualities: blindsight 30, darkvision 60, hide in plain sight, immunity to negative energy, improved evasion, incorporeal traits, intangibility, manifest fatigue, shadow meld, shadow step, shape change, spell resistance
Saves: Fort +2, Ref +4, Will +1
Abilities: Str 3, Dex 15, Con 10, Int 6, Wis 12, Cha 14
Skills: Balance +10, Climb +6, Hide +24*, Jump +10, Listen +10, Spot +10
Feats: Alertness
Environment: Plane of Shadow
Organization: solitary or group (4-12)
Challenge Rating: 1/2
Treasure: None
Alignment: Usually True Neutral
Advancement: 2-3 HD (tiny), 4-5 HD (small)
Level Adjustment:
umbral cats

“Hey, that’s a great bunny shadow puppet… what do you mean ‘you thought I was making it’?!

-Tergan Fellisworth, Horizon Walker

From the shadows near the wall, a small black shadow moves of its own accord and glide towards you, quickly taking the shape of a small housecat. It regards you with faintly glowing purple eyes and brushes up against you. Petting it, you feel a softness like cool velvet. Then it seems to melt into your own shadow, and is gone.

Umbral cats are small, generally harmless creatures native to the Plane of Shadow. Hardy and elusive, they are named not for their likeness to domesticated cats, but for their cat-like behavior. Umbral cats are inquisitive to a fault, often playful and even more often lazy. They most frequently travel to the material plane by having hitched a ride on an unsuspecting adventurer traveling through the Plane of Shadow via the Shadow Walk spell.

The true shape of an Umbral Cat is not known; they take whatever form they wish, though the most common forms are that of a small cat, rat, or weasel. Formed from pure shadow essence, they are incorporeal on the material plane, but can manifest in corporeal form for brief periods. However, doing so appears to be tiresome for them, and manifesting for more than a few minutes at one time is practically unheard of.

Umbral Cats are more intelligent than animals, and are prized as familiars by some arcane practitioners, as they make excellent spies and scouts. Umbral Cats cannot speak, and it is not known if they communicate with each other telepathically.

Umbral Cats are weightless unless taking solid form, in which case they never weigh more than a pound. Umbral Cats understand common, but are incapable of speech or any other vocalization.


Umbral Cats are not fighters. They cannot harm anything while in their intangible state, but even when manifesting they are fairly weak creatures. When faced with foes that actually possess magical means of striking at them, an Umbral Cat will seek the nearest shadow and use their shadow step ability to escape. A tactic with more clever Umbral Cats is to jump into the shadow of their attacker and hide somewhere out of sight on the body of their attacker, and slink away unnoticed later.

Hide in Plain Sight (Su): An Umbral Cat can use the Hide skill even while being observed. In any lighting except direct sunlight, as long as it is within 10 feet of some sort of shadow, an Umbral Cat can hide itself from view in the open without anything to actually hide behind.

Intangibility (Su): At will, an Umbral Cat may take physical form by making itself into a solid shadow in order to manipulate objects for its master or just to cause mischief. It can suppress this ability as a free action and become incorporeal again. While in solid form, the Umbral Cat loses its incorporeal traits, cannot shadow meld or hide in plain sight, and is vulnerable to physical attacks.

Manifest Fatigue (Ex): Taking solid shape is tiring work. For every minute the Umbral Cat spends in solid form, it takes one point of non-lethal damage due to exhaustion. If its non-lethal damage reaches its current hit points, it becomes staggered and must immediately become incorporeal once again. A staggered Umbral Cat can still use its shadow step and shape changing abilities, but using them requires a standard action. Umbral Cats regain one hit point per full hour they remain incorporeal.

Shadow Meld (Su): As a swift action, an Umbral cat can become part of any shadow larger than a square foot, disappearing completely. It can even disappear into a moving shadow, such as one cast by a walking person. If the shadow occupied by the Umbral Cat vanishes due to a new light source or some other reason, the Umbral Cat is expelled from the shadow, suffering no ill effects other than annoyance.

Shadow Step (Su): At will, an Umbral Cat can travel between shadows as if by means of a dimension door spell. The limitation is that the magical transport must begin and end in an area with at least some shadow, and the shadows must be within line of sight of each other.

Shape Change (Su): As a free action, an incorporeal Umbral Cat can change its shape to whatever it wishes, though its size remains tiny. It is still just a shadow, and gains no special abilities from any form it takes.

Spell Resistance: An Umbral Cat has spell resistance equal to 12 plus the number of hit dice it possesses.

Skills: In any illumination except full daylight, an Umbral Cat receives a +10 racial bonus to hide checks. This bonus increases to +20 when within another shadow. Umbral cats also receive a +4 racial bonus on Listen and Spot checks.


An Umbral Cat can be taken as a familiar via the Improved Familiar feat, for a caster of at least caster level 7th or greater.

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Eiji-kun's Homebrew (5579 Articles)
AlignmentUsually True Neutral +
AuthorEiji-kun + and Spanambula +
BenefitNone. +
Challenge Rating1/2 +
EnvironmentPlane of Shadow +
Identifier3.5e Monster +
Level Adjustment+
PrerequisiteImproved Familiar, 7th-level or higher arcane spellcaster +
Rated ByHavvy +
RatingRating Pending +
SizeTiny +
SubtypeExtraplanar + and Incorporeal +
TitleUmbral Cat +
TypeMagical Beast +