Finding HQ

Giant Spiders

Giant Spiders inhabit the woods and underground labyrinths of the Empire and surrounding lands. There are several types to be found; all are dangerous. Giant Spiders inject venom when they bite, although the effects of the poison may vary. Some Giant Spiders actively hunt; others wait for their prey to become caught in their webs.

Giant Spiders are animals, and are not intelligent. What they lack in smarts they make up for in ruthless hunting ability. They will eat, or attempt to eat, anything that moves, including Heroes!

Unlike some animals that ignore potential prey when not hungry, Giant Spiders will hunt at all times. If they find prey when not hungry, they will wrap the unlucky victim with web thread, saving it for later. Giant Spiders keep their 'future food' from escaping by injecting a smaller than normal dose of poison. This renders the victim unconscious. Web Spinning Spiders will hang their future food from a spot on their web, while Hunting Spiders will carry future food back to their lair.


Giant Hunting Spiders:
These Giant Spiders do not spin webs to catch their prey. Instead they hunt it. While they do not spin webs, they can produce the web thread, and often encase their victims in the sticky substance to reduce struggling and help prevent the victim from getting away. Giant Hunting Spiders are larger than Web Spinning Spiders, using their bulk to hold down their victim while striking.

If the Heroes come upon the lair of a Giant Hunting Spider, they will find the residue of past meals there. Hunting Spiders care nothing for gold, weapons, and other treasure, so if this Spider has feasted on creatures carrying such things, the Heroes will find it once the Spider is destroyed.

Web Spinning Spiders:
These Giant Spiders spin huge webs, hoping an animal will become caught in it. Giant Spider webs, like the ones spun by their smaller cousins, are hard to see yet incredibly strong. They often spin them along game trails or near watering holes. Web Spinners are always found close to their webs, and often are hidden in a concealed corner of it. They will use any material that can be found nearby to build their place of concealment. Web Spinners are sensitive to vibrations in the web, and can often be lured from hiding by tweaking one of the strands.


Besides causing normal damage, a Giant Spider's bite is venomous. When bitten by a Giant Spider, the Hero must roll 1 red die. On a roll of 6, he has been envenomed. Until an antivenom potion is taken, the Hero will loose one Body Point per turn from the poison until dead. A healing potion or spell will restore Body Points, but the Hero will still be envenomed. Some Giant Spiders will use their venom to knock a Hero unconscious, hoping to save the Hero to eat later. To do so, they will inject only a partial venom dose when attacking. When a Spider is attacking this way, the Hero should still roll one red die. Again, on a roll of 6, the Hero is envenomed. He immediately becomes unconscious, and cannot move. The Spider will no longer attempt to attack the Hero, but will envelop the Hero in web thread (see Enveloping Prey below). If the Quest being played makes no mention of whether the Spider is attempting to kill the Heroes or knock them unconscious, this decision is left up to the GameMaster. Once a Hero is envenomed, additional Spider bites will do regular damage but he will not receive additional doses of venom. An unconscious Hero can be restored by either a healing spell, or by forcing a healing potion down his throat.

Once per turn, during its movement phase, the Spider may leap onto a Hero. The Spider makes this leap onto any Hero no more than two squares away. The Spider may leap over other Heroes, Monsters, or furniture. When making this leap, it attempts to jump on top of the Hero. The Hero must roll one red die. On a roll of 1-4, he has avoided the Spider. Place the Spider on an square adjacent to the Hero (if none are free, leave the Spider in its current location). If the Spider pins the Hero, he may not attack with any weapon besides a dagger, and may attack no other monster besides the Spider. If the Hero has a dagger but is not currently wielding it, he must spend a turn dropping his other weapon and drawing the dagger. The Hero remains pinned as long as the Spider lives. As long as the pinned Hero lives, the Spider will only attack him, even if other Heroes attack the Spider.

Enveloping Prey:
If the Giant Spider has knocked a Hero unconscious, it will attempt to envelop him with web thread. The Spider cannot move or attack that turn, and if it looses a Body Point to an attack made by another Hero, the attempt at Enveloping has failed. Once enveloped, the Hero may not move, attack, or defend. Hunting Spiders will attempt to carry any enveloped Hero back to its lair, where it will leave him and resume hunting. Web spinning Spiders will hang the Hero from its web, and will return to attack any other Hero in or near its web.

Following Prey:
Once a Spider with this trait either sees a Hero, or crosses the path where a Hero has traveled, it will follow him as long as it lives - it will not give up the pursuit until it dies. If the Hero dies, it will still follow his scent until coming to the death place. In this place it will either begin following another Hero's scent (if another Hero was in the same location) or begin hunting again. If a Spider with this trait crosses a trail where more than one Hero has been, assign each of the Heroes a number on a red die (use the left over numbers as 'roll again'). Roll the die to determine which of the Heroes the Spider begins following.

Net Casting:
A Spider with this trait carries a small net made of web thread in its front legs. When attacking from ambush, it will attempt to tangle its prey in the net. The net can be thrown at any Hero no more than two squares from the Spider, and is thrown any time during the Spider's movement phase. Throwing the net does not count as the Spider's attack. When the net is thrown at a Hero, he must roll one red die. On a roll of 1-3 the Hero is caught in the net. The rules for a Hero caught in a net of web thread are the same as a Hero caught in a Spider web. Once the net is thrown, it cannot be used again.

As long as a Spider with this trait is still in its web, it will sway back and forth, attempting to hypnotize any Hero looking at the web (the direction the Hero is pointed is the direction he is looking). Roll two red dice for the Spider, and the Hero should roll two. If the Hero's roll plus his current Mind Points is greater than the Spider's roll, the Hero escapes being hypnotized. Each turn that the Hero is looking at the Spider in the web he must make the throw against being hypnotized. A hypnotized Hero will continue walking in the direction of the web until he is caught in it (see rules for Heroes caught in webs). The Spider will continue to try to hypnotize the Heroes until either all are caught, or either it or its web is attacked. A hypnotized Hero will stay that way until either the Spider is killed or he is attacked.


When fighting Giant Spiders, the Heroes may have to deal with this menace. Giant Spiders' web threads are very strong, yet almost invisible. The webs often outlast their owners - it is not uncommon for Heroes to stumble into the web of a long dead Spider.

Webs, whether ones of living Spiders or dead, should be treated as a trap. If the Heroes search for it they can spot it, but if not they will blunder into it, becoming stuck.

There are times when a Hero needs to cut a Giant Spider's web, such as when a Hero is caught in it or when it is blocking a passage. It may be cut with a sharp weapon (blunt weapons like staffs, maces, clubs, and hammers, will not work). A Hero that is stuck in a web rolls 1/2 (round down) his normal attack dice when attacking or trying to cut the web. Other Heroes roll their normal number attack dice when cutting a web.

When a Hero attacks or gets stuck in a web with a living Giant Spider in it, the vibrations alert the Spider to the presence of the Hero. The Spider will immediately attack, attempting to make the Hero his next meal.

When a Hero attacks a web, there is a potential for his weapon becoming entangled in the sticky substance. After the Hero rolls his attack dice against the web, he should roll two red dice. On a roll of 2 or 3, his weapon has become stuck in the web. He must cut it loose, just like when a Hero is stuck, to retrieve it.

When a web is destroyed, anything that is stuck in it will fall to the ground. This includes Heroes, stuck weapons, and the residue of past meals - gold, treasure and weapons if the past meals have included Heroes or Monsters that might carry these.

A Hero stuck in a web cannot move at all until freed.

Enveloped Heroes:
When a Hero is enveloped in web thread by a Giant Spider, he can no longer move. The web thread is so strong that he cannot break free by himself, and must be helped by another Hero. When a Hero rescues an enveloped friend, he must have a dagger or sword. It takes one turn to cut the web from the enveloped Hero, during which the rescuing Hero cannot attack. The enveloped Hero cannot attack or defend while enveloped, and since he cannot move he cannot cast a spell or use any item he has in inventory.


Generally Giant Spiders are found alone. They do not hunt in packs, nor will you find more than one web in a room. You might find more than one Spider in a long passage, though, with one on each end. Spiders are cannibalistic, and will eat other Spiders if they catch them.

Having said that, there is nothing to stop you from playing Spiders any way you wish. You might want to give them some intelligence. There could be more than one Web Spinner on a web, or more than one web in a room. The Spiders could work in tandem to catch their victims. Hunting Spiders could work in packs, like wolves.

Another way to play them is to make the Giant Spiders intelligent, like the ones in Tolkien's books The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Perhaps the Heroes will stumble on a Spider city in the treetops, built of web thread. Or they could find an underground city of Hunting Spiders. Whether these Spiders are friendly or not would depend on you. You might want to allow intelligent Spiders to wear armor, use weapons, and even cast magic.