• Justin Handlin

Dungeons & Dragons Monster Tactics: Displacer Beast

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Seldom where they seem, displacer beasts mislead enemies by concealing their true location by displacing light, which helps them evade danger. Aside from the Feywild, they also prowl the forests and caverns of the natural world, where their glowing emerald eyes appear to change position constantly as they stare out from their dark hiding places.

-Volothamp Geddarm-

Displacer beasts look like enormous panthers, but their barbed tentacles and illusions make them far deadlier. They quietly stalk their prey before bringing it down as quickly as possible in an ambush. The displacer beast's cunning, stealth, and ferocity have earned it a reputation as one of the most well-known predators of the Feywild. The creature's image is used in heraldry and literature to indicate a character or an organization that is elusive, tricky, or mysterious.

A surprise attack by a displacer beast means a quick death for most. The beast's speed is so great, and its attacks so fierce, that it can swiftly drop anyone who is not prepared and trained for battle.

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With their displacement ability and deft movement, displacer beasts can avoid most enemies, which means the creatures usually enter battle as the aggressors. They attack the weakest targets first, using their maneuverability to slip past tougher defenders.

When hunted, displacer beasts spring ambushes in thick forests or other places where they can quickly escape from enemies that prove too strong. If they're outmatched or gravely wounded, the beasts nearly always try to retreat, unless starvation drives them to fight on in hopes of claiming a meal.

Intelligent Predators

Displacer beasts hold a comfortable spot near the top of the food chain. Their predatory skill is unmatched, and they possess strong instincts and far greater intelligence than most ordinary animals. Displacer beasts set ambushes, track their prey by following clues (not just scents), and lure enemies into traps and hazards when fighting in a dangerous area. They're also capable of making relatively intricate plans. For example, they might remember which trade routes have seasonal traffic and return in the spring to plague travelers.

It's rare to encounter more than two displacer beasts (usually a mated pair) at one time, but a beast might lead a pack of other wild predators. Because of their natural instinct to seek dominance within a pack, displacer beasts prefer to attack animals rather than humanoids.

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