Friday 17 April 2020

d50 Birds of Bastion

You all liked d100 Horses?

Roll d50 to find which weird bird is around here.

Arnold, this is a challenge. Make this up to d100. Our Horses need avian companionship.

Unless noted, assume 3hp, STR 5 and a peck too small to do any real harm.
  1. Medician Crane: Waist-high black crane with a scalpel-sharp bill (d4) and adhesive spit. Cultivated by the rich and sent into poor areas to administer ineffective surgery. 
  2. Protobird: Knee-high dinosaur-thing with yapping jaws (d6). Forced to live on rooftops among its feathered cousins. Hates what it has become. 
  3. Legal Eagle: Fat grey eagle. Enforces only unwritten rules, mostly through squawking but can use its Talons (d6) if ignored.
  4. Coalman's Parrot: Dull yellow, with a taste for spicy and picante foods. Traditionally taken as pets by miners and fed mustard in exchange for limited conversation.
  5. Steam Penguin: Incredibly tough little things that hang around steam-vents before hunting down large fish as part of a ruthlessly effective pack. 
  6. Major Falcon: Huge red bird of prey that seems utterly ineffective at hunting anything living in Bastion. A few environmental organisations work tirelessly to set up fake prey for the few surviving specimens to hunt, as they will not accept charity food.
  7. Unnamed Goose: A breed of goose known for malicious behaviour, leading to it being stripped of its former name, which is now stricken from all archives. 
  8. Cog Crow: Clever golden-eyed blackbirds, bred to collect any loose machine-parts and take them to a single pile in Bastion. Nobody knows who bred them for this purpose, but nobody is laying claim to the scrap heap.
  9. Hangman's Flamingo: Dark grey and silent, they hang from their feet in condemned buildings and covered alleyways, picking off spiders and rats, and giving trespassers a nasty fright.
  10. Kestrellion: Small, white cloaked bird of prey that seems to have limited control over inferior birds. Will often sit at a vantage point and cause pigeons and gulls to fly straight into a dog or pony, before swooping in and delivering the killing blow to the weakened prey.
  11. Sire of the Spires: Dove-like bird with distinctive grey/white triangle markings. No being can bring themselves to willingly harm these birds, and their growing population seems to favour temple roofs for their nests. 
  12. Steward's Condor: Especially large, muscular breed of this already huge bird. Can glide, but not really able to take-off anymore. Bred as intimidating guard pets, they actually have a very gentle manner.
  13. Mammoth Mynah: Horse-sized bird-of-burden known for imitating its owner in the most unflattering light. 
  14. Mortar Pecker: Quick little red birds with a steely beak. Can be seen swarming over old buildings, gathering mortar from the brickwork to use in their sturdy nests. Can cause a building to collapse if left undeterred. 
  15. Clubber Kite: Graceful, hovering bird of prey that has mastered the art of dropping rocks onto their prey. In Bastion they have adapted to dropping rocks on the heads of unaware street-food enthusiasts and scooping up the fallen kebabs and rice-balls. 
  16. Limb Vulture: Stooped, flightless, and barely able to hold the weight of its huge, chomping beak. Will approach an already weakened victim before attempting to tear off a single limb to feed on. 
  17. Bleeding Dove: Deep red with black eyes and beak. Bred for releasing at funerals as a more sombre alternative to white doves.
  18. Reid's Heron: Unkempt black feathers and distinctive blue eyes. To attract mates, the males gather rough cuts of metal and scrape them together to create an atonal cacophony. The loudest and most unpleasant is the most successful at attracting a female.
  19. Parallelican: A clumsy sea-bird that simultaneously exists above and below the surface. The airborn version scouts for fish while the underwater version scoops them up in its gaping maw. 
  20. Patched Bucket-Head: A great crested sea-duck occasionally seen in Bastion's harbours. Stories tell of these ducks helping sailors to bail out water from sinking ships with their deep, broad bills. There's no record of this actually happening, but crews will often throw some scraps to them if they're seen at sea.
  21. Green Owl: Always covered in a thick layer of moss, which they have adapted to cultivate as a means of camouflage. Always seen in pairs, tending to each others coats, which doubles as a secondary source of nutrition.
  22. Immortal Canary: An unremarkable-looking variety of small yellow bird. They are completely immune to toxins and diseases, require no food or water, and don't even seem to age. If they do not suffer a violet death at the claws of a cat they could theoretically live forever. Nobody has yet managed to harness this ability, but they still fetch a vast price for those interested in such things.
  23. Widow's Hoser: Fat, blue, trumpet-billed thing with a mournful cry. Often seen in cemeteries rummaging for grubs in the fresh earth. 
  24. Trap Weaver: Bright yellow birds that craft elaborate nests out of twisted vegetation. This specific variety have adapted their nests to function as traps, springing shut when an intruder enters and suffocating them under the pressure.
  25. Pink Egret: Long-legged beach-bird that each guard their own rock-pool aggressively. They cultivate their own food supply in their pool, even heading out to sea to bring in specific prey to breed. 
  26. Hossbird: Cheery little blue bird with a distinctive, syncopated song. Horses in particular seem amused by them, so they often form a sort of symbiotic relationship where the bird cleans mites from the horse's main in return for a song.
  27. Electro Grackle: Glistening indigo bird that seems attracted to large buildups of electromagnetism, often building their nests around pylons or generators. 
  28. Coualing: Tiny beige birds, barely thumb-length, with black mask-like markings around their eyes. Descend on other bird's nests in packs to feed on their eggs and young and even tear apart the nest for materials. 
  29. Linton's Partridge: Tragic-looking game bird. Formerly the official emblem of a luxurious boroughs. After one of these birds accidentally killed the mayor during a civil ceremony they were banished, but now these formerly pampered birds are usually seen begging for scraps.
  30. Fairy-Rat: Resembles a colourful feathered rat, barely capable of frantic flight. Children believe that feeding it sweets will yield wishes, but all they have is a bacteria-ridden bite that tends to cause fevered delusions. 
  31. Gutter Gull: Dirty white gulls that waddle through the gutters of Bastion, getting fat on spilled gravy and drunk on discarded beer, after which they usually become aggressive.
  32. Creeper Finch: A wingless, four-legged little bird that excels at climbing walls and sneaking into open windows, raiding homes for scraps of bred or fruit.
  33. Cowbird: Stubborn little owl that fights off any attackers with its deceptively sharp horns (d6). Always seems to build its nest in warm, cosy locations, where they annoy the existing residents with a low, constant, mooing hoot.
  34. Lone Starling: Small black bird with a sharp bill. Instinct seems to draw them together, but they do nothing but squabble loudly, making them a real pest to be around. 
  35. Caw Hen: Bright red chicken with strong talons allowing it to haul its flightless body up to perch on branches. Their eggs are delicious, with large buttery yolks, but the hen seems content to lay them straight from the branch to smash on the floor, so they are often carefully stalked, with a net ready to catch. 
  36. Lobster Pigeon: Your standard grey vermin-bird, but this variety hides a grey-blue carapace under its feathers. It can't fly for long, but birds of prey hoping for an easy meal are usually deterred by its toughness.
  37. Death Quail: Pale little flightless birds kept as pets by the fashionable. In day they enter a sleep so deep that they appear completely dead, but at night they are full of life, eagerly hopping about and gathering loose seeds, fruit, or carrion. 
  38. Catterrail: Secretive little brown bird, flightless but with a keen beak it uses to catch mice and small rats. Rarely seen but appear to swarm out of the woodwork to deter any cats from entering their territory.
  39. Gobbling Hawk: A ridiculous wattled head on a majestic golden body. This bird of prey casts a broad shadow, descending on dogs and even small donkeys to tear them apart in a gobbling frenzy.
  40. Under-Turkey: A rare breed that makes its home primarily in the Underground. Smaller than a traditional turkey, but sporting a peacock-like spectrum of colours. They always know the way to the surface, and scurry towards there in case of danger. 
  41. Robber's Duck: Black-headed duck with an iridescent body and golden bill. If placed in an unfamiliar location (such as a bank) they start to repeat a quacking snore noise, which causes other creatures (including humans) to get a sudden urge to sleep. 
  42. Billy-Burra: Crooked little grey bird that bounds after large snails, spiders, and small lizards with its crunching beak. They all respond to their name (Billy) if called, so are often kept as pets and called out to deal with unpleasant creepy-crawlies in the house.
  43. Sparroc: Fat, football-sized sparrow that seems to have eaten its way out of the food chain. Gorges on bread and especially pastry if it can find some discarded in the street. Predators look at them like somebody might look, over-faced, at a mountainous plate of mashed potato, before suddenly losing their appetite.
  44. Toucawary: Huge blue sabre-billed birds known for their dramatic fights, which are part flyby-joust and part treetop-swordfight. Certain aristocratic families would keep a single Toucawary as their champion to fight against those of other families to settle minor disputes.
  45. Faux Raven: Appears to be a normal raven at first, but these green-feathered birds have taken to dying their plumage in industrial waste to mimic a raven's appearance. Real ravens are too smart to fall for this, but let them stay nearby as a more tempting target to would-be predators.
  46. Flighted Emu: They said it couldn't be done, but this gangly-legged bird has been bred with wings broad enough to fly, and a barrel-like chest to power them. Unfortunately, they only live a matter of months before their lungs give out.  
  47. Oilbird: Tiny, needle-nosed hovering bird known for carefully lifting oil-caps from vehicles and machinery to feed on the engine oil within, which they eat exclusively to feed their ultra-high metabolisms. 
  48. Wagging Warbler: Plump little gold and grey birds that have a thumping, rhythmic song. If startled they can combine their bassy thumps to produce a noise loud enough to shatter nearby glass and cause temporary deafness.
  49. Pipebird: Slender kingfisher-like bird that wedges itself snugly into a pipe or a gutter, waiting for bugs to pass by before snatching them up. Considered one of the greatest causes of flooding and leaks in Bastion. 
  50. Magnificent Bustard: Nobody has ever agreed on an emblematic animal for Bastion, but this strutting white fowl, with its golden moustache-like protrusion and bright red eyes was a good candidate. Unfortunately it was also delicious, so was hunted to extinction, or at least you thought so until you saw this one...


  1. My favourite birds were one through fifty. Whoops!

  2. Awesome list, I really like how you used real birds for inspiration