House Sphinx

January 4th, 2016

Alex Riggs

Exotic Encounters Archive

                It's a new year, and that means a brand new set of monsters, and we're starting with basics. Namely, we're revisiting a classic Egyptian monster: the sphinx. This one is pocket-sized, and perfect for anyone looking for a new familiar.


Sphinx, House

                This creature could almost be mistaken for a housecat, if not for the 18-inch-long, white, feather wings which extend from its back, and its deep, soulful eyes, which betray a greater intelligence.

HOUSE SPHINX               CR 2
XP 600
N Tiny magical beast
Init +2; Senses darkvision 60 ft., low-light vision; Perception +2


AC 15, touch 14, flat-footed 13 (+2 Dex, +1 natural, +2 size)
hp 19 (3d10+3)
Fort +4, Ref +5, Will +5


Speed 30 ft., fly 40 ft. (poor)
Melee 2 claws +7 (1d2+1), bite +7 (1d3+1)
Space 2-1/2 ft.; Reach 0 ft.
Special Attacks diving strike, pounce
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 6th; concentration +7)
     At will—detect magic, read magic
     1/week—divination, remove curse


Str 13, Dex 15, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 15, Cha 12
Base Atk +3; CMB +2; CMD 14
Feats Iron Will, Weapon Finesse
Skills Fly +8, Knowledge (history) +5, Knowledge (religion) +5, Stealth +20; Racial Modifiers +4 Fly, +4 Stealth
Languages Common, Sphinx
SQ sphinx's knowledge


Environment warm deserts and hills
Organization solitary, pair, circle (3–12), or colony (13–32)
Treasure standard


                Diving Strike (Ex): Whenever a house sphinx makes a charge attack while flying, if it descends at least 10 feet as part of its movement, it gains a +2 bonus on all damage rolls made as part of the charge.

                Sphinx’s Knowledge (Ex): House sphinxes make excellent advisors, and can often provide useful facts and insights. The house sphinx is treated as trained in all Knowledge skills, and whenever a non-sphinx within 30 feet of a house sphinx makes a Knowledge check, the house sphinx can use the aid another action to assist them. Additionally, if both the house sphinx and the creature it is aiding get an odd result on their die rolls, the bonus the house sphinx grants on the check if its aid another attempt is successful increases to +5, whereas if both the house sphinx and the creature it is aiding get an even result on their die rolls, the aided creature is treated as trained in that skill for the purposes of determining whether or not it can achieve results higher than 10.



                These small creatures are deceptively adorable, and combine the appeal of house cats with the beauty and wonder of angels. Curious and inquisitive to a fault, house sphinxes are bundles of constant energy, always poking their noses into every new and exciting mystery they can find. This curiosity often leads them into companionship with wizards and other spellcasters as familiars, and house sphinxes are highly sought as such. The majority of house sphinxes live in the wild, however, in large colonies which roam the deserts, plains, and hills, seeking out new and exciting locations to explore, in a roiling mob of excited, childlike creatures.

                The exact nature of the house sphinx is a matter of some controversy, as other species of sphinx see their existence as a terrible embarrassment. Criosphinxes and hieracosphinxes view them as abominations, and go out of their way to attack any house sphinxes that they become aware of, making sure to gruesomely dismember the bodies and spread the remains. Androsphinxes and gynosphinxes take a somewhat less hostile approach to their smaller kin, but still have little patience for them, and will generally not tolerate their presence. In fact, the mere mention of house sphinxes is a great source of annoyance, which has prevented many scholars from gaining much of any insight into the sphinx's perspective on their smaller cousins. What few sphinxes are willing to speak about house sphinxes universally claim that there is no actual relation, and that only humanoids could possibly be confused or short-sighted enough to see any kind of resemblance.

                A spellcaster of at least 7th level, who has the Improved Familiar feat, and whose alignment is within one step of neutral, may select a house sphinx as a familiar.