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Spiders; Black Widow, Crab, and Tarantella

by Trevor Mellis

Vermin (Spider kind)


The spiders described here are meant to be used with the statistics for all spiders, found on Pages 209-210 of the 3rd Edition Monster Manual. All of the stats mentioned in the Monster Manual should be used for each of these spider types, except as noted below.


Black Widow

The black widow is the deadliest of all the spiders, and quite possibly the deadliest of all creatures. It is glossy black in colour with a bright red hourglass-shaped mark on its belly. A black widow spider is almost never seen outside its web. They are commonly found in dark, out-of-the way places, like caves, ruins, abandoned buildings, and such.


Poison (Ex): See page 205 of the Monster Manual. Victims of the bite of a black widow suffer a -2 penalty to their initial Fortitude save, and a -1 penalty to their secondary save. If both save throws are failed, the creature bitten by the black widow will die in 1d10 minutes.


Crab Spider

The crab spider is a typical hunting spider that lives deep underground or in dense forests and jungles. They are grey or green in colour, and have a chameleon-like ability to blend into their surroundings.


Camouflage (Ex): A crab spider can change the colour of its skin to blend into its surroundings. As a result, a crab spider gains a +8 circumstance bonus to its Hide checks when stationary.


Poison (Ex): See page 205 of the Monster Manual for difficulty class and damage information. The venom of a crab spider is very weak; victims of the crab spider's bite gain a +2 bonus to both the initial and secondary Fortitude saves against the poison.



A tarantella is a large, hairy spider, usually brown or black in colour. Tarantellas lurk in dark forests, jungles, or rocky areas that provide plenty of hiding places and plenty of food for it to hunt. It does not spin webs, but ambushes or chases down its prey.


Extra hit points: A tarantella is larger than your average spider, and as a result, gains a bonus of +2 hit points per hit dice (in addition to any Constitution bonuses).


Extra bite damage: Although not very poisonous, the tarantella has a serious bite...much more dangerous than any other spider. For Fine, Diminutive, and Tiny tarantellas, double the amount of damage listed in the Monster Manual for a monstrous spider. For Small and Medium tarantellas, add 4 points damage to the listed amount. For Large and Huge, add 10 points of damage to the listed amount, and for Gargantuan and Colossal tarantellas, add 20. (For example, a Small tarantella would inflict 1d4+2 points of damage with its bite, and a Huge tarantella would inflict 2d6+16.)


Poison (Ex): See page 205 of the Monster Manual for the difficulty class for this spider's venom. Unlike other spiders, the venom of a tarantella does not inflict initial or secondary ability damage. The poison from this creature will paralyse (stun) its victim for a number of hours equal to its initial and secondary damage (1-2 hours for a tiny tarantella, 1-4 for a medium one, and so forth).