Mesozoic Magic

June 24th, 2015

Alex Riggs

Obscure Arcana Archive

                I was 5 years old when Jurassic Park hit theaters, and it was one of the most defining movies of my childhood. And that means that I have a very important question to ask all of you:

                Was Jurassic World as good as I hoped it would be?

                You see, at the time that I’m writing this, it hasn’t come out yet. I have almost a month to wait. But for you, it came out nearly two weeks ago. Surely you’ve seen it by now, loved it, and are just as hyped about dinosaurs as I no doubt will be. Or, maybe you haven’t, and you wish I would get to the spells. Fine, fair enough.

                Obviously, the point I’m trying to make is that today’s article contains spells that are all about dinosaurs, but it doesn’t seem very much in the spirit of dinosaurs to talk about it, so let’s skip straight to the action!


School transmutation (polymorph); Level druid 8, shaman 8
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S, F (a fossilized dinosaur bone)
Range personal
Target you
Duration 1 round/level (D)

                With a mighty roar, you transform into a great and ancient behemoth, taking the form of one of the terrible dinosaurs. This spell functions as beast shape IV, except that it only allows you to take the form of dinosaurs, and allows you to assume the form of a Gargantuan or Colossal dinosaur of the animal type, in addition to the sizes allowed by beast shape IV. If the form has any of the following abilities, you gain the listed ability: burrow 60 feet, climb 90 feet, fly 120 feet (good maneuverability), swim 120 feet, darkvision 90 feet, low-light vision, scent, capsize, clobbering charge, evasion, ferocity, grab, hold breath, leaping charge, poison, pounce, powerful bite, powerful charge, rake, reflexive strike, rend, roar, spikes, sprint, stun (DC equal to dinosaur shape’s saving throw DC),swallow whole (1d6 per 2 caster levels bludgeoning and acid damage, AC 10 + caster level, hp 2 times caster level), tail lash, tearing bite, thumb spikes, trample, or trip.

Gargantuan Dinosaur: If the form you take is that of a Gargantuan dinosaur, you gain a +8 size bonus to your Strength, a -6 penalty to your Dexterity, and a +8 natural armor bonus.

Colossal Dinosaur: If the form you take is that of a Colossal dinosaur, you gain a +10 size bonus to your Strength, a -6 penalty to your Dexterity, and a +10 natural armor bonus.

                The GM is the final arbiter of what does and does not count as a dinosaur, but as a general rule, only creatures listed with “dinosaur” in their names (such as “Dinosaur, Tyrannosaurus”) are suitable forms for this spell.


School conjuration (creation); Level druid 4, shaman 4, summoner 4, witch 6
Casting Time 1 standard action
Components V, S
Range medium (100 ft. + 10 ft./level)
Effect fog spreads in 40-ft. radius
Duration 1 min./level
Saving Throw Fortitude partial; Spell Resistance no

                You conjure swirling mists from the ancient times of the dinosaurs, which bring with them some of that lost age’s climate. This functions as fog cloud except as noted here. The fog carries with it an intense heat and humidity. Each round that a non-reptilian creature begins its turn within the fog, it must succeed on a Fortitude save (DC 10, +1 for each previous check) or suffer 1d4 points of nonlethal damage. This is treated as fire damage for the purposes of resistances, immunities, and vulnerabilities. Characters wearing heavy clothing or armor of any sort take a -4 penalty on this saving throw. A creature reduced to unconsciousness begins taking lethal fire damage, instead. A creature who takes any nonlethal damage from this spell becomes fatigued until the nonlethal damage is healed. Once the creature leaves the heated cloud, the nonlethal damage inflicted this way heals rapidly as the character’s body cools; the character recovers 1d2 points of nonlethal damage inflicted in this way for each round spent outside the cloud.

                Reptilian creatures in the cloud (including dragons, dinosaurs, humanoids with the reptilian or kobold subtype, and so on, at the GM’s discretion) do not suffer these penalties, and instead gain a +2 enhancement bonus to Strength and Dexterity for as long as they remain within the cloud, and 1d4 rounds thereafter.


School conjuration (summoning); Level druid 9
Casting Time 1 round
Components V, S, DF
Range close (25 ft. + 5 ft./2 levels)
Effect three or more summoned tyrannosauruses
Duration 10 min./level
Saving Throw none; Spell Resistance no

                Reaching back through the mists of time, you summon 1d3+2 tyrannosauruses, each with the advanced and giant simple creature templates. The summoned tyrannosauruses appear where you designate and act immediately after the end of your turn. They are not under your control, but immediately begin hunting for prey. As you cast the spell, you can designate up to 1 creature per 2 caster levels, each of which must be within 60 feet of you. The tyrannosauruses will not attack the designated creatures.

                Any creature that is currently swallowed whole by one of the tyrannosauruses at the end of the spell’s duration is transported back with them whence they came, still inside the stomach of the giant lizard. The unfortunate creature continues to take damage each round until he either dies or escapes from the tyrannosaurus’s stomach. If he escapes into the tyrannosaurus’s mouth, he is immediately transported back to the place where the tyrannosaurus was when the spell ended. If he dies, he is not transported back.