- Los Diablos, the Devil's
- A Scenerio Seed for Call
of Cthulhu/Delta Green
From: Morrigan (email@example.com)
Date: Tuesday November 18th , 2003
- The Devil's Herd is an undetermined
number of ghostly Texas longhorn bulls, all of stupendous size.
A bull from the Devil's Herd looks to be the same size as a bison,
cape buffalo, or even a rhinoceros. Every sighting of the Devil's
Herd will number at least five animals, and will include one
pure white bull, one midnight black, and one blood red. This
suggests some connection between Los Diablos and the steeds of
the horsemen of the Apocalypse, but exactly what that connection
might be is unknown. The Devil's Herd is also likely to have
a connection to the Wild Hunt of European folklore, as well.
The eyes of the bulls of the Devil's Herd all glow like blazing
embers, while the bulls snort blasts of smoke and belch balls
of fire. Their unshod hooves are made from the blackest iron,
as are their broad horns, while a ring of tarnished brass passes
through their noses. Close inspection of the hide of one of the
bulls reveals that they do not have a covering of hair, but instead
of very small iron scales. The herd is surrounded by a zone of
extremely intense heat - the heat from the fires of Hell.
- The Devil's Herd is a portent
of doom in the west, especially the Spanish influenced southwest.
Keepers can use sightings of the Devil's Herd as a sign of portents
to come, like seeing a shooting star, either ones the Keeper
has designed to be dispensed, or the proceeds of spells/ psychic
talents with divinatory aspects. When Los Diablos are to be seen
as such a portent, they will take the form of a ghostly herd
of gigantic bulls, accompanied by grim faced cowboys, seen in
dim light, or from a distance, or even galloping across the skies
(the latter is particularly apt just before or during particularly
noteworthy storms). Seeing such a portent costs 1d3 SAN.
- It takes four nights for
the Devil's Herd to fully manifest its full, sinister aspect.
- On the first night, the focus
of their attention will hear a distant rumbling - it is the Keeper's
choice if others can hear this rumbling - as though a herd of
bison or steers were stampeding in the distance. The next night,
the rumbling grows louder, as though the stampede might be just
around the corner. A SANity check must be made or those hearing
the rumbling will lose 1d3 SAN points. The third night, the target
of the Devil's Herd, and any others the Keeper chooses, will
see a cattle stampede in the distance, a parade of titan bulls
racing across the horizon at dawn or dusk. A failed SAN check
results in a loss of 1d4 points. On the fourth night, the
Devil's Herd will fully manifest, as an actual stampede of unearthly,
yet entirely physical bulls. Witnessing the physical manifestation
of Los Diablos is worth a loss of 1d6 SAN points if a check is
- It is on the fourth night
that Los Diablos will attempt to claim a target.
- The keeper will designate
a character, either a player character or non-player character,
as the target of the Devil's Herd. Los Diablos will always attempt
to run this individual down. If any of the constituent bulls
of Los Diablos scores a successful hit with their charge attack
on the target, then the Devil's Herd has claimed him. What happens
next depends on the character of their target.
- A person of good character
will be carried along with Los Diablos for a
time, as a sort of ghostly outrider or cowboy, either mounted
or on foot,
and will be released by the Devil's Herd 1d100 days later, having
year for every day he or she accompanied Los Diablos.
- A person of evil character
will be transformed into one of the constituent
bulls of the Devil's Herd, and will never be seen by kith and
- Persons of indeterminate
character will be carried along by Los Diablos
forevermore, as ghostly outriders, aging a year for every day
they accompany the herd but never dying. If someone of good character
is targeted by the Herd, it is this company of damned souls they
join for the duration of their time with the Devil's Herd. This
is a uniquely western Hell, to forever tend the Devil's Herd.
- Western folklore has it that
the Devil's Herd ranges far and wide, claiming souls for their
infernal master, which implies a more dire fate for those carried
along by the Herd. If the Keeper chooses to have a firmer connection
between Los Diablos and the powers of Hell, the consequences
of being targeted by Los Diablos are as described above. However,
the persons of indeterminate character carried along by the Herd
have been claimed by the Devil as his own, and this is their
unique punishment in Hell: to forever tend the Devil's Herd as
its cowboys. Those good souls who are gathered up by the Herd
ride with it for a time, but are eventually taken with the Herd
to Hell itself, there to contest with the Devil over their souls.
The Keeper is encouraged to have fun with however the ownership
of these souls is contested, but anyone who loses this contest
with the Devil joins the company of cursed cowboys who accompany
Los Diablos as its outriders.
- Although the bulls of the
Devil's Herd are phenomenally tough, they can be hurt and killed,
and if the red, white, and black bulls from the herd can all
be killed, Los Diablos are prevented from claiming their target.
If one of the ghostly outriders can succeed in roping one of
the bulls, that person is immediately freed from both the Herd
itself and any claim the Devil might have on it. One of these
ghostly cowboys cannot be harmed by any means so long as it accompanies
the herd, so even death itself is not a reprieve from their torment.
- Although the Devil's Herd
obviously is best used in games with something of a wild west
flavor, such as adventures set in the southwest, or concerning
cowboys or western lore in some other direct way, this should
not limit their uses. Imagine the Devil's Herd chasing down a
target in modern day Las Vegas, or claiming a Vietnam-era GI
- in Indochina - who hailed from Albuquerque. The Devil's Herd
can, and should, turn up anywhere the Keeper wants them to, with
the incongruity of their appearance adding to the shock they
give to the PCs.
- 4d6 + 20
- 3d6 + 10
- 20 - 21
- 4d6 + 20
- Move: 12
No physical barrier is proof against the bulls of the Devil's
Herd. They can
run through thin air if they have to, and what they cannot bludgeon
they can simply pass right through, like ghosts.
- Hit Points: 27 - 28 *
- Average Damage Bonus: + 3d6
- Armor: 5 points muscle and hide *
- Weapon: charge, 30%, damage: 5d6
- fireball: range 5 meters, 30%, damage equal
to ½ the "firing" bull's CONstitution score
- Power Drain: Anyone within
a number of feet of a bull from Los Diablos equal to the POWer
score of that bull will lose a point of POWer each round they
are within that radius. When POW reaches 0, that person falls
unconscious, and will regenerate lost POWer normally. Physically,
this POWer drain from proximity to a bull feels like waves of
blistering heat pouring off the bulls, and the unconsciousness
which results from lost POW is usually chalked up to heat exhaustion.
- Skills: scent enemy 65%
- * Only attacks from the designated
target of the Devil's Herd can do full damage to one of the bulls.
Attacks from anyone else always do the minimum possible damage,
and an impale can never be scored.