Dark stalkers are the elite leaders of the dark creepers. Even more enigmatic and unknown than their squatter brethren, the origins and goals of the dark stalkers are entirely dark. While the dark creeper resemble dwarves, dark stalkers are tall and human-shaped. Their abilities are very similar to the dark creeper, but they employ swords, poison, and a natural fog cloud ability.
Dark Stalkers in Different EditionsEdit
Dark stalkers made their first appearance in the Fiend Folio. They are leaders of the villages of dark creepers, and in addition to the abilities of the creepers, they can employ short swords, and use fog cloud 2/day. They explode in a fireball rather than simply a blinding flash when they die.
Dark stalkers were updated in the Monstrous Compendium: Fiend Folio Appendix. They lacked the theiving abilities of dark creepers, but picked up the ability to poison or taint their weapons, and retained their explosive death throes. It is noted that dark creepers give offerings of magic items to dark stalkers, though the reasons for this (worship or bribery or something else) are unclear.
In the third edition Fiend Folio, dark creepers make their 3e debut. They are significantly changed, more closely resembling 3e rogues, complete with a Sneak Attack ability. Like their creeper kin, they have lost their explosive death throes. Instead of being able to create darkness, the 3e dark stalker can shroud itself in a shadow cloak, gaining concealment.
In this edition, they also appeared in the third party product, Tome of Horrors. The dark stalker there was closer to its roots in having fireball death throes, and also used poison. They dark stalker could also create deeper darkness that they could see through.
In fourth edition's Monster Manual, the death throes of the dark stalkers returned, though now it was a cloud of blinding darkness, identical to the dark creeper's death throes in that edition, rather than a fireball. It retained its sneak attack (dealing extra damage with combat advantage), and picked up a new ability, Dark Step. This ability let them move a short distance (less than their normal speed) to gain a higher AC against opportunity attacks and to gain combat advantage (and thus extra damage) aginst a creature it ends its movement next to. They also employed scimitars rather than short swords, and they weren't poisoned.
Dark creepers featured in the adventures Scepter Tower of Spellgard, and Pyramid of Shadows
Dark creepers have not appeared yet in 5e.
- Fiend Folio (1e)
- Monstrous Compendium: Fiend Folio Appendix (2e)
- Fiend Folio (3e)
- Monster Manual (4e)