Species: mammal
No. Appearing: 1-2
Distribution: mated pair
Behaviour: ursoid
Intelligence: 2
Length: 4½ ft. at withers; stands 12 ft. tall
Weight: 1,500 lb.
Armor Class: 5
HD: 6+6
Hp/die: d12
Attacks: 3
THACO: 15
Damage: claws, 2-12 each; jaws, 3-18
Special Powers: mauling
Move: 9 AP
Range: subterranean
Treasure: BA (x7)

This is an unnatural meat-eating relative of the brown bear, but much bigger and dwelling only in subterranean settings. Cave bears are intensively aggressive, being far more likely to attack others than natural bears. Cave bears are entirely carnivorous. If a second bear is encountered, this will be the bear's mate; offspring are extraordinarily rare and do not occur with every season (since the cave bear is deep below ground, offspring only occur if food is found in great abundance).

Mauling will result if the cave bear hits a single opponent with both claws. The bear will always seek to attack at one opponents with both its claws, though it may attack at a second opponent with its jaws. Mauling will indicate that the bear has pulled down its opponent, who will be trapped and unable to take any action whether stunned or not. Mauling is equal to 4-16 +2 damage. The time spent being mauled counts against the mauled combatant's move - but when the bear is free to attack again (or if the bear is stunned), then the mauled character will be left and the bear will attack another opponent.

Encounters

#1 (hunting): cave bears will roam cavern areas and underground ponds seeking food, often surprising a patrol or aggressively attacking much larger prey. If encountered when hunting, a cave bear will attack indiscriminately without warning. It will not back off unless wounded.

#2 (hibernating): cave bears hibernate 9-10 months of the year, usually in periods ranging from 3-12 weeks at a time, separated by 2-8 weeks of hunting. They will only hibernate if they have been successful in finding prey. They will often return to a single den again and again, accounting for the small amount of treasure that will be found here. There is a 10% chance the bear will be awake in its den. If disturbed (rustling armor will be enough), the bear will wake up easily and will attack immediately, fighting to the death.

#3 (rampaging): occasionally cave bears will go mad with bloodlust (often due to disease or contamination, which will affect a mated pair), roaming the halls and killing without purpose, always moving towards areas with the highest amount of potential prey. Normally, a cave bear would avoid a large humanoid lair, but when rampaging the bear will simply rush in and fight until the death. While very unusual, a single cave bear can cause a great deal of damage. With mated pairs, one will often kill the other, an act that will often draw attention, for the chance of killing the survivor (that will be reduced in hit points following the battle) and fresh meat. Rampaging cave bears will attack with +2 to hit and +3 damage until dead.

#4 (sated): having eaten their fill, cave bears can become passive and indifferent to interlopers, allowing them to pass by without incident. This is very unusual as well, and most times their will be evidence of the satiety (many half-eaten corpses or one immense one). Sated cave bears will not be found in their lairs.


See Bestiary