Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wendigo - my version for RPGs

(Wendigo in Wikipedia.)


Spirit of winter and nature, stalker of the night and cold. Beast of the spirit world who consumes human(oid) flesh. No one truly knows where Wendigo origins but it is speculated that when humanity conquered forests for their own interests in Northern and snowy parts of the world Wendigo was awaken. When human abuse forest for their own needs hacking trees for goods and space to live within, Wendigo get's what is rightly for him: Human victims.

A true protector of winter wilderness Wendigo cannot be exile. It was awaken or became carnivorous spirit when human first time disturbed the peace of remote cold locations. It is angry, it is hungry.


Those few who have witnessed Wendigo with their own eyes describe it as white great werewolf standing on two feet with horrible long arms with knife sharp claws. It's size is twice of an ordinary human and it's strength and agility is hard to compare.

Even though it walks with two feet, it is far from humanoid form. It is manifested spirit. Not a human nor a wolf but something horrible.

But Wendigo doesn't only manifest as physical being, but can travel like a wind. Invicible to eye it is described as extremely cold breeze when there is no wind. Some people acclaim that they did even see a shape of Wendigo in snow of the breeze.


Wendigo usually attacks those who travel deep in the snowy and cold winterness. It doesn't try to scare intruders of the forest, but does kill them with it's claws and teeth. Sometimes but rarely it even attacks small villages and communities tormenting them as a breeze or killing every living person over one night.

For reason unknown Wendigo is not always physically aggressive, but can also torment people as in its spirit breeze form. No campfires stay burning, frostbites occur even through warm and thick furs and in the camp someone might have frozen to death before morning.


  • Can travel long distances fast in spirit form as a wind or breeze.
  • Is unharmed by normal weapons.
  • Does regenerate.
  • Can make small area extremely cold.
  • Is extremely strong and agile in physical form.

  • Is vulnerable to magical weapons or special shaman crafted weapons.
  • Is vulnerable for fire (but can blow fires off easily in wind spirit form).
  • Tied into locations of cold and snow. If there is summer, autumn or spring time, Wendigo cannot exsist in that period of the year.
Banishing Wendigo

When Wendigo's healthpoints decrease to its death, Wendigo is banished. However you cannot kill it, as it will return in next full moon. Only way to get rid of Wendigo in the area is not to destroy it as it is impossible to destroy it permanently but leave the place.
Characters who encounter Wendigo in their travel must move along.
Village tormented by Wendigo must be abandoned for good.

Wendigo In Campaigns
Wendigo is truly powerful entity and can cause several problems for the party of adventurers. Defeating it is extremely hard, so Wendigo should be encountered only by strong characters by default. If characters cannot directly defeat Wendigo, best way to survive is to stay alive and trying to get away from that area.

Possible adventure seeds:

  • Village is tormented by Wendigo and characters are asked to banish or destroy it.
  • Characters who travel through wintery wilderness could encounter Wendigo and must do their best to survive.
  • In modern horror setting (CoC, WoD etc.) there might be rumours of Wendigo. Characters might for different reasons encounter it. Maybe they are called to investigate it or are fascinated by the story. They might even be at the wrong place in the wrong time.
Statting Wendigo

It depends on game system what Wendigo's stats would be. You could use werewolf if there is stats presented in rules system but tweak it a bit. It doesn't shapehange from human to werewolf but it can shapechange from wind to physical apparation.
Basically Wendigo in wind spirit form is invulnerable. You cannot harm it by hitting it, but some really powerful magical or shamanic artifacts could keep character(s) safe.
In physical form Wendigo can be attacked, but only magical or enchanced weapons harm it. In modern setting golden bullets harm it (silver is cold, moon, winter - gold is warmth, sun, summer). But even though Wendigo can be damaged via magical or enchanted weapons it has plenty of stamina and hitpoints to make it hard to kill with even proper weaponry.
Remember, that Wendigo has high strength and dexterity (or similar values). It has also good senses (perception or similar and proper skills). It is spirit, so it should be tougher than normal physical monsters and beings.

Benefices Of Defeating Wendigo 

Naturally as Wendigo is tough opponent, it is worth plenty of experience for its defeaters. Unfortunately as Wendigo is spirit being, you cannot obtain for example Wendigo Claws or Wendigo Fur for character's benefices. When Wendigo is destroyed, it simply disappears like a breeze.

If character is skilled in talking or communicating with spirits or is even able to command them, you should allow it as rules in your system in use states. But Wendigo is always angry and agressive for human(oid)s so you cannot bargain with it. It wants to banish you for good. Kill you. Eat you. Destroy you. Keep that in mind if some character with proper qualities tries to communicate or even command Wendigo.
Only deal you possibly could do with success with Wendigo is to assure that you will leave the place as soon as possible.

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