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Creature Preview: Pyronic Sentry

Creature Preview: Pyronic Sentry

Here's a preview from The Sun Below: City on the Edge, available now on While the creature hails from a Numenera adventure, it'd be right at home in The Strange as well.


Art by James E Shields

A pyronic sentry is a synthsteel- and glassteel-cladded automaton whose color changes to match the flames it finds itself in. It looks like a massive armored man with long blades for hands. Motive: Follow orders to guard a place or a thing. Environment: Pyronic sentries are usually found near fires, lava pits, or other hellishly hot environments. Damage Inflicted: 5 slashing and 5 heat. Armor: 3 (100 vs. heat) Modifications: While being almost invulnerable to heat, cold attacks gain an asset and ignore armor. In fact, if a pyronic sentry is removed from a fiery environment and placed in a temperature comfortable for a human, the automaton will become sluggish and have a one-level penalty on all its actions. Should one end up in a frigid environment, it would take a two-level penalty on all actions and take one point of damage a turn until it shattered into pieces. Combat: A pryonic sentry will follow its orders first, and worry about self-preservation second. Usually the orders do not require it to move to cooler locations. Interaction: Pryonic sentries do not speak, but are telepaths. Use: An arch-nano’s synthsteel tower rises out of a lava field. People say the arch-nano hasn’t been seen in years, but the pryonic sentry still stands guard, stopping good folk from taking valuable items from a woman who surely doesn’t need them anymore. Loot: Once cool, the remains of a pryonic sentry can be salvaged for 1d6 cyphers and possibly an oddity.

TiersThe Pyronic Sentry's GM Intrusion is designed to challenge any tier party, from tier one to tier six. Stats are presented in three groups, separated by /s. The first stat is for tiers 1 and 2. The second for tiers 3 and 4. The last for tiers 5 and 6.

GM Intrusion: The pyronic sentry teleports an enemy who is at short range or  closer to just in front of the automaton. The sentry then attacks as level 7/8/9 with both bladed hands, doing double damage and dazing the foe for one round if it hits. The foe will also take heat damage from the environment if the pyronic sentry is in its usual searing environs.

You teleport into the flames and feel the searing-hot bladed hands of the automaton spike deep into your body. Your flesh sizzles like meat on a spit.

Notice how the GM Intrusion flows from the creature's description? Bring on the searing heat! You can do the same with your own creatures, see Numenera GM Intrusions: Creatures.

Have fun, and there plenty more creatures to be found in The Sun Below: City on the Edge's bestiary!

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Using Fronts in Numenera and The Strange