(aquatic, giant, reptilian)
|Environment||Any coastal (Sightless Sea)|
Source: Vault of the Onyx Citadel, pg(s). 84
Vault giants have powerful bodies and webbed hands and feet, affording them great mobility in water. Their eyes glow blue and a dark, rigid crest runs from their head to the tip of their thick tail. Vault giants paint their scales with glowing, waterproof markings brewed from luminescent fungi, which display clan affiliation, status and noteworthy personal deeds. A vault giant takes both individual and clan pride in these designs, and mocking or defacing them is an easy way to earn its ire. Vault giants are 42 feet tall and weigh 25,000 pounds.
Vault giant civilisation arose on Golarion in the distant Age of Serpents. Each clan raised mighty, translucent crystalline spires in its coastal territories. In the Age of Legend, vault giant civilisation declined due to conflicts with the human empire of Thassilon, who took advantage of their disunited clan structure. Threatened by extinction, vault giants struck a bargain with dark powers and retreated underground to the Darklands, eventually settling on the shores of the Sightless Sea. Their aquamarine scales slowly faded over time, and in compensation modern vault giants began to paint themselves with glowing markings. To this day, vault giants despise rune giants, Thassilon's servants, and attack them on sight.
Vault giants have adapted well to subterranean life and hunt the great beasts that roam the Sightless Sea for sustenance. They capture and observe any new creatures they encounter before either consuming or releasing them depending on their leaders' orders. Vault giants are quick, logical thinkers who employ powerful psychic magic to study and overcome their foes. Vault giants mature at the age of 30 and can live for several hundred years.
Vault giants build strongholds on the shores of the Sightless Sea. These strongholds are cunningly disguised as natural stone, with concealed lookouts, and their entrances are always underwater. They are designed to sustain the entire clan and are defensible from attacks by outsiders, and are decorated with glowing paint like the vault giants' bodies.
Vault giant society is strict and ritualistic. One's status within the clan is established by their actions, which all individuals are aware of. Roles are associated by the clan to members according to individual talents. Each clan is led by a circle of powerful female psychics, who communicate with the leaders of other clans and the dark entities that they serve but few other vault giants know. A female vault giant who hears the call to join a circle dives deep into the Sightless Sea, and returns many years later with psychic abilities if she returns at all. Members of the circle do not age but are eventually drawn back into the sea, never to be seen again.
Vault giants put clan unity over familial ties, all couplings are controlled and eggs are laid in a communal hatchery. Eggs take a year to hatch; those that hatch early often have deformities and are destroyed. The whole clan is responsible for raising children and teaching them combat and magic.
Vault giants place the survival of their clan above all else, and self-image is closely tied to status in the clan. Exile is the punishment most feared by vault giants: the individual has their markings erased before being sent away alone on the Sightless Sea. These exiles usually seek out smaller creatures, usually troglodytes, to bully into submission, but this leadership cannot replace the sense of belonging in a clan, and vault giant exiles often become psychotic.
Vault giants seem to interact with other creatures according to an inscrutable agenda: they might raze a settlement and bestow gifts upon another, or eat certain captives and set others free. Vault giants are cautious when they meet unfamiliar intelligent creatures, preferring to take them captive until receiving instructions from their leaders.