Cloakers are fiendish horrors, related to trappers, that dwell in dark places far beneath the surface of the earth. They generally seek to kill those who enter their lairs, unless they can think up some other, more amusing way to punish interlopers.
When a cloaker is first seen, it is almost impossible to distinguish this monster from a common black cloak. The monster's back has two rows of black eye spots running down it that look much like buttons, and the two ivory-colored claws on its upper edge can easily be mistaken for bone clasps.
When it unfurls itself and moves to attack, however, its true nature becomes all too obvious. At this point, its white underside is clear and the monster's face is fully visible. This face, with the glow of its two piercing, red eyes and the needle-like fangs that line its mouth, is a truly horrible sight. At this point, the monster also uncurls the whip-like tail at its trailing edge and begins to swish it back and forth in anticipation.
When a cloaker strikes at its victim, it moves with blinding speed. Without warning, the cloaker flies at its target and, if the attack roll is successful, engulfs its prey within its folds. Any creature that falls victim to this attack is all but helpless and can be bitten easily (no roll required) for 1d4 points of damage plus the victim's unadjusted Armor Class. Thus, an adventurer in chain mail (AC 5) suffers 1d4+5 points of damage each round. Shields offer no protection from such attacks.
While it is devouring its chosen victim, the cloaker uses its two whip-like tail attacks to inflict 1d6 points of damage on those who move in to help rescue the captive. The tail is AC 1 and can be cut off if a total of 16 points of damage are inflicted upon it.
Any attacks made on the cloaker inflict half their damage to the cloaker and the other half to the trapped victim. Area effect spells, such as fireball, cause full damage to both the monster and its victim.
The cloaker can also emit a special subsonic moan of increasing intensities. Although this power is blocked by stone or other dense materials, it can be very effective in an open chamber. Cloakers may not moan and bite during the same round. A cloaker may emit one of four types of moan each round.
The first intensity of moaning causes unease and numbs the minds of those within 80 feet of the cloaker. The immediate effect of this moan is to cause a -2 penalty to the victims' attack and damage rolls against the cloaker. Further, any creature that is forced to listen to the moan for six consecutive rounds is temporarily forced into a trance that renders it unable to attack or defend itself as long as the moaning continues.
The second intensity of moaning acts as a fear spell. All creatures within 30 feet of the cloaker must roll a successful saving throw vs. spell or flee in terror for two rounds.
The third intensity of moaning causes nausea and weakness and affects all those in a cone 30 feet long and 20 feet wide at its open end. Anyone caught in this area must roll a successful saving throw vs. poison or be overcome by nausea and weakness for 1d4+1 rounds. During this time, those who fail their saving throws are unable to act in any manner.
The fourth and final intensity of moaning acts as a hold person spell. This power can be used on only one person at a time, has a range of 30 feet, and lasts for five rounds.
Each of the various effects of the cloaker's moan can be defeated by the use of a neutralize poison spell on a victim.
Cloakers also have the power to manipulate shadows. Known as shadow shifting, this power can be used in a number of ways, but in only one particular manner at any given time. The cloaker can employ its shadow shifting ability to obscure its opponents' vision, thus bettering its Armor Class to 1. Or the creature can produce precise images from the shadows that can be used to trick its adversaries. One common means of employing these images is to create a duplicate of the cloaker to draw away enemy attacks. If this method of shadow shifting is employed, it can be treated as a mirror image spell that creates 1d4+2 images.
A light spell cast directly at a specific cloaker blinds it and prevents it from using its shadow shifting powers.
The thought processes of cloakers are utterly alien to most other life forms. As such, they can only be communicated with by mages who have devoted long hours to training their minds in the arcane discipline necessary to understand these creatures.
It is believed that cloakers are asexual, although no definitive proof of this has ever been found.