Showing posts with label Monstrous Mondays. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Monstrous Mondays. Show all posts

Monday, October 17, 2016

Kick Start Your WEEK: Monstrous Monday Edition

Today let's Kickstart Your Week and have out Monstrous Monday all in one.

Up on Kickstarter is Monsters - A Sourcebook for Chill Third Edition Horror RPG.

Spend any time here and you know there are two things I REALLY love.  The Chill RPG and Monster books.
This gives me both in one great book.


https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/playattentiongames/monsters-a-sourcebook-for-chill-third-edition-horr

The new Chill is a joy to read and it is visually stunning.  I am expecting no less from this book.  A quick look at the art also assures me this will be the case.

Chill Vampires remains one of my most favorite sourcebooks to this day.  If this book is half as good as that, then it is well worth the price.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Street Faeries for Victorious/Castles & Crusades

I am going to spend some quality time with Victorious over the next week or so as I continue with my work on Castles & Crusades and then move into Victorian-era games.

I thought it might be good to bring back this little dollymop.
You can see other Street Fae here:
Ghosts of Albion and Rippers/Savage Worlds,
Victoriana 2nd Ed,
Victoria and
Swords & Wizardry.

Michael Thomas, Victorian Gothic Fairy
Street Faerie

NO. ENCOUNTERED: 1-3
SIZE: Small
HD: 2 (d4)
MOVE: 20 ft.,
AC: 10
ATTACKS: Spark* (
SPECIAL: Spell–Like Abilities (glamour, blink),  Twilight Vision,  takes 2x damage from cold iron
SAVES: M
INT: Average
ALIGNMENT: Neutral
TYPE: Fey
TREASURE: 1


XP: 45+1

Sreet Faeries are fae that have chosen to live in the urban sprawl of large cities rather than the normal sylvan glades and woods that one typically associates with their kind.

A typical street faerie stands about 3' high, but can glamour themselves to be taller or shorter by 2' in either in direction.  They have peppered moth wings that they can hide when needed.  Many will live in cities and disguise themselves as children or young humans.

A Street faerie can also "Blink" as per a Blink Dog or a Dimension Door spell.

Their only attack is a Spark which is a spell-like attack (no save). They can cause a spark of electricity to shoot from their fingers causing 1d4 hp of damage.
A typical attack of a Street Fae will consist of a spark attack and then them blinking away.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Giants in the Mist

or fog as the case may be...

Since I am going to combine some Cloud Giant adventures and have a floating castle, I figure I should have at least one encounter with their land-dwelling cousins.  Fog giants first appeared (well for me anyway) in the 1st Edition Fiend Folio.

These creatures can be added to any giant-themed adventure.


D&D 5th Edition


Castles & Crusades

NO. ENCOUNTERED: 1-6, 1-10*
SIZE: Large (16'-18')
HD: 14 (d12)
MOVE: 40 ft.,
AC: 24
ATTACKS: Weapons; Greatclub (5d6) or rock (3d8)
SPECIAL: Spell–Like Abilities,  Mist (Twilight) Vision, Scent
SAVES: P
INT: Average
ALIGNMENT: Neutral Good (50%) or Neutral Evil (50%)
TYPE: Giant
TREASURE: Horde
XP: 4750 + 12

*Any group of 10 Fog Giants will include a Cloud Giant noble.

From the 2nd Edition Monstrous Compendium.

Description
Cousins to the cloud giants, these large rock-hurlers are more intelligent and stealthy than portrayed in story or song. Fog giants are huge and husky, with tree-trunk sized legs, and over-developed arms muscled by constant throwing games and exercises. They have milk-white skin which aids their natural ability to blend into fog (80% chance). Their hair is silvery white and flowing, with ample hair on the arms, legs, and chest. They grow no facial hair whatsoever. They prefer to wear no armor, counting on their high natural Armor Class.  They love massive, ornate clubs made from bleached and polished wood or bone.

Habitat/Society
Fog giants are proud of their strength and fighting skills, often playing games when on hunting forays in an attempt to best one another. Their favorite such game is called “copsi” and consists of the giants pairing off to toss larger and larger boulders to their partners until one of the pairs misses its throw.

The fog giant families live in caves, canyons, or thickets, in the most inaccessible areas of marsh, swamp, forest, or coast. The men usually hunt in groups, ranging up to a dozen miles from their homes. The groups generally are formed of giants of similar alignment.

By tradition, a young giant may not mate until he has obtained at least one large ornament of silver. Usually, the young giant joins with several others in a quest to find one (or acquire enough treasure to buy one).

Fog giants do not often mix well with other creatures or races, although they can often be persuaded to perform services for a fee, or barter goods with groups of similar alignment. Fog giants will happily barter goods and services for refined silver.

Territorial disputes sometimes flare up between groups, especially in times of bad hunting. Friendly disputes can sometimes be resolved by a game of copsi or an arm-wrestling match. Fog giants fighting amongst themselves will generally throw rocks and fist-fight, rather than use swords.

Fog giants are fond of all sorts of cooked meats, particularly hoofed creatures such as horses, cows, deer, elk, and centaur. They often cook meat by building a large fire, then impaling chunks of meat on their swords and holding them over the open flame. Fog giants prefer fruits and sweets for dessert, and will also down large quantities of spirits if available to them. They do not distill their own spirits or liquors.

They also sometimes smoke fresh milkweed pods in wooden pipes, though the taste is too bitter for humans and demihumans to enjoy.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Woodwose for Castles & Crusades

A couple of things came together for me this week.  First off I have been going through all my Castles & Crusades material.  My son is getting ready for the game he runs with his group so I have been cleaning my game room, reorganizing my shelves and reading a lot of C&C.

I have been wanting to do something cool with C&C for a very long time.  So I am torn as to whether I am going to use it for my "Second Campaign" or "War of the Witch Queens".  I have a lot of good in-universe reasons to use this for the Second Campaign, but there is SO much of what is native to C&C that make me really want to use it for War of the Witch Queens.
In particular, books like the Haunted Highlands and Codex Celtarum are just full of ideas.

Today I wanted to update a monster I did a while back that was also recently updated on the newbiedm.com blog; the Woodwose.

You can see my version for Basic Era games here:
http://theotherside.timsbrannan.com/2015/03/woodwose-for-basic-era-games.html

Newbie DM's version, based on a 2nd Edition version I knew nothing about here:
https://newbiedm.com/2016/09/12/monster-conversion-woodwose/

Here is a new version for Castles & Crusades.

Note: this is different that the Woodwose class found in the Codex Celtarum.

Woodwose
NO. ENCOUNTERED: 5–30
SIZE: Small
HD: 2 (d4)
MOVE: 20 ft.,
AC: 13
ATTACKS: Weapon
SPECIAL: Spell–Like Abilities,  Twilight Vision,  takes 2x damage from cold iron
SAVES: M
INT: Average
ALIGNMENT: Neutral
TYPE: Fey
TREASURE: 1
XP: 45+1

The Woodwose, or "the Wild-Man of the Wood" is faerie creature related to the brownie and buckwan. These creatures typically look like small, old men completely covered in hair. Their hair can vary from brown, to light yellow to even green.  These creatures stand about 4' to 4 1/2' tall though some have been reported as small at 2' and others as tall 7' tall.   They have a language, a very early form of Sylvan, that they use among themselves but they can speak elven when talking to others.

As their name would suggest the woodwose are a wild, barely civilized race. Much of their time is spent in raiding the homes of other faerie creatures stealing food, treasures, and their women.  Woodwose that live close to human settlements have also been known to attack an outlying farm or prey on a lone traveler.   They are only brave in packs and rarely venture out of their burrows alone.  Despite their size a woodwose will attack any creature up to and including, ogre-sized, if they have the numbers.  Woodwose fear and avoid elves.

For every 6 woodwose encountered 1 will be a shaman capable of casting spells as a 2nd level druid.  For every 12 one of those 2 shamans will be 3rd level.  At 24 woodwose, a small community, there will be a shaman with the powers and spells as a 4th level druid.
In any case all woodwose are capable of casting the druid spell Shillelagh on their club once per day.  They are also capable of casting Pass Without a Trace at will as many times as they need.
Woodwose will be wary of adventurers unless they can outnumber them 2-3 to 1.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: 5E Monster Books

I LOVE Monster books. Always have.  One of the first, if not THE first, book I ever saw for an RPG was the AD&D Monster Manual.  My love for these books has never waned.

So of course, I am going to grab the new Monster books for 5e!


I am rather pleased with both of these, but Tome of Beasts from Kobold Press edges out in terms of things I want to use.  There are just a lot of really great monsters in this book.
Including some I will use in my current Come Endless Darkness game and some for the War of the Witch Queens.

They have their own version of Camazotz which I am dying to use.


I have not compared these stats to the ones I worked up a while back,  But I think I will use these new ones since the players did not kill Camazotz the first time.

There is also a new Witch Queen featured in the book.


She is based, somewhat, and named after the Scottish witch Nicnevin.   I will have to do a conversion of her sometime soon.  Having someone that is the "Daughter of Scáthach" is just too cool to ignore really.

I am not ready for a review of these just yet. But stay tuned.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Special thanks go out to +Justin Isaac for letting me know about this book and that it featured Camazotz.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Wendigo Matron

A while back I featured a Wendigo as part of my A to Z.  Well, my son has been running some games on his own with a group of his friends and he has been using Wendigoes as well.  This monster is one of his original creations.

Section 15: "Wendigo Matron" Copyright 2016 Liam W. Brannan.

Wendigo by TheRutheLa
Wendigo Matron
Armor Class:  2 [17]
Hit Dice: 10d8+5* (50 hp)
No. of Attacks: 2 claws / 1 bite / breath weapon / spell use
Damage: 1d6 / 1d6 / 1d6+3 / 1d8+5 (cold)
Special: breath weapon, fear, low-light vision (240’), scent, immunity to cold
Movement: 90’/180' (fly)
No. Appearing: 1
Saves As: Witch 10
Morale: 9
Treasure: None
Alignment: Evil (Chaos)
XP: 3,000

A windigo matron is if anything, more evil than the common wendigo.  This creature is te defacto leader of a any band of wendigo and she has powers above and beyond the already formidable powers of these foul creatures.
In addition to the physical attacks, breath weapons, and fear of a normal wendigo, the wendigo matron can also use the following spell-like powers 3 times per day:

Wind Walk
Fly
Invisibility 
Shape change

A common tactic of a wendigo matron is to shape change into a normal human woman and lead victims to the lairs of the wendigo. She will often pose as a rescued victim, or as a someone seeking vengeance against the wendigo that killed her "family".   There may be truth in both guises as the wendigo may in fact, have been her family.
The wendigo matron is also different in her origin.  While humans can become wendigo when confronted with the prospect of starvation and freezing to death, a wendigo matron chooses to become what she now is.
It is believed that there is a dark ritual where prospective wendigo matron cuts out her own heart with a flint dagger.  What is known that a wendigo matron can not be truly destroyed till she is reduced to 0 hp and her heart is burned.  Otherwise, she will rise again when the next snowfall occurs.
Like the lich and his phylactery, the wendigo matron keeps her heart in a safe place.


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Stranger Things

If you play D&D or ever played it and read this blog chances are really good that you have already heard of (or have watched) Netflix's Stranger Things.


It is the biggest hit of the summer and made huge stars not just of the great young cast, but also D&D. In fact it is being credited with helping D&D sales.

Beyond all that it is just great story telling and a fantastic tale.

Plus it has a cool monster.

The Monster, called "Demogorgon" after our favorite two-headed demon prince, is a true monster.  It is hard to see, hunts and kills people and can smell blood anywhere.  I am not going to spoil it if you have not seen it, but sufice to say it is a great monster.

Great enough in fact for AD&D.  Here it is, with some artistic liberties taken.

The Monster
AKA: The Demogorgon
Frequency: Very Rare
No. Appearing: 1 (believed unique)
Size: Large 7" (L)
Armor Class: 5 [14]1
Movement
 Basic: 180' (60')
 Advanced: 18"/27"
 3e: 45ft
Hit Dice: 8d8+4 (40 hp)
% in Lair: 50% (hunting at night, hiding in the Border Ethereal)
Treasure Type: None
Attacks: 3 (claw/claw/bite)
Damage: 1d6+4/1d6+4/1d6
Special Attacks: Scream (as fear spell)
Special Defenses: Ethereal Projection; Immune to all gaze attacks, blindness; regeneration
Save As: Witch 102
Magic Resistance: none
Morale: 103
Alignment: Chaotic evil (animal)
Level/XP: 8/4,250 + 12/hp

STR: 19 INT: 10 WIS: 8 DEX: 16 CON: 20  CHA: 6

1 Descending and [Ascending] Armor classes are given.
2 This is used for Basic games, and S&W. Also for monsters that I think need to save a little differently than others.
3 Morale is "Basic" Morale and based on a 1-12 scale. Multiply by 1.6667 for 1-20 scale.

The Monster, known by locals as "the Demogorgon" is not a demon, or even related to demons.  It is a native of the Border Ethereal known as "the Upside-Down" and really not much more than an animal.  It is a rather terrifying animal with hunting abilities similar to that of a shark.  It has no eyes, it's entire head opens up to a large mouth, it can smell and even taste blood on the air like a snake or shark would.

The Monster is a nocturnal hunter, not because of fear of light, but it is when it has advantage over it's prey.  It seeks out it's prey, large warm blooded creatures, and drags it back to it's lair in the Border Ethereal.  There it can feed at it's leisure.

The Monster can heal itself at the rate of 2 hp per round.


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Dirds and Meowls

I did not forget Monster Monday!  I have just been really busy at work today and I just got around to it now.

So spend and any time on the Internet and you will soon realize that people are ... well ... really fucking crazy.  I say this in all sincerity.  Go pack and look at the original Monster Manual and you will see such monsters as the iconic Owlbear (based on a plastic figure) and the Peryton (based on a mythological creature).

Well not to be outdone the Internet gives us Dirds and Meowls.

Dirds and Meowls
No. Enc.: 1 (3)
Alignment: Nuetral
Movement: 90' (30') / Fly 180' (60')
Armor Class: 5
Hit Dice: 1
Attacks: 3 (claw/claw/bite)
Damage: 1d2/1d2/1d4
Special: Very rare
Save: Monster 1
Morale: 10
Hoard Class: NA
XP: 100


Meowls and Dirds are a magical crossbreed. Often thought to be the same sort of deranged arcane experiments that gave us the Owlbear, the results of this experiment are less malign.
Dirds are a cross between birds and dogs, while meowls are a crossbreed of cats and owls.

Dirds typically have animal intelligence with the senses of both dogs and birds.
Meowls typically have slightly higher intelligence.

Both creatures make for good animal companions and even better familiars.   Any wizard or witch can gain a meowl or dird on a result of "Special" on their Find Familiar rolls.  Where an Imp or Quasit would be chosen for an evil spellcaster a Neutral one can choose a Dird or Meowl.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: D&D 5e Homebrew Tumblr

Typically I don't pay much attention to Tumblr. But this is something that has popped up a few times on my feed that is too cool to ignore.

The D&D 5e Homebrew Tumblr page has a ton of really nice material for a D&D 5 game.  Including a lot of monsters.


The pages are well done and there is a lot of material here.
Including some new dragons:


http://dnd-5e-homebrew.tumblr.com/post/147797832343/how-to-train-your-dragons-nightfury-by


Princess Mononoke/San

http://dnd-5e-homebrew.tumblr.com/post/144553345402/spirit-of-the-wolf-by-jonoman3000


It's fun blog and worth your time if you play D&D5 at all.


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, July 18, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Baby Bestiary Vol. 1

Baby Bestiary Handbook Vol 1

A while back I posted support for the Baby Bestiary vol 1 and 2.  Volume 1 is now up for the Best Interior Art and Best monster/adversary ENnies and it is no surprise.  The book is absolutely gorgeous.

+Andreas Walters has put together a fantastic book that is part monster manual, part field guide, part ecology book and a huge part art book.

The book is a densely packed 81 full-color pages.  Easily one of the best-looking books to be nominated for an ENnie.   Each monster description comes with details on what the young of each monster is called (a baby Hippocampus is known as a "fry" for example), how hard it is to train the young and other vital facts such as danger and intelligence levels.

The book would make for a great coffee table book really and I hope there is a nice leatherbound option in the future collecting both volumes.
Of course, the obvious choice here is the older gamer that has kids that LOVE monster books.
I have forgotten how many times I have had to go on rescue missions to my kids rooms to find my D&D books.  I still have a Pathfinder book that I can't account for in fact!  For younger kids a "baby monster" game, ala Pokemon, gotta catch them all, would be fantastic.
Since there is little to no "crunch" in this book it is compatible with a wide variety of games.  Play your favorite game, use this book as your guide and go monster hunting with your kids.

In any case, this is a really fun book and I am really looking forward to Volume 2.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

---
I am up for an Ennie this year for Best Blog!
Please click on the link and vote "1" under "The Other Side".


Monday, July 11, 2016

Monstrous Monday: Camazotz & Weekend Round-up

This weekend I took the Order of the Platinum Dragon through the classic module C1 The Hidden Shrine of Tamoachan.  I ran it semi-tournament style. That is I focused on the areas from tournament play where suggested, but I did not keep the scoring.  Given the trap crazy nature of this module I also gave XP for clever ideas on how to defeat the traps.

I changed it a bit to fir the current "Come Endless Darkness" storyline. The party was teleported there after the Council of Greyhawk scryed for anything that might help them re-ignite the sun.  The crystal pointed here and off the party went.
They appeared in a jungle with a pyramid of into the distance and an opening in front of them.

Yeah, so it was an Egypt project my son did...
Entering the tunnel the soon where confronted with traps of a sort.

I played up the "Temple of the Sun" bits and focused a lot on the various god depictions in the dungeon. In particular the ones with the bison, coyote, bear, serpent and eagle heads.   They encountered the evil neried and decided to drain all the water out of the room with a portable hole. That convinced her to tell the party what was a "safer" route.

They mangaed to find their way up to the temple where a sight of horror was found.  On the temple floor were hundreds of dead humans and among them four dead gods. Each god was dressed in Olman garb wearing sylized headgear of the bison, coyote, bear, and serpent.  All of their hearts had been cut out.  On the altar was a god wearing the Eagle head gear, his heart was also cut out.
They party recognized the gods not only as the gods from the frescoes, but also they were the Cinco Hermanos, their retainers from the Keep on the Borderlands.  Standing over Eagle/Cinco/Ixion was the demon bat god Camazotz.  In his hand was the heart.


The paladins attacked right away and managed to force Camazotz back to his home plane of Xibalba in the Abyss.  But Cinco (as always played by Danny Trejo) was dying.  He told the Order that he tricked Camazotz into taking his liver instead of his heart (gods can do the sort of thing), but he was dying anyway.  He convinced them to take his heart so they could use to relight the Forge of Moradin.  This would give them enough magic to at least keep the world from frezzing to death.

The forge was relit with the help of the only surviving members of Greyhawk's great wizards, Bigby, Tenser and Mordenkainen. But at the cost of their own magic.

Now the Order has been sent to investigate the possible outbreak of attacks by a group of giants.

This adventure was a big one.  It set up the next act of the campaign, it brought back the Cinco Hermanos (though only for them to die) and revealed the Orcus connection to the death of all the Gods of the Sun.

It also allowed me to bring in Camazotz as a demon lord.
Here are the stats I used, Maybe not 100% accurate for 5th edition, but it worked yesterday and the kids did not have to fight him much.

Bat King by FangWangLlin
Still getting the hang of these monster stats, but they are based on my Labrynth Lord/Petty Gods stats for Camazotz and the D&D5 stats for Yeegnohu.

All in all I like it.  Can't wait for the kids to run into him again in Throne of Bloodstone!


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Monstrous Monday: Beasties from Night Owl Workshop

I like my Monstrous Mondays to be flexible.  Sometimes a monster, other times something monster related or in this case a review.

Now I have gone on the record, many, many times, talking about how much I love monster books. My first glimpse into D&D was way back in 1978-79 when I first saw and read the Monster Manual.  Very few books have come close to that feeling of unlimited potential.  So when a new monster book comes out, I have to take a look and usually grab it.

Beasties from Night Owl Workshop has something of a pedigree in my mind.  The art and text are from none other than +Thomas Denmark.  He is responsible for some of my favorite art during the d20 boom, in particular Citizen Games "Way of the Witch".

Beasties is an 84 page, digest sized, black and white interior book of new monsters.  According to the sales text on DriveThru the book contains:
27 Monsters
6 NPC's
37 Drawings!
5 Maps
1 "Megadungeon" sample.

It certainly punches above its weight class in terms of monsters and content.  All the art is by Denmark himself, as is the text with additional text by Terry Olsen.

The book is designed for "Original Fantasy Rules" but plenty of conversion notes are given for OSRIC and Basic Fantasy.  There are also some conversion notes for Nite Owl Workshop's other games Colonial Troopers, Guardians and Warriors of the Red Planet.

Monsters are typically presents with stats and description on one page and the art on the next.
Many of the monsters have a distinct "old school" or even pulpy feel about them.  Indeed, I certainly can see many of these working great with WotRP above.
There are a lot of new undead monsters to add some interesting challenges to your players too.

I love the "Flying Locust Citadel" to be honest. There are just not enough flying mega-dungeons in D&D as far as I am concerned.

Plus the entire work is released as "Open" under the OGL so that is a nice touch.

Bookmarks in the PDF would have been nice as well as a table of contents. All in all a good book for the price.

Sinderan Witches
Of course, these two caught my attention right away.  I'd love to hear more about "Sinder's ancient past" and how these two groups of witches came to be.  I'd also love to hear how the "Sinderan Light Witch" became the evil, youth stealing witch and the "Sinderean Shadow Witch" became the good protectors of the innocent.    I could build an entire tradition out of these two.



Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Midsummer Monstrous Monday: Fire Nymph

Today is the first day of summer, also known as Midsummer.

I know I was planning to do a review today, but a few things conspired against me. Work is really busy, plus today is midsummer and the RPG Blog Carnival this month is about faeries and the faerie realm. Also, my game over the weekend dealt with the disappearance of a character. This character's backstory is tied to today's monster.

Back in the early d20 days the Tome of Horrors hit the shelves and it had a number of old monsters updated for the then 3.0 d20 system and a few new ones as well.  The Fire Nymph was one of those new ones, but also struck me as something that should have been created earlier. Nymphs are fae creatures that also have elemental properties. Plus we have water nymphs, tree nymphs, air nymphs, earth nymphs, fire seemed to be the only one missing.

Since then the Tome of Horrors has been updated, converted to Pathfinder (and here) and to Swords & Wizardry.

What we don't have yet is a 5th edition version.

Fire Nymph

This creature appears as a very attractive and beautiful female with long, flowing fiery-red hair. Her eyes are pale blue and her skin is lightly colored with a cinnamon hint to it.

A fire nymph is a very beautiful creature that dwells on the Plane of Fire. It is akin to the nymph and dryad, though its origins obviously lie elsewhere. Fire nymphs rarely visit the Material Plane, though mages are known to request their company on occasion. A fire nymph is most easily summoned on Midsummers' Eve where they can walk about and interact with mortals and other fey. A fire nymph usually wears translucent robes of white or ash.

Summoning a fire nymph is relatively easy, but not without dangers.  The nymphs' passionate nature causes her to move from one emotional extreme to the next very quickly. When a fire nymph is angry her hair will burst into flames.

Also due to their passionate nature there are many gifted pyromancers that claim to be the offspring of a wizard and a fire nymph.

Fire Nyphs are also known as Pyroeads in some arcane circles.
--
Still working on creating 5e monsters.

Happy Midsummer!

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Zugarramurdi Brujas

This creature has been haunting my dreams for a very long time.
I wanted a creature that combined aspects of the witch, vampire, hag and lich into one creature.  A "first draft" of this creature was known as an Occult Lich, but that did not really capture what I wanted.  Here is another attempt. This time for Labyrinth Lord.

Undead Witch by doghateburger
Zugarramurdi Brujas
No. Enc.: 1 (3)
Alignment: Chaotic
Movement: 90' (30')
Armor Class: 2
Hit Dice: 10+5*** (50 hp)
Attacks: 3 (claw/claw/bite)
Damage: 1d4/1d4/1d6
Special: Wisdom & Charisma drain
Save: W 10
Morale: 10
Hoard Class: XVII
XP: 2,600

The Zugarramurdi Brujas are undead witches that are believed to have come from the village of Zugarramurdi, Spain.  Zugarramurdi was the scene of a huge witch trail in the 17th century.  It was believed that these witch sold their souls to a devil named Akerbeltz, he gave them magical powers, silver and a toad familiar.  When alive they had power of animals and members of the opposite sex.  It was believed that these witches could also spit poison.  To maintain their power they had to sacrifice children on the night of the Summer Solstice.
Some of the accused died before they saw trail, but many of the witches were tried and executed.  Their remains, which could not be buried in hallowed ground, were tossed into a cave where the witches used to meet; Cuevas de las Brujas ("Cave of the Witches").
It is said they returned from the dead on the next Summer Solstice.

The term now is used to refer to any witch that comes back from the dead due to improper burial.  As an undead creature they are more powerful than they were in life, though most of their spell casting ability is diminished.
They attack with a claw/claw/bite routine as their primary form of attack.  On a successful critical hit (natural 20) on any attack they also drain 1 point of Wisdom and 1 point of Charisma from their victims.  Any victim reduced to 0 in either ability will become a zombie under control of the Zugarramurdi Bruja who killed it.
They also are surprised only on a 1 in 6.
They also cast the following spells as a 10th level witch: Bewitch III, Charm, ESP, Eyebite, Greater Command, Shriek, Withering Touch, and Undead Enslavement.

Zugarramurdi Brujas are vulnerable to silver, magic weapons and holy items.  Holy water does 1d8 hp of damage to them. They can be turned by good cleric as if they were vampires.  A lawful witch can also turn these creature as if she were a cleric of the same level, such is their abomination of all things the lawful witch holds sacred.   Like a vampire these creature cannot enter into a personal dwelling unless they are granted permisson nor can they ever enter hallowed ground, such as a place of lawful worship or a graveyard.  Doing so causes 1d8 hp damage per round.


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!


Monday, May 30, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Memento Mori

It's Memorial Monstrous Monday so I thought this might be a good choice for today.

Memento Mori
No. Enc.: 1-2
Alignment: NA
Movement: NA
Armor Class: 9
Hit Dice: 1d4 (1 hit point)
Attacks: 1 (fear)
Damage: as per fear spell
Save: F0
Morale: NA
Hoard Class: nil
XP: 10

Memento Mori are the spectral remains of a violent death. When someone dies a particularly violent death they can leave behind a fragment of their psychic energy as a memento mori.  They appear as thin, ghostly shapes acting out the moment of their death over and over again.  Rarely will they interact with the living.

Upon seeing a memento mori creatures and characters at or below 3 hit die/levels act as if a fear spell was cast on them. Observers above 4 HD and at or below 6 are allowed a saving throw vs.Petrify to avoid the effects.  Creatures about 7 HD are not affected.

A cleric who can dispel undead of 1 HD can put a memento mori to rest.  Also, a memento mori can be put to rest via an atonement, banishment, exorcise or wish spell.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!


Monday, May 23, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: Street Faerie

For today I want to post something I was working on over the weekend for a possible Swords & Wizardry game I have coming up.

Plus I thought it also might be nice to revisit a classic monster. Well...one of my classics.
You can see other Street Fae here and here.

Michael Thomas, Victorian Gothic Fairy
Street Faerie
Armor Class: 9 [10]
Hit Dice: 2
Attacks: Spark* (1d4)
Special: Blink, Glamour
Move: 12
HDE/XP: 3/60

Sreet Faeries are fae that have chosen to live in the urban sprawl of large cities rather than the normal sylvan glades and woods that one typically associates with their kind.
A typical street faerie stands about 3' high, but can glamour themselves to be taller or shorter by 2' in either in direction.  They have peppered moth wings that they can hide when needed.  Many will live in cities and disguise themselves as children or young humans.
A Street faerie can also "Blink" as per a Blink Dog or a Dimension Door spell.
Their only attack is a Spark which is a spell like attack (no save). They can cause a spark of electricity to shoot from their fingers causing 1d4 hp of damage.
A typical attack of a Street Fae will consist of a spark attack and then them blinking away.

Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!


Monday, May 16, 2016

Monstrous Mondays: The Piasa Bird

Welcome back to Monstrous Mondays!
Today I want to add a monster from stories of my childhood.  If you grew up in Central or Southern Illinois you heard stories of the Piasa Bird.   I featured this monster in one of my earliest posts here and thought I really need to bring it back.

The following text is considered Open for use under the OGL.


The Piasa Bird
AKA: The Piasa, "The Bird That Devours Men", "The Destroyer"
Frequency: Very Rare
No. Appearing: 1
Size: Large 18'
Armor Class: -2 [22]1
Movement
 Basic: 90' (30') Fly:  240' (80')
 Advanced: 9" Fly: 24"
 3e/5e: 25 ft  Fly: 60
Hit Dice: 11d8+6 (55 hp)
% in Lair: 50%
Treasure Type: None. The Piasa eats all meat an discards everything else.
Attacks: 4 (claw/claw/bite/tail swipe) + fear
Damage: 1d6+2/1d6+2/2d8/1d6
Special Attacks: Cause Fear once per day.
Special Defenses: none
Save As: Fighter 102
Magic Resistance: 0%
Morale: 93
Alignment: Chaotic evil
Level/XP: XXXX4

STR: 22 INT: 8 WIS: 8 DEX: 14 CON: 15  CHA: 4

1 Descending and [Ascending] Armor classes are given.
2 This is used for Basic games, and S&W. Also for monsters that I think need to save a little differently than others.
3 Morale is "Basic" Morale and based on a 1-12 scale. Multiply by 1.6667 for 1-20 scale.
4 Still working out an XP systems that works across all games.

According to the diary of Louis Joliet, the Piasa Bird "was as large as a calf with horns like a deer, red eyes, a beard like a tiger's, a face like a man, the body covered with green, red and black scales and a tail so long it passed around the body, over the head and between the legs."

Piasa Birds in the game are a larger and resemble a manticore or a dragon.
They do not keep treasure. They are only interested in killing for meat and sport.

Story of the Piasa Bird 
The following story appeared in the Alton Telegraph (1836) by John Russel. It is claimed that this is story told to Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Joliet by the Indian tribes of the valley.

When Marquette and Joliet came down the Mississippi river in 1673 they encountered a bluff on the east side of the river with the painting of a giant monster. When they asked the Indians what this monster was, they retold for them the story that had been handed down to them for generations. Marquette named the monster "Piasa," pronounced Pie-a-saw, which means "the Destroyer."

The Legend of the Piasa bird that was related to Marquette and Joliet went something like this. Many years ago a great bird roamed the land. Every morning the people would wake in fear to the shrill screams of the great Bird. The bird awoke hungry and would carry off dozens of boys and girls to its cave to be eaten. Chief Ouatoga [OO-wa-toe-ga] was getting old. He wanted to destroy this terrible monster before he died. He called his braves to a meeting and told them he was going to ask the Great Spirit what to do.

He went up on the highest bluff. He spoke with the Great Spirit. The Great Spirit told the Chief, "Dip your arrows deep into the poison of a copperhead snake and shoot them into the body of the Bird. They will cause its death." He returned to the camp and told his people what the Great Spirit had told him. He gathered up a small army of the strongest braves and set out to hunt the Bird. Chief Ouatoga told his braves that the plan was for someone to stand on the cliff to lure the Bird down. When the great monster swoops down they were to shoot it with their poison arrows.

The braves all begged their chief to be the one to sacrifice themselves. But the chief told them no, he would be the one, since he was older. While the braves practiced with their bows, Chief Ouatoga spoke with the Great Spirit. "Think not of my life," he said, "but the lives of the children."

The next morning the chief stood tall waiting for the great bird to come. Its screams could be heard as flew down the river looking for victims. The bird saw the old chief and swooped down on him with a terrible scream.

Just as the monster was ready to attack the braves shot their arrows and all 100 met their mark. The monster fell into the Mississippi river and died. The braves carried the broken and bruised body of their chief back to the tribe. The medicine man healed him and he awoke the next day surrounded by his grateful people. In remembrance of the act the returned to the site and painted a life-size picture of the monster. Every time an Indian went down the river after that, he fired an arrow at the bluff.
In alternate versions of the story the youngest brave stands on the cliff instead of the Chief. When he is healed the next day he becomes the new Chief.

The rare female Piasa Bird.   
Section 15: "The Piasa Bird". Copyright 2016 Timothy S. Brannan.


Don't forget to include the hashtag #MonsterMonday  on Twitter or #MonsterMonday on Google+ when you post your own monsters!

Monday, May 9, 2016

The Return of Monstrous Mondays: The Cailleach Bheur

For a while now I have been contemplating returning to an old feature here, Monstrous Mondays.
A few other bloggers I met in the A to Z Challenge also do it, tailored to their respective audiences.  The last one I did was just over a year ago (Yog, Monster from Space) but I never kept going.

Natasha Duncan-Drake
Part Time Monster
MindweaverRPG
Dispatches from Kickassistan,

For this blog, I would feature monsters that would likely appear in my games. I would likely focus on OSR stats.  Also, I am likely to release them all as "Open" via the OGl.  Art is excluded from that of course.  Wish to join me?  Let me know each Monday and post with the hashtag #MonsterMonday (Twitter) or #MonsterMonday on Google+.

So let's get going!

I think for my "OSR" stated monsters I am going to start using the format/stat block I used for some of the vampires I did last year.

The following text is considered Open for use under the OGL.

The Cailleach Bheur as a human witch
The Cailleach Bheur by Andrew Paciorek
used with permission
The Cailleach Bheur
AKA: The Blue Hag, The Crow of Winter
Frequency: Very Rare
No. Appearing: 1 (believed unique)
Size: Large 8" (L)
Armor Class: 2 [17]1
Movement
 Basic: 120' (40')
 Advanced: 12"/18"
 3e: 30ft
Hit Dice: 10d8+5 (50 hp)
% in Lair: 50% (roaming countryside in winter, dormant in summer)
Treasure Type: None
Attacks: 3 (claw/claw/bite) + cold, fear
Damage: 1d6+4/1d6+4/1d4
Special Attacks: Cold 6d6 (breath), once per day. Cause Fear once per day.
Special Defenses: Immune to cold based attacks
Save As: Witch 102
Magic Resistance: 25%
Morale: 103
Alignment: Chaotic evil
Level/XP: 10/5,530 + 15/hp

STR: 19 INT: 10 WIS: 17 DEX: 16 CON: 204  CHA: 75

1 Descending and [Ascending] Armor classes are given.
2 This is used for Basic games, and S&W. Also for monsters that I think need to save a little differently than others.
3 Morale is "Basic" Morale and based on a 1-12 scale. Multiply by 1.6667 for 1-20 scale.
4 Have not decided yet if I want to use 3.x style undead Constitutions or not. (15) Reflects what their Con would be if I do use it.  I might just put a number in () like I do for Ghosts of Albion.
5 monster witches can use an "absolute value" for Charisma.  So a really bad CHA is just as good as a really good one.

Known as the Crow of Winter, The Cailleach Bheur is a very deadly hag. She appears only after Samhain/All Hallow’s Eve and stays till Beltane eve. While as evil as other hags, Cailleach Bheur is more interested in eating sheep and deer than children. In Ireland and Scotland, she is the personification of Winter. During the summer months, Cailleach Bheur turns to stone and is indistinguishable from the other standing stones of the area.

The Cailleach Bheur was cursed into her existence back in a time before writing came to Scotland. One tale, disturbing as it sounds, describes the Cailleach as the ancient Protector of Alba, maybe even a faerie queen or goddess.

In her previous life, the Cailleach Bheur was a lone protector of animals (a Ranger) and a follower of the Great Goddess. One night he fell asleep by a well. The well overflowed with the thaw and she nearly drown. She invoked powerful magics to move the water away, but in the process created Loch Awe (in Scotland) and drowning several villagers and cattle. As repentance, she is to walk the snowy earth till she can feel the mid-summer sun on her face, something that can’t ever happen since she is cursed to be stone from Beltane to Samhain.

The Cailleach Bheur still protects her lands as she did before, ignoring humans unless they tread on her domain, then she kills them with glee by freezing them solid. She blames humans for her current state.

The Cailleach Bheur is believed to be at least 400 years old.

Staff of Winter: Possibly a remnant of her former life the Cailleach Bheur carries a magical staff. The Staff of Winter is made up of holly and gorse branches intertwined to form a 7’ long staff of solid wood. It acts as a magical focus tool providing the Cailleach Bheur +2 magic to all magic related rolls, attacks, saves and checks.

Anyone in possession of this staff can command Cailleach Bheur to leave the area by holding the staff and saying “Bì falbh buitseach!” (begone (get out) witch!). Both Cailleach Bheur and her staff will disappear after the command is uttered. This would require research into Cailleach Bheur specifically or local lore.

Section 15: "The Cailleach Bheur". Copyright 2016 Timothy S. Brannan.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Monster Monday! Yog, The Monster from Space!

It was my pleasure to meet Natasha Duncan-Drake and her sister Sophie Duncan in last years A to Z Challenge.  They both posted a lot of great stuff and plenty that can be used in any game.

Well Natasha has started a new feature.  Monster Mondays.
http://tashasthinkings.blogspot.com/2015/05/monster-monday-2-talos-bronze-giant.html

You might recall I did something similar here for a while and there are other blogs that also do this.
MindweaverRPG has done a few, so has Dispatches from Kickassistan, and I know there are others.



I like Tasha. She is cool, so I am happy to get behind this monster monday.  Plus I love monsters.

Since I am talking about Sci-Fi games all week how about a sci-fi monster.
And no space monster is loved more here than Gezora from Yog, The Monster from Space!

Gezora
Is a giant (100ft/30meter tall) squid controlled by the "Space Amoeba" Yog.
Gezora usually attacks a planet, but can be transported through space.
Gezora, Yog and other kaiju are the "stars" of "The Space Amoeba" aka "Yog the Creature from Space".

Gezora can walk on land, swim in the ocean and travel through space.  While it has 10 tentacles it can only attack with 2 of them.  Any natural 20 attack roll means that Gezora has grabbed onto a victim and will swallow it whole.


(White Star)
Armor Class: -2 [22]
Hit Dice: 25
Total Hit Bonus: +20
Attacks: 2 attacks with tentacles, 4d8x2. Swallows whole on a natural 20.
Saving Throw: 5
Special: Survival in water and in space
Movement: 18 (on land, sea and space)
HDE/XP: 20/7,500


(Starships & Spacemen)
Encountered: 1
Movement: 180' (60')
Intelligence: None/Super Genius (Gezora has no intelligence, Yog does)
Psionic Potential: Telepathic
Hits: 25d8
Armor: -4
Combat Skill: 20
Save: L20
Attacks: 2
Damage: 4d8 x2
Morale: 12
XP: 5,480


(Stars Without Number)
Armor Class: -2
Hit Dice: 25
Attack Bonus: +20
Damage: 4d8 x2
No. Appearing: 1
Saving Throw: 5+
Movement: 40' (land, swim, space)
Morale: 12

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

MONSTROUS MONDAY: Fin

I am very, very pleased with the way MONSTROUS MONDAY turned out!

Thank you all very much who participated, commented and visited all the sites.

Managing the sites was pretty easy.  Many of the participants were familiar faces from other blog hops, so they knew what to do.   I did delete a few sites from the listings.  Some signed up early and then must have forgotten.  Others signed up yesterday and never posted a link back or a monster.  One I even recognized from previously bloghops/blogfests as signing up but never participating.  Obviously just looking for the links.

I have a LinkyTools account now, so I am going to look into ways of using it to improve my site.  Likely a dynamic link list of some sort.

Though the action is not done here yet.  I still have the WICKED AFTER DARK bloghop I am participating in.  Don't forget to visit all those sites and enter for some free stuff.  I am giving away a copy of the Witch!
http://timbrannan.blogspot.com/2012/10/wicked-after-dark-blog-hop-spread-witch.html
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