Monday, October 1, 2007

Manual monsters

As Stephen Schubert's latest post mentions, they're all still hard at work on the Monster Manual, which as my last bunch of posts might indicate, has my feelings all mixed.

Shoe teased about what the highest-level monster was going to be. I didn't expect the tarrasque to be it, since we've seen higher level monsters since the 3rd edition Monster Manual. Still, I do hope they include the tarrasque in the new book, since it's quite an iconic monster for those who play. And I hope that it follows a formula when created... *grumble*

The slaadi, though. I always seem to forget about these menaces, but I really like them. I never think to use them in my own campaigns, and I think the last time they appeared in our group was in the Lord of the Iron Fortress module. This got me thinking about why I don't use them, and I think the problem is that I think of the environment of a campaign first, and populate it later -- and in the case of the slaadi, they just never occur to me as "applicable" to the quest.

As an experiment, I should grab the Monster Manuals and flip through them, and see if I can come up with a campaign idea based on the foes, putting story and plot around them, instead of the other way around. In fact, this would be a good exercise for coming up with submissions for the Side Treks; as well, this would make a good web enhancement for the Monster Manual... it would be quite fun to come up with a different encounter for each monster.

Or perhaps just the underutilized monsters -- who needs help sticking an orc into a module?

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