Monday, May 25, 2020

5 Monster Manual Creatures that Deserve More Love

As a dungeon master it's easy to go for the usual goblins and dragons when you're building your campaign. But deep within the Monster Manual you will find a plethora of fun critters to put your players up against. Here are five you may want to slip into your next session.

5: Gibbering Mouther

A Lovecraftian horror, the Gibbering Mouther is an unusual critter to say the least. It's a mass of everchanging mouths and eyes that constantly gibbers nonsense and can drive anything around it insane. This is a fun way to give that barbarian or fighter in the party something to mess with, giving some of the characters that don't get a lot of play time a chance to shine.

4: Rug of Smothering (Animated Object) 

A pit trap is good, a pit trap with spikes is better, an elegant rug that strangles the first person to step on it is the best. Rug of Smothering (Found under "Animated Objects") is a fun and twisted way to further fuel your player's trust issues. The rug not only does bludgeoning damage, it suffocates whoever it wraps around until they pass out. That puts a fun time mechanic into the combat on top of trying to figure out where the weak spot is on an angry bath mat.

3: Kuo-Toa

Another Lovecraftian throwback, these little fishy slime monsters make a great alternative to the overused goblins. Their sticky shield ability can steal players weapons and only being a 1/4 challenge rating you can throw a lot of them up against the party without feeling too guilty. Kuo-Toa come in their basic form, a stronger warrior form called the Kuo-Toa whip and a formidable magic user called the Kuo-Toa Archpriest, so you can build a colorful encounter for any level adventurers.

2: Githyanki/Githzerai

Used a lot in the Dungeons and Dragons video games, these folks still haven't had their just due (the upcoming Baulder's Gate III might change that). Essentially these folks used to be a slave race under the Illithids, or mind flayers, until they broke out and crippled the multiverse spanning empire. Divided into two people, they now travel the multiverse hunting their former masters and pillaging worlds for resources. They can make for either fun one-time encounters or be the catalyst for hours of adventures.

1: Magmin

This thing is a fun surprise for anyone who doesn't immediately recognize them. They look like little on-fire goblins, but once killed they explode and cause fire damage. They're like little fiery pinatas that your players will be both annoyed by and delighted to fight. Make them a big encounter for a low level party or an extra obstacle for a high level party, either way they make for a great touch of madness.

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