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Fantasy Bestiary

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 2:05 pm
by olshanski
Thanks for the invite.

I've been here a few years as a lurker, and have directed people here from the Design/Development subforum at RPG.NET.

I am at the point where I want to procrastinate, and I find that reading other people's stuff helps me procrastinate.

I should be writing bestiary entries for some standard fantasy monsters, but I am just not feeling motivated.

As to "which ones caught my eye".

Nights of the Crusades: Just read it, really liked it.
Old School Hack: Read it a few years ago, liked it then.
The Shadow of Yesterday: Read it a few years ago, my game is inspired by it.
On Mighty Thews: The link to the game didn't work, searching revealed it is available for $5.00. I read some reviews of it including some interesting stuff about the cover art.
Talislanta: I wasn't familiar with this, even though its been around forever. I looked at it. Some nice mechanics, but too much setting (too many races, too much focus on minutia of weapons/armor).
I really liked "Dungeonslayers", but I didn't see it in the database.
Vhraeden. Blood, Steel and Iron Will: Oh my god the amount of work that went into this. I was impressed by the quantity, but again the rules were so crazy fiddly, and a lot of it seemed like filler.


Basically I was looking to see what other people had done with their bestiaries, and I am not seeing much at all.

Re: Searching for RPGs on the main site

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:27 pm
by Chainsaw Aardvark
Welcome to 1km1kt.net.

So what are you looking to do with your monster compendium? Are you just seeking to compile creatures, or add a bit to the world with stores and descriptions of legendary beasts?

As I recall, the Runebearer RPG has a good list, as does the Basic Fantasy Retroclone (Real original name, huh?) The Brutal RPG is more of a dungeon crawl game than an RPG, and as such, its monster and character race selection would be worth a look as well. The excellent Retunrer's Final Fantasy RPG has quite unfortunately disappeared(though check the internet archive - it had an extensive monster creation system). However, the Zodiac FF RPG remains.

If you're not really motivated to write up standard fantasy monsters, why not write some non-standard ones? Or write some exciting stores involving people fighting them, and then either try to pull stats from the literature, or leave that task to the GMs?

I believe the 1km1kt.net game Excalibur, an extended version of Adventurer, has a good list of races/opponents. Dragonfly might also have some inspiration - it bills itself as a cross between "Pokemon" and "Starship Troopers" and thus has a number of pages dealing with creature types. However, since a lot of the games on this site are written for contests or unusual genres, even I can't think of too many that created large lists of monsters. I need to do some more micro-reviews of the site content, however, so if I find any more - you'll be amongst the first to know.

If there is any other way I can help, let me know.

Re: Searching for RPGs on the main site

PostPosted: Thu Feb 16, 2012 3:45 pm
by olshanski
Awesome help. I'll be following those links.

Basically, I have a homebrew fantasy roleplaying game that I am playing with my family and friends, and I using my old D&D adventures. So far I've played Red Hand of Doom, B1 In search of the Unknown, B2 Keep on the Borderlands, N4 Treasure Hunt, N5 under illefarn, and the Warhammer adventure "Thousand Thrones".

My game rules are nicely written up and playable, but I wanted to include a beastiary. I also wanted more than just names+stats, and I don't want to plagerize, so I am having a rough time trying to come up with clever ways of describing a Brown Bear, a Giant Scorpion, a Gargoyle, and things like that... the fluff is dragging me down.

I'm in a monster stock art kickstarter, so that may inspire me a bit too.
http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/inkwellideas/monster-stock-art

Hopefully reading some other work will inspire me. While I am at it, I should probably break out some old D&D monster manuals and give them a read-through.

Re: Searching for RPGs on the main site

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 5:15 am
by Evil Scientist
Image

olshanski wrote:My game rules are nicely written up and playable, but I wanted to include a beastiary. I also wanted more than just names+stats, and I don't want to plagerize, so I am having a rough time trying to come up with clever ways of describing a Brown Bear, a Giant Scorpion, a Gargoyle, and things like that... the fluff is dragging me down.

As far as I understand, you don't have a unique setting, just the ruleset? In this case, the bestiary would be a good way to start world-building! Otherwise you will have to stick to generic descriptions - what else can you write about a Brown Bear? Now, if you have a setting, you can always add fluff like "the Brown Bear is worshipped by the Xosgopasb tribe who tattoo its image on their chest".

If you include animals that exist in our world like DRAGONS AND MANTICORES I SEE THEM BUT NO ONE BELIEVES ME--- I mean, like bears, wolves, lions, etc., you can always just make a "common animals" section where you simply list their attributes and habitat, with no extra text. Maybe as a table. Fluff and descriptions are only needed for monsters and other "fantasy creatures.

Also, just make up creatures, then you'll have absolutely no problem with plagiarism. Of course, they might bear a slight resemblance to D&D/etc. monsters, but that's acceptable. But most of all: you need to know what setting you are working with.

olshanski wrote:I should be writing bestiary entries for some standard fantasy monsters, but I am just not feeling motivated.

Just ditch the generic standard fantasy monsters, if you don't have fun writing about them. Or change them.

Onix wrote:Either that or ask Chainsaw Aardvark what you're searching for, he seems to have an encyclopedic knowledge of the games on the site. 8-)

Chainsaw Aardvark wrote:[Thousands of awesome links]

:mrgreen:

(Maybe a moderator should split and move this thread to the fantasy section?)

Fantasy Bestiary

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:36 pm
by olshanski
Edit: Duplicate of merged text}

Re: Fantasy Bestiary

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 3:24 pm
by Rob Lang
Moderator split and merge completed!

Awesome topic, welcome olshanski! I am keen to see how the bestiary pans out. I agree that keeping out the standard monsters is a good idea.

Re: Fantasy Bestiary

PostPosted: Fri Feb 17, 2012 3:59 pm
by olshanski
Well, what counts as a "standard monster"?
Along with the typical "brown bear", I've also got the old 5' long centipedes with poisonous bite.
Along with the "american alligator", I've also got the 40' long Deinosuchus.
All of those are kind of "standard monsters"... at least not exactly "fantasy" (well, maybe the giant centipedes are).

I've tried to include some setting-fluff in the game... That was good advice and seems to be working pretty well.
I don't actually have a strong setting since I just run any published adventures I happen to have handy.

Re: Fantasy Bestiary

PostPosted: Fri Jun 08, 2012 1:17 pm
by falinxelote
Yea, I noticed that a lot of people online have been upset with not having a Bestiary for A+ fantasy, as was I, so I just made one. I have 41 monsters and counting. The list is 4 elemental, 5 goblins, 5 ogre, 6 dangerous plants, 4 intelligent plants, 5 small totem constructs, 7 undead (one is just rules for a lich though I did include a Vampire), 5 wolves (including werewolf and hexan wolf.) Every one of the monsters has a picture, except for the 6 dangerous plants and all 41 have a description. I just googled the pics so I don't have rights or anything. But hay that was 3 days to make in my spare time. The only thing i haven't done is convert in some spells that a couple of the monsters have like darkness and entangle put I gave the radius and folks should be able to figure it out. If you want a copy, I'm not stingy, but beware as I said the pics aren't mine nor do I own the rights to them so this is a strictly between friends Bestiary, not for popular upload. Unless someone wants to donate some monster pics that they own to the cause. Anyway I will probably slow down but I'll keep making monsters and adding them in as I need them. Oh I almost forgot, I had to add a couple of skills Like fly and hide(for monsters that cannot sneak but are good at hiding) again they should be self explanatory. I was also thinking of an expanded list of skills like adding a skill tree to some of them like apprentice at B you can choose specializations like summon or ritual magics, just a thought.