Dungeon 178 - Bestiary: Creatures of Classical Myth

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DnDi_Large.png   Dungeon 178
Bestiary
Creatures of Classical Myth

By Bruce R. Cordell

With the recent release in April of the remake of Clash of the Titans, it seemed like a perfect opportunity to release some variations on D&D monsters that have always been classic since the 1981 original version of the movie, in their majestic forms as seen in the story of Perseus.  Amongst these are Legendary and Spellbred Scorpions (which I would contend shouldn't have the world Spell in them because they're altered by DIVINE magic, not ARCANE), Stygian Hags (which look like female Pale Men from Pan's Labyrinth), a ridable Pegasus Scion!, and a Medusa Abomination, which seems somewhere between a Medusa and a Yuan-ti Anathema. 

Some of the secrets hags learn are gained directly from divine sources, usually through intermediaries, but sometimes after the hag meets directly with an angel, avatar, or other herald of a devious god. Good gods rarely treat with hags, disliking their mercurial natures, though sometimes it is the hag that has information that divine beings must seek.


These are awesome monsters.  Talk about this article here.
178-bestiary-mythology.jpg

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

Really cool article, I love the medusa! That'll put the fear back into seeing the snake-haired lady.

Well done author, one of the better articles I've seen in Dungeon. Also, the scorpions were cool, they'll be certainly making an appearance in Dark Sun once that coems out for me
I was excited to see the format they used for the monsters in Ampersand: Just Like the White Rabbit…
Who is Sometimes Very, Very Late…


This article didn't follow that format. Is that format not going to be used across the board? It is such a well-organized format, I, for one, would like to see it adopted as the standard.

Also, the Stygian Hag's "Hag's Lies" attack power uses the ranged icon, instead of the close blast icon.

Thanks!
Clash of the Titans was not a good movie.  Not at all.  I'm a little diappointed in DDI for even giving it a nod.  You guys don't need tie-ins with Hollywood debacles to make your product good.

This article would have been perfectly fine without riding a movie's coattails.  Better even, as the hag powers might not have come out looking so forced if they been written with a good RPG in mind rather than a bad movie.
If your position is that the official rules don't matter, or that house rules can fix everything, please don't bother posting in forums about the official rules. To do so is a waste of everyone's time.
You know, you can't fault them for wanting to latch on to something that's in the public eye, especially when it's fantasy related.  Personally, I think this could have been better handled by doing a tie-in with How to Train Your Dragon, making something the younger crowd can enjoy.  Of course, it depends on when they came up with the idea, and how something like that would (if at all) conflict with Hereos of Hesiod.

In the end, whether you thought Clash of the Titans was a good movie or not has little bearing on the fact that the article itself was pretty good.  Regardless, you can easily use this article to point to the original Harryhausen masterwork, which was brilliant film-making for its time.
Wait, weren't they refering to the original movie, the not the new one that just came out?  The original was awesome.
Yeah, I think D&D could have made a much better article by doing a cross-media survey of these monsters and a little discussion, rather than just some stat blocks and some fluff that compromises both their classic roots and the PoL storyline. (I doubt we will ever see Pegasus as a proper noun from here on out in PoL)

Perseus and Andromeda is one of the most archetypal myths, and a prototype of the hero saves princess from dragon story that echos throughout modern fantasy. Dragon use to be full of awesome discussions of it's source material and the fantasy genre in general. I miss that, especially seeing the fumbling nature of this article.

So if we aren't going to get an article on the origins of the myth and it's interpretations in fantasy, other mechanics inspired by the movie I would have liked to see rather than just more stat blocks:


1) a description of how to handle trying to catch the witches eye as they throw it around (whichever witch has it has a significant bonus to attack, any attack dealing more than blank damage causes them to toss it to the farthest witch . . . blah blah whatves I dunno)

2) How to handle fights against large scale creatures, like the kraken, that are so huge you can't miss it, but it's also hard to damage (acrobatics checks, attacking individual limbs, have to bloody before you can use an artifact etc.)

2) Medusa Abomination heads as an artifact! Would have been awesome to show a DM how to leapfrog conquering one monster into the next quest.

3) Bubo inspired figurine of wondrous power! Okay, so that wouldn't have been that beneficial to stretching story telling, but we got totally gyped with a nonsensical cameo.

4) Game counseling on how, if you're thinking of introduce characters like a pair of feral brothers or Djinn with a haunted past, etc. Use them or lose them! Holy hell did they even write a script or was that all improvised?
You could make fighting a huge creature like the Kraken a skill challenge with combat elements.
Kraken is an enemy in Monster Manual 3.  It comes in Sea Kraken and Astral Kraken forms.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

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