Dragon 376 - Creature Incarnations: Fell Taints

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Dragon 376
Creature Incarnations: Fell Taints

by N. Eric Heath

Fell taints are beautiful, translucent orbs of wispy tendrils that flow and writhe as if in winds that aren't there. Mysterious and deadly, fell taints can add a new dimension to any adventure, and they make a great change of pace.

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This article is made of win. The creatures are really well put together, creepy, flavorful, and effective. I think I may have an idea on how to kick off my new campaign. Mwahaha!
I am a: Lawful Good Dragonborn Paladin
Seems like the Ripper's attack bonus is a little low, I'd guess it to be +5 at the least, but that's more of an errata issue.

Anyways, these guys are so much tougher than Kobolds and play even dirtier. Incorporating them, behavior, and generally the fluff at the beginning was good. Seems like good Evil DM creatures to me, dunno how the nice guys will be able to use em, perhaps by including an insubstantial killing Bow?
Now they remind me even more of creepy Japanese tentacles that do you know what. Only instead of physical **** they MIND ****. ...So Yeah.

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

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Who named this creature? Seriously, how did this name get through editing?
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Who named this creature? Seriously, how did this name get through editing?

God, thank you. Really, really bad name.

I'm not all that thrilled with the critter - I mean, the idea is creepy but I can't really see using them. YMMV, of course.

Also, it sounds like the Fell Taint Wisp's fluff is backwards - it doesn't dissolve into mist to make others stronger; it solidifies to do so.
Who named this creature? Seriously, how did this name get through editing?

I saw it in the calendar and had a good chuckle, but when I saw that it wasn't a joke I had a real good laugh. Monsters seem cool, although I don't care much for aberrant story lines I'm sure these can make an appearance in an adventure down the road. With a different name of course. Knowing the guys I play with, if I told them they were facing a Fell Taint the whole game would break down into who can one up the other with a "taint" joke.
"I stab the Darter in the taint!"
"It would suck if my taint was defiant!"
"This guy wants to rip your taint!"
"This guy has a void in his taint!"
etc. etc.

Seriously WotC if you want to give us some spooky and fun, don't give it a name that any guy can make a lame joke of the instant they hear the monsters name.
I saw it in the calendar and had a good chuckle, but when I saw that it wasn't a joke I had a real good laugh. Monsters seem cool, although I don't care much for aberrant story lines I'm sure these can make an appearance in an adventure down the road. With a different name of course. Knowing the guys I play with, if I told them they were facing a Fell Taint the whole game would break down into who can one up the other with a "taint" joke.
"I stab the Darter in the taint!"
"It would suck if my taint was defiant!"
"This guy wants to rip your taint!"
"This guy has a void in his taint!"
etc. etc.

Seriously WotC if you want to give us some spooky and fun, don't give it a name that any guy can make a lame joke of the instant they hear the monsters name.

"I've been fighting monsters all day in heavy armor under the hot sun, and now I have fell taint and soggy areas."
Seriously WotC if you want to give us some spooky and fun, don't give it a name that any guy can make a lame joke of the instant they hear the monsters name.

yeah, though the Taint Ripper seems like it would instill the proper level of fear in my group.
yeah, though the Taint Ripper seems like it would instill the proper level of fear in my group.

Gives a whole new meaning to "Cover Your A**"
yeah, though the Taint Ripper seems like it would instill the proper level of fear in my group.

Oh My God No Taint Ripper Attack 1
Standard * Weapon, Rattling
At-Will * Melee touch
Attack: Strength vs. Reflex
Hit: Your target dies in agony, and all your target's allies are stunned.
Oh My God No Taint Ripper Attack 1
Standard * Weapon, Rattling
At-Will * Melee touch
Attack: Strength vs. Reflex
Hit: Your target dies in agony, and all your target's allies are stunned.

Who named this creature? Seriously, how did this name get through editing?

I don't see any problem with the name. Am I missing something?
I don't see any problem with the name. Am I missing something?

"Taint" is a slang term for the perineum. A "fell taint" might, therefore, be a hygiene problem, or one dangerous crotch, depending on the definition of "fell" to which you subscribe.
These guys are kicking off my one-shot campaign, the first encounter of which is on the Day of Mourning and the players will end up about 100 feet from the dead gray mists (on the Breland side). I figured rather than zombies or demons, I would show some of their old comrades stagger out of the mists holding their heads as if they had headaches and the fell taints explode out of their heads and torsos. Whee!

It's a bad critter name but not because of the slang connotations... if this is a fell taint, what does a - never mind. ;)

Too bad there are no miniatures for 'em. I'm going to use Bendaroos. 

Who named this creature? Seriously, how did this name get through editing?



You're surprised? Dude, WotC does not know how to name things.  They haven't for years now. "Dragonborn" do not sound like badass dragon-people, they sound like a very awkward moment in the maternity ward. The "Wordnoun Verbers" are thick on the ground for monsters. They use the words "Wild" and "War" so often that you'd think they believe that if those words were not in use, people would forget about them. There's the "Darkbad" / "Ambiguous Unpleasant Word" problem. There's the whole "this word means something new now" effect with some of the legacy material, too. This isn't just a 4e problem, though -- 3e had equal amounts of goofball terms.

Though there haven't been many new groaners for a few months. "Evil Crotches" have been around for a little while, so they're sort of grandfathered in. 

They are pretty decent monster (if you're a fan of the Lovecraftian), which just makes it weird because I like to use them, but I have to prohibit anyone from ever mentioning their real, live, official name ever, period, because once they figure out that this oozing horror from beyond the stars is named after unpleasant body parts, the "I take this seriously as a threat" threshold has been passed irrevocably.