July 2017 RPG Blog Carnival – Mutant Monsters

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They shouldn’t have existed, mistakes of nature and mistakes of humanity!  These abominations were the accidents as a result of careless experiments and deadly warfare.  And the result?  Worse than we could have ever feared.  Confused, angry, resentful, hateful!  These things seek to destroy both their creators and the world around them.  Much like the forces that spawned them, destruction is usually their goal.  But, these creatures are no villains, but the consequences of arrogance, apathy, discrimination and violence.

Author’s Note: As a continuation of my theme, here’s a plethora of horrible mutants and mad experiments.  While much of it is revisiting old monsters, there’s a good amount of new goodies to toss into your wastelands, super secret labs and other such locations.
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FREAKS! – Aberrant Beasts, Mutants and other Abominations

When magic is involved to experiment with life, the results can be horrifying and sickening.  So-called Freaks are born from careless tinkering with supernatural forces.  These “freaks” are often driven to madness and hostility by either their inability to grasp the world around them or reacting to a harsh and judgemental society.  Those who lack sentience tend to go mad from their tormented existence. Most of the time, their creators have little care for their warped creations.  Those who do seem them as the perfect meat shield, whilst they continue their depraved and disturbed experiments.

While many are the result of mad scientist, evil alchemists and deranged wizards; some are victims of corrupting powers and incomprehensible forces.  These powers greatly vary.  Forces like abyssal underworld hexes, maddening voids of realms beyond, places of raw and untamed energies.  Creatures born from such mysterious planes and domains are often thralls to their mad overlords.  Those who break free often became chaotic and destructive forces prone to rampage, much like material plane  “freaks”.  These planar-blighted beings were often enslaved as living machines of destruction.  They serve as pawns in warfare, conquest or acts of terror.

Author’s Note:  Many of these are original with the help of some of my friends (Thanks Bobby, Centaurpede will give me nightmares!)  Also, the creepy horse mask inspired some of the flavor text…  In the case of some of the others, they are homages.  The Cosmicoid is both a nod towards Alien and the equally inspired Wanamingo from Fallout 2.  The Hulking Mutant is a more clear reference towards the Super Mutants from Fallout.  Meanwhile the Atomic Beast was my translation of Keith Thompson’s Pripyat Beast and Psi-Zombie is Zombified Stalker from S.T.A.L.K.E.R. meets the Witch from Left 4 Dead.  Also, Atomic Beast and Centaurpede are conceptually very similar…  Granted, one’s alive while another is a From Software staple.

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Expedition to Barrier Peaks – D&D 5th Edition Conversion (PART 4) – Pre-Existing Monsters and Custom Stuff

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“I want to get off Barrier Peaks’ Wild Ride.”

Much of the art of conversion can be much more simple than one thinks.  Minimalism is something I’ve been meaning to toy with, as well as looking at my previously available options.  With that, here’s a list of existing monsters to modify for the adventure as well as creatures that already exist in some capacity.  Enjoy!

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Expedition to Barrier Peaks – D&D 5th Edition Conversion (PART 1) – Robots and Androids

RPG Blog Carnival LogoTo kick off the August 2016 RPG Blog Carnival theme of “Super-Science and Sorcery”, I thought I’d show a part of a conversion I’m working on.  This module has always been a special one for me.  Not only was it a crazy fun house dungeon crawl, but it’s a bizarre crossover of D&D elements with the likes of Gamma World and Metamorphosis Alpha.  Plus, I’ve always loved conspiracies revolving around Ancient Aliens.  With that, I’ll be hoping to transfer Barrier Peaks to 5th Edition to the best of my abilities.  After it’s complete, it might go up on the DM’s Guild.

To kick things off, we’ll start the conversion with an assortment of robots and androids.  Now, you may be wondering, what do robots have to do with D&D?  I’m not entirely sure, as I’m running on coffee and sheer determination.  Granted, that hasn’t stopped me from finding a way!  Needless to say, the rest of the module is being converted in chunks, to be collected in a megapost in the end.

Author’s Note:  You read that correctly!  More or less, I’m going to be dumping some time into converting this module.  It’s very likely that this will take up a chunk of the month, itself.  Luckily, the Playtest made work a lot easier on me.  I’ve found help from other bloggers as well, thus making the journey a non-arduous one.  Plus, I’ve made a helping of techno goodies in the past too.

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The Walking Disease: An Abhorent Mobile Plague for D&D 5th Edition

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… Eeeewww

“Writhing vermin, fungaloid spores, infected and mutated flesh.  Such a creature, its combination should be impossible!  Such a bonding of disgusting things, it makes no sense.  What mad arcanist would perform blasphemous rituals to create a redundant and putrid nightmare like this?  Why, I’ll inform you and shed the bliss of ignorance.  From the dark art of necromancy arose the magics of pathomancy, a school of magic devoted to diseases, infections and other maladies to afflict one’s health.  While one could debate the good in necromancy, pathomancy is almost certainly evil.  Its sole purpose is spreading illness wherever it goes.  Perhaps it is the ultimate in biological terror and weaponry.  And from these dark arts, evil creatures are spawned.  One such being is the Viral Undead, a zombified horror that is brought back to life through plagues rather than raw negative energy.  However, such creatures are the only beginning of such vile rituals.  There are far worse…  I speak of ghoulish things that control the bodies of the dead; plagues, fungi, vermin… seemingly corrupted by darkness and made into a weaponized hivemind.  There is only one title for an anathema to all that is holy, Walking Disease!” – Rambles of a mad archivist on the Walking Disease.

The Walking Disease is among one of the foulest necromantic beings ever created.  This thing is an incubator of some of the most foul and dangerous illnesses and parasites known to many, and some to few.  Disgusting environment, combined with magically enhanced organic tissue lends itself to the perfect breeding ground for a device of mobile biological warfare.  While it is certain this is a work of dark magic, such monsters thrive in environments like fetid swampland, damp and dirty dungeons, sewage tunnels and other environments hampered by humid moisture and/or rampant decay.  Some consider densely populated areas with little regard for hygiene as well as space to be perfect breeding grounds for the walking disease as well.  Sometimes, when eldritch arts go awry in the right conditions, the walking disease is made entirely by accident, usually from someone who passed on in such a disgusting environment.  The reason for such beings is unknown beyond forbidden magical power.  Some say that the specialized necromancers seek to perfect plague magic as a weapon against their enemies.  Others say cults devoted to gods of Death and Disease want to appease their dread masters any way possible.  Perhaps they were simply an experiment that went horribly wrong.

This sad thing is bloated and warped beyond any recognition of its original self.  Discernible anatomy is replaced by pus spewing boils, sickly sores, asymmetrically placed tumors, stretched necrotic lesions, chitinous-like plates, assorted fungal growths replacing some features entirely, chains of undead insects wriggling and swarming about, among other grotesque features.  Worse yet, almost every victim suffers these deformities and mutations in different revolting and shocking ways.  Despite its staggered appearance, the walking disease boasts supernatural strength and is surprisingly agile, making it a surprising and truly terrifying foe.

On top of this, it’s seemingly more observant and aware than other undead.  When not posing as a body being fed on by the wretched wastes around it, it might hide in a wretched hive of filth and grime.  While it feels no physical pain, its existence is prolonged by endless mental anguish and hatred.  Only a complete fool would be willing to actively engage such a monster.  And those who do often suffer a slow and agonizing death… only to rise up as another shambling colony of plague and despair.

Author’s Note: Considering I only posted one monster, I wanted to craft a second one for you all!  This one is a conversion of a conversion.  In other words, I updated one of my very first blog posts to Fifth Edition.  The original post was a quick and easy conversion of the “Walking Disease” from a somewhat obscure D20 accessory book called “Into the Black.”  For those who haven’t heard of it, the book is a great resource for subterranean and dungeon adventures.  I’ve used it a small handful of times, myself.  Also, the idea came to me while thinking about tons of horror and sci-fi monsters: The Flood from Halo, the Infected from The Last of Us, Spawn of Nurgle from Warhammer/40k, etc.  While this is a translation of the original monster, those creatures played their part in making this too.  Also, there’s nothing that gives me the creeps like medical horror.  We all fear illness and disease, so a perfect creature of horror is a literal incarnation of it.  The end result is a horrifically deadly creature that can slay its victim in mere moments, if not careful.

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Graveyard Tyrant, Divine Atrocity & More – FromSoft inspired Horrors for D&D 5th Edition

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There is a certain darkness that lurks within our multiverse.  Great beings of power hold dominion over reality, creating guardians to defend their reign.  Likewise, powerful mortals meld conviction, innovation and craft to create a testament to their beliefs  Among them are foul creatures that epitomize forces of corruption.  These creatures are born out of hatred, malice, destruction, tyranny, bedlam and a wide variety of other horrid acts and negative emotions.  However, many of these fell beings were forged from the best intentions.  Purity, piety, justice, liberty, order, compassion, knowledge; all desires to improve or better understand the worlds around us.  However, positive intentions are distorted by extremes and turn into unending nightmares unforeseen by the perpetrators.

Where kindness and creativity go awry, cruel and unspeakable monsters arise.  All are the embodiment of some ideal that has turned horribly wrong.  Spiritual powers of nature contorted into vicious beasts, an arbiter judge of the dead turned callous taker of souls, the most virtuous and divine being unraveled and maddened by the abyss, those dedicated to a cause pursuing their quest into the depths of insanity.  Such tragic horrors are just examples of great power that falls from grace.  These beings were not meant to be or not meant to become this way.  The Divine Atrocity is the desecration of nature by its own followers, The Graveyard Tyrant is death’s hatred for the living taking hold of the land, The https://i2.wp.com/img03.deviantart.net/9c58/i/2014/243/d/8/bloodborne___cleric_beast_by_artsed-d7xeote.jpgDemon-Shackled is a fell knight who gave up on all that is sacred for the Abyssal chaos they fought, the Sundered Saint is the deranged remains of a faithful being driven insane by their convictions and goals.  Thus, a swift death is a true act of mercy when it comes to their existence.

These sacrilegious mistakes often haunt wastelands plagued by far worse evils.  The entropic decay and destruction only serves to empower these tainted powers.  Mad cults, other beings born of the same madness as such abortions of science and arcana.  They pose a challenge to any crusader, chosen one or hunter foolish enough to get in their way.  In some cases, the very land around these abominations conspires against those who bring their wicked masters any harm.  These soulless forgeries of life seek to destroy all those who oppose their sick mutation, those who defy their damnation, those who defend against their twisted ways.

Author’s Note:  I wasn’t really happy with these creations, initially.  So, I figured they were both due for an update.   We’ve had horrors from the mists, some classic dark fantasy and a bit of weird western and steampunk for good measure too!  So, I’ve done all I can to expand my “Gaslamp and Gothic” theme to it’s fullest.  On that note, the other reason I wanted to do this is a tribute to the gaming series/multiverse I love so much.  The Souls games (and Bloodborne) are coming to an end for the time being, so polishing some homages is fitting tribute.  Here’s my take on Grave Lord Nito and Cleric Beast in D&D 5E.  In addition, I create some extra content to commemorate Dark Souls III and make general homage to all of the Souls games (including Demon’s Souls).  And as always, the mad rambling prose is in part thanks to my love of Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem and of course, H.P. Lovecraft.  The first three monsters are directly inspired by various creatures, while the third is a general homage to several beings from the series.

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Divine Atrocity – A Massive Beastly Terror for D&D 5th Edition

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Across the multiverse, priests of nature show their devotion to bountiful realms untouched by civilization and the divine powers that tend to them.  Many of these priests make pilgrimages to distant demiplanes dedicated to these powers.  The Demiplane of Nature is a realm of such untouched wilderness and raw magical power.  However, many dark forces seek to harness and corrupt it.  As such, a dark reflection of this domain was created, much to the ignorance of those who worship the forces of nature.  When the corrupted wild plane reaches a faithful before the pure version, it taints their soul, maddens their mind and warps their body.  Victims become horrible monsters, with nature priests and druids being the most heavily afflicted.  Among them is a massive nightmare deemed the “Divine Atrocity.”  This hulking beast was likely one of many important high priests dedicated to the plane, before being turned into a savage horror.  Infection could be from the plane’s dark mirror feeding off of the victim’s hatred, perhaps a corruption within the blood itself.

Divine Atrocities dwell in lands of horrific plagues, planar incursions of the fey or of beasts, or sites of heavy lycanthropy.  While lesser creatures create a nightmare for the remaining residents, these abominations help to wipe out any straggler still caught in the streets.  Fortunately, these beings are a rare sight.  This is in part because prolonged exposure to extreme corrupt energy was the main cause of these nightmares and most victims die long before turning into something like the Atrocity.  However, there is a fear that dwells among many.  As many nature-based societies come under attack by more technological societies, many will likely fall to that hatred that spawned such dread monsters.  And such, a war against civilization will likely escalate to frightening new extremes.

AUTHOR’S NOTE:  I made a creation based on Nito from Dark Souls, so I figure it would be more than fair to tackle an awesome boss from Bloodborne as well.  Or rather, taking inspiration and applying it to my setting’s planar cosmology a little bit.  Who knows?  If my FromSoft inspired monsters prove popular, I might make more!

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