I know I am late to this party, but I just got this great book four days ago. Now, my first idea was to write up a glowing review of why this is a really strong monster manual, but there are enough of those already out there. So, I’ve decided to write about monsters that may play a defining role in my Pellham campaign, how the 5E Monster Manual will help or hinder use of those monsters, and My Plan on their use in my games.
Fomorians: In myth and legend Fomorians are among the great foes of the Tuatha de Dannan. I’ve not used them much at all in my games, because earlier editions of D&D presented them as weak, deformed giants, not as foes worthy of rivalling gods. This all changed with 4E and at last here were foes worthy of heroes! Since I am running a Celtic-style game in my Pellham campaign, Fomorians seem like natural choices for opponents. While I am thrilled that many of monsters in 5E have returned to previous versions of themselves, I am saddened by the Fomorians demotion to lesser giants. My Plan: Ignore the 5E version of Fomorians and use my 5E conversions of 4E Fomorians.
Hags and Dryads: I’ve used dryads for years as oracles and sharers of knowledge. Hags have played similar roles in my games, but in more sinister ways and often as villains meant to fought and destroyed. While hags often come in my games in packs of three, dryads only recently gained that particular feature. When my wife and I took a trip a few years back, we saw three trees grown together at the edge of a small river. Looking at those trees I saw a set of dryad sisters and immediately placed them in Rhillmoran. 5E gives me strong descriptions of dryads and hags and cool rules for hag covens. My Plan: Introduce my PCs to Kirke, Medea, and Trakiya of the Coven Tree, expand on the stories of Oak, Ash, and Thorn, and place a couple of hag covens around to cause trouble.
Blights: Never used blights in any of my games, but they are going to appear in days to come. My Plan: Integrate blights into N2: The Forest Oracle.
Shambling Mounds: I’ve used shambling mounds as the big bosses in more than one swamp or garden-gone-bad. The 5E version contains enough information to run a solid encounter or three. My Plan: Enter the Fens and face the terrors within.
Looks like plants are the big monsters in this campaign. What monsters are likely to show up in your games?