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[Let's Read] AD&D 2e Monstrous Compendium Fiend Folio Appendix

Leonaru

Taxidermic Owlbear
Validated User
#1
Welcome to my next Let's Read. This time, we have a closer look at AD&D 2e Monstrous Compendium Fiend Folio Appendix:



The original Fiend Folio was a monster book collecting monster from the Fiend Factory column of White Dwarf magazine. Most of the monsters have been created by White Dwarf's British readers, though the book contains some TSR monsters published in certain modules as well. Due to the many many contributors, the Fiend Folio is pretty incoherent, but that's not a bad thing. A whole bunch of D&D monsters that are classics now stem from this book.

The AD&D 2e Fiend Folio is a collection of loose sheets with monster created or updated by members of the Role Playing Game Association. Its monsters are more wacky than the ones from the main MCA, and even feel less generic than the Greyhawk or Dragonlance monster. I can't really say why, though.

There is also a D&D 3e/3.5e Fiend Folio. It updates the monsters once more and again adds new once. The 3e Fiend Folio is probably the most fiendish of the three.
 

Crinos

Be inspired!
Validated User
#2
Okay, from that cover I recognize the Kamadan and the Xill, but what the heck is that third one? Looks like an albino fat balding middle aged man.
 

Sleeper

Red-eyed dust bunny
Validated User
#3
Curious to see how faithful the 2nd edition version is to the original.

(I'd love to run a campaign using just the monsters from the original Fiend Folio. No orcs, no chromatic dragons, no umber hulks, no elementals. Just norkers, and oriental dragons, and meenlocks, and mephits.)
 

Leonaru

Taxidermic Owlbear
Validated User
#4
Okay, from that cover I recognize the Kamadan and the Xill, but what the heck is that third one? Looks like an albino fat balding middle aged man.
It's a shaved yeti.

I'd love to run a campaign using just the monsters from the original Fiend Folio. No orcs, no chromatic dragons, no umber hulks, no elementals. Just norkers, and oriental dragons, and meenlocks, and mephits.
That would be quite interesting. I think it would be even more fun with the original Fiend Folio.
 

DMH

Master of Mutant Design
Validated User
#5
Okay, from that cover I recognize the Kamadan and the Xill, but what the heck is that third one? Looks like an albino fat balding middle aged man.
Either a fog giant or a urdunnir (a kind of dwarf). I am guessing it is a giant as it has no beard, but who knows what the artist was thinking.
 

Leonaru

Taxidermic Owlbear
Validated User
#6
Aballin



Let's not waste any time and have a look at the first monster: The aballin. I already reviews it in my Let's Read of the first MAC Annual. In fact, that's true for a couple other monster from this book too. However, I want to have a fresh look at them and won't just link to my old posts (feel free to check them out, though).

The illustration is solid from a technical point of view, but not really inspiring. I like the very vaguely visible face, though (or am I just imagining that?).

The aballin, also know as the living water, is a fluid creature that looks like clean water devoid of life. It's not a water elemental (unlike the water weird), though. The aballin has INT 9. I'm not sure why, but I guess the author wanted to make sure that it's just a little less intelligent than the average human.

The aballin's shtick is that pretends to be a harmless pond of water. As soon as somebody touches it or attempts to drink from it, it takes a gelatinous form and attacks. Water Breathing doesn't help if trapped inside a aballin. The aballin has a ton of immunities, including many elements (fire, electricty...) and status effects (blindess, paralysation...) and slashing weapons.

Aballins are like to disguise themselves as wishing wells, leaving the points and other precious items of their former victims at the bottom of their pond. It's like a liquid gelatinous cube! Sometimes aballins also live in families with up to four members.

Bottom line: If you ever see two large sentient fountains next to two child-sized fountains, be aware of the aballin!
 

DMH

Master of Mutant Design
Validated User
#7
I don't get the immunity to fire. They are watery oozes, shouldn't they be turned to steam? And then enter the lungs of the caster and suffocate them from the inside?

And oozes with a family life. What do they do for fun? Play catch with some of their victims' bones, carve new fountains to inhabit or study the stars for signs of their trip home?
 

Leonaru

Taxidermic Owlbear
Validated User
#8
It's water so it has to be good against fire. That's common RPG and video game logic. It's the same with treant and fire weakness: Aren't trees better at surviving direct exposure to fire than, say, mammals?
 

Leonaru

Taxidermic Owlbear
Validated User
#9
Achaierai



Now we are talking: Chaotic Evil disembodied parrot head on four metallic chicken legs. The achaierai appear in flocks and never check morale while part of a flock. However, they will flee if they loose a leg.

An achaierai can only be killed by damaging the body/head. If a leg suffers 15 or more points of slashing damage, it is severed but the the body doesn't take damage. So if your really want to have the D&D version of Angry Birds, cut off all four legs. Severed legs do not regrow.

If you cut off all legs but one, the achaierai releases toxic gas that causes damage and insanity (equal to Feeblemind) for a couple of hours. An achaierai has 40 hit points (body) which indicates that it should have about 9 hit dice (even though its THAC0 says otherwise). There's a reasonable chance that your melee guys will not make the save and you end up having to babysit them for hours. Then again, that's still better than Type F Poison.

Achaierai are from hell and were originally created for some evil purpose nobody remembers anymore. Nowadays, achaierai live mostly underground and spend their time hunting down other creatures they can eat.

Bottom line: Four-legged bird from hell? I'm sold.
 

neutrondecay

An Experience
RPGnet Member
Validated User
#10
Achaierai

Bottom line: Four-legged bird from hell? I'm sold.
I've successfully used them as a 'vicious wandering bastard' encounter in both planar and megadungeon contexts. Weird, dangerous, and challenging. B+, would dismember again.

nd
 
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