Friday, April 24, 2015

Cutting Deeper Into Neoplastic's Teratic Tome For Your Old School Campaigns

 I  'm going to do a quick break down of one of my recent favorite monster books, The Teratic Tom from Neoplastic Press. You can get the pdf HERE  Or The Hardback from Lulu HERE
the APR15 and FWD15 coupons on Lulu should apply at least for a little while and before you ask I'm not shilling for LuLu or Mr. Chandler.

  So two weeks ago, I ordered a physical copy of the Teratic Tome by Rafael Chandler and his crew of incredibly demented and talented artists who worked on the book. The fact is that I've read review after review of the book and aside from the 'oh's and ah's over the mature and slightly disturbing content with all of the tentacles. I'd like to address something about the monsters withing the book. Yes there are high level monsters of all kinds and demons, devils, and wall to wall Lovecraftian weirdness  in between the slime filled tendril laden entries. Each monster has a very simple challenge level built right into the entries. And aside from being a well put together book this level entry system is keyed for the levels of the PC's who should be fighting said monstrosities. And yes there are low level horrors just waiting to tackle your PC's in the book. The thing about these horrors is that these nasties
 are memorable and very dangerous but not out of the realm of unkillable at all. Far from it, these are horrors that can go a long way to really giving your PC's a hard time.
For example right out the gate we get a very well done horror that is keyed in for a level five party of fools erm adventurers. Another thing to notice is the simple and concise way that the treasure is laid out in the book, each entry has everything splayed out with the beastie's lair and its contents right in front of you. A simple and easy way of doing treasure in a game. 

   Other bits and pieces that that added to the monster's setting and feel is the inclusion of the way the damn thing smells and I do me damn thing here in every sense of the word. Its these simple and well thought out little fiddly details that brings the whole monster experience home for a DM. Which is one of the reasons why I decided to use this book for my upcoming a Fantastic Heroes and Witchery campaign.
   Another asthetic details that gets thrown in here is the way that each monster's entry is almost but not quite a bit like a movie plot hook. That is brought home in entry after entry with lots of little nuggets and details about the mad bastard horrors that your PC's are facing down. This was done I believe on purpose and has a very 80's vibe to it. Each and every monster is almost its own star in a way and it echoes something that a friend recently said to me. Each of these monsters should be its own 'star' of an adventure or to put it another way each monsters is unique enough to have the adventures built around it. A recent conceil that I found with old pre code horror comics and movies going back to the golden age of Hammer horror. One monster or creature powerful enough to carry the entire picture or film and powerful enough to give the PC's a hard time.

   There is also an Arduin style vibe that runs through this book as well, one of power attracting power and that those with power cause ripples across the multiverse over and over again. This is again another echo that I think was done quite well on purpose and one that goes straight back into the back bone of the recent Lamentations of The Flame Princess rpg monster book Lusus Naturae. Over and over again there's over lap between the monsters here as if there's far more bubbling below the slime covered surface of this book and I can see the various arrows point back and forth between the horrors with in the Teratic Tome. Now I've mentioned using this book with Fantastic Heroes and Witchery. But why? Because the average FH&W PC is slight more robust hit point wise and the dark dangerous tone of that game suits this book of horrors quite well but  it needs to be pointed as with the other book that less is far more in this case. 


  1. Yeah, Teratic Tome is a great monster manual. And it looks right at home sitting on a shelf next to all your 1st Edition AD&D hardbacks.


  2. I've told folks I was going to slow my roll down and look into some of the resources of my campaign. Blue Tyson so I'm glad you enjoyed it pal.

  3. I love my copy of the book actually, its been stilling on pdf edowarsblog and I've been wanted a copy for a long while now. So its one of those things I've been so looking forward to getting. LuLu actually did a decent job of doing a copy of it up for me. So all in all I'm pretty damn happy with the thing. I've got more coming up.

  4. I've been buying more POD product lately. One thing that Lulu does better is package product for shipping. My most recent purchases from Lulu have been shrink wrapped to keep the books from sliding around inside the box. I've been getting more books with dented corners from other vendors.

  5. I've noticed this as well, I'm always trying to get the books from the authors directly. Take for example my recent purchase of my Venger Satanis books, he did a great job packing the books and thank Cthulhu for that because man my post office is a bit psycho about it.He put in packing and air bags, the whole nine yards of precautions with the books. They came and the envelop with ripped up,etc. Because of his packing job the books came safe on sound. Now contrast this with Lulu job on the The Teratic Tome and they also did their usual bullet proof packing job. As you can see my book is pretty much perfect. Another company that did a great job with my Mutant Epoch books was Atomic Empire who packed those books right. They're still as good as ever. I've been enjoying the hell out of the POD stuff lately.


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