Continuing the trend of “Planescape books I weirdly skipped posting about,” here’s the second Monstrous Compendium for the campaign setting (1995). Have no clue why I stopped with the first volume, but I did. And that meant overlooking an entire book of @DiTerlizzi illustrations, which is probably a crime.

The whole book is pretty great. Tony takes a crack at the astral dreadnought, for one. We also get stats for the astral dreadnought, for another (despite featuring on the cover of Manual of the Planes, it mostly remained a mystery until now). There’s walking brain monsters, animal people, flying elephants, those weird porcupine-haired guys from Highlander II: The Quickening. Razorvine gets an official entry. Retrievers are retrieved. The Arcane are imported from Spelljammer, as are an odd sort of Neogi-kin.

Many of the monsters feel less like singular encounters than they do jumping off points for whole adventures, or even campaigns. The Prolonger, for instance — a sort of soul-eating, immortality obsessed pseudo-undead — is a personal favorite and made for an excellent serial killer nemesis in my own homebrew campaign. Good monsters are fuel, not foes!

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