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MC14 Monstrous Compendium Fiend Folio Appendix (2e)
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MC14 Monstrous Compendium Fiend Folio Appendix (2e)

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Look to your weapons! Here comes a horde of the strangest creatures ever to inhabit the worlds of the AD&D game. The denizens of the original FIEND FOLIO tome are back, updated and expanded for the AD&D 2nd edition game.

Treat yourself to an in-depth look at the peculiar achaierai, vicious stilt-legged birds that roam the infernal planes - and they also hunt closer to civilization. Find out what xvarts do for fun, but don't expect them to play fair! The menagerie inside includes leaping gambados, grenzied gorbels, and other old favorites. Several brand new creatures, such as the beautiful but haughty gem dragons join them. Don't pass up your cance to get to know these astonishing creatures.

Product History

MC14: "Monstrous Compendium Fiend Folio Appendix" (1992) is the fourteenth monster manual for AD&D 2e. It was published in April 1992.

Origins (I): Binders of Monsters. In early 1992, it had been two and a half years since TSR had published a totally generic Monster Manual. The closest had been MC8: "Monstrous Compendium Outer Planes Appendix" (1991), since Planescape had not yet become a setting, but other than that, every single Monstrous Compendium from MC3: "Monstrous Compendium Volume Three: Forgotten Realms Appendix" (1989) to MC13: "Monstrous Compendium Al-Qadim Appendix" (1992) had been closely to a D&D world.

The "Fiend Folio Appendix" was something else: a book of the wackier, stranger, and more alien D&D monsters, with a focus on those found in the original Fiend Folio (1981).

Origins (II): Another Fiend Folio. The original Fiend Folio was the Monster Manual's weird cousin during the AD&D 1e era (1977-1989). Still, some of the monsters were iconic enough that they'd already become a part of the D&D core: the Fiend Folio's aarakocra, blood hawk, bullywug, death dog, dragonfish, ettercap, fire toad, flind, giant hornet, guardian daemon, heucuva, jermlaine, kelpie, kenku, killmoulis, kuo-Toa, lamia noble, osquip, poltergiest, throat leech, two-headed troll, and vodyanoi each appeared in one of the first two Monstrous Compendiums (1989) for AD&D 2e. Surprisingly, the MC5: "Monstrous Compendium Greyhawk Appendix" (1990) was the AD&D 2e book with the most Fiend Folio monsters, covering everything from the bonesnapper to the tentamort.

Still, there were many Fiend Folio monsters that had not yet appeared in AD&D 2e (1989-2000), and they'd be the foundation of this new Monstrous Compendium.

Origins (III): It Came from the RPGA. This fourteenth Monstrous Compendium was not actually the work of TSR. Instead it was created by TSR's organized play network, the RPGA. They'd come into their own as producers of AD&D material in the '90s thanks to their development of the "LC" series of adventures (1989-1991). Now Don Bingle, John Terra, Wes Nicholson, Tim Beach, Steve and Kris Hardinger, Rob Nicholls, Greg Swedberg, Al Boyce, Vince Garcia, and Norm Ritchie were producing a different sort of book.

Since the "LC" adventures had come to an end the previous year, the "Fiend Folio Appendix" would be the last major RPGA production until the late '90s and the appearance of books like The City of Ravens Bluff (1998) and Kidnapped (1998).

Monsters of Note. The "Fiend Folio Appendix" revisits many Fiend Folio classics, including favorites like the adherer, the coffer corpse, the firedrake, the iron cobra, the mephits, the sheet phantom, the volt, and the xvart. It's by no means a complete collection of the original Fiend Folio's monsters, but it's a nice compilation of many fiendish monsters that had not yet appeared for AD&D 2e.

There are also new monsters, the most notable of which are the gem dragons. The idea of neutral gem dragons had first appeared in The Dragon #37 (May 1980) in an article by Arthur W. Collins. Now Tim Beach offered his own take, introducing amethyst, sapphire, topaz, crystal, and emerald dragons to the AD&D game.

About the Creators. The RPGA's main creative conduit in the '90s was the Polyhedron newszine. The "Fiend Folio Appendix" offered a rare opportunity to share their creative fruits with a larger D&D audience.

About the Product Historian

The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, the editor-in-chief of RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons - a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to shannon.appelcline@gmail.com.

 
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File Last Updated:
October 17, 2016
This title was added to our catalog on October 18, 2016.