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MC6 Monstrous Compendium Kara-Tur Appendix (2e)


Not just more monsters - mysterious, sinister creatures of the Orient! Inside you'll find 64 pages of the most fascinating monsters in the Kara-Tur campaign setting. From the jungle bajang to the arctic yuki-on-na, from savage sprits to beauteous new beasts - this volume captures them all. A must for Oriental Adventures fans and players with a taste for the exotic.

Product History

MC6: "Monstrous Compendium Kara-Tur Appendix" (1990), by Rick Swan, is the sixth monster manual for AD&D 2e. It was published in June 1990.

About the Cover. Curiously, this Kara-Tur supplement doesn't use the trade dress for either "Oriental Adventures" or the "Forgotten Realms". It's the one Kara-Tur supplement that just advertises itself as "Kara-Tur".

About the Dividers. The four color dividers in MC6: "Monstrous Compendium Kara-Tur Appendix" (1990) depict the covers for Oriental Adventures (1985), OA1: "Swords of the Daimyo" (1986), OA6: "Ronin Challenge" (1990), and OA7: "Test of the Samurai" (1990). Given these dividers sometimes went off-topic, this was a nice, tight set.

Origins (I): Binders of Monsters. The first year of Monstrous Compendiums for AD&D 2e (1989) contained five releases. It was a pretty astounding amount, but TSR had already revealed their methodology for pumping these supplements out. By producing Monstrous Compendiums for the Forgotten Realms (1989), Dragonlance (1990), and Greyhawk (1990), they made it obvious that their new monster books were all about the settings.

TSR could have turned to Spelljammer or Ravenloft, their first AD&D 2e settings, next. But instead they opted to stay with the classics. Their fourth setting-based Monstrous Compendium thus covered a sub-setting: Kara-Tur, the eastern lands of the Forgotten Realms.

Origins (II): The Kara-Tur Expansion. Spring 1990 was truly a dawning for the land of Kara-Tur. MC6: "Monstrous Compendium Kara-Tur Appendix" (1990) quickly followed after FRA1: "Storm Riders" (1990) and OA6: "Ronin Challenge" (1990), the beginnings of two trilogies of adventures that would keep the eastern Realms front and forward throughout the year.

In many ways, the "Kara-Tur Appendix" is the closest thing that Kara-Tur had to a core sourcebook in the AD&D 2e era (1989-2000). Both Oriental Adventures and Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms (1988) predated the new edition … but the transition between the versions of AD&D was minor enough, that players were still happily using them. Except maybe for Oriental Adventures' monsters … and that's where this new book came in.

Monsters of Note. The "Kara-Tur Appendix" contains a wide array of monstrous humanoids and spirits, but only a few are likely to be recognizable to westerners: the foo creature, the gargantua kaiju, the hengeyokai fox-people, the oni spirits, and the tengu bird-people. The Oriental dragons are the most notable omission from this book, but they'd already appeared in MC3: "Monstrous Compendium Volume Three: Forgotten Realms Appendix" (1989).

Though there are a few new monsters in the "Kara-Tur Appendix", most previously appeared in Oriental Adventures, now suitably expanded for the new AD&D 2e creature format. A few others had previously appeared in "OA" adventures, making it a true compilation of monsters for the "Oriental Adventures" setting.

About the Creators. Swan had been was one of the authors of Kara-Tur: The Eastern Realms (1988), giving him a foothold in the Realms' eastern lands. He'd later move west with supplements like FA2: "Nightmare Keep" (1991).

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

We (Wizards) recognize that some of the legacy content available on this website does not reflect the values of the Dungeons & Dragons franchise today. Some older content may reflect ethnic, racial, and gender prejudice that were commonplace in American society at that time. These depictions were wrong then and are wrong today. This content is presented as it was originally created, because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming these prejudices never existed. Dungeons & Dragons teaches that diversity is a strength, and we strive to make our D&D products as welcoming and inclusive as possible. This part of our work will never end.

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