D&D 5E Zooming In On Monsters of the Multiverse [UPDATED!]

Earlier, WotC announced Mordenkainen Presents Monsters of the Multiverse, a new D&D compilation of monster material from previous products updated to a new format. These screen grabs are as good as I could get them. They're not terribly clear, but you can make more out than in the original images.

The screenshots show the original entry in Volo's Guide to Monsters next to the new entry in Mordenkainen Presents Monsters of the Multiverse.


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UPDATE -- a cleaned up version of the War Priest has appeared on imgur.

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

But I mean, do we know the book won’t contain any Monster Manual stat blocks? I kinda doubt that it won’t, personally.

I don't know, but given the MM is getting its own update, I doubt there will be many if any MM creatures in it.

One weird thing I noticed was Nautiliods on the cover, I don't remember any book giving creature stats on Nautiliods, just basic ship info, but my memory might be failing me.
 

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The funny thing about the art is for something that is supposed to be setting neutral, the art isn't setting neutral, the War Priest is very clearly a Priestess of Selune! Which makes the fact that she is a WAR Priest weird given she's a Moon Goddess, not a War Goddess.This could be a hint that like AL, they plan on making Domains universal instead of tied to specific Gods in the PHB 5.5e.
 


The funny thing about the art is for something that is supposed to be setting neutral, the art isn't setting neutral, the War Priest is very clearly a Priestess of Selune! Which makes the fact that she is a WAR Priest weird given she's a Moon Goddess, not a War Goddess.This could be a hint that like AL, they plan on making Domains universal instead of tied to specific Gods in the PHB 5.5e.
Domains were never tied to specific gods - they were always just suggested domains. In fact, the column is literally called "Suggested Domains" in the deity lists in the back of the PHB. Granted, some choices will be a bit hard to explain in RP terms ("You want to be a Light Domain cleric of Shar?"), but they aren't outright forbidden.

A War Domain cleric of Selune would just be sworn to root out creatures of darkness through any means. All clerics of Selune do that to some extent, but she's really serious about it!
 



And, as I said way upthread, even if the Demon Lords and Archdevils are included, as well as all other VGtM and MToF creatures, that still gives us at least 14 creatures from other books that will be included - they've told us that there will be at least 250 creatures in this book, and VGtM and MToF have 236 in total. In all probability probably it might be more like 20 or so - and that's if the 250 quoted isn't just a vague number and it's even more. Removing the individual creatures does improve that, but if we get around 20 creatures from other books, that's not too bad actually...
 

I don't know, but given the MM is getting its own update, I doubt there will be many if any MM creatures in it.

One weird thing I noticed was Nautiliods on the cover, I don't remember any book giving creature stats on Nautiliods, just basic ship info, but my memory might be failing me.
I hadn't thought of this before, but they might put in the ship stats from Saltmarsh (since they are compiling things like this from other books for this one, and it's really useful info to have in a general book and not just in an adventure), and then maybe throw in some extras like nautiloids. There are some very general stats for one in Dungeon of the Mad Mage (along with stats for a Spelljamming helm), so it wouldn't be too hard to update it to a full stat block. It would be pretty neat, and actually a selling point if they did so, as it would be something entirely new in the book...

Heck, they could even throw in other vehicles like those in Descent to Avernus, and add further regular vehicle stats...
 
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I hadn't thought of this before, but they might put in the ship stats from Saltmarsh (since they are compiling things like this from other books for this one, and it's really useful info to have in a general book and not just in an adventure), and then maybe throw in some extras like nautiloids. There are some very general stats for one in Dungeon of the Mad Mage (along with stats for a Spelljamming helm), so it wouldn't be too hard to update it to a full stat block. It would be pretty neat, and actually a selling point if they did so, as it would be something entirely new in the book...

Heck, they could even throw in other vehicles like those in Descent to Avernus, and add further regular vehicle stats...

That would be cool, BG3 trailers made me fall in love with Nautiliods.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
We already have NPCs that can do things the PCs can’t. Look at the champion from Volo’s, for instance. They can do an extra 2d6 damage if they have more than half their hit points.

My Friday group made an alliance with one last night. When I pointed out this feature, one of my players said “I want that ability!”

It immediately made me think of this thread and the complaints about giving NPC spellcasters abilities the PCs can’t have.
When that happens in my games, I let them spend time (with checks to determine how much time) to learn the ability. 2d6 damage is what, a 1st level spell? So, being able to do it all the time would be a rare magic item, while a few times per day would be uncommon, at a rough guess. Basically count it as a magic item in terms of keeping track of what the PC has gained overall.
 

Looks great!

Though I remember an editor yelling at me a few years ago for writing out spell effects as monster abilities instead of just saying that the monster could cast a given spell: "it's simpler! and DMs don't mind looking stuff up!"

How the times change.
In that exchange, the editor sounds like their spouting a classic example of the cart leading the horse to justify not having to go an extra mile for the customer. I'd rather not look up stuff at all if I don't have to which made 4e so much easier ... at lower levels. Hopefully this is will be a solid compromise.
 

We already have NPCs that can do things the PCs can’t. Look at the champion from Volo’s, for instance. They can do an extra 2d6 damage if they have more than half their hit points.

My Friday group made an alliance with one last night. When I pointed out this feature, one of my players said “I want that ability!”

It immediately made me think of this thread and the complaints about giving NPC spellcasters abilities the PCs can’t have.
That's been a complaint in D&D for like ... always. When I was a big D&D hater (mostly due to players not wanting to learn a new system OR take a turn DMing*), one of my complaints was that NPC mages could make flying castles and armies of zombies (which you got to have when you mix your franchise fiction with your rpg.) Why would my PC go risk their life in a dungeon to cast fireball?

The answer to most of those questions eventually became artifacts in most editions of the game. And as a DM, it does make life simpler to NOT give PCs those type of NPC powers.

*Before the internet and the geeky ascension, players could hold -- and would -- a whole "community" of gamers (3 players and 1 GM in a rural town) hostage with their demands for D&D.
 
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Chaosmancer

Legend
That's been a complaint in D&D for like ... always. When I was a big D&D hater (mostly due to players not wanting to learn a new system OR take a turn DMing*), on of my complaints was that NPC mages could make flying castles and armies of zombies (which you got to have when you mix your franchise fiction with your rpg.) Why would my PC go risk their life in a dungeon to cast fireball?

The answer to most of those questions eventually became artifacts in most editions of the game. And as a DM, it does make life simpler to NOT give PCs those type of NPC powers.

*Before the internet and the geeky ascension, players could hold -- and would -- a whole "community" of gamers (3 players and 1 GM in a rural town) hostage with their demands for D&D.

Yeah, it is concern, but there are multiple ways to handle it.

Another good example is creating a nexus of magic. Sure, the Necromancer has an army, but they needed to invest months of time and effort doing nothing else except enchanting a core to support that army, which can't be easily moved or they needed to sell their soul to Orcus or something.

The PC can do these things, but they generally find the cost too high.
 

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