On Early Tropes, Monster Powers

Monster powers were special attacks a monster could make outside of or to replace a melee attack. These effects have been in the game since the original edition.

PURPLE WORMS: These huge and hungry monsters lurk nearly everywhere just beneath the surface of the poisonous sting at its tail, but its mouth is the more fearsome weapon, for it is so large as to be able to swallow up to ogre-sized opponents in one gulp. Any hit which scores over 20% of the minimum total required to hit, or 100% in any case, indicates the Purple Worm has swallowed its victim. In six turns the swallowed creature will be dead. In twelve turns it will be
land. Some reach a length of 50 feet and a girth of nearly 10 feet diameter. There is a
totally digested and irrecoverable. Purple Worms never check morale and will always attack.

TYPE III DEMON: Towering to well over nine feet in height, this not unusual kind of demon has a ghastly appearance, being broad and strong-looking, covered with a wrinkled hide, with a head much like a goat-horned dog, pincers instead of normal hands, and a small pair of human arms protruding from its chest. Magic resistance is 60%. Intelligence is medial for demons. Normal attacks will affect this demon type. It causes darkness in a 10' radius when it so wills. Additional abilities, any one of which can be performed at will, are: Fear (as a fear wand), levitate (as a 10th level magic-user), cause pyrotechnics, polymorph itselftelekinesis 4,000 gold piece weight, gate in another demon of types I-IV (roll for which type) (30% chance of success).


  1. Yep gotta love special attacks and defenses. it was the most enamoring part of 4e when
    it first came out. finally fire beetles could do something with those sacks of lava on their butts!

    I try to give most of my monsters special powers, and those that don't have them, like humanoids, I mix up with alternate arms armor. Great blog, thanks.

  2. I just recently read of fire beetles in one of the Elric books ... funny running into them in a comment like this.


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