" Being a SYSTEM-AGNOSTIC Role Playing supplemental treatise ON MONSTERS; which is to say a BESTIARY for your Tabletop Games of Fantasy. Styled in the manner of the Baroque Period; a Curiosity Cabinet of Creatures for enlivening the table!"
"The over 100 entries were gathered out of sundy authors, philosophers, physicians, and poets; sacred and profane. The illustrations are collages of diverse prints and emblems. From the lowly ant to the earth shattering Behemoth, the mundane dog to the alien Ch M G, this collection is a rollicking gambol through history and myth"
A Groats-worth of Grotesques* from G. Edward Patterson III, came in the mail today. This is so very cool, what A Groats-worth of Grotesques is actually is an in universe 'Monster Manual'. A Groats-worth of Grotesques is made up of creatures, monsters, & nasties done with public domain artwork. But done so in such a way as to take many Middle Ages creatures & animals with a brand new OSR spin.
A Groats-worth of Grotesques takes these familar animals & turns them on their ears! We get ants with alien 'in universe' qualities that takes the ant in a completely new direction. There's two hundred and fifty one pages of monsters & creatures. These are done in a complete OSR fashion. This means that the OSR retroclone of your choice can now feature a familiar animal with completely different spin. So you can get the drop on your players with some really nasty or normal creatures.
Ants for example make friends & enemies of other insects. These can be vary dangerous for farmers or other food stuff producers in OSR & D&D style games! This is only the start of this.
G. Edward Patterson III does an excellent job of taking these monsters in weird & different directions. This means that you can get maxium adventure or encounter utility out of the monster or creature from A Groats-worth of Grotesques.The set up is familiar & yet weird for your OSR adventures.
The idea that another world or campaign setting is actually different from a creature or biological standpoint is going to keep players on their toes. The illustrations while public domain are put to excellent use. The monsters are colourful & engaging. There's a ton of stuff going on in A Groats-worth of Grotesques.
These are all push overs and there's a touch of the alien about many of these familiar creatures of myth & legend.
Many of these creatures & monsters looks like they would feel right at home in a wide variety of OSR systems. Some these in my mind include Lamentations of the Flame Princess, Lion & Dragon, & even B/X Dungeons & Dragons. A Groats-worth of Grotesques is also perfect for a mythic or Middle Ages Castles & Crusades game!
So what can you actually do A Groats-worth of Grotesques?! The monsters & creatures of 'A Groats-worth of Grotesques' is perfect for setting up a Fairytale land or plane. These monsters could also be used nicely as a Jim Henson 'Labyrinth' style game setting dressing or adventure potential! Other uses spring to mind include the following.
Many of these creatures & monsters could well be used as unusual & rare monsters as magical or Fey disease vectors within old school or OSR campaigns. The idea that the monsters from 'A Groats-worth of Grotesques' could serve as the basis for a magical or Fairyland related plague for an OSR game isn't far fetched at all.
So is A Groats-worth of Grotesques worth getting?! In my humble opinion, 'Oh Hell yes it is!
Thanks for reading our review
Swords & Stitchery Blog
Want more OSR coverage?!
Please subscribe to https://swordsandstitchery.blogspot.com/