Monster Menagerie: Giraffenomicon
This installment of the Monster Menageries-series clocks in at 13 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page of SRD, leaving us with 10 pages of content, one of which is devoted to the introduction, so let’s take a look!
Okay, so see that one the cover? Legend Stan! Provides pretty hilarious artworks for all the monsters herein, so let’s check out whether the stats hold up as well: The first critter would be the Giraffecorn (CR 5), who sports a glistening silvery coat, cloven hooves and a sex-feet long, pink horn. It also, hilariously, can use invisibility at will and has an air walk that only works to a limit of 6 feet above ground. Except when it doesn’t. To quote the ability: “Being a very magical beast, it can still bypass this limitation at times. For example, if there is a chasm in the ground, the giraffecorn can cross it, even though the ground under the chasm is more than six feet below it, because the ground to either side is not. This flagrant disregard for magical law causes conniptions in rules lawyers.” This actually made me laugh out loud!
Giraffemeras (CR 8) have a cobra and a bat-head as well; they can spit venom. Oh, and they know kung-fu. Because life is unfair. And they can apply stunning fist to natural attacks, flurry, and block attacks. XD Oh, and never remark how badly they fly. They are touchy that way, and with their very good Stealth…well. Surprise giraffe kung-fu to the head is not something you want. Right? Minor complaint: Perception value is inconsistent – +7 or +8?
The CR 5 giraffon is a hybrid of giraffe and hummingbird, and, as the write-up drives home – they make no sense. For example, why are they carnivores? How can they be so good at catching prey unaware? Oh, and their attacks can dazzle and blind you. Unless I’ve missed something, this one’s CMB is off by 1.
It can get worse for adventurers just humiliated by a hummingbird/giraffe-hybrid: CR 15 – the giraffelich! Their necksmash is laced with negative energy, and they do have a fear aura, paralyzing touch and the rejuvenation you’d associate with a lich. They’re also lucky, gaining luck tokens when failing attacks or saves, which may then be spent to roll d20s twice and take the better result. Speaking of giraffelich phylacteries – those are defecated apples of evil, that not even necessarily are consciously produced.
Editing and formatting are very good on a formal level; on a rules-language level, only minor snafus may be found; nothing serious. Layout adheres to the series’ two-column tome-like standard and sports pretty broad borders. I love Stan!’s comic-style artworks for the giraffes, and the artworks come on their own pages, making them suitable for handouts. The pdf comes fully bookmarked in spite of its brevity.
I love Jeff Lee’s giraffenomicon. It made me laugh out loud multiple times and is so surreal and funny to me. Additionally, the critters genuinely have some neat mechanical components I enjoyed seeing. What more can you ask of a small pdf such as this? 5 stars.
You can get this hilarious little bestiary here on OBS!
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