Thursday, April 2, 2020

OSE Encounter Activities - Lizard, Giant

Continuing the theme of “Giant” week, here are the Giant Lizards in OSE and B/X (the Rules Cyclopedia contains the same beasts, and only really adds their load and Barding Multiplier). They all make for interesting mounts honestly, imagine Blowgun bearing Hobgoblins astride soaring Dracos, Second-story Gnomes strapped to the backs of their vertical Geckos, an Illusionist and her faithful Horned Chameleon, or a battle hardened War Tuatara with a special spine accommodating saddle.

I’ve run campaigns where Horses didn’t exist, and Giant Lizards were the primary draft animal and transportation, so these stat-blocks saw considerable use. They’re ripe for re-skin as well: who doesn’t want Giant Venomous Gila Monsters strutting about, shell-armored Merfolk mounted on massive Marine Iguana, or Dwarf-trained gold seam-seeking super Skinks?

I was undoubtedly inspired by this iconic David Sutherland illustration from Holmes

Like many, my childhood fascination with Dinosaurs extended to the closest living relative I could clap my eyes on (this was well before the Avian Dinosaur debate was included in the books I read). I fondly recall those big brown lizards with brilliant blue belly stripes that sunned themselves on our fence, doing the occasional push-up. I remember the alarming effect of getting squirted with eye-blood (and being admonished for ruining a brand-new shirt) from picking up a startled Horny Toad. Later, when I’d visit more tropical regions, I’d chase after brilliant chartreuse Anoles with their Fly Agaric-themed dewlaps.

To this day, I still have to strongly resist that ingrained urge of “See Lizard! Grab Lizard!” when I spot one sunning itself on my walks. Lizards are just so lovely.

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