Saturday, April 11, 2020

OSE Encounter Activities - Rust Monster

Rust Monsters remain one of my favorite foes, even after all these years. One even managed to make an appearance during my Gygax Memorial Session Transcripts. A wonderful mascot for the older style of play if there ever was one.

Being absolutely obsessed with Dinosaurs as a child, I would often beg my parents for those inexpensive bags of plastic toys in the Grocery Store (always frustratingly placed in an aisle opposite the cereal!), so I had a few of the affectionately nicknamed “China-saur” molds for these (as well as the [redacted], or Landshark). Years later when I started playing D&D, I was surprised to see them show back up in my life. They’re probably still in thier milkcrate, gathering dust on a closet shelf somewhere.

These guys are a great gauge of Player Knowledge versus Character Knowledge, but these days I’m sure every Tavern patron has heard tales of Adventurers descending into dungeons fully armored, only to return girded solely in their padded gambesons, wielding chair-legs with frowns on their faces. It is still nice when the occasional opportunity to spring one on a tenderfoot presents itself.

These Monsters attack combat resources directly, significantly hindering further exploration or advancement, so I like to use them sparingly. Their ability to erode even Magical Weapons makes them feared at nearly every tier (nothing like a Name Level Fighter quivering in their Enchanted Boots as what basically amounts to a big bug flickering feathery antennae at them). I must have either never noticed or ignored their mundane damage immunity in the past, as I think they’re rough enough as is honestly. Plus, I like to encourage Player improvisation for dealing with them (hope you brought a wooden Club!).

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