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Because my recent posts are all D&D related, D&D is taking over Caturday this week. Here’s my top ten list of cat-related D&D creatures. WordPress won’t allow me to use descending numbers, so in this case, my favorite will be #10.
- Sea Cats. Basically, they’re mentioned because there aren’t enough cat-like monsters to fill this list. Kind of funny, though, so they beat out the semi-feline dragonne for the bottom spot.
- Tabaxi. I’m at least curious about playing a a Tabaxi. As a cat person, I could probably make a good run of it, but I never have. Curiosities don’t get to land high on a list.
- Displacer Beast. These guys are probably lower on my list than they would be on the lists of most players. I never had the fanboy reaction to them that so many others did. I’m not sure why. They just didn’t do it for me.
- Tressyms. Clearly, I’m a cat person. What cat person wouldn’t want a flying kitty cat? But I’ve never played one because I don’t play wizards, and the only context in which I’ve seen a player have a tressym is as a familiar. As with Tabaxis, theory doesn’t rank as high as practice.
- Wemic. Leonine centaurs? How wonderfully majestic. In Sumerian mythology, they were called Urmahlullus, and they appear to be good guys. To my recollection, they’ve been considered neutral in D&D with respect to their alignment, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be played as helpful to a party of PCs.
- Manticores. Not only do manticores appear in a few of my favorite old-school adventures (ah, nostalgia), but they pose an interesting tactical challenge. Manticores can fly, and they’re equally dangerous at range or in melee.
- Tembos. I’m taking some license here and calling these denizens of Athas cats (from the Dark Sun campaign setting). I have doubts that they are; however, much like hyenas are feliforms (catlike) that appear to be canines (doglike) because of the space they occupy in their ecosystem, the Tembo appears roughly like a smilodon. When I first took a look at the stat block in 4e, I knew they were trouble, but when the DM threw one at our party, I realized how little I actually knew. It was hard not to immerse yourself in the gaming moment considering the unspeakable horrors it committed against you. (Unspeakable Horror was a fitting name for one of its 4e powers.) You may have well been fighting a creature three of four levels higher. Sometimes you just want a fight, and this thing delivered in spades.
- Sphinxes. This creature is right up my alley. My favorite aspect to D&D is solving puzzles, and a sphinx is loaded with them. Encountering sphinxes and being able to circumvent their threat using my real-world wits makes for a great and memorable encounter.
- Leonines. What’s better than meeting a sphinx? Playing one. Duh. Grexes was my a leonine (anthropomorphic lion) from the Mystic Odyssey of Theros campaign setting, and I presented him as someone with an
obsessionadmiration of sphinxes. He often spoke in riddles, for example asking a greeter at the inn for “that which has four legs by cannot run.” It took a second, but the DM quickly realized I was asking for a table. Maybe Grexes should have made my list of my favorite TTRPG characters.
- Snuggles. Snuggles was a jaguar, but more to the point was the name I gave to my 4e beastmaster ranger’s animal companion. That was a fun class to play. Super mobile, varied attacks, high damage output, and always able to self-flank using Snuggles, which means he hit fairly often. Snuggles was the shit.
Snuggles wins. YMMV.
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