Lurking behind these covers are over 150 of the most ferocious, wondrous, and challenging creatures of the D&D game.
This new Creature Catalog revises and expands on the older product of a similar name. The perfect companion to the D&D Rules Cyclopedia, the Creature Catalog updates old monster descriptions, provides information compatible with the new Rules Cyclopedia, develops monster background information, and includes new creatures and old fiends from the very best D&D adventure modules. With the Creature Catalog, a Dungeon Master can find the right monster to challenge any adventuring party, form 1st level on up.
The Creature Catalog
- covers and illustrates over 150 creatures not included in the Rules Cyclopedia;
- contains an updated D&D creature index; and
- features new wilderness encounter tables.
DMR2: Creature Catalog (1993), revised and developed by John Nephew, was the second and last in the DMR ("Dungeon Master Reference") series for the Basic D&D Rules Cyclopedia (1991). It was published in March 1993, just two months after the first DMR release.
Continuing the Challenger Series. Though the Rules Compendium marked TSR's last attempt to sell Basic D&D, it didn't go unsupported. Creature Catalog was one of more than a dozen supplements for the Compendium, all marked with the "D&D Challenger" logo.
Creature Catalog contains a massive collection of creatures that complements those found in the Cyclopedia, and thus is perhaps the most important Challenger release - though some might argue for Wrath of the Immortals, which added immortal rules to the Cyclopedia, or Champions of Mystara, a massive boxed supplement for Basic D&D's setting.
Revisiting the Creature Catalogue. DMR2: Creature Catalog is a revision of the similarly named AC9: Creature Catalogue (1986) - which was itself one of the last works produced by TSR UK. Some creatures were removed and others added between the two editions of the book:*
- The new edition eliminates 11 creatures from the original: two conjurations, the huptzeen and the reflecter; two humanoids, the oard and the stalwart; one monster, the leveler; and six undead, the agarat, the death leech, the phygorax, the possession, the sacrol, and the vapour ghoul.
- The new edition adds 18 creatures. Unlike in the original book, these are organized alphabetically instead of by category: animal, prehistoric - baluchiherium; animal, prehistoric - hyenodon; annelid, great; brownie; brownie, redcap; choker; coltpixy; deep glaurant; dinosaur, archelon; dinosaur, dimetrodon; dinosaur, trachodon; dog, elven; elf, shadow; feywing; lizard, rockhome; lycanthrope, werejaguar; vampire, nosferatu; and wychlamp.
Sources. Most of the monsters in the Catalog are taken from the various B-, X-, and CM-series modules - the heart of Basic D&D adventuring. A smaller number came from more esoteric sources, such as the DA (Blackmoor), M (Magic Marker), and XS (Expert Solo) series. Adventures from the late 80s onward are for the most part not included in the Catalog; meaning that GAZ, PC, and Hollow World monsters are largely absent.
Approximately 80 monsters were new to Basic D&D in the original Creature Catalogue, most of which carried over to the new edition. Fans have suggested that some of these new monsters were brought over to Basic D&D from OD&D or AD&D, while others might have been inspired by British sources such as White Dwarf and Imagine magazine.
Monsters of Note. DMR2: Creature Catalog is essentially the Monster Manual for Basic D&D, so the monsters that the Catalog covers are some of the more typical ones you'd expect to see. Among the more interesting are a variety of dragons and dragon-kin including the pocket dragon, sea dragon, undead dragon, colored dragonflies, dragonne, three-headed feywing, thunderhead, and xytar; a number of isolated man and primitive man subtypes; and some distinctly Mystaran monsters such as the brain collector, hephaeston, kopru, lupin, pegataur, phanaton, rakasta, and saberclaw.
About the Creators. John Nephew is best known for his own game company, Atlas Games. By 1993, his company was really going, so the Creature Catalog was his last work for TSR other than some contributions to Mystara Monstrous Compendium Appendix (1994), which brought some of these same monsters over to the AD&D game.
About the Product Historian
The history of this product was researched and written by Shannon Appelcline, editor-in-chief at RPGnet and the author of Designers & Dragons - a history of the roleplaying industry told one company at a time. Please feel free to mail corrections, comments, and additions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
* This listing is derived from work done at Dragonsfoot.org.