MASTER THE ACCURSED! Ultimate Bestiary: The Dreaded Accursed is not another A-Z of monsters. Instead, following on from its predecessor Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde, we have focused on some of the commonly encountered undead and accursed monsters like ghosts, ghouls, liches, lycanthropes, and vampires, detailing their origins, environments, and attitudes, as well as introducing a wide variety of stat blocks to suit a range of challenge levels, with a huge variety of unique artwork.
This book contains over 130 monsters! And there are stretch goals that add even more!
Ghosts (6) - Emotionally tethered to the material plane by trauma or tasks unfinished, ghosts range from affable to dangerously insane.
Please make sure tankards are washed PROMPTLY and THOROUGHLY. Arteus is clearly upset by mess and clutter and I don’t want to spend another day cleaning up the common-room and scrubbing blood out of the walls. YES, it is hypocritical that he wrecks the place when he’s upset. NO, there is no value in trying to point that out to him.
-Note posted behind the bar in The Famous Spirit taproom
Ghouls (14) - Scavengers and vermin who creep into our world from another plane, ghouls take on a variety of forms, gradually taking on the physical attributes of the bodies they feast upon.
“They enter through the cracks, we are told, as rats will enter a kitchen, drawn by the crumbs. However, will rats not also flee a sinking ship? What wave are they running from, I wonder, and how long before it swallows us all?”
-Ylandro Movag, naturalist
Liches (15) - Powerful spellcasters who have sealed off a portion of their soul to extend their lives. Apocryphal liches are self-made masters of the arcane, profane liches were priests of dark gods in life, and the rare blight liches pervert the very powers of nature to fuel their unlife.
“I transcended when your people hunted in the brush with stones. When men bent the first plough, I was more learned in the higher powers than any creature living. I have been worshipped as a god, my sacrifices clawed each other's eyes for the privilege of dying for me, and when they cast me out, I displaced all the monsters of their primitive mythologies. I have worn many names in my time, but all have been feared. More heroes than even I can recall have attempted to slay me, and all have failed. The dust of their forgotten bones could choke a nation.
So tell me, child, what is it that makes you dare hope for victory ?”
-The First, lich
Lycanthropes (8) - Vicious and feral killers, or innocent victims of a terrible curse? Many lycanthropes begin as the latter, but all too many embrace the former.
“I didn’t know he was no wolf ‘til we quarreled. Tried to stick a knife in his guts and the blade broke off. Reported it to the constable, and we made him dance a jig. Let the bugger try to howl with a rope ‘round his neck.”
Mummies (11) - Bodies preserved in ancient rites to serve as vessels for the soul in the afterlife. All too often, the soul which reinhabits the body is twisted and wrathful from millennia in a plane of suffering and torment.
It is to you who read this that I speak, unworthy invader. You step foot in the resting-house of a god. Take you so much as one pebble from this place and you shall rue it. You shall know no peace, no joy, until the transgression is redressed. Your name forgotten and accursed. Your line turned fallow, barren and dry as the desert sands. These are the words of the King, wrought by the hand of his servant
-Inscription found inside the burial complex of an unknown monarch
Revenants (4) - Engines of vengeance, revenants hunt down their own murderers with tenacity tinged with desperation. Should a year pass before they have their revenge, their soul is forfeit.
“Justice? Justice lies rotting in the ground with my husband. You look upon the face of vengeance.”
-Kinrama Shathaan, revenant
Shadows (3) - Undead ambush predators, shadows siphon the life-force from their prey before striking unseen from the darkness.
Two shadows, run. No shadow, pray.
-Words of wisdom
Skeletons (13) - The animated bones of the ancient dead, skeletons are renowned for their obedience and reliability, as well as for their narrow and literal interpretation of any instructions given.
“What is the lot of the mortal but to strive, sometimes fruitlessly, for meaning and purpose? Given a clear and achievable task, a mortal is contented. We must, I think, imagine the skeleton happy. Perhaps this is why they grin so.”
-Aticus Greenmoss, minstrel
Specters (5) - Formed when a being's soul is ripped from them while they still live, specters long for the life denied to them. Were they not so deadly, they would be pitiable creatures.
"Popular myth states that, with the final brushstroke committing her tormentor to canvas, Lennyra died on the spot, and was found with an expression of contentment and peace unknown to her in life. Romantic as the idea may be, reports from the time instead note ‘a face of exquisite terror’. An unhappy end, it would seem, to a short, unhappy life.”
-Zhanhara Tilvayne, art curator, on Xhan Lenyra’s Raven
Vampires (6) - Reanimated and granted immortality by an accursed disease, vampires are adept at blending in with their prey. With potential centuries to refine their predatory cunning, and a tendency for obsession and sadism, a vampire is a terrible foe to encounter.
The night and the grave are cold as death,
But the blood, my dear, the blood.
-Refrain from The Vampires’ Lament, popular song
Wights (10) - Clawing their way back from death through hasty pacts with dark entities, wights are free to pursue their own selfish agendas, so long as they oppose and slay the living at all turns.
“Theirs is a cold and passionless hatred. I saw one skin a man alive once, and it didn’t even frown. Gods, I would have preferred if it had laughed…”
-Rhona, former soldier
Will-O'Wisps (3) - Simple, bobbing lights in the dark, will-o'wisps lure their prey into traps (or simply get them hopelessly lost) in order to feast on their emotional energy as they die miserably.
A daring and alternative lighting piece. Consisting of a captured wisp in a reinforced glass container, it is sure to be the talk of any gathering, combining unpredictable thrills with ethereal beauty.
Disclaimer. Do not position this item close to sleepers. Do not listen to the whispers. DO NOT OPEN THE JAR.
-Listing from The New Silvercleft Auction House
Wraiths (5) - The twisted remnants of anguished souls, wraiths harbor a burning hatred for the living, and will do all in their considerable power to ensure anything with a beating heart is scourged from the earth.
“They were dead when we got there, the entire village. Didn’t look like they managed to put up much of a fight. Death found them behind locked doors and huddled in their cellars. No blood. Just a look of terror. That and the cold. A couple of them had weapons in their hands, for all the good it did them. We’re not an enemy to them, we’re vermin.”
-Barker, soldier’s account of a wraith attack
Zombies (27) - Simple and animalistic, zombies are not the first choice for a subtle necromancer, but they can certainly make an impression as an undead horde. Common zombies simply kill their victims, but the rarer plague-born can pass on their infection, causing a spreading wave of undeath.
Surrounded by the dead. Thought we could hold them off with fire. Now surrounded by burning dead and no oil for the lamps.
-Last entry in the logbook of Whitehall Garrison
DIGITAL (Digital add-ons are only available at the Specter $20 Level and above. Please see FAQ for more information.)
- $10 - Ultimate Bestiary: The Dreaded Accursed PDF
- $10 - Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde PDF (Physical copies of previous Nord Games titles, including 'Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde' are being restocked on our website and should become available mid-May. Backers will be issued with a discount code to use on the website after the Kickstarter has ended.)
- $40 - Ultimate Bestiary: The Dreaded Accursed Hardcover
- $15 - Reference Deck #1 - Monsters include Ghouls, Lycanthropes, Mummies, Revenants, Skeletons, Vampires, and Mongrelfolk. The cards have quick reference stat blocks on one side and artwork on the reverse. (some stat blocks are too extensive to fit on a card, in which case only the most important details will be included. All other information will be found on that monster's page in the book)
- $15 - Reference Deck #2 - Monsters include Ghosts, Liches, Shadows, Specters, Wights, Will-O'-Wisps, Wraiths, and Zombies. The cards have quick reference stat blocks on one side and artwork on the reverse. (some stat blocks are too extensive to fit on a card, in which case only the most important details will be included. All other information will be found on that monster's page in the book)
Dog Might Accessories
- $272 - Ultimate Bestiary Valhalla Screen - Command your undead army from behind this epic game master's screen with custom artwork from The Dreaded Accursed!
- $78 - Ultimate Bestiary Dragon Sheath - Store your most ghoulish dice and heroic miniature in this dice cast featuring the Apocryphal Lich Adept (more designs may be coming).
Like Ultimate Bestiary: Revenge of the Horde, and the Ultimate NPCs books, we want you backers to help us build the book you want! As we approach our stretch goal levels, we will hold polls to determine the order you want the stretch goals unlocked!
$15,000 (Unlocked) - Undead Player Options. Who says death has to be the end of an adventuring career?We will include various player options for those interested in dabbling in undeath. The exact mechanics will vary, with some being presented as player races, others more similar to additional classes.
$25,000 (Unlocked) - Full Color Artwork. Every piece of sketch artwork in the book will be revisited and turned into a full colour piece.
$35,000 (Unlocked) - Dread Beasts. We will add a selection of beasts, such as skeletal and zombie hounds and horses, plague-touched vermin, mummified animal sacrifices and more. Includes artwork.
$40,000 (Unlocked) - Lair Maps. We will add maps of various lairs for the appropriate monsters. These maps will be in the book, PLUS you'll receive a digital version of every map no matter what your pledge level!
$50,000 (Unlocked) - Mongrelfolk. We will add an additional chapter of monsters to the book. Physically twisted by powerful magic into an amalgam of human and animal, the unfortunate mongrelfolk are shunned by society. The random assortment of features available to augment the base mongrelfolk statblock will make each one a unique and unpredictable creature.
$60,000 (Unlocked) - Animated Objects. We will add an appendix of animated objects for use in haunted houses, ancient tombs, and more. Includes artwork
$65,000 (Unlocked) - Encounter Tables. We will add a selection of encounter groups for a variety of challenge ratings to each chapter.
$70,000 (Unlocked) - Monster Hunter Journals. We will add a longer-form document to the end of each chapter, following renowned monster hunter Thaddeus Loach in his battle against the scourge of the undead. These stories will weave together the various chapters and serve as inspiration for your own encounters with the dreaded accursed.
$75,000 (Unlocked) - Additional Artwork. We will add extra pieces of accent artwork to the longer chapters, highlighting particular items and objects of importance.
$90,000 (Unlocked) – Shadow War - PDF FREE TO ALL BACKERS $20 AND UP! We will create a variable difficulty adventure exploring the accursed creatures of the book. When the ancient war between lycanthrope and vampire flares up once more, one town is caught in the crossfire. Where do the party’s loyalties lie in the shifting battlefield of the shadow war?
$100,000 (Unlocked) - Creative Team Bonus. Our creators need some love sometimes. This will allow us to give them all a well-deserved boost.
$105,000 (Unlocked) – Illustrated Journals. We will add sketch artwork to the Monster Hunter Journals, illustrating creatures and events in an antiquated style.
$125,000 (Unlocked) – The Rule of Three - PDF FREE TO ALL BACKERS $20 AND UP! We will create a variable difficulty adventure exploring the undead creatures of the book. When three liches threaten the land, the party must disturb the ghosts of the past, and unearth that which should perhaps remain buried…
-Flip-through by Nerdarchy
"It’s hard for me to describe just how great of a resource this book is. To provide an example, goblins are one of my favorite creatures in fantasy, however they come with the obvious downfall that they’re weak. For most, the GM's solution is just “I’ll have the players fight more of them,” which works pretty well sometimes. I mean just last week our party killed 200 goblins.
But this book.... Sir, this book is gold. It has goblins with bombs, warlord goblins, goblin shamans, goblins with traps; it’s got every goblin you could want! And this is just the goblins! This level of quality is all throughout the book."
-stew1416, 5 stars
"I love this book. It will assist every busy Dungeon Master out there. So I’ve been DMing for 30 years now and I’m always looking for products that will assist me with game prep and inspiration. Revenge of the Horde delivers on both. First, I love the multiple stat builds on each of the monsters. This is so helpful and it gives you a variety of troops to use against your players. This isn’t your Monster Manual Ogre!!! Each monster has a section about environment, role playing, and tactics... ...I know as I move to my new campaign I will be using Revenge of the Horde a great deal."
-William Hart, 5 stars
"A damn fine book that gives exactly what you’d expect and a little more. With this fine book you can make the mook races hang around in higher level play instead of having them just become minor speed bumps.
The Player options, while not a main selling point, are a great bonus and surpass some of the official 5e versions of them, not to mention that some of the items in the book can add great flavor and make the horde races deadly and even lucrative to fight if you take them out before they can use some of the items."
-hewhodwellsindarkness, 5 stars
As shipping fees continue to climb, it's becoming more and more difficult to fulfill physical products. Underestimations of shipping fees can seriously impact projects like this, so we are waiting until we are closer to the delivery date to collect those fees. This will ensure more accurate shipping fees (if they continue to rise), prevent us from paying up to 10% of the shipping fees collected to Kickstarter, and give us a better idea of how much money we've actually raised through Kickstarter.
Please refer to the FAQ section for our current shipping cost estimates.
Risks and challenges
All of the monsters are conceptualized, and the artwork for the book is designed and being finalized by the artists. That really only leaves stretch goals and production as the two variables that could delay us. We will be working on the additional content unlocked by stretch goals as we achieve them, and we will be working with a printer with a good track record for on time delivery and excellent quality books.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (23 days)