DnD monsters in Mythic Europe?

In the spidersilk thread, the idea that giant spiders could be in Mythic Europe.

What other DnD monsters might fit into Mythic Europe?
Perhaps goblins, treants, mummies for starters?


Any creature that is not a unique invention of D&D, like say, Mindflayers or Beholders.

Most of the fantasy creatures find their origin within the mythos and folklore of various cultures after all.
So...most of the staples of fantasy, is the answer, with two caveats:

  1. Consider the region from which associated monster comes from
  2. Consider that said monster will most likely look very different in Ars Magica than D&D in terms of power. Terrasque is an end-game level threat in D&D, but in Ars it is a kind of Aquantine Dragon that a starting mage can take down, depending on how they conduct their combat.
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(I'm from France)
Mummies are not at all part of European mythology at these times! It would be a bit anachronical.
Mummies rather have their origin from Aegypt (which is far from Europe) or South America (which is not yet "discovered").

Well, to my mind, if you add any of monsters from DnD, AM will be no more a "semi-historical" game but will become a fantasy game ; so you could add whatever you want!

EDIT : as Kodlak says, you could replace it by a sort of "undead" corpse.

Egypt is part of Mythic Europe (or the Mythic Middle-East if you prefer).
While not geographically part of Europe, people in Europe definitely knew of Egypt, and plundering ancient tombs was not uncommon in Egypt at the time, so they would know of mummies.

A lot of the DnD monsters have their origin in the myths and legends of Europe. Dragons, demons, devils, dwarves, goblins, kobolds, chimeras, ghosts, vampires, golems, and a whole lot of other monsters found in the DnD monster manuals are based on real-world myth and folklore and can be encountered in Mythic Europe - though their Mythic Europe versions will be closer to the original tales.

As others have noted, many D&D monsters are inspired by folklore. Others are from fantasy literature. But all have been modified for the D&D game experience, which is very different from the Ars experience. Forgive me for going off on this topic, but as a member of the D&D design team at WotC, I may be uniquely qualified.

Mechanically, a monster in D&D is designed to be an interesting and fun tactical challenge lasting for three rounds, ending in the monster’s death. (We don’t always succeed, and of course individual games vary, but I’m talking mechanical design goals here.) There are so many assumptions baked into this that I’m not even sure where to start enumerating them, but my points is: Ars Magica “monsters” are not designed this way.

In Ars, every dragon, chimera, medusa, and unicorn is a unique creature. Its stat block is specific to it, and while that stat block may be useful when designing a different dragon, that different dragon will have different stats.

Monsters in D&D are designed on the assumption they will fight and die. Their encounter with the player characters is likely to be the last 3 rounds of their life. This is not true in Ars. As David Chart recently put it on these forums, the question in Ars is almost never “can we kill it?” because the answer to that question is almost always “yes.” Rather, the question is “is killing it the best, most interesting, or most fun way to proceed?”

Any monster in D&D could exist in Ars. Even the owlbear, one of the most distinctive and silly monsters in the game, could be an experimental creation of Marcus of Criamon (see Magi of Hermes). But it would be a singular creature. Not “an owlbear,” but “The Owlbear.” It would have Personality Traits and Flaws, and abilities useful beyond fighting. And therein lies all the difference.


On the specific topic of the Owlbear, someone madena really cool video about reinterpreting "the" owlbear vs "an" owlbear:


Egypt's not far from Europe. Italian traders go there regularly and Muslims from Granada go through it the Haj.

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A whole bunch of Germans and Dutch men are coming back from a sunny holiday in Damiette where they got to sample local delicacies around game start.

Anything can work if you want it to. Especially if you want a multi planar ars magica.

Some DnD monsters can be used in Ars Magica. Most will need to be reskinned, to fit the world, and their stories of origins updated. Some can be used as creatures without much work.

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That's an exaggeration. The only stats you need to vary is the personality traits. Who cares about the other stats?

Yeah, I suppose that is exactly the difference between roleplaying games like ArM and rollplaying games like D&D.


I would love to see a bog-mummy from northern europe as a monster.

This would be a great subversion of the traditional mummy trope.

Most bog-bodies/bog-mummies suffered violent deaths, likely they were killed under circumstances with religious under/overtones. They tend to naturally appear in areas where people drain marshes and bogs, most often marshes that have superstitions surrounding them (bogs have mystical significance in traditional germanic and possibly irish religion). So they make for great material for the classical "this house is built on haunted land" stories.