Monsters! Monsters! was one of those games I really wanted to play back in the day, but for whatever reason, we never got around to it. The premise of the game is, the monsters in the dungeons get tired of having their homes continually raided by adventuring parties and they strike out to raid towns and such occupied by humans, elves, dwarves and hobbit. I have also heard of this game being played in the context of the monsters deciding they want to be heroes, because well heroes get all the good loot, all the pretty girls and get invited to all the best parties.
First let me say, from a nostalgic point of view, this book is great. The writing style is light and irreverent, as was common at the time this was originally published.The art is crude, it is about the same quality as your standard teenager van mural. This was very much a product of its time, however, by modern standards, this books appearance and layout are crude and unprofessional, art ranges from bad to worse. If someone released this product today, they would be laughed out of the business.
I like the Tunnels & Trolls game mechanic, characters are easy to generate, combat is quick and simple and you only have to use 6 sided dice, which may or may not be a good thing. I am told in the 7th edition of the game, there is a skill system in place, but none of that is here. This book is pretty much a verbatim reprint of the book that came out in 1976 and the rules are based on T&T 4th edition. You start out by rolling 3d6 for each attribute, Strength, IQ, Luck, Constitution, Dexterity and Charisma. You then draw from a standard 52 card deck and the card you get determines what type of monster you are. An Ace of Spades will make you Dragon, while a Seven of Diamonds will make you a Giant Slug. You then modify your attributes according to your race, the Dragon gets to multiply his Strength by 25, while the Giant Slug only gets to multiply his by 2 and because he has no arms, his Dexterity is limited to 3. I suspect if this game were going to be played by the book, it would take considerable amount of player buy in.
My original copy of this game has went missing along with a couple of hundred odd issues of the Dragon magazine and 10,000 Magic cards. So I was happy to hear Flying Buffalo reprinted this last year for Gen Con. The old geezer in me is happy to it reprinted exactly as I remember it when I was teenager. The modern gamer in me cringes as what passed for Tier 2 RPG back in the day. This is on my list of things to play this year, I might make Bruce run this for me so I can play a Kobold named Mog who wants to be a Paladin.
Summery (Scale of 1-5):
Appearance and Layout: 1
Game Mechanic: 3