Updated: Dec 6, 2019
A One, Two Punch Mimics are the reason so many role-playing gamers have trust issues with their Gamemasters. I recall fondly one of my newer players, having found the quintessential treasure chest in the dungeon the players were exploring. Assuming the chest to be loaded with lavish riches and wondrous magic items they carefully decided to look for traps. Now, being the vicious...um...super-fun game master that I am, I roll the dice for players when they shouldn’t know the results of their actions. So no traps were detected. I rolled poorly, like I often do. I may have even used the words “absolutely no traps.” When they opened the chest and the mimic’s eyes blinked at them for the first time, and its teeth formed a wicked Cheshire grin... That look in the player’s eyes, that gasp of surprise... That’s why I play RPGs. That’s why I run games. ~ Brian Berg
Hidden in Plain Sight
A wooden chair or a ceramic vase -- perhaps even a hair brush? What could be more disconcerting; more unnerving than the creature that changes its shape in order to hunt human prey? Mimics are perhaps one of the most iconic creatures in the role-playing game industry and never has one monster been more responsible for the unabashed destruction of inanimate objects than this camouflaged creeper.
Mimics have been a part of the Dungeons & Dragons game since the beginning of the game. Since the time of Dave Arneson and Gary Gygax working on the rules of the game in Gary's basement in Lake Geneva. With the Monster Manual in 1977 for Advanced Dungeons & Dragons, the image of a living treasure chest about to put the hurt on the unsuspecting thief put players everywhere on edge. Where would the next mimic strike? Is this treasure chest going to attack us?
The mimic has lived on in every edition of Dungeons & Dragons since, as well as any number of role-playing games that trace their lineage back to D&D. In this post, we are going to take things up a notch and introduce you to the idea of 50 seemingly ordinary things that just might end up ruining the day for your player-characters. These mimics are cleverly disguised hunters just waiting for the right moment to strike at - and feast on - their prey.
CHOMP! CHOMP! CHOMP! When players get out of control thats usually an opportunity to throw one of these mimics at ‘em. The combination of being caught off guard by something that does not just want to kill but wants to EAT you is pretty sobering. Plus, I like to kill my players whenever possible! ~Jimmy Duffie
"50 Magnificently Murderous Mimics" features not only cruel ways for a Gamemaster to spring a mimic on their players, but also stats for eight different sizes and types of mimics to help scale an encounter for any occasion. Perhaps a GM wants a boat-sized mimic to ambush the PCs at sea. Maybe an unassuming hand mirror is a great way to surprise an adventurer as they are settling in for the evening.
We began with the stats for a 5th Edition, Dungeons & Dragons mimic and spent our time thinking about what exactly a mimic might do to get to its food source. In 1st Edition, a mimic was mostly just a dungeon crawl trap monster, but as time has gone on they have evolved into something more sinister - and it is that upon which we have capitalized in this book.
Walking a Fine Line I find the threat of mimics and other hidden or undetectable foes is often greater than the threat they actually pose in encounters. Once they are out in the open they can be dealt with directly. Choose your mimic wisely and you can keep the party on their toes. Hinting at the presense of such things is a tricksy line to walk...too much and the players get really paranoid and trust nothing. It might seem fun for a while but it can really grind things to a halt. ~ Danny Lee Grimes
For example, here's a sneak peek of our Tiny-sized mimic - one who can be commonly found around the castle living as a hair brush, an ashtray, or any other number of tiny objects:
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MIMIC ENOUNTERS Mimics are a great add-on to an encounter that might otherwise be a bit underwhelming or one where the characters have made a lot of assumptions without a lot of investigation. Its fine to assume your party is gonna mop up the cultists in their subterranean lair UNTIL the altar comes to life and starts eating all the new “sacrifices” ~ Matt "KCRift" Everhart
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