- BUY MY NOVELS!
- Creepy Columns
- Iconic Characters of Horror Fiction
- Key Concepts of Horror Fiction
- There Goes Tokyo
- Between Logic and Enchantment
- Monster Spotlight
- First Impression Reviews
- How I’d Ruin It
- Monstrous Miscellany
- Monster Menageries
To celebrate Horror Flora‘s four year anniversary, I’ve prepared a special treat for you: a bestiary for a non-existent monster catching game inspired by this website’s Iconic Characters of Horror Fiction essay series. Welcome to 4 Horror War, where people raise different Archetypal Fears – “Arkies” for short – into powerful monsters, and then battle each other to prove the superiority of their chosen fears. I’ll be posting a different Arky family each day from now through Halloween – today’s Arky family of the day belongs to Gothic Horror, THE THERIANTHROPE FAMILY! Now, before we dive in to the gritty details, an explanation/reminder of how this non-existent mons game works. Unlike Pokemon, evolution is not necessarily an upgrade – in other words, the first stage of a given family is generally on par with the most “advanced” stage. Evolution reshuffles stats rather than straight-up improving them, allowing the Arky to function differently on the team. In addition to giving you alternate options/strategies for a given Arky, the family tree of each Archetypal Fear is sort of a huge meta-reference to how actual horror archetypes have, well, evolved in fiction. Though I’ve had to stretch now and then with the families to make every monster I wanted to make fit, the meta commentary is more or less accurate enough to make my inner horror nerd happy. Ok, enough pre-amble, let’s dive in: A monster of pure id, Ripenhyde was born from a potion designed to separate man into good and evil halves, though no good half has ever manifested. It uses dirty fighting tactics in combat, as no move is too base for it to consider. Upon wearing a very special pair of boots, Ripenhyde can become Springheel, a high leaping monster who breaths brilliant blue flames and delights in terrifying innocent people. Relying on agility to outmaneuver opponents, Springheel is a fragile monster that hits fast and hard. After surviving an attack from another Therianthrope arky, Ripenhyde can evolve into Talbowuf, the werewolf Arky. Resistant to most forms of damage and bearing terrific close range offensive power, Talbowuf is a versatile fighter that strikes fear into the hearts of many. After defeating four Arkies under the light of the full moon, Talbowuf can evolve into Hufenpuff, an immense werewolf that is far more wolf than man. While its loses some of its resistances in the evolution, it gains additional attack power and a long range sonic attack. Upon successfully winning four battles with the same Arky partners, Talbowuf can evolve into Eyesofgreen, a were-cat of great guile. Though it lacks some of the resistances and raw power of Talbowuf, Eyesofgreen makes up for it with increased agility and stealth, dodging attacks with ease and delivering critical hits far more frequently. When given a strange mask to wear, Ripenhyde can evolve into Babaoni, a monstrous ogre that preys upon the weak. Boasting great raw strength and arcane spells in its arsenal, it is a versatile fighter to have on your team. When given a beautiful silk kimono, Babaoni can evolve into Arachescort, the seductive spider Arky. Skilled with a wide variety of spells, this tricky arachnid can debuff enemies, misdirect them with illusions, and even just pound them into the dirt with magic might. Evolving from Ripenhyde after winning a battle in a watery environment, Gulpgil is a beautiful fish person who is as strong as it is romantic. Considered one of the most fetching monsters around, Gulpgil can charm other Arkies into acting against their best interests, and has the raw strength to take advantage of its smitten enemies’ lowered guards.