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Sentient Races on Mystara[Aarakocra-Giant by Matthew Levy with comments by David Knott] [Giff - Zombie, Lightning and Savage Coast critters and addenda including extended Bugbear and Dwarf entries by Giampaolo Agosta]. Additional updates and comments by Giampaolo Agosta and Andrew Theisen.
Oy vey. This is a very, very, very long project which I started some time ago, got only about a third of the way done with, and then let sit for a long time. Rather than trying to complete the rest of this bruiser myself right now (not possible) I thought I would post the sizeable portion that I already have done and see what reactions and/or sympathy I can get.
To whichever Mystarans it may concern:
It occurs to me that one of the problems with the transition to AD&D for Mystara (for those of us who accept it) is the confusion surrounding OD&D monsters versus AD&D monsters. The Mystara MC appendix makes matters worse instead of better; it seems to have been written mostly from a few of the old modules without ANY reference to the GAZ series. Entirely new monsters are given there with no context for placing them in various settings, and old ones are completely ignored or misused. Furthermore, the random encounter tables in the back are haphazard and generic. While I am not yet up to the task of a comprehensive list of EVERY monster species on Mystara, for purposes of character creation and campaign development I have compiled a list of all the Sentient races, sentient being defined as any monster with at least low intelligence which has free will, is not undead, and is capable of linguistic communication and/or complex social interaction. I have tried to include both all the monsters present in the GAZ series and modules and all the new ones from the MC appendix. In addition, I have included brief notes on all these monsters, plus a few AD&D monsters that I have thought it was appropriate from time to time to add to Mystara, with respect to culture, location, and viability as player characters. I would really, really appreciate any additions/subtractions/complaints/criticisms or comments that any of you might have.
Aarakocra: These are not mentioned in any Mystara source, though they are quite similar to the Faenare of Flying Serraine. IMC they are related species, and the Aarakocra are found commonly in the Western mountains of Brun, though they are rare elsewhere.
Actaeon: These are an underused monster from OD&D. Probably "created" as a guardian race by immortals (perhaps Djaea, or Zirchev), these Elk Centaurs live only in deep temperate forests ... the northern taiga of Brun, and *maybe* the southern portions of Vulcania, the Canolbarth, or perhaps the Hollow World. They should not be found in areas without large expanses of forest nor in settled areas.
Annis: An Annis is a type of hag (large ugly female humanoid, possible fiendish in origin).
Aranea are a race of intelligent arachnids. They have evolved into at least two different subspecies -- those who are able to shapechange to a humanoid form, and those who only have their original, arachnid shape.
The aranea are found in a large region running from the Isle of Dawn to the Thanegioth Archipelago to the western Savage Coast.
According to Talons of Night, the Aranea arrived in Mystara through a planar gate under the Isle of Dawn.
It is possible that the two colonies where created at the same or different times, but in both cases they started underground, and only later did the Aranea emerge to the surface world, and started influencing it.
If Korotiku really was a mortal Aranea, then the spider people has been around for an incredibly long time, but in any case the Savage Coast Aranea were a thriving civilisation even in the Blackmoor age.
The presence of non-shapechanging Aranea in the Thanegioth archipelago also leads to assume that early Aranea colonies where formed in the region much before the Great Rain of Fire.
The society of the Herathian Aranea is a magocracy, with nobles being either Wizards or Webmaster Druids. Their society includes many non-aranea, who are unaware of the true nature of the ruling aristocracy. Outside Herath, aranea are fully able to pass themselves off as natives of the human and near-human nations.
The non-shapechanging Aranea of the Isle of Dawn live in the Great Escarpment area and are followers of the evil Immortal Arachne Prime.
They controlled for a long time the Thothian society. Arachne Prime created a special kind of werespider creatures to act as go-betweens with the Thothians.
With the current loss of their patron Immortal and the overthrowing of the puppet government of Thothia, the Aranea of the Great Escarpment may be forced to find new ways to contain the human expansion into their territories.
More primitive, non-shapechanging Aranea form only smaller communities in forests, often allying with neighbouring bands of Bugbears.
It is possible that they are the remnant of a former, more civilised and powerful, Aranea nation south of the Known World.
The only remains of this kingdom may be some ruined temples in the Sea of Dread.
References: M5 Talons of Night, Savage Coast Campaign Book, XSOLO Lathan's Gold, Isle of Dawn by Andrew Theisen
Baldandar: This is essentially another variation on the Doppelganger and/or the Rakshasa; owing to its appearance I would guess it is alien to Mystara, or perhaps from deep underground. Since Baldandar are loners and can appear as any race, they should be widespread and found in any location, but extremely rarely. Anybody wanna give me a guess as to where these guys came from?
Bargda: This is another new and seemingly unnecessary monster. However, as true Minotaurs are debatably not found on (external) Mystara, this could be the "M-equivalent"; IMC they dwell mostly underground but can also be found in tropical, mountainous terrain including Izonda, the Tangor peninsula, and parts of Minaea.
References: Giulio N. Caroletti's history of Minotaurs reference.
Beastman: The Beastmen from whom all Mystaran goblinoids are descended are not covered under AD&D rules; PWA3 says that they should be equivalent to the AD&D Mongrelman. However, their range of attributes should be even greater than the Mongrelman's, since the HW boxed set describes Beastmen as big as trolls and as small as kobolds, with all the other traits as random as size. Beastmen, AFAIK, exist only in the HW.
Beaver: Okay, so it may be a stretch to call beavers sentient. But if ever there was a planet likely to have a civilisation populated by intelligent beavers, wouldn't Mystara be it? Any ideas? (since writing this, I have noticed the Mugumba in CoM, who are a kind of primitive beaver-men who live on Thanegia Island. I guess I musta spoke too soon!)
Beholder: The Beholder has been known to exist on Mystara for some time, but has never seemed to have much influence on the world as an intelligent being. My guess is that Beholders are still somewhat new and are extremely rare on Mystara, and many are still building up knowledge and political power; some day they may be a significant force in human events, as they are on Faerun. Beholder-kin of the various sorts are apparently unknown on Mystara, except for the aquatic beholder (eye of the deep), which is mentioned in the MMCA; possibly there might be a handful of these wandering around the sea of dread; maybe they are allies of the devilfish who live there. Note that beholders may very well have something to do with the cult of Arik of the One Hundred Eyes, one of the few Outer Beings whose name is known on Mystara in the present day.
Bhut: This monster, since officially neither undead nor lycanthrope, is apparently a viable sentient race. They are native to Sind and AFAIK are not found other than around that area of Mystara; they have appeared in Darokin, the Black Mountains, and (IMC) on Thanegia. They do not seem to have a culture of their own, so much as they simply parasitise Sindian human settlements. There are some bands who have actively cooperated with Hosadus in recent history.
References: Bhut article by Agathokles
Blink Dog: These are intelligent enough to be included as a "race" here, though they do not use tools of any sort or have much influence on the world; they appear to be found commonly in the Savannah lands at the northern end of the Serpent Peninsula, and possibly on the Meghala Kimata plains, but not elsewhere on Mystara. IMC Baron Marcus Robert Dunn of Eisenfurt, a vassal of King Stefan Karameikos, has learned to communicate with and train blink dogs for use in big game hunting (especially displacer beasts!); his blink dogs come from the area near Tyjaret, where he managed to tame wild ones for the first time.
Bloodseeker: This is an extraplanar race of my own devising, similar to planetars in appearance and strength but chaotic evil in alignment and very warlike. IMC a small handful were summoned during the last war by an Alphatian wizard to serve as a secret weapon ... the wizard was killed in battle and the bloodseekers stayed for good. Vanya has shown great interest in them.
Boobrie: I don't remember but I think that this is a type of sentient stork-like creature. IIRC it may be similar or related to the Eblis, which I had planned to put in the Yalu river delta as a strange counterpart to the Giff; anyway MMCA says Boobries exist on Mystara in marshy areas; I would guess the Malpheggi would be a good place for them. Any ideas?
Brain Collector (Neh-Thalggu): These alien critters seem to have a particular interest in Mystara, as I know of nowhere else in the Prime Material Plane where they are found. AFAIK, though, there are only two sightings that can actually be confirmed: The Brain collector met by adventurers investigating Chateau d'Ambreville after the first disappearance of Prince Etienne (x2), and one encountered by Haldemar of Haaken along the savage coast (Dragon Magazine #?, anybody know?). Due to its association with the Cthulhu mythos (through CAS and Averoigne), it is likely that this monster is from the dimension of the Old Ones, the vortex from whence spectral hounds and blackballs come. Either that, or it is from the Dimension of Nightmares (if these two places are not connected or even the same).
Brownie: PC 1 (Tall Tales of the Wee Folk) does mention Brownies as a fairy race found on Mystara.
Bruteman: These Mystaran equivalents of Neanderthals exist mostly in the Hollow World. In addition to Hollow World settlements, there are some Brute-men in the Isle of Dread, and possibly other lost world areas.
References: X1 Isle of Dread, Hollow World Campaign Setting
Bugbears are a giant hairy variety of goblins. They are found in northern and eastern Brun and in Alphatia. There are three main subraces.
The Ursus Bipedis Bugburbianus is found in Bugburbia (ca. 500, one third of the population), High Gobliny (ca. 30) and Oenkmar.
The Ursus Bipedis Vulgaris is found in the Known World and in Alphatia:
* some serve the Aranea in Thanegioth and perhaps in the Isle of Dawn;
* one tribe raids western Karameikos and the Five Shires (some 500?);
* large numbers can be found in Denagoth, and raid on Wendar;
* some live among the humanoids of the Black Mountains and in Hule;
* unknown numbers of Bugbears can be found in the Alphatian Kingdom of Limn;
The Ursus Bipedis Hyborianus is a northern variant, living in Hyborea and Norwold.
References: GAZ1 Grand Duchy of Karameikos, Expert Set, X11 Saga of the Shadow Lord, GAZ10 Orcs of Thar, GAZ3 Principalities of Glantri, PWAs, X1 Isle of Dread.
Bullywug: This is not a canon monster on Mystara. IMC two isolated communities exist, one in the Hagvar/Tukluk Islands in the HW, the other in the delta of the Yalu river in western Brun. Perhaps they were once a more numerous race, descendants of the bizarre experiments of the Order of the Frog (DA2) in Blackmoorian times; then they were probably almost all killed by the climate changes surrounding the fall of Blackmoor. (Late addition: I am about to run the old Greyhawk module I1, Dwellers of the Forbidden City, adapted to Mystara, in my 977 AC Thanegioth Islands Campaign. I am thinking about leaving in the bullywugs from the published module [who worship a Pan Lung as a god] and making these also survivors of the Frog Folk).
Carnifex: These sentient dinosaurs are all trapped in a demi-plane somewhere, though (IIRC) they were originally prominent on Mystara. I wonder what relationship they bear to the Immortal Ka, who was once a dinosaur? Anyone? (Damn, I wrote this a long time ago originally, before I had read all the web-based quasi-canon material on the Carnifex, Y'hog, and the Serpentine empire. This will bear significant expansion I am sure).
Centaur: Centaurs should be relatively common on Mystara; they are known to be found in all the major temperate forests of Brun, as well as in Alphatia, on the Isle of Dawn, in the Hollow World, and in northern Davania. They live in small bands and do not have great numbers; occasionally one might enter human or demi-human society and develop some importance as a personage.
Chevall: These are more rare than centaurs, but should be found in many of the same places, especially the forests of Karameikos and Alfheim (pre-Aengmor); I do not think they are found anywhere but Brun however.
Couatl: This feathered servant of the immortals is associated with the Oltec culture, and is found only in the forests of the Atruaghin clans and in the Hollow World. I don't have a source on that, so can someone check me on that?
Crabman: Not a canon Mystara monster. I have one group which lives on the Hagvar/Tukluk islands. From old Fiend Folio. Like many other generic AD&D aquatic races, these could appear as members of the underwater empires mentioned in the Savage Coast material (see Sea Hermit in the SC MCA). There's also a mention of crab people in the annals of al-Kalim's voyages.
Crone of Chaos: This monster from B8? has never been used anywhere else that I know of; apparently they are associated with dark forces more powerful than themselves. IMC they are extremely rare but are used as agents/messengers by entropic immortals, such as those who destroyed Tuma. More commonly, they are just predatory parasites who live around the fringes of many human communities.
A race of bat-like humanoids, the Cryions live (as their name suggest) in arctic climates. Their society is organized in clans, called mnelds. They have limited technology and few shamans, and are likely to be found around the polar openings in Mystara.
References: Creature Catalogue.
Cyclopskin: This monster is known to exist in the Milenian Empire in the HW. I believe there were also a few in the Black Mountains, and it could easily be found elsewhere ... due to its "Greek" flavour, I would say it should be found in or around Thyatis as well as near the Meghala city-states in Davania; they should especially inhabit the occasional rocky island in the Sea of Dread or the HW.
Dark Creeper/Dark Stalker: This is a *very* obscure humanoid race, from the old fiend folio; No one much ever uses them anymore, but I have put some in the Mystaran underworld, under the Isle of Dawn and eastern Brun.
Darkwing: These barely qualify as sentient; they probably live in predatory, migratory flocks around the major mountain ranges of Brun, mainly the Altan Tepe. I would be surprised if they were found elsewhere.
Devilfish (Ixitxachitl): These have a complex civilisation on the floor of the Sea of Dread; I don't believe they are found elsewhere, though the seas off the coast of the Azcan lands in the HW would be a perfect place for them, given their AD&D name. The Dread Sea Devilfish have not yet taken a significant role in the politics of the region, but they have the capability and probably will do so in the years to come. In addition to their major settlements in the Sea of Dread, they have been spotted as far as in the Norwold (M5 Four Coins for a Kingdom).
Diabolus: The PWAs mention the creation of a peaceful diaboli community, Redhorn, in Norwold. Diaboli may come to Mystara for various reasons, but they do not communicate with human/oids if they can help it.
Djinni: These are a pretty major extraplanar race, often involved with the fates of various human kingdoms, possibly at the behest of the immortals. They are especially common in Ylaruam and Sind, though they could conceivably appear anywhere.
Dolphin: Mystaran dolphins are sentient; They are mentioned as existing in most of the seas around the planet, and they serve Tritons and Aquatic Elves as steeds.
Doppelganger: These nuisances seem pretty common on Mystara, especially in the highly populated areas of the KW and Alphatia. Even with competition from Mujina, Rakshasa, Randara, and Baldandar (qv.) for their given ecological niche, they seem to do pretty well. Some humans know much about them and occasionally hire/charm them to perform various shadowy tasks; these would include the Huleans and the Glantrians.
Dragon: The various races of dragon seem to be pretty well accounted for on Mystara. On the subject of metallic dragons, it has always been said that none but gold dragons are found here; however the Sis'thik entry in the MMCA strongly implies that at least copper dragons can be found. The dragon population overall is much higher than most AD&D worlds; the Wyrmsteeth range in Norwold seems to be filled with dragons of various sorts. Most of the population in that region should probably be smaller, younger dragons who can subsist off smaller game; full strength 2nd edition dragons should still be comparatively rare. Every once in a while, the Wyrmsteeth must reach a breaking point in population; this should send hundreds of dragons marauding across the surface of Mystara, finding new food sources. Most dragons are simply too individualistic and undisciplined to be a significant force in the goings on of the world; but individuals like Raknaar or Respen-ak-Tarpis occasionally make waves in the human societies around them. IMC a small band of dragon-mounted warriors operates for the army of Karameikos from a cave high in the Cruth; they raise dragons from captured eggs and train them as mounts for warfare.
Another possible theory is that dragons are able to penetrate the sky shield, and that some nearby planet is ruled or at least heavily populated by them. The Wyrmsteeth is a kind of alien colony, if you buy this theory. (Also see the historical background for the Draconian and Golden Empires on this subject).
Dragon Turtle: These are extremely rare creatures, though there is known to be one in a huge pool in the Shadow Elf caves, and there are probably many in the Hollow World. On the outer world they should be found only rarely.
Drake: These shapechangers appear to be minor immortal agents of some kind, as they organise themselves to infiltrate humanoid society for some philosophical purpose. They should be rarely found wherever their "host race" is found; IMC there are a small number who have their own base in Izonda.
Drow: The drow are not native to Mystara, although GAZ7 mentions the Dock-Alfar and the MMCA mentions them as a possible wandering monster. I have a nation of them living (mostly above ground) at the southern end of the Isle of Dawn; I also have an offshoot group known as Ice Elves who have blue skin and live on the frozen Nentsun Peninsula. At any rate, any Drow on Mystara are NOT related to other elves of Mystara in any direct way, so I have listed them here, separate from the Elvish entry.
Dryad: These wood nymphs appear to be pretty common, especially in the forests of the KW and northern Davania. With a little bit of adjustment for local cultures (i.e. a different name or appearance) this should be a pretty common monster wherever there are trees.
Modern Dwarves are divided into two different races, the Rockborn and the Mordrigswerg. Pre-GRoF Dwarves (Kogolor) exist in the Hollow World.
These Dwarves were preserved in the Hollow World when the race dwindled in the Outer World. They live in the mountains, but are more likely to be surface dweller than the modern dwarves. Their communities are also less centered around metalworking, and their culture seems to be based on RW Alpine regions, like German-speaking Switzerland or Tirol.
The main breed of modern Dwarves hails from Rockhome, which is by far the largest centre of Dwarven culture. The government is a sort of clan-based constitutional monarchy, where the power is shared between the King and the Senate. The population is divided in seven large clans, each having a major focus of interest (military, religion, administration, commerce, etc). The clans act as political parties, with senators being the head of the largest families. The Dwarven society is also quite complex, with a significant role given to "Guilds", which seem to be social clubs.
The Rockborn Dwarves have also sent colonies to many lands. The largest is probably the Kingdom of Stoutfellow in Alphatia, but considerable numbers of Dwarves also live in the mountains of Norwold and in or around Oceansend. The Barony of Burohur in Thyatis is another Dwarven holding. There are dwarven clans in Karameikos and Minrothad, and Dwarven quarters in most Ylari towns. Dwarves probabily are quite common in Darokin, especially in Selenica. According to "Lathan's Gold", a dwarven explorer where sent as far south as the Thanegioth Archipelago to look for prospective new colonies.
There are also a number of dwarves living in the Gulf of Hule and on the Savage Coast, up to Bellayne. These Dwarves came to the Savage Coast around 450 BC, after the end of the Dwarf-Goblinoid wars. From east to west, Dwarves appear in the City-State of Zvornik, in the Savage Baronies, mostly in Cimarron County, though one Dwarven Barony (Montoya) existed from 906 to 937 AC. In Robrenn, a Dwarven Duke holds Avernos, while many dwarves live in the County of Harstal in Eusdria. The westernmost dwarven settling in the Coast is a recently established community of coal miners in Penwick, Bellayne. These dwarves probably come from Cimarron County.
These odd Dwarves live in caverns in the Northern Reaches. They were created alongside with the Rockborn, but are definitely different from several points of view: first, they have an affinity for weird magics, and are known as makers of wondrous item, most of which, though, seem to be myths or fakes. Second, they are as much asocial and prone to mental instability as the Rockborn are social and sound-minded.
References: GAZ4 The Dwarves of Rockhome, GAZ7 The Northern Reaches, The Savage Coast Campaign Book, Hollow World, Dawn of the Emperors Boxed Set, GAZ1 The Grand Duchy of Karameikos, GAZ9 The Minrothad Guilds, XSOLO Lathan's Gold.
Eblis (sp?): I think this is also a stork-like intelligent creature. It seemed an appropriate race for the Yalu river, which is huge, flat and wide like the Nile or the Mississippi; IMC the delta of the Yalu is populated by Eblis, Giff, Gurrash, a few Bullywugs, and Orcs, all appropriately marshy kinds of creatures. The Eblis are the real intellectuals of this lot, and their whole culture is dependent upon the more physical Giff, and vice versa.
Efreeti: See Djinni. These extraplanar beings apparently interfere in human events pretty frequently. They are found most often in very hot and dry areas such as deserts; I think their race may have a special understanding with Hosadus and the Huleans.
Elemental: All sorts of Elementals appear to be commonly found on Mystara; someone posted something earlier about the large number of elemental vortexes which can be found on the planet's surface. Things as seemingly mundane as geology and weather patterns on Mystara are not arbitrary; instead they are the direct result of the works of various elementals. Elementals of law and chaos, as well as their more ordinary counterparts, should be pretty commonly encountered by high level adventurers, and possibly conjure elemental spells on Mystara should have a higher than usual chance of summoning non-ordinary types. IMC a group of PC's once had to organise the KW to fight off an attempted invasion from the Elemental Plane of Water; rivers were overflowing and crops were being destroyed all over Mystara until they plugged the gate and returned things (relatively) to normal.
There are many elven subraces and cultures in Mystara, since the elves, who originally lived in Davania, splintered into several groups after contacting the humans. The three original groups were the Northern Elves who went to Blackmoor, the Grunland Elves, who remained in Davania, and the Aquatic Elves, who entered the sea. Later, the development of advanced technology caused another major rift, as Ilsundal led many elves away from Davania. These became the Sylvan Elves, while those who stayed perished (except for the ancestors of the Blacklore Elves).
The Northern Elves were also hit by the Great Rain of Fire, but some clans survived, and reverted to a low-technology lifestyle.
Other clans formed as groups of elves broke off from the long migration of Ilsundal.
Sylvan elves are the elves that followed Ilsundal in his migration from Davania to the Sylvan Realm.
They include the elves of Alfheim, the Sylvan Realm, Karameikos (Callarii and Vyalia), Minrothad (Forest Elves), Alphatia and Norwold (Shiye), and the Savage Coast (several clans).
These clans, while displaying some physical and cultural differences, more or less fall into a basic social pattern of loose kingdoms where the king is usually balanced by the power of the clan elders.
Savage Coast elves, on the other hand, have adopted feudalism from the humans, and their clans are usually part of the local human or near-human kingdoms.
Some clans that have developed very unusual traits, like the Ee'aar or the Minrothad Water Elves, are described in separate entries.
These elves broke off from the original stock during the early Blackmoorian age, when they refused technology and chose to live under the sea, following the Immortals Calitha and Protius.
Saved from the Great Rain of Fire and the destruction of the advanced technology they relied on, these elves now survive only in the Hollow World, thanks to the Spell of Preservation that keeps their robots and tools functional.
Their society appears advanced, but is actually very decadent.
These elves are though to be the descendants of ancient Glantrian elves that fled underground, and emerged beyond the Sea of Dread.
They now live in the Principality of Belcadiz in Glantri, sharing most of the cultural traits of the other Glantrians.
Their culture is remarkably similar to that of the Ispan people of the Savage Baronies. Whether they are related to the Espa-speaking elves of Torreón or not is uncertain.
These winged elves were part of Ilsundal's migration, but now live in the highest mountains of the Arm of the Immortal, where they form a single kingdom, Aeryl.
These are the descendants of the Northern Elves of the Blackmoor era. They live in Wendar and (at least before the rise of the Shadowlord) in Denagoth.
Elf, Gentle Folk
These pacifistic elves live in the Hollow World. A dying culture in the Outer World, they probably survive in the Hollow World only thanks to the powerful Spell of Preservation.
These elves live in arctic areas of the Hollow World. They are more hardy than other elves, but have much reduced knowledge of magic.
These elves went underground after the explosion of a Blackmoorian artifact in what is now Glantri. They are divided in two branches, the Shadow Elves, followers of the Immortal Rafiel, who have a strongly religious culture and live below the Known World, and the Schattenalfen, followers of the Entropic Immortal Atzanteotl, who dwell in caves in the Hollow World.
They are physically quite different from other elves, having large ears and pale hair and skin.
These elves broke off from Ilsundal's migration in the Serpent Peninsula, but due to conflicts with the Tanagoro humans were pushed out into the Great Waste. They currently live in a dual-race nation under the desert, sharing the caves with the Grugraakh gnolls.
Their society is more primitive than those of other elves, somewhat influenced by the shamanistic Gnoll culture.
These elves, while similar in character to other Minrothaddan elves, bear an odd resemblance to Shadow Elves.
They are one of the major powers in the Minrothad Guilds.
References: GAZ5 The Elves of Alfheim, GAZ1 Grand Duchy of Karameikos, GAZ3 The Principalities of Glantri, GAZ9 The Minrothad Guilds, GAZ13 The Shadow Elves, The Orc's Head, The Savage Coast Campaign Book, Dawn of the Emperors, The Hollow World boxed set, X11 Saga of the Shadowlord, DA1 Adventures in Blackmoor, DA4 City of the Gods.
Emerondian: These are a race of aliens who are essentially equivalent to humans but have green skin. They have their own nation hidden in the rain forests of northern Davania but are unknown elsewhere. They use biotechnology for many purposes ... I believe they also use giant insects for travel, similar to the Tasloi of the Thanegioths.
Enduk: These winged minotaurs are apparently found only in the same places as Ee'aar. They once were responsible for creating the great nation of Nimmur, but have never been numerous. It is possible they were created by Nithian wizards. The existence of Enduk does point the way towards the belief that there ARE normal minotaurs (qv) on Mystara; see also Bargda.
Enduks where created by the Immortal Ixion as a reward for one of his highest ranking proxies, the Greater Shedu Gildesh. Some of them betrayed their king, and were transformed into common Minotaurs.
Reference: Orc's Head, Giulio N. Caroletti's History of the Minotaurs.
Ettercap: PWA3 says these are found in the forests of Esterhold. IMC a few live on the Isle of Dawn and associate with Aranea but not other sentient races.
A race of enchanted female creatures, the Faedornae act as protectors of the elven race, favouring especially elven heroes. They live in Shining Isles, floating high in the skies. The Faedornae do not appear to have a society, though being powerful magic users they do have the means to keep in touch, even if they don't leave their islands.
References: O2 Blade of Vengeance, Creature Catalogue.
Faenare: The Faenare live on Serraine and in the Broken Lands. Most likely they dwell in inaccessible parts of the surface, well away from the tunnels of the goblinoids.. Whether they are the same thing as Aarakocra (qv) or just similar and related is open to debate.
Familiar: These buggers replace the old "imps" of OD&D GAZ 3. Since they are manifestations of minor immortals, they should be found virtually anywhere; but since they serve as familiars to powerful spellcasters, they are likely found mainly in Glantri and Alphatia.
Firenewt: Another obscure FF monster, these are not normally found on Mystara. IMC there is a tiny settlement on a volcanic island in the Sea of Dread, where they were left by an Alphatian wizard long ago after their usefulness to him ceased.
Another Wee Folk race, these diminutive pixies are found in large clans on the fungi rings in the Emerlas, and likely in other woodland regions controlled by friendly elves, Wee Folk, or sylvan beings.
References: O2 Blade of Vengeance, Creature Catalogue.
A variant on the Treant theme, the Gakarak are solitary and brooding creatures, the last survivors of past ages. Only large, ancient (pre-Blackmoorian) forests are likely to host a Gakarak. There are probably not enough of them left to have a true society.
References: DA4 City of Gods, Creature Catalogue.
Galeb Duhr: PWA3 says these talking boulders are found in Soderfjord; my guess is there should be a few around the general area, such as in Norwold, Dunadale, Heldann, etc. They could possibly be related to Rock Men (qv); at any rate they are intelligent and communicative but have no particular civilisation.
This primitive human race existed during the early Blackmoor era. It is unlikely that they survived in the Outer World, but it is possible that they were moved to the Hollow World. Their society is tribal.
References: DA4 City of Gods, Creature Catalogue.
Gentle Folk: These (IIRC) are a long-lost offshoot of Elves, living in the HW, who have become total pacifists and vegetarians (well, vegans actually). They have little contact with anyone other than the Neathar tribes.
Geonids are small humanoids covered in a rock-like shell which allow them a high degree of protection and the possibility to hide, appearing as small boulders. Geonids are hunters and farmers and live in clans of 30 to 80 individuals, led by a single priest. The community is focused around a shrine built to honour the Geonids' Immortal patrons. Note that DA3 speaks of a single Geonid deity, while the MCA speaks of Geonid Immortals -- maybe in the millennia between the Blackmoor age and the modern era something has changed in the Geonid culture. On the other hand, Geonid technology never advanced beyond the Stone Age level.
In modern Mystara, Geonids are found in the Black Mountains and in neighbouring mountainous areas, though they leave their underground tunnels only at night, to mount hunting expeditions.
Geonids are an old race, and they were already found in the pre-industrial Blackmoor era. At the time, a large community of Geonids (2000 of them) dwelt in the Kerman Peaks area (south of Blackmoor). These geonids were controlled by a group of Fire Giants.
References: Mystara MCA, X5 Temple of Death, DA3 City of the Gods, Hulean Gaz by C. Constantin.
Giant: There are many species of Giants on Mystara. The Hill, Stone, Frost, Cloud, and Storm types are known to exist commonly in various locales around the world; in addition Fire Giants live wherever there is volcanic heat or hot desert, and there is a subspecies of Aquatic Storm Giant (i.e. Sea Giant). In the forests of northern Davania, on the Isle of Dawn, and in various parts of Brun lives the mighty Athach. In Minaea there have been reported sighting of Firbolgs, and the occasional Verbeeg lives in the Black Mountains. Mountain Giants are found in Heldann, Norwold, and possibly elsewhere. Near Thothia there lives a subrace of red Stone Giants known as Hunakoi. The Hephaeston are listed as a kind of giant in the MMCA, but IMHO they are more akin to lesser titans and are likely the pet project of the Immortal whose name they bear. Nowhere on Mystara are there large communities of Giants; most live either as small family units or occasionally in nomadic bands. The one exception to this is Frosthome in Norwold, which contains large numbers of Frost Giants who occasionally raid the communities to the south. (also check the history of the ancient Giantish Kingdom of Gandhar).
This race comes from the Spelljammer setting, but some of the previous entries say that the author has decided to put Giff communities in the Yalu Bay region.
Since Giffs need smokepowder, the Haze would mark the boundaries of their activity on Mystara.
Note that Spelljamming races would have a hard time trying to reach or leave the planet, if you go by the canon structure of the Mystaran universe (that is, no Crystal Sphere--or at least a very big, perhaps infinite one).
Githyanki and Githzerai are non-canon races in Mystara, though there has been at least one attempt to set them here (IIRC, in the Great Waste).
Since the two races wage a plane-spanning war, it is entirely possible that one of the two has decided to set a base in some deserted region of Mystara.
It is more likely that a Mystaran base belongs to Githzerai than to Githyanki, who are more aggressive, and whose presence on the planet would be more easily detected.
Gitzerai fortresses could be present in any desertified, depopulated region. Davanian deserts (Arypt, e.g.) seem the best candidates for such a settlement.
One of the major goblinoid race, the Gnolls are not direct descendants of the Beastmen.
They are found in a large area of Brun extending east of Soderfjord and the Emirates of Ylaruam up to the Grande Carrascal in the Savage Coast.
They seem to disappear right north of the Broken Lands and Graakhalia, so they are limited to temperate or hot, arid climates. However, a northern subspecies, probably living in the Midlands of Brun, is reported in the "Orcs of Thar" Gazetteer.
Major Gnoll societies are modelled on the local strongest model--desert nomad tribes in Ylaruam, shamanistic hunter-gatherers in Graakhalia, and human baronies in the Savage Coast.
References: Orcs of Thar Gaz, Savage Coast Campaign Setting, Champions of Mystara, Northern Reaches Gaz.
Mystaran Gnomes are quite rare, but present in many regions. They all belong to the same race, but cultural differences have divided them into various "subraces".
Best known are the Rock Gnomes, present in Karameikos and neighbouring Known World nations, as well as in the Alphatian Kingdom of Stoutfellow.
Their only nation is Highforge, whose government form seems closely related to the Dwarven clanic monarchy of Rockhome. There were gnomes in the Wendarian range, but they were later displaced by dragons. I suppose that the gnomes in Ierendi and the few gnomes in Glantri are their descendants. IMC, there is a community of gnomes in the Principality of Nouvelle Averoigne, and the gnomes assistant of the Belcadizian elf in Ierendi is one of these Averoignese gnomes.
Sky Gnomes live only in the Flying City of Serraine, under a quasi-democratic political system (before the Grey Front takes the power, that is).
Ice/Water Gnomes are supposed to have been living in Soderfjord at some point in the past, and in Southern Davania. They may survive in submarine cities.
Fire/Steam Gnomes were in the past known as the builders of the gigantic robots, the Earthshakers.
They were originally from Davania, and I would think that the spartan-like Gnomes of the Snartan Empire are Fire Gnomes who have been in contact with the Milenian culture.
In the Hollow World, a floating continent holds the Sky gnomish community of Oostdock.
References: Karameikos Gaz, Ierendi Gaz, Snartan Empire by Bruce Heard, Northern Reaches Gaz, PC2 Top Ballista.
Goatmen are native to the Black Mountains and the eastern coast of the Gulf of Hule. According to Bruce Heard, there are several Goatman races (Goatling, Ovinaur, etc.). Most of them have tribal societies, led by shamans.
Some more advanced Goatmen may have copied neighbouring human societies (Hule, the Traladaran City-States). Some Goatmen (or perhaps even all) are locked in a war against Braatnee, a fiend that attempts to dominate their society.
References: Savage Coast MCA, ``Goatmen of Kavaja'' by Bruce Heard.
Another major goblinoid race, Goblin are common everywhere in the Known World, in Hule and in the Yazak Steppes, and may appear in northern settings, as do most Beastmen-descended races.
Their "nations" are usually primitive, and goblins don't seem to be the most advanced among the goblinoids, taking on whatever culture is imposed by the dominant races.
The only achievement known is wolf-mounted cavalry, which seems to be common among all goblin tribes, and is likely to be the most common and successful goblinoid cavalry.
References: Orcs of Thar, B10 Night's Dark Terror, Savage Coast Campaign Setting.
These Chaotic Wee Folk are too disorganised to exist as nation. They are likely to be present mostly in magic-rich environments, as Castle Amber and Serraine.
Reference: X2 Castle Amber, PC2 Top Ballista.
There is no mention of this monsters on Mystara. They are a subterranean race, so they could be living in any remote underground complex.
Gyerians are found along the western coast of Brun, from the Arm of the Immortal up to the Sylvan Realm.
They are likely to live in small tribes, with a primitive lifestyle (probably aeneolythic-level technology, and shamanic/wokanic magic).
More advanced nations like the Ogrekin nations and the Yezchamenid Empire may have dislodged/conquered tribes of Gyerians.
A Gyerian is also reported on the Isle of Dawn, so it is possible that Gyerian communities exist there.
References: CM5 Mystery of the Snow Pearls, the Mystara MC Appendix, the Yezchamenid Empire by Adrian Mattias.
These evil race is hopefully too rare to have a culture of itself, but is likely to be present almost everywhere, thanks to its spellcasting and illusionist abilities.
Mystaran Halflings (Hin) originally hail from Davania, but they were chased away. Tribes of nomadic Hin have been set in eastern Davania (Aryptian Desert), but otherwise the major Halfling civilisation resides in Brun.
The most relevant Halfling settlements include the Five Shires, Leeha, and the surface of the Kingdom of Stoutfellow in Alphatia.
Smaller Hin communities are present among the humans of Ierendi, Darokin, the Savage Coast, Norwold, and Karameikos.
They seem to be quite conservative: both Hin nations follow the same basic government model--clan elders ruling through elected Sheriffs, and both share a similar technological and cultural level.
However, Halflings don't seem to be very interested in imposing, or even preserving, their own traditional government and culture.
Wherever Halfling and Big Folk coexist, the first have little say in the governmental matter, and are likely to adopt the culture of the other group, as seen in the Savage Coast case, but also in Ierendi and Stoutfellow.
References: Five Shires Gaz, CM1 Test of the Warlords, Dawn of the Emperors, Savage Coast Campaign Setting, Ierendi Gaz, Karameikos Gaz.
Apparently, Half-Ogres are a common race in the Far East of Skothar, and they have expanded their influence up to the Arm of the Immortal, founding the Kingdoms of Gombar and Sumag.
The N'djatwa of Davania may also be considered a form of Half-Ogre.
References: Voyage of the Princess Ark, Orc's Head Sourcebook.
The Aerial Servant usually appear on Mystara when summoned by a priest, but they could probably be found in the fabled city of clouds, where flying and air-borne creatures live.
However, due to their evil disposition and enmity with the Djinn, they are not likely to be found even there.
Harpies are social, birdlike creatures. They live in large flocks, also known as screams. Thirty Harpies are reported living in the Flying City of Serraine in PC2. The same source provides info on Harpy presence in Karameikos, which is confirmed by the small group adventure in the Red Box (Basic Set).
I'm not aware of other Harpy screams, but it's likely that they will be found in Thyatis and Darokin at least, and probably in other temperate environments.
References: PC2 Top Ballista, D&D Basic Set (Red Box).
Sea Hermits are sages and spies of an unknown undersea kingdom. They probably have a very complex society of their own, but nothing is known of it.
When near or in the coast, they are solitary creatures.
References: Savage Coast MCA
One of the most organized and powerful goblinoid races, Hobgoblins of the Goblinus Grandis subrace are common in the Broken Lands, Karameikos and other regions of the Known World, while the Goblinus Fortis is more common in desertified regions and steppes.
Member of the former subrace are usually organized in small bands under a powerful warrior, who styles himself a King, and often control larger bands of goblins. Goblinus Grandis tribes are led by Khans.
The fact that "Orcs of Thar" doesn't mention an artic Hobgoblin subrace leads me to think that Hobgoblin, as a race, have developed later in the history of the goblinoids, probably from goblins after the hordes left their native territories in Hyborea.
References: Orcs of Thar Gazetteer, B10 Night's Dark Terror.
Hsiao are forest dwelling owl-priests. They are found together with other forest creatures as Treants, or cooperating with Druids.
Their numbers seem too low to allow them to form true societies larger than close family groups, but they are likely to act as collectors of knowledge and hired spellcasters for other races.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk.
Hutaakans were created by the Immortal Pflarr during the height of the Nithian Empire. At the fall of the Empire, they established their theocracy in modern Karameikos, but their nation collapsed under the Gnoll Invasion.
In modern times, they can be found in small numbers in the Lost Valley of Hutaaka, but a much larger community exists in the Hollow World. Other than these two groups, I don't think there are any other Hutaakans, though many Lupins have Hutaakan blood.
References: B10 Night's Dark Terror, Hollow World Boxed Set.
While Mind Flayers are not canon monsters in OD&D, one of them is found in ``Mark of Amber''. Some people consider this an error, and suggest that it be replaced with a Brain Collector, as in the original ``X2 Castle Amber'' module. Others simply assume that the Illithid in Mark of Amber is a lone explorer from another world.
In the latter case, one would probably assume that Mind Flayers do not come to Mystara for some specific reasons -- perhaps linked to the absence (or rarity) of psionics on this world.
References: Mark of Amber.
This is not a canon Mystaran monster. It is a kind of evil Gremlin, which lives in underground settings.
This is an Oriental unicorn. It is of Outer Planar origin, and could be found in Oriental lands like Ochalea and Myoshima.
I would not consider it common enough to have an organized society of its own.
The Jorri is a kind of intelligent, otter-like creature. It is found along the Savage Coast, where it is well liked by the local sailors, since Jorries will rescue victims of shipwrecks and warn sailors of incoming bad weather.
The Jorries live in family groups, but do not create larger societies.
References: Savage Coast MCA
An intelligent sea turtle, the Kla'a-Tah acts as a protector of the Tortle tribes. It is not a social creature, however.
The evil counterpart to the Kla'a-Tah, the Claurin is not very social, but often requires goods and services from the Snappers.
References: Savage Coast MCA
One of the sea people, the Kna look like giant, more-or-less-humanoid goldfish. They are nomadic traders, and their society seems to be based on family groups, which can be as small as a single couple, and as large as a four-generations clan.
References: PC3 The Sea People
The Koalinth is a marine form of Hobgoblin. I don't know of any Koalinth community on Mystara, though they may live in far-off seas--those near the Known World are too closely monitored by land-dwellers navies and Sea People armies.
A minor goblinoid race, Kobolds are common in the Known World, from the Kol in the Broken Lands to the Kobold tribes in the Darokinian mountains south of Alfheim, to the larger tribes in Soderfjord. There are no Kobolds west of the Black Mountains, and they don't seem to be common anywhere outside the Known World and some neighbouring regions, as the northern Isle of Dawn.
Kobold society is less likely to be based on physical power then any other goblinoid society: Kobold rulers are more often tricksters, charismatic, or magically strong individuals. Their society varies from chaotic clanic tribes to lawful near-democracies.
References: Gaz10, Orcs of Thar, D&D Expert Set (Blue Box)
An aquatic form of gargoyle, the Kopoacinth is not a canon Mystaran monster, nor it is known to have been used in unofficial Mystaran material.
However, being a construct it poses little problems, as there are several Sea People spellcasters who could create constructs of this kind.
These intelligent but quite evil creatures once ruled much of the Sea of Dread from their home volcanoes. Their society was one based on slavery, which the Kopru enforced through their powerful mind control powers. Nowadays, there are few Kopru, and they tend to be loners. A few of them have moved to the Triton kingdom, where they act as independent entrepreneurs.
References: PC3 The Sea People, X1 Isle of Dread
A giant intelligent squid, most likely to be found in the northern waters, off the coast of Norwold. I think these are solitary creature, with no society to speak of.
A (probably non-intelligent) tropical variety lives in the Sea of Dread.
References: PC3 The Sea People
These diminutive, human-like beings exist only in the Hollow World.
They seem to have a militaristic, matriarchal society, with Alphatian and Milenian influences.
References: Hollow World Boxed Set
An evil marine humanoid. They do not appear in any canon source for Mystara, but since their habitat are underground seas and lakes, it is possible that some communities live in the caverns that dot the crust of the planet.
The Kuo-Toan society is usually theocratic, devoted to non-good Immortals of the Sea and Elemental Water.
A somewhat comparable fan-created Mystaran monster which could fill the niche of the Kuo-Toa is the Hresha-rhak, by Geoff Gander.
Lamara (Lamia Noble)
I don't think this is a canon Monster, and I can't think of any appropriate setting for Lamia in general. Perhaps the Milenian lands could go (the Lamia is a monster of Greek folklore, IIRC)
This Wee Folk race dwell in the Fairy Court, an extradimensional space with strong links to certain areas of Mystara. Therefore, they are likely to appear in small numbers in those areas accessible through the Court.
They don't have a special society, beyond being part of the society of all immortal fairies.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk.
Liches are not especially social, and it can be hoped that their number is not great enough to allow them to form societies.
Notable liches of Mystara include Doomrider and Death Flame, the Inheritor Liches of the Savage Coast; two forms of lich-like Aranea undead, the Arashaeem and the Yeshom; the Radiance Liches, like the Glantrian Prince Brannart McGregor; and a number of Nithian Liches (though it is always difficult to tell whether these are actually Liches, or very powerful specimens of the Ancient Dead).
The only steady source of Liches on Mystara would be the Secret Craft of Necromancy, but its Master is not likely to use this power, nor to step down any soon.
References: Savage Coast Campaign Setting, Savage Coast MCA, The Principalities of Glantri Gazetteer; other Liches appear in various Gazetteers.
Lizard-Kin are a group of ancient reptilian races, still quite common on Mystara.
Cayma are diminutive lizard-kin that live in the Kingdom of Cay, near Herath in the Savage Coast. They are technologically more advanced than their Gurrash and Shazak neighbours, but their culture isn't yet a match for the old Malpheggi civilisation.
Cayma have been created by the Herathian wizards, so they are unlikely to be found anywhere but in the vicinity of their nation.
Chameleon men, or Wallara, are as much related with Dragons as they are with other Lizard-Kin. They are an old race, but their current level of technology does not go beyond stone age.
They have a tribal, deeply involved in religious ceremonies and strongly supported by a set of rituals and beliefs linked to the Wallara draconic ancestry and their affinity for the Dreamworld.
Gator-men were a race of barbarian fighters in the age of Blackmoor. Apparently [that is, IMO], they became extinct during the Great Rain of Fire, just like the Malpheggi.
However, in the last centuries a race of Lizard-Kin very similar to the Gator-men appeared in the Bayou of the Orc's Head Peninsula. These new Gator-men are called Gurrash, and have a crude society, based on the might-makes-right principle.
The Gurrash of the Bayou worship Demogorgon as did the Gator-men, so it is hypothesised [by me] that the evil reptilian Immortal interfered with the Herathian magic processes that created the Gurrash in order to restore the Gator-man race.
These winged breed of Lizard-Kin is found mostly in the Arm of the Immortal. Many members of this race are mercenaries in foreign, more advanced nations, but this apparently hasn't helped the race to grow beyond its current technology level.
Krolli are not as common as other Lizard-Kin, and they tend to be spread in many countries beyond their own, so they don't have been able or willing to create a kingdom like the other Lizard-Kin of the Savage Coast.
Lizard-men were once a widespread race with an advanced civilisation, centred around what no is the Malpheggi Swamp in Darokin, and spreading east to Ylaruam and south to Ierendi.
When the Great Rain of Fire changed the weather pattern, the Malpheggi Lizard-men became near-extinct, and the Nithian colonists finished the job a few centuries later.
Nowadays, the Malpheggi culture survives only in the Hollow World, while only primitive tribes of Lizard-men live on the planet's surface (mostly in the Known World and in the Savage Coast). Their organisation is almost exclusively tribal, and the tribe is lead by a king, or more often a queen, advised by shamans and wokani.
The Shazak are just a breed of Lizard-men who have been enslaved to the Herathian wizard-kings for a time. They have now a primitive kingdom, and are quickly assimilating the technology and culture of the more advanced Savage Coast nations.
These are desert-dwelling Lizard-Kin. I think they are quite primitive and have tribal society, and live in Aryptian desert
References: Orc's Head, Savage Coast Campaign Setting, Savage Coast MCA, Mystara MCA.
Lupins are one of the major civilised races on Brun, though they don't seem to have spread beyond the sea, except in the nation of Ochalea. Lupins coexist fairly well with humans and demihumans, less so with Rakasta and Goblinoids, and they hate lycanthropes with a passion.
This canine race has developed its own society, a feudal monarchy, in the Kingdom of Renardy, which in any case shows strong Glantrian and Baronial influences. More primitive Lupins along the Savage Coast still adopt a nomadic hunter-gatherer lifestyle.
Lupins are also very common in Ochalea, where they have adopted fully the local customs (of Rakastan origin!), as they have done in the Traladaran City-States of the Gulf of Hule.
In Glantri, Lupins are likely the third most common race beyond humans and elves, though the native races tend to keep apart from Glantrian society. References: Campaign Classics: Lupins of Mystara, by B. Heard; Savage Coast Campaign Setting, X2 Castle Amber.
Lycanthropes of several species live on Mystara. The known (and canon) phenotypes are the wolf, boar, bear, tiger, rat, shark, fox, swine, and bat. Other lycanthropic strains became extinct through the efforts of werehunters of various humanoid races, as was the case of the werehawks.
Yet other species may appear here and there as results of specific lycanthropic curses, but are usually too few to survive and develop into true were-species (non canon examples appear in Glantri, as the wereraven Edgar Beaumarys-Moorcroft by Kit Navarro and the werehawk Marcantonio Odilone by Giovanni Porpora).
Most lycanthropes are just parasites with no society of their own, but there are at least a couple of notable exceptions, including the Principality of Morlay-Malinbois in Glantri and one of the Orc tribes of the Orc's Head, where the tribal leaders are chosen among an elite of devil swines. References: PC4 Night Howlers, Glantri: Kingdom of Magic, The Principalities of Glantri Gazetteer, The Orc's Head.
This intelligent constructs are the creation of the d'Ambreville wizards. They are common only in Chateau Sylaire in the Principality of Nouvelle Averoigne, but since the d'Ambreville returned after their 30 years long disappearance, the Gens Magica has probably found its way in other Principalities.
The Magen make good servants, since they are reliable as any construct, but much more intelligent and good-looking than living statues and gargoyle.
References: X2 Castle Amber.
The main manscorpion civilisation on Mystara is located on the Orc's Head Peninsula in Western Brun. The Nimmurian Manscorpions have conquered their land from the Enduks (q.v.) and have adopted their language, architecture, and many other cultural traits. However, their theocracy is devoted to Menlil (Atzanteotl) instead of Idu (Ixion).
Other (non-Nimmurian) Manscorpions live, or have lived in the past in other hot, dry regions of Western Brun (e.g., the Great Waste north-west of Sind), or in the subterranean areas below those lands.
References: Savage Coast Campaign Book, Orc's Head, X4 Master of the Desert Nomads.
Manticores are held to be solitary, aggressive monsters, and they are not overly intelligent. I think they are present in various borderlands or savage regions of Mystara, but there is no Manticore society.
AFAIK, these are not Mystaran monsters. They seem to fit the same niche as the Boneless (see Rockhome Gaz).
Medusae are often lonely monsters. I think they are most common in the Milenian lands of both the Outer and Hollow World.
The standard AD&D Mermen (half-men, half-fish beings) do not exist on Mystara. Mystaran Mermen are more correctly called Merrow (see below).
References: PC3 The Sea People.
The name "Merrow" is used on Mystara to address a race of two-legged, half-men half-fish beings, not Aquatic Ogres (who don't exist here, at least in the Sea of Dread).
The Merrow are nomadic hunter-gatherers and herders. They have occupied the shallow regions of the Sea of Dread since the sinking of Taymora.
References: PC3 The Sea People, Kingdom of Ierendi Gaz.
Mystaran Minotaurs are the descendants of cursed Enduks who, lead by Minoides, betrayed the Shedu-King Gildesh to get his treasure, and were banished to eastern regions.
From their original homeland of Nimmur, they may have spread over large regions of Brun and Davania, though I suppose they are quite few and their cursed nature prevents them from creating nations or even large tribes.
Minotaurs have been sighted even in Karameikos, but it is not known whether these are descendants of Minoides and his Enduks or cursed humans.
In Davania, there is a Minotaur nation (the land of Mis, by Francesco Defferrari), and a City-State controlled by Minotaurs appear in Skothar (Erech, within the Minean lands).
References: Savage Coast Campaign Book, Orc's Head, B10 Night's Dark Terror, The Last Haven of Mis by Francesco Defferrari, Confederated Kingdom of Minaea in the Mystaran Almanac AC1017.
Another small variant of the Gremlin, like the Jermlaine (q.v).
These "humanoids" are the result of hideous magical experiments, so the forests of Alphatia and Herath could hide a number of Mongrelman tribes. However, I don't think this is a canon race.
Mongrelmen, or the Ravenloft-ish counterpart, the Broken Ones, can be used as creations of the Dark Pyrondians on Damocles (my sub-setting based on the flat world Damocles, a.k.a. Asterius in the Mystaran cosmology).
References: Damocles Q&A by Agathokles.
These powerful shapechanging warriors are often travelling mercenaries and/or assassins. If they have a large scale civilisation, it is well hidden from the sight of the non-shapechangers.
I think central Brun might be their centre of diffusion (as for other shapechangers), due to the events that occurred in Sind some centuries ago.
Note that Mujina are said to hunt down Psionicists--which could account in part for the rarity or non-existence of this character class on Mystara.
A band of Mujina is located in Port Shireton. Others can be met in Hule in the X5 module.
References: Five Shires Gazetteer, X5 Temple of Death
These tiny bear-like humanoids live in the mountains of the Arm of the Immortals. They live in large villages of carved ice with mountain caves, and have a fairly well organised society.
References: Savage Coast MCA
These serpentine beings are not canon Mystaran monsters, AFAIK. However, they would fit well into MIndian lands, though more Shahjapur or Selimpore than Sind itself.
Nagpa hail from Varellya, and are the result of a centuries-lasting curse laid on the original Varellyans, who keep reincarnating into this half-man, half-vulture form.
Many Nagpa are plain evil, and all are definitely chaotic. Their primary motivation is to end their curse. To this end, they collect knowledge and items. The latter are sacrificed to the Immortals, hoping that they would lift the curse.
A group of Nagpa live in the Flying City of Serraine, the Sky Gnomish city that travels over the Known World.
Other Nagpa have found their way through Davania to other arid, desolated regions, like the Sind Desert.
They prefer to keep apart from humans, and often dwell in abandoned crypts and tombs.
Nagpa don't gather in large numbers, and their society takes the form of a secret network of scholars. The Grey Front leadership is the only known example of Nagpa society outside Varellya.
Within Varellya, Nagpa gather every year at the spot where their curse was created to sacrifice all their riches to the Immortals.
Moreover, they collect the cocoons that contain the immature form of their reincarnated relatives and store them in caverns, where the reborn Nagpa will complete their growth in the following months.
Due to their reincarnation cycle, there is a fixed number of Nagpa, which amounts to the part of the population of Varellya that survived to the end of the civil war that destroyed the nation.
The Mystara MCA presents a different take on Nagpa. While the Varellyan Nagpa is barred from using magic (except his special powers) and is a reincarnated Varellyan human, the MCA Nagpa is just a powerful mage, cursed to assume the shape of a half-man half-vulture.
There are also a number of other differences -- MCA Nagpa do not (and, indeed, cannot) sleep or eat, while Varellyan Nagpa do.
There are several possible interpretations to this differences, including the following:
1) The MCA Nagpa is simply inaccurate
2) The MCA Nagpa is a variant of the Nagpa curse that is sometime inflicted by Immortals who know of the fate of Varellya The first option, while less inclusive, keeps a single source for the Nagpa, which may make for a better story.
References: PC2 Top Ballista, X4 Master of the Desert Nomads, The Voyage of the Princess Ark, 5: "As they fed on a nation, so were they cursed" (Dragon Magazine 157), Creature Catalogue, Mystara MCA.
Nereids hail from the Elemental Plane of Water. Since Mystara has got an unusually high number of Elemental Vortices, it is likely that some exiled Nereid has found its way to the planet's oceans.
Outside their home plane, Nereid are solitary, and there's no Nereid society on Mystara.
A sort of intelligent primate, the Neshezues are primitive and chaotic, living in villages ruled by a dominant couple -- a warrior male and his mate, usually a poisoner of great skill.
In some way, the Neshezues ape pirate society and use the same tools and weapons of the humanoid pirates -- including firearms, if available.
The only known population of Neshezues is found in the jungles of Herath.
References: Savage Coast MCA
These are powerful beings from the Negative Energy Plane. They appear on Mystara only when summoned by powerful magics, or sent by an Entropic Immortal.
Nightshades tend to attack everything else, except other Nightshades or a summoner, so it is highly unlikely that they have any society (at least on Mystara).
Nixies are female water sprites (contrary to other worlds, in Mystara there are no male Nixies). They live in shallow waters, in small tribes. They often keep charmed male servants, humans or other land dwellers.
There is no larger Nixie society.
References: PC3 The Sea People.
A Greyhawk goblinoid, similar to an hobgoblin. Since an article from Dragon Magazine reports "Norke" as an Orc-like monster from Swiss folklore, we can assume that Norke or Norker is just the name given by the Kogolor Dwarves to the Krugel Orcs.
Another option is to consider the Norker a crossbreed between goblins and other goblinoid races--most probably hobgoblins or bugbears, much like the orog and ogrillon (orc-ogre crossbreeds).
There's no reason why there shouldn't be Nymphs on Mystara. However, they are a solitary race, so there is no Nymph society to speak of. They are nature spirits, much like the Hamadryads.
This is a race of cyborgs, dwelling in a dimension called Aelos, where technology is prevalent on magic. They are basically the Mystaran version of the Borgs from Star Trek.
References: CM? Where Chaos Reigns.
Ogres are one of the less intelligent and social goblinoid race. The only known Ogrish "nation" is Ogremoor in the Broken Lands. Large numbers of Ogres are known to dwell in the Mengul Mountains to the north of Wendar.
There are smaller Ogre tribes in North-Western Karameikos as well, and Ogres must have reached a wide diffusion in the past, as testified by the existence of half-ogre races like the N'djatwa (see below).
This intelligent, magic-using subrace of the Ogre is common only in Ochalea (and possibly in other oriental lands). The Ogre Magi are carnivorous, and eat preferably human, demi-human, or lupin flesh. They are also slavers, and might have contacts with other slaver societies, like the Iron Ring or Jaibul.
This should be an aquatic Umber Hulk. I don't know why it is listed here.
An half-ogre, half-orc breed, the Ogrillon is likely to exist in the Broken Lands and in Oenkmar, where the goblinoid races mix frequently. However, it is not a canon Mystaran monster, just like the other Ogre-Orc halfbreed, the Orog.
A race of half-ogres, half-elves of Southern Davania, the N'djatwa are cannibalistic, and follow the lead of tribal Druids. Their numbers are quite low.
References: The Orcs of Thar Gaz, The Voyage of the Princess Ark series, X11 Saga of the Shadowlord.
Perhaps the most common and important goblinoid race, the Orcs are common almost everywhere in Brun. There are several Orc subraces, with vast cultural and even physical differences. The major Orcish nations are in the Broken Lands (Orcus Rex, Red Orkia, Yellow Orkia, plus the Tangut nomads in neighbouring Ethengar); in the Yazak Steppes and in Hule; and in the Orclands of the Savage Coast (various tribes of Swamp Orcs).
Other tribes and subraces live in the northern regions (Orcus Hyborianus) and in Nentsun (Skotharian Orcs, of the Ondonti subrace).
In the Hollow World, the is the Krugel Horde, a nation of Orcish raiding and mercenary horsemen.
Orcish nations are usually nothing more than glorified hordes and tribes. The command chain is mostly based on fighting prowess, but intelligent Orcs like Thar and Krugel have been introducing new concepts to the orcish society, so that it is likely the most successful among all goblinoid societies--as shown by the fact that Orcs tend to be in command in multi-racial hordes, as in the Broken Lands.
References: The Orcs of Thar Gaz, Savage Coast Campaign Book, Orc's Head, Hollow World Boxed Set, Chronicles of Nentsun by Giulio N. Caroletti, The Golden Khan of Ethengar Gaz.
Omm-wa are intelligent, lamantine-like creatures. They live in the seas around the Orc's Head and in the rivers of that region. They trade with the Herathians and Shazak, and occasionally war with the Gurrash.
The Omm-wa society is matriarchal, with females leading the family and acting as shamans. Males form a warrior society, with frequent challenges and duels for positions of prominence.
References: Savage Coast MCA
These centaur-like crossbreeds of elf and pegasus are highly intelligent and social, though limited in numbers. They are found in at least two locales, namely the Flying City of Serraine in the skies of the Known World, where they make up an important, if small, part of the population; and the Zatrapy of Pazarkan in the Yezchamenid Empire in Western Brun.
They can probably be found in other high mountains in the temperate or tropical regions, and in airborne lands like Floating Ar.
They seem to fit well with other races, even though they might behave somewhat arrogantly towards non-fliers, and don't have a very distinct society, probably due to their low numbers.
On the other hand, the Pegataurs have influenced the Yezchamenid society quite heavily, so it is possible that part of the Yezchamenid culture is originally due to the Pegataurs themselves.
References: PC2 Top Ballista, Yezchamenid Empire by Adrian Mattias.
These small, somewhat humanoid flying squirrels are common in the Thanegioth Archipelago and have a kingdom of their own, Jibarú, in the Orc's Head Peninsula. It can be supposed that jungle regions between these two major Phanaton settlements have seen, or still hold, minor Phanaton communities.
The Phanaton society is tribal, with a King or Queen at the head, followed by the warrior and shamanic castes.
References: Orc's Head, X1 Isle of Dread.
A being of Elemental Fire, the Phoenix is not a common Mystaran race, though an individual Phoenix could well be found on the Planet-not enough to create a Phoenix society, though.
It could appear anywhere other fire elemental-kin dwells (Sollux encampments, e.g.), or in Ochalea and other Oriental Lands.
One of the Fairy races, the Pixie live mostly in the Dreamlands. However, they are also one of the most warlike and best fitted for life outside the Dreamlands of the smaller fairies, and it is possible to find Pixie clans in various enchanted locales, as the Lake of Lost Dreams.
They seem to have a clanic society outside the Dreamlands, similar to the demihuman clans.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk, B10 Night's Dark Terror.
The Plasm is a monster native to the Ethereal. Plasm haunt the elemental vortices that link Mystara to the Elemental Planes, but don't come to Mystara itself, since their ethereal frame wouldn't last long in the Prime Material plane.
They are intelligent, though evil, but probably not common enough to gather in societies.
References: Companion Set, A Guide to the Ethereal Plane, Mystara MCA.
Another member of the Wee Folk, the Pooka is one of the less humanoid Fairy in appearance. Pooka are usually chaotic, but good natured, and quite adventuresome.
They fit well with the Fairy society, but don't have much interest in organisation or political power, and have little need of help from their fellows (pooka are quite powerful, even by Wee Folk standard).
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk .
The Pseudodragon is an intelligent flying lizard, probably evolved from the Flapsail. I think it could be extinct on the surface, but present in some regions of the Hollow World.
I think this monster comes from the Forgotten Realms setting. Moreover, it is psionic. In the end, it doesn't seem to have any relevance to Mystara.
No info on this critter.
One of the most common non-human race, save for goblinoids, the Rakasta have evolved from primitive clans of hunters and herders to great civilised nations.
The largest Rakastan nation is the Empire of Myoshima, located on the invisible moon of Mystara. The M-Japanese culture of this empire has been created by the Rakasta themselves, and has influenced not only the Rakastan nations and tribes of Mystara itself, but also some human nations (Ochalea, and the Warrior's Code on the Savage Coast).
Bellayne, a modern feudal monarchy, is the most advanced Rakastan nation on the planet, having successfully merged the traditional Rakastan culture with that of humans and demihumans. The nation is undergoing a fast economic and politic development.
However, the strongest Mystaran Rakasta, and the cradle of Rakastan civilisation, are the Simbasta of Davania. These powerful nomadic warriors, while apparently less civilised than their settled brethren, were indeed able to soundly defeat even the Heldannic Knights, who are equipped with the most advanced human technology and clerical magic.
The last of the major Rakastan societies is that of Skotharian Rakasta, which is divided in many branch, most of which follow a tribal organisation, mid-way between the nomadic Simbasta and the settled Myoshimans and Bellaynish.
These evil shapeshifting spirits have plagued the Sindhi and Rakasta society for centuries. After having been purged out with the other shapeshifter by the Sindhi humans, their influence on Mystara has been severely reduced.
Nowadays, most Rakshasa are found in Skothar, among the Tagh and Harimau-Belang tribes. While the Sherkasta loathe them, they often fall under Rakshasa domination, due to the powerful magic and intellect of the evil spirits.
Rakshasa enjoy despotic rule, supposing they are the rulers, and practice slavery.
Rock Men are mountain dwellers, probably of elemental origin. They live in small clans, lead by elder councils. Since Dwarves can detect them more easily than other race do, I suppose there are at least some Rock Men clans in Rockhome.
Other clans may dwell in any mountain chain in the temperate regions--the Arm of the Immortal, the Black Mountains, and the mountain ranges in Tangor all look like potential habitats for Rock Men.
A non-canon aquatic race, the Sahuagin may or may not be present in the Mystaran seas. As for the Kuo-Toa, they can be replaced by the Hresha-rhak, by Geoff Gander, or other native evil aquatic creatures.
Salamanders are reptilian-looking, elemental beings. There are two varieties, Frost and Fire. None of the two is particularly at home in the Prime plane, but sometime they are summoned by conjurers for various purposes--well, usually combat.
They may also reach Mystara through one of the Elemental Vortices, establishing lairs in suitable areas.
The Sasquatch, also known as Bigfoot or Yeti, is not especially intelligent. It lives in primitives tribes in lands where there is little or no danger of attack from more intelligent humanoids.
The forest variety could appear in Western Brun, west of Hule, and in the forested regions of Alphatia and southern Norwold, while the mountain variant would be at home in the mountains of Norwold and Western Brun.
Southern Davania could also host Sasquatch clans.
Satyrs, or Fauns, are woodland beings who embody Chaos, which is more a nature than a philosophy for them. Therefore, Satyr society can be considered the paramount of anarchy.
Satyrs live in woodland areas, like Canolbarth, of temperate or warmer climate.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk.
A sort of mutant ochre jelly, scamilles have reached sentience. However, they have no interest in long term cooperation: each scamille does what it wants, without interference by other scamilles.
Since they are not aggressive, this way of life works well for them, so they can be considered to have an anarchic society.
As a general consideration, shapeshifters often behave as parasite, therefore they adapt to the human society rather than creating a racial society.
However, certain little known legends speak of an hidden city which would be the centre of a civilisation of shapeshifter races.
Adaptor are a race of technologically advanced planar travellers. Their origins are unknown, but their ability to survive in any environment suits perfectly their taste for travelling.
It is not known what for of society they have on their home planet, supposing they do have one.
A race of good or neutrally aligned shapeshifters, the Metamorph are clanic, and share many traits of the woodland folk, with whom they are usually friendly.
A variant of the Doppelganger, much stronger but solitary. There isn't much known on them.
Probably a Fairy who has lost memory, the Shargugh is a near-immortal, simple-minded but sometimes deep and prophetic, inhabitant of the woods of Canolbarth.
It is too addled to have a society, but it often enters a symbiotic relation with a human village, much like brownies do, though downsized to the Shargugh limited intellect.
Shark-kin are nomadic hunter-gatherers of the Sea of Dread. They live in small tribes, and train sharks.
References: PC3 Sea People.
A sea dwelling female only race--a sort of marine nymph, perhaps--the sirine is not very social, its only form of society being the family.
According to the fan material by G. Caroletti, there is an aristocratic sirine family in Thyatis.
Possibly a step behind the doppelganger in the evolution ladder, the Skulk is a nocturnal, underground humanoid. However, it is not a canon Mystaran monster (it is linked to the Greyhawk setting).
If used on Mystara, it could be set as an ancestor of the doppelganger, living in some underground areas of the Hollow World, or in the Hollow Moon.
Another small gremlin-kin, like the Mite, but even less organized and aggressive. Not a canon Mystaran monster, but neither a totally out of place one.
The Sun Brothers, of Sollux, are elemental beings of the Plane of Fire. Their Brotherhood wages a constant war against the Efreeti Sultanate, and often scout the Prime for traces of Efreeti activity.
Their society is (at least on the Prime) very militant, and resemble more an army than a civilian society.
References: X2 Castle Amber
Sphinxes are not uncommon on Mystara. Great lovers of riddles, they may be found alone, or at most in small family groups, due to the need for extensive hunting grounds. The hill regions of the former Milenian Empire, the south-eastern tip of Brun and Thothia are all adequate for some Sphinx settlements.
Some Sphinxes mix with the humanoid societies, and can be found in Serraine and in, probably, in Limn.
This is just a male sphinx.
This is just a female sphinx.
Planar Spiders are spider-like intelligent beings hailing from some unknown Demiplane hidden in the Deep Ethereal.
As there are many nations of Planar Spiders, it is likely that they have developed a number of different societies, and judging from their magic and technology, it is likely that these societies are very advanced.
Sprite are faeries with a strong affinity for magic, and are closely related to Pixies. They are part of the Faery society, and can be found in the Dreamlands and in other lands of the Wee Folk, though they are probably less common than Brownies or Pixies in the human lands.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk.
The Invisible Stalkers are elemental beings from the Plane of Air. They have a society of their own on their home plane, but appear on Mystara as summoned servants, so it is unlikely that they have formed societies here--though they probably appear in Djinn holdings in the skies of Mystara.
This feline humanoids look much like Rakasta. They live in clans, often lead by a Tabaxi Lord--a sort of intelligent great cat, having some blood relation to the Tabaxi themselves.
If used on Mystara, they could actually be a race of savage jungle Rakasta fallen under the sway of some dark power.
The Tabaxi are mentioned in the Rakasta of Mystara article, so they are not entirely non-canon.
References: Rakasta of Mystara, by B. Heard, Dragon Magazine 247.
Tabi are small flying humanoids that look like monkeys. They have a certain affinity for magic, and are silent and dexterous, but have very short attention span, and a primitive technology level.
They live in extended tribes in the jungles of northern and eastern Davania, but the Nagpa have conceived magics that allow them to summon and bind Tabi as familiars.
References: PC2 Top Ballista, X4 Master of the Desert Nomads.
Tasloi are small, somewhat rat-like, humanoids. I don't think they are canon Mystaran monsters, but I seem to remember that someone put Tasloi in the Thanegioth Archipelago. They could also dwell in other jungle regions (e.g., in Skothar).
A nightmarish mix of troll and ghoul over an hobgoblin frame, the Thouls are limited in numbers, but powerful in single combat, thanks to the natural abilities.
Possibly due to the presence of undead blood in their makeup, Thouls reproduce slowly, and are not overly intelligent, even for goblinoids.
Thoul are often employed by hobgoblin "Kings" as bodyguards, otherwise they live as outcasts in large hobgoblin hordes or in small, isolated communities.
A Titan is an Immortal being, a creature of status even higher than the Exalted beings, though not as powerful as a true Immortal.
Titans are major servants of the Immortals, and should appear rarely, if ever, on the Prime.
References: Wrath of the Immortals boxed set
There are two races of turtle-like humanoids living along the Savage Coast, the pacifistic Tortles and the savage Snappers.
Tortle are, rather unsurprisingly, intelligent, humanoid turtles. They have a limited technology (Stone Age, though this has changed where the Tortle lands have been colonised by the Baronial humans and the Lupins of Renardy), and are often looked upon by the more advanced races of the Savage Coast.
Tortle once had an advanced cultural level, as testified by the mysterious monuments their civilisation left, like the Monoliths of Zul, but now they are just peace-loving primitives, living in the free, but resource poor, Tortle Tribelands, or peasants in the haciendas of the human Baronies.
References: Savage Coast Campaign Book.
Snappers are aquatic Tortles of evil disposition. They are even more primitive than their land-dwelling cousins, and their tribe are often dominated by powerful cläu-rin (intelligent but evil sea turtles).
References: Savage Coast MCA.
These sentient plants look like large trees with humanoid faces, often bearded. They live in large forests, like Canolbarth in the Known World, sharing their territories with other woodland being.
They form small clans, lead by the elders.
References: PC1 Tall Tales of the Wee Folk, O2 Blade of Vengeance.
An highly civilised and magically powerful aquatic race, the Tritons have formed a large kingdom in the Sea of Dread, with a feudal structure.
The Triton society has historically been divided along the wizards-priests line, so nowadays the King or Queen is always a wielder of both kinds of magic.
Tritons are highly organized and even militaristic, probably due to their continuous struggle with the devilfishes.
Looking at their language, it can be safely supposed that there have been, at some point in the past, heavy contacts between the Kingdom of Undersea and the Empire of Thyatis. It is also likely that these contacts ended badly (see the "battle of Aquapopulus" won by the Thyatians).
References: PC3 The Sea Peoples, XSOLO Lathan's Gold.
These cave-dwelling reptiles are considered (from non-canon works by Geoff Gander) a creation of the long lost Carnifex. They are not overly common, nor culturally advanced enough to form complex societies--at least not the Troglodytes found in the better known regions.
Troglodytes are present in the Thanegioth Archipelago, and as slaves of the lizard-men in Davania.
A nation of more advanced Troglodytes appears in the non-canon Klagorst region, by G. Caroletti.
References: X1 Isle of Dread, PWA II, Mystaran Almanac AC 1017.
Trolls are near mindless, ravenously hungry humanoids. They are considered descendants of the Beastmen, even though they are largely different from other goblinoids.
Troll minds are too limited to understand concepts as complex as that of society. The Troll domain in the Broken Lands is actually in complete anarchy, since the "Queen" only controls what passes near enough to her to be eaten.
Trolls are found in relatively large numbers in a region that goes from the Broken Lands to the Northern Reaches, but some can be found in other regions, including the Savage Coast, Norwold, and Alphatia.
References: Gaz 10 Orcs of Thar, Gaz 7 The Northern Reaches.
These are aquatic Trolls. I don't known whether they are present on Mystara.
Utukku are fiends from Carceri, where they serve an imprisoned Immortal, an enemy of Ixion.
On the Prime Material, they are solitary. They are mostly found in the barren regions of the Orc's Head Peninsula.
References: Savage Coast MCA
There are several monster species belonging to the Vampire class on Mystara. The origin of many modern bloodlines can be traced to the Necromancer Kings of Taymora, and to various Entropic Immortals.
Vampires are found everywhere in Brun and Alphatia, and in many of the most populated locations of Davania.
The most important Vampiric societies are the Principality of Boldavia in Glantri, and the Devilfish hierarchy in the deeper reaches of the Sea of Dread.
References: The Principalities of Glantri Gazetteer; Revised Vampire Rules & Bloodlines by Bleakcabal, Vampires of Mystara by Agathokles
These undeads are closely related to Vampires, but they show lesser prowess in combat, but much stronger skills in other areas. Moreover, they suffer less from the limitations typical of Vampires, so that they can better mix with the human society.
These are aquatic Vampires. They come in smaller numbers, due to the inability to create new Velyas by just draining a victim dead, and are solitary. They routinely use wights as minions, creating small bands.
The Chameleon men live in the Orc's Head Peninsula, where they form small tribes led by elders. However, all tribes bow to Bakaloo Sunskin, overchief of the Wallara and leader of the only Wallara city, Risilvar.
Except those in Risilvar, most Wallara are nomadic hunter-gatherers.
References: Orc's Head, Savage Coast MCA, B8 Journey to the Rock
I think this is a sort of Kobold, and an Underdark monster as well. I don't think it is present on Mystara (at least as a canon monster).
These intelligent undead are reanimated right after death by powerful Radiance energies. They retain the basic personality they had in life, but lose all memories, and acquire common undead immunities (including agelessness).
They are very uncommon (and unheard of before WotI, AFAIK), but the few observed groups keep human-like behaviours, including societies, usually led by a powerful specimen (a Greater Lightning Zombie).
References: Wrath of the Immortals boxed set.