Remember how excited people were last year about the new Slaad monsters ? All-new monsters, people said, expecting that to mean all-new monster models too. No one ever said they would be a new model, but so it was believed anyway.
People have to have hope right? Grasping for it when necessary, and it seems that wanting a new model is one of those times when it is necessary. Judging by the rate at which they appear, monster models (and for that matter, player character race models) must be the hardest and/or most resource intensive thing in all of DDO.
It had been five years since we’d gotten a new PC model. Maybe longer. I forget exactly when Half-Elves and Half-Orcs came in. 2010? Earlier? And then suddenly, Gnomes, a brand-new model.
I can’t remember the last new monster model. Archons? Except not really new, more like new-ish, as the Archon model has been around since Amrath was first released, even if the model may not have been fully utilized until Update 27. So if not Archons … what?
I don’t even know. Zuggtmoy? The end boss of Temple of Elemental Evil? That has to be a new model, yes? Sitting here in my morning fog, clutching the day’s first coffee, I cannot remember with certainty ever getting a new monster model. Even if it is obvious that we have, many times; they weren’t all present at game launch.
It is just that unusual.
Bringing us back to last year’s Slaad. Which some people continue to believe is a new model. No, it is not, it is a re-skinned Hezrou, and this should end the discussion; this is how we know:
That is, inarguably, a Hezrou dance. End of discussion.
Something about the mechanics of dancing must be very elementary to the model; every model has one dance, and only one dance, and it is never changed, no matter the re-skinning or re-use of that model.
Sound effects can identify a model too, and I am pretty sure I’ve heard some Wood Woad sound effects when killing Slaad – maybe the red ones are re-skinned Hezrou but blue or green are re-skinned Wood Woads. Which are themselves re-skinned …. whatever you call that thing? … the end fight creature in STK. Yes? And both the Wood Woads and the STK end boss are suspiciously hill-giantey. Guess I need to dance some Wood Woads and check them out.
So … a dance can disprove a new model. But can a dance also be used to identify a new model? Why yes, yes it can!
Nothing dances like that; this is all new.
An all-new monster model! And not just any new monster either, but Umber Hulks, one of my all-time favorites back when I was a DM. Looking exactly like they are supposed to look. Check out the image at the top of the page; it is from the D&D Monster Manual. Compare it to the dancing model. Identical! Very nicely done.
How strange this year is shaping up to be. New content is down to a trickle, all the devs talk about is how difficult things are to do, we can’t even get a Producer Letter.
But we get amazing new models. Every update.
🙂 😀 🙂