Monsters of Innistrad in D&D: Hanweir, the Writhing Township

After the popularity of the Gitrog post, I decided to make another one of my favourite creatures, also a horror of Innistrad. Of all the effects of Emrakul’s presence on Innistrad, Hanweir was my favourite. It was just so genuinely unnerving reading the Hanweir chronicle as the town’s community became more and more insular until it became one gigantic walking horror.

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A Wandering Town. The coming of Emrakul has left Innistrad crawling with hundreds of mutated horrors, but none that match the size and terror of the town of Hanweir. Once a well-known township, Hanweir fell to gross mutation, becoming something so aberrant that many of those who see it fall to madness.

Born of Paranoia. Prior to the arrival of Emrakul, as the angels of Innistrad turned on the humans, the town of Hanweir concluded that they could protect themselves through isolation from the outside threats. The town became increasingly insular and distrusting of any outsiders, the paranoia of the townsfolk culminating in the building of a gateless wall, in the belief that the town and its people would be ready for any threat that could approach. Hanweir was never attacked. Instead, the warping presence of Emrakul fused the maddened townsfolk with the brickwork of their town, and the very wall built to defend it.

We are Emrakul. The town of Hanweir engulfs those unfortunate enough to fall in its path. As they become fused to the town, and a part of Hanweir, those who fall prey to the town lose all free will, acting little more than another limb for the writhing horror.

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Warped Townsfolk

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My main points of reference were the Hanweir chronicle articles, and the card itself. To simulate the size of the walking town, I based the stats, particularly health-wise, on the largest creatures in D&D, namely the Tarrasque. To make the size count in-game, the Massive Pseudopod attacks send out shockwaves on impact, which also served nicely to mirror the card’s trample mechanic, dealing damage to creatures other than the initial target. 

I also took inspiration from the different types of Oozes, since Hanweir is the same creature type. As such, the “We Are Emrakul” ability is heavily based on the engulf ability of other oozes such as the gelatinous cube.

The basis for the Warped Townsfolk/Eldrazi Horrors falling from the town was adapted from the limb-dropping Strahd Zombies, the Townsfolk themselves being an amalgamation combined from the stats of a Commoner and Giant Octopus.

This is my first new post after reaching 1000 followers, which has come as a total shock to me, and I’m so pleased to see that so many people are engaging with my homebrew designs. I will be making another post this weekend about reaching this milestone, and what is happening as a result, so stay tuned!

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