Monsters of Innistrad in D&D: Grimgrin, Corpse-Born

Another sinister post for October, I’m following up on two of my most popular MTG posts, The Gitrog and Hanweir, with stats for another monster of Innistrad: Grimgrin, Corpse-Born.

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A Stitcher’s Masterpiece. A paragon among skaabs, Innistrad’s stitched undead, Grimgrin was created by

Geralf Cecani,

a stitcher of particularly notable skill, Geralf Cecani, in preparation for the siege of Thraben. To tease his twin sister, Gisa, a ghoulcaller necromancer and subject of a long-time feud, Geralf named his greatest creation Grimgrin, in reference to his sister’s smile.

Terror at the Gate. When the combined zombie horde of the Cecani twins and Liliana Vess laid siege to Thraben, the holy city, Grimgrin stood at the head of the diabolical swarm. Though few of the defenders could stand in the horror’s way, Grimgrin and the horde that followed it were defeated with a plan of the city’s stand-in leader of the Guard, Thalia, who instructed the guard to remove the thatch from the city’s roofs, place it around the walls, and set it alight, Grimgrin and the Zombies shambling mindlessly into the fire.

Force of Destruction. While Grimgrin was laid low at the siege of Thraben, the horror was clearly a force to be reckoned with, gaining strength from those it devoured, both its living victims and the zombies around it, slowly becoming more powerful with each grizzly meal. 

Grimgrin’s design used the flesh golem as a base (hence the construct category as opposed to undead). Appropriately, the Aversion to Fire and Lightning Absorption abilities, already on the statblock for the flesh golem, served as references to Grimgrin’s fiery destruction, and the card Rooftop Storm respectively, which I can imagine as the circumstance of Grimgrin’s creation. With both Grimgrin’s Devour attack and Rapture of the Feast ability, I sought to represent the card’s ability to gain +1/+1 counters for either sacrificing a creature, or destroying an opponent’s creature when Grimgrin attacks. The Hook and Chain and Lash attacks were both inspired by Grimgrin’s art, giving him abilities to both drag in and throttle his victims.

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