The Slayer's Guide to Hobgoblins


The Slayer's Guide to Hobgoblins

Author: Matthew Sprange
Publisher: Mongoose Publishing
Publish Date: 08/2001
ISBN: 1-903980-00-3
Pages: 32
Rating: 9 out of 10
Retail Price: $7.99


This book was the first in a long line to be published by Mongoose Publishing. Not only is it the first Slayer’s Guide, it’s the first book released by Mongoose, and they obviously tried very hard to create a product that was extremely useful, yet fundamentally different from the other d20 books of the day.

This book takes an exhaustive look at hobgoblins as a race. It begins by pointing out to the reader that despite the fact that DMs have been using hobgoblins as cannon fodder for years, hobgoblins are not simply stupid creatures that exist for no other reason than to be slaughtered by adventurers. Had I found nothing else likable in the book at all, this message would have completely made up for it.

The bulk (if such a term can be used for a 32 page book) of the book begins with a look at hobgoblin physiology, touching on the possible origin of the race, the differences between hobgoblins and other goblinoids and the psychology of the race. Habitat and society are detailed and special attention is given to how individual hobgoblins function within the tribe. Afterwards, the book moves into a discussion on hobgoblin methods of warfare before shifting focus and launching into a discussion about using hobgoblins as PCs or NPCs. The book closes with a fleshed-out adventure location, a captured fortress currently being held by hobgoblins. Impressively, a three-dimensional map image is included.

There’s not a lot one can say about so small of a book. It could be very useful for a DM looking to flesh out a normally monstrous race or for a player wishing to create a hobgoblin PC. It’s very well-written for the most part, and the running storyline that progresses with the book is entertaining. With a price tag of less than $10, I’d say this book is well worth the money.