The first entry into the Expansion Category this year are the Epic Monster Cards from Dungeons & Dragons. Four different sets of cards were submitted by D&D to the awards this year and we asked them to choose a single set of cards to enter the category, rather than diluting the judges votes by putting in all the different sets.
They chose the Epic Monsters.
Of all the reference cards that could be used by players, it has to be said that the Epic Monsters are probably the ones that will see least use, because most of these creatures are more than a match for the entire party, and the chance of any GM needing to use more than one of these cards at a time and for any purpose other than an end of adventure, even end of campaign encounter, is very limited.
So why was it a good call for them to ask to include these cards for the category?
Because the creatures within are without a doubt the most awesome things that can be encountered in D&D. These aren’t goblins or devious innkeepers, these are the creatures that can shape the world to their own ends, and the point to cards like these is that when you play them, you give the players the first notion of what they’re coming up against.
Imagine, if you will, that the GM puts down one of these cards
Or one of these.
You don’t have to guess from the size of the card that this is a major encounter, you know from the second the name comes up. Being able to reveal the adversary with a turn of a card makes it almost like the prestige of a magic trick.
The cards themselves are thick card, laminated well and proof against anything that we spilled on them, and just so we’re clear, we spilled a few things on them. Coffee, Cake, Barbeque sauces, all wiped away without any damage to the card. The artwork is everything you’d expect, and the details for the creatures are clear and concise, and while they might not see every day use, they’re certainly a useful thing for that end of adventure reveal.