Several months ago at a tiny RPG convention in Baltimore I met Laura Ketcham, a talented local artist. After talking with her at her booth, I purchased a print of her Pack of Horrors, a set of cards with unique, creepy system-agnostic monsters for tabletop RPGs; flipping through them fills my mind with ideas of using them in a game.
I may try using them as a form of in-game tarot cards. The GM would present the players with a eerie fortune teller or royal soothsayer. With some intricate-yet-meaningless showmanship (chanting, sorting the cards into seven piles and asking each player to focus their energy through the cards, etc), the soothsayer would place four face-down cards, asking two players to each select a card, which are discarded. The two remaining cards are flipped face-up, and an ominous warning is given about the nature of the creatures that they will soon encounter; the soothsayer thematically explains the info printed on the card, like “Witnesses claim sunlight kills them”.
While you could easily substitute stats of similar creatures, sometimes its fun to make the stats. Above are the quick sketch and handwritten stats for the bogwalker, a mostly docile creature that can be mounted and ridden through the swamp.
You can get PDFs of Laura Ketcham’s Pack of Horrors here, I highly recommend them.