Mac Guffin Guardian
A non-human keeper guards the Mac Guffin


(permanent link) added: 2011-05-01 10:36:29 sponsor: Ryuuma (last reply: 2011-05-12 12:06:00)

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Our brave hero has outsmarted the guards, sneaked into the ancient and mysterious crypt and now is about to lie his hands on the object of his long quest and/or about to open the grim-looking gate leading to said object.

But Wait! As he approaches, a sudden roar chills the blood in his veins and a towering, nameless creature suddenly appears to stop him. Is the Guardian!

This happens really often, with any kind of possible keeper. Monsters, Living Statues, Dragons or Demons summoned by portals and runes. It can be tracked back in old myths where a monstrous guardian keeps a treasure or a person, usually for his master. Of course, it doesn't need to be revealed in that exact way to qualify, but has just to be a monster keeping a treasure. A variation is a monster who guards not an artifact but rather the path/gate which our heroes must take.

Usually the monstrous/inhuman nature of the keeper is justified by its skills: monsters tend to be stronger and more resilient, with hard skin or maybe Combat Tentacles or enhaced senses or Breath Weapon or whatnot.

Sometimes overlap with Teleporting Keycard Squad, especially if the room appeared totally bare just a moment ago. See also Forgot to Feed the Monster when the spooky guardian is here... and already dead or incapacitated.

Don't confuse with Threshold Guardians which usually is there to test the hero, while the Mac Guffin Guardian is here to eat the hero. It may though be the test of said Threshold Guardians.

Examples:

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[[folder: Anime and Manga]]

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[[folder: Literature ]]

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[[folder: Mythology]]

[[/folder]] [[folder:Tabletop RPG]]

  • Stormbringer supplement Demon Magic, adventure "The Velvet Circle''. The box the adventurers are seeking is guarded by a demon named Tyik Tyva. Inside the box is a Melnibonean Wheel worth 500,000 large bronze pieces.
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[[folder: Video Games]]

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[[folder: Web Comics]]

  • In The Order of the Stick there's a monster on the way to the Oracle, and it must be killed in order to pass the trial. Also the Black Dragon guarding the Star Metal fragment and the many monsters guarding one of the five Gates.
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[[folder: Western Animation]]

  • The Sponge Bob Square Pants episode, "The Lost Mattress" had Mr. Krabs' prized money-filled mattress guarded by a ferocious worm at the junkyard, after it got thrown away.
  • Played for laughs in one Simpsons episode where the secret exit from the Nuclear Power Plant is guarded by a Giant Spider with a taste for human flesh.
  • The Cave of Wonders itself in Aladdin.
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