Oh The Manticore One of my favorite creatures of myth and legend. Also always a very enjoyable creature to throw out on the table come game time. The Manticore starts off in Persian legend.The image of this beast was considered a mark of evil by many right up until the early 1900s and is to this day considered an ill omen to some.
There are many variations of the Mantiore mythology but there are a few constants. Manticores have Lion shaped with fur the color of blood. Manticores have a human face or head. Three rows of very sharp shark like teeth, and a trumpet like voice.
Some have horns or wings or both. The Tail of a Dragon or Scorpion. Its mane or tail has spikes that it can shoot venomous spines from. These spines either paralyze or kill. Many descriptions of Manticores claim the beast has great speed and agility.As well as a taste for human flesh. Fitting as Manticore’s Persian is Man-Eater. More than just a Man-Eater Manticore’s in legend were said to not just eat the flesh of man but devour them whole weapons and clothes included. Leaving nothing behind.
Intelligent and evil Manticores are something to be feared. often they will join in league with powerful evil allies and they can become truly terrifying foes.
Bringing it all to the table. There is a lot of potential here with the Manticores eating habits. A village might be plagued with many of the locals going missing. Each night as the sun goes down or is low in the sky. The Manticore swoops down from the cover of darkens and carries his prey away to feast. None of the villagers knows where their fellow townsmen are disappearing too.
Or maybe you have a powerful Evil NPC in your story and the party is finally nearly powerful enough to take him out. What better time to give that Evil NPC a comrade he can ride into battle !