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I recall reading about a monster in AD&D 2e that was a gold piece, but had a stinger that existed in another plane of existence. The extra-planar stinger made the monster very difficult to detect and to defend against.

Do any of you remember this monster and can you help me locate a name/stats for it?

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    \$\begingroup\$ There's a similar monster from the 1e Fiend Folio called the goldbug, but it doesn't have the extraplanar stinger. It's just a poisonous beetle that impersonates a gold piece. \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk says reinstate Monica May 22 '15 at 3:26
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I believe this is the Lock Lurker from several AD&D 2e publications. It was first featured in Forgotten Realms creator Ed Greenwood's regular column, "The Dragon's Bestiary," in Dragon magazine #139 (Nov 1988, pp. 70-71). Next, Greenwood put it in the Forgotten Realms adventure Haunted Halls of Eveningstar (1992), and then the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (1993). It was also in Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume I (1994) and lastly in the Priest's Spell Compendium Volume III (2000).1 (Special thanks to @SevenSidedDie for additional research!)

The fullest descriptions, along with pictures, are found in Haunted Halls of Eveningstar, Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting and Monstrous Compendium Annual Volume I.

Reproduction of stats for AD&D 2e is likely copyright infringement, so I won't be posting anything too specific, but ...

It looks like a coin—a cold, hard, coppery or bronze disk (25% are silver or golden). It has two rows of tiny, retractable legs on its underside, surrounding a razor-sharp iris of teeth, and a lightning-fast stinger that can be up to a foot long, but this stinger is usually on the Ethereal Plane, invisible to observers on the Prime Material.

A human handling a lurker often thinks he has picked up a smooth, heavy coin until its sting advises him otherwise. ...

The stinger can attack creatures in the Ethereal Plane and materializes on the Prime Material Plane only when the lurker launches an attack ...

The stinger "is powerful enough to pierce any armor" and contains 40+ uses of venom that can stun, slow and potentially paralyze victims.

A google search should give you any other information you may want.


  1. The lock lurker is described in the Priest's Spell Compendium Volume III as part of the summon lock lurker spell (p. 617), exclusive to priests of Waukeen, which summons 1d3 lock lurkers for 8 hours that are "typically set to guard treasure, small areas such as the interior of chests, bags or pouches, or the person of the caster."
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just beat me to it. I'll note that it predates the Annual I (1994) by appearing in the Monstrous Compendium: Forgotten Realms Appendix (1992) and (I believe) was originally a FR-specific creature. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Jan 31 '15 at 6:09
  • \$\begingroup\$ @SevenSidedDie I've found it in the adventure Haunted Halls of Eveningstar, Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting and Priest's Spell Compendium, but I've triple checked my old hardcopies of Monstrous Compendium Forgotten Realms Appendix (MC3) published in 1989 and MC FR Appendix II (MC11) in 1991 and can't find it in either. Do you have a TSR product # or any other info? (The Wikipedia list doesn't have it in either of the MC FRs.) \$\endgroup\$ – sadaqah Jan 31 '15 at 7:53
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    \$\begingroup\$ Can I say that thing seems scarier than most dnd monsters I've heard of? I mean. Dragons? phfff; standard fare (though I wouldn't necessarily want to fight said dragon) but a coin among the treasure hoard you got that can paralyze you when you pick it up with a FOOT LONG STINGER THAT IS IN THE ETHERIAL PLANE UNTIL IT ATTACKS YOU. is freaking scary sounding. \$\endgroup\$ – Cataru Moore May 16 '15 at 6:27

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