The cover of the 1st edition AD&D Monster Manual, and some early art shows the roper with two eyes, and the ability to cling to cave ceilings like a stalactite.
I'm sure that many DMs who noticed this eventually made some sort of connection between ropers and piercers, but it wasn't until 5th edition that piercers officially became juvenile ropers.
Another version of the roper was the storoper, which is described as looking like a small (5' tall) statue of a roper.
As far as miniatures go, the old Grenadier roper from the Dwellers Below box set was pretty spot on for a 1/72 roper in size, and resembled the description in the Monster Manual pretty well. I kind of wish that I hadn't traded the one I owned away, but oh well.
The first two miniatures I have are the Reaper Stone Lurker (Bones 77227; Dark Heaven Legends 03602) and a Grenadier Stone Tangler (Monster Manuscript Vol.IX 1509, MM79). The Stone Lurker is supposed to come with six tentacles (not attached for this picture), but I only received five with the figure. The Stone Tangler is a two-eyed roper, but unlike the early D&D ropers, the eyes are on stalks.
Both of these miniatures are larger than the stated size of a roper, but I don't see any reason why there can't be giant ropers.
I particularly like the tentacles of the stone tangler. I always thought that the generic tentacle used for the roper didn't really mesh with its appearance.
Another good source of ropers is Midlam Miniatures, who produce a whole line of creatures called Stalagbites.
Stalagbites do not have any tentacles, but I plan to drill holes in the figures so that they can be fitted with tentacles from the Reaper roper (hopefully Reaper will re-implement their Boneyard service in the near future so I can order up a bunch of these).
|Roody, Bitey, Irky, and Lurky|
|Devilly, Wonky, Shelly, and Sleepy|
|Noody, Slurpy, Gnawy, and Chompy|
|Sneaky, Blanky, Skanky, and Spiky|
The stalagbites average about 40mm in height, which makes them just a bit over 9' tall in 1/72 scale. Each figure is full of character, and getting them all has pretty much filled my quota of ropers and then some.