Under your bed. In your closet. Is it better to out-monster the monster or to be quietly devoured? This tag covers questions relating to monstrous antagonists.

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3
votes
1answer
239 views

How do I create a balanced “Glass Cannon” monster? [closed]

I have a good handle on 4e monster creation, but there is one particular role missing for me that the current monsters don't satisfy, and I need assistance making sure it works well. I want a monster ...
7
votes
3answers
270 views

Should I choose targets before or after I roll for the Beholder's rays?

Reading the Beholder's stat block I noticed that the Eye Rays it can fire are randomly determined. Do I roll for them before I choose a target so I still have a say as to which PC is affected by what ...
5
votes
1answer
158 views

What other giants are there in 3.5e? [closed]

I'm looking into building a campaign involving the giants going at war. But I'm looking for diverse bunch of giants, so the party does not keep fighting the same type over and over again. Going ...
3
votes
2answers
221 views

Examples of “High Technology” Monsters/Traps in D&D

In my home-spun campaign, players are about to discover the ruins of an ancient city. Long ago, there was a civilization with an advanced level of technology, which is now dead. I'm thinking of ...
4
votes
2answers
485 views

NPCs and Enemies using Feats

I am currently DMing my first campaign in D&D 5E and had opened up the use of feats to the players. I really like how feats give each of the players another way to differentiate from one another. ...
4
votes
1answer
95 views

Reading the racial modifier to skills in a monster's stat block

Below is a snippet from the stat block of a ghost scorpion: Skills Perception +4, Stealth +8; Racial Modifiers +4 Perception, +4 Stealth What is the correct way to interpret the proper bonus to the ...
3
votes
1answer
36 views

2e Monster Multiple Attacks - To Hit Penalty Per Each or No Penalty Applied

During a session a player asked if it were allowable for the bullywugs to have 3 unmodified attacks, claiming that even monsters natural attacks should be imposed with a -2 and then a -4 to hit ...
2
votes
1answer
435 views

Are the Erinyes their own group outside of the normal infernal hierarchy in 5e?

Going through the 5e Monster Manual I noted that the Erinyes had been added to the book again in their absence from the 4e MM. But they are described as being part of the regular infernal hierarchy, ...
6
votes
3answers
971 views

D&D 5th Edition Modify Multiple Monster XP Encounter

I'm a new DM and finding it a bit difficult to challenge my group that wants the glorious battles style of game play. When I asked them what they wanted from the campaign, the consensus was that they ...
8
votes
1answer
751 views

Why would an amphibious Storm Giant need to cast Water Breathing?

In the MM, on page 156, a Storm Giant is described as Amphibious. The giant can breathe air and water Yet it has the innate spellcasting ability to cast water breathing 3 times a day. Why ...
6
votes
2answers
353 views

Is multiattack only for natural attacks?

This is a quick one because I can't find clarification in the rules: if I give a monster with multiattack and a slam attack a nice pointy sword, does it still attack twice with the sword? Or once with ...
3
votes
1answer
395 views

Is there a good way to boost monsters with character levels?

I want my Doppelganger villain in my D&D 5e game to be a worthy match for my level 7 party, but since it's CR 3, if they get it into combat, though it will be fun, it won't last long. Is there a ...
15
votes
1answer
485 views

At what level do monsters cast cantrips?

A 9 HD Yuan-ti Pureblood can innately cast the poison spray cantrip 3 times per day. The monster description says the save is DC 12, but it does not go into damage. So does it do 1d12 or 2d12 damage?
1
vote
1answer
109 views

Demons vs. Devils? [closed]

I come across Demons in 13th Age, and Devils in the 13 True Ways, and sort of know that such distinctions exist in d20 games. In D20 games, what are the differences between demons and devils, and do ...
27
votes
7answers
2k views

How much do I tell new players about new monsters?

Background I am a brand-new DM, about to lead a game for brand-new players. I have a lot of knowledge of rules from playing Baldur's Gate and Neverwinter Nights over and over, leafing through a ...
1
vote
0answers
94 views

Help to the creation of epic boss battle [closed]

A little intro:         We are playing in Faerun and currently are in a southern city in calimshan. The story is that this city used to be controlled by a great ...
1
vote
1answer
159 views

Encounter Budget in D&D 4e after Essentials

When the first 4e books came out, the encounter building chapter suggested to limit the enemies' level: from party level -2 to party level +4 Has this changed over the years, especially after ...
21
votes
12answers
3k views

How can an aristocracy be perpetuated between creatures that can't interbreed?

The 25-year-old human prince of a 50-year-old small nation (total population maybe 100,000 spread out in a rather large valley among settlements no larger than 5,000 creatures each) is looking to ...
8
votes
1answer
251 views

How does a dire toad's tongue attack work?

An upcoming encounter with a dire toad (Monster Manual II 74, 76) has me concerned with its tongue attack. The stat block lists the creature's tongue Attack as tongue +5 ranged and the creature's ...
15
votes
3answers
1k views

Harmlessly Harvesting Poison from a Monster Companion

The person who is DMing our Tyranny of Dragons campaign (HotDQ->RoT) is considering allowing my evil character to track down a Wyvern nest and find an egg to obtain a tamed mount using a significant ...
6
votes
3answers
322 views

Playing (some) monster races without racial HD

I'm interested in whether it is possible to play certain (monstruous) humanoids from MM without adding their racial HD, whist at the same time preserving balance. What exactly would I need to do to ...
3
votes
3answers
302 views

Can a vampire enter a temple?

My party will be going to a temple soon, and I'm wondering if a vampire (who is stalking them unbeknownst to the party) will be able to enter. It's to an evil god, but the ground is still technically ...
0
votes
2answers
342 views

Clarifying the wraith's Life Drain attack

May contain spoilers for a published 5e campaign. I'm not referring to how their stats are different to reflect their CR's. Both of their attacks refer to the effect of reducing HP maximums on a ...
4
votes
2answers
234 views

Good source material for building a Kobold empire?

The game I'm currently running is starting to go up in scope and one thing I'm really looking forward to doing is introducing an empire of Kobolds. Are there any good books on what these would look ...
6
votes
2answers
430 views

How should I implement False Appearance?

In the MM, several creatures have the ability False Appearance, which is described with the general structure (emphasis mine) While [the creature] remains motionless, it is indistinguishable from ...
16
votes
2answers
1k views

When do Lair Actions occur?

The Monster Manual describes Lair Actions as occurring "On initiative count 20 (losing all ties)..." (p 11). What does "initiative count 20" mean? I can't find that phrase anywhere in the PHB or in ...
6
votes
2answers
566 views

Can an Orc use their Aggressive trait, plus Dash, plus running?

I don't yet have a copy of the monster manual so I apologize if this is explicitly stated in there. The Orc has an "aggressive" trait that allows it to "move up to its speed toward a hostile creature ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Should I tell the players the exact stats of monsters they fight?

When the party encounters a solitary and strong monster, should the GM state the monster's HP and armor? Or are all the calculations made by the GM secretly and represented only in the fiction ("He ...
1
vote
2answers
162 views

Help me buff out an Efreeti

Continuing the advancement of the efreeti in this question, I try to figure out the gains of an efreeti advanced to 16 HD. After advancing it and achieving the huge size as indicated by its new HD, I ...
6
votes
3answers
341 views

Can a construct be undestroyed?

The type construct includes this trait: Not at risk of death from massive damage. Immediately destroyed when reduced to 0 hit points or less. (MM 307) Besides the 9th-level Clr spell miracle ...
3
votes
3answers
280 views

Advancing a monster with spell-like abilities

I am interested in advancing an Efreeti to 16 HD and thus making it huge. My question is about advancing a monster with spell-like abilities. Would the caster level - currently 12 - increase by ...
1
vote
4answers
406 views

Where can I find the highest CR Vampire ever in an official adventure module?

Where can I find the highest-CR pre-built Vampire opponent in all of Dungeon & Dragons 3e and 3.5 (as that is my favored system) or Pathfinder? I am looking for official adventure modules and ...
3
votes
2answers
89 views

What determines when a monster qualifies for a bonus feat?

Is there a rule for when a monster qualifies for a bonus feat in Pathfinder? For example, among small elementals, water elementals have no bonus feats, earth elementals have one, and air and fire ...
2
votes
1answer
105 views

Some interesting things to do [closed]

I'm running my second game for my group ever, and I like doing fun and interesting things for them. One of the things I've been thinking about is them opening up a bag, or a chest, or a portable ...
2
votes
1answer
130 views

Decreasing Enemy Base Health

I'm the DM for a 4e group and none of us really like minions because of their hit-or-miss nature; its unsatisfying to use an encounter power on them, even when its strategically sound. I'd still like ...
3
votes
5answers
255 views

How can I make a shapeshifter that takes human forms?

I want to make an NPC who can change into different human forms. The concept I'm forming is the character is committing a string of murders, and the PCs have additional problems tracking the killer ...
9
votes
2answers
428 views

Do birds cry? Or, how to play interactions with intelligent non-humanoid beings

Currently I have a campaign where the highly capable antagonist has a weak spot: A very beautiful, highly intelligent, jocund and unfortunately pretty spoiled raven which is also able to speak. The ...
3
votes
1answer
177 views

How to avoid Werewolves

I'm playing D&D 3.5 and we are about to travel through lands where Werewolves are living. There aren't many of them but we need to deceive them somehow, so that, if it comes to a fight, we don't ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

Are size bonuses already incorporated into large races' attribute modifiers?

I have a friend who is playing a Trox. In the listed description we have the bonuses for being that race. All trox have the following racial traits. + 6 Strength, –2 Intelligence, –2 Wisdom, –2 ...
6
votes
3answers
175 views

What should be the DC to identify monster vulnerabilities?

What should be the DCs for checks revealing monster vulnerabilities, damage reductions, and other qualities of the like? Knowing such facts about a monster can dramatically change the dynamic of a ...
6
votes
1answer
639 views

Does an Otyugh really have 3 melee attacks per round?

The Otyugh description reads: Tentacle, At-Will Attack: Melee 3 (one creature); +12 vs. AC The way I read it due to it mentioning "one creature" that its 3 attacks per standard action. Is ...
4
votes
2answers
596 views

Should I replace the swarm with the individual creature after enough damage?

So one thing I found odd in the DM's Basic Rules v0.1pdf was a large list of animals that seemed so insignificant as to wonder why it was included in the PDF. For example, the "Rat" monster, has 1 ...
5
votes
1answer
352 views

Can player characters identify monsters?

In D&D 5e, I can't find a skill check for identifying monsters. (Other than Arcana for planar monsters). Can PCs identify monsters, and if so, what skill should they use? (Or is it just a Wis/Int ...
2
votes
2answers
214 views

Shadows vs. Sleeping Characters

The following question is for DND 3.5 -- The links however are SRD rules links IF that matters somehow. Shadows deal 1D6 strength damage with their incorporeal melee touch attacks. If a shadow were ...
4
votes
5answers
330 views

How can keepers be optimized?

I don't know what to do with these guys. I liked their fluff enough that I put them in the campaign and now, when it's time to use them, I'm at a loss. The Keeper One of the power groups the PCs ...
2
votes
2answers
305 views

How to generate a monster with levels in wizard?

I read in a Pathfinder book about a monster (intellect devourer) that had nine levels in Wizard. How would I be able to create an NPC character sheet for such a thing? The monster without any wizard ...
3
votes
1answer
426 views

Can a vampire cross running water in Pathfinder?

(Inspired by some comments in this question) In D&D 3.5 and earlier, vampires couldn't cross running water - even over a bridge or on a boat (I vaguely remember them being able to do so if they ...
4
votes
2answers
160 views

How can I improve roleplaying as monsters during the encounters?

Lately, I've noticed regadrless of the game and edition, my games pretty much flow as a Final Fantasy Game: Roll Initiatives, and spend the whole encounter being a piñata that hits the players back ...
1
vote
1answer
173 views

Is there a complete list detailing all Magical Beasts and Outsiders native to the Outer Planes?

I am looking to write a guide on the interaction between the Planar Shepherd and the various Outer Planes, but for this I am looking for an overview of all Magical Beasts and Outsiders native to said ...
5
votes
1answer
205 views

How is treasure determined randomly for CR 21 or higher creatures?

The Magic Item Compendium says Step 1: Roll on Table A-1: Treasure, using the monster's CR to determine which row you will use. (265) Table A-1: Treasure only goes to Challenge Rating 20. The ...