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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9
votes
3answers
267 views

Good source for a dark/weird dryad concept?

I'm working on an adventure that involves obtaining the wood from a dryad's tree, and would like to present the dryad as something other than the typical depiction. I have some ideas, but am curious ...
3
votes
3answers
228 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 ...
3
votes
5answers
193 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
136 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 ...
0
votes
3answers
244 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
693 views

Can a DnD vampire or spawn use a mobile coffin?

The Vampire Spawn monster class from DnD 3.5e Libris Mortis states under their Fast Healing that If reduced to 0 hit points in combat, it automatically assumes gaseous form and attempts to ...
12
votes
3answers
606 views

Can monsters make multiple attacks in a single action?

In the bestiary for the new D&D Next playtest packets, some creatures look as though they get multiple attacks per round. e.g.: An owl bear gets Melee Attack: Claws +5/+5 (etc.) and Bite +5 ...
5
votes
2answers
211 views

How do you figure Attributes from an MR?

I'm talking about Tunnels & Trolls, of course -- where monsters have a Monster Rating (MR), and that's all they need! ...usually. It gets sketchy (for me, anyway) when you, the GM, want your ...
4
votes
2answers
157 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
338 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 ...
9
votes
2answers
587 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
471 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 ...
20
votes
4answers
29k views

Calculating and balancing challenge ratings

Are there standard rules for calculating CR of groups? For example, in my Pathfinder bestiary, a single Stirge is listed as CR 1/2, and a group of 2d4 (average 5) of them is listed as an average CR 4. ...
7
votes
3answers
634 views

Is it even worth playing a monster class in 3.5?

Monster Classes are completely crippled from what I see. You start out greatly underpowered and it's a slow climb to being half-way decent with most creature's insane Level Adjustment. You don't get ...
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 ...
2
votes
2answers
307 views

Determining an NPC's Gear Value

A PC's Wealth by Level (DMG 135) is determined by the PC's effective character level, but how does the DM determine an NPC's gear value on Table 4-23: NPC Gear Value (DMG 127)? Does the DM use the ...
1
vote
2answers
112 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
173 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 ...
2
votes
3answers
112 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
117 views

Must the body remain on the Material Plane during astral projection?

The spell 9th-level Sor/Wiz spell astral projection [necro] (PH 201) is one of those high-level legacy spells dating back to at least Advanced Dungeons and Dragons (1978), likely included in Dungeons ...
3
votes
2answers
68 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
94 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
113 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Cthulhu in D&D 3.5

I am planning a campaign arc where the antagonists are followers of the entity known as Cthulhu from H.P Lovecraft's strange tales. In the end of the campaign I'd like to have the adventurers fight ...
8
votes
2answers
366 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 ...
9
votes
10answers
1k views

How can I tailor an encounter so that a low level, mostly mundane party can defeat a wasp swarm?

I'm GM'ing a game with a large, mostly mundane party where all PCs at level 2. The party is made up of a good aligned cleric (i.e. no damage spells), wizard, druid (with wolf animal companion), monk, ...
4
votes
2answers
264 views

About monster definition and distinctions

I was having a discussion with some guy and I argued that I think D&D made distinctions between monsters and regular characters since earlier editions, and it even employed different mechanics. ...
3
votes
1answer
165 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 ...
10
votes
2answers
294 views

How is the clockwork soldier priced?

I've been looking at the possible constructs in current Pathfinder bestiaries looking for options for a crafter character and I couldn't help but notice that the pricing of the clockwork soldier ...
11
votes
1answer
614 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
209 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
128 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 ...
10
votes
5answers
625 views

Sources for officially published GURPS monsters

When I recently purchasing the Dungeon Fantasy collection of monsters, I noticed that most of the listed monsters are not "every-game" monsters. It seems to be lacking simple goblins, harpies, etc. ...
6
votes
1answer
615 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 ...
22
votes
6answers
7k views

Is it possible to actually kill a Tarrasque?

I've seen a good bit of conflicting information on this creature. Is it possible to actually kill it? Permanently? Is the answer to this something that varies from edition to edition of D&D?
4
votes
2answers
483 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
143 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
1answer
227 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 ...
4
votes
3answers
188 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
309 views

How can I include Dresden-Files-style vampires in my Pathfinder game?

I have a concept for a campaign that uses a Dresden-Files environment in a medieval fantasy setting, but for reasons of familiarity and experience prefer to use the Pathfinder system. I specifically ...
3
votes
1answer
246 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 ...
33
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is Survival not a class skill for animals?

Question in title. Seems odd that an animal isn't naturally inclined to get bonuses to Survival, which typically involves dealing with the wilds and it's associated difficulties (an animal's natural ...
21
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I play monsters and NPCs up to their potential?

In many cases discussions about balance in 3.5 will, inevitably, involve one side or another invoking an anecdote of the time they fought this monster, or a member of that class, and they didn't ...
4
votes
2answers
136 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
82 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
150 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

How do I tailor a Solo Monster for 1st level characters on D&D Next?

I'm running my first campaign of D&D Next and I'm tailoring some custom monsters, and using some of the weakest from the Monster Manual from the Playtest (I'm using the October 2013 document). ...
8
votes
2answers
390 views

What is a ghoul's personality?

Ghouls, it seems, speak the language they spoke in life, and their intellect isn't necessarily worse than it was in life (int. 13 as per the SRD). Unfortunately, there are very little references on ...
6
votes
2answers
592 views

How much XP do monsters or NPCs have for spending on spells and item creation?

How much experience do monsters, NPCs or other generated creatures have for the use of spells and item creation? When a demon uses wish, how does it spend XP, and from what pool does it draw on? Is ...
5
votes
1answer
90 views

How do monsters multiple attacks work?

In B/X, monsters have more various attacks. For example, an Owlbear has: 2 claw/1 Bite that deals 1d8 damage each. But how does this work? Can they use one attack per turn or all their attacks in one ...