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84

It's based on a toy. And that's all most sources will give you, because they're drawing from an article (Ed Greenwood's "Ecology of the Rust Monster" in Dragon #88, later quoted by another article of the same name in issue #346) which is actually about the rust monster, and only passingly mentions the owlbear. In fact, the original quote is so vague it's ...


33

Short Answer The characters don't know, so there's no need to tell their players. But why's that? Your GM principles should give you your answer here: Address the characters, not the players. Begin and end with the fiction Give every monster life Remember, your principles and agendas are rules just like HP and armor. If you're telling the players ...


23

It really is up to you. There's nothing in the rules that'd prevent it - 4e doesn't enforce alignments. That's a departure from earlier editions, where alignments had mechanical meaning. In 4e, they are there purely for flavor and you don't need to worry about breaking something by changing them. There's nothing in the nature of goblins that makes them ...


18

3.x is bizarrely... quiet on the subject of death There’s lots and lots of text and rules about what does or does not kill things, and when and why things die, and on how to fix that, but very little about what being dead actually means for a creature, mechanically. Notoriously, nothing actually says a dead character cannot act or is otherwise ...


17

This isn't rare at all. This is the Monster Manual from the 1st edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. It's worth about $5–$25 (US) on eBay, depending on condition. I got mine there for about $12, a few years ago, and prices haven't changed. Yours looks to be in fairly beaten condition, so you're unlikely to get anything much for it. Although it's not ...


16

The same thing that happens to everything else, they're slowed. Unfortunately it doesn't stack. Slow notes that: Multiple slow effects don’t stack. Zombies, specifically have Single Actions Only (Ex) Zombies have poor reflexes and can perform only a single move action or attack action each round. Contrast with slow: A slowed creature can ...


16

That's Not The Intention The intention of monsters having a block of stats like characters do is so a DM has stats to use when they look up the monster. If I want to put a Bodak into play, I don't want to have to create stats for it every single time. That's what those stats are for - they greatly speed up DM preparation (and improv if things suddenly ...


15

No. That 3 is actually it's melee reach. A multi attack stat block in 4e looks like: Effect: The mooncalf makes three melee attacks, each against a different target. When you see a power say melee X, the X refers to the reach of the attack. melee 1 is the default, but you might see 0, 2, 3, or more.


15

The quoted rule about -2 dexterity is for a creature that changes sizes. A creature that is naturally a given size has all its racial ability modifiers already calculated into its race description. Note: the Trox's RP-built monstrous race and the Bestiary character race option are consistent with each other; the one showing the RP expenditures has the ...


14

The succubus's non-magical movement modes are replaced by the movement modes of whatever she turns into. The succubus's flight is a movement mode. It's in the "Speed" section, not the "Special Qualities" section of the stat block, so it's not magical or anything special like that. Now, when a succubus uses her Change Shape supernatural ability, it's got ...


14

You can definitely have a hippogriff as a companion--there's even an archetype for it. But the text is silent on hippogriff egg incubation periods, so it's up to you as GM to decide. If you're more of a storytelling GM, decide based on what's convenient timing for your game—otherwise known as "it incubates at the speed of plot." If you're more of a ...


13

All attacks do a minimum of one point of damage regardless of damage penalties. Therefore the poison would still potentially affect the target. If penalties reduce the damage result to less than 1, a hit still deals 1 point of damage. Note that in Pathfinder the rule is slightly different - If penalties reduce the damage result to less than 1, a ...


12

The largest problem with breaking stereotypes in a game/setting is if it breaks immersion - basically being seen as either unrealistic or inconsistent writing. The single biggest counters you have to this is to: Make sure there is some reasonable justification from this "deviation from the norm" This deviation is remarked on as a deviation by the rest of ...


12

Sometimes the Rules Are Guidelines... According to the Player's Handbook, "[Y]ou can use [Knowledge skills] to identify monsters and their special powers or vulnerabilities. In general, the DC of such a check equals 10 + the monster's HD. A successful check allows you to remember a bit of useful information about that monster" (78). And there just ain't ...


11

Yes. I never thought of that usage for them before, but I would have to say yes. If you look at other entries like the Bone Devil (Osyluth) under special abilities they are sometimes noted as "Invisibility (self only)". The Ogre Magi has no such notation, so it will work just like the spell definition I believe - both Invisibility and Gaseous Form allow ...


11

Enter the cranium rat swarm (the linked monster is on Wizards’ website, but I don’t know how official it is; there are official printings of it in Fiend Folio). You’ll note it’s got a base CR of ⅛ per rat. In a swarm. The swarm gets smarter and more magical the more rats are present, and they swiftly become very dangerous, ...


11

Typically, this sort of thing is handled by DM fiat. If you want one of your NPCs to craft a magic item, then they can. The whole reason that XP costs for that kind of thing exist is to make it so players don't have an unlimited supply of powerful magic to mess around with, and that's not a problem with NPCs. In addition, specific XP values are very ...


11

Since D&D's ghouls, designed by Gary Gygax, were strongly based on the critters of the same (Arabian) name invented by H.P. Lovecraft... The D&D ghoul was inspired by the Lovecraftian critter of that name and my own imagination. they first appeared in play in c. 1970 in the Chainmail Fantasy Supplement table top games. – Gary Gygax, August ...


11

Yes. An orc can do the following on it's turn: Bonus Action: Aggressive. Move 30' towards a hostile creature Move action: Move 30' Action: Dash. Move 30' There is nothing at all to prevent you from using your turn this way. This give the orc an excellent ability to close a huge distance in their turn if they give up their attack, or close a significant ...


10

You should have trounced those dire rats handily. The dire rat is a level 1 brute, has an AC of 13, and is +6 v. AC, 1d10+5 damage. Make sure you're using the version from the monster vault, as the monster manual's maths tend to be horrible. Normal monster maths expect a monster to have Level+5 to hit (it does) and Level+14 AC (it's a bit lower, but in ...


10

Mostly, No. Compared to Player Character Classes, Monster Classes are typically vastly underpowered. You talk about 'LA', but refer to classes - a 'Monster Class' typically refers to a Savage Progression from Savage Species, where they take a Monster's LA and RHD and add it together and create a class with that many levels where a player taking that class ...


9

Yes. Specifically, Aggressive allows movement on a bonus action. So the Orc can Dash (its one action for the round) to gain extra movement speed for the round, move, then use Aggressive (its one bonus action for the round). That gives a total of 90 feet of movement. Note that Dash is additive, not multiplicative. It's easy to misread it as doubling your ...


8

NO. The verbiage for Nature reads: Make a Nature check to teach a natural beast a simple trick (come, fetch, heel, stay, and so forth). This use of the skill is usually part of a skill challenge, which might take much longer than an encounter to complete. (RC 148) Natural Beast is a specific monster type and only monsters with both the Natural and ...


8

First off, I'll quote some general advice about converting settings, which is in the GM section of Savage Worlds Deluxe: Like an original setting, identify the themes of the other game and try to adapt with a very few key world rules. Literal translations of game mechanics from other systems usually just result in cumbersome sub-systems that don't ...


8

Yes, he may cast either or both on allies Both invisibility and gaseous form have “Range: Touch” and “Target: One creature” (invisibility can also be used as “Range: Personal” and “Target: You” or “Range: Touch” and “Target: One object”), and being cast as a spell-like ability does not change any of the parameters of the spell aside from the Components ...


8

Slipping Past Werewolves This is the big deal. The 1st-level Drd and Rgr spell pass without trace [trans] (Player's Handbook 259) for 1 hour/level grants 1 touched creature/level the ability to leave neither tracks nor scent, making tracking the creature impossible except with magic. Although these might also be of interest. The 1st-level Sor/Wiz ...


7

To create the effect of the Dahaka in your plot, there are two basic elements you need: the creature must be unstoppable (but escapable) until X happens, and then defeatable with X. And for this to work, the most crucial point is that the party must know that. Knowing they can't win, they'll run and look for a way to win. If they believe they might win, ...


7

I think mxyzplk got most of it. But I will add a few points. Don't do anything too drastic. Chances are, if you have to say "Ok guys, forget everything you know about..." then there's something else out there that is much better suited to what you want. You can also try making the character "technically" fit the stereotype but give them an unusual view on ...


7

This one's pretty clear. Opponents so grappled cannot get free while the mimic is alive without removing the adhesive first. There is no reason to consider the mimic grappled. While normally initiating a grapple causes you to also gain the grappled condition, this is not the mimic grappling normally. Rather, it is an ability the mimic has that simply ...


7

The rules are behind walls of text and part of a rules salad, but A Creatures Doesn't Get More Than Four Attacks from Its Base Attack Bonus In the sidebar Behind the Curtain: A Limit to Attacks and Saves, the Dungeon Master's Guide says, in part, After 20th level, your base attack bonus never improves. You gain epic bonuses and other bonus on your ...



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