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I am trying to build a simplified system for creating creatures

For 3rd Edition there are lists of all the special abilities/powers/actions that a creature/monster may be able to employ.

For example "Special Abilities".

Is there a comparable list or list made for 5th edition creatures?

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The 5e Dungeon Master's Guide, pg.273 "Creating a Monster", if you flip to pages 280-281 there's a huge table of "Monster Features".

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    \$\begingroup\$ That table is not exhaustive- 5e expects creatures to have unique features \$\endgroup\$ – Dale M Mar 13 '18 at 23:02
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The DMG has a Monster Features index (DMG p. 280)

It may not be exactly what you're after, but it should be a good starting point.

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