I play 5E almost exclusively, now, and while I love the resources out there, I have many a miniature from other editions that is now stat-blockless. I've scoured the internet already, so I think I know the answer but figured it wouldn't hurt to ask:

Are there any official methods to translate a 3.5 statblock to 5E?

I'm looking for spell replacements, AC or HP adjustments, XP translations, anything that can help me stay true to the flavor, feel, and challenge the monster presented in it's original game. If there is something published by WotC out there, that's the preferred answer here, but assuming there isn't I'd settle for tried and true tips and tricks. Ideally I'd want a true method by which to approach the problem so I don't have to spend an hour looking over every detail of the monster.

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    \$\begingroup\$ As an alternative, you could perform such a conversion yourself and post the results in a separate question asking Is this 5e conversion of this 3.5 monster balanced? \$\endgroup\$ Jun 29, 2018 at 19:27
  • \$\begingroup\$ To really do that right and boil it down to a "method" we're talking about hours of work for me, which is precisely what I'm trying to avoid by asking my question. :-P \$\endgroup\$
    – Euch
    Jun 29, 2018 at 19:30
  • \$\begingroup\$ To be honest it won't take that much work (depending on the monster). I've converted monsters accross entirely different systems in minutes, with system mastery granted, but it shouldn't take you hours. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 29, 2018 at 19:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's totally fair. I wasn't trying to dis the question or anything. I was just thinking that were you to offer even a very rough estimate of a conversion (even if your conversion is something like I think it's pretty much a gnoll except with this special ability or something) folks may be inclined to explain the ins and outs of their own feelings about your conversion, and knowing their thoughts could inform how you make future conversions. \$\endgroup\$ Jun 29, 2018 at 19:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Assuming a 15 AC in 3.5 = a 15 AC in 5E. But I can't say with certainty that is true. Hence my question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Euch
    Jun 29, 2018 at 19:36

1 Answer 1



Wizards have written this handy and pragmatic guide.

The last page has advice for translating monster statblocks under "Quick Conversions".

For first and second edition, you can use the shorthand monster statistics in the adventure. In these adventures, monsters are often more numerous, but they typically deal lower damage and have fewer hit points than their fifth edition counterparts. Make the following changes to those first- and second-edition monsters...


In third edition, you can use monster statistics included in an adventure as a guide. Monster distribution in this edition is fairly close to the distribution in fifth edition. in earlier editions, such creatures often deal lower damage and have fewer hit points than their fifth edition counterparts. Most statistics in third edition include the creature’s ability scores. Use the following parameters...

  • \$\begingroup\$ Good find! (although I disagree with some of the methods Wizards suggests using). \$\endgroup\$ Jul 4, 2018 at 17:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, the other answer wasn't bad, it just wasn't exactly what was asked for. It's a shame it seems to be deleted. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maaark
    Jul 4, 2018 at 19:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ That was my answer. I deleted it since I didn't like the tone it took. Seemed a little more dismissive than helpful. I may edit it and undelete later. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 4, 2018 at 19:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ Please do, AFAIK house rules and homebrew are welcome here, as long as they're clearly labeled as such. \$\endgroup\$
    – Maaark
    Jul 4, 2018 at 19:23

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