So, I'm running a dnd 4e campaign, and one of the characters in the party is a level 12 monk. He keeps killing the monsters I throw against him, and it is getting difficult to make encounters challenging. What are the best types of monsters to throw against a monk in 4e?

  • \$\begingroup\$ what's his DPR? how fast is he killing these monsters? a properly optimized striker should be killing a monster in 4 rounds by himself. \$\endgroup\$
    – wax eagle
    Commented May 22, 2012 at 2:16
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Monks rely mainly on melee/touch attacks, so you need enemies that can either survive those attacks long enough to deal damage to the monk, or enemies who are difficult to reach. You might try a combination of characters. Maybe a couple high-hp baddies with reach weapons up front, teamed with some ranged guys who will be difficult for the monk to approach, due to terrain. Either/both the guys up front or/and the guys in back should have slowing, immobilizing, or dazing attacks, which would reduce the monks' effectiveness in his preferred attack-and-move or move-and-attack powers. Good luck! \$\endgroup\$
    – Lechlerfan
    Commented May 22, 2012 at 3:15
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Lechlerfan why isn't that an answer? \$\endgroup\$
    – wax eagle
    Commented May 22, 2012 at 11:53
  • \$\begingroup\$ @wax eagle Ha! I asked myself the same thing when I finished. I didn't start writing thinking it was going to be that long. \$\endgroup\$
    – Lechlerfan
    Commented May 22, 2012 at 22:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Lechlerfan so how about making it into an answer? \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 25, 2012 at 2:05

2 Answers 2


Monks primarily target Fortitude or reflex. Monsters that have high fort, ref, or both would present greater challenges to the monk. Likewise many of his abilities are about hitting enemies in a blast or moving and hitting lots of enemies monsters that prone, grapple, and punish moving away from them (basically monster versions of defenders) combined with powerful ranged artillery monsters could help you put the beatdown on him. In general monsters from the far realm have proven tough for my wife's monk to hit.

  • \$\begingroup\$ +1 because it makes it harder for the monk without making the monster harder for the party. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 25, 2012 at 21:58
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yep that was my thought as well. \$\endgroup\$ Commented May 27, 2012 at 4:46

Monsters that cause:

  • Prone (cuts movement, costs movement to stand unless they have the free action stand power),
  • Daze (Can't delay, only move, minor, OR standard) ,
  • Stun (Can't take actions!),
  • Immobile (Can't move yourself without teleport),
  • Dominate (You can control their turn!), - and there is no better monster than another player.
  • Grabbed (Basically immobile again),
  • Slowed (Speed is now "2"),
  • Weakened (Half Damage!) , or
  • Restrained (Teleport to move only!),

will always extend your round count provided the player does not save against the effect.

Status effects will always be your friend, Not just ham-fisted heavy hitters.

If you want your monk to not wipe the field as quickly, target him with a Weakened and/or Restrained to halve damage, an Immobile, Prone, Slow, or Grabbed to take away some movement, and Dominate*, Stun, and Daze to remove actions they can take during their turn. Of course, the monster of your choosing should be powerful enough to have a fair chance of these effects sticking.

Unless you really want to fight the monk's proverbial "fire" with "fire", use a ranged creature or caster to inflict these effects. I suggest a reach of two or three for a single melee monster to go against most Monks, especially if this Reach is granted by size alone. A medium sized creature with this reach should probably have a lot of abilities that allow them to shift around the field before or after striking the target in order to prolong their life.

As an aside, I highly suggest incorporating some party dividing tactics to spread the Monk's attention. There's nothing like being caught between two lines of archers that refuse to converge.

If all else fails, use things that Fly! After all, if it's out of range, it's out of range.

(Ranged melee with fly? Ugh.)

(*If you Dominate the Monk, you can still use the At-Wills, as best I can recall, which can definitely throw a wrench into his plans. This is certainly the case if the Healer/Leader is suddenly in danger of being surrounded and pounded. Also, please make sure your party is okay with the use of "Dominate," as many players in my personal experience find the use of the status effect very undesirable.)

In summary, to challenge your monk, use flying ranged melee strikers or flying controllers that target the Monk's weakest defense.


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