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Questions tagged [cr-calculation]

For questions that deal with the calculation of a Challenge Rating, a method of evaluating the combat-difficulty of monsters and encounters in D&D and derived systems. Such questions should ideally demonstrate that the querent has first tried official methods of calculating CR and describe what problems they encountered in doing so.

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3
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1answer
290 views

What is a proper CR for this homebrewed bloodborne-esque NPC?

Having ventured into the lands of gothic horror for a soon upcoming adventure, I wanted to create something a little more out there from the normal rules of D&D 5e. So I came up with this idea ...
10
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3answers
228 views

What level character might win a solo fight with a CR 8 monster? [closed]

I'm running a fifth edition game heavily featuring intelligent undead. One such undead is a Sword Wraith Commander who was killed in a duel with a noble, who had cheated during the fight to ensure ...
12
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8answers
6k views

Is this homebrew CR 12 monster too difficult an encounter for two level 4 characters?

I'm about to lead a raid into an orc camp for a party of two characters. Both are level 4, one is a bard and the other is a barbarian/warlock multiclass. I found a CR12 homebrew monster, the Orc ...
5
votes
1answer
145 views

Calculating CR of monsters that do not deal calculable damage

How do I calculate the challenge rating of monsters that feature abilities that do not directly do damage? For example, my homebrew monster has the two following abilities: The target takes a ...
4
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2answers
593 views

How to interpret the challenge rating of creatures?

I looked at the proposed topics and, it seems, did not find similar to my question. I understand that the challenge rating is the creature's level of danger, and the more deadly it is, the higher the ...
0
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1answer
159 views

Would it be possible to get a dragon to CR27 using only official material and variants (Shadow Dragon/Dracolich, innate spellcasting, etc.)? [closed]

Ancient Gold Dragons and Ancient Red Dragons have a CR of 24. This means that, if you were to have such a dragon of the innate spellcasting dragons variety (MM p.86), they could know spells up to 8th ...
12
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4answers
425 views

What is the CR of a Metallic Dragon after it uses Change Shape?

The older Metallic Dragons have the Change Shape ability: Change Shape. The dragon magically polymorphs into a humanoid or beast that has a challenge rating no higher than its own, or back into its ...
7
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2answers
230 views

How would giving Hydra a Breath Weapon affect game balance and CR?

I wanted to spice up a fight I'm planning for my party by giving a Hydra a Breath Weapon. I'm flexible on the specifics, but the change would effectively be described as such: Actions ...
5
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1answer
142 views

How to calculate the CR of innate spellcasting dragons (and how that affects their highest spell level)

I have a rough understanding of how to calculate expected challenge rating, but I'm not sure how it works in the case of the innate spellcasting dragons variant. Consider an Ancient Gold Dragon: ...
4
votes
1answer
195 views

How do I determine Shadow Dragon's Breath Save DC?

From the Shadow Dragon template, it would appear that the Shadow Breath has the same damage and save as the original dragon's breath weapon, as no change is stated in the template: New Action: ...
7
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2answers
212 views

Understanding CR calculations

I've been working on a tool to help me design monsters, specifically doing CR calculations as described in the DMG. In order to test it, I've tried it out on some monsters in the Monster Manual, which ...
3
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2answers
142 views

How do I compute an encounter level of monsters with vastly different CR?

In D&D 3.5, how do you add creatures with different CR which are more than 2 CR apart? The table in the DMG 3.5, p. 49, describes how to calculate the encounter level of a mixed pair creatures ...
7
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1answer
877 views

Can you just subtract the challenge rating of friendly NPCs?

The party have bitten off more than they can chew and the DM wants to help them out to avoid a likely TPK by adding a friendly NPC to an encounter. Can they get a good sense of how difficult the ...
4
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1answer
117 views

How do you calculate CR for running battles?

I am creating an encounter for a game I am DMing and am wondering how you calculate CR for a running battle. What I mean by this is that characters will be fleeing through a zombie infested town, with ...
30
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4answers
6k views

I've given my players a lot of magic items. Is it reasonable for me to give them harder encounters?

I'm running a campaign for a group of 6 level 8 characters. Last session, they went shopping, and I let them buy about 2 magic items each. On top of this, I let them each start with an extra feat and ...
7
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1answer
4k views

Is the official Necromancer NPC’s CR calculation accurate?

I am planning to make a variation of the official Necromancer NPC statblock from Volo’s Guide to Monsters, and I wanted to make sure the challenge rating was correct based on the original. However, ...
4
votes
2answers
925 views

How much does adding the Pack Tactics trait to this homebrew monster affect its CR?

I am using this Beowolf homebrew monster as a basis to create a Large Mountain Wolf. It currently has a CR of 3, if I add the Pack Tactics trait (as listed below) to this monster, how does that ...
6
votes
1answer
145 views

How would strategic but non-damaging actions affect monster CR?

I'm in the middle of designing a dungeon with heavy fire and ice elemental themes influencing a lot of undead enemies. I'm relying on CR a lot to rough out encounters, as I don't have a super great ...
9
votes
3answers
279 views

Is there a quick and fair way to adjust stats for an upcast Conjured Elemental?

The 5th level spell Conjure Elemental spell states (PHB, p. 225, bold added): An elemental of challenge rating 5 or lower appropriate to the area you chose appears in an unoccupied space within 10 ...
12
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1answer
609 views

How does the ability to cast healing spells affect a monster's CR?

I've been making a few homebrew monsters for my current D&D 5e campaign, and I ran into a problem when I wanted to create a creature that used healing magic. There were general rules for offensive ...
5
votes
1answer
464 views

Is this conversion of a Cloud Ray Elder CR 16?

In the finale of the 3 part series on Cloud Rays, we take a look at the stat line of the largest pancake in the universe. From Pup to Adult to finally Elder, I am hoping to gain insight on the balance ...
1
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1answer
196 views

Is CR 14 accurate for this conversion of a Cloud Ray Adult?

In a series of three questions involving the largest flying pancake of D&D, I am looking to gain some insight into the balance for a conversion of the Cloud Ray. In this question, I ask about the ...
3
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1answer
260 views

Is CR 8 accurate for this conversion of a Cloud Ray Pup?

So I have been running a campaign that I wanted to focus in on a super cool unique "monster" that the party could utilize for narrative, combat, and transportation purposes. So I looked through my old ...
8
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1answer
537 views

How can high-CR (20+) NPCs be created?

I remember in earlier editions villains and NPCs sometimes had astronomical levels (Elminster, etc. all are 20+ Spellcasters). Currently I am making a campaign where the major NPCs are all Legendary ...
9
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2answers
4k views

How do I determine a dragon's new Challenge Rating when applying the Shadow Dragon template?

The Monster Manual contains a template whereby any true dragon may be turned into a shadow dragon. A shadow dragon differs from a true dragon in the following ways: It has resistance to necrotic ...
4
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3answers
1k views

What would be the challenge rating for this homebrew “Obelan Enforcer”?

Obelan Enforcer Medium construct, lawful neutral Armor Class 15 (natural armor) Hit Points 48(10d6+4) Speed 30ft. STR 18 (+4) DEX 10 (+0) CON 16 (+3) INT 8 (-1) WIS 12 (+1) CHA 6 (-...
5
votes
3answers
289 views

How do I account for attack distribution when calculating CR?

When calculating a monster's CR, how do I account for whether the monster deals all its damage in one attack or via several attacks? Based on the DMG, it doesn't matter how the damage is distributed, ...
2
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0answers
59 views

How do I calculate challenge rating against a player character? [duplicate]

I am trying to pit a party against a powerful, epic-leveled Goliath Barbarian, using the abilities he would have as a player character. I do not want to make him too powerful, but I still want him to ...
7
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2answers
125 views

XP & CR for Monsters with magic equipment?

Suppose I have a monster. OK he's not really a monster, he's just Knight like the one on page 347 of the monster manual. Only this particular Knight has a Spellguard Shield as described on page 201 of ...
7
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2answers
1k views

The CR of a Dragon [closed]

I've been looking to scale up the CR of a few Ancient dragons for one of my settings, so I've been figuring out the offensive and defensive CR of each dragon to determine how my scaled-up dragons ...
20
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8answers
7k views

How to increase a monster's CR without adjusting its flavour too much?

Background I have a player who has a level 8 Half Orc Paladin (STR 16, CON 18, CHA 14, Vengeance oath, Sentinel and Orcish Fury feats, no magic items) whose backstory involves running away from his ...
-1
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1answer
113 views

In a homebrew campaign, how should I set CR for lesser and Boss monsters? [closed]

I am currently trying to make a campaign, and I am steadily homebrewing new monsters, all the way up to the boss at the end. I am aware of how CR works, but unsure how my monsters would shape up ...
11
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4answers
1k views

How much does “Defender Wins Ties” affect challenge rating math?

In my group, we couldn't be bothered in session 1 to look up whether the attacker needed to score equal to or greater than the defender's AC in order to hit. We decided to live in a "defensive" world, ...
4
votes
2answers
829 views

Do the Bronze Scout's burrow speed and Earth Armor trait make it stronger than a CR 1 creature?

The Bronze Scout Clockwork construct from Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes (p. 125) is a CR1 monster, but has a set of traits that seem to make it incredibly powerful, unless I'm interpreting them ...
8
votes
1answer
642 views

Are aberrations of CR 6 and below approximately as powerful as demons of CR 6 and below?

Background I'm currently playing a Great Old One (GOO) Pact of the Chain warlock in one homebrew campaign. Originally, I had designed the character to be evil and roleplay-heavy, with skill and spell ...
5
votes
1answer
435 views

What would a Shadow Pseudodragon's CR increase to?

I want to create a shadow version of the Pseudodragon for a Pact of the Chain warlock's familiar, and wanted to know if it would be unbalanced. It would gain the gain all the features a dragon gains ...
4
votes
2answers
234 views

Monster can choose between an attack-preventing reaction or a 20hp attack - which is more significant when calculating CR?

I'm working on a reaction which allows a creature to raise its AC in response to being hit by an attack. This reaction will be effective against any single attack that is resolved against the creature'...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

How does a monster giving disadvantage to hitting it affect its CR?

I'm working on a big creature with an AC of 22 and for flavour reasons, I'd like attacks against it to be made with disadvantage. Could you suggest how this would effect the creature's CR? I ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Is this “Timberwolf” Balanced?

Based on the dire wolf an a twig blight, this creature is a essentially a large wolf-like construct made of wood, held together by arcane magic. Timberwolf Large Construct, unaligned ...
6
votes
1answer
156 views

Can CR be used to estimate difficulty for a group of players using monster stats?

I have a situation planned where the players will playing as monsters, using the stats in the monster manual (entirely in lieu of their own). Are there any guidelines anywhere about how to balance ...
0
votes
1answer
377 views

“Episode Boss” encounter balance assessment

I am creating a boss battle for the end of an episode in my campaign using the following homebrew monsters: Knight Zombie AC 16 (chainmail) HP 28 STR 13 DEX 15 CON 10 INT 7 WIS 10 CHA 6 ...
3
votes
2answers
155 views

Is there a way I can accurately calculate the CR of my homebrewed monster?

In my current 3.5 Epic level campaign, I am trying to make 11 monsters around the CR of a hecatoncheire, however, my googling skills have failed me and I can’t find any reliable way to calculate their ...
6
votes
1answer
849 views

Is the CR for the Kuo-Toa Whip accurate?

In the Monster's Manual, the Kuo-Toa Whip has a CR of 1, but that seems much too low given that it has 10d8+20 hit dice (average of 65 hp) and 2nd level spellcasting abilities. This seems to be more ...
4
votes
1answer
746 views

How to calculate the Levels of an opposing party

My four member party is Level5 and I want to set up another party they have to fight. Last time I did that I created another same level party and they did not have a chance and told me that the CR of ...
4
votes
1answer
104 views

What are the CRs for diseases used in traps, and how are they calculated?

Are there guidelines for determining the CR of diseases when they're part of traps? I'm actually interested specifically in Tetanus, but the lack of a clear answer of which I'm aware leads to me to ...
1
vote
1answer
166 views

Monster CR adjustment based on item outside its treasure allotment

I know that monsters often have treasure, and that if a monster has say a +1 magic longsword as part of the hoard described in the treasure entry he will likely use it, and this is figured (somewhat) ...
-7
votes
1answer
607 views

How to calculate CR of modified beasts for druids

I always found some creatures in MM weaker than they should be, so I would tweek them to my idea and party strength, no problem. Now my druid wants to use my modified beasts for his wild shape (circle ...
14
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3answers
9k views

Why is the Will o' Wisp CR2?

The Will O' Wisp seems pretty challenging for a CR2 monster. An AC of 19 is Incredibly high, especially for lower level players. In addition to its AC, it has resistance to most melee damage types ...
13
votes
1answer
9k views

Why is the Basilisk’s CR so low?

A basilisk has a hardy pool of HP and can force players to save-or-die constantly. For a party of low-level adventurers, going purely by CR, one should be a normal-ish challenge, but I don't know how ...
8
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2answers
1k views

Do the HP multipliers for resistance and immunity when computing EHP stack?

DMG p. 277 provides a table and some instructions for the computation of effective hit points based on resistances and immunities when computing the defensive Challenge Rating of a monster, or ...