the trouble with lycanthropes - Page 2
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  1. #11
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    I think it depends on how much of the classic lore you want to give up for efficiencies sake. I will say that I would be more willing to use the template if it was easier. I picture Hill Giant Wereboars

    But some people really do want that traditional view of an animal form and some want the hybrid form and some I am sure want both. Is there some way have one statblock for both forms? Were you pick OK, animal form you have faster move and trip, or hybrid form claws? A round to switch between them? I don't know but I would hope that the fluff and tradition could be maintained with a simplified stat block


    Quote Originally Posted by GlassJaw View Post
    I also find it off that the humanoid form doesn't get DR/silver. That would very easy to add to toughen them up in that form.
    I agree, if you are a lycanthrope, why are you only tougher in your animal form? I think there should be SOME kind of addition to the base form from this template. It does not need to be Hit Dice, but as you mentioned GlassJaw:

    Quote Originally Posted by GlassJaw
    Another I idea I had was to remove the added Hit Dice but put Hit Dice/level requirements (or at least recommendations) on the templates themselves. For example, in order to add the weretiger template, the base creature must be at least 6 HD (or 7). That would keep it similar mechanically and put it in line with the current CRs.
    Maybe if someone gets infected, you merely boost them up to the minimum level? Since this only applies to NPCs it won't matter for a PC. that solves your commoner problem. Bitten by a werewolf lowly farmer? Surprise, next full moon you are now a 4th level farmer. It will mean that an added template onto an existing monster/person will be power appropriate. I still think there should be a stat or HP bump along with the DR/silver.

    Quote Originally Posted by GlassJaw View Post
    Thanks for the all the replies so far everyone.

    Wulf and I had a chat the other night and I think we are close to a solution. If nothing else, we at least have a direction on how we will proceed next.

    In a nutshell, we are leaning towards dropping the added Hit Dice when the lycanthrope is in its base humanoid form. What this means it that no changes will be required to the base creature stat block.
    So a werewolf in human form is a normal human? Ok I could see that

    Quote Originally Posted by Glasjaw
    We are then going to combine the animal and hyrbid forms into one stat block. They are already essentially the same with a few minor differences. Most likely, we will consolidate those differences further. For example, the hybrid form currently does not gain the special attacks of the animal (Improved Grab, Rake, Trip, etc). We will give those abilities to the hybrid form.

    The one complication to all this is if a 1st-level commoner lycanthrope (which would most likely only have a few hit points) takes damage, what happens if it immediately gets reduced to negative hit points? Wulf proposed that lycanthropes get a "reset" if this happens. The lycanthrope changes form (into hybrid most likely) and "heals" back its hit points and is now ready to fight.

    The problem with this is how will this mechanic work for the 10th-level fighter werewolf, for example. If it gets reduced to negative hit points in humanoid form, having it completely heal and then change into hybrid form feels wonky.

    My solution to that is to give the lycanthrope the same amount of hit points in all forms (including its modified Con). There are already rules in place for contracted lycanthropes who can't control their changes (see the Control
    Shape skill in the SRD). This method would also give the commoner lycanthrope some added "toughness" without having to change its stat block in any way.
    Ug, my head hurts, no wonder you guys have struggled. I think you need to enforce the minimum HD requirement. That prevents the 1st level commoner. A werewolf with a 0 BAB is kind of pointless. Maybe have a "base form" HD, and you use which ever is higher? That way the 1st level commoner farmer uses the base werewolf stats, but the 10th level fighter uses his own higher stats? That might get complicated in a stat block. I think you need to just have the miminum HD, bring up the base from to standards then apply any bonus HP, Str etc. to that form.

  2. #12
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    [quote=Fenris;5729204]I think you need to enforce the minimum HD requirement. That prevents the 1st level commoner.

    It's interesting you mention that. Wulf and I talked about this specifically and he wanted to preserve the case of the commoner who doesn't know he/she is a lycanthrope. Again, it's a nod to the fluff but I can see the merit.

    Overall, that's another problem with lycanthropes in general. I prefer to use the fluff as a starting point for design and then tweak the mechanics so it makes sense in-game. With lycanthropes, you are constantly trying to find the "sweet spot" between the two.

    Placing a HD/level requirement certainly makes things easier from a mechanics standpoint. I liked the concept but wasn't married to it.

    A werewolf with a 0 BAB is kind of pointless. Maybe have a "base form" HD, and you use which ever is higher? That way the 1st level commoner farmer uses the base werewolf stats, but the 10th level fighter uses his own higher stats? That might get complicated in a stat block. I think you need to just have the miminum HD, bring up the base from to standards then apply any bonus HP, Str etc. to that form.
    We came up with a sort of compromise (which is slightly different than I posted above):

    We will give the base form "bonus" hit points equal to the number it would receive from the additional animal Hit Dice in hybrid and animal forms. This will just be a flat bonus - no other calculations needed.

    Wulf and I agreed early on that lycanthropes needed to be reduced to a single stat block. In order to really do that, we had to remove the added Hit Dice to the base form. But by doing that, it removes the extra "toughness" it would normally have. Hence the bonus hit points.

  3. #13
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    I'm liking it.

    Something to consider, the effects of spells being used to detect more powerful creatures in disguised to blend in a crowd. Do you want to come up with a countermeasure against pcs using spells that could incapacitate with HD/hit point based effects? Like color spray?

    I've been in games where PCs did this, "knowing" the unaffected creatures were the tough monster. in the SRD version the infected commoner would still be "disguised" against this kind of cheese to detect a lycanthrope.

    Maybe a sidebar discussion of the implications?

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