D&D 4th Edition Monster Design in D&D Next


What's on your mind?

+ Log in or register to post
Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 69
  1. #1

    Monster Design in D&D Next

    This week Mike tackles monster design and walks you through the conversion of a hook horror.

    Read Monster Design in D&D Next on D&D Insider here!



 

  • #2
    Member SILVER SUBSCRIBER
    Enchanter (Lvl 12)



    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Israel netanya
    Posts
    1,308
    Reviews
    Read 1 Reviews
    I Defended The Walls!D&D NextD&D

    Ignore Blackwarder
    Seems interesting, I still think that the XP is too high though.

    One thing that jumped up was the talk about encounter design, I thought we were moving away from that to advanture design.

    Warder
    I LIKE COMBAT AS WAR!!!!!!

    the essence of D&D is "The thrill of victory the agony of a natural 1" - Mike Mearls, Gen Con 2012

    Starting From the Ground Up - ACKS Economic system
    Starting From the Grounds Up, Part II - ACKS Economic system

  • #3
    Registered User
    Acolyte (Lvl 2)

    Philousk's Avatar

    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Qubec city
    Posts
    46
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    Ignore Philousk

    L&L: Monster Design in D&D Next

    As your new servant, why not bring you on a platter the new section of L & L this week? It is about Hook Horror, developing the concept of monsters following the ideas from all editions and presentation design example of a stat block in the rough and use NPCs to D & D Next. Bon appetit!

  • #4
    Registered User
    Thaumaturgist (Lvl 9)

    Raith5's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    820
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    Ignore Raith5
    I quite like the idea of monsters having a "level". This makes it easy to eyeball the power of monsters and makes it easy to advance the level and the difficulty of the monster.

  • #5
    Registered User
    Grandfather of Assassins (Lvl 19)

    Stormonu's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Mississippi
    Posts
    4,037
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    Blog Entries
    7

    Ignore Stormonu
    My communities:

    The design sounds pretty straight-forward; for the purposes of designing a monster for a combat encounter, should work fine.

    It's interesting to note monsters, at this time, aren't given skills. As broad as skills are going to be, I think that's a shame. I'd like to see kobolds with skill at trapmaking, bugbears with stealth, gnolls with tracking, sphinxes with skills in riddles, etc., to at least suggest uses beyond straight-up combat.
    "If it has stats, we can kill it." - T.G. Jackson, intro to 3rd ed Hackmaster

  • #6
    Registered User
    Magsman (Lvl 14)

    MortalPlague's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Port Coquitlam
    Posts
    1,405
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    ENniesZEITGEISTThe Perturbed DragonGygax Memorial Fund

    Ignore MortalPlague
    I'm on board with this. The fact that they're keeping the 4th Edition experience budget fills me with joy; it made encounter-building an easy task. And I like the straightforward, yet flavorful approach to combat abilities. The hook horror has enough going for it there that it can do some cool maneuvers, but it's not going to take an hour to learn how to run it at the table.
    Your skill in reading has increased by 1.

  • #7
    The Guvnor
    Orcus on an Off-Day (Lvl 22)

    Morrus's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Location
    Southampton
    Posts
    26,985
    Reviews
    Read 11 Reviews
    Blog Entries
    4
    13th AgeSupermanCircvs MaximvsENniesPathfinderZEITGEISTDoctor Who

    Ignore Morrus
    My communities:

    Merging this with the existing news thread.

  • #8
    Registered User
    The Great Druid (Lvl 17)



    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Posts
    4,479
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews
    Cortex+ZEITGEISTWotBSI Defended The Walls!

    Ignore Neonchameleon
    My communities:

    It's a curate's egg. I like that they're keeping the 4e approach to the XP budget. But the monster itself? Urgh. No. It's slightly less flavoursome than the 4e version of the same monster, printed effectively as filler in the worst monster manual ever produced for 4e (the MM1). And this is what they use as a Showcase?



    What the designers think is important about the Hook Horror in order:

    * You can't hide from it (screwing the rogue)
    * It gets two attacks that grab
    * The grab does damage
    * It gets to bite grabbed foes
    * It can climb
    * Its level
    * Its stats

    Which are fundamentally the least important parts.

    If you want to make a monster interesting you start with its psychology. How it moves - not just its movement modes. How it hunts. Those are what make a monster. Not having mechanics that are identical to an oversized crab that scuttles up to people, grabs them in its claws, and squeezes. Oh wait - it does impaling rather than crushing damage. There's literally your only mechanical difference from a giant crab with a carapace.

    If you want to make your hook horror actually interesting, give it a "No one looks up" ability giving it advantage when attempting to hide on the ceiling, and a "Death from Above" attack; the Hook Horror can drop safely from a ceiling that is 30ft or lower and land on its feet as a free acttion. If it does so it retains any advantage it had for being hidden from its foe for the attacks it makes this turn.

    Now. Instead of a crab that climbs instead of swims you have something really scary. A monster that hides on the ceiling, drops into the middle of the enemy, and then rends them into pieces.

    (Some ideas stolen from Drek on rpg.net; his version of the Hook Horror dragged the enemies off but I'm going for more of a gore-monster here as that feels more like a hook horror to me.)

  • #9
    Registered User
    Cutpurse (Lvl 5)

    nogray's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Kissimmee
    Posts
    176
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    Ignore nogray
    Quote Originally Posted by Neonchameleon View Post
    It's a curate's egg. I like that they're keeping the 4e approach to the XP budget. But the monster itself? Urgh. No. It's slightly less flavoursome than the 4e version of the same monster, printed effectively as filler in the worst monster manual ever produced for 4e (the MM1). And this is what they use as a Showcase?
    Well, if Mearls is reporting honestly, it's not as if much thought went into picking the Hook Horror to "show off."

    If you want to make a monster interesting you start with its psychology. How it moves - not just its movement modes. How it hunts. Those are what make a monster. Not having mechanics that are identical to an oversized crab that scuttles up to people, grabs them in its claws, and squeezes. Oh wait - it does impaling rather than crushing damage. There's literally your only mechanical difference from a giant crab with a carapace.

    If you want to make your hook horror actually interesting, give it a "No one looks up" ability giving it advantage when attempting to hide on the ceiling, and a "Death from Above" attack; the Hook Horror can drop safely from a ceiling that is 30ft or lower and land on its feet as a free acttion. If it does so it retains any advantage it had for being hidden from its foe for the attacks it makes this turn.

    Now. Instead of a crab that climbs instead of swims you have something really scary. A monster that hides on the ceiling, drops into the middle of the enemy, and then rends them into pieces.
    I like these bits for this monster, but does this sort of change go against the original critter? (Honestly asking; I can't recall ever actually using or encountering a Hook Horror in my games.) A little research found this bit:

    Quote Originally Posted by www.dotd.com
    Hook horrors are natural climbers, as their hooks give them excellent purchase on rock surfaces. They can move at normal speed up vertical surfaces that are not sheer. Their great weight means that they cannot hang from the ceiling like other insects.
    I think that is culled from the 2e Monstrous Manual. Still, I think I like some of your (or Drek's) ideas better than the original.
    In all things, seek to learn.

    Regards,
    nogray

  • #10
    Registered User
    Thaumaturgist (Lvl 9)



    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    Middlesbrough, UK
    Posts
    1,179
    Reviews
    Read 0 Reviews

    Ignore jadrax
    My communities:

    Quote Originally Posted by Stormonu View Post
    The design sounds pretty straight-forward; for the purposes of designing a monster for a combat encounter, should work fine.

    It's interesting to note monsters, at this time, aren't given skills. As broad as skills are going to be, I think that's a shame. I'd like to see kobolds with skill at trapmaking, bugbears with stealth, gnolls with tracking, sphinxes with skills in riddles, etc., to at least suggest uses beyond straight-up combat.
    Yeah, I would have liked to see this, but Skills are currently in the limbo of modularity.

  • + Log in or register to post
    Page 1 of 7 1234567 LastLast

    Similar Threads

    1. [4e] Monster Design - a flying monster built to fight on the wing.
      By catastrophic in forum Older D&D Editions and OSR Gaming
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: Tuesday, 13th September, 2011, 03:24 AM
    2. Dragon 372 - Design & Development: Monster Design
      By Shroomy in forum General RPG Discussion
      Replies: 1
      Last Post: Friday, 13th February, 2009, 08:51 AM
    3. my first try at monster design
      By eleran in forum Older D&D Editions and OSR Gaming
      Replies: 0
      Last Post: Thursday, 3rd April, 2008, 06:00 AM
    4. Monster Design Contest
      By Ishmayl in forum Older D&D Editions and OSR Gaming
      Replies: 5
      Last Post: Sunday, 3rd December, 2006, 10:37 PM
    5. Design this monster and win a prize!
      By Kunimatyu in forum General RPG Discussion
      Replies: 4
      Last Post: Sunday, 22nd May, 2005, 11:08 PM

    Posting Permissions

    • You may not post new threads
    • You may not post replies
    • You may not post attachments
    • You may not edit your posts
    •