5E: Converting Monsters from White Dwarf Magazine for Fifth Edition

Cleon

Legend
Amiraspian Griffon Rider Gallant
Medium humanoid, any non-lawful alignment
Armor Class 16 (breastplate)
Hit Points 97 (15d8 + 30)
Speed 30 ft.

STR​
DEX​
CON​
INT​
WIS​
CHA​
18 (+4)​
15 (+2)​
14 (+2)​
10 (+0)​
14 (+2)​
13 (+1)​

Saving Throws DEX +4, CON +4, WIS +4
Skills Acrobatics +4, Animal Handling +4, Athletics +6, Perception +4
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 14
Languages Common and either Giant, Gnoll or Goblin
Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Monocular Illusion Resistance. The amiraspian has advantage on saving throws against illusions that include visual elements it can see.

Poor Depth Perception. The amiraspian has disadvantage on attack rolls with a ranged weapon or melee weapon if the target is more than 5 feet away.

Running Leap. With a 10-foot running start, the griffon rider can long jump up to 25 feet.

Archery. The griffon rider gains a +2 bonus to attack rolls it makes with ranged weapons.

Actions

Multiattack. The griffon rider gallant makes two attacks with its melee or ranged weapons.

Battleaxe. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d8 + 4) slashing damage, or 9 (1d10 + 4) slashing damage if used with two hands.

Longbow. Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, range 150/600 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d8 + 2) piercing damage.

Spear. Melee or Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 20/60 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) piercing damage, or 8 (1d8 + 4) piercing damage if used with two hands to make a melee attack.

Bonus Actions

Eye of the Eagle. The griffon rider gallant selects a target it can see. As long as the griffon rider maintains concentration, it can attack the selected target without disadvantage on attack rolls from its Poor Depth Perception. The griffon rider can end this effect as a free action, literally in an eye blink.
 Should the griffon rider already have an Eye of the Eagle target when it uses Eye of the Eagle, the griffon rider gains advantage on its next ranged attack roll against the selected target if it still has concentration.

Leap of the Lion. If the griffon rider gallant uses Running Leap or moves at least 20 feet straight towards a creature, it can use its bonus action to make a melee weapon attack against that creature. If it hits, that target must succeed on a DC 14 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Reactions

Slow Fall. The griffon rider gallant can use a reaction when it falls to reduce any falling damage it takes by 30 points.


Description

Amiraspians who ride on griffons are their race's most renowned warriors (see Amiraspian Griffon Rider for details). A griffon rider who is particularly skilled, talented, and/or experienced earns the honofic "Gallant" from his or her peers. A griffon rider gallant is such a formidable fighter they can defeat an Amiraspi Cyclops in single combat and even a Cyclops Chief may not be their match.
 Most griffon rider eyrie have at least one gallant and a few puissant eyries are lucky enough to have three or four or more. A gallant is usually the leader of a flight or squadron of their eyrie's griffon riders, although their leadership may be more inspirational than official. Gallants rarely wear any insignia or awards and typically look no different from a regular rider, although the respect they receive from their amiraspian colleagues should make their status obvious.

(Originally created by Albie Fiore; appeared in White Dwarf Magazine #21 (Oct/Nov 1980) as part of the Fiend Factory mini-module "One-Eye Canyon", edited by Albie Fiore.)
 
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Cleon

Legend
Amiraspian Griffon Rider, Novice
Medium humanoid, any non-lawful alignment
Armor Class 14 (chain shirt)
Hit Points 44 (8d8 + 8)
Speed 30 ft.

STR​
DEX​
CON​
INT​
WIS​
CHA​
17 (+3)​
13 (+1)​
13 (+1)​
10 (+0)​
12 (+1)​
11 (+0)​

Saving Throws DEX +3, CON +3
Skills Acrobatics +3, Animal Handling +3, Athletics +4, Perception +3
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 13
Languages Common and either Giant, Gnoll or Goblin
Challenge 1 (200 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Monocular Illusion Resistance. The amiraspian has advantage on saving throws against illusions that include visual elements it can see.

Poor Depth Perception. The amiraspian has disadvantage on attack rolls with a ranged weapon or melee weapon if the target is more than 5 feet away.

Running Leap. With a 10-foot running start, the griffon rider can long jump up to 25 feet.

Archery. The griffon rider gains a +2 bonus to attack rolls it makes with ranged weapons.

Actions

Battleaxe. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 3) slashing damage, or 8 (1d10 + 3) slashing damage if used with two hands.

Longbow. Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, range 150/600 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d8 + 1) piercing damage.

Spear. Melee or Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 20/60 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d6 + 3) piercing damage, or 7 (1d8 + 3) piercing damage if used with two hands to make a melee attack.

Eye of the Eagle. The novice griffon rider selects a target it can see. As long as the griffon rider maintains concentration, it can attack the selected target without disadvantage on attack rolls from its Poor Depth Perception. The griffon rider can end this effect as a free action, literally in an eye blink.
 Should the griffon rider already have an Eye of the Eagle target when it uses Eye of the Eagle, the griffon rider gains advantage on its next ranged attack roll against the selected target if it still has concentration.

Reactions

Slow Fall. The novice griffon rider can use a reaction when it falls to reduce any falling damage it takes by 10 points.


Description

This young amiraspian has not earned their wings as a griffon rider (see Amiraspian Griffon Rider) but is experienced enough to fly a griffon. They appear to be a tough and athletic human teenager apart from having the face of a cyclops, with one large eye under a monobrow instead of the paired eyes of a regular humanoid.
The Griffon Knights' Cubs. Each novice is mentored by a seasoned griffon rider much like a knight's squire, although other riders and experts also contribute to the trainee's education. To become a full-fledged griffon rider a novice must pass many tests and trials, the most important of which is to raise a griffon from its egg and train it to as their personal steed. Harshly traditional mentors make their novices steal their griffon egg from the nest of a wild or feral griffon, but common practice is for a mentor to present their disciple with an egg laid by one of their eyrie's tamed griffons as a reward for their accomplishments. Becoming a griffon rider is extremely difficult and dangerous, and many novices die or flunk out of their training. The most common cause of death is being attacked by a griffon or falling, followed by being killed by some other monster. More novices are invalided out or simply give up due to the brutal training regime than actually die. The order always looks after its own, and unsuccessful recruits are always offered safer work in a griffon rider orphanage or barrack.
 Most of a novice's time is taken up with dull but hazardous tasks and duties – mainly cleaning the mews, herding livestock, and working shifts in a wilderness watch post. The most prized assignments involve flying a griffon. At first these are training flights escorted by their mentor, but once the novice is skilled enough they sometimes accompany their mentor on their aerial patrols or fly solo as postal couriers or to deliver a passenger (see Knights of the Air in Griffon Rider for details).
 Being flown on griffon back is the fastest and safest means of travel normally available to Amiraspians, so griffon riders sometimes carry passengers in response to some emergency. A griffon needs mere hours for a journey that would take a caravan days to cross, and the mountains' steep and winding paths can be far too treacherous for most lone travellers to risk. A griffon rider's most important passengers include politicians, military figures and professional experts (e.g. a wizard, cleric or healer), but the commonest reason for griffon passenger travel is actually romance. A typical amiraspian prefers to marry someone from another settlement than their own so many travel to spring fairs and courting festivals to seek a spouse. These young men and women are often unable to reach such events by caravan, but could be flown there by a novice griffon rider. Amiraspians consider it good luck for a bride or groom to be carried to their wedding by griffon, or ideally a mated pair of griffons, although few courting couples are that fortunate. Courting flights may lead to marriage for the griffon rider too, and this happens frequently enough it has become a clichéd trope of amiraspian storytelling.

(Originally created by Albie Fiore; appeared in White Dwarf Magazine #21 (Oct/Nov 1980) as part of the Fiend Factory mini-module "One-Eye Canyon", edited by Albie Fiore.)
 
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Cleon

Legend
Amiraspian Griffon Rider Mystic
Medium humanoid, any non-lawful alignment
Armor Class 16 (mystic armor)
Hit Points 110 (17d8 + 34)
Speed 30 ft.

STR​
DEX​
CON​
INT​
WIS​
CHA​
17 (+3)​
16 (+3)​
15 (+2)​
12 (+1)​
16 (+3)​
13 (+1)​

Saving Throws DEX +6, INT +4, WIS +6
Skills Acrobatics +6, Animal Handling +6, Nature +4, Perception +6
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 16
Languages Common, Giant and either Gnoll or Goblin
Challenge 6 (2,300 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Monocular Illusion Resistance. The amiraspian has advantage on saving throws against illusions that include visual elements it can see.

Poor Depth Perception. The amiraspian has disadvantage on attack rolls with a ranged weapon or melee weapon if the target is more than 5 feet away.

Mystic Armor. While the griffon rider mystic isn't wearing armor, its base AC becomes 13 plus its Dexterity modifier. This protection ends if the mystic dons armor or becomes unconscious.

Innate Spellcasting. The griffon rider mystic's innate spellcasting ability is Wisdom (spell save DC 14, +6 to hit with spell attacks). It can innately cast the following spells, requiring no material components.
  • At will: detect magic, detect poison and disease, expeditious retreat, speak with animals
  • 1/day each: commune with nature
Spellcasting. The griffon rider mystic is an 8th-level spellcaster. Its spellcasting ability is Wisdom (spell save DC 14, +6 to hit with spell attacks). It has two 4th-level spell slots it regains when it finishes a short or long rest. It knows the following spells:
  • Cantrips: eyebolt, guidance, prestidigitation, resistance
  • 1st-4th level (2 slots): animal messenger, conjure animals (only summons gryphon spirit), dispel magic, dominate beast, feather fall, find steed (only summons gryphon spirit), fly, freedom of movement, protection from energy, protection from poison, wind wall
Thunderbolt Toxology. When the griffon rider mystic makes a ranged attack, it can choose to add either 5 (2d4) lightning damage or 5 (2d4) thunder damage to it (included in the attack).

Gryphon Spirit. The griffon rider mystic has formed a long-lasting bond with a spirit that assumes the form of an unusually intelligent, strong, and loyal griffon. Whenever the mystic casts find steed or [conjure animals, it always summons this spirit. The mystic may only summon one gryphon spirit at a time, so while the spirit is summoned, the mystic cannot cast find steed or conjure animals to summon another. The mystic can't have more than one gryphon spirit bonded to them. Either the mystic or the spirit can release the bond as an action at any time, causing the spirit to disappear.
 This spirit has the statistics of a griffon, but is a fey creature with an Intelligence of 6. It has the ability to understand every language the griffon rider mystic can but can't speak them. When the gryphon spirit is within 1 mile of the mystic, they can communicate telepathically.
  The gryphon spirit serves the mystic as a mount, both in combat and out, and the pair share an instinctive bond that allows them to fight as a seamless unit. While mounted on their spirit, the griffon rider mystic can make any spell they cast that targets only the mystic also target the spirit.
 When the spirit drops to 0 hit points, it disappears, leaving behind no physical form. The mystic can also dismiss the spirit at any time as an action, causing it to disappear. In either case, casting find steed or conjure animals again summons the same spirit, restored to its hit point maximum.

Running Leap. With a 10-foot running start, the griffon rider can long jump up to 25 feet.

Actions

Multiattack. The griffon rider mystic makes four melee attacks: two with its scimitar and two with its shortsword. Or the mystic makes three ranged attacks, either with its longbow or its eyebolts.

Scimitar. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d6 + 3) slashing damage.

Shortsword. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d6 + 3) piercing damage.

Longbow. Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, range 150/600 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 3) piercing damage, plus either 5 (2d4) lightning damage or 5 (2d4) thunder damage (mystic's choice).

Eyebolt. Ranged Spell Attack: +6 to hit, range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d10 + 3) force damage, plus either 5 (2d4) lightning damage or 5 (2d4) thunder damage (mystic's choice).

Bonus Actions

Eye of the Eagle. The griffon rider mystic selects a target it can see. As long as the griffon rider maintains concentration, it can attack the selected target without disadvantage on attack rolls from its Poor Depth Perception. The griffon rider can end this effect as a free action, literally in an eye blink.
 Should the griffon rider already have an Eye of the Eagle target when it uses Eye of the Eagle, the griffon rider gains advantage on its next ranged attack roll against the selected target if it still has concentration.

Leap of the Lion. If the griffon rider mystic uses Running Leap or moves at least 20 feet straight towards a creature, it can use its bonus action to make a melee weapon attack against that creature. If it hits, that target must succeed on a DC 14 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Rake of the Panther. If the griffon rider mystic is within 5 feet of a prone or grappled creature, it can use its bonus action to make a melee weapon attack against that creature.

Reactions

Feather Fall. If the griffon rider mystic falls, it can use a reaction to cast feather fall on itself without expending a spell slot, requiring no material components.


Description

Amiraspian griffon rider mystics are cyclops-eyed humanoids like other amiraspians (see Amiraspian Griffon Rider). They dress in weird garments of feathers and fur instead of the conventional armor and clothes worn by regular griffon riders. A griffon mystic has strange symbols on their clothes and accessories, the most common being the Trikyklopes – three circular eyes in a triangle. A griffon rider mystic is armed with a longbow and several pairs of light blades, normally two shortswords and two scimitars. These mystics are rare and often have very eccentric personalities. Some live as mountaintop hermits with only birds and griffons for company, but most spend at least part of their time in an eyrie with standard martial griffon riders.
 The griffon rider mystic detailed above is a typical example. Mystics often have different spells than the example and some have different and/or additional abilities. These alternative powers often match the abilities of a barbarian (e.g. Danger Sense, Feral Instinct), ranger (e.g. Feral Senses, Hide in Plain Sight, Land's Stride, Natural Explorer, Primal Awareness), monk (e.g. Deflect Missiles, Evasion, Stillness of Mind, Purity of Body) or another standard class, but could be strange powers only revealed to griffon mystics.
Eye of Lightning. Griffon rider mystics have many supernatural powers, the most notable of which is firing eldritch thunderbolts from their single eye. Even without these Eyebolts, a mystic is a skilled fighter as skilled with melee and missile weapons as an expert amiraspian warrior (for example, a Griffon Rider Gallant). Their abilities resemble a cross between an eldritch warrior and a warlock but are actually spiritual in nature, like a druid or shamanic priest. In battle a mystic uses eyebolts, martial arts and support spells to deadly effect. In peace they act as sages and spiritual advisors to griffon riders and other amiraspians who seek their council. Not all eyries have griffon mystics and those that do typically only have one, possible with an apprentice or two. The record house of the griffon rider's Grand Eyrie always has multiple griffon mystics, both active mystics researching magical or historical texts and elderly mystics who have chosen to retire to its halls.
Spirit Allies. Arguably, a griffon rider mystic's most crucial role is acting as an intermediary to the spiritual and divine. While a standard griffon rider is partnered with a flesh-and-blood griffon, a mystic's griffon is a spirit creature from the Feywild (the Gryphon Spirit in the mystic's Traits). An apprentice griffon mystic first learns how to summon this entity in the form of an eagle with the abilities of a Blood Hawk, but as they develop their spiritual powers their partner evolves in form. First to a Panther, then a Lion, then a Giant Eagle, then finally a Griffon. It is said that legendary mystics had gryphon spirit partners whose powers rivalled an elemental or young dragon.
Note: Although many griffon mystics can only summon their gryphon spirit partner, a substantial portion can summon other creatures. The griffon rider mystic's Challenge Rating includes their gryphon spirit partner and any other conjured companions.

Triple-Eyed Mysticism. All amiraspian mystics believe in a vast host of spiritual forces and beings, but the key figures in their belief system are Arges, Brontes and Steropes; three semi-divine cyclopes who made the thunderbolts of the King of the Gods. The trikyklopes worn by most mystics symbolizes these immortal one-eyed giants. The mystics say that long ago, these godlike Cyclopes took pity after seeing the monstrous Amiraspi Cyclops exiling one of their half-human children to die. They tossed a splinter of thunderbolt into the child's eye, gifting it with the power of eyebolts. Guided by the Trikyklopes, this youngster became the first ever mystic. This first mystic inspired other exiled amiraspi cyclops offspring to travel into the mountains and found the Amiraspian nation.
 Becoming a griffon rider mystic is as much revelation as practice. Sometimes a completely ordinary amiraspian will be going about their mundane business when they have a sudden vision of one, two, or all three of the Trikyklopes, who tells them they're a mystic now. More often, an elderly mystic will find a civilian child or trainee griffon rider (see Novice Griffon Rider) who the deific Cyclopes gave given the spark of mystic insight and take them on as an apprentice. The magical and religious beliefs of a griffon rider mystic vary greatly from individual to individual. One mystic's teachings can be wildly different from another's, and can sometimes be completely contradictory. This is rarely a cause for conflict, since mystics say their understanding of their revelations is limited by their mortal perspective, much like a squat cylinder can look like a circle from the end but a rectangle from the side.

(Originally created by Albie Fiore; appeared in White Dwarf Magazine #21 (Oct/Nov 1980) as part of the Fiend Factory mini-module "One-Eye Canyon", edited by Albie Fiore.)
 
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Casimir Liber

Adventurer
Still musing on names - did you have any particular spells in mind for the spellcasters? Maybe a name related to that...

Maybe "warhawk" as they can summon bloodhawks? or giant eagles? or a group of five of them can summon a roc?
 

Cleon

Legend
Still musing on names - did you have any particular spells in mind for the spellcasters? Maybe a name related to that...

Maybe "warhawk" as they can summon bloodhawks? or giant eagles? or a group of five of them can summon a roc?

I imagine it as mostly attacking with eldritch blast style beams it shoots from its eye or using weapons like a Gallant, except with a bit more lethality as I was thinking of making it around Challenge 6 or 7.

As for summoning, I was going to give it a magical spirit steed like a Paladin, except it's a Griffon.

Other spells I was thinking about were utility / maneuver / defensive ones like fly and feather fall and mage armor.

Although I did wonder about giving it something like a Monk's Unarmored Defense instead of mage armor, so it can use DEX + WIS or DEX + CHA for its Armour Class when "naked."

So basically going for a mystic warrior more than a spellcaster. Wasn't planning to give it any offensive magic apart from the warlock style eldritch blast eyebeam attack.

Hmm… Griffon Rider Mystic Warrior might work as a name.

EDIT: Then again, I'm viewing Griffon Riders as ALL being "mystic Warriors" so maybe the Warhawk/Warlock version is just one that's much, much better at the rider's form of mysticism.

So Griffon Rider Mystic Master perhaps?
 
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Cleon

Legend
For the Novice Griffon Rider I was thinking about moving its Eye of the Eagle ability from Bonus Actions to Actions on the idea that, being a novice, it takes it more time and concentration to activate the power than a fully seasoned Griffon Rider would.

It would give it disadvantage on ranged attacks more often as it'll need an action to "take aim", but that could be viewed more as a bug than a feature.

Alternatively, we could give the Novice the Bonus Action version of Eye of the Eagle but remove the Archery so it just gets +3 to hit with its longbow.

Does either of those sound like a good idea to you?
 



Cleon

Legend
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