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

Cleon

Legend
The weresnake is a shapeshifter that can adopt the form of a humanoid, a giant snake or a snake-humanoid hybrid with a humanoid torso, arms and head (albeit with snakelike eyes and fangs) and the lower body of a giant snake.

Even in human form, their speech takes on hissing sibilant tones and they have a slow stealthy movement.

They generally dwell in warmer climes - swamps, forests or (less commonly) urban areas, and enjoy company of serpents of all kinds.

The first paragraph is pretty redundant as half of it repeats information in the Shapechanger trait.

What do you think of this:

Weresnakes are insidious lycanthropes who delight in stalking and killing humanoids. In humanoid form they tend to be thin but muscular and unusually flexible. They prefer to fight in their hybrid form, which has a scaled humanoid upper body from the waist up while the lower half is that of a giant snake. The head appears disturbingly human apart from having the slit-pupiled eyes and venomous fangs of a viper.
 These reptilian lycanthropes typically prey on travelers and strangers who are unlikely to be missed, but will happily murder locals if they think they can get away with it. Weresnakes are highly insular, and most believe only their children and closest companions deserve to join their ranks. They go to great lengths to slay surviving victims who are infected with their curse.
 A weresnake is only comfortable in hot, humid conditions. Most live in tropical swamps and jungles, typically in wilderness areas although some hide in settlements. They like to lair beside water, either in a cave or burrow or some kind of building. Weresnakes are perfectly capable of constructing a hut or house, but prefer to murder a building's original owners and move in. Weresnakes enjoy the company of serpents of all kinds and often keep them as pets.

VARIANT: WERESNAKE SERPENTCALLER
A few weresnakes have the ability to summon venomous snakes. Known as serpentcallers, a weresnake with this ability is revered by its fellow serpent-men and is often the leader, spiritual advisor, or elder sage in a weresnake nest. A serpentcaller is Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) and gains the following action option.
Summon Serpents. The weresnake serpentcaller can innately casts a 2nd-level spell called conjure serpents at will, requiring no material components. This spell summons 2 giant poisonous snake [or 5 (1d3 + 3) poisonous snakes?] and is otherwise identical to the conjure animalsspell.
Thought I'd forgotten the original monster could summon giant poisonous snakes, didn't you!

A back-of-the-envelope calculation says the above would make the Serpentcaller roughly Offensive CR 6 and Defensive CR 1/4, so it's even more of a glass cannon than a regular Weresnake.

My original draft used "This spell summons 2 (1d3) giant poisonous snakes [or 4 (1d3 + 2) poisonous snakes? / 6 (1d3 + 4) poisonous snakes?]" to match the original's 1-3 snake summoning, but the problem is the CR swung a lot depending on how many snakes appear.

While it's Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) with two giant poisonous snakes, if it gets three it guesstimates to be Challenge 5 (1,800 XP) and if it only has one it's Challenge 3 (450 XP).

Alternatively, we could make it:

A few weresnakes have the ability to summon venomous snakes. Known as serpentcallers, a weresnake with this ability is revered by its fellow serpent-men and is often the leader, spiritual advisor, or elder sage in a weresnake nest. A serpentcaller is Challenge 3 (700 XP) and gains the following action option.
Summon Serpents (Recharges After A Short Rest) #2. The weresnake serpentcaller innately casts a 2nd-level spell called conjure serpents, requiring no material components. This spell summons 2 giant poisonous snakes [or 5 (1d3 + 3) poisonous snakes?] and is otherwise identical to the conjure animalsspell.
I reckon that not having it spam the conjuring at-will but only having one set of snakes in a fight will nudge the Challenge Rating down a notch.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Cleon

Legend
Even in human form, their speech takes on hissing sibilant tones and they have a slow stealthy movement.

Forgot to include this bit. Hmm…

Maybe change the first paragraph to:

Weresnakes are insidious lycanthropes who delight in stalking and killing humanoids. In humanoid form they tend to be thin but muscular and unusually flexible. They move slowly and smoothly with occasional bursts of startling speed. A weresnake's voice is a sibilant hissing, but when in human form they can disguise this by careful pronunciation and usually speak normally with, at most, a slight lisp. Weresnakes prefer to fight in their hybrid form, which has a scaled humanoid upper body from the waist up while the lower half is that of a giant snake. The head appears disturbingly human apart from having the slit-pupiled eyes and venomous fangs of a viper.​
 




Cleon

Legend

There's multiple differences.

First, my version doesn't have Keen Smell, mostly because a 5E Giant Poisonous Snake doesn't have that special trait.

I'm fine adding it to the Enworld Weresnake if you like it.

Second, the Bite has the wrong DC and is missing its poison damage. Oops!

Bite (Snake or Hybrid Form Only). Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d4 + 3) piercing damage, and the target must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw, taking 10 (3d6) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. If a humanoid target takes poison damage from the bite and survives, it must succeed on a DC 12 Constitution saving throw or be cursed with weresnake lycanthropy.
Third, its Hand Crossbow should be a Blowgun with poisoned quarrels.

Blowgun (Humanoid or Hybrid Form Only). Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, range 25/100 ft., one target. Hit: 1 piercing damage, and the target must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw, taking 10 (3d6) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.
Fourth, and finally, the Serpentcaller variant has multiple glitches in Summon Serpent. It should be as follows.

A few weresnakes have the ability to summon venomous snakes. Known as serpentcallers, a weresnake with this ability is revered by its fellow serpent-men and is often the leader, spiritual advisor, or elder sage in a weresnake nest. A serpentcaller is Challenge 3 (700 XP) and gains the following action option.
Summon Serpents (Recharges After A Short Rest). The weresnake serpentcaller innately casts a 2nd-level spell called conjure serpents, requiring no material components. This spell summons 2 giant poisonous snake or 5 (1d3 + 3) poisonous snakes and is otherwise identical to the conjure animals spell.
I think that's everything.
 





Remove ads

AD6_gamerati_skyscraper

Remove ads

Upcoming Releases

Top