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

Cleon

Hero
Okay, comparing the Enworld Pine Kindred Fircarl to the D&D Beyond Fircarl.

Should have "Armor Class 14 (natural armor)".

Needs "Damage Resistances lightning, poison; piercing from nonmagical attacks", although I believe D&D Beyond is uncooperative about single type nonmagical damage resistances so that might be problematic.

Fircarls can speak, so have "Languages Druidic, Sylvan".

Noticed a couple of grammatical errors in in my Description, as follows.

The first paragraph was missing an "a" in the last sentence. I've changed it to "Fircarls bear inferior equipment and are typically only armed with a spear plus a few darts stuck through their belts."

Fircarl Creation has two bolsters, it's corrected to "Most thane "pretenders to jarldom" create fircarls to bolster their ranks with this spell" with just one.

The Sap is The Life had a typo (a creature that should be creation).

Finally, The Sap is The Life and Sapdrinking Insanity both have multiple italic phrases that are not italicized in D&D Beyond. Here's the Enworld version with the italics highlighted in blue and the creature/creation error in red:

The Sap is The Life. A fircarl is basically a Pine Kindred who didn't receive enough Necrotic Sap Infusion at its creation to produce a full-blooded Kindred. This gives fircarls a perpetual thirst for sap containing the Gift of Nidhogg. A fircarl who perform exceptionally well is often rewarded with Nidhogg's Gift by their Thane or Jarl.​
 Fircarls do not naturally regrow lost body parts like true Kindred, but if an undamaged fircarl receives a Necrotic Sap Infusion it gains the Pine Kindred ability of Regrowth from the excessive dosage of sap. The fircarl loses one excess dose of Gift per season (3 months), and its Regrowth ability ends once its oversaturation with Nidhogg's Gift ceases.​
 There is another method of absorbing sap: cannibalism. If a fircarl eats or drinks the sap of a dead Kindred, it becomes infused with however many doses of Gift of Nidhogg the sap contained (the full dosages of Kindred are ½ for resin-thrall, 1 for fircarl, 2 for pine kindred, 4 for thane and 8 for jarl; assuming the entire body is devoured and the kindred did not expend any doses via Necrotic Sap Infusion). Most Kindred societies consider this practice abhorrent but a few encourage fircarls to honor fallen comrades by eating them, or even allow them to devour corpses from enemy jarldoms. Multiple fircarls can share a Kindred corpse to divide its doses between them. Note that only the standard types of kindred can be cannibalized, not the bestial or brutish forms such as Resin-Hounds or Tree-Vargr.​
 A fircarl can "evolve" into a true Pine Kindred if infused with enough doses of Gift. Normally this is done during a Pine Kindred Initiation ceremony. This promotion requires four doses of Necrotic Sap Infusion, at least two doses of which must come from a Jarl, just like the normal Initiation of a Pine Kindred from a living humanoid. If a pine kindred is ever infused with 5 or more doses of excess sap it can spontaneously transform into a full-blooded Kindred by succeeding on a Charisma check against a DC of 25 minus the number of excess doses it is infused with.​
Sapdrinking Insanity. A fircarl can be tainted with madness and so overcome by sap-thirst they will prey on its own kin. Called a sapdrinker, these undead serial killers are very rare and occur at random, but the madness is more likely to happen to a fircarl who was a particularly evil person when alive and infused with necrotic sap from enemy Jarldoms in undeath. Sapdrinkers may have a higher Intelligence or Charisma score than a normal fircarl. Knowing they would be destroyed if discovered, these insane fircarls resort to secret murder. Resin-thralls are their usual victims, being weak and unlikely to be missed, or Kindred from an antagonistic neighboring tribe. Should the fircarl consume enough Gift of Nidhogg to become a full-blooded Pine Kindred it is either killed immediately or escapes to become an outcast who only the most depraved Traitor Thane would shelter. All mainstream Pine Kindred view sapdrinking as a blasphemous crime.​
 Sane fircarls lose their thirst for necrotic sap once they become full-blooded kindred, but not those corrupted by sap-thirst. Even if a sapdrinker becomes a Thane or Jarl it never loses the thirst, which it feeds by bleeding Kindred captives or unfavored minions. Sapdrinkers may have special devices to squeeze every last drop of sap from their Pine Kindred victims or their corpses: boiling them in kettles or grinding them in mills. Some are connoisseurs who savor liquors refined from necrotic sap and herbs in alchemical stills.​
 

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Cleon

Hero
Comparing the Enworld Pine Kindred Resin-Thrall to the D&D Beyond Resin-Thrall.

The usual "Armor Class 13 (natural armor)" error.

It's missing bludgeoning vulnerability, should be "Damage Vulnerabilities bludgeoning, fire, slashing".

Noticed a "to slowly seeping" grammatical error in Evolution of the Lost, and have corrected that phrase to "it may begin to slowly seep into the buried bodies of the surviving resin-thralls".

That whole first paragraph of Evolution looks overly long and a bit clumsily worded. Perhaps I should polish it up a bit?

Which do you think is better, this:

Evolution of the Lost [Original]. If all the true pine kindred and fircarls in a tribe are destroyed, any resin-thralls that remain will either witlessly continue any tasks they were assigned to or sleep under the ground. Most will eventually fall apart from their labors, rot away to the elements, or be destroyed by some accident or enemy. As the remains of the pine kindred decompose, the necrotic energies in their bodies leeches into the soil, poisoning nearby plants. This pollution pools in unhallowed places such as an Unholy Grove, mixing with any other necromantic residues in the area. If nothing directs these malign forces, such as another pine kindred tribe or a hag coven performing rituals nearby, it may begin to slowly seep into the buried bodies of the surviving resin-thralls. Normally this just preserves the resin-thralls, staving off decay for many years or even decades before they perish, but in particularly favorable circumstances a resin-thrall can metabolize these energies into Gift of Nidhogg. After years of enough exposure the thrall may accumulate enough Gift to evolve into a fircarl, rising from the soil as a fully sapient pine kindred. The newborn fircarl instinctively starts on the long path of seeking more Gift of Nidhogg to become a full-blooded pine kindred and studying the Dark Druidic Mysteries, with the ultimate aim of becoming a Jarl and founding a new tribe.​

or this:

Evolution of the Lost [Polished]. If all the true pine kindred and fircarls in a tribe are destroyed, any resin-thralls that survive will either continue whatever task they were assigned or sleep under the ground until they are destroyed by decay, accident or an enemy. When pine kindred decompose, their necrotic energies leech into the soil, poisoning nearby plants and pooling in unhallowed places such as an Unholy Grove. If nothing directs these malign forces, such as a hag coven or other pine kindred performing rituals, it may slowly seep into any resin-thralls buried nearby. Normally this just staves off decay for a few more decades before the thrall perishes, but in particularly favorable conditions a resin-thrall can metabolize accumulated necrotic energy into Gift of Nidhogg and transform into a fircarl. Rising from the soil, the newborn fircarl seeks more Gift in order to evolve into a full-blooded pine kindred and study the Dark Druidic Mysteries, with the ultimate aim of becoming a Jarl and founding a new tribe.​

The shorter version has pretty much the same information and I think it'd worded better. Shall I swap it in to the Enworld Resin-Thrall?
 


Casimir Liber

Adventurer
Comparing the Enworld Pine Kindred Resin-Thrall to the D&D Beyond Resin-Thrall.

The usual "Armor Class 13 (natural armor)" error.

It's missing bludgeoning vulnerability, should be "Damage Vulnerabilities bludgeoning, fire, slashing".

Noticed a "to slowly seeping" grammatical error in Evolution of the Lost, and have corrected that phrase to "it may begin to slowly seep into the buried bodies of the surviving resin-thralls".

That whole first paragraph of Evolution looks overly long and a bit clumsily worded. Perhaps I should polish it up a bit?

Which do you think is better, this:

Evolution of the Lost [Original]. If all the true pine kindred and fircarls in a tribe are destroyed, any resin-thralls that remain will either witlessly continue any tasks they were assigned to or sleep under the ground. Most will eventually fall apart from their labors, rot away to the elements, or be destroyed by some accident or enemy. As the remains of the pine kindred decompose, the necrotic energies in their bodies leeches into the soil, poisoning nearby plants. This pollution pools in unhallowed places such as an Unholy Grove, mixing with any other necromantic residues in the area. If nothing directs these malign forces, such as another pine kindred tribe or a hag coven performing rituals nearby, it may begin to slowly seep into the buried bodies of the surviving resin-thralls. Normally this just preserves the resin-thralls, staving off decay for many years or even decades before they perish, but in particularly favorable circumstances a resin-thrall can metabolize these energies into Gift of Nidhogg. After years of enough exposure the thrall may accumulate enough Gift to evolve into a fircarl, rising from the soil as a fully sapient pine kindred. The newborn fircarl instinctively starts on the long path of seeking more Gift of Nidhogg to become a full-blooded pine kindred and studying the Dark Druidic Mysteries, with the ultimate aim of becoming a Jarl and founding a new tribe.​

or this:

Evolution of the Lost [Polished]. If all the true pine kindred and fircarls in a tribe are destroyed, any resin-thralls that survive will either continue whatever task they were assigned or sleep under the ground until they are destroyed by decay, accident or an enemy. When pine kindred decompose, their necrotic energies leech into the soil, poisoning nearby plants and pooling in unhallowed places such as an Unholy Grove. If nothing directs these malign forces, such as a hag coven or other pine kindred performing rituals, it may slowly seep into any resin-thralls buried nearby. Normally this just staves off decay for a few more decades before the thrall perishes, but in particularly favorable conditions a resin-thrall can metabolize accumulated necrotic energy into Gift of Nidhogg and transform into a fircarl. Rising from the soil, the newborn fircarl seeks more Gift in order to evolve into a full-blooded pine kindred and study the Dark Druidic Mysteries, with the ultimate aim of becoming a Jarl and founding a new tribe.​

The shorter version has pretty much the same information and I think it'd worded better. Shall I swap it in to the Enworld Resin-Thrall?
agree - shorter version is an improvement.
 


Cleon

Hero
Pine kindred fixed to here
jarl to here
thane to here
fircarl to here

will continue later

The base Pine Kindred and the Jarl are finished.

The thane is still missing lightning resistance, it should have "Damage Resistances lightning, poison; bludgeoning, piercing and slashing from nonmagical attacks".

Can we do anything about the fircarl's damage resistance only affecting piercing from nonmagical attacks?

Fircarls don't have any Skills remember, so you should cut that entire line out (presumably it's a copy-paste from the base Pine Kindred).
 
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Cleon

Hero
Okay, checked the Resin-Hound and it has a couple of issues.

Does it matter that (natural armor) isn't in brackets?

It's missing its poison resistance; should have "Damage Resistances cold, poison".

The Baying Wail is the old version that affects humanoids as well as animals. It ought to be:

Baying Wail. The resin-hound bays a terrifying hunting call as a bonus action. The hound must take a bonus action on its subsequent turns to continue wailing but can stop wailing at any time. The wail ends if the resin-hound is incapacitated or makes a bite attack. Every animal within 300 feet of the resin-hound that can hear the wail must succeed on a DC 8 Wisdom saving throw or be frightened and act as if affected by a suggestion spell telling them to "run in terror".​
 If the animal is within 300 feet of the kindred, it must move on its turn away from the hound by the most direct route, trying to get as far away as possible. The target tries to circumvent opportunity attacks and obvious damaging terrain, such as lava or a pit. While affected by the wail, a target ignores the wails of other pine kindred (including resin-hounds). If the target stops hearing the wail or flees outside ear shot (i.e. more than 300 feet away from the wailing hound) they are no longer affected by that wail.​
 Whenever it takes damage, the target can repeat the saving throw. The target can also repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns. A target who successfully saves is immune to the wails of any pine kindred with the same or fewer Hit Dice as the resin-hound they saved against, but can be affected by wail attacks from pine kindred with more Hit Dice, such as the shrieking wails of standard Pine Kindred and Thanes.​
 
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Cleon

Hero
The Tree-Jotun has a few differences to the D&D Beyond tree-jotun.

Its damage resistance to nonmagical attacks only affects piercing, like a Fircarl.

Should be "Damage Resistances cold, poison; piercing from nonmagical attacks".

The passive Perception in Senses should be 10.

It's missing Rooted Stability.

The Description is fine.
 


Cleon

Hero
Just realized a problem with the wording of the wail actions of those Pine Kindred that possess that attack.

They all end "but can be affected by the shrieking wails of pine kindred with more Hit Dice."

However, we created multiple different wails: Shrieking for the Pine Kindred, Pine Kindred Jarl and Pine Kindred Thane, Baying for the Resin-Hound and Howling for the Tree-Vargr, so the above should not have used shrieking wails but just wails.

I've changed them all to "but can be affected by wail attacks from pine kindred with more Hit Dice," some of which have "such as Thanes or Jarls" (for base Pine Kindred), "such as Jarls" (for Thanes), or "such as the shrieking wails of standard Pine Kindred and Thanes" (for Resin-Thralls) and afterwards.
 

Casimir Liber

Adventurer
Right. starting from the top again, Pine Kindred now here
Jarl now here
Fircarl now here (skills removed. I can't tweak to make resistant to nonmagical piercing only sadly)
resinhound now here
resinthrall now here
thane now here

out of time - will dlbe check last couple in several hours
 
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Cleon

Hero
Right. starting from the top again, Pine Kindred now here
Jarl now here
Fircarl now here (skills removed. I can't tweak to make resistant to nonmagical piercing only sadly)
resinhound now here
resinthrall now here
thane now here

out of time - will dlbe check last couple in several hours

The base Pine Kindred, Jarl and Thane are good to go.

For the Fircarl, maybe just make it resistant to piercing damage? It'd be closer to the original than also making it resistant to nonmagical bludgeoning and slashing, since at least it's only protected against one damage type (it's kind of a reverse Skeleton).

You've added the new Baying Wail text to the Resin-Hound but failed to remove the old humanoid-affecting version's text, so it's got like four surplus paragraphs.

The Resin-Thrall still needs (natural armor) not skin.
 



Cleon

Hero
Oh, I've just noticed some of the Enworld versions have "exhausted" which should be "exhaustion" since that's how the MM prefers to spell that Condition Immunity.

Will correct them.

It doesn't affect the D&D Beyond versions.
 




Cleon

Hero

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