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

Cleon

Hero
I like Foes of Humankind as a subtitle heading, as the original text used that phrase.

Oh, I'm undecided on whether to capitalize the Amiraspian in their name or not. If it's just a descriptive part of their name, the 5E style appears to be to not capitalize (the Monster Manual has "abominable yeti" for example). It doesn't look right to me though, since "Amiraspian" is treated as a proper noun for the Griffon-riders.

Hmm… there are 5E monster writeups that mainly use only part of their names in their writeups. A Horned Devil (Malebranche), for example, just uses "devil" in its statblock.

We could do that, and just use "cyclops" in the statblock and most of the Description, and only have a few uses of "Amiraspian" which we can strategically arrange to the start a sentence so they'd be capitalized either way.

So, instead of:

Hypnotic Stare. As a bonus action, the Amiraspian/amiraspian? cyclops's eye becomes a twisting vortex of colors and it stares at a creature within 60 feet. If the target can see the cyclops it must make a DC 12 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature becomes charmed for 1 minute. While charmed by the stare, the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0. The effect ends if an affected creature takes any damage, or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.​
 A target that successfully saves is immune to this cyclops's stare for the next 24 hours.​

It'd be

Hypnotic Stare. As a bonus action, the cyclops's eye becomes a twisting vortex of colors and it stares at a creature within 60 feet. If the target can see the cyclops it must make a DC 12 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature becomes charmed for 1 minute. While charmed by the stare, the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0. The effect ends if an affected creature takes any damage, or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.​
 A target that successfully saves is immune to this cyclops's stare for the next 24 hours.​

Yes, I like that…

Updating the Cyclops with some Red Questions?
 
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Cleon

Hero
Let me rephrase myself: :)



EDIT: Just noticed that 'giants' in the first sentence no longer applies.

Well there's plenty of 5E monsters with "giant" in their name and Descriptions which aren't giant type, such as the various giant animals.

That phrasing does make it a bit confusing though.

Regarding the "rapey bits" that are a bit, ah, problematic for a 5E family-friendly production, I've thought of an alternative approach.

These are fey right? Fey are notorious for kidnapping babies and replacing them with their own, a Changeling.

So maybe that's what these Cyclopes do. They kidnap pregnant women, and during the birth they somehow transform the baby into a cyclops?

Sometimes this transformation doesn't work (resulting in a human baby that is eaten), sometimes it only half-works (resulting in a Cyclopean human).

That introduces an element of "rescue the babies" to the plot, since they aren't monsters in the womb, but are turned into monsters when born.

In the original adventure, what are the PCs supposed to do with the baby cyclopes most of the 1d6 pregnant ladies will give birth to? Kill them? Put them in an orphanage? Try to raise them NOT to be man-eating rapacious monsters?
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
I like Foes of Humankind as a subtitle heading, as the original text used that phrase.
Agreed.

EDIT: Uhm..., but where? Instead of Man-Eaters?
Oh, I'm undecided on whether to capitalize the Amiraspian in their name or not. If it's just a descriptive part of their name, the 5E style appears to be to not capitalize (the Monster Manual has "abominable yeti" for example). It doesn't look right to me though, since "Amiraspian" is treated as a proper noun for the Griffon-riders.

Hmm… there are 5E monster writeups that mainly use only part of their names in their writeups. A Horned Devil (Malebranche), for example, just uses "devil" in its statblock.

We could do that, and just use "cyclops" in the statblock and most of the Description, and only have a few uses of "Amiraspian" which we can strategically arrange to the start a sentence so they'd be capitalized either way.

So, instead of:

Hypnotic Stare. As a bonus action, the Amiraspian/amiraspian? cyclops's eye becomes a twisting vortex of colors and it stares at a creature within 60 feet. If the target can see the cyclops it must make a DC 12 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature becomes charmed for 1 minute. While charmed by the stare, the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0. The effect ends if an affected creature takes any damage, or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.​
 A target that successfully saves is immune to this cyclops's stare for the next 24 hours.​

It'd be

Hypnotic Stare. As a bonus action, the cyclops's eye becomes a twisting vortex of colors and it stares at a creature within 60 feet. If the target can see the cyclops it must make a DC 12 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature becomes charmed for 1 minute. While charmed by the stare, the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0. The effect ends if an affected creature takes any damage, or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.​
 A target that successfully saves is immune to this cyclops's stare for the next 24 hours.​

Yes, I like that…
Good thinking and agreed.
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
Well there's plenty of 5E monsters with "giant" in their name and Descriptions which aren't giant type, such as the various giant animals.

That phrasing does make it a bit confusing though.
Don't favor giant. It was still in there because my original write-up still thought they were going to be giants. But then what? Humanoid probably isn't the way to go coz they're not creature type Humanoid. "Fey" sounds silly?
Hmm...
Monstrous humanoid?

Regarding the "rapey bits" that are a bit, ah, problematicfor a 5E family-friendly production, I've thought of an alternative approach.

These are fey right? Fey are notorious for kidnapping babies and replacing them with their own, a Changeling.
Hmm... They are fey and that's what fey do, but I think this is too much of a concession. I never familyfriendlyize old-school monsters for my own conversions because... well, many reasons we probably shouldn't go in to here.
Can't we just come up with some less objectionable turn of phrase? Or is the problem that we can't even refer to the whole concept of them... getting women with child?
So maybe that's what these Cyclopes do. They kidnap pregnant women, and during the birth they somehow transform the baby into a cyclops?
Hmm..., Satanic Panic anyone?
Sometimes this transformation doesn't work (resulting in a human baby that is eaten), sometimes it only half-works (resulting in a Cyclopean human).
Hmm..., come to think of it: Eating babies may also be a bit of a problem because..., well, pizzerias.
That introduces an element of "rescue the babies" to the plot, since they aren't monsters in the womb, but are turned into monsters when born.

In the original adventure, what are the PCs supposed to do with the baby cyclopes most of the 1d6 pregnant ladies will give birth to? Kill them? Put them in an orphanage? Try to raise them NOT to be man-eating rapacious monsters?
Cringe and vomit, but I see what you mean.

So, does the whole women and children thing have to go?

Come to think of it, maybe kidnapping pregnant women isn't such a bad idea after all. And then shamans pray to gods to transform the kids after birth to avoid people connecting the transformation to vile rituals performed on dark altars.
Maybe they gauge out an eye of each kid after birth and then the cyclopes somehow 'know' which ones are going to be what? Hmm..., too construed contrived?
 

Cleon

Hero
Agreed.

EDIT: Uhm..., but where? Instead of Man-Eaters?

The original text referred to was the White Dwarf #21 version:

Cyclops can be found in almost any terrain, including underground complexes. They habitually dwell in caves. They are frequently found in control of a group of orcs, gnolls, svarts, goblins or hobgoblins that they dominate because of their ferocity and strength. They are innate foes of humankind and continually raid villages for females and food.

Hmm, Innate Foes of Humanity has a certain ring to it too, but it doesn't really need Innate in a Description subheading…

Good thinking and agreed.

I'll remove the Amiraspian? from my Cyclops working draft.

Here's the former version:

Amiraspian Cyclops
Large fey, chaotic evil
Armor Class 13 (natural armor)
Hit Points 76 (9d10 + 27)
Speed 30 ft.


STR​
DEX​
CON​
INT​
WIS​
CHA​
18 (+4)​
12 (+1)​
17 (+3)​
10 (+0)​
9 (–1)​
14 (+2)​

Saving Throws WIS +1
Skills Perception +1
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 11
Languages Giant, Gnoll, Goblin
Challenge 3 (700 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

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


Poor Depth Perception. The Amiraspian? cyclops has disadvantage on its attack roll if the target is more than 10 feet away.

Aggressive. As a bonus action, the Amiraspian? cyclops can move up to its speed towards a hostile creature that it can see.

Actions

Multiattack. The Amiraspian? cyclops makes three attacks: one with its bite and two with its claws; or it makes two attacks with its greatclub or rocks.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (2d6 + 4) piercing damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6 + 4) piercing damage.

Greatclub. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) bludgeoning damage.

Rock. Ranged Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, range 20/60 ft., one target. Hit: 9 (2d4 + 4) bludgeoning damage
.

Bonus Actions

Hypnotic Stare. As a bonus action, the Amiraspian? cyclops's eye becomes a twisting vortex of colors and it stares at a creature within 60 feet. If the target can see the cyclops it must make a DC 12 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the creature becomes charmed for 1 minute. While charmed by the stare, the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0. The effect ends if an affected creature takes any damage, or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.
 A target that successfully saves is immune to this cyclops's stare for the next 24 hours.


Description

???.
 ???.
Subsection. ???.
 ???.

Subsection. ???.
 ???.


(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.)
 

Cleon

Hero
Hmm... They are fey and that's what fey do, but I think this is too much of a concession. I never familyfriendlyize old-school monsters for my own conversions because... well, many reasons we probably shouldn't go in to here.

Well, kidnapping pregnant women to turn their newborn babies into monsters and then eat their mothers (and sometimes the baby) is not that family friendly.

I was partially inspired by the 5E version of the Minotaur. The standard AD&D version has them be "cursed humans, or the offspring of minotaurs and humans" but in 5E they are humanoids transformed by rituals of Baphomet-inspired cults or their descendants (5E Minotaurs can breed with each other, but not with humanoids, so they can't all be male like the 2E AD&D Monstrous Manual version).

Hmm, that's odd. The Minotaur in 5esrd.com is a third-party version, not the 5E version. Is it not in the SRD?

The Minotaur in D&D Beyond is the official Monster Manual version.
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
So how about this?

AMIRASPIAN CYCLOPS
Amiraspian cyclopes are violent, one-eyed, man-eating something that stand nine feet tall and have dull, weathered tan skin with scattered clumps of greenish black, straggly hair. They resemble human men in general shape and have powerful arms, clawed hands, and a large, wide maw crammed with fangs allowing them to inflict horrendous bites. Their face has a single massive eye, eerily human apart from its size and clear sea-green in color.
Amiraspian cyclopes can be found almost anywhere, including underground complexes, and they habitually dwell in caves.

Foes of Humankind. Amiraspian cyclopes continually raid villages, paralyzing their inhabitants with their hypnotic stare before slaughtering those that resist and taking the rest back to their cave lair to devour or serve another, more nefarious purpose.

Males Only. Amiraspian cyclopes are always male, possibly due to genetic deficiencies. They propagate their kind by capturing pregnant human women and waiting until they have given birth before devouring them like the other prisoners they make. Consequently, in any lair there will be from one to six pregnant human women. The children born of these women are handed over to the chieftain, who will then gauge out one of their eyes while praying to some unspeakable deity. In some cases, his prayers are heard and the wound inflicted on the child quickly heals as it is transformed into a new male cyclops, to be raised as one of the group. If this transformation does not occur but the wound still heals, the child is cast out to fend for itself, becoming known as a cyclopean human if it survives (or maybe given to other cyclopean humans coz children not very likely to survive in the wilderness). If nothing happens, the child is simply devoured.

Man-Eaters. Amiraspian cyclopes eat human flesh, though they prefer the meat of halflings, gnomes, dwarves, and elves. Any such creatures they have not been eaten are kept prisoner in their lair, alive only until the day they are eaten. Any half-orcs encountered during a raid are killed as a matter of course and their corpses left for scavengers, for the cyclopes do not like their flesh.
(maybe add this to Foes of Humankind?)

(Bullying the Weak/Bullying and Lording It Over/Ruling the Weak/Lording It Over the Weak). Well-versed in the brutal and violent ways of various humanoids and typically speaking many of their languages, hypnoclopses are frequently found in control of a group of orcs, gnolls, goblins, hobgoblins, and perhaps other, similar humanoids (for svarts)?, dominating them because of their ferocity and strength.

EDIT: Ah, hypnoclopses. Too eager to notice.

EDIT SOME MORE: "eerily human apart from its size and clear sea-green in color" > "clear sea-green in color and eerily human apart from its size"?

TRIPLE EDIT: "those that resist" > "anyone and anything that resists"?
 
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ilgatto

How inconvenient
Well, kidnapping pregnant women to turn their newborn babies into monsters and then eat their mothers (and sometimes the baby) is not that family friendly.

I was partially inspired by the 5E version of the Minotaur. The standard AD&D version has them be "cursed humans, or the offspring of minotaurs and humans" but in 5E they are humanoids transformed by rituals of Baphomet-inspired cults or their descendants (5E Minotaurs can breed with each other, but not with humanoids, so they can't all be male like the 2E AD&D Monstrous Manual version).

Hmm, that's odd. The Minotaur in 5esrd.com is a third-party version, not the 5E version. Is it not in the SRD?
Baphomet!?!? Oh dear!
The Templars were accused of idolatry and were suspected of worshiping either a figure known as Baphomet or a mummified severed head they recovered, amongst other artifacts, at their original headquarters on the Temple Mount that many scholars theorize might have been that of John the Baptist, among other things.
Wiki Knights Templar

Well, all I can say is that there seems to be a lot going with SRD's at the moment. :)

The Minotaur in D&D Beyond is the official Monster Manual version.
Heh, that is... succinct.
 


Cleon

Hero
The children born of these women are handed over to the chieftain, who will then gauge out one of their eyes while praying to some unspeakable deity.

There's a typo here.

It's "gouge" (scooping/scraping/digging, like with a chisel) not "gauge" (measuring something).

Oh, and I wouldn't bring religion into it, the issue is controversial enough! :p

Baphomet!?!? Oh dear!

I'm surprised by your surprise.

There's been a demon called Baphomet in D&D who's been associated with minotaurs since he debuted in the pullout section of S4 The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth (Minotaurs are his worshippers and servants") in 1982, before his mainstream appearance in the 1983 Monster Manual II ("Baphomet is lord of minotaurs").

D&D Baphomet doesn't resemble the historical (and probably equally made up) Templar allegation version. He just looks like a big Minotaur.

Haven't you come across the D&D version before? I guess if you mainly read 2E sources it's not that surprising. I believe his only only official appearance in 2E AD&D was in DMGR4 Monster Mythology (1992), where he's a tanar'ri Lesser God "who has increasingly attracted the worship of minotaurs".

Curiously, DMGR4 takes the trouble to explicate that Baphomet didn't invent minotaurs, but "Myths of the birth of minotaurs are obscure and place their origin in pre-history, where a terrible and ancient curse condemned a number of wicked humans (who may have had dealings with tanar’ri) to this shape. This curse somehow drew Baphomet's attention to the newly-created monsters."
 

Cleon

Hero
So how about this?

AMIRASPIAN CYCLOPS
Amiraspian cyclopes are violent, one-eyed, man-eating something that stand nine feet tall and have dull, weathered tan skin with scattered clumps of greenish black, straggly hair. They resemble human men in general shape and have powerful arms, clawed hands, and a large, wide maw crammed with fangs allowing them to inflict horrendous bites. Their face has a single massive eye, eerily human apart from its size and clear sea-green in color.
Amiraspian cyclopes can be found almost anywhere, including underground complexes, and they habitually dwell in caves.

It seems easier if we discuss a section at a time. The red something can just be "creatures" or "monsters".

The first two sentences are a bit clumsy. They run on too long and might benefit from being split into shorter sentences.

Also, the wording looks rather derivative of the White Dwarf description, especially the "allowing them to inflict horrendous bites."

Let's see, my first stab at it was:

So here's a start on the Description…

An amiraspian cyclops stands around 9 feet tall and resembles a man in general shape, with powerful arms and clawed hands. Its face has a single massive eye, eerily human apart from its size and clear sea green in color, as well as a horrible mouth, broad and crammed with fangs. The cyclops's weathered skin is tan in colour, with scattered clumps of straggly green-black hair.

That's got pretty much the same info as yours apart from the "horrendous bite" bit, which I feel is superfluous. I'd just rephrase that to make it plural, so…

Amiraspian cyclopes stand around 9 feet tall and resemble men in general shape, with powerful arms and clawed hands. Their faces have a single massive eye, eerily human apart from its size and clear sea green in color, as well as horrible mouths, broad and crammed with fangs. The cyclopes' weathered skin is tan in colour, with scattered clumps of straggly green-black hair.
Foes of Humankind. [man-eating] [raid villages.] ???
Cave Tyrants. These monsters can live off most types of terrain, including subterranean, but prefer to lair in caves. Amiraspian cyclopes often dominate bands of humanoid monsters (orcs, gnolls, goblins, et cetera) as their minions. The group is ruled by the strongest and fiercest cyclops, who controls by right of power (see Amiraspian Cyclops Chief for an example). The cave dwelling may also include young cyclopes and captured prisoners. Often human, these living prisoners are held to be eaten. Unlucky captives suffer ghastly fates before they are devoured.
Cursed Births. [the "problematic" bit] ???​
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
There's a typo here.

It's "gouge" (scooping/scraping/digging, like with a chisel) not "gauge" (measuring something).
Noted.
Oh, and I wouldn't bring religion into it, the issue is controversial enough! :p
Hmm... Does 5E generally avoid religions and deities?
I'm surprised by your surprise.
No need. I was still in sarcasm mode because of the familyfriendlifying thing.
There's been a demon called Baphomet in D&D who's been associated with minotaurs since he debuted in the pullout section of S4 The Lost Caverns of Tsojcanth (Minotaurs are his worshippers and servants") in 1982, before his mainstream appearance in the 1983 Monster Manual II ("Baphomet is lord of minotaurs").

D&D Baphomet doesn't resemble the historical (and probably equally made up) Templar allegation version. He just looks like a big Minotaur.

Haven't you come across the D&D version before? I guess if you mainly read 2E sources it's not that surprising. I believe his only only official appearance in 2E AD&D was in DMGR4 Monster Mythology (1992), where he's a tanar'ri Lesser God "who has increasingly attracted the worship of minotaurs".

Curiously, DMGR4 takes the trouble to explicate that Baphomet didn't invent minotaurs, but "Myths of the birth of minotaurs are obscure and place their origin in pre-history, where a terrible and ancient curse condemned a number of wicked humans (who may have had dealings with tanar’ri) to this shape. This curse somehow drew Baphomet's attention to the newly-created monsters."
Naah. I know of Baphomet, of course. For conversions, I limit myself to "official" 2E sources, often with some clarifications from early 3E mixed in. I tend to stick to the original as much as possible in case of conflicting info (e.g., S4 vs FOR7 and Planescape) and I ALWAYS* ignore all post-Satanic-Panic names and similar lip service. I never mention the Blood War in anything I write up and, for outer-planars revised in MC8 and Planescape, I add the boosted stats in a separate section in the file headed "Planeslore", in which I include game-affecting blurb using literal quotes and never failing to point out things I consider to be silly.

Never knew about the info DMGR4 you mention above, though, for reasons I can't really fathom and which is therefore rather annoying. Now that I know about it, I'll have to add it to the 2E conversion, probably in a block starting with something like "Some theologians have argued..."

* Extra points awarded for guessing the only two exceptions
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
It seems easier if we discuss a section at a time. The red something can just be "creatures" or "monsters".
Creatures is a good one.

The first two sentences are a bit clumsy. They run on too long and might benefit from being split into shorter sentences.
Agreed. I copy-paste-attached some drafts without really checking again.

Also, the wording looks rather derivative of the White Dwarf description, especially the "allowing them to inflict horrendous bites."
Er... okay. It wasn't meant to. I was simply trying to use as much of the original text as possible.

Let's see, my first stab at it was:

That's got pretty much the same info as yours apart from the "horrendous bite" bit, which I feel is superfluous. I'd just rephrase that to make it plural, so…

Amiraspian cyclopes stand around 9 feet tall and resemble men in general shape, with powerful arms and clawed hands. Their faces have a single massive eye, eerily human apart from its size and clear sea green in color, as well as horrible mouths, broad and crammed with fangs. The cyclopes' weathered skin is tan in colour, with scattered clumps of straggly green-black hair.​
Excellent.
I've grown used to trying to summarize a creature in the first sentence rather than starting with what it looks like, so that a DM sort of instantly gets an idea what a creature is about but never mind if that's not a thing in 5E.

Foes of Humankind. [man-eating] [raid villages.] ???
Cave Tyrants. These monsters can live off most types of terrain, including subterranean, but prefer to lair in caves. Amiraspian cyclopes often dominate bands of humanoid monsters (orcs, gnolls, goblins, et cetera) as their minions. The group is ruled by the strongest and fiercest cyclops, who controls by right of power (see Amiraspian Cyclops Chief for an example). The cave dwelling may also include young cyclopes and captured prisoners. Often human, these living prisoners are held to be eaten. Unlucky captives suffer ghastly fates before they are devoured.​
I'm seriously going to have to get used to 5E trying to add drama to texts I believe should be encyclopedic in nature rather than... prosaic. This is for many reasons, one of which is that I don't want to work my way through someone's interpretation of a monster when I have to look something up in the heat of battle. I'm not saying 2E is always better than 5E at this, but still.
Anyway, not criticizing your write-up above and I guess I'm just gonna have to get into the 5E swing of things. :)

Cursed Births. [the "problematic" bit] ???​
Processing.
 

Casimir Liber

Adventurer
(munches popcorn....) ......still baffled as to why Aggressive is a trait and not listed as a bonus action, espeically as my idea is that the cyclops chooses one to do.
 

Cleon

Hero
Hmm... Does 5E generally avoid religions and deities?

The :p smiley indicated I was joking.

I'm seriously going to have to get used to 5E trying to add drama to texts I believe should be encyclopedic in nature rather than... prosaic. This is for many reasons, one of which is that I don't want to work my way through someone's interpretation of a monster when I have to look something up in the heat of battle. I'm not saying 2E is always better than 5E at this, but still.

Prosaic wording is appropriate for the game mechanics section, but I'm fine with adding a bit of flair to the Description. When you get down to it that section's only suggestions to hopefully inspire encounter/adventure/campaign ideas, and the DM can always change it. If given the choice, I'd go for colourful expression over boring blandness as it give you more to work with.

Besides, there are some pretty dramatic Monstrous Compendium writeups in 2E.
 

Cleon

Hero
Foes of Humankind. [man-eating] [raid villages.] ???

Anyhow, I'll try whipping up another paragraph or two…

Foes of Humankind. Amiraspian cyclopes are carnivores with an innate fondness for humanoid flesh. Their favorite food is halfling, followed by gnome, dwarf, elf, gnome and human, but they loathe the taste of orcflesh. Only a starving cyclops would eat an orc or half-orc, it would rather leave the corpse to rot.
 Cyclopes are notorious for repeatedly raiding undefended settlements, attacking them whenever they feel hungry. Like many predators, cyclopes prefer weak victims (e.g. abducting unarmed villagers from hamlets or farmhouses) over hunting strong prey that might injure them (e.g. fighting warriors or adventurers).
Cave Tyrants. [as above].
 The lair of a cyclops is usually infested with carrion-eaters that feed off the remains of its prey.
Cursed Births. [the "problematic" bit] ???​
 

Cleon

Hero
(munches popcorn....) ......still baffled as to why Aggressive is a trait and not listed as a bonus action, espeically as my idea is that the cyclops chooses one to do.

Well the 5E Monster Manual doesn't use Bonus Actions in its monster stats, but has Traits activated with bonus actions, like the Superior Invisibility of a Faerie Dragon.

Perhaps we should move Hypnotic Stare from Bonus Actions to Traits to match the Monster Manual format?

Incidentally, I was tempted to put Hypnotic Stare in Traits and have it start "As an action or bonus action" instead of being bonus action only.

That'd allow the Amiraspian Cyclops to use an Aggressive bonus action and Hypnotic Stare action on turns it doesn't want to use its Action for melee or ranged attacks.

However, it can move the same distance using a Dash action and Hypnotic Stare bonus action, and that doesn't restrict the extra movement to being towards a hostile creature like Aggressive does, so there wouldn't seem to be much point.

It would be useful to Cyclopes with more bonus action options though.

What do you think?
 

Cleon

Hero
Incidentally, I was tempted to put Hypnotic Stare in Traits and have it start "As an action or bonus action" instead of being bonus action only.

Come to think of it, I rejected the idea because it'd allow two Hypnotic Stares per round (an action-stare and a bonus-stare) unless we added a "can only stare once per turn" rule, which seemed an unnecessary wrinkle.

I prefer the current "As a bonus action" version.

The question remains, do we put in Special Traits with Aggressive à la Monster Manual or in its own Bonus Actions section?

If the latter, shouldn't Aggressive logically be moved to the Bonus Actions section too?
 

ilgatto

How inconvenient
Next:

AMIRASPIAN CYCLOPS

Amiraspian cyclopes are one-eyed, man-eating creatures known for their violent raids on the settlements of humans and humanoids alike. They stand nine feet tall and resemble men in general shape, with powerful arms and clawed hands, and tan-colored, weathered skin with scattered clumps of straggly green-black hair. Their faces have a single massive eye, clear sea green in color and eerily human apart from its size. Below this eye sits a horrible, broad mouth crammed with fangs.

Foes of Humankind. Amiraspian cyclopes are carnivores with an innate fondness for humanoid flesh. Their favorite food is halfling, followed by gnome, dwarf, elf, gnome and human, but they loathe the taste of orc flesh. Only a starving cyclops would eat an orc or half-orc, it would rather leave the corpse to rot.

"for" > "of"?
"to rot": why not the original scavengers bit?
Also: I’m rather against the inclination of many early English 3PPs to ridicule and victimize halflings. Still, I suppose we’ve got little choice in the matter in this case because the original expressly mentions the order above?


Amiraspian cyclopes are notorious for repeatedly raiding undefended settlements, attacking them whenever they feel hungry. Like many predators, cyclopes prefer weak victims (e.g., abducting unarmed villagers from hamlets or farmhouses) over hunting strong prey that might injure them (e.g., fighting warriors or adventurers).

Cave Tyrants. Amiraspian cyclopes can live off most types of terrain, including subterranean, but prefer to lair in caves. They often dominate bands of humanoid monsters (e.g., orcs, gnolls, goblins) as their minions. The group is ruled by the strongest and fiercest cyclops, who controls (+ "the others"?) by right of power (see Amiraspian Cyclops Chief for an example). The cave dwelling may also include young cyclopes and captured prisoners. These are held to be eaten, some of them after suffering ghastly fates before they are devoured.
Cyclops caves are usually infested with carrion-eaters that feed off the remains of their prey.

Note: LOL man cave. But it’s not in the original.


Cursed Births. Amiraspian cyclopes are always male, possibly due to genetic deficiencies. To propagate their kind, they keep any pregnant human women they capture alive until they have given birth. A child born of these women is handed over to the chieftain, who will then invoke a powerful, irreversible curse to transform the child/it into a cyclops. However, this curse does not always work and invoking it may also result in a cyclopean human, a human child with only one eye which is then cast out to fend for itself. Often, such children are then picked up by other cyclopean humans, who will raise it as one of their own. In other cases, the curse will simply fail to generate any effect, leaving the child unchanged and to be devoured like the other prisoners.
 
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