D&D 5E 5e Updates: Monstrous Compendium

inthegreylight

Explorer
Weakness to holy symbols seems well represented by the cleric class' Turn Undead feature (and the devotion paladin's Turn the Unholy feature). Maybe vampire spawn could have disadvantage on saving throws against features that turn undead. I like the idea of common folk believing a holy symbol will protect them from vampires, not realizing that it's the holy symbol used in conjunction with Turn Undead that actually lets clerics drive away vampires.
 

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inthegreylight

Explorer
I feel like the traditional vulnerability to silver should be present, and maybe have wooden piercing weapons be useable against lesser vampires as well, even if not enchanted.
I agree on the silver. In my games, undead of all kinds are affected by silver weapons as if they were magical. Vampires especially should have silvered weapons overcome their damage resistances. But I think vulnerability to silvered weapons would be too much.

How about an addition to the Stake to the Heart weakness that reads, "If the vampire is reduced to 0 hit points using a wooden piercing weapon while outside its resting place, the vampire is destroyed and cannot use its Misty Escape feature"?
That way there's an interesting choice presented, where the players need to decide between using their normal weapons/spells (which will take it down faster in combat but will let the vampire escape to its resting place) and a wooden piercing weapon (which is probably far less effective as a weapon, but will prevent the vampire's escape).
 

dave2008

Legend
Weakness to holy symbols seems well represented by the cleric class' Turn Undead feature (and the devotion paladin's Turn the Unholy feature). Maybe vampire spawn could have disadvantage on saving throws against features that turn undead. I like the idea of common folk believing a holy symbol will protect them from vampires, not realizing that it's the holy symbol used in conjunction with Turn Undead that actually lets clerics drive away vampires.
Good point. I will think about whether or not I want to include that one.
 

dave2008

Legend
I agree on the silver. In my games, undead of all kinds are affected by silver weapons as if they were magical. Vampires especially should have silvered weapons overcome their damage resistances. But I think vulnerability to silvered weapons would be too much.

How about an addition to the Stake to the Heart weakness that reads, "If the vampire is reduced to 0 hit points using a wooden piercing weapon while outside its resting place, the vampire is destroyed and cannot use its Misty Escape feature"?
That way there's an interesting choice presented, where the players need to decide between using their normal weapons/spells (which will take it down faster in combat but will let the vampire escape to its resting place) and a wooden piercing weapon (which is probably far less effective as a weapon, but will prevent the vampire's escape).
Thank you for the suggestions!
 

Stalker0

Legend
Weakness to holy symbols seems well represented by the cleric class' Turn Undead feature (and the devotion paladin's Turn the Unholy feature). Maybe vampire spawn could have disadvantage on saving throws against features that turn undead. I like the idea of common folk believing a holy symbol will protect them from vampires, not realizing that it's the holy symbol used in conjunction with Turn Undead that actually lets clerics drive away vampires.
I like this idea. Frankly there are too many undead with "advantage" on turn saving throws, it would be nice to actually have an undead weak to that mechanic for once!
 

Stalker0

Legend
Vampire (Spawn) - WIP
Medium Undead (Shapechanger), any evil alignment
My notes:
  • CR feels low to me. My look at the Cr calculator puts this at CR6, and I think a 5 or 6 is definitely appropriate. The combination of regeneration, damage resistance, and bonus action dash with high speed, creates a creature that in smart hands could absolutely wreck a low level party.
  • I think telekinesis is a weird ability for the "base" vampire. While that is definately a power some vampires have in lore, I don't consider it normal for the "stock" vampire. I'm ok with it at higher tiers.
  • The limited charm has a weirdly low DC for its CR. Yes being able to do it at will is nice, but its not like it helps them get in a bite, and in combat this ability is generally weaker than trying to get in a bite or just doing claw damage. I think going with the normal DC 14 is fine.
  • Ultimately this brings back a lot of what makes the older edition vampires scary. Draining the max hp combined with regeneration and high speed means that played well, a vampire just slowly drains away the party's ability to fight, while remaining strong itself. So overall I like the design.
 

dave2008

Legend
As always - thank you for your time and comments!
My notes:
  • CR feels low to me. My look at the Cr calculator puts this at CR6, and I think a 5 or 6 is definitely appropriate. The combination of regeneration, damage resistance, and bonus action dash with high speed, creates a creature that in smart hands could absolutely wreck a low level party.
I did check the CR. but not very carefully. I did it quickly in my head so I could have missed something. I started with MM CR5 and when I checked it became a CR 4. But I will check it again before I remove the WIP status.
  • I think telekinesis is a weird ability for the "base" vampire. While that is definately a power some vampires have in lore, I don't consider it normal for the "stock" vampire. I'm ok with it at higher tiers.
There is quite a bit of modern lore that has vampires manifest unique / special powers. That is what this is intended to show. When I flesh-out the vampires entry there will be a table with unique powers and telekinesis will be one of them. Originally I omitted the special power from the stat block, but decided I wanted to show how those look in a stat block and not just leave it to the table of powers.
  • The limited charm has a weirdly low DC for its CR. Yes being able to do it at will is nice, but its not like it helps them get in a bite, and in combat this ability is generally weaker than trying to get in a bite or just doing claw damage. I think going with the normal DC 14 is fine.
I will check the DC, but I don't really care to much if it is not effective in combat. It is a power a vamp should have, so I felt it needed to be added back. If it is not effective against adventurers, I'm OK with that.
  • Ultimately this brings back a lot of what makes the older edition vampires scary. Draining the max hp combined with regeneration and high speed means that played well, a vampire just slowly drains away the party's ability to fight, while remaining strong itself. So overall I like the design.
Thanks! That was my general goal.
 

dave2008

Legend
My notes:
  • CR feels low to me. My look at the Cr calculator puts this at CR6, and I think a 5 or 6 is definitely appropriate. The combination of regeneration, damage resistance, and bonus action dash with high speed, creates a creature that in smart hands could absolutely wreck a low level party.
I checked it again and came up with 5.5. I rounded down to 5 because of Vampire Weaknesses
 
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inthegreylight

Explorer
In trying to design a unique, alien beholder (using this thread as inspiration), I created a CR 8 beholder (gauth?) to challenge lower-level players and make beholder hive encounters more viable. In addition to remixing typical beholder abilities, I specifically chose eye rays that correspond to the 5e beholder zombie's "decayed" eye rays. I landed on CR 8, but I might be wrong with that estimate. Let me know what you think!

Beholder, CR 8.png
 

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