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D&D 5E 5e Updates: Monstrous Compendium

dave2008

Legend
White Dragon, Elder
Huge dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 20 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 297 (22d12 + 154; bloodied 148)
Speed 60 ft., burrow 40 ft., climb 50 ft., fly 140 ft., swim 60 ft.
1602422889192.png

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
23 (+6)12 (+1)25 (+7)14 (+2)16 (+3)17 (+3)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Str +12. Dex +7, Con +13, Wis +9
Skills Athletics +12, Intimidation +9, Perception +15,
Damage Immunities cold
Condition Immunities petrified (ice)
Senses blindsight 90 ft., darkvision 180 ft., passive perception 25
Languages Common, Draconic
Challenge 18 (20,000 XP) Proficiency Bonus +6
1602422894359.png

Dragon Scales. The dragon has resistance to all damage from an attack or effect that originates 120 feet or more from the dragon.

Dragon Traits.* The dragon can use the following Dragon Tactics: crush, dive, flyby slam, multi-claw, snatch, strafing, tail sweep, throw, wing buffet

Frost Bite.
When an area is subject to the dragon’s Cold Breath it is covered in ice and becomes difficult terrain. If a creature without the Ice Walk trait attempts to go over the frozen area at normal speed, it must succeed on a DC 17 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check for every 10 feet of movement or fall prone. If the temperature is below freezing, the area remains covered in ice indefinitely. If the temperature is above freezing it last 2d6 minutes.

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Magic Weapons. The dragon’s weapon attacks are considered uncommon magical weapons.

Perceptive. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks. Additionally, when the dragon succeeds on a Wisdom (Perception) check targeting a creature within 60 feet of it, the dragon learns the surface thoughts of the creature as in the spell detect thoughts.

Savage. If the dragon has advantage on an attack and both rolls are a hit, the attack is considered a critical hit.

Unstoppable. At any time, requiring no action, the dragon can take 30 hit points of damage and immediately end all conditions or effects it is suffering. After taking the damage, the dragon cannot take reactions until the start of its next turn.

ACTIONS
Multiattack.
The dragon can use its Frightful Presence. It then makes three attacks: two with is claws and one with its bite. The dragon can substitute a tail attack for one bite or two claw attacks.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +12 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 22 (3d10 + 6) piercing damage plus 14 (4d6) cold damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +12 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 16 (3d6 + 6) slashing damage and, if the dragon wishes, the target must make a DC 20 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +12 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 19 (3d8 + 6) bludgeoning damage. If the target is a Large or smaller creature, it must succeed on a DC 20Strength saving throw or be stunned until the end of the dragon’s next turn.

Ice Bolt. Ranged Spell Attack. +9 to hit, range 120 ft., one target. Hit. 21 (6d6) cold damage and the target must make a DC 20 Constitution or loose all resistance to cold damage for 1 hour.

Frightful Presence. Each creature of the dragon's choice that is within 120 feet of the dragon and aware of it must succeed on a DC 17 Wisdom saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a creature's saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the creature is immune to the dragon's Frightful Presence for the next 24 hours.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 100-foot cone or eight 10-foot-by-10-foot contiguous areas within 60 feet of it. Each creature in the area must make a DC 21 Constitution saving throw. taking 55 (10d10) cold damage, beginning freeze and be restrained on a failure, or half as much damage on a success. Additionally, a creature that fails the saving throw must repeat the saving throw at the end of its next turn. On a success, it stops freezing and is no longer restrained. On a failure, the creature is petrified (ice). A frozen creature can be thawed by a greater restoration spell, similar powerful magic, or by heat equivalent to 30 fire damage. Additionally, any magic or active spell of 3rd level or lower in the area ends.

Recharge. The dragon recharges its breath weapon and it can use it on its next turn.

Dragon Magic (3/Day).* The dragon uses its innate magic, requiring no components, to create one of the following spell-like effects (spell save DC 17, +9 to hit with attacks) as if they are 6th level spells: armor of agathys, fog cloud, ice knife, spike growth (ice spikes), & sleet storm

LEGENDARY ACTIONS
The dragon can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. If the dragon has unspent legendary actions at the end of the round, it may spend and immediately use its remaining legendary actions. The dragon regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

Detect. The dragon heightens its senses, it makes a Wisdom (Perception) check and gains advantage on its next attack.
Juggernaut. The dragon gains 20 temporary hit points and it can move up to half its walking speed. The dragon looses any temporary hit points after it stops this movement.
Move. The dragon can move half its current speed.
Bolt (Cost 2 Actions). The dragon makes an Ice Bolt attack.
Tail Slam (Cost 2 Actions). The dragon makes a Tail attack.
Wing Attack (Costs 3 Actions). The dragon beats its wings. Each creature within 15 feet of the dragon must succeed on a DC 20 Strength saving throw, taking 13 (3d4 + 6) bludgeoning damage and be pushed 10 feet on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. The dragon can then fly up to half its flying speed.

---

*DM's Note: Dragon Magic and Dragon Traits provide more choices for the dragon. However, the inclusion or exclusion of this traits does not affect the CR of the dragon.
 
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dave2008

Legend
1628542155764.png

Dungeons and Dragons - White Dragon by polwalker

White Dragon, Adult
Huge dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 19 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 243 (18d12 + 126; bloodied 121)
Speed 50 ft., burrow 30 ft., climb 40 ft., fly 120 ft., swim 50 ft.
1602422889192.png

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
21 (+5)14 (+2)23 (+6)12 (+1)14 (+2)15 (+2)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Str +10. Dex +7, Con +11, Wis +6
Skills Athletics +10, Perception +11, Stealth +7
Damage Immunities cold
Condition Immunities petrified (ice)
Senses blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 120 ft., passive perception 21
Languages Common, Draconic
Challenge 14 (11,500 XP) Proficiency Bonus +5
1602422894359.png

Dragon Scales. The dragon has resistance to all damage from an attack or effect that originates 150 feet or more from the dragon.

Dragon Traits.* The dragon can use the following Dragon Tactics: dive, multi-claw, snatch, strafing, tail sweep, wing buffet

Frost Bite.
When an area is subject to the dragon’s Cold Breath it is covered in ice and becomes difficult terrain. If a creature without the Ice Walk trait attempts to go over the frozen area at normal speed, it must succeed on a DC 15 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check for every 10 feet of movement or fall prone. If the temperature is below freezing, the area remains covered in ice indefinitely. If the temperature is above freezing it last 2d4 minutes.

Keen Senses. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks.

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Magic Weapons. The dragon’s weapon attacks are considered uncommon magical weapons.

Savage. If the dragon has advantage on an attack and both rolls are a hit, the attack is considered a critical hit.

Unstoppable (3/Short Rest). At any time, requiring no action, the dragon can take 30 hit points of damage and immediately end all conditions or effects it is suffering. After taking the damage, the dragon cannot take reactions until the start of its next turn.

ACTIONS
Multiattack.
The dragon can use its Frightful Presence. It then makes three attacks: two with is claws and one with its bite or tail.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 21 (3d10 + 5) piercing damage plus 10 (3d6) cold damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 15 (3d6 + 5) slashing damage and, if the dragon wishes, the target must make a DC 18 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 18 (3d8 + 5) bludgeoning damage. If the target is a Large or smaller creature, it must succeed on a DC 18 Strength saving throw or be stunned until the end of the dragon’s next turn.

Ice Bolt. Ranged Spell Attack. +7 to hit, range 120 ft., one target. Hit. 14 (4d6) cold damage and the target must make a DC 20 Constitution or loose all resistance to cold damage for 1 hour.

Frightful Presence. Each creature of the dragon's choice that is within 120 feet of the dragon and aware of it must succeed on a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a creature's saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the creature is immune to the dragon's Frightful Presence for the next 24 hours.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 80-foot cone or six 10-foot-by-10-foot contiguous areas within 30 feet of it. Each creature in the area must make a DC 19 Constitution saving throw. taking 45 (8d10) cold damage, beginning freeze and be restrained on a failure, or half as much damage on a success. Additionally, a creature that fails the saving throw must repeat the saving throw at the end of its next turn. On a success, it stops freezing and is no longer restrained. On a failure, the creature is petrified (ice). A frozen creature can be thawed by a greater restoration spell, similar powerful magic, or by heat equivalent to 20 fire damage. Additionally, any magic or active spell of 2nd level or lower in the area ends.

Recharge. The dragon recharges its breath weapon and it can use it on its next turn.

Dragon Magic (2/Day).* The dragon uses its innate magic, requiring no components, to create one of the following spell-like effects (spell save DC 15, +7 to hit with attacks) as if they are 3rd level spells: armor of agathys1, fog cloud1, ice knife & spike growth (ice spikes)

LEGENDARY ACTIONS
The dragon can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. If the dragon has unspent legendary actions at the end of the round, it may spend and immediately use its remaining legendary actions. The dragon regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

Detect. The dragon heightens its senses, it makes a Wisdom (Perception) check and gains advantage on its next attack.
Juggernaut. The dragon gains 15 temporary hit points and it can move up to half its walking speed. The dragon looses any temporary hit points after it stops this movement.
Bolt (Cost 2 Actions). The dragon makes one Ice Bolt attack.
Tail Slam (Cost 2 Actions). The dragon makes a Tail attack.

---

*DM's Note: Dragon Magic and Dragon Traits provide more choices for the dragon. However, the inclusion or exclusion of this traits does not affect the CR of the dragon.
 
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dave2008

Legend
White Dragon, Young Adult
Large dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 18 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 198 (18d10 + 108; bloodied 99)
Speed 45 ft., burrow 30 ft., climb 35 ft., fly 100 ft., swim 45 ft.
1602422889192.png

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
19 (+4)12 (+1)22 (+6)11 (+0)12 (+1)13 (+1)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Str +8. Dex +5, Con +10, Wis +5
Skills Athletics +8, Perception +9, Stealth +5
Damage Immunities cold
Condition Immunities petrified (ice)
Senses blindsight 60 ft., darkvision 120 ft., passive perception 19
Languages Common, Draconic
Challenge 10 (5,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +4
1602422894359.png

Dragon Traits.* The dragon can use the following Dragon Tactics: snatch, wing buffet

Keen Senses. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks.

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Magic Weapons. The dragon’s weapon attacks are considered magical weapons

Savage. If the dragon has advantage on an attack and both rolls are a hit, the attack is considered a critical hit.

Unstoppable (2/Short Rest). At any time, requiring no action, the dragon can take 20 hit points of damage and immediately end all conditions or effects it is suffering. After taking the damage, the dragon cannot take reactions until the start of its next turn.

ACTIONS
Multiattack.
The dragon makes three attacks: two with is claws and one with its bite or tail.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 15 (2d10 + 4) piercing damage plus 7 (2d6) cold damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 11 (2d6 + 4) slashing damage and, if the dragon wishes, the target must make a DC 16 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) bludgeoning damage. If the target is a Large or smaller creature, it must succeed on a DC 16 Strength saving throw or be incapacitated until the end of the dragon’s next turn.

Frightful Presence. Each creature of the dragon's choice that is within 120 feet of the dragon and aware of it must succeed on a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a creature's saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the creature is immune to the dragon's Frightful Presence for the next 24 hours.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 60-foot cone. Each creature in the area must make a DC 18 Constitution saving throw, taking 33 (6d10) cold damage and its speed is reduced in half on a failure, or half as much damage and no speed reduction on a success. A creature may make additional saving throws at the end of each of its turns, and its speed is no longer reduced by this effect on a success.

Recharge. The dragon recharges its breath weapon and it can use it on its next turn.

Dragon Magic (1/Day).* The dragon uses its innate magic, requiring no components, to create one of the following spell-like effects (spell save DC 13 +5 to hit with attacks) as if they are 3rd level spells: armor of agathys, fog cloud, & ice knife

LEGENDARY ACTIONS
The dragon can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. If the dragon has unspent legendary actions at the end of the round, it may spend and immediately use its remaining legendary actions. The dragon regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

Detect. The dragon extends its senses, making a Wisdom (Perception) check.
Juggernaut. The dragon gains 15 temporary hit points and it can move up to half its walking speed. The dragon looses any temporary hit points after it stops this movement.
Tail Slam (Cost 2 Actions). The dragon makes a Tail attack.

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*DM's Note: Dragon Magic and Dragon Traits provide more choices for the dragon. However, the inclusion or exclusion of these traits does not affect the CR of the dragon.
 
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dave2008

Legend
White Dragon, Juvenile
Large dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 18 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 136 (12d10 + 65; bloodied 68)
Speed 40 ft., burrow 30 ft., climb 40 ft., fly 100 ft., swim 40 ft.
1602422889192.png


STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
17 (+3)10 (+1)20 (+5)8 (+0)11 (+0)12 (+1)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Dex +4, Wis +3
Skills Athletics +6, Perception +6, Stealth +4
Damage Immunities cold
Senses blindsight 40 ft., darkvision 120 ft., passive perception 16
Languages Common, Draconic
Challenge 6 (2,300 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3
1602422894359.png

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Keen Senses. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks.

Savage. If the dragon has advantage on an attack and both rolls are a hit, the attack is considered a critical hit.

Unstoppable (1/Short Rest). At any time, requiring no action, the dragon can take 20 hit points of damage and immediately end all conditions or effects it is suffering. After taking the damage, the dragon cannot take reactions until the start of its next turn.

ACTIONS
Multiattack.
The dragon makes three attacks: two with is claws and one with its bite or tail.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 14 (2d10 + 3) piercing damage plus 5 (1d10) cold damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (2d6 + 3) slashing damage and, if the dragon wishes, the target must make a DC 14 Strength saving throw or be knocked prone.

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (2d8 + 3) bludgeoning damage.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 40-foot cone. Each creature in the area must make a DC 16 Constitution saving throw, taking 27 (5d10) cold damage and its speed is reduced in half on a failure, or half as much damage and no speed reduction on a success. A creature may make additional saving throws at the end of each of its turns, and its speed is no longer reduced by this effect on a success.

Recharge. The dragon recharges its breath weapon and it can use it on its next turn.

Dragon Magic (1/Day).* The dragon uses its innate magic, requiring no components, to create one of the following spell-like effects (spell save DC 12, +4 to hit with attacks) as if they are 2nd level spells: armor of agathys & fog cloud

---

*DM's Note: Dragon Magic provides more choices for the dragon. However, the inclusion or exclusion of this traits does not affect the CR of the dragon.
 
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dave2008

Legend
White Dragon, Young
Medium dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 17 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 59 (7d8 + 28; bloodied 29)
Speed 30 ft., burrow 20 ft., climb 30 ft., fly 90 ft., swim 30 ft.
1602422889192.png

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
16 (+3)10 (+0)18 (+4)6 (-2)10 (+0)11 (+0)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Dex +2, Wis +2
Skills Athletics +5, Perception +4, Stealth +2
Damage Immunities cold
Senses blindsight 30 ft., darkvision 90 ft., passive perception 14
Languages Common, Draconic
Challenge 2 (450 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2
1602422894359.png

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Keen Senses. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks.

ACTIONS
Multiattack.
The dragon makes three attacks: two with is claws and one with its bite or tail.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d10 + 3) piercing damage plus 3 (1d6) cold damage.

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

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 3) bludgeoning damage.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 30-foot cone. Each creature in the area must make a DC 14 Constitution saving throw. taking 16 (3d10) cold damage cold damage and its speed is reduced in half on a failure, or half as much damage and no speed reduction on a success. A creature may make additional saving throws at the end of each of its turns, and its speed is no longer reduced by this effect on a success.

Recharge. The dragon recharges its breath weapon and it can use it on its next turn.
 
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dave2008

Legend
White Dragon, Wyrmling
Small dragon, chaotic evil
1602422887420.png

Armor Class 14 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points 22 (4d6 + 8; bloodied 11)
Speed 30 ft., burrow 15 ft., climb 20 ft., fly 50 ft., swim 20 ft.
1602422889192.png

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
15 (+2)12 (+1)14 (+2)6 (-2)8 (-1)10 (+0)
1602422892971.png

Saving Throws Dex +3, Wis +1
Skills Athletics +4, Perception +3, Stealth +3
Damage Immunities cold
Senses blindsight 20 ft., darkvision 60 ft., passive perception 13
Languages Draconic
Challenge 1/4 (50 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2
1602422894359.png

Ice Walk. The dragon can move across and climb icy surfaces without needing to make an ability check. Additionally, difficult terrain composed of ice or snow doesn't cost it extra movement.

Keen Senses. The dragon has advantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks.

ACTIONS
Bite.
Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d8 + 2) piercing damage plus 2 (1d4) cold damage.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4 + 2) slashing damage.

Tail. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d6 + 2) bludgeoning damage.

Cold Breath (1/Rest). The dragon exhales an icy blast in a 30-foot cone. Each creature in the area must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw. taking 9 (2d8) cold damage cold damage.
 
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dave2008

Legend
My other note on the new "unstoppable".

I'm never a fan of abilities that trade in offense for potential defense. Basically if you blow all your legendary actions, your going to kick yourself if you get hit with a condition that takes you out of the fight. If you wait to see if you need them, you may really miss out on some key times to hit the players.

I liked the 30 hp effect much more. Its both a resource you always have and always hate to lose. And for a player, they know that damage is the ultimate currency in beating a guy, so if they lose their cool effect, but still do hp damage, well then your at least still contributing to the guys down fall. Losing legendary actions can do that sometimes, but its not as concrete imo. That said, I think its fine if the 30 damage scales up or down depending on the HP of the creature, just to ensure the overcoming has roughly equal effect.
OK, I want to get this figured out before I do the dragons, so here is what I am thinking. I think we have a basic trait that is then modified by: the amount of damage, the number of conditions, the number of uses. Something like this:

Unstoppable (# of uses). The (monster) can use a reaction, take (#) hit points of damage and immediately end (#) condition(s) or effect(s) it is suffering.

CRDamage/Condition# of conditions# of uses
0-5511/Short Rest
6-101012/Short Rest
11-151513/Short Rest
16-202023/Short Rest
21-25252unlimited
26-30303unlimited

What do you think?
 

Stalker0

Legend
Since your going to do so many dragons, I'll just note a few of my desires and pet peeves about the standard dragons.

To me, Dragons are supposed to be Alpha Predators, top dogs on the planetary food chain (and of course the namesake of the franchise). They are the embodiment of the living tank....they combine a strong durable defense with an incredible offense. Its not that dragons are the toughest things, and its not that they are the most damaging things....its that they combine high strengths in both to generate a weapon you just do not mess with.

So a few notes:

1) Dragons as written have incredible senses and even get detect as a legendary action. But it doesn't do anything, its just perception. I wish this was pushed further, dragons don't just see you....they see "through you". They see your soul, your thoughts, your intentions. This could be manifested as a form of foresight, advantage against foes they use detect on, able to exploit a vulnerability (aka vulnerability the game mechanic) you didn't even know you had, etc.

2) Dragon breath weapons are their hallmark, and though they do good damage, they aren't always the sexiest option. I like to see breath's really scale up on the higher dragons, they can burn away magics, alter their shapes, linger and shape the battlefield, recharge more often at high levels, etc.

3) Dragon defenses should always be tough....and the high level dragons are I think worthy of true Damage Reduction (similar to the heavy armor mastery feat, but against magic weapons too). Its not a damage threshold, but true honest to god damage reduction. Also top dragons should get proficiencies in all saves, dragons don't have weak points to exploit like lesser monsters, they are always tough, its just some things are tougher than others. That said, I wouldn't not give them magic resistance, as dragons are innate creatures of magic, and frankly that mechanic is used way too often for higher CR monsters. Though of course, some kind of "unstoppable" ability as you have already used in other monsters.

4) I like that dragons are magical creatures and so get magical effects as they age, but spellcasting never feels right for them. I would love to see some magics imbued into their abilities. They have mage armor on all the time (reflected in their AC), some dragons breath blows you away like gust of wind (included in the breath stat block), some essence dragons have a passwall innate abiity that they can literally just pass through walls and barriers. So just ideas, but the thought being is that dragons should not "cast" spells in a fight, magic is an innate part of them, they are magic, so its either always on, or always applied to their attacks and movements.
 
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Stalker0

Legend
OK, I want to get this figured out before I do the dragons, so here is what I am thinking. I think we have a basic trait that is then modified by: the amount of damage, the number of conditions, the number of uses. Something like this:

Unstoppable (# of uses). The (monster) can use a reaction, take (#) hit points of damage and immediately end (#) condition(s) or effect(s) it is suffering.

CRDamage/Condition# of conditions# of uses
0-5511/Short Rest
6-101012/Short Rest
11-151513/Short Rest
16-202023/Short Rest
21-25252unlimited
26-30303unlimited

What do you think?

So I think the 30 damage number felt right at the CR 16ish level where I have used some of your monster ideas, so I would be fine with that.

In terms of number of conditions, again its too much to track (well which effects will I remove, how many do I have left, etc). I think unstoppable is unstoppable, if its activated, all conditions are dropped. Realistically I rarely see that many conditions stacked on a monster at one time, once he's disabled the party moves on to condition another creature....or they just wail on it.

# of uses: My combats very consistently last about 3 rounds (in fact one of my players actually noted that recently himself). Also looking at the boards, 3 rounds seems to be a common duration for your general fights. So again I say...just make it an innate part of the monster, very rarely are you going to eck out more than 3 uses of it.

What you could do is keep the damage high at the lower CRs. So yeah, those monsters can use it as much as they want....except they are REALLY killing themselves to do it, so they are going to be loathe to commit to it that often. So the system balances itself, if the DM wants to keep using it at lower levels to do a ton of damage to his monster, than the party kills it all the quicker.
 

dave2008

Legend
Since your going to do so many dragons, I'll just note a few of my desires and pet peeves about the standard dragons.

To me, Dragons are supposed to be Alpha Predators, top dogs on the planetary food chain (and of course the namesake of the franchise). They are the embodiment of the living tank....they combine a strong durable defense with an incredible offense. Its not that dragons are the toughest things, and its not that they are the most damaging things....its that they combine high strengths in both to generate a weapon you just do not mess with.

So a few notes:

1) Dragons as written have incredible senses and even get detect as a legendary action. But it doesn't do anything, its just perception. I wish this was pushed further, dragons don't just see you....they see "through you". They see your soul, your thoughts, your intentions. This could be manifested as a form of foresight, advantage against foes they use detect on, able to exploit a vulnerability (aka vulnerability the game mechanic) you didn't even know you had, etc.

2) Dragon breath weapons are their hallmark, and though they do good damage, they aren't always the sexiest option. I like to see breath's really scale up on the higher dragons, they can burn away magics, alter their shapes, linger and shape the battlefield, recharge more often at high levels, etc.

3) Dragon defenses should always be tough....and the high level dragons are I think worthy of true Damage Reduction (similar to the heavy armor mastery feat, but against magic weapons too). Its not a damage threshold, but true honest to god damage reduction. Also top dragons should get proficiencies in all saves, dragons don't have weak points to exploit like lesser monsters, they are always tough, its just some things are tougher than others. That said, I wouldn't not give them magic resistance, as dragons are innate creatures of magic, and frankly that mechanic is used way too often for higher CR monsters. Though of course, some kind of "unstoppable" ability as you have already used in other monsters.

4) I like that dragons are magical creatures and so get magical effects as they age, but spellcasting never feels right for them. I would love to see some magics imbued into their abilities. They have mage armor on all the time (reflected in their AC), some dragons breath blows you away like gust of wind (included in the breath stat block), some essence dragons have a passwall innate abiity that they can literally just pass through walls and barriers. So just ideas, but the thought being is that dragons should not "cast" spells in a fight, magic is an innate part of them, they are magic, so its either always on, or always applied to their attacks and movements.
I generally agree with this and feel I captured most of the concepts to some extent in my red dragon drafts. However, I will keep them in my mind as I move forward.

On of my issues with 5e dragons is that they are all the same. Other than breathweapon, the dragons are basically indistinguishable. The will change with my dragons.

PS - from my avatar I hope you can guess I have a bit of a dragon crush. I too agree they are alpha predators and plan to stat them as such.
 

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