D&D 5E Brainstorming: Getting Rid of the Monstrosity Creature Type


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el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
I actually combined monstrosities and aberrations in my game after the nth time the ranger in my group that had chosen monstrosities as its species enemy saw the wackadoo monster attacking the party asked if it was a monstrosity and the answer was no, its an aberration. Later, we got rid of the species enemy ability altogether and swapped it for a "Hunter's Vision" ability.
 

Yaarel

🇮🇱He-Mage
I actually combined monstrosities and aberrations in my game after the nth time the ranger in my group that had chosen monstrosities as its species enemy saw the wackadoo monster attacking the party asked if it was a monstrosity and the answer was no, its an aberration. Later, we got rid of the species enemy ability altogether and swapped it for a "Hunter's Vision" ability.
I feel the Aberration type needs psychologically corrupting effects as well as malignant shapechanging effects.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Hydra - Dragon!
Looking at this makes me think the "Dragon" type needs renaming and expanding to include reptilian monsters that aren't in fact Dragons: e.g. Hydrae, Nagas (or Lamias, I forever get those two mixed up - whichever one's the mostly-snake with a human head!), maybe Yuan-Ti, maybe dinosaurs, etc. That would take some heat off the "monstrosity" category, if in fact it needs to go.
 

In my published setting, Monstrosity has been a very important type. Given, we've changed the definition; it now means any monster that is alien to the base world of Scavenger. But, regardless, I still like the monster-type, and making them actual aliens (yes I know, aberrations, but those are OTHER aliens incompatible with us in different ways!) or the results of arcane experiments to me makes them unique enough.
 

TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
Except IMO there needs to be a dividing line between real-world natural creatures (horses, elephants, robins, etc.) and fantastic natural creatures (gryphons, chimerae, direwolves, etc.). Then, reining in Druid wildshape becomes easy: rule they can only shapeshift into real-world natural creatures.

The beast-monstrosity dividing line may not be in the right place but it does work for this purpose.
I'm not a huge fan, that would indicate there's some concept within the fictional narrative that separates Earth creatures from non-Earth creatures. (And since plenty of magic spells work based on creature type, this is obviously an attribute that exists within the fiction.) I can see that working for game settings that are assumed to be alternate Earths (i.e. Oerth), but don't love it for game settings that are assumed to have their own ecologies.
 


Tales and Chronicles

Jewel of the North, formerly know as vincegetorix
I'd go with Abominations being the quasi-unique monsters created by magic experiments, one off of evolution or godly curse, such as lamia, medusa etc Tarrasque would be Abominations (Titan)

Humanoids would be for mortal races generally playable by players, such as humans, dwarves, elves etc

Monstrosities, to me, are for races degenerated/twisted from Humanoids by demonic forces or mind warping powers, like (FR) Gnolls, Kuo-toa, Merrows, Derros, etc .

Mostly beastly creatures that can now breed true and occupy an ecological niche, even if created by magic at first, such as owlbear, griffon, worg, cockatrice etc are just beasts. Magical ones, but still beasts.

Behir, Hydra would be moved to dragons, Chimera would be moved to fiend, Basilisk would be dragon or elementals.

Devils would be Celestials (devil) and Demons would Abominations (demon).

Sorrowsworns and Skulk are undead.

etc
 


Yaarel

🇮🇱He-Mage
Looking at this makes me think the "Dragon" type needs renaming and expanding to include reptilian monsters that aren't in fact Dragons: e.g. Hydrae, Nagas (or Lamias, I forever get those two mixed up - whichever one's the mostly-snake with a human head!), maybe Yuan-Ti, maybe dinosaurs, etc. That would take some heat off the "monstrosity" category, if in fact it needs to go.
The essence of a dragon is a snake splicing together with other animals.

Classical dragon = snake+lion+eagle
British dragon = snake+wolf+bat
East Asian dragon = snake+carp+deer+bactrian camel+etcetera

And so on. Snake is the essence.
 

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