Comparing Giant Sizes

Russ Morrissey

Comments

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
And yet combat between such a giant and a human fighter comes down to just standing next to each other in their squares on the battle mat and swinging their swords at one another and blocking and parrying each others blow,

I don't think anyone on AoT or SotC would ever try to just block a blow from a storm giant sized opponent with his human sized shield attached to his human sized arm.
That’s a problem with game and encounter design, not the size of giants.
 

thealmightyn

Villager
But how would you narrate that for the ToM without the giant looking like an idiot?
Well, the PCs aren't always going to be the ones dishing out damage. I mean, if the players roll really well and the giant rolls really poorly, the giant will invariably end up looking like a buffoon, but assuming both sides get in good hits, there are lots of ways you can narrate it.
 

Mirtek

Explorer
Can you unpack what “look like an idiot” even means, to you, in this context?
I believe that's pretty simple, isn't it?

If the assumption is that a human sized fighter can not just take a hit from a giant, then the combat can only go with the giant not hitting the human until the last blow.

So while the human nibbles away the giant's hp with small hit after small hit, the giant depletes the human's hp with him having to narrowly avoid blow after blow (until the very last hit in case the giant wins).

Unfortunately that makes the makes the giant a lumbering brute and ignores that they are supposed to have sophisticated cultures with their own renowned martial arts styles and fencing masters.

To do the giant justice he has to hit the human often and reliably, but when a single hit would end the human, that causes a problem.
 

FreeTheSlaves

Explorer
I recently did an after action write up of a couple of Frost Giant combats, so I get what Mirtek is getting at. Essentially there were a couple of 6' tall humans wielding 4' and 6' blades taking on 21' tall giants. The 12' pike and lance used early on made sense, but switching to swords to be within the Frost Giant's guard also had a rationale, much like martial artists looking to grapple bigger but less technically trained guys.

Realistic? Not so much. A huge giant simply moving about is inevitably going to knock you, and you would go absolutely flying. But that's HP abstraction.

The first battle was straight-forward because the melee types slowed down the giants while the Ranger and Rogue eventually whittled their leader down with missile shots, forcing the giants to retreat.

Narratively, the characters never took a direct hit, they were always near misses, 'nudges' with the haft or 'brushes' with a giant sized forearm/knee. Again narratively, the characters were knocked about and off their feet, scrambling to safety. Twice characters had to withdraw, heal up, then get back in.

There can be no parrying against giants. Just no way.

So yeah, sticking within guard, cutting and slicing away at tendons, knees, ankles etc.. There would've had to have been so much icy blood. And I ruled the deathblow was when the Giant had sunk to the ground, bringing his throat within reach. It wouldn't have been a pretty scene.

There were two narrative direct hits from giants in fight #2, a critical for 60 and shortly after another critical, which triggered Deathward. Seriously, good, spell.
 

dave2008

Hero
I believe that's pretty simple, isn't it?

If the assumption is that a human sized fighter can not just take a hit from a giant, then the combat can only go with the giant not hitting the human until the last blow.

So while the human nibbles away the giant's hp with small hit after small hit, the giant depletes the human's hp with him having to narrowly avoid blow after blow (until the very last hit in case the giant wins).

Unfortunately that makes the makes the giant a lumbering brute and ignores that they are supposed to have sophisticated cultures with their own renowned martial arts styles and fencing masters.

To do the giant justice he has to hit the human often and reliably, but when a single hit would end the human, that causes a problem.
But that is not accurate. If a giant is indeed similar to a human (it's moves travel at the same speed) then it will take longer for its club, sword, or whatever to strike a target (it is traveling a greater distance). This makes it much easier for a human-sized creature to dodge the massive blows of a giant, no matter how sophisticated its martial skills are.

EDIT: For example, if it takes a fighter 1 second to swing his/her sword, then it take a giant 3 seconds to do the same thing because it travels 3x the distance. On top of that I would imagine most giant martial arts center around fighting other giants and/or dragons. Creatures of similar size. Of course, now I am interested in giants specifically trained to take on the "small-folk."

EDIT EDIT: This is of course assuming basic similarity. It you purpose that giants are actually magically stronger than their size suggests, then they can actually swing their giant swords in 1 second instead of 3, but then your really opening a can of worms.
 
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Mirtek

Explorer
But that is not accurate. If a giant is indeed similar to a human (it's moves travel at the same speed) then it will take longer for its club, sword, or whatever to strike a target (it is traveling a greater distance). This makes it much easier for a human-sized creature to dodge the massive blows of a giant, no matter how sophisticated its martial skills are.

EDIT: For example, if it takes a fighter 1 second to swing his/her sword, then it take a giant 3 seconds to do the same thing because it travels 3x the distance. On top of that I would imagine most giant martial arts center around fighting other giants and/or dragons. Creatures of similar size. Of course, now I am interested in giants specifically trained to take on the "small-folk."

EDIT EDIT: This is of course assuming basic similarity. It you purpose that giants are actually magically stronger than their size suggests, then they can actually swing their giant swords in 1 second instead of 3, but then your really opening a can of worms.
But then the same would apply to humans vs. goblins or kobolds.
 

dave2008

Hero
But then the same would apply to humans vs. goblins or kobolds.
Not quite, the kobold or goblin is using the same size sword or dagger that a human uses, and they are not that much different in size. A giants sword is 3x the size of a humans sword. It simple has to travel a lot further. I'm not making this stuff up, it is geometry, physics, and mechanics - science baby!
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I believe that's pretty simple, isn't it?

If the assumption is that a human sized fighter can not just take a hit from a giant, then the combat can only go with the giant not hitting the human until the last blow.

So while the human nibbles away the giant's hp with small hit after small hit, the giant depletes the human's hp with him having to narrowly avoid blow after blow (until the very last hit in case the giant wins).

Unfortunately that makes the makes the giant a lumbering brute and ignores that they are supposed to have sophisticated cultures with their own renowned martial arts styles and fencing masters.

To do the giant justice he has to hit the human often and reliably, but when a single hit would end the human, that causes a problem.
Or, we just imagine that the size difference makes it harder to hit a skilled opponent less than half your size. 🤷‍♂️
 

Mirtek

Explorer
Not quite, the kobold or goblin is using the same size sword or dagger that a human uses, and they are not that much different in size. A giants sword is 3x the size of a humans sword. It simple has to travel a lot further. I'm not making this stuff up, it is geometry, physics, and mechanics - science baby!
While that is true, a giant is also able to generate a lot more energie to make it move.
 

dave2008

Hero
While that is true, a giant is also able to generate a lot more energie to make it move.
That goes without saying, and I am not sure what you are suggesting. Remember, by virtue of its size, a giant, has to use a lot more energy just to move as effectively as a human (which = 3x the time). If you want a giant to move more effectively, swing a sword in 1 second, than it needs to be a lot stronger (relatively speaking), which of course would mean even more damage!

Remember also that a giant* moving at human speed (3 second attack vs 1 second attack) should have approximately 64 x the damage of human attack of the same type. If you want them to attack faster (1 sec vs 1 sec) it should be a lot more damage. Personally I don't want to roll all of those d8s! ;)

*I assumed a 24' giant for the ease of the math
 

dave2008

Hero
While that is true, a giant is also able to generate a lot more energie to make it move.
Also, your point was that giants not being able to hit smaller humans made them look stupid. I am simply saying that is not the case, IMO. It is, by virtue of their size, harder for a giant to hit a human. On top of that, like I said before, I would expect giants to be trained to fight giants and other monsters (namely dragons). So, to me, the idea that a giant has a hard time taking down a human fighter running around has nothing to do with their intelligence or martial abilities.

YMMV
 
And yet combat between such a giant and a human fighter comes down to just standing next to each other in their squares on the battle mat and swinging their swords at one another and blocking and parrying each others blow,
Your DM lets you block and parry?

But, yeah, giants are the Fighters of the D&D monster world: they just attack.
 
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LuisCarlos17f

Adventurer
Some time I imagine a new martial maneuver with an effect like the jump spell to be used by little humanoids (halflings or gnomes) against giants and large or huge enemies. Other martial maneuver would be a spell-like effect like boomerangs, with little and light throwing weapons as surikens or knives.

Have you tried a combat between a spear, or a spiked chain against a knife? You may be very fast but usually the longer weapon can attack first most of times.... but when the enemy would rather throwing weapons as daggers or axes.

Usually somebody who can live for more hundred years has enough time to train with weapons as slings, or with atlatl(spear-throwers), or a Swiss arrow, thrown without bow. In the battlefield the poison wasn't used because they would need industrial qualities, but in a dungeon defenders can allow themself because the idea is almost never will be spent. Some time to spend money to get poisoned arrows against giants is cheaper than losing squads.

And even giants could face with big beasts whose rider is a little humanoid as a gnome. In fantasy worlds lots of beasts would be used in the warfare as cheaper cannon fodder because magic with mind-affecting effects can help to train and tame savage animals. Let's imagine in the battle harmless illusory runes appear on the chest of the enemies, only to be marked as target by trained beasts as bulls or even mammoths.
 

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