Converting monsters from Dragon magazine

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I just don't think that's exactly worth calling a separate conversion. If you really really want, you could add it to the Mystaran Gargantua entry, but that had plenty of samples IIRC.
 

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Cleon

Legend
I just don't think that's exactly worth calling a separate conversion. If you really really want, you could add it to the Mystaran Gargantua entry, but that had plenty of samples IIRC.

What's the harm in counting them as a conversion.

I'm thinking if we do all of the nine Sea Monsters, then we can add the Sea Bat and make it a batch of 10.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
It's not exactly harm, but there are some reasons I wouldn't want to make these separate conversions:
1) Applying a template doesn't require any judgement or actual game rules conversion (with rare exceptions, like lycanthropes).
2) Why not say they are dire eels with the Advanced Bestiary gigantean template instead?
3) Template samples should go with the template entry by precedent.
4) The more time we spend worrying about template application, the less time we have for actual conversions and getting all the critters converted. I think that should be our focus.

So, I'm ok with adding it to the Mystaran Gargantua template as a sample, but I'd rather not take a spot out of our weekly updates for it once we've decided it's handled by an existing template. You could just add it (and any others of these that are just template applications) and make a separate news item during some mid-week. As an edit, it wouldn't even bump the "new conversions" list.

That work ok for you?
 

Cleon

Legend
So, I'm ok with adding it to the Mystaran Gargantua template as a sample, but I'd rather not take a spot out of our weekly updates for it once we've decided it's handled by an existing template. You could just add it (and any others of these that are just template applications) and make a separate news item during some mid-week. As an edit, it wouldn't even bump the "new conversions" list.

That work ok for you?

Not really, I'd rather customize it some more to justify it being a new monster.

That seems more interesting, and I like the idea of a "Sea Monsters" batch.

I'm thinking we could tweak the HD, and give it Improved Grab plus a "Bite & Constrict" special attack instead of Attach.

Probably lower the Strength to make it less powerful than a Str 35 Whale - it doesn't seem right to make it stronger than the much stockier cetacean. Might as well cut the Con to 22 as well, for similar reasons.

Possibly make it Dire.

It could also do with a hefty bonus on its stealth skills. If it's a real-world creature that no one's given a reliable sighting of, it must be real good at hiding!

There's quite a few things we could do to make it worth becoming a new monster.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
This I can do.

Str 31, Con 20?

The "Attach" it has isn't really the usual "Attach" SA. That's more like "Chew" that we've used. Could do Chew and Constrict separately.

What about Capsize or similar ship-smashing attack?
 

Cleon

Legend
This I can do.

Str 31, Con 20?

I was thinking of applying a "half size" demotion to the existing creature (-4 Str, -2 Con), making it Str 33, Con 22, but I'd be OK with Str 31 and Con 20.

Maybe average the two to Str 32, Con 21?

The "Attach" it has isn't really the usual "Attach" SA. That's more like "Chew" that we've used. Could do Chew and Constrict separately.

Yeah, that could work.

What about Capsize or similar ship-smashing attack?

Capsize doesn't seem right for an Eel. I might be willing to give them a "Ship Crushing" constrict attack, providing the target vessel is small enough.

Are we going to be tweaking the HD? The Dragon version starts at 9 HD, then 13 HD, and ends up at 18 HD. 9 HD seems rather wimpy for a Gargantuan Eel, but I'd be happy to make it 13 HD - and probably a Dire Animal to boot.

I'm also tempted to have it Advance to Colossal at some stage. Maybe at 24 HD?

E.g.:

Super Eel
13 HD Gargantuan Dire Animal
Str 31-33, Con 20-22
Advancement 14-23 HD (Gargantuan); 24-39 HD (Colossal)
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I'll meet you at Str 33, Con 22. I'm also fine with the proposed advancement.

It already has Constrict, so are we agreed to add Chew?

The sea drake (FF) has the following:
FF said:
Constrict Ship (Ex): Instead of crushing a s hip with its tail, a sea drake can wrap its serpentine body around all but the largest ships and crush them or drag them below the waves automatically. This can be done to a rowboat (1 round), keelboats (3 rounds), longships (5 rounds), and sailing ships (10 rounds). Warships and galleys are too large for a sea drake to affect in this way.
Something like this seems pretty good, but I think I'd require the ship to be constricted first, or something. There should be some way to resist it. The drake also has a crushing blow tail slap type attack.
 

Cleon

Legend
I'll meet you at Str 33, Con 22. I'm also fine with the proposed advancement.

Hmm, I don't mind lowering the Str and Con if you prefer it.

An SRD Giant Constrictor Snake advanced to Gargantuan is 17 Hit Dice, Strength 33, Constitution 17. I guess an eel is pretty snakelike, but I'm not sure the Eel should be quite as strong as a serpent that specializes in constriction.

Hmm, I'll make it Str 32, Con 21 for the time being.

It already has Constrict, so are we agreed to add Chew?

I hadn't added the Constrict to the Working Draft, so I didn't consider the Chew / Constrict question had been settled.

If it has Chew it doesn't really need the regular Constrict, since its chew can deal damage more reliably. Unless the Chew only works against certain opponents, and the Constrict against others.

I think the best answer is only have the eel chew smaller opponents, but have to constrict larger ones.

Updating the Super Eel Working Draft.

Something like this seems pretty good, but I think I'd require the ship to be constricted first, or something. There should be some way to resist it. The drake also has a crushing blow tail slap type attack.

Most ships have difficulty making opposed grapple checks, so I was thinking a Strength check against a Break DC is the best approach. If successful, the ship springs a leak and sinks in X rounds.

I'd support having it do some damage per round too.

Hmm, I came up with the following proposal when we were converting the Sea Demon. We ought to be able to repurpose it:

Crushing Embrace (Ex): As a standard action, a sea demon can wrap its limbs around a waterborne target (such as a ship or another creature) and squeeze with devastating pressure. This attack deals 2d8+12 points of damage if the sea demon makes a successful grapple check, and 1d8+8 damage if it fails. A sea demon must use at least half its tentacles to make a crushing embrace (four for a typical sea demon), it can not use tentacles that are grappling other targets. The sea demon can maintain its hold on any other creature or object it is grappling, but can not use its constrict attack against other targets while making a crushing embrace.

If a ship is the target of a crushing embrace, the sea demon can make a Strength check to breach its hull, which causes the ship to sink in 1d10 minutes. The break DC varies with the type of vessel embraced, as follows: rowboat DC 20, keelboat DC 23, sailing ship or longship DC 25, warship DC 27, or galley DC 30. (See Chapter 5 of the DMG for information about ships). Regardless of the check result, every creature aboard must attempt a DC 15 Reflex saving throw. Success means the creature takes 1d6 points of damage from being thrown about by the impact; failure means the creature is hurled overboard.

Crush Ship (Ex): As a full-round action, a super eel can wrap its serpentine body around a ship up to half the eel's length (i.e. a 30 ft. ship for a 60 ft. eel) and squeeze with devastating pressure. This attack deals 2d6+16 points of damage and breaches the ship's hull if the super eel succeeds at a Strength check, which causes the ship to sink in 1d10 rounds. The break DC varies with the type of vessel crushed, as follows: rowboat DC 20, keelboat DC 23, sailing ship or longship DC 25, warship DC 27, or galley DC 30. (See Chapter 5 of the DMG for information about ships).
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I like the working draft so far, and Crush Ship looks great. Incidentally, the Str score works pretty much perfectly in that it can crush a rowboat more than half the time and a galley only on a 19-20 roll for the Str check. Only one thing: should the Crush Ship provoke AoOs from people on the ship? Or can it be evaded by a Profession (sailing) check? I'd like at least one of those two options.
 

Cleon

Legend
I like the working draft so far, and Crush Ship looks great. Incidentally, the Str score works pretty much perfectly in that it can crush a rowboat more than half the time and a galley only on a 19-20 roll for the Str check. Only one thing: should the Crush Ship provoke AoOs from people on the ship? Or can it be evaded by a Profession (sailing) check? I'd like at least one of those two options.

It's a full-round action, so the ship's crew can attack the Super Eel normally before it takes effect.

Come to think of it, 3E ship sinking times are usually in minutes, not rounds, so I should probably make the sinking time 1d10 minutes.

Allowing Profession (sailing) checks to evade the Crush Ship's a good idea. I suggest a crew can substitute the result of their skill check for the DC the Super Eel must beat, assuming they roll higher than the default Crush DC of their vessel. Or we could just have a flat DC, with success giving a +2 bonus on the vessel's Crush DC.

Or combine the two?

The vessel's crew can counteract a super eel's Crush Ship attack by succeeding on a DC 20 Professional (sailor) check; the Crush DC of their ship is increased by +2 or becomes the result of their Profession (sailor) check, whichever is greater.

Hmm, I like the combination best.
 

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