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Converting prehistoric animals

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BOZ

Creature Cataloguer
This thread continues my idea of “cooperative conversions” started in this thread, converting a series of monsters from similar sources. For this thread, we will be focusing on prehistoric animals from various D&D sources, such as dinosaurs and early mammals.

What I will do is first post the creature’s original stats and flavor text. Then, I will post a basic outline of the things I think it needs, and then I will give you an opportunity to suggest stats and ideas on how powers and abilities should work. Then, I will add more to it and we will continue to discuss it until I feel it’s done and time to move on to the next. As we work on these creatures, they will be posted in this thread, and after 10 conversions are complete they will be added to the Creature Catalog. You may comment on monsters already finished, of course.

The following is a list of prehistoric animals from various that haven’t yet appeared in official WotC products, the Tome of Horrors, or the Creature Catalog. You may feel free to make suggestions, but ultimately I will pick what to convert and when. If I’m missing any monsters from this list or if any of these have appeared elsewhere already, feel free to inform me.

First Edition Monster Manual (1977):
Dinosaurs (Anatosaurus (Tractodon), Apatosaurus (Brontosaurus), Archelon Ischyros, Brachiosaurus, Camarasaurus, Ceratosaurus, Cetiosaurus, Dinichtys, Diplodocus, Gorgosaurus, Iguanadon, Lambeosaurus, Megalosaurus, Monoclonius, Mosasaurus, Paleoscinus, Pentaceratops, Plateosaurus, Plesiosaurus, Pteranodon, Stegosaurus, Styracosaurus, Teratosaurus)
Mammoth
Mastodon
Titanothere

First Edition Monster Manual II (1982):
Dinosaurs (Ankisaurus, Camptosaurus, Compsognathus, Dacentrurus, Diplophosaurs, Dimetrodon, Euparkeria, Kentrosaurus, Mamenchisaurus, Masspondylus, Nothosaurus, Ornitholestes, Podokesaurus, Giant Pterosaur, Struthiomimus, Tanystropheus, Tennodontosaurus)

DRAGON mag:
55 - Allosaurus, therezinosaurus, parasaurolophus, ankylosarusus
112 - Aetosaur, ankylosaur, carnosaur, ceratopsian, marine chelonian
137 - Alticamelus, ambelodon, arsinotherium, astrapotherium, short-faced bear, giant bison, cattle (auroch), deinotherium, gigantopithecus, glyptodon, macrauchenia, moropus, sivatherium, ground sloth, uintatherium
167 - Agriotherium, amphycion, anancus, andrewsarchus, giant camel, dwarf elephant, eucladoceros, giant hippopotmaus, megalania, metridiochoerus, pelorovis, sarkastodon
176 - Giant opabinia, electric agnath, eurypterid, armored predatory fish, eogyrinus, eryops, cyclotosaurus, cacops, giant platyhystrix, estemennosuchus, early therapsids, giant therapsid, erythrosuchus
204 - Opabinia, yohoia, marrella, odontogriphus, leanchoilia, amiskwia, sanctacaris, wiwaxia, ottoia, anomalocaris
 
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BOZ

Creature Cataloguer
Didn’t mean to get you thinking that I was going to get a whole new thread going just yet – I needed the hyaenodon converted and since I was going to get to the prehistoric animals sooner or later, I started up this thread. :) but, not intending to disappoint, the thread will probably drop off for a bit after finishing this beastie up.

Now, according to the original MM, the hyaenodons “are simply huge (prehistoric) hyenas”. There’s a little bit of a stat difference, so that’s all I’ll really post here and we’ll have this done in no time.

A hyaenodon is a Large creature instead of a Medium. It travels in smaller packs of only 2-8. It has 5 HD. As for its bite, the normal hyena did 2-8 and the hyaenodon did 3-12. the current hyena does 1d6+3, so we need only come up with an appropriate range for the hyaenodon.

Now, the creatures appeared again later in MC1, with a better description:

Although the hyaenodon resembles a giant hyena it is actually not related at all. It is a survivor of prehistoric times, a predator that evolved into a canine-like form. Hyaenodon markings are similar to those of hyenae, although the dominant fur color is a lion-like gold. Despite their genetic differences, they are very similar to hyenae in temperament and behavior. Hyaenodon females give birth to litters of 1-4 cubs. These mature within 4 years.
Its savage bite does 3-12 (3d4) points of damage and it can lock onto its victims as smaller hyenae do. If the hyaenodon does this, the victim’s movement rate is cut by 12 for each hyaenodon that attaches itself. Hyaenodon packs will devour one man-sized victim per day. Because of their larger size, they are able to take large prey such as elephants, oxen, and buffalo. If a giant hyena suffers 2 or more points of burning damage, it immediately flees the area in search of a spot to tend its wounds.
 

Echohawk

Shirokinukatsukami fan
BOZ said:
112 - Aetosaur, ankylosaur, carnosaur, ceratopsian, marine chelonian
The article in issue #112 which seems to abruptly end on page 16 actually continues again on page 66, so you can add a few more to that list: Coelurosaur, Crocodilian, Cynodont, Deinonychosaur, Dicynodont, Ichthyosaur, Labyrinthodont, Ornithomimosaur, Ormthopod, Plesiosaur, Prosauropod, Pterosaur, Rhynchosaur, Sauropod and Stegosaur.

Some of these have already appeared in 3.x, but I'm late for a meeting, so I'm not going to stop to check which ones right now...
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
I'd recommend we retool it as a dire creature. Otherwise, it would simply be a hyena advanced to Large size with a different description.
 

BOZ

Creature Cataloguer
if you mean using erica's template, i was thinking of doing that. not necessarily following it strictly, but definitely using the parts that i like. more on this soon...
 


BOZ

Creature Cataloguer
in shade's conversion, i see Move Silently as a skill, but Weapon Finesse for the feat just doesn't work here. geocorona's version of the dire hydra also adds Wilderness Lore (aka Survival) with a bonus to tracking by scent, and he gives it the Dodge feat as well.
 


Shade

Monster Junkie
For the other feat, how about either Run or Weapon Focus (bite)? And maybe give it Track as a bonus feat? (Compare to 3.5 Dire Wolf).
 

BOZ

Creature Cataloguer
ok, unless there are additional comments, i will consider this one done once someone gives me a description. :)
 

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