D&D 5E How broken is Long Death Monk at 11th level or higher?

ECMO3

Hero
It doesn't actually enable these, since it leaves the monk on 1 hp, so any continuous damage effect will quickly burn through all the monk's ki.

No it won't, at least not usually. Hazards like Lava ususally do "damage per your turn" If the Lava he is "swimming" in causes 500hps damage on his turn he can swm in it for 11 rounds if he has 11 ki and starts with 1hp..

Sure if the goal is to get to the other side there are other ways to do it, but if the goal is to go into the lava there are not many better ways.

MINOR SPOILER AHEAD:


As an aside when i played Princes of the Apocolyse my character (a Sorcerer-Warlock) cast Primordial Ward and dove into Lava (using his reaction to be immune to fire damage). He did this to avoid being attacked.

In that particular adventure the Lava caused 6d10 damage the first time you enter the lava on a turn or end your turn there. So getting back to the original question, as long as he did not go in and out of the lava repeatedly it would cause 66 damage on the first round (33 when entering and 33 on the end of his turn), then it would cause 33 per round after that and 1ki per round to stay there after he lost all of hit points.


Also, a point of physics - molten rock still has the density of rock. You can't swim in it, even if the heat cannot harm you, since you can't sink. Archimedes' principle applies.

You don't sink in water either, yopu float, but you can certainly swim downward in water.

Also, the doomed people in Pompey were found on the bottom of the dried pyroclastic flow, not on the top of it.
 

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ECMO3

Hero
It is, of course a simplistic example, and the monk has other options depending on the tactical situation and subclass. But whatever they do, if they aren't burning through their ki quickly they are not being effective.

And a monk should aim to burn through their ki quickly. As a short rest class we can assume they will take a short rest after any fight of significance, so any ki they have left over is a waste. Hording ki is not a good strategy.

I do agree they should burn through ki quickly, but with 11 ki, that is quite a lot when the average fight only lasts 3-4 rounds.
 

ECMO3

Hero
But the thing is, against extremely weak enemies, the monk is pointless anyway. A peasant with a pointy stick will do as much damage.

Against extremely weak enemies it is really irrelevant. The point is though, those are the only enemies you are going to burn 5 ki a turn on using stunning strike and FOB.

My big problem with the arguement is the people claiming that it is so easy to use SS and FOB and burn 5 ki a round. That is not easy, at least not against any enemies that are relevant. 3ki in a round is much more reasonable expectation for spamming Stunning Strike, and 3 ki per turn at high level means you will not run out of ki very quickly.

You can build a Monk to fill a several different roles, but they are generally not that effective at melee offense, even with stunning strike. They are mechanically much better suited to doorway dodging, tanking or blocking to make enemies use extra actions to attack other party members that are doing more damage.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
I don't think it's broken. I am playing a Mercy Monk (my first monk, after all these years) and enjoying it quite a lot. But if he had this ability, it would come up very rarely.

This ability is subtly different than Healing Word. A lot of creatures attack a foe until it goes down and then move on to the next foe. Healing Word tends to be used to revive someone after that creature has already moved on to a new target, giving them a moment to then get out of there.

This ability must be used as you go to 0 hit points, to stay up at 1. Which means that creature that took you down to 0 is likely about to do it again, and again, right that turn at those levels.

You're going to burn through that Ki real quick. And if you were in that bad position in the first place, you very likely had already burned through Ki to be there. So the situations where this ability is going to be a real difference maker are pretty situational.

Gone done to breath weapon of a dragon? Yes, use the ability.

Gone down to a creature which will keep attacking you even after you've gone down? Yes, use the ability as long as you can.

But gone down to claw #2 of four attacks from one creature which will be followed by four more from the next creature, unless you go down and they move on to another of your allies because they're MO is to proceed that way? Don't use the ability. Waste of most of your Ki, where a Healing Word or something similar will rescue you soon.
 

ECMO3

Hero
Monks lower AC, hp and inability to effectively use 2d6 weapons puts them behind baseline melee classes.

Their ability to dodge as a bonus action overcomes their lower AC and I will also point out that their AC is not lower than classes using 2d6 weapons. It is slightly lower in early tier 2 if the fighters can get plate (but that is not universal in early tier 2. But by 8th level a Monk AC is as good as plate. Now it is not as good as plate and shield, but characters using plate and shield are not using 2d6 weapons.

Now other martial classes have abilities that are going to either boost that damage or their AC with fighting styles and subclass abilities, but then the Monk does too through using ki.

That said there is a level of versatility that the Monk brings to the fight that other martials lack do to their ability to bonus action dodge and use FOB.


If the monk doesn't need to use ki, then the fight isn't challenging. Combat that does not threaten the party is basically meaningless. If they do use their ki, then there is no point in having any left at the end of the fight, since they will be taking a short rest anyway. As a general strategy, it's best to use any consumable resource you don't intend to have left over at the end as early in the fight as possible.

I agree with this, however I will note that using mastery of death is using ki.
 

S'mon

Legend
You don't sink in water either, yopu float, but you can certainly swim downward in water.

Also, the doomed people in Pompey were found on the bottom of the dried pyroclastic flow, not on the top of it.

Pyroclastic Flow isn't lava.

You can swim down in water because humans & water have similar density. Lava is several times denser than humans; IRL you could not swim down in it. You can walk on some types of lava. Movie lava generally behaves like water though and I see no issue with having lava be movie lava in your D&D game.
 

Clint_L

Hero
Pyroclastic Flow isn't lava.

You can swim down in water because humans & water have similar density. Lava is several times denser than humans; IRL you could not swim down in it. You can walk on some types of lava. Movie lava generally behaves like water though and I see no issue with having lava be movie lava in your D&D game.
Yeah pyroclastic flow is a cloud of high velocity, super heated gasses. And though it killed most of the people in Pompei, they were actually found buried by the subsequent ash fall. Not lava.

I like that this thread is reiterating how much monks need help. A monk basically needs to burn through their ki to be competitive with what most other classes can do baseline. My current main is a monk, and I am enjoying it but…not that powerful!

Also, not many great magic weapons for monk, which you really feel at higher levels.
 
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My big problem with the arguement is the people claiming that it is so easy to use SS and FOB and burn 5 ki a round. That is not easy, at least not against any enemies that are relevant. 3ki in a round is much more reasonable expectation for spamming Stunning Strike, and 3 ki per turn at high level means you will not run out of ki very quickly.
if you use 3 ki a round, and the fight is 3 to 4 rounds long, that leaves 0 (since we can't have negative ki)-2 ki left for mastery of death over the entire fight. that is a maximum of 2 preventions from going to 0, by your own estimations, and that's assuming you'll even need that.

by these numbers, i think mastery of death is fine.
 

You don't sink in water either, yopu float, but you can certainly swim downward in water.
Physics lesson. Next time you are in school pay attention, I usually get paid to do this.

Archimedes' Principle states (in short): "upthrust equals weight of fluid displaced". The human body has a density that is fractionally less than water (it is mostly made of water after all) so it sinks until it is almost fully immersed. At this point upthrust prevents it sinking any further. Since your arms and legs are immersed in water, you are able to swim. Molten lava has a density of around two and a half times that of water (depending on the type of rock). This means that you will sink until around 40% of your body is immersed, then upthrust prevents you sinking any further. If you where upright, this would be about half way up your thighs. Since your arms and legs are not immersed in the lava, you cannot swim through it.

An earth elemental would have a density similar to molten rock, so it would be able to swim through lava the way a human can swim through water.

Note that the end of the Lord of the Rings movie gets it completely wrong: Gollum, who is pretty lightweight, should float on the surface until he burns up. The ring should sink immediately, since gold is denser than lava. Revenge of the Sith is more accurate - Vader can crawl out of the lava because he is not dense enough to sink into it.
 
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pemerton

Legend
I don't think "exploit", or the OP's term "broken", is a good way to describe Mastery of Death. But it does have potential for unforeseen, and possibly undesired, consequences.

The first potential for wonkiness is along the lines of things other people have brought up. When the monk knows he can't die, it enables outlandish behavior like swimming in lava or dancing in a blade barrier. Many people won't see this as being any more of a problem than abstract hit points and other game mechanics. But I think Master of Death takes a few more chips away at verisimilitude (for those that care about it).
I don't see how it is "outlandish" that a master martial artist, who has Mastered Death, can temporarily resist the heat of lava, or dodge and parry the blades of a Blade Barrier.

Mastery of Death has some interesting effects on resource management. If managing hit points and healing is a factor in your game, this changes the game a lot. If you know an enemy has the ability to hit hard, it suddenly becomes better to tank with a 1 HP monk than a 100 HP warrior. After all, Ki can be completely replenished after a short rest, but HP takes a long rest, and HD takes two days. Again, lots of people probably won't care. But for those that do it can result in significant changes to tactics.

One of the complaints some people have about 5e in general is that it's too easy to not die (especially compared to early editions). This ability just exacerbates that problem. And, IMNSHO, the ability to not care about death just screws with the story sometimes. Does the bad guy have me pinned to a wall with a gun against my head, demanding I tell him my secrets or die? Who cares? By 13th level he'll have to reload his six-shooter twice before I have to make a death save. Have you ever had to choose which friend to save with only seconds to keep them alive? Well, your Death monk friend is guaranteed to last an extra minute even if he's unconscious.
Isn't the point of character abilities to be used by players to affect the game? I can't see how the things you describe here could be problems. I mean, as Gygax described way back in his DMG a dragon can have the 100 hp fighter chained to the cliff, ready to breathe, and the fighter can survive that fiery breath with a lucky saving throw: or three breaths from an adult red dragon with three successful saves (32 hp per successful save).
 

Their ability to dodge as a bonus action overcomes their lower AC and I will also point out that their AC is not lower than classes using 2d6 weapons. It is slightly lower in early tier 2 if the fighters can get plate (but that is not universal in early tier 2. But by 8th level a Monk AC is as good as plate. Now it is not as good as plate and shield, but characters using plate and shield are not using 2d6 weapons.
If you're using your bonus action to dodge, you're not using it for Martial Arts/Flurry of Blows, which is the only thing that can keep the monk's damage output anywhere near competitive with other classes.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Physics lesson. Next time you are in school pay attention, I usually get paid to do this.

Archimedes' Principle states (in short): "upthrust equals weight of fluid displaced". The human body has a density that is fractionally less than water (it is mostly made of water after all) so it sinks until it is almost fully immersed. At this point upthrust prevents it sinking any further. Since your arms and legs are immersed in water, you are able to swim. Molten lava has a density of around two and a half times that of water (depending on the type of rock). This means that you will sink until around 40% of your body is immersed, then upthrust prevents you sinking any further. If you where upright, this would be about half way up your thighs. Since your arms and legs are not immersed in the lava, you cannot swim through it.

An earth elemental would have a density similar to molten rock, so it would be able to swim through lava the way a human can swim through water.

Note that the end of the Lord of the Rings movie gets it completely wrong: Gollum, who is pretty lightweight, should float on the surface until he burns up. The ring should sink immediately, since gold is denser than lava. Revenge of the Sith is more accurate - Vader can crawl out of the lava because he is not dense enough to sink into it.
Yeah exactly I mean it’s not like you could lie down and stick your limbs into or something lol

What an absurd thing to even argue about. You two plannin on going out and dippin a toe in a lava pool, or what?

“Pay attention I usually get paid for this” good lord do you read your posts before you hit the button?
 

ECMO3

Hero
If you're using your bonus action to dodge, you're not using it for Martial Arts/Flurry of Blows, which is the only thing that can keep the monk's damage output anywhere near competitive with other classes.

Sure, but the claim was Monks have lower AC and the inability to use 2d6 weapons. Both of these things are true individually but not at the same time.

Using martial arts in tier1 and tier 2 your base damage is slightly higher than a character using 2d6 weapons, while also generally having a roughly equal AC to a Fighter or Paladin (depending on how fast plate becomes available) and a better AC than a Barbarian or Ranger using a 2d6 weapon.

Using Bonus action dodge in tier 1 and tier 2 gives you a substantially better AC than someone in plate and shiled while doing substantially less damage.
 



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