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D&D 5E No Monsters Immune to Stun?

Andrew Bieber

First Post
Whats the deal with stun immunity? I looked through the monster manual and almost no monsters have it. The Helmed Horror (the only construct I saw that had it) and the Revenant both have it, but no other monsters with those types seem to. Also the Demilich gets immunity but not the Lich (the other floating head undead, the flameskull, does not get stun immunity).

What makes those guys so special? Would it be reasonable to say that all/most undead and constructs have immunity to stun as a house rule? Can I pretend it should be errata-ed and call it day? Surely monk's stunning fist doesn't work on nearly every monster! Am I missing something?
 

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jaelis

Oh this is where the title goes?
I would not have expected a lot of monsters to be immune to stun. If you feel like constructs and undead should be, then you can certainly houserule it.

Be aware though that stunning fist is one of the monk's key abilities; if you nerf it too much you might worry about monks remaining effective.
 


Rogin

Villager
I'd tend to agree with jailis, it would seem to me perfect acceptable to houserule that in, so long as Stun isn't something anyone of your plays is relating on to be effective.

For me I'm happy that most thing are not immune because whether your a magical construct or mindless undead if your hit harden enough your going to need time to recover.

Sent from my STV100-4 using EN World mobile app
 

thethain

First Post
Most concepts in DnD are applicable to a fairly broad range of effects. A miss might be a literally miss, or it might be a hit that was ineffective vs the armor.

Stunned is when a creature has been damaged so suddenly or violently that it is unable to respond for a moment, there also might be some mystical or otherwise supernatural force at work disabling the creature. I think the primary idea was to limit condition immunity unless it was absolutely obvious, and allow the saves and legendary resistances to augment those who might be naturally resistant to it.

Also, generally speaking as a player it sucks when your toys are taken away "because the DM doesn't like it". If the you are going to add blanket immunity across the board it would be a favor to discuss it with players before they decide classes and such.
 

Colder

Explorer
Aren't there a few others that are immune to incapacitated? Since that's the main component of stunned, you might want to look into it.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
Aren't there a few others that are immune to incapacitated? Since that's the main component of stunned, you might want to look into it.

There are no monsters in the MM that are immune to being incapacitated. Period.

[MENTION=6875003]Andrew Bieber[/MENTION] Welcome to ENWorld! For most monsters, it's fine that Stunning Strike always can affect them if they fail their Constitution save. In the case of a monster you intend to present as a solo challenge, however, it's something you may want to tweak the monster design to account for (NOT to negate entirely).

For example, take the Hydra. Usually having more than 1 head means its has advantage vs. stunned. However, if I were to run a hydra as a solo monster (meaning it's encountered by itself, without any other monsters, and is meant to be a challenge for the PCs), then I'd tweak that slightly so that stun only affects one head, but its non-stunned heads act just fine. This allows abilities that stun, like Stunning Strike, to still be meaningful and have an impact without crippling the solo monster into being a boring punching bag.
 

dave2008

Legend
There are no monsters in the MM that are immune to being incapacitated. Period.

[MENTION=6875003]Andrew Bieber[/MENTION] Welcome to ENWorld! For most monsters, it's fine that Stunning Strike always can affect them if they fail their Constitution save. In the case of a monster you intend to present as a solo challenge, however, it's something you may want to tweak the monster design to account for (NOT to negate entirely).

For example, take the Hydra. Usually having more than 1 head means its has advantage vs. stunned. However, if I were to run a hydra as a solo monster (meaning it's encountered by itself, without any other monsters, and is meant to be a challenge for the PCs), then I'd tweak that slightly so that stun only affects one head, but its non-stunned heads act just fine. This allows abilities that stun, like Stunning Strike, to still be meaningful and have an impact without crippling the solo monster into being a boring punching bag.

To follow up what the good Lead said, I also give solo's some resistance to the stun condition. I usually do something like the monster's speed is reduced in half for the duration of the effect and it can't use (depending on how much resistance): multiattack, or bonus actions, or legendary action(s), or reactions, or a combination of those, until the end of its next turn.
 


futrtrubl

Explorer
Maybe they could be immune to "mundane" stuns but remember that even the monks stunning fist comes from his use and manipulation of chi and that one more level and his unarmed strikes count as magical.
 

nswanson27

First Post
Maybe they could be immune to "mundane" stuns but remember that even the monks stunning fist comes from his use and manipulation of chi and that one more level and his unarmed strikes count as magical.

I play a monk, and as a player, if a DM decides to houserule in stun immunity, he/she had better have a good reason beyond just wanting to do it or thinking that monks are "OP". Otherwise, I'm probably not going to sit with that DM again.
 

futrtrubl

Explorer
I play a monk, and as a player, if a DM decides to houserule in stun immunity, he/she had better have a good reason beyond just wanting to do it or thinking that monks are "OP". Otherwise, I'm probably not going to sit with that DM again.

I did specify mundane stuns and then went on to say monk stuns are NOT mundane so....
 



Saeviomagy

Adventurer
I've got a vague feeling that this might be a consequence of conditions being insufficiently based in narrative.

Like:
What exactly does it mean when a creature has been stunned?
Well, it means you can't move, have trouble speaking, can't act, fail strength and dex saves and grant advantage. But you can still carry heavy loads and resist being grappled just fine (as an example of weirdness).

What actually happened to it?
It heard a word of power (power word stun)
It got a short term madness
It was punched by a monk

So from that list can we get a consistent narrative that might explain why you are immune to being stunned? Not likely. I guess being deaf, insane and immaterial might cover it?

A similar complaint applies to exhaustion, being restrained, being charmed and being incapacitated. From the entry in conditions alone, you can't tell what causes these things, what they're supposed to describe and how being under their effect is narrated. Because of that, it's hard to justify a monster shrugging them off without knowing what the specific afflicting incident is.
 

I did specify mundane stuns and then went on to say monk stuns are NOT mundane so....
If the stunning fist of a monk is not mundane, then what is? The only other effects which I can think of that can cause stun are all spells, or otherwise obviously supernatural.

I guess a titan's hammer attack isn't obviously supernatural, but I would argue that it's at least as supernatural as a monk's fist.
 

S'mon

Legend
The Monk IMC getting to stun a dozen times per short rest certainly feels OP to me since it gives the whole group time to defeat the opponent. In general any save-or-disabled abilities in 5e feel OP since saves are usually failed, especially at high level. The Monk has to hit but he gets plenty of attacks so that's rarely an issue.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
Let me reiterate the original poster's question:

What's up with monsters' immunity to Stunned - or the lack thereof.

At first we maybe thought it was just an oversight, but with Mordenkainen's Tome of Foes I note how several new monsters have specific immunity to Stunned.

I want to know if you can find some kind of rationale - why does monster X have Stunned immunity while monster Y doesn't?
 

S'mon

Legend
I don't think the MM monsters were written taking account of the Monk's ability to spam stun attacks.

I would suggest a limited approach of giving some monsters advantage on stun saves. The likely result is the monk will have to hit 2-3 times to stun rather than 1-2, using up ki faster and making it more of a decision, while still getting plenty moments of awesome especially vs poor CON foes like wizards.

I think stun save advantage is most appropriate for constructs and for creatures with very alien physiology like oozes. Maybe incorporeal undead, but I would not give it to most corporeal undead.
 

If the stunning fist of a monk is not mundane, then what is? The only other effects which I can think of that can cause stun are all spells, or otherwise obviously supernatural.

I guess a titan's hammer attack isn't obviously supernatural, but I would argue that it's at least as supernatural as a monk's fist.
Monks are explicitly magical. A magical attack charged to disrupt the flow of magical or physical energy through a being's body sounds like the kind of thing that would make most things pause for a few seconds.
 

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