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Special Conversion Thread: Finishing off giants and their kin

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
The lower weight is fine by me. Per Big Mac's suggestion, why don't we say that their skin is perpetually covered by a layer of embedded dirt and pebbles?
 

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Shade

Monster Junkie
Gray Troll
CLIMATE/TERRAIN: Any subterranean
FREQUENCY: Very rare
ORGANIZATION: Solitary/tribe
ACTIVITY CYCLE: Night
DIET: Carnivore
INTELLIGENCE: Low (5-7)
TREASURE: Q (D)
ALIGNMENT: Chaotic evil
NO. APPEARING: 1
ARMOR CLASS: 2
MOVEMENT: 12
HIT DICE: 8 + 1
THAC0: 13
NO. OF ATTACKS: 3
DAMAGE/ATTACK: 1d4+5 (×2)/1d8+5
SPECIAL ATTACKS: See below
SPECIAL DEFENSES: Regeneration, see below
MAGIC RESISTANCE: Nil
SIZE: L (9’)
MORALE: Champion (16)
XP VALUE: 6,000

Gray trolls are tall and gangly, and look much like normal trolls. Their gray or gray-brown skin is dry and flaky, like old parchment. The unruly mass of hair on the gray troll's head is gray or white. Deep in the sunken pits that are its eye sockets dance cold blue pinpoints of light.

Gray trolls possess excellent infravision, out to 150'. They are also able climbers (75% climbing chance).

Combat: Gray trolls are ferocious in battle, ripping into anything near them with their claw/claw/bite routine. Gray trolls are able to direct these attacks against up to three opponents.

The gray troll's saliva is highly toxic, and is delivered every time it successfully bites an opponent. The poison has an onset time of 20 minutes. The victim must then save vs. poison. If successful, there is no further effect. If failed, the victim slips into a coma, and will not awaken unless the poison is neutralized. After 36 hours, the victim must save again, but this time at a -2 penalty. If successful, the victim suffers 2d6 points of damage and then wakes from the coma. If unsuccessful, the victim dies.

Gray trolls prefer their natural attacks above ail others, never using weapons or missiles.

Thrice per week, a gray troll may assume gaseous form for no more than six rounds per use. It takes one full round to assume or exit gaseous form. This time does not count against the duration of the power. While changing, the troll can't defend itself, but once in gaseous form, it is immune to all but magical weapons and spells. While in gaseous form, the troll must remain within 5' of the ground and can move at twice its normal speed.

Gray trolls are extraordinary regenerators, regaining six hit points per round, beginning on the fourth round after being wounded. Gray trolls also are totally immune to damage by acid, cold, and electrical attacks. However, fire damage cannot be regenerated, and because of its dry, paper-like skin, a gray troll takes double damage from fire attacks. They hate fire so much they will attack anyone bearing it, in hopes of extinguishing it as quickly as possible.

Thanks to its lanky, emaciated form, a gray trolls limbs are easily severed (on a natural attack roll of 18 to 20) by edged weapons. Severed limbs will fight for up to five rounds after being cut off. If the battle ends before five rounds elapse, the limbs will rejoin the body. If not, the severed limb crumbles to dust.

Sunlight, like fire, is deadly to a gray troll. A gray troll will never willingly enter sunlight, but, if forced, will desperately try to flee and find a dark shelter, attacking anything in its way. While in sunlight, a gray troll fights as if blinded (-4 penalty on attacks, saves, and AC), and is "burned" by the sunlight for five hit points of damage (which cannot be regenerated) every round. If brought to zero hit points while in sunlight, a gray trolls body shrivels and crumbles into black and gray ashes, forever dead. Light other than sunlight has no effect on gray trolls.

Gray trolls are always ravenous and are distracted from pursuit by food dropped in their path 75% of the time.

Habitat/Society: Gray trolls are normal trolls that reached their present state by being totally level drained, usually by some form of undead. By processes not fully understood, the rush of negative energy from the attacker reacts strangely with the troll's natural regenerative ability. Less than 5% of trolls so drained of life energy react in this odd way; the rest simply die. Once drained, the troll lapses into a coma for 24 hours, during which time it isn't adversely affected by sunlight. When it awakens, it has become a gray troll, and all commensurate abilities and weaknesses are gained at that moment. It is not undead, however. As a gray troll, the beast has gained a strange link to the Negative Material plane. Due to this connection, a gray troll is rendered sterile and loses any spell-casting powers that it may have possessed. It lives for 25 to 75 years before it crumbles to dust.

After transforming, most gray trolls become solitary wanderers of the Underdark, full of hate and hunger, recklessly attacking any creatures they meet. Occasionally, they will find their old tribe or a new troll tribe, and gain leadership of it.

Ecology: Gray trolls attack, kill, and eat any creature they come across. Gray trolls live only to feed and destroy. Though they may seem to possess undead-like abilities, they are alive, and cannot be turned or controlled by clerics.

The dust of a gray troll is useful in healing and resistance magics (acid, cold, electricity) and can bring quite a hefty price due to its extreme rarity.

Originally appeared in Dragon Magazine #199 (1993).
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Xtreme negative energy trolls! :D

Given that these are just normal trolls that have been level drained but survived, should the stats be similar to the regular troll? (Though these do have 2 more HD than the 3e troll; how many did the 2e troll have?) Regular trolls have Str 23, Dex 14, Con 23, Int 6, Wis 9, Cha 6, so how about Str 25, Dex 14, Con 21, Int 6, Wis 9, Cha 6? Con has suffered from the energy drain, but they gain strength from the Negative Energy? :p
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Normal trolls had 6+6 HD in 2e.

Grays have 2 better AC than 2e trolls.

Grays regenerate 3 more hp/round.

I agree with your ability score assessment, and will Homebrew them soon.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Ok, let's keep the 8HD (and lower Con based on the lower bonus hp). An extra +2 to natural armor for a total of +7 makes sense (and gets AC 18, which matches the original). Regeneration is 6 based on the original text, but we can up that based on the 2e comparison (3e trolls get 5). Fire deals normal damage. Also add vulnerability to fire?
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Added to Homebrews.

How about doubling the stanard troll's regeneration (10 points), since it was double before?

Let's keep Str the same since their 2e damage output was lower than a standard troll (but not much).

Gray trolls possess excellent infravision, out to 150'. They are also able climbers (75% climbing chance).
Darkvision 150 ft. and racial bonus on Climb checks?

The gray troll's saliva is highly toxic, and is delivered every time it successfully bites an opponent. The poison has an onset time of 20 minutes. The victim must then save vs. poison. If successful, there is no further effect. If failed, the victim slips into a coma, and will not awaken unless the poison is neutralized. After 36 hours, the victim must save again, but this time at a -2 penalty. If successful, the victim suffers 2d6 points of damage and then wakes from the coma. If unsuccessful, the victim dies.
Turn this into actual poison that behaves more like others, or make it a unique Ex ability?

Thrice per week, a gray troll may assume gaseous form for no more than six rounds per use. It takes one full round to assume or exit gaseous form. This time does not count against the duration of the power. While changing, the troll can't defend itself, but once in gaseous form, it is immune to all but magical weapons and spells. While in gaseous form, the troll must remain within 5' of the ground and can move at twice its normal speed.
Modifying the vampire's ability....

Gaseous Form (Su): Three times per week, as a full-round action, a gray troll can assume gaseous form as the spell (caster level 5th), but it can remain gaseous for six rounds and has a fly speed of 60 feet with perfect maneuverability.

Gray trolls also are totally immune to damage by acid, cold, and electrical attacks.
Immunity to acid, cold, and electricity?

Thanks to its lanky, emaciated form, a gray trolls limbs are easily severed (on a natural attack roll of 18 to 20) by edged weapons. Severed limbs will fight for up to five rounds after being cut off. If the battle ends before five rounds elapse, the limbs will rejoin the body. If not, the severed limb crumbles to dust.
Didn't we do something similar with a recent conversion?
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Shade said:
How about doubling the stanard troll's regeneration (10 points), since it was double before?

Let's keep Str the same since their 2e damage output was lower than a standard troll (but not much).
Both sound good.

Darkvision 150 ft. and racial bonus on Climb checks?
Yes to both, maybe +8 Climb bonus?

Turn this into actual poison that behaves more like others, or make it a unique Ex ability?
I'll think about that one...

Modifying the vampire's ability....

Gaseous Form (Su): Three times per week, as a full-round action, a gray troll can assume gaseous form as the spell (caster level 5th), but it can remain gaseous for six rounds and has a fly speed of 60 feet with perfect maneuverability.
Looks good.
Immunity to acid, cold, and electricity?
Yes, and vulnerability to fire as I mentioned above?
Didn't we do something similar with a recent conversion?
Was it the troll mutate?
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Updated.

Good memory!

Severed Limb Attack (Ex): If one of a troll mutate's arms is severed (such as via the impeded fortification ability, above), the arm attacks the troll mutate's enemies with its usual attack bonus and damage, although it takes penalties for attacking while prone. The severed arm acts on the troll mutate's initiative and remains animate for 2d4 rounds if it is not reattached to the troll mutate.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
Let's add it! Did we have rules for severing limbs in the troll mutate? The gray troll has
Thanks to its lanky, emaciated form, a gray trolls limbs are easily severed (on a natural attack roll of 18 to 20) by edged weapons. Severed limbs will fight for up to five rounds after being cut off. If the battle ends before five rounds elapse, the limbs will rejoin the body. If not, the severed limb crumbles to dust.
which would suggest severing an arm on a critical.

Sunlight, like fire, is deadly to a gray troll. A gray troll will never willingly enter sunlight, but, if forced, will desperately try to flee and find a dark shelter, attacking anything in its way. While in sunlight, a gray troll fights as if blinded (-4 penalty on attacks, saves, and AC), and is "burned" by the sunlight for five hit points of damage (which cannot be regenerated) every round. If brought to zero hit points while in sunlight, a gray trolls body shrivels and crumbles into black and gray ashes, forever dead. Light other than sunlight has no effect on gray trolls.
Like a vampire's vulnerability to sunlight or just a direct conversion (5 hp per round lethal damage)?
 

Big Mac

Explorer
Updated.

Anything left?
It looks good, but this sentence looks wrong: "Stone trolls are not bothered sunlight like many other trolls."

This could be taken to mean "Stone trolls, like many other trolls, are not bothered by sunlight." I know that is not what you mean, but I think the sentence needs a tweak.

I would go for: "Stone trolls are not bothered sunlight like many other trolls are."

Or: "Stone trolls are not bothered by sunlight unlike many other trolls."

Or reverse the two bits to get: "Unlike many other trolls, stone trolls are not bothered by sunlight."

I think the third version would be the one that would work best for non-native speakers.
 


Big Mac

Explorer
Turn this into actual poison that behaves more like others, or make it a unique Ex ability?
I don't like the part of the poison that kills people. I would rather have a poison that puts people into a coma. If they don't wake up they would eventually starve to death anyway.

The other ability seems to be "inherited" from an undead ability. Is there an undead poison that knocks people out?

Given the Gray Troll's knockout bite attack, do you think it should bite people, retreat and then stalk them for 20 minutes to see if the knockout poison kicks in? A monster that runs in and hit's a PC's cohort with a KO bite and then tries to steal the unconsious victim later on could be quite fun.

Modifying the vampire's ability....

Gaseous Form (Su): Three times per week, as a full-round action, a gray troll can assume gaseous form as the spell (caster level 5th), but it can remain gaseous for six rounds and has a fly speed of 60 feet with perfect maneuverability.
Don't forget that the original couldn't get more that 5ft from the ground. Taking that restriction out could allow them to fly over castle walls or across the Grand Canyon and so on.

Immunity to acid, cold, and electricity?
Yes, and vulnerability to fire as I mentioned above?
I agree with freyar. The vulnerability to fire seems to be similar to the vulnerability to light.

Are you going to keep its "attack people with fire first" strategy? I wonder if the creature should attempt any fire-fighting tactics. It has a low intellegence, so I suppose it wouldn't walk around with a bucket of water and a blanket to throw on a fire.

Severed Limb Attack (Ex): If one of a troll mutate's arms is severed (such as via the impeded fortification ability, above), the arm attacks the troll mutate's enemies with its usual attack bonus and damage, although it takes penalties for attacking while prone. The severed arm acts on the troll mutate's initiative and remains animate for 2d4 rounds if it is not reattached to the troll mutate.
I'm not a big fan of severed arms that fight by themselves, but this does the job fairly well. The end would need to change to: "...remains animate for 2d4 rounds and then disintegrates if it is not reattached..."
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I don't like the part of the poison that kills people. I would rather have a poison that puts people into a coma. If they don't wake up they would eventually starve to death anyway.

The other ability seems to be "inherited" from an undead ability. Is there an undead poison that knocks people out?

Given the Gray Troll's knockout bite attack, do you think it should bite people, retreat and then stalk them for 20 minutes to see if the knockout poison kicks in? A monster that runs in and hit's a PC's cohort with a KO bite and then tries to steal the unconsious victim later on could be quite fun.
I'm inclined to make this a regular poison (though the 20 minute stalking idea is quite amusing). If so, I'd maybe start with something like

Poison - Injury, Fort DC X negates, initial damage nauseated for 2d4 rounds, secondary damage unconscious for 1d4 hours. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Thoughts?
Don't forget that the original couldn't get more that 5ft from the ground. Taking that restriction out could allow them to fly over castle walls or across the Grand Canyon and so on.
I think the 6 round limit will keep it pretty close to the ground most of the time.

I agree with freyar. The vulnerability to fire seems to be similar to the vulnerability to light.

Are you going to keep its "attack people with fire first" strategy? I wonder if the creature should attempt any fire-fighting tactics. It has a low intellegence, so I suppose it wouldn't walk around with a bucket of water and a blanket to throw on a fire.
I think that strategy is reasonable for these things, and the lack of fire-fighting tools is also probably about right for a troll.

How did you want to handle light vulnerability? I'm leaning toward something similar to immersing a vampire in water.

I'm not a big fan of severed arms that fight by themselves, but this does the job fairly well. The end would need to change to: "...remains animate for 2d4 rounds and then disintegrates if it is not reattached..."
Hehe, I think the remaining animate takes care of that. Afterwards, it just dies.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
I fixed the stone troll with sentence #3...nice catch!

I'll look over the other discussion shortly.
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
I'm inclined to make this a regular poison (though the 20 minute stalking idea is quite amusing). If so, I'd maybe start with something like

Poison - Injury, Fort DC X negates, initial damage nauseated for 2d4 rounds, secondary damage unconscious for 1d4 hours. The save DC is Constitution-based.
I like it.

I think the 6 round limit will keep it pretty close to the ground most of the time.
Agreed. Besides, it could just stay within 5 feet of the wall or canyon sides to cross the examples, right? ;)

How did you want to handle light vulnerability? I'm leaning toward something similar to immersing a vampire in water.
How's this? I combined the drow's light blindness with the vampire's water immersion and through in some of the original flavor text...

Light Sensitivity (Ex): Abrupt exposure to bright light (such as sunlight or a daylight spell) blinds a gray troll for 1 round. On subsequent rounds, it is dazzled as long as it remains in the affected area. A gray troll exposed to natural sunlight robs it of one-third of its hit points each round until it is destroyed at the end of the third round. A gray troll cannot regenerate damage caused by sunlight, and upon reaching 0 hit points it crumbles into black and gray ashes.

Hehe, I think the remaining animate takes care of that. Afterwards, it just dies.
Indeed.
 

freyar

Extradimensional Explorer
I like the light sensitivity, though maybe it should be light vulnerability or something since it actually takes damage.

On the homebrews page, there's still a "troll mutate" in the severed limb attack.

Any other SAs for this, or should we move on to skills and feats?
 

Shade

Monster Junkie
Light vulnerability it is, and the leftover "mutate" removed.

Updated.

The only other special ability we might need after re-reading the original text is some sort of "healed by negative energy/harmed by positive energy" bit, if we want to go that route.

Otherwise, here are the feats and skills:

Skills: 11
Trolls split ranks between Listen and Spot.

Feats: 3
Trolls have Alertness, Iron Will, Track.

Since these are essentially still trolls, we may not need to change the feats and skills.
 

Big Mac

Explorer
I'm inclined to make this a regular poison (though the 20 minute stalking idea is quite amusing). If so, I'd maybe start with something like

Poison - Injury, Fort DC X negates, initial damage nauseated for 2d4 rounds, secondary damage unconscious for 1d4 hours. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Thoughts?
Instant poison is a change, but it is a change for the better. Monster abilities should mostly happen during the combat (or in front of the players).

I think the 6 round limit will keep it pretty close to the ground most of the time.
I must have missed that limit. If this creature lives underground vertical flight won't come into play too much. And cutting out the height limit means less things for the GM to remember.

Hehe, I think the remaining animate takes care of that. Afterwards, it just dies.
The crumbling to dust thing is a bit weird as that evokes some vampire films I've seen. (See also my reply to Shade below.)

How's this? I combined the drow's light blindness with the vampire's water immersion and through in some of the original flavor text...

Light Sensitivity (Ex): Abrupt exposure to bright light (such as sunlight or a daylight spell) blinds a gray troll for 1 round. On subsequent rounds, it is dazzled as long as it remains in the affected area. A gray troll exposed to natural sunlight robs it of one-third of its hit points each round until it is destroyed at the end of the third round. A gray troll cannot regenerate damage caused by sunlight, and upon reaching 0 hit points it crumbles into black and gray ashes.
It does seem very fast, but I really like this.

One point though. If the gray troll crumbles and turns to dust in sunlight, should they also crumble to dust if they die normally? And should severed limbs crumble to dust?

The only other special ability we might need after re-reading the original text is some sort of "healed by negative energy/harmed by positive energy" bit, if we want to go that route.
These creatures are already bordering on being undead. Would pushing it further in that direction make for a more interesting creature? (How many undead trolls are there?)

Otherwise, here are the feats and skills:

Skills: 11
Trolls split ranks between Listen and Spot.

Feats: 3
Trolls have Alertness, Iron Will, Track.

Since these are essentially still trolls, we may not need to change the feats and skills.
I think that everything should be as per a standard troll, unless there is a reason for it to learn additional skills or feats. This has to be a regular troll that got transformed.

Considering what this is, I'm tempted to suggest gray troll should be a template that can be applied to any troll. :p
 

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