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hawklost
2014-08-08, 01:06 PM
Seems that Wizards has released the Suppliment for Hoard of the Dragon Queen
http://media.wizards.com/2014/downloads/dnd/HoardDragonQueen_Supplement1.pdf

Along with it is some new monsters and some very special ones called Legendary Monsters (Adult Blue, Adult White Dragons and a 'friendly' Vampire)

It appears that these Legendary creatures are supposed to be a challenge in and of themselves against the party without any mooks involved.
As such, they get an ability to succeed 3/day times they fail a Saving throw. they aslo get 3 effects they can do after Player turns (up to 3 per round) as well as their normal monstrous abilities.

Merc_Kilsek
2014-08-08, 01:14 PM
Today lesson is....

Don't *beep* with dragons. :smalleek:


Edit: Nice selection of monsters and npc types for use here till the MM

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 01:21 PM
Something good to look at.


These items don't have a GP, they just have a rarity rating.


Now this is classic Dnd


Rug of Smothering
Large construct, unaligned
Armor Class 12
Hit Points 33 (6d10)
Speed 10 ft.
STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
17 (+3) 14 (+2) 10 (+0) 1 (−5) 3 (−4) 1 (−5)
Damage Immunities poison, psychic
Condition Immunities blinded, charmed, deafened, frightened,
paralyzed, petrified, poisoned
Senses blindsight 60 ft. (blind beyond this radius),
passive Perception 6
Languages ó
Challenge 2 (450 XP)
Antimagic Susceptibility. The rug is incapacitated while in
the area of an antimagic field. If targeted by dispel magic, the
rug must succeed on a Constitution saving throw against the
casterís spell save DC or fall unconscious for 1 minute.
Damage Transfer. While it is grappling a creature, the rug takes
only half the damage dealt to it, and the creature grappled by
the rug takes the other half.
False Appearance. While the rug remains motionless, it is
indistinguishable from a normal rug.
Actions
Smother. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one
Medium or smaller creature. Hit: The creature is grappled
(escape DC 13). Until this grapple ends, the target is restrained,
blinded, and at risk of suffocating, and the rug canít smother
another target. In addition, at the start of each of the targetís
turns, the target takes 10 (2d6 + 3) bludgeoning damage.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 01:36 PM
Something good to look at.


These items don't have a GP, they just have a rarity rating.


Now this is classic Dnd

I'm guessing the treasure hordes are going to be like "2 common items, 1 rare item and XGP." I think that's pretty cool.

Those dragons are so beautifully designed it makes me want to shed a tear.

pwykersotz
2014-08-08, 01:37 PM
Legendary actions? What madness is this?! I LOVE them...

hawklost
2014-08-08, 01:39 PM
I know, how dare Wizards make Solo Monsters actually be able to handle the party well and not just be shot down cause there are 5 turns to his 1!

MadBear
2014-08-08, 01:39 PM
I actually really like the legendary saves ability. It reigns in the casters from being able to just target it's weak save round 1 and auto-win. Not to say that they won't be super important still, but it does help ensure that the martial characters will still be relevant.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 01:40 PM
And the legendary resilience. I decide to pass the save. Sorry. I already knew about the ability, but it's just magnifique.

lianightdemon
2014-08-08, 01:41 PM
Fear the rugs!

hawklost
2014-08-08, 01:41 PM
I actually really like the legendary saves ability. It reigns in the casters from being able to just target it's weak save round 1 and auto-win. Not to say that they won't be super important still, but it does help ensure that the martial characters will still be relevant.

Its not just the Caster though, its any kind of save (Think Assassin attack). It means that the Legendary creature is protected from a first turn bad roll. He should be able to last at least a few rounds and punish the party for facing him now! (There is nothing worse than a Boss dying on the first round)

pwykersotz
2014-08-08, 01:49 PM
I think "monsters with class levels" is being trivialized. Note the sheer number of creatures that are created to fill a niche that classes usually do. Like Veteran or Hobgoblin Captain or Spy. On the one hand, I support not needing to give classes to monsters. On the other hand, this could get to be a sickeningly long list very quickly.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 01:54 PM
I think "monsters with class levels" is being trivialized. Note the sheer number of creatures that are created to fill a niche that classes usually do. Like Veteran or Hobgoblin Captain or Spy. On the one hand, I support not needing to give classes to monsters. On the other hand, this could get to be a sickeningly long list very quickly.

I think it's easier to use, not harder. Instead of having to basically build a first level PC every time you need some mook to go up against the party, you just grab one of these guys. And I'm sure they'll have them scaled up to appropriate CRs in higher-level adventures.

hawklost
2014-08-08, 01:56 PM
I think "monsters with class levels" is being trivialized. Note the sheer number of creatures that are created to fill a niche that classes usually do. Like Veteran or Hobgoblin Captain or Spy. On the one hand, I support not needing to give classes to monsters. On the other hand, this could get to be a sickeningly long list very quickly.

Yes, I can agree with the Spy just being a monster with class levels and even possibly the Veteran (although in both cases the HP does not match the abilities to any class, even if some of the abilities can be matched. Spy has 6d8 HD but only +2d6 sneak. Veteran has 9d8 HD but only 2 attacks with no real other bonuses.) The Hobgoblin Captain though does not have abilities related to a Class and uses unique ones so that definitely does not fit.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 02:03 PM
Yes, I can agree with the Spy just being a monster with class levels....

I get that POV, but this gives the DM more work (statting up individual enemies by class level instead of just using a stat block). This can be a rewarding experience, and DMs who want to put in that extra effort to get more robust NPC challengers can still do it, but this is one of the things that I think the developers learned from 4e. One of the best things about 4e D&D is the ease of encounter building for DMs. Pick monsters of the appropriate level, have them fight PCs. 5 does pretty much the same thing, but with the added XP budget guidelines. Asking DMs to take the time to add class levels to all their humanoid enemies following all the PC generation rules (6 chapters of them!) is too much for most people. This makes the game more accessible. I honestly look forward to using this system as a player and a DM. I DM 3e pretty often, and making monsters and encounters is tons of work if I want them to be exciting and challenging. It's a personal thing though, and your mileage may vary.

Tholomyes
2014-08-08, 03:12 PM
One thing I'm a bit perplexed by is some of their CR decisions. For example, take the Goblin from the starter set, vs the Guard from this PDF. The goblin does, on average, one more damage than the Guard, but has 4 fewer HP and one fewer AC. However it is 1/4 CR, while the Guard is 1/8 CR. It seems pretty unclear as to the reasoning behind this. Sure, the goblin has the ability to disengage or hide for free on it's turn, but it goes down on an average hit from a level 1 non-caster, while the guard does not. Seems to me they should be about the same CR. It's not the only enemy that has this issue (take a look at the trogladite, that gets 3 attacks per turn), and it makes me concerned about the ease of running the system, since CR and XP don't really tell you enough to balance encounters well.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 03:28 PM
One thing I'm a bit perplexed by is some of their CR decisions. For example, take the Goblin from the starter set, vs the Guard from this PDF. The goblin does, on average, one more damage than the Guard, but has 4 fewer HP and one fewer AC. However it is 1/4 CR, while the Guard is 1/8 CR. It seems pretty unclear as to the reasoning behind this. Sure, the goblin has the ability to disengage or hide for free on it's turn, but it goes down on an average hit from a level 1 non-caster, while the guard does not. Seems to me they should be about the same CR. It's not the only enemy that has this issue (take a look at the trogladite, that gets 3 attacks per turn), and it makes me concerned about the ease of running the system, since CR and XP don't really tell you enough to balance encounters well.

I'm guessing it's about PC hit point totals. They pretty much said that the CR is based on what the PCs can "handle," i.e., punishment before going down. A crit from a goblin will take out most PCs, but a crit from the guard only takes down the wizard.

da_chicken
2014-08-08, 03:48 PM
One thing I'm a bit perplexed by is some of their CR decisions. For example, take the Goblin from the starter set, vs the Guard from this PDF. The goblin does, on average, one more damage than the Guard, but has 4 fewer HP and one fewer AC. However it is 1/4 CR, while the Guard is 1/8 CR. It seems pretty unclear as to the reasoning behind this. Sure, the goblin has the ability to disengage or hide for free on it's turn, but it goes down on an average hit from a level 1 non-caster, while the guard does not. Seems to me they should be about the same CR. It's not the only enemy that has this issue (take a look at the trogladite, that gets 3 attacks per turn), and it makes me concerned about the ease of running the system, since CR and XP don't really tell you enough to balance encounters well.

Really? Disengage 1/turn means it's impossible to run away from Goblins, and they will oftentimes ignore your opportunity attacks. That's worth at least one step, IMO.

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 04:07 PM
Legendary my ass, they just made plot armor into a game mechanic lol

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-08, 04:10 PM
Legendary my ass, they just made plot armor into a game mechanic lol

Wasn't it always?

Also... just realized something. The Legendary Actions don't say you can't use them during the surprise round, so even if you get the drop on a dragon, he can still use his wing attack and tail attack.

da_chicken
2014-08-08, 04:10 PM
Legendary my ass, they just made plot armor into a game mechanic lol

Which is fantastic! It means game allows the narrative to have precedence over the mechanics with some method beyond DM fiat.

Tholomyes
2014-08-08, 04:18 PM
Really? Disengage 1/turn means it's impossible to run away from Goblins, and they will oftentimes ignore your opportunity attacks. That's worth at least one step, IMO.In comparison the guards are harder to put down; Unless the PCs get lucky, no one can put them down in one hit. With Goblins, a caster could put them down with a lucky cantrip, and a fighter or other martial could put them down with an average swing of their weapon. With guards, a caster can't put them down with a cantrip, even if they max their damage, and a Fighter or other martial can only put them down with a lucky roll. That seems worth even CR to me.

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 04:27 PM
I can just see future things



Greater Holy Smite Spell: This item does 10d10 against undead, and ignores legendary effects.

IAmTehDave
2014-08-08, 04:37 PM
I'm planning on running a game in another system at some point, and for any solo boss types, I'm stealing the Legendary Actions mechanic. Holy crap that's beautiful.

zorb25
2014-08-08, 05:25 PM
I am not a fan of Legendary Resistance. it is more Categorized Dm fiat. it basically says f... thee three times a day to any save base ability Dm does not want to face/dislikes. imo it would be better if it was tied to certain save types with recharge potential and was mandatory, so you can still get around it and target enemy weakness and it remains presence for the whole fight or allow legendary creatures to shake these effects off cheaply, for example through easy roll and burning a legendary action.

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 06:23 PM
I can see it leading to some rage inducing moments for players, set this big elobrate trap and condition to fire off some undead charm or destruction spell that would kill the boss. An dm says..... Nope.....


It really forces final boss fights to be about pumping out damage spells rather then control spells.



Did this single handily make evocation wizards usable ?

Giddonihah
2014-08-08, 06:26 PM
Another option is try to overwhelm a Legendary Creatures defenses by making it make one bad save after another, perhaps starting off with a non critical Debuff or two for it to use its resistance on.

Secret Bard
2014-08-08, 06:33 PM
Another option is try to overwhelm a Legendary Creatures defenses by making it make one bad save after another, perhaps starting off with a non critical Debuff or two for it to use its resistance on.

Problem is that this requires the boss monster to fail 3 times before anything can breach its defenses. Every time it succeeds a saving throw just adds more time for it to pummel the party while they try to weaken it.

Edit: And looking the bonuses to the dragon's saving throws, it will be succeeding a lot.

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 06:36 PM
Problem is that this requires the boss monster to fail 3 times before anything can breach its defenses. Every time it succeeds a saving throw just adds more time for it to pummel the party while they try to weaken it.


Fighter does a trip , cleric trys to turn , paladin tries to smite, wizard tries to control undead, rogue uses some sort of wand, bard uses whatever magic it gots..


A 5 man team can chew through that bit real quick, although this game seems to be designed around a 4 man layout not 5 like 3.5 ?

Giddonihah
2014-08-08, 06:51 PM
Problem is that this requires the boss monster to fail 3 times before anything can breach its defenses. Every time it succeeds a saving throw just adds more time for it to pummel the party while they try to weaken it.

Edit: And looking the bonuses to the dragon's saving throws, it will be succeeding a lot.

The Reward for exhausting its defenses is being able to land a Save or Suck spell, ending the encounter. Whether its a bad choice vs just beating the thing with damage (and who says you can't do a bit of both) will depend entirely on the monsters other attributes like AC, Regeneration and attack style.

ImperiousLeader
2014-08-08, 07:17 PM
The Vampire is also pretty scary. Doesn't have the Dragon's damage potential, but the charm and bite effects are impressive.

obryn
2014-08-08, 11:14 PM
Okay, my interest in 5e is falling even lower than before. Two big issues.

(1) One of the worst things during the first playtest were the Giant Rats. They were awful, because all 18 or whatever of them attacked with Advantage. Why is this awful?

Normal Scenario: 18 rats attack. Roll 18d20. Look for hits.
Advantage Scenario: Roll 2d20, pick higher. [repeat 17 times]. You can't just throw down a handful; each rat needs rolled separately, unless you've set aside specific pairs of d20's.

It was removed for Giant Rats, but now it's back ... for Kobolds! Will it be anywhere else, too?

(2) I am going to go on about spell lists in monster stat blocks again, but bear with me a minute. Look at the Mage in the supplement. Now, quick! Which of these spells are Reactions? Which of them are Bonus Actions?

The fact that spells in 5e aren't (almost) all standard actions, like they were in 3e and earlier, makes this a much trickier scenario.

CyberThread
2014-08-08, 11:24 PM
One thing I do hate about the spells is that that they do backtrack . They get listed on the various spell lists, but when you look up those spells or just browsing through the spells they don't say who gets them or at what level. of spell slot.

da_chicken
2014-08-08, 11:26 PM
Okay, my interest in 5e is falling even lower than before. Two big issues.

(1) One of the worst things during the first playtest were the Giant Rats. They were awful, because all 18 or whatever of them attacked with Advantage. Why is this awful?

Normal Scenario: 18 rats attack. Roll 18d20. Look for hits.
Advantage Scenario: Roll 2d20, pick higher. [repeat 17 times]. You can't just throw down a handful; each rat needs rolled separately, unless you've set aside specific pairs of d20's.

It was removed for Giant Rats, but now it's back ... for Kobolds! Will it be anywhere else, too?

Yeah, I can see that being kind of annoying. I guess when I DM I never roll attacks for multiple creatures simultaneously. Mostly because I only have 3-5 d20s out at any one time. I think it's carry over from critical fumble rules, though. However, this does give me an excuse for buying matched pairs of d20s. :smallbiggrin:


(2) I am going to go on about spell lists in monster stat blocks again, but bear with me a minute. Look at the Mage in the supplement. Now, quick! Which of these spells are Reactions? Which of them are Bonus Actions?

I got them all right. I had to double check Misty Step, but I what I thought I remembered was correct. Counterspell and Shield have to be reactions or they don't function.

I do admit that I have uncanny memory for spell descriptions.

Mando Knight
2014-08-08, 11:41 PM
The Reward for exhausting its defenses is being able to land a Save or Suck spell, ending the encounter.

It's not guaranteed against all Legendaries, though. After you beat through an Adult Blue Dragon's Legendary Resistances, it still has 4 proficient saves, and one of the two remaining saves is its best stat (Str). Good luck shutting it down with a vs Con spell, though its Dex save is low enough that you have a bit better than even odds against it.

It also only expends Legendary Resistance when it fails saving throws, so you're going to have to throw a good number of them at the Legendary before it succumbs to your encounter-ending spell.

MadBear
2014-08-08, 11:58 PM
so you're going to have to throw a good number of them at the Legendary before it succumbs to your encounter-ending spell.

Which I'm totally ok with for boss fights.

Legendary Resitance isn't something I'd want to see on all monsters, but it does help create a scenario where 1 PC alone won't normally prevail, and thereby invalidate the rest of the party.

In this regard it encourages characters to team up by throwing out many save or sucks, if they want to go that route, without it being an auto "spell caster targeted weak save we win" button. At high levels in 3.5 and PF killing a monster by doing HP damage was usually the least efficient way to kill a boss, when you could just knowledge check it's weak save, and have a caster take it out in 1 turn.

This also helps make it so you don't need a ton of mooks at the boss fight, since the legendary is boss is well..... legendary! By giving it extra actions, it get's 3 little mini turns inbetween the characters turns to affect the battlefield.

Secret Bard
2014-08-09, 12:21 AM
(2) I am going to go on about spell lists in monster stat blocks again, but bear with me a minute. Look at the Mage in the supplement. Now, quick! Which of these spells are Reactions? Which of them are Bonus Actions?

The fact that spells in 5e aren't (almost) all standard actions, like they were in 3e and earlier, makes this a much trickier scenario.

I guess it's personal preference; but I prefer the spell description being in the PH rather than being posted on every monster that can cast spells, I just think that is a waste of space and would make navigating the MM a bit annoying because one mage needs 4 pages worth to describe their spells.

Mr.Moron
2014-08-09, 12:30 AM
Okay, my interest in 5e is falling even lower than before. Two big issues.

(1) One of the worst things during the first playtest were the Giant Rats. They were awful, because all 18 or whatever of them attacked with Advantage. Why is this awful?

Normal Scenario: 18 rats attack. Roll 18d20. Look for hits.
Advantage Scenario: Roll 2d20, pick higher. [repeat 17 times]. You can't just throw down a handful; each rat needs rolled separately, unless you've set aside specific pairs of d20's.


Yes you can.

1) Roll 18d20. Note hits.
2) Re-roll the misses. Set aside hits/crits. Anything still a miss is a miss.
3) Roll 1d20 for each Hit noted in step 1. Any Crits become crits instead of hits. Anything other than a crit remains a hit.
4) Add up hits and crits from steps 1,2 and 3.

This is gives you the same results as roll 2d20 keep highest for each creature, but you only have to roll twice as opposed to 18 times. There is probably a more efficient way of doing this, but this was the quickest I could come up with off the top of my head.

Envyus
2014-08-09, 12:58 AM
Okay, my interest in 5e is falling even lower than before. Two big issues.

(1) One of the worst things during the first playtest were the Giant Rats. They were awful, because all 18 or whatever of them attacked with Advantage. Why is this awful?

Normal Scenario: 18 rats attack. Roll 18d20. Look for hits.
Advantage Scenario: Roll 2d20, pick higher. [repeat 17 times]. You can't just throw down a handful; each rat needs rolled separately, unless you've set aside specific pairs of d20's.

It was removed for Giant Rats, but now it's back ... for Kobolds! Will it be anywhere else, too?

(2) I am going to go on about spell lists in monster stat blocks again, but bear with me a minute. Look at the Mage in the supplement. Now, quick! Which of these spells are Reactions? Which of them are Bonus Actions?

The fact that spells in 5e aren't (almost) all standard actions, like they were in 3e and earlier, makes this a much trickier scenario.

Hello dwarf74 from something awful.

Tholomyes
2014-08-09, 01:28 AM
One thing I might replace Legendary resistance with is, instead of 3x making a save automatically succeed, Legendary creatures get a free saving throw at the beginning of their turns, to end any effect they're afflicted by (even if they normally don't get a save at the end, like color spray; in such cases, use the same saving throw as the first one). It makes it less all or nothing, but it gives them a lot better chance to succeed, so they don't just flounder to SoS spells. The only issue is for spells that are instantaneous, and don't cause an ongoing effect, a Legendary creature is more SoL, but I don't know how bad that necessarily is. There aren't really any Save or Die spells that I know of, so those saves might not be as make-or-break.

Malifice
2014-08-09, 09:14 AM
Loving the Legendary creature rules.

Great way to make a Solo challenging for high level PC's.

The one thing that wrecked classic Solo encounters was SOD spells, and the action economy disparity amongst 1 monster VS 4-5 PC's.

As a GM I would rarely fudge dice rolls against the players (its usally the other way around). But nothing wrecks an encounter more than when your BBEG Solo goes down in one round to a SOD spell, or flubs its initiative roll and gets wasted by 4-5 full attacks before it gets a single action.

Accordingly I found myself simply keeping BBEG monsters alive for a few extra rounds (intentionally flubbing saving throws vs SOD effects or intentionally adjusting initative rolls up, and ignoring HP loss) to keep the PC's challenged.

Wont need to do this anymore woth these rules.

Love this mechanic that evens that disparity and makes Solo encounters truly memorable encounters.

rlc
2014-08-09, 09:48 AM
Yes you can.

1) Roll 18d20. Note hits.
2) Re-roll the misses. Set aside hits/crits. Anything still a miss is a miss.
3) Roll 1d20 for each Hit noted in step 1. Any Crits become crits instead of hits. Anything other than a crit remains a hit.
4) Add up hits and crits from steps 1,2 and 3.

This is gives you the same results as roll 2d20 keep highest for each creature, but you only have to roll twice as opposed to 18 times. There is probably a more efficient way of doing this, but this was the quickest I could come up with off the top of my head.
three things i can think of:
-don't bother with rolling for individual creatures when it gets to be a huge number. just roll somewhere between 1 and 3 times (or whatever's appropriate) and divide it up evenly. tell the players that you're simplifying things to take less time.
-if you don't roll combats beforehand, do it for this specific encounter. that way, you can choose to do it "the right way," the way i said above, or just make it up.
-give the party a surprise round whenever they're that outnumbered, even if it doesn't make sense logically so that they can kill some of the creatures and you have less things to roll for

ImperiousLeader
2014-08-09, 10:00 AM
Okay, my interest in 5e is falling even lower than before. Two big issues.

(1) One of the worst things during the first playtest were the Giant Rats. They were awful, because all 18 or whatever of them attacked with Advantage. Why is this awful?

Normal Scenario: 18 rats attack. Roll 18d20. Look for hits.
Advantage Scenario: Roll 2d20, pick higher. [repeat 17 times]. You can't just throw down a handful; each rat needs rolled separately, unless you've set aside specific pairs of d20's.

It was removed for Giant Rats, but now it's back ... for Kobolds! Will it be anywhere else, too?

(2) I am going to go on about spell lists in monster stat blocks again, but bear with me a minute. Look at the Mage in the supplement. Now, quick! Which of these spells are Reactions? Which of them are Bonus Actions?

The fact that spells in 5e aren't (almost) all standard actions, like they were in 3e and earlier, makes this a much trickier scenario.

I believe this is revenge for all the bags of rats killed in 3.5 ... :smallcool:

Yes, this is annoying. But I'd point out that 1: Swarm of Rats is a thing. As long as the DMG/MM has rules for "swarming" a monster, then this'll go away, except for the DM that decides to just roll it. 2: It might be a lot of mechanical rolling, but it also can legitimately threaten the PCs.

pwykersotz
2014-08-09, 11:04 AM
Yes you can.

1) Roll 18d20. Note hits.
2) Re-roll the misses. Set aside hits/crits. Anything still a miss is a miss.
3) Roll 1d20 for each Hit noted in step 1. Any Crits become crits instead of hits. Anything other than a crit remains a hit.
4) Add up hits and crits from steps 1,2 and 3.

This is gives you the same results as roll 2d20 keep highest for each creature, but you only have to roll twice as opposed to 18 times. There is probably a more efficient way of doing this, but this was the quickest I could come up with off the top of my head.

I think that's overcomplicating it, but maybe I'm just not seeing the scope of what you're doing.

Step 1: Roll 18d20, knowing what your target minimum is.
Step 2: Pick out the dice that didn't hit that number, reroll in bulk.
Step 3: Roll damage for hits and crits.

Since crits no longer need to be confirmed, this cuts a lot of rolls out of a situation like this.

Tholomyes
2014-08-09, 11:17 AM
I think that's overcomplicating it, but maybe I'm just not seeing the scope of what you're doing.

Step 1: Roll 18d20, knowing what your target minimum is.
Step 2: Pick out the dice that didn't hit that number, reroll in bulk.
Step 3: Roll damage for hits and crits.

Since crits no longer need to be confirmed, this cuts a lot of rolls out of a situation like this.The issue is advantage also confers an increased crit chance. So you do need that extra step of rerolling the number of dice that hit, but didn't crit, in case they do crit on the next hit.

Personally the thing that bugs me more isn't so much the three bulk rolls (plus bulk damage rolls), but the fact that the odds are that all 18 aren't attacking the same target. So you might need to roll 6d20 (with steps 1 to 4) on the fighter, 5d20 (with steps 1-4) on the Wizard, 4d20 (with steps 1-4) on the thief, and 3d20 (with steps 1-4) on the cleric. That ends up being a lot of rolling for one set of monsters. Granted, I'm personally of the mindset that even if 18 kobalds might be a balanced encounter, by the encounter building guidelines, it will almost never be a fun encounter, so I'd much rather have 6 or 7 kobalds with a Kobald Shaman as the leader, buffing them, and using spells, or even having fewer kobalds, but adding in another specialized kobald.

Malifice
2014-08-09, 11:29 AM
Multiple Mook rules would benefit greatly from rules similar to SWSE stormtroopers (which took its cue from WEG stormtroopers) 'combining fire'.

Basically every Mook that forgoes its attacks adds 1 to the attack rolls and 2 to the damage rolls of one other similar adjacent Mook. This stacks.

6 Mooks attack at +5 to hit and +10 to damage.

Makes them deadly in numbers, without slowing the game down.

I hope to see a rule like this in the Monster Manual.

PinkysBrain
2014-08-09, 12:37 PM
If you aren't at least a switch hitter in 5e you're doing it wrong, trying to melee one of those dragons is for suckers.

pwykersotz
2014-08-09, 01:06 PM
Multiple Mook rules would benefit greatly from rules similar to SWSE stormtroopers (which took its cue from WEG stormtroopers) 'combining fire'.

Basically every Mook that forgoes its attacks adds 1 to the attack rolls and 2 to the damage rolls of one other similar adjacent Mook. This stacks.

6 Mooks attack at +5 to hit and +10 to damage.

Makes them deadly in numbers, without slowing the game down.

I hope to see a rule like this in the Monster Manual.

Yeah, this might be a good area to apply the passives in. Advantage is +5, Disadvantage is -5. Then ignore the increased crit chance (which I now see). Roll once and apply modifiers, that is all. Unless, of course, like you say we have better rules for mass combat.

Lokiare
2014-08-09, 03:52 PM
Seems that Wizards has released the Suppliment for Hoard of the Dragon Queen
http://media.wizards.com/2014/downloads/dnd/HoardDragonQueen_Supplement1.pdf

Along with it is some new monsters and some very special ones called Legendary Monsters (Adult Blue, Adult White Dragons and a 'friendly' Vampire)

It appears that these Legendary creatures are supposed to be a challenge in and of themselves against the party without any mooks involved.
As such, they get an ability to succeed 3/day times they fail a Saving throw. they aslo get 3 effects they can do after Player turns (up to 3 per round) as well as their normal monstrous abilities.

yeah, legendary actions are a little better, because they limit them to after a characters turn. Instead of 'anytime between the end and start of the legendary creatures turn', but they still come off as cheap DM plot devices.

3 auto saves per day is also too binary. Remember when the survey results said people didn't like auto-successes? well they still don't like it. Not to mention you can power through this in a single round if you have the right party.

Basically there are better more granular ways of making this work. This is what I use in 4E:

Choose one for your 'legendary/solo':

Indomitable
Through sheer willpower, fanaticism, or supernatural ability this creature is able to break through things that make it feel helpless.
You roll a saving throw against all effects and conditions that affect the action economy of the creature at the start of your turn with a -5. (you still retain normal saves at the end of the turn).

Ineffectual
The lesser things of mere mortals have a lesser effect on this creature because it is something beyond mortal.

Conditions have lesser effects and must build up to the actual effect. Anytime this creature is subject to a condition follow the chart below moving along the condition track:
Paralyzed = -10 feet of move speed > -10 feet of move speed and dazed > Paralyzed
Daze = lose reaction > lose reaction and bonus action > dazed
So if a spell caused 'paralyzed' it would the first time it takes effect cause -10 feet of move speed. The next paralyzed effect would cause -10 feet of move speed and dazed and the third paralyze effect would cause Paralysis.

Doesn't think like normal creatures
This creatures mind works differently than regular creatures, it can control limbs independently of others and partitions it mind in such a way as to segment effects into those parts of its mind so it can remain effective.
The creature rolls initiative multiple times, on each of its turns it can use a small sub-set of its actions. When a condition is applied to the creature it only affects one of its initiative turns. It can have one hit point pool or multiple hit point pools, but the total hp of the creature is the same as normal.
Example: A Beholder might have each of its eye stalks attack on different initiatives with their own hp pools and subject to their own conditions.

In this way players that use conditions and saves aren't totally marginalized, and they can't blow through the entire mechanic in a single round. It challenges them, but still leaves them effective.


One thing I might replace Legendary resistance with is, instead of 3x making a save automatically succeed, Legendary creatures get a free saving throw at the beginning of their turns, to end any effect they're afflicted by (even if they normally don't get a save at the end, like color spray; in such cases, use the same saving throw as the first one). It makes it less all or nothing, but it gives them a lot better chance to succeed, so they don't just flounder to SoS spells. The only issue is for spells that are instantaneous, and don't cause an ongoing effect, a Legendary creature is more SoL, but I don't know how bad that necessarily is. There aren't really any Save or Die spells that I know of, so those saves might not be as make-or-break.

Yep, see above.


Yeah, this might be a good area to apply the passives in. Advantage is +5, Disadvantage is -5. Then ignore the increased crit chance (which I now see). Roll once and apply modifiers, that is all. Unless, of course, like you say we have better rules for mass combat.

Advantage and Disadvantage don't work that way. The chance goes up based on what the target d20 number is. If you have to roll 19 on a D20 with advantage your chance for success only goes up by 9% (+2). If you have to roll a 14 on a d20 with advantage your chance for success goes up by 22.75% (+4).

Which is why if you are optimized and have to give something up for advantage its usually not worth it.

Now simply having each creature assist the attacks of the one next to it will halve the number of dice you have to roll and a full 'mob' system would be much better.

pwykersotz
2014-08-09, 04:05 PM
yeah, legendary actions are a little better, because they limit them to after a characters turn. Instead of 'anytime between the end and start of the legendary creatures turn', but they still come off as cheap DM plot devices.

3 auto saves per day is also too binary. Remember when the survey results said people didn't like auto-successes? well they still don't like it. Not to mention you can power through this in a single round if you have the right party.

Basically there are better more granular ways of making this work. This is what I use in 4E:

Choose one for your 'legendary/solo':

Indomitable
Through sheer willpower, fanaticism, or supernatural ability this creature is able to break through things that make it feel helpless.
You roll a saving throw against all effects and conditions that affect the action economy of the creature at the start of your turn with a -5. (you still retain normal saves at the end of the turn).

Ineffectual
The lesser things of mere mortals have a lesser effect on this creature because it is something beyond mortal.

Conditions have lesser effects and must build up to the actual effect. Anytime this creature is subject to a condition follow the chart below moving along the condition track:
Paralyzed = -10 feet of move speed > -10 feet of move speed and dazed > Paralyzed
Daze = lose reaction > lose reaction and bonus action > dazed
So if a spell caused 'paralyzed' it would the first time it takes effect cause -10 feet of move speed. The next paralyzed effect would cause -10 feet of move speed and dazed and the third paralyze effect would cause Paralysis.

Doesn't think like normal creatures
This creatures mind works differently than regular creatures, it can control limbs independently of others and partitions it mind in such a way as to segment effects into those parts of its mind so it can remain effective.
The creature rolls initiative multiple times, on each of its turns it can use a small sub-set of its actions. When a condition is applied to the creature it only affects one of its initiative turns. It can have one hit point pool or multiple hit point pools, but the total hp of the creature is the same as normal.
Example: A Beholder might have each of its eye stalks attack on different initiatives with their own hp pools and subject to their own conditions.

In this way players that use conditions and saves aren't totally marginalized, and they can't blow through the entire mechanic in a single round. It challenges them, but still leaves them effective.



Yep, see above.



Advantage and Disadvantage don't work that way. The chance goes up based on what the target d20 number is. If you have to roll 19 on a D20 with advantage your chance for success only goes up by 9% (+2). If you have to roll a 14 on a d20 with advantage your chance for success goes up by 22.75% (+4).

Which is why if you are optimized and have to give something up for advantage its usually not worth it.

Now simply having each creature assist the attacks of the one next to it will halve the number of dice you have to roll and a full 'mob' system would be much better.

Your monster traits are pretty cool. Well done.

But yes, I'm aware Advantage and Disadvantage don't work that way. It was a casually suggested change to improve usability, nothing more. It has the benefit of being pre-established in the rules as what you do to modify passive perception.

Lokiare
2014-08-09, 04:16 PM
Your monster traits are pretty cool. Well done.

But yes, I'm aware Advantage and Disadvantage don't work that way. It was a casually suggested change to improve usability, nothing more. It has the benefit of being pre-established in the rules as what you do to modify passive perception.

Well then its probably a workable mechanic, though depending on numbers it could turn the fight super deadly. Maybe some kind of cap?

PinkysBrain
2014-08-09, 07:06 PM
What's the DC to recognize a spell being cast BTW?

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 02:44 AM
Not sure how challenge rating is supposed to work. That Vampire is CR 13 and by the article I read parties under 13 level shouldn't fight it. For the heck of it me and my friend rolled up 2 level 10 Barbarians and a level 10 Bard. We took him down. There was a legitimate risk of PC death, but all in all we found it fairly manageable. I don't know if it would really stack up to your average +3 CR encounter via pathfinder standards.

Envyus
2014-08-10, 02:47 AM
Not sure how challenge rating is supposed to work. That Vampire is CR 13 and by the article I read parties under 13 level shouldn't fight it. For the heck of it me and my friend rolled up 2 level 10 Barbarians and a level 10 Bard. We took him down. There was a legitimate risk of PC death, but all in all we found it fairly manageable. I don't know if it would really stack up to your average +3 CR encounter via pathfinder standards.

The entire thing about that article is that he was a large chance of PC death. Added on they did not actually kill him he will be back in an hour unless they find his coffin..

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 09:19 AM
The mist form is not invisible as I understood it, we also fought the vampire out doors in a forest type setting. This made the most sense if we had to fight him and his optimal number of wolves. So once he decided it would be wise to run away, the turn we got him from 70ish HP to 17, he turned into a bat then moved. The bard then downed him with scorching ray, turning him into mist. The mist is not invisible and travels at a move speed of 20. Meaning would could follow it with relative ease?

I suppose you could fight it infinite times, but I don't know why your DM would do that. You follow the mist and fight him in his lair at not quit full HP or he decides back off while he amasses more resources (vampire spawn) and refreshes his daily 3d6 wolves. As a DM I see those as the two most likely options I would through at my players. I don't think that every hour until you die he comes back and fights you. Either way it's a successful encounter for the party and XP is awarded.

hawklost
2014-08-10, 10:23 AM
The mist form is not invisible as I understood it, we also fought the vampire out doors in a forest type setting. This made the most sense if we had to fight him and his optimal number of wolves. So once he decided it would be wise to run away, the turn we got him from 70ish HP to 17, he turned into a bat then moved. The bard then downed him with scorching ray, turning him into mist. The mist is not invisible and travels at a move speed of 20. Meaning would could follow it with relative ease?

I suppose you could fight it infinite times, but I don't know why your DM would do that. You follow the mist and fight him in his lair at not quit full HP or he decides back off while he amasses more resources (vampire spawn) and refreshes his daily 3d6 wolves. As a DM I see those as the two most likely options I would through at my players. I don't think that every hour until you die he comes back and fights you. Either way it's a successful encounter for the party and XP is awarded.

Its not that it is invisible that makes it hard to follow, its that it can move through any space or crack where it is impossible for PCs to follow it. It has 2 hours for the Mist to make it to its Coffin.

Lets say there is a cave system somewhere within a half hour Mist form run. Now lets say the PCs follow the Vampire Mist to this cave and watch it move through a crack in the wall. Now the PCs believe the Coffin is somewhere in this cave while really it just flies out a different end and continues on its way.

Also, since the Mist is weightless and I would assume the Vampire would choose to only come out at Night that it could go 1000ft up in the air away from the party, travel in whatever direction it felt like for an hour or so to get home. It really isn't practical to easily follow the vampire back to its coffin it it chooses to avoid detection.

Also, assuming it takes more than an hour and 5 minutes to get to the vampire once it reaches it resting place (lets say there is a lot of crap to get through in his Lair as well as having his resting place hidden off and blocked by anything that isn't air. He will be at full HP and back at almost full power (just no summons).

As for a successful encounter, the DM might or might not reward full XP for the fight if the parties objective was to destroy the Vampire and keep him from (enter X reason here). Because they have not actually successfully destroyed him yet.

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 10:52 AM
Fair enough. No one was below half HP, bard still had about half his spells (including high level). I guess what I'm trying to say is that seemed like appropriate CR for a 3 man level 10 party, or if you want to say we'd have to fight him more than two times in a day, probably about right if we'd had a four man party. I really don't understand the CR system.

da_chicken
2014-08-10, 11:37 AM
Not sure how challenge rating is supposed to work. That Vampire is CR 13 and by the article I read parties under 13 level shouldn't fight it.

No, it means that the creature may have attacks or defenses which lower level parties cannot handle. Challenge and CR are different metrics. Higher challenge means either the attacks could do too much damage, hit points could be too high, or other abilities (regeneration, damage resistance, charm) mean that the creature can potentially outclass the characters. It doesn't mean that the party won't be able to hit or damage the creature.

I don't have my PHB with me, but if my memory is right then you picked 3 classes that are highly resistant to several one of the Vampire's primary abilities: Charm and Grapple + Bite. Did you also give the PCs magical weapons to overcome the vampire's resistance? Did they have a source of repeated radiant damage to cancel out regeneration? If so, then you just took all the abilities that make the vampire a Challenge 13 and gave your PCs the ability to ignore them. It shouldn't be surprising that the PCs won.


For the heck of it me and my friend rolled up 2 level 10 Barbarians and a level 10 Bard. We took him down. There was a legitimate risk of PC death, but all in all we found it fairly manageable. I don't know if it would really stack up to your average +3 CR encounter via pathfinder standards.

It does not stand up to a +3 CR encounter. They do not mean the same thing. You're not expected to always fight Challenge = level +/- 2 in 5e. Attack bonuses and defenses don't scale much with level in 5e, but hp and damage do.

However, if 10,000 XP is a Challenge 13 creature, then I think the encounter math (http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/features/building-adventures-0) must have changed. 10,000 XP is a level 17 hard encounter for 4 PCs. That makes no sense as a Challenge 13.

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-10, 03:59 PM
I also wonder if you were using its legendary actions correctly.

You're right though, the vampire's DPR is way too low to seriously challenge a level 10 party. Maybe the high CR is to account for the charm, and assumes the party does not know the vamp is hostile at first. Building an encounter with one of these and some vampire spawns would be much more challenging, too.

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 07:19 PM
We gave one character in the party a magic weapon. From what I understand magic items are rare, but by level 10 a party has probably ran into at least one magic weapon. Just went with a basic +1 weapon.

We had no sources of radiant damage, the vampire was recovering at least 20 HP a round. Many rounds the Vampire was recovering 30 to 40 hp. A bit draining HP on it's own turn and possibly one during the PC's half of the round. Charm person in combat is limited in it's use. You can't really make a PC attack another PC. I think that charm ability is more for before a battle has started or meant to be used on a third party.

I believe we were using the legendary actions correctly, the big question is whether you can shove someone to end a grapple. In the description of grapple it states that an affect like thunderwave would end a grapple. The barbarians were converting about half their attacks to shoving the vampire off the bard. Once the bard realized how screwed he was if he couldn't escape being grappled like 4 times in a round he cast greater invisibility to take himself out of the target line up.

Lokiare
2014-08-10, 07:40 PM
How many times did you run the combat? 10 times? 100?

Basically this isn't representative of anything, but the swing of the dice.

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 08:05 PM
Our playtest fell within calculated damage averages. You have one barbarian with a +1 weapon dealing 50 average damage a round, another w/out a +1 weapon dealing about 12-15, and a Bard casting mid level spells to deal with wolves/attack the vampire when able (for about 21). The Vampire heals on average 30 HP. So assuming the bard attacks on half the rounds the party deals 35ish damage a round. So can the party survive 5 rounds of combat with the vampire and her 3d6 wolves? The answer is more likely yes than no.

It's hard to have a realistic idea of what resources the party will have to use without actually running the scenario. Could it go differently? Yes. But once you've actually run the scenario you have a better idea of who will be doing what and how things will go. From there you're able to better look at the battle using statistics.

Lokiare
2014-08-10, 08:06 PM
Our playtest fell within calculated damage averages. You have one barbarian with a +1 weapon dealing 50 average damage a round, another w/out a +1 weapon dealing about 12-15, and a Bard casting mid level spells to deal with wolves/attack the vampire when able (for about 21). The Vampire heals on average 30 HP. So assuming the bard attacks on half the rounds the party deals 35ish damage a round. So can the party survive 5 rounds of combat with the vampire and her 3d6 wolves? The answer is more likely yes than no.

It's hard to have a realistic idea of what resources the party will have to use without actually running the scenario. Could it go differently? Yes. But once you've actually run the scenario you have a better idea of who will be doing what and how things will go. From there you're able to better look at the battle using statistics.

If that's the case then it proves their CR/XP budget system doesn't work.

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 08:33 PM
It may just prove that that particular monster has too little starting HP, not quite enough regeneration, or that while legendary actions are very cool and take steps in the right direction they don't quite account for being outnumbered 3 to one.

It could also mean that bardic lore giving bards access to ALL THE SPELLS makes bards quite possibly the best casters in the game. Combine that with bardic inspiration being amazing and only taking a bonus action and you've got Bards being incredible at buffing the party, dealing damage via spells, and shaping the battle (again via spells). Combine that bardic swiss army knife with a decent piece of DPS and another barbarian built as the uber-tank and you have a very effective party. I can't tell you how many times I've sat down at a table to realize we have no tank or no healing. Having two people decide on what will constitute the party produces possibly a more balanced party that four people getting together and deciding to play what looks cool.

Even if those two people made their class decisions based off, "We should only use classes that sound similar."

"You mean like bard and barbarian?"

"Yeah! Go team bardbarian!"

Human Paragon 3
2014-08-10, 09:18 PM
Bards do seem amazingly good in 5e. However, I expect you could have gotten similar results with 3 fighters if they had magic weapons. The real dealbreaker is probably the charm effect, which was not used effectively at all. If half the party started out charmed, it'd be much more difficult. Maybe impossible at level 10.

da_chicken
2014-08-10, 10:27 PM
It sounds to me like you ran it relatively fairly. A +1 weapon by level 10 is reasonable. I don't remember the Barbarian being able to do 50 damage a round, but I only saw a level 7 one played in the playtest, and only for a single session. I guess you have two three attacks (forgot about Frenzy) at advantage dealing 1d12+9 and crits would be 3d12+9? I guess that's close to 50 damage. Certainly more than enough to overcome the vampires regeneration and blood drain.

I do think most Vampires would use Charm to try to aggravate the party's ability to cooperate, or would not approach the party intending to battle them. Vampires prefer to stalk their prey when they're alone. I also think most vampires would flee at closer to 25% health. I do understand that this was just a test, though, rather than a session. Of course, it sounds like you didn't really kill it, you just drove it off. Part of what makes vampires scary is the fact that they retreat to one of their coffins through a mouse hole and recover and come back at full strength after a short rest.

Arzanyos
2014-08-10, 10:31 PM
Yeah, the reason for the CR13 is the Charm Effect. It's more powerful than the Charm Person Spell, and can basically sit you out of the fight if you get hit by it.

Jenckes
2014-08-10, 11:52 PM
Zomg. I just reread that ability. It starts off exactly like charm person, but the end there mentions the willingly submit to the draining bite attack. I do believe this may merit a rematch.

My bad.

Seerow
2014-08-11, 12:12 AM
For what it's worth I like the legendary resistance mechanic. I will likely adapt some variation of it to boss type monsters I run, with a few variations. Most likely something like every X% of HP lost removes 1 possible use of legendary resistance, and having recovery abilities that can also cost a use. Possibly even have using a legendary resistance to auto-pass a save cost the creature some HP. It helps put everyone on the same page as far as contributing to bringing down the monster. It'd be way too much tracking for an average fight, but for something that might show up once every level or 2, it seems perfectly acceptable.

Envyus
2014-08-11, 12:32 AM
Zomg. I just reread that ability. It starts off exactly like charm person, but the end there mentions the willingly submit to the draining bite attack. I do believe this may merit a rematch.

My bad.

It also mentions that it thinks the vampire is a trusted friend to be heeded and protected and will take the Vamps requests in the most favorable way it can. Normal charm just makes them a friendly.

PinkysBrain
2014-08-11, 05:30 AM
Just want to ask again, what's the DC to recognize a spell being cast? (ie. will it blow it's legendary resistance on cantrips.)

da_chicken
2014-08-11, 09:16 AM
Just want to ask again, what's the DC to recognize a spell being cast? (ie. will it blow it's legendary resistance on cantrips.)

There isn't one defined anywhere that I'm aware of. I would assume it to be automatic or require an Intelligence (Arcana) or Intelligence (Religion) roll (possibly automatic with proficiency).