I made a monster using Thor’s stickied guide for the first time, it’s definitely not the most original beast but I want to make sure my stats make sense based on the description I gave, before I expend energy on making more monsters. All feedback appreciated!
Link (scroll down for stats): Marsh Wyrm Species in The Realm | World Anvil
Very cool. Sounds intriguing and should be a lot of fun.
Overall, great concept. I think it could be condensed down a little. TB monsters are different than most games because everything is very minimal, condensed, and essential. Everything you need to run the monster is tightly packed together. Even the “flavor text” provides the necessary context to run the rest of the stats. Just something to consider.
Dragons are awesome. A semi-aquatic dragon concept is very cool, but not sure that is really coming out in the stats. If “semi-aquatic” is necessary to call out, maybe they should have water-breathing or something that connected more to “semi-aquatic,” then it would make more sense to include that. Not a big deal, but there could be an opportunity to strengthen that aspect or just strike it.
One of the things I learned from Thor is to always drive the information in a monster toward interactions with the adventurers. If they don’t eat people, is the Dietary heading important to have as its own section? Maybe that could be included in another sentence to condense it down. Or, is there an opportunity to provide some mechanical bonus, such as the leftovers from the frogs can be used as +1D bait supplies for a fishing test. Or, maybe some of the poison can be extracted from the leftovers. Then there is some meat behind them bones.
The conflict disposition should be:
Drive Off (7), Flee / Pursue (11), Kill (4)
Primary conflict: 5 x 2 + 1 weapon = 11
Secondary: 5 + 2 weapons = 7
Weakness: 3 + 1 weapon = 4
It is an interesting idea to provide guidance for attack actions, however, that would be better encapsulated in the instinct. Why does the dragon lurk in the water? How does that provide a bonus for a feint? Things like a Defend action are so situational that more general instruction in the flavor text or instinct would help a GM better understand how to run the creature. For example, skeletons are mindless as they plod forward, so a GM understands they shouldn’t be pulling tricky feints.
Hope this helps
This is really helpful, thank you!
First, I should have said that the worldbuilding project is its own thing independent of the TB campaign - diet is important because I’m an ecology nerd lol (also the worldanvil section headings can’t be edited unless you pay)
As for how to relate the information back into the monster’s stats: I did think about the semi-aquatic aspect in terms of the flee / pursue conflicts. It should be very slow on land and almost impossible to catch in the water. Would that work as a special rule? Or would that be a case where the animal is acting outside its nature when on land, so you follow the procedure for acting outside nature?
When I think about it, “extra” info like diet can be useful for twist encounters. If you’re in a certain neck of the woods, a failed Fisher test might summon a swamp dragon (because they’re territorial about fish) whereas a failed Pathfinder test might summon another creature. Sort of a “who’s the hungriest monster in your vicinity” approach to twists.
I have been using pre-determined conflict patterns in my own games because my brain gets so tired during sessions. I might change it to a note about its nature descriptors - it feints and maneuvers in water, it only attacks when backed into a corner, etc.
So I will add info on the conflict actions into the flavor text or nature descriptors, thank you!
Also where did you get the formula for determining the conflict hit points?
Glad to help
where did you get the formula
Disposition Breakdown, SG p. 172
There’s also an updated step-by-step example on the TB wiki under Monsters > How to Make Monsters:
very slow on land and almost impossible to catch in the water
Very interesting. Yeah, that works. How would that translate into a bonus or penalty? For example, it could have “Conflict Armor” that soaks more damage in water during a flee/pursue.
also the worldanvil section headings can’t be edited
Yeah, I just see that as an opportunity to make all that info meaningful at the table. You’re on the right track!
animal is acting outside its nature
Well I wouldn’t mess with Nature, but I think something equivalent would work. Alternatively, you could have a special rule that disposition or weapon effects are increased in water. Or, have different weapons for water/land, not sure how that would actually work at the table, but that could be innovative!
There’s been a wiki this whole time??
Come on google!
Ha ha, yeah. It needs to be updated more for 2e, but still has lots of good info.
We’re always looking for more community editors if anyone out there wants to clean up some pages.
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