Help me stat a crocodile

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Help me stat a crocodile

Postby KyleC » Sun Nov 20, 2005 7:48 pm

I've begun working on the conversion of the old school adventure "The Isle of Dread" to True20. First up, creatures! I'm trying to use the excellent Unofficial Monster Builder rules by Dragonspawn (along with the input of other posters in that thread) along with the Monster Manual stats as the base guideline.

My first attempt has me scratching my head a bit. Let me stat the little feller up so y'all can comment on it.

CROCODILE
Size & Type: Medium 3rd Level Animal
Speed: 20 ft., Swim 30 ft.

Abilities: Str +4, Dex +1, Con +3, Int -4, Wis +1, Cha -4
Skills: Stealth +7, Notice +5
Feats: Improved Grab
Traits:---
Combat: Attack +3 (+2 base, +1 Dex), Damage +9 (bite), +11 (tail slap), Defense +3 (+2 base, +1 Dex), Initiative +1
Saving Throws: Toughness +7 (+3 Con, +4 natural), Fortitude +6, Reflex +4, Will +2


The main thing I want to make sure of is that I'm converting the damage properly. This is how I've been doing it in the past, and just want to verify it is correct. The d20 stats for the croc's damage is listed as:

Bite 1d8+6; tail slap 1d12+6

My first assumption is that the MM factors the croc's strength into the damage, so I pulled that out, leaving a 1d8+2 and 1d12+2, respectively. 1d8 converts to a +3, and adding 2 gives me +5. 1d12 converts to +5, and adding 2 gives me +7. Finally, I add the croc's strength bonus to both for a +9 and +11 (looking back, I should have just kept the original strength bonus in and shortened the conversion process). Is this the correct way to do it, or should the extraneous +2s be dropped?

Anything else I might have missed? +9 and +11 damage seems a bit high to me for a 3rd level creature. Agree or disagree?

-KyleC
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Postby Tim Gray » Mon Nov 21, 2005 12:55 am

That's a modest size for a crocodile. They can reach 20ft long, and it is fantasy...

One of the oddities with the system is that size doesn't automatically feed into damage dealt, leaving the GM to fudge as seems right. I wonder whether one could use the same mod as for Toughness, so they balance in the same way as attack/defence. Then you just have to compare the attack form to a weapon and add Str and size. Teeth and claws would be equivalent to a dagger.

For a croc, damage done should be more about size and less about Strength.

(NB I haven't actually read the monster statting thread, but the lack of a process in the rulebook led me to make one for my setting submission. EDIT: On a quick read of that thread, mine was rather simpler and looser, based on assigning a level according to the challenge you want and drawing combat and saves from the classes/roles.)
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Postby DnDChick » Mon Nov 21, 2005 5:00 am

The +6 damage bonus for the croc's attacks comes from multiplying its Strength bonus by 1.5.

In 3.X D&D, if a monster can only attack with a single natural weapon in a round, you multiply its Strength bonus by 1.5. The croc can attack with a bite or a tail slap, but not both in the same round, so it gets this benefit.

So, in short, drop that extra +2. :)
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Postby KyleC » Mon Nov 21, 2005 6:25 am

Tim Gray wrote:That's a modest size for a crocodile. They can reach 20ft long, and it is fantasy...

The size is straight out of the Monster Manual, although there is a separate Giant Crocodile entry set as Huge.
One of the oddities with the system is that size doesn't automatically feed into damage dealt, leaving the GM to fudge as seems right. I wonder whether one could use the same mod as for Toughness, so they balance in the same way as attack/defence. Then you just have to compare the attack form to a weapon and add Str and size. Teeth and claws would be equivalent to a dagger.

For a croc, damage done should be more about size and less about Strength.

Unless of course, the size is already factored into Strength, which the MM appears to do. While what you are describing has merit if you are building a monster from the ground up, I think monsters from existing sources (such as the MM) already have their size accounted for.
(NB I haven't actually read the monster statting thread, but the lack of a process in the rulebook led me to make one for my setting submission. EDIT: On a quick read of that thread, mine was rather simpler and looser, based on assigning a level according to the challenge you want and drawing combat and saves from the classes/roles.)


Well, post yours up so we can all take a gander! Your version sounds like you tweak the monster to fit the encounter difficulty instead of tweaking the encounter difficulty to fit the monster.

-KyleC
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Postby KyleC » Mon Nov 21, 2005 6:37 am

DnDChick wrote:The +6 damage bonus for the croc's attacks comes from multiplying its Strength bonus by 1.5.

In 3.X D&D, if a monster can only attack with a single natural weapon in a round, you multiply its Strength bonus by 1.5. The croc can attack with a bite or a tail slap, but not both in the same round, so it gets this benefit.

So, in short, drop that extra +2. :)


Aha! So that is where that +2 is coming from. Then the croc's damage should be +7 and +9. I don't feel as bad about those stats for a 3rd level creature. He's still a heavy hitter, but not quite as vicious.

The next question would be, what are the rules for filling his head with cannonballs and powdering his behind? Oh wait, that's for alligators. (+1 Wealth increase for the first person to name the reference.)

Thanks for the tip!
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