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Posted this in the dms_corner community, and figured yall might have… 
4th-Feb-2007 08:36 pm
Posted this in the dms_corner community, and figured yall might have some input.

Alright, I know I don't post--like ever, in fact--but I need a bit of help. I've got a massive dungeon to build, and I'm running out of ideas for creatures. Well, not running out of ideas, but running out of creatures, more like. I'll explain behind the cut, as I tend to get longwinded.

So I generated a huge maze (fills an entire notebook sheet of graph paper), blocked in certain parts to make buildings, and created a huge, labyrinthine city that I never thought I'd use. I was horribly wrong, because in a fit of creativity/unthinking masochism I looked at it and said, "This would be perfect for the next long arc of my campaign." So I divided it up into sections (relatively easy, as mazes tend to do it naturally), themed them, and am done with the first seven. The eighth is sticking me.

The story is that this whole thing was once the main district in a grand city ruled by mages, and was thrown down in a huge version of the imprisonment spell, the mages ruling each section turned to stone, and their creations magically bound to their areas in the city to further prevent escape. The players will have to head down there in classic style--they know a duke, who has a young daughter, who will be kidnapped by an inexplicably escaped monster (I'm thinking about a big, nasty ogre mage with some levels or templates) that brings her down into the farthest depths of the city, leaving a note (of course) that gives the Duke a month to face him and get his daughter back. The party has managed to impress the Duke many times before, and being his new favorite swordarms, he's going to send them.

This dungeon starts at level 7, and by section eight the party will have just hit level 10. The theme for this section? Bound outsiders. I've been looking through lots of outsiders at CR 9-11, and I shouln't have a problem filling the five sections before the boss--suggestions are welcome, though. I need a boss for the last section, one that would be the prize of a very curious binding wizard whose spells still linger long after his petrification. What I was thinking was mixing things up a bit in terms of outsider encounters: a formian armadon fighting alongside a blue slaad, angels forced to aid demons, that kind of thing.

Well, I thought, wouldn't it be cool to make some kind of half-fiend celestial (or vise versa), as if this wizard was twisted enough to force such creatures to breed? I know it's not technically allowed, but I'm invoking DM rights and doing it anyway. Problem being, I don't want to kill off the party (there's a neat crossbreed on the WotC site, but it's CR 17). So, know any good CR 8-10 fiends or celestials that would make good half-breeds? Setting is not an issue, and I have access to pretty much any book. Suggestions?

I was thinking of using a Movanic Deva, making it a half fiend, and making it completely nuts. However, I would like something a bit more combat heavy, less spell-oriented.

When I'm done making this dungeon, I'm going to write it up and post it in my journal, if anyone wants to see it. Still a lot to get done, but it shouldn't take me too much longer. Thanks, in advance, for any help you can provide. Rock on.
(Deleted comment)
5th-Feb-2007 04:45 am (UTC)
Oh wow, good call, dude. I totally forgot about that template. I might not use it for the boss, but that really makes sense for one of the encounters before it. Any suggestions for celestials? I'm personally thinking maybe the Asura from BoED.

I think I found my boss, too. I was looking through Fiendish Codex I and found the Bulezau, and I think I'm going to add either the celestial or half-celestial template. Maybe feral, too, if I can make the numbers work. What do you think?
5th-Feb-2007 01:22 pm (UTC)
You can always add class levels to a lower CR creature. Hound archons are pretty standard, but throw on the fiendish/half-fiendish template and a handful of levels of Blackguard and you've got a fun toy.
5th-Feb-2007 03:14 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I know you can, but it's a bit more work than I like, you know? The few times I do give any kind of monster class levels are for villians who I use over and over, rather than just one or two encounters.

Good call on the hound archon blackgaurd, though. I guess you can just swap out levels of pali off the one in the MM, right? That would be badass.
5th-Feb-2007 06:03 pm (UTC)
Ooh, love the icon. Just finished The Wake, and I was thinking of making some Destiny ones. That kids' book is insanely cute.
5th-Feb-2007 08:00 pm (UTC)
Oh, man, Sandman is awesome. I'm partial to Destruction for a lot of reasons, not the least of which being that I look like him. That whole thing with chibi endless is pretty wicked, honestly--except Despair... she's just gross however she is.

You should go pick up Endless Nights, if you're still looking for some Sandman goodness after you're done the main series. There's also the two Death titles, the Corinthian series, and the Dead Boy Detectives, if you're really bored. Oh, yeah, and the whole run of Lucifer, which I highly recommend.
5th-Feb-2007 11:31 am (UTC)
Level 20 monks are considered outsiders. I don't know what CR that equals. After fighting random half-mindless beasties for a few days, I think it'd be a cunning twist to walk into a room with a dark human form giggling insanely at the other end.

He could Flurry them one after the other while begging to be released, which should hopefully create some dichotomy amongst your PCs whether to free him somehow or just kill him like all the beasties they just crossed. Is it all the same and they should just slaughter some poor bound monk, or did they just kill legions of helpless creatures?

Of course, Darkmonk is completely convinced that the only way to be released is to either please his strangely silent master by slaughtering the outsiders, or be slain by them for the liberating embrace of Death.

I dunno. I like pulling morality stunts on my PCs. They generally don't care and just take the easiest way out, alignment be damned, which eternally confuses me.
5th-Feb-2007 03:19 pm (UTC)
As cool as it would be, for things with class levels (minus racial adjustments and all that) character level is CR.

The creatures are pretty much helpless to do anything but serve their original function--servants and muscle. That's why a celestial will attack the party, though perhaps apologizing the whole time, or why a slaad and formian are fighting together. I wouldn't say they're helpless, but some of them really don't want to fight, and all would rather be somewhere else.

I think it's kind of universal that PCs just kill whatever is in the way. I'm hoping mine will stop to look at scenery, but alas, who knows?
5th-Feb-2007 06:00 pm (UTC)
As cool as it would be, for things with class levels (minus racial adjustments and all that) character level is CR.
If this is true, why would a first-level Elf Ranger from the MM be CR-1/2?
5th-Feb-2007 06:38 pm (UTC)
If it's the same as the statblock on D20srd.org, he's not a Ranger but a first level Warrior. Being 1st level in an NPC class is a CR of 1/2, while higher levels have a CR equal to the NPC level minus one.
5th-Feb-2007 08:08 pm (UTC)
NPCs are rarely PC classed, and those that are are very special ones. As Mike says, anyone you see in the various monster manuals, folios, or collections at 1 HD is generally a warrior, adept, or commoner (I've never seen a stat block with aristocrat, but I suppose it's possible). The glaring exceptions to that are the NPC stat blocks for important NPCs in various races in the MM4--or was it 3? I'm at work and can't check. But yeah, that's why.
5th-Feb-2007 01:36 pm (UTC)
If you want to go with a celestial that has a semi-classic feel, but a low CR (then slap a template and then either advance it, or add a couple of class levels), I can't think of one better than the Protectar (Miniatures Handbook pg 66).

Think...well, think angel, they look like beautiful humans with gigantic feathery wings. They've a few spell-like abilities that make them seem like Solars-to-be, but they're limited and their caster level is 2. Their CR? Also 2. IMO, they'd be great to customize to suit your own purposes, as their CR is low enough to give you head room, and they have a look that is absolute celestial.
5th-Feb-2007 03:21 pm (UTC)
An excellent idea, and I might just do that, if I don't find something easier than adding class levels to something. It's a bit more work than I'd like to be doing on this monster, particularly since I have work and school to contend with.

Protectars are cool, though. I played one a few games back, and it was quite awesome.
5th-Feb-2007 06:37 pm (UTC)
What about adding the half celestial template to a Rhaksasha? What better end villain could there POSSIBLY be?
5th-Feb-2007 08:13 pm (UTC)
Dude, thank you. Excellent idea, and a lot easier as I have physical copies of the books I'd need (as opposed to pdfs that I print bits out of at work). Isn't the warrior rhaksasha from Eberron a CR 8? I could tack on living breastplate for a +1, and half-celestial for a +2, for a good solid 11. Plus, it'd be more combat oriented than, say, a half-fiend movanic deva, AND I get to throw in the vilest felines in the multiverse. To be honest, I hadn't thought of them at all yet, and they're much cooler than genies.

Rock on.
5th-Feb-2007 08:38 pm (UTC)
I on the other hand have been looking for a way to work a genie into my nonmagical campaign. I think I have a way.

I've always liked raksasha's... We had a player who played one once in a one shot evil game... I played a spellslinger(one of those 6 armed guys) and we decimated a large part of a city. It was cool.

Just make sure the party doesn't have any holy bolts which kill them instantly.
6th-Feb-2007 02:54 pm (UTC)
Yeah, they would have had that, too, but the guy who plays the fighter convinced the rogue that holy wasn't a worthwhile enchanment for a repeating crossbow. Heheheheh, this is going to be hilarious.

Actually, you know, would that even work if it's half celestial? It would almost make sense either way, but I guess I'll just go with system rules.

How are you getting the genie in? Now I'm curious.
5th-Feb-2007 11:13 pm (UTC)
Use one type of critter, in multiple packs, and make the BBEG an awakened member of that species. Add in a few herds of belligerent prey animals.

Clueless Player: It's a cow. What can a cow do to us?

DM: That cow has you pinned against the wall and is grinding your spine into dust.
6th-Feb-2007 02:55 pm (UTC)
Very Diablo.
5th-Feb-2007 11:13 pm (UTC)
Use one type of critter, in multiple packs, and make the BBEG an awakened member of that species. Add in a few herds of belligerent prey animals.

Clueless Player: It's a cow. What can a cow do to us?

DM: That cow has you pinned against the wall and is grinding your spine into dust.
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