Maze Rats 5.3 – Monsters

A. Shipwright

As a small blog, I can respond to people. That’s a cool thing.

I’ve been asked, so figured I’d make a post about it: “How do I create monsters in Maze Rats 5.3?”

Answer: follow the original (mostly). I just decrease the Armor to make them easier to hit and more in line with the 5.3 changes.

The longer answer is that the only monsters I prep with stats and all that are bosses. And usually that’s just because bosses have unique and special abilities. (By the way, if you are designing bosses, you should absolutely read this article from Coins and Scrolls. This fueled my last campaign a TON.)

Everyone else who is not a boss gets stats on the fly AND only when you need them.

The description words are easy to have a good handle on. “Memorize” them. The Attack Bonus, STR, DEX, and WIL all function at similar levels of potency: from 0 to 4. Higher = more deadly.

Actual Monster and NPC stats

Health. Weak: 3 (1d). Typical: 7 (2d). Tough: 10 (3d). Hulking: 14 (4d). Colossal: 21 (6d). For Health, I can roll the totals, but usually I take the average. That’s especially true at the table when I need something fast.

Armor. Unarmored: 5 armor. Light protection: 6 armor. Moderate protection: 7 armor. Heavy protection: 8 armor. Nigh impervious: 9 armor. Note that armor can also be used to represent a monster’s resistance to mundane weapons, or other factors that would make it difficult to harm.

Attack Bonus. Untrained: +0 AB. Trained: +1 AB.  Dangerous: +2 AB. Masterful: +3 AB. Lethal: +4 AB.

STR Bonus. Weak: +0 STR. Average: +1 STR.  Strong: +2 STR. Powerful: +3 STR. Monstrous: +4 STR.

DEX Bonus. Slow: +0 DEX. Average: +1 DEX. Nimble: +2 DEX. Swift: +3 DEX. Blurred: +4 DEX.

WIL Bonus. Dimwitted: +0 WIL. Average: +1 WIL. Clever: +2 WIL. Brilliant: +3 WIL. Genius: +4 WIL.

Now, all the details about the monsters, what they look like, what their abilities are, what secrets they have, their weaknesses are all up to you. This posts just helps guide the stats side.

Honestly, I wish games like 5e would get an easy monster builder like this. It would save people time and allow them to focus on the stuff that actually matters: what the monster looks like, acts like, and how they behave.

Variety comes from the descriptions and interactions. Difficulty comes from the numbers.

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