We’re rounding out the Stone Summit today with their elite units from Sorrow’s Furnace. I haven’t covered every single Stone Summit from the game, but the Summit are already way more densely packed with units than even well-represented creature types like orcs in the standard Monster Manual. I think orcs could use a few more units to round them out (we made a few ourselves), but they don’t need twenty new unit types, which is how many would have to be added to bring them up to speed with the number of Stone Summit unit types in Guild Wars: Prophecies. Tabletop RPGs simply do not have the demand for tons of minutely tweaked versions of the same bad guy, nor is Guild Wars: Eternity intended to follow the level scaling of Prophecies (never reflected in the lore and abandoned in all other Guild Wars releases) that requires the Stone Summit of the Southern Shiverpeaks to be drastically more powerful than the ones in the Northern Shiverpeaks.
We’ve got our first corpse exploiting necromancer in here, so it’s important to note that a “fresh corpse” is specifically one made within the last six hours (before rigor mortis has set in) and which has not been decayed by other means. Generally speaking, a fresh corpse is going to be the result of some very recent murder. If a corpse is decayed as a result of some spell or other effect, it is no longer fresh.
Returning to the Shiverpeaks for our first look at the Stone Summit, maniacal dwarven zealots Hellbent on enslaving basically everything.
This entry contains the first monstrously effective healer, so let’s talk about the difference between D&D combat and Guild Wars combat. Although they use the same system, the common abilities of each make them actually very different from one another. This is not to say that D&D characters can’t fight Guild Wars monsters, nor that Guild Wars characters can’t fight D&D monsters, just that the way the Guild Wars characters/monsters fight is very different. In Guild Wars, healing is common, effective, and limited by recharge rates, not uses per day. Thus, when fighting Guild Wars monsters (or for GMs fighting Guild Wars characters, who will be a thing after we wrap up the monsters), you must either focus fire to drop an enemy before the healer gets a turn – preferably focusing that fire on the healer themselves so you won’t have to worry about them going forward, although the enemy’s front line might take issue with that strategy – or else stunlock or otherwise mitigate the healer’s effects on the battle, usually by having a member of your party dedicated all of their actions and reactions to stuns and interrupts.
Today we have minotaurs, dryders, and ice drakes. The first two have entries in the Monster Manual, but their Guild Wars incarnations have significant differences.
Today’s entry in “monsters that are slightly different in Guild Wars than in the regular Monster Manual” is the ettin. Tomorrow will have a double feature with dryders and minotaurs!
Well, that was quick. On to the Shiverpeaks, then.
Most of the Ascalonian monsters are palette swaps of Pre-Searing monsters. That’s the point, after all, it’s the same place but after the apocalypse. For the sake of keeping the project’s scale somewhat manageable, I have collapsed lots of similar monsters together so, for example, we’re not getting a whole bunch of extra types of grawl, here. Also, I completely forgot oakhearts in the Pre-Searing bestiary, so we’re getting those here.
With the last of the charr the Pre-Searing bestiary is now complete. We’ve also thrown in the Flame Caller for good measure. In the actual game of Guild Wars he didn’t appear until post-Searing, but adding him in made for a nice, symmetric two posts of three charr each capstone to the Pre-Searing. We’ll be looking at Post-Searing monsters tomorrow.
We’re just about done with the Pre-Searing bestiary. Today we’ve got the first half of the charr. Some people might find the charr shaman is pretty badly under-CR’d, and he kind of is. His CR reflects the fact that he is a pushover if you encounter him alone, but typically you’ll find him in a group with a couple of other charr, and he is a Hell of a force multiplier for them. GMs be advised.