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Old 07-30-2018, 12:26 PM   #1
Lord Dynel
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Default DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

I've tried looking for an answer before bothering you fine folks, but came up rather empty.

I'm not terribly familiar with Dungeon Fantasy, but I do know the characters start at 250 points, making them somewhat more powerful than my normal (regular) GURPS Fantasy games (100 pts., -45 disads., -5 quirks). I also know that there are three monster supplements for DF, and I am interested at the prospect of expanding my existing collection of foes to harass my PCs. My question is this: will DF monsters be too strong for PCs of a lower point value (of the point totals I mentioned above) than those of the standard DF characters?
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Old 07-30-2018, 12:29 PM   #2
SilvercatMoonpaw
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

I'd be worried they wouldn't stand up to GURPS character built to do conflict other than "kill, take stuff, repeat".

(Not the same question, but I thought I'd piggyback.)
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Old 07-30-2018, 12:48 PM   #3
korbeau
 
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Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

Your reasoning is wrong. The total CP of a character does not equate to his combat strength.

You should read Christopher's excellent article "It's a Threat!" in Pyramid 77. It gives a calculation method for the power of a creature versus a group of PCs.

I use it in every campaign!

Quote:
"It's a Threat!" -- a guide to determining how deadly GURPS Dungeon Fantasy monsters are (with all Dungeon Fantasy critters up through Pyramid #3/76: Dungeon Fantasy IV). See each creature's Offensive Rating, Protective Rating, and Combat Effectiveness Rating, or calculate ratings for your own monsters. Never deliver too small a threat or too great a danger to those meddling heroes . . . unless you want to!

Last edited by korbeau; 07-30-2018 at 12:49 PM. Reason: Quoting
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Old 07-30-2018, 12:50 PM   #4
Anthony
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Berkeley, CA
Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

In general, you can use monsters tuned for a more powerful party against a less powerful party by:
  1. Reducing the number of them you use; if you'd be using ten of them against a DF party, maybe only use five against your weaker party.
  2. Adjusting the type of challenge you assume they represent. A fight that is expected to weaken or delay but not seriously challenge a DF party might be a serious or deadly challenge for a weaker party, but that doesn't mean you can't use it, it just means it serves a different narrative purpose.
  3. Creating situational effects that help the weaker party.
  4. Adjusting the statistics for the monster.
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Old 07-30-2018, 12:52 PM   #5
VariousRen
 
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Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

I've run a DF game that had players start at henchmen levels (125 points). At that level most warriors are competent but are still at risk of failing the occasional unmodified defense and are still moderately troubled by traditional armour. Wizards have their spells around 14 or 15, and they don't have a lot of them. They can usually deal with them, as long as they aren't outnumbered, surrounded, etc.

Some monsters are going to end up being more deadly than others because your characters might not have access to particular abilities. An electric jelly (shock damage every time you hit it with a metal weapon) is going to hurt a lot more than usual if you don't have a scout who can shoot it 4 times a round or a wizard who can pump a few 12d6 fireballs into it. In general the threats to a 250 point crew will be extremely dangerous to a 100 point crew, but they would still be interesting to have around in limited numbers.
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Old 07-30-2018, 07:21 PM   #6
Pursuivant
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

You can easily scale the threat level for a given monster by adjusting levels of ST/HP, DX/Basic Speed, DR, and offensive powers such as innate Attacks.

Use DF monsters as a starting point, then "nerf" them as necessary to fit the power level of your campaign. Call them "dwarf" or "very young" versions of the monster if you need to.

Alternately, change the circumstances of the encounter so that they favor the PCs. Certain DF monsters become far less scary if you can use ranged attacks, if you can attack from above, or if characters have time to intelligently plan against them.

Change their role. Instead of using DF monsters as "routine" encounters, use them as "bosses" or "sub-bosses".

Alternately, change the way in which certain DF monsters are used. They might become much less scary opponents if you must sneak past them or negotiate with them rather than kill them.
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Old 07-30-2018, 11:06 PM   #7
tbone
 
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Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

Who's got specific, quick-n-easy GM tips for powering down tough foes?

Two examples I like:

1) The monster tries to flee if reduced to half HP. (If PCs block it from fleeing so it has to keep fighting, well, that's on them...)

2) Knock 4 (!) off of the monster's DX. (For a lot of monsters, that'll put it in the DX 7 to 10 range.) Reduce Basic Speed, Move, and Dodge by 1 to match.
If the monster keeps comically missing the PCs, have it use Telegraphic Attacks (i.e., big, roaring sweeps; very monster-appropriate). That puts monster TH back up to a dangerous level, but the PCs should heroically evade most of the blows.

Any others?
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:03 AM   #8
Anthony
 
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Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
Any others?
Giant monsters can quite plausibly be given altered time rate (-1).
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Old 07-31-2018, 12:06 PM   #9
Pursuivant
 
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Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbone View Post
Any others?
Comically low levels of DX also fits into the stereotypical "rubber suit" cinematic monsters trope.

In addition to making it hard to hit the characters, it's also crucial that the GM design the monsters to that they can't easily "one shot kill" characters unless they're meant to be scary dangerous.

Reduce Striking ST for physical attacks, give bonuses to resist Innate Attacks and reduce the severity of those powers.

Convert some HP damage from a successful strike into Knockback, which throws the characters around the room without hurting them too badly.

Depending on the skill of your players, you might need to set up an encounter so that the circumstances greatly favor the characters, such as a wide-open area so that ranged weapon users can get a few shots in before melee starts and so that the entire party can surround a large monster and attack it from the flanks.
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Old 07-31-2018, 08:44 PM   #10
Lord Dynel
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Default Re: DF monsters for non-DF Fantasy?

Thank you all, for your suggestions! Much appreciated.
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