DM Briefing Room: Giant Spider (Pt. 3)

Giant Spider Version 2

Giant Spider Version 2

DM Briefing Room provides a look into some of my personal ideas on game design.

This continues my test drive of the DDI Monster Builder, and takes a different route to another Giant Spider.

Again I’ve started from an existing creature, the Bristle Spider. After renaming the creature I adjusted the level. While this changed a lot of the stats and damage levels, there were still a couple things that still didn’t seem quite right.

While it might work fine at the higher level, the Acidic Poison spray, an at will burst 5 power, seemed a bit out of line for this level even at a reduced damage amount. I changed it to an encounter power, eliminated the acidic effects, and lowered the ongoing damage from 10 to 5.

I also eliminated Bristle Blast, a second close burst 5 power. I don’t believe there’s a hard and fast rule about how many powers a monster at a certain level, and because this one causes no physical damage and the blind and daze effects only last a round, I considered keeping it. It just felt like overkill considering both the remaining powers will slow party members in addition to the initial damage and ongoing poison damage.

Eliminating this power revealed one minor problem, perhaps I’m just overly cautious, but when I went to remove the power, the software gave me a warning about deleting the power. No big deal as long as the power is just being deleted from the creature, but the wording of the warning was enough to make me go back and look a little closer, worried I might have been removing the power from the database entirely. Inserting ‘from this creature’ into the warning would have eliminated any chance of confusion.

The other slightly annoying thing I keep experiencing is that when you leave a creature your editing, the sofware warns you that changes will be lost and gives you a chance to save the creature. A good feature, but annoying if you’ve just saved the creature and then immediately tried to leave the creature editing area of the software.

Next I’ll be using the DDI Monster Builder to create a spider from scratch instead of basing it on an existing creature. Looking forward to your questions and comments on either my creations, or the Monster Builder software.

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