Monster Point Buy
For as long as I’ve been creating NPCs for D&D 5e, I’ve really struggled with assigning stats. A lot of the time I would modify the stats of an existing creatures to make sure I kept them consistent with published materials. That made me feel like maybe I was just reskinning existing creatures more than I was making up new content. It occurred to me a few weeks ago that what would be great is a monster point-buy system for NPCs like the one that exists for PCs.
So, I scraped some data together, did some calculations and came up with just that: A table that assigns a point value to all possible Ability score values, and an average amount of points for an NPC at a given CR.
Using the Tables Below
When creating an NPC:
- First, Determine the appropriate CR for you monster.
- Then, use the first table below determine the “Point Buy Budget” for your creature. The budget is the average buget your creature should have. Often celestials have significantly higher stats, while undead significantly lower stats, particularly, intelligence and charisma.
- After that, use the second table, “Point Cost for Ability Score”, select the ability scores for your creature. Total the points and compare to the budget for the CR you selected. Adjust scores accordingly.
- Note that only Strength and Constitution ability scores will affect the CR calculations as you proceed with creating your NPC.
- With those scores determined, you can proceed with the rest of NPC creation as outlined in the 5e Dungeon Master’s Guide on pages 273-283.
Monster Point Buy – Recommend Point Budget by CR
|Challenge Rating (CR)||Point Buy Budget|
Monster Point Buy – Point Cost for Ability Score
|Ability Score||Modifier||Point Cost|
All done with this article? Why not check out some of my nuisance monsters, or you can see some of my favorite published monsters.