Fantastic Beasts and How to Slay Them: Imp & Pixie

In Dungeons & Dragons, size isn’t everything, but it is important.

Whether a creature is ‘tiny’, ‘large’ or ‘gargantuan’, size has a mechanical affect. A human-sized sword will usually to one die-worth of damage, whereas a giant is going to hit you with at least three dice loads of damage. Health depends on how many ‘hit dice’ a character has, but the size of a creature changes the dice you are rolling. A regular spider will have d4s, whilst a giant spider gets the eight-sided guys.

Size often informs the other stats a creature has. A small creature is likely to have a much lower Strength Score. There’s no defined rule in-game, but there’s a logic to it. A mouse, try as they might, is not going to win a tug-of-war against an elephant. Larger creatures are going to be naturally stronger because of their sheer mass.

All of these leads me to this point: building monster stats for the Imps and Pixies of the Potterverse required some careful thought.

‘Imps and Pixies like their pranks’, Fantastic Beasts tells us. Not the kind of prank where the victim can laugh along with the joke, mind you. No, imps like to shove people in rivers and pixies like to carry people up hillsides and abandon them. What larks, what japes.

When trying to make D&D stats for these beasts, the fact that these tiny bugs are even able to shove people over or carry hikers through the air creates a little puzzle. The easy option is to simple say, “these creatures have a high strength score”. That would be very funny. Strength affects attack rolls, the ability to escape certain traps and monster-grapples. Which means that a pixie with a high strength score could pulverise you into the dirt. That would immensely fun to witness, but a swole imp doesn’t really fit with the prankster image.

Imp
Pixie

I settled on creating very specific abilities based on what was described in the book. In D&D, a ‘Shove’ is when you attempt to push a creature 5 feet or knock them down. That, plus a boosted proficiency with athletics makes the Imp a greater little prankster. The imp won’t be putting the hurt on anyone, but you could have a wild encounter with the party being tripped and tumbled by a pack of these little pests.

A fight with Pixies could be more problematic. Escaping from a grapple can be tough, but escaping from a grapple 50 feet in the air has its own set of issues.

The best thing about either monster is the surprise the party will experience. Unless the group has expert knowledge of imps or pixies, they will see little bug-fairies zipping about ‘harmlessly’ around them. Unless these creatures use their ridiculously high stealth checks. In which case, the party will only realise something’s up when they are face down in the river or dangling from their collar high up in the air.

Thank You For Reading

You can find all the other Fantastic Beasts made ready for D&D right here!

Author: Rufus Scott

I am a long term Gamer, a full-time History Teacher and a part-time geek. I enjoy writing about the positive aspects of gaming, especially when it comes to education. My posts are sometimes nostalgic, occasionally irrelevant, largely meant to provoke further discussion. I'll sometimes punctuate these whimsical ramblings with a random comment on gaming and/or teaching.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: