March Monster Madness
Tue, 03/17/2020 - 12:20pm by audreyh
Watch monsters familiar and obscure duke it out in the month of March! We will be playing through a bracket of 64 monsters to find out who will be this year's champion.
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Monster March Madness Streaming Schedule
Round 4 Results - Elite Eight: Thursday, April 9, 3pm
Team Monster brings you the latest updates on our monster bracket and reveals who made it into the final four.
Round 3 Results - Regionals (aka Savory Sixteen): Friday (April 3) 3pm: https://youtu.be/RLxNMa-Wg4A
Team Monster highlights our Sweet 16 monsters. Tune in to hear about these wild battles as our monsters start turning to their big abilities to advance.
Round 2 Results - Group of 32: Thursday (April 2) 3pm: https://youtu.be/z9Ox_cjB_xQ
We're really getting into it now! After a fairly straightforward Round 1, we're looking forward to some upsets and surprises. Team Monster will bring you the latest updates on the results of Round 2. Find out how our monsters are doing in their battle towards glory.
Round 1 Results - Northern Reach and Southern Crescent: Friday (March 27) 3pm: https://youtu.be/j5nCxV_l5xo
Team Monster will recap the Round 1 results for the Northern Reach and Southern Crescent regions. Hear about the latest upsets and surprises as the monsters battle on.
Round 1 Results - Eastern Shore and West Marches: Wednesday (March 25) 3pm: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zuQspu4Bd_8
Team Monster will recap the Round 1 results for the Eastern Shore and West Marches regions. Tune in to find out how your favorite monster did!
BRACKET PREVIEW: Thursday (March 19) 3pm: https://youtu.be/j5zQm6nf9is
Audrey and Tyler will preview the upcoming March Monster Madness! Monsters of all stripes will face off against each other in this bracket. Audrey and Tyler will talk about exciting match ups, potential upsets, and what to watch out for in these monstrous face-offs.
(the rest of the schedule coming soon!)
Round 3 - Eastern Shore
(1) Zuggtmoy vs. (4) Cloud Giant Smiling One: The poor, poor Cloud Giant was no match for the Zuggtmoy's immunites. After getting hit a few times, the CG realized this match wasn't going in his favor so he turn himself into a cloud and *poofed* away. Zuggtmoy moves on with full HP (304).
(3) Frost Giant Everlasting One vs. (2) Nabassu: Even though it was up against an opponent hundreds of times its size, a literal GIANT, the Nabassu was anything but intimidated. Knowing it had resistances against the Great Axe attacks of the Frost Giant Everlasting One, it decided to go toe-to-toe, or rather toe-to-entire body with the big fella. Having a creepy demon monster flitting around your face trying to steal your soul would enrage anybody, and this Giant was no different. It called upon Vaprak's Rage to increase its damage output AND give itself the same resistances as its foe. This turned the battle into a bonafide slugfest, with the Nabassu just barely outLASTING the Frost Giant Everlasting One. The Nabassu advances with 138 HP and increases its damage bonus to 3d6.
Round 3 - West Marches
(1) Graz'zt vs. (4) Djinni: Can one monster win this thing on sex appeal alone? Graz'zt is certainly doing his level best. The Djinni was able to land a glancing blow, but quickly realized it was in over its head and plane shifted right on out of the bracket. Graz'zt advances with 343 HP.
(3) Devourer vs. (2) Fire Giant Dreadnought: This was a much talked-about matchup between fighters of very different styles. The Fire Giant Dreadnought played to type, using his mammoth fire shields to bowl the Devourer over before they could even take a breath. Instead of knocking the wind out of the Devourer, however, this basically knocked the defeated Shadow Dancer from the previous round out of him. Reanimated as a Wight, the fallen former foe and the Devourer hoped to gang up on the Fire Giant and wear him down. Wear him down they did, but not quite enough, as the Fire Giant used his nigh unbeatable AC and consistent Fire Shield attacks to pound both opponents into oblivion. Fire Giant Dreadnought advances with 106 HP.
Round 3 - Northern Reach
(1) Adult Blue Dracolich vs. (4) Horned Devil: In an extreme back and forth the Dracolich and the Horned Devil traded blow for blow. Even being temporarily frightened, the Devil held his own, skewering the Dracolich with its fork multiple times. Finally, the Adult Blue Dracolich was able to claw the devil down. Adult Blue Dracolich limps ahead with only 124 HP.
(3) Retriever vs. (2) Adult Red Dragon: While it could have been a close battle with the Retriever's immunities, after the Retriver got a few good hits the the Red Dragon took flight and the Retriver was no match for Mama's fire breath. The Retiever plane shifted outta there and Red Dragon moves forward with 187 HP.
Round 3 - Southern Crescent
(1) Geryon vs. (4) Efreeti: Geryon just barely got out of bed for this battle, and he probably could've gotten a couple more winks and still have been fine. He started off by smashing the Efreeti with an Ice Wall spell. The Efreeti took the cold damage and smartly responded with a few Hurl Flame attacks... which the Geryon barely even noticed. Lazily he proceeded to grapple the Efreeti with his huge snake tail, but as he yawned before delivering a killing blow, the Efreeti pulled the ripcord and Plane Shifted on out of there. Geryon advances with the full 300 HP.
(3) Vampire vs. (2) Adult Gold Dragon: As everyday, the sun rose, putting the vampire at immediate disadvantage. The Vamp used an unarmed strike to grapple the dragon with the hopes of drinking some tasty gold blood. The dragon used fire breath on itself hoping to dislodge the parasite. After trying to take a bite, the vampire realized it was useless and called an end to the fight. Being lawful good, the Gold Dragon showed mercy, letting the vampire limp back to the shadows. Adult Gold Dragon moves on with 535 HP.
Round 2 Recaps
Round 2 - Eastern Shore
(1) Zuggtmoy vs. (8) Werebear: Werebear was flying high into this matchup, banking on her immunity to nonmagical, nonsilvered weapons to carry the day once again. She ran up against a monster with a similar set of immunities, however, and Zuggtmoy has magical psuedopod attacks to boot. 5 or 6 crushing tentacle attacks later, and Werebear barely escaped the playing field to make it home to her cubs... hopefully she can find a cure to the poison she took in the first round. Zuggtmoy advances with 304 HP.
(5) Star Spawn Hulk vs. (4) Cloud Giant Smiling One: On paper this battle looked to be a heavyweight fight for the ages, and Cloud Giant Smiling One took their cues from one of the best to ever do it - Muhammad Ali. The Giant used their greater movement speed, Misty Step cantrip, and Invisibility spell to wonderful effect, staying one step ahead of the Hulk at all times. This rope-a-dope strategy frustrated the Hulk to no end, as did the deadly rocks hurled at top speeds from the Giant's huge hands. Cloud Giant Smiling One advances with 243 HP after using its 1 between-fight-action to cast Cure Wounds on theirself. They have 1 fewer spell slot going forward.
(6) Earth Elemental Myrmidon vs. (3) Frost Giant Everlasting One: After getting off to a rocky start, this battle quickly settled into a grind as the Earth Elemental Myrmidon tried to chip away at the Frost Giant Everlasting One's health. The EEM was no match for the giant's healing abilities, and eventually succumbed to his wounds. The FGEO advances with 178 HP.
(7) Fire Elemental vs. (2) Nabassu: The Nabassu made quick work of the Fire Elemental, despite being temporarily lit on fire. He quickly snapped up the soul of the Fire Elemental, to advance with 190 HP plus 7 Temporary HP. The Nabassu also gets an additional 2d6 to its attacks moving forward.
Round 2 - West Marches
(1) Graz'zt vs. (8) Shambling Mound: Graz'zt continues his run of embarrassingly easy victories here, as he dispatches the Shambling Mound without any fuss. Graz'zt summits the hill, and advances with 346 HP.
(5) Soul Monger vs. (4) Djinni: A trendy upset pick, Soul Monger started this battle by promptly getting caught in the Djinni's trademark Whirlwind. They didn't let this stop them though, hitting the Djinni with a long range Finger of Death - not only causing a ton of necrotic damage, but crucially breaking the Djinni's concentration. In a bit of desperation, the Djinni summoned an Air Elemental to help swing the momentum... only to have the Soul Monger hit them with another spell, breaking concentration once again! This time, the Djinni lost control of the Air Elemental, who now saw everyone on the battlefield as hostile. The Djinni was having none of this, moving out of range of both enemies and casting Invisibility on itself. Somewhat anticlimactically, the Air Elemental interloper ended Soul Monger's run in the tournament, and the Djinni hopped to another dimension using plane shift (96 HP going forward).
(6) Shadow Dancer vs. (3) Devourer: Shadow Dancer got initiative, teleporting up behind the Devourer and hitting it with its spiked chain. The Devourer spun around and hit with its claws, and killing the Shadow Dancer. The Devourer lived up to its name and teleported the corpse into its rib cage to rejuvenate its minor wound. The Devourer moves ahead with 178 HP.
(7) Kruthik Lord vs. (2) Fire Giant Dreadnought: The Kruthik Lord sprayed the Fire Giant Dreadnaught with acid then turned chitinous armored rump and burrowed into the ground. The Fire Giant was too big to follow the cowardly reptile and began hurtling rocks after it. Using its sneaky tunnels the Kruthik kept burrowing away only to pop up and try to spray the giant with acid. The Giant frustratedly threw rocks down the tunnels after the cowardly and creepy Kruthik. Finally the Giant got lucky throwing rocks with disadvantage and caught the Kruthik and smushing it dead in an unsatisfying win. Fire Giant Dreadnaught advances with 167 HP.
Round 2 - Northern Reach
(1) Adult Blue Dracolich vs. (8) Bulette: The Adult Blue Dracolich came in strong with lightning breath. Afraid, the Bulette missed his one shot to bite the dracolich, and was finished off in one bite. The Dracolich moves ahead with its full 225 HP.
(5) Orthon vs. (4) Horned Devil: The Horned Devil stabbed the Orthon with his infernal dagger, giving the Orthon an infernal wound, sucking the life from him. Unable to reach the flying devil, the Orthon eventually succumbed to its wound (and several other stabs from the devils fork). Horned Devil moves on with 177 HP.
(6) Frost Salamander vs. (3) Retriever: The Frost Salamander proved to be a much more difficult quarry for the Retriever to... retrieve. A series of well-timed Freezing Breath attacks put the Retriever on its heels, before it regrouped and hit the Salamander with the devastating Paralyzing Ray. After breaking out of paralysis, and much worse for wear, the Salamander tried to burrow to safety, only to take a final metal foreleg to the chops. Retriever advances with 164 HP.
(7) Gauth vs. (2) Adult Red Dragon: Another appearance by the Adult Red Dragon, another massacre. All it took in this one was a well-aimed Fire Breath, which was plenty powerful to take down the already-bruised Gauth, and shut those creepy eyes for good. Adult Red Dragon advances with 256 HP, and has yet to be touched.
Round 2 - Southern Crescent
(1) Geryon vs. (9) Brontosaurus: Geryon hit the gargantuan beast with its stinger, poisoning the Brontosaurus. Brontosaurus tried to womp the Geryon with its massive tail but Geryon was able to duck at the last second. Geryon once again clawed and stung at the dinosaur. Big Bronty was able to get in one good swipe before falling to a masterful claw/stinger attack. Geryon moves ahead with 287 HP.
(5) Bone Devil vs. (4) Efreeti: Efreeti and Bone Devil were quite evenly matched, matching blow for blow in an almost elegant dance of moving forward and back, the claws and stinging tail of the Bone Devil verses the hurled flame of the Efreeti. After the Bone Devil gracefully doging multiple attacks, Efreeti called in help from a friend, a helpful Fire Elemental who really put the heat on the devil. After a long back and forth, the Bone Devil finally succomed to the flames. Efreeti advances slightly worse for wear with only 112 HP.
(6) Young Black Dragon vs. (3) Vampire: The Vampire was in luck this time around, as this battle happened to occur after dark. Not only did this give the Vampire full access to all its abilities, it allowed him to regain 20 HP at the beginning of every turn! This certainly came in extra handy, as the Young Black Dragon put up a pretty good fight, leaning hard on its Acid Breath attack. The Vampire summoned 5 Swarms of Bats to mostly run interference and sow confusion, much to the Dragon's annoyance. After a few melee skirmishes that went overwhelmingly the way of the Vampire, the Young Black Dragon escaped the battlefield, forfeiting the match. Vampire advances with 138 HP.
(10) Black Pudding vs. (2) Adult Gold Dragon: Could Black Pudding pull off another stunning upset?? The Adult Gold Dragon answered with a resounding NOPE, finishing off the Pudding with a Wing Attack, smartly out of gross acid splashback range. Adult Gold Dragon advances with 542 HP.
Round 1 Recaps
Round 1 - Northern Reach
(1) Adult Blue Dracolich vs. (16) Rust Monster: The Rust Monster did its level best to attack the Adult Blue Dracolich with a bite attack, but it was easily rebuffed. The ABD bit the RM into oblivion, almost as an afterthought as if scratching a flea. ABD advances with a full 225 HP.
(8) Bulette vs. (9) Tanarukk: We thought this was going to be a close match, but that didn't turn out to be the case! The Bulette's Deadly Leaps and strong bite demolished the Tanarukk in a few moves. The Bulette took some damage and advances with 86 HP.
(5) Orthon vs. (12) Slithering Tracker: In a surprisingly close match, the Slithering Tracker really gave the Orthon a run for its money. A few lucky breaks allowed the Orthon to escape and deal enough damage to the tracker for it to advance to victory, albeit somewhat wounded, with 86 HP.
(4) Horned Devil vs. (13) Allosaurus: The Allosaurus bravely leapt forward to battle the Horned Devil. Sadly, its enthusiasm was misplaced as the HD easily dispatched of the dinosaur, taking only 1 HP of damage. The HD moves to its next battle with 177 HP.
(6) Frost Salamander vs. (11) Stone Defender: The Frost Salamander started the battle off with a chill Freezing Breath which quickly knocked the Stone Defender's HP down. The Defender got one good hit in before being bitten to death. Frost Salamander proceeds with 158 HP.
(3) Retriever vs. (14) Quickling: The spider-like Retriever locked on to its target, the Quickling, and started things off with a powerful Paralyzing Beam. This proved to be the match-deciding blow, as it allowed the Retriever to attack unimpeded and land an automatic Critical hit with its sharp foreleg. That was all she wrote for the poor Quickling. Retriever advances with the full 210 HP.
(7) Gauth vs. (10) Girallon: The Girallon shook off the stunning effects of the Gauth's creepy gaze and reached up to deliver a series of claw swipes, catching the Gauth off-guard immediately. With an intelligence score 3x that of the Girallon, however, the Gauth smartly hovered to a point that was out-of-reach, and proceeded to shoot myriad rays of power from its many tentacled eyes. A combination of Fire ray and Enervation ray eventually wore down the super primate, and Gauth advances with 49 HP.
(2) Adult Red Dragon vs. (15) Duergar: Beating the Red Dragon on an initiative roll, The Duergar thought he was being sneaky by running to the right and becoming invisible. Unfortunately for him, the Red Dragon has blindsight and knew exactly where he was, promptly killing him. The Adult Red Dragon advances with 256 HP.
Round 1 - Southern Crescent
(1) Geryon vs. (16) Kenku: This wasn't much of a fight tbh. The little Kenku went down with one hit of the Geryon's claws. The Geryon moves forward with full HP.
(8) Mezzoloth vs. (9) Brontosaurus: The Mezzoloth started strong using Cloud Kill to summon a yellow-green cloud of poison gas around the Brontosaurus' face and teleporting away to safety. Mezzoloth kept chipping away at the Brontosaurus' leathery hide with its claws and trident but finally the Brontosaurus hit with its mighty tail, clearing away the poison gas cloud in the process. One final tail womp was all it took to smash Mezzoloth into the ground dead. Brontosaurus moves on with only 72 HP and a wounded butt.
(5) Bone Devil vs. (12) Leucrotta: The poor Leucrotta wasn't much of a match for the Bone Devil. The Bone Devil's AC was juuustt too high for the Leucrotta to lay any hits before the bone devil clawed and stung the Leucrotta to death. Bone Devil moves forward with his full 142 HP. May the Leucrotta run free in the great fields beyond.
(4) Efreeti vs. (13) Centaur: Centaur used it's first action to turn tail and run away. Efreeti, not taking kindly to cowards, threw fire at Centaur singeing its cowardly rump. Centaur kept running until it whipped around and shot off an arrow from its long bow. Enraged, Efreeti took to the air, engulfed the Centaur in flames, and will be dining on char-roasted Centaur-steaks this evening. Efreeti advances with 191 HP.
(6) Young Black Dragon vs. (11) Green Hag: The Young Black Dragon immediately took to the skies to get out of reach of the Green Hag's claws, and rained down two powerful Acid Breath attacks. Using her extensive language background, the Green Hag was able to hurl a few biting insults in Draconic towards her foe, using Vicious Mockery to remove HP and dignity in equal measure. The Dragon finally decided they had had enough, and came down to finish the job. Young Black Dragon advances with 121 HP and a wounded ego.
(3) Vampire vs. (14) Female Steeder: A random quirk in the gods' die roll dictated that the sun should shine on this battle, setting the Vampire at an early disadvantage (and knocking 20 HP off each round). The Female Steeder was able to get a few choice bites in, but wasn't able to capitalize enough before the Vampire demonstrated what a truly powerful bite can do. Vampire advances with 111 HP.
(7) Annis Hag vs. (10) Black Pudding: The Black Pudding brought its oozy A game to this battle, schlorping up to the Annis Hag and delivering a devastating critical hit right out the gate. Annis Hag tried to counter with her formidable claws and bite, but the Pudding's acidity made her regret it. The Hag did deal significant damage to the Pudding, but the slash of her claws also triggered its Split function, forcing the Hag to now contend with two smaller opponents! This proved to be too much to overcome, as the Black Pudding advances with 67 HP, and reforms into one globby fighter.
(2) Adult Gold Dragon vs. (15) Imp: This battle was over before it began, as the Imp was just too overmatched by the Adult Gold Dragon. One Bite was all it took, and the Dragon got herself a tasty appetizer before the next round. Adult Gold Dragon advances with the full 256 HP.
Round 1 - Eastern Shore
(1) Zuggtmoy vs. (16) Aarakocra: The Aarakocra showed some fight, hitting Zuggtmoy with a javelin, but doing zero damage. Zuggtmoy took care of the rest and moves forward w/ 304 HP.
(8) Werebear vs. (9) Otyugh: It wasn't a tough fight for Werebear because his immunities, but as a fleeting move before death, the Otyugh bit the Werebear, poisoning (-5 HP every 24 hours, disadvantage on attack rolls) him until he finds a cure. Werebear leaves the battlefield with 135 HP.
(5) Star Spawn Hulk vs. (12) Darkling Elder: In a closer fight than many expected, the Darkling Elder kept things interesting by casting a magical Darkness on the field. Star Spawn Hulk was left flailing around blindly, getting stabbed by short swords out of the darkness. Eventually the Elder got too close, and HULK SMASHED. SSH moves forward with 116 HP.
(4) Cloud Giant Smiling One vs. (13) Green Dragon: Green Dragon tried to be smart by flying but you may say he flew too close to the sun. The Cloud Giant used the distance to his advantage and started throwing rocks at the Green Dragon, quickly diminishing his HP. The Green Dragon tried to at least do SOME damage and went in for a bite, but the Cloud Giant retaliated with an unarmed attack, easily crushing the dragon's skull. CD moves forward with 255 HP.
(6) Earth Elemental Myrmidon vs. (11) Basilisk: The Basilisk quickly used its ferocious stare to try to petrify the Earth Elemental. Unfortunately, the EEM is already made of stone and was immune to being petrified (see already made of stone) and was merely restrained. After that, the EEM was able to make relatively quick work of the Basilisk. EEM advances with 118 HP.
(3) Frost Giant vs. (14) Ghoul: After getting in a quick hit with its claws, the Ghoul’s hopes of victory were quickly dashed as the Frost Giant healed its minor wounds and then decisively chopped the ghoul in half. The FG moves ahead with 189 HP.
(7) Fire Elemental vs. (10) Orc War Chief: The Fire Elemental made quick work of the Orc War Chief, largely by lighting him on fire. Without the help of his compatriots, the OWC was left to try to do as much damage to the FE as possible before succumbing to the flames. The FE took some damage, but advances with 67 HP.
(2) Nabassu vs. (15) Thri-Kreen: The Nabassu handily came out on top of this match-up, easily demolishing the Thri-Kreen and then scarfing down its soul like a delicacy. The Devour Soul ability allowed the Nabassu to advance with its full HP of 190, and its hitting ability increased by 1d6.
Round 1 - West Marches
(1) Graz'zt vs. (16) Twig Blight: Twig Blight tried to pretend to be a dead shrub, but Graz'zt saw through the ruse pretty quickly, and stompy-stomped. G goes forward with 346 HP and all slots.
(8) Shambling Mound vs. (9) Unicorn: This was a real knockdown, drag-it-out affair. The Unicorn made charge after charge at the Shambling Mound, but had uncharacteristic bad luck and didn't land any devastating attacks. The SM, on the other hand, stuck with its trusty Slam attack, and wore the Unicorn down. The Unicorn fled the battlefield in disgrace. SM goes forward with 126 HP.
(5) Soul Monger vs. (12) Merrenoloth: This one was over quickly, with the Soul Monger attacking first, and attacking hard. Two hits and it was all over for the Merrenoloth. The Monger goes forward with 20 Temporary HP and a full 123 after stealing some HP from their fallen foe.
(4) Djinni vs. (13) Ankheg: Djinni started the battle by trapping the Ankheg in a Whirlwind, which left the Ankheg restrained. Not too restrained to spray the Djinni with Acid though! The Djinni shook that off pretty quickly, stepping up to the acid whirlpool and delivering a series of fatal scimitar hits. Djinni moves forward w/ 155 HP.
(6) Shadow Dancer vs. (11) Bone Naga: The Shadow Dancer slashed the Bone Naga with three chain attacks and quickly teleport away. The Bone Naga tried to use its shield of faith, but couldn't hit on the Shadow Dancer. The Shadow Dancer danced in with another chain attack catching the Bone Naga with its spiked chain and killing it. Shadow Dancer advances with 71 hit points.
(3) Devourer vs. (14) Maw Demon: The Maw Demon didn't stand too much of a chance again the Devourer. While it tried, the Devourer easily claws him down. Devourer moves forward with a full 178 HP.
(7) Kruthik Hive Lord vs. (10) Neogi Master: Neogi Master tried to outsmart the KHL by casting Hunger of Hadar, but the KHL quickly ran out of the dark sphere. The Neogi Master had much more luck in hand to hand (mouth to spike?) combat by successfully taking multiple forceful bites out of the KHL. Unfortuantly, the KHL's AC was just too high and the KHL stabbed the Neogi Master to death. KHL moves forward with a measly 61 HP.
(2) Fire Giant Dreadnaught vs. (15) Hobgoblin: The Fire Giant Dreadnaught made short work of the Hobgoblin; crushing it between its twin fire shields leaving only jelly. Fire Giant Dreadnaught advances with 187 HP.
How We Picked the Monsters
To make our list of monsters, we randomly selected 64 monsters from the Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition roster of monsters. We consulted the Monster Manual, Volo's Guide to Monsters, and Mordenkainen's Tomb of Foes to find our ferocious line up. After assessing the stat blocks of each monster, we divided the monsters into four regions-- North, South, East, and West-- and seeded them accordingly.
How We Will Find Our Champion
AADL staff members Audrey, Elle, Marisa, and Tyler will be taking control of 64 different monsters and battling them in real time using the rules of Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition!
Monsters will regain half of their health (Hit Points) and half of any spells they used between each match. After regaining health and spells, the monsters will have the option to use one action before the upcoming match. This action can be used to resolve an effect from a previous match, cast a spell in advance of the next match, or use one of their abilities in a logical way. If the roll fails, the attempted action fails.
The monsters will be battling on what we're calling a "neutral terrain." Essentially, a large field with a few randomly generated obstacles, like boulders and trees. Day or nighttime will be determined by a coin flip.
We'll offer recaps of the Round of 64, 32, and 16, and real time streaming of the quarterfinals to the championships on AADL TV. You can fill out your own bracket and follow along as we find the most ferocious monster of the year!