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Thread: 5e boss: The Musician (CR 13)
- Join Date
- Jan 2013
5e boss: The Musician (CR 13)
So one of the groups I'm DMing in 5e has been having a really rather hood time with the whole system. We are currently playing through Hoard of the Dragon Queen, and an idea for a sidequest popped into my head... As well as a boss for said quest. So ladies and gentlemen, I present you the one, the only... Musician.
Feedback that I'm looking for is mostly the name, song suggestions and balance as far as some of the numbers go. Any feedback is appreciated! So then, without further ado, I present you the maestro, the weaver of magic and song...
In a manor on the coast of Faerun there is a concert being played. The notes gently drift on the wind, a siren song calling the lost and the weary, offering a night of entertainment and a rest from their troubles. And so they come, finding their way to the dusty halls and passages, and always arriving within the reception hall, where there is always a seat for a new member of the audience.
And oh, but what a show they are given. For this grand reception hall is where the Musician plays, his spectral hands drifting over the pure ivory keys of his piano in perfect tandem, pouring put more than just mere sound. No, that would be a pathetic display, left behind long ago when the Musician mastered his art.
His masterpiece, his creation, is Music. Not just the thing of bards or choirs, not a mere ballad or concerto, no. Nothing that simple. Or at least, not as simple in that way. The sound that pours from the musician's piano is the pure essence of music, a thing that sends ripples out into the very Weave itself and shapes it, builds it... And then, at the height of the song, replaces the it, the sound literally becoming magic that dances and spins to the Musician's tune.
Of course, mere mortals are unable to resist the call of the Musician's song, and so they come to dance to the tune of his eternal concert. Slowly, they lose the will to leave, finding that the desire to stay and listen more overcomes any wants or needs. Friends? Family? Food? Sleep? Life? What are these to the music? What are they to the perfect song? Not even the cold grasp of death is enough to rip them from the eternal concert...
And the concert keeps calling, drawing more and more mortals to come and listen, to feel the tune flow through them, to bring new songs for the musician to play. For what is an artist if he cannot shape and improve new art?
Psychology: The Musician is not a malicious spirit, or even a dangerous one in his own mind. He simply plays his songs because they are his purpose, his life and his happiness. If other people are drawn in and enraptured with its beauty, then they are more than welcome to watch and listen as the Musician continues to try and create the perfect song. He does not mean to harm anyone, and if he knew that others were dying because of his song, the spirit would be horrified.
However, the music has the Musician as enslaved to it as his captivated audience. The only thing that will give him even a second of reprieve is if a song so sweeping and powerful ripples over him that his very soul must recover from the shock... but that would only be temporary. For the music whispers to him that the perfect song is out there. It has to be out there. And he has to find it.
And so the spirit plays his beloved piano, simple and happy. Completely oblivious to the harm he causes.
The Musician's Lair
The musician lives within a manor that is old and crumbling with disuse. Scattered letters, a library and a guild hall all adorn it, but all rooms except the entrance and concert chamber are empty of other beings. The building itself has been changed by the music to be perfectly acoustic, carrying the sounds of the Musician's concert through empty halls to draw in all members of the audience. This manor seems to shift locations, sometimes located in a forest or mountain valley, other times along the outskirts of a ghost town or the run-down slums of a city. The one constant is that it never appears in areas of "high society," though the reason why isn't entirely clear.
On initiative count 20 (losing initiative ties), the musician takes a lair action to cause one of the following effects:
- The Musician casts the spell Silence targeting any area in his lair, but does not have to maintain concentration on this spell. This lair action lasts until the duration expires or it is taken again.
- The Musician attempts to enthrall a creature inside of his lair. One creature that the Musician can see must make a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw, becoming Charmed by the Musician on a failed save. While charmed in this manner, a creature must use their movement to end at least 10 feet closer to the Musician at the end of each of their turns, and cannot willingly move away. The creature remains charmed for up to 1 minute, or until the Musician takes any other lair action.
- The Musician calls back one of his Spectators, creating a spiritual minion that battles its foes. This minion uses the stat block of a Helmed Horror, and is immune to the spells Charm Monster, Hold Person and Thunderwave. Three different lair actions must be taken before this one can be used again.
- Melody of Peace: While a creature is in the manor of the Musician their desire for war and conflict seems to fade away. A creature in the manor must pass a Charisma saving throw (DC 18) or be unable to take hostile actions within the manor until the Musician finishes playing his concert. Alternately, if drawn into battle, the song will end the moment the Musician makes any action other than Performance to sustain or restart this effect. If a creature spends at least one hour in the Melody of Peace, then they must make another charisma saving throw of the same DC or find that they are unwilling to leave the manor until the concert's end. On a success, the creature may leave or enter as they wish, but they must remake this saving throw once every hour.
A creature trapped by this effect will slowly fade away, dying after they have failed to eat or sleep for long enough, and rising to become an undead spectator the moment they die. Undead spectators who are destroyed while the Melody of Peace is in effect rise back at the beginning of their next turn with 1 hp, still enslaved by the music despite being destroyed.
- Creatures do not hear any ambient noise beside the music and the voices of people who speak directly to them as long as the Melody of Peace is in effect.
- The Musician is accompanied by 10 Skeletons, 2d6 Zombies, 1d6 Ghouls, 1d6 Specters and 3 Wraiths. If the concert ever ends as per the Sweeping Performance ability, then any currently surviving undead immediately attack the Musician. If the Musician is slain in this manner, he is immediately reborn from the piano and resumes the concert, healing all creatures with a Sweeping Melody of Joy. If the undead are destroyed before the Musician is slain, then the concert ends for 24 hours before the Musician is forced to continue once again.
When the Musician and his piano are destroyed, all lair effects end and the musician's lair begins to crumble into dust over an 8 hour period.
Spoiler: The Musician's Stat Block
Medium Undead Spirit
Armor Class: 16 (Natural Armor)
Hit Points: 195 (30d8+60)
Alignment: True Neutral (50%) or Unaligned (50%)
Speed: 50 ft (fly)
Condition Immunities: Charmed, Frightened, Grappled, Poisoned, Prone, Restrained, Stunned
Damage Resistances: Thunder, Psychic, Force; Bludgeoning, Piercing and Slashing damage from non-magical sources
Damage Immunities: Necrotic, Poison damage
Vulnerabilities: Fire damage, radiant damage
Strength Dexterity Constitution Intelligence Wisdom Charisma 13 (+2) 19 (+4) 15 (+2) 19 (+4) 19 (+4) 20 (+5)
Saving throws: Intelligence: +9, Wisdom: +9, Charisma: +10
Skills: Perception: +9, Perform: +17
Senses: Blindsight 60', Darksight 120', Passive perception 19
Languages: All (Does not speak)
Fascinating Sonnet: Actually putting effort into the act of playing his piano and shaping the magic therein into a perfect melody, the Musician creates a melody of such heart wrenching beauty that one cannot help but stay a while and listen. After receiving and/ or hearing a new song, the Musician will begin to play and perfect it. Any creature within 60 feet of his piano when this performance begins must make a Charisma saving throw (DC 18) or be held entranced by the song until it comes to an end 10 minutes later. This ability may not be used if the musician is in combat.
Legendary resistance (3/day) If the Musician fails a saving throw, he can choose to succeed instead.
Slave to the Music: If the Musician is ever slain before the Concert he is performing ends, then he is immediately reborn with full hit points. The ways to end his concert are described in the Lair Effects and Sweeping Performance sections.
Sweeping Performance: Depending on the song he plays, the Musician can cause different effects among those that listen to his performance. While only able to play these songs when combat is not distracting him, the musician's song becomes far, far more powerful as he plays, and the better he plays the song, the more powerful the magic. When he uses this ability the Musician chooses a song to perform and makes a perform check. Depending on the results of the roll and the song, one of the following results is created. If a living creature begins to play a song on his piano they may choose one of the following options, then the musician will automatically use this ability to try and perfect and personify the song they are playing.
- Anger: Creatures that hear this music must make a DC 18 wisdom saving throw or be dealt 10 (3d6) Psychic damage.. A successful saving throw negates all damage. On a result of 27 or higher, the Melody of Peace and any Fascinating Sonnet both immediately come to an end, triggering the attack of any undead spectators that survived as per the Lair Effect. If all other undead are slain before the Musician, then the Concert ends for 24 hours.
- Joy: Creatures that hear this song are immediately treated as if they had just benefited from a short rest. They may spend hit dice and recover abilities as normal. Additionally, if they are damaged, they are healed by a varying amount depending of the performance check. 2d6 (7) on a 18, 4d6 (14) on a 19-20, 6d6 (21) on a 21-24, 8d6 (28) on a 25-29, and 10d6 (35) on a 30+.
- Fear: Other creatures that can hear this song must make a successful wisdom saving throw (DC 18) or have disadvantage imposed on their actions. Which checks they suffer disadvantage on depends on the results of the perform check. On a roll of 18 the creatures have disadvantage on all charisma, wisdom and intelligence skill checks for one minute. On a 19-20, creatures take disadvantage to all of their skill checks for 1 minute. On a 21-29, the creatures take disadvantage to all attack rolls and skill checks for 1 minute. Finally, at 30+, creatures that hear this song are at disadvantage on every roll they make for 1 minute.
- Sorrow: Upon playing this kind of song, the undead surrounding the Musician will immediately attempt to stop the musician's performance by attacking him and any creature that gets in their way. All living creatures within the manor are exempt from the melody of peace for 8 rounds, or until the musician is slain by the undead seeking to stop him. If the undead succeed in stopping the performance, then the Musician is reborn with full hit points immediately, and continues to play his songs. If he survives for 5 rounds, however, then the melody of peace and his ability to play songs on the piano are suppressed for 1 day as he attempts to recover from the emotions rushing through him. Any undead spectators that were still alive at this time are instantly destroyed, any any undead that were destroyed remain destroyed at the end of this performance. He still rolls a perform check for this song, and on a 30+ the number of rounds before he stops increases to 8.
- Valor: Creatures hearing this song feel revitalized, more ready to move out and act. Depending on how well the performance roll goes, one of the following effects is produced. On an 18-19, creatures that can hear this song have any resources that can only be used a finite amount of times each short rest recharged to the maximum number of charges they may normally have. On a 20-29, the creatures who listen to this song are treated as if they had just finished a short rest, regaining the use of abilities that can be used per short rest, having the ability to spend hit dice to heal themselves, etc, etc. On a 30+, the creatures are treated as if they had finished a long rest, regaining/ spending hit dice, regaining the use of abilities that refresh on a long rest, recovering from exhaustion and, if they are a spell caster who prepares spells, they may choose new spells to memorize.
Soulborn Artifact: The Musician is bound to his piano, and unless it is destroyed he will always re-surge from the music. If the Musician is reduced to 0 hp, his soul will travel back into the piano, and he will be reborn within 1d4 hours with 30 hit points unless his piano is destroyed. His piano has 30 hit points, 18 AC and is Immune to all damage while the Musician is alive. Once destroyed, the magic and the musician both cease to be, and the concert finally comes to an end.
The Musician's Piano: The Musician is always in possession of this artifact. The statistics for this item may be found below.
Multi-attack The Musician may spend his turn making two attacks, one with Forte and one with either Pianissimo or Cacophony, and he may choose to play either Dirge of Despair or Requiem of Ruin.
Cacophony: Releasing a blast of music from his body, the Musician lashes out at all nearby creatures in his rage. All creatures within 30 feet of the Musician when he makes this attack must make a DC 18 Constitution or be dealt 3d6+5 (15) thunder damage. On a successful save, the creature is dealt half damage instead.
Dirge of Despair: (3/day) When he begins to play this song the Musician releases a wave of magical and condemning energies, ending the Symphony of Peace if it is still active. Any creature within 60 feet that can hear this song must make a Wisdom saving throw (DC 18) or immediately have disadvantage imposed on all of their attack and skill rolls until the Musician switches to a different song. If there is a Silence spell or an effect that acts like it currently in effect within 60 feet of the Musician, that effect is ended when this song is played. Dirge of Despair and Requiem of Ruin may not be played simultaneously, and the effects of Dirge of Despair end if the Musician is slain.
Forte: Ranged magic attack: +10 to hit, range 50/ 100 feet, one target. Hit: 3d8+5 (18) thunder damage and 4d6 (14) psychic damage to the target if it hits. This whip of sound has a 5% chance of deafening a creature that it hits for 1 hour.
Pianissimo: Ranged magic attack: +10 to hit, range 50/ 100 feet, cone target. Hit: 3d8+5 (18) thunder damage. Any creature struck by this attack must make a DC 18 wisdom saving throw or become mute as if they were in the spell Silence for 1d4 rounds. This effect is not ended by the Dirge of Despair.
Requiem of Ruin: (3/day) Switching his song to one of discord and painful loss, the Musician makes his foes more vulnerable to the energies of his wrath, ending the Symphony of Peace if it was still active. All enemies that can hear this song must make a DC 18 Wisdom saving throw or be inflicted with vulnerability to thunder damage until Requiem of Ruin is no longer played. If a creature is normally immune to thunder damage, their immunity becomes resistance instead on a failed saving throw. Requiem of Ruin and Dirge of Despair may not be played simultaneously, and the effects of Requiem of Ruin end if the Musician is slain.
Legendary actions: (3/round)
Being the literal embodiment of music, the Musician is a creature of vast power and deadly skill if angered. At the end of an enemy's turn, the Musician may make one of the following actions;
- Dirge of Despair/ Requiem of Ruin: (2 actions) The Musician switches which song he is currently playing, using up one of the daily charges and forcing saving throws as normal.
- Forte: The Musician uses his Forte attack against a foe within range.
- Spectral dash: Shifting and moving in an unnatural way, the Musician launches itself from its piano to strike any who would seek to interrupt his concert. He immediately moves 30' in one direction, passing effortlessly through all objects and creatures in the way without provoking Opportunity attacks. If a creature has its space moved through, they must make a Dexterity saving throw (DC 18) or be dealt 4d8 (18) necrotic damage as the Musician makes contact and saps away a part of their life force.
Spoiler: The Musician's PianoThe Musician's piano
Wondrous Item, artifact
Hand crafted by the musician as a gift for his son, the piano is the literal incarnation of music and the new house for the Musician's soul. The ornate carvings along the edging and cover depict the freedom and happiness that he had wished for his son. All of the once-great man's life and ability is trapped within every key and string of the beautiful instrument. And because of everything given to it, even the most novice of all performers sounds like a master when they play along its keys. As a magical object of great power, the piano is capable of great and terrible things. Unfortunately, the vast majority of this power is bound to the Musician, and any use of the power must be channeled through him. While this means that it is easier to shape, it also means that no one else can truly claim the piano while the Musician is part of it. And the Piano has no desire to release the Musician... ever.
Duet: If a creature plays on the piano with the Musician, they may enhance the spell of his song, granting the musician advantage on the performance and becoming exempt from any harmful effects that the performance might cause.
Mortal-born: While most artifacts are nearly impossible to destroy due to their creation by a deity or otherworldly force, the Musician's Piano is born of the soul of an exceptionally powerful mortal. While still exceedingly difficult to destroy, the piano may still fall through mortal means. The piano has 30 hit points, 18 armor class and is immune to all damage and magic while the Musician is alive.
Magic channel: A bard performing a duet with the Musician may cast any ritual spell or spell of level 5 or lower without spending a spell slot, as long as that spell does not damage a different creature or the piano.
Permanently attuned: The piano is permanently attuned to the Musician, and ownership may not be changed by any means. He cannot even remove his bond with the artifact willingly.
Phylactery: When the Musician is slain, he is reborn from the piano with 30 hit points after 1d4 hours unless the piano is destroyed.
Soul-protecting: While it enslaves its master, the Piano also protects the musician from any affect that would attempt to steal or otherwise effect his soul. The Musician is immune to effects that target souls, such as soul jar, and to all necromantic spells like Finger of Death and Power Word Kill.
- Join Date
- Jan 2013
- Join Date
- Jan 2013
Re: 5e boss: The Musician (CR 13)
Oh, I should probably say that this got a rather massive overhaul (abilities wise)... Yeah. That's a thing now. Spectators should come soon (be a bit weaker when they do). Comments, questions, concerns?