Monster Analysis: The Four Corners Brawl

Thanks to @HighScoreKid for this art piece!

*movie trailer voice over* This Horisol, join The Mighty Nein for a tavern brawl of epic proportions, with a cast of characters so intense you’ll have to see it to believe it.

  • An ogre fighter, flying high off of his most recent win, hungry for the taste of human.

  • A tiefling cleric, who was just having a good time here at breakfast.

  • A human monk, sidetracked on her quest for information by the prospect of combat.

  • And an elf monk with a secret so dire its reveal will blow. you. away.

Four will enter, only one will leave. Throw in your ante and sharpen your blades; this is The Four Corners.

Ogre Fighter

  • Encounter Appearance: 2-53 Cornered

  • Armor Class 14

  • Speed 40 ft

  • Suggested Average, Max HP: 59, 91

  • 74+ damage taken, Unknown finishing blow by Dairon

The ogre’s strategy was about as straight forward as they come. He came to slash things with his sword, and based on the previous combatants the Nein saw dragged as bloody pulps out of the tavern, “hit it very hard” seems to work pretty well for him, on average. Although he dealt 23 damage to the enemy monk, Jester quickly became his primary target after she forced him to grovel before her, wasting his turn while the monks continued to trade blows. His anger against Jester only grew as he was pelted by magical hamster-sized unicorns. Focusing his primary attacks, the ogre felled Jester in the 4th round.

That last blow against Jester was the last attack he was able to get off, however, as he was quickly dispatched by the drow. To quote a lesson from early in Beau’s training, “You see, brute force has its place. But precision, and intent. That can take down the greatest of mountains, by poking the weakest point.“ Speaking of…

Expositor Dairon, Cobalt Soul Monk (Undercover)

Thanks to @Cha_C_San for this art piece!

  • First Appearance: 2-04 Disparate Pieces

  • Encounter Appearance: 2-53 Cornered

  • Armor Class 18 or 19

  • Speed 50 ft

  • 108 total HP, 106 damage taken

On the other hand, the disguised Dairon (who only entered the fight because she feared Beau would get herself killed otherwise) was significantly more nuanced in both abilities and strategy. While the ogre attacked Jester because she made him look like a fool, Dairon was keenly aware of the threat mind-affecting magic would have on her ability to stay conscious and disguised. Add her familiarity with the Cobalt Soul monastic training that Beau brought to the ring, and Dairon knew she had to balance her strategy against brute strength, divine magic, and the threat of losing her vital turns to stun.

Dairon judiciously split her attack targets each round based on who was near her and posed the greatest threat. She expertly put her Preternatural Counter / Stunning Strike combo to use to stifle Beau’s turns in three out of six rounds. With Beau stunned, at least temporarily, she could focus her attention on whittling down Jester and the ogre’s hit points.

In the last round, with only one combatant to worry about (and a hit point total of 2), Dairon combined all of her abilities to stack the odds in her favor. She couldn't tell Beau that she had to win the fight, so her only option was to outright win it. While Beau normally had about a 50/50 chance of hitting Dairon, getting a single hit in with disadvantage against Dairon’s Patient Defense dropped the likelihood closer to 25%. This gave Dairon her opportunity to strike with Preternatural Defense to knock out Beau and maintain her anonymity.

Of course, we all know the real reason Beau and Jester lost…