Pathfinder Player Companion: Animal Archive (PFRPG)

****½ (based on 15 ratings)
Pathfinder Player Companion: Animal Archive (PFRPG)
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From a witch’s black cat to a ranger’s mighty wolf companion or a cavalier’s noble steed, animals have always had a place in fantasy adventuring—but why should only a few classes have all the fun? With the proper training, animals can be invaluable allies for adventurers of all stripes. Whether you’re a scholarly spellcaster looking for a familiar to deliver spells or help turn the pages of your spellbook, or a brawler ready to lead your armored animal into the thick of battle, this book is a treasure trove of rules and advice aimed at helping you and your animal friends get the most out of your fantastic adventures.

Animal Archive presents a player-focused, in-depth discussion of animals and the various roles they can play in your game. Each Pathfinder Player Companion includes new options and tools for every Pathfinder RPG player. Inside this book, you’ll find:

  • A complete list of every familiar in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, to make choosing yours quick and convenient.
  • New archetypes like the mad dog barbarian or carnivalist rogue to help classes that haven’t traditionally used animals work with their bestial allies, as well as tips on how every class can employ animals.
  • New animal companions and familiars, from innocuous squirrels and rabbits to bizarre platypuses, armored armadillos, and powerful pandas.
  • Information on which animals are closely associated with the various races and deities of the Pathfinder campaign setting.
  • Tons of new tricks and feats to customize your animals, plus archetypes for animal companions and familiars.
  • New animal equipment, spells, magic items, information about the personalities of magically intelligent animals, and more!

Written by Amanda Hamon, Philip Minchin, Jason Nelson, Patrick Renie, Owen K.C. Stephens, and Christina Stiles

Each monthly 32-page Pathfinder Player Companion contains several player-focused articles exploring the volume’s theme as well as short articles with innovative new rules for all types of characters, as well as traits to better anchor the player to the campaign.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-488-7

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

Product Availability

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Print Edition: This product is out of print.

Non-Mint: Unavailable This product is non-mint. Refunds are not available for non-mint products. The standard version of this product can be found here.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

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****½ (based on 15 ratings)

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Favorite Player Companion to date

*****

I bought the PDF a while back and opened it again last night just to refresh my memory. There is a lot crammed into this very compact volume and at almost every page I think, 'oh, hey, that's cool.'

Just one example is the familiar and animal companion archetypes. They're the logical next step in archetypes but the type I might not necessarily have thought of. At last we can customize what otherwise is a very generic animal ally. The Mad Dog barbarian archetype is another flavorful, of-course! option. Why wouldn't we have companions who rage alongside their masters?

Everything is flavorful, organized, options-heavy, and superbly illustrated (I especially love the cover art). This one is a keeper.


Good resource

****( )

I thought the book was a good buy. I bought the PDF version of it to save a couple of bucks. It did have a lot of good information and includes the very useful "flank" trick and "Boon Companion" feat. The one thing I wish it did have were blank copies of a familiar or companion character sheet. I know there are digital copies available, but this book seemed like it should have been a good source for this.


The Tasmanian Devil is in the details.

***( )( )

Overall I liked it, but there were more than a few problems.

The art was amazing. (I really want to take the poor compsognathus home)

The chart is... wow has this been missing for a long time. About time we got something like this.

The division of belt into belt and belt (saddle) was new and more than a little arbitrary.

The magic item section was the most disappointing. Its barely a page, and most of the items suffer from the usual "its not on the christmas tree so its overpriced" effect. Magical items for critters is almost new ground, i thought they could have done a lot more with this.

The collar of obedience seems useful... but by the time you can afford it most of the animals you'd want to use it on are bigger than large, and for some reason unlike every other neck slot item in the game, this one has resizing limits.

I love the idea of animal archetypes. More variety is good.

The charger seems like a good archetype... but it technically can't do anything as it gives benefits to cavaliers but cavalier mounts can't take it because it replaces an ability they don't have (share spells)

The tricks vary. Bombard is absolutely hilarious and probably the best of the lot. There's a few more that have more than a little overlap with already existing tricks, Like watch and guard or perform and entertain. Some seem to be like rogue tricks where they, by implication, limit what you could otherwise have done with another trick by their existence.

Absolutely loved the new familiars and animal companions, they really should be as diverse as the adventurers that they own. People seem to love the panda bear, and even if i never take a llamma as an animal companion i rejoice to know that somewhere there's a druid with a llama and profession (weaver)


Ring Side Report- RPG Review of Animal Archive

*****

Originally posted at www.throatpunchgames.com, a new idea everyday!

Product: Pathfinder Player Companion Animal Archive
Producer: Paizo
Price: ~$12
System: Pathfinder
TL;DR-If you have pets, then get this book. 91.25%

Basics: This book adds options, abilities, and types for any character who has a familiar or a animal companion. The book starts off right away with the inner cover discussing the magic items that each type of animal can use. After the standard Player Companion line pages discussing the book's intent, the next section describes what types of animals each race typically works with. Next the book introduces new class archetypes for the rogue, cavalier, and barbarian that use animal companions. Following archetypes, the book add new animal tricks for your companion to learn and new ways to teach tricks to animals. The book then presents new familiars, equipment, and animals to buy in Golarion. The centerfold of the book is six new animals that a PC could take as a companion and the parts of the world where these creatures are found. Following the centerfold, new animal feats and archetypes are discussed for your companions and familiars. The book then presents a section on what happens after you awaken your animal. Like all player pathfinder books, the book adds several spells and magic items, before ending by adding new familiars and animal companion statistics.

Fluff or Story: This book isn't very story heavy. It primary focus is to give you new animal options. What it does have is interesting, but don't look for it to carry the book on that alone. 4/5

Crunch or Mechanics: You want animal crunch? You got animal crunch! Some of the crunch is interesting like the rogue who uses an animal to do sneak attack, but some is left out like what bonuses you get for using tools to train an animal. It's not bad, but some minor things were missing. 4.75/5

Art: This book has a surprising amount of art for primarily being a mechanics book. It's new, and looks like it belongs and is well done. 5/5

Execution: The book has a nice flow, reads quick, and isn't difficult to read. I didn't like that the book repeats some of its mechanics as the book is less than 30 pages. Also, some of the choices of where things were laid out were a bit strange as there are two item sections. 4.5/5

Summary: If you run animals in Pathfinder, you need this book. That's it. It won't really convince you to take up an animal if you're the type of player who doesn't want that complication in his life. If you want to have some fun with an animal companion/familiar, then this book will give you lots of options and makes sure the ideas you have fit into the larger world. It's worth a read for any class that gets an animal pet. 91.25%


*****

I've reviewed this on RPGGeek.com.

You can read it here.


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Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Announced! Cover image is a mockup, and will change prior to publication.


On my Christmas list!


Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?

Silver Crusade

I find this release intrigues me. I think I may have to get it.

Dark Archive

Sounds cool, look forward to getting it to see how it stacks up to 4 Wind Fantasy Gamings book about cats, dogs, and horses.

Liberty's Edge

I'm also really intrigued by this ...


Hopefully no Golarion equine types go unaccounted for...

Liberty's Edge

Cheapy wrote:
Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?

I'd bet on class archetypes that grant companions.


I sense excitement ... Oops, that would be me waiting for thIs to release.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

What a good idea.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Interesting, anyone can have animal companions and hopefully familiars.


Laschoni wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?
I'd bet on class archetypes that grant companions.

yeah. im pretty sure of that

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Steve Geddes wrote:
What a good idea.

That's a big part of why we had to take the Player Companion monthly—too many good ideas were lining up!


3 people marked this as a favorite.
MerrikCale wrote:
Laschoni wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?
I'd bet on class archetypes that grant companions.
yeah. im pretty sure of that

You mean my Bear can't take the Lion archetype? :(


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Shut up and take my money.

Seriously, I love having an animal companion for some odd reason, but I get tired of playing rangers and druids and I don't really like the way the summoner plays.

A rogue with an animal companion would be awesome! The street urchin with the loyal and uncanny canine, or the fighter who wrestled with and earned the respect of an enormous tiger in an arena...

Yes, I very much look forward to this book.


9 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:
That's a big part of why we had to take the Player Companion monthly—too many good ideas were lining up!

I'm calling BS on that excuse. I'm certain the frequency is increased because you heard about the raise I got last month.


This sounds good. I just hope we get information, however brief, on various breeds of dogs, horses, and the like in this.


Since not all small cats are cheetahs, will this book offer some different abilities for different varieties of the standard animal companions? Say the difference between a cheetah, a lynx, and a mountain lion?


Another Christmas present to get!


OWOW!
I can't waitcant'waitcan't wait!
My prayers have been heard at last!

Dark Archive

Eric Hinkle wrote:
This sounds good. I just hope we get information, however brief, on various breeds of dogs, horses, and the like in this.

If you are looking for especially some differences to mundane breed differences you should also take a look at Phantasia Zoologica Volume 1 - Cats, Dogs, and Horses. It is a pretty good book with some variety to breeds and such by 4WFG, End and I both did reviews of it. In case you are curious about what all is in it and it fits what you are looking for.

Not to take away from this product, which I plan to get too. Just pointing out the 3pp one that covers some animals already out. So you don't have to wait till Dec. :)

Silver Crusade

Wonderful! Such a worthy edition to the line.

Dark Archive

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

I really like how the Player Companion line's shaping up. Very cool stuff Paizo.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Animal Archive- I choose you!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Llama llama duck.


Excited about it, but fearing that the speciality of existing classes is lost/blurred/smeared all over every other class.
Every class can get an AC. Seriously? Will we see a companion about magical/divine healing and how your average BSF can get it too?

Ruyan.


I love this!

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

As much as I like what Paizo did to animal companion/mounts, I really wish I could build a non-Cavalier/Paladin with a mount that matters.

Dark Archive

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Yeah. Ever since I played Dragon Age Origins, I wanted to run a Fighter with decent war dog companion. Of course, there are ways to achieve something like that, such as Awaken in combination with Leadership, but you have to wait until 7th level. I love this idea.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Yesss! My elf bard/alchemist will be able to ride his oversized potiondrugged giant cat at last!!!


9 people marked this as a favorite.
Cheapy wrote:
MerrikCale wrote:
Laschoni wrote:
Cheapy wrote:
Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?
I'd bet on class archetypes that grant companions.
yeah. im pretty sure of that
You mean my Bear can't take the Lion archetype? :(

Or the dog archetype? I want a polar bear dog! :D

And a flying bison, and a fire ferret.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Derek Vande Brake wrote:

Or the dog archetype? I want a polar bear dog! :D

And a flying bison, and a fire ferret.

+5


2 people marked this as a favorite.

:)

Maybe we'll see a set of new stats for the bear. Something bigger then a koala bear.

Scarab Sages

4 people marked this as a favorite.

So, a Player Companion book about companions for player characters.

Well played. 8^)


Arazyr wrote:

So, a Player Companion book about companions for player characters.

Well played. 8^)

I assure you that that book would be completely different from this book.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber

Please tell me this will let me play a Bard with an animal companion. No pard is complete without a savage attack Triceratops.

Dark Archive

Very cool.

Silver Crusade

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Cheapy wrote:
Arazyr wrote:

So, a Player Companion book about companions for player characters.

Well played. 8^)

I assure you that that book would be completely different from this book.

I don't think Companions of the Night is the image Paizo is trying to project, even though a legitimate bard archetype or two may fall under it.

So are there any new uses for the ride skill? (Works either way.)

Contributor

Nukruh wrote:
Hopefully no Golarion equine types go unaccounted for...

You won't have to wait until this one for that. ;)

Contributor

7 people marked this as a favorite.
Cheapy wrote:
Archetypes for.... Animals? Are we getting closer to the days of weapon archetypes?

Cats and dogs, living together... mass hysteria!

Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Anguish wrote:
Vic Wertz wrote:
That's a big part of why we had to take the Player Companion monthly—too many good ideas were lining up!
I'm calling BS on that excuse. I'm certain the frequency is increased because you heard about the raise I got last month.

You got a raise... Noted. ;)

Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Gorbacz wrote:
Llama llama duck.

Ooooooh... might have to have stats for a llama. Patrick would LOVE that (his screen saver cycles through pictures of dogs, cats, and llamas).

Contributor

Ravenmantle wrote:
I really like how the Player Companion line's shaping up. Very cool stuff Paizo.

Yay! Just wait till you see it! Varisia just landed on my desk earlier this week and Knights is about to go out the door and oh boy am I pleased with these. And the stuff I'm REALLY excited about is still on the horizon!

Contributor

By the by, this is my FAVORITE mock-up cover EVAR.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I want a killer bunny! Monty Python and the Holy Grail style killer attack bunny! Need stats on that immediately Wes!!!


I had an inkling this was on its way. I remember scouring my Inner Sea World Guide to help out with horse breeds. I expect my name will be in the credits? :P

Looks pretty cool. I'll probably pick it up for the fluff, given that I dont know the first thing about horses and have trouble playing characters that do....

Edit:

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Nukruh wrote:
Hopefully no Golarion equine types go unaccounted for...
You won't have to wait until this one for that. ;)

Welp! Time to pick up Knights!


F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
By the by, this is my FAVORITE mock-up cover EVAR.

Where did that art come from anyway? It looks like a Golarion version of "Day of the Animals" to judge by the malevolent look on their faces.

Either that or the horse heard someone say that earth ponies are losers next to unicorns and pegasi and how he has to kick some sense into them.

Contributor

WESLEY SPAM!

:O


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Can the final art be more cute? Like a basket of kittens? Or Lem throwing a basket of kittens?

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