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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Bestiary 5 (OGL)

****½ (based on 12 ratings)
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Bestiary 5 (OGL)
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Beyond the veil!

Creatures strange beyond imagining and more terrifying than any nightmare lurk in the dark corners of the world and the weird realms beyond. Within this book, you'll find hundreds of monsters for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Face off against devils and dragons, deep ones and brain moles, robots and gremlins, and myriad other menaces! Yet not every creature needs to be an enemy, as whimsical liminal sprites, helpful moon dogs, and regal seilenoi all stand ready to aid you on your quests—if you prove yourself worthy.

Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 5 is the fifth indispensable volume of monsters for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and serves as a companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook and Pathfinder RPG Bestiary. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into a new era.

Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 5 includes:

  • More than 300 different monsters.
  • New player-friendly races like caligni dark folk, deep one hybrids, plant-bodied ghorans, and simian orang-pendaks.
  • Psychic creatures both benevolent and terrifying, from the enigmatic anunnaki and faceless astomoi to the howling caller in darkness and insidious, alien grays.
  • New familiars, animal companions, and other allies, such as clockwork familiars, red pandas, and many-legged wollipeds.
  • New templates to help you get more life out of classic monsters.
  • Appendices to help you find the right monster, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat.
  • Expanded universal monster rules to simplify combat.
  • Challenges for every adventure and every level of play.
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-792-5

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscription.

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Product Reviews (12)
1 to 5 of 12 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

****½ (based on 12 ratings)

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Monsters Galore

****( )

Read my full review on Of Dice and Pen.

I like Bestiary 5 a great deal. On an initial look-through before reading it more thoroughly, there were numerous monsters that drew my attention, that made me want to know more about them, and screamed to be included in one of my games sometime down the road. There's a wide variety of monsters present, with every type represented and the spread between them being fairly even. Ooze is a monster type that is often under-represented, but there are quite a few new oozes in this book. Along with that there are lots of magical beasts, constructs, undead, vermin, fey, and so on. In addition, there are several mythic monsters, and Bestiary 5 is the first hardcover book to contain monsters using the occult rules from Occult Adventures. The monsters cover a wide variety of challenge ratings as well, from 1/6 to 24. The bulk of the creatures are in the low- to mid-CR range, but there are also a sizeable number of high-CR monsters as well.

Grim Reapers, Deep Ones, and Greys Oh My!


I have always loved Bestiaries and Paizo has yet to disappoint in department. Now with a 5th hardcover bestiary they continue with quality and variety. I will list the good and the bad of this fine product.
The Good
-Dragons, 5 great new true dragons, along with a variety of "lesser" dragons such as jungle drake, rope dragon, vishap, and awesome shen.
-Fey, a variety of ranging from low to high CR such as the house spirits and the glaistag.
-Giants, we finally get the Firbolg, been waiting to see this one for a long time.
-New 0HD races like the Astomi, Caligni, and Reptoid.
-Aliens such as greys and the Anunnaki.
-Elementals such as aether, the wysps and the awesome anemos.
-Interesting oozes such as animate hair, apallie, and living mirage.
-New clestials and aeons.
-Creatures from mythology.
-Old school monster such as moon dogs, muckdwellers, brain moles, and thought eaters.
-Some interesting undead like bone ship and death coach.

The Bad
-Some minor design issues.
-Some art issues.
-The Sahkil, another evil outsider group, could have used this space for Oni, Azura, or Rakshasa.
-Continued use of the mythic rules that to me should be a completely optional rule.

3 STARS?????


I can't agree with the below rating of 3 stars. (Read Below) This is on-par with any other bestiary piazo has produced. Although i cant speak of quality due to just buying a pdf, this bestiary has the best range of monster selection in my opinion. It adds some technology driven ideas, unique story driven monsters and my favorite: A BoneShip, literally the pcs can fight an undead ship!!!! The complaint of no new monster over CR25 is a lazy lie, using templates the Esoteric Dragons can be over CR25 with other CR20+ monsters utilizing templates provided can increase above CR25. This book contains ideas for familiars, companions, and constructs for many classes and pairs amazingly well with content from the Occult Adventures. I Love this book, and pathfinder in general due to the wealth of information it has for both a PC and a DM. Cant wait for more!!!

I feel a little different, I like the Bestiary's as they come out.


Please understand, ink and space is limited when a book is put together. Paizo has to choose carefully what they put in as apposed to data overload. As a player, the reason I bought the Bestiary 5 is the monstrous humanoids, humanoids and undead. As a GM, I feel the roles of the Beasties are different and have fire power!.

The polymorph school is fun! I get to turn into monsters! Monstrous humanoids, humanoids and undead are the beasties I can turn into and keep my armor, sword and the like when I turn into them.

Polymorph is like gas on a camp fire in a fight. Getting larger, and for example, having multiple arms creates options. You can carry a reach weapon and a melee weapon to threaten all squares you threaten you can reach. For changing shape to a larger creature, increasing to a size large creature gives a +1 to attack with CMB against CMD unlike a -2 to attack AC. For turning into a size Huge creature, a +2 is given to attack CMD with CMB. There is a size Huge monstrous humanoid with more than two arms in the Bestiary 5. I can only think of one size Huge monstrous Humanoid in all the other Bestiary's.

That means Sunder, Trip, Grapple, Reposition and the like are incredibly successful on low rolls the larger you get. Not to mention the damage output increases along with reach in which creatures smaller than you can not take a free shot if they can not reach you when you provoke. There are lots of reasons to enjoy the book as a player. Monstrous Physique I, II, III, and IV here I come with more ammo!

I like the layout of the book, the stats of the monsters fulfill roles that the other bestiary's do not completely fulfill as in the example given above. As a GM, ever since the first bestiary, the monsters are scarier and scarier as each Bestiary has come out. That means as a player or a GM, the fire power can be increased for the players and more fire power means more epic fights.

As a side note, I feel the story should propel the fights just like it should propel the role-playing, investigating or what not in any adventure. The book propels the fights, but the fights are the most fun of Pathfinder. The rest of the flavor of the game is like mortar around the bricks in a wall. All of it is needed to complete what the purpose of a brick wall or an adventure in relation to the first sentence above in this Paragraph.

I have noticed players like fire power. The more people play the more fire power they would like to have. Such increases means greater rules struggle. The more I play and understand chapter 8 & 9 of the core rule book, the more the rules become easier to use and that struggle has become less. Pathfinder Forever!!!

Overall great bestiary, but perhaps not to the level of Bestiaries 3 or 4

****( )

This is my first review here, and part of my effort to actually provide more reviews of products I like an enjoy.

Bestiary 5 is the latest big hardcover Bestiary from Paizo, and if you have seen prior volumes you have a pretty good idea what to expect from this book. This bestiary has over 300 setting neutral monsters for the Pathfinder game, a mix of reprints from past Paizo softcovers (Campaign Setting, Module, and Adventure Path lines for the most part), a few SRD critters left unconverted from 3.5 (Caller in Darkness, Brain Moles, etc) and a large number of brand new creatures. These new creatures are spread evenly across CR ratings, creature type, and role. They include the staples we see in every bestiary, including another set of 5 new dragons, dinosaurs, familiars, and 0HD races. We get further support for some neglected groups (Aeons, Kami, Azatas, leshies), and some groups get more high CR representatives to flesh out there threat range (especially plants and fey). Most creatures get what I feel is an adequate amount of text, but some groups continue to suffer, especially dragons. We also get some brand new creature types, including robots, and the excellent and stomach turning Sakhils

If Bestiary 3 was the "Asian" Bestiary and Bestiary 4 was the "horror and mythic bestiary", than Bestiary 5 is the occult bestiary, with many monsters making use of the new Occult Adventures rules, or having rules and themes that fit well within such an adventure, even if they do not overtly use the power point system. However there are plenty of other creatures that easily fit into any style game, as well as new mythic monsters.

So what are the cons? well for one I would say the artwork was ever so slightly reduced in quality compared to previous bestiaries, with some pieces like the Gravebound being especially bad.

While I am fine with them reprinting monsters from other books, pulling monsters, especially the robots, from the Inner Sea Bestiary was especially annoying. It's a dedicated bestiary book, and with the exception of the 0HD races doesn't need stuff pulled from it. The robots are especially a poor choice, as Iron Gods and the Numeria book had an assortment of robots that could have been reprinted instead.

Finally, I feel there is a bit of difficulty at times with finding niches for monsters. The scum and deep ones sort of step on each other toes, as do the reptiloids and Serpentfolk, their are a bit too many mummy-esq critters, and the Caligni feel like the direction the developers should have taken from the beginning with Darkfolk. This was bound to happen with 1000+ monsters already out there,sooner or later, but still adds a bit of a repetitive quality to parts of the book.

Probably worth also pointing out, although we get more mythic monsters, we received nothing new above CR 25. We have demon lords and Great Old Ones, and so it would have been nice if some of the other outsider groups got similar treatment.

Overall I would say it's definitely worth the buy; There are bound to be at least a few critters that you will get use of or which inspire new ideas, and this book is especially a great buy if you are planning on running an all out Occult Adventures campaign. If your happy with just running with bestiaries 1 or 2, I don't think there is anything in this book that will probably make you change your mind. I'd probably rank it behind Bestiaries 3 and 4 as far as novelty and awesomeness goes, so check those books out before this one.

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