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Bird Animal Companion - silly PFS question


Pathfinder Society® General Discussion

Osirion **

So, I'm working on a Tengu Ranger, and I'm looking at the Falconer Archetype, which says:

Feathered Companion wrote:
At 1st level, a falconer earns the trust and companionship of a bird of prey. The bird can be of any type of large hunting or scavenging bird (even a vulture).

The question is, how much flexibility in PFS do I have in picking what type of bird? My original thought was a Raven or Crow, because, Tengu. The phrasing of the rule seems pretty permissive, but since a Raven is a type of familiar, I don't want to sit down at a PFS table and have non-mechanical flavor on my Animal Companion be an issue. Would a Razorcrow be more appropriate?

Animal Archive wrote:
This unusually large crow earns its name from its curved beak...

Good enough to qualify as a "large hunting or scavenging bird?"

It seems like a silly, flavor related question, since regardless of whether I call the AC a Razorcrow or an Eagle or a Falcon, it will use the Bird AC stats. But then I read threads arguing against vulture, since that got added to the AC list as a separate category after Falconer was published. And also, the yellow Tengu ruling. To my knowledge, Razorcrow doesn't appear on any Animal Companion lists. I'd also be fine with just calling it an unusually large normal raven.

In fairness, the description of the Razorcrow does also include some mechanics.

Animal Archive wrote:
A razorcrow uses the same statistics as a raven (Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 133), except its bite attack deals 1d4 points of damage and its Strength score is 6.

I am not looking to apply those, as Falconer is very specific that the AC uses the Bird stats. The biggest change would be that a Bird is a Small creature, while a Raven is Tiny.

So what's the verdict, PFS people? If I sat down at your table and said I had an unusually large Raven or Razorcrow Animal Companion, are you going to care?

Why do I care? Tengu with a Raven, that's why. I'm also considering adding Yokai Hunter as an Archetype, so it's thematically appropriate for that, too.

Shadow Lodge ***

I think some people will care. reskinning is kind of a sensitive topic for some.

Let me see if i can finagle some way of making that sucker legal.

Bird (Eagle/Hawk/Owl):

Starting Statistics: Size Small; Speed 10 ft., fly 80 ft. (average); AC +1 natural armor; Attack bite (1d4), 2 talons (1d4); Ability Scores Str 10, Dex 15, Con 12, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6; Special Qualities low-light vision.

4th-Level Advancement: Ability Scores Str +2, Con +2.

Unfortunately it doesn't just say raptor or large bird it specifies eagle hawk or owl.

A razorcrow uses the same statistics as a raven (Pathfinder
RPG Bestiary 133), except its bite attack deals 1d4 points of
damage and its Strength score is 6.

The falconer archetype would make it legal, but there's no stats for the animal companion version of a razercrow or a raven.

You could have a black roc, but they have eagle like beaks.

Osirion **

BigNorseWolf wrote:

I think some people will care. reskinning is kind of a sensitive topic for some.

Let me see if i can finagle some way of making that sucker legal.

** spoiler omitted **

Unfortunately it doesn't just say raptor or large bird it specifies eagle hawk or owl.

A razorcrow uses the same statistics as a raven (Pathfinder
RPG Bestiary 133), except its bite attack deals 1d4 points of
damage and its Strength score is 6.

The falconer archetype would make it legal, but there's no stats for the animal companion version of a razercrow or a raven.

You could have a black roc, but they have eagle like beaks.

Falconer goes on to say you must take the bird Animal Companion, so it has to be something that fits into that. I did get thrown off a little by pfsrd, which lists "Any large birds such as eagles, hawks or owls" under the description of Bird, and not just the three. But looking at the PRD, you are correct, and that's all that is there.

I'll probably just let it go or not take Falconer and take a vulture or something like that instead.

It does bother me, though, that by that RAW interpretation a Falconer cannot even take a falcon, since the Falconer must take the bird Animal Companion. Just one of the quirks of a strict RAW campaign, I guess.

I suppose if having the raven becomes important enough to me, I could always take a class with a familiar instead, whether dipping something and taking the Ranger bond with his companions instead of an Animal Companion, or switching out of Ranger entirely.

Andoran **

One of the issues here is that while the rules say 'such as' and leave things open for many different types of things (not just for falconers but for other companions, summoned creatures, familiars and more.. there are really only specific stats for a very small number and since many of the stats would be identical or similar.. they don't really bother to flush out every variance... which.. especially when it come to PFS.. leaves you sorta out to dry.

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