I was deciding on an animal companion for the druid I am making for Pathfinder Society and had a question about the ape companion. I couldn't find anyone else who asked this, probably because it's kinda silly but, can the ape companion be any kind of ape or is it just a gorilla or something? I really wanted to have an orangutan as an animal companion but I didn't know if that was allowed.
I know it probably wouldn't be a big deal if it wasn't and I was playing in an unofficial game. I might be able to come to an agreement with the GM to allow an orangutan, just using the ape's stats but this being a Society game I can't really do that.
I know it's a newbie thing to ask, but I don't have much experience with Pathfinder yet, so any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
Disclaimer: this is from memory so...
Generally you can't re-skin to something else with different stats (like calling a dog a wolf).
Also, anyone who looks at it must know what it is. Your fox can be albino or a white artic fox, but no one thinks its a white wolf even if it gets enlarged.
Lastly, there can be no mechanical change like a improved steath score in snow conditions or such in my fox example.
Basically, flavor only. You have an ape, and you can call him an orangutang (if an orangutang doesnt have a dedicated bestiary entry).
Thank you Grey_Mage, that all makes sense. So I looked at the bestiary again to makes sure that there wasn't an ape (orangutan) entry and I missed that in the description of Ape (Gorilla) it says,
"This stat block can generally be used for any of the larger types of primates, such as gorillas- for smaller apes like orangutans and chimpanzees, apply the young simple template."
Which made me wonder if the Ape animal companion was a gorilla with the young template, since the gorilla is Large and the Ape companion is Medium. But it is not, its stats are close to that but are not exactly the same.
The differences (if I did this correctly) would be that the young gorilla (or orangutan) has 11 Str vs 13 Str of the Ape animal companion and 19 dex vs 17 dex of the Ape animal companion.
Everything you said, Grey_Mage, made sense to me, I'm just confused because I don't understand the relation between the Ape animal companion's stats and the Ape (Gorilla)'s stats, the one ape entry in the bestiary. Well, there is the Dire Ape entry but its stats don't line up either when I apply the young template. Maybe I'm just missing some template that explains this. I don't know.
Animal companion stats don't fully line up with their associated animal stats in the bestiary.
Also many of the bestiary animals are intended to be able to stand in for a variety of similar creatures with minor modifications such as templates or simply adding or removing an ability.
Animal companions are like this as well in a way but you can't add templates to them normally.
I think the designers were probably thinking chimp and gorilla when they wrote it out, but it's just called ape so it's can be any ape you want it to be. just make it large if it's a big one or keep it medium if it's not.