Eidolon subtypes and base forms

Rules Questions

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Does an eidolon gain the evolutions listed on the Base Forms in addition to its subtype? This is to say does the Base Form of Biped grant Elemental Eidolons the claw evolution? Or does the Serpentine Base Form grant the Azata a Climb Speed?


Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The Subtypes add to the Base Forms.

"Each eidolon has one of three base forms that determines its starting size, speed, AC, attacks, and ability scores."

"Eidolons of some subtypes are restricted in their choice of base form...The evolutions listed here are gained automatically, and do not cost points from the eidolon’s evolution pool."

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The Base Form that you reffer to is the Base Form section listed under each Subtype. This lists the specific evolutions that apply to each Base Form available to the Subtype in question. For instance, the Angel subtype lists

"Base Form(s): Biped (limbs [arms], limbs [legs], slam). Base Evolutions: At 1st level, angel eidolons gain the resistance (acid) and resistance (cold) evolutions. They also gain a +4 bonus on saving throws against poison."

So if you select the Biped base form for the Angel, you get Limbs (arms), Limbs (legs) and a Slam attack.

The confusion I have comes from the fact that the Biped, Quadraped, Serpentine, etc. are listed as Base Forms. Under the Biped Base Form it lists claws as another free evolution. So does the Biped Angel get claws as well as the double Limbs and Slam attack.

Now the Devil Eidolon that has the Biped base form lists claws as a free evolution under the Devil subtype.

So does the Angel also get claws? And if so, why are claws listed as free evolution for Devils?

And I would really like an offical ruling on this if possible.


Starfinder Charter Superscriber

You don't get a four armed Angel, if that's what you're asking. Base Forms don't actually designate which limbs you get. That's the job of the Subtype.

You choose a Base Form, and then you choose a Subtype. Not the other way around.

So say you want to create an Eidolon that's a Biped with the Angel Subtype. The Biped Base Form gives you the Claws evolution. The Angel Subtype gives you the Limbs [Arms], Limbs [Legs] and Slam evolutions.

The Slam evolution replaces the Claws evolution, because that's what the Slam evolution states.

As for an "official" answer, I went ahead and flagged your post for the Rules Questions Forum. You're most likely to get the proper attention over there.

2 people marked this as FAQ candidate.
Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

To clarify, I believe the OP wants clarification on the interaction between the "base form" entry for a specific subtype (which lists the default evolutions) and the other "Base Form" section of thd Eidolon entry, seperate from any particular subtype (which lists raw stats and not evolutions)

It can be confusing, much like "Race Traits" versus "Racial Traits" in other books. Here are a few examples of what I see to be potentially misleading wording, with Example C being quite the head scratcher.

Example A::
Angel Subtype wrote:

Base Form(s): Biped (limbs [arms], limbs [legs], slam). Base Evolutions: At 1st level, angel eidolons gain the resistance (acid) and resistance (cold) evolutions. They also gain a +4 bonus on saving throws against poison.
Biped Base Form wrote:

Starting Statistics: Size Medium; Speed 30 ft.; AC +2 natural armor; Saves Fort(good), Ref (poor), Will (good); Attack 2 claws (1d4); Ability Scores Str 16, Dex12, Con 13, Int 7, Wis 10, Cha 11.

For that one, I see it rules-as-intended that the Slam replaces Claws. But what if it's the Devil subtype, which grants the Claws evolution? Does it gain a second set if claws if you have available limbs? Or just one pair with the evolution as a redundancy? What if you pick a subtype like Fey that grants no weapons at all, do they still get claws? The written rules seem to feed me conflicting information.

Heck, if you look at the various Serpentine loadouts for many subtypes, each one has its own set of evolutions! Speaking of serpentine...

Example B::
Morphic Savant archetype wrote:

A morphic savant’s eidolon must be of a chaotic alignment (if using the Unchained Summoner, the eidolon must have the azata, demon, or protean subtype). The morphic savant’s eidolon has three base forms: biped, quadruped, and serpentine. Each form has the same feats and skills, but has its own set of evolutions.

When the summoner meditates and regains his spell slots for the day, he can select any of the three base forms of his eidolon.

So let's say I take a Protean base form, which is legal for this archetype. Since Protean only has Serpentine as a base form, can I assume that the independent Base Form entires function as a template for what base evolutions I'd have? If not, then what do I get?

Example C::
Aberrant base form wrote:
Starting Statistics: Size Medium; Speed 20 ft., swim 20 ft.; AC +2 natural armor;Saves Fort (good), Ref (poor), Will (good); Attack bite (1d6), tentacles (1d6); Ability Scores Str 12, Dex 13, Con 16, Int 7, Wis 10, Cha 11.
Aberration Subtype wrote:
Base Form(s): Aberrant: (bite, grab [tentacle mass], tentacle mass), biped (limbs [arms], limbs [legs], slam), quadruped (bite, limbs [legs, 2]), or serpentine (bite, grab [bite], reach [bite], tail, tail slap).
Evolution: Tentacle Mass wrote:
Tentacle Mass (Ex): The eidolon grows a thick mass of tentacles that can be used as a primary natural weapon. The tentacles deal 1d8 points of damage if the eidolon is Medium.

Bolded for emphadis. The default evolution for "Tentacle Mass" deals 1d8 damage. The Base Form has some mysterious "tentacles" attack that deals 1d6. Does that mean Tentacle Mass is only d6? Does the eidolon get an extra "tentacles" attack on top of Tentacle Mass? Does "tentacles" function as two copies of the "Tentacle" evolution from the Unchained book? Was there a mistake in editing?

Also, swim speed on the Base Form? Does that count as the swimming evolution, or is it just a seperate benefit?

Sovereign Court

aye rosc i think that is the confusion, having looked at it ive seen instances where the base form grants a claw attack and the subtype grants a claw attack. so is this claw attack an overlap?
another example does a protean have a climb speed? the serpentine form gives it without mention of an evolution however the protean subtype does not grant a climb evolution.

the sections in unchained is a lil vague on how it is supposed to work.

IIRC when I posted the question to the Pathfinder Unchained Thread this was the answer I got from Mark Seifter:

Cantriped wrote:

Regarding the Unchained Summoner:

The general entry for the Biped Base Form lists that it has 2 claw attacks. Is this still true of Eidolons subtypes that do not include the term "claw" in their more specific Base Form entry (such as the Azata, Fey, and Kyton subtypes)?
Mark Seifter wrote:
It's the default, but that general default is replaced by the specific evolutions listed by subtype. It's only there in case a later subtype wants to save space and use the default, but it might be more confusing than it's worth.


Bear in mind this isn't an official ruling, so for PFS table variation abound. The issue is they didn't change the generic Base Form entry when they wrote the Unchained Summoner. So it is still written as though it were the only determinant of the eidolon's statistics. Paizo's "conversational" writing style strikes again!

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Yeah thats previsely the issue. And while Mark has weighed in on this as a developer (the main thread that his post was taken from was meant to be a rules clarification thread) for some reason its not an official ruling and because he isnt one of the "PFS Official Rules Guys" the Venture Captain is ruling it as RAW that the Base Form evolutions add to the evolutions under the subtype.

My concern is that since Mark has already posted something, the Official PFS devs will just consider the issue closed without ever weighing in.

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All we can do is keep FAQing it until the PDT drowns in Eidolon Related FAQ requests! Or we can wait for the Heat-Death of the universe; which may come before we get an answer to even half of the questions that actually deserve a FAQ. Since it seems like the PDT is more concerned with releasing rules revisions disguised as clarification than they are with releasing actual clarifications these days.

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