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How does Boon Companion work?


Rules Questions


Hey all ive played like 4 pathfinder games but im not a very knowledgable player, at least about the rules. So if anyone wants to, please help I really appreciate it. I have a friend whos playing a warpriest/bloodrager dont know the set up. But it sounds like he got his valet familiar through bloodrager, not important. So from what i understand he has one level in the class that gives him his familiar. He has some ability that lets him heal extra from whatever healing he gets and he wants to utilize it more but it specifies that fast healing doesnt affect it so we are looking for some solo ways to heal him without devoting other members of the party to do so, since no one else has healing other than wand of cure light wounds.

Question part 1 - Does BOON COMPANION allow his level 1 familiar count as a level high enough to (3 or 4 or 5) cast touch spells.

Question part 2 - Does his familiar have its own turn?

Question part 3 - If his familiar has his own turn and can cast touch spells, (I think it uses up his spell slots) can the familiar cast a touch spell on him on the familiars turn?

sorry for the long post, thank you for your help if you give any


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
TurtleTamer wrote:

Hey all ive played like 4 pathfinder games but im not a very knowledgable player, at least about the rules. So if anyone wants to, please help I really appreciate it. I have a friend whos playing a warpriest/bloodrager dont know the set up. But it sounds like he got his valet familiar through bloodrager, not important. So from what i understand he has one level in the class that gives him his familiar. He has some ability that lets him heal extra from whatever healing he gets and he wants to utilize it more but it specifies that fast healing doesnt affect it so we are looking for some solo ways to heal him without devoting other members of the party to do so, since no one else has healing other than wand of cure light wounds.

Question part 1 - Does BOON COMPANION allow his level 1 familiar count as a level high enough to (3 or 4 or 5) cast touch spells.

Question part 2 - Does his familiar have its own turn?

Question part 3 - If his familiar has his own turn and can cast touch spells, (I think it uses up his spell slots) can the familiar cast a touch spell on him on the familiars turn?

sorry for the long post, thank you for your help if you give any

Welcome to the game.

First up, here's how the Boon Companion feat works. Imagine you take four levels of monk. None of those grant you a familiar, so you don't have one. Then you take one level of wizard, and you get a familiar. There's a table that tells you what a "wizard 1" familiar can do. If you take Boon Companion as your feat, your "effective wizard level" is 5 for purposes of your familiar's abilities. So you look up on the table what a wizard 5 would get for a familiar.

That all said, here are you answers.

1} No. Familiars don't get to cast any spells. (Though some specific Improved Familiars may have some spell-like abilities which they can cast.) What familiars get at "wizard 3" is "deliver touch spells". That just lets the wizard cast a spell, and instead of the wizard touching the target, the familiar can. Not what you want.

Final comment here, if the wizard has ranks in the Use Magic Device skill, so does the familiar, and that could enable a familiar - with a successful check - activate a wand or scroll.

2} Yes-ish. A familiar gets its own set of actions. Some groups (mine) have the familiar go on the wizard's turn in initiative because it's easier than coming back to that player twice in the round. Other groups run the familiar on its own initiative count. But either way, a familiar gets a turn... it might just be done at the same time as the master's turn for convenience.

3} Yes. But see my comments in #1. Familiars can't cast spells except by activating a magic item or its own inherent spell-like abilities. They never cast the master's spells or use the master's slots. So yes, a familiar could do what you want, but only if it's been carefully planned. Some people deliberately use the Improved Familiar to get an imp or pseudodragon, or other familiar that can manipulate items, then max out Use Magic Device and buy them wands. Point is, you can't really hand a scroll to your bat familiar and expect it to open the scroll, read it, and cast. Other creatures actually have hands to manipulate things with.

Hope this helps.

I don't see anything in the valet familiar archetype that changes any of my answers, by the way.


Anguish wrote:
TurtleTamer wrote:

Hey all ive played like 4 pathfinder games but im not a very knowledgable player, at least about the rules. So if anyone wants to, please help I really appreciate it. I have a friend whos playing a warpriest/bloodrager dont know the set up. But it sounds like he got his valet familiar through bloodrager, not important. So from what i understand he has one level in the class that gives him his familiar. He has some ability that lets him heal extra from whatever healing he gets and he wants to utilize it more but it specifies that fast healing doesnt affect it so we are looking for some solo ways to heal him without devoting other members of the party to do so, since no one else has healing other than wand of cure light wounds.

Question part 1 - Does BOON COMPANION allow his level 1 familiar count as a level high enough to (3 or 4 or 5) cast touch spells.

Question part 2 - Does his familiar have its own turn?

Question part 3 - If his familiar has his own turn and can cast touch spells, (I think it uses up his spell slots) can the familiar cast a touch spell on him on the familiars turn?

sorry for the long post, thank you for your help if you give any

Welcome to the game.

First up, here's how the Boon Companion feat works. Imagine you take four levels of monk. None of those grant you a familiar, so you don't have one. Then you take one level of wizard, and you get a familiar. There's a table that tells you what a "wizard 1" familiar can do. If you take Boon Companion as your feat, your "effective wizard level" is 5 for purposes of your familiar's abilities. So you look up on the table what a wizard 5 would get for a familiar.

That all said, here are you answers.

1} No. Familiars don't get to cast any spells. (Though some specific Improved Familiars may have some spell-like abilities which they can cast.) What familiars get at "wizard 3" is "deliver touch spells". That just lets the wizard cast a spell, and instead of the wizard touching the...

Thank you for the help, it clears up alot. My understanding now is that they can only deliver touch spells that are yours and on your turn. This gives me some solid boundaries, and you even gave me an alternative approach (thanks again). Following up on that if I may, my next questions are.

1. What are the requirements for a familiar to use a magical device such as a wand? Does it need to be improved, or just have appendages?

2. How does the familiar gain its UMD stat, is it based on the owners stat, if so how much?

3. If the familiar doesnt need to be improved but needs to be anthropomorphic, would the spell anthropomorphic animal allow the animal to use the wand anyway?


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
TurtleTamer wrote:

Thank you for the help, it clears up alot. My understanding now is that they can only deliver touch spells that are yours and on your turn. This gives me some solid boundaries, and you even gave me an alternative approach (thanks again). Following up on that if I may, my next questions are.

1. What are the requirements for a familiar to use a magical device such as a wand? Does it need to be improved, or just have appendages?

2. How does the familiar gain its UMD stat, is it based on the owners stat, if so how much?

3. If the familiar doesnt need to be improved but needs to be anthropomorphic, would the spell anthropomorphic animal allow the animal to use the wand anyway?

1} This is partly a DM decision. I expect most DMs apply some realism. Expecting a turtle familiar to use a scroll or wand stretches the imagination. Same with a cat. But an exceptionally generous DM might not care, and let a goldfish use a wand. But really, the requirement would be being able to realistically manipulate the item. Just holding it in their mouth is probably not enough since most spell-completion items have a command word that has to be spoken. Which is another component. So... mostly improved familiars.

2} In the familiars section of the core rulebook, it shows that familiars gain their masters' skill ranks. They won't get a class-skill bonus unless that skill happens to be class for their type (magical beast). The familiar applies its own ability modifier. So a wizard 7 who has 7 ranks in UMD would have a familiar who also has 7 ranks. But the familiar's Charisma modifier might be negative where the wizard's is positive. In general, the master will be better at the skill, but once you get high enough level it stops mattering because you can meet the DCs.

3} No. The target of the anthropomorphic animal spell is "animal touched". A familiar is no longer an animal. The moment they become a familiar, they change from animal to magical beast.

Unrelated thought... the goal of all of this is to provide small in-combat healing to the master. They could forgo UMD if they work with potions. It's reasonable for a familiar to shove a potion in their master's mouth as a standard action. If there are a few potions within the familiar's reach (maybe in cloth loops on the master's clothing), they could use move action to retrieve one. Still not practical for a turtle or something, but a generous DM might let a raven or something do this.


Anguish wrote:
TurtleTamer wrote:

Thank you for the help, it clears up alot. My understanding now is that they can only deliver touch spells that are yours and on your turn. This gives me some solid boundaries, and you even gave me an alternative approach (thanks again). Following up on that if I may, my next questions are.

1. What are the requirements for a familiar to use a magical device such as a wand? Does it need to be improved, or just have appendages?

2. How does the familiar gain its UMD stat, is it based on the owners stat, if so how much?

3. If the familiar doesnt need to be improved but needs to be anthropomorphic, would the spell anthropomorphic animal allow the animal to use the wand anyway?

1} This is partly a DM decision. I expect most DMs apply some realism. Expecting a turtle familiar to use a scroll or wand stretches the imagination. Same with a cat. But an exceptionally generous DM might not care, and let a goldfish use a wand. But really, the requirement would be being able to realistically manipulate the item. Just holding it in their mouth is probably not enough since most spell-completion items have a command word that has to be spoken. Which is another component. So... mostly improved familiars.

2} In the familiars section of the core rulebook, it shows that familiars gain their masters' skill ranks. They won't get a class-skill bonus unless that skill happens to be class for their type (magical beast). The familiar applies its own ability modifier. So a wizard 7 who has 7 ranks in UMD would have a familiar who also has 7 ranks. But the familiar's Charisma modifier might be negative where the wizard's is positive. In general, the master will be better at the skill, but once you get high enough level it stops mattering because you can meet the DCs.

3} No. The target of the anthropomorphic animal spell is "animal touched". A familiar is no longer an animal. The moment they become a familiar, they change from animal to magical beast.

Unrelated...

Alright well thanks again, its hard sometimes to find the right information on the internet and i dont own the books... The potion idea might work, though it would help to have a anthropomorphic animal with hands. I wonder if I could find an animal that i would take on as a familiar, but before I do cast permanency anthro animal on it. Sounds like a dm decision but I don't see why it coulnd't work. Or maybe a homunculus, but they are pretty expensive.


Scratch that apparently the animal has to be unmodified, woo taking out the fun.

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