Can owlbear animal companions use the statistics of a grizzly bear?


Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild

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22 people marked this as FAQ candidate. 6 people marked this as a favorite.

Ultimate Wilderness released a grizzly bear animal companion option with much praise and anticipation, notably because it's a bear that can become Large size. The boon below allows you to have an owlbear as an animal companion using the bear statistics.

Can you use grizzly bear statistics for your owlbear? If not, can this be added as an option in Campaign Clarifications?

I really want to so I can use my owlbear miniatures, which are all Large just like the creature listed in the bestiary.

Boon:
You recovered a clutch of owlbear eggs and may raise one of the hatchlings as a pet. If you possess a class feature that permits you to take a bear as an animal companion or mount that progresses as an animal companion, you may instead gain the service of an owlbear. The owlbear companion uses the stats of a bear companion with the following modifications: all Handle Animal checks made to train or handle the owlbear suffer a –4 penalty; the bonus granted by the devotion ability increases to +5; the creature’s starting Charisma score is 10; and the animal companion looks like an owlbear instead of a normal bear. This owlbear is considered an animal for all purposes.

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Nope, no reskinning allowed.

*** ⦵⦵ Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East

I don’t think this is a reskinning question, really. There is a boon that lets you do something neat with a bear companion. The question is: can you use the new grizzly bear for this or only the CRB bear companion?

Shadow Lodge ***** ⦵⦵

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I believe that

bear

and bear,Grilzzy

Are two seperate companions, much like cat , large and cat, small are..

The Exchange ***** Venture-Agent, North Carolina—Charlotte aka eddv

Eh, I think it's a question worth asking, I'll hit the FAQ button

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

You can indeed have a large Owlbear companion.

The secret is being a Beastmaster Cavalier ^_^

Although, I must caution, after having played this very combination for 8 levels, the mechanics just didn't work well in PFS.

Really awesome roleplay, though!

Dark Archive *

You can also have a large Owlbear companion at 7th level by playing a Totem-Bonded Hunter.

Sovereign Court ** Venture-Agent, Canada—Ontario—Toronto aka crashcanuck

BigNorseWolf wrote:

I believe that

bear

and bear,Grilzzy

Are two seperate companions, much like cat , large and cat, small are..

The issue is that the boon came out before there was more than one kind of bear. If it were released today I would expect a clarification of which one like your example of the Cats.

Sovereign Court ***** Venture-Captain, North Carolina—Central Region aka Kyrand

It requires a round, and a possible level-dip, but a wildblooded(sylvan) sorcerer can cast enlarge person on their animal companion via share spells. So Large at effective druid 4th (however you get there).

Or keep a couple of dire collars on hand, and switch them out between fights.

I agree it would be nice to not have to jump through these hoops, though, so I'd support the requested clarification.

Scarab Sages ***** Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I would also like to know if this is possible.

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It would be nice if we had this option to use grizzly's statistics. Especially when the owlbear boon is almost entirely flavor.

Shadow Lodge **

BigNorseWolf wrote:

I believe that

bear

and bear,Grilzzy

Are two seperate companions, much like cat , large and cat, small are..

This.

Just because "grizzly bear" has "bear" in the name does not mean that it counts as the "bear" animal companion.

This is going to be the halfling warslinger/sling staff argument all over again...

Sovereign Court **** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I believe that technically it's not possible because "bear" refers to the stock CRB bear and not "any bear including maybe grizzly". Similar how "bird animal companions" mean falcons and not rocs.

However, I also think it would be good to make an exception and allow it, as well as allowing bears for other archetypes etc. that want bears; because the CRB never more than medium bear is just too humdrum.

Sovereign Court **

This would be really awesome! :D

Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Eastern Eurasia-Africa

5 people marked this as a favorite.
Gummy Bear wrote:
This would be really awesome! :D

I wouldn't call it awesome, it will only make these kind of animal companions just bearable.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

-_-

The Exchange ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

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Auke Teeninga wrote:
Gummy Bear wrote:
This would be really awesome! :D
I wouldn't call it awesome, it will only make these kind of animal companions just bearable.

Don't you hate it when the Dutch get to the good English puns before we can?

I mean, he just barely beat me to the punchline.

Starfinder Society Developer

4 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm just owling at these jokes...

Scarab Sages ***** Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

We bearly even got started.

Sovereign Court *****

8 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Class Deck, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I heard that we were making owlbear jokes, so I showed up.

Get it, because I'm an owlbear, and I'm a joke... *nervous laughter*

*****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

What a hoot.

Silver Crusade **** Venture-Agent, Ohio—Cincinnati

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Owl your bears are belong to us!

Sovereign Court ** Venture-Agent, Canada—Ontario—Toronto aka crashcanuck

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These puns are getting ursinine.

Shadow Lodge ***** ⦵⦵

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Thats your 'pinion.

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

These puns are starting to get grizzly.

*****

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Also hitting the FAQ.

The boon came out when there was just one stock 'bear'.

This boon notionally allows a legal reskinning, rather than an actual Owlbear.

If your class grants one of the varieties of bear, then as far as I can see it should be game on, as this does not break anything and is simply an owl bear wrapper on something you can otherwise have anyway.

Personally I want my giant panda owlbear - quest for perfection style.

Shadow Lodge **

Shifty wrote:
as this does not break anything

Unfortunately "doesn't break anything" is not a valid argument for determining if something is campaign legal. The boon refers to a specific rule element (the original "bear" animal companion"), not any animal companion with the word "bear" in the name.

Like I said, halfling warslinger/sling staff all over again.

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SCPRedMage wrote:
Shifty wrote:
as this does not break anything
Unfortunately "doesn't break anything" is not a valid argument for determining if something is campaign legal. The boon refers to a specific rule element (the original "bear" animal companion"), not any animal companion with the word "bear" in the name.

Normally, I'd agree with this logic. However, an owlbear has little to no advantage over a regular animal companion, regardless of type.

Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

2 people marked this as a favorite.

This is not a clarification issue. The new grizzly bear is a different animal than the original bear which is the one specifically listed in reference to the owlbear boon unlock. Now, if Paizo wants to errata the existing boon and make the new grizzly bear a legal selection, that is something entirely different since they will also have to provide rules for those who have already assigned said boon unlock and already have an owlbear companion. Do you get a free replacement? Do you have to use the retaining rules? If any equipment is not properly sized for the new option do you get a free replacement? Or do you have to sell it back for half-price and re-buy? I'm not speculating what they should do or what I want them to do, only what the rule IS until something else is provided by Paizo.

Shadow Lodge **

Cyrad wrote:
Normally, I'd agree with this logic. However, an owlbear has little to no advantage over a regular animal companion, regardless of type.

And again, "little to no advantage" is not a valid argument for whether it's something you can currently do. It might be an argument for why Paizo should change it so you can, but that's not what you asked.

Unless the PFS team reviews this and makes a ruling that you can use any other animal companion as the stats for your owlbear, you can only use the stat block for the original bear animal companion.

*****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Meh, I don't agree with the arguments against. It is not the warslinger/staff sling all over again. One is mechanics, the other is a fancy dress costume for an AC.

The implications of trading in your current fancy dressed companion for a bigger fancy dressed companion should follow the same rules as swapping out a regular Bear for a new Grizzly bear.

With any luck this might get a clarifcation/errata.

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SCPRedMage wrote:
Cyrad wrote:
Normally, I'd agree with this logic. However, an owlbear has little to no advantage over a regular animal companion, regardless of type.
And again, "little to no advantage" is not a valid argument for whether it's something you can currently do. It might be an argument for why Paizo should change it so you can, but that's not what you asked.

But my original question is two-fold.

1. Can you use grizzly bear statistics for your owlbear?

2. If you cannot use grizzly bear statistics for your owlbear, can this option be added to campaign clarifications?

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

1. No
2A Nothing to clarify, so no need to add it to Campaign Clarifications.
2B Campaign Clarifications doesn't cover Chronicle Sheets anyways. The Chronicle would just need to be Errata'd to add Grizzly as another option.

Sczarni *****

1 person marked this as FAQ candidate.
Starfinder Charter Superscriber

That being said, I'd be against such a change anyways.

The Owlbear Boon is supposed to make a mediocre option more desirable, not make a desirable option even cooler.

***

3 people marked this as a favorite.

I think the CRB 'bear' should be renamed to 'bear cub'; then it follows that the owlbear bear companion was really a grizzly bear all along. :P

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Nefreet wrote:
The Owlbear Boon is supposed to make a mediocre option more desirable, not make a desirable option even cooler.

Says who? More likely that the boon is meant to give you a cool animal companion option and uses bear statistics because it's a physically similar creature.

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I don't see how those statements are at odds.

Sovereign Court *****

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I am in posession of an adorably incompetent owlbear companion named Hoot. Hoot tries to do things, but all the poor thing can manage is to flank with other Pathfinders and aid another. It only looks scary. I’d love it if some people had the option to make owlbears off of grizzlies (alas not an option for lunar oracles like myself.)

Scarab Sages ***** Venture-Captain, Netherlands aka Woran

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I want it because all my owlbear minis are large :P

Sovereign Court **** Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Nefreet wrote:
2A Nothing to clarify, so no need to add it to Campaign Clarifications.

Clarifications have been used before to outright change things.

Similar to how some FAQs are really a thinly veiled errata, along with "is this as it's clearly printed in the text?", "No, it's now completely different".

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber
That's why I also wrote:
Campaign Clarifications doesn't cover Chronicle Sheets anyways. The Chronicle would just need to be Errata'd to add Grizzly as another option.

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Nefreet wrote:
I don't see how those statements are at odds.

There's a very significant difference between "let's buff this suboptimal option with a reflavor boon!" and "let's make a boon that let's you have an iconic monster as an animal companion and implement this boon by reflavoring an existing option."

***

I forgot which scenario has this owlbear thing... can a ranger of high enough level use this in CORE mode?

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

No, because CORE Rangers can't select Bears as Companions.

***

I thought so... that's in the PFS Guide right? (although I seem to remember the guide sayin' something like 'allowed if chronicle sheet allows...')

Sczarni *****

Starfinder Charter Superscriber

It's in the Core Rulebook under Ranger.

***

From Roleplaying Guild Guide -
"Chronicle Sheets: Items listed on Chronicle sheets
earned in the Core Campaign are valid options for Core
characters. Promotional boons and other Chronicle
sheets that open up new race options otherwise can’t be
used in the Core Campaign."

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I think the point is that a CORE ranger can't select a bear to begin with and the boon language specifies being able to select a bear companion as a prerequisite for utilizing the boon, yes?

Sczarni *****

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Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Yes. The Boon modifies a Bear you already have access to.

In the CORE Campaign, that would only be a Druid.

Paizo Employee ***** Organized Play Lead Developer

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Hey folks, I chatted with the rest of the team, and we're on board with applying this boon to grizzly bears as well. In the next Additional Resources update (for which we finished a large content review meeting today for the next update) we'll be adding the following line to the Ultimate Wilderness entry: A grizzly bear animal companion can qualify for and be subject to boons as though it were a bear animal companion.

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