Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary (OGL)

4.50/5 (based on 40 ratings)
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary (OGL)
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Here there be monsters!

What is a hero without monsters to vanquish? This 328-page book presents hundreds of different creatures for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Within this tome you'll find fire-breathing dragons and blood-drinking vampires, vile demons and shapechanging werewolves, sadistic goblins and lumbering giants, and so much more! Yet not all the creatures in this book are enemies, for some can serve lucky heroes as allies or advisors, be they summoned angels or capricious nymphs. And it doesn't stop there—with full rules for advancing monsters, adapting monsters to different roles, and designing your own unique creations, you'll never be without a band of hideous minions again!

The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is the must-have companion volume to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.

The Pathfinder RPG Bestiary includes:

  • More than 350 different monsters
  • Dozens of monstrous variants to modify creatures and keep players on their toes
  • Numerous lists of monsters to aid in navigation, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat
  • Extensive rules for creating effective and balanced monsters
  • Rules for advancing monsters by hit dice, template, or class level
  • Universal monster rules to simplify special attacks, defenses, and qualities like breath weapons, damage reduction, and regeneration
  • More than a dozen feats tailored especially for monsters
  • Suggestions for monstrous cohorts
  • Two dozen additional animal companions
  • More than a dozen different wandering monster encounter tables
  • ... and much, much more!

Available Formats

The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary is available as:

Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-60125-183-1

Errata
Last Updated - 9/12/2011

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Rulebook Subscription.

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This product is non-mint. Refunds are not available for non-mint products. The standard version of this product can be found here.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

PZO1112


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4.50/5 (based on 40 ratings)

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Excellently formated and beautiful Art work.

5/5

I bought the PDF version of this and what a deal. It is formated so that when I need a monster I simply print that page. I have not ran into a monster that takes up more then 1 page. It is so well formated. It saves my ink and paper and Im ready to go with just one page. I write all over it with notes for that game and toss it when Im done. Great job!!!!!!


Another case of four stars not telling the whole story . . .

4/5

This book, like the core rulebook, is gorgeous. Not only that, but it has most of the OGL creatures in it, updated to the Pathfinder rules as well as some interesting and logical tweaks.

The only real gripe I have is that, while I understand why it was done, I didn't like that some classic creatures were turned into templated versions of the core version of the monster (I don't know you you need to have separate stats for heavy war horses, but it just doesn't sit right, to me, to have them be "advanced" horses, for example).

All of that having been said, call this one a 4.75, but I'm just too much of a pain to give up a five star review.




Oh So Glorious!

5/5

When this arrived at my door I couldn't wait to tear it open and as I read it all I could think about was great enemies to use to kill my friends. There is only one problem.... Where's the Bodak? J/K never use him anyway.


Vast improvement over it's predecessor.

5/5

My first thought was this product was going to be essentially a reprint of the 3.5 monster manual with the Paizo rules changes and the awesome Paizo design work. As such my expectations were pretty moderate for this book.

I am happy to say that my expectations were greatly exceeded. The book is indeed an amazing piece of design (art!) which I expected from paizo, but it goes a lot further than that. The monsters are rebalanced and often completely reworked. Common abilities are standardized and put in a "common monster ability" section in the back of the book which means the pages are dedicated to strategy, ecology, and generally awesome flavor text.

The artwork is exceptional, there are a few outliers that look out of place in there but in general it's amazing stuff. In a really nice touch the illustrator's names are on the side of each page.

Overall the book is amazingly well organized, it's easy to find what you need and the book is simply the best looking RPG source book I have ever seen.


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Dark Archive

Penthouse

of

page 7.


Zootcat wrote:
Any chance that there will be a pronunciation guide for the not-so-obvious names, such as tiefling, erinyes, hamatula, vargouille, etc.?

TEEF-ling, ERRIN-nee-ess, HAMMA-tyula, var-GWEEL :)

The Exchange

I am curious if there will be a Lore section in the Bestiary, such as those found in the later 3rd edition Monster Manuals.

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

Jacob Blackmon wrote:
I am curious if there will be a Lore section in the Bestiary, such as those found in the later 3rd edition Monster Manuals.

If you are talking about a chart listing Knowledge DCs and bits of info given for the critter, I am of the understanding that that information will not be included. However, with that space there will be varying amounts of critter information available.


Jacob Blackmon wrote:
I am curious if there will be a Lore section in the Bestiary, such as those found in the later 3rd edition Monster Manuals.

Personally, I'm kind of hoping there isn't. I'd rather if someone makes a knowledge check, they find out what they are actually wondering about a given monster.

"How can I hurt this thing?"

::23 on the Knowledge roll::

"Well, according to the Lore chart, you know it hates halflings and prefers to eat hot apple pie."

"But I wanted to know how to kill it . . . "

And of course, the reverse is true as well.

"How do I feed this cubs if I want to raise them?"

"Well, according to the chart you can kill them with cold iron."

"Um, I don't want to kill them, I want to feed them and train them to adulthood."

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Jacob Blackmon wrote:
I am curious if there will be a Lore section in the Bestiary, such as those found in the later 3rd edition Monster Manuals.

Each monster will have some amount of information about it; for a few, this is only a few sentences, but for the majority there's a fair amount of flavor text.

If, as mentioned above, you're looking for a table that summarizes what's learned about a monster with a Knowledge check, that WON'T be in the book. Partially because those tables take up a lot of room and because they tend to waste space by repeating information (or leave out information entirely), but mostly because they're not really worth the trouble. Especially since it seems to suggest to the GM that there's a specific order in the information that should be rewarded. Much better for the GM to be able to customize the results of Knowledge checks as needed so that if a player wants to know about a monster's defenses or hunting habits, he won't get information about its mating habits or special attacks.

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6

James Jacobs wrote:
Especially since it seems to suggest to the GM that there's a specific order in the information that should be rewarded. Much better for the GM to be able to customize the results of Knowledge checks as needed so that if a player wants to know about a monster's defenses or hunting habits, he won't get information about its mating habits or special attacks.

Thanks. In published tables like that, it always seems like the most likely things to be known are put at very high DCs (such things as "trolls regenerate").

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

Russ Taylor wrote:
Thanks. In published tables like that, it always seems like the most likely things to be known are put at very high DCs (such things as "trolls regenerate").

Thanks for the spoiler, Russ!


Russ Taylor wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Especially since it seems to suggest to the GM that there's a specific order in the information that should be rewarded. Much better for the GM to be able to customize the results of Knowledge checks as needed so that if a player wants to know about a monster's defenses or hunting habits, he won't get information about its mating habits or special attacks.
Thanks. In published tables like that, it always seems like the most likely things to be known are put at very high DCs (such things as "trolls regenerate").

THEY WHAT!?

The Exchange Contributor, RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6

And purple worms will EAT YOU!

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

Russ Taylor wrote:
And purple worms will EAT YOU!

LA LA LA! I can't HEAR you!


Knowledge (the planes) DC 10: Earth elementals know how to rock.

Sovereign Court

Arakhor wrote:
Zootcat wrote:
Any chance that there will be a pronunciation guide for the not-so-obvious names, such as tiefling, erinyes, hamatula, vargouille, etc.?
TEEF-ling, ERRIN-nee-ess, HAMMA-tyula, var-GWEEL :)

Many gamers "know" how to pronounce names because they've been saying them in their head a certain way every time they read it for many many years. Or maybe it's because that is how their gaming group has always said it. They now believe that their pronunciation is the only correct way. So, how do you know that those are the correct pronunciations?

An official pronunciation guide would be great for a couple of reasons.
1] I can trust it to be accurate. Take tiefling for example. Wolfgang Baur coined that term. He is in a close relationship with Paizo. So, if James Jacobs tells me it's pronounced TEEF-ling, then I know I can trust him.
2] It will get everyone on the same page. I don't want to go join a new gaming group and have them all insist that it's pronounced TY-fling, and tell me that I am the one who's saying it wrong. This actually happened to me. It was almost impossible to convince them that I was indeed saying it correctly.

So, Arakhor, I appreciate the help, but I hope you'll understand if I take your pronunciations with a grain of salt. ;)

Dark Archive

I would like to see a pronunciation guide for all things Golarion as well as the monsters book ect.

But it is not a priority and might be better as a free PDF anyways. That way they could add to it over time as new stuff comes out.

Dark Archive

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Zootcat wrote:

Many gamers "know" how to pronounce names because they've been saying them in their head a certain way every time they read it for many many years. Or maybe it's because that is how their gaming group has always said it. They now believe that their pronunciation is the only correct way. So, how do you know that those are the correct pronunciations?

An official pronunciation guide would be great for a couple of reasons.
1] I can trust it to be accurate. Take tiefling for example. Wolfgang Baur coined that term. He is in a close relationship with Paizo. So, if James Jacobs tells me it's pronounced TEEF-ling, then I know I can trust him.

There were actually a series of audio files released by TSR (or else really early days of WotC-owned D&D) for Planescape and Birthright with the proper pronunciations for just anything you can think of that would trip people up. Also the Planescape "A Player's Primer to the Outlands" came with an audio CD that had a lot of the pronunciations as well.

Dark Archive

I have the CD somewhere.


I see September here, but I saw July somewhere else in the forums (sorry for the lack of link, I got lost amongst so much text) I was just hoping I could get an "official" date. Also, for those of us buying the core rulebook from another source (amazon.com, as I have gift cards there, and it's the only way I can afford the books now, besides, the money gets back to Most Glorious Paizo) will said sources be shipping out the items at the same time the Paizo warehouses do, or will there be a delay? I guess I'm asking if 3rd party suppliers will be getting copies in advance, so everyone releases at once? Sorry for the rambling, it's late and I'm excited to get my greedy hands on the Pathfinder RPG.

Silver Crusade

Kvantum wrote:

There were actually a series of audio files released by TSR (or else really early days of WotC-owned D&D) for Planescape and Birthright with the proper pronunciations for just anything you can think of that would trip people up. Also the Planescape "A Player's Primer to the Outlands" came with an audio CD that had a lot of the pronunciations as well.

The CDs that came with the Mystara-Glantri box and the starter rules box were downright hilarious.

The captive male elf in one of them sounded like a young Doctor Smith from Lost in Space. More camp than Crystal Lake.

Paizo Employee CEO

Canticle wrote:
I see September here, but I saw July somewhere else in the forums (sorry for the lack of link, I got lost amongst so much text) I was just hoping I could get an "official" date. Also, for those of us buying the core rulebook from another source (amazon.com, as I have gift cards there, and it's the only way I can afford the books now, besides, the money gets back to Most Glorious Paizo) will said sources be shipping out the items at the same time the Paizo warehouses do, or will there be a delay? I guess I'm asking if 3rd party suppliers will be getting copies in advance, so everyone releases at once? Sorry for the rambling, it's late and I'm excited to get my greedy hands on the Pathfinder RPG.

First off, thanks for jumping onto the messageboards!

The Bestiary will be releasing in September. We originally had it releasing in July, so you weren't imagining things, but moved it to September for quality reasons, mostly having to do with making sure the core rules were finished before we edited the Bestiary.

As for the release date of the core rulebook, we will be shipping books out so that they are in stores by the 13th of August should all go right, though hiccups could happen that are outside of our control (like a shipment getting lost). We have been told that the book stores, of which Amazon is a part, will be releasing the book on the 19th of August because they always release on a Wednesday and that is the first Wednesday after the official August 13th release.

I hope this info helps!

-Lisa

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Lisa Stevens wrote:
As for the release date of the core rulebook, we will be shipping books out so that they are in stores by the 13th of August should all go right, though hiccups could happen that are outside of our control (like a shipment getting lost). We have been told that the book stores, of which Amazon is a part, will be releasing the book on the 19th of August because they always release on a Wednesday and that is the first Wednesday after the official August 13th release.

...and we have no idea why Amazon is listing September 2 for the Core Rulebook.

Liberty's Edge

I have a design question. And I'm not sure if it's been asked before, if it has please point me in the direction of the answer.

Regarding Monster Advancement. Are you keeping the same basic style of advancement for monsters? A new way or nothing at all?

Thanks!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

mattdroz wrote:

I have a design question. And I'm not sure if it's been asked before, if it has please point me in the direction of the answer.

Regarding Monster Advancement. Are you keeping the same basic style of advancement for monsters? A new way or nothing at all?

Thanks!

There'll be several ways to advance monsters, but the basic "add Hit Dice or change size" method remains in the game as the baseline method, if you will. There's a few options for simpler, faster methods to adjust a monster as well.


Lisa Stevens wrote:

[...]

As for the release date of the core rulebook, we will be shipping books out so that they are in stores by the 13th of August should all go right, [...]
_Lisa

Hope they hit the shelfs in Stockholm Sweden the same date :-)


James Jacobs wrote:
There's a few options for simpler, faster methods to adjust a monster as well.

Oooh. That is fantastic news. I have a group of players that crave more high-level play, and the MM 3.5 is simply not up for the task.

Liberty's Edge

James Jacobs wrote:
mattdroz wrote:

I have a design question. And I'm not sure if it's been asked before, if it has please point me in the direction of the answer.

Regarding Monster Advancement. Are you keeping the same basic style of advancement for monsters? A new way or nothing at all?

Thanks!

There'll be several ways to advance monsters, but the basic "add Hit Dice or change size" method remains in the game as the baseline method, if you will. There's a few options for simpler, faster methods to adjust a monster as well.

Thank you! This is great news.

Liberty's Edge

James Jacobs wrote:


There's a few options for simpler, faster methods to adjust a monster as well.

Sweet, I was hoping for something like this! ;)

Liberty's Edge

Lisa Stevens wrote:
Canticle wrote:
I see September here, but I saw July somewhere else in the forums (sorry for the lack of link, I got lost amongst so much text) I was just hoping I could get an "official" date. Also, for those of us buying the core rulebook from another source (amazon.com, as I have gift cards there, and it's the only way I can afford the books now, besides, the money gets back to Most Glorious Paizo) will said sources be shipping out the items at the same time the Paizo warehouses do, or will there be a delay? I guess I'm asking if 3rd party suppliers will be getting copies in advance, so everyone releases at once? Sorry for the rambling, it's late and I'm excited to get my greedy hands on the Pathfinder RPG.

First off, thanks for jumping onto the messageboards!

The Bestiary will be releasing in September. We originally had it releasing in July, so you weren't imagining things, but moved it to September for quality reasons, mostly having to do with making sure the core rules were finished before we edited the Bestiary.

As for the release date of the core rulebook, we will be shipping books out so that they are in stores by the 13th of August should all go right, though hiccups could happen that are outside of our control (like a shipment getting lost). We have been told that the book stores, of which Amazon is a part, will be releasing the book on the 19th of August because they always release on a Wednesday and that is the first Wednesday after the official August 13th release.

I hope this info helps!

-Lisa

I see now that it has been pushed back to October, now. As long as you're producing quality work, than that perfectly fine by me! :-) However with you saying September and the order icon saying October, I now wonder, "Which one is right?".


Kevida wrote:
I see now that it has been pushed back to October, now. As long as you're producing quality work, than that perfectly fine by me! :-) However with you saying September and the order icon saying October, I now wonder, "Which one is right?".

Good catch Kevida.

I'm with you on quality.. but it would be good to know when to expect it.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

I've increased the page count in the product description. This fabulous tome is so jam-packed we had to bump it up to 328 pages to make room for all the goodness.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Kevida wrote:
I see now that it has been pushed back to October, now. As long as you're producing quality work, than that perfectly fine by me! :-) However with you saying September and the order icon saying October, I now wonder, "Which one is right?".

We're just about to turn it over to the printer, and they'll give us a better date soon after we do, but my guess is that it'll be early October.

Liberty's Edge

Vic Wertz wrote:
Kevida wrote:
I see now that it has been pushed back to October, now. As long as you're producing quality work, than that perfectly fine by me! :-) However with you saying September and the order icon saying October, I now wonder, "Which one is right?".
We're just about to turn it over to the printer, and they'll give us a better date soon after we do, but my guess is that it'll be early October.

Well Paizo has yet to disappoint. Therefore I won't mind that wait. The only bummer is that I am going to be starting a Pathfinder game come September. Maybe I can convince my gang to hold off until October because I would rather have the Bestiary alnog with the Core Rulebook but I'll somehow manage! :-)

Paizo Employee Chief Creative Officer, Publisher

Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to the entire Paizo staff for helping out with this mammoth project, and to all of the great writers and artists who helped to make what I truly believe is the best monster book ever published for a fantasy RPG.

It is really, really amazing.

Grand Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Erik Mona wrote:
Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to you guys Erik.

And don't worry about that typo on page 287 ... it's no big deal. >:)

-Skeld


Erik Mona wrote:
Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Whoohoo! Congratulations!

So say we all!!!

Liberty's Edge

Erik Mona wrote:

Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to the entire Paizo staff for helping out with this mammoth project, and to all of the great writers and artists who helped to make what I truly believe is the best monster book ever published for a fantasy RPG.

It is really, really amazing.

Ooh-RAH!


Congratulations guys and gals - make sure you take a little breather before Gen Con - we don't want the big news to be "Entire Paizo Team faints with Exhaustion after record-breaking sale!"... Well.. maybe we do...


Erik Mona wrote:

Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to the entire Paizo staff for helping out with this mammoth project, and to all of the great writers and artists who helped to make what I truly believe is the best monster book ever published for a fantasy RPG.

I don't doubt it. It's very exciting to hear you say so!

Congratulations!

Paizo Employee Managing Developer

Awesome! I can't wait for this book to be out. It's such a great book to be a part of!

Silver Crusade

Congrats!

Now everyone else get back to willing this thing into being released faster using the power of your minds!

Will harder, dammit!


Congrats.

I look foward to the previews (and the book).


Sweet music to my ears. I can't wait to see the new critters set up to masticate many, many player characters. ~weg~

Liberty's Edge

Erik Mona wrote:

Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to the entire Paizo staff for helping out with this mammoth project, and to all of the great writers and artists who helped to make what I truly believe is the best monster book ever published for a fantasy RPG.

It is really, really amazing.

So, does this move the release date back to September? :::crosses fingers:::


Erik Mona wrote:
Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

Given the two month delay from GenCon to the October release of this book, does that mean that no adventures from Paizo will have anything but Core races/classes as enemies except when a full statblock is included until October? Or will PF25, 26 and Crypt of the Everflame reference page numbers in this book that we won't be able to go to until October?

Sovereign Court

yoda8myhead wrote:
Given the two month delay from GenCon to the October release of this book, does that mean that no adventures from Paizo will have anything but Core races/classes as enemies except when a full statblock is included until October? Or will PF25, 26 and Crypt of the Everflame reference page numbers in this book that we won't be able to go to until October?

Perhaps all of their beasties will be statted out in the books?

Paizo Employee Creative Director

yoda8myhead wrote:
Given the two month delay from GenCon to the October release of this book, does that mean that no adventures from Paizo will have anything but Core races/classes as enemies except when a full statblock is included until October? Or will PF25, 26 and Crypt of the Everflame reference page numbers in this book that we won't be able to go to until October?

What it probably means is that, for monsters appearing in the adventures that don't have their stats fully printed out, we'll preview those pages on paizo.com or something like that. We're not 100% sure how we'll work this out yet, but it WILL have some sort of similar solution.

Scarab Sages

James Jacobs wrote:
What it probably means is that, for monsters appearing in the adventures that don't have their stats fully printed out, we'll preview those pages on paizo.com or something like that. We're not 100% sure how we'll work this out yet, but it WILL have some sort of similar solution.

Don't forget about the PFS scenarios :)

Liberty's Edge

October!?!?!?!?!!

ARRRGGGGGG

And here I was thinking that I would have both the Core and Beasties book arriving together (combined shipping) in the mail at or around my birthday. (sniffle, sniffle).

Oh well, anticipation prolonged increases pleasure obtained I guess ;)

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

James Jacobs wrote:
yoda8myhead wrote:
Given the two month delay from GenCon to the October release of this book, does that mean that no adventures from Paizo will have anything but Core races/classes as enemies except when a full statblock is included until October? Or will PF25, 26 and Crypt of the Everflame reference page numbers in this book that we won't be able to go to until October?
What it probably means is that, for monsters appearing in the adventures that don't have their stats fully printed out, we'll preview those pages on paizo.com or something like that. We're not 100% sure how we'll work this out yet, but it WILL have some sort of similar solution.

I like that so much better than taking up valuable adventure space with statblocks for unaltered monsters we'll have statblocks for in a few months. And, they'll serve as previews for the upcoming book, if not spoilers for the adventures and such. I knew I could count on you, Paizo!

Silver Crusade

Erik Mona wrote:

Ladies and gentlemen, as of about an hour ago, the Pathfinder RPG Bestiary is AT THE PRINTER!!!

Congrats to the entire Paizo staff for helping out with this mammoth project, and to all of the great writers and artists who helped to make what I truly believe is the best monster book ever published for a fantasy RPG.

It is really, really amazing.

Can't wait to translate it! :-D

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