Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Bestiary 5 (OGL)

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Bestiary 5 (OGL)
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Beyond the veil!

Creatures strange beyond imagining and more terrifying than any nightmare lurk in the dark corners of the world and the weird realms beyond. Within this book, you'll find hundreds of monsters for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Face off against devils and dragons, deep ones and brain moles, robots and gremlins, and myriad other menaces! Yet not every creature needs to be an enemy, as whimsical liminal sprites, helpful moon dogs, and regal seilenoi all stand ready to aid you on your quests—if you prove yourself worthy.

Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 5 is the fifth indispensable volume of monsters for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and serves as a companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook and Pathfinder RPG Bestiary. 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 a new era.

Pathfinder RPG Bestiary 5 includes:

  • More than 300 different monsters.
  • New player-friendly races like caligni dark folk, deep one hybrids, plant-bodied ghorans, and simian orang-pendaks.
  • Psychic creatures both benevolent and terrifying, from the enigmatic anunnaki and faceless astomoi to the howling caller in darkness and insidious, alien grays.
  • New familiars, animal companions, and other allies, such as clockwork familiars, red pandas, and many-legged wollipeds.
  • New templates to help you get more life out of classic monsters.
  • Appendices to help you find the right monster, including lists by Challenge Rating, monster type, and habitat.
  • Expanded universal monster rules to simplify combat.
  • Challenges for every adventure and every level of play.
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-792-5

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

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My Favourite So Far

5/5

Don't have really anymore to add beyond that, love all the eldritch and occult flavor being pumped in ^w^


The weakest of the bunch

2/5

On the one hand, there are a good couple of gems and some very inspired entries throughout this book and, in truth, two stars is somewhat unfair, especially for the PDF. But, personally, I feel they're warranted, as this book seems to signal a shift in Pathfinder's direction, and one that I'm not happy about in the least.

First off, while Occult Adventures is readily available for consultation online in the SRD, I did not like to see a sizable number of monsters using rules from that book. It's one thing to have spells or feats from, say, Advanced Player's Guide or Mythic Adventures, as those are books that complement the game as a whole and present options for all classes, whereas Occult Adventures is a very specific niche that not all players will want to incorporate in their campaigns.

Secondly, I did not like the muddled product identity Paizo is showcasing here, with monsters such as the Android, Gray (Roswell), Reptoid (Reptilian) and Robot. Even the Annunaki seems more at home as the antagonist of, say, a Legion of Super-Heroes comic book. It's one thing to want to provide the tools for varied and diverse fantasy campaigns - in which constructs, space aberrations and even clockwork creatures can easily work without sticking out like sore thumbs - but quite another one to insert borderline hard-SF or contemporary conspiracy theorist creatures on a lark. Expedition to the Barrier Peaks this is not, and let's endeavor to keep it that way, please.

Thirdly, snake-bodied weasels with boar tusks? Serpentine bulls? Shark-headed sea serpents? Wolf-headed sea serpents? A chinchilla with a bat wing on the tip of its tail? An octopus with three shark heads? Really? Unless you have an absolutely amazing hook or a compelling campaign seed, why bother putting out this silly, uninspired dross? You can do much better than this, Paizo.


Monsters Galore

4/5

Read my full review on Of Dice and Pen.

I like Bestiary 5 a great deal. On an initial look-through before reading it more thoroughly, there were numerous monsters that drew my attention, that made me want to know more about them, and screamed to be included in one of my games sometime down the road. There's a wide variety of monsters present, with every type represented and the spread between them being fairly even. Ooze is a monster type that is often under-represented, but there are quite a few new oozes in this book. Along with that there are lots of magical beasts, constructs, undead, vermin, fey, and so on. In addition, there are several mythic monsters, and Bestiary 5 is the first hardcover book to contain monsters using the occult rules from Occult Adventures. The monsters cover a wide variety of challenge ratings as well, from 1/6 to 24. The bulk of the creatures are in the low- to mid-CR range, but there are also a sizeable number of high-CR monsters as well.


Grim Reapers, Deep Ones, and Greys Oh My!

5/5

I have always loved Bestiaries and Paizo has yet to disappoint in department. Now with a 5th hardcover bestiary they continue with quality and variety. I will list the good and the bad of this fine product.
The Good
-Dragons, 5 great new true dragons, along with a variety of "lesser" dragons such as jungle drake, rope dragon, vishap, and awesome shen.
-Fey, a variety of ranging from low to high CR such as the house spirits and the glaistag.
-Giants, we finally get the Firbolg, been waiting to see this one for a long time.
-New 0HD races like the Astomi, Caligni, and Reptoid.
-Aliens such as greys and the Anunnaki.
-Elementals such as aether, the wysps and the awesome anemos.
-Interesting oozes such as animate hair, apallie, and living mirage.
-New clestials and aeons.
-Robots!
-Creatures from mythology.
-Old school monster such as moon dogs, muckdwellers, brain moles, and thought eaters.
-Some interesting undead like bone ship and death coach.

The Bad
-Some minor design issues.
-Some art issues.
-The Sahkil, another evil outsider group, could have used this space for Oni, Azura, or Rakshasa.
-Continued use of the mythic rules that to me should be a completely optional rule.


3 STARS?????

5/5

I can't agree with the below rating of 3 stars. (Read Below) This is on-par with any other bestiary piazo has produced. Although i cant speak of quality due to just buying a pdf, this bestiary has the best range of monster selection in my opinion. It adds some technology driven ideas, unique story driven monsters and my favorite: A BoneShip, literally the pcs can fight an undead ship!!!! The complaint of no new monster over CR25 is a lazy lie, using templates the Esoteric Dragons can be over CR25 with other CR20+ monsters utilizing templates provided can increase above CR25. This book contains ideas for familiars, companions, and constructs for many classes and pairs amazingly well with content from the Occult Adventures. I Love this book, and pathfinder in general due to the wealth of information it has for both a PC and a DM. Cant wait for more!!!


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knightnday wrote:
There is probably a way to do a goodly amount of monsters and have a goodly amount of information. People just have to compromise. :)

And they came up with a compromise: they put lots of stat-blocks in the bestiaries and go into more detailed fluff in the APs and in the "Revisited" series.

But because it's a compromise, their product lines don't cater exclusively to you.


137ben wrote:
knightnday wrote:
There is probably a way to do a goodly amount of monsters and have a goodly amount of information. People just have to compromise. :)

And they came up with a compromise: they put lots of stat-blocks in the bestiaries and go into more detailed fluff in the APs and in the "Revisited" series.

But because it's a compromise, their product lines don't cater exclusively to you.

Nor do I ask them to! I purchase most every product that they put out, however, so it isn't a burden for me to find the information in an AP for those that happen to come from there; those people who purchase fewer products don't get that opportunity.

But that still doesn't cover the hundreds of creatures that do not come from APs, no? Anyway, as I said, it's a preference. I don't have a preference on adding dozens of whatever creatures of whatever specifics. I prefer less creatures and more substance behind them. I'm not sure why that is offensive other than it is the Internet.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Not saying you can't advocate more fluff, in fact I encourage you to post what you want, but just trying for a helpful suggestion here:

Fluff doesn't get killed by edition changes as much as statblocks do. Maybe a little bit, but I daresay 90% of fluff from previous editions is still perfectly usable. So there's actually quite a bit of monster fluff out there over the 40 years of history the game has. There's far more stuff out there than the 10 revisited books. Perhaps some of that might be of use.

This product has an index of a lot of fluff.


Mystic_Snowfang wrote:
Chuspikis.... they are FREAKING ADORABLE AND I WANT ONE!

And they're probably one of the most powerful familiars a spellcaster can get O_o

Bestiary 5's info on the chuspiki:
Basically, it's a mouse with [Aero]-Kineticist abilities that rely on its HD. No seriously, that's one of the few monsters whose abilities are clearly written that it's based on its HD. One of the rules about familiars is that the familiar has its own HD of its master... whichever is greater. Your 20th-level sorcerer with a chuspiki familiar essentially has a 20th-level Kineticist by his side. Ouch X_X

Wait until it coughs up an Air Blast that hits as hard as a fireball at this point...

Paizo Employee Designer

JiCi wrote:
Mystic_Snowfang wrote:
Chuspikis.... they are FREAKING ADORABLE AND I WANT ONE!

And they're probably one of the most powerful familiars a spellcaster can get O_o

** spoiler omitted **

References to HD in a monster are for actual racial HD (not class levels, inspire greatness, phantom HD from familiars, etc), so for instance a monster with HD-based special ability DCs that took class levels would not advance those DCs. The original turnover for chuspiki actually also specifically called out that the familiar thing doesn't work, but it became vaguer at some point during the process, likely due to thinking that the overall rule I mentioned above was clearer to everyone than it is.


Mark Seifter wrote:
JiCi wrote:
Mystic_Snowfang wrote:
Chuspikis.... they are FREAKING ADORABLE AND I WANT ONE!

And they're probably one of the most powerful familiars a spellcaster can get O_o

** spoiler omitted **

References to HD in a monster are for actual racial HD (not class levels, inspire greatness, phantom HD from familiars, etc), so for instance a monster with HD-based special ability DCs that took class levels would not advance those DCs. The original turnover for chuspiki actually also specifically called out that the familiar thing doesn't work, but it became vaguer at some point during the process, likely due to thinking that the overall rule I mentioned above was clearer to everyone than it is.

Oh, I see, thanks for clarifying ^_^


I like seeing monsters with kineticist powers, and other class abilities...especially when you can get them as familiars.


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Samy wrote:

Not saying you can't advocate more fluff, in fact I encourage you to post what you want, but just trying for a helpful suggestion here:

Fluff doesn't get killed by edition changes as much as statblocks do. Maybe a little bit, but I daresay 90% of fluff from previous editions is still perfectly usable. So there's actually quite a bit of monster fluff out there over the 40 years of history the game has. There's far more stuff out there than the 10 revisited books. Perhaps some of that might be of use.

This product has an index of a lot of fluff.

A very good point and a good link. It makes me sad that we don't have Dragon and The Ecology of X articles on a regular basis. I miss things like that.


It would be nice to have a list of every creature that got an ecology article in a dragon magazine. Just to see what made it in and what didn't.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

The product I linked contains, "And did we mention an index of every ecology ever printed?"


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Dragon78 wrote:
It would be nice to have a list of every creature that got an ecology article in a dragon magazine. Just to see what made it in and what didn't.

Here you go. Just scroll down a bit.


Wondering when we will get back to discussing content of this product rather than preferences...
Loved the Choral Angel and Muse creatures.The art? Oh no. The Muse outright stunk. The Choral Angel? The only part I liked of that art were the wings. HOWEVER: I loved the inclusion of the SoundStriker's WeirdWords in these creatures ranged attacks! Perhaps these creatures can teach SoundStrikers...love that as a background hook to this archetype.
The dragons are very intriguing. The fluff of the Occult Dragon was a little reminiscent of the Greyhawk Steel...
Love the Papinijuwari! and Pyrausta! That is just the tip of the iceburg--I love this book.
Basically, this is the first Bestiary I have purchased since 2. 3 & 4 did not quite earn a spot on my shelf... I have to be picky with what money I have as a teacher and father of 5 boys.


"New familiars, animal companions, and other allies, such as clockwork familiars...."

Me: Sweet new options/example for clockwork familiars. I could really make use of this.

Paizo: /Ctrl C /Ctrl V

Paizo: Enjoy your new content.

Me: /Not happy...

Community Manager

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Removed some posts and their responses. Accusing others of lacking imagination or being lazy is not acceptable behavior on our forums. Please reread the Community Guidelines.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I love some of the new plant creatures, paticularly such horrific creations like the griefgall. Try attacking a tiny target, that is also inside one of the party allies or members. And trying to remove it is a dc25 heal with the risk of permanent paralysis for the victim, or killing it while its still attached to the host.

Also i wonder, if the grim reaper killed the tarrasque with the instant death effect, would it still come back(as per the tarrasques rules rules) or would it remain dead as per final death?

Furthermore, i love the Heikegani by its concept. Its a Samurai Crab, that seeks death so its soul may find rest.


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Anyone else get a strong "First World" vibe from this Beastiary. A lot of Fey, Magical Creatures, and plants. I know there is a lot more to the book than this, but I just got this great, sylvan feel. BTW, I love this Beastiary.


Actually the last bestiary has more fey but yeah there are more nature themed magical beast.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I love the wood collosus being constructable. It's basically telling anybody with the relevent skill 'go forth and make a house capable of giving a kaiju a solid left hook'. It's definatly a climactic point in an adventure, as the mansion you were exploring suddenly spews the party out and slowly rises up into a collosal entity of wood, windows, and anger (probably because you killed the master of the house). By the time 'roll initiative' is called, the players know this is not going to be pleasent if the house steps on them, in any stretch of the imagination.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Actually the last bestiary has more fey but yeah there are more nature themed magical beast.

in addition to the esoteric entities, the massive quantity of unusual oozes, and a good variety of things to make combat challenges more interesting and challenging affairs.

Also the number of plants makes wood kineticists 'minor gardening powers' actually visibly useful in some situations.

Liberty's Edge

How is the power creep in this book?
Are the monsters on par with past Bestiaries or a little tougher?


I have noticed several more Mythic-tiered monsters than I recall from previous Bestiaries...don't know if that is an indicator of "power creep" or not. Not a fan of Mythic, myself.
There are plenty of creatures in the CR mid-teens and up, but there also seems to be many in the CR 4-12 range. Take it for what it may be worth...which may be nothing! :P''''


I am not a fan of mythic rules for monsters but it is an "optional" system that is here to stay.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I've finished reading this book now, and it's another great Bestiary. Paizo really is the best RPG company for monster books. That said, not everything appeals to me (nor should it, since the book is aimed at a wide audience), but the vast majority does, and there do seem to be some hiccups.


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Fourshadow wrote:

I have noticed several more Mythic-tiered monsters than I recall from previous Bestiaries...don't know if that is an indicator of "power creep" or not. Not a fan of Mythic, myself.

There are plenty of creatures in the CR mid-teens and up, but there also seems to be many in the CR 4-12 range. Take it for what it may be worth...which may be nothing! :P''''

Since this only the second Bestiary since the release of Mythic Adventures, this isn't surprising :-)

I like mythic personally, I haven't used it to the extent of others, but we haven't found anything too wonky with it.


Azazyll wrote:

Please give the new dragon type at least a page of background. There's so much stat block that usually the new dragons have zero personality, and I never end up using them. What makes these new dragons different besides a few combat tricks and alternate spell like abilities? The last batch in bestiary four was particularly frustrating: I loved the idea of Outer Dragons but all I got was more monsters with the dragon label. I would rather have had the same amount of space dedicated to background on these guys and just had a page or two reskinning old dragons to fit this great new idea.

I have every confidence Paizo can blow me away; your single-page guides to outsider types do this job brilliantly. I'd just would like dragons to get the same love, so they're worth more than a second glance.

I have that issue with alot of the monsters in this book. Some of them have no personality and it kills me.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Cauthon1987 wrote:
Azazyll wrote:

Please give the new dragon type at least a page of background. There's so much stat block that usually the new dragons have zero personality, and I never end up using them. What makes these new dragons different besides a few combat tricks and alternate spell like abilities? The last batch in bestiary four was particularly frustrating: I loved the idea of Outer Dragons but all I got was more monsters with the dragon label. I would rather have had the same amount of space dedicated to background on these guys and just had a page or two reskinning old dragons to fit this great new idea.

I have every confidence Paizo can blow me away; your single-page guides to outsider types do this job brilliantly. I'd just would like dragons to get the same love, so they're worth more than a second glance.

I have that issue with alot of the monsters in this book. Some of them have no personality and it kills me.

the problem you are giving is answered by the following. Do your party actually intend to converse with a killer plant or ooze. The book needed to squeeze a lot of things in and as the designers have stated, some material was cut out for space, while others lost entire abilities because the art took up room. Dragons are not all going to be alike, and they did at least give so details on how they act generally in this discussion. Outside of that, you are dealing with robots(which are more kill first, discuss later in programming) animals that are highly instinctive. If you are looking for personality, there is only so much you can find in a monster book. And besides, that's what improving and gm'ing are all about. Building up characters out of creatures and ideas.

Liberty's Edge

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ErisAcolyte-Chaos jester wrote:
If you are looking for personality, there is only so much you can find in a monster book.

That is so very very untrue.

Example from 1e Monster Manual

Example from 2e Monstrous Manual

Example from 3e Monster Manual

Monster books have often given more than 50% of page space to flavor text. It's revisionist history that "there is only so much you can find in a monster books". Monster books have historically provided a LOT of fluff.

Quote:
And besides, that's what improving and gm'ing are all about. Building up characters out of creatures and ideas.

Historically we have not been expected to do so. I think it is more than fair to criticize a monster book for not providing what monster books before have provided. Not everybody has the time or the skill to improvise fluff out of nothing.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

So Pathfinder Bestiaries have to do what Monster Manuals for a different game did? I don't understand why that should be.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

No book *has* to do anything. They can publish a book called Player's Handbook and put it full of food recipes if they want to.

Liberty's Edge

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Ed Reppert wrote:
So Pathfinder Bestiaries have to do what Monster Manuals for a different game did? I don't understand why that should be.

Yes and no.

They don't *have* to, but it's worth looking at what other similar books have done and consider why. There's often a very good reason something was repeated again and again over the editions when it would be easier not to.
If your competitor is doing something and it's resonating, then it's a very good idea to see if you can follow suit. Make what works for them work for you.

While it's true that your party is unlikely to converse with a killer plant or an ooze, that's a fringe example as they're unintelligent. A social being like a dragon, which should be so much more than a big bad of hit points and experience, should likely have some information on roleplaying, personality, goals, and their role in a campaign. Something to enable you to use the monster as more than a glorified random encounter.
Such as giving us a better idea of what separates a hostile dream dragon from a nightmare dragon.

We don't need monsters without flavour. At that point we can make do with a couple special abilities and the chart of monster statistics by CR in the appendix. Think about how many more "monsters" could be included if instead of a full statblock there was just a package of special abilities.

After all, the most iconic monster in Pathfinder is the goblin. And everything that makes the Pathfinder goblin special is not in its statblock, which is roughly identical to the bland 3.5 goblin's racial traits.
Flavour is incredibly important.


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Speaking as both a designer who worked on this book and a huge fan of monster books, I find the discussion about how much flavor text each monster gets to be very interesting. I like to think that the stat block can do a great deal of the heavy lifting when it comes to how a monster "lives", as it were. It should show if a monster uses stealth, or openly attacks; often what it feeds on (especially with blood drain or energy drain); how it moves around; what it's family units look like; etc. The text is there to give a bit of context to otherwise unclear sections. After all, every monster has a section for organization, treasure, and environment, as well as icons for some things. They're right there on the page.

There's also only so much to say about some monsters. Unless you are incredibly interested in fungal life cycles, swarms of ducks or whatever other obscure thing you may see, it's usually enough to note that some rare ancient curses result in ducks forming doom hordes. People can assume what the ducks eat and how the ducks mate. I'd rather have a cool special rule than a paragraph about the favorite foods of a given monster.

Paizo also has made a huge change to ensure the playability of monsters over past editions-all monsters are on a single page, or a two page spread. The gnoll entry above was on two pages, and the older entries had very limited art. One of Paizo's goals has also been to present a useful visual to be held up across the table. The only way to add words to a monster is probably to violate one of these rules, and i for one would hate to see that.

Lantern Lodge

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Adam Daigle wrote:
Eric Hinkle wrote:
Adam Daigle wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:

The Reptoids are based on the aliens from the show "V".

....
To be clear, the idea of reptilian humanoid creatures (from other planets or time periods) posing as humans is MUCH older than that 80s series.

I'm curious, just how old is it?

Myself, I thought the reptoids were based on the, well, highly unique views of David Icke.

As far as I know, Howard's usage is the oldest I'm aware of.

I also always think of Icke, even before thinking of "V."

Myths about reptilian humanoids are old, worldwide. Native American tribes carry several stories, especially out west near New Mexico/Arizona. As do African tribes (specifically the Dogon, among others), certain Aboriginal traditions, and of course, the reptilian nagas of India (I won't go into a long discussion on how PFRPG nagas are more like Conan/AD&D than they are like true naga mythology, but we love them anyway). Plus, how far of a stretch is it from reptilians to dragons, considering more than a few flying snake-beast-things that can often change shape are spoken about in different parts of the globe? I could go on.

Just looking over a few pages of this discussion, all I can say is: Nice work, Paizo. To the rest of you: Clearly, you just need to find a way to get this book. I am still laughing at whoever asked if there were UFOs in here. LOL, no. Maybe vimanas will be featured in a Vudra adventure (...if I don't get to it first).

And to those of you discussing those reptilian shapeshifters, you obviously need to put your tin caps back on - AND, do you need to be reminded once again of the first two rules of the Shapechanger Wars? Think Fight Club. There is no war. There are no shapechangers. You are mistaken. It was swamp gas. Leave it alone. Go back to work.


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For all the people that can't find info or don't have inspiration to create their own fluff, there are some tips:

These are in my opinion the creatures with few fluff on them:

Exscinder Archon - I think their abilities tell enough, create your own fluff around that. The little information given is probably enough for these repeative archon who spend their days doing the same.

Gate Archon - See Excinder Archon. Gate Archon, how much information do you need really?

Astomoi - Not much info on these mythological creatures on the internet as well, but i'm sure they end up in another race-book soon with more info. Astomi Wiki info

Raelis Azata - Buy Shattered Star 6 - The Dead Heart of Xin, tons of information on this Azata there.

Caller In Darkness - D&D monster, it is what it does, don't need much info, and D&D was also not really generous with info on this creature, so you can't blame pathfinder.

Sphinx Colossus - If you can't make your own fluff about this creature then you're hopeless lol.

Wood Colossus - Same as the Sphinx Colossus, these ideas are just the creature, you enter a freaking scary mansion and it comes alive, how much fluff do you need really?

Crone Queen - Buy Reign of Winter 6 - The Witch Queen's Revenge for tons of information.

Cursed King - I think their awesome abilities speak for itself. A creature that doesn't really need much fluff in my opinion.

Death Coach - This one could use some more fluff, Wikipedia has a lot of info on the Death Coach however so you could use that info to add to their fluff.

Seraptis Demon - My opinion is that demons have a role, they don't have too much fluff, this is just a suicide demon, and looking at her artwork should give people with enough fantasy enough fluff in their heads.

Devastator - Wrath of the Righteous - City of Locusts PAGE 90 IS YOUR FRIEND, lots of info on this tank.

Heresy Devil - Search for Heresy and create the fluff around that, devils don't need that much fluff in my opinion.

Warmonger Devil - Looking at that awesome artwork should give people enough inspiration to create a whole story around it.

Astral Dragon - Try asking the creator of these dragons to share more fluff, or wait for the Daily Bestiary.

Dream Dragon - Try asking the creator of these dragons to share more fluff, or wait for the Daily Bestiary.

Etheric Dragon - Try asking the creator of these dragons to share more fluff, or wait for the Daily Bestiary.

Nightmare Dragon - Try asking the creator of these dragons to share more fluff, or wait for the Daily Bestiary.

Occult Dragon - Try asking the creator of these dragons to share more fluff, or wait for the Daily Bestiary.

Aether Elemental - It's an elemental, how much fluff do you need?

Crystal Golem - Golems don't need fluff, you use them as mindless created tanks anyway, their material can be found on internet, crystal is just for crystal mine adventures, or crysmals could use them as guardians.

Lead Golem - Just search lead on wiki or ask people that know something about it, then create the fluff around it.

Lotus Tree - Check this page on the lotus-eaters, I think you find lots of inspiration there.

Manasaputra Rishi Manu - Don't care really, but ask its creator for more information, I think you might get some more fluff about them if you ask nicely.

Muckdweller - It is made by D&D to have less fluff, just as minion for lizardmen, how much more fluff do you need for this creature?

Muse - You're welcome! The muse is someone you can use if you can't make fluff of your own though lol.

Ophiotaurus - You're welcome!

Riftcreeper - That picture + Abilities + Fluff is enough reasons to use it, if you like it you like it, if you don't then you don't.

Terraformer Robot - It's name is enough fluff, there can be so much stories with terraformers, don't need more fluff.

Sahkil Qolok - This is a rare case of, I need more info on it, maybe asking Wesley or Adam for more fluff would do?

Sangoi - Check out the AP Reign of Winter 3 - Maiden, Mother, Crone PAGE 88, there is more fluff you can handle about this tiny evil creature there.

Saxra - It's abilities make this creature interesting, there isn't much information about the Saxra (from South American mythology) on the interenet as well, so let your own fantasy run free here! Read in their abilities and use them in high-level Mountain adventures, they go well together with Baykok and Gaki me thinks.

Urannag - It's a demonic trap, not much fluff needed, just looking at that awesome picture does enough for me, the fluff forms around it.

Yangethe - Don't care, you can maybe ask the creator of the creature if you can find him? Looks like something James Jacobs created as it looks very Lovecraftish. I think James Jacob can give more fluff in the Ask James Jacob Question topic.

You can also wait for The Daily Bestiary to create some awesome ideas on the creatures you want more info about, you can speed up their appearance by asking really kindly to the founder of this awesome project!

For Dinosaurs and Animals, just check google for information on them too, and D&D never had much information on those creatures as well, as it makes sense.

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

To fill in a couple of holes in Nightterror's gathering of sources:

The heresy devil, warmonger devil, and apostate devil are all from Book of the Damned I: Princes of Darkness, while the suicide demon is from Book of the Damned II: Lords of Chaos.

The riftcreeper and urannag are from The Worldwound.

The yangethe is from Pathfinder Module: The Dragon's Demand.


I knew they were from those products (spare for the Yangethe) but do they have more fluff on them in those products? Thought they were one-page creatures in those products as well?

Sovereign Court

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

The Book of the Damned creatures get two pages each - about the equivalent of an Adventure Path bestiary entry.

The riftcreeper, urannag, and yangethe only get one page in their original sources, and there's not much in those sources that one couldn't get from Bestiary 5.

(The only info of note is that the yangethe are developed by the Dominion of the Black, one of the two "factions" of the Dark Tapestry. This means that they wouldn't be seen alongside Mythos creatures.)


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I might suggest then that the appropriate module/AP is mentioned on the monster's entry if they are from there. That way those people who haven't purchased the item might if they want more about the creature.

@Eric "Boxhead" Hindley: This may stand true for a number of monsters. That said, it is simply a preference and a desire, not one that I expect much follow up on. I'm an odd one, I suppose, that I'd like more information rather than a mass of stats and one line.

Jester David wrote:

We don't need monsters without flavour. At that point we can make do with a couple special abilities and the chart of monster statistics by CR in the appendix. Think about how many more "monsters" could be included if instead of a full statblock there was just a package of special abilities.

After all, the most iconic monster in Pathfinder is the goblin. And everything that makes the Pathfinder goblin special is not in its statblock, which is roughly identical to the bland 3.5 goblin's racial traits.
Flavour is incredibly important.

This cannot be stressed enough. If you tell me that we don't need any information about the creature or to just go look it up on wiki, I question why I/we needed it in the first place? To fill a page count? To say that we created the great Wyey'ne'naqueuwuteuwerrt that someone saw somewhere?

I'm all for creative takes on monsters and filling in those holes. But if we're just filling page count and not attempting to fill in possible worlds with anything more than the base stats, then I am far less interested in the final product.


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on a completely random note, I just finished going through the bestiary. Props to the people behind the Zygomind. Such a cool and awesome fungus creature that seems to take a page from so many science fiction stories.


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P.S. I do agree that it would be nice to have some tiny bit of text somewhere, or a table in the back, listing where reprinted monsters originally showed up in.


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Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

Where is The Chicken Heart That Ate Philadelphia?

"It's coming down your street..."

:-)


I would also love the information about were reprinted monsters originally showed up.


Quote:
This cannot be stressed enough. If you tell me that we don't need any information about the creature or to just go look it up on wiki, I question why I/we needed it in the first place? To fill a page count? To say that we created the great Wyey'ne'naqueuwuteuwerrt that someone saw somewhere?

This holds SO much error.

MOST of the mythological creatures spare for the obvious Muse, Astomoi, Saxra and Death Coach have ENOUGH fluff, if you don't think THAT much text is enough fluff, then you need 10 pages of fluff? You want Bestiaries with only 10 creatures in it? I see!
Most of those names spare for the Muse don't have much information on them on other sources too for your information.

Colossus, Demons, Devils, AP Monsters, Dragons, Golems, Animals, Dinosaurs and most other obvious creatures lack Fluff, NOT most mythological creatures, and if that is a sneer to the Mngwa, Scitalis and Papinijuwari, than that is low, because they have enough fluff, they are so much more cooler than the same old Minotaurs and Medusa's we've seen over and over again and they don't have such impossible names as you describe, mostly Lovecraft monsters have more difficult names.

+ They are fresh monsters, finally someone that also gives the lesser known (and mostly much more interesting) myth monsters a face and a soul.

I hope Paizo puts in even more myth monsters with such names in Bestiary 6, just for you.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

On the 'stats vs fluff vs art' debate... it might make sense to reverse the current distribution somewhat. Rather than always introducing new creatures with lots of fluff in the APs and then publishing a stripped down description of them in the Bestiaries they could sometimes use the APs to publish additional fluff, art, and variants for monsters already released in the Bestiaries.

Sure, getting new critters in the APs is fun, but there is plenty of past precedent (e.g. Dragon ecologies, Paizo revisited books, etc) showing that further fleshing out existing monsters is beneficial too. Maybe they could have the APs include stats only for new monsters actually used in that adventure and fill the extra space with ecology/revisited type info for pre-existing monsters used. Would have the benefit of making the entire AP bestiary directly relevant to the volume it appeared in.


Quote:
I question why I/we needed it in the first place? To fill a page count? To say that we created the great Wyey'ne'naqueuwuteuwerrt that someone saw somewhere?

No.

Most people that use the creature in their adventures/games KNOW their mythological backstory and use it in a similar environment and story in their game, you don't have to use every monster in your game.

And if the artwork really interest you, you will search google, its the google age, everyone is linked to free information that is one click away.

Some monsters are created for their different abilities NO other monster holds, much like golems, that are all the same mindless constructs but only have different materials and different creators, their abilities mostly come with the materials they are created from, not much fluff needed here their material and powers talk for them and create their story.

Your point in this bestiary only holds true for the AP Bestiary monsters, the dragons and the Archons, and maybe some rare cases like the Qolog.

ALl others fluffless creatures are obvious creatures that don't need much fluff to work, or have special powers that set them apart, more than any fluff could do.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Nightterror, i have some relevent information on who or what the Sahkil are. So what a sahkil is a psychopomp that knowing that their cycle is going to end, decides to rebel against the goddess of death, Pharasma, abandoning their duties and take up residence in the darkest corners of the ethereal plane. there they twist themselves into horrifying forms to rule over the souls through fear. Sahkil often take on the forms linked to primal fears (the Qolok being the fear of never having enough, of want), and reach into the material planes to torment and influence the very nature of humanity into dark places(qolok's for example urge overindulgence and gluttony among mortals), turning good men into monsters. of course they don't want the souls they have been toying with to ever getting back to the cycle so they take great delight in tearing apart wayward souls or twisting them into vile undead.

So what is the sahkil Qolok's? former psychopomps that have become the twisted puppet masters of gluttony, overindulgence, and want, tormenting souls to increase their power. Their influence could bring about cannibalism, hedonism, and overindulgence. They are a threat as well to the passage of souls, turning them into undead or mercilessly shredding their souls apart. The biggest detail of why sahkil Qoloks do such things as inspiring fear in mortals is actually to look at their abilities, specifically their look of fear-'A creature affected by a qolok’s gaze is panicked for 1d6 rounds and shaken for 1 minute thereafter, or shaken for 1 minute on a successful save. A qolok gains a number of temporary hit points equal to the number of rounds the target is panicked, which stack with each other to a maximum equal to double the qolok’s number of HD.'
They literally Feed on fear for strength, and can swallow victims whole to impose and trigger phobias in them, seeding the source of more fear to feed on.

Paizo Employee Designer

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Hey guys,

I'd like us all to step back a bit in the discussion of flavor text and look at it analytically, and to do that, I'll provide our perspective: We love having that flavor text at the end, and monsters are intended to have it, but it's also the place where we can cut and retain playability when the monster takes up more space than we expected.

So pretend that you're a designer intern for a day, and we have you helping us out in copyfitting on a bestiary. The text is our purview, not the art, so assume that the art isn't going to change. You're in Adobe InCopy, and the program is telling you that your current monster is 36 lines over (each column in about 100 lines). How did it get there? Well, we have wordcount estimates for each page, but those are only estimates, and we can't really predict the effect of the art in advance. If it's something stabbing or with really big wings, that can cause a pretty big effect on the text. In any case, that's where you stand. You're looking at the monster, and you notice that each of its major special abilities is an important part of the creature or of the way it fights. Perhaps it has a few spell-like abilities you can cut, though this won't always save you lines. You trim the wording on special abilities and find other ways to make them shorter (for instance, in the muse, referencing the nymph's muse inspiration ability instead of reprinting that part). Eventually, you hit that point: There's literally nothing else to be done but actually cutting a special ability of the creature that will significantly affect the creature or its theme, or cutting some of the descriptive text. Where do you cut? To use the muse as an example again, since she was one of the ones that was really over, and I wrote her as a freelancer and was thus given the copyfitting since the PDT figured that the original author could best figure out how to keep her heart and soul while cutting lots of lines: I managed someone to cut a surprising number of lines while only losing one flavorful ability (subjective form, which I posted above in this thread) and cutting down her descriptive text a bit (though the special abilities plus the remaining line still have enough descriptive text to explain how she works).

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

While insightful, layout woes do not change the fact that some people would prefer a monster book with a better fluff versus crunch ratio. Explaining the layout and space problems doesn't change peoples' preferences.


Then maybe Samy, you should try being a layout editor for the next Hardcover...


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Nightterror wrote:
Quote:
This cannot be stressed enough. If you tell me that we don't need any information about the creature or to just go look it up on wiki, I question why I/we needed it in the first place? To fill a page count? To say that we created the great Wyey'ne'naqueuwuteuwerrt that someone saw somewhere?

This holds SO much error.

MOST of the mythological creatures spare for the obvious Muse, Astomoi, Saxra and Death Coach have ENOUGH fluff, if you don't think THAT much text is enough fluff, then you need 10 pages of fluff? You want Bestiaries with only 10 creatures in it? I see!
Most of those names spare for the Muse don't have much information on them on other sources too for your information.

Colossus, Demons, Devils, AP Monsters, Dragons, Golems, Animals, Dinosaurs and most other obvious creatures lack Fluff, NOT most mythological creatures, and if that is a sneer to the Mngwa, Scitalis and Papinijuwari, than that is low, because they have enough fluff, they are so much more cooler than the same old Minotaurs and Medusa's we've seen over and over again and they don't have such impossible names as you describe, mostly Lovecraft monsters have more difficult names.

+ They are fresh monsters, finally someone that also gives the lesser known (and mostly much more interesting) myth monsters a face and a soul.

I hope Paizo puts in even more myth monsters with such names in Bestiary 6, just for you.

Again, you are trying to be provocative because I disagree with you.

I do not recall myself, or anyone else, asking for a book with 10 pages of fluff per creature nor a book with only 10 creatures .. although if they were done well that could be nice.

Secondly, you should include the words "to me" when you mention how much cooler something is. Not everyone agrees. I do not personally find them fresh, or interesting, or necessary. That said, I do not begrudge nor did I ask to have them removed.

Nightterror wrote:

No.

Most people that use the creature in their adventures/games KNOW their mythological backstory and use it in a similar environment and story in their game, you don't have to use every monster in your game.

And if the artwork really interest you, you will search google, its the google age, everyone is linked to free information that is one click away.

Some monsters are created for their different abilities NO other monster holds, much like golems, that are all the same mindless constructs but only have different materials and different creators, their abilities mostly come with the materials they are created from, not much fluff needed here their material and powers talk for them and create their story.

Your point in this bestiary only holds true for the AP Bestiary monsters, the dragons and the Archons, and maybe some rare cases like the Qolog.

ALl others fluffless creatures are obvious creatures that don't need much fluff to work, or have special powers that set them apart, more than any fluff could do.

This may come as a shock to you, as you spend a great deal of time getting hot and bothered over mythological creatures, but I'd daresay that not everyone else does nor do they know the backstories other than what they heard third hand or saw in a tv show or movie.

Nor does this address what I've brought up before: are they different interpretations being presented or just what is already on Earth?

We differ in opinion. You want quantity. I want quality. Neither is right or wrong, they are two sides of the coin.


Mark Seifter wrote:

Hey guys,

I'd like us all to step back a bit in the discussion of flavor text and look at it analytically, and to do that, I'll provide our perspective: We love having that flavor text at the end, and monsters are intended to have it, but it's also the place where we can cut and retain playability when the monster takes up more space than we expected.

So pretend that you're a designer intern for a day, and we have you helping us out in copyfitting on a bestiary. The text is our purview, not the art, so assume that the art isn't going to change. You're in Adobe InCopy, and the program is telling you that your current monster is 36 lines over (each column in about 100 lines). How did it get there? Well, we have wordcount estimates for each page, but those are only estimates, and we can't really predict the effect of the art in advance. If it's something stabbing or with really big wings, that can cause a pretty big effect on the text. In any case, that's where you stand. You're looking at the monster, and you notice that each of its major special abilities is an important part of the creature or of the way it fights. Perhaps it has a few spell-like abilities you can cut, though this won't always save you lines. You trim the wording on special abilities and find other ways to make them shorter (for instance, in the muse, referencing the nymph's muse inspiration ability instead of reprinting that part). Eventually, you hit that point: There's literally nothing else to be done but actually cutting a special ability of the creature that will significantly affect the creature or its theme, or cutting some of the descriptive text. Where do you cut? To use the muse as an example again, since she was one of the ones that was really over, and I wrote her as a freelancer and was thus given the copyfitting since the PDT figured that the original author could best figure out how to keep her heart and soul while cutting lots of lines: I managed someone to cut a surprising number of lines while only losing one flavorful ability (subjective form, which I posted above in this thread) and cutting down her descriptive text a bit (though the special abilities plus the remaining line still have enough descriptive text to explain how she works).

Mark,

What about introducing the lost/cut material on the web site as a Director's Cut to the books, not unlike what was done with Dragon and Dungeon magazine articles? It seems you folks already have the material -- since you have to cut it out -- so putting it into a small PDF and tossed on the site could satisfy those looking for a ton of monsters per book and those looking for more information per book.

Thanks!
Robert

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