Are my polymorph forms legal?


Rules Questions


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I've made a 9th-level mystic with polymorph as a 3rd-level spell. As such, I gain 12 polymorph forms. Since the polymorph rules are a lot to take in, I was hoping to get some help checking my chosen forms for legality/rules accuracy. If you find something amiss, please explain why you think it is illegal.

I figured this could also be a place for other people to share their polymorph forms for "show and tell" and/or for review.

Some Things to Note:

The base number of abilities you can choose are determined by what level of polymorph spell you are casting. If you choose a specific form, rather than a unique one, you get to choose one more ability. Chosen forms also have CR limitations, as shown below:

No | CR | Spell
----------------------------
01 | 01 | polymorph I
02 | 03 | polymorph II
02 | 06 | polymorph III
02 | 09 | polymorph IV
03 | 12 | polymorph V
03 | 15 | polymorph VI

You can add one movement mode (or increased land speed) for free, whereas additional movement modes use up an ability slot.

Adding a natural attack or gaining additional abilities from a creature type (as specifically outlined in the polymorph rules) do not count against your special ability limit.

APOCALYPSE WORM (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH III
Medium vermin
Senses blindsense (vibration) 30 ft.
------------------------------
DEFENSE
------------------------------

+4 enhancement bonus to saving throws against mind-affecting effects
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed burrow 20 ft.
Melee bite
Offensive Abilities break objects (khefak, AA2 78)

GREAT HORNED OWL (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH III
Small animal
Senses blindsense (sound) 15 ft., low-light vision
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed fly 20 ft. (Ex, clumsy)
Melee claws

OROCORAN (AA 90) - POLYMORPH III
Medium aberration
------------------------------
DEFENSE
------------------------------

Defensive Abilities unflankable
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Melee proboscis
Offensive Abilities hallucinate, projectile vomit

XAARB (AP #8 61) - POLYMORPH III
Medium magical beast
Senses blindsense (scent)
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed climb 20 ft.
Melee bite
Offensive Abilities oversized maw, swallow whole

FIRE GIANT ASPECT (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH II
Medium humanoid
------------------------------
DEFENSE
------------------------------

Resistances fire 5
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed 40 ft.
Melee slam
Offensive Abilities trample

GREAT CAT (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH II
Medium animal
Senses low-light vision
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed 40 ft.
Melee claws
Offensive Abilities pounce

HOUND (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH II
Medium animal
Senses low-light vision, tracking (scent)
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed 40 ft.
Melee bite

OWLBEAR, JUVENILE (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH II
Medium magical beast
Senses low-light vision
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed 40 ft.
Melee claws
Offensive Abilities grab

CANINE FORM (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH I
Medium humanoid
Senses tracking (scent)
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Melee bite

PISCINE FORM (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH I
Medium humanoid
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed swim 20 ft.
Melee slam
------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
------------------------------

water breathing

SERPENTINE FORM (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH I
Medium humanoid
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Speed swim 20 ft.
Melee bite
Offensive Abilities poison (constitution track)

SIX-ARMED HUMANOID FORM (UNIQUE) - POLYMORPH I
Medium humanoid
------------------------------
OFFENSE
------------------------------

Melee slam
------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
------------------------------

multi-armed


Hard to say Raving. The PDF is available this Wednesday so I will get it and take a look.


friendly reminder that the 1st level spell doesn't allow you to copy any PC racial traits specifically. So your Six-armed form doesn't work i don't think.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

You know, the excitement over getting the book early goes away really fast once the realization that there is no one to talk to about it starts to set in. :(

Hazrond wrote:
friendly reminder that the 1st level spell doesn't allow you to copy any PC racial traits specifically. So your Six-armed form doesn't work i don't think.

Thanks! I hadn't forgotten it though. Multi-armed was taken from the glossary on Universal Monster Rules, not from any specific race's racial traits. Most racial traits say "four-armed" or "six-armed" not "multi-armed."

It's also worth noting that many abilities are both racial traits and generic abilities. Take low-light vision for example.


Ravingdork wrote:

You know, the excitement over getting the book early goes away really fast once the realization that there is no one to talk to about it starts to set in. :(

Hazrond wrote:
friendly reminder that the 1st level spell doesn't allow you to copy any PC racial traits specifically. So your Six-armed form doesn't work i don't think.
Thanks! I hadn't forgotten it though. Multi-armed was taken from the glossary on Universal Monster Rules, not from any specific race's racial traits. Most racial traits say "four-armed" or "six-armed" not "multi-armed."

Technically, anything with more than one arm is "multi-armed". Don't worry Raving.. Wednesday will be here soon!! Can't wait.


So tell me if this is correct for a form, and if not, why it is wrong

-------------------------------------------
Assembly Ooze-Morph Form (Based off Assembly Ooze, Spell Level 1)

Medium Humanoid
-------------------------------------------
Movement: Swim 20 ft.
-------------------------------------------
Special Abilities
-------------------------------------------
Ability 1: Assemble (Ex)
Ability 2: Disassemble (Ex)

As far as i can see it's legal i think?


Hazrond wrote:

So tell me if this is correct for a form, and if not, why it is wrong

-------------------------------------------
Assembly Ooze-Morph Form (Based off Assembly Ooze, Spell Level 1)

Medium Humanoid
-------------------------------------------
Movement: Swim 20 ft.
-------------------------------------------
Special Abilities
-------------------------------------------
Ability 1: Assemble (Ex)
Ability 2: Disassemble (Ex)

As far as i can see it's legal i think?

It's not clear to me that you can take GM approved "other abilities" unless you're adopting (and able to adopt) the subtype of that specific creature you're imitating. If that's the case, you can't do this because none of the spells allow you to be an ooze.

The Exchange

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Hazrond wrote:

So tell me if this is correct for a form, and if not, why it is wrong

-------------------------------------------
Assembly Ooze-Morph Form (Based off Assembly Ooze, Spell Level 1)

Medium Humanoid
-------------------------------------------
Movement: Swim 20 ft.
-------------------------------------------
Special Abilities
-------------------------------------------
Ability 1: Assemble (Ex)
Ability 2: Disassemble (Ex)

As far as i can see it's legal i think?

I'm pretty sure the restriction on humanoid or animal isn't a restriction on the final form has to being humanoid but that the form you are taking on if you're using an existing form has to be a humanoid or animal, so you can't use level 1 polymorph to transform into an assembly ooze. Obviously any special abilities you want to mimic are subject to GM discretion if you're not mimicing a specific thing.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

The book has this to say on Other Abilities:

Alien Archive 2, p143 wrote:
If you’re designing a polymorph form based on a specific creature, the GM may allow you to select one of that creature’s special abilities or traits so long as the creature has a CR no higher than the spell’s maximum CR.

Whether that means "You must be the creature whose abilities you're poaching" or if it means "your designed form can be somewhat based on this creature, so you can poach its abilities" is anybody's guess.

I for one would not be the least bit comfortable allowing a player to poach abilities from an illegal creature type. EDIT: I just realized that two of the polymorph examples, blue dragon and dragonkin, are both illegal types (dragon). That makes it clear to me that you're allowed to poach from illegal types.

Just because you look like a large dragon, doesn't mean you took the dragon type.

Does make me wonder if they get the +10 disguise bonus to look like one or not though.

You'd think if it's a made up form you wouldn't get the +10 bonus.

Otherwise, I could take the construct type, a host of disparate abilities, tell the GM that my mutant form looks entirely like a mundane dog, and get a +10 bonus to disguise checks to prance around town looking like a dog?

That doesn't sit well with me.


Ravingdork wrote:


I for one would not be the least bit comfortable allowing a player to poach abilities from an illegal creature type. EDIT: I just realized that two of the polymorph examples, blue dragon and dragonkin, are both illegal types (dragon). That makes it clear to me that you're allowed to poach from illegal types.

No, neither of these require poaching from actual creature abilities, they were built from generic polymorph options and grouped together to call them a Dragonkin and a Blue Dragon. You could call them a humanoid Snipe and they'd function and be legal just as they are.

Except the "Blue Dragon" form is illegal because they took two defensive abilities (you can only take one without picking up something similar via a direct monster ability or a racial ability), but many of the examples are illegal, I don't think they were built with the final rules.

The "Dragonkin" looks legal, it's a batch of generic polymorph abilities that add up to resemble a Dragonkin without requiring any direct borrowing from that creature.

Note that none of the examples specify a subtype they're imitating, so the only way to figure out if they thought they were doing that is to see if they are legal, but only if they get an extra ability because they limit themselves to abilities available to that specific monster.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Half the aspects of the polymorph rules claim you can only take "something" once. Half the aspects of polymorph contradict that though elsewhere in the same text.

I think when it says "one" more often then not, it means "uses up one ability slot."

Take racial traits for example:

Page 143
When selecting a racial trait for a polymorph form, you can select any one player character racial trait...

Pages 145-146
Polymorph I: You cannot grant racial traits.
Polymorph II: The form can grant only one racial trait...
Polymorph III: The form can grant up to two racial traits...
Polymorph IV: The form can grant up to two racial traits...
Polymorph V: The form can grant up to three racial traits...
Polymorph VI: The form can grant up to four racial traits...


That seems reasonable for their intent, I'm not sure it's what they wrote. But I'm not sure it's not, either.


Ravingdork wrote:

Otherwise, I could take the construct type, a host of disparate abilities, tell the GM that my mutant form looks entirely like a mundane dog, and get a +10 bonus to disguise checks to prance around town looking like a dog?

That doesn't sit well with me.

I mean, those Institute Synths don't sit well with anybody really. :P


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Reading over the polymorph rules carefully, I think you can take almost everything more than once (using up ability slots) except for defenses. :P

--- Parsing/Phrasing ---

Defensive Abilities: You can select only one of the defensive options listed for the level at which you cast the spell, and it counts toward the maximum number of special abilities the form can grant.

Wording here is pretty strict. What's more, it seems to be supported by the spell descriptions. In this case, I think "only one" means "only one."

Movement: Your polymorph form can grant one form of movement without it counting against its maximum number of special abilities, but any additional forms of movement must be selected as special abilities.

Clear as day that you can get more than one movement mod if you want.

Racial Traits: as stated in my post above.

The initial text is ambiguous, but the spell descriptions make the intent clear.

Senses: Each of the sense options a given polymorph spell can grant the target counts as a single special ability that counts toward the maximum number of special abilities a polymorph form can grant.

The description is clear: you can get more than one sense if you wish.

Other Abilities: ...the GM may allow you to select one of that creature’s special abilities or traits so long as the creature has a CR no higher than the spell’s maximum CR...

I don't believe this is a hard limit, so much as poor wording much like the racial trait entry. I suspect it really means "select one per ability slot you're willing to use up."

Hazrond wrote:
Ravingdork wrote:

Otherwise, I could take the construct type, a host of disparate abilities, tell the GM that my mutant form looks entirely like a mundane dog, and get a +10 bonus to disguise checks to prance around town looking like a dog?

That doesn't sit well with me.

I mean, those Institute Synths don't sit well with anybody really. :P

*Snicker/Snort*

To GM: I may have the construct type, and all the benefits that that entails, but I look like nothing more than an ordinary, mundane sparrow. (A firebreathing sparrow.)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

You could probably cast polymorph IV on the party's melee soldier or solarian to give them a "charging form" with the following traits:

40 ft. movement speed (free movement trait) Your base movement speed is 40 feet (which, since it replaces your normal base speed, likely stacks with any other speed boosting abilities you might possess). Casting it as a 6th-level spell grants 60-foot base speed.

Ferocious Charge (uplifted bear) When you charge, you can attempt a trip combat maneuver in place of a normal melee attack. In addition, you can charge without taking the normal charge penalties to your attack roll or AC. If you have another ability that allows you to charge without taking these penalties (such as the charge attack ability from the soldier’s blitz fighting style), you also gain the ability to charge through difficult terrain.

Momentum (ferren) You deal an additional amount of damage equal to your character level with your first melee attack after you move at least 10 feet in the same round.

Pounce (dromaeosaurid) When you charge, you can also make a full attack.

Makes for a pretty good buff spell!


That is a rather horrible combo for an enemy, and one mean combo if the player plays it right


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
AmbassadoroftheDominion wrote:
That is a rather horrible combo for an enemy, and one mean combo if the player plays it right

Be sure to check with your GM before employing it, mind. It's a bit murky on whether or not that is a legal combo or not.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Trying to build a new set for my damaya lashunta wild warden mystic 5/soldier 2 of the Green Faith.

Do they look legit to you guys? Are there better combos befitting a militant xenodruid?

POLYMORPH II

AVIAN FORM (UNIQUE, GENERIC FORM)
Small animal
Senses low-light vision
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Speed
20 ft., fly 30 ft. (average)
Melee bite +6 (1d6+7 P)
-------------------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
-------------------------------------------

Strix mobility

FELINE FORM (UNIQUE, GENERIC FORM)
Medium animal
Senses low-light vision
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Speed
40 ft.
Melee claws +6 (1d6+7 S)
Offensive Abilities pounce

PISCINE FORM (UNIQUE, GENERIC FORM)
Medium animal
Senses blindsight (sound) 60 ft., low-light vision
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------

Speed swim 30 ft.
Melee slam +6 (1d6+7 B)
-------------------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
-------------------------------------------

Kalo vision, water breathing

SERPENTINE FORM (UNIQUE, GENERIC FORM)
Small animal
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Speed
climb 20 ft., swim 30 ft.
Melee bite +6 (1d6+7 P)
-------------------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
-------------------------------------------

Compression

POLYMORPH I

AQUATIC ASPECT (UNIQUE, SPECIFIC FORM)
Medium humanoid
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Speed
swim 20 ft.
Melee slam +3 (1d4+2 B)
-------------------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
-------------------------------------------

water breathing

GNOME FORM (CRB 508, GENERIC FORM)
Small humanoid
Senses low-light vision

KALI FORM / WRATH ASPECT (UNIQUE, SPECIFIC FORM)
Medium humanoid
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Melee
slam +3 (1d4+2 B)
-------------------------------------------
SPECIAL ABILITIES
-------------------------------------------

multi-armed (4 arms)

PREDATOR ASPECT (UNIQUE, SPECIFIC FORM)
Medium humanoid
Senses tracking (scent)
-------------------------------------------
OFFENSE
-------------------------------------------
Speed
30 ft.
Melee bite +3 (1d4+2 P)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I guess everyone's having a lovely weekend. I'll be right here. Waiting.

XD


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Ah man. I just realized pounce isn't really a thing in Starfinder. It's not on the polymorph approved ability list (like I initially thought) and even doesn't appear in the Universal Monster Abilities rules!

It does exist on two monster entries, but they differ in their function and wording.

Guess I can't even turn into a cat without GM's permission. The more I work at determining cool druid forms, the more I realize just how limited polymorph is and the more frustrated I get.


The mediocre attack and damage bonus seem enough of a problem even if pounce did exist.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I'm just going to take momentum instead. It adds more damage, is thematically appropriate (it can still be described as a pounce), and doesn't reduce my hit chances with charge and full attack penalties.


Ravingdork wrote:
I'm just going to take momentum instead. It adds more damage, is thematically appropriate (it can still be described as a pounce), and doesn't reduce my hit chances with charge and full attack penalties.

One thing I can't decide for momentum is whether your get your full level to damage or you're capped by the CR of spell. I think the former is probably the intent, but I fear the latter might be the most likely interpretation of the RAW.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Why would you think it could be capped? I'm not seeing any language that (to me at least) even hints at that.

Is there something I missed that says you don't get ALL of the racial trait selected?


I think the CR spell cap may carry over to all level based abilities, including things like racial traits momentum and natural weapons. You get the racial traits of a Vesk/Ferran only up to the level permitted by your spell level.

Otherwise I don’t really know what the CR cap is for.


Xenocrat wrote:

I think the CR spell cap may carry over to all level based abilities, including things like racial traits momentum and natural weapons. You get the racial traits of a Vesk/Ferran only up to the level permitted by your spell level.

Otherwise I don’t really know what the CR cap is for.

Creatures you can design a form off of and the math for abilities already defined by CR?


Isn’t a race whose trait you borrowed a creature you designed a form off of? I think there’s a strong argument that CR caps count for racial traits that have level variables. In addition to those already mentioned, caster level on SLAs. You don’t get the natural weapons of a Vesk of your level, you get the natural weapons of a Vesk of the level/CR your Polymorph spell level can support.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Seems a bit too complex to be true to me, especially since a playable race can have a CR anywhere between less than 1 and 20.

I agree with Nerdy Canuck, that it's just the CR of the base form your permitted to emulate.

Thanks for the explanation, Xenocrat.


Ravingdork wrote:

Seems a bit too complex to be true to me, especially since a playable race can have a CR anywhere between less than 1 and 20.

I agree with Nerdy Canuck, that it's just the CR of the base form your permitted to emulate.

Thanks for the explanation, Xenocrat.

I don't even know that I'm making an argument so much speculating wildly, but it does "feel" right.

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