How smart are beasts, and why aren’t there tool using beasts everywhere?


Rules Discussion


Animals are -5 and -4 intelligence modifier.

Beasts are -3 (score 4) and higher and it’s specifically stated that some beasts can speak. Wargs can and are -1 (intelligence 8). Linnorm are -3 and speak 3 languages (aklo, dragon, sylvan).

Some beasts are probably equivalent to a dumb human with mittens on. Wargs certainly are. As they can speak, you could explain tool use to them but they should also be able to figure it out after watching you. Even animals have been observed to use tools naturally (birds and monkeys). Monkeys use sticks to poke things out of trees and birds can use hooks to get things from a bottle.

Why isn’t golarion full of tool-using beasts? Why are magic Druid animal companions so restricted in what they can do? I could load a rifle wearing mittens,. It should be possible for an animal smart enough to speak.


4 people marked this as a favorite.

The are multiple issues that can lead to this, even if they are intelligent enough. The problems relate to body issues (shape, size), social issues, and a lack of patience for the slow return you get from tool development.

The first issue would be the body shape. Wargs are intelligent...but they are shaped like dogs. There are limits on the kinds of tools they can use. Additionally, those tools might be awkward to use, and possibly not worth the irritation. While some beasts might be able to use stolen human goods, those tools were made for human hands.

Next, there is a simple problem of size. Many linnorm, for example, are large or larger. In general, larger items are under more stress (often just from the leverage of their greater length and how weight can outpace their tensile strength). There is a reason why many giants just use a barely altered tree trunk as a crude club.

Why not use better materials? well, that brings us to the social issues. Better materials are usually discovered and developed through the cooperation of a large amount of people. Bronze is an easy to work with material, but certain components (such as Tin) were difficult to find with ancient technology, and required trade routes spanning hundreds of miles from the convenient sources of the material.

Why is this a problem? Well.... beasts....are often treated as monsters for a reason. They are not the most reasonable individuals. Thus, it is difficult to maintain friendly relations that would allow for long term traditions that rely on traded materials.

The final problem is that the creation of tools requires patience in order to get results. A monkey can use a twig to get ants...but that requires only a couple minutes of work in return for an immediate return. Compare that to the lengthy work of creating thread, weaving it, and then sewing it into a bag so it is easier to carry things. And besides the time taken to make the item, the learning process might have countless failures before you get an item that is worthwhile. It takes a lot of patience to learn from someone else, and it takes a lot of patience to teach someone else.

Beasts often lack that patience- especially when you combine this with the specific requirements for their body, and the limits to their resources since they often have to obtain everything on their own. A singular beast might figure out the trick and use it, but it might never bother to pass it onto its children as a tradition.

Liberty's Edge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Beasts are usually restricted by their anatomy from using too many tools.

Wargs, for example, have nothing resembling hands, so they can certainly pick up a stick in their mouth and poke things with it or roll a rock from point A to point B, but complex tool use is beyond their abilities even if well within their understanding. The same is true of the pegasus, unicorn, ether spider, and similar Beasts who lack manipulators.

This is greatly frustrating to some Beasts, too. Irrisen specifically has one city in which Winter Wolves can assume human form due to Baba Yaga's magic. They love it there since they can just have hands whenever they like. Super convenient.

But some Beasts, specifically those with hands, do indeed make extensive use of tools. Centaurs, for example, use all the tools humans are familiar with, as do many Gargoyles, Lamia, and werecreatures. All of those are Beasts (though the werecreatures are debatably cheating).

The only Beasts I can think of who have manipulators but don't use tools much are krakens, and they're both aquatic (making tools less useful...or at least advanced tools harder to make), and so powerful they rarely need them.


We also have to look at the fact that they might not feel they even need the tool (or at least not low quality tools made by their amateur techniques).

The dragon like Linnorms don't use weapons (a tool for killing) because their own bodies are far more powerful that most weapons they could obtain.

Clothing? Many of them don't need it for protection, since they have strong bodies. So any efforts for clothes would usually be for appearances sake. (There is also the advantage of pockets.... but those are usually useful when you have tools to put into those pockets).

And let us look at a common low level use of human tools- dismantling a hunted prey. While a knife could neatly cut that deer up into nice slices.... a creature with a wolf like head might just rip it apart directly with their teeth, and they might enjoy eating it directly over finely sliced parts.

Of course, even less predatory beasts might have little appreciation for human arts. I doubt a grass eating pegasus has much use for cooking techniques as they eat their food directly.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

A lack of thumbs, mostly.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Also, on a side note, Druid Animal Companions are Animals, not Beasts. They don't use tools as they have standard animal level intelligence.


Any “too impatient” issues should not apply to trained companions.

Deadmanwalking wrote:
Also, on a side note, Druid Animal Companions are Animals, not Beasts. They don't use tools as they have standard animal level intelligence.

Specialized companion feat gives them a modifier of -2 or a score of 6.

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Why haven't some of the smarter simian species on Earth built a civilization? Maybe it takes a critical mass of intelligence and need to get it started.

As for wargs and such, I think they get hit by a double whammy of not having opposable thumbs and also not being bipedal; they need their front legs to stay standing as well. They might be able to lie down and free up their front paws to manipulate items, but that's a bigger hurdle than humans/monkeys face.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

One of the primary reasons humans managed to get a civilisation running wasn't their intelligence, but opposable thumbs.


6 people marked this as a favorite.

There's a Douglas Adams quote that applies here, I think: "man had always assumed that he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much — the wheel, New York, wars and so on — whilst all the dolphins had ever done was muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the dolphins had always believed that they were far more intelligent than man — for precisely the same reasons."


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Also, animals that learned how to use tools as a society became humanoids. Gripplis, Boggardd, Lizardfolk, Catfolk, those weird bird people, halflings.


Ascalaphus wrote:
As for wargs and such, I think they get hit by a double whammy of not having opposable thumbs and also not being bipedal; they need their front legs to stay standing as well. They might be able to lie down and free up their front paws to manipulate items, but that's a bigger hurdle than humans/monkeys face.

What about disabled humans?


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Disabled humans can use walkers/wheelchairs/prosthetics/walking stick/hearing aids/canes/crutches all tools. I have seen dogs with some kind of wheel chair strapped to them for missing legs, but there is a lot of work on a humans side to get it where they can use it and keep using it.


Kennethray wrote:
Disabled humans can use walkers/wheelchairs/prosthetics/walking stick/hearing aids/canes/crutches all tools. I have seen dogs with some kind of wheel chair strapped to them for missing legs, but there is a lot of work on a humans side to get it where they can use it and keep using it.

So why can't a human make the initials ones to start the beasts off?

Once enough of them have them they can build their own.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
krobrina wrote:
Kennethray wrote:
Disabled humans can use walkers/wheelchairs/prosthetics/walking stick/hearing aids/canes/crutches all tools. I have seen dogs with some kind of wheel chair strapped to them for missing legs, but there is a lot of work on a humans side to get it where they can use it and keep using it.

So why can't a human make the initials ones to start the beasts off?

Once enough of them have them they can build their own.

Give a worg a fish today, and he eats for a day.

Teach a worg how to fish... and he will give you a funny look and then he will eat you for the rest of your soon to be short lifetime.

Edit- Also... I am sure some beasts think it is easier to just captures some human slaves or take over some village instead. Humans are good at crafting things, and the average villager is easily kowtowed into submission. Why waste the effort themselves on it?


krobrina wrote:
So why can't a human make the initials ones to start the beasts off?

The beast would have to WANT to and so too would the human. What do either of them gain by it? Not much as far as I can see.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

The bestiary gives us a useful example- worgs and goblins. When goblins ride worgs, the worg is usually the one in control.

This means it has an easily controlled minion that provides a set of thumbs they can carry around with them. And any crafting tasks can be shoved off on the goblin.


I've thought about this and decided that the Gods of Golarion hate the idea. If this was a sci-fi game there would be a "beast uplift project" already underway but it's traditional fantasy so there isn't.


I would guess one big reason is 'civilisation'

Most beasts (just to be sure: talking about actual beasts and not monstrous humanoids (yeah I know they are also technically beasts now)) seem to have either a bad temper, are solitary or similar stuff like that

and without people to work together with the process of creating tools is certainly more difficulty
humans (and other civilized folk in golarion) achieve this through cooperation
one knows how to find the ore, one knows how get the ore, one knows how to smelt it, one knows how to make the tool out of it
while there are certain people who know all of these tasks they rarely are equally good in all of them and while it is possible for a single human to aquire and use all of these skills it is incredible hard and tedious to do all of the work on your own

lets look at a few beasts from the bestiary
-Basiliks - 'nasty disposition' 'solitary creatures' and no opposable thumbs
-Centaur - humanoid upper body, live in groups, use tools and weapons
-Chimera - 'wild, hateful' -also no thumbs but really not a social creature
-Cockatrice - 'ugly and agressive' they sure make no casual travel companions
-Dragons - not technically beasts but as far as I know some dragons (especially those who use their magic to shapechange into humans on a regular basis) use tools. In some cases these tools are more likely scrolls and wands to supplement their magic
-Giant eagles - 'attempt to prevent encroachment of civilisation' well, here you got it
-Ether spiders - 'are interested in items that help them against their enemies'
-Gargoyles - have several traits that make them bad company but they collect items of different kinds and know how to use them

well, it swings wildly but the most common reason for beasts not to have tools is a mix out of beeing uncivilized and the lack of thumbs

It would be certainly possible to create a community of creatures somewhere in the world that went beyond their usual limitations


Dragons seem like they have MANY abilities and tendencies that set them apart from the other creatures we are discussion.

Besides their well known tendency to take servitor races (kobolds are allowed to exist almost solely because "they have thumbs and they are easy to order around"), their magic actually changes a lot of context. Let us ignore the easy outs like shape changing. Their other spells could allow them to eskew out 'needs thumbs' paradigm.

For a comparison, almost every single species of naga from PF1e had mage hand, and Lunar Naga are depicted with floating scrolls and astronomy tools. While player characters usually can't use that for precise manipulation... a creature can learn a trick or two when that is the only way to use things without worrying about acid spit or crushing claws.

Additionally, many dragons are well known for their use of spells for nonoffensive purposes. Green dragons are noted to carefully and meticulously shape their dens to make them more convenient- and that is presumably done using their vast magical knowledge (they are prepared casters, so even if it isn't in their stat block, it could just be because the spell isn't needed day to day).

Magic in general presents a problem for our discussion. While many beasts have innate magical powers with preset spells, Others actively study magic, and can perhaps gain new spells the same way we do from scrolls and spellbooks.

When you consider it that way, we have to ask- do we count spells as'technology'? If a spell has to be developed, tested, refined, and passed down generations, then how it is different from the process of refining a type of tool? A spell can be taught and they can be turned into a service or a product (scroll). When you live in a magic world, can't many forms of magic be treated as just another 'tool' created by civilization?


lemeres wrote:
For a comparison, almost every single species of naga from PF1e had mage hand.

Every PF2 naga to date has Mage Hand too.

Thieves' Tools Tricks
Source Dirty Tactics Toolbox pg. 19
In addition to the feat or skill prerequisites (listed in parentheses) for each of the following tricks, you must have the appropriate Equipment Trick feat.

Indispensable to a rogue or any other adventurer who wishes to crack open a lock or disable a trap, a set of thieves’ tools contains a number of sharp picks and coarse files.

PS: On Mage Hand for precise movement-
Equipment trick [thieves tools], Ranged Chicanery (Disable Device 1 rank, Sleight of Hand 1 rank, ability to cast mage hand): You can use mage hand to attempt Disable Device and Sleight of Hand checks at range. Working at a distance increases the normal skill check DC by an amount equal to 5 + 1 for every 5 feet the range is greater than 25 feet. You can’t take 10 or 20 on this check. Any object manipulated must weigh 5 pounds or less. If you also possess the ranged legerdemain class feature, you no longer increase the skill check DC by 5 while using Disable Device and Sleight of Hand at range.

So on a similar note, you can make a feat to allow similar things in PF2, or in a monsters case they can just get the ability for free cuz they are a monster.


Staffan Johansson wrote:
There's a Douglas Adams quote that applies here, I think: "man had always assumed that he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much — the wheel, New York, wars and so on — whilst all the dolphins had ever done was muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the dolphins had always believed that they were far more intelligent than man — for precisely the same reasons."

I love this quote.

(Of course, both the humans and the dolphins were both wrong)


Seisho wrote:

-Giant eagles - 'attempt to prevent encroachment of civilisation' well, here you got it

well, it swings wildly but the most common reason for beasts not to have tools is a mix out of beeing uncivilized and the lack of thumbs

It would be certainly possible to create a community of creatures somewhere in the world that went beyond their usual limitations

I think civilisation and tool use aren't instrinsically linked.

If an intelligent culture had a highly developed social hierachy, and writing, and was controlling its natural envirionment, we'd probably call them civilised even if their writing was scratching in trees with their claws and their farming was digging the same way then shoving in seeds with their beaks. Tools would help them, but wouldn't be essential.

"Ignoring civilisation" also doesn't mean you have to reject all tools. Eagles already have some basic form of civilisation in their "pecking order".


2 people marked this as a favorite.
krobrina wrote:

I think civilisation and tool use aren't instrinsically linked.

If an intelligent culture had a highly developed social hierachy, and writing, and was controlling its natural envirionment, we'd probably call them civilised even if their writing was scratching in trees with their claws and their farming was digging the same way then shoving in seeds with their beaks. Tools would help them, but wouldn't be essential.

"Ignoring civilisation" also doesn't mean you have to reject all tools. Eagles already have some basic form of civilisation in their "pecking order".

I think there is a strong connection between tools and civilization.

Civilization, at it's core, is a method of passing on a heritage- a way of life, form of communication, and social mores. The technology that created that tool is part of that.

If you don't learn from those that came before you, you will spend a large part of your life reinventing the wheel. Each individual beast would have to start over from scratch after it is born. They would never get very far if they aren't a race that lives for centuries.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
lemeres wrote:

I think there is a strong connection between tools and civilization.

Civilization, at it's core, is a method of passing on a heritage- a way of life, form of communication, and social mores. The technology that created that tool is part of that.

If you don't learn from those that came before you, you will spend a large part of your life reinventing the wheel. Each individual beast would have to start over from scratch after it is born. They would never get very far if they aren't a race that lives for centuries.

Yes, there is a connection. But if they can write by scratching on trees, they satify the requirement to pass down knowledge. That would still be a civilisation, even if we think it wasn't a very good one.


krobrina wrote:
lemeres wrote:

I think there is a strong connection between tools and civilization.

Civilization, at it's core, is a method of passing on a heritage- a way of life, form of communication, and social mores. The technology that created that tool is part of that.

If you don't learn from those that came before you, you will spend a large part of your life reinventing the wheel. Each individual beast would have to start over from scratch after it is born. They would never get very far if they aren't a race that lives for centuries.

Yes, there is a connection. But if they can write by scratching on trees, they satify the requirement to pass down knowledge. That would still be a civilisation, even if we think it wasn't a very good one.

And probably one that would lag behind other civilizations that happen to invent portable, and store-able paper. Leaving your written history on trees has a lot of issues after all. Can't really make "copies" without just carving the same information in a different tree, if your civ moves on they leave behind any information they had carved into their local library, and trees actively grow, so eventually older knowledge will be literally lost to time.

The same principles can apply to paper and other mediums, but they tend to be more easily mitigated by virtue of just copying older text onto new paper, or binding that paper in leather or some other protective material.

Perhaps given enough time the "beast" ancestries would catch up with the "civilized" ones. But the question becomes how much further would they have lagged behind by the time they do? They could find themselves in a situation where they are functionally in the industrial age while the humans and elves are exploring the rest of the solar system, Starfinder style.

Or far more likely given our own actual past, they would be assimilated into the global community or wiped out.


beowulf99 wrote:

And probably one that would lag behind other civilizations that happen to invent portable, and store-able paper.

Perhaps given enough time the "beast" ancestries would catch up with the "civilized" ones. But the question becomes how much further would they have lagged behind by the time they do? They could find themselves in a situation where they are functionally in the industrial age while the humans and elves are exploring the rest of the solar system, Starfinder style.

Or far more likely given our own actual past, they would be assimilated into the global community or wiped out.

Golarion's non-magical bow technology hasn't advanced much in several thousand years.

I don't go with the wipeout idea. They'd have got rid of the whole bestiary years ago if they could. Those creatures in it are just dangerous.


krobrina wrote:
beowulf99 wrote:

And probably one that would lag behind other civilizations that happen to invent portable, and store-able paper.

Perhaps given enough time the "beast" ancestries would catch up with the "civilized" ones. But the question becomes how much further would they have lagged behind by the time they do? They could find themselves in a situation where they are functionally in the industrial age while the humans and elves are exploring the rest of the solar system, Starfinder style.

Or far more likely given our own actual past, they would be assimilated into the global community or wiped out.

Golarion's non-magical bow technology hasn't advanced much in several thousand years.

I don't go with the wipeout idea. They'd have got rid of the whole bestiary years ago if they could. Those creatures in it are just dangerous.

Sure but that is a convenience to allow us to go and play in a fun sand box with bad guys and monsters readily available. In reality, if half the monsters that exist in the bestiaries existed, we would have stamped them out through concerted effort centuries ago, simply because they are so dangerous.

This is the crux of the question: The real reason beasts don't "advance" is because they are written the way they are to serve the purpose they serve. Realistically, in the real world, we would have stamped out Orcs, Gnolls, Dragons and any other monster that ever caused a city issues by the 1600's simply because allowing them to exist is simply too dangerous. Any beast races that willfully assimilated would have lost most of their base culture, just going by what we have unfortunately done to ourselves in the past.

But this is a high fantasy game, where the expectation is that these things exist, and we happily turn a blind eye to their existence because they enrich our stories.

And the real beauty of the hobby as we know it is that if you happen to want advanced beast societies, nothing is stopping you from introducing them in your own game. Wargs that developed opposable thumbs and have a culture and community all their own are absolutely free game. The only thing restricting them is your imagination really.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
krobrina wrote:
Yes, there is a connection. But if they can write by scratching on trees, they satify the requirement to pass down knowledge. That would still be a civilisation, even if we think it wasn't a very good one.

I wouldn't even say they need writing, or even 'words'. Effective body language cues and good visual demonstration could suffice if they are comprehensive enough.

Crows (and related species) are some of the most advanced nonhuman creatures around. Experiments have shown they can do things such as creating tools based off of novel material. In one study, a crow was shown a paperclip for the first time, and it managed to bend it into a hook to get at food in a tube.

Heck, they even have methods of sharing identifying information to individuals that never saw the original topic. The experiment was that a guy in a mask (let us say a Nixon Mask) tormented a single crow. From then on, the local flock would harass people with 'a Nixon face'. This means that they are developed enough to be able to say "Oi, look at that guy. He's a jerk, go get him".

These are the main skills for tool using species- analyzing materials so you can figure out what you can do with them, and helping others learn the discoveries you've made. A beast that can't socialize might be able to pull off a trick or two with his own discoveries, but it is hard to advance past its own old routine tricks if it doesn't socialize.


lemeres wrote:
Crows (and related species) are some of the most advanced nonhuman creatures around. Experiments have shown they can do things such as creating tools based off of novel material. In one study, a crow was shown a paperclip for the first time, and it managed to bend it into a hook to get at food in a tube.

Octopi are no slouches either: they can open jars [from outside or inside them], can leave their tank to go to another tank to eat fish and return all while replacing the lids on the tanks, and carry tentacles from the Portuguese man o' war as a weapon [they are immune to the poison but their prey isn't]... They can also solve puzzles and mazes. They can ID people like squirting water at people they don't like and one figured out hoe to turn on/off the light by squirting water at it.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Yeah but octopi are like elves. Aliens


Kennethray wrote:
Yeah but octopi are like elves. Aliens

They are just mindflayers without arms and legs... ;)


Octopi in jars? No you can't come in. This jar is octopied.


Octopi are actually a really good example

They are really intelligent, are very aware of their capabilities, can learn to use tools

but when octopi breed the mother stays with the egg cluth till they hatch and usually dies along the way because she can't get out to feed herself

and so, no knowledge can be passed on and the little octopi have to learn everything from scratch

I would be really curious what would happen if you fed a octopus mom and make sure she come healthy through the phase of protecting the eggs


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Why would a manticore or a griffon or owlbear even want to use tools? Humans used hunting and gathering tools because we didn't have claws or fangs or great strength and speed, and we used shelter-building tools because we didn't have blubber or fur or a thick hide or the ability to hibernate to protect us from the elements.

When you have foot-long, razor sharp claws, you don't really get much benefit from a knife or spear.


Tender Tendrils wrote:
When you have foot-long, razor sharp claws, you don't really get much benefit from a knife or spear.

But what if you absolutely, positively have to launch a 90kg stone projectile over 300 meters? ;)

Spoiler:
Showing myself out...


lemeres wrote:
Heck, they even have methods of sharing identifying information to individuals that never saw the original topic. The experiment was that a guy in a mask (let us say a Nixon Mask) tormented a single crow. From then on, the local flock would harass people with 'a Nixon face'. This means that they are developed enough to be able to say "Oi, look at that guy. He's a jerk, go get him".

This science has great potential.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Ubertron_X wrote:
Tender Tendrils wrote:
When you have foot-long, razor sharp claws, you don't really get much benefit from a knife or spear.
But what if you absolutely, positively have to launch a 90kg stone projectile over 300 meters? ;)

Imagine the 30-50 feral hogs gun meme, but the hogs have a trebuchet.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Seisho wrote:


but when octopi breed the mother stays with the egg cluth till they hatch and usually dies along the way because she can't get out to feed herself

and so, no knowledge can be passed on and the little octopi have to learn everything from scratch

I would be really curious what would happen if you fed a octopus mom and make sure she come healthy through the phase of protecting the eggs

Apparently, this has been attempted, but they have a gland that effectively shuts off their digestive system and sometimes drives them to commit suicide after they lay their eggs. Also removal of said gland apparently resulted in the mother abandoning their eggs.

I don't know about you, but I find it as depressing as it is interesting.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Corwin Icewolf wrote:
Seisho wrote:


but when octopi breed the mother stays with the egg cluth till they hatch and usually dies along the way because she can't get out to feed herself

and so, no knowledge can be passed on and the little octopi have to learn everything from scratch

I would be really curious what would happen if you fed a octopus mom and make sure she come healthy through the phase of protecting the eggs

Apparently, this has been attempted, but they have a gland that effectively shuts off their digestive system and sometimes drives them to commit suicide after they lay their eggs. Also removal of said gland apparently resulted in the mother abandoning their eggs.

I don't know about you, but I find it as depressing as it is interesting.

That really is fascinating and perhaps shows that more about behaviour is hard coded than we would like to admit.

Liberty's Edge

Malk_Content wrote:
That really is fascinating and perhaps shows that more about behaviour is hard coded than we would like to admit.

Well, all it really argues is that octopus behavior is pretty hard coded.

There's certainly some evidence of that to some degree in humans (twin studies are a strong indicator that it's about half of everything that's genetically programmed) as well, but this really isn't it.


I think humans have a similar mechanism, namely falling asleep afterwards.

It's not so extreme as the animals that die after, but the male is (allegedly) still useful afterwards.


krobrina wrote:

I think humans have a similar mechanism, namely falling asleep afterwards.

It's not so extreme as the animals that die after, but the male is (allegedly) still useful afterwards.

Men don't necessarily fall asleep after though, I think most modern men have just seen it enough on TV and done it enough that they're effectively trained to do so. It can actually be a pretty energizing thing.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

This thread took a weird turn.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Deadmanwalking wrote:
Malk_Content wrote:
That really is fascinating and perhaps shows that more about behaviour is hard coded than we would like to admit.

Well, all it really argues is that octopus behavior is pretty hard coded.

There's certainly some evidence of that to some degree in humans (twin studies are a strong indicator that it's about half of everything that's genetically programmed) as well, but this really isn't it.

I think it is illustrative. We tend to view ourselves as separate from animals but we work on most of the same fundamentals. Studies on removing certain parts of the brain are (thankfully now) kinda frowned upon so how much we can discern is certainly limited. Still the mechanisms we do know about do show more is hardcoded than most people think, even if we have high individual variance.


"Beast" in PF2e covers monsters that used to be in the "Magical Beast" category from 3e. So yeah, plenty of them should be able to talk or use tools, if they care to do so, and their anatomy allows it.

Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder Second Edition / Rules Discussion / How smart are beasts, and why aren’t there tool using beasts everywhere? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.