Ways to get monster companions / followers / minions


Pathfinder Second Edition General Discussion


Besides animal companions, eidolons, constructs, undead, and summon spells.

I'm curious if there are any ways to have monsters, and I mean monsters straight out of the monster manual as companions.

I've always been fascinated with the whole monster taming vibe. While I enjoy animal companions they don't give enough of that scariness/coolness factor that monsters like cockatrice, bulettes, owlbears, behirs, and such (not limited to those just the monsters that came to mind).

Heliana's Guide to Monster Hunting for D&D 5e made the Tamer which is pretty much what I'm looking for, but I don't feel confident in converting an entire class from 5e to P2e.

Please don't suggest Eldamon. From what I've seen I'm really not interested in it so far. Mainly because it seems like they're gonna make Eldamon seperate creatures from normal monsters, and I want those normal monsters. Not some pokemon stand-in. If you know what I mean. I love pokemon, but I want real monsters.

Mechanically I know it can be done. Summons are essentially are any monster levels below your level. And most companion creatures take up your actions via commands.


Non-companion animal will be playable in Howl of the Wild

There is Battlezoo Ancestries series for more playable monster as ancestries

But is that you wanted?


No, I think the OP is saying they want a monster companion. An animal companion that is a monster like an owlbear


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Tame Animal

Once Tamed you can teach it things to do with Train Animal and than you would be able to use Command an Animal to get it to preform actions.


For the most part no, as the mechanics of NPCs vs PCs (and their minions) are different.

As evidenced by summons, they're intentionally below party level to the point that direct combat usefulness is dubious. So even if you were to get an Owlbear, it's either not going to have Owlbear stats like in the Bestiary, or you wont get it until it's basically irrelevant.


You can model things based on the create undead , create skinstitch , and animate object rituals and table 7-1. Those give you a solid template for creating/summoning/animating any type of monster you'd like, just reflavor "undead" to [your creature type here] or whatever and pay for it in GP.

https://2e.aonprd.com/Rituals.aspx?ID=1

https://2e.aonprd.com/Rituals.aspx?ID=10

https://2e.aonprd.com/Rituals.aspx?ID=42

This is how my campaign handles PCs who want to summon demons for extended periods of time rather than just via the summoning spells or one-off uses of planar ally . They just use create undead but summon and bind a fiend instead of creating a zombie.


Claxon wrote:
For the most part no, as the mechanics of NPCs vs PCs (and their minions) are different.

Agreed. This is the realm of homebrew.

Start with an animal companion and then give it the flavor of an Owlbear. Same with undead monsters using an Undead Companion as a base. Or Construct Companion if you want to have a golem following you around.


breithauptclan wrote:
Claxon wrote:
For the most part no, as the mechanics of NPCs vs PCs (and their minions) are different.

Agreed. This is the realm of homebrew.

Start with an animal companion and then give it the flavor of an Owlbear. Same with undead monsters using an Undead Companion as a base. Or Construct Companion if you want to have a golem following you around.

That seems to explicitly not be what the OP is after though.

Like we can file off the identifiers of pretty much anything and using numbers appropriate for the level craft an animal companion that functions a lot like how we would expect an Owl Bear, Undead companion, etc to function for a PC.

But the OP seems to want the exact version that a player would encounter as an enemy...which just doesn't happen in PF2 as far as I'm aware. And even if it did, it probably wouldn't be available until your character level was 2 to 4 levels above the CR of the enemy creature (based on comparing the stats of summoned creatures to NPCs).

Which would mean they'd almost never be useful, but they could be thematic.

If your theme was being ineffective.


You can get the exact version. With summoning or with creature creation rituals. You can't get it on-level, that's borked. But you can totally get a pet vampire count if you want with create undead or animate dead . I'd assume you could do the same with an owlbear, just swap in "level 4 undead" for "level 4 animal" and otherwise keep the ritual unchanged.

Or you can just use dominate and force them to crit fail their saves, either by repeatedly spamming the spell or debuffing saving throws with conditions like stupefied or frightened. Once it's dominated, you can sustain it every day by expending the relevant slot and they don't get resaves (same as any other all-day spell). The perk of dominate is that it works on anything of spell level x 2 or lower, meaning it scales better than summoning spells or create undead .

So it's totally possible to do what the OP wants.


Claxon wrote:
But the OP seems to want the exact version that a player would encounter as an enemy...which just doesn't happen in PF2 as far as I'm aware. And even if it did, it probably wouldn't be available until your character level was 2 to 4 levels above the CR of the enemy creature (based on comparing the stats of summoned creatures to NPCs).

Yeah. That's the other balanced homebrew option. Run it like a summoning spell that has a permanent duration. Then you get the actual monster creature - but it is at a level that makes it really squishy for being in combat with.

Now, if they want to just run with a full monster companion in the party, they could certainly do that. It wouldn't be balanced. At least - not for a level or two immediately after you get it. Or if you level it up by following the numbers on the Building Creatures tables.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Nicolas Paradise wrote:

Tame Animal

Once Tamed you can teach it things to do with Train Animal and than you would be able to use Command an Animal to get it to preform actions.

This is what you're working with, along with a lot of GM fiat. Wild Empathy and its plant equivalent are also helpful in these efforts.

But note this is purely up to your GM. There is no way to recruit bestiary creatures without GM buy-in. There are some loosely defined mechanics a GM can lean on, but even the Tame Animal feat is uncommon. Monsters are NPCs, after all.


To note: Dominate is also uncommon.


Calliope5431 wrote:

You can get the exact version. With summoning or with creature creation rituals. You can't get it on-level, that's borked. But you can totally get a pet vampire count if you want with create undead or animate dead . I'd assume you could do the same with an owlbear, just swap in "level 4 undead" for "level 4 animal" and otherwise keep the ritual unchanged.

Or you can just use dominate and force them to crit fail their saves, either by repeatedly spamming the spell or debuffing saving throws with conditions like stupefied or frightened. Once it's dominated, you can sustain it every day by expending the relevant slot and they don't get resaves (same as any other all-day spell). The perk of dominate is that it works on anything of spell level x 2 or lower, meaning it scales better than summoning spells or create undead .

So it's totally possible to do what the OP wants.

I think what you mean is you can get certain creatures and undead as the exact bestiary version by using undead creation rituals or the appropriate summoning spell. For some creatures you're interest in (the owlbear) is an animal and could be summoned via summon animal. But in the OP's initial post they said they weren't interested in summon spells, so I discounted those. Aside from summon spells there aren't rituals that I'm aware of, but you could make a ritual that would mechanically be similar to the create undead rituals, though obviously it's homebrew.

So for whatever reason that summon spells are unacceptable, there is no official method to accomplish what the OP is after that I'm aware of.


Yes, the OP was asking about monster taming and getting monster statblocks generally. I agree owlbears in particular are off the table unless your GM allows you to take dominate or is willing to homebrew up an animal equivalent of create undead or the like.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Owlbear is only a level 4 creature my level 5 party in Kingmaker that I am running are very likely going to Tame Beaky and make him them a pet. They won't really be good for combat for more than a level or 2 but that is fine. It can just be a friend that lives in the woods outside of town.


If monster vs monster is allowed there, I could do "play as monster" in that way.


Thank you all for responding. I've come to similar conclusions, but its nice to get more experienced folk to weigh in.

There's a third-party book for 5e I really wish they'd convert to P2e, but I doubt they will. But it's called Heliana's Guide to Monster Hunting. The Tamer in there is pretty close to what I'd like, but I have no idea how to convert stuff to P2e.

Beyond that I've been looking into the Battlezoo stuff. But without funds to spend currently (buying a house so woo!).

But yes my goal was to have a monster or monster companions that aren't summons, but from things I've conquered, or raised myself. I suppose changing semantics works. My DM has expressed interest in working with me on this. Just I feel more comfortable when rules are plainly stated.


OgreWarHulk wrote:
But yes my goal was to have a monster or monster companions that aren't summons, but from things I've conquered, or raised myself. I suppose changing semantics works. My DM has expressed interest in working with me on this. Just I feel more comfortable when rules are plainly stated.

The Minion trait was designed for allowing buddies to a player character in combat. People who have played or GMed for a PF1 Summoner character could probably tell you horror stories that were the cause of designing the trait.

So yeah, what you are going to find are: Minions - either Animal Companions (or variants like construct companion), Familiars, summoning spells, hirelings, or rituals like Animate Object. Or Eidolon from the Summoner class.

You might also get GM controlled NPC monsters in the party from particularly indulgent GMs. Because then the GM can decide how much of the combat the monster is going to take over.


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

You and your GM should keep in mind that adding a level X creature is the equivalent of adding a level X PC to the party for encounter balance, but potentially with far more disruptive abilities. For example, an owl bear will pretty much open every combat with blood curdling screech, which will impact every creature on both sides of the GM screen. That crap will get old for everyone, particularly given the critical failure condition.


Captain Morgan wrote:
You and your GM should keep in mind that adding a level X creature is the equivalent of adding a level X PC to the party for encounter balance, but potentially with far more disruptive abilities. For example, an owl bear will pretty much open every combat with blood curdling screech, which will impact every creature on both sides of the GM screen. That crap will get old for everyone, particularly given the critical failure condition.

Thank you, I was about to add this, that actual monsters from outside of PC/class abilities would be participants as much as any NPC.

And yeah, they're built to operate in monstrous scenarios, lacking much of the teamwork, skill feats, and breadth that helps PC synergy. And of course they might be able to spam abilities or shirk off common threats too, which could give a GM a headache. Their feast/famine, irregular builds would be interesting to capitalize on, if possible, but anything impactful kinda has to count as another participant whether Dominated or not. Imagine something as common as a Troll with seems basic yet has such skewed stats. If nurtured, it could participate well past 5th level.

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