3e SRD:Reading Creature Entries

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Creature Overview

Main Statistics Block

This text contains basic game information on the creature.


This is the name by which the creature is generally known.

Size and Type

Information on the creature's base size and any Type modifiers.

Table:Creature Sizes
Size AC/Attack Modifier Dimension* Weight**
Fine +8 6 in. or less 1/8 lb. or less
Diminutive +4 6 in.-1 ft. 1/8 lb.-1 lb.
Tiny +2 1 ft.-2 ft. 1 lb.-8 lb.
Small +1 2 ft.-4 ft. 8 lb.-60 lb.
Medium 0 4 ft.-8 ft. 60 lb.-500 lb.
Large -1 8 ft.-16 ft. 500 lb.-4,000 lb.
Huge -2 16 ft.-32 ft. 4,000 lb.-32,000 lb.
Gargantuan -4 32 ft.-64 ft. 32,000 lb.-250,000 lb.
Colossal -8 64 ft. or more 250,000 lb. or more
*Biped's height, quadruped's body length (nose to base of tail).

**-Assumes that the creature is roughly as dense as a regular animal. A creature made of stone will weigh considerably more. A gaseous creature will weigh much less.

Each creature is "typed". Type determines many of the creature's characteristics and abilities, as described below.

Hit Dice

This line gives the number and type of Hit Dice the creature has and any bonus hit points. A parenthetical note gives the creature’s average hit points. A creature’s Hit Dice total is also its level for determining how spells affect the creature, its rate of natural healing, and its maximum ranks in a skill.


This line shows the creature’s modifier to initiative rolls. A parenthetical note tells where the modifier comes from.


This line gives the creature’s tactical speed. If the creature wears armor that reduces its speed, this fact is given along with a parenthetical note indicating the armor type; the creature’s base unarmored speed follows.

Armor Class

The Armor Class line gives the creature’s AC for normal combat and includes a parenthetical mention of the modifiers contributing to it (usually size, Dexterity, and natural armor). Note that each creature is proficient in whatever type of armor (light, medium, or heavy) that is is described as wearing, as well as all lighter types. Creatures not listed as wearing armor as not proficient with armor.


This line gives all the creature’s physical attacks, whether with natural or manufactured weapons.

Natural Weapons: A creature with the Weapon Finesse feat can use its Dexterity modifier on melee attacks with Natural Weapons. The first entry is for the creature's primary weapon. The remaining weapons are secondary and have -5 to the attack bonus, no matter how many there are. Creatures with the Multiattack feat suffer only a -2 penalty to secondary attacks.

Unless noted otherwise, natural weapons threaten critical hits on a natural attack roll of 20. Unless noted otherwise, creatures deal double damage on critical hits.


This line shows the damage each of the creature’s attacks deals.

If any attacks also cause some special effect other than damage (poison, disease, etc.), that information is given here.

Natural weapons have types just as other weapons do. The most common are summarized below.

Bite: The creature attacks with its mouth, dealing piercing, slashing, and bludgeoning damage.
Claw or Rake: The creature rips with a sharp appendage, dealing piercing and slashing damage.
Gore: The creature spears the opponent with an antler, horn or similar appendage, dealing piercing damage.
Slap or Slam: The creature batters opponents with an appendage, dealing bludgeoning damage.
Sting: The creature stabs with a stinger, dealing piercing dam¬age. Stings are usually envenomed.


Written in the format [feet] by [feet]/[feet]: The numbers before the slash show the creature’s fighting space (width first, length second). The number after the slash is the creature’s natural reach.

Special Abilities

A special ability is either extraordinary (Ex), spell-like (Sp), or supernatural (Su).

For creatures with spell-like abilities, a designated caster level serves to define how difficult it is to dispel their spell-like effects and to define any level-dependent variable (such as range and duration) the abilities might have. If no caster level is specified, the caster level is equal to the creature’s Hit Dice.

Special Qualities

This line gives all the creature’s special qualities, in the order they are most likely to be used. If the creature has no special qualities, this line does not appear. Details of the most common special qualities are provided here.


This line gives the creature’s Fortitude, Reflex, and Will save modifiers.


This line lists all the creature’s skills by name along with each skill’s score.

A creature’s type and Intelligence score determine the number of skill points it has. Some creatures receive bonus skill points for having Hit Dice in excess of what is normal for creatures of their size, as listed in the accompanying table.

Table:Creature Skills
Type Points Base Skill Bonus Points
Aberration 2xInt score +2/EHD*
Animal 10-15 -
Beast 10-15 +1/EHD
Construct - -
Dragon (6 + Int mod)xHD -
Elemental 2xInt score +2/EHD
Fey 3xInt score +2/EHD
Giant 6 + Int mod +1/EHD
Humanoid 6 + Int mod +1/EHD
Magical beast 2xInt score +1/EHD
Monstrous humanoid 2xInt score +2/EHD
Ooze - -
Outsider (8 + Int mod)xHD -
Plant (- -
Shapechanger 2xInt score +1/EHD
Vermin 10-15 -
Undead 3xInt score +2/EHD
*-EHD: Extra Hit Die. To calculate EHD for any creature other than an elemental, subtract 1 from the creature’s total Hit Dice if it is Medium-size or smaller; 2 if Large; 4 if Huge; 16 if Gargantuan; and 32 if Colossal. Treat results less than 0 as 0.

The "Skills" section of the creature’s descriptive text recaps racial and other bonuses for the sake of clarity; these bonuses should not be added to the listed skill scores unless otherwise noted. An asterisk (*) beside the relevant score and in the "Skills" section indicates a conditional adjustment.


The line lists all the creature’s feats by name.

Secondary Statistics Block


This entry describes the locales where the creature is most often found.

Cold: Arctic and subarctic climes. Any area that has winter conditions for the greater portion of the year is cold.
Temperate: Any area that has alternating warm and cold seasons.
Warm: Tropical and subtropical climes. Any area that has summer conditions for the greater portion of the year is warm.
Aquatic: Fresh or salt water.
Desert: Any dry area with sparse vegetation.
Forest: Any area covered with trees.
Hill: Any area with rugged but not mountainous terrain.
Marsh: Low, flat, waterlogged areas; includes swamps.
Mountains: Rugged terrain, higher than hills.
Plains: Any fairly flat area that is not a desert, marsh, or forest.
Underground: Subterranean areas.


This line describes the kinds of groups the creature might form. A range of numbers in parentheses indicates how many combat-ready adults are in each type of group. Many groups also have a number of noncombatants, expressed as a percentage of the fighting population. Noncombatants can include young, the infirm, slaves, or other individuals who are not inclined to fight. A creature’s Society entry may include more details on non¬combatants.

Challenge Rating

This is the average level of a party of adventurers for which one creature would make an encounter of moderate difficulty.


This entry gives the alignment that the creature is most likely to have. Every entry includes a qualifier that indicates how broadly that alignment applies to the species as a whole.

Always: The creature is born with the listed alignment. The creature may have a hereditary predisposition to the alignment or come from a plane that predetermines it. It is possible for individuals to change alignment, but such individuals are either unique or one-in-a-million exceptions.

Usually: The majority (more than 50%) of these creatures have the given alignment. This may be due to strong cultural influences, or it may be a legacy of the creatures’ origin.

Often: The creature tends toward the listed alignment, either by nature or nurture, but not strongly. A plurality (40-50%) of individuals have the given alignment, but exceptions are common.


This entry reflects how much wealth the creature owns.

Treasures include coins, goods, and items. Creatures can have varying amounts of each, as follows.

Standard: Roll once under each type of treasure’s column on the appropriate row for the creature’s Challenge Rating (for groups of creatures, use the Encounter Level for the encounter instead).

Some creatures have double, triple, or even quadruple standard treasure; in these cases roll under each treasure column two, three, or four times.
None: The creature collects no treasure of its own.
Nonstandard: Some creatures have quirks or habits that affect the types of treasure they collect. These creatures use the same treasure tables, but with special adjustments.
Fractional Coins: Roll on the Coins column for the creature’s Challenge Rating, but divide the result as indicated.
% Goods or Items: The creature has goods or items only some of the time. Before checking for goods or items, roll d% against the listed percentage. On a success, make a normal roll on the Goods or Items column (which may still result in no goods or items).
Double Goods or Items: Roll twice on the Goods or Items column.
Parenthetical Notes: Some entries for goods or items include notes that limit the types of treasure a creature collects.

When a note includes the word "no," it means the creature does not collect or cannot keep that thing. If a random roll generates such a result, treat the result as "nothing" instead.

When a note includes the word "only," the creature goes out of its way to collect treasure of the indicated type. If an entry for Goods indicates "gems only," roll on the Goods column and treat any "art" result as "gems" instead.

It sometimes will be necessary to reroll until the right sort of item appears.


This book lists only the weakest and most common version of each creature. The Advancement line shows how tough the creature can get, in terms of extra Hit Dice. (This is not an absolute limit, but exceptions are extremely rare.)


As its Hit Dice increase, the creature’s attack bonuses and saving throw modifiers might improve, and it could gain more feats and skills, depending on its type.

Note that if the creature acquires a character class, it improves according to its class, not its type.

Descriptive Text

The descriptive text opens with a short description of the monster: what it does, what it looks like, and what is most noteworthy about it. Special sections describe how the creature fights and give details on special attacks, special qualities, skills, and feats.

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