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Creatures that are summoned via the Summon Monster Spell; can they successfully hit and or damage creatures that require a +1 magical weapon or better to hit? In other words do a summoned creature's attacks count as magic for the purpose of bypassing DR?

The scenario was that a magic user cast the spell 'Summon Monster I' and summoned an eagle in an effort to distract a wraith that was killing a fellow party member. The other party members fighting the wraith were unable to hit it, save for a Paladin carrying a +1 sword. The question was then raised whether the summoned eagle could successfully attack said wraith or not.

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@user9888 It was incorrect by the rules-as-written, but you also ruled well for your game, I think: low-level parties frequently cannot handle incorporeal monsters at all unless the monster is Undead and they have a Cleric. Opening up more ways to deal with incorporeal creatures is, I think, good for the game. Though of course it’s really the mundane types, rather than the wizard, who needs more options. – KRyan Nov 23 '13 at 18:07

No, a summoned creature's attacks do not automatically count as magic for the purpose of bypassing DR (or hitting incorporeal creatures or anything else). Specific creatures you summon may have this ability, of course, especially if they have DR/magic their natural attacks will bypass magic DR.

Summoned creatures with an alignment subtype will bypass alignment DR, but this does not apply to the creatures with a fiendish/celestial template because though they have DR/alignment they don't have an alignment subtype.

See Damage Reduction on d20PFSRD for more details.

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Where does it say in the rules that having DR/magic causes your natural attacks to bypass magic DR? Surely that would be a property of attack not defense. – Tim B Jul 31 '14 at 13:55
Go read at the provided link - it's in there. – mxyzplk Jul 31 '14 at 20:20
Ahh, found it. It's specific to magic weapons and I was looking for something covering silver/etc which is not covered. So DR/Magic makes you count as magic but DR/Silver does not make you count as silver. – Tim B Jul 31 '14 at 20:45


A summoned creature’s presence is magical in nature; it can be dispelled and sent away. It does not, however, automatically gain magic bonuses to its attacks, or overcome magic-vulnerable defenses as if its weapons were magical. The creature can only do those things if it could normally, without being summoned.

It’s very difficult to cite a lack of a rule. The best I can do is to show you to the Summoning Rules:

Summoning: a summoning spell instantly brings a creature or object to a place you designate. When the spell ends or is dispelled, a summoned creature is instantly sent back to where it came from, but a summoned object is not sent back unless the spell description specifically indicates this. A summoned creature also goes away if it is killed or if its hit points drop to 0 or lower, but it is not really dead. It takes 24 hours for the creature to reform, during which time it can't be summoned again.

When the spell that summoned a creature ends and the creature disappears, all the spells it has cast expire. A summoned creature cannot use any innate summoning abilities it may have.

Those are the complete effects of summoning; nothing there says anything about overcoming defense against non-magical weaponry.

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Summoning a creature does not impart the ability to bypass damage reduction as though attacking with a magical weapon to the summoned creature.

Some summoned creatures, however, may have the ability to hit as though wielding a magic weapon, inherently. They retain this ability; it really depends on the creature summoned.

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This answers the title, which is ambiguous. It fails to take into account the body of the question though, which clearly asks whether summoned creatures count as magic for DR only by virtue of being summoned. – SevenSidedDie Nov 25 '13 at 21:02
I can see your concern, but nowhere in the question does it clearly ask if DR is bypassed purely on virtue of being summoned. Also, the first sentence of my answer pertains to that exact subject. – Finni McFinger Nov 30 '13 at 17:06
Yes it does; second paragraph. To which "maybe" is incorrect. – SevenSidedDie Nov 30 '13 at 17:27
My answer stands. If it was a creature that had the ability to hit as-if it were wielding a magic weapon, it would still be able to do that. As my answer states, it does not gain this ability from being summoned, but the answer is not categorically "no". It ultimately depends on the creature being summoned. – Finni McFinger Dec 3 '13 at 21:15

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