To be quite honest, this question ties in to another one.

Generally speaking, though, when Shapechanging, do you gain the feats of the creature you are shapechanging into?

On many counts, this seems logical. There are many outsiders that would be totally absurd without certain feats that help them function -- these feats are often calculated into their stats.

Still, the question remains -- what are feats that are "part of" a creature's stat block considered (assuming, ofc, they are not derived from class levels)?


2 Answers 2


When using the shapechange spell (which works like polymorph, which works like alter self), you're going to get all bonus feats of your chosen shape, which means all feats that are marked with a superscript capital B in the statblock of that creature.

From alter self, emphasis mine:

You acquire the physical qualities of the new form while retaining your own mind. Physical qualities include natural size, mundane movement capabilities (such as burrowing, climbing, walking, swimming, and flight with wings, to a maximum speed of 120 feet for flying or 60 feet for nonflying movement), natural armor bonus, natural weapons (such as claws, bite, and so on), racial skill bonuses, racial bonus feats, and any gross physical qualities (presence or absence of wings, number of extremities, and so forth).

Bonus feats are racial features, in addition to the feats that any character gains when their HD goes up (including those from their racial HD!), and this is consistent with the fact that you never get class levels or anything else one would normally gain with experience while shapechanging.

If you're talking about shapechanging as a general concept, well, there's rarely anything general across all spells and features that grant you shapechanging capabilities. You'll need to look at the specific spell.

The only thing I'd risk telling you is that, unless a specific spell gives you a feat (I'm looking at you, bite of the were... spells) the most you will get is bonus spells (and the worst you will ever get is nothing).

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, that solves that. I'm hitting my 9th level Druid spells at the end of the current encounter in a campaign, so Shapechange the spell is what I'm thinking about (well, plus a Greater Rod of Persist). \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Commented Jan 23, 2018 at 21:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Alphaeus You must mean a greater rod of Extend, for I know of no such thing as a Rod of Persist (but oh, how I'd like to be proven ignorant!) \$\endgroup\$
    – Zachiel
    Commented Jan 24, 2018 at 19:29
  • \$\begingroup\$ Rod of Persist is from Pathfinder, and the DM is allowing some Pathfinder material. That said, somehow, somewhere I seem to recall hearing about a 3.5e Rod of Persist. Never personally found it, though, so probably a myth :P \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Commented Jan 25, 2018 at 2:55

Here is a comparison chart that was made by the community of Minmaxforum, that I saved years ago (included all the latest information at the time it was created):

Alter Self, Polymorph, Shapechange

Change Shape, Alternate Form, Wild Shape

Metamorphasis, Metamorphasis object, Greater Metamorphasis

  • \$\begingroup\$ Dear God, this is wonderful. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Commented Jan 25, 2018 at 4:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Alphaeus You are most welcome. I thought this information would be handy to have up for the sake of posterity, so I posted an answer despite another one already being accepted. I recall being happy to have found this back in the day. \$\endgroup\$
    – nijineko
    Commented Jan 25, 2018 at 18:40

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