3
\$\begingroup\$

The Beast Conclave revised ranger (from Unearthed Arcana: Revised Ranger) gains an animal companion. The Companion's Bond feature description states:

Your companion uses your proficiency bonus rather than its own. [...]

Your animal companion gains proficiency in two skills of your choice.

I'm confused about how to calculate a ranger's animal companion's skill bonuses.

Say I'm playing a level 3 revised ranger (proficiency bonus +2) with the Beast Conclave who has a panther as his animal companion. The panther stat block (MM pg. 333) gives the panther stat bonuses of Perception +4, Stealth +6 (with DEX 15 [+2], WIS 14 [+2], CR ¼).

The DMG (pg. 274) states that monsters with a CR of ¼ get a proficiency bonus of +2, though I don't know if that is relevant here.

How do I calculate the animal companion's skill bonuses?

I would guess I ignore the skill bonuses given in the animal's stat block and calculate them as I would a PC.

Say I choose Stealth (DEX) and Survival (WIS) as the panther's skill proficiencies.

If my understanding is correct, the panther's skill bonuses are:

  • Perception +2 (ignoring the standard panther's skill bonus)
  • Stealth +4 (ranger's prof. bonus + DEX)
  • Survival +4 (ranger's prof. bonus + WIS)

Is that accurate? It almost feels like a downgrade (though when the ranger reaches high levels it won't be as bad).

\$\endgroup\$
7
\$\begingroup\$

The Companion gains new skills, doesn't replace them

The panther by default has proficiency in Perception and double proficiency in Stealth. These are not replaced by the 2 skills you get for the beast, but you can choose two new skills (emphasis mine):

Your animal companion gains proficiency in two skills of your choice.

As such, I don't recommend choosing Stealth as the panther seems to already has double proficiency for that skill1. This is especially good since that doubled proficiency will scale very well as you level. Extra bonuses like this are addressed in the Introduction to the Monster Manual:

Other modifiers might apply. For instance, a monster might have a larger-than-expected bonus (usually double its proficiency bonus) to account for its heightened expertise.

If you did choose Stealth and Survival, the panther would have these skills:

  • Perception +4 (ranger's prof + Wisdom modifier)
  • Stealth +6 (2*ranger's prof + Dexterity modifier)
  • Survival +4 (ranger's prof + Wisdom modifier)

Stealth wouldn't benefit again because you can't benefit from proficiency from more than one source.


1: It is possible but unlikely that the Panther just gets a flat +2 bonus to Stealth meaning the ranger's proficiency bonus wouldn't be doubled but the skill would be slightly higher (the same at levels 1-4). I know of 0 examples where a flat bonus is applied different than a monster's proficiency bonus.

\$\endgroup\$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.