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I am making a level 11 witch. Looking at the viper familiar bonus for perception it's +9. What gives?

I know 4 is from race, and 1 is from WIS. Where is the other 4 from?

Ranks: 11
Race: 4
Class skill: 3
Wis: 1
Mystery: 4?

Total: 23?

Also, why is the bite damage 1d2-2. STR mod is -3. Shouldn't it be 1d2-3?

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closed as unclear what you're asking by goodguy5, Sdjz, GreySage, Purple Monkey, Xirema Mar 13 at 21:29

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • \$\begingroup\$ I understood most of the question but what is that other calculation starting with Ranks: 11 and getting a total of 23? \$\endgroup\$ – Sdjz Mar 13 at 18:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ wizard/witch familiars use the master's ranks to calculate the bonus \$\endgroup\$ – FrancisJohn Mar 13 at 18:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ I agree that as-asked, this question is unclear. \$\endgroup\$ – goodguy5 Mar 13 at 18:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ What are you using to get +23? I'm not seeing a problem with the normal viper's Perception skill: 1 rank +3 class skill +1 Wis +4 racial bonus = +9 bonus. That means a level 11 witch that's maxed out Perception would give her viper 11 ranks +3 class skill +1 Wis +4 racial bonus = +19 bonus. Where's +23 from? \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Mar 13 at 19:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Kyle's answer explained it. I didn't know it had one rank to start with as a class skill \$\endgroup\$ – FrancisJohn Mar 13 at 19:16
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The snake by default has 1 rank in perception as a class skill, giving it 1 from ranks, 3 from the class skill bonus, 1 from wisdom, 4 from its racial bonus to perception checks, for a total of +9. If the familiar's master has higher ranks in perception those ranks and the class skill bonus would replace the existing +4 bonus.

As for the damage, it is inconsistent. With its strength of 4, the damage modifier should indeed be -3, and the statistics for other familiars have no such inconsistencies. This may just be a typo or minor math error.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ (On the bite point, I think the developer misread If a creature has only one natural attack, it is always made using the creature’s full base attack bonus and adds 1-1/2 times the creature’s Strength bonus on damage rolls as the viper receiving for its one bite 1½× the viper's Strength modifier and gave the viper a little damage bump. <- Feel free to take that as your own, by the way. You figured out what the asker really needed.) \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Mar 13 at 19:49
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan Yeah, I was thinking it might be that, but they didn't do it with any other familiars, which is weird. I was also thinking they might have been copying over stat blocks from D&D 3.5 and accidentally referenced the small-sized viper, which does have a damage of 1d2-2. \$\endgroup\$ – Kyle Doyle Mar 13 at 20:41

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