When I first bought the core rulebooks for Dungeons and Dragons 3.5, I did a cursory look through of all the books. One thing that stuck out to me was the fact that in the very back of the Player's Handbook, it showed the rules for the Polymorph Subschool. It struck me as odd for it to be all the way in the back, past all the indices and whatnot, on the very last page.

Why it was done this way? It makes it seem to me that it was an afterthought that they threw in there, but that wouldn't make much sense for a company like Wizards of the Coast to do that. Why wasn't it included at the end of the section on Magic?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to RPG.SE! Take the tour if you haven't already and see the help center if you need more guidance. Good Luck and Happy Gaming! \$\endgroup\$ – Someone_Evil Apr 29 '19 at 20:38
  • \$\begingroup\$ To be clear, you have the 2012 printing of the Player's Handbook, yes? \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Apr 29 '19 at 20:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ I am pretty sure that is the one, yes. I don't have it with me to verify though. \$\endgroup\$ – Greppo Apr 29 '19 at 20:50

It was not, originally, a separate subschool. Rather than edit the book itself—which would take a trained typesetter a non-trivial amount of work to make sure nothing got messed up—they just tracked it on to the end of the book in later printings.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Interesting, so it used to be part of other schools? Or more like an implied school based on the effects of certain spells? \$\endgroup\$ – Greppo Apr 29 '19 at 20:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ It may be worth mentioning that in the Player's Handbook that section is as misleading as it is superfluous—none of the PH spells actually use those rules (alter self, the polymorphs, and shapechange see their specific rules trump those general ones, and even the druid's wild shape now references alternate form from the Monster Manual). \$\endgroup\$ – Hey I Can Chan Apr 29 '19 at 21:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ That's kind of odd, thanks for the heads up! \$\endgroup\$ – Greppo Apr 29 '19 at 21:16
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Greppo It was an implied thing, those spells were simply Transmutation without subschool. \$\endgroup\$ – KRyan Apr 30 '19 at 1:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ Rules Compendium has the final version of the polymorph rules, iirc. \$\endgroup\$ – nijineko Apr 30 '19 at 19:04

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