Inspired by this question: what are the most and least resisted damage types for Pathfinder 2e? What about weaknesses? (This question precedes the release of Bestiary 3, but it seems to me that Bestiaries 1 and 2 would probably establish a strong enough trend that it would hold with the third.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ Note that even when Bestiary 3 does release, the question could simply be bountied to have answers match the new information. The answers might even get updated without a bounty, potentially \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 12, 2021 at 15:18

2 Answers 2


Fire is the most resisted, Sonic the Least*

*of the typical "energy damage types".

Each link is to a hopefully evergreen Archives of Nethys query so that you can view which creatures those are and how many there are; feel free to update the numbers if they've changed. They were last updated en masse per the Feb 26 2022 AoN update. The results:

Acid Cold Electricity Fire Sonic
Immune 65 72 49 119 7
Resist 126 186 154 223 105
Weak 4 68 28 87 10
Negative* Positive** Mental† Poison Force
Immune 16/340 3/2061 158 566 0
Resist 109 28 144 163 9
Weak 5 57 6 0 2
Bludgeoning Piercing Slashing Physical Bleed
Immune 2†† 10 12 0 143
Resist 323 379 356 274 84
Weak 21 12 60 3 1
Lawful Chaotic Good Evil
Immune 1685 2001 1205 2209
Resist 28 18 58 2
Weak 20 12 139 33
Cold Iron Silver Orichalcum Nonlethal
Immune 0 0 0 120
Resist 83 84 84 0
Weak 200 26 20 0

Note that there are 84 creatures that have resistance to all with some caveats, so the resistance numbers for many types are inflated. A lot of these have carveouts for positive, force, and ghost-touch, though.

*Second number is sum of creatures specifically immune to negative damage and the number of undead creatures.

**Second number is sum of creatures specifically immune to positive damage and the number of NOT undead creatures.

†Sum of mental immunities plus mindless creatures. I didn't see the value in having a separate number, since it's a lot harder to determine whether someone is mindless visually than living/undead.

††AoN seems to be mistakenly picking up an immunity to "critical hits (except bludgeoning)" as a bludgeoning immunity; there's actually only 1 creature with bludgeoning immunity.

‡AoN doesn't have a specific option for searching this with numbers like the others, and given there's no results I can't actually assume the query is working, but I believe it is.

So as you can see from all of that, Fire is going to be a very interactive damage type. Sonic is the most consist "elemental" damage, and having access to Cold and Fire damage should cover most elemental weaknesses. Poison and Mental are strictly inferior damage types, and Force (as usual) is a strictly superior damage type. Make sure to grab a cold iron bludgeoning weapon, or a slashing weapon if you want more weaknesses at the cost of more immunities and resistances.

Notes on Interpreting the Data

A lot of campaigns will have certain sorts of creatures that you are more likely to encounter than others; this can change what the best damage types for your campaign are. Look at these queries and filter by Creature Families ("Show All Filters" -> "Creature Families"), but with your GM's permission; your GM might not want you to know (since it might not be common knowledge) about weaknesses to relevant creature families.


This is available, in somewhat incomplete form, for Bestiary 1

While I'm not aware of a source that has done this analysis for all currently printed creatures, an enterprising individual on Reddit manually combed through Bestiary 1 to work this out for that book. Their analysis comes with some qualifiers, namely:

  • Positive and Negative damage was not considered, due to the large numbers of creatures immune to each.
  • Alignment based damage was not considered, due to being subject to GM discretion.
  • Weapon damage types were not considered, as many weapon resistances have built in means to bypass them.

Recreating the table of the post's data below, we see that:

  • Fire is most commonly resisted, while Force and Sonic are least commonly resisted
  • Poison is by far the most common immunity, while Sonic and Force are the least common immunities
  • Fire and Cold are the only significant weaknesses, and are similarly common
Acid Cold Electricity Fire Force Mental Poison Sonic
Resistant 17 23 24 37 2 16 15 12
Immune 16 16 11 41 0 29 82 0
Weak 0 22 0 26 0 0 0 1
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    \$\begingroup\$ I think that table might be missing a few entries that don't follow the standard format. Iron Golem for example takes extra damage from Acid, which isn't included on the table. This comment would probably be more useful on the Reddit post, but that's a year old. \$\endgroup\$
    – WeirdFrog
    Commented Jan 12, 2021 at 19:35

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