As a Wizard I have a quite high Initiative (at level 9 +18). My improved familiar (in this case a faerie dragon) has an initiative value of 3. Since I would like to do spell combos with him I am looking for a way to improve his initiative. How might this be achieved?


1 Answer 1


Most GMs will just have your familiar/companion/mount act on your initiative count, but this is basically up to GM taste and I'll assume that isn't the case here.

So Familiars are, by nature, more limited in their progression than animal companions. Their ability scores do not improve as their master levels up and they do not gain feats. Because of this, there are really only two options, as far as I can tell.


This is probably the most readily-available option for you. Familiars have the share spells ability, allowing you to cast spells with a target of "You" on your familiar. If you really want to, you can give it a heightened awareness or anticipate peril spell every so often (you'd probably want a wand). However you may be looking for something more permanent. In that case...

Magic Items

Familiars are creatures, and as such can make use of magical items. This will depend on their body type, as different creature forms only have specific slots available. See here for which slots are available to each creature type. If a belt slot is available to your familiar, they can wear a belt of incredible dexterity. Any creature that is intelligent enough (3+, and all familiars begin with at least 6) can make use of ioun stones, particularly the dusty rose prism ioun stone and its cracked variant which grant bonuses to initiative that stack with one another. There are tons of other options out there, so experiment with magical items that your familiar can equip.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Familiars can also exchange and/or retrain their initial feats, if the GM doesn't prohibit that. Most familiars start with 2 feats, e.g. the Faerie Dragon starts with Dodge & Acrobatic, and you could retrain Acrobatic to Improved Initiative. Familiars can also equip some kind of weapon (e.g. tail weapon), and if the weapon gets the Training enchantment, you can put the Improved Initiative (combat) feat into it. Faerie Dragons count as Sorcerers for spellcasting, so they can use wands with sorcerer spells, Pages of Spell Knowledge, Runestones of Power, … to cast the spells themselves. \$\endgroup\$
    – Theaitetos
    Feb 11 at 18:32

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