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I am checking the Monster Manual, and most of the monsters have one or more feats in their statblocks. When a wizard casts polymorph to transform into a monster, does she need to remove all the feats on it and re-calculate the data with her own feats? As things like Improved Natural Attack would go away, does she basically transfer into a lesser version of the targeted monster?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ About polymorph and HD, that’s really a separate question (and we have a policy of one question per Question), and more importantly, it’s a question we have already asked and answered. (If the linked question doesn’t cover everything you want to know about polymorph and HD, feel free to ask another question, but please explain what you need to know that isn’t covered by that question. I’m pretty sure it covers everything.) \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Nov 16, 2022 at 16:29

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This spell functions like alter self,

(Polymorph spell description)

You acquire the physical qualities of the new form while retaining your own mind. Physical qualities include […] racial bonus feats,

(Alter self spell description)

This is the only mention of feats in polymorph, so you get your new form’s racial bonus feats but not any other feats. The means you get the feats marked B in a creature’s statblock, and not the rest. Yes, that means you have to recalculate your stats based on your own feats that you keep, and based on the creature’s usual feats that you don’t keep. (Non-bonus feats listed in creature statblocks are really just the usual feats those creatures have; it is possible for an unusual individual creature to have different feats. For example, you, when you’re using polymorph 😜.)

As for whether or not this makes you a “lesser” version of the creature, that’s pretty much a matter of opinion: which feats do you like better, the creature’s default feats or your own chosen feats?

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