When a spellcaster transforms an object or creature into a creature using the True Polymorph spell, does that creature form with equipment?

Example: if a spellcaster used True Polymorph to transform a twelfth level fighter into an Erinyes, would the Erinyes form with the plate armor, magical longsword, or rope of entanglement listed in its statistics block?

This isn't clear to me from True Polymorph's text, which notes the "target's game statistics, including mental ability scores, are replaced by the statistics of the new form", but this doesn't address equipment.


4 Answers 4


You get all of the creature's game statistics. This includes their default equipment, powers, etc (otherwise your game statistics would not be the same).

However, I think something like the alternate option such as the Rope of Entanglement would be very much at the DM's discretion. There's no clear RAW here, so it's definitely up to discretion.

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    \$\begingroup\$ While I don't disagree with this answer, it could use a little more support/reasoning in terms of what spells do, and what constitutes a stat block. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 31, 2019 at 15:15
  • \$\begingroup\$ I would say: Creature to Creature, No, it keeps what equipment it has; Creature to Object: Yes, it keeps its equipment in object form; Object to Creature : Depends - if you creature to objected a creature then it gets its equipment back otherwise you get nonmagical equipment \$\endgroup\$
    – David Fass
    Jan 27, 2020 at 19:38

A True Polymorphed creature forms without equipment

Though not official, this tweet from Jeremy Crawford indicates that you do not receive the equipment of a creature:

True polymorph: if you turn into a creature, you don't also get gear from the transformation.

(He clarifies in a followup tweet that the same also applies to other transformation spells.)

The interpretation of "A spell does (only) what the description says" is consistent with how spell effects are interpreted elsewhere, and equipment is not mentioned in the spell.

This interpretation also prevents the duplication of magic items (such as a Drow Matron Mother's Tentacle Rod) or artifacts that should otherwise be unique. This is pertinent considering that True Polymorphing a creature into an object carries the requirement that the object be nonmagical.

True Polymorph transforms the target into a creature

The True Polymorph spell uses the text:

Creature into Creature. If you turn a creature into another kind of creature, the new form can be any kind you choose...

The effect specifies that you choose a creature to turn into. Equipment is distinctly classified as Objects whether worn or carried by a creature. Even sentient weapons are considered objects.

As there is a separate spell effect for turning creatures into objects, the logical conclusion is that the Creature into Creature effect would not include this. The usage of the word "statistics" in this case in intended to indicate attributes, abilities, etc.

  • \$\begingroup\$ My intuition was that a creature would form with equipment, however I was unable to find anything in support of this. Though I do not generally cite Crawford as a source, I can find no reason to disagree with his interpretation in this case \$\endgroup\$
    – Blits
    Aug 9, 2019 at 0:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ An example of your last paragraph about duplicating magic items; true polymorph someone into a Githyanki Knight, and now you have a +3 Silver Greatsword. \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Aug 9, 2019 at 14:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ @NathanS I would include that example in the answer, however the sword "takes on the properties of a +3 greatsword in the hands of its creator" which seems aimed at preventing PCs from obtaining it. \$\endgroup\$
    – Blits
    Aug 9, 2019 at 14:36
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    \$\begingroup\$ Ah, nevermind then. But I'm sure there are other examples out there of creatures that have magic items included in their stat blocks, that was just the first one that occurred to me that I knew for certain. \$\endgroup\$
    – NathanS
    Aug 9, 2019 at 14:55
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    \$\begingroup\$ As the spell specifies that you only choose a "kind" of creature, which is distinct from a specific creature (as in the locate object spell), yes. I believe the language is consistent with the polymorph spell which allows only for beasts, which do not include equipment. \$\endgroup\$
    – Blits
    Aug 9, 2019 at 21:41

When you true polymorph into a monster you gain its usual equipment

Note that the true polymorph spell's description states:

The target's game statistics, including mental ability scores, are replaced by the statistics of the new form...

The question then becomes: "What count as creature's statistics?". Luckily, there is already an answer to that question here which has 20 upvotes, no downvotes, and is accepted, leading me to believe it is generally agreed upon. The answer uses the following quote from the Monster Manual (page 6):

A monster's statistics, sometimes referred to as its stat block, provide the essential information that you need to run the monster...

This allows one to define the following: If it is on its statblock, it is part of the monster's statistics.
The Monster Manual goes on with short sections on each part of a creature's statistics (pages 6-11):

  1. Size
  2. Type
  3. Tags
  4. Alignment
  5. Armor Class
  6. Hit Points
  7. Speed
  8. Ability Scores
  9. Saving Throws
  10. Skills
  11. Vulnerabilities, Resistances, and Immunities
  12. Senses
  13. Languages
  14. Challenge
  15. Special Traits
  16. Actions
  17. Reactions
  18. Limited Usage
  19. Equipment

A monster's equipment is included on its statblock and thus is included in its statistics. This is further supported by the simulacrum spell which states:

It appears to be the same as the original, but it has half the creature's hit point maximum and is formed without any equipment. Otherwise, the illusion uses all the statistics of the creature it duplicates, except that it is a construct.

There would be no reason to say that equipment are not created if equipment were not part of a creature's statistics. Thus, equipment are part of a creature's statistics.

true polymorphing into a monster will give you their usual equipment


Mundane Equipment

tldr: I allow the spell to create non-magical equipment in my own games (as that seems to follow precedent and eliminates some problems), but many creatures generate magical effects using mundane weapons

True Polymorph seems powerful enough to generate equipment, as creating objects is one of its options. Also (as mentioned above): creating an unequipped creature would play havoc with its stats, which is not fun and would slow down the game. Such alteration of stats does not seem to be intended by the authors, as indicated by the phrases "The target's game statistics, including mental ability scores, are replaced by the statistics of the new form" and "The GM has the creature's statistics"

However, True Polymorph is apparently not powerful enough to create magical objects, as indicated by its description "You transform the creature into a different creature, the creature into a nonmagical object, or the object into a creature". Plus: generating magical equipment could create havoc with the game. My players seem very understanding of such a restriction... especially since they are seldom allowed to loot those same 'magical' items from fallen foes, similar to:

In play this means either the creature generates magical effects using mundane weapons, or some attack effects may not occur (depending on my own judgement as DM). Since it's a 9th level spell, this seldom comes up (and at that level, the creature's gear is seldom a balance issue)


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