3e SRD:Improving Creatures

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This material is published under the OGL 1.0a.


This book lists only the weakest and most common version of each creature. The Advancement line shows how tough the creature can get, in terms of extra Hit Dice. (This is not an absolute limit, but exceptions are extremely rare.)

Creatures With Character Classes[edit]

If a creature acquires a character class, it follows the rules for multiclassing. The creature’s character level equals the number of class levels it has, plus the total Hit Dice for such beings.

A creature’s monster class is always its favored class, and the creature never suffers XP penalties for having it.

Additional Hit Dice from a character class never affect a creature’s size.


As its Hit Dice increase, the creature’s attack bonuses and saving throw modifiers might improve, and it could gain more feats and skills, depending on its type. Note that if the creature acquires a character class, it improves according to its class, not its type.


A creature’s type and Intelligence score determine the number of skill points it has. Some creatures receive bonus skill points for having Hit Dice in excess of what is normal for creatures of their size, as listed in the accompanying table.

Table:Creature Skills
Type Points Base Skill Bonus Points
Aberration 2xInt score +2/EHD*
Animal 10-15 -
Beast 10-15 +1/EHD
Construct - -
Dragon (6 + Int mod)xHD -
Elemental 2xInt score +2/EHD
Fey 3xInt score +2/EHD
Giant 6 + Int mod +1/EHD
Humanoid 6 + Int mod +1/EHD
Magical beast 2xInt score +1/EHD
Monstrous humanoid 2xInt score +2/EHD
Ooze - -
Outsider (8 + Int mod)xHD -
Plant (- -
Shapechanger 2xInt score +1/EHD
Vermin 10-15 -
Undead 3xInt score +2/EHD
*-EHD: Extra Hit Die. To calculate EHD for any creature other than an elemental, subtract 1 from the creature’s total Hit Dice if it is Medium-size or smaller; 2 if Large; 4 if Huge; 16 if Gargantuan; and 32 if Colossal. Treat results less than 0 as 0.
Size Increases[edit]

Creatures may become larger as they gain Hit Dice (the new size is noted parenthetically).

A size increase affects a creature’s ability scores, AC, attack bonuses, and damage ratings as indicated on the following tables.

Old Size* New Size Str Dex Con Armor Attack
Fine Diminutive Same -2 Same Same -4
Diminutive Tiny +2 -2 Same Same -2
Tiny Small +4 -2 Same Same -1
Small Medium-size +4 -2 +2 Same -1
Medium-size Large +8 -2 +4 +2 -1
Large Huge +8 -2 +4 +3 -1
Huge Gargantuan +8 Same +4 +4 -2
Gargantuan Colossal +8 Same +4 +5 -4
*-Repeat the adjustment if the creature moves up more than one size.
Old Damage (Each)* New Damage
1d2 1d3
1d3 1d4
1d4 1d6
1d6 1d8
1d8 or 1d10 2d6
1d12 2d8
*-Repeat the adjustment if the creature moves up more than one size category.

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