The Strixhaven mascots make great familiars, but they’re a bit weak compared to the other options available after 1st level. The imp is clearly the power-play. It’s a CR 1 monster, not the 1/4 and 1/2. And while that’s not a significant problem, it’s one that can be fixed. What would you need to do to make the Inkling Mascot a more permanent companion/familiar?
Recently other companions are designed around un-fluffed stat blocks. The Primeval Druid has a beast, but all description is up to the to the player and DM. One of the players in the Uprising & Rebellion campaign is a multiclass Warlock-Rogue, who just leveled up in Warlock and took Pact of the Chain for the slightly boosted familiar.
Combining the player’s desire with recent history means I’ll be making a few adjustments to Nerinmil’s familiar.
First, the quick part. A bunch of stuff is going to get that character’s Proficiency Bonus (Stealth, to hit, a bonus Armor Class, uses of Ink Spray per Long Rest). We’re also going to add Perception as a proficient skill, because the player has mostly been a ranged attacker and spy who wants to enhance their current role via the familiar.
Because the player really liked the imp, I’ll be granting the ooze-y Improved Inkling resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage. Also, because of that spy role desire, I’m adding in a Reaction: Ichorous Form – When an opponent makes an opportunity attack the Improved Inkling may take use its reaction to flow around the attempted attack if it has perceived the attacker. That opponent than has disadvantage on its attack role.
We’ll also be boosting its mental attributes to Int: 10, Wis: 12, Cha: 10 and dropping the Strength to a 6.
Armor Class 16
Hit Points 18
Speed 10 ft., fly 45 ft. (hover)
STR: 6 (-3) | DEX: 16 (+3) CON: 14 (+2) | INT: 10 (-) | WIS: 12 (+1) | CHA: 10 (+0)
Skills: Stealth +6, Perception +4 (passive 14)
Resistances: Bludgeoning, piercing, slashing from non-magical weapons
Immunities: Psychic, Blinded, Charmed, Deafened, Exhaustion, Prone
Blot at +6 for 1d4+3 psychic
Ink Splot is now 3/Long Rest at DC 13
Reaction: Ichorous Form – When an opponent makes an opportunity attack the Improved Inkling may take use its reaction to flow around the attempted attack if it has perceived the attacker. That opponent than has disadvantage on its attack role.
This was a quick and dirty reskin and improvement based on conversations with the player. It works for the world, where the founder dragons from Strixhaven are part of the Ken’s power center. It works for the character, because his rogue class will eventually be a Propagandist. Using a amorphous ink thing to pick up rumors to put in the broadsheet is perfect.
tl;dr – reskin official creatures to make them appropriate for your world.