[RPG] How to a level 11 druid have a Dire Tortoise as an animal companion

dnd-3.5e

I do not understand how a level 11 druid by RAW can have a Dire Tortoise (from sandstorm) as an animal companion.

Best Answer

As per the Wasteland animal companions sidebar (p48):

Any of the listed animals are appropriate for a wasteland druid to select as an animal companion ... druids of sufficiently high level can choose the following animal companions ... Level 10 ... Dire Tortoise

Looking at the handbook, this creature is certainly accepted as the best creature to choose at this level. So, until level 14, at which point they get a Horrid Dire Tortoise this choice is quite significant. The only tradeoff is that they do need to be a wasteland druid (with the appropriate alternate class features.) This feature is a nice cherry on the rather remarkable sundae (7 flavours and counting) that comprises the 3.5 Druid. Take heart: they could be riding an armored and buffed Allosaurus instead.

(dire) Ice cream turtle provided for reference:

enter image description here