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6,356 posts (6,424 including aliases). 14 reviews. 3 lists. 1 wishlist. 8 aliases.

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You Need This Book



Wow, where do I start? There is just so much in this book, and it’s not even the largest volume in the GM’s Miscellany series. I supposed we could start with the very basics. The .pdf comes in at 159 pages, and every page is a winner, jammed full of interesting events, objects, encounters, and more. It also comes in two versions, one for laptop or handheld device screens and one for printing; though with both documents being black and white with no color artwork I don’t think that’s really an issue. The font is clean and easy to read (I’m not up on my fonts, so I can’t say which one it is, however). The chapters are laid out in such a way that their contents can be quickly referenced and used by random dice rolling on the spot during a game or chosen specifically for a location or event. All in a well laid out book.


The contents are broken down into four main headings: “Features and Events”, “Folk”, “By Land”, and “By Sea”. Each of these chapters are further divided into myriads of other lists to go over that allow much greater customization in each of the primary chapters. There’s no way to really go into every subheading without going over the word limit for reviews, but suffice to say it covers every possible wilderness thing you can imagine stumbling across. The descriptions are setting neutral, very detailed but short, and can be dropped into any game for flavor or even as adventure hook. From folk tales and local contests and events to pirate ships and crews, this book is totally full of great ideas. I’ve used several as wilderness dressing, just as the title suggests, and my players, ever paranoid, are always on the lookout for what caused the fox to sneak through the camp at night to the classic remains of a raided caravan. If you’ve seen Creighton Broadhurst’s Friday freebies from this, its companion works, or upcoming releases, you’ll know what to expect.


The artwork, for the most part, is superb, and calls to mind the great black and white illustrations from the 1e supplements and old Dragon magazines, and in many ways can be used itself as a description of something stumbled across or way to start an adventure. There’s a bevy of contributing artists, all doing great work to compliment the encounters found in the pages of this .pdf or hardcover, whichever you own or prefer.


You need this book, whether you know it or not. If you’ve seen Creighton Broadhurst’s Friday freebies from this, its companion works, or upcoming releases, you’ll know what to expect. Great encounters, clues, adventure starters, or just plain curiosities, Wilderness Dressing is essential. Even if you’re a GM who’s a master at description and dropping things in games to entice or puzzle your players, Wilderness Dressing shouldn’t be passed up, because you’ll find ideas there you may never have come up with on your own. Buy this book. You won’t regret it. I give it Five Stars!

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I Needed This Class


To be honest, I think the game as a whole did. The Oracle and the Cleric, as well as the Druid, are great classes, don't get me wrong. But a non-combatant holy class was missing, and the Priest fills this role nicely.

There's not much I can say about the class that other reviewers haven't already. It's spellcasting is more Arcanist than Cleric, and the Divine Gifts are great additions to the class. And where the Channel Energy ability falls a little short compared to the cleric, there is a MUST HAVE feat, Powerful Channel. For the price of a fatigue round per number of HD channeled, the Priest can substitute a d10 for the d6 usually used to tally damage or healing. Just make sure to keep a protective hedge around the Priest until she recovers from the fatigue. And there's no reason a normal Cleric couldn't take this feat for even more bang, though the more combative role some Clerics take might suffer from the downtime. The other new feat is Extra Divine Gift, a nifty treat that allows you to gain another use of Divine Gift per day. Taking this feat more than once allows the Gifts to stack. There is a typo, however, in the "Special" section of the description, where it refers to "Divine Gift" as "Divine Boon".

The single archetype, The Chosen of Nature is interesting, being a Priest who draws from the Druid spell list. And beginning at 5th level it can cast Beast Shape or Plant Shape as a spell-like ability. It also adds the skills Handle Animal, Knowledge (Nature), Ride, and Survival to its skill set.

There's not much more I can add to what others have said. This is a great class and one I think the game has been needing. It's on par with every class Kobold Press has released in the New Paths line, which in and of itself makes it worth the purchase. I give The Priest Five Stars and wholly recommend it to any player, from novice to advanced. Good job again, Marc, Wolfgang, and the rest at Kobold Press!


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The Trickster from Kobold Press


The Trickster (Second Revision) Please see my addendum to this review at the end of the original.

The Revised Trickster receives a d8 for Hitpoints and 4 points plus INT bonus for Skills (though I may still house rule it gets its original 6 Skillpoints/level). Its spellcasting abilities are considerable, making it more versatile than the Bard where that is concerned as it draws its spell from the Sorcerer/Wizard list rather than having its own set of spells. With this vast amount of magic to choose from, it can go from buffing the party to outright damage dealer with no problem, though it can only cast a limited amount of spells per day and is limited to 6th level. It must have a spellbook with its spells in it, though it casts as a sorcerer using spell slots, allowing the casting of the same spell over and over until the slots of the appropriate level are gone.

As far as skills and proficiencies go, it has a nice selection of the former which borrows a little from the Bard’s list, as well. Combat wise it is proficient with all simple weapons plus the longsword, rapier, sap, short sword, shortbow, and whip. Light armor and shields are allowed, though not tower shields. The Trickster also gains a number of Rogue abilities. These include Trapfinding, Evasion, Uncanny Dodge, and Sneak Attack, though this last one caps out at +7d6. While that may not seem like much, it can augment this ability with other abilities that will be explained.

The unique things that set a Trickster apart from the Bard and the Rogue are its Fortes. There are five of these, and the Trickster must select one at second level. After that it cannot be changed. These are Acrobat, Arcane Accomplice, Beguile, Shadow, and my personal favorite, Spell Pilfer. The five Fortes are as follows:

Acrobatics gives the Trickster allows him to perform Acrobatics, Climb, Fly, Sleight of Hand, or Stealth checks while wearing light armor with no penalty. Wearing no armor at all allows for +2 to Acrobatic and Fly checks. The trickster is also considered to have a running start when it comes to jumping.

Arcane Accomplice allows the Trickster to gain a familiar as a wizard might. This stacks with any other ability it might have that allows familiars. The cool thing about the familiar is that it can sneak attack within 30 feet of its master, though it only does d4’s for damage instead of d6’s. It also adds Sleight of Hand and Disable Device to its skill list. It can also deliver harmless touch spells to a target, as well.

The third Forte is Beguile, which, among other things, gives it bonuses to overcome the Spell Resistance of a flat footed target. This begins at +1 and caps out at +3, making it a pretty handy trick to have. It can also use Bluff in combat to cast a spell on a foe during combat, denying it its DEX bonus, though the Trickster is still open to an AoO from its target unless casting defensively.

The Shadow Forte is the new addition to the list of the Trickster’s key abilities. Granting 30’ lowlight vision, or extending existing such vision by 30 feet is the least of this Forte’s gifts. Darkness or shadow spells are cast at the Trickster’s level +1. The great advantage from the Shadow Forte is at 5th level, where in bright light the Trickster can animate his own shadow, allowing the Trickster to flank an opponent, as well as doing 1d8 of negative energy damage to an opponent via touch attack.

The fifth Forte is, as mentioned before, my favorite, Spell Pilfer. This allows a Trickster to actually steal a spell from an opponent’s mind and use it against him, as long as it’s within a span of time equal to half the Trickster’s level (minimum 1 round) and the Trickster can cast a spell of the appropriate slot. At 9th level the Trickster can pilfer a spell of a higher level it can cast, though it cannot cast the spell, though it prevents the opposing caster from using it.

Other Trickster abilities include Crafty, which gives him +1 to one of the following skills: Bluff, Disguise, Escape Artist, Sleight of Hand or Stealth. This bonus increases by +1 at every third level thereafter, and can be applied to the same skill or one of the others on the list. The Trickster also gains a small number of bonus feats beginning at 6th level. These feats must be one of the following; Deceitful, Persuasive, Spell Focus, Spell Penetration, Stealthy or a metamagic feat. It gains another bonus feat at 12th and 18th levels.

Sneakspell gives the Trickster the ability to add spell damage to a successful sneak attack. This is one of the Trickster’s greatest abilities and is gained at 5th level, and on a critical hit the damage is doubled. If the attack misses, the spell is expended normally but does not take effect. At 17th level gains Improved Sneakspell, which means the spell is not lost but can be held until the next successful sneak attack is resolved.

9th level sees the ability Ranged Legerdemain come into play, allowing Sleight of Hand and Disable Device checks out to a range of 30 feet, though with a +5 added to the difficulty of the task’s DC.
14th level sees the introduction of Filch Spell, which allows the Trickster to wrest control of a spell away from the original caster.
Surprise Spells, gained at 15th level, the Trickster adds his sneak attack damage to any spell that causes damage. Care must be exercised in using this ability, because spells such as Fireball deals damage to everyone within its normal range, so friends, foes, and the Trickster itself could take damage from the spell being used. 20th level sees the Trickster at his most dangerous, maxing out its sneak attack at +7d6 and treating all 1’s and 2’s as 3’s on sneak attack damage, making him truly deadly at this level.

Let me talk a bit about the two archetypes, the Dual Forte Trickster and the new Forte Master Trickster, the latter being the big star of this revision. The Dual Forte Trickster is just what it says, a Trickster with the ability to use two fortes, but at the expense of spellcasting power. Maximum spell level has been reduced from 6th level to 4th to allow for the extra forte and its abilities. It's a pretty good trade off, in my opinion - a little less bookkeeping in exchange for some nifty tricks. At 6th level she can choose a second forte. The second forte is treated as though the Trickster is second level for purposes of utilizing the new abilities, and remains at -4 levels regarding the second forte until 11th level, where the level difference is treated as -2. The capstone ability at 20th level allows the Dual Forte Trickster to use both fortes at an equal level, giving it the full catalog of abilities from both. This is a modification to the Master Trickster ability.

The Forte Master Trickster is a nifty addition to the class. Like the Dual Forte archetype, it receives a cap of level 4 where spellcasting is concerned. But it gets a bucket load of new abilities to compensate. Each forte gets a boost at higher levels (11th and 14th). I won’t go into them all for reasons of word count, but I will touch on the biggest advantage to being a Forte Master; The Spell Pilfer gains the ability to steal divine spells beginning at 11th level. The target of this attempt receives a +2 to resist this attack. The Trickster can’t use this stolen spell, however, until he reaches 14th level, whereupon the divine spell may be cast the same as an arcane spell. This ability replaces the bonus feats gained at 12th and 18th level.

There is also new sidebar which talks about Trickster spells and balance, changing the magic schools to exclude Evocation and Necromancy, which is something I'm on the fence about, though I understand the reasoning behind these choices. I personally think the Trickster should be able to choose which two schools he excludes himself, but it's a minor quibble and one I'm sure won't be shared by everyone who uses the revised version. Overall I can say that I still love this class, revisions and all. It seems to be the perfect balance between Rogue and Spellcaster, able to provide a very skilled character whose abilities can be augmented by its own magic as well as serving in a support role as a backup spellcaster. Think of it as the sneaky version of the Magus. I give this class a solid 5 stars. Good work, Kobold Press!

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Terrific Product


Absolutely excellent product. The templates are easy to understand and implement and will make my encounters so much more interesting. And it's also one of the most beautiful PDF products I've ever seen. Great work!

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THE Definitive Psionics Book

****( )

This won't be a long review, because I can't compete with Endzeitgeist's excellent reviews. It's really a small list of glitches that affected my impressions of the books.

First, the good stuff. Fixes to original base classes are great and were necessary, as well as changing some of the feats and the addition of 0 level powers. All good. The expanded list of powers is amazing, and the new classes, for the most part, are pretty interesting. More on that in a second.

The artwork is good, not stellar but, but good. My only gripe with it is once again a female ophiduan was shown with hair and breasts. They're reptiles for Pete's sake, and it clearly says in their description they are hairless. Grr.

There are an uncomfortable number of typos and some awkward sentence structuring, but it's easy enough to extrapolate what's being said in each case. I wish that they'd proofread things a bit more thoroughly.

My biggest "gripe" is the Dread seems unnecessary in my book. It's focus is very narrow and would've made a better psion prestige class, in my opinion, just as the marksman would've been a better psychic warrior PrC.

Overall I'm going to give the book 4 stars, largely for the truly amazing amount of work that went into it. But the glaring typos and curvaceous ophiduan really bugged me.

Addendum. I received two copies 4 days apart with the same order number, though I only purchased one. I've been in touch with Paizo Customer Service and as soon as I get paid I'll be sending the extra copy back so that someone else might enjoy it.

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