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Ghalshoatan

James Thomas's page

Pathfinder Society Member. 244 posts. 6 reviews. 1 list. 3 wishlists.



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Pett's Crooked Deserves The CBE

*****

Richard Pett's Crooked, by far his best work to date, draws readers into a world of horror and supernatural adventure on the cyclopean scale of a decadent Empire.

The atmosphere is dark and always unsettling. The fantastic Industrial Age city of Brine has all the qualities of the worst Dickinsonian dystopia filled with drudgery, abuse, hopelessness and corruption. Pett addresses several social evils and comments on the worst of mankind's nature but doesn't leave us there. He shines a light on scattered individuals who bear through the tragedies and impossible circumstances of their lives with strength and nobility. So many of his characters, good and bad, have such a familiar air we easily relate to them and care about their goals and motivations.

Pett's protagonists are flawed but endearing. Klesh the undead museum curator, Angelica the strong and caring "everywoman" and Jared the hard-boiled churchman and supernatural investigator draw in the reader. You want to see them achieve their dreams though you know they have little chance in such a doomed setting.

In Brine, more and more of the corrupt and effete ruling class extend their lives becoming "The Reborn" through the power of a strange elixir of horrible manufacture. Meanwhile, the slum born, indefatigable working class citizens are on the brink of revolution; ready to shake off the chains of an ossified declining Empire.

Locations like the Empire Museum, the Asylum, the Abandoned Underground and the incredible Dreadnaught are gigantically scaled beyond the margins of reality. They are the stuff dreams are made of. Unsettling dreams, but wondrous and compelling.

Crooked could easily develop into a series of books and Richard Pett’s work designing Pathfinder adventures remind me the setting would work wonderfully as a backdrop for RPG gaming.

I anxiously await his next book!


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Quality Gamestuff!

*****

Scott Gable's It Came From The Stars balances between solid ground and forbidding outer space. The "stars" include nine high-calibre designers including, Clinton Boomer, Michael Kortes, Colim McComb, Richard Pett and David Schwartz! ICFTS includes new races and classes designed to deal with extraterrestrial threats in a Pathfinder gameworld. The otherworldly threats can be dropped into any setting be it Midgard, Golarian or homebrew. Despite the concise page count the product includes great new feats and magic items. Still its not over done and your players will need them to face the otherworldly threats found in four exciting short adventures. The cartography and art is beautiful and also make great handouts. And yes, there are printable players maps at the back of the product!
James says check it out!


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The Raven’s Call

*****

The Raven’s Call is no ordinary adventure. Set in Midgard it has fantasy elements all its own, but fits into any Pathfinder world. The premise of rescuing an entire town from a band of kobolds and trollkin seems a bit steep for a 1st level adventure. But Wolfgang Bauer pulls it off with some great designing. What makes this sandbox adventure great is the unpredictable ways players will come up with to solve the crisis. There are several interesting encounters allowing for different character skills to shine (always great to see in a published adventure). Enough details are given to allow a GM to respond to unexpected player actions while not bogging things down in a lot of text. The layout is well organized for ease in running a Pathfinder game. Sometimes a stat block will run over onto another page (a personal peeve of mine), but generally finding information when you need it is not a problem. Useful side bars give great tips for running the adventure.

The art is first rate. Wolfgang Baur well chose cover artist Aaron Miller and interior artist Michael Perry to showcase this introductory piece. I like the maps and they would make great handouts to players. As a GM I appreciate this flexibility. Art should not be merely for the GM to enjoy.

While designed as an introduction to Midgard, it is also an engaging stand-alone for a band of new characters. New players as well as veteran RPGamers will appreciate The Raven’s Call.


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Best KQ Ever!

****( )

There is good stuff and more of it in this Summer's issue! Worth the buy for Pathfinder gamers. You will find plenty of cool material for your PF RPG as well as showcases of the latest KQ products for PF like Tales of the Old Margreve. James says, "Check it out."


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One of the best 3rd ed Dungeons ever!

*****

Monte Cook's The Harrowing sold me on his creative talent. The Dying of the Light is the best vampire adventure I have ever read. Amistace and Demonclaw are very well done and Dungeon of the Fire Opal by Jonathan Tweet (author of the 3rd ed Monster Manual) is an old school treat. I got this one as a subscriber back in 2001 and I want to get another copy since the one I have is falling apart from use!


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