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Nicos's page

RPG Superstar 6 Season Star Voter, 8 Season Star Voter. Pathfinder Society Member. 10,347 posts (16,180 including aliases). 13 reviews. No lists. 2 wishlists. 30 aliases.



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*****

Disclaimer: I participated in the creation of first Villain codex but have no participation in this one in any form.

The book present 12 villainous NPCs with fully detailed statblocks. They are two CR9, two CR 10, two CR 11, three CR 12, one CR 13 and two CR 14. We have a variety of classes and races, from elves to nagajis and no class was used twice.

All the Npcs comes with a description, detailed combat tactics, goals and plots.

Mechanical wise, I can't not say that there is no mistake but I didn't see one, and even if they exist, I doubt they stop you from using the NPcs just fine

So we have 12 statblocks ready to be used by the DM on the fly, but it is there more about this villains that makes them great? Well, mostly yes. Their goals and plots give concrete ideas about how to use them in a campaign, you can use these ideas to create a whole adventure around them.

Unfortunately, I have a problem with one of the NPCs. There is a paladin in this motley crew and I just feel she fell short. Basically all the other NPCs has villainous plots that if the PC don't do something then bad things happen. But the Paladin just feels like someone the players will be annoyed with, and that is all, she present no threat. There is an advice about how to make her overstep her code and lose her powers, but why a good character (or even a neutral one) would want to do that?.

One huge improvement this book have over villain codex I is the appendix section. Here we have the statblocks for familiars, Eidolons and other things that would have occupied too much space in the main NPC entry. This free space in the NPC entry so the writer can give more detail about the NPc descriptions and plots and overall improve the quality of the villain.

Overall I feel somewhat sad because I like the idea of paladins as villains but the rest of the product seems flawless.


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****( )

This time Dire Rugrats present a tavern that will not be comfortable for the Pcs but that is filled with adventuring opportunities.

Tuffy's Good Time Palace is a rather bad taver, the kind of place that most adventures with some self respect will avoid.

Inside this product you will find the description of the tavern, the NPCs that frequents it and some rumors and events to use.

The description of the tavern is well done, the Pcs surely will quickly get the point of what kind of place is Tuffy's.

The NPcs vary from very interesting to interesting enough. The description of the NPCs is well done, they have motivation and personality. This have been a strong point in tangible taverns line.

Now, this product is an improvement over the last one (the bull and the bear) in the sense that it provides clearer adventuring opportunities, reasons for the PC to spent some time in the tavern, and reasons for they to care and learn about the NPCs.

The weak side of the book is an all-female mercenary group, the stunning blades. By themselves they are good written NPCs, that the GM can use at any campaign in case he is in a hurry to improvise or something. But they are almost unrelated to the rest of the book, you could take them away from the product and nothing else will be compromised. IMHO, this space should have been used to give even more rumors, events and adventuring opportunities.

There are some typos too. Normally I care little about typos since I'm not a native speaker and don't detect them, but this time I did (the most glaring one is a guy that is described as unintelligent and unwise have wisdom 18 in the stats)


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I enjoyed reading the pdf. The best part are the NPcs, I found most of them to be interesting.

Now, as a one shot the pdf serves perfectly well, it names a couple of NPcs and give some description so the players feel the atmosphere and that is it.

However, I think there a missed opportunities everywhere. The tavern could serve as a place where the PCs return time after time in between their main adventures. The pdf would have been stellar if it would have provided adventure hooks tied to each NPCs, giving the players a reason to interact and get involved more and more with them. There are some events listed but for most of them I don't see any reason for the PCs to intervene.

the two guards needs to be of higher level, some of the courtesan could beat them in a 1 vs 1 fight.


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Great book

*****

Very useful to surprise your players with unexpected twist of old monsters.


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Large Collection of Useful ideas.

*****

Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange of an honest review.

From the other people's in deep reviews you know the book is full of tables filled with ideas and details that help to flesh out your wilderness based campaign. As a DM with a lack of descriptive prowess I found this book and it's campaign dungeon dressing to be invaluable tools, even a minor description like "The snow falls in heavy flakes, which make a
whispering sound as they fall to the ground." is way better than "it is snowing".

Now, examples like the above are really great but what really blow my mind are the ideas for adventures a single entry can inspire, in every section there was entries that could be expanded into hooks for new adventures.

In that regard the chapter about Folks is a personal favourite, tons of interesting ideas for NPC, roll a dice and suddenly an encounter with a random traveler is now an interesting event.


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