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Pathfinder Companion: Qadira, Gateway to the East (PFRPG)

****( ) (based on 4 ratings)
Pathfinder Companion: Qadira, Gateway to the East (PFRPG)
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GENIE MYSTICS AND DESERT GLORY

A hot-blooded realm of riches, slavery, and blood feuds, the desert nation of Qadira looks down upon foreigners, for all other lands are glass when compared with Qadira’s diamonds. Ogre mercenaries and soldiers on flying carpets keep caravans safe from bandits and strange beasts. Bound genies build majestic palaces or guard pompous wizards, while tribes of jann roam the deserts hoping to free all geniekind. Militant factions of Sarenrae’s faith rattle their sabers and train dervishes, while mages and scholars from across the world line up to attend Qadira’s prestigious academies. And through it all, the war-mongering satrap turns his ambitious eye toward Taldor and the lands to the west, ready to break the centuries-long peace if only the padishah emperor would give him permission.

This Pathfinder Companion describes the country of Qadira and its capital of Katheer, the city of a million caravans. Study the secrets of the daivrat, humans honored with the trust of wise and deadly genies! Learn how to tell a half-genie from a thin-blooded suli-jann! Unlock Qadiran secrets with new feats and traits! Everything you need to know to play a Qadiran character—or defend yourself against one—is right here!

Written by Brian Cortijo

Each bimonthly 32-page Pathfinder Companion contains several player-focused articles exploring the volume’s theme as well as short articles with innovative new rules for social, magic, religious, and combat-focused characters, as well as a persona section detailing helpful NPCs and traits to better anchor the player to the campaign.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-180-0

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

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Product Reviews (4)

Average product rating:

****( ) (based on 4 ratings)

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75% for GMs, 25% for Players (but well-written)

****( )

Qadira, Gateway to the East is a 32-page source book about what could be called the "Arabian Nights" area of Golarion. Retroactively listed as part of the Pathfinder "Player's Companion" line of books, this is probably as much or more for the GM rather than players. It's an impressive and well-written overview of the land, and there's definitely a lot of bang for the buck here. The book includes a full-color map of Qadira (sparsely annotated, to be fair) on the inside front-cover and is then separated into seven sections:

* A ten-page introduction to Qadira. This section discusses the history of the area, its political situation in terms of leadership and relationship to nearby lands, what goods are traded, and how the people are divided into four groups: nobles, citizens, slaves, and foreigners. It also includes descriptions of major cities and landmarks in Qadira. A sidebar introduces one new feat, one new combat trait, and two new regional traits.

* A four-page section labelled "Society." This is a quite useful overview of how the core races and classes are perceived in Qadira, and has a useful (if brief) discussion of cultural quirks. This section would be quite useful for players interested in creating a Qadiran PC. A new social trait appears here.

* A four-page overview of Katheer, an important city in Qadira. This section includes a half-page map, discussion of some major areas of the city, and four individual NPCs (description only, no stat blocks) that could come into contact with adventurers. Two new regional traits and an item are introduced here. This section is mostly for the GM.

* A two-page section titled "Combat" that consists solely of a prestige class called a Daivrat (a spellcaster who befriends genies). I've never played or seen one of these in a session, but the mechanical abilities don't seem to really do enough to draw out the flavour of the concept.

* Two pages titled "Faith." This section includes very brief discussions of the role of Irori, Sarenrae, Rovagug, Abadar, and Gorum in Qadira before introducing a pretty powerful new item ("War Kilt of Sarenrae") and a new feat ("Dervish Dance").

* "Magic," a short section that mentions some different traditions of magic in Qadira (like Veil Magic, Warding Magic, and Gen Magic) but unhelpfully doesn't cover in any detail whether these traditions have any real differences compared to the common schools of magic. Five new regional traits and the alchemical substance silversheen are introduced here.

* A six-page bestiary with stat-blocks for the half-janni, suli, and zhyen.

As best I can tell, much of this book was written before Paizo had clearly differentiated between its Player's Companion line and its Campaign Setting line. Qadira, Gateway to the East has much more in it of interest to GMs (a bestiary, an overview of a major city, etc.) than it does to players, while still introducing enough traits, feats, and even a prestige class to hold some value to players. It's a bit of a confusing mix, but, as I mentioned, it's a well-written product overall. More recent comers to Pathfinder might be warned that the artwork, although fine, is not up to the later Paizo standard.

As this review is being written, a new book about Qadira is on the horizon, titled (rather too similarly) "Qadira, Jewel of the East."


Excellent Introduction to the East

*****

This was the best organized and most coherent Companion yet. I haven't really appreciated most of this series so far as the Companions often feel like a random collection of odds and ends of limited usefulness. Qadira gave a thorough overview of the history, geography, society, and even culture of magic. Enough background to give me a solid feel for the nation. I might have wanted to see a Dervish PrC, but I found the Daivrat to be very original and a good read. In fact all the Djinnfo was well presented.
My only suggestion would be that the traits be collected together, but otherwise I really enjoyed this product. AND much appreciation for reconnecting gnolls with their ghoulish heritage!


like sand through an hourglass

**( )( )( )

These companions are not impressive at all. The cover is juvenile, interior art is silly, the maps are lack luster, and what's with the half-janni? On the plus side the bestiary has a couple of nice additions to the writer's tool box, new traits, feats, and material which will help players of Pathfinder Society, backgrounds of local beliefs, types of magic schools, a prestige class, a few pages obout Katheer, how races and classes are viewed, the part on genders is confusing from a role playing angle, and their views of cast in society. I wish they would have had more about things like seasons, a bit more statistics on every city, struggles inside Qudira, details like roads between towns on the maps and products for different regions and cities, and how they would feel about other countries in Pathfinder Society.


Makes me want to play in Qadira

****( )

I'll admit that I wasn't anticipating this book nearly as much as I was other releases. I tend to GM rather than play and Qadira was never one of the locations in Golarion that grabbed me.

Then I read it. This is a well-written, engaging book that has turned me on to this amazing nation in the setting and given me a caravan's load of new ideas for both sides of the screen. I especially love some of the new crunchy bits, like the suli race (which I think I might play in an upcoming Legacy of Fire campaign) and the zhyen familiar option.

I've been uninspired by past Companions either because of their content or their subject, but this book has made a huge impression on me. Plus, everything in it is 100% compatible with the new rules, so I don't even need to convert grapple to CMB and spot to perception. It's ready to go, right out of the gate.


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