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The Genius Guide to Dream Magic (PFRPG) PDF

****½ (based on 2 ratings)

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There’s something magical about dreams. In them we can be and do anything our minds can conceive, the laws of nature hold no sway, and despite the fact that they seem as real as the waking world you walk through, there are no consequences for any of the actions you take or injuries you may suffer. Dreams are real, yet unreal—which is also as perfect description of magic as you are ever likely to find. So it makes perfect sense to find a way to blend the two together for use in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

Dreams have often been associated with prophesy and other supernatural powers. People say they are sometimes visited in their dreams by the spirits of the dead, the forces of nature, and even the gods themselves. Upon waking, one’s head is often filled with inexplicable information, and stories persist of people even bringing important items back with them from their dreams. Bad dreams can haunt us during our waking hours and particularly powerful nightmares can sometimes cause us to injure ourselves while we sleep or even make sleep impossible entirely.

In fantasy fiction, the realm of dreams is often a real place that exists beyond the mortal world—somewhere that our minds wander when we sleep, and that we can physically travel to if we open the right magical doors. Different versions of this dream realm can be seen in books and movies (and a suggested reading/viewing list is provided at the end of this volume), but perhaps the most influential is H.P. Lovecraft’s Dreamlands—a place where whole lives are lived, destinies forged, without most residents ever even being aware of our “real” world.

While dreams play a strong role in fantasy fiction, they are underserved in terms of game rules. The Genius Guide to Dream Magic provides a way to bring the power and influence of dreams into your campaign in a more than superficial way. It contains a collection of new spells (many of which feature the new [dreaming] descriptor) plus a sorcerous bloodline, clerical domain, and wizard specialty that focus on this new dream magic. It also describes the Dreamscape—an ever-changing demiplane where dreamers, and sometimes waking characters, can go—and the creatures that call it home.

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Product Reviews (2)

Average product rating:

****½ (based on 2 ratings)

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Dream a little Dream for me...

*****

This pdf is 16 pages long, 2/3 of a page front cover, 1 page editorial and SRD, leaving 14 1/3 pages of content for the magic of dreams, so let’s check it out!

The underrepresented realm of dreams and their power are the focus of this Genius Guide and, after a short introduction that mentions Lovecraft’s Dreamlands as inspiration (that does bode well indeed!), we are introduced to the new [dreaming]-descriptor, which denotes spells that only affect sleeping creatures. Additionally, only a limited amount of dreaming-spells can affect the same creature, hinting at a rather beneficial, buffing nature of said spells.
Surprisingly, though, the pdf does not start with a discussion of spells, but rather an entry on the dreamscape, the physical demi-plane of dreams where waking world and dream mingle. Concise and cool rules are presented for forays into the realm of dreams and some of the limitations and peculiarities are quite profound and may stymie some PCs until they have learned the rules of this mutable place. My first thought upon reading this pdf was “Coliseum Morpheuon” – while not explicitly designed that way, I’m quite sure that a campaign featuring the plane of dreams might benefit from scavenging some of the ideas herein.

Next up are 13 new spells. “Doze” lets you remain alert while sleeping, there are greater and lesser variants of the classic dream-spell and doze enables non-sleeping characters to sleep and dream (though elves do dream and don’t need this one). “Fell Sleep” is a combination of deeper slumber and some nightmares that leave the enemy shaken. The “Lucid Dreamer”-spell is necessary for maximum functionality of PCs in the dream-scape. The true stars of this pdf, though, are “Morpheus”, which lets you teleport via your dreams (and take others with you!),” Oneirmancy” which lets you witness another’s dreams and thus gain a deeper understanding of them and “Phantasos”, which lets you conjure up non-magical dream-items – very cool and a lot of potential for creative problem-solving.

I didn’t have a problem with a single spell in this pdf. In fact, I liked them ALL. Now let’s take a look whether the additional material holds up!

The new sleep domain is a solid addition, its nap ability granting a full rest if a target sleeps at least one hour. It’s ok, though I would have loved some sandmanish abilities to complement it. The new dreamscape bloodline is mechanically interesting, as it essentially grants the sorcerer the ability to use evocations and later conjurations in more or less the same manner as with shadow evocation and conjuration respectively and finally making them much more real. The new wizard specialist focuses on nightmares and is a rather jaded practitioner of his fear-inducing craft, getting SR against [fear]-spells and effects.

Next up are two templates, the dreamlander (CR +0), who is a native to the realm of dreams and the Nocnista, who is a dreamlander that can physically hurt sleepers from their dreams, much like famous boogeyman Freddy Krüger.

The pdf closes with a list of suggested reading/viewing that easily explains why the ideas in this pdf are so well-crafted.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any glitches. Layout adheres to the three-column standard, artwork is stock-art and the pdf has no bookmarks. I’m all excited for this pdf: The spells rock, the templates are cool, the dreamscape-ideas are cool and can easily be merged with other rules. The alternate class options all have at least one ability I liked, though they are somewhat less brilliant than the spells. For the low price you a get a lot of awesome quality material and yours truly doesn’t have anything to complain about but the fact that I want more!

My final verdict will be 5 stars.
Endzeitgeist out.


Genius Guide to Dream Magic by Otherworld Creations.

****( )

This product is 16 pages long. Page 1 and 2, cover and introduction, with talk about which spells in the PFRPG should have the Dreaming subtype.

2 pages about the dreamscape a demi plane of dreams. It talks about the plane with a small section on how to get there and two paragraphs about what types of creatures could be found there.

Little bit over one page of spell lists. 5 pages of new spells, there is 13 new spells.

The next part is new options with 3 pages. Sleep Domain, Dreamscape bloodline, Nightmare specialist(a wizard that focuses on fears)

It finishes with 2 pages for dreamscape template and Nocnista template. Two different templates to give to monsters found in the dreamscape plane. The rest is taken up with suggested reading and viewing.

With the final page being credits and the OGL.

Closing thoughts. I really really liked this book, I liked most of the spells and the quality of production and work is what one has come to expect from Otherworld Creations. The art goes from fair to good. My biggest complaint about this is... it doesn't go far enough. It is like a appetizer to a fine meal, but there is no entree. It is a good read but just feels a bit incomplete, it left me really wanting to know more about the dreamscape and for more magic. What spells there are is good, but I wanted to see magic and a section on fighting in the dreamscape or invading other peoples dreams, etc. Just more of what there was. If you like the topic of dream planes or magic then you will like this book but likely end up like me, left wanting more. That shouldn't discourage you from buying it, it is still a very good buy. I just think this topic would have been better suited to at least a 32 page product if not more. So I am giving it a 4.5 star rating. It's very good but I think it could have been better with more pages.



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