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Advanced Options: More Cavalier Orders (PFRPG) PDF

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The Advanced Player’s Guide introduced the cavalier as a new class: the mounted knight whose power comes as much from the conviction of his ideals, the oaths that he swears, and the challenges that he makes as it does from sheer force of arms. The cavalier class is flexible and customizable through the use of cavalier orders—a themed focus for the character built around the ideas of a chivalric order. The Advanced Player’s Guide presents six possible orders, each granting the cavalier a number of bonuses, class skills, and special abilities, as well as a number of edicts that the cavalier must follow.

The orders detailed in the Advanced Player’s Guide are interesting, well balanced, and cover some of the most common tropes in which a cavalier’s player is likely to be interested. However, compared to the number of clerical domains or sorcerer bloodlines, six is a tiny sample of possible options for cavalier customization. To help expand this list Advanced Options: Cavaliers’ Orders presented six additional orders from which the cavalier could choose. Since more choice is almost always a good thing, Advanced Options: More Cavalier Orders presents even more new cavalier orders! Although these two books work well together, nothing in them overlaps, and players do not need the original Cavaliers’ Orders to use everything in More Cavalier Orders.

A GM who wants to add new cavalier orders to a campaign has numerous options. The easiest method is to assume that these orders have always existed. If the players and/or GM want more verisimilitude in the campaign world, perhaps these could represent brand new orders that have only recently come into prominence. Alternatively, these orders might have existed for quite some time, but were previously unknown to the PCs. Perhaps an order might have originated in a different part of the campaign world and has only recently become active in the PCs’ part of the world.

The seven new cavalier orders presented herein are as follows.

Order of the Bow: A cavalier who belongs to this order is dedicated to mastering the bow and mounted archery in particular. Cavaliers of this order see perfection in archery as an outward manifestation of inner perfection.

Order of the Citadel: Cavaliers who join the order of the citadel dedicate their lives to the ideals of teamwork, bravery, and valor in combat. Cavaliers of the citadel are often seen as the ultimate soldiers, willing to give and obey difficult orders and lay down their lives in the performance of their duty.

Order of the Raven: Grim enforcers of their lord’s safety and lawbound servants of that lord’s will, cavaliers of the order of the raven wrap themselves in dark colors to enhance their function as warnings to those who would oppose them. To members of this order, a harsh appearance and gruesome reputation are as effective as a sharp sword and swift lance charge.

Order of the Shroud: A cavalier who belongs to this mysterious order is dedicated to hunting down and destroying undead. Cavaliers of the shroud see life and death as a natural cycle, and undead are a vile and unnatural violation of that cycle. Although a few cavaliers of the shroud recognize that not all undead are evil, the majority see little distinction and are more than willing to destroy neutral and good undead along with the evil ones.

Order of the Trident: Cavaliers belonging to this order frequently come from aquatic races such as sea elves, tritons, merfolk, locathah, and sahuagin. Cavaliers of the trident are dedicated to the pursuit of various goals pertaining to the sea. However, like the sea, those goals can be wildly different and ever changing. Some cavaliers of the trident nobly dedicate themselves to protecting the creatures of the sea while others selfishly work to plunder and exploit the sea’s vast resources.

Order of the Unicorn: Cavaliers who belong to this order are staunch protectors of nature. The order is open only to females of exceptionally pure virtue. Cavaliers of the unicorn are great enemies of evil and particularly seek out those who harm animals or damage the local ecosystem unnecessarily. Order of the Wolf: This order is most often taken by the champions and legendary warriors of less civilized clans and tribes, especially orc and half-orcs. The order of the wolf cavalier is a fierce defender and supporter of the clan, working to further its best interests regardless of what others think of the cavalier’s actions.

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Product Reviews (3)

Average product rating:

***** (based on 3 ratings)

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More Great Orders for Cavaliers

*****

While Endzeitgeist and Dark_Mistress have done their usual amazing jobs reviewing this PDF, I feel like adding a few words of my own as well.

As stated, it contains seven new cavalier orders, all of them amazing on both a game and story level. They have some very well done background and flavor written in, and I can only think of one I'd likely never use myself.

The Order of the Bow is for anyone who ever wanted to play a Byzantine cataphract or Persian savaran; indeed, it allows to make some of the most dangerous archers I've ever seen in the game. If you want to play a mounted archer with some social skills and decent armor, your quest ends here.

The Order of the Citadel is for players who enjoy handling and leading in combat, especially in a military campaign. Really, this order would go perfectly with the Battle Herald prestige class from the Advanced Player's Guide. Or it could make for a fine leader of troops all by itself!

The Order of the Raven is for someone who wants to play a cavalier who is scary without being necessarily evil. One of my favorites, Raven Order cavaliers work as great lieutenants to leading villains or as frightening allies for PC leaders.

The Order of the Shroud is focused on battling the undead. Depending on the campaign style and how much undead you face, this will be either too specialized or a must-have.

The Order of the Trident is specialized for underwater and ocean-going campaigns and adventures. As I rarely do such, for me it has little use, but if you enjoy such a campaign this is almost a necessity. And it has a good list of underwater mounts as well.

The Order of the Unicorn is for the classic virtuous maiden knight defending nature. Great for nature-oriented adventures and campaigns, and hey, you get to ride a unicorn at 8th level.

The Order of the Wolf is easily my favorite for one simple reason, you get a wolf or dire wolf mount. It also focuses on teamwork feats more than many other orders, and on working even better with your mount than many another cavalier. It is also mainly an order for members of savage races and tribes, so if you ever wanted to throw an orc or goblin cavalier against your PCs, here he is!

It closes out with three new feats, one specifically for cavaliers, one for anyone specializing in mounted combat, and one for non-cavaliers. A very, VERY fine bargain at the price listed.


Even better than the first book

*****

Advanced Options: More Cavalier Orders by Super Genius Games

This product is 11 pages long. It starts with a cover and forward. (1 ½ pages)

New Orders (8 ½ pages)
This part introduces 7 new Orders for the cavalier. They are
Order of the Bow – A mounted archer focused order. Could be used to make masters of the mounted archer. I was thinking this could work well for making a Hun like society.
Order of the Citadel – A tactics, teamwork and leadership focused cavalier. Can buff allies and command NPC allies effectively. I liked this one a lot.
Order of the Raven – A grim enforcer to their sworn lord. Not shinning knights in the slightest, these are the enforces who do what they must for the greater “good” Made me think a bit of the Operative from the movie Serenity. My only issue was the limited spell casting coming at level 15, with the works like a cleric with a limited spell list but at -14 levels makes it of pretty limited use.
Order of the Shroud – A order focused on killing undead.
Order of the Trident – A aquatic based cavalier. Great for those campaigns that focus on undersea. Would be a great addition to Alluria Publishing Cerulean Sea product. Very well suited to such undersea campaigns and it comes with stats for 8 aquatic mounts.
Order of the Unicorn – A all female order that is focused on protection, while they do focus on protecting nature. They also protect the home and things including people that live with nature. They get a unicorn as a mount at 8th level.
Order of the Wolf – a tribal or clan focused cavalier. They are self appointed protectors of their clan or tribe. They often take wolves or dire wolves as mounts. There is stats for a dire wolf mount.

It ends with three new feats.
Knightly Focus – pick one class or order ability and count as if 4 levels higher.
Mounted Specialization – bonus to, to hit and dmg rolls while mounted.
Squire – you was a squire, gain bonuses to order recommend skills.

It ends with a OGL and credits. (1 pages)

Closing thoughts. The art work is black and white and is just of the order symbols plus the cover image of course. Editing and layout was good I didn't notice any errors. The feats where all pretty good and fit the theme of the class very well. I thought all the orders where well done and very interesting with the exception of two. Order of the Raven I felt their final limited spell casting was a bit weak, good for minor self buffing and such. Order of the Shroud while pretty cool and well done, kinda treads on occupied ground by other classes a bit, as killing undead is really their only focus. But still I liked all the orders and I thought this one was better than the first.

More chances was taken and the orders more unusual which is a very good thing. Orders of the Bow, Citadel, Trident and Unicorn where all outstanding. While the orders of the Raven, Shroud and Wolf where just merely good. So what's my rating? Well I really liked it but think with how good some of the orders where it could have still been better. So maybe my expectation have just gotten high. Regardless I am giving it a 4.5 star review.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.


Excellent cool new orders for the cavalier, vastly superior to its predecessor

*****

This pdf is 11 pages long, 2/3 of a page front cover, 1 page editorial & SRD, leaving 9 1/3 pages of content.

The pdf kicks off with a short discussion on the nature of cavalier orders and presents a summary of the 7 new ones contained herein, 1 more than in this pdfs predecessor.

The first Order is already more original than almost all from the first pdf, being the Order of the Bow, an order that (Surprise!) focuses on mounted archery. Seeing that up until now this niche has not yet been covered well by the class, I consider this to be a nice addition. Especially the lvl 15 ability that lets the Cavalier end a mounted charge with a ranged attack is quite a nice one. If you’re the Cavalier and not on the receiving end of the charge, that is.

The next Order, the Order of the Citadel, focuses on battlefield command and tactical support of his allies, featuring the ability to issue commands that grant significant bonuses to his allies, going so far as to offering a selection 5 decisive commands in addition to the standard battlefield support, making this mechanic a) more versatile than a single one and b) actually pretty useful, as e.g. one of the tactics enables the cavalier to grant his allies his Cha-mod as morale bonus to their crit-confirmation rolls, initiative and ref-saves –Neat!

The Order of the Raven acts as a kind of dark enforcer for a lord, and, while not necessarily evil, they usually are feared. They are quite adept at demoralizing foes and generally speaking, I much prefer them to the one-dimensional oh-so-evil cardboard cut-out Order of the Skull. My only, minor gripe with this class is the lvl 15 ability that once again nets the Cavalier limited spellcasting at his level minus 14, which at this level is simply neither impressive, nor too useful. Plus, I’ve said it once and will say it again: The Cavalier, at least to me, is a rather worldly class and would be better suited for some supernatural or unique ability.

The next on the list is the Order of the Shroud, a dedicated undead slayer whose challenges are especially lethal against the living dead and who get usage to channel energy, but only for smiting purposes. Unfortunately, there’s a minor formatting glitch here: A part of the order’s cool crest’s white background conceals approximately one fourth of the letters of the first column on page 6 – while still decipherable, it’s still a glitch that could be avoided.

And now comes one of my favorite Orders from this pdf, the Order of the Trident, which focuses on aquatic combat – now that’s a bit out of the ordinary, gathered, but it can be a godsend and offers for some rather interesting new concepts with regards to what one think of when the term “Cavalier” is uttered. Even better, a smattering of sample aquatic mount stats are presented that range from the obvious dolphins, whales, sharks and orcas to the rather cool giant morays, manta rays and even 2 kinds of dinosaurs –now if that’s not cool, I don’t know what is. If you happen to own Alluria Publishing’s Cerulean Sea campaign setting, be sure to check this order out.

The penultimate Order is one of those iconic ones one practically has to like: An all-female Order of the Unicorn, who even can get the legendary creatures as mounts. The rules for the pure mounts are analogue to those of the Order of the Griffon from the predecessor and, while not necessarily the solution I would have chosen for the mount’s advancement, definitely work, though as a DM I would impose some restrictions with regards to the class-levels the mount can take.

The final Order is dedicated to the Wolf, a barbaric scion of a tribe who can inspire allies via pack tactics but also work alone. More importantly, though, he gains an extremely iconic direwolf mount. Oh yeah! Unfortunately, once again, the heraldic crest’s white background is somewhat superimposed over parts of some letters and while not impeding usability, it is somewhat annoying.

Finally, there are three new feats: One grants you +4 cavalier levels for the purpose of one of your abilities, one increases a mounts atk and damage and the final one, squire (intended for non-cavalier classes), lets you gain the skill-bonuses and class skills of an order of your choosing, but only as long as you do not violate the teachings of that order. This is a feat I really enjoy, as it practically combines a substantial, yet cool benefit with a background for your character, namely having served a squire. You don’t have to be a genius to come up with some neat ideas resulting from that.

Conclusion:
Editing is top-notch, I didn’t notice any glitches. Unfortunately, the same does not hold tue for formatting, as I’ve mentioned in the review. Layout adheres to the 3-column standard and the pdf has no bookmarks. The front cover by Redpeggy is beautiful and the b/w-crests for the orders are a nice touch. All in all, I’m very pleased to say that this book is superior to its predecessor in each and every way imaginable: Designer Marc Radle with Owen K.C. Stephens has trumped his last shot at orders by a huge stretch: While the Orders presented herein still remain easy to integrate in every campaign setting out there and are generic, they all offer enough touches, nooks, ideas to make them captivating in some way. Be it via an interesting, ability, a cool mount or just iconic imagery, they all serve a certain theme that goes beyond being the bland fulfillment of a trope. My only very minor mechanical gripes are the “spellcasting at level minus 14”-mechanic, which I consider useless and the class levels for the unicorn mounts, but these are personal preferences and not necessarily something I can hold against this pdf. Indeed, when all’s said and done my only true gripe with this pdf lies with the minor formatting glitches. If they would make parts of the text unintelligible, I’d detract a whole star. As the lines are only partially obscured, cutting of parts of capital letters, though, I’ll only detract the half star that separates a very good file from an outstanding one, resulting in a final verdict of 4.5 stars, rounded up to 5 for the purpose of this platform and making this, in my opinion, one of the best advanced options books.

Endzeitgeist out.


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