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Evocative City Sites: Eiffelmacher Estates (PFRPG) PDF

***½( ) (based on 3 ratings)

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"I am an explorer, a man of action, and foiler of nefarious plots. Come read my book, Evocative City Sites, as I, Owain Northway, Come enter the forgotten manor and pirate cove, see the depravity and horror of the Spotty Bottle Gang. Gather close, I will tell you of the Eiffelmacher Estates."

Evocative City Sites is a Pathfinder Roleplaying Game-compatible supplement detailing small locations that you could find in any urban campaign setting. This site is detailed with its own cartography, a 1-inch to 1 square scale map pack, and four unique npcs, all presented in the unique, useful, and entertaining form of Owain Northway's first person point-of-view guidebook.

Eiffelmacher Estates is set upon the shores of the Shadowfey Sea having become a place where pirates can safely unload thier goods. The pirates find safe haven here due to the blessings of the diety known as Our Father of Wind and Wave granting them good fortune against the various haunts that prowl the grounds of the sprawling estate.

This product includes:

  • Fortune-blessed human rogue 5 (CR 5)
  • Entropy-infused (saltwater) fortune-blessed human rogue 8/cleric of luck and sea 1 (CR 7)
  • 7 New Haunts

Author: Rob Manning
Cartography: Richard Biggs Jr.
Pages: 10 (39)

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Product Reviews (3)

Average product rating:

***½( ) (based on 3 ratings)

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Large house on estate grounds

****( )

Evocative City Sites: Eiffelmacher Estates by Rite Publishing

This product is 39 pages long. It starts with a cover and credits. (2 pages)

Eiffelmacher Estates (4 ½ pages)
It has four pages of maps, the grounds, barn, green house, both levels of the house. It has information on those with in the house and like all of these products it starts off with a interesting IC introduction.

NPC's (2 ½ pages)
There is 2 NPC's one is for a general member of the gang and for the other full stats for the leader of the gang.

The House (2 pages)
The house has a write up as well, it is haunted after all. In this section it talks a bit about the house and introduces 7 new haunts.

The rest of the book is taken up with pages of maps that can be printed out for Mini's. (25 pages)

It ends with a OGL and ads. (3 pages)

Closing thoughts. The art work is mix in black and white, color and quality. Editing and format where so so. The house and maps where pretty well done as was the NPC stat blocks. The haunts are a mixed bag, I felt a couple of them was pretty meh and a couple of them was very cool. I do have to admit I am a little disappointed due to have expectations about this product that I knew I shouldn't have. When I read estate I was thinking a huge 40 room estate with 2 or 3 floors. I should have realized that not what this is, it is more of a manor house or large house on a estate grounds. So with that said what's my rating? Well there is more than normal number of editing glitches and the haunts I think could have been better as whole, but it is a neat location. So I am going to settle on a 3.5 star review.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.


An interesting haunted house with minor problems

***( )( )

This installment of the ECS-series is 39 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages advertisement, 1 page SRD, leaving 34 pages of content for this latest installment of RiP’s iconic series. Let’s see how it holds up when compared to some of its excellent predecessors!

This installment, as we’ve come to expect, kicks off with an introduction to the haunted grounds of the erstwhile Patrician’s estates of Eiffelmacher, aptly written in the voice of Owain Northway, explorer extraordinaire and veteran narrator of the ECS-series. I can’t stress enough the importance and quality of the prose of his narrations over the course of the ECS-series, as said in-character exploits make for an easy way not only to capture the mood, but rather let the maps transcend being maps and become an iconic location.
Said estates are now lair to a gang of thugs called the spotty bottle gang, a band of sickle-wielding thugs who come not only with a stat-block for their captains, but also with a short write-up of their hierarchy. Their fighting style is interesting and also includes Bolas (though a typo calls them “bolos”). The leader of the gang, a saltwater-infused rogue/cleric also gets his own statblock that. His background-story offers additional adventure hooks in excess to the 4 that are already provided to justify the PCs exploring the estates. There unfortunately seems to be a formatting glitch in the fluff of the gang’s leader Ormea Kaletka, separating a sentence in the middle via a superfluous blank line.

Next up are haunts – 7 ones, three of which are linked, are presented to offer your PCs a chance to run for their money. They range from CR 2 to 4 and are of the stellar quality and creepy imagery I’ve come to expect from Rite Publishing. One of the haunts, though, has an editing glitch – it speaks of one manifestation of a singular obese person, while the following text continuously refers to “them” and “their”. Nothing too bad, but somewhat annoying.

I haven’t yet talked about the maps and damn, I should: We get maps of the 2 floors of the estate, an overview of its grounds, a map of the two floors of the barn, a map of two floors of the greenhouse and one of the basement amphitheater. All of the maps are full color and thankfully don’t feature annoying numbers and keys, thus qualifying them for good hand-out maps – Nice! The maps come with grids, though, for ease f usage and, as with all ECS-pdfs, we get blown-up b/w-versions of the maps for use with miniatures. The greenhouse and overview of the grounds are not among the blown-up ones, though.
Poor Europeans like yours truly also get all the blown-up maps (i.e. the estate, the basement and the barn) in A4-format in a spate zip-file.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting could have been better; I noticed glitches in both that could have easily been avoided. Layout adheres to the new, full-color 2-column standard you might now from the free Pathways e-zine. The stock-art is beautiful and fits the topic perfectly. The cartography by Richard Biggs Jr. once again brings to life the estates and you get quite some bang for your buck. The pdf is also bookmarked, though one of the bookmarks features another editing glitch. I mainly have two minor gripes with this installment of the series: First are the editing and formatting glitches, that, while not too prevalent, still are there and detract from the otherwise excellent atmosphere and writing. The second would be that I would have loved to see a blown-up version of the green house map as well. I know that there’s an excellent, supremely creepy ECS that deals with a green house, but I’d nevertheless would have enjoyed an inclusion of said location. Other than that, though, I don’t have much to complain about – while this pdf does not quite reach the heights of the best installments of the series, it’s still a solid addition and offers a lot of content for a low price. My final verdict will be 3.5 stars, rounded down to 3 for the time being - as soon as the glitches have been taken care of, I’ll round up to 4.


Abandoned Manor Houses Never Are

****( )

This is a perfect location to have on hand if your PCs decide to take a sudden left turn in your adventure, explore a house or area that is not a part of your campaign or decide to surprise the Game Master by spending the night in an abandoned manor that you know you didn’t have detailed. I love the duality of this location. No matter where the players may decide to investigate or sleep through the night, there is something waiting for them. I love the haunts in particular. But anyone tough enough to take on the bandit gang would likely not find them very challenging. Conversely, anyone finding the haunts to be challenging would be hard pressed to survive an encounter with the full gang of thieves. Knowing this ahead of time is the key to deciding how difficult you wish this encounter location to be. You may decide your players need to encounter something just a little bit too difficult for them, inculcating in them the value of running away when the situation calls for it. Of course the flexibility of an encounter site that is not tied to any adventure plot means that what the PCs discover here is up to the GM.

Art is clearly taken from Public Domain sources and this is clearly stated in the cover page. The maps spaced in the text of the house descriptions and encounters were in full color. If I had to guess, I’d say they were hand drawn. But that doesn’t detract from the adventure at all. In fact I rather like this. The maps show the manor house and environs very simply and without fluff, yet are very easy to read. I like the black and white printable full size additional maps for use with miniatures or just for showing the players. The maps also come in the A4 sized pdfs as well.

I love flexible locations with encounters or NPCs I can yank to use for other things if I need them or to surprise players who thought to surprise me by taking an unplanned siesta or turn left when they were really supposed to turn right. Eiffelmacher Estates provides this for me. Icing on the cake is the nice bundle of printable maps set at an appropriate scale for miniature use. This is a nice supplement. The only quibble some might have about the encounters described herein is the slight imbalance of difficulty between the haunts in the house and the Spotty Bottle gang’s leader. I don’t mind this for my own players, though. A little challenge is a good thing, a lot can make for the most harrowing and best remembered gaming experiences. I do wish that there had been some description and encounter suggestions for the greenhouse, for completeness. The lack of details on the interesting-looking greenhouse keeps this from being a full five stars, four out of five.



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