Bullet Points: 6 Spell-Less Ranger Feats (PFRPG) PDF (based on
Super Genius Games
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Sometimes rules supplements read like the world-setting bible of frustrated novelists. While solid world-building is a useful skill, you don't always need four paragraphs of flavor text to tell you swords are cool, magic is power, shadows are scary, and orcs are savage. Sometimes a GM doesn't have time to slog through a page of history for every magic weapon. Sometimes all that's needed are a few cool ideas, with just enough information to use them in a game. Sometimes, all you need are bullet points.
Bullet Points is a line of very short, cheap PDFs each of which gives the bare bones of a set of related options. It may be five spells, six feats, eight magic weapon special abilities, or any other short set of related rules we can cram into about a page. Short and simple, these PDFs are for GMs and players who know how to integrate new ideas into their campaigns without any hand-holding, and just need fresh ideas and the rules to support them. No in-character fiction setting the game world. No charts and tables. No sidebars of explanations and optional rules. Just one sentence of explanation for the High Concept of the PDF, then bullet points.
The High Concept: Six new feats to help rangers who have given up their spell ability (such as the spell-less ranger from New Paths: Expanded Spell-Less Ranger and skirmishers from the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Advanced Player’s Guide) redirect their unused mystic energies in a way that helps compensate for their lack of the flexible, mystic bonuses spells can provide. This is the latest in a series of products to celebrate the "Summer of Bullets" event!
The six feats included are:
Bestial Surge: You can call on your spiritual connection to the animal kingdom to gain temporary bonuses.
Blood Enemies: You can forge a link of enmity in blood.
Defensive Lore: You can use your knowledge of enemies and the environment to defend yourself against spells and other effects.
Improved Hunting Bond: You can quickly give allies broad advice on how to fight your favored enemies.
Take Cover: You always know how to get cover when in a favored terrain.
Woodland Juggernaut: You have studied the heavily armor creatures of nature, from armadillos to rhinos, and learned to emulate their ways.
All right, you know the deal - 3 pages, 1 front cover, 1 editorial/SRD, 1 content - let's check it out!
The feats herein are intended for Marc Radle's stellar spell-less ranger-class, released by Open Design, so what do we get?
-Bestial Surge: Call upon an animal to get a bonus on a skill or encumbrance 3+Cha-mod times per day. Cool to reflect a belief steeped in totems etc., but staying firmly in the non-magical territory.
-Blood Enemies: Temporarily gain a favored enemy-bonus as a swift action against an enemy who dealt damage to you and who was damaged by you.
-Defensive Lore: Gain 1/2 favored enemy-bonus on saves against spells and abilities of the class of foes.
-Improved Hunting Bond: Grant half your favored enemy bonus to all your allies for a short period of time.
-Take Cover: Gain cover as a move action when in favored terrain. Awesome, cool feat!
-Woodland Juggernaut: Benefit from Ranger-abilities usually reserved to being usable in light and medium armor in heavy armor. Neat!
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches. Layout adheres to SGG'S 3-column standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length. I'm a big fan of 3pp-synergy and thus I do enjoy that Marc Radle's class gets some further love from SGG. As was to be expected from Crunch-Overlord Owen K.C. Stephens, the mechanics are rock-solid, the ideas are cool and in the end, I can't complain about this one: Excellent feats for an excellent class and cool synergy indeed - 5 stars.
Continuing the Summer of Bullets with 6 Feats for the Spell-Less Ranger, this addition to the Bullet Point series follows the standard 3 page, 3 column (for new material) approach. Two pieces of artwork, both color, and both really nice pieces. Editing/Grammar wise I found only one typo (halkf instead of the word half).
So, the Spell-Less Ranger (from Open Design) is our target this time, although as is pointed out these feats work well with Skirmishers from the Advanced Player's Guide as well. First off, lets just get this out of the way, I love the fact that Owen is not afraid to write to add to and enhance/support another 3PP's material. That is flat out awesome, and helps make sure that a great idea will continue to grow. Well done Owen!
As Owen has taken to listing the contents of each of these Bullet Points himself these days, it seems a little silly to take up space within this review rehashing that, so let's discuss instead my favorite of the bunch, shall we? Woodland Juggernaut. For far to long has the ranger been at the mercy of his armor, with the idea of ever wearing heavier armors denied him by the threat of lost abilities...when in fact the animals around him show without a doubt that nature comprehends armor. Emulating animals such as the Armadillo and Rhino, with this feat your ranger can utilize heavier armors without losing access to class features typically dependent upon lighter armors alone. A fantastic feat that opens the door fully for the ranger to step up into a front-line combatant.
With four of the remaining feats all focusing on the Favored class abilities and expanding or enhancing them, they are all solid feats well worth having, it is the first feat offered that I had to reread a few times to decide what I thought of. Bestial Surge, allows for a bonus to a skill, pretty simple right? Well, it does this via letting you tap into your spiritual connection to the animal kingdom....now, the first time I read this it felt kind of against the vein of a non arcane/mystical ranger to me, I won't lie. But as I let it mull over in my thoughts, I realize, we hear the term ranger and always think along the lines of Aragorn, what of Tarzan folks? Is he not the quintessential Spell-Less Ranger? And does he not perform amazing tests of physical skill that seems to be superhuman as if the very animals had infused their aura into him? No, the more I thought on this feat, the more I realize it is a perfect feat for this type of class, as one without spells of any nature, living amongst nature, is going to pay far more attention to the lessons that are there to learn, and would find themselves able to do things the rest of us could only marvel at.
In the end, another set of solid additions to the ever growing Bullets from the chambers of the SGG crew, yes, there was a typo, but I am not going to penalize even half a star for that, even if this is technically only a one page write up. Going with the full 5 star rating for another excellent addition, and looking forward to the next!