Bullet Points: 5 Mount/Steed Spell Feats (PFRPG) PDF (based on
Rogue 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 are 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.
Five feats designed to augment spells used with riders, or improve “steed spells” (spells that conjure a creature or force to act as a mount for one or more characters, such as ghost wolf, mount, phantom chariot, phantom steed, and the communal versions of such spells).This is the latest in a series of products to celebrate the "Summer of Bullets" event!
The feats included are:
Aethon: When you use spells to protect yourself or allies, you also extend that protection to their steeds.
Buraq: When you use spells to heal yourself or allies, you also extend that healing to their steeds.
Augment Steed: Your steed spells can boost the effectiveness of mundane steeds.
Heighten Steed Spell: You can make your conjured steeds are faster and tougher than most.
Summon Steed: You can summon monsters ready to serve as steeds.
5 Mount Steed Spell Feats...yes, it's time again to look in on the Bullet Points series. Following the standard look and format for the Bullet Point series with the three page, three column layout, with of course the lead in page explaining what exactly the Bullet Point line is all about. Found three hiccups in the editing, which really surprised me given the usual level of quality behind SGG's products.
So, 5 feats....what does Owen have for us this time? Aethon allows for mounts to be included within abjuration spell targets (as long as the spells target a number of opponents rather than area effect, while Buraq allows for healing spells to include the mounts of those targeted. Augment Steed is easily one of the cooler feats in this collection, as it allows you to forgo summoning a mount to apply it's crunch to a mount you are already astride, as well as giving your mount some nice perks in regards to fatigue, hunger, etc. Heightened Steed Spell cranks up the effective level of the summon spell giving the summoned mount bonuses to its movement and AC. And last, not least, is my personal choice out of this collection, the Summon Steed feat. Summon Steed allows you to summon anything off of your summon lists that is already available to you outfitted and ready to go, as a willing steed...go ahead, let that sink in for a few minutes...think of how many things are on the summon lists, and how cool it would be to utilize some of them as steeds.
Final thoughts...the editing balanced against the design of the feats. Two of the feats are stellar in my opinion, with the other three being decent to cool, but not rising to the level of the other two. Settling at a three star rating for this one, a good product, just not entirely up to the standards Owen has led me to expect from him.
All right, you know the drill - 3 pages, 1 page cover, 1 page editorial/SRD, 1 page content, so let's take a look at 5 feats to modify mount spells!
-Aethon: This feat allows you to extend your harmless, personal ranged abjuration spells that specify a number of targets to the mounts the characters are riding, but only while they are riding. Not sure about this one: I usually handle riding animals as separate targets. The limitations help, though.
-Buraq: When casting healing (conjuration) spells on characters, their mounts are healed as well while they're in the saddle.
-Augment Steed: This feat enables you to forgo one or more of the steeds you conjure in order to improve your steed by granting the conjured, foregone steed's abilities like AC, movement etc. to the your regular steed. Additionally, your steed is not considered to be exerting itself while under the effect of the spell. An interesting and rather cool buffing-option for the spells, though one that has to be read very carefully by both players and DMs to avoid confusion.
-Heighten Steed Spell: By making the spell-level higher, you also improve the movement, AC and HP of the steeds. I think this feat is supposed to be a metamagic feat and lacks the [Metamagic]-descriptor, but I might be wrong here, since it actually increases the effective level of the spell it modifies. It depends on your perspective, I guess.
-Summon Steed: Each creature you summon with a summon spell can also come equipped with tack and saddle, willingly serving you or your allies as your mount. On the one hand, I really like this idea, on the other, the potential for goofiness is VAST - riding chokers and gibbering mouthers would e.g. also be possible, as would be riding elementals. A caveat that the creature has to have a place o actually sit on and be able to carry you would probably be in order.
Editing and formatting are very good, though not perfect - the wording of augment steed could have been slightly more precise and the yes/no-fringe regarding whether Heighten Steed Spell is [Metamagic] or not make it hard to judge. Layout adheres to SGG's 3-column standard and the BP comes mostly as no-frills and has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length. I'll just come clear - I'm not comfortable with Aethon and Buraq. Not because of their effects, but because of the internal logic of the world they tend to wreck: So casting the spell on dismounted beings make them count as two, but casting them on mounted beings makes it count as one? Can you see sick people being lifted up on sick horses during plagues to conserve both resources and money? I can and it's not a pretty sight. What I' m trying to go at - I think the feats herein NEED a closer definition on what constitutes a bond between rider and mount and limit the spells to respective teams. All in all, this BP provides ok feats, but I'm not truly sold on any of them apart from the Heighten Steep Spell- (metamagic?)feat. All in all, this BP feels slightly less polished than similar issues of the line and probably would have worked better as a full-blown mounted magic genius guide. My final verdict, thus, will be 3 stars - If you're like me and very keen on the consistence of the internal logic of your campaign, detract a star. If my gripes don't faze you too much, add one.
The latest PDF from Super Genius Games covers "steed spells", that being spells such as mount, ghost wolf, phantom steed and the like, along with some that can augment spells used with riders. The PDF itself is three pages long, with a cover, the actual feats proper, and the OGL and credits.
The feats themselves are well done. In order they are:
Aethon: defensive spells cast on the rider can also protect the mount.
Buraq: healing spells cast on riders affect their mounts as well.
Augment Steed: When you cast a steed spell, you use some of its power to enhance the mounts being ridden by your fellows. This is a great spell for people who like keeping that riding wolf or trusty old horse around at higher levels.
Heighten Steed Spell: By raising the level of the steed spell you can make the conjured steed faster and tougher. Again, this can be a very helpful spell for the right campaign.
Summon Steed: if you ever wanted to use one of your summon monster spells to get a free ride, now you can! And hey, they even bring their own tack and saddle! This one also stacks with augment steed in case you wanted to grant any special monstrous powers to the mounts of the rest of the party.
Steed spells may not always be the most useful, depending on the campaign -- ones revolving around kingdom-building and exploration are much more likely to get use out of these than, say, ones devoted more to urban or dungeon-delving adventures. But they are very well-done and can be a great way of making sure that those horses and other mounts can still contribute more than an increased movement rate and the odd charge attack at higher levels. I'd say that they're especially great for druids and summoners who lack mount-worthy eidolons. Five stars, and it's a great buy at the price.