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Monsters of Sin #6: Sloth (PFRPG) PDF

***** (based on 2 ratings)

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Monsters of Sin epitomize the very worst of our natures—and they prey on others' weaknesses. This sixth book in the Monsters of Sin series for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game is devoted to Sloth, the willingness to let things get worse because improving them would take too much effort and discomfort. This sin can turn the most dynamic of adventurers into former heroes.

It includes:

  • The Flab Giant, a race slowly letting itself go to waste.
  • The Scrap Drake: something more than a worm but less than a dragon.
  • A creature that visits a cruel punishment on the active, the Slow Storm.
  • The Embodiment of Sloth itself, immobile enticement to comfortable lethargy.
  • Detail on Sloth within the Midgard Campaign Setting.
  • Rules for incorporating Sloth into your NPCs and monsters.
Whether you're running a Campaign of Sin, or simply want to slow the pace of a fast-action campaign, Monsters of Sin: Sloth demonstrates that sometimes inaction can be as dangerous as the most daring of actions.

Pick up your copy today!

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Product Reviews (2)

Average product rating:

***** (based on 2 ratings)

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4.5 stars - damn, it took me long to review this

*****

This pdf is 10 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page advertisement/SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with a total of 6 pages of content, so let's take a look!

Following the format of the monsters of sin-series, we start the issue with a short discussion on the nature of sloth as well as a quick template to create slothful creatures (reducing the CR, actually) before we delve into the new beasties herein.

The CR 4 Flab Giant is a disgusting, lumbering being that can't run or take five foot steps, but it can actually sit down on you, crushing you with its inaction and pin you with one combat maneuver-check. Nice!

The CR 6 Scrap Drake is usually a sluggish, constantly sleeping drake that makes for an ideal guardian - woe to those disturbing it, though: Their bursts of speed make them temporarily VERY fast and agile and the creature also has a cool breath weapon that consists of shoving debris in its mouth and spewing the splinters/dirt/whatever at its foes. Cool!

At CR 15, the Slow Storm makes for a truly weird being: Surrounded by wisps of humid wind, these strange spiny balls can not only cast some lightning-based spells, they can also cause arthritic pains that make you regret every action, since you take damage for non-purely mental exertions. I would have loved a slowing aura or the like, though.

The final new creature herein, as with every Monsters of Sin-book, is the Embodiment of the respective sin - in the case of sloth, a CR 17 unmoving blob of flesh sans features. It's vast telepathic range of over 2000 miles enables it to recruit powerful followers to fall prey to its aura of slothfulness, that can sustain its followers in their inactivity, but also adds the slothful creature template to them. It should be noted that the embodiment can exempt people from its dread aura to grant them a temporary motivation and respite from the languishing existence at the non-existent feet of this mound of inactivity. The embodiment is cool, though I feel it could have used some additional defenses against threats - as written, it's quite proverbially a barn that behaves like a sitting duck - a DR or a sluggishness when hitting it as an additional form of defense would have been nice.

As always with the series, the installment closes with a section on tales of the deadly sin in the midgard campaign setting.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches. Layout adheres to a beautiful 2-column standard with red highlights and the b/w-artworks are awesome. The pdf has no bookmarks, which is a bummer, even at the short length. Sloth - The Death of potential is perhaps my most hated of the deadly sins, representing one of the most devious sicknesses that can befall the human mind and spirit. It's also probably rules-wise one of the most interesting ones, since being inactive usually is not THAT dangerous. I expected lost actions, slow foes etc. and the pdf delivered. While I still maintain that the embodiment is a tad bit weak and that the slow storm could have used a slight bit more variety regarding its spell-selection. Nevertheless, though, this is one of the installments of the series that nails the essence of the sin and thus, I'll settle for a final verdict of 4.5 stars, rounded up to 5 for the purpose of this platform.

Endzeitgeist out.


*****

The sixth installment in the Monsters of Sin series tackles Sloth. Weighing in at 10 pages, with 4 pages going to the covers, the OGL and the credit/TOC. No bookmarks, nor is the Table of Contents linked, which I'll admit bummed me a little. The cover art, as has been the standard for this series, is excellent, with interior art giving us two great pieces, one that left me at the “meh” stage, and one particular piece that really needed some color, as it looks hilariously like something else entirely (don't worry, all will be explained). Following in the standard dual column approach, I saw nothing jarring in the sense of grammatical errors.

Opening with a run down of the author's thoughts on the particular sin of sloth, the template offering this time out is for the Slothful Creature. I think I can honestly state that this template, more than any other presented in this series, is a punishment more than anything, lol. Nothing but negatives and detriment, there are no redeeming qualities in this template to make it a desirable thing...which makes it perfect as a template for this sin. I mean seriously, Sloth...there shouldn't be bonuses to a slothful creature. Well done, and well handled!

First up, we have the Flab Giant, an addition to the Giant sub-species, they are a relatively short member of the species, with their larger size translating into girth rather than height. Grossly enlarged abdomens supported on short muscled legs clothed only in the most minimal of clothing, these giants use their dangerously heavy bodies as weapons, crushing their opponents to death before eating them. An excellent monster to represent sloth as a sin.

The Scrap Drake is not only a lesser dragon in that it is a drake, it's a lesser drake. This thing is so apathetic towards life in general it prefers to push along on its stomach like a snake rather than stand up on its two legs. The perfect deterrent for an area one needs guarded, as the creature is very unlikely to actually leave the area, ever. The coolest thing about this lazy lizard is their answer to having no supernatural breath weapon. The scrap drake keeps a mouthful of debris (wood, stone, metal) ready to spit out as an improvised breath weapon. Rather unique, and kind of a cool thought that the creature would have developed this technique of attack/defense. All in all I like these guys, they have the right feel of slothfulness while maintaining a coolness about them.

OK, so two down, both of them being the artwork I thought was really good. This takes us to the Slow Storm. Now, simply looking at the artwork for this I thought to myself I am not going to like this creature. This creature is, quite simply, a bizarre looking thing. A quill-ed ball of organics at the center if a centralized storm throwing off static lightning...with eyeballs and a mouth...yup, goofy looking. But, it has a seriously cool ability that makes it seriously deadly. This thing absorbs the moisture from the joints of living creatures, causing a DEX drain, simulating the effect of aging on the living basically. Now, as cool as that is, here's where we run into problems...the presentation of this ability creates some serious confusion...as the way it is listed on the Special Attack line of the statblock it might be a special ability, or a breath weapon...but in the Special Abilities section there is no mention of it being a breath weapon...Now the breath weapon and the Arthritic Pain special ability do show the same DEX drain amount, and are both a Fort save ability, but where as the breath weapon has a limited usage, this is not mentioned within the special ability write up...and if this ability is in fact not the breath weapon, then we are left with no defining target concept for the ability, is it area? Single target? I am inclined to believe the ability is in fact intended to be the breath weapon, I just wish the wording within the description would have clarified that.

Which brings us to Embodiment. Illustrated and described as a mass of flesh, this B&W drawing far more resembles a large pile of excrement, with people sitting around it. Yes, once you read the entry you realize what you are looking at, but the initial thought upon getting to this page is a far different one than after reading the opening line. Hence my earlier observation that perhaps once, a small amount of color might have been warranted internally. So, the embodiment...a CR17 blob o' flab, with no discernible features...the ultimate in letting other do kinda critter. Has an insane leadership score that it utilizes to get others to handle its needs,defend it, or handle matters elsewhere. Ironically the creature typically chooses its agents from the least slothly of its followers, to try and guarantee that they will actually succeed in their task (this was fluff gold, loved it). Those who get to close to the embodiment and fail a Will save will find themselves chilling with the big squishy flesh mound. In return for serving its needs, the embodiment of sloth provides benefits equal to a ring of sustenance to its fellow mellows. All around, one seriously cool take on an embodiment for this sin, and an impressive design.

As always with this series, we close with some tidbits of Midgard, acting as not only extras for those utilizing Midgard as a setting, but as teasers for those who are not, enticing them to explore these lands, and the people we are being given an insight into. An expertly crafted closer to these books, the Midgard section has become one of my favorite parts of this series.

So, final thoughts. I liked this PDF, a great deal. The creatures were cool, the template made sense, the embodiment was awesome...but I keep coming back to the slow storm...and the breath weapon/special ability. The fact that the special ability has a name makes me think it is not intended to be the breath weapon, but they have the same DEX drain and are both a Fort save ability. I can't help but think this could have been worded much clearer to avoid any sense of confusion in this regard. In the end the only thing preventing me from giving this the 5 star rating it deserves is this issue, well, that and the no bookmarks (sorry, I like bookmarks). I'm going with a 4.5, rounded down to a 4. I would be happy to raise this rating if the wording of this becomes clarified...or if for that matter someone can help me see what I am obviously missing in case I am simply having a dense moment (it happens, I'm human, I'll admit it). Still well worth it folks, and this is an excellent addition to this series.

-edit. As the clarification has been made to the Slow Storm's specials, I am adjusting my rating to the full 5 stars this product deserved. Thanks guys!



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