Faces of the Tarnished Souk: Jubal D'tirn, The Fool's Champion (PFRPG) PDF (based on
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“Glory, once won, should be worn proudly.”
Warriors from across the planes flock to the Coliseum Morpheuon for glory, power, and the promise of their heart's desire – but most will only meet their bloody doom. Jubal D'tirn is a bone-clad jotun full of primal power and dreams of victory who spends his nights in the arena and his days playing taxidermist for the Coliseum's heroes. High and mighty on the heels of recent success, Jubal is a prime example – and tragic specimen – of the starry-eyed gladiators who die in vain on the floor of the Chimeric Amphitheater every day
This product provides Game Masters with details on a rugged rock-hurler found amongst the Faces of the Tarnished Souk, ready for immediate use in any campaign—but especially for use within the Coliseum Morpheuon. Each entry features ingenious stat-blocks from multiple OGL sources, history, motivation, secrets, and insight into the NPC’s most carefully guarded dreams, along with complete game statistics for low, middle, and high levels of play.
Within you will find: Jubal D'tirn, a giant-blooded juggernaut who's got a bone to pick with you
CR 20 Male combat clairvoyant jotun paragon 6/magus (primagus) 12
CR 12 Male jotun paragon 6/magus (primagus) 6
CR 7 Male jotun paragon 6/magus (primagus) 1
Utilizing feats for the storm-blooded giant in your life
Magical items including a bestial cloak, a ring for near-immortals, and a blade you'd be a fool to ignore
And featuring the primagus magus archetype—binding magic to blade with less reading involved
This installment of the FoTS-series is 15 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of advertisement, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 10 pages of content, so let's check this out!
Following my format for the series, I'll first take a look at the supplemental crunch introduced in the pdf: We get 3 different simple templates, the Giant Creature (CR +1), the Enraged (CR +1) and the Combat Clairvoyant creature (CR +1).
Now Jubal is a Jotun, a race that is infused with elemental blood of the giants and unleashes, over the levels said power, growing further and further. A cool class that first premiered in "In the Company of Giants" and which can be found in its revised version in RiP's latest compendium "In the Company of Monsters", though all the pieces of information to run Jibal are in here. There are 3 new feats included in the deal, granting "Aspect of Air", which represents Jotun-powers stemming from cloud or storm giants, "Crushing Volley" allows you to use combat maneuvers a limited amount of times per day to make combat maneuvers with thrown stones, while "Power Throw" allows you to use your Str-mod instead of Dex with thrown weapons.
There also are new magic items in this pdf, for example the triple-toss dagger, a throwing dagger that turns into multiple weapons when thrown and adds a couple of different properties upon throwing, a class of cloaks that duplicates beast shape-effects, a ring made of a vast array of other rings (with their powers) and a new artifact, the Fool's Blade. It is said blade that can enlarge and enrage (as per the templates) the wielder and, while a powerful blade, it also carries a curse...
We also get a new archetype, the Primagus- which is rather awesome - a spontaneous version of the magus-class, this rather complex archetype also gains limited access to some barbarian-like rage abilities, which is a rather cool addition to an already useful and cool archetype. Better yet, the archetype comes with alternate rules that make it even more versatile, allowing you to trade in some of its powers for bloodline abilities or oracle mysteries, making this archetype even more versatile and one of the best I've seen for the magus. If you're rather an adherent of SGG's spontaneous gish-class by Marc Radle, the excellent Vanguard, you should still check this out, as it features some neat ideas to potentially modify this class.
Now, Jubal D'tirn starts as a Jotun Paragon 6/primagus 1 (CR 7) and becomes a Jotun Paragon 6/Primagus 6 (CR 12) and his final CR 20 incarnation adds further 6 Primagus levels as well as the combat clairvoyant-template.
Now Jubal is a character that should come off as not necessarily an opposition to the PCs - dreaming of glory in the amphitheatre and a triumphant return home, the Jotun taxidermist is on full route to becoming the next champion of the amphitheatre and comes with a plethora of hooks as well as dreamburning information.
Editing and formatting are very good, though not perfect: I noticed some minor glitches. Layout adheres to RiP's old, rune-bordered two-column b/w-standard and the piece of cover-artwork is neat. The pdf comes with nested bookmarks.
Jubal D'tirn is an interesting character in that it finally provides a gladiator-champion for the PCs to encounter as an ally, though an unreliable one out for his own glory. The Primagus-archetype is one of the best anywhere for the magus-class and its extremely modularity should ensure that it alone is worth the low asking price. Jubal as a character is more straight-forward and less far-out than e.g. my all-time favorite, Nameless Nil, but he still is an interesting build, though perhaps not as complex as I'm accustomed to by the FoTS-series. This, combined with the minor glitch here and there, make me settle for a final verdict of 4 stars for Jubal.