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Pathfinder Tales: The Wizard’s Mask

**( )( )( ) (based on 12 ratings)
Pathfinder Tales: The Wizard’s Mask
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Non-Mint

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By Ed Greenwood

In the war-torn lands of Molthune and Nirmathas, where rebels fight an endless war of secession against an oppressive military government, the constant fighting can make for strange alliances. Such is the case for the man known only as The Masked, the victim of a magical curse that forces him to hide his face, and an escaped halfling slave named Tantaerra. Thrown together by chance, the two fugitives find themselves conscripted by both sides of the conflict and forced to search for a magical artifact that could help shift the balance of power and end the bloodshed for good. But in order to survive, the thieves will first need to learn the one thing none of their adventures have taught them: how to trust each other.

From New York Times bestselling author and legendary game designer Ed Greenwood comes a new adventure of magic, monsters, and unlikely friendships, set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

400-page mass market paperback

Download a free sample chapter by clicking here! (70 KB zip/PDF)

ISBN–13: 978-1-60125-530-3
ePub ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-531-0

The Wizard's Mask is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Organized Play. Its Chronicle Sheet is available as a free download (397 KB zip/PDF).

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Tales Subscription.

Product Availability


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ePub/PDF: Fulfilled immediately. Will be added to your My Downloads Page immediately upon purchase of ePub/PDF.

Non-Mint: This product is non-mint. Refunds are not available for non-mint products. The standard version of this product can be found here.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at webmaster@paizo.com.

PZO8515


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Product Reviews (12)
1 to 5 of 12 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

Average product rating:

**( )( )( ) (based on 12 ratings)

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Not bad... but not good, either.

***( )( )

At no point while reading this book did I think, "Man, this is terrible." That's the frustrating part... it wasn't *bad*, but it had trouble holding my attention. I've been reading the PF Tales novels in publication order, and every book up until now I've read in a matter of days. This book took me three months to get through. It didn't keep drawing me back the way the others did. At no point did I actively want to put it down and stop reading, but when I did stop, I wasn't really drawn to pick it back up.

I liked the halfling. I didn't like or dislike The Mask... he was still pretty two-dimensional by the end of the book. I honestly didn't care what happened to him by the end.

The non-stop chase got old. The conflict between two political houses was flat and like a caricature. The conflict between the two nations was the same. The author *almost* got me to care about the conflict between the nations, but dropped the ball. I think that's ultimately the problem with the book... despite all that's going on, there's very little for the reader to actually *care* about.


Not my favorite

**( )( )( )

I liked the characters in Wizard's Mask, but not the adventure they go on. Too many chase scenes, too little of the characters themselves. We are never quite clear if there is a romance, and the villains are as flat and interesting and a frisbee. Not a stand out.


Boring and repetative

*( )( )( )( )

Reading this had me constantly wondering if my bookmark had slipped back a few chapters while I dozed off. Wait, weren't they running away and being desperately chased a few pages ago? Oh.. yes they're just at it again. And again. And again.

Yes. The mysterious Masked in the mask is mysterious. We know noooothing about him. Or the mysterious guy following him. We got that. Somewhere between the 8th and 12th chase scene.


Are they Dead Yet?

*( )( )( )( )

Let me save you the agony of reading this book by revealing the entire plot now:

We were running away from: <roll for group>
When we ran into a rival group: <roll for group> and ran away some more.
Suddenly, we were captured by: <roll for group>
They asked us who we were. We cried: “We’re the secret police!”
Before they could sense our obvious bluff, the whole group was attacked by: <roll for group>
Which allowed us to escape briefly, and: <roll for action>

Roll for Group (1d8):
1=Local Guards, 2=Local Gang North, 3=Local Gang South, 4=Eastern Army, 5=Western Army, 6=Horde of smurf kittens, 7=Guy who’s been following us, 8=Someone with a name

Roll for Action (1d4):
1=Sleep, 2=Get injured, 3=Cure wounds, 4=Drink some LSD, 5=do something that would involve a plot

Repeat sequence above until nauseous.
Then realize you’re only 1/3 of the way through the book, so continue repeating right through the delirious stage and keep going even though you have past the point where you just hope everyone dies so the book will end.

Rant: And the heroes are?
“Remind me to tell you more about why I’m wearing this mask when we stop running!” he said.
Well, they NEVER stop running. Thus they never stop to explain anything or give any interesting background or motives for the main characters.

Rant: And the bad guys are?
It’s a third of the way through the book before we find out who the guy mysteriously chasing them is. And then they just give a name. Did they reveal anything more on who he was? I stopped caring. Maybe there’s more to find out, but then they have to start running…. again….

Rant: We’re the Secret Police!
A dark version of Jim Carrey in The Mask and Shirley Temple run up to you and say “We’re the Secret Police!” Would anyone believe them? The Lone Ranger wore a mask and no one believed him.

Rant: Check for traps?
The heroes don’t have any skills, ability, or talent of their own that would make them useful. They just run. I assume they were rogues, but do they bother to check the dungeon for traps? Nope. Just keep running right through, setting them all off and getting injured as they go. Just like the rest of the plot. Apparently the only skills they have are evasion and endurance.

Rant:

Smurf Kittens?:

They are being chased by a horde of magical blue kittens. At first, they are nipping at their heels and arms, and are barely able to escape the horde surrounding them. But somehow they are able to ‘pull ahead a little’ allowing a short lead. A short lead? They were chased by the horde for 3 days! I’d given up on them sleeping any several chapters earlier, but wouldn’t they at least need to stop and pee? Even with the LSD trips, this was too implausible, or even the writer forgot to care about who’s chasing them now.

How the book should have ended:

After being sworn in as actual members of the Secret Police as our reward, we headed back to town. The guard asked us who we were.
“We’re the Secret Police!” we cried again.
THWUNK. THWUNK.
“Bull Sxxx” he replied, after shooting us dead on the spot with crossbow bolts like a competent guard would. “You've used that one before. Over… and over… and over…”

What the boon should be:

Plot Endurance: When you are sent on a repetitive mission, you endure it by burning this book as you go. Skip the mission and/or encounter and gain all treasure and XP.


Self-abusive

*( )( )( )( )

I read this book recently. I still can't forget it fast enough. All the reviews that said this book is bad were correct: terrible pacing, repetitive, exhausting chase scenes that never seem to end, and the same 4 mobs used over and over followed by villains that don't need stats because they just can't be defeated.

But, for me, what sticks are the many "Oh, Hell NO!" moments.

Here's what the others didn't tell you (SPOILERS):

Our hero: Find me a guy anywhere that, when he finds a cursed item that erases physical features, for fear that it actively hastens the melting of his face, decides the best place for his cursed mask is *in his pants and over his junk*. And the thing can, and is, placed back over his face again later. That alone was terrible. His sudden remembrances of who just tried to kill him, *after* the combat was over was annoying.

Our heroine: Becomes very dislikeable despite a really promising prequel story. She meets the hero-a guy that is hunted day and night by lunatics in, above, and below the law. He has a disturbing, face melting curse. He lies to her, "Oh, yeah, I do know those guys that tried to kill us personally," not once, but twice. Has a strange, LSD-style trip as an undead priest claws up her thighs, by desperately downing any potion to heal her pains. Gets maimed trying to help the hero. The hero violently digs through her mind and memories using an artifact. She feels personally violated by him, runs. She suddenly feels sorry for him, tries to talk it out. He tells her, "You're darned right you should have trusted me. Apology accepted." He's broke; she's doing all of this to have the opportunity to *pay him* 10gp. Takes the job with the government that has held her in slavery, but only if the hero is her partner from now on. After all this she initiates a physical relationship with the hero by kissing his lip-less, veiny, melted into a mere slit of a mouth--happy ending!

I felt like I was being taken on a stupidly abusive road trip where my captor wouldn't even let me sleep. As a woman, this was not a fun read. Looking at the other reviews, it wasn't fun for most of the men, either.


1 to 5 of 12 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
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