Pathfinder Player Companion: Faiths & Philosophies (PFRPG)

***½( ) (based on 4 ratings)
Pathfinder Player Companion: Faiths & Philosophies (PFRPG)

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There’s more to faith than simply choosing a god. In the Pathfinder campaign setting, dozens of different religions, traditions, and philosophies war for people’s hearts and minds—sometimes with reasoned arguments, and sometimes with bloodied swords. Whether as a servant of a powerful deity, a devotee of a world-shaping philosophy, or a zealous atheist, it’s time to claim the power of your convictions with this guide to devotion—religious or otherwise.

Beliefs are nothing without champions. With Pathfinder Player Companion: Faiths & Philosophies, characters of every class can make their convictions work for them. Inside this book, you’ll find:

  • Detailed overviews of Golarion’s more esoteric spiritual traditions, from druidism and atheism to juju and pantheism, all with new rules to customize your character’s mechanics, from the arcane healer bard archetype to the juju oracle mystery.
  • New honor point systems for groups like the righteous Knights of Ozem, the mercantile Prophets of Kalistrade, and the terrifying Red Mantis assassins.
  • A new system of meditation feats to help characters of any class unleash their greatest potential in battle.
  • New traits tied to your character’s spiritual and philosophical views.
  • Information on codes of honor, false and deceased gods, monasticism, religious schisms, and philosophies for all manner of irreligious characters!
  • New inquisitions to help purge nonbelievers, druid domains to help you draw power from your totem spirit, feats to help atheists defy the gods, spells and magic items usable by characters of any class and philosophy, and more!

Written by Savannah Broadway, Paris Crenshaw, Neall Raemonn Price, David Ross, Owen K.C. Stephens, and James L. Sutter.
Cover Art by Ben Wootten.

This Pathfinder Player Companion is intended for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, but can easily be incorporated into any fantasy world. Each monthly 32-page Pathfinder Player Companion contains several player-focused articles exploring the volume’s theme as well as short articles with innovative new rules for all types of characters, as well as traits to better anchor the player to the campaign.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-543-3

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

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Product Reviews (4)

Average product rating:

***½( ) (based on 4 ratings)

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Fills a neglected niche

****( )

Read my full review at Of Dice and Pen.

I’m really glad that a book like this exists as I often wish Pathfinder Player Companion and Pathfinder Campaign Setting volumes would include just a little bit more of what daily life is like in the world. I do wish Faiths & Philosophies could go into quite a bit more detail, in fact. It offers a tantalizing glimpse at the belief structures of the world, but since a lot of space has to be devoted to new traits, feats, archetypes, and more, it can really do nothing more than brush the surface of these things. Nonetheless, it does provide just enough information to inspire players designing characters and gamemasters designing campaigns. For that, if nothing else, it’s well worth it. And some of those new mechanical options are quite interesting.

Deity: NONE

****( )

All right, the old character creation question: which god does the PC worship? Usually, the answer is BOOZE AND SEX, sorry, Cayden Cailean. But sometimes, the answer is ...

... one of the many choices presented in this book. Atheism, theism, pantheism, totemism, philosophy, false gods, schismatic sects ... the list is long, and everything gets a little loving.

The diversity is this book strength, but also a weakness - it's very likely that you'll use just a small part of it. While other Companion books are broadly useful to anybody invested in one particular topic, this one is somewhat all over the place due to its' nature.

All in all, a great thing to have on your bookshelf if you're aware of it's highly situational usefulness.

I'm not sure I get it

**( )( )( )

As much as it does seem to hit the mark, it likewise seems to not just as often. Perhaps Philosophies of the Unfaithful might have been a more appropriate name, as that's what it mostly seems to hit up on.

I see that Paizo also couldn't resisted focusing on the Bard as one of the big four classes covered, but this time I really just don't get it. Why would they focus on Bards, or Monks for that matter, in a book specifically about religions (and anti-religions) and philosophical/spiritual orders?

Typical of many of the Player's Guides, it tends me leave me feeling "that's it?", wishing that certain areas where expanded more, particularly beyond the already published material or flavor, but just not going far enough into the subject. Less Player's Guide material and more almost a brief summary of multiple topics. F&P goes along the same route, retreading Razmiran and Rahadoum without going too much further into other "atheists". I kind of felt the Feats in the particular section are pretty heavy handed. Not entirely sure it's a good idea to undermine some classes main features so strongly. SR 11+ Level for 2 Feats, even if only against Divine and most Outsiders is kind of ridiculous, A feat that can make a Cleric or Paladin doubt themselves and maybe force them to actively Save from even spells they cast on themselves, likewise not cool. Back to Evil getting the good toys.

We have a PFS legal Juju thing, but it's pretty watered down, kind of a Oracle flavored to be a druid/shaman, or a Voodoo analogue.

I'm curious about the point or intent of the centerfold portion. It seems to me an attempt to mock some real world sorts of things, except well in game, it's pretty much entirely correct. Bubblers and Liespinners (Razmiran, most non-divine healing and "cures", and similar things are generally very evil, or at best neutral). There's exceptions, but they generally ARE uncommon exceptions. Atheists and Deniers pretty much are ignorant and blind, but also notably intentionally "bad guys" in the setting (Rahadoum and Razmiran obviously, but the Whispering Way and the River Kingdoms as well).

Spells and Items, in my opinion where kind of "meh". I wished for some more info on Pantheonism, especially the much needed mechanics for it for non-Oracles divine characters, as well as a look at some new, not rehashed Faiths and Philosophies, and religious schisms.

Good but not wonderful

****( )

Faiths and Pantheons does a good job of accomplishing what it set out to do. It is a good mix of fluff and crunch. Most of the material is new and it makes a great deal of sense to reprint the bits that I've seen before.

The book is primarily aimed at enriching the backgrounds of those characters for whom religion or philosophy is a major focus (including those characters who dislike or despise the Gods). The book will be useful if you have a particular concept in mind and want to know where you might come from. It is useful if you want to know how the rest of the world tends to view your character. It is useful in giving mechanical suggestions on how to build a character.

Mechanically, the book has lots of new material and some reprinted material (lots of traits I`ve seen before). The material is usually very flavorful and is the usual mix of mechanically weak and mechanically sound options. None are overpowered which I personally think to be a VERY good thing.

Mechanically, my favourite by far is the Juju Oracle Mystery. While similar to the older one it has been altered somewhat in a good way. This one is even legal in PFS. I`m definitely going to be creating one of these for my next character

But there are a lot of other options that I`d at least consider using, especially with a new character. And some of the background fluff will be applied to existing characters to make them a little richer and a little better tied to the world.

I`d like to give this 3.5 stars. The Juju Oracle causes me to raise that to 4 stars.