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Pathfinder Player Companion: Magical Marketplace (PFRPG)

***( )( ) (based on 5 ratings)
Pathfinder Player Companion: Magical Marketplace (PFRPG)
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Gather your gold and get ready to upgrade your gear with Pathfinder Player Companion: Magical Marketplace! The merchants of Golarion have honed their skills for years, plumbed ancient sites of legend, and made deals with otherworldly forces to dredge up miraculous magic items salable to intrepid adventurers such as yourself. From the opulent boutiques of the Ivy District in Absalom to the bustling black markets of Katapesh’s Nightstalls, the shopkeepers herein stock a wide range of magical items useful to adventurers of any walk. Whether you seek to poison enemies with a mere gesture, walk the ocean floor in search of plunder, shatter bones with magical hammers, or enhance your body with clockwork prostheses, these dealers are sure to offer the key to your success. In addition, these practiced merchants each offer a host of unique and useful abilities to teach their favored and frequent customers.

Magical Marketplace contains dozens of new magic items and character options keyed to a variety of shops both big and small within the Pathfinder campaign setting. Inside this book, you’ll find:

  • Over 50 new magic items, including enchanted tattoos, drow devices, insidious traps, holy relics, and more.
  • Profiles of 14 shopkeepers from all over the Inner Sea region, including detailed information on their shops and wares.
  • Discounts and alternative methods of payment available to regular customers and hardy adventurers willing to assist their merchants.
  • New special weapon and armor abilities designed to help cripple enemies and ward against their devastating attacks.
  • Dozens of new rules options for every class, including feats, spells, inquisitions, hexes, discoveries, and more.

This Pathfinder Player Companion is intended for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and the Pathfinder campaign setting, but can easily be incorporated into any fantasy world.

Written by Paizo Staff.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-600-3

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

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Product Reviews (5)

Average product rating:

***( )( ) (based on 5 ratings)

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This is easily the worst Pathfinder Player Companion volume I have seen.

Thematically, there is just nothing here. Not a drop of ink is spilled on overarching concepts of how magic shop work in relation to Golarion or the like. The shopkeepers are overwhelmingly obvious (a pirate on a ship! A Varisian in a wagon!), and there simply isn't enough wordcount given to their descriptions to make them or their establishments memorable or interesting.

Mechanically, most of the stuff is boring or bonkers. The price adjustments are random, and the very first one is an exception to how they work (as well as an infinite gold bug). Gating abilities behind gold values is nonsensical when they are at inappropriate points in relation to wealth-by-level (who picks a new Inquisition when they have 60,000gp?).

There is no balance to the abilities offered. The mid level Arcane Discovery that lets you randomly increase Illusion DCs is nothing compared to the one that lets you double up on successful Enchantment spells (because the only thing better than Dominate Person is a second Dominate Person for free). Shoot people off cliffs, a Rogue talent ideal for non-Rogues, even more options making Shields the best weapons in the game, and so on.

I haven't even gotten to the items yet, but at this point I feel it is basically unnecessary. More of the same, the overpriced next to the overpowered next to a bunch of spells-in-a-can, most of which are entirely forgettable. Nothing to redeem the book here.

Really, overwhelming disappointing. Not something I would recommend.


A mixed bag, an ugly-ish mixed bag.

***( )( )

Magical marketplace is an interesting little book. I actually like a lot of the ideas behind the different merchants and personalities and discounts given. All too often players treat merchants as simple dump points for loot, this book goes a long way in making interplay between PCs and local or random merchants much more realistic or at least interesting.

The actual items are very interesting, some really fun things that should appeal in at least some way to players and GMs alike. You'll want to think and compare them to existing items, and either rework or reprice them accordingly.

Fluff and content wise this is a 4 or 5 star book, but I have to knock it for its design/layout. This was rushed or handled by interns, not sure what happened here. Why use the backgrounds they did, why not pages from the standard books? Same with the sidebar graphics. They just aren't good, or at least at paizo standard levels, which is usually great. I know there are lots of designers that are waiting to get fun work like this and would hit it out of the park and this is just... blech.


Wonderfully creative

*****

Read my full review on Of Dice and Pen.

Magical Marketplace is one of the most creative Player Companion volumes in some time. While its overall focus is on new mechanical options for player characters, it presents these new options in a way that’s full of world flavour, and helps to flesh out Golarion in a way that most campaign worlds rarely receive. I heartily recommend this book.


Interesting, but not very play friendly

**( )( )( )

I'm not sure how to rate this. I like reading through it, so in that aspect more like a 4 star. Some of the material I'm not sure about, so in that aspect I'm thinking like a 2 star. I like some of the items and ideas, so maybe a 3 star, but then (with the stuff that follows), I'm finding it hard to go above 3, and that's kind of pushing it. Not because its a poor book, just one I am not sure I will ever really use, (to the point of needing a book for it).

The book mostly focuses on shops that are one of two things mainly; A.) a place to buy things of a certain theme or B.) a place to go that can teach some classes things like Feats or Bard Masterpieces. They are generally both Class and Concept specific, so the Mendev Sarenrae shop is pretty much focused on Inquisitors (and the proprietor, a Cleric, can teach Inquisitors new Inquisitions, . . . wait, what?), and will have basic stuff for divine classes, but no more than any other random shop. Some of them work, some are kind of odd.

All in all, it's one of those sorts of books that I'll probably never ever use, (possibly an item or two later on), but if it ever did come up in a game, it's probably only going to be a single time. It's a bit too specific (for me) to actually use for play, and so in the end was kind of a waste of money. I don't mean that to be harsh, and it is an interesting book, but I just don't use or want a bunch of mini magic marts in game, and I'm thinking that even on the rare occasion where I might use it, much of the fluff and flavor will be wasted on the players.

I was hoping for a little bit more of an Adventure's Armory than an NPC book about magical shops. Some of the material is, (and this greatly depends on what you like in your game), along the same lines as the elephant in the room Gunslingers and the like. Not really for me, but I'm not against others liking it, so I'm mostly neutral on that for this review. One think I would have liked is a lot more 1,000 - 5,000 gp prices gear, both magic and nonmagical. So, so much of the gear in here is more at the 20,000+ range that again it's just never going to be used, and if so, not often enough to warrant buying the book for it. That's how it feels anyway, that could change.

I am really not sure why this is a Player's Companion, and would really have been best placed as a small aside or chapter in a DM related product, (Ult Campaign for example) more than anything, possibly splitting up the gear into something else. It really suffers for being a small book of a bunch of mostly unrelated concepts, and really needs to be bigger and have included more. Another Adventure's Armory or mini Ult Equipment I would have found many times more useful, and much more in line of being a Player's Companion. More shops offering spells (only one does and they, well kind of suck) would have been fantastic. Great concept, but the two included are meh. Would be a great way to implement how to include spells from other similar products though, rather than just throwing them in wholesale.

One last thing I kind of hated about this book (and the more recent Companions) is the set up. It's annoying as all get out that everything is listed all over the place. It makes sense that Alchemists shop would have related gear, but at the same time I would have been so much better to just place everything together in one are. All magic weapons ere, all magic armor there, all feats back there, etc. . . and the individual shops indicating which they have access to. It would both look so much better and also be much more convenient. Visually, the way it is now is kind of tacky/ugly.


Three Words: Clockwork Prosthetic Limbs. That is all.

*****

Alright, I personally think that this book should have been a Campaign Setting book rather than a Player's Companion because it seems to contain more ideas for Game Masters than for Players (plus Campaign Setting books have more content and I want more!). That said, I love, love, love this book. It introduces a host of different specialized magic shops perfect for any GM to spice up their campaign and present to their players. Heck, a few are so interesting an adventure could be based off the owners of the shops. The book really helps to make magic shops, well, magical. Further, the book has a host of magnificent magic items, not the least of which are clockwork prosthetic limbs from Alkenstar. Oh, and did I mention that the limbs can be enchanted in the same manner as a weapon?

I would certainly recommend it.



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