Strange Magic: Ethermagic, Composition, and Truemagic (PFRPG) PDF
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Bored of Vancian magic? Try something Strange instead!
In development in one way or another since June of 2013, Strange Magic offers up three brand new magical subsystems with freedom as their modus operandi. Build custom spells from the ground up with ethermagic, compose your own scores with musical composition, and weave ridiculous combos and reverse recitations with truename magic.
Ethermagic takes equal parts Douglas Adams and H. P. Lovecraft to produce an 'all day long' system of magic with a cosmic flavor. Spiritual successors to the warlock base class of the 3.5 days, the ethermagus, ethermancer, and etherslinger base classes seek to have improved playability by offering the ability to mix and match spell effects to make custom evocations on the fly. Whereas the warlock simply blasted, the ethermagician can ask, 'How hard?', and can even choose to be an interesting hybrid class rather than a pure-blooded caster.
Thanks to the advent of a rapidly-regenerating spell point pool, players must choose whether or not to spend more than they will regenerate next turn. Incredibly potent effects are indeed possible, but firing them off without a care in the world will reduce the player to single-target ranged touch attacks in a hurry!
In the real world, great musicians are some of the most creative people that you will ever meet. When sitting down to play one in tabletop gaming, however, musical performance boils down to a short list of canned abilities that are autogranted at particular level thresholds. In short, gaming a musician is not the creative enterprise that actually being one is.
The musical composition system seeks to capture the raw creativity of music with the advent of a freeform composition system. Players combine intros, melodies, and outros to compose custom scores, which are then conducted in much the same way that a bard performs his performances. Each base class contained herein takes a different spin on the concept, combining it with spellcasting, arcane magic, divine magic, or more freeform musical composition, as the case may be.
Composition's transformative archetypes are not mere flavor packages, but instead modify the very root of the composition system itself, to the point that each base class can be made almost unrecognizable by piling on two or three of them.
We call it the First Language, and anything spoken in this most primal of tongues is law. Be the speaker king or peasant, the universe is compelled to shift the very fabric of its being to conform to that which is said. Complex beyond comprehension, this ur-tongue contains syntax and vocabulary capable of describing all that can conceivably exist in this, or any other universe. Though perfect mastery of such a construct is impossible for even the gods—this is why deities have portfolios—even a mortal can learn enough of the First Language to effectively BE a god with an incredibly narrow focus. These obsessive scholars and phoneticians are collectively called the truenamers, and their efforts to capture the power wielded by the gods themselves upsets everyone from clerics to cultists.
Truename magic features the recitations system, in which spells are cast upon successfully making a truenaming check (same as a concentration check, but a different name so other content can't break it) against the level of the recitation. Each time a recitation is recited, its check DC increases by +2 until the following day. Inflections, effectively a metamagic system that allows for bonus effects in exchange for increasing the truenaming DC faster, makes even the 1st-level recitations useful forever. After all, if you could cast a quickened 1st-level recitation each round, why wouldn't you?
- Three ethermagic base classes: the full-caster ethermancer, the melee ethermagus, and the cosmic firearms etherslinger.
- Four composition base classes: the maneuvers-based breakdancer, the divine cantor, the score-spamming harmonicist, and the arcane maestro
- Two truename magic base classes: the classic truenamer and the universe-trolling scion of discordia
- Ten ethermagic archetypes, four of which, the healing etherfuser, the insane mad evangelist, the etherbomber, and the stealthy void stalker, are complex enough to be new classes in their own right!
- Five composition archetypes, all of which are compatible with multiple composition classes
- Eight truename magic archetypes, two of which, the chessmaster and the discordant instigator, may as well be their own classes!
- Five truename magic prestige classes
- An NPC Codex! Over 30 pages of iconic NPCs for use in your games
- Well over 150 pages of manifestations, compositions, opuses, recitations, dance moves, talents, and feats
- Favored Class options for all common races, as well as most featured races
"For me, this is an EZG Essential, a candidate for my top ten of 2014, and deserves a final verdict of 5 stars + seal of approval. This is, even without anything I added, the best crunch-book I've seen in ages—innovative, fun, complex, and yet, pretty easy to grasp." —Endzeitgeist, reviewing Ultimate Ethermagic
"WOW, this supplement (which is only 1/3 of the entire book) is amazing!" —Chris Zank, reviewing Ultimate Ethermagic
"Its crowning achievement, to me, remains in its ability to make the mastery of the system mimic the process it seeks to emulate—a feat rarely seen in any supplement and one that must be considered superbly rewarding. Hence, Ultimate Composition receives a final verdict of 5 stars + seal of approval and becomes a candidate for my Top Ten of 2015." —Endzeitgeist, reviewing Ultimate Composition
"I can assure you this monster is worth each cent, offering a vast array of cool options and salvaging the truenaming concept, making it actually work while maintaining its distinct identity." —Endzeitgeist, reviewing Libram of the First Language
"Might [be] worth the price for the Breakdancer class alone. Seriously. I totally want to make a gnome breakdancer now." - Timothy B., featured reviewer, commenting on the Strange Magic Subscription
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