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Into the Breach: The Kineticist (PFRPG) PDF

****( ) (based on 7 ratings)

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Into the Breach is a series of crunch-focused books intended to expand the options available to the Occult Classes (the kineticist, medium, mesmerist, occultist, psychic, and spiritualist).

For our 10th installment, we call upon primal elements both familiar and strange, and will them to our purpose with the kineticist. With three new archetypes, two new prestige classes, five new elements, and a host of kinticist focused items both mystic and mundane you are sure to find new ways to shape you chosen element, as it resides all around, awaiting your call.

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Product Discussion (33)


Same deal as always, free copy of our work for the price of an honest review.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Oh wow, I was wondering when this was coming out.

Shadow Lodge

I adore the kineticist but I'm note sure I could do a good review. Still, nice to see my favorite class getting more and more love!

I suppose I could give a shot at a review, what is the timetable you expect?

Hey N. Jolly,

Into the Breach: The Kineticist is out right now, available on Drivethru RPG and of course here on the happiest site on earth! (coming soon to D20)

Of course, you are welcome to a reviewer copy sir, I was rather hoping you would jump in on this one, being the kineticist guru round these parts. (gotta be honest, this was a tough project, it really really was)

@ The Golux, timetable, generally review done within one month is pretty normal, though we don't set reviewer deadlines, but as soon as one can manage is always appreciated (reviews are rather important). If you wanna jump in on the review train, just let PM me your email address that you would like the PDF download email delivered to (will be via Drivethru RPG site)

::casts shamless bump spell::

What it's my signature spell?!

Silver Crusade

You know I'm good to check it out, although preferably if you can get me a copy on drivethru, that'd be better so I can review it more than one place.

Sigh, I'll write a review when my tablet stops eating my review.

So if anyone has any specific questions about content please let me know.

Drivethru I can do, consider that flying through the ether in your general direction now N. Jolly!

::casts shamless bump spell again::

What it's my signature spell?!

Pearl of Power..recast...BAM!!

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Okay I've given up on writing the review where it goes.

Lots of material here.

Three archetypes.

The kinetic answer to the arcane archer for aether. Imbue arrows, enhance arrow damage, shoot through people, and blow people up.

The second is for teiflings out to embrace their heritage. Hellfire, imp familiar, becoming more outsider like.

Lastly, air kineticists who use the wind itself as an instrument for bardic music.

Two new prestige classes.

The first is for fire kineticists who want to burn the undead with holy blue fire.

The second is for all your kinetic Gish needs. Aether users who can enhance their armor, shields, and melee weapons.

Sadly all these options are element specific- 1 air, 2 aether, 2 fire.

Especially disappointing since the next action is five more elements.

Crystal and time don't really need explanations.

Bone is one of my two faves in the book. Very packed with flavor.

Chaos is my other favorite. Chaos in the literal sense as well as transformation. Looks mighty fun.

Dream, obviously, is mental focused, so it looks like it would play quite differently.

New feats and talents as well. Kudos for including element appropriate notes for some universal talents.

Shadow Lodge

Well, I hope I didn't go into too much detail.

Dragonborn3 wrote:
Well, I hope I didn't go into too much detail.

I wouldn't worry, the point is to help other people decide if they want to buy it or not.

I know I would have gone into more detail if I wasn't afraid that the fourth try wouldn't be the charm.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

Thanks Dragonborn3 and StSword we appreciate the feedback.

Writing a review means taking the time to read through the material, having an opinion, and the confidence to express that opinion. It is putting yourself out there as much as anyone standing in front fo a group to speak. kudos to you both.

Thanks for the reviews folks, we THRIVE on them, they help us grow as writers and designers, and most importantly, they show us what you folks like and want more off, so KUDOS to both of you!

1 person marked this as a favorite.

You are very welcome.

And thank you for putting out a book that adds fun toys for a class that needs more fun toys.

Serious folks, if you are a kineticist fan I can't imagine not wanting to play with something in this book.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

Thanks to J4RH34D for the latest review. Glad to hear we're holding up to high standards set for 3PP Kineticist by Purple Duck Games. We took our time on this one, seems like we're getting it right.

Aye, a big TFPG team thank you to J4RH34D for the in depth and excellent review!

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Well sherbert guys, you are making me blush :P.
You guys have a very cool system at TFPG and I am happy to support you all.

::casts Ffej's shameless bump spell::

What, we do don't do the 1 hour 3PP work day round these parts, no sir...!

I apologize for my slowness in publishing my review, the last few weeks have gone by faster than I expected, but it's up now. I hope it fits expectations and doesn't go into too much detail; this was my first ever RPG Product review so I am open to feedback.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

@The Golux life happens, we understand. Thank you as you took care and put some time into the review and that is clear to see.

We are one of the 3PPs where people often get their first pub credit, or their first editing credit, or in this case a first lead developer credit.

We do the free for a review to get those folk feedback and also to get people a chance to get a reward for writing their first review.

When this makes a profit it's small but it's still the most rewarding "job" we do.

Silver Crusade

Finally finished my review, there's a lot in here that could use some more TLC, but as a whole, it's a decently solid book.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

Thanks for the review N. Jolly, I can see the err towards player agenda on most of your review which I appreciate. It's a common argument of design as player agenda and game balance can seem like opposing forces at times. It's a tough class to design into and we all appreciated the challenge.

Aye, the staff appreciates the in depth and critical review N. Jolly, and it was an interesting and tough challenge, not an easy class to work with at all.

Part II of my review:

The second element would be chaos…and, well, it’s chaotic: Immediate action rerolls, but on a second failure, the target is staggered for one round. The blast replaces 3d6s with 1d20, 2d6s with 1d12, making the base damage more swingy. Also: Free bane versus lawful targets. This would be less of an issue, but the blast is untyped, which I d not think is a good call here. (Untyped damage must be handled very carefully…) Problematic would, for example, be a barrier that auto-disintegrates missiles and even thrown weapons. Yeah, that plus +5 thing? It’s gone. No save. WTF. Horrid mutation, a 2 burn level 2 substance infusion is also a really versatile potential save or suck and should probably by at least qualified as a polymorph effect. We also have 0 burn utility subjective gravity for free wall walking etc. Note that this element isn’t necessarily bad, but it feels weird in some of its design decisions, as it’s hard to get either the evil or whimsical chaos angle properly here.

Crystal feels a bit like a brother of bone and earth, allowing for some caltrop-ing, a bit of terrain control and otherwise feeling kinda similar to earth; personally, I probably would have made this an extension of earth, as the light/refraction-angle associated with crystals isn’t really represented here. It’s not a bad element, but it could use a couple of more unique tricks.

Dream is very versatile, allowing you to mimic elemental blasts; however, the blasts are only partially real, meaning that a successful Will-save can greatly decrease their efficiency and the blast is mind-affecting to boot. Speaking with the sleeping, tracking in the realm of dreams and a ton of spell-duplicates can be found here. I like the focus of this one, as a whole, though it does require a bit of flexibility from the GM. I wouldn’t allow it in all campaigns, but if you have a dream-theme, it’s really neat- As a secondary element in particular, this one can be neat. As a whole, in spite of the spell-duplicates, one of my favorites herein.

The final new element would be time, and I’m going to spare you the sordid details, but this one is broken as all hell. It thinks that “supernatural aging” is a damage type (it’s not!) and sports options to advance targets on the age category for 2 blasts. Lol, that is fatal very quickly. We have a per-encounter ability (ironic, considering that encounters have nothing to do with time…and yes, insert my “per-encounter abilities make no sense*-rant right here!) Restore youth allows you to cheat age. WTF. Why are there liches? And Stop Time…is a clear case of “What were they thinking???” – it’s a level 9 utility wild talent, 1 burn…that vastly outclasses frickin’ time stop. Yeah, you heard me. Also: 5th level perma-aging. WTF.

We also get notes on spark of life and draining infusion and use with the new elements. There are 3 new utility wild talents: Kinetic blade/fist charge with a trail of energy, an elemental aura and an elemental body SP duplicator. Bolster Kinetic Defense can be pretty potent in some combos: It makes elemental defense be treated as though you had spent 1 burn on it and may be taken multiple times. Elemental Ambassador is weak-sauce: It nets you a bonus on Cha-based skill checks and an elemental language. Kinetic Crafting allows for minor crafting, but oddly does not cover all elements herein. Kinetic Synergy is a spellcasting/kineticist-combo feat that allows you to accept burn for more spell-damage or DCs. Yeah, not a fan. Spells don’t need more power. Kinetic Understanding allows for the limited use of spell-trigger and spell-completion items. Signature Infusion lets you choose an infusion and reduce burn cost by 1. Again, not 100% happy. Then again, Merciful Blast is glorious and, coincidentally, I wrote an analogue ability half a year ago: It allows the kineticist to blast at a lower power-level and for nonlethal blasts.

We also get 6 new magic items: Athame Ignus is a blade for fire specialists; condensed elemental energy is a category of item that is highly problematic: It’s basically a throwaway item that can take burn for you. While it’s priced pretty highly and grouped by level, it’s still something I would not allow. Then again, if you enjoy all-day casting and have no problem with pearl of power abuse in your game, then this won’t bother you either. Focus gauntlets enhance attacks with blasts. Nexus aloe oil is a burn remover, but repeated use causes the sickened condition – should imho have a caveat that it can’t be applied when the character is sickened already. Third eyes of elemental accuracy are yet another item to enhance the chance to hit. Whistling arrows are adamantine, have a slightly wonky rules-verbiage, and are intended for use with the archetype. The pdf closes with an array of mundane items that represent different stones: The proper kineticist-specialist in possession of such an item gains a minor insight bonus. I liked these.


Editing and formatting, on a formal level, are very good. On a rules-language level, there are a couple of issues in the details, but as a whole, this is relatively tight, which is impressive considering the difficulty of the kineticist’s rules-chassis. Layout adheres mostly to a two-column full-color standard, with a couple of pages instead using a 1 –column standard. The pdf sports really nice full-color artworks, which, while public domain, are NOT ones I’ve seen time and again. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience.

Andrew Hoskins, David S. McCrae and Jeff Harris did not have an easy task here: The kineticist is probably one of Paizo’s most difficult classes to design for: It requires serious understanding of both rules-language and math. Considering that, the pdf, for the most part, does a decent job. While there are issues here and there, particularly regarding the value of damage types, a crucial balancing tool for the kineticist, the pdf gets a lot right. But it has a big issue. You see, almost all kineticist-supplements released by 3rd party publishers have been done by N. Jolly and the members of his team KOP. And…well, they are amazing. The Kineticists of Porphyra-series and Legendary Kineticists (can’t say anything about Part II as per the writing of this review) are amazing; in particular, KOP III’s dimensional ripper is just pure amazing. There also is a kind of aesthetic going on here: As a non-vancian class, kineticists shine most when they don’t require spell-references, when they can do unique things.

The kineticist options in this book, while not bad, did simply not blow me away and left me ambivalent; add to that the minor hiccups and the appeal drops. Another problem I see here pertains that a LOT of the small design parts here add to the min-maxing game; we get escalation of numbers in depth, when the kineticist’s main issue is that it needs more versatility. The craftsmanship of this book is, as a whole, pretty solid, but there are relatively few aspects herein that I’d consider to be really neat. The pdf also sports, here and there, aspects that are frankly broken and should be kept out of the hands of min-maxers. As a whole, I am sorry to say this, but I was pretty underwhelmed by this pdf. If you’re a GM who is confident regarding the refining and scavenging of rules, then this may well be worth checking out, but it should receive careful monitoring. My final verdict cannot exceed 2.5 stars, though I will round up due to in dubio pro reo.

Reviewed first on, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS, etc.

Endzeitgeist out.

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Flying Pincushion Games as a whole tries to both help break in new designers and be on the innovative end of design. It is a testament to the difficulty level of Kineticist design that it was the first book I've not done any design work for personally, because it both has a ton of player agenda already and most of the places I thought of to go with it were already out there. I'm still going to give my team Kudos as generally this seems well liked even if not so much by EndZ.

We might make some tweaks down the line.

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I for one am going to take all those many points where we feel short, and double down on this book to make it as good as it deserves to be. As always, thanks for the frank and honest review Thilo.

Sovereign Court

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Thanks for the review, Thilo, as always!

And you're right. It's wasn't an easy task. but this was a great learning experience. We'll make some tweaks in the future and get it sparkling. ^.^

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Big believer in the design rule of ABL (always be learning).

Thilo's deep reviews are big part of making that work for me, a light like or dislike (while not a wrong way to review) IMHO does not give the authors nearly as much feedback that can be put into action.

I suspect I would not be at the point I am as a designer without honest and critical reviews. Fluffy feelings are great (I like feeling warm and fuzzy as much as the next designer), but hone your craft to a razor edge alas they do not.

I didn't post in a TFPG product thread as grumpy wizard, shocking I know!

RPG Superstar Season 9 Top 32

For what it's worth I still think the world needs to see Stealthephant and Badgerdilles

That goes without saying!

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