Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Nidal, Land of Shadows

****( ) (based on 6 ratings)
Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Nidal, Land of Shadows

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A Land Chained in Shadow

Ten thousand years ago, faced with extinction, the terrified leaders of Nidal heard whispers in their minds—promises of salvation for their nation if only they'd submit their people's bodies and souls to perpetual servitude. Those leaders' assent transformed them into conduits for Zon-Kuthon, the god of envy and pain, and has sealed Nidal's fate to this day.

Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Nidal, Land of Shadows draws back the curtain from one of Golarion's most wicked and mysterious theocracies. Within these pages, you'll find:

  • Detailed descriptions of Nidal's history, including its tragic fall into Zon-Kuthon's grasp.
  • An in-depth gazetteer of the entire nation, from settlements to more sinister features.
  • Malevolent adventure sites from the Castle of the Captive Sun to the Tower of Slant Shadows.
  • A bestiary of shadowy creatures, including the suffragan kyton, that lurk in Nidal and beyond.

Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Nidal, Land of Shadows is intended for use with the Pathfinder campaign setting, but it can be easily adapted to any fantasy world.

ISBN-13: 978-1-64078-033-0

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Campaign Setting Subscription.

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PZO92108


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****( ) (based on 6 ratings)

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At long last...

*****

... all the bits and pieces of information we've had coming out piecemeal over the years coalesce into a quite enjoyable write-up of Nidal, arguably the most screwed-up nation-state in Avistan.

The sense of just how oppressive the place is really comes across in the art and the writing, and the historical bits are quite well fleshed-out.

While not quite as outré as it maybe could have been, it's still pretty grim going in places. At the same time, you get a taste of what Nidal was before it knuckled under to a god of pain and darkness, and a sense of what the place has to offer.


A terrific description of one of the most evil countries

*****

Nidal is an intriguing nation and one of the most unique to Golarion, in my view.

This first part of the book does a brilliant job of portraying the thorough depravity of the place and what it’s like to live under the oppressive, slightly insane theocracy. The following chapter on adventure sites is full of adventure hooks and places/reasons to visit. The book finishes off with half a dozen well chosen, nidalese themed monsters.

I think it’s hard to portray a truly evil place without descending into parody and this book has avoided that trap with great skill. It was exquisitely written and a joy to read (albeit with the occasional shiver).

As with all good sourcebooks, I ended up with half a dozen campaign/adventure ideas rolling around in my head. That’s the point of these kinds of supplements and I can’t give it anything other than five stars.

More like this please!


At best, I am not impressed...

*( )( )( )( )

I bought this book in the expectation of a little edgy goodness. It is a guidebook about Nidal for crying out loud. It even came with a "graphic content"-warning.

Well, that warning was overselling the content in the worst way. I expected a horror movie and I got the disney-fied all-ages version. I am so disappointed. This book has no spells, no magic items, no classes. In fact, no crunch at all. It is one big, sanitized National Geographic article. Yawn! I could have pieced the entire content together myself with a few hours of work from previous sources, with the possible exception of the city maps.

If it was possible to get a refund on the basis of "try again, buddy", I would.

Needless to say, this book is not recommended.


Seems like a cheerful place.

*****

This book does a great job of conveying what a country being run be Zon-Kuthon for millennia actually looks like and how the practicalities work out. Nidal really makes a lot more sense to me, and I'm a lot better equipped to run an adventure there after reading this. Check it out!


Beautiful and Horrific

*****

Long shrouded with secrecy and terror this books finally dives into the shadowy horror that is Nidal. And it is wonderful.

The overview of the various areas and the art along with it are awesome, and an absolute treat for GMs and players who have long had/wanted characters to be from this dreadful place.

Warning: this book contains VERY disturbing themes and certain pieces of art, being, ya'know, the country of misery and torture. And now that you've been warned, enjoy ^w^


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Heine Stick wrote:

-Hive brute (CR 8 NE aberration), another hive creature

-Joyful thing (CR 6 LE outsider)
-Suffragan kyton (CR 5 LE outsider), creature with spiked chains for arms and no lower body

More kytons and hive beasts are always fun.

But I feel some surprise to see the Joyful Thing listed as an outsider. I though they were just mortals who were tortured beyond the limits of sanity by the Kuthites and got hung up in bags in their temples to aid the ambiance?

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Well yeah, apparently you get ascended to outsider status when you under go that Joymaking ritual .-.

Dark Archive

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

So this book is so full of content you could probably run multiple books in Nidal with this book alone ._.;

The Exchange

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Finally got my hands on it. Read it literally cover to cover in a day. This is almost <i>perfect</i>. Now I just need those two planar books and I can really start working on my campaign!

Also, most of the art is absolutely gorgeous (I say mostly just because of the few rather disturbing ones, which are still amazingly well done). And oh my god, the <i>map</i>. A while ago, I made a shoddy map edit to add Crosspine and the Uskheart and Karpad to a Nidal map, but this has almost everything! It's really only missing Karpad, and a few minor obscure things, like the dueling liches and the umbral dragon in the mountains (names are escaping me at the moment). But all in all, this is amazing.

Dark Archive

7 people marked this as a favorite.

Random thoughts;

There is a lot of Occult Adventures stuff in here. Multiple mesmerists and mediums, for instance. That's kind of neat.

After the Qadira book, this may be my second favorite of the regional sourcebooks, and that's surprising to me, since I like Qadira a lot more than Nidal!

Tons of stuff going on, and I like the expanded backstory on the horselords of old, and the somewhat lip-service nature of the faith of Zon-Kuthon outside of the long shadow of Pangolais.

As for races, I really enjoyed the expanded information on the caligni, particularly the kind of sad attempts they are undergoing to create a culture from fragments of lore about Azlanti practices, and that the 'fetchlings' have their own name for their race, and consider fetchling to be insulting. That's some neat development.

Contributor

10 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm really happy this book is getting a positive reception. It was the first time I'd written any out-and-out gaming materials, and I wasn't altogether sure we'd hit the brief. But hey, looks like it came out all right after all. :)

I thought Lyz did a really amazing job with the adventure locations, btw. Lots and lots of neat game ideas nested into each of those.

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Pardon me, but I need to fanboy for a moment.

I absolutely love what I'm reading in the book. I'm forcing myself to go slowly and not devour it all in a single sitting. I'm hopeful we'll see more Nidal in the future, either in the form of another novel (Nightglass and Nightblade were excellent!) or in the form of additional lore material in a Pathfinder 2 supplement.

Okay, enough flailing.

Thank you for writing this for us, Ms. Merciel! And thank you to Erik Mona for confirming it was in the pipe after I kept pestering him. The wait was worth it.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Echoing Zhern, Liane and Lyz kicked ass!

*daydreams about possible 3rd Night book*


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Rysky wrote:

Echoing Zhern, Liane and Lyz kicked ass!

*daydreams about possible 3rd Night book*

Mines still on the slow boat. :(

Getting fidgety!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
Rysky wrote:

Echoing Zhern, Liane and Lyz kicked ass!

*daydreams about possible 3rd Night book*

Mines still on the slow boat. :(

Getting fidgety!

*offers hugs*

Lantern Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Liane Merciel wrote:

I'm really happy this book is getting a positive reception. It was the first time I'd written any out-and-out gaming materials, and I wasn't altogether sure we'd hit the brief. But hey, looks like it came out all right after all. :)

I thought Lyz did a really amazing job with the adventure locations, btw. Lots and lots of neat game ideas nested into each of those.

I hardly post on here anymore, but I wanted to step in and say that this is my favorite CS book since Qadira. It's so well thought out and easily could've been twice as long and still kept me as interested. I read it cover-to-cover in a single, eager sitting.

Excellent work, Liane and co. Truly excellent.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Quality book! Thank you very much for the great work. This does a fantastic job of fleshing out what it's like in Nidal, and how things have persisted this long. The distinctions between rural and urban life were especially useful.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Class Deck, Maps, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

This was a fantastic book. Congratulations to all the authors. I wouldn’t have changed anything. The campaign setting books have really been great of late.

We need more books written by Liane (and Lyz - the adventure sites were universally brilliant).


any new dragon type in this book ?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:

This was a fantastic book. Congratulations to all the authors. I wouldn’t have changed anything. The campaign setting books have really been great of late.

We need more books written by Liane (and Lyz - the adventure sites were universally brilliant).

I second this.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
demiurge108 wrote:

any new dragon type in this book ?

Nope.


Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Taskuhecate wrote:

Finally got my hands on it. Read it literally cover to cover in a day. This is almost <i>perfect</i>. Now I just need those two planar books and I can really start working on my campaign!

Also, most of the art is absolutely gorgeous (I say mostly just because of the few rather disturbing ones, which are still amazingly well done). And oh my god, the <i>map</i>. A while ago, I made a shoddy map edit to add Crosspine and the Uskheart and Karpad to a Nidal map, but this has almost everything! It's really only missing Karpad, and a few minor obscure things, like the dueling liches and the umbral dragon in the mountains (names are escaping me at the moment). But all in all, this is amazing.

I just want to double-check because I'm start to prep The Midnight Mirror. This book doesn't have anything on Karpad?


Jhaeman wrote:
I just want to double-check because I'm start to prep The Midnight Mirror. This book doesn't have anything on Karpad?

A search of the PDF for Karpad yielded 0 results.


Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Fair enough, thanks.


absolutely loved the Smokeshade and the Hive Critter.

Spoiler:
on the fence about the Joyful Things, and the Kyton that creeps out other Kytons.

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