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Pathfinder Battles—Legends of GolarionWizKids/NECA
My Experience With One BrickCuuniyevo —
Variety: I received the following figures: 1, 2, 3, 3, 4, 5, 6, 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 24, 24, 28, 30, 31, 32, 34, 35, 37, 39, 40, 45, 51, 54. In all, only 2 duplicated figures (the Kobold Archer and the Ulat-Kini), both of which are handy to have.
My favorite figures are the Akata, Derhii, Goblins, Kobolds, Serpentfolk and last but certainly not least: The Fire Demon. The Fire Demon is fantastic, and I'm very tempted to hide it from my players until the perfect moment, which I'll have to plan out starting now.
Paint: I was quite pleased with the paint jobs and have almost no complaints on that front. All of the figures are vibrant and easily recognized. The one disappointing figure from a painting standpoint was the Eagle Knight (#22), who has a smudged face and some color bleed from the trim of his coat.
Construction: Most of the figures are top notch and seem like they'll hold up for a lot of use, but the Black Dragon (#45) had a broken horn. Thankfully, the dragon and its horn were kept in a small bag and I can fix it with glue. Many of the weapons are flexible, and will require some adjustments to straighten them out, but that's to be expected with plastic figures, and it's certainly better than being too brittle. Some of the figures have obvious seams that I would have liked to be filled in.
Verdict: Based on my experience thus far, I'd recommend this Brick and will probably buy another one for myself.
Annals of the Drunken Wizard: Critical Hit-Exchanging Weapon Special Abilities (PFRPG) PDFInterjection Games
Our Price: $3.50Add to Cart
Dealing Extra Damage Is So MundaneCuuniyevo —
Length: 17 pages total: 1 page front cover; 1 page introduction; 1 page licensing; 14 pages of content.
Format: Mostly 2-column, with 6 pages of centered tables at the end. There is a great deal of wasted space on the later pages with tables so if you like printing, you may be disappointed with their layout. Overall, this book is easy to read. Of particular note is that this book is extensively hyperlinked to d20pfsrd.com, making it very easy to find the rules on item creation and the particulars of the spells used during that creation. These links were no doubt time-consuming to create and they are a very nice addition. I did not click on every link to test them but I did do a cursory scan of each, finding 3 that did not receive links and 1 that pointed to the pdf's file location instead of a website. One of the few links I did click did not lead to a proper page. Whether this is due to a website redesign or a mistake at the time of writing is unknown to me. Apart from that, there were 18 typographical and grammatical errors that had no serious impact on readability or gameplay mechanics.
There were 4 errors that I noticed which do impact gameplay mechanics, as follows: Concussion has a different number for Price and Cost; Greater Evocative Impact has an unrelated special ability's text copied into its description instead of the proper text, rendering it unusable without guesswork based on Evocation Impact; Tideturner and Greater Tideturner have rules calling for DC's to mitigate their effects, presumably as saving throws, but they do not specify whether it's a Will, Reflex, Fortitude or ability score to be rolled.
Art: 1 cover + 11 pictures, all black and white, with several pieces appearing to be basic clip art. There's nothing wrong with them, but they're not exciting.
Critical Hit Exchange: The idea presented by this book is to introduce a set of special abilities for melee and ranged weapons that replace the weapon's ability to deal extra damage from critical hits. There are 45 such properties, ranging in strength from being equivalent to a +1 bonus all the way to being equivalent to a +5 bonus, and they are priced accordingly. Some of these properties only apply to melee weapons while others apply to ranged, and some may be applied to either. Some are specific to bludgeoning, piercing or slashing weapons as well. There are several tables at the end of the book allowing for random loot generation and making it a simple task to see which properties may be applied to which types of weaponry.
All of the special qualities listed within either remove the ability to deal extra damage upon confirming a critical hit or require another such ability to already be active. You need to confirm your critical hit to gain the new benefits, so don't think of these as being "always on". Here are some of the weapon abilities you'll find within:
• Alchemical - Treat the enemy as though they had been hit with a Tanglefoot Bag.
Verdict: I really like this book and almost all of the special abilities within. There are a few hiccups that keep it from being perfect but since these special abilities are almost entirely stand-alone, I believe there is still enough fun to be had here to warrant my full endorsement.
2/3rds Good, Handle With CareCuuniyevo —
Length: 7 pages total: 1 page front cover, credits and introduction; 5 pages of content; 1 page licensing.
Format: 2-column, easy to read. I found 17 typographical and grammatical errors total, 11 of which are contained within the introductory text on page 1. It makes for a fairly poor first impression, but the errors were not serious enough to diminish the overall quality of the book.
Art: 2 pictures, both of characters, with one in color and one in black and white. Both are of good quality.
Dhampir Feats: There are 37 feats within this book, specifically for use within the Shadows over Vathak campaign setting. One of the feats listed within has a prerequisite that references elements of that campaign setting, so you may need to adjust or outright ban it if your adventures take place in another setting. Most of these feats are thematically appropriate for the Dhampir; enhancing senses, social abilities, necromantic powers, vampiric abilities and so on. I like many of the feats in this book, but several stood out as being strangely written or balanced, with a few missing prerequisites or having conflicting purposes.
The first strange feat is Animation by Touch, which appears to grant the ability to cast animate dead as many times as you want for free, with the only limit being that you may only animate one undead creature per turn with a maximum number of undead controlled being 2HD per caster level. I do not believe this is the intent, but as-written, this is an enormously powerful feat. Strangely, it appears to be impossible to actually take the feat, as something called "Death Touch" is listed in the prerequisites, but I can find no Pathfinder source for that ability/feat/trait on any of the usual websites or in my copy of the Shadows of Vathak campaign setting. There are multiple abilities that are similar, with the closest being "Death's Touch" for Bones Oracles or Grave Touch for Necromancy Wizards, but it's also possible that the writer inadvertently used a 3.x edition ability name by mistake. Since I do not know for sure what the intent was (and the feat appears to be way too powerful as-written), I would simply ban it as an option.
One of the core feats (acting as a prerequisite for 7 of the others) in this book is Blood Drinker, which grants a series of abilities related to drinking an enemy's blood, dealing 2 points of Constitution damage to the enemy and granting temporary hitpoints and a bonus to saves based on your own Constitution. Further feats add to these bonuses or otherwise alter the ability to be less restricted. As a balancing feature, the initial feat may only be used against a single subtype of (living) humanoids, but this may be expanded to animals, the recently deceased, monstrous humanoids or other humanoid subtypes. My only concern with this ability is that the Con damage and all of the bonuses appear to be automatically successful, so long as the actual bite attack connects. If you have a bite attack from another source, the blood-drinking is automatic and doesn't appear to take any time at all or have any cost, so a GM may find themselves picking different enemies to counter the tactic if this feat gets overused.
Bone Armor is a fantastic idea for a necromancer, but falls short mechanically. The idea is that you may encase yourself in bones forcefully drawn out of any dead bodies in the surrounding area, providing an armor bonus with no arcane spell failure chance of armor check penalty. Awesome! Except… it is limited to once per day, only provides +2 armor and only lasts a number of rounds equal to your level. The feat requires that you be a wizard so you will be able to cast mage armor, which grants +4 armor and lasts for 1 hour per level. Mechanically, why would you want to spend a feat on an inferior version of a level 1 spell? There is another feat in this book that upgrades the armor bonus to +4 but the duration is left untouched, so you're now potentially spending 2 feats on something that's still inferior to a level 1 spell. If the feat at least granted an automatic demoralize effect to any enemy that saw you use it, that would be something.
Perhaps the most confusing feat in this book is "Greater, Negative Energy Blast". To my eye, this feat may be read one of two ways: Either as "upgrading" a 1d8+1 per caster level (capped at 10d8+10) attack to a 1d6+2 per two caster levels (naturally capping at 10d6+20) attack; Or as granting an all-new ranged attack using the second set of numbers, but with no limit to the number of times per day it may be used.
Replicate the Divine appears to be partially broken. In theory, it's supposed to let an arcane caster use a single divine spell chosen from the Death domain as if they were a cleric of the appropriate level, in addition to their usual method of preparing and using it. Unfortunately, one of the prerequisites is that you have the ability to cast it as a divine spell. If you could already cast a divine version of one of those spells, why would you want to take a feat to allow yourself to cast that specific spell as if you were a cleric? If the writer had wanted the feat to be useful to arcane casters, the prerequisite should have been "ability to cast a spell that appears on the Death Domain spell list" instead of being "ability to cast divine spells from the Death Domain spell list".
Spirit Dissertation is interesting, but potential trouble for an unwary GM. The only prerequisite is that the character be a Dhampir, meaning that the feat could be taken at first level. It grants the supernatural ability to speak with dead, as the spell of the same name, once per day. This is a nice ability, but if you're playing a murder-mystery adventure at low levels, you may not want your 1st level players to have access to a 3rd level spell like this. I actually like this feat quite a bit, and don't have a problem with gaining early access to such an ability, considering how it is only useful in very specific situations.
Thirst For Blood is the last feat I take issue with on a technical level. It improves your bite attack by transferring a portion of their life force to you through the blood, effectively healing you a small amount. The only problem is that it does not grant you a bite attack or require that you already have one before taking the feat. It's a simple oversight, and I would hope that nobody would take a feat that they can't actually use, but better safe than sorry.
Thankfully, the list of feats I unequivocally like is much longer than the list I took issue with. In the interest of time, I'll briefly skim over them below.
Verdict: If you like Dhampirs already, you will almost definitely find a lot to like here, and if you don't like Dhampirs, there are some pretty great new feats that might change your mind. There are some issues I'd like to see cleaned up, but this book is mostly good.
Solid Idea, Mind-Boggling ExecutionCuuniyevo —
Length: 14 pages total: 1 page front cover and credits; 11 pages of content; 1 page advertising; 1 page licensing.
Format: 2-column, with a couple information tables spreading from side to side. Laid out well for the most part, but the font is a little thin, so I zoomed in to 100% to make it more comfortable to read. There are multiple times where an ability makes reference to another part of the book without clearly saying where that information is, and a table of information was awkwardly inserted into a column of unrelated rules. I found several typographical and grammatical errors—neither numerous nor serious enough to cause confusion—but after spotting several large mechanical flaws with the class, I stopped keeping track.
Art: 1 cover image showing the Eldritch Conjuror and a conjured creature. 8 pieces of interior art, representing various aspects you'd expect: 4 sigils related to Old Gods, 2 creatures, a character and a tome. Some of the art is black and white while others are in color. All of the art is of good quality.
The Eldritch Conjuror: This book tries to present a new class, modeled partially after the Summoner, sans-eidolon, and I am sad to say that it utterly fails on a mechanical level. The premise is sound, and reasonably appealing: Drawing power from Old Ones, the Eldritch Summoner has access to strange powers and the ability to apply 'Pseudonatural'—a new template presented herein—to any creature summoned via the summon monster line of spells. In terms of flavor and mechanics, this template is actually pretty nice, and I will certainly use it on monsters elsewhere. Unfortunately, the Eldritch Summoner class says that it can use this ability on all of it summons starting at level 1. The pseudonatural template adds SR, DR 5/—, immunity to crits and sneak attacks, +4 Str and Con, and changes the Type to Outsider. This is very powerful for a level 1 combatant, and that's only the beginning.
The main problem with the Eldritch Summoner is its spell-list. This book does not have a spell-list, opting instead to use fuzzy language implying that they can pick any spells they want from the summoner list, the wizard/sorcerer list, or even make up their own spells via research. They are a 6-level spell-casting class, with the usual early-access issues you might imagine, but exacerbated by a terrible class abilities table. The default summoner gains access to 2nd level spells at level 4, 3rd at 7, 4th at 10, 5th at 13, and 6th at 16, so even though it has access to high-level wizard/sorcerer spells, its early-access isn't ridiculous. The balance issues were only when you combined it with potion-making, elixirs and Limited Wishes. The Eldritch Summoner takes that much further by granting 2nd level spells at level 4, 3rd at 6, 4th at 8, 5th at 10, and 6th at 12. So imagine, if you will, a 6th level character casting Black Tentacles or Dimension Door, an 8th level character with Baleful Polymorph or Magic Jar, a 10th level character with Plane Shift or Simulacrum, and a 12th level character with Dominate Monster or Greater Planar Binding, PLUS Summon Monster VIII. To add insult to injury, this book lists the Eldritch Summoner as being able to cast all of their spells multiple times per day a full level before knowing them. They are also described as being spontaneous casters that never need to prepare spells (despite being automatically granted all of the summon monster spells as known spells), and then described as being able to swap out their nonexistent prepared spells for a summon monster spell of equivalent level… spontaneously. 4 different class abilities are listed with the text conflicting with the table (one of them is a full 4 levels off!), and 3 other class abilities don't specify when they are gained, leaving us at the mercy of said table for guidance.
After those points, I must confess that I stopped paying close attention to what was going on in this book. There is an archetype for the class, as well as 6 spells, 3 magic items and some short write-ups for Old Ones, but the heart of the book is completely broken, and the flavor is not enough to redeem it.
Verdict: Unless there is a major revision, I cannot recommend this book to anyone, despite its solid premise. If an update is released, I'm certainly willing to revisit this.
Remarkable Races—Pathway to Adventure: The Entobian (PFRPG) PDFAlluria Publishing
Our Price: $2.95Add to Cart
Pincers Down, My Favorite InsectoidsCuuniyevo —
Length: 14 pages total: 2 pages front and back covers; 1.5 pages credits and licensing; 10 pages of content; .5 pages of GM advice.
Format: 2-column, with a single information table spreading from side to side. Overall, laid out well and easy to read. I noticed 15 typographical and grammatical errors while reading, but they were mostly unimportant and did not cause confusion or diminish the quality of the book.
Art: The front cover art is cropped from an interior piece, and the back cover has what appears to be a cropped photograph of a moth. 7 pieces of interior art, 6 of which represent various Entobians and 1 half-page scene featuring 2 Entobians in a forest. All of these interior pieces are in color and of very high quality; they make a strong impression and immediately made me want to play a character of this race. Many insectoid creatures from bestiaries are hard to relate to but the artists for this book (Dean Spencer and Eugene Jaworski) did a great job humanizing the Entobians and making them look like real adventurers and characters rather than monsters.
The Entobian: This book presents a new race of six-limbed "insect people" to be used for making player characters or NPC's. They are very interesting creatures in the sense that they begin play in a larval form, but may take special Metamorphosis feats to drastically change their form, both physical and mental. Before getting into the mechanics, there is a page and a half dedicated to describing the Entobians' physical features, ecology, society, relations to other races, alignments and reasons for adventuring. This is all quite flavorful and definitely worth reading. At the end of the descriptive section, there is a chart listing the vital statistics for generating random starting ages, heights and weights.
Larvite, the basic Entobian, has these racial traits: +2 Dex, +2 Cha, -2 Wis; Small size with the appropriate adjustments; Fast speed of 30ft.; Familiar Foe, granting a +1 to attack versus vermin; Insect Mind, granting +2 bonus to saving throws against charm spells and effects; Natural Weapons in the form of their 2 mid-legs dealing 1d4 damage; Skilled, granting +2 to Acrobatics and Climb, lost after metamorphosing; Spin Silk, the ability to create 30ft. lengths of silk rope that biodegrades after a day, lost after metamorphosing. It is possible to play with these abilities all the way to level 20, but if you choose to take the Prepare for Metamorphosis feat, you can take a further feat to metamorphose in several different ways, described below. These special feats are irreversible and mutually exclusive. Before applying a metamorphosis feat, the Entobians are genderless, but their new forms are strictly divided with only one female form—the Matron. The Larvite's body resembles a caterpillar.
• Coleophite, available at level 7, changes the basic racial traits, trading the ability scores for increased Con and Str at the expense of Dex, adding natural armor, situational DR and able to fly at a speed of 25ft. with poor maneuverability for a number of minutes per day equal to their level. Coleophites resemble beetles.
• Eulite, available at level 9, changes the basic racial traits, trading the ability scores for increased Str and Wis at the expense of Con, adding darkvision, adding shocking grasp as a spell-like ability usable once per day and flight with a speed of 30ft. with good maneuverability a number of minutes per day equal to their level. Eulites resemble moths.
• Farfalite, available at level 8, changes the basic racial traits, trading the ability scores for increased Dex and Int at the expense of Con, adding displacement once per day as a spell-like ability and the ability to fly with a speed of 40ft. with good maneuverability for a number of minutes per day equal to their level. Farfalites resemble butterflies.
• Larvite Lifer, available at level 6, gives up your chance for metamorphosis and increases your size to medium, your natural attack damage die to 1d6, and also increases your height and weight, as shown on the aforementioned chart. This form is the only one that does not require Prepare for Metamorphosis.
• Matron, available at level 15, is unique in that you choose two of the other forms and blend their mechanics together, as well as increasing in size, as the Lifer. The Matrons resemble a cross between the chosen forms.
• Moscanite, available at level 7, changes the basic racial traits, trading the ability scores for increased Con and Dex at the expense of Cha, adding low-light vision, acid resistance, the use of acid arrow once per day as a spell-like ability and the ability to fly with a speed of 30ft. with average maneuverability a number of minutes per day equal to their level. Moscanites resemble flies or mosquitoes.
Apart from these feats, there are several others that an Entobian has access to, starting with Prepare for Metamorphosis, which basically acts as the feat Toughness until you actually metamorphose, at which point the extra hitpoints are lost and it becomes a feat-tax. The other feats include one that improves a Larvite's ability to make silk rope, even allowing its use in a limited capacity after metamorphosis. There is a feat called Glowworm that allows the Larvite to shed light from their abdomen as a free action that sounds neat at first, but as-written, the ability is lost after metamorphosing, which seems a shame for an Entobian planning on becoming a Lightseeker.
After the section on feats, the book details an Entobian-only prestige class called The Lightseeker, who are designed as fast, roguish spelunkers who double as front-line fighters. They have several good abilities, and I'd definitely be tempted to play one for mechanical and flavor reasons.
The final section consists of example stat-blocks for the Larvite, Coleophite, Eulite, Farfalite and Moscanite, all with class levels. This is a helpful section for seeing the possibilities, but it is unfortunate that there was not room for an example Matron or Lightseeker and I did notice a few mechanical errors in these stat-blocks. In the example Larvite's, the melee section says that it only has 1 natural attack instead 2. The example Coleophite has acid resistance, with no corresponding feat, special ability or class feature to explain how. The example Farfalite was missing the section pertaining to melee attacks entirely. I did not pore over them for very long, so it is possible that there are some errors I missed, but these examples are not that important to the book as a whole. I count the Larvite's as a typographical error in the Format portion of my review, but the other two are harder to categorize without speaking to the writers.
Verdict: I really enjoyed this book and highly recommend it. The metamorphosis feats add a lot of versatility to this race and all of the flavor text and great artwork drew me in, immediately making me want to introduce this race to my campaigns.
Remarkable Race Submerged: The Sunken Relluk (PFRPG) PDFAlluria Publishing
Our Price: $2.50Add to Cart
Excellent Underwater-Only RaceCuuniyevo —
Length: 15 pages total: 2 pages front and back covers; 1.5 pages credits and licensing; 1.5 pages of story; 9.5 pages of content; .5 pages of GM advice.
Format: Mostly 2-column, with information tables occasionally spreading from side to side. Overall, well laid out and easy to read. I found 14 typographical and grammatical errors, but they were not serious enough or prevalent enough to mar the experience.
Art: Art on the front and back covers are duplicates of interior art. 5 pieces of interior art, 4 of which represent Relluks of varying types and 1 representing special gems. All art is in color and of high quality.
The Sunken Relluk: This book presents a new race of living constructs as a playable race for use specifically in the Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting, but is usable in any aquatic setting. The Sunken Relluk has no movement speed on land, and cannot survive above water for very long without magic, so it may be hard to integrate in more traditional campaigns.
The Sunken Relluks have quite a bit of written material describing their physical bodies, ecology, relationships to other Cerulean Seas races, etc. and most of it is quite interesting and well-written. They are essentially stone heads with living wooden masks formed into a covering shell, from which two arms extend but no legs. Instead, they have 3 pipes jutting out which they jet water and steam from to propel themselves through the water. At the top of their face-like body is a receptacle for a soul crystal which houses their essence. A Sunken Relluk does not age but if their bodies are destroyed, this soul crystal may be removed and installed in a new body. This is in some ways similar to reincarnation, with certain proclivities and predilections being retained, but all memories and abilities being lost. Essentially, the new one is a level 1 version of the old, free to make their own life decisions going forward. With a finite number of soul crystals in existence and no way to make more, some Sunken Relluks calling themselves Kahikua have taken it upon themselves to build new bodies, recover old crystals and act as guardians to their history and way of life.
The racial write-up has a list of immunities and vulnerabilities related to being a living construct, as well as a few special abilities. First of the special abilities is their use of Power Gems, which may be implanted into their bodies in special sockets for decorative purposes. If you get a matching set of 11 stones, they confer a boost similar to Ioun Stones, with each type having its own bonus and price, listed in a handy table. Their second special ability is the use of Boiling Spray, which acts as a very short-range breath attack, as the name suggests. Thirdly, their soul crystal constantly provides the luminescence of a torch. After the racial write-up is a selection of several racial feats that may be taken, ranging from granting a gore attack to the ability to jet quickly out of combat or have a single mismatched gem in your set.
Also included are rules for the Kahikua Prestige Class, race-restricted and with a focus on knowledge and avoiding or disabling traps.
Lastly, we are given 2 stat-blocks for: A variant Sunken Relluk and; An example NPC Sunken Relluk with class levels.
Verdict: I like this race a lot, and would readily choose it for use in an aquatic campaign. Just make sure to note that this race cannot survive on land. It may not be the strongest race around, but the flavor makes up for it, in my opinion.
4.5 out of 6 CreaturesCuuniyevo —
Length: 10 pages total: 1 page cover; 1 page index, credits and intro; 7 pages of content; 1 page of copyrights and licensing.
Format: 2 column and fairly easy to read, but there are a few issues that seemed odd to me:
I spotted 8 typographical and grammatical errors, but they were not significant or prevalent enough to mar the reading experience or hinder comprehension of the material.
Art: 5 pictures, 1 for each creature, all in color and of decent quality. The picture of the Fetch does not quite match the written description, but it and all of the other pictures do serve to convey the strangeness of their subjects.
The Monsters of Twilight: There are 5 creatures detailed within, plus a variant creature and 3 items.
The first and largest section of this book is devoted to the Dweller in Darkness, also called the Mi-go (no direct relation to Paizo's Mi-Go, which was introduced after this pdf was released, though they do touch on the same themes). The Mi-go is a CR 2 NE space-faring skin-stealing telepathic insectoid Aberration that is very intelligent and prone to taking levels in spellcasting classes as they go about their business taking over the known universe. There's a lot of good material written for them that lends the creeps well to all sorts of adventures, and the mechanics seem pretty solid. They have weak physical abilities but plenty of potential to mess with your characters' heads (more on that coming up). However, one thing did jump out at me as being strange regarding the stat block: They are listed as having 300 ft. Blindsight. That is unusually high, even when compared to other aberrant creatures, and it made me wonder whether it was supposed to be 30ft. I did not include this in the formatting issues listed earlier, because it is entirely possible that it was intentional. The chapter also includes two magical items and a variant Dweller in Darkness called the Mi-go Guardian. The first item is a rather nasty rod called the Mist Projector, which deals cold and acid damage in a 120ft. line. The second item is a single-use wondrous item called the Brain Canister, which preserves a single brain indefinitely and prevents it from dying while keeping it completely contained. Telepathy may be used to speak with the brain but the poor soul is otherwise completely powerless. Very cool stuff. The Mi-go Guardians are CR 8 genetically modified brutes that are enslaved to the Mi-go, using their special Extract Brain ability on pinned foes to provide research material for their masters.
The second section is devoted to the Fetch, a CR 4 LE Outsider from the Plane of Shadow that serves the Kytons as a laborer or bodyguard. They radiate darkness, as the spell, and there are rules included for crafting armor or shields out of their skulls, which is nice, but apart from that, I did not find them particularly interesting. They're just pawns, with no personality to speak of.
The third section is devoted to the Knocker, a CR 3 CN Fey that loves to hoard the treasures of the earth for itself, misleading miners and keeping them away from the best gems and ores. They're not evil though, and view these miners as competition—not enemies. They may even come to the aid of passers-by, if they see someone threatening their rivals.
The fourth section is devoted to the Nightgaunt, a CR 6 TN Outsider from the Plane of Shadow that act as guardians of a sort, watching over remote or dangerous places. They are described as being faceless and communicate via telepathy, though many are isolationist and not interested in conversation. Fairly quick flyers with high stealth, they usually open a fight by swooping down to grapple trespassers, but they set themselves apart in a great way: They are expert ticklers. Yes, after they've grappled you, they start tickling uncomfortably, leaving you dazed if you fail the Fortitude save. After they've subdued their prey, they fly them away from their domain. Nightgaunts are not tied to a specific alignment, and may be more aggressive and drop people in danger, or perhaps helpfully use their ability to carry people out of harm's way, depending on the individual.
The fifth and final section is devoted to the Twilight Unicorn, a CR 4 LE Magical Beast that heals via negative energy and is harmed by positive energy, has minor spell-casting (and the ability to deliver touch attacks with their horn) and a negative energy aura that buffs nearby undead. They're described as being very intelligent and wise, but they are also described as being very wasteful and destructive to their home and surroundings, killing indiscriminately even when they are no longer hungry.
Verdict: This is a pretty good book overall, and I will probably use almost all of the creatures within at some point, with the possible exception of the Fetch and Twilight Unicorn.
5 Star Character Trapped In A 2.5 Star BodyCuuniyevo —
UPDATE: A new version of this book has been released (5/14/15), touching on several issues with the original, with an additional update being promised. I have removed an error I made in the review after being informed of the correct ruling.
Length: 34 pages at the time of this writing, after downloading the updated version: 1 page front cover; 2 pages of credits and licenses; 2 pages of advertisement at the end; 29 pages of content.
I've been waffling back and forth on whether to give this pdf 2 stars or 3 for several minutes now, but the quality of the ideas and the promise of more updates leads me to settle for 3. If the text and a few mechanics were cleaned up, this could easily be a 5 star product, and I sincerely hope that I can update this review in the future, after another editing pass has been performed.
Fun, but Needs TweakingCuuniyevo —
Length: 9 pages total: 1 page cover; 2 pages of index, credits and license; 6 pages of content.
Format: 2 column, easy to read and understand. I noticed 2 typographical errors and a couple grammatical issues. Multiple sentences begin with conjunctions when they could just as easily have been incorporated into the preceding sentences. None of these issues interfered with the overall quality of the pdf, which is quite good.
Art: 1 cover image in color, well-made.
How Monstrous are these Bloodlines?: There are 7 bloodlines presented here: Couatl, Eidolon, Flail Snail, Flumph, Phoenix, Pugwampi and Time. Each gets a short description of how these bloodlines may have started and how they may manifest, followed by the standard selections of class skills, bonus spells, feats and bloodline powers.
Some thoughts on the Couatl Bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Eidolon Bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Flail Snail bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Flumph bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Phoenix bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Pugwampi bloodline:
Some thoughts on the Time bloodline:
Verdict: I really like most of this pdf and think it would be a lot of fun to use most of these in my games, but a lot of little issues would need to be house-ruled first. My personal favorites are the Couatl, Phoenix and Pugwampi bloodlines, which are all iconic and flavorful without requiring much in the way of tweaking. Unfortunately, I can't recommend the Eidolon, Flail Snail or Time bloodlines as they currently stand, but I do think Eidolon and Time have enough going for them that they deserve the effort to fix them. The Flumph is pretty good as-is, and lends itself more towards role-playing than combat.
Imperfect, but Very GoodCuuniyevo —
Length: 14 pages total: 2 pages of instruction and advice, 11 pages of content and 1 page listing the people who worked on the project.
Format: Landscape, 3 column. The font sizes, colors and scale of some pieces of art can make reading some of the entries a little bit of a chore. It's functional, but not particularly pleasant to look at.
Art: Cover + 8 pictures of objects. 4 of the pictures correspond to objects described within and 2 of the remaining pictures are recycled from the first What's in My Pocket? pdf. The art is a mixture of black and white, color and 3D renders. I generally dislike mixing art styles in the same book, because it ends up feeling disjointed and awkward, so their inclusion grates on me slightly. This distaste is compounded by the poor quality displayed in this pdf. The first 3D render is a wildly inaccurate depiction of female anatomy in the form of a statue that has no relevance to any of the items described in the pdf. Its inclusion baffles me. The Bonnet and Totem pictures are good, but overall, I was not impressed with the art in this pdf.
What's in My Pocket?: There are 31 objects listed herein and each gets its own description, story seed and, in the case of the magical items, construction requirements. In order to randomly select one of these objects, we are instructed to roll a d20, and on a result of 20, to roll a d12 and add 19, resulting in the first 19 having a 5% chance of showing up while the final 12 have only a 0.4% chance of showing up. There is no obvious distinction in quality or value from the first 19 to the final 12 so this discrepancy seems bizarre. I would advise either picking and choosing manually or rolling a d4 and d8 to get a number from 1 to 32, re-rolling 32 (this method is similar to how you would roll 2d10 to simulate 1d100). Almost all of these objects are interesting and useful, with one obvious exception: The Copper Chain. Thankfully, the others more than make up for it. 15 of them jumped out at me as being immediately usable and would either be appreciated by my players or by myself. Most of these objects are between 100 and 500gp and have good RP value, increasing the quality of life of your PCs or NPCs. Some good examples would be the needles that thread themselves and a book that records any music that plays nearby. What's in My Pocket II may not have as many items as the first volume, but I think the items themselves benefit quite a bit from the increased word-count. It ends up having a different feel than the first volume but, similar to the first one, the GM still needs to flesh out some details after the pdf provides the inspiration.
Verdict: This pdf has some rough spots, but it does a very good job of providing GMs with a way to spice up a pawn shop or dusty lockbox. Almost half of the content is comprised of items I will try to find a spot for in my home-game, and most of the other items are good enough that they could also find a spot, with a little tweaking. I struggled with trying to come up with a rating for this product, as I quite enjoyed most of the written content, but I don't enjoy flipping through the pages due to some small issues mentioned above. Ultimately, this is a pdf about loot, and none of my complaints will have an impact in-game. The parts that matter work, and it doesn't feel right to knock a good, useful resource for being imperfectly presented.
Simple InspirationCuuniyevo —
Length: 8 pages total: 2 pages of instruction and advice, 5 pages of content and 1 page listing the people who worked on the project.
Format: Landscape, 3 column. Easy to read, without any serious errors that I could see. A couple terms could have been hyphenated, but that is of little concern.
Art: Cover + 6 pictures of objects + 1 scene. The art within does not seem to correspond to the written content, or at least not with what I imagined while reading it. Still, it is of pretty good quality and serves to set the mood fairly well. All pictures are in color.
What's in My Pocket?: There are 110 objects listed herein and 10 of them were either boring or lacked verisimilitude, leaving 100 usable objects, of which 14 jumped out at me as being immediately worthy of a side-quest, with the remaining objects ranging from "okay" to "good". In order to randomly select an object to use, we are instructed to roll 1d100, and on a result of 91 or higher, to roll a d20 and add 90, resulting in the first 90 each having a 1% chance of showing up and the last 20 have .5% each. The final 20 generally have more text written for them or are more valuable than the preceding objects, but there are a couple simple items towards the end and most of the best items (in my opinion) appear earlier on, so the 90-20 split doesn't seem entirely justified. It's easy enough to re-roll if a dull object comes up but personally, I would have pared the list down to an even 100. Most of the items are only described with a single sentence, and leave plenty of room for interpretation, but some get a paragraph detailing appropriate Knowledge checks and uses. Most of the items have no listed price or inherent value, making them perfect to toss into a random character's backpack.
Verdict: This pdf is well-made and does what it sets out to do. Most of the content is ready to use as-is, and for those pieces that aren't, you can easily re-roll or add a line of text, personalizing it to suit your needs.