I am glad I got this on PDF and not DTF... the money difference is what saved it.
Classes: Left so much to hope for.
Gunslinger - Less than inspiring but a nice ranged option to supplement casters and archers when done right.
Ninja - *sigh* Rogue. So badly done. I have seen 13 year olds write better tripe for their characters.
Samurai - A complete joke and waste of paper. With so many sources to draw upon for inspiration for samurai, this load of FECES is what counts as a samurai? A low quality cavalier wannabe? Makes me glad I kept my old AEG/L5R inspired 3.0 books. A little elbow grease might be able to bring those old hackneyed classes up to snuff with the power creep in today's game.
Archetypes - Good but lacking.
If you enjoyed the advanced players or the magic manual, you will enjoy this. Funny how the gunslinger got archetypes (albeit only 4) but ninja and samurai got left out. Oh, I guess since they were just half backed rogues and cavaliers, they didn't need anything. Except for this failure, this section almost made the book.
It's feats. Yay. What do you expect? They make fighting interesting but nothing says 'TAKE ME!!!' all over it. Still, adding spice to boiled beef.
If you actually open to this section, you are either looking for new gear or you missed the feat section. Try flipping a few pages. Oh, the dueling is fun... too bad I know they won't add the melee parrying rules into the main combat rules. Beyond that, you are not missing anything.
Same rehashed 3ed ships and vehicles that we have had since the Arms and Equipment guide. Wake me up when something actually interesting arrives... like a galleon or a true man of war. The vehicle rules are not much changed either from those days. Almost not worth including.
Do not open this section.
Armor as DR is terrible... especially if it makes EVERYONE and their dog hit and provides NO BLOODY ACTIVE DEFENSE! Just turns the game even MORE into stand there and be hit like a retard.
Called shots - *bored* wheeeeee...
Piecemeal Armor - Now I can look like a hobo or min max my armor! Thanks Billy Mays!
Wound Pts and Vigor - Great. Lets not address the insane damages and autohits and make things die EVEN faster. Hells.
Spells - WHY!
This is the COMBAT book... I don't need 50 pages of new spells... especially on the heels of a CASTER book a few months back that next to ignored melee in it.
In summery - If you need a splat book to flavor a bland character, can't go wrong here. Does it have problems? Oh by the gods yes it does. Do the writers and producers need to be dragged out behind a building and flogged? No. But a sound smacking around is deserved for this book.