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Design Manager. Organized Play Member. 9,723 posts (10,283 including aliases). 29 reviews. 6 lists. 1 wishlist. 12 Organized Play characters. 2 aliases.



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Plenty of Oaths in your diet...

5/5

So this new supplement lays out new Oaths (as presented in Ultimate Magic) for the Paladin. The new Oaths are Battle, Law, Liberty, and Redemption.
Battle is an interesting Oath that essentially trades out Smite Evil for 4 bonus combat feats and a complimentary feat to your Divine Bond. You'll trade out your big Smite bonuses for a little more fighter-like versatility. While losing Smite is a pretty big blow, I can certainly see a few places where this is a worthwhile transition. For those taking the game into the upper echelons of play, this Oath also trades out your capstone ability for at will use of the Transformation spell, which should be fairly potent combined with the bonus feats and other abilities.
The Oath of Law trades out Detect Evil for Detect Chaos, and trades out the paladin's Mercies for an ability called Lawbinder. I have to be honest here, this Oath is way more likely to see use on an NPC than a character, as Lawbinder has few practical applications for your average PC.
The Oath of Liberty is one of my favorites, giving the Paladin the ability to cast Knock as an SLA, making some themey changes to his Divine Bond, and giving him a cool way to share his Mercies through his allies.
The final Oath, Redemption, is fairly cool, transforming the Paladin's Smite damage into non-lethal, giving big bonuses to social checks vs. evil creatures, trading out Divine Bond for scaling bonuses to spell DC's, and replacing Aura of Resolve with the Leadership feat. There's a place for this guy in more than one campaign. Plus, this is probably the best Oath to tack the two new feats presented at the end of the .pdf onto.
Overall, a lot of fun and themey goodies for specialized Paladins, presented with the usual Abandoned Arts skill.


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New Knights

4/5

This product introduces 3 new archetypes for the paladin, the Champion of Law, the Knight-Zealot, and the Peacebringer.
The Champion of Law (as might be expected) essentially trades in their standard Detect Evil Ability for Detect Chaos and their Aura of Good for an Aura of Law. They gain an interesting ability to track in an Urban environment using the Diplomacy skill, but it comes at the hefty price of trading out their Divine Grace. Their Uncompromising Will ability helps compensate for this loss by giving them enhanced mental protections, eventually evolving into a full-blown Mind Blank ability at 17th level. All in all, certainly not a bad archetype, but it was just lacking a certain something to really catch my attention. Maybe I just haven't found the right game for him yet.
The Knight-Zealot made me wince at first as read the flavor text, visions of the penultimate "Lawful Stupid" paladin dancing in my head. Turns out the Archetype isn't so bad, though it's pretty limited as well. The Knight-Zealot trades out Lay on Hands, his Mercies, and the Divine Bond class feature to gain the ability to expand the usefulness of his smite ability by targeting anyone who's just non-good (instead of specifically evil) by burning an extra use of Smite. He also adds his CHA modifier to his STR score, and treats his CHA as 2 points higher for the purposes of bonus spells. You'll definitely squeeze a few extra points of damage out of this archetype, but, even moreso than the Champion of Law, I'm not quite sure it justifies what you're giving up.
The final Archetype, the Peacebringer, is the largest, and most complete feeling, archetype, offering a whole new spin on the way the paladin works. The Peacebringer gains a ki pool and numerous new ways to heal or protect the party. I'm actually planning on doing a little third-party mash up and utilizing this guy in an upcoming game session by using this build and enhancing his ki-pabilities with Legendary Games "The Way of Ki" (another cool product you should probably check out). This guy actually made me decide to bump my original 3 star rating to a 4, he's that neat. He really feels like a healer with a bit more complexity and usefulness, with elements reminiscent of the half-orc Redeemer archetype, or the aasimar archetype for a "peaceful" paladin, but much more complex and capable.


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Inquisitor goodies!

4/5

I know that there's a lot of material out there for the INquisitor, but deep down inside some part of me believes that they are the least supported class in the system, despite being one of the most mechanically elegant and best-built classes in the game. This supplement directly addresses that part of me and says "It's okay. We heard your prayers and sent the angels from Abandoned Arts to set your fears at ease"
...
Seriously though, 18 new Inquisitions was exactly what the doctor ordered, and I can't wait to give them a spin. There's an Inquisitor for every campaign with the addition of these new options, and great ways to lend a little extra "theme-y-ness" to your Inquisitor. GM discover that Witches make the best NPC's cause he gets at least one player kill a session by knocking out the party with that Slumber Hex? Enter the Witchbane Inquisition, and hexes and curses shall trouble you no more! I'm currently pretty enamored of the idea of taking their Shadow Agent archetype from their other recent Inquisitor release and pairing it up with the Blood Inquisition, which allows you to count half of your Inquisitor levels as fighter levels for qualifying for fighter-specific feats. Skills and Weapon Specialization? Yes please!
The Incarnate Inquisition allows you to become a living avatar of your deity (and who doesn't want that?), while the Wisdom Inquistion fills in those last couple gaps in the Inquisitor's abilities, making him a functional healer and expanding the usefulness of his Teamwork feats by allowing him to share a Teamwork feat he knows with the ally of his choice whenever he uses his Judgements!

They also provide a handy little table at the end of the document to help you match up your new Inquisitor and his Inquisition to the appropriate deity by suggesting appropriate Deific Portfolios for the user of a given Inquisition to associate with.
As usual for the guys from Abandoned Arts, this is a fantastic value for the low pricetag.


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Cops and Robbers

5/5

So Abandoned Arts new Inquisitor Archetypes are definitely going to be seeing table time with my new group. They present them in their usual simple and flawless format, etc...
The meat of the thing though:
Their Lawful Badass Inquisitor build, The Arbiter, is a lawman style character who takes the Inquisitor fluff and blends in a healthy dose of anti-crime activism. His opening ability "Arbiter's Decree" which replaces Monster Lore, is incredibly potent but definitely flavorful (although probably guaranteed to upset a few GM's) as it allows him to force enemies who can hear and understand him to reroll their initiative and take the lower result. He has a series of abilities after that that all contribute towards the idea of this character being a fearless lawman striking fear into the lawless and willing to do whatever it takes to bring in the bad guy.
The second Archetype, The Shadow Agent, trades spells and Monster Lore for an expanded skill list, better urban capabilities than the typical Inquisitor, and a slew of abilities called "Shadow Talents" that work something like divinely powered Rogue Talents. This build is my personal favorite and one I can't wait to bring to the table. I've actually got a rogueish gnome Inquistor of Besmara who I might beg my GM to let me rebuild for this role, since many of the passive benefits of the Shadow Talents will be easier to utilize in most situations than burning multiple standard actions buffing with the usual spells.
This Archetype is definitely one that should be fun to play, though the lack of spells and (relatively) limited selection of Shadow Talents will require most players to think hard about their build before jumping in as it will be a little less versatile than your average Inquisitor.


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More Sorcerer Bloodline fun!

5/5

Abandoned Arts had my attention instantly with their variant spell-less Rangers, and with the fantastic .99 price on their supplements, I've never regretted purchasing their material. Class Acts: Sorcerers introduces two new bloddlines, the Mesmeric, and the Trollblooded. The Mesmeric bloodline gives you a kind of fun pseudo psionic / divination vibe, which has some fun abilities that don't step on any of the traditional diviners toes. I initially thought their 20th level ability "Thought Made Reality" was a bit over the top (an essentially unstoppable Wish SLA) but then I realized that we are talking 20th level here.
The Trollblooded bloodline gives us another claw-having melee style Sorcerer. He scales a little nicely, with improved claw damage that scales by level and throws in a couple fun abilities, and CON bumps and eventually regeneration. I was a little worried about how this one might work with the Eldritch Heritage line of feats, but ultimately it's no worse than the Orc Bloodline.
Some of their Wildblooded alternates were fun too (The Scrag-blooded will be making an appearance in our Cerulean Seas campaign), so definitely more than worth the .99 price tag.


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Expanded Monk Styles... I'm in!

4/5

So, I'm going to start this review by pointing out that I'm becoming increasingly prejudiced towards Abandoned Arts products. Their Spell-less Ranger Archetypes are some of my favorite and they have a wide array of products that are both fun and balanced.
Now, to the meat of the thing-
The .pdf is well written and edited (something I have come to expect of them) and laid out in the concise two-column parchment format in which all of their supplements appear.
Class Acts: Monks features 6 new Style feats and the associated feats to build off of them. Many of these feats are fairly pre-req heavy, but to me this is honestly not much of a downside. I think that a monk taking the pre-reqs to build towards these feats really will feel like a martial artist developing a "style" and all of the requisites are fairly achievable for a monk or fighter, though maybe a bit of a stretch for most other classes.
The hydra style leads to a fairly powerful capstone feat that allows a monk to make a full attack as a standard action under a fairly specific set of circumstances, a cool ability that may allow a monk to utilize both their enhanced mobility and their Flurry in a single round. I'll have to play with it a bit before I'm willing to commit to deciding whether this a much-needed enhancement to a class with singularly disparate abilities or an OP addition that pushes the characters power a bit too far.
All in all though, a lot of great tools for some unique monks and creative combatants.


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Another triumph for Alluria

5/5

Cerulean Seas amazed me. I'm starting with this because anyone interested in this product should be starting there first and then purchasing this supplement.
Waves of Thought does a fantastic job of seamlessly integrating psionics into their existing Cerulean Seas campaign setting, introducing races that fit the psionic footprint exceedingly well without treading on the toes of the existing races. The Cerulean Seas setting definitely comes with an added layer of complexity, and psionics carries that another step further, so this is definitely not a product for beginning players.
However, the artwork is stunning, probably the best I've seen outside of Paizo core products (and even better than some of that material in certain instances). The races are well-balanced, but individually unique enough to stand clearly apart from their contemporaries.
The new psionic class introduced here, the Aquanaut, is fantastic, and a great addition to the game. The class allows you to stack an ever-increasing array of mutations onto your base form, often giving you the ability to spend power points to temporarliy amplify your mutations in unique and potent ways.
If you haven't purchased Cerulean Seas, buy it first. If you haven't obtained Dreamscarred Press' Psionics Unleashed and Psionics Expanded materials, buy those next. And then buy this. You won't regret it.


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