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Gorgeous map of the Abyss

5/5

As with most map folios for the adventure paths, the Wrath of the Righteous Poster Map Folio comes with three large, full-colour maps. One is a map of the Worldwound, the area where most of the action of Wrath of the Righteous takes place. The second map is of Kenabres, the city where the adventure path begins in The Worldwound Incursion. Both of these maps are high-quality and beautiful to look at, while also being highly useful for playing the adventure path. Admittedly, the map of Kenabres is really only useful for the first adventure, but the map of the Worldwound will be useful right up to the final instalment.

However, the stand-out map of this set is the third one: a map of the Abyss (which the PCs travel to in the fourth and fifth instalments of Wrath of the Righteous). Mapping out the Abyss is a daunting task—no, more an impossible task really, considering the Abyss is essentially an infinite plane made up of countless other planes. What this map does instead is provide an artistic rendition of the various Abyssal realms and “where” (metaphorically speaking) they are in relation to each other. Admittedly, the map doesn’t have a lot of utility in actual game-play. However, I don’t really care. The map is utterly beautiful to behold and can easily serve as an in-game representation of the Abyss—something the players’ characters might actually see. Ultimately, this map provides a visual element to enhance game-play. It gives both players and GMs just a little hint on what their characters are seeing, allowing the imagination to fill in the rest. It also makes a great poster to hang on the wall.

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Very good

4/5

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This is a very informative book. It both updates and expands on the information in Osirion, Land of Pharaohs, going into considerably more detail than the earlier book (which, to be fair, is a much shorter book, so just doesn’t have the space that this one has). One of the most important qualities on which I judge a setting book is how many ideas it starts creating in my head. Legacy has simply flooded my head with ideas, enough to run three or four different campaigns set there, and so passes this criterion with flying colours. It’s densely packed with information on cities, adventure sites, denizens, and more.


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A useful and entertaining book

4/5

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I’m sure I’ve mentioned before that region-based supplements tend to be my favourite ones, and People of the Sands certainly doesn’t disappoint. As part of the Player Companion line of products, it contains a lot of new mechanical options (as well as updates to things like the living monolith prestige class). However, it also contains a good balance of fluff, with background information on the histories and peoples of the region it covers, making it a book that is entertaining and informative to read, and useful for gameplay.


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The mythic is back!

5/5

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Herald of the Ivory Labyrinth, written by Wolfgang Baur, manages to be one of the most original and exciting outer plane adventures I’ve read in some time. While The Midnight Isles, its immediate predecessor in Wrath of the Righteous, is rather ordinary as far as planar adventures go, Herald brings back the mythic feel that was present in the earlier instalments of the adventure path. This is an adventure where the PCs face off against some of the deadliest foes in the multiverse, but also leaves ample room for investigating, roleplaying, and drama. And it brings with it some incredible rewards for the PCs—assuming they succeed, of course.


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Lacks that mythic feel

3/5

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The Midnight Isles is the first adventure in Wrath of the Righteous to lose that mythic quality and feel like just another adventure. It’s a decent adventure, sure, but it doesn’t stand out the way the other instalments in this adventure path have. In part, this is because planar adventures already have many of the qualities that make an adventure feel “mythic” and so, in order to make them stand out even more, they have to have something more than other planar adventures have—and I really don’t think this one does. In part, it’s also due to the fact that this adventure feels rather “done before”. It bears a lot of similarities to some earlier Paizo adventures, particularly parts of the Savage Tide adventure path. Of course, to a certain extent, all adventures reuse common patterns and tropes, but this one seems to do so to a greater extent. In his foreword, James Jacobs explains that the reason there are two authors on this adventure is because he and Greg A. Vaughan helped each other out due to both of them have very busy and tight schedules. It’s therefore not surprising, I suppose, that in order get it completed, they had to rely on reusing tried-and-true tropes. But alas, tried-and-true does not make for a mythic feel. The result is a planar adventure that seems rather ordinary when compared to the adventures that have led up to it.


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Surprisingly generic

2/5

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Despite the fact that Alkenstar and the Mana Wastes are a very non-generic setting, Wardens of the Reborn Forge is a surprisingly generic adventure. Oh, it has all the trappings of the setting. There are Mana Wastes mutants, clockwork leviathans, guns, and even a mana storm. However, it uses all these things in a generic dungeon crawl adventure that could otherwise take place just about anywhere.


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5/5

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The Inner Sea NPC Codex is a magnificent work and makes a worthy setting-specific companion to the NPC Codex. I strongly suspect it will start to see a lot of use in my games in the future.


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Wonderfully creative

5/5

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Magical Marketplace is one of the most creative Player Companion volumes in some time. While its overall focus is on new mechanical options for player characters, it presents these new options in a way that’s full of world flavour, and helps to flesh out Golarion in a way that most campaign worlds rarely receive. I heartily recommend this book.


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Excellent resource

4/5

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Towns of the Inner Sea is an excellent book, and it brings to life six very different, but equally fascinating locations. All six can be the basis of entire campaigns or just interesting places to pass through on the way to someplace else. Whatever the case, these towns will provide GMs with the means to create hours of fun for their campaigns.


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4/5

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Demon’s Heresy is a welcome change of pace for the Wrath of the Righteous adventure path. After the urgency of the first two volumes, it allows the PCs to breathe a little (just a little) as they secure their hold on Drezen and the surrounding lands. While they do this, the PCs also have the opportunity to make a powerful new ally and score a major blow against the demon forces. All things considered, Wrath of the Righteous continues to surprise me with just how good it is.


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Lots of fun new monsters!

4/5

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Bestiary 4 contains over 300 new monsters. All the monster types are represented, although some more than others. There are many of the standards found in every Bestiary—new dinosaurs, devils, dragons—but also many unusual and bizarre creatures. It has provided me with lots of new options to throw at my players, and that’s always a good thing.


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Lots of lycanthropic flavour!

4/5

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Blood of the Moon is not a book that will be useful for every campaign. It’s a niche product and many campaigns will likely have limited use for it. However, people who want to add a touch of lycanthropic flavour to their campaign or just want the option of playing new races will find the book adds a lot of useful options and more importantly, flavour.


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Great!

5/5

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Sword of Valor is really quite excellent. It didn’t wow me quite as much as The Worldwound Incursion, but nevertheless it has all the ingredients for a great adventure. It has a strong plot, but still a large variety of options, ensuring that the PCs don’t feel railroaded, and it has a great, detailed cast of NPCs, both allies and villains. One of the most impressive things about the adventure is that it manages to make an adventure about endless war and killing into an adventure about people, one containing great roleplaying opportunities. Wrath of the Righteous is well on the way to being a superb adventure path.


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Some decent mechanical options, but lacks flavour

2/5

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Despite its name, Mythic Origins doesn’t really deal much with the origins of mythic characters, apart from adding a category of mythic character known as a godling. Indeed, most of the book is simply new mechanical options, primarily new path abilities, but also a few new spells and magic items. Make no mistake, this is a book of “crunch”. While this is typical of Player Companion books, Mythic Origins goes beyond even many of them. There is next to no “fluff” at all, apart from a couple of brief descriptive paragraphs or sidebars here and there. To be honest, the amount of new options in here is a little overwhelming. This isn’t because it’s a big book (just 32 pages like all Player Companions), but it’s the fact that it comes so soon after Mythic Adventures itself. I still haven’t had a chance to use or get used to the breadth of options introduced in that book, and suddenly there’s a whole pile more here to remember and consider when making a mythic character. More so, the new abilities in this book are actually rather generic. There’s not a lot that makes them Golarion-specific, so they lack that added touch of flavour to make them memorable. Even the godling abilities, which are tied to specific Golarion gods, lack anything that really makes them stand out as anything other than abilities tied to generic gods.


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Good introduction of mythic to Golarion

3/5

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Mythic Realms introduces the mythic rules to Golarion and takes a look at how they interact with the setting. It provides information on founts of mythic power, locations, and mythic characters. Just as there is a lot of variety to mythic characters, there’s a lot of variety in the book, particularly in Chapter 2: “Places of Myth”. Indeed, each location detailed is often different enough from the others to make it feel almost like you’re reading a different book. This does have the downside that most people are only likely to use one or two small sections of the book, and few people will actually find use for the entire thing. Still, it’s a good book and definitely useful for people wanting to introduce mythic rules into their Golarion campaigns. It’s also an entertaining read for people already familiar with Golarion, as it adds detail to a number of things that have only been mentioned or hinted at before.


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Functional with some interesting options

3/5

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The Demon Hunter’s Handbook is a very functional book. In terms of flavour, it doesn’t really add a whole lot to the gaming experience, but it does add useful mechanical options for player characters preparing to hunt demons. It’s not a captivating read by any means, but that’s not really its purpose. It does exactly what it says in its title.


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Great book!

5/5

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Demons are popular antagonists in many Pathfinder games (not to mention numerous other roleplaying games as well). While they are in the limelight at the moment in many recent products, they have always shown up with regularity in Pathfinder products and adventures. Demons Revisited by James Jacobs is another of the recent books focusing heavily on demons—indeed, in this case, focusing entirely on demons. One of the strengths of this book is that, while it is a great stand-alone product that looks at ten specific demon types in detail, it is also the perfect companion product to several others. Combining them all together provides a huge wealth of information and adventuring opportunities, giving demons a life and “reality” that most other monsters in the game don’t have.


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Fills a neglected niche

4/5

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I’m really glad that a book like this exists as I often wish Pathfinder Player Companion and Pathfinder Campaign Setting volumes would include just a little bit more of what daily life is like in the world. I do wish Faiths & Philosophies could go into quite a bit more detail, in fact. It offers a tantalizing glimpse at the belief structures of the world, but since a lot of space has to be devoted to new traits, feats, archetypes, and more, it can really do nothing more than brush the surface of these things. Nonetheless, it does provide just enough information to inspire players designing characters and gamemasters designing campaigns. For that, if nothing else, it’s well worth it. And some of those new mechanical options are quite interesting.


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Phenomenal

5/5

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The Worldwound Incursion by Amber E. Scott absolutely blew me away. A couple months ago, I declared Rasputin Must Die! to be one of the best adventures I had ever read. Well, it’s entirely possible that adventure now has a rival. I don’t make statements like that lightly (and anyone who reads my reviews regularly knows I can be very exacting in my standards), but from start to finish, this is one epic and exciting adventure. It’s definitely worthy of the term mythic. If this adventure is anything to go by, the remainder of Wrath of the Righteous will be simply stunning.


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Great options, but not all that "mythic"

4/5

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Mythic Adventures is a very good book and it offers a lot of new and interesting options for players. I really like the idea of being able to improve abilities in ways that aren’t linked to experience points (now I just wish there were a way to do that with skills so that you could have highly-skilled NPCs who aren’t also accomplished combatants) and base attack bonus. However, I don’t think the book achieves its desired aim of adding an overall special feel to the mythic characters. Apart from the way they gain their powers, there really isn’t anything that makes them stand out from, or be any “better” than non-mythic characters. A low-level mythic character is no more likely to change the world than a non-mythic character of just slightly higher level. Where the book really excels though is in creating options for high-level characters. Mythic makes an excellent substitute and replacement for epic levels. A 20th-level character with 10 mythic tiers is truly a force to behold and one that really does stand out above the rest of the world.


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Very evocative

5/5

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The Worldwound is really quite an impressive book. The desolation and despair of the setting come across remarkably well, while at the same time, the little glimmers of hope that dot the region (a few hold-outs for the forces of good) keep the book from becoming too depressing in its subject matter. In many ways, travelling to the Worldwound is like travelling to the Abyss without leaving Golarion, so it presents a very, very different setting to what is just next door. Even the sky and the weather behave in different ways. It’s not an area of the world I’ve paid a lot of attention to in my gaming up to now, but after reading this book, I just may pay it a little more in the future.


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Some good stuff, but something of a rehash

3/5

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The Pathfinder Society Primer is a bit of a dry read, but it does a good job of providing a player-centric overview of the society and how to create characters who are members of the society. As with other Player Companion books on types or groups of characters (like Knights of the Inner Sea or Pirates of the Inner Sea), it’s not vital for players to have the book in order to create such characters, but those who do will find some benefit from it. Perhaps the best aspect of the Primer is that it provides player-specific information in one place rather than mixing it in with GM material, like in Seekers of Secrets and the Pathfinder Society Field Guide.


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Gorgeous map of Irrisen

5/5

The Reign of Winter Poster Map Folio contains three poster maps: one of the country of Irrisen, one of its capital Whitethrone, and one of the region of Iobaria. Each map is in a somewhat different style, with the map of Irrisen being the most visually stunning. In many ways, it’s more like a piece of art than a map, and indeed, it’s perhaps not the most useful map as a result. Still, it show the locations of sites throughout the country, and would work especially well as a representation of a map that people actually living in the game world might see and use. The other two maps are more typical of the gaming maps of most use to gamemasters. There was a poster map of Whitethrone in the City Map Folio from a few years ago, but the one here is larger and more detailed. Overall, the Reign of Winter Poster Map Folio contains three good maps that will be useful to people running games in the northern reaches of Golarion.

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Good start to a new format

4/5

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The Dragon’s Demand is a bold start to a new format for Pathfinder Modules. My criticisms of the NPCs aside, I do still think it is an excellent adventure. It has a great opening, a strong plot, and the dragon himself makes for an excellent and very challenging adversary. The adventure will provide many sessions of fun for a new party just starting out on the road to adventure.


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Does what it's supposed to

5/5

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Reign of Winter is a very linear adventure path. One event leads into the next in a somewhat preordained manner, and given its constant movement from one location to the next, there’s not a lot of opportunity for the PCs to stop and do their own thing. There’s certainly no opportunity for side quests. For this reason, characters need to be well-suited for what’s ahead, and their backgrounds need to reflect their abilities (although there are otherwise very few restrictions on appropriate character backgrounds and origins). The Reign of Winter Player’s Guide helps players create such useful characters, and it accomplishes this quite admirably.


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