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Pathfinder Adventure Path #84: Pyramid of the Sky Pharaoh (Mummy's Mask 6 of 6) (PFRPG)Paizo Inc.
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Excellent Finalearchmagi1 —
The final book in the Mummy's Mask path starts off not with a bang, but an earth shaking rumble as the great pyramid of Hakotep the Sky Pharoah descends to the sand of Osirion.
This book is 1 large dungeon crawl split into 5 mini-dungeons. Each of the primary 4 are associated with an element, with enemy themes appropriate for the area. The fifth is the personal level of Hakotep. Daunting enemies throughout the pyramid are there to kill your party, and *gasp* the final showdown with Hakotep isn't a 1 v 4 solo boss monster fight!
The post adventure material, though, is where this volume really shines. The River of Souls article is the most comprehensive study of fantasy death and afterlife that I've ever seen. Golarioverse's cycle of positive energy to soulstuff to outsiderstuff to planestuff to maelstrom energy is thoroughly explained and even has a few handy charts to help intrepid adventurers with ranks in Knowledge: Religion and Knowledge: Planes explain it to the Fighter!
Continuing the Campaign goes out of its way to give some excellent hooks, two of which are decidedly mythic (and a third probably). Colossal sphinx advisors to Hakotep? Check. Spawn of Rovagug? Check. More Shory? Check. Demonlord War? Check. It even gives stats for the big bad beetle that dug up the subterra under Ninshabur and proceeded to wreck shop all the way to Sothis in eons past, just in case those pesky Rough Beast cultists get their way.
This book put an excellent capstone on the somewhat loosely jointed Mummy's Mask saga. 5/5.
Solid Titlearchmagi1 —
The site ate my long detailed review, so here's a concise without too much preview.
Helps the Tricksterarchmagi1 —
The Trickster, IMO, is the poorest of the Mythic Paths, whose abilities pale in comparison to the other three Martial based paths. This review will look at the path abilities with regards to the Bard and Rogue.
Book: 3 pages, one of which is content. The watermarked cover image behind the text on page 2 reduces readability. Font size is smallish, but still very readable. Abilities fall into 5-1st, 5-3rd and 1-6th tier abilities.
Final Thoughts: A pretty good collection of abilities, with a few gems sprinkled throughout. Well worth the purchase price.
4/5, with points off for readability
Greatly Neededarchmagi1 —
Mythic feats, as sparse as they were in the Mythic Adventures book, are an intriguing part of a Mythic campaign. The Missing Core Feats contains 64 feats that were left out of Mythic Adventures.
The book is a 15-page, 2-column, black, white, and red all over format, with pretty good color illustrations. 1 page color cover. 2.25 pages are table space listing the feats. 1 page is Credits and OGL.
Metamagic: These all give a boosted version of the base feat (Empower gives +75% instead of +50%, Extend is x3 duration, Enlarge is +200% range, etc.), as well as giving you a spontaneous version of the lesser feat without burning a higher slot or increasing casting time. This secondary ability is similar to the Archmage's Arcane Metamastery ability, but not as long of a duration (1 spell vs 10 rounds), and doesn't have the same spell level fiat. These feel a bit strong, but really, what Mythic feats aren't strong?
Extra "X": These give additional uses of Rage, Channel, Performance, etc, and allow you to burn MP to get more if you're completely out. Kind of "Meh."
Greater CMB: Some interesting penalties to your enemies, like tossing the disarmed items 15 feet to allies, distracting feinted enemies so others can stealth, and taking DEX away from AC for greater trip AoO's. Seem OK.
Improved Saving Throw Feats: Gives you a 1/day 20+Save Bonus save. Thumbs Up.
Vital Strike Chain: Improved allows SA, flaming or other typically non multiplicative bonuses to multiply per Mythic Vital Strike. Greater allows for full bypass of DR/Resistance/Hardness for the attack. *OMG WOW* There's how I finally break 1000 damage on a smiting Paladin.
Also, there is a superfluous "Mythic Tier 1" prerequisite on Combat Casting, since a mythic feat can only be gained through gaining a Mythic Tier.
Verdict: 4/5. Good job, Rogues.
Psionics Expanded: Advanced Psionics Guide (PFRPG)Dreamscarred Press
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Excellent Follow-uparchmagi1 —
Psionics Unleashed was an amazing book, and has gained at least 1 psionic follower at my table. Psionics Expanded continues in the excellent thread that Dreamscarred Unleashed, and makes for a very good rulebook.
Pro's: Its long. There is only 1 short chapter, and its about alternative rules and post Unleashed tweaks (like adding actual 0-level talents instead of nerfed 1st levels). My biggest take away is that these half a dozen new classes are actually something different. Think how utterly creative and frankly dissimilar to the core classes the Inquisitor was for the APG, and apply that to these. The Aegis is basically a guy wearing an astral construct. The Cryptic is a stealthy class full of awesome. The Vitalist is just about a psionic cleric. Oh and there's even a Psionic Fighter archetype.
The racial alternatives are just as fun in Expanded as they were in the APG. The tons of new powers add not only to the new manifester classes, but give the old guard a few nice additions to boot (psionic True Strike in the form of Inevitable Strike, yes please). Oh there's even a comprehensive list of magic weapon special abilities so that your Soulknife can make a quicker choice of what to juice his or her weapon with. Finally, on the credits page, below where they credited their play testers and before the OGL declarations, the 'based on 3rd edition' spiel is just golden.
Con's: Some of the classes are complicated. Like Eidolon complicated. Aegis, I'm looking at your half a dozen pages of armor abilities as an example. The Dread class just feels kinda 'meh' to me, not as inspired as some of the others. The Prestige classes all seem odd in the fact that some have weird entry levels and cap at odd clvls (one is a 11th clvl entry with 7 PrC levels).
Nitpicks / Other: The bookmarks don't split the powers up alphabetically. Some early errata that wasn't caught before it went gold. One of my players commented the art style was entry level Deviant Art (I disagree).
Dreamscarred again delivered a AAA level title from a 2-person publisher. I highly recommend this book!
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Combat (OGL)Paizo Inc.
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Mediocre to Goodarchmagi1 —
Overall the book has a good feel, with lots of Asian and Wild West influence throughout. Below is a summary of the sections with my thoughts.
==New Classes (2/5)==
The Ninja is an unneeded re-flavoring of the rogue, with many powers that simply seem like fan service rather than good design (I'm looking at you walking up walls trick). Thankfully its not a 'better rogue than the rogue' because it loses trap-finding and it takes 2 advanced talents to get evasion & improved evasion.
The Samurai is an Asian themed cavalier with thematically modified powers. Would have been fine as an Archetype with additional Orders.
Highs: More teamwork feats, More combat feats
==Mastering Combat (5/5)==
==Variant Rules (1/5)==
Final Verdict: 3/5