Imrijka

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RPG Superstar 9 Season Star Voter. Organized Play Member. 157 posts. 63 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 32 Organized Play characters.



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One of the best!

5/5

Rules driven purely by roleplay? Heck yeah!

Not only does it cover both sides of the coin well - both pro and anti-Royalty, the spells and magic items - often stale filler, are inspired and fitting. The section of Knightly Favors like a magic kerchief granted by a Lady had me impressed.

This is exactly what a perfect Player Companion should be - main focus is lore and regions and roleplay, with rules and archetupes and items/spells to make it all possible in your game. A-freaking-plus.


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uninspired

2/5

I pride myself on long detailed reviews, but there is very little to say about this. Uninspired, tending to overly dramatic and "uncontrolled!" type wackiness. Lack of content covered by larger than normal bad magic items section.


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I couldnt believe how good it was, quantity and quality both

5/5

I normally roll my eyes at books like this - either goofy silly or otherwise unusable monsters, or just a blathering list of templates written with the passion of a tax return.

This is a wonderful book. The quality of the writing - and art! - is outstanding, the templates and content are interesting and *balanced*.

I added a scalding template to a minotaur and it had my players terrified.

This is the kind of book that gets your mind racing with new ideas and hooks!


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no content

2/5

Good content, just not much of it. Further cut in half by content for races that are not PFS legal. Some of the races had multiple, huge (and gorgeous) artwork - not appropriate for a 32 page book when you are already desperately low on content. This would have been a 4 star product if it was say 48 pages, with the extra 16 dedicated to PFS races.

If you are looking for content on a Catfolk, for example, ask a friend who owns it, as they get 2 pages of archetypes (zero for core classes), and 2 pages of vigilante and weird feats. Thats it, 4 pages with some giant content-killing pics.


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Great book, and best first 50 pages of any book I can recall!

4/5

Although I did not care for the endings *style*, this is a very strong book, and definitely worth 4 stars.

The writintg style is very fluid and easy going, and is just a pleasure to read. You will look up at the clock and wonder where the time has gone.

The characters are very interesting right off the bat and drag you in, and the action also gets you sucked in right off the bat! Mysteries are presented early, and yet the author has done such agood job of making you like the characters so quickly, youre hooked, and nothing feels forced. The first 50 pages of this work are really a study in outstanding writing and involving the reader extremely quickly without anything feeling forced. Very impressive.

The rest of the book is just solid and very good. Id normally go into more detail, but will just say for any Pathfinder folks out there, its a wonderful journey involving the Darklands, and you'll thank me for not commenting additionally!

This is hard to explain, but I liked the ending, but not its style. I can't really describe it any better than that without spoiling.

Do I like this book, ending and all, enough to reccommend it? Absolutely. It's a fine addition to the Tales series.


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Scooby Doo episode

2/5

Ha I just saw Darkrist said same thing. Here is the review i wrote for goodreads and amazon before coming here and reading his:

Just all around not good. I was rooting for this book, because it covered a lot of crucial lore territory in the Pathfinder world - Taldor, Andoran, and the druids of the forests in between. Add in the very secretive Lion's blade organization and I read every page, hoping it would get better.

The plot is a Scooby Doo episode
The Lions blades comes off very cartoony as well.
The character interactions are DeGrassi High or some other teenage tv show.

It is not good.

I hate writing bad reviews - and its rare if you check mine - so let's focus on the positive for a moment.

- you have a character who is into puppetry as a serious artform, which is just awesome.
- a relatively strong case is made for non-democratic governments - the Taldor loyalists are believable in their discourse, not played off as simple crazies or power freaks.
- the poetry and song, especially the Andoran patriotic ones, are just fantastic. I wish i had a book with all of them collected in one place! Fantastic stuff.

If you are a Pathfinder junkie, fight your way through it and you will be grateful for the content you can glean from it. If you are just looking for a decent yarn, move on to something else.


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Great book that stalls in places

4/5

This is just a super good book all around. The diversity and depth of the charatcers makes for just a wonderful crew running amok in a world that Rob Laws doews a wonderful job of bringing to life. I was certainly never bored, but I did feel it dragged a little bit in parts, hence "only" 4 wonderful stars. Another classic in the Pathfinder Tales family


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One of the best I have read

5/5

I adored this book. The plot is sufficiently convoluted (hmm that word sounds bad... whats the good version of it?) to be very interesting, the characters have interesting struggles and flaws, the ups and downs were fun to read and in no way paint-by-numbers or telegraphed 100 pages in advance. It truly felt like there were six or so main characters, all fully flushed out and well crafted to stand on their own. I pray theres a sequel!

Best of all, my goodness do you get won over by the lizardman culture. it is so alien to our own, but it comes to life, in a consistent and highly believable fashion. I dont know if Mr Jones patterned it after Mayan or who knows what on earth, but it is so believable and yet clearly alien to "human" culture that it is worth the read just by itself. Its internal logic is clear and, as you learn about them, all of their actions make perfect sense under their foreign set of values of what is important and unimportant.

Great story, great characters, and all set with a clash of cultures - how many books can you say had you on the edge of your seat as two characters discussed the meaning and purpose of a legal contract? Haha!

Its fantastic, a must-read for any fantasy fans.


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Abysmal

1/5

The 85th book I have read in 2015 and by far the worst. I painfully finished it as I had to for credit in Pathfinder Society.

Pro - "The Princess" character is a wonderful character and i do not deny Mr Greenwood's ability to come up with some nice characters.

Sadly the plot doesnt really start until page 120 or so (the rest is one giant, pointless chase on roofs. Its a 90 minute car chase from a michael bay movie).

When we finally do sniff out some plot, its the classic trope of super powerful items with goofy names. Extremely flimsy reasons are given for why these godlike weapons arent already being used since the characters who end up recovering them are basically nobodies with mediocre skills.

I also detest the writing style. It bounces between 1st person, 3rd person, and 3rd person omniscient. It is an absolute mess, complete with awkward sexual innuendo that makes your whole face hurt from wincing.

Unless you are desperate for lore on Molthune, avoid. Even their detour into Nirmathas gave practically little useful lore.

A super bad book forced into a Pathfinder Tales by sprinkling a little jargon around.

Abysmal.


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Stick with it!

4/5

Did not expect to love this so much from the sort of stilted (in my view) start. A lot of odd stuff happens all at once, and some (apparent) stereotypes/definitions put onto the characters that didnt make them seem very interesting. Could not have been more wrong. Its all sort of a set-up so you can see how much they grow and change, so you understand how difficult some of the choices they have to make are, lending them a great deal of force and drama.

I cant even begin to dissect the plot these characters traverse other than to say its a thrill-ride, and like most of what I call good books, it escalates and speeds up the farther you get into the book, until you are completely sucked in.

I think I saw this author has written several other works and I am going to hunt them down immediately.


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PFS useful

5/5

To avoid spoilers, it is used in a Season 6 scenario that is one of the best scenarios to date. All around great even before you factor that in


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Written for GMs and Players equally!

5/5

I just love the things Silver Games chooses to focus on when making a product.

This is not just a chart with gods and their domains. Each god has a full color image, all kinds of revelations and character options, a full background, and most important to a GM and something Pathfinder could use, a table for Knowledge (Religion) describing what someone would know about that god! THANK YOU!


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New format is down to a science and excellent!

4/5

Another great Ponyfinder expansion, with the new standard layout that really pops!

I very much liked the way the writer thinks - as both a player, but always with a GMs eye towards balance. For example Pegasi can fly of course... but get serious armor restrictions if they do. Nothing is free!

Naming guide - yes please! One binding thread throughout all the Ponyfinder books is a focus on making everything special and unique, so elements like the Naming guide, and also the critical "How do other tribes view this tribe?" sections are absolutely essential, and this one is well done per usual.

My favorite part was the Cloud Walker trait - you'll have to buy it to see what I mean!


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Not sure how he pulled it all off

5/5

So good, I got sad when I turned the last page...

As my review history shows, I am an absolute addict of the Dave Gross Radovan and Count Jeggare works. I entered into this book fresh off of King of Chaos, and to be honest I was wondering how the power level of the adventures could continue to escalate without the plot getting out of hand.

For the first half of the work, I was having a great deal of fun with the banter we have come to expect and love, but I still hadn't seen a clear way this was going to get epic without going off the rails.

Wow, was I in for a surprise.

The second half of the book is pure adrenaline. Believable, high-level adrenaline. At the 2/3rds point I nearly dropped the book, such a jolt was delivered - I am positive it was 2/3rds into it, because I saw no way Dave could write his way out of this one, and he had 1/3rd of the book to go!

I was in for more surprises.

The last 100 pages of this book are emotionally draining in the absolute best sense. You ride a rollercoaster with the lads and somehow Mr. Gross keeps you fully immersed even when the power levels and subject matter gets pretty epic.

All the while, Radovan and the Count are dealing with their usual internal issues, as well as their interpersonal dynamic issues we have come to love. Nothing is sacrificed for the sake of the high-level plot arc.

The major revelations and realizations experienced by Radovan and Jeggare, both seeing their own flaws clearly for really the first time, as well as a growing realization that the fundamental dynamic between them is under incredible strain after so many adventures, felt so visceral that I grew nervous about where this was all headed. This is the most emotionally involved I have been in a book since the final book of Lord of the Rings as a middle schooler riding the bus home. So many things have to be resolved, and you aren't sure how the author is going to do it.

But he does.


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The pair continues to evolve

5/5

A huge fan of all the earlier novels, I thought to myself as I started reading this - how will the lads grow closer in this one? The pair always soaks up their local flavor when doing so, and I frankly wondered if the Worldwound backdrop would provide as much interest as exotic Tien Xia or gothic Ustalav had.

Wow, it did, but in a way that didn't shy away from stark terror, brutal horrors, and at times, grim, bleak, almost pessimistic futures.

Its a great read every page. The minor characters continue to get a lot of love without seeming to take away from the main story, a real treat, because the list of "lovables" keeps growing.

I cant count how many times I spoke "Yikes!" or "Sheesh" out loud as I read - the humorous situations inspired by Kung Fu movies from Master of Devils are not here. The natural beauty and courtly intrigue of Queen of Thorns are not here. The gothic mystery and old-school detective work of Price of Wolves are not here. This is exactly what a book about the Mendevian Crusade should be - a gore-drenched war at the Gates of the Abyss. Mr Gross did not shy away from taking his beloved characters into a rough scenario and writing it to be believable; the witty banter and playful tete a tete is seamlessly replaced with all-out brutal war, and it works.


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classic fantasy - plot, themes, characters, surprises!

5/5

A self-admitted huge fan of his works (dont forget to check out his short stories and fiction on paizo.com if you want to supplement the novels!), I decided to go into this read with an eye towards the issue of whether people new to the Radovan and Count Jeggare world would get their "moneys worth".

I was very surprised to see just how much effort, when i paid attention, Mr Gross had put into just that. The book is fantastic even as a first introduction to their wonderful world.

The plot is top notch - this is one of those books a reviewer has to be careful what he says - and the usual advancement of the friendship between Radovan and Varian gets its share of attention and nourishment. But indeed, a new reader will get plenty of chance to come to love these characters without having read any previous works.

And as happens in all of his longer works (when page count permits! I am still a sucker for some of the short mystery-focused short stories however!), we get not just a great plot, a new character, and an advancement of the relationship we have come to adore, but a bevvy of themes as well that end up both tying the characters together in interesting ways, but also acting as classic fantasy or science fiction by (non preachily... is that a word?) shedding light on perhaps our own lives as well. Race versus nationality, heritage and tradition versus change, situations where no matter what you do, youre guaranteed to upset one of your friends/allies. The quest for knowledge versus the responsibility to let dangerous secrets lie. And figuring out who you are and what you believe, without the chaos of others trying to define it for you.

I was thrilled with Queen of Thorns, even with a special eye to acting as if i were brand new to the Jeggare family of lore.


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builds to amazing crescendo

5/5

Another amazing installment in the Radovan and Count Jeggare body of work!

(paraphrasing)

"I thought you knew these people?"
"I do. Thats why i dont trust them."

we are off the the eastern lands of Tien Xia, and a world of asian mysteries. Mr. Gross wonderfully writs in a way wher ethe characters points of view slowly are saturated with the culture, so things that they seem as odd or impossible (like ki powers, massive leaps, kung fu movie kind of stuff) seem bizarre at first, but as they are assimilated into the culture, their point-of-view stlye narratives begin to shift to it being par for the course - as usual one of Dave Gross' best attributes is his ability to allow the reader to see changes, patterns, and even flaws in the lead characters that they themselves cannot see.

and thats just my praise for the writing style. The plot and evocative setting is just wonderful. It starts out as a great fanciful yarn with an exotic locale, and begins to spin faster and faster as different plot threads build momentum into an inevitable grand collision - youll find yourself reading faster and faster the closer you get to the end! In many ways it reminds me of gabriel garcia marquez' 100 years of solitude with its ability to suck the reader in with an ever-quickening pace.


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Another solid Ponyfinder product

5/5

I am used to getting more than I bargained for with Silver Games' products and this was no exception. Particularly impressive was the full color map by Sita Duncan.

This is an excellent introductory adventure, be it for players new to Ponyfinder or Pathfinder rules in general. The encounters are balanced well, and ample description is given as to how to grow or shrink them based on party size, quite helpful!

Best of all, the adventure (trying to be spoiler free) is in part a test of ethics in spots, and the story can cleverly branch in ways based on player actions. Very little extra work for the GM for a lot of extra enjoyment. There is even a scoring system like the old-school tournament modules of my youth so players can see what they did right or wrong, or missed.

This product is a great combination of a good scenario, a fun test of ethics under pressure, and a final evaluation that comes off as interesting and not a punishment. It's a hoot to see how people will react!

The combats are interesting without being the entire focus of the work - that's not an easy task to pull off either.

And while there is plenty of Ponyfinder Lore built into it, this could also be easily converted to a Golarion scenario, with the wonderful plot, tests, and scoring system in place. This is a great product!


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great story, uses setting wonderfully, nautical terms galore

5/5

I was prepped to be skeptical of this by some of the reviews emphasizing it had a romance in it. Do not be worried, it all makes sense and is in fact critical to the story. People were making it sound like he had just slapped in some pointless romance novel passages, which is not at all the case.

Where to start? First off, you'll end up feeling like you could draw a map of the inner seas from memory.

I am running a pirate campaign, and the sheer expertise Mr jackson has in sailing just brings this to life. Since my players dont know either, i plan on stealing half a dozen cool nautical terms i dont understand to add flavor to my game haha!

the romance doesnt distract from the narrative, it is critical to it. The relationship between ALL of the crew is on display, not just the captain and his navigator.

I can understand why some people didnt like the cat-and-mouse aspects of it if they were expecting cannons and explosions, but i much prefer the style of the Stargazer - precision pirates who use inside information to steal wonders and unique items, not a cargo hold full of long underwear bound for Ulfen.

I also recommend reading the short story Stargazer, free here on paizo i think, since its a prequel to this and explains what, cough, happened to their old first mate.

and for those wondering - the sequel so far (i havent finished) is looking even better! All of the cool side characters from the first book are back, and in just the very start, BAM!! major bombshells dropped. I cannot believe the discipline the author in writing the first one to not drop these earlier. i look back now, and see the hints and signs, which makes me want to re-read this!

PS Snick for President


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All around fantastic

5/5

(suggestion - read Hells Pawn, and The Lost Pathfinder first, but this is not required)

Having already read two stories and a novella, I was hooked on Radovan and Jeggare. This work started off a little slow for me, since i was used to hopping right in the action. Now that i have finished it, I wouldnt have it any other way. All of the early stuff sets up the later parts beautifully, and also gives the final mad dash an extra sense of drama.

I won't go into detail to avoid spoilers, but this book has one chapter that is an all-time classic. We are used to Gross alternating points of view between Radovan and Jeggare chapter by chapter, but without warning we have a Chapter where Jeggare is writing a letter to someone that is clearly not Radovan. You may do a double-take to see if you missed something, nope - just trust Gross, and hold on for the ride! You'll be blown away!


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and the embiggening begins...

5/5

this is a great work on its own, like all of Gross' work, but boy does it just synergize the more you read.

I'll let the 5 stars stand for themselves as far as the main story itself - and you do not need to know anything before reading this - but placed after Hell's Pawns and before prince of wolves, you're now getting to see the very complicated and shifting dynamic between Radovan and Jeggare. Gross has loaded up both characters with lots of quirks and foibles, not hackish 2D versions like hollywood, and this work shows off how Radovan handles things when his "boss" is not at his best. But even deep in his cups, Jeggare is no 2D drunk wallowing in despair - we see a different side of him as well, one no less competent or imposing, just with a twist we haven't seen before.


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great intro to the characters

5/5

Not only do you get a great introduction to the general awesomeness of Radovan and Count Jeggare, you also get some trademark Gross craft - you'll wish some of the "incidental" characters had spinoffs!

Having read a ton about Cheliax for my pathfinder games, I was still chilled to read him bring it to life. Its a blast to see Count Jeggare both be a part of that weird, deadly society, and skirt it.

Also this is a great way to start - this work sets the tone as sort of a Watson and Holmes theme, and gets you comfy with it, before the future works spin the stereotype on its head and turn it up to 11 with complications and twists between them! But ya, I am glad this one starts their relationship off a little less complicated so the new readers can just focus on the characters and story, get their feet wet.


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verry solid, plus a great "new paizo" touch

4/5

This is a solid work of the expected items, feats archetypes, etc. But just as an example of how the "new" paizo seems to think of everything, there is even a table where they have gone through all of the Summon Monster spells, and made a list of stuff you can summon that has ranged attacks. Brilliant, would not have thought of that in 100 years!


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Well-Designed Intro Scenario, but with some bells to teach new players to think

5/5

review of tower of misery scenario, written by William Kreber, Edited by Brandon West
Silver Games LLC

Matthew Paluch

August 19th 2014

Introductory scenarios have specific challenges to overcome, yet not dawdle upon - Tower of Misery handles that hurdle with some grace.

The starting hook can be introduced at just about any point in many current or starting campaigns, so this is a flexible adventure that can be used by GMs not only to start a new campaign, but as a side quest somewhere in the early stages - it does not feel forced or contrived.

The flavor text is overall very well done, and I especially appreciated the immediate description of the local town and area before bombarding the reader with other matters. The material I needed first thing to set the scene was the first thing in the scenario - good design.

The treasure caught me a bit by surprise - while the very solid description of the adventures location is excellent, and has some standard encounters and treasure, there are also a few cases where clever partys might get some rarer and more valuable items I would not expect to see in an introductory adventure, but all of them require players to have either an odd skill, or beat a very high DC after taking "smart"actions. It will reward those who are not on autopilot, but the treasure balance is just fine assuming PCs do not find either of the two difficult secret rewards. I like this idea, so long as GMs don't sympathetically give it to the party without making them do the work. In fact it would be an excellent teaching tool for new players (who again, will get a fair share of loot just from doing "the basics") if the GM revealed after the adventure how they could have additional loot if they had been a bit more savvy (or spent some skill points on more diverse areas). This is a big plus for me.

My overall impression is one of simple elegance but with some teasers added for smart players, or to teach new players how to think smarter - I liked it a great deal. The combats were a little tougher than I expected, but not too bad, so I think it would work well for a larger group as well, unlike many introductory scenarios. But as one of the few scenarios I have seen for beginning characters where a well-timed Knowledge or Profession role can be used to avoid a combat or gain extra treasure, this scenario's design is definitely thinking along lines upon which I heartily agree!


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Lots of material, just not a ton in one area

3/5

I didnt like this book as i read it, but having read it a second time, its a solid 3-stars.

The common complaint that it doesnt explore any one area in detail is valid, as is the question as to why material about the planes made it in at all. well the obvious answer is that it had to be available somewhere, and it wasnt enough material to get its own campaign setting.

You get the races, optional race traits, new regular traits, a feat, magic items, material on the planes. you get a lot. And theres nothing wacky here, so its a solid 3 star book. they covered a TON of areas, just not a huge amount of material on each piece.

Still, i think this book is one that you'll be using more than you thought you would,after the first read (which, like alot of the player companions, feels more like a pamphlet than a sourcebook at times)


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