Kusa of the Jade Oath (PFRPG) PDF

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"All warfare is based on deception."
    —Sun Tzu

They are known by many names: Iga-mono, Kunoichi, Nokizaru, Nonomi, Rappa, Shinobi, and in the west we call them them Ninja; but in the Lands of the Jade Oath they are known as Kusa.

Kusa are covert agents or mercenaries specializing in the unorthodox arts of war. The functions of the kusa include espionage, sabotage, infiltration, and assassination, as well as open combat in certain situations.

    Within this document you will find:
  • The Kusa Base Class
  • New rules for Ch'i and Chakra feats
  • 20+ new feats

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A ninja type base class.

4/5

Kusa of the Jade Oath by Rite Publishing

This product is 25 pages long. Cover and Credits is 2 pages. Next it jumps right into the class.
D8, 6 skills, medium BaB, simple and some select weapons, light armor. The class is somewhat a combination of a monk and rogue or one might consider it a ninja. It gets some unarmed combat, bonus AC and sneak attack. Plus Genin Jutsu, Chunin Jutsu, Jonin Jutsu abilities and Chi points. (11 pages on the class and abilities)

Genin Jutsu abilities (4th level on)
Bonus Feat – bunch of combat feats
Chi Feat – new chi feats
Child of the Night – bonus to combat at night
Darkvision – cost chi
Evasion
Fast Movement
Illusory Deception – cast silent image/cost chi
Illusory Substitution – works sorta like mirror image/cost chi
Improved Sneak attack
Invisable Warrior – become invisable/cost chi
Poison Use
Slow Fall
Still Mind
Trackless Step
Trap Finding
Uncanny Dodge

Chunin Jutsu abilities (8th level on)
Camouflage – use stealth anywhere
Crippling Strike – used with sneak attack cause str dmg
Enhanced Mobility
Ghostly Step – can move throw threatened space and not cause AoO/cost chi
Improved Evasion
Improved Illusory Deception
Improved Invisable Warror
Improved Slow Fall
Improved Illusory Substitution
Nimble Steps – moved threw difficult terrian normally.
Oppurtunist – may make a AoO against someone that was just hit.
Paper Bomb – 1d6/2 levels AoE bombs/Cost chi
Poison Immunity
Rejuvenating Night – Only need half as much sleep
Shadow Jump – dimension door from one shadow to another/cost chi

Jonin Jutsu Abilities (9th level on)
A Thousand Faces – disguise self
Defensive Roll – When a attack would reduce them to 0 or fewer hp. She may roll to avoid the blow. ½ damage if made.
Hide in Plain Sight – cost chi
Improved Shadow Jump
Shadow Defense – may use to hit total as AC against one foe.
Slippery Mind
Superior Slow Fall

Cap stone power is Shadow Power – May duplicate any spell, special ability used in there presence.

Next it moves on to new feats. (9 pages)
There is about 18 new feats and 23 chi/chakra feats.

It ends with OGL and 2 pages of ads (3 pages)

I did notice a few errors. Uncanny Dodge starts in the middle of the Trap Finding paragraph. Ranged Disarm feat title listed twice. Once at the bottom of one page and then again at the top of the next page where the feat actually is. In addition there was a couple of things that where not completely clear. Such as crippling strike if the str damage stacks or not, it doesn't say one way or the other.

Closing thoughts. The Art work is fair to good, though not really the type that appeals to me so take my view of the art with a grain of salt. There is a few errors in the book but nothing to major that I noticed. It could have used another editing pass though, not bad. But not up to the level I have come to expect from Rite Publishing either. This class is a good fit for those looking for a ninja type class. What I like best is that since most of the abilities are ones you can pick. You can either make a natural mystic free character or a more supernatural mystic based one. Making it flexible to fill both rolls. All and all if you are looking for such a class this is a good pick up for the price. I am giving it a 4 star, really a 3.75 honestly. As there was some more errors than normal and some of the stuff was not as clear as it could have been.



I wanted to thank Vic, for getting this up.

Dark Archive

Review is not done yet but it will be by the end of the week.

Dark Archive

Ok i got more free time tonight than I thought I would and finished up the review and posted it. Here, Enworld and Drivethru.


As always thank you for taking the time to do a review.

I did not design this so I don't speak with authority but damage always stacks (really there is no stacking damage it just deals damage), a listed penalty to stat like -2 profane penalty to Str would not stack. but a unlisted penalty like -2 penalty to Str would stack. But 1 point of strength damage would keep going till you were at 0 strength (always) and then the damage would carry over to con. That is just following the universal rules for ABILITY DAMAGE

But I could be wrong about the concern you have.

Dark Archive

Yeah it is just a ability that once you learn it. Sneak attack always does the str damage. Which seemed like a pretty strong ability, since it cost nothing to do once learned.


Sorry for the editing glitches, I guess I didn't catch some of them. I hereby vow to improve, though, and hope they didn't impede your enjoyment too much.

With regards to the Str-damage, I have to agree with Steve, though: As far as I know, Str-damage always "stacks" as its damage and not a cumulative penalty (which would not stack).

All the best and thank you for the review,
Endzeitgeist


This looks great. As a student of ninjutsu, I would have designed this class with many of the same abilities. It looks like a very fun class to play, but I am partial to both rogues and monks and this is the best of both worlds.

I would have tied a "ninja" class to the 5 chinese elements as this was a huge part of their system (called Go-Dai). They were very closely tied to nature with roots in Shinto and Tendai Buddism.

I will plan on picking this up!


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

As the designer, I have to chime in and confirm what Steve says above.

As for the 5 Chinese elements, they were a strong influence with the inpiration for the class; however, the goal was to create a class that could be easily included in other fictional, Asian cultures. Keeping some degree of distance from the that inspiration and others helps to keep it from being tied down as a strictly Japanese-style class. This allows for DMs and players to more easily use it in other regions of the campaign setting without having to justify how the character came from that Japan-like homeland to where they are adventuring currently. Please keep in mind that this class was originally designed for Arcana Evolved in the Jade Oath setting.

You can see more of the Chinese element influence in the Heroes of the Jade Oath.


Ashanderai wrote:

As the designer, I have to chime in and confirm what Steve says above.

As for the 5 Chinese elements, they were a strong influence with the inpiration for the class; however, the goal was to create a class that could be easily included in other fictional, Asian cultures. Keeping some degree of distance from the that inspiration and others helps to keep it from being tied down as a strictly Japanese-style class. This allows for DMs and players to more easily use it in other regions of the campaign setting without having to justify how the character came from that Japan-like homeland to where they are adventuring currently. Please keep in mind that this class was originally designed for Arcana Evolved in the Jade Oath setting.

You can see more of the Chinese element influence in the Heroes of the Jade Oath.

I'm a big AE/Diamond Throne fan, and discoverer Rite products via the Your Turn boards. If only I had unlimited time and funds. However, the more I read the more I'm interested in Jade Oath.

Dark Archive

Endzeitgeist wrote:

Sorry for the editing glitches, I guess I didn't catch some of them. I hereby vow to improve, though, and hope they didn't impede your enjoyment too much.

With regards to the Str-damage, I have to agree with Steve, though: As far as I know, Str-damage always "stacks" as its damage and not a cumulative penalty (which would not stack).

All the best and thank you for the review,
Endzeitgeist

I have never read a game book yet that didn't have some editing glitches. Thats just the nature of things and that's the point you work to get better. Honestly unless they or major, as in make it unable for me to understand what is being written I don't mind glitches. I was merely pointing some out as feedback.

As for the ability, yeah I figured it did with how it was written. My gut reaction was that was just a very strong ability. I have not play tested it so maybe it is not as strong as my first reaction imagines it to be.


Don't apologize, DM, I'm really glad that you pointed out some glitches I didn't get. While I sometimes am quite pedantic, I realize I still lack some practical experience in proofing products with this one being my first real try.

I really liked your criticism and the fact that I can improve via this criticism, so please keep it up! After all, that's the only way to improve! :)

All the best,
Endzeitgeist


Dark Mistress,

Would you make a detailed list of the errors and email them to me at hawkinsthedm [at] yahoo [dot] com (I don't know if that still fools email bots or not). I will try to include them when I have time to also update the ki rules for the Kusa (though I don't know when that will be).

Thanks,
Tim Wallace (a.k.a. Hawkins)

Dark Archive

Hawkins wrote:

Dark Mistress,

Would you make a detailed list of the errors and email them to me at hawkinsthedm [at] yahoo [dot] com (I don't know if that still fools email bots or not). I will try to include them when I have time to also update the ki rules for the Kusa (though I don't know when that will be).

Thanks,
Tim Wallace (a.k.a. Hawkins)

Thats been awhile. i no longer even have my notes. I had to reread my review to remember what the editing errors where. If I get time later and start to get caught up some on reviews I will try and redo it and make a list and send it to you. As it stands right now I just simply don't remember them beyond what I already listed in my review.


Hawkins wrote:

Dark Mistress,

Would you make a detailed list of the errors and email them to me at hawkinsthedm [at] yahoo [dot] com (I don't know if that still fools email bots or not). I will try to include them when I have time to also update the ki rules for the Kusa (though I don't know when that will be).

Thanks,
Tim Wallace (a.k.a. Hawkins)

I just bought this today, and have noticed some errors myself. I can email them to you if you'd like


please do

Steve [at] RitePublishing [dot] com

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