Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Magic (OGL)

3.10/5 (based on 48 ratings)
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Magic (OGL)
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Raise your character to the pinnacle of magical might with Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Magic! Within this book, secrets arcane and divine lie ready to burst into life at the hands of all the spellcasting classes in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. In addition to the brand-new magus class—a master of both arcane magic and martial prowess—you'll also find a whole new system for spellcasting, rules for spell duels and other magical specialities, and pages upon pages of new spells, feats, and more. Because when it comes to magic, why settle for less than absolute power?

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Magic is a must-have companion volume to the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook. This imaginitive tabletop game builds on more than 10 years of system development and an Open Playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into the new millennium.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Magic includes:

  • The magus, a new base class combining deadly arcane magic with the skills and weapons of a trained warrior.
  • Words of power, an innovative and flexible new spellcasting system.
  • New options for dedicated casters, such as alchemist discoveries, alternative uses for channeled energy, druid companions, sorcerer bloodlines, eidolon abilities, witch hexes, and oracle mysteries.
  • Additional feats and magical abilities for martially oriented casters, including monk ki tricks, inquisitor archetypes, and ranger traps.
  • New magical conditions called spellblihgts, as well as systems for crafting constructs, binding outsiders, and spell-dueling.
  • More than 100 new spells, plus detailed guidelines for designing your own.
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-299-9

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Errata
Last Updated - 03/30/2012

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Rulebook Subscription.

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3.10/5 (based on 48 ratings)

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Not Perfect But...

5/5

I think this book is pretty good, maybe not on the level of Core or APG, but I was comparing it to the Complete Series for 3.5. I was disappointed with no Prestige Classes as I'm one that thinks Archtypes are great but can't replace all PrC's. Not having magic items didn't bother me at all as there are magic items in tons of books. I won't get into details as that has been covered extensively, just wanted to give a 5 star as I think UM is getting knocked down alot because of how good The Core and APG are.


The Ultimate Review Part 1: Ultimate Magic

4/5

In the first of their two-part "Ultimate" series, Paizo hands out presents to all of the good little priests and mages.But did those boys and girls get the goods, or will they have to suffer coal for Charistmas? Let's find out!

The Magus and its Archetypes
Not going to lie here, folks, but I am heavily biased in this part. I absolutely LOVE spellswords, and the Magus and its support in this book delivers in every possible way. While this class easily beats out the Eldritch Knight at low levels, their skills become a subject of heavy debate in the mid to late game. Yup, the class is so good that it gives the old Martial Spellcaster class a run for its money. In my opinion, the book is worth it just for the Magus alone, but there is PLENTY of good stuff in this book. {10/10}

Base Class Archetypes
This section is a little bit hazy. There are some really powerful, awesome archetypes here. The Magus ones are especially awesome. Some of the options are a little lackluster, and the level of support for each class varies heavily; for example, Bards got Masterpieces, Wizards got Arcane Discoveries, Clerics got Alternate Channel Energies, Inquisitors got Inquisitions. However, other classes got a lot less (Paladin only got one Archetype, though it is extremely flexible and they can use alternate channel energies and inquisitions), while some classes got completely shafted (the Sorcerer only got four new Bloodlines, one 'real' archetype, and one faux archetype that only gives a lackluster "subdomain" mechanic to the older bloodlines). This section has a lot of cool concepts. In true SPLAT book fashion, there isn't anything that is game-breakingly good, but the sheer lack of inventive ideas for the Sorcerer in this department is depressing. {7/10. I'm a Sorcerer player. Sorry.}

Spellblights
Spellblights are special diseases and such that a GM can inflict on their players for doing things like losing a spell due to a failed Concentration check or from suffering form Arcane Spell Failure. Its a completely optional system that rocks in every way. Its blights are fun and flavorful, and really add a sense of risk to magic; especially if you can find good ways to implement them. Its definitely a system that is more for the GM; I recommend that GMs set their own conditions for spellblights to occur to make magic more interesting. I don't mean to suggest the current rules are poorly implemented; they aren't. This is a system that, however, is screaming for campaign setting customization, and is therefore sweet. {10/10)

Binding Magic
I love the Tome of Magic's binder classes. Not going to lie. As of now, I'm in the process of refluffing and rebalancing the class for my Pathfinder campaign. I squealed when I saw the name of the chapter and then cried when I realized what it was actually about. This entire chapter offers additional rules for implementing the Planar Aly spell. That's it. Its an interesting concept, but it takes up an entire section of the book, and its mostly for fluff. The bonuses to your Planar Ally check are small (+2) to the point where one wonders if it will ever impact your games. It's a great resource for players who want to ooze fluff in their roleplaying, but it really feels like too much effort went into this section. One can only wish that the Sorcerer received this much attention. {4/10}

Construct Adaptations
This chapter informs a spellcaster on how to upgrade and better equip the constructs they build. This chapter is cool, not going to lie, but it does not feel like it works in this section. It implies that ALL constructs are magical in nature; well what if you run a steam punk campaign? I didn't think my car ran on magic (though at the prices gas stations charge these days, one has to wonder). You can argue the ice golems are definitely magical in nature, but then I ask you, "why are you shoving beakers of alchemical fire into your ice golem?" I could understand why this was here if there was never intent to print another Bestiary every again, but lo! Bestiary 3 was announced TODAY. This would have worked better in there, instead of hogging up whatever fun things could have been given to the Sorcerer. {5/10. This section is cool, but it doesn't fit the book.}

Feats
The feat section is very hit or miss. There are some awesome options and some terrible options. Some options look a little overpowered (for example, I'd be okay with Antagonize if it let my mage target the antagonizer with a spell instead of forcing them to charge into melee a la Spongebob Squarepants) while others seem redundant (Prodigy, why are you in a magical book? All of these guys could just Greater Creation your goods into existence). Overall, though, this is a good addition to the current setup of Pathfinder feats. {7/10}

Premade Spellbooks
I think this was where the magic items would have gone, but spellbooks take up so much room. This is invaluable to any DM who gives out spellbooks as a reward. Players (especially non-wizards or magi) won't care. Even Wizards and Magi might not care because they'd be sad if they saw the same premade spell books over and over again. The biggest problem with this section is that it references spells that either had their names changed or were scrapped from the book; no offense Paizo, but you may want to lash your editors or something. :) {5/10}

Words of Power
The words of power is a new spellcasting system that appears in Ultimate Magic. In a nutshell, you take syllables and combine them into powerful spell effects. The goal of the system that it is extremely flexible in how it creates spells, but it cannot mimic the sheer situtationalness of some of the Core spells. The system is strong, and there are many effects that cannot be duplicated as normal spells within the situation (+4 armor and +2 to three stats comes to mind as being awesome). It is a book-heavy system and is stronger in the hands of prepared casters, who can know all of the syllables. However, it is a cool and unique system for anyone wanting to play a Wordcaster (Tome of Magic) that actually works. {8/10}

Spells
You can't call a Pathfinder Book "Ultimate Magic" without having some spells in it, and boy do Paizo come through on this book. Unlike the Advanced Player's Guide, which has many "scroll/wand spells" but few really good ones, Ultimate Magic has something for everyone. It has spells that affect aging, spells that deal damage as a swift action, spells that heal, spells that harm, it really fills in the spellcasting gaps quite well. While I am still hoping for new spells in Ultimate Combat, if no new spells were printed for a year, at least you can be glad with what Paizo gives us in this book. {10/10}

Score and Final Thoughts
Not everything in this book is for everyone. As the Advanced Player's Guide. This book is fluffy as you can get without making it Golarion specific; I have to admit that even the parts I did not like were very enjoyable to read. {Fluff 10/10} Where this book takes a strong hit to the groin is in the grammar department. There are a LOT of errors in this book; the premade spellbook, and there are a lot of what forum trolls like to call "Copy/Paste Fails." One of the best one haunts the Pip of the book, the Sorcerer, where a bloodline for Earth Genies grants the ability to teleport to the Plane of Water (instead of the plane of earth, which was clearly the intent based on the other genie bloodlines). Overall, this is an excellent book, but there are some illogical choices (why aren't the monster building rules in the bestiary?), bad editing, and unequal support for the spellcasting classes (I will pray for you, oh Sorcerer. Let's look at the total score, below:

Magus: 10/10
Base Class Support: 7/10
Spellblights: 10/10
Planar Binding: 4/10
Construct Upgrading: 5/10
Feats: 7/10
Words of Power: 8/10
Spells: 10/10
Fluff: 10/10
Style and Grammar: 5/10
Total: 76/100 = 76% = 3.8 Stars = 4 Stars

EDIT 9/19/2011: After further playing with Ultimate Magic, I've decided to revise my scoring of it slightly. As a GM, I


Ultimate Magic: the name says it all....

5/5

I am truly impressed by how Paizo products are designed for ease of use by novice players. Ultimate Magic is not different: Check my full review: Ultimate Magic


Excellent book, but needed more editing and balancing.

4/5

As both a player and a GM, I'm quite happy to have my hands on Ultimate Magic. The Magus class is definitely the star of the book, but there are plenty of other great options such as additional archetypes, feats, spells. One of my players is also using the wordcasting system on his sorcerer, and he is having a field day with it.

However, this book has some major editing issues. Certain Archetypes such as the Sythesist currently aren't usable without GM houserules to determine how exactly its abilities work. Other parts of the book refer to feats or spells that were cut out. There are also some problems with the book inserting powers or abilities that just seem too weak (such as ranger traps). None of this makes the book unusable since a GM can make his own adjustments as necessary, but these problems will still cause headaches.

I'm giving this book four stars because I believe that it will be just fine after Paizo does some erratas for it, but I am annoyed that I am going to have to refer to on online document for information that should have been done right in the first place.


Ecelectic Purchase, but worth it

4/5

Pros: ok, number one the Magus class is awesome. It fills a casting spot in my campaigns that is needed, and wasn't even known to BE needed till now.

Red Mage comes to mind...

As for the rest of the book, yes there are few options for fighters, and melee characters as is to be expected in a book on Magic.

Cons: I did not expect the wordcasting section, nor will I be using it. The Alchemist, and Oracle seem to have little support compared to other casting classes.


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Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

deinol wrote:
Yrtalien wrote:
Dragnmoon wrote:
Woot! just got my Shipping in the Next week or so message!

Could someone explain to me how this works? I just became a subscriber for the benefit of the free PDF and somewaht earlier shipping and I'm wondering how this all happens...

First I get an email that tells me it will be shipping in the next week or so (the email I got last week after order doesn't count I guess since it said exactly that : ).

After I get that I wait for the physical book to ship and get another email and THEN I can download the PDF?

How long it usually between getting the ships soon email and the actual shipping?

Do I have that all right?

Sounds about right, yes.

The one that came right after signing up for the subscription doesn't count because it could be a month or two before the actual product ships (depending on which subscription you sign up for). So sometime next week they should start shipping them out and people will get their PDFs.

Do note that due to the large volume of subscribers, it will take a few days for them to ship all the orders. So if the first people get their PDFs on Monday, some people will still have to wait until Thursday (or later if there are problems). So be patient! It will come!

Also note that the simpler your order is, on average, the earlier in the ship process you will be. It's not deterministic, but I have large orders (and often an extra item or two) so I'm usually later in the cycle. If you are just getting the rulebooks, you'll probably be out the door pretty early in the cycle.

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

gbonehead wrote:
Also note that the simpler your order is, on average, the earlier in the ship process you will be. It's not deterministic, but I have large orders (and often an extra item or two) so I'm usually later in the cycle. If you are just getting the rulebooks, you'll probably be out the door pretty early in the cycle.

Generally, it's not the "larger" that makes you later, it's the "extra item or two." The more your order is similar to other people's orders (in terms of contents, shipping method, and destination area), the faster it generally goes out.

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

Vic Wertz wrote:
gbonehead wrote:
Also note that the simpler your order is, on average, the earlier in the ship process you will be. It's not deterministic, but I have large orders (and often an extra item or two) so I'm usually later in the cycle. If you are just getting the rulebooks, you'll probably be out the door pretty early in the cycle.
Generally, it's not the "larger" that makes you later, it's the "extra item or two." The more your order is similar to other people's orders (in terms of contents, shipping method, and destination area), the faster it generally goes out.

Yep.

I've just gotten resigned to it, since, by definition, there's no way to handle the orders that will please everyone. These days I've got so much Pathfinder reading material that an extra day or two doesn't matter anyways.


That's it.I just subscribed.Amazon is $10 cheaper,but no pdf,and 1 extra month of wait.Plus,i guess,my money now goes directly to Paizo,which is also a nice bonus.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Vlad Koroboff wrote:

That's it.I just subscribed.Amazon is $10 cheaper,but no pdf,and 1 extra month of wait.Plus,i guess,my money now goes directly to Paizo,which is also a nice bonus.

I ended up with a similar rationale, only instead of passing up Amazon, I pass up my employee discount at Barnes & Noble. :-P


Joseph Wilson wrote:
Vlad Koroboff wrote:

That's it.I just subscribed.Amazon is $10 cheaper,but no pdf,and 1 extra month of wait.Plus,i guess,my money now goes directly to Paizo,which is also a nice bonus.

I ended up with a similar rationale, only instead of passing up Amazon, I pass up my employee discount at Barnes & Noble. :-P

There is no Barnes&Noble in my area(actually,there is only two gaming stores at all,and they do not stock Paizo),so it's a choice between cheaper Amazon and more costly Paizo...with a free PDF!

My GM have a veeeery strange idea to make my alchemist the Witcher,so it's either Ultimate Magic or homebrew.


Interested to see what the witch archetypes are going to be like - are they just new hexes, or different class features too?

Definitely interested in the sea witch - I like the prestige class from Stormwrack of the same name, but that one seemed too limited for anything but a NPC.

The inquisitor exorcist sounds cool as well >:)

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?


Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?

They usually start shipping after lunch so I would guess we have 6 and a half hours before they start shipping.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Justin Franklin wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?
They usually start shipping after lunch so I would guess we have 6 and a half hours before they start shipping.

Damn, i'm in the wrong time zone again!

Shadow Lodge

Gorbacz wrote:
Justin Franklin wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?
They usually start shipping after lunch so I would guess we have 6 and a half hours before they start shipping.
Damn, i'm in the wrong time zone again!

5 more hours how will I make it through the workday?

God Forbid I might actually have to work:(


Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Justin Franklin wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?
They usually start shipping after lunch so I would guess we have 6 and a half hours before they start shipping.
Damn, i'm in the wrong time zone again!

I know your pain. They really ought to start operating the warehouse according to European time, don't they?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Kajehase wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Justin Franklin wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?
They usually start shipping after lunch so I would guess we have 6 and a half hours before they start shipping.
Damn, i'm in the wrong time zone again!
I know your pain. They really ought to start operating the warehouse according to European time, don't they?

Of course! :) Actually, Paizo should have an European warehouse - that would solve oh so many issues.

It's so much better an investment than sponsoring any GenCons! ;)


Remember to do this properly: send by alphabet and continent first. So process all packages destined for Africa today please :D

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

F5, F5, F5...

Dark Archive

It has begun. :)


I am in Washington like Paizo is, they should do reverse alphabetically on states :)

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

They should just send it to me first, don't care when everyone else gets theirs... ;)

Owner - House of Books and Games LLC

(continues to expect his email on Thursday, Wednesday if he's lucky.)


i just subscribed when do i get this on pdf?


@gbonehead:

No! You must let them know your burning passion! Springtime of youth! Your feelings will reach them and quicken their hands!

Dark Archive

I could talk about how cool they are after I DLed the new books... but I won't. :D

Liberty's Edge

Vic, I have a question, one you've probably answered 7,830 times already, but, well, here it is.

Is there any particular reason you guys don't make the .pdf available to all subscribers at the time that you ship the first book to the first person? I mean, sure, there might be a delay of a few days between the .pdf fulfillment and the ship date for the hardcover, but it would ensure that all subscribers get access to the .pdf at the same time. Is it just a technical issue that prevents this, or is it a business reason?

I'm not dissatisfied or anything, just curious - of course, you're under no obligation to talk to lil' ol' me about your business strategies. :-)


I wish I could just subscribe to just the PDFs. I don't do printed anything anymore if I can avoid it.

Still, I'll wait the 9 days. My next game isn't for 13 more.


@Dark_Mistress: you know we all like the way you torture us

Dark Archive

Jeremiziah wrote:

Vic, I have a question, one you've probably answered 7,830 times already, but, well, here it is.

Is there any particular reason you guys don't make the .pdf available to all subscribers at the time that you ship the first book to the first person? I mean, sure, there might be a delay of a few days between the .pdf fulfillment and the ship date for the hardcover, but it would ensure that all subscribers get access to the .pdf at the same time. Is it just a technical issue that prevents this, or is it a business reason?

I'm not dissatisfied or anything, just curious - of course, you're under no obligation to talk to lil' ol' me about your business strategies. :-)

They give you access to the PDF's when they officially charge your account for the money. Since they charge your account only when the order is boxed and shipped, thats why people get access in staggered days as they do them. They could wait until they have processed all the orders to give access. But that might make some people unhappy to be charged a few days in advance of getting access to the PDF's. Plus it could cause problems of making sure everyone that was charged 2 or 3 days ago then get their access correctly. I imagine it would be a lot more work for Paizo to do that and they would still have some people unhappy. *shrug*

I am just teasing of course, i have been at the tail end of the shipping before when I order extra stuff and it drove me nuts waiting those couple of extra days when others already had the PDF. :)

Shadow Lodge

Dark_Mistress wrote:
Jeremiziah wrote:

Vic, I have a question, one you've probably answered 7,830 times already, but, well, here it is.

Is there any particular reason you guys don't make the .pdf available to all subscribers at the time that you ship the first book to the first person? I mean, sure, there might be a delay of a few days between the .pdf fulfillment and the ship date for the hardcover, but it would ensure that all subscribers get access to the .pdf at the same time. Is it just a technical issue that prevents this, or is it a business reason?

I'm not dissatisfied or anything, just curious - of course, you're under no obligation to talk to lil' ol' me about your business strategies. :-)

They give you access to the PDF's when they officially charge your account for the money. Since they charge your account only when the order is boxed and shipped, thats why people get access in staggered days as they do them. They could wait until they have processed all the orders to give access. But that might make some people unhappy to be charged a few days in advance of getting access to the PDF's. Plus it could cause problems of making sure everyone that was charged 2 or 3 days ago then get their access correctly. I imagine it would be a lot more work for Paizo to do that and they would still have some people unhappy. *shrug*

I am just teasing of course, i have been at the tail end of the shipping before when I order extra stuff and it drove me nuts waiting those couple of extra days when others already had the PDF. :)

My account has already been charged I don't get pdf access until it ships which I'm hoping will be today and not Friday....


What about adding the option: "Charge me as soon as possible and give me access to the PDF" ?

I wouldn't mind waiting the few extra days for the stuff to actually ship. Heck, my one order from January only arrived recently now, in May. (Yay Africa... - I was actually already giving up on that order. Halleluja!)


@Decorus: make doubly sure, Paizo first clears the money on your account before actually charging when they ship. I usually get a message from my bank as soon as the money is cleared, but it isn't actually charged til a few days later.

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Decorus wrote:


My account has already been charged I don't get pdf access until it ships which I'm hoping will be today and not Friday....

That Charge is to make sure your payment method is Valid, that charge will disappear after a few days if they do no confirm it.

And they do not give you access to the PDFs until they Ship the Books, because of rules with Visa/Mastercard that state they can not charge you until the items have been sent, or something similar to that.

Dark Archive

LoreKeeper wrote:
@Dark_Mistress: you know we all like the way you torture us

Then you must be really happy. :)

@Decorus - Is it a charge or a pending charge? They put a pending charge up a couple of days before they technically charge the account. They check to be sure you have the money to cover it. If not they send you a email to let you know there is a problem so that you can take care of it before the actually charge you. Some banks show pending charges separately, some banks may not. But you should get the books the same day they officially charge you.

Paizo Employee Customer Service & Community Manager

Decorus wrote:

My account has already been charged I don't get pdf access until it ships which I'm hoping will be today and not Friday....

As a quick data point, we have not charged your account yet. What you see if you are checking your balance right now is an authorization. (Paizo FAQ on Authorizations) An authorization is not a charge. It is a non-monetary transaction that checks to make sure the account is valid and has funds. If for some reason we can't ship the order, that authorization disappears.

We being processing subscriptions/preorders a few business days before we begin actaully physically shipping as this helps us make sure that we aren't packing orders that we won't be able to ship due to invalid accounts or payment method declines. It also gives customers who do have issues time to call their bank, add a different card, etc before we begin shipping.

thanks
sara marie

edit: ninja'd by Lorekeeper, Dragnmoon and Dark_Mistress.. I hope I'm not losing my touch!


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
Decorus wrote:
My account has already been charged I don't get pdf access until it ships which I'm hoping will be today and not Friday....

Actually, your account hasn't been charged. They run an authorization at the same time as your 'shipping soon' e-mail. An authorization is a request to the credit card company that asks if they have permission to charge the card. It verifies that they have all the correct info (zip code, expiration date, available funds, etc). Once they actually ship it they turn that authorization into a charge.

Of course, if your credit card is not actually a credit card, and is instead tied to a bank, the banks will usually use the authorization as an excuse to hold that money for 3-7 days (depending on the bank) which means that while the money has not been transfered to Paizo yet, it is effectively gone from the account. If you were to cancel the order, the authorization would go away after a few days, and no money would be transfered.

Which is why I leave my subscription tied to a real credit card, and only switch to a bank card when if I know I will have funds available. The credit card will just deny payment if there is a problem. The bank card will happily overdraw your account and charge you overdraft fees.

Edit: Quadruple ninja'd.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
LoreKeeper wrote:

What about adding the option: "Charge me as soon as possible and give me access to the PDF" ?

I wouldn't mind waiting the few extra days for the stuff to actually ship.

Paizo actually follows the regulations set by the credit card industry, which is to not charge your card until products are shipped. I know too many other websites ignore this requirement on pre-orders, but those are the actual rules.


@Sara Marie: not at all - we're just desperately waiting and hoping to see a "PDF in your downloads", so we are paying very close attention to this thread. Against all expectation, whenever I click Refresh I hope again that *this* time shall be different! ;)


deinol wrote:
LoreKeeper wrote:

What about adding the option: "Charge me as soon as possible and give me access to the PDF" ?

I wouldn't mind waiting the few extra days for the stuff to actually ship.

Paizo actually follows the regulations set by the credit card industry, which is to not charge your card until products are shipped. I know too many other websites ignore this requirement on pre-orders, but those are the actual rules.

That's why it would be an option that the client checks (off by default) - thereby we explicitly grant permission and thus the regulations shouldn't have a problem.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
LoreKeeper wrote:
deinol wrote:
LoreKeeper wrote:

What about adding the option: "Charge me as soon as possible and give me access to the PDF" ?

I wouldn't mind waiting the few extra days for the stuff to actually ship.

Paizo actually follows the regulations set by the credit card industry, which is to not charge your card until products are shipped. I know too many other websites ignore this requirement on pre-orders, but those are the actual rules.

That's why it would be an option that the client checks (off by default) - thereby we explicitly grant permission and thus the regulations shouldn't have a problem.

That might be possible, but it would then be a pain to code the change into all of Paizo's software to alter the way some orders are handled. Is it really worth hundreds of hours worth of programming time just to give a few customers a PDF a few days earlier?


by that standard the free pdf might was well be a moot point and the money i spent to get the content earlier could have been money saved if i bought ultimate magic from amazon or some other site that proveds a wholesome discount .

i subscribed because i thought id get the content at a time earlier than release essentially paying 20$ more if im only going to get it 3 days in advance (and thats just the pdf mind you) ill be thoroughly disappointed and cancel my subscription .

im not saying this to cause a stir its just how i see it , i value my hard earned money and i dont like the idea of essentially paying more for the same thing or a slight difference that dosent equal the extra cost that was paid.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Stasiscell wrote:

by that standard the free pdf might was well be a moot point and the money i spent to get the content earlier could have been money saved if i bought ultimate magic from amazon or some other site that proveds a wholesome discount .

i subscribed because i thought id get the content at a time earlier than release essentially paying 20$ more if im only going to get it 3 days in advance (and thats just the pdf mind you) ill be thoroughly disappointed and cancel my subscription .

im not saying this to cause a stir its just how i see it , i value my hard earned money and i dont like the idea of essentially paying more for the same thing or a slight difference that dosent equal the extra cost that was paid.

The street date is May 18th, so you will (likely) be ahead with the PDF several days before anybody can start selling the book in retail.

Also, Amazon is legendary for their delays when it comes to RPG books, Paizo stuff included.

Dark Archive

Stasiscell wrote:

by that standard the free pdf might was well be a moot point and the money i spent to get the content earlier could have been money saved if i bought ultimate magic from amazon or some other site that proveds a wholesome discount .

i subscribed because i thought id get the content at a time earlier than release essentially paying 20$ more if im only going to get it 3 days in advance (and thats just the pdf mind you) ill be thoroughly disappointed and cancel my subscription .

im not saying this to cause a stir its just how i see it , i value my hard earned money and i dont like the idea of essentially paying more for the same thing or a slight difference that dosent equal the extra cost that was paid.

You should have your PDF's no later than Friday the 13th. Amazon and other places won't even start filling orders until the 18th. So you are likely looking at having your PDF's 2 weeks before a book ordered from Amazon or something would show up. In fact your book shipped from Paizo should show up first* by a week or more. *(assuming you live in the US, not sure about international)


my fears were confirmed i wont get the pdf till they ship the actual book and thats going to be at release date if i used amazon with express shipping i would have saved 16$ and obtained the book in a period of 2 days (dedicated stores get the product a day before release ) in short i would have had the book cheaper and sooner a pdf that i wont use after a day or 2 (afterall why use it if i have the hard copy) isnt worth the extra money.

after the book ships and i get the pdf im canceling my subscription things would have been different if i received the pdf at the time of the order .


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Stasiscell wrote:

i subscribed because i thought id get the content at a time earlier than release essentially paying 20$ more if im only going to get it 3 days in advance (and thats just the pdf mind you) ill be thoroughly disappointed and cancel my subscription .

The street date is May 18th, so you will (likely) be ahead with the PDF several days before anybody can start selling the book in retail.

Also, Amazon is legendary for their delays when it comes to RPG books, Paizo stuff included.

Amazon may be fast at shipping things out once they are in an Amazon warehouse, but they save money on the back end by not being in a hurry to get stuff into their own warehouse. They don't even accept deliveries to their warehouses, they send a truck to the distributor's warehouse to pick things up. And they wait until that truck will be absolutely full. So if they sent one to the warehouse today, when there aren't any Ultimate Magic books in stock, it could be 2-6 weeks before they send another one to that distributor.

You'll get the PDF around 7 days before it could possibly be for sale in stores. Depending on your local game stores, it may be much longer. I know I won't expect to see it at my local game store until the 25th.

A subscription isn't always the best option for everyone. If you want to buy the book elsewhere go ahead. It boosts Paizo's sales ratings in other channels which helps give them wider exposure in the long run.


Stasiscell wrote:

my fears were confirmed i wont get the pdf till they ship the actual book and thats going to be at release date if i used amazon with express shipping i would have saved 16$ and obtained the book in a period of 2 days (dedicated stores get the product a day before release ) in short i would have had the book cheaper and sooner a pdf that i wont use after a day or 2 (afterall why use it if i have the hard copy) isnt worth the extra money.

after the book ships and i get the pdf im canceling my subscription things would have been different if i received the pdf at the time of the order .

Until your order actually gets processed, you can call customer service and cancel your subscription and order from Amazon and save the money still. I would hazard a guess it'd be shipped well after the 18th street date though by going by past posters experiences with Amazon and new releases.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens Subscriber
Stasiscell wrote:
my fears were confirmed i wont get the pdf till they ship the actual book and thats going to be at release date

They should start shipping books today, you will get your PDF sometime this week. Most subscribers inside the US will receive the physical book before the release date. I suspect most Amazon pre-orders won't arrive for at least another 2 weeks, if not longer.

Grand Lodge

I am living in the UK and I just downloaded my PDF. I would not normally get to see this book for weeks. This is just one of the reasons that my subscriptions are worth every penny. *goes back to reading*


thanks for the feedback everyone i decided to stay the course and wait it out

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Crispy3ed wrote:
I am living in the UK and I just downloaded my PDF. I would not normally get to see this book for weeks. This is just one of the reasons that my subscriptions are worth every penny. *goes back to reading*

Yeah, having the PDF 3-4 weeks ahead of the book is a winner for most overseas customers.


3 to 4 weeks? Hah! 2 months in my case. Worst delays have been 4 months. The PDFs are a godsend.

Also, Crispy3ed has made me reach enviable levels of jealousy.


So lets move onto a different topic whats everyone most excited about (those who havent gotten the pdf yet)

Liberty's Edge

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Stasiscell wrote:
So lets move onto a different topic whats everyone most excited about (those who havent gotten the pdf yet)

Though I hate the Magus Class, one good thing about the class is that we are getting new Touch spells, which I am excited about.

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