Pact Magic Unbound, Vol. 1 (PFRPG)

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Immerse yourself in the intricate rituals and legends of Goetian magic. Grab thick chalk, inscribe a geometric seal around yourself, and invoke the name of a terrible spirit to aid your quest. Behold! With a final intonation you seal a bargain with the spirit and a quivering surge of power emanates from deep within. Are you ready? Embark on your journey with the spirit of a shivering demon, martyred titan, lost mortal, chastised god, or stranger being still. The vestiges of thirty-two sundered souls lie at your fingertips, yours to command if you dare.

You will discover...

  • An introduction to fantasy pact-making for your campaign.
  • A new base class, the occultist, as well as an occultist archetype.
  • Archetypes for the 11 core classes.
  • Add-ons: a new cleric domain, barbarian rage powers, rogue talents, an oathbound paladin oath, and more!
  • A new type of feat to modify your pact magic, known as occult feats.
  • Binder Secrets, which are special abilities that an occultist can take in place of a feat.
  • Constellation aspects, which are like 0-level spirit powers that allow you to increase the binding DC of a spirit in order to gain an additional granted ability.
  • Most Important! 32 starter spirits from 1st through 9th level. These spirits are favorites drawn from the original Secrets of Pact Magic and Villains of Pact Magic, with 3 brand new spirits.

This 84-page guide opens gateways to perilous and exciting adventures. This is first volume of several to launch you on adventures of dangerous occult power.

For use in your Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. Requires the use of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Core Rulebook, published by Paizo Publishing LLC.

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Nice Adaptation

****( )

I was a real fan of the Pact Magic mechanic when it came out in 3.5 so I was tickled to see it done in PF. Radiance House has done a very nice job with making a good adaptation and making it their own.

There are some differences so be aware.
First, the entities you bind to yourself are no longer called vestiges but spirits. Not sure why. Second, the goetia-based spirits from the original TOM are not to be found here which was the only disappointing thing for me. You have lots of spirits but they are all like they were once living creatures instead of the extreme creepy weirdness from the original TOM. I might have to convert the original vestiges to this system as I really liked them.

Anyway, there is a lot to sink your teeth into here. Volume 2 is worth getting as well as it has options for classes found outside the core book and even utilizes character background rules from the Ultimate Campaign book. I'm looking forward to rolling an occultist (the new binder class) and seeing how they play. Looks like lots of fun!


An Endzeitgeist.com review

****( )

The first book converting pact-magic to PFRPG is 86 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 81 pages of content, so let's check this out, but only after a short glance back:

When I bought the "Tome of Magic" for D&D 3.5, I immediately fell in love with Pact Magic - I loved the concept, the great fluff...but power-wise, it came apart. With the notable exception of some minor supplemental material in certain Dragon-APs by Paizo, I never saw any supplemental material and if you're like me and have a LOT of books, that's a big drawback. And then, when the now deceased Kobold Quarterly magazine featured a pact magic ad, I clicked on it and ordered the books in blind faith. And if there was ONE defining experience that still makes me check out unknown 3pps, it was this one: I got gorgeously-crafted, beautiful hardcover books for a very low price and they've seen a lot of use in my subsequent campaigns.

With PFRPG, we now FINALLY get the update of my favorite magic system and it's more than just a cut-copy-paste-job - in fact, we get a completely new base-class, but for those of you not familiar with the concept, here's the spin: First, binding a spirit requires drawing a seal on a free 5-foot square - depending on the spirit, you'll have to draw the seal e.g. in darkness, with blood, etc. After drawing this symbol, you perform a ceremony, which is unique for each spirit and might range from the weird to the creepy. After witnessing the manifestation of the spirit, the binder barters with it: Each spirit comes with a binding DC that is compared to a binder's binding-check. Said check is d20+ 1/2 binder's level+cha-mod. You enter a pact with the spirit regardless of whether you succeed the check, but it does have consequences: For 24 hours, the binder shares soul and body with the entity and the check determines the amount of influence the spirit exercises over the binder. Successful checks indicate e.g. that the binder can suppress potentially weird physical signs that accompany entering a pact with a spirit. Also, the spirit's personality affects your behavior and you may ignore the spirit's restrictions like "not lying", gold as a top priority, short tempers etc. Now this system thus does not only provide a magic-system, it also provides a GLORIOUS role-playing catalyst.

That out of the way, Pact Magic, fluff-wise, is also a somewhat scorned upon practice that brings out the fanatics in e.g. some clerics and has always carried the allure of the forbidden - after all, the practitioners channel spirits that are beyond mortality and often, the range of the gods. Thus, rules provided for hiding the physical signs etc. are provided. Since the forbidden aspect is partially based on an availability, other classes can wilder in the territory of Pact Magic - especially interesting for paladins, who can now vow oaths against spirits or become Templars of Spirits, who may smite those bound as well as evil and perform exorcisms.

Clerics may become occult priests, take the occult domain and even worship spirits now - though whether sanctioned or as a heresy depends on your world. Oh, detecting heretics is supplemented by 3 new spells. Pactsworn Pagan-druids modify their shape to be more pleasing to the spirit and pay for their binding with diminished spellcasting, while the monks of the empyrean friar blends martial arts with being possessed by spirits and their supernatural abilities - I had a similar character in one of my campaigns once and it rocked, so cool concept! And yes, even fighter may opt to become so-called warshades and benefit from pact magic.
Rangers get a new archetype to gain some limited pact magic-associated abilities, while rogues may select new talents to hide supernatural aspects, improve capabilities of spirits or play an untouchable, who always gets the short end of the stick, bargain-wise, but apply a skill-bonus to a whole attribute's array.

Sorcerors may chose the Ergon bloodline that has tumor-like, eye-resembling growths spawn on the body and work as eyes as well as the power to devour magic and transcend into a half-construct as per the ARG. The second bloodline, the ravaged, is closer to a more conventional pact magic/sorceror blending. Wizards may opt to take the new soul weaver archetype, who have their spellcasting prowess diminished and forsake 3 schools, but may in turn fuse pact magic and regular magic by e.g. sacrificing prepared spells into granted abilities for more flexibility. Barbarians may become totemic sages (and also get 2 rage powers) and bards soul muses. Bards also benefit from a new masterpiece to daze foes.

You may have noticed some confusing terms here, so let me elaborate: A spirit's write-up takes up at least 1 page and not for no reason - each spirit has totems, mementos that remind him/her/it of its former life that grant the binding character a +2 insight bonus on binding checks when present, +4 when all are present - researching these can, again, be a great roleplaying opportunity.

The aforementioned ceremonies can be rushed, but that makes the result be more prone to being unfavorable for the binder. Binding spirits has multiple benefits: First of which would be minor benefits - and plural is appropriate indeed - for each spirit has at least a couple of these benefits. They range from permanent boons while being bound to the spirit to abilities that can be used 1/character level to some that have a cool-down of a couple of rounds, but no other restriction. Major abilities are simply the stronger ones granted by the spirit. Beyond these, each spirit has a capstone empowerment, which only becomes available to the binder if he/she succeeds at the binding check by 10 or more, making even low-level spirits bring something new to the table. All spirits also are aligned to one of 13 eldritch constellations and almost all of aforementioned archetypes are limited in their constellation choices. Each spirit has a favored enemy and ally constellation (sometimes multiple) that can be further enhanced by feats and makes binding spirits to allied races easier/harder, respectively. Furthermore, each constellation has 4 different potential constellation benefits. Now, the binders may also opt to forego a minor ability to instead gain the service of a so-called vestigial companion (after vestiges, the name originally applied to the spirits). The spirits also are grouped by levels from 1st to 9th, following in that regard the traditional presentation.

Now, it should come as no surprise that we also get a full binding class, the Occultist, who gets 3/4 BAB-progression, d8, 4+Int skills per level, and bind multiple aspects and squeeze augmentation bonuses out of their spirits.

But what are these spirits? Well, for example, you could bind Cave Mother, she who discovered fire, General Hessant, the Patron of Lost Soldiers, a tall story come to life by enough people believing in it, N'alyia, the First Vampire, the first of the otyughs, a living curse, Loh'Moi the geometer that sought to think 4-dimensional by teleporting into his brain, ultimately to turn back time, famed Dagon (Yes, mythos-aficionados - one constellation is called Dark beyond...), a psychotic elven princess turned black unicorn, a king betrayed by any and all as well as the sworn enemy of time. And no, that were not all contained herein.

A total of 20 feats are also part of the deal to expand the options of your pact magic-casters. Interesting is also that multiple models of spirits-known are presented for the DM, putting control essentially in your hands while featuring guidelines that help maintaining balance easy.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are very good, though I noticed some minor typo-style glitches, I encountered very few and far-between, so nothing to truly complain about here. Layout adheres to a b/w-2-column standard with many of the artworks of the 3.5-version and one artwork for each seal. The pdf comes fully bookmarked, but sans nested bookmarks.

Pact Magic Unbound Vol.1 is a great streamlined version of the Pact Magic-rules I've come to love and enjoy in my home-games. The thing is... I have both 3.5 hardcovers, which are now out of stock everywhere I look. And I realize these two probably have been produced at a loss - at least that would explain the stitch-binding and top-quality paper. In direct comparison, this one still just feels so...incomplete to me. While there are quite a bunch of cool spirits in here, there's a factor that made me LOVE, ADORE the original book, which is only partially present herein:

In the original, EVERY spirit had a legend, an expertly-written, sometimes, creepy, sometimes tragic, sometimes philosophic, but never boring history spanning a whole page as well as a cliff-notes version for the DM. While multiple of the spirits have retained their legends in this book, there also are several that have been omitted - for example the disturbing legend of evening star. The PFRPG-mechanics are awesome (and I hope, we'll get APG, UM and UC-support in Vol. II), the omission of the legends/cutting them down to mere paragraphs may conserve page-count, but it also detracts from what made pact magic stand out in my mind - not necessarily the mechanics, but the storytelling. The AWESOME flavor that made Pact Magic feel much more magical than regular magic.
Don't get me wrong - this is still a great offering. Its crunch is actually better, getting rid of alignment-changes etc. On the fluff-side, though, it just isn't as brilliant, as mind-boggling in its fluff as its previous incarnation and I really hope Vol. II will come with ALL legends - for more than anything else, more than the solid mechanics, it's always been the stories that, for me, defined Pact Magic.

Due to this factor, I will settle for a final verdict of 4 stars + seal of approval, for the rules are awesome - but the cut legends and the useful cliff-notes make this pdf suffer a bit. If you can, somehow hunt down the 3.5-books as well - they are worth every cent and having legends for ALL spirits makes them so much cooler.

Endzeitgeist out.


My thoughts on this!

****( )

Yasha gave a more fully detailed review outlining what's in this book, and I generally agree with it.

Here’s my thoughts on volume 1, hopefully to guide your thoughts on volume 2:

I would love to give it 5/5, but I can’t. I can’t give it 3/5, either; that would be too mean IMO, so it gets a 4/5 from me.

I should note that I thought the introduction of binders in 3.5 TOM was great. However, that had its flaws, which I’ll get to in a minute.

Things missing from volume 1:
No index.
No feat table.
No table providing a summary of what each spirit does.
Considering that there were four blank pages at the back, I thought it a shame that the above weren’t there! Such items would have been very useful!

The thing I loathed about the 3.5 TOM binder was the class fluff. The TOM introduced this amazing class, but the fluff said “everyone hates you”. Which I thought was total B.S. What makes binders so bad that everyone hates them? An evil binder is no worse than an evil sorcerer, evil cleric, and so on. A good binder isn’t evil, yet people still hated them. I loathed that fluff.
To a large extent, PMU volume 1 got rid of that rubbish, but not entirely. :-( For instance, there is no way I’d ever allow the paladin archetype, and the rogue archetype is pretty questionable to me, too.
Later on in volume 1, it talks about the level of availability of pact magic, but even at the “Pact Magic is Prominent” level, it still has the “everyone hates you” crap. What I would have preferred is that the binders (occultist etc) are treated just like any other class. You could then have had a sidebar saying something along the lines of “Pact magic is based on a theory developed in the real world Renaissance, and as such the Catholic Church was strongly against it. If you wish to introduce a flavour that binders, sorcerers, witches, etc are hunted by strong churches in particular lands, then feel free to do so. [These archetypes] are recommended if you want to use such a background, otherwise it is recommended that you do not use them if will not enhance the fun of the game.” Or better yet, Radiance House releases a compiled hardback, please have a chapter with the “everyone hates you” stuff that is optional, and take the view that the rest of the stuff is just treated normally!

The spirits. My favourites are Tyrant Cromwell, Ubro, and Serapith. It’d be good if the spirits in future books have just as much “oomph” as those. Some of the spirits just seem a bit random!!
It occurs to me, that with nine levels of spirits and thirteen constellations, there should eventually be at least 117 spirits. I’m sure it’ll be a while before we see that many, though!

Overall, I really like this book- don’t think otherwise. I just wanted to make the above points and hope that you’ll take them into consideration!

This book is well worth buying!


Pact Magic done properly

*****

Alright, Pact Magic! Being a longtime fan of the Binder from the Tome of Magic, I decided to bite the bullet and buy the Print/PDF Bundle. Here goes.
Lets start with the "Binder" class, the Occultist. The Occultist is a solid conversion and update of the ToM Binder Class. There are a few small gripes though. It has lost the Soul Guardian tree of abilities, likely that Occultists can bind a variety of Spirits in order to get similar abilities instead. While I understand while those abilities didn't make it into the finished class, I still miss them.
The ultimate and penultimate abilities of the class are new, interesting and have a lot of potential for fun usage. All while being totally unique to the Occultist.
One thing that did strike me as odd is this; the level at which you max out the number of spirits you can bind. It seems arbitrary, it also essentially spells out that Occultists of level 21+ don't gain any additional spirits either. While I understand most folks don't play much past 15th level, I find this limits options a bit (especially since I am running an epic game right now).

The archetypes: interesting and a good way to introduce spirit binding into your campaign. One that does seem a bit unclear and I imagine will cause some confusion is that the Bind Spirit features don't specifically mention if the number of spirits you can bind increases or not. If it doesn't (as I read it) thats good and will keep these archetypes balanced against others. If it does (which the lack of Bind Additional Spirits as a class feature makes me think it doesn't), then these archetypes are looking overpowered. Clarity on this will likely stop arguments at the table. If the archetypes work the way I think they do, then they would be a welcome addition to the repertoire of the various PFRPG classes, at least at my table.

Constellations: This is an interesting little mechanic. Think of them as Occultist cantrips. They are customizable (always good) on which ones you select, there is a wide range of choices, and with multiple spirits bound you could end up with a wide range of little abilities that help out. Also, its optional to even try for a constellation ability while binding a spirit, so its up to the player whether to worry about it or not (also good).

Feats: The feats seem nice and balanced (nothing randomly OP) and fit with the flavor of the class. Reminiscent of the ToM feats but also some totally new and good stuff in there too.

Chapter Fiction: There is a reason this is a section! I like having chapter fiction/samples of characters like this. Its a little short story that lets you hear a narrative about a character like the one you are likely creating. Oddly though the "Pact Magic in Action" one lists someone using Spirits that aren't in the book at all. After reading it, I wanted to look those spirits up. Hopefully they make the next volume.

Spirits: I still need to look at them more in depth, but my general impression is of a job well done. They seem more comparable to other vestiges of the same level than the ToM ones did. At any given level, its more situation and circumstance that will determine which vestiges are best, not one just being flat out better. Great job on this section folks! I really like that you can increase the binding DC to get an empowerment on the main ability of the vestige. It actually will encourage players to try for them and hopefully make bad pacts (which is fun). I only saw one spirit that really gave much in the way of resistances or immunities though, and it is 9th level. Overall there are a lot of attack abilities and what seems like fewer defensive ones. I'd have to really give various selections of spirits trials in game to give a better opinion, that is just my initial impression.

Final Impression: Overall (despite a few little gripes), I love this book. Obviously, the developers knew what they were doing and actually liked the old ToM Binder class. They did the spirit of the class justice and brought it into the PFRPG system with style.


The Standard for Pact Magic and/or Binders

*****

Back around the time the Pathfinder RPG first came out, I saw some posts about a 3rd party version of Wizards of the Coast's Binder from Tome of Magic. I'd seen a number of people say that the Binder had some good ideas, but had some mechanical problems. The general consensus was that this 3rd party publication "Secrets of Pact Magic" was 'the binder, done right'.

Now, the authors of Secrets of Pact Magic have updated their book to the Pathfinder RPG. This isn't just a quick and dirty conversion, the authors have taken advantage of the innovations introduced by PFRPG to make their Pact Magic book blend seamlessly with the overall system. It's a very elegant and professionally put together system and there is something in here for pretty much every game whether or not you decide to use the new class added by this book or if you want to use an archetype for an existing class.

Bottom line, this comes highly recommended and I hope to see more such material from Radiance House.


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Dark Archive

Fantastic, thanks again for all your help and answers!

I agree that Exorcise Spirits should not be usable on yourself (as allowing that makes Expel Spirits effectively unnecessary) - if you're planning errata, that's a great one to get in there. I'll note your intent in the handbook. I do however like the Poltergeist->Exorcise combo as an alternative expulsion method since that takes much longer and has higher prerequisites.

If you're taking suggestions on Pact Poltergeist, my recommendation is that the Occultist be limited to one at a time. I have a couple of reasons for this:

- The minions you can get with this are very strong; stronger in fact than many of the vestigial companions you can achieve from spirits themselves. They are balanced somewhat by always being under the spirit's influence, which limits which ones you will want to call upon and when (Evening Star might be a bad idea, for instance), but careful spirit selection can nullify this drawback with little effort. Consider for instance that you can get up to Gargantuan Poltergeists at level 16; even a dedicated Summoner at that level would have a hard time getting 4 loyal gargantuan minions to follow him around all day, especially minions with construct defenses like hardness and immunities, and spirit powers on top of their already quite impressive melee presence (15-20ft. reach etc.)

- The Occultist is likely to already have one very strong minion in the form of a spirit's vestigial companion. You can get some pretty powerful ones already, such as scaling dire animals from N'alyia and Vodavox, Portentos' awakened companion, and in particular Loh'moi's Eidolon (even at half evolution points, he is going to be a pretty tough customer the Occultist can hide behind.) And I haven't even finished looking through all the great new options in volume 2. And these too have the same advantage of a spirit's powers in addition to their strong physical forms.

So an Occultist, even a frail caster version, is going to be difficult enough to corner in melee past mid-levels with just one poltergeist and a companion out; with 3 poltergeists and a companion they're going to be next to impossible to place in danger unless they are significantly outgunned. They can even animate an object like a giant cage or a wagon and ride around in it, safe from many forms of attack. I'm perfectly fine with this strategy and indeed it could be a lot of fun, I'm just not certain allowing more than one poltergeist at a time is needed.

Contributor

My current gut feeling is to make the pact poltergeist count as a vestigial companion; as in if you have a pact poltergeist, you can't have a companion from another spirit. It basically functions as a vestigial companion as written anyway.

Dark Archive

That would do it - and in fact, it would give a great VC option to spirits that either don't have one at all (e.g. Demos, Jayna), don't have one they can share powers with (Hessant, Sylvus) or don't have a very strong one (Gulguthriana, Xalen etc.) I do like the idea of having one "companion slot" and one "poltergeist slot" though. Maybe if the poltergeist was limited to Large or Huge size? Or they could get back companion + poltergeist with a feat? I dunno.

Anyway, it's your call of course :)

Shadow Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Any idea of when this wil come off backorder?

Contributor

Yes and no.

Basically, Dario and I have been focused on getting Volume Two to Paizo for the past month or so, and if you've kept up with its product thread you'll know all about the crazy printing issues we've been struggling with regarding Vol 2.

Volume 1 went into Backorder sometime during that process and we weren't able to print new copies of it. When we finally got Volume Two squared away (about two weeks ago), Dario and I decided that we didn't want to reprint Volume 1 until we were able to clean up its text some with an errata and FAQ document. That's been my primary objective for the past two weeks or so; its taken so long because I'm an east coaster and am constantly losing power thanks to the record-breaking snowfall we've been getting this year.

So in sort, its on the table but I don't know when it'll be in the warehouse. I'll keep all interested parties posted!

Shadow Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

SO if I buy the bundle now does that mean I'll get the current PDF and the new reprint when it does eventually happen? I'm more than happy to subsist on the pdf in the meantime, but having a dead tree copy always appeals to me more.

Contributor

If you buy the bundle now, you'll get the print book shipped to you when it arrives in stock and the PDF immediately. When we update the PDF, you'll receive an e-mail from Paizo telling you that we've updated it and you will immediately be able to download a fresh copy. I'm also planning on having the errata readily available to those who don't want to kill more trees.

But I totally hear you on having a print copy. I haven't used Volume 2 in my home games yet because I don't have a print copy, and I wrote the bloody thing!

Shadow Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Sold!

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Definitely liking what I'm reading in the book, still working my way through the spirits in the back. For those who have used the Occultist class, how does the power level stack up with the normal PF classes?

I'm putting together material for a new campaign, and I know this just needs to be in there. Looking for advice for things to be wary of, as we do have the obligatory player with the Enhanced Powergaming feat. At the very least, I'm looking at the Occultist, adding the new domain for clerics, and the Paladin archetype.

Contributor

If you like the Templar of Spirits, you'll want to pick up Volume 2; it includes more classes flavored along the religion/occultism battle lines (inquisitor and cavalier are the big two that
Play in on it).

Pact Magic as a whole is balanced around being a long-term game. You can't run out of occult powers, but you can't really nova with them either. As a result, most of the optimized in my group don't even consider the pact magic classes, but your mileage may vary. As another general rule, it's the core/base class archetypes that are more often used for optimizing than the occultist itself.

Thanks for supporting our book, nevertheless!

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

OK, good to know. Volume 2 has made it from sidecart to this month's order, so it should be shipping out to me soon.

Reading reviews of the prior OGL versions, it sounds like some of the spirit stories didn't make it into the product versions (guessing for space reasons). Is there any chance of those becoming a PDF download? I'm aiming for a "pact magic is rare" campaign, and the spirit backgrounds seem like they could be useful to provide some details as an occultist locates lore on spirits.

Contributor

100% chance. Dario Nardi, my co-author, is working on a product called Six-X-Six, which is an anthology of every occult story he's ever written, as well as two new ones. Those legends will act as previews for two new spirits that will be detailed in Volume 3.

Before that, however, I have Dario busy triple checking my errata for Volume One so we can get the book back in stock at Paizo.


Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Believe I noticed a few errors here and there (mostly minor):

Spoiler:
In the New Spells sidebar in Chapter One, the text for Last Impression has a sentence that goes, "You experience this information in real time, suchYou only gain information that the creature possessed, so if it was stabbed from behind, never seeing its attacker, then this spell does not reveal who the attack was to you." I'm...not entirely certain as to what the first part was supposed to be in full? And I also presume that it should be 'attacker', not 'attack'. Edit: I belatedly note the spell was fixed for Vol. 2, though.

Less an error than a quibble with wording, in Pact Magic is Scarce subsection under How Many Spirits Do I Know?, I feel, "gains no additional spirits knowledge when leveling up," is a bit unwieldy; might I suggest, "gains no knowledge of additional spirits when leveling up," instead?

And for a quite nitpicky detail, Aza'anti's physical sign says that onlookers perceive you as being much younger then you actually are...which should be than.

Minor thing, Mute Sylvus' manifestation reads, "You feel a cold gaze upon you before suddenly experiencing flashes of the terror and panic that Sylvus and his sons felt before returning to realty." Should be reality.

Another nitpicky error, Tyrant Cromwell's physical sign says, "Your gain blond hair and blue eyes," which should be You.

In Hexus' vestigial companion section, it read, "See the monster’s entry in see the monster’s entry in Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Bestiary."

Noted a few typos in Dark Blood's legend: "According to the legend, there once was youth who was drafted into the great armies of the hobgoblins." Should be 'a youth', I presume. "They ultimately failed, though it unclear why." Should be 'it is unclear', I believe.

Jayna has listed as a favored enemy Elemental (any); the Elemental type doesn't exist in Pathfinder, and is now a subtype, so it should likely be Outsider (elemental). Also relatedly to Jayna, this is probably the nitpickiest nitpick, but I feel like, an array automatically makes whatever follows plural, so it ought to be, "an array of elemental powers".

Hope this is of use to you.

Contributor

Thanks for reviewing us, eggplantman!

To answer your questions:

Why did we change the name from vestiges to spirits?
You can't copyright game mechanics terms (like rolling dice or "binding checks" or whatnot. You can't copyright "pact magic," as it is based on real-world geotian magic and was written about over 70 years ago, placing it into the common domain of copyright law. You can copyright the term "vestige" as it pertains to pact magic because it is a specific term. By changing the name from a specific term to a general term, we avoid copyright infringement on the original designers of Pact Magic.

Why did we drop the geotia-based spirits?
Because its more fun to invent new ideas then to rehash old. Plus I really want to cover those spirits as actual demons rather than "vestiges" in the future. I agree that the rich beliefs behind Solomen the King and his 72 Demons are awesome, but I'd be more likely to convert the entire mythology rather than simply snip bits and pieces of it around.


Alexander Augunas wrote:
Thanks for reviewing us, eggplantman!

Happy to do so! Really enjoy the products and the effort put into them. I do miss the goetian spirits though I see that yours are a little more approachable while the goetian ones from ToM are quite monstrous.

If you ever come up with a supplement that tackles them as spirits, please let me know.


Are there plans to take volume 1, 2, and the eventual 3 that is mentioned and turn them into one giant hardback compilation book, perhaps with a Kickstarter? (I think Ultimate Psionics spoiled me :P)

Contributor

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Gambit wrote:
Are there plans to take volume 1, 2, and the eventual 3 that is mentioned and turn them into one giant hardback compilation book, perhaps with a Kickstarter? (I think Ultimate Psionics spoiled me :P)

I announced this in our Pact Magic Facebook group a few months ago, so I guess there's no harm in saying it here on Paizo.

We are NOT doing a Volume 3.

Here's all of the information that you need.


Alexander Augunas wrote:

Why did we drop the geotia-based spirits?

Because its more fun to invent new ideas then to rehash old. Plus I really want to cover those spirits as actual demons rather than "vestiges" in the future. I agree that the rich beliefs behind Solomen the King and his 72 Demons are awesome, but I'd be more likely to convert the entire mythology rather than simply snip bits and pieces of it around.

Since the Goetia all have their ranks and legions in Hell, may I suggest that they're not really vestiges/spirits in the standard sense, but rather simply infernal dukes who've been given the power to emulate being pact spirits, so as to gain eyes and ears on the world and maybe do a little temptation on the side?

Contributor

Evil Midnight Lurker wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:

Why did we drop the geotia-based spirits?

Because its more fun to invent new ideas then to rehash old. Plus I really want to cover those spirits as actual demons rather than "vestiges" in the future. I agree that the rich beliefs behind Solomen the King and his 72 Demons are awesome, but I'd be more likely to convert the entire mythology rather than simply snip bits and pieces of it around.
Since the Goetia all have their ranks and legions in Hell, may I suggest that they're not really vestiges/spirits in the standard sense, but rather simply infernal dukes who've been given the power to emulate being pact spirits, so as to gain eyes and ears on the world and maybe do a little temptation on the side?

I have plans to make it work flavor-wise, but they won't be happening for a good while.


Alexander Augunas wrote:
I have plans to make it work flavor-wise, but they won't be happening for a good while.

Coolness, I'll be very interested to see what you do with 'em. :)

And a side issue, if I may: We now have a complete set of constellations for Golarion, both hemispheres and a zodiac ring. Which do you think Golarionian occultists would assign to the pact constellations? Would they go with the 13 signs of the Cosmic Caravan zodiac, or branch out further?

handy list:

Cosmic Caravan: The 13 signs of the Cosmic Caravan offer portents to Varisians and astrologers alike. Below are the astrological signs and their corresponding dates.
The Thrush (18 Kuthona–20 Abadius): This curious bird heralds the coming of the travelers, its wings spread wide.
The Lantern Bearer (21 Abadius–16 Calistril): Guiding the caravan past danger and monotony, this serpentine angel lights the way with the torch of inspiration.
The Newlyweds (17 Calistril–11 Pharast): Slipping away for privacy, this couple—represented by a pair of intertwined bodies or scarves—embodies devotion and new life.
The Bridge (12 Pharast–18 Gozan): A span across danger, this constellation carries the travelers to new adventures and separates the dark of winter from the light of summer.
The Daughter (19 Gozan–13 Desnus): This light-hearted dancer is the first to cross the Bridge, skipping into the warm days of spring, filling them with joy and song.
The Rider (14 Desnus–20 Sarenith): This stern barbarian and his painted mount watch over the caravan, sometimes a boisterous companion, other times a solemn warden.
The Patriarch (21 Sarenith–20 Erastus): The father of the wanderers reliably steers the Wagon through danger.
The Wagon (21 Erastus–10 Arodus): The vehicle that conveys the travelers through the sky, represented as a seven-armed wheel or star.
The Pack (11 Arodus–16 Rova): The beasts that follow the Wagon, either dutiful hounds or scavenging wolves.
The Mother (17 Rova–30 Lamashan): Depicted as a cauldron over a warm fire, the spiritual heart of the caravan shares her bounty of food and comfort to stave off the coming chill.
The Stargazer (31 Lamashan–20 Neth): Either a prophet or a fool, this robed traveler casts his gaze ever toward what lies beyond, searching for either new wonders or treasures lost.
The Stranger (21 Neth–29 Neth): A f leeting companion to the wanderers, this outsider passes through their lives on his own journeys, and is represented by a single staring eye.
The Follower (30 Neth–17 Kuthona): Trailing behind the travelers and only seen on the darkest of nights, this veiled figure waits at the end of every journey—the constant companion, Death himself.

Northern Hemisphere:

Animal Mother
The Caravan: Which protects all who travel. (And is apparently not the same thing as the Cosmic Caravan.)
The Wyrm
The Stirge: Whose nose got stuck in the sky.
The Stair of Stars: The pathway that leads the faithful to Desna's palace of Cynosure (the North Star).
The Dancer
The Twins
The Mantis (Red, so probably Achaekek, Mantis God of assassins.)
The Snakefang (a dagger)
The Salmon
The Goblin
The Sea Wraith: The vessel of Besmara, the Pirate Queen.
The Jackal
The Rose
The Owl

Southern Hemisphere:

The Hawk: Who hunts the heavens and defends the sun.
The Key: Which Abadar made to unlock the First Vault.
The Spider
The Sorcerer: Who spellcasters look to for guidance.
Gigas Major: The old giant.
Gigas Minor: The young giant.
The Gecko: Who climbed up to the sky.
The Ferryman: Who claims lost souls.
The Sphinx: Who knows many secret things, and whom even the gods respect.
The Fang: That vampires kill for.
The Kraken: Who ensnares Ardacondis.
Ardacondis: Who wrestles the Kraken to keep it from
choking the world.
The Tarrasque: Who sleeps among the stars for now, but will return when the time comes to end the world.
The Throne: Reserved for the final king.

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