Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Chronicle of the Righteous (PFRPG)

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Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Chronicle of the Righteous (PFRPG)
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Pray for Mercy
The empyreal lords watch over the infinite expanses of the multiverse to ensure that good can flourish and that evil, no matter its form, can be vanquished. But even these powers cannot stem the tide of evil by themselves, and they must often rely on their celestial servants—noble angels, wise agathions, unrelenting archons, and free-spirited azatas—to lead the charge against the forces of corruption. Together, these virtuous forces wage an unending war against the blasphemous and the profane, all the while lifting worthy mortals to stations of ever-greater glory among the boundless celestial spheres.

Inside this book, you’ll find:

  • A thorough exploration of over 50 empyreal lords, including details on their minions, the divine powers they bestow upon mortal worshipers, and the celestial realms from which they hail.
  • Rules for the mystery cultist prestige class and details on the various types of mystery cults.
  • Methods to bolster mortal spellcasters’ efforts while summoning all the different types of celestials.
  • New spells for spellcasters to hurl at their wicked foes and new magic items to aid adventurers in their battles against evil.
  • Rules for rituals of self-mortification and the divine powers that can be gleaned by such acts of devotion.
  • A bestiary of five new celestials to assist or oppose player characters, including the keen-eyed spyglass archon and the veranallia, azata master of seasons, growth, and decay.

Chronicle of the Righteous is intended for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and Pathfinder Campaign Setting, but can easily be used in any fantasy game setting.

By Amber Scott

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-506-8

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscription.

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Heavenly!

5/5

Chronicle of the Righteous is about the servants, worshippers, and homes of a group of beings in Golarion (Pathfinder's campaign setting) called "Empyreal Lords." Empyreal Lords are hard to define exactly; they're divine beings that inspire small groups of worshippers (called Mystery Cults), but they're not major deities that attract thousands of worshippers and the building of major temples. They might be best thought of as demigods, because they're below deities but above normal "celestial" races like angels. That's my best guess anyway, as I'm still a little bit fuzzy on the role of Empyreal Lords in Golarion. But put that to one side: Chronicle of the Righteous is a fascinating book that has inspired me to want to integrate Empyreal Lords, Mystery Cults, and more into my campaigns. The book is a 64-page entry in the Campaign Setting line. The inside front cover is a list of approximately fifty Empyreal Lords, their alignment, areas of concern (portfolios), domains (that they grant to clerical worshippers), and favored weapons. The inside back cover is a full-page reproduction of the cover art, which is quite impressive in its own right. Between the the covers are nine sections.

1. "Tabris's Return to Heaven" (two pages): This is a dense account, written in a "handwritten" font, that tells the tale of a warrior-scholar angel named Tabris who was obsessed with fully exploring and detailing the heights and depths of the heavenly and fiendish realms. Tabris disappeared for decades before returning with his Chronicle of the Righteous, and the book contained secrets that even the celestial realms would have rather been suppressed! It's quite evocative and well-written, and surprisingly effective. It's definitely a flavourful way to start the book off.

2. " Lords of the Empyrean" (29 pages): Each of the major Empyreal Lords receives at least a half-page entry that describes them and their particular interests, along with a drawing of their holy symbol and information on what types of people worship them, where their shrines might be located, and what sorts of celestial beings act as their minions. I would say that every third or fourth Empyreal Lord receives a full-colour picture, and these are done quite well. Perhaps the most important thing in this section is the introduction of the concept of "Celestial Obedience" and "Boons." Celestial Obedience is a feat that can be taken by worshippers of Empyreal Lords and provides them with an immediate +4 sacred bonus to something like (depending on the particular Emypreal Lord worshipped) a certain type of saving throw, combat maneuver check, AC against a particular type of enemy, etc. The benefit is narrow in scope and certainly not game-breaking, but additional powers ("boons") are gained at character levels 12, 16, and 20--and some of these are pretty cool. The best part of the Celestial Obedience concept is that, although it can certainly be taken by clerics, paladins, and other divinely-focussed classes, it doesn't have to be. If your Cavalier is a worshipper of the Ragathiel, the Empyreal Lord of chivalry or your Bard is a worshipper of Seramaydiel, the Empyreal Lord of communication and music, they can gain the benefits of Celestial Obedience. It's a great way to make the gods (or demigods) meaningful to more than just clerics in a campaign.

3. "Celestrial Realms" (2 pages): This is a description of the major geographical features of the celestial realms: Elysium, Heaven, and Nirvana. I have to admit I've never had characters adventure in celestial realms, and I have no idea what it would be like to GM or role-play such a place. I suppose it's good to have something more concrete to heaven than fluffy clouds. I did like how there was mention of where mortals who plane shift to each realm are most likely to appear.

4. "Celestialkind" (6 pages): After an introduction to celestial races and a sidebar about what happens to mortal souls who reach the celestial realms ("petitioners"), each of the following varieties of good-aligned denizens of the celestial planes receives a full page description: Agathions, Angels, Archons, and Azatas. I think this would be especially useful for those pesky spellcasters who are prone to summoning celestial beings willy-nilly.

5. "Concordance" (2 pages): Although only two pages long, this is one of my favorite sections of the book. The premise is that "once an eon, and only in times of great danger or turmoil" all of the divine powers of the celestial planes gather together to reach an accord on what should be done. There's material here about the death of Aroden, Lamashtu's rise to power, hints about a deity interested in time-travel, and, most intriguing of all, "The Seventh Accord", a Concordance never spoken of in the centuries or millennia since it happened and considered so blasphemous and dangerous that no mention of it is permitted to exist. Great fodder for creative GMs!

6. "Empyreal Worship" (14 pages): This section is a grab-bag of material, but it's useful. There's a page on how the different divine classes relate to Empyreal Lords, two pages on different types of Mystery Cults (drawn broadly among themes, but useful), and two pages on "secret offerings" that can be made to improve one's chance in summoning a particular type of celestial being. Two pages are also devoted to Rituals of Mortification, which requires a character to invest a certain number of days going without food, water or sleep in order to gain both an affliction and a benefit. The actual rituals listed are said to be examples only and GMs should feel free to add more. The Ritual of Appetite, for example, requires two days' fasting, afflicts the character with a -2 penalty on Constitution checks and saves vs. disease and poison, but grants the character a +2 sacred bonus on concentration checks and Will saving throws. Other rituals are far more powerful, with one providing a +4 sacred bonus on attack rolls against evil creatures and a +4 bonus on caster level checks to overcome their spell resistance! I haven't used these rituals in play, and I'm not sure whether they would be balanced or not, especially because part of the mechanism is the infliction of nonlethal damage once a day, but nonlethal damage heals quite easy. So the idea is interesting, but I'd have to test this concept out more before I'd be confident it's a good addition to the game. Next, there's an important new prestige class introduced here: the Mystery Cultist. A Mystery Cultist gains spells at the same speed as their prior class and several celestial-themed abilities, but a big reason for playing one is that they can receive the "boons" of the Celestial Obedience feat a few levels earlier than a regular character. I'd be very tempted to try this class out, as it seems to both fit the flavour of Empyreal Lord worship and be mechanically sound. After this, here are two pages of new spells (6 in all), with specific mention that these are not restricted to worshippers of Mystery Cults (and a couple of the spells are arcane in nature). I would love to see "Charitable Impulse" in a game, as it forces someone to help others and gradually give away all of their possessions instead of committing acts of violence. Last, there are two pages of celestial-themed magic items.

7. "Lesser Empyreal Lords" (1 page): About two dozen Empyreal Lords that were, for whatever reason, not significant enough to be included in the first section receive a brief, one-sentence description here.

8. "Fallen Celestials" (1 page): Intriguing description of those celestial beings who have turned their back on the heavens, many of whom have joined the infernal realms.

9. "The Celestial Hosts" (8 pages): This is basically a bestiary. It helpfully puts into table format all of the Agathions, Angels, Archons, and Azatas introduced in other Pathfinder materials, and then describes five new ones: Cervinal Agathions, Balisse Angels, Choral Angels, Spyglass Archons, and Vernallia Azatas. I found the new creatures interesting and potentially useful (except for the Choral Angels, which were a bit too cliche for me).

In sum, there's a lot of material here and it's almost all great. I picked this book up by chance (it was half-price) and have never done much with the celestial realms in a game, but I can now definitely see why I might want to in the future; and if I do, I'm confident that Chronicle of the Righteous would be the first place I'd turn.


Want More!

5/5

Few of the books in RP that I never wanted to end. The flavor and stats in this book are awesome and highly useful for people that find that they are not fitting into the 'standard gods' but your not a deviant into the other alignments.

There is something for almost everyone good aligned, investigators have two options of Emperial Lords who they can follow and seem perfectly inline with their 'deity's' viewpoints. Spies and artisans have options, crusaders have more than just Iomedae's views. Good aligned nature gods - sure you don't have to be purely neutral.

There are many options and the mechanics are useful but are more geared towards games that would end up in higher level range (12+) but would add a lot of good flavor without being overpowered.


Everyman Product Reviews: Chronicles of the Righteous

5/5

Final Score & Thoughts
Crunch: 5/5 Stars
Flavor: 5/5 Stars
Layout: 4/5 Stars
Final Score: 14/15 Stars, or 4.5 Stars, rounded up for it’s flavor.

Chronicles of the Righteous is a must-own book if you do absolutely anything with good outsiders in your campaign. This book provides a much needed insight into the nature of the celestial races and provides plenty of fodder for potential gods and entities in your campaign setting. This product is a rich tapestry of righteousness that your Pathfinder collection is incomplete without.

Read the complete review at the Everyman Gaming blog.


Excellent Book!

5/5

Read my full review on my blog.

Overall, Chronicle of the Righteous is an excellent book, particularly due to its extensive list of Empyreal Lords. It helps to balance out the playing field between the forces of evil and the forces of good. While gamemasters may have less call for information on celestials than they do information on fiends, the do have some call for that information, and this book fills that niche splendidly.


This is a fantastic book!

5/5

It is up there with Lords of Madness, Book of Fiends and Demonomicon of Iggwilv in the amount and quality of information it provides on the various Empyreal Lords and the other celestials. The author should be proud of this creation!

As for the material, there is an awesome list of new sources for divine casters as well as other information on new celestial creatures. I especially like the inclusion of Tabriss, the Celestial Realms, Concordance and the Fallen Celestials.

Do yourself and your players a favor, go out and pick up this book now!


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So many books came out it is hard to focus on one at a time.

I really do like what I have read so far, so many interesting choices and ideas. Plus we finally get some new angels which unlike archons, azatas, and agathions, haven't gotten any new ones since bestiary 2.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Amber Scott wrote:
I can't tell you all how glad I am to hear all these comments. I wrote this book during pretty much the worst year of my life. I remember sitting in the sun with Wes at PaizoCon and telling him about a friend of mine who had just passed away and how fresh and raw everything was. . .

I'm very sorry to hear that, and I sincerely hope that life gives you a much needed break. I know how you feel, and it really sounds so far that you did an amazing job, and have done something that most can not, in pleasing pretty much everyone with your work. :)

Editor-in-Chief

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Christina Stiles wrote:
Wow. I can tell that crunch time is over: I think that is the most Wes has posted in a very long time!

This is apparently how I spend my vacation. (*face palm*)

Editor-in-Chief

6 people marked this as a favorite.
Evil Midnight Lurker wrote:
I can't help but feel that what the Empyreals did to Tabris was so vastly hypocritical that some of them should have Fallen on the spot. Honestly, I find it almost unbelievable that events could have gone down as written, and I'm wondering if you've really given us the whole story...

This is something that I seriously enjoy. Can you have a place in a multiverse filled with shades of gray and black that stays pure white? Can you have a Heaven where the good of every ONE is weighed and maintained as being as inviolably important as the infinite MANY? Can Heaven regret?

So I dig that for a thousand reasons. (Reference: Lucifer comics, Engel RPG, Constantine film.)

On the other side, though, there's a flat out directive I want our Heaven to uphold:

Heaven MUST be good.

Too often creatives--myself and a few others at Paizo especially--get into this Too Cool for School, cynical mindset when it comes to religion and especially Heaven. So then you start getting hardcore hypocrisy and dark sides of the pearly gates and weighted hierarchies and so on and so forth. Essentially Dystopian Heaven. (Which is sort of what Hell should be.)

I don't really want that (or, we already have a place for that). Sure, we're GMs, we love, love, love the bad guys and the schemes and the twists, but at the end of the day, if there's one place that needs to be good, and good in as many varied ways as there is evil, it needs to be Heaven and the other celestial realms.

So the solution, as usual, is to have our cake and eat it too. And in this case, the dual forces that drive Heaven help with that. Heaven is capital "G" Good, but also capital "L" Lawful. It is possible to do the right thing and still break the law. You can be a good person in Heaven and still get evicted. That doesn't mean damned, but it does mean you're not coming back.

As for Tabris, who had a heck of a time and did what he was told and literally went through Hell and worse, could he have come back with a result to his mission that satisfied Heaven? Maybe. Did he? Well, the official record is no. Is there more to the story? You can bet there is.

Stay tuned. ;)

Project Manager

5 people marked this as a favorite.
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Christina Stiles wrote:
Wow. I can tell that crunch time is over: I think that is the most Wes has posted in a very long time!
This is apparently how I spend my vacation. (*face palm*)

GO HOME, WES.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Jessica Price wrote:
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Christina Stiles wrote:
Wow. I can tell that crunch time is over: I think that is the most Wes has posted in a very long time!
This is apparently how I spend my vacation. (*face palm*)
GO HOME, WES.

I thought the Paizo boards were his home.


Can anyone share the prereqs for the mystery cultist PRC? Even if by PM?

Editor-in-Chief

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mikaze wrote:
Zohls has an awesome "anti-succubus" look going there. (and I can't stop myself from imagning her as a more collected Patricia Tannis at the moment)

Ha! Awesome. (I've got another character in mind for Miss Tannis. For Zohls, my thinking was: Sherlock Holmes, Empyreal Lord.

Editor-in-Chief

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Amber Scott wrote:
Azure_Zero wrote:
Though I noticed that not every empyreal lord listed in the inside cover was covered in detail in the book (Not all had boons).
The inside cover lists all the "main" empyreal lords as well as the "lesser" ones from pages 54-55. The latter are not detailed but give an idea of all the potential empyreal lords out there. We did give them favoured weapons and domains just in case players really liked one of the minor ones.

What Amber said. You'll see these in the Books of the Damned as well. These are not meant to be all inclusive lists either, we're not tying ourselves down and want to give ourselves plenty of room to expand.

Ultimately, if you want more--more empyreal lords, more boons, traits, options, any of the thousand other flavors we couldn't fit in just one 64-page book--let us know and we'll do more down the road. :)


Can we get material on Law and Chaos too? I really dig that theme moreso than Good vs Evil which is extremely overdone.

I really dig the Inevitables. I hope Paizo can do something unique and new for once


3 people marked this as a favorite.
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Amber Scott wrote:
Azure_Zero wrote:
Though I noticed that not every empyreal lord listed in the inside cover was covered in detail in the book (Not all had boons).
The inside cover lists all the "main" empyreal lords as well as the "lesser" ones from pages 54-55. The latter are not detailed but give an idea of all the potential empyreal lords out there. We did give them favoured weapons and domains just in case players really liked one of the minor ones.

What Amber said. You'll see these in the Books of the Damned as well. These are not meant to be all inclusive lists either, we're not tying ourselves down and want to give ourselves plenty of room to expand.

Ultimately, if you want more--more empyreal lords, more boons, traits, options, any of the thousand other flavors we couldn't fit in just one 64-page book--let us know and we'll do more down the road. :)

I want more!

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Talinthal Uth Mondor wrote:
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Amber Scott wrote:
Azure_Zero wrote:
Though I noticed that not every empyreal lord listed in the inside cover was covered in detail in the book (Not all had boons).
The inside cover lists all the "main" empyreal lords as well as the "lesser" ones from pages 54-55. The latter are not detailed but give an idea of all the potential empyreal lords out there. We did give them favoured weapons and domains just in case players really liked one of the minor ones.

What Amber said. You'll see these in the Books of the Damned as well. These are not meant to be all inclusive lists either, we're not tying ourselves down and want to give ourselves plenty of room to expand.

Ultimately, if you want more--more empyreal lords, more boons, traits, options, any of the thousand other flavors we couldn't fit in just one 64-page book--let us know and we'll do more down the road. :)

I want more!

Seriously. Wes, please get Amber started on writing book 2 already!

Assuming she can fit it in around being the first female author of an AP volume (Worldwound Incurison, the first volume of Wrath of the Righteous.) Amber, I think we're beginning to realize just how lucky Paizo and its fans are to have you writing such great stuff for us all.

Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I second what Kvantum said!


Le sigh. It seems I won't be getting my PDF until next week. Oh well, in the meantime, I'll echo the words of praise that have been said of Amber Scott. I cannot wait to see what's in store for us with Worldwound Incursion, and I'm very pleased to see talented female game designers getting some adventure path spotlight.


F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
YESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYESYES
This one and Champions of Purity are definitely for you Mikaze, and all your "More good stuff for good guys" advocating. Enjoy! :)

Huh, interesting...*pushes big red button labeled "Commence Operation Gimme-My-Mendev-Book"*

Silver Crusade

Amber Scott wrote:

I can't tell you all how glad I am to hear all these comments. I wrote this book during pretty much the worst year of my life. I remember sitting in the sun with Wes at PaizoCon and telling him about a friend of mine who had just passed away and how fresh and raw everything was.

I returned to Canada, went back to school, and in between classes and helping my newly-widowed best friend and dealing with my own grief (and an unexpected medical issue--yeah, it was quite a year), I wrote this book. It was comforting, in a weird way, to leave behind "earthly" things and contemplate what the ultimate good in a multiverse would look like. I tried very hard to give capital-g Good a lot of nuance and a lot of different dimensions. To think of all the different kinds of suffering and what would provide a balm. I hope I invested in it the gravity and peace and joy that I imagined during the writing.

I'm sorry to hear about the rough times you've had of late too. Everything you poured into this book certainly came through. I know it's going to sound cheesy to some, but it is a comforting read in a lot of ways. :)

Honestly, this is a book on Good that has some real heart to it.

Amber Scott wrote:

Of course I tried to put in a lot of fun flavour and mechanics too, a lot of cool options and awesome crunch. I love how the mystery cultist turned out, particularly the capstone ability. I love the spells. And the mortification rituals! The empyreal lords, as you can imagine, were the most fun to write. I've always loved fairy tales and myths and legends and I tried to draw on them to make the lords epically fantastic, like Tabris covering seven leagues at a step, or Ragathiel wrestling in the Maelstrom for 16 years, or Eritrice's origin. I love Arshea and Bharnarol and Irez and of course Vildeis and who am I kidding, all of them.

This is not to say the book is perfect and those who have complaints, I will take them to heart. I just wanted to say that this book was a labour of love and also healing and I'm so glad it turned out the way it did.

The fairy tale elments certainly did come across that labor of love absolutely did pay off. I'm in all sorts of love with this book now.

also, Vildeis needs all of the hugs

then again that might send her over the deep end

After this and Blood of Angels, I'm even more stoked to get to play Wrath of the Righteous now. :D

Silver Crusade

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
Zohls has an awesome "anti-succubus" look going there. (and I can't stop myself from imagning her as a more collected Patricia Tannis at the moment)
Ha! Awesome. (I've got another character in mind for Miss Tannis. For Zohls, my thinking was: Sherlock Holmes, Empyreal Lord.

Well, that too if you wanna go obscure. ;)

But yeah, she seems like the perfect patron saint for every super-brilliant-but-difficult-to-socialize-with detective out there, including all the Sherlock incarnations and who knows how many current crime drama protagonists. Hmm... CSI: Axis....

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:


Ultimately, if you want more--more empyreal lords, more boons, traits, options, any of the thousand other flavors we couldn't fit in just one 64-page book--let us know and we'll do more down the road. :)

I suppose there are a number of pros and cons to weigh before contin-ZOMG MOAR PL0X PL0X PL0X

Silver Crusade

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Also, I think Valani is my new favorite potential patron for non-evil orc/half-orc tribes now. Pitch-perfect match. :D

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I have one concern about the book, and that is the subdomains available to Empyreal Lords. As it stands, they have more subdomains than clerics of the gods do, which seems a bit upside down. This is pretty much my only complaint in what is a wonderful book that paints good as far less monolithically dull than is traditional. *rubs hands together* Soooooo many options to blow my players' brains with,

Silver Crusade

Any chance we could get a preview of the Subdomains and some Divine Spells?

Liberty's Edge

All subdomains except those that smack too much of Evil ;-)

Some spells : one is a multi-elements attack when you are not sure of your opponent's resistances. Another allows all weapons in the area to get past the DR of a specific type of fiend. The Necromancy one is disturbing like hell : the target gets damaged and those who drink its overflowing blood get healed.


Paul Watson wrote:
I have one concern about the book, and that is the subdomains available to Empyreal Lords. As it stands, they have more subdomains than clerics of the gods do, which seems a bit upside down. This is pretty much my only complaint in what is a wonderful book that paints good as far less monolithically dull than is traditional. *rubs hands together* Soooooo many options to blow my players' brains with,

Well, they've kept making new subdomains far more than new domains, so those have to get assigned to someone... Some of them may retroactively get assigned to gods too.


I'm REALLY excited for this book based on the comments I have seen.
I'm glad that the steriotypical approach to "good" has been broken....
It sounds like good just became as much fun to play as evil.

Now if they would only take the same approach to a First World/Eldest book, and get out of the typical fey steriotype....I could die a happy man ;)


The Golux wrote:
Paul Watson wrote:
I have one concern about the book, and that is the subdomains available to Empyreal Lords. As it stands, they have more subdomains than clerics of the gods do, which seems a bit upside down. This is pretty much my only complaint in what is a wonderful book that paints good as far less monolithically dull than is traditional. *rubs hands together* Soooooo many options to blow my players' brains with,
Well, they've kept making new subdomains far more than new domains, so those have to get assigned to someone... Some of them may retroactively get assigned to gods too.

That's not it: rather than specify subdomains, the Lords are just given all subdomains of their domains.


Do they list the favored animals of the Emperyal Lords?


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I am just now hearing of this book. I would absolutely love to have this, as I get more enjoyment out of reading about the good things than the evil. I don't give a patoot about demon lords or devil princes or old gods. But the thought of Empyreal Lords, and the other celestials gets me interested.

Silver Crusade

Since Wes asked:

I could stand another 1 to 3 books that fall along the general lines of either this one, or Champions of Purity. I'd gladly buy them, as there is a bit more material I would like to see. Faiths of Purity was okay but didn't quite offer the options I wanted (and had a few 'fluff' errors that I had to get corrections on them from James Jacobs). Blood of Angels theoretically offered what I wanted, but its options either were a bit too strong/optimal for my tastes (I realize this is a vague complaint, don't put too much weight on it) or the options didn't fit the classes I like to play. I was left a little disappointed by these purchases, thus.

Conversely, Champions of Purity directly enabled me to complete one of my character concepts. Adding a 'holy themed' blast spell (Burst of Radiance) that was available to Celestial Sorcerers (and other classes) fairly early on was a huge help in conveying their magic theme. Summon Good Monster completed the other major part of what that theme was missing, so the moment I heard details on those two pieces of game content I immediately went out and bought the book. I considered it a very good purchase, because now a character idea I've always had is finally complete or nearly complete. That said, any more material covering these two themes would basically just be even more helpful (and thus welcome) in fully driving the point home.

To put it more plainly, I like options that allow classes other than Paladin, Cleric, Oracle, and Inquisitor to wield holy power and smack Evil around with it.

Other things I like, in little to no detail, include...
Game material options for Good Bards

Game material options for Good Fighters

Archetypes for other alignment exemplar 'Paladin style' characters to use (e.g. a CG Paladin, maybe a NG Paladin, etc.).

Options to get Good-aligned Mounts, esp. if PFS legal and not particularly table-disruptive (Leadership feat fails on both counts)

More deity choices. Lesser gods and Empyreal Lords are acceptable for this criteria.

Especially deity choices that offer nuance on Chaotic Good. I really like Milani, as her take on CG seems to be a more studied and "I've thought this through" take on benevolent freedom than the 'benevolent swashbuckling drunk pirate' motifs one sees in Cayden Cailean. Cayden is there for whoever wants that motif, while more cerebral takes on it appear to he available through Desna, Milani, and I'm hearing some of the Empyreals might do this too; I want more of that sort of content. Similar focus on Neutral Good is also fine.

This is all stuff I'll open my wallet for. I'm told my last criteria is somewhat or even extremely well met by Chronicle of the Righteous, so I'm buying that on the 29th.


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I agree with the Pegagus. I think that the more options for good the more people might be willing to play good characters.

Shadow Lodge

I sort of agree, but at the same time, not at all. "To put it more plainly, I like options that allow classes other than Paladin, Cleric, Oracle, and Inquisitor to wield holy power and smack Evil around with it." kind of sound like "hey, arcane magic is cool, lets give everyone magic then".

I'm not against everyone having a small taste of holy stuff, but that (calling on the powers of holy good to bludgeon demons to death) is very much a Cleric/Inquisitor/Paladin thing, and not something that should be handed out like candy.

Silver Crusade

In regard to that critique: You can give out lesser versions of a concept without obsoleting the primary class' value at that concept/role. I'll use the Celestial Sorcerer as my example throughout.

It has healing. Very limited healing that is Alignment-specific (though this gives it a neat secondary use as a Determine Morality Axis of Creature effect) and stops being worthwhile within a few levels, but it has it via Heavenly Fire and this is incredibly flavorful. Clerics nonetheless remain better healers.

They gain a little buffing via Bless. Clerics remain better buffers, and so do Bards.

So then we get to one of the stereotypical roles of a Sorc, 'fire support'; hitting targets with Blast spells. This is supposed to be their thing. Then we see a bloodline where the whole premise is "your magic comes from holy sources." Why not give them some holy-themed blasts? Sure, Flame Strike is awarded around Level 11... but I think it's fair to say most people don't want to wait 11 levels for their character theme to fully make sense. They want it around levels 1-5. "Celestial Sorc" + "Sorcs are excellent at Blasting" makes it seem reasonable to infer that "Sorc blasts with holy magic" is a valid interpretation of the class, and I'm very happy Burst of Radiance opened up this possibility before one hits Sor/Wiz 5 spells.

I want to see more material of that kind. You can do it without rendering Paladin, Inquisitor, or Cleric obsolete in the role of holy heroes. More material simply allows other classes, other concepts, to plausibly fill that aspect too. They just have to do it differently. Burst of Radiance, after all, is not a Smite Evil attack with a gods-blessed weapon. It's not a powerful healing effect. It's simply "Holy Mage throws Holyballs at Evil instead of Fireballs."

You can do that without wrecking class distinction.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Like what everyone else is saying, Amber excellent work Wes would totally want more of this. In the future I would love to see another Chronicles of the Righteous that gives us more focus on either one of the major outsiders covered in this book (maybe angels since they have a nice range of alignments and portfolios) or one that covers some of the other powerful outsiders we haven't seen get some love like garuda or peri's. Honestly though what I really want is something on the Neutral outsiders, especially the ones committed to the setting neutral books like Aeons and Proteans since both of these are completely new and have so much room to be advanced (want some options for my CN summoner that aren't azatas or demons) and we no practically nothing about most of them in relation to either the multiverse or the material plane at large. I mean I actually wonder if most mortals even know if Aeon's exist sometimes.

Contributor

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Thanks for the well-wishes everyone. :) Things are much better now I'm happy to say. I'm looking forward to chatting about CotR and other projects at PaizoCon this year with the people I meet!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Shalafi2412 wrote:
I agree with the Pegagus. I think that the more options for good the more people might be willing to play good characters.

Very much so.

Liberty's Edge

Shalafi2412 wrote:
I agree with the Pegagus. I think that the more BROKEN options for good the more people might be willing to play good characters.

There. Corrected that for you ;-)

Honestly, while perusing Champions of Purity, I was wondering why Evil was not yet extinct.

Shadow Lodge

Why would Evil be extinct, and what options are you referring to as Broken? Options to deal nonlethal damage? A Feat that allows summoning of things that around the same power level that Evil can do in the core Book? A mundane option to remove poison from someone else without poisoning yourself (within a 1 round limit) and a magical method to take someone else's status effect on yourself? The ability to cast Chains of Perdition as a Good spell at like 2 spell levels higher? Or the Rogue option to jump on the grenade and save their friends rather than hide in the corner? A very minor smite attack that lets Sneak Attack (only) get past some DR.

Not much is really jumping out as extremely overpowered, in my opinion. Burst of Radiance is probably the most almost overpowered, but even that really to means sounds exactly like what most Good Clerics, Oracles, and maybe even Sorcerers should have had all along. Clerics (and Oracles) are supposed to call down the divine wrath of heaven to smite true evil, and sort of be the prime anti evil outsider and undead go to's, right? Channel is generally a very poor way to do that, and even most of the iconic spells, Holy Smite, for example, are just terribly underpowered.

Silver Crusade

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Burst of Radiance is aggressively efficient, no question about that. I'm not sure it's broken/overpowered though. Compare it to several peers in the Sor/Wiz 2 and 3 lists and you see some trends emerge.

What does Burst of Radiance do? It is a Blindness effect with a short (yet meaningful) duration in a small Area of Effect, that also does moderate damage to targets provided they are Evil. The Blindness has a save (becoming Dazzled instead if they make it), but the damage doesn't... and is Typeless, as befitting an explosion of holy light. It also has Long Range. To be clear, only the damage cares about Alignment.

Let's compare it to Glitterdust. Glitterdust has less range, the same area of effect, and does no damage. However, Glitterdust's effects ignore Spell Resistance (a huge benefit), and have a secondary effect of negating a large chunk of Invisibility's benefits. This means Glitterdust is the superior choice if you're trying to sharply change the situation in a single spell. It is almost always relevant, it is more reliable, and it simultaneously reduces the enemy's damage output while making them easier to attack (provided they were invisible to begin with). Burst of Radiance is the second place finisher in this contest.

Flaming Sphere versus Burst of Radiance is interesting too. Flaming Sphere does less damage at once, but it repeatedly inflicts damage... several times over a single casting. It ignores Alignment; anything not Fire resistant cares about the Flaming Sphere. Against Neutral or even other Good aligned foes (though why your PC is fighting the latter with lethal force is anyone's guess), Flaming Sphere will actually do damage whereas Burst of Radiance will only inflict its Blind effect. Even against Evil foes, long-term the Sphere will inflict more damage per casting.

A quick comparison to Sor/Wiz 3 blasts tells us Burst of Radiance would be a terrible Sor/Wiz 3 spell, too. Stack it up against Fireball and see which one you'd rather have; it's probably Fireball, which should be the case given it's a full level higher.

None of this is to say Burst of Radiance is a terrible spell. It isn't. Quite the opposite, it's aggressively effective and a very strong choice for any PC that wants Long Range, typeless damage, and the potential to inflict Blind for a few rounds. There are however times where it will be borderline useless (this is true of its peers as well though, I admit) and several cases where you'd genuinely prefer other spells in the same level over it. Extremely useful and strong, sure. I just don't think it's overpowered.

Shadow Lodge

Agreed, I was tackling it from the Cleric side. Similar spells might be Soundburst, a Sonic Effect (against everything, not just Evil) that deals 1d8 and has a save for Stun, (much worse in my opinion, can't act and hen need to spend the next round picking up anything you had been holding). Calm Emotions can make that incoming Barbarian horse cry, well, feel like they need to cry but can't. Bull's Strength, Darkness, Shatter (that big mean weapon with the low Will Save or the nonmagical flask with a Cure potion inside), Silence, all in the right place can be devastating, and will probably far outweigh the small benefit that Burst of Radiance gives for a few rounds.

It probably should be a Close Range spell, though.


Anyone know if Tolc is in this one?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Icyshadow wrote:
Anyone know if Tolc is in this one?

Yep he is and he has some interesting choices in minions. Also his Obedience sounds downright painful..in several different ways.


Just got it today...read through most of it and have enjoyed what I have seen. Reading through the obediences is kind of fun...I like that one of the Empyreal Lords basically has an obedience that translates to "singing in the Shower"

Also like the further info on Tabris as well as the concordances. The info on Tabris makes me hopeful that we might be seeing some new types of neutral outsiders down the road. The concordances provide a good reason on why all the Empyreal Lords are mentioned in one book, as they the different good outsiders are far more integrated with one another than devils are with demons or daemons.

My only complain is that there is a best of text playing up the hypocrisy of heaven, but we don't really see it. At best the hypocrisy and tarnish might be related to Tabris's exile, or to the mysterious 7th concordance that no Empyreal Lord speaks of. Be nice if they made this a bit more explicit.

Liberty's Edge

Now I am wondering what the obediences and boons are for each Good God, because they are that awesome.

I now feel that worshipping an empyreal lord is better than worshipping a God, which sounds a bit strange to say the least.

Is there a possibility for a character to worship a God AND an empyreal lord ?


This is a bit weird: why is Lamashtu the only god who grants boons?

Silver Crusade

Maybe it's something that'll turn up in Faiths and Philosophies?

I think the armored lilend is my favorite example of that particular race in Pathfinder so far. It's like if Second Darkness' Malindil moved towards Chaos towards the end of her life. :D


The black raven wrote:
Shalafi2412 wrote:
I agree with the Pegagus. I think that the more BROKEN options for good the more people might be willing to play good characters.

There. Corrected that for you ;-)

Honestly, while perusing Champions of Purity, I was wondering why Evil was not yet extinct.

Your attempt at levity using my words is not appreciated.


Amber, if you have time, can you (or somebody else who worked on the book) address level 1 of the Mystery Cultist? It seems like a disappointing level merely to get the good parts of the class. For this one level, you get +1 Will, skill and hit points, a boon you only get when you die (something to avoid, typically), and a requirement to perform your obedience.

No matter what a character's entry class is, that level is going to feel like a waste. Why not a full 10 levels of spellcasting for this class? The rest of the class is fantastic. It just seems like it should get full spellcasting, or miss out on a level of spellcasting when you get your first boon (since that is always spell-like abilities).

Also, and this may be intended, but you have to be really into killing to perform obedience for Ragathiel. You have to kill somebody every day to get your obedience bonus. Plus, if you are a mystery cultist of Ragathiel, you must sacrifice somebody every morning or you lose your spellcasting ability. I feel like this is dancing dangerously close to breaking the alignment rules in the core rulebook:

CRB wrote:
Some evil creatures simply have no compassion for others and kill without qualms if doing so is convenient. Others actively pursue evil, killing for sport or out of duty to some evil deity or master.

Ragathiel isn't an evil deity or master, but as a mystery cultist, you would be killing out of duty so that you don't lose everything gained from the class. If you stave off a horde of orcs, you have a strange incentive to capture as many as you can so you can ritualistically sacrifice them one at a time each day.


Awesome book, but two problems.
1) Ragathiel's obedience just isn't feasible. You're supposed to be able to do an obedience in about an hour, daily. Finding a proven evildoer and slaying them is a bit unreasonable given the time scale.
2) Unless all angels are doing some kind of Gozreh thing, someone forgot to add genders to the angel empyreal lord listings.


well, angels are often considered genderless in folklore/pop culture, so might be intentional.


Yes but angels tended to look male or female depending on which specific angel or type of angel you were talking about.


According to the explanation in the start of the chapter, the gender is only mentioned if the empyreal lord identifies as male or female. If they identify as both or neither then the gender is left off.


I'll admit some of the obediences are a little hardcore when you consider the logistics of achieving them over a long period of time... but that's what I find awesome as well.

Best bet is a heart to heart with your DM to discuss the concerns and get an agreed solution that is still restrictive, but also more achievable.

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