Nautical Heroes: Pregenerated Characters (PFRPG)

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Set Sail for Adventure with Eight Spectacular Sailors and Scallywags!

Nautical Heroes is our fifth set of 8 ready-to-play pregenerated 1st level characters created specifically to shine in a Pirate Adventure Path but ideal for any campaign venturing into the beautiful briny blue! Ideal for use as allies, cohorts, long-running NPCs, or replacement player characters, superstar author Neil Spicer brings you amazingly detailed and lushly developed characters including:

  • Aethan Calder, human swashbuckler
  • Cathran Tyvirian, half-elf cleric of the Goddess of Luck, Travelers, Stars, and Dreams
  • "Fairweather" Lumis Prindle, halfling sea singer bard
  • Miriel "Miri" Kalantee, elf sea witch
  • Ondirra Shirahz, undine flowing monk
  • Silvio Devaulis, human oracle of the Pirate Queen
  • Tarren Torrenato, human gunslinger buccaner
  • and last but not least, the deadly "Rookrost" Evon Bloodbeak, tengu swashbuckler rogue

Built according to Pathfinder RPG organized play specifications, using the 20-point-buy method and with scaling notes for 15-point builds, these characters are not just piles of statistics. Each one is as much about story as combat, with robust links built in to each other as well as the official Pirate Adventure Path, though every one easily stands on its own in any seagoing setting. The crunch for every character more than measures up to its incredible flavor text, though, and when it’s time to throw down in combat none of these Nautical Heroes will be stepping to the sidelines.

Each character includes a detailed backstory, roleplaying tips, special equipment, and links to the published campaign, including a campaign trait selection from the Pirate Adventure Path player’s guide. Each also lists detailed level advancement information for their first few levels, with further suggestions for developing the character's long-term mechanical build. We haven't even mentioned the fantastic character portraits courtesy of Bob Greyvenstein, or the included foldable paper miniatures for every character! Print and PDF versions of this product are available, and HeroLab portfolios will be available soon for every character!

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Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

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An Endzeitgeist.com review

5/5

This collection of pregens clocks in at 42 pages, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial,1 page ToC, 2 pages of introduction, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 33 pages of content, so let's take a look, shall we?

As always, we get the pregens presented herein as 20-point-buys, though advice for modification down to 15-point buy is provided for each character. The character itself is always presented not only with basic stats, but also a gorgeous artwork that represents the character alongside a nice in-character quote that helps get in the spirit of the character- layout-wise, the presentation here is great: Page 1 presents aforementioned artworks and quotes, whereas the second page covers the statblock of the respective character alongside the basics of physical descriptions etc., which continues on the third page. there, on can also find excessive advancement-advice for future levels of the respective builds. Finally, the 4th page also provides advice for the players to properly portray the respective characters. This decision may result in some blank spaces on some pages, yes, but it does make it very easy for the DM to print and hand out characters to the respective players.

So what are the characters herein? Well, for once, the first, right out of the box, would be a swashbuckler - yes, this pdf does have full-blown ACG-support and Aethan, the noble and romantic swashbuckler, makes for an interesting and fun leader for a respective group. Cathran, a beautiful cleric of Desna would be next up and yes, there would also be a halfling sea-singer and an elven sea witch, which, of course, also comes with a fully depicted familiar.

Now so far, the choices have been pretty much what you'd expect, but introducing an undine flowing monk into the fray imho is an interesting choice for those who prefer more uncommon races. Skull & Shackles is one of the APs wherein playing an evil character is pretty much supported and Evon Bloodbeak, the aptly-named tengu-rogue (swashbuckler) does cover this niche admirably - without overlapping with the ACG-swashbuckler regarding the build's focus, mind you.

Using age as a nice way to modify a character, a peg-legged oracle (with a smart focus on terrain-control and social skills) can be considered yet another interesting build. Of course, no Skull & Shackle-prgen collection would be complete without a gunslinger (buccaneer)...

The pdf's final page is devoted to foldable paper miniatures of the respective characters for use with battle maps.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are very good, though not perfect, with the most hilarious glitch being the language "polyglut." Layout adheres to Legendary Games' beautiful standard established for Skull & Shackles plug-ins and the copious artworks are beautiful indeed - with the exception of the undine, the artworks have, to my knowledge, not been used in other LG-supplements - and overall, are top-notch. The bookmarks suffer from a weird glitch where the first couple of them are missing and then, some do not read like character names, while others do. Rare rules and uncommon pieces of crunches have unobtrusively been hyperlinked to d20pfsrd.com.

Neil Spicer's nautical heroes are AWESOME as pregens. Why? because they not only get the theme right from the get-go, they also generally adhere to the same level of optimization - none of the pregens felt overpowered, with all sporting some definite roleplayer's choices, while at the same time remaining competent at what they set out to do.

The AP's focus on naval combat offered a further potential for problems - namely naval combat and siege weapons - instead of shoehorning a 1st level character into such a role, the pdf wisely opts out of this in favor of putting such decisions into player-hands - you won't find the one siege-guy herein, or the one navigator/look-out - instead, you have aptitudes, yes, but not ones that lock you into an option.

While the minor glitches here and there and the minor bookmark hiccup are unpleasant blemishes, overall, I still absolutely adore these pregens and their general balance. My final verdict will hence clock in at 4.5 stars, rounded up to 5 for the purpose of this platform.

Endzeitgeist out.


Top notch Characters Ready for use in Skull & Shackles

5/5

For an explanation of how I use the five star review method, see my entry on So What's the Riddle Like Anyway? HERE.

OK, first up a disclaimer: I wrote Tarin’s Crown with Matt Goodall for the Islands of Plunder series of adventures for Legendary Games. This was not a paid job, just an opportunity to get published and I have not worked on any other project for the company. I was part of a discussion group in which the Islands of Plunder were hashed out, so I have avoided reviewing all of those including Tarin’s Crown. I have had no connection with the creation of Nautical Heroes and have never worked with Neil Spicer. However, I felt it important that anyone reading this should know of the connections to Legendary Games that I have in order to judge for themselves the unbiased nature of this review.

This document is forty-two pages long, of which thirty-three pages are content and two are introductions to how the pre-generated characters were made and their reasons for use. Each of the eight characters get four pages each and there is a page of paper minis that can be printed out at the end of the content.

The introductions briefly explain why a group of pre-generated characters for use in the Skull & Shackles AP is worth having and the methods that have chosen to use in making them. The prime explanation is simple and straight forward enough: if the player’s want characters that have been built to have a good shot at survival while still being useful and rules compliant, why not use characters provided by the writers who Paizo enlists to write the APs in the first place? It’s a logical argument, but most of my players prefer taking their own character concepts and building characters on their own. So this isn’t a good reason for my group. Still I can see it having value with people who are either new to the game or really want a well-balanced character and are unsure of how to proceed.

My reason for wanting this supplement comes at the end of the explanation: GM NPCs. Having a group of complete characters designed for the flavour of a campaign and ready to use is a godsend, especially in a sandbox style game like Skull & Shackles has been designed to be. Any GM worth his salt will tell you that NPC design is the hardest and most time consuming feature of the hobby. Having eight characters that allow you to add colour and excitement to simple ship encounters makes it flow much more easily.

The characters are created using the 20-point Character buy creation method for determining attributes, so they are legal for use in the Pathfinder Society campaign. If you prefer the characters to be built to the standard 15-point buy system, suggestions for altering are given with each character’s entry so they can be modified correctly swiftly. They also each include a Campaign Trait from the Skull & Shackles Player’s Guide built into their character’s background to better connect them to the campaign and the initial adventure, The Wormwood Mutiny. Only Ship’s Surgeon and Dockside Brawler are not covered by the characters presented.

The character pages are all presented in the same way. The first page has the character’s name, a nice piece of art showing the character, and a quote of theirs to help establish the character in the reader’s mind. The following two pages cover their first level stats, background, personality, and recommendations for advancement (detailed up to fourth level with recommendations for continual advancement). The fourth and final page of each entry contains role-playing notes, rules for shifting from a 20-point buy to a 15-point buy, and any notes on familiars or animal companions if any exist for that character.

I love the characters backgrounds and how Neil has woven the alignments, traits, classes, races, and histories into whole characters with solid reasons to be involved with the campaign. Each is intriguing and will be invaluable for fleshing out crews of rival ships or barroom brawls. For players these notes and information simply hand them completed characters. Any tweaking and adjustments should be fairly simple and straight forward. They have a wide array of race/class ideas here, from the somewhat expected (human swashbuckler, half-elf cleric, halfling bard) to the a little different (elf sea-witch, one-legged human oracle, human gunslinger (buccaneer)) to the very unique (evil tengu rogue (swashbuckler) and undine monk (!)).

My only criticism of this section is the female art. While some cheesecake art is fine, all cheesecake art is outdated and bothersome. I have no issue looking at scantily clad attractive females with noticeable cleavage, but it can be off-putting for many female players. I don’t suggest getting rid of the eye-candy, but mixing in a few practically dressed women would go a long way to broadening the audience.

The final page of content is the Paper Minis. These are simply the full body portraits of the characters shrunk down and placed on mini templates for printing and construction. A very useful and thoughtful addition for personalizing the characters for those of us who use minis.

Final Thoughts: Overall this is an excellent product. If your players are having trouble developing a character for a pirate campaign or if you are a player looking for a shortcut, this supplement is for you. As NPC rivals, allies, or even opponents, having richly detailed and rule legal characters these eight entries will find great use in my campaign. So even if your players create their own characters, as a GM you should consider the value of extra NPCs and seriously think about this product. My only criticism is of the female art, and that really only docks a half-point off the total in my opinion. That would give this supplement a final score of 4.5 stars, but I’ll round up as the art does not detract from the overall usefulness. 5 out of 5 stars.


15...err..8 men on a Dead Man's Chest...

5/5

Nautical Heroes continues Legendary Game's awesome series of pre-generated characters for the Paizo Adventure Path series. Ably filling the role of PC, NPC, or Quickie Replacement Character, each comes nicely illustrated with backstory and levelling suggestions in addition to the regular character stats. Characters range from a bloodthirsty Tengu rogue to an Undine Monk. You'll want to play them all. Check it out.


Webstore Gninja Minion

PDF now available!


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Just purchased and the download link isn't working. Do I report this to Customer Service or Website Feedback?

Dark Archive

Ywah having the same problem here.

Webstore Gninja Minion

Poking things. Please try again!


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Thanks Liz! Works great now! :)

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Thanks for the purchases and the pokes! Let us know how you like the latest in the "Heroes" series!

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32

Wouldn't a priest of Desna (Goddess of Luck, Travelers, Stars, and Dreams) have a problem with Piracy?

Pirates not only don't help travelers, they are usually harming them.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

2 people marked this as a favorite.

You should read the character backgrounds. It's not intended that each and every one of these characters makes a choice to become a full-fledged pirate. Some of them are good-natured, but chaotic, which puts them at odds with outside entities trying to restrict their freedom. Before they get to the point where they can fully live by their own principles, however, sometimes they've got to endure being press-ganged...which is a considerable portion of the early part of the assumed Pirate AP for which Nautical Heroes is written.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Hmmm...this has been out for a couple of weeks now, but no reviews. Anyone have time to post up some feedback? I'm working on Metal Gods right now and if there's anything folks would like to share or propose about the direction of these pregen products, now's the time to let your voice be heard (by the author, that is).


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Neil Spicer wrote:
Hmmm...this has been out for a couple of weeks now, but no reviews. Anyone have time to post up some feedback? I'm working on Metal Gods right now and if there's anything folks would like to share or propose about the direction of these pregen products, now's the time to let your voice be heard (by the author, that is).

I've been considering writing a review and putting in the disclaimer about writing Tarin's Crown with Matt at the front. That way people know I haven't had anything to do with this project but was involved with developing some of the pirate stuff. They can judge whether to take my review at face value or not then.

Is that kosher?

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

I have no objection to it. But then, I'm mostly certainly biased. ;)

I also assume Endy will eventually get around to it. He's got a big list of reviews to work through, though.


I can't really think of anything i'd change. If you really wanted to beat yourself up maybe do multiple avenues of advancement, but it's a really great product as is.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Thanks for the review, DB, and go for it Feros!


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Reviewed!

Now, back to RPG Superstar voting. I'm getting behind...

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Thanks for the review, Feros.

Feedback on the Art:

Spoiler:

I'll take your input on the art to heart, and see what we can do about setting some better guidelines for our artists wherever and whenever we can (though it may be a little late on the next series). That said, sometimes the cheesecake art is a vital, eye-catching component for marketing purposes, particularly for cover art which is meant to get the viewer to pause and look over the product description. Since we use a small rogue's gallery mash-up of the character illustrations as our cover art on these products, that's what we have to select from.

With regards to the more scantily-clad female illustrations in this product, two of them were chosen to be depicted that way, because of their backgrounds. The elven sea witch is a very sensual, seductive character based both on her personality and her religious faith, while the undine monk is frequently in the water and her attire is very much in line with descriptions of her species from the Advanced Race Guide. So, we tried to make sure we stayed true to those characterizations. The third female character is the traveling, half-elven priestess, and she admittedly came out a bit more sexualized than I'd envisioned...but not egregiously so. Of the three female characters, we chose her for the cover art.

Also, good luck on that next Champion voter tag. :)


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Neil Spicer wrote:

Thanks for the review, Feros.

Feedback on the Art:
** spoiler omitted **

Also, good luck on that next Champion voter tag. :)

You are welcome! And thanks for the encouragement!

Response to Art Feedback

Spoiler:
Oh I get it and fully understand. That is why I said that it wasn't really a problem or that sexy pics aren't that bad. It is the mass of them to the exclusion of all else that bothers me. And you seem to agree with that, so all is cool! :)

Dark Archive

Still no catfolk (sigh)

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

Kevin Mack wrote:
Still no catfolk (sigh)

Take heart, Kevin. I've not forgotten you. Just looking for the right AP to introduce one. Right now, I'm most likely to include a catfolk in the following AP plug-ins for pregen PCs:

Spoiler:

Serpent's Skull
Reign of Winter
Mummy's Mask
Legacy of Fire

I may or may not be actively working on a set for such a product. ;)

Dark Archive

Thats great to hear


Reviewed first on endzeitgeist.com, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and d20pfsrd.com's shop.

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