Pathfinder Tales: Hellknight

***** (based on 7 ratings)

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Devils in Her Blood

The Hellknights are a brutal organization of warriors and spellcasters dedicated to maintaining law and order at any cost. For devil-blooded Jheraal, a veteran Hellknight investigator, even the harshest methods are justified if it means building a better world for her daughter. Yet things get personal when a serial killer starts targeting hellspawn like Jheraal and her child, somehow magically removing their hearts and trapping the victims in a state halfway between life and death. With other Hellknights implicated in the crime, Jheraal has no choice but to join forces with a noble paladin and a dangerously cunning diabolist to defeat an ancient enemy for whom even death is no deterrent.

From celebrated dark fantasy author Liane Merciel comes an adventure of love, murder, and grudges from beyond the grave, set in the award-winning world of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.

432-page trade paperback
ISBN-13: 978-0-76537-548-3

Hellknight is also available as a digital edition on the following sites:

Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Sanctioned Content
Hellknight is sanctioned for use in Pathfinder Society Roleplaying Guild.

Download the Chronicle sheet — (410 kb zip/PDF)

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

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***** (based on 7 ratings)

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I fought the law, and, the law won!

*****

What do you get when you forge a party comprising a LG paladin, a LN Hellknight, and a LE diabolist? Three different interpretations of the power of Law. More importantly, you get a rollicking good time w/ great characters, villains, dialogue, and a strong vote for best supporting character (that would be the diabolist's companion, Vhaeros) in a PF book.

Kudos on making us believe a star-crossed romance between the paladin and the diabolist could, maybe, possibly, work out. Some of the best dialogue in the book came from Velenne, in fact.

Editing was very good; not a lot of noticeable errors at all.

I would love a sequel to this book, w/ all 3 characters working together again (and Vhaeros makes 4). Also, a shout out to those in the acknowledgments who contributed towards the final product; thank you as well!


*****


A real page turner

****( )

I thought the action in this one was excellent. The character interactions between the paladin and his companions were interesting - but sometimes over the top. Some of the Hellknight principles and the eventual final setting were a bit Dragonlance-ish, but didn't detract from the flow of the book.


A great and captivating story!

*****

My only quibble is the prologue. In my opinion, it gave away too much information, spoiling the whole murder mystery plot. If you enjoy a little mystery and haven't started reading yet, I would recommend skipping the prologue.


Undead Hellknights. 'nuff said.

*****

A dark story of unlikely romance, murder, and an evil so heinous it was disavowed by Cheliax AND the Hellknight orders. Great stuff!


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Paizo Employee Community & Digital Content Director

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Announced for April! Cover image and description are final.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

This sounds fantastic. :)

I presume it's set in Cheliax, somewhere?

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Awesome!

Looking forward to this. ^_^

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Yes please!
Don't know how recent, but I'm glad to see nook support.

Contributor

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Steve Geddes wrote:
I presume it's set in Cheliax, somewhere?

Yes indeed. Most of the story is set in Westcrown.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Cool, thanks. I really enjoyed your previous PF Tales novels - can't wait for this one. :)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Sounds interesting.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber

Oooh. Shiny!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber

Yet another Paizo purchase I must make :)

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

With a single word title of such an iconic part of the Pathfinder Canon, and such a great writer on deck, my expectations are Sky High.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

A hellknight, a diabolist, and a paladin. Quite a team, that. Looking forward to it.

Contributor

9 people marked this as a favorite.
Ed Reppert wrote:
A hellknight, a diabolist, and a paladin. Quite a team, that.

One of the things I wanted to do in this book was pose one possible answer to the age-old question of "can a paladin team up with a known evildoer?" Like, forget about the conceal alignment or lie-to-the-paladin tricks. What happens if the evildoer is just straight-up "pleased to meet you, hope you guessed my name"?

Posing the question made me laugh, anyway, which is 99.5% of what makes these stories fun for me. ;)


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Ah, I love Westcrown! The story is intriguing as well.


Just saw this. Dotting for later but I'm interested.

Sovereign Court

Soon.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber; Starfinder Superscriber

No Print/PDF bundle?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
DragoDorn wrote:
No Print/PDF bundle?

Haven't been since ~June 2015 when distribution shifted to Tor books. Digital versions are available through most e-book channels.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber
Liane Merciel wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
A hellknight, a diabolist, and a paladin. Quite a team, that.

One of the things I wanted to do in this book was pose one possible answer to the age-old question of "can a paladin team up with a known evildoer?" Like, forget about the conceal alignment or lie-to-the-paladin tricks. What happens if the evildoer is just straight-up "pleased to meet you, hope you guessed my name"?

Posing the question made me laugh, anyway, which is 99.5% of what makes these stories fun for me. ;)

Will we also learn what happens when the hellknight, diabolist, and paladin walk into a bar?

Silver Crusade

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

The paladin falls, duh.

Contributor

6 people marked this as a favorite.
Kajehase wrote:
Liane Merciel wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
A hellknight, a diabolist, and a paladin. Quite a team, that.

One of the things I wanted to do in this book was pose one possible answer to the age-old question of "can a paladin team up with a known evildoer?" Like, forget about the conceal alignment or lie-to-the-paladin tricks. What happens if the evildoer is just straight-up "pleased to meet you, hope you guessed my name"?

Posing the question made me laugh, anyway, which is 99.5% of what makes these stories fun for me. ;)

Will we also learn what happens when the hellknight, diabolist, and paladin walk into a bar?

Two out of the three, anyway.

The diabolist doesn't really do bars. Unless they're the kind of bars that have $15 cocktails with no fewer than three unpronounceable ingredients per drink. Because that right there, that is a Lawful Evil kind of bar.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
AJCarrington wrote:
DragoDorn wrote:
No Print/PDF bundle?
Haven't been since ~June 2015 when distribution shifted to Tor books. Digital versions are available through most e-book channels.

Also don't like how Tor upped the price on the books by 50%

RPG Superstar 2015 Top 8

A great and captivating story!

My only quibble is the prologue. In my opinion, it gave away too much information, spoiling the whole murder mystery plot.

If you enjoy a little mystery and haven't started reading yet, I would recommend skipping the prologue.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I'm wondering, what is the time frame of this book? Like, how long from start to finish in story line? One month, one year or another amount of time?

Contributor

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Chris Ballard wrote:
I'm wondering, what is the time frame of this book? Like, how long from start to finish in story line? One month, one year or another amount of time?

It's a single summer, iirc about ten weeks from start to finish, not counting the epilogue.

There are, or should be, enough context clues to figure out the exact number of weeks, but it's been a couple of years since I wrote the thing so I wouldn't want to try blind guessing it now.

Anyway, one summer. :)

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I e only recently started reading the book, so there's plenty more to enjoy in the book. So far, so good.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber

Wow, just read this today and loved it. I had one question, though, about the very cool "dog", Vhaeros.

Was that a unique fiend created for the book, or is he (?) an actual, canon-blessed (heh heh) fiend? I couldn't figure out what type of devil Vhaeros was supposed to be. Regardless, there are some great scenes w/ him. Trying to get the children to pet him in Westcrown...twisted fun! And then his last scene (no spoilers)...


BenS wrote:

Wow, just read this today and loved it. I had one question, though, about the very cool "dog", Vhaeros.

Was that a unique fiend created for the book, or is he (?) an actual, canon-blessed (heh heh) fiend? I couldn't figure out what type of devil Vhaeros was supposed to be. Regardless, there are some great scenes w/ him. Trying to get the children to pet him in Westcrown...twisted fun! And then his last scene (no spoilers)...

I think he's an Eidolon.

Scarab Sages

Yeah, an infernal eidolon seems likely, but only Liane Merciel knows for sure.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber

I appreciate the feedback, but his master is not a summoner, but a diabolist. I admit I haven't looked at that class lately, but I don't believe they have access to eidolons.

I'm starting to lean towards "unique fiend created by the author for plot purposes". Regardless, he was a cool addition to a great book.


BenS wrote:

I appreciate the feedback, but his master is not a summoner, but a diabolist. I admit I haven't looked at that class lately, but I don't believe they have access to eidolons.

I'm starting to lean towards "unique fiend created by the author for plot purposes". Regardless, he was a cool addition to a great book.

The diabolist in the book might not have taken levels in the Diabolist PrC.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber
Fabius Maximus wrote:
BenS wrote:

I appreciate the feedback, but his master is not a summoner, but a diabolist. I admit I haven't looked at that class lately, but I don't believe they have access to eidolons.

I'm starting to lean towards "unique fiend created by the author for plot purposes". Regardless, he was a cool addition to a great book.

The diabolist in the book might not have taken levels in the Diabolist PrC.

I really don't think he can be an eidolon. There are large swathes of the book in which he's in a completely different part of the city on his own and acting independently from his "master". I'm no expert, but I believe eidolons can't be too far away from their masters.


There's nothing to suggest that a summoner COULDN'T take Diabolist. At least according to my reading...


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
BenS wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
BenS wrote:

I appreciate the feedback, but his master is not a summoner, but a diabolist. I admit I haven't looked at that class lately, but I don't believe they have access to eidolons.

I'm starting to lean towards "unique fiend created by the author for plot purposes". Regardless, he was a cool addition to a great book.

The diabolist in the book might not have taken levels in the Diabolist PrC.
I really don't think he can be an eidolon. There are large swathes of the book in which he's in a completely different part of the city on his own and acting independently from his "master". I'm no expert, but I believe eidolons can't be too far away from their masters.

The Unfetter spell would let an eidolon operate at any distance away from its summoner, but the master in this case has access to powerful sorcerer/wizard spells that are not on the summoner spell list. She is definitely a sorcerer or wizard and not a summoner.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
David knott 242 wrote:
BenS wrote:
Fabius Maximus wrote:
BenS wrote:

I appreciate the feedback, but his master is not a summoner, but a diabolist. I admit I haven't looked at that class lately, but I don't believe they have access to eidolons.

I'm starting to lean towards "unique fiend created by the author for plot purposes". Regardless, he was a cool addition to a great book.

The diabolist in the book might not have taken levels in the Diabolist PrC.
I really don't think he can be an eidolon. There are large swathes of the book in which he's in a completely different part of the city on his own and acting independently from his "master". I'm no expert, but I believe eidolons can't be too far away from their masters.

The Unfetter spell would let an eidolon operate at any distance away from its summoner, but the master in this case has access to powerful sorcerer/wizard spells that are not on the summoner spell list. She is definitely a sorcerer or wizard and not a summoner.

Don't forget that Summoners and their Eidolons have that matching rune on their foreheads.

Silver Crusade

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Aaaand since fiction can't use the OGL material and are therefore not bound by it, looking for close representation of game rules in fiction is somewhat futile.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Aaaand since fiction can't use the OGL material and are therefore not bound by it, looking for close representation of game rules in fiction is somewhat futile.

*nods*

Until it's recursive which is why we have stats for House Drakes :3

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