Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Distant Shores (PFRPG)

4.80/5 (based on 8 ratings)
Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Distant Shores (PFRPG)
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Beyond the Inner Sea!

It's time to leave familiar climes and tour the wider world! While most Pathfinder characters hail from the Inner Sea region, there are many other continents and societies out there just waiting to be explored. Within this book, you'll find detailed discussions of six major trade cities found on the distant corners of Golarion, complete with full-page maps and information on the resident cultures and traditions, adventure sites, new gods, magic and fighting styles, and more, plus rules to help you add local flavor and abilities to your characters. Face your destiny with a cyclopean myth-speaking, study the mysteries of the Iridian Fold, or hone your magic at the House of Green Mothers—there's a whole world at your fingertips!

Cities detailed in this book include:

  • Aelyosos, City of Tides and westernmost port in the archipelago of Iblydos, whose half-flooded streets are guarded by cyclops prophets and mighty hero-gods.
  • Anuli, City of New Beginnings and ancient gateway between the Inner Sea and southern Garund, where divine matriarchs rule with the mandate of Heaven.
  • Dhucharg, City of Conquest, whose militant hobgoblin generals won't be satisfied until their armies overrun all Tian Xia.
  • Radripal, City of Arches in the Impossible Kingdoms of Vudra, where priests travel the holy Matra River and rakshasas rule through fear and silver.
  • Segada, the fabled City of Keys in isolated Arcadia, whose mountaintop walls keep foreign colonists on the Grinding Coast from expanding into the continent's mysterious interior.
  • Ular Kel, Caravan City and Jewel of the Steppe, where Water Lords and nomadic horse tribes rule over massive trade routes that cut through the Grass Sea of central Casmaron.

Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Distant Shores is intended for use with the Pathfinder campaign setting, but can be easily adapted to any fantasy world.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-787-1

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

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4.80/5 (based on 8 ratings)

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Only problem is that there isn't more!

5/5

This material is super difficult to use.

Weird way to start a five star review, but there you have it. The reason why I say so is because this book has six great, wonderful, inspiring cities that I desperately want to adventure in, but nothing about their surroundings. So there are a few ways you can use this material: A DM that loves to worldbuild and has the time to do so, can flesh out the nation around the city, thus allowing a campaign to take place there. You could teleport-travel to the cities from afar, from areas better detailed, and then teleport back. You could run the campaign entirely inside the city -- perhaps something like transplanting Hell's Rebels to a revolution in the hobgoblin city of Dhucharg. You could have characters conventionally travel to these cities from nearby areas, but handwave/vague/skim the actual journeys. These are some ideas for how you could use these cities. But it is really important to be aware of this when considering buying this book: they are wonderfully fleshed out cities in the middle of a lot of blank white map. Personally, I don't take off a star because of that, but you might, so that's why I want to be really clear about that aspect of the product.

Having gotten that out of the way, let's move on to the content itself. Now, this is six cities, ten pages each. Each has a one-page top-down map for layout, and each has an amazingly evocative two-page wide panoramic shot for atmosphere. Additional graphics include 2-3 full-body NPC shots per city to show important personages or typical inhabitants. Each city has a settlement block (of course), and some new crunch/mechanics. The pseudo-Greek city (Aelyosos) has three new weapons, three new mythic path abilities and two new deities. The pseudo-African city (Anuli) has a new player race (Ganzi, which is to Chaotic as Aasimar is to Good or Tiefling is to Evil), seven new traits and one deity. And so on. The rest of the page count is rounded out by gazetteers of important locations, NPCs, customs and other such flavor material.

The six cities detailed are: Aelyosos (pseudo-Greek, with Mythic Adventures flavor), Anuli (pseudo-African, matriarchal), Dhucharg (pseudo-Japanese, hobgoblin-dominated military-flavored), Radripal (pseudo-Indian, with rakshasa intrigue), Segada (pseudo-Amerind, trade hub and entrance into Arcadia) and Ular Kel (pseudo-Mongol steppe city).

I'm biased because I'm a huge, huge, massive fan of all settings and environments that break away from the traditional Western European fantasy fare, so this product is tailor made for me. It's like getting to travel the world for twenty bucks. This is easily within my top five Pathfinder supplements, and if you're similarly interested in "off the beaten path" cultures and settings, I couldn't recommend Distant Shores more.

Having said that, if your campaign doesn't travel a lot, you're not likely to see a lot of use for this book. Some of the crunch can be brought abroad (like the ganzi player race, for instance) and maybe you want to make a character that has backstory in one of these cities. But this book is very situational. You'll want to think about whether you will have a use for it.

My rating is based on taking the book for what it is, and having a use for the niche it fills. As long as you have a campaign where travel is welcome, this book is a five star product.


A tantalizing glimpse of a wider world

5/5

Read my full review on Of Dice and Pen.

I always love seeing far-off lands of campaign settings described in greater detail. Not only does it give other real-world peoples some much-needed representation, it provides a welcome change of pace from the standard European-based cultures that make up the bulk of so many fantasy worlds. Distant Shores provides a tantalising look at the vast diversity that exists in Golarion. While I know that time and resources make it difficult to fully describe everywhere in the world, I hope that Distant Shores is only the first of several books that will one day explore numerous other regions of Golarion.


Takes you There!

5/5

A lot of the points have already been hit in previous reviews of this product, so this will be somewhat brief and hopefully to the point.

Each one of these locations feels a little bit 'clunky' at first read, but when reading for content, and weighing the possibilities of each one of these cities as a 'starting point' for a campaign or world setting, the true genius of each of their designs becomes readily apparent.

They work right now really well for home campaigns, even.

I can't wait to see a further expansion of Holomog and the nations around it, or Ducharg and how the hobgoblins keep from completely falling apart beyond the capital, or Arcadia and how this unknown continent has been both years ahead and behind of Avistan.

With the introduction of Iblydos Vudra, and Casmaron as viable settings as well, suddenly the world of Golarion feels both a slight bit smaller and a *lot* larger.

There are a few limitations to such an offering, but they do not detract from the value of this volume, and I would recommend it to anyone seeking to branch out from Tian Xia or the Inner Sea Region!


A nice taste of new lands

4/5

I really enjoyed this book providing information on never before explored corners of Golarion. It provides enough info to build a campaign arc in each location, and each is unique and interesting in its own way. Highly recommended for GMs wanting to spread out to something new for a bit.


A great sampler platter beyond the Inner Sea

5/5

Distant Shores whets the appetite for more, but gives 6 locations on 6 continents a write up, each chock full of adventure ideas and built in conflict. I particularly liked the evil Hobgoblin capitol city in Tian Xia, and Segada the gateway city to Arcadia. The first because it provides a worthy for for the already somewhat detailed Dragon Empires continent, and the later because it literally acts as a gate blocking the interior of the continent, making it a natural site for colonists and explorers looking to go where none have before (from the Inner Sea at least).

Radripal and Ular Kel build upon the scattered lore already seeded in the campaign setting for Vudra and Casmaron, while Aylyosos provides a setting in need of new mythic heroes as their home grown source of them hasn't proven up to the challenge lately.

I was intrigued by Anuli, the most Northern city of Southern Garund, but wasn't as grabbed by how to use a primarily stable city run by empyreal worshiping good and honest folk, especially when their primary foil is the necromantic nation of Geb, but Geb already has Nex set up as their primary allies. I can see adding Anuli to the conflict as a strategic ally for Nex, or safe haven retreating from Nex, but I had been hoping for something more exotic for Southern Garund, after the years of hints that the further south you travel, the weirder things get.

Overall though, this is a great supplement which stretches beyond the more detailed borders of the primary campaign setting.


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Paizo Employee Developer

11 people marked this as a favorite.
Odraude wrote:
Seconded for a native Arcadian city. We have enough Inner Sea cities. We need a glimpse into the life of the Arcadians, not the colonists.

I happen to agree.


awww yisss modaf-ing breadcrumbs!


Got awhile before October, at least this month is Paizo Con and Occult Adventures in July.

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Not sure what to make of it only being a select city in each region. Hope we at least have a larger map for each to show exactly where it is in relation to everything else even if that map isn't overly detailed.


I like the idea, but the book seems a tad... misnamed.


Maybe we will get a new player race for one of the regions.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Maybe we will get a new player race for one of the regions.

More likely: they'll name or reference a race, but we won't get actual stats for a while. :)


Your more then likely right but one can dream;)


Oooo, Southern Garund... can Crystal please write this section?

{makes baby goblin eyes} Pwease?


I've waited years for this. YES :)

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I've calmed down a bit, and while still hyped, I hope there's more than just a glimpse at a city in each region.
Tian Xia got a whole book (and while I crave more), this is promising about 2.5 continents worth of fluff.

And no Casmeron? Or is that under the Vudra entry?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Not gonna lie, hoping the Arcadian settlement is Valenhall.

Grand Lodge

I think there isn't enoug info to be a fair preview. Any place in the book is famous?


Well it will be awhile before we found out what all 6 cities will and were they are located.


Ashram wrote:
Not gonna lie, hoping the Arcadian settlement is Valenhall.

If it isn't Elesomare, I would not mind it being Valenhall.

Of course we appear to be in the minority with our request for Inner Sea colonies... I just think it would be more interesting with a settler/native dynamic going on.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Iblydos! Nuff said.

Ruyan.


Is Iblydos mentioned in the Inner Sea World Guide and if so what page?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I don't have a page number for you right now (bedtime), but check the section on other continents. There's no information there, though. :/

The most informative book on the subject thus far is Mythical Monsters Revisited, since so many of the monsters in there are Greek (and thus originate in Iblydos). Not a lot there, either...


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
Is Iblydos mentioned in the Inner Sea World Guide and if so what page?

the PDF for it is only 9.99, you should totally get it, very much worth it:-)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

I for one cannot wait for this book, my very first pathfinder book before the CRB even was Cities of Golarion, so i cannot wait! also if it sells well you can guarantee its not the last we'll see of the places mentioned, so i'm fine if it seems like a bit of a tease:-)

Scarab Sages

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
DeciusNero wrote:
And no Casmeron? Or is that under the Vudra entry?

The non-final product description says 6 global regions, and the blurb lists 4. Hoping Greater Casmaron (No Kaladay or Iobaria please, Give us the *REAL* Casmaron, we need the Padishah Empire of Kelesh like a gnome needs adventure!) makes one of the last two slots.


I have the Inner Sea World Guide and Mythical Monsters Revisited, I just don't remember anything about Iblydos. It has been a while since I read MMR.

I am really happy that we are finally getting something for Arcadia, Southern Garund, and Vudra.

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I have the Inner Sea World Guide and Mythical Monsters Revisited, I just don't remember anything about Iblydos. It has been a while since I read MMR.

Its not even mentioned in the "Beyond the Inner Sea" part of ISWG. From the PF Wiki article, I think its the big island in the quartet of islands between Jalmeray and Vudra on the rough world map (ISWG p204).


This sounded cool 'til I realized Sarusan is being skipped.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber

I know it says 6 regions, but I'd be fine with both Valenhall and a native city in Acadia.


How do you know that Sarusan will be skipped Milo?

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
archmagi1 wrote:
DeciusNero wrote:
And no Casmeron? Or is that under the Vudra entry?
The non-final product description says 6 global regions, and the blurb lists 4. Hoping Greater Casmaron (No Kaladay or Iobaria please, Give us the *REAL* Casmaron, we need the Padishah Empire of Kelesh like a gnome needs adventure!) makes one of the last two slots.

I'd definitely want more of the Padishah Empire and its various states, myself!

Paizo Employee Developer

9 people marked this as a favorite.
Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
Oooo, Southern Garund... can Crystal please write this section?

Funny you should request that...


Will there be any new monsters in this book?

Executive Editor

11 people marked this as a favorite.
DeciusNero wrote:


And no Casmeron? Or is that under the Vudra entry?

Oh, there's Casmaron in here. I can *personally* ensure that... ;)

Scarab Sages

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

*snark* watch it be Kaladay.

But seriously! Yay for Casmaron!


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Hear, Hear for Casmaron...

Though really, I'm reminded how little there is about Tian Xia still,
certainly the regions outside Minkai (and Jade Regent itenerary) need some more "meat",
...Personally, I think the "core" Tien countries need more differentiation and explanation of their dynamics,
and Nagajor was underwhelming, as it sounded really more like a federation of MANY countries more than one small simple country.

Dark Archive

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

Happy to hear the Empire getting some due! :D


Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?

Contributor

Awesome!

I can't wait to see this! :D

Paizo Employee Creative Director

26 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?

No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

Liberty's Edge

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Oh HELL yes. Even with the misnomer, and the low page count, and only getting one city instead of a treatment of the continent in general --

-- even so, oh HELL yes. Anything, and I mean ANYTHING outside the Inner sea is auto-buy!

Hopefully Distant Shores means a brand under which we can get more stuff. I would sell my soul for a Distant Shores Campaign Setting hardcover.

Hopefully this is also another piece of product synergy (like Occult Adventures) that heralds a Vudra AP after Hell's Rebels.

I'd rather take an Arcadia AP but I think that's off the table so Vudra would be the next best thing.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
James Jacobs wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?
No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

Seeing that I'm the guy that started the Arcadia thread two years ago, I'm very excited for this glimpse into non Inner Sea areas. I've always been sad that we rarely see RPGs delve into non-Anglo settings and it hurts even more when I cannot play my own ethnicity because I don't exist in most settings. I'm glad to finally get a taste of Arcadia before we get a lot more in the future.

I really should update my Arcadia thread now...

Grand Lodge Global Organized Play Coordinator

15 people marked this as a favorite.

Note to self for next PFS meeting......there might be some interesting adventuring locales for the Society to explore mid season 7 and beyond.....

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Michael Brock wrote:
Note to self for next PFS meeting......there might be some interesting adventuring locales for the Society to explore mid season 7 and beyond.....

!!!

Dark Archive

James Jacobs wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?
No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

THIS book is obviously worth it .... BUT what´s with the retroactive price increase from "Hell Unleashed" in june onward???

The Adventure Path Installments are obviously priced ok at a whopping 100 pages - but 23 dollars for 64 pages seems a bit much.

Will they increase page count or include a fold-out map or did the costs just explode?

The Pathfinder Tales novels are 50% more from june on too - but they are bigger now...

Community Manager

Marco Massoudi wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?
No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

THIS book is obviously worth it .... BUT what´s with the retroactive price increase from "Hell Unleashed" in june onward???

The Adventure Path Installments are obviously priced ok at a whopping 100 pages - but 23 dollars for 64 pages seems a bit much.

Will they increase page count or include a fold-out map or did the costs just explode?

The Pathfinder Tales novels are 50% more from june on too - but they are bigger now...

Read more about the pricing changes here.


I take it there will not be any new monsters, 0HD races, animals companions, and/or familiars in this book, correct?

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I wouldn't be surprised to see a monster or two. But the others are extremely unlikely. The big thing to remember is that this is a GM book, and a regional one at that.

They tend to save what you're looking for for the Player's Companions and such, although there are sort-of exceptions (androids and ghorans in the Inner Sea Bestiary, for example).


Aieee! I must have it!

Hopes James does get his act together for a new world map...


2 people marked this as a favorite.
James Jacobs wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?
No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

squeeing intensifies

I would like to take this opportunity to once again plead for, as ridiculous as it may sound, an inflatable ball map of Golarion. ^.^


4 people marked this as a favorite.

That would be so cool to have a globe(inflatable or not) of Golarion.

Dark Archive

I want a globe too!!!


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

The most awesome maps of a planet I've ever seen are the ones in Kèthíra: The World of Hârn. Everything from polities to climate to prevailing winds, currents, average annual rainfall... There must be a dozen of 'em. But then, the whole "Atlas Keléstia" project is amazing.

Dark Archive

James Jacobs wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Will there be maps for the region around each town/city or just the town/city itself?
No maps of the regions, but maps of the cities yes. And if I can get my act together... a more accurate map of the planet...

A more accurate map of Golarion would be great!

Maybe on the inside cover?

Thank you for making this book!

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