Pathfinder Player Companion: Arcane Anthology (PFRPG)

****( ) (based on 4 ratings)
Pathfinder Player Companion: Arcane Anthology (PFRPG)

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Throw the Book at Them!

If knowledge is power, then the eldritch secrets presented in Pathfinder Player Companion: Arcane Anthology represent significant sources of potential might! From magus and wizard spellbooks to alchemist formula books to mystical options for bards, bloodragers, sorcerers, and witches, this volume presents tomes of spells and uncanny knowledge written and recorded by Golarion's mightiest arcane casters. In addition to new spells and secrets of spell preparation found in spellbooks such as the collected Analects of Aroden, the Wisdom of Jatembe, and the Runes of Wealth, this Player Companion also includes archetypes, feats, and character options for PCs of nearly every character class. Inside this book, you'll find:

  • Rules for copying preparation rituals into new spellbooks, and ways for every spellcaster to use such rituals through prayer books and meditation books.
  • Archetypes for spellcasting traditions inspired by the fallen god Aroden, the legendary Old-Mage Jatembe, and a nearly forgotten runelord of greed.
  • Dozens of spells, ranging from handy low-level options such as expeditious construction and heckle to the powerful 9th-level mass Last Azlanti's defending sword.
  • New traits and character options, including alchemist discoveries known as anointings that transmute the inherent properties of any weapon or suit of armor.
  • New feats, including some inspired by the Ten Magic Warriors of Mwangi legend that allow characters to bond with ritual masks to hide their names and identities and enhance their spells' power.

This Pathfinder Player Companion is intended for use with the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game and the Pathfinder campaign setting, but can easily be incorporated into any fantasy world.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-814-4

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Player Companion Subscription.

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****( ) (based on 4 ratings)

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Nice concept, meh execution

***( )( )

I like that they tried to give some meat to the idea of books of magic qua books, but didn't think any of the actual results were amazing. GMs can probably get some use out of the premade spell books to spice up treasure they give the party, if that's what you want. I found the spells pretty mediocre to bad. Some (e.g. Celestial Healing) have rightly been aggressively mocked throughout the forums. A couple of the archetypes are interesting ideas, but as usual for the large majority of Paizo archetypes they aren't actually worth taking.

I will, however, offer some moderate praise for the Runes of Wealth section. I did enjoy that one.

If you're looking for a good magic supplement and are budget constrained, try the Magic Tactics Toolbox instead.


Loved it!

*****

Plenty of goodies for bards--and that is my admitted bias--including an archetype reminiscent of the Arcane Archer but with a style all its own. There is also a Masterpiece than partially satisfies the frustrating lack of Spell Kenning for Bards.
Force Sword may be the spell you were looking for if you did not want to spend money on the ghost touch property. I love it--and because of the above mentioned Masterpiece, Bards can use it!
That's not even the tip of the ice berg. If you are fan of the arcane, you should have plenty of reasons to pick this up.
If you're looking for anything Occult, this isn't the place--Arcane Anthology is very aptly named.


Eh...

**( )( )( )

So, I was kind of hoping that this would be something *other* than just another bunch of spells. Yeah, a lot of them are cool (and if you're just looking for a bunch of spells, more power to ya'), but frankly, there's nothing all that special here.

Maybe I'm being a buzzkill, but the fluff was lacking, and I'd been hoping it would've focused on alternate casting, magical traditions, or (long shot I know) maybe some content for the Occult classes (specifically, the seriously lacking Kineticist). Again, while for the price, the spells weren't horrible, but after stuff like the Weapon Master's Handbook, and the Ranged/Melee/Dirty Trick handbooks, this is seriously weak-sauce.


Slick rules content matched with tightly-themed fluff

*****

I feel that the more recent Player Companions have been hit or miss. Arcane Anthology is one of the hits.

Most of the new spells are ones I want to use. I dig the new rules for copying preparation rituals--they're not too overpowered and generally well-balanced for the cost, plus they lend much-needed flavor to what would otherwise just be a list of spells. The new prayer and meditation book rules also give options for more scholarly-minded casters who are members of classes that don't traditionally use spellbooks.

I especially like the Magaambya content--all of it. The new bloodrager and arcanist archetypes are on point.

All in all, a good marriage of rules content with interesting setting information, perfectly bundled.


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Paizo Employee Community & Digital Content Director

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Announced! Product image and description are mocked up, and subject to change.


Neat.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

Somewhat interested.


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

Sounds pretty cool!


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Count me as VERY interested. Bards get nice things from this? SOLD.

Any chance of a really cool masterpiece or two?


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Until proven otherwise I'm going to fantasize that "archetypes, feats, and character options for PCs of any character class." includes a proper spellcasting archetype for the Rogue... Even though I'm sure it doesn't. :p


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I'll be even more ambitious with my fantasizing: I am hoping to see something that lets characters of any class cast spells.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Selkie wrote:
Until proven otherwise I'm going to fantasize that "archetypes, feats, and character options for PCs of any character class." includes a proper spellcasting archetype for the Rogue... Even though I'm sure it doesn't. :p

A 'Gray Mouser' class that combines a bit of arcana with rogue traits, could be fun.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

I want to see an entire section devoted to anti-caster options for full BAB martials.

Grand Lodge RPG Superstar 2014 Top 4, RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Sounds interesting!


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Arachnofiend wrote:
I want to see an entire section devoted to anti-caster options for full BAB martials.

Except this is Arcane Anthology, not Anti-Arcane Anthology...so, I don't believe this book will have any of that.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I'd love to see more arcane discoveries.


10 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Ooh. I hope it has Bloodrager versions on non-CRB Sorcerer bloodlines. That would be great.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
Ooh. I hope it has Bloodrager versions on non-CRB Sorcerer bloodlines. That would be great.

Definitely agreed. I love bloodragers but the relative lack of bloodlines makes me sad...if this thing is going to add more bloodrager bloodlines, might be a must-buy for me.

Not that that I wouldn't appreciate more sorcerer bloodlines either...


I like the sound of this!


I hope their is an archetype that works as a "wild mage" or "chaos mage" theme.....someone who can achieve feats of spellcasting that should not be possible for their level....


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
nighttree wrote:
I hope their is an archetype that works as a "wild mage" or "chaos mage" theme.....someone who can achieve feats of spellcasting that should not be possible for their level....

Or horribly fail altogether...or blast themselves/party in the process.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Irnk, Dead-Eye's Prodigal wrote:
Ooh. I hope it has Bloodrager versions on non-CRB Sorcerer bloodlines. That would be great.

Gods, yes. I can think of 4-5 bloodlines easily that I'd like to see detailed that way. Accursed and Boreal stick right out as the main ones; I'd like to be able to use them to fight like a night hag or a frost giant, respectively.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Valantrix1 wrote:
I'd love to see more arcane discoveries.

Or how about a way to gain access to the existing arcane discoveries without actually being a wizard -- or any other specific class?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

How about a nice Artificer Archtype of the Alchemist.


6 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

How about a way to give Spell Kenning to Bards who should have had it in the first place?! I would be willing to give up Dirge of Doom and Inspire Greatness for Spell Kenning I & II, myself. It sure would be nice to swap out features like that.
How are Skalds literate enough or cosmopolitan enough to do that?! Makes no sense to me.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber

It'd be nice to see a way to use a feat to boost the effective class level for the effect of Arcane Bonds; I feel that there are a number of cool potential builds, particularly with Arcane Trickster, that would work really well with the Bonded Wizard.

Sort of an item bond version of Boon Companion.


Pathfinder Starfinder Society Roleplaying Guild Subscriber
Selkie wrote:

Until proven otherwise I'm going to fantasize that "archetypes, feats, and character options for PCs of any character class." includes a proper spellcasting archetype for the Rogue... Even though I'm sure it doesn't. :p

Sounds great, but I imagine it would exchange spellcasting for sneak attack. With the feats from dirty tactics toolbox though a reduced progression could be doable though.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

So much desire for cross-classing abilities. Can't some classes just have some goodies only for themselves?


A feat that gives cantrips to "half" casters (or just bloodragers given this is Arcane focused).

David knott 242 wrote:

I'll be even more ambitious with my fantasizing: I am hoping to see something that lets characters of any class cast spells.

Yeah, actual casting, not SLAs.

3.5's Magical Training feat which gave actual level 0 casting (and could be combed into Precurious Apprentice, giving you one level 2 slot) was interesting.

Hidden Talent in psionics gave you a 1st level power and enough PP to use it a few times a day. Was pretty nice and fairly balanced.


I would be interested in seeing some of the new spellbooks that are there.

Liberty's Edge

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

An archetype or feat that changes Bard casting from Cha-based to Int-based would be appreciated.


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

I'd love a variant summoner that can summon multiple eidolons, like in Final Fantasy.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I'd love to see a book that teaches how to make "warjacks"! ;-)


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Evan Tarlton wrote:
I'd love a variant summoner that can summon multiple eidolons, like in Final Fantasy.

Doesn't the Broodmaster archetype cover that?

Dark Archive

Just a couple of thing I'd like to see...
- More blaster spells -- like lesser orb of...
- An arcane version of produce flame - more like x rounds of throwing magic missiles
- An arcane version of flame blade - this a staff of arcane energy but still does touch attacks
- A bloodline that increases BAB
- Lower level staffs - a cost of 750gp or 2 prestige point
- Swap spell staffs
- When gaining a bloodline spell. Instead of receiving the default bloodline spell you can gain a spell from any other spell list depending on the linked attribute to class skill of bloodline
- A raw spellcasting archetype with out class abilities but more spellcasting per day
- Spells, feats or items that make better use of these class abilities that are almost obsolete at higher levels
-- like making the 1st level wizard abilities move actions instead of standard actions then later free actions.
-- Or spending X2 1st level class abilities to regain X level spell slot
-- 3.5 spells ting prodigy
-- a feat to take damage to regain spell stots
-- a feat to use your spell casting attribute instead of dex or str for spells that require attack rolls


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-I miss the Quest spells of 2nd edition. Things that are only allowed because of DM Fiat because they are so powerful. How about 10th level spells?
-A spellcasting version of Weapon Focus/Specialization?
-A feat to improve metamagic feats?
-Magical Ceremonies that can have earth-shattering concequences?
-I second the Wild Mage! WITH The Wild Surge random effect table!
-How about Cantrip magic items?
-Use/day magic weapons? (+2 bonus 3/day, Vorpral 1/day, etc?)
-Comperable spells for overused spells, a la Shocking Grasp?
A feat to treat any one/two spell(s) like it's on your spell list!


Something like Eternal Wands: X uses a day for any low level spell you want.


Pathfinder Maps, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Thirding the chaos mage idea! A cleric who has to take the chaos domain but gets a bunch of chaos powers (including a table of random results) instead of their second domain would be pretty cool too.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
David knott 242 wrote:
Evan Tarlton wrote:
I'd love a variant summoner that can summon multiple eidolons, like in Final Fantasy.

Doesn't the Broodmaster archetype cover that?

No. That gives you multiple eidolons at all times. I'm thinking more like Pokémon, ie. different eidolons which can be swapped out as the situation (and the character's level) allows.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

"Dual School Spells" were introduced at the very end of 3.5's reign. They were only seen in a few of WotC's splatbooks ... but they were genius spells in design and gave you multiple utility options (including early dismissal of the spell for a quick alternate benefit).

All Pathfinder spells are Single School Spells. Going the Dual Route will open-up a vast array of new spell options for the arcane spellcaster.


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

Never liked the duel school concept and hope to never see them again.


Pathfinder Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Evan Tarlton wrote:
David knott 242 wrote:
Evan Tarlton wrote:
I'd love a variant summoner that can summon multiple eidolons, like in Final Fantasy.

Doesn't the Broodmaster archetype cover that?

No. That gives you multiple eidolons at all times. I'm thinking more like Pokémon, ie. different eidolons which can be swapped out as the situation (and the character's level) allows.

Ah -- I think I have seen that in some 3rd party products, but definitely nothing from Paizo.

The closest thing Paizo has done to that is the Morphic Savant archetype, which basically gives you a single eidolon for which you can change the base form once per day (and you can select different evolutions for each base form).

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

These items might already be in pfs I just don't recall if they are already there.
-- a mundane action using your spell craft to help spell casting - example ( using a move action - draw a chalk circle around yourself and make a spellcraft check to gain a bonus to caster level.)
-- Something like the rituals from 4th ED. This was the ability to produce spell effects during downtime but to use time instead of spending spell slots. (Example, when interrogating the captured NPC rather than spending a spell slot to cast zone of truth spends 30 minutes and some inexpensive components to create the spell effect)


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Souphin has some nice ideas above, I especially like the idea of the chalk circle.

That said, arcane casters are very powerful in Pathfinder..

A feat to add a spell or two (one of your highest level, or two others) to your spell list could be awesome, but could also create opportunities for huge abuse.

Some kinda Stamina or Burn system for casters could be fun, as could the "Sudden X" line of metamagic feats which allow you to apply X feat to a spell once a day without preparing it ahead of time.

I played Tears of Bitter Manor with an Arcanist who owned a copy of the Book of Harms. Being able to sudden maximise a spell once a day (even if I did take damage when doing it) was awesomely useful. I'll be interested in the spell books which are going to be included.

A Burn or Stamina system could allow you to raise Caster Level in return for fatigue (and Nonlethal damage). That'd be great.

Loads more low level magic items will be great too. I don't see why half or more of the items in Player Companions are hugely expensive items which will hardly ever see the light of play.

Magic item restrictions would be great, and could be used to bring the price down. It's a +2 Shortsword, but only when you're in dim light. If someone casts daylight it turns to a -1 Shortsword!!

Dark Archive

Apocryphile wrote:
Loads more low level magic items will be great too. I don't see why half or more of the items in Player Companions are hugely expensive items which will hardly ever see the light of play.

I totally agree, especially in PFS where players cap at around 11th level

Quote:


Magic item restrictions would be great, and could be used to bring the price down. It's a +2 Shortsword, but only when you're in dim light. If someone casts daylight it turns to a -1 Shortsword!!

I see many feats that are very situational and I think if these limitations could be set on magical items then this could drive down the cost. Especially if these items had cost that only spell casters could provide, like how clerics can spend uses of channel energy on certain items to create an effect. An arcane character can spend class abilities or arcane spells to create other effects.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I would still like to see Spell Kenning be a Bard option because it sounds more Bardic than Skaldic! Since when are those backwoods bumpkins hobnobbing it with Clerics and Wizards?! Nah, it should have been a Bard-thing! The cosmopolitan scholars are more likely to know that than their redneck cousins.

Paizo Employee Community & Digital Content Director

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Updated with final cover image and description!


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

...is it bad that expeditious construction is the bit that tempts me the most?


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More 'Power Component' options would be wonderful. Our groups use them all the time as they are extremely cost-effective tools for occasional and specific use of certain magic spells.

Besides, the ones we currently have in Pathfinder are wonderfully creative in their flavor text and thematic concept. Unforunately, there's only a small handful of core spells they apply to ...


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mass Last Azlanti's defending sword.

Okay officially my favorite named spell of 2015. :)


Hey! This product doesn't have "And much, much more!" :<


They probably ran out of the second much.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

"10 magic warriors who bond with their masks to hide their identities and increase their spellcasting powers"

Is anyone else thinking that some of the 10 apprentices of Old Mage Jatembe or their decendants are actually the Decemvirate of the Pathfinder Society?

Either that or they use their rituals for their decemvirate helms...


1 person marked this as a favorite.

It seems that either that, or the Decemvirate are essentially a case of convergent magical research. Sort of the way blades in Pathfinder at least have some affinity for grabbing and binding souls. As evidenced by things like Soul Drinker, Final Blades, or the Field of Ten Thousand Swords.

It would make sense if masks magically are associated with protecting your identity.

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