Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Wilderness

3.00/5 (based on 59 ratings)
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Wilderness

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Wild, untamed lands hold a wealth of mystery and danger, providing the perfect backdrop for heroic adventure. Whether adventurers are climbing mountains in search of a dragon's lair, carving their way through the jungle, or seeking a long-lost holy city covered by desert sands, Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Wilderness gives them the tools to survive the wilds. A new 20-level base class, the shifter, puts animalistic powers into the hands—or claws—of player characters and villains alike, with new class features derived from animalistic attributes. Overviews of druidic sects and rituals, as well as new archetypes, character options, spells, and more, round out the latest contribution to the Pathfinder RPG rules!

Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Wilderness is an invaluable hardcover companion to the Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook. This imaginative tabletop game builds upon more than 10 years of system development and an open playtest featuring more than 50,000 gamers to create a cutting-edge RPG experience that brings the all-time best-selling set of fantasy rules into a new era.

Pathfinder RPG Ultimate Wilderness includes:

  • The shifter, a new character class that harnesses untamed forces to change shape and bring a heightened level of savagery to the battlefield!
  • Archetypes for alchemists, barbarians, bards, druids, hunters, investigators, kineticists, paladins, rangers, rogues, slayers, witches, and more!
  • Feats and magic items for characters of all sorts granting mastery over the perils of nature and enabling them to harvest natural power by cultivating magical plants.
  • Dozens of spells to channel, protect, or thwart the powers of natural environs.
  • New and expanded rules to push your animal companions, familiars, and mounts to wild new heights.
  • A section on the First World with advice, spells, and other features to integrate the fey realm into your campaign.
  • Systems for exploring new lands and challenging characters with natural hazards and strange terrain both mundane and feytouched.
  • ... and much, much more!

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-986-8

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

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3.00/5 (based on 59 ratings)

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Another Great Hardback Update Collection!

5/5

Ultimate Wilderness is a much better book than some reviewers might lead you to believe. You get the new shifter class - which has had some basic errata since release - along with great archetypes for most of the other classes to help them fit into a wilderness-based campaign.

It's a great book to help players prepping to play something like Kingmaker or Ironfang Invasion. You get new spells, feats and a new exploration mode.

The book itself maintains the high quality of work that most Paizo products exhibit. The art in this book is some of my favorite in any of the hardback collections. There are a few updated spells that needed errata, such as snowball.

As a fan, I really like that several of the archetypes convert the flavor of many Game of Thrones characters into Pathfinder mechanics. What more could you ask for?


Lots of ptential, but none of it really sticks

2/5

I was extremely excited for this publication, so it's rather depressing how disappointing the books contents turned out to be.

The shifter class was an interesting idea, but when put down on paper is just druidic wild shape with hunter focus, in the form of aspects. It, unfortunately, never surpasses the druid in the wild shape department, and is, in fact, rather limited, and the temporary nature of all the aspects means that the shifter isn't terribly impressive in that regard either. The archetypes, both for the shifter and other classes, are interesting, but several suffer from massive drawbacks, for little to no gain. Like taking on druidic weapon/armor proficiencies and restrictions, including losing abilities for wearing metal, but don't gain any significant power to mkae up for it.

The new rules expansions are, for the most part, only thrown off by some conflicting skill applications (survival to harvest poison, but heal to take internal organ trophies?) but these are easy to ignore, or fix by homebrew. So these chapters are the most stable and useful of the lot.

One of the most exciting discoveries was the Cultivate Magic Plants feat, allowing you to grow plants that copy spell effects, but the price tag attached to them, especially when attached to something with the considerable disadvantages of being an immobile magical item, makes it entirely useless next to the crafting cost of regular magical items, especially if you have a GM that's willing to allow players to use the rules on creating new magical items. Just for an example, a goodberry bush can fully feed 2 people per day forever... for 4000 GP to craft. While you could make an item to infinitely cast goodberry for 2000 gp if you have to wear it, or better yet create food and water (for about 30000).

In conclusion, the book has a lot of cool stuff in it, but only for GMs. Players won't be able to make good use of many of the archetypes and feats as they revolve too much around staying in a single environment or working with nonsensical restrictions. While many of the feats are just too focused (or expensive) to be useful except to an NPC. GMs, grab it, it's got good stuff, but players will (and should) probably stick to what they've already got.


Everything I wanted from Ultimate Wilderness

4/5

Great race write ups, a fun new class (that doesn't require a ton of source books to play) and tons of information and systems to run a wilderness adventure or spice up the wilderness sections of any game. Definitely happy to add this one to my bookshelf.


Reprinted material, lack of clarity

1/5

First off, I'm a huge fan of Pathfinder. But I'm not a fan of "Ultimate Wilderness." There are a number of issues with the content in the book, mostly the clarity of language. A lot of the rules seem unclear and not straightforward. The shifter is the biggest example of this.
To be honest I was looking forward to the shifter, being far more robust than it actually is. And I understand that this is my issue with what I expected from them, but what built up my anticipation of the shifter was the quality of past classes released by Paizo: summoner, alchemist, witch, bloodrager, investigator, brawler, spiritualist, medium (even if it isn't harrowed), magus, ninja, hunter and so on and so forth.
Past that, I'm not a big fan of the reprinted material because I buy the smaller books. If I'm buying the smaller books why would I want to buy them again with a hardcover?
That being said, I'm still a big Pathfinder fan, but I'd like for future releases to take a different developmental cycle than what "Ultimate Wilderness" received. This book seems like it lacked editing and playtesting.


4/5


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doc roc wrote:
Disappointed at the lack of playtesting regarding the Shifter.... solves a lot of issues down the line... fills a gap as the 'Nature Paladin'.... although whether or not thats how it comes out will be another matter.

The release date is November 2017; still plenty of time for playtesting, no? ;)

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
JiCi wrote:
doc roc wrote:
Disappointed at the lack of playtesting regarding the Shifter.... solves a lot of issues down the line... fills a gap as the 'Nature Paladin'.... although whether or not thats how it comes out will be another matter.
The release date is November 2017; still plenty of time for playtesting, no? ;)

Paizo explicitly said there's no playtest this time round.


nighttree wrote:
I'm still wondering how this will be distinguished from the Feral Hunter.....I wish they would start leaking more information....

All the Feral Hunter does it gets bonuses to an ability score, minor bonuses to a skill, or certain other very specific bonuses.

For starters, we know the Shifter begin with claws, which the feral hunter does not get. I would imagine these can become stronger/more powerful over levels.

Also, the example of being able to take on the traits of, or become an owlbear, makes me think the S&$*er will do more than just get a stat/skill bonus.

Without knowing more about the class, the only thing I can thing of is they might be able to mix and match abilities/powers from various shape-changing spells.


I am sure that the shifter will be focused on animals(and maybe magical beast). More then likely you will need archetypes for other creature types.


Dragon78 wrote:

I am sure that the shifter will be focused on animals(and maybe magical beast). More then likely you will need archetypes for other creature types.

Sounds like a fair guess.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
KingOfAnything wrote:
Yeah I just click the "Messageboards" button on the nav bar and can see everything. *shudder*

Focus is your friend :3


The shifter sounds promising so far, with claws from level 1, a patchwork of natural attacks and abilities later and wildshape just as alternative, not as focus. Finally a separation of shapechange and casting...

When it comes to archetypes, there is always something interesting in the Ultimate books - simply due to the high amount.

I don't expect too much from the feats, given the focus of the book and the rather limited flow of really new feats in RPG line books lately. But I might be wrong. Magic items, spells and companions are not so relevant to me.

The section about the First World sounds like a reprint, but the latest Campaign Setting book about this topic (The First World: Realm of the Fey) was stunningly evocative and informative, so repeating that content should be absolutely worth it players who didn't read the former book yet.

Weather, hazards, strange terrains - could be anything from lame to exciting, we will see.


I am interested to see what the fey touched hazards/terrain will be like.


doc roc wrote:

'Nature Paladin'.... although whether or not thats how it comes out will be another matter.

Other than that it has potential!!

Would you consider Steve Irwin as a real life Nature Paladin. CRIECKEY!!!


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Reprinting my statements here:

JiCi wrote:
The shifter seems to be focusing on gaining natural attacks and creature limbs for special abilities. For instance, talons for regular damage, bear claws for damage and grab, wings for flight, fish tail for swimming, weasel fangs for damage and grab, tentacles for reach, etc. I don't think it will get spells, but it might receive different shifting abilities, similar to how a kineticist selects talents.

So... the shifter gets Wild Shape at Level 5... How do the other abilities fit in? Is it something it gets in addition of Wild Shape?

On a sidenote, is it a base class or a hybrid class?

JiCi wrote:
Archetyping the shifter can open a lot of possibilities. If the base shifter is animal-focused, then any archetype that switches the creature type around would be neat. A shifter using limbs from aberrations, plants, vermins, magical beasts (like the Totemist from Magic of Incarnum), dragons, oozes (especially since blights were introduced in B6) and undead would be awesome :D If the base shifter uses limbs from more than one type, then archetypes could be focused on other types. For instance, a shfter could morph a limb into a longsword.

Again, I thought the Shifter wouldn't get Wild Shape... I can see trading abilities to enhance Wild Shape or whatever partial shifting ability the class might have.

JiCi wrote:

Archetypes for the other classes can go in several directions:

- Barbarians, druids, oracles, hunters, rangers and witches, being nature-based classes, will probably get the lion's share of archetypes.
- Kineticists could get more talents... but I doubt that Wood would be expanded, since it was expanded in Golarion booklets :S
- I'd like to get options for companions, mounts, familiars and eidolons here. I feel like it isn't much explored.

So... the Wood element will be reprint so I heard... Ok :P


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Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:

I was interested in Starfinder but the more I learned about it, the more I didn't like. But that is another subject all together and belongs in it's own section.

I can't wait to see what the shifter will be like, can't wait for kineticist wild talents(new and old), can't wait for first world, fey, and nature themed options and I can't wait for more animal companion, familiar, mount, etc. options.

I hope this book will finally have the fey based polymorph spells.

I also hope that it will reprint other polymorph spells that are not in hardcover books.

Somebody from the banquet confirmed fey polymorph spells and an ooze-based shifter option, so you'll finally get the Ultimate Intrigue you always wanted!


Well I am happy to hear about the fey polymorph spells.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

While I'm interested to see the Shifter, I'm far more interested in the animal sidekick expansions, Fey Realm, new archetypes, and natural hazards. While I don't think it would require a lot of page count, I'm really hoping we get some expansion of topics for surviving in the wild and various related crafting and profession skills.

Expansions to the Downtime system related to wilderness structures, resources, and organizations would be great to see as well. Something along the lines of what Heroes of the Wild did but with more content.


Will there be any archetypes where your creature type changes? Like the few trickster archetype?


Stuff I am most excited about from greatest to least.

1)The Shifter class.

2)New polymorph spells.

3)More stuff for animal companions/mounts/familiars.

4)Fey/First World stuff.

5)Non-First World environment stuff.

6)Archetypes for certain classes.

7)Everything else.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I wonder if basic phytokinesis will be tweaked now that positive energy is a default association with the wood element. I'd like it if it could grant stabilize and vigor at-will, along with a bonus to Heal checks.

Liberty's Edge

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

along with very minor shaping of plant growth.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
ErisAcolyte-Chaos jester wrote:
along with very minor shaping of plant growth.

Well, basic phytokinesis does somewhat cover that with the pruning/gardening ability...

Hmm, since this book will have magical plants, I wonder if the wood element will get a talent involving creating them?


That is an interesting question about basic phytokinesis being tweaked. Stabilize would be useful, so would vigor, a minor bonus to heal checks, and/or minor plant growth would all be interesting.


I'm wandering what the new class will add to the excisting options of the feral hunter and a druid/ranger combo... what will be different i wonder :-)


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I really hope the shifter gets shapeshifting at level 1. If you have to wait until level 4 or 5 like a druid, it's going to be lame.

Silver Crusade

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

Well they have stated they get claws at 1st so they get some amount of shapeshifting before Wildshape.


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Rysky wrote:
Well they have stated they get claws at 1st so they get some amount of shapeshifting before Wildshape.

It doesn't sound like what I and other people have been asking for in a level 1 shapeshifter.

Silver Crusade

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
darth_borehd wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Well they have stated they get claws at 1st so they get some amount of shapeshifting before Wildshape.
It doesn't sound like what I and other people have been asking for in a level 1 shapeshifter.

Lots of people have been asking a bunch of different things involving a martial shapeshifter class but I don't think there's been anything coherent other than having shapeshifting.

Silver Crusade

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

Ah, the good old "what I ask for is what everyone is asking for".


Has it been confirmed they get wild shape in the first place ?
I was wondering if they would go more the route of an Eidolon....

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
nighttree wrote:

Has it been confirmed they get wild shape in the first place ?

I was wondering if they would go more the route of an Eidolon....

They get an ability called Chimerical or something that might let them do something similar.


From my understanding the shifter has been confirmed to get Claws at 1st level, wild shape at 5th level, the ability to use different Animal foci(i think thats what they were called) such as bear and owl, and even combine various animals to gain other unique benefits such as owlbear.


I wonder if the claws will just be two attacks or will it be like a monk-like flurry of blows type mechanic. I wonder how many natural attacks you can have.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

42

Dark Archive

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Dragon78 wrote:
I wonder if the claws will just be two attacks or will it be like a monk-like flurry of blows type mechanic. I wonder how many natural attacks you can have.

Ideally, I'd like a high level Shifter to be able to use all sorts of natural attacks, from the common bite and claw, to the less common gore, hoof, tentacle, wing, pincers, tail slap, sting, etc. Alternately, a high level Shifter might specialize on one bigger attack, and get iteratives with that bite (for instance), rather than a flurry of gore, bite, claw, claw, wing-buffet attacks, like a gargoyle on crack.

I'd also prefer if not every 1st level Shifter had to use claws. That seems kind of cookie-cutter, to me, so an alternative to be bite focused (wolf, alligator or shark-shifter!), or tail-slap/sting focused (scorpion-shifter!), or slam-focused (ape-shifter!), with a larger single attack instead of a pair of claw attacks, would be welcome.


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please not another pile of teamwork feats...

Dark Archive

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BigNorseWolf wrote:
please not another pile of teamwork feats...

The only way I could stand teamwork feats is if your party had it's own character sheet, separate from those of the PCs comprising said party, and the team abilities were 'paid for' by the party character (to represent stunts and tactics that the party has practiced together, but wouldn't necessarily be able to do with just anyone they ran into), and not the individual PCs.

But that's just insane and could lead to a book called Ultimate Teamwork, so forget it.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Set wrote:
BigNorseWolf wrote:
please not another pile of teamwork feats...

The only way I could stand teamwork feats is if your party had it's own character sheet, separate from those of the PCs comprising said party, and the team abilities were 'paid for' by the party character (to represent stunts and tactics that the party has practiced together, but wouldn't necessarily be able to do with just anyone they ran into), and not the individual PCs.

But that's just insane and could lead to a book called Ultimate Teamwork, so forget it.

I've actually done this before.

It's pretty good for getting a group of no account, scurvy scallywags working together.

But erm... that's probably a discussion for a different topic.


Never liked teamwork feats. But "Ultimate Tactics" would make a better name then "Ultimate Teamwork".

I agree, I hope claws are not the only natural attack option at level one.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

I assume they wouldn't be, just be one specific example, which matches the iconic's focus.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

I admit personally I was hoping for something more along the lines of Wild Shape at level one, but having a limited number of options for the early levels. Like maybe you can only shapeshift into one form at level 1, which you choose at character creation.

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