Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Wilderness

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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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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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Jon Brazer Enterprises

7 people marked this as a favorite.

Just want to point out that the GenCon preview panel of Ultimate Wilderness has been posted on Know Direction.


Thank you Dale McCoy Jr for the information:)

Jon Brazer Enterprises

Dragon78 wrote:
Thank you Dale McCoy Jr for the information:)

You're welcome, Dragon78.


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

Thanks for the head's up, Dale! Wow! I am even more excited about this book now!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

A lot of interesting information, can't wait. Though it does make it sound that the Shifter might be too limited in what forms it can take.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I will take a full BAB martial shape-shifting class any way I can get it! As long as it is cool and thematic and has some umph to it's abilities, I will be happy! Besides, specializing in a few forms could be more powerful than having many. We shall see.

JUST.SO.EXCITED.FOR.THIS.BOOK.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I just hope that when the shifter gets wild shape it doesn't have a limited selection of animal forms unlike the druid.


One question I've thought of, the shifter has been stated to have the ability to manifest claws from the start, could they be able to instead have say, a minotaur-esque gore?


I wonder if you can get crab claws, mantis "claws", or non-claw based natural weapons like slams(tentacles, hooves, etc.), bite, gore(horns, antlers, etc.), and/or tail attack in your base (usually)humanoid form?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I just hope that when the shifter gets wild shape it doesn't have a limited selection of animal forms unlike the druid.

The podcast mentioned that you couldn't flip through all the bestiaries looking for animals you wanted to turn into, since that experience (hunting down what gets the most out of wild shape, and abandoning all your forms as soon as you hit a more powerful beast shape) is covered by the Druid. The Shifter is supposed to be easier to use, and allow sticking with your creature.


8 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

Actually, notes from the podcast for anybody interested but without an hour to spare! I didn't cover everything, and my apologies if anything is misremembered- take this all with a grain of salt.

To my mild consternation, Snowball is getting reprinted in the core line.

Playable plant races lost some of their immunities after their druid and bard archetypes had to be specially designed to not be immune to their own iconic class features. That was a little much. We can probably expect them to no longer be immune to at least polymorph and mind-affecting.

Shifter:
- The nature focus and alignment stuff matches Druid, but you can take archetypes if you don't care for that focus. The ooze archetype was their given example.
- Their bonus AC works as follows (once you get it): if you are wearing no armor (e.g. wild shaped) you get your Wisdom bonus to AC, if you are wearing Druid-approved armor you get half your Wisdom bonus to AC, and if you are wearing other armor you don't get anything.
- Gets a good amount of magic items right out of the gate.
- Sorry, no swarm-based Shifter. It'd need to be an archetype, and it's not one of the initial archetypes.
- Some of the archetypes include an ooze Shifter that has to concentrate on maintaining a humanoid form (there was a joke about sleeping in a bucket), one that is more of an out-of-control beast than the typical more controlled shifting, and one that transforms into creatures tainted by the fiendish realms.

There's a racial spell to make an enemy try to eat one of their allies. I feel like any time it's ineffective, it's amusing. Plus, I feel like if you try to make a dragon's minion eat the dragon, you're almost guaranteed to get the reverse benefit as well.

Kineticist does not get new wild talents, but all the various stuff for wood gets collected together, allowing for more support in the future. (Sorry, void.) There are a couple new archetypes, including a racial leshy archetype for wood kineticist, and an archetype that drains the land's life force instead of taking burn and uses it to boost their strength score. (Seems like the first burn-replacer to allow boosting your stats, so that's cool.)

Animal companion and familiar archetypes all get collected together, and will get their rules clarified better. Mark has read all the confused threads about them.

You can get an animal companion that influenced by fey, draconic bloodline, or (if you bring them back from the dead and it doesn't go quite right) undead. There are also animal companion archetypes more focused on doing certain things rather than creature type based, such as a bully archetype. (Good for making your badger a honey badger, I imagine.)

Familiar archetypes include a trickster archetype that can mess with their master, giving fake results for empathic link or making up their own scry-on-familiar results.

More vermin and plant companions.

The fey polymorph spells give you bonuses if you use your spellcasting to cast a spell that the fey creature has as an SLA.


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Well the alignment restriction sucks. I had hoped we were done with those things. I'm not a fan of races getting weaker either, instead of being given exceptions when it's their own class features but I can understand why it's being done.

It will be confusing, however, since I believe this is the first time races will have two different write ups?

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
QuidEst wrote:
To my mild consternation, Snowball is getting reprinted in the core line.

Oh dear.

Silver Crusade

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
TOZ wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
To my mild consternation, Snowball is getting reprinted in the core line.
Oh dear.

*preemptively begins popping popcorn and brewing tea*

Liberty's Edge

Whats the Deal with snowball?

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

There have been many spells, feats, and other character options reprinted from softcover books into new hardcovers, which was an opportunity for Paizo to errata them as softcovers rarely get reprinted and errata tends to only be published in reprints.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Paladinosaur wrote:
Whats the Deal with snowball?

It's conjuration being better than evocation at evocation. Ranged touch rather than melee at first level, no spell resistance, and there's a save rider for staggered one round. I think there's also some feat that keys off the cold damage or something? I don't know that bit.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
QuidEst wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
I just hope that when the shifter gets wild shape it doesn't have a limited selection of animal forms unlike the druid.
The podcast mentioned that you couldn't flip through all the bestiaries looking for animals you wanted to turn into, since that experience (hunting down what gets the most out of wild shape, and abandoning all your forms as soon as you hit a more powerful beast shape) is covered by the Druid. The Shifter is supposed to be easier to use, and allow sticking with your creature.

My interpretation of what they said is that that's why you don't get wild shape at level 1, so you can play with just the claws and aspects a bit before getting pushed headlong into the gibbering madness of wildshape and the many forms it allows at level 4. Though I personally would not object to some restrictions there...I just didn't get the impression there would be some.


I can't wait to see the stuff for animal/plant/vermin companions and familiars.

I hope that the fey polymorph spells still grant a lot of interesting abilities and not just benefits for spells that you will more then likely not have.

Sovereign Court

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

The PaizoCon panel explains Shifter wildshape a little more.

You get to wildshape into one of your aspects. You get more abilities than standard wildshape allows, but you are limited by which aspects you chose. You can also add bonuses from your other aspects in order to get the famed bear-owl.


Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
KingOfAnything wrote:

The PaizoCon panel explains Shifter wildshape a little more.

You get to wildshape into one of your aspects. You get more abilities than standard wildshape allows, but you are limited by which aspects you chose. You can also add bonuses from your other aspects in order to get the famed bear-owl.

Hmm, I watched it too, but got the impression that aspects and wildshape were different and could be combined freely...such as combining owl aspect with turning into a bear, or...I think it was bull aspect with turning into a tiger. I will have to watch it again and see if I missed something, I suppose...


QuidEst wrote:

...

Animal companion and familiar archetypes all get collected together, and will get their rules clarified better. Mark has read all the confused threads about them.
...

That is welcome news.


Slight nerf to Mauler Familiar incoming lol


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
QuidEst wrote:

- Some of the archetypes include. . . one that is more of an out-of-control beast than the typical more controlled shifting, and one that transforms into creatures tainted by the fiendish realms.

YES


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber
Azten wrote:
Slight nerf to Mauler Familiar incoming lol

Almost certain the effect will be properly labeled a polymorph now, since that's something Mark mentioned regretting not doing in the first place.


Thanks for the info KingOfAnything, well my expectations for the shifter class has dramatically lowered:(


Is the class's Wisdom dependence known? As a frontliner, physical stats come more to prominence.

In other words, what is the likelyhood that a good wild fullplate is competitive with no or druid-approved armour?


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

*keeps fingers crossed for the probability of Leshy AWESOMEness*


I'm interested in seeing of the Animal Companion stuff for undead is like the Accursed Animal companion from Horror Realms.


I was also disappointed that the shifter's AC bonus is based on wisdom, would have loved charisma as an option for the base class.


I don't care which stat it is, as long as the 1/2 for druid-approved over metal is insignificant.


It is a shame that there are no new wild talents but I was expecting that anyway.

I am really interested in the dragon and fey archetypes for animal companions. I wonder if there are any magical beast, aberration, and/or ooze based ones as well.


All this news is good to hear...how much longer now?! Oh. I thought this was due out late October. Now it is mid-November?! *Sigh*


1 person marked this as a favorite.

It was a November release to begin with.

Silver Crusade

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

Yep.


It is nice that wood kineticist element gets a reprint, now to wait and see when void will get a reprint in a hardcover book.

Other then the fey polymorph spells, I wonder if there will be any other fey themed spells...maybe some summon fey spells:)

I hope there will be a lot of fey/first world themed archetypes. Also a lot of plant based archetypes as well.

I wonder how many shifter archetypes there will be.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
It is nice that wood kineticist element gets a reprint, now to wait and see when void will get a reprint in a hardcover book.

Maybe in the upcoming Planar Adventures hardcover?

Dark Archive

Fourshadow wrote:
All this news is good to hear...how much longer now?! Oh. I thought this was due out late October. Now it is mid-November?! *Sigh*

You're a subscriber - if you're lucky, you'll get the pdf on october 30th. ;-)


Dragon78 wrote:

It is nice that wood kineticist element gets a reprint, now to wait and see when void will get a reprint in a hardcover book.

I kinda wonder if they will forget Wood's basic utility wild talent again.


Last I heard they said they do have wood's basic utility wild talent in the book.

I do like the sound of the leshy alchemist archetype that replaces bombs with seed pods. I wonder if they replace their alchemy with druid spells or at least add some druid spells to their formula list.


When I heard "no new wild talents", I'm pretty sure they meant "nothing new beyond reprinting all of the wood stuff".

And yeah, definitely hoping for void in Planar Adventures. It would certainly make sense.


QuidEst wrote:
Paladinosaur wrote:
Whats the Deal with snowball?
It's conjuration being better than evocation at evocation. Ranged touch rather than melee at first level, no spell resistance, and there's a save rider for staggered one round. I think there's also some feat that keys off the cold damage or something? I don't know that bit.

Please be a Witch spell. Please be a Witch spell. Please be a Witch spell.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
BenS wrote:
QuidEst wrote:
Paladinosaur wrote:
Whats the Deal with snowball?
It's conjuration being better than evocation at evocation. Ranged touch rather than melee at first level, no spell resistance, and there's a save rider for staggered one round. I think there's also some feat that keys off the cold damage or something? I don't know that bit.
Please be a Witch spell. Please be a Witch spell. Please be a Witch spell.

Your wish is granted.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

All I know is planar adventures better have some Cabal devil in it! :p


Now that you mention it, I wonder if planar adventures will have monster/NPC stats?


3 people marked this as a favorite.

(The following post is worded extra dramatically and should not be taken completely seriously.)

Man the shifter is starting to sound more and more disappointing.
When can a man finally get some non-3pp support for changing into a giant pistol-shrimp, echidna, cuttlefish, deinonychus or heck even just a boar. Cool animals instead of being tied to the usual suspects: Wolf, Bear, Bull, Eagle etc. The 'standard totem' animals that already have entire druid archetypes devoted to them.
And probably no arthropod love again either, typical phylumism.
I want scales, not fur. Carapace, not feathers. Slither, not walk.

In all seriousness though, I hope they either have an extremely broad range of 'aspects' and/or continue to expand upon those with an extra small splatbook like the "blood of" series because I hate being tied down by the very basic, highly regarded and beloved for good reasons, but in my opinion very boring, animal selection.

I'm also rather (perhaps erroneously) disappointed by the very explicit druid-esque nature of the class and hope the archetypes remedy that so you can play an actual shapshifter that isn't strongly tied directly to woodland critters but maybe more aberrant in origin for example.


Dragon78 wrote:

It is nice that wood kineticist element gets a reprint, now to wait and see when void will get a reprint in a hardcover book.

Other then the fey polymorph spells, I wonder if there will be any other fey themed spells...maybe some summon fey spells:)

I hope there will be a lot of fey/first world themed archetypes. Also a lot of plant based archetypes as well.

I wonder how many shifter archetypes there will be.

The Entice Fey spell chain doesn't please you?

I like them just fine.


Marco Massoudi wrote:
Fourshadow wrote:
All this news is good to hear...how much longer now?! Oh. I thought this was due out late October. Now it is mid-November?! *Sigh*
You're a subscriber - if you're lucky, you'll get the pdf on october 30th. ;-)

Ha! Perhaps so. Would be nice.


Entice Fey spell is like planar ally, I would prefer a summoning fey spell that works more like summon monster/nature's ally though maybe not as many versions/levels.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Summon Neutral Monster is full of fey.

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