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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1 person marked this as a favorite.

I really like the exploration and weather mechanics. I'm a consummate GM, so more rules systems like those are MY JAM.


6 people marked this as a favorite.

Stuff I like on a midnight to 5 am read through

Some of the flavor is amazing. A spell that lets you walk through the forest like snow white and the animals even bring you three square meals a day? Great.

entire menagieries full of critters

large bears

Some stuff i am very much not a fan of "rumor monger" esque options, where something that would previously be ruled a use of the skill gets put behind a feat wall

-The ability to make a false trail
-caw caw caw like a bird
-cover your tracks

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yeah, there are a lot of feats that are useless because you can do what feat allows even without the feat according to the rules <_< I guess you could say "With this I can do it even though I suck in skills!" but yeah still waste of a feat.

Anyway, did I mention I love all plant companions? Because seriously, sniper cactus, why nobody mentioned that before


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

Yeah, reading through the feats as well right now and a lot of them just seem uninspired. There's a pretty large chunk of small bonus increases or super duper niche "nobody would actually take these without a specific campaign" feats. Some of them are cool though, like Beastmaster Style.

And then there's the nerfed Wolf Savage, which while I get why it was changed (mostly because curses became stupid powerful as a result of Horror Adventures) it's still like "Aw, come on, it was so cool before."


6 people marked this as a favorite.

It was annoying that the second and third of the feats in the Feat Chapter is literally "here's a thing you could already do, but let's retcon it to require a feat".

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I would argue that technically some of them don't retcon it so that you can't do them without feats now, I mean, animal calling one technically allows that instead of bluff vs sense motive opponent has to do knowledge nature check(without dc given so thats annoying) to realize "Wait a minute" :p

But yeah, seriously though, I'd be really annoyed if some gm was like "Well, its not a feat, so you can't do it even though you can cite several sources which say you can do it without feat"


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

...which did happen after UI dropped.

Sovereign Court

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Pathfinder Accessories, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber

And everyone else collectively rolled their eyes at those people.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Back to Ultimate Wildlnanigans...

...hoping for that vine leshy boon! We can make this happen!

...actually... any word on when this is going to be properly vetted for PFS play?


3 people marked this as a favorite.

So I just want to let everyone know that the Treestrider Hunter archetype selects their animal companion as a free action.

I assume that was an error in writing. If not, that's genuinely hilarious.

Also, if I read this correctly, a Saurian Champion Cavalier can take a level in the Mammoth Rider Prestige Class to grow their Dinosaur Mount to Huge and then take level 10 in the Saurian Champion to grow their mount to Gargantuan size. Not that it's useful in anyway, but hey, you're riding a Gargantuan mount!


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

"LADIES AN' GENTLEMEN! IT'S TIME for EPIC KAIJU BATTLE! BEGIN!!!"

Dark Archive

Thats depressing to hear <_< I hadn't actually heard about that happening after UI was released


CorvusMask wrote:
Thats depressing to hear <_< I hadn't actually heard about that happening after UI was released

I havent seen it happen yet but i was worried about it when ui came out


Wildstag that sounds like two actual size increases to me which wont stack

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Hmm, did I just heard indirect dissing of Leshy Warden and Leshy Caller? : D

Seriously though, just because you find only 3 or 4 of them interesting doesn't mean there are only 3-4 worthwhile archetypes <_< I mean, of course if you don't like casters you won't find any of archetypes for casters that interesting either.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Feats like Animal Call and Branch Pounce bother me. Being able to mimic a bird call or being able to jump down on top of an enemy from above feel like things you should just be able to do with the right skill checks.

And before this book was published, they likely were at many tables! Now they're feats, something that's kind of a precious commodity for a lot of characters, which means most simply won't be able to do them anymore.

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.

It sounds like they're running out of ideas for feats.


The getting wild empathy as a feat bothers me. It would make classes that have a reason to have a charisma score (oracles, paladins, sorcerers) better at wild empathy than druids.

Silver Crusade

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

Feats like Animal Call and Branch Pounce bother me. Being able to mimic a bird call or being able to jump down on top of an enemy from above feel like things you should just be able to do with the right skill checks.

And before this book was published, they likely were at many tables! Now they're feats, something that's kind of a precious commodity for a lot of characters, which means most simply won't be able to do them anymore.

Branch Pounce doesn't let you charge by falling, you can and always have been able to do it without the Feat. BP adds extra damage and makes you takes less falling damage when you do a falling charge. The feat even starts with "When charging by falling", the feat is additional stuff on top of the charge.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
The getting wild empathy as a feat bothers me. It would make classes that have a reason to have a charisma score (oracles, paladins, sorcerers) better at wild empathy than druids.

The Wilding feat? Yeah, but you are basically investing in order to do that, and you can only take the feat at 1st, and it gives classes that already have WE a bonus. And that drawback (don't know how much of a drawback it is but it's there).


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yeah, not a fan of feats that say "you can't do something without this feat" even though you could in the rules before.

They might be running out of feat ideas but I haven't yet;)

If they had reprinted the cunning feat I would have added another star to my review.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Cunning is in a hardcover so there's no need to reprint it.

Silver Crusade

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

Yeah, but it's in a book which D78 is not interested in, so that means it doesn't exist;)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:

Yeah, not a fan of feats that say "you can't do something without this feat" even though you could in the rules before.

They might be running out of feat ideas but I haven't yet;)

If they had reprinted the cunning feat I would have added another star to my review.

Have you considered submitting your feat ideas to 3rd party publishers or publish them yourself. :-)

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Dragon78 wrote:

Yeah, not a fan of feats that say "you can't do something without this feat" even though you could in the rules before.

Actually I went digging some more into this because I've never actually seen any rules for allowing Bluff to imitate voices, and that's because there isn't. And there wasn't really a consensus on the forums from my searching (Bluff, Disguise, and Perform were all suggested).

It wasn't till Ultimate Intrigue that it brought up using skills on vocal alteration and the distinction between Bluff (telling a lie) and Disguise (actually altering something to be something else).

So Animal Call isn't cutting out a rule, since no rule existed before, but by going off published rules it allows you to use a different skill (Bluff instead of Disguise) to disguise your voice.


None the less it's a very crappy feat...


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Joe Hex wrote:

... Example- I'm assuming the season witch loses their familiar to get other features. Nothing specifically says the familiar is replaced. Also, depending on the season you chose, you get to pick a bonus hex out of two options, but below, it says that feature "alters the hex gain at 1st level", which sounds like it replaces the 1st level hex. But if that was the case, it's not really a bonus hex... Usually it would say you must pick specific hexes at that level. Anyhow, I decided to treat it as a bonus hex in addition to the one normally granted a 1st level. Since you're losing your familiar, a bonus hex seems appropriate.

...

Actually, I think they misused the word "bonus" here, and you keep your familiar but are limited in your choices of 1st level hex depending on your patron season. So you get a bonus off choosing a season to compliment your patron spells—which you normally get nothing but the bonus spells per level—and as a result your choice of 1st hex is limited. That's my take on it.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Alex Mack wrote:
None the less it's a very crappy feat...

I can mimic the noble and benevolent call of the Tyrannosaurus Rex with it.

(Since you pick a terrain and can mimic all the animals in it that’s a pretty big list)

Sovereign Court

Rysky wrote:
Alex Mack wrote:
None the less it's a very crappy feat...

I can mimic the noble and benevolent call of the Tyrannosaurus Rex with it.

(Since you pick a terrain and can mimic all the animals in it that’s a pretty big list)

You mean just like all gnomes can via Ghost Sound? see! I've always known gnomes were uber! they've had that free extra feat the whole time! :P


Zzorn wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Alex Mack wrote:
None the less it's a very crappy feat...

I can mimic the noble and benevolent call of the Tyrannosaurus Rex with it.

(Since you pick a terrain and can mimic all the animals in it that’s a pretty big list)

You mean just like all gnomes can via Ghost Sound? see! I've always known gnomes were uber! they've had that free extra feat the whole time! :P

Or vigilantes with the Mockingbird talent. That's at-will, ranged, works to imitate anything, and is generally more versatile.

And for some vigilantes, there aren't necessarily a lot of great choices for 5th-level social talents anyway, so it's not competing for a precious build resource.

Sovereign Court

Can we start a:

VIGILANTE VS. SHIFTER BATTLETHREAD!!!

(two noble contestants from the semi-pro division that never made it to the big leagues! come! our old stadium from the 1920's has cheaper beer and the hot dog guy still offers grilled onions as condiment!)

Silver Crusade

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

Gnome's ghost sound SLA is 1/day and Mockingbird you have to have 5 levels in Vigilante to take. Animal Call can be taken at first level by anyone and is usable all day.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
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...and at all day long you can call ever so many tyrannosaurs!


5 people marked this as a favorite.

The only reason I can see for calling a tyrannosaurus is to ask it questions about Pathfinder;)


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Actually, would that be legit?

An in-game method of breaking the Nth wall to get insight on the game and how it is put together as it relates to a given encounter?

That changes the Feat from 'meh' to 'freaking awesome'.

...and probably soon to be nerfed because it's too awesome like that, and as we've determined already UW is about the not-AWESOME.


Loving a lot of the archetypes, especially for the hunter. Question on the Forester: is it's Tactician ability at 3rd supposed to NOT give a bonus teamwork feat? Usually when classes get the Tactician power they get a feat to go along with it by design. Seemed like it might be an oversight here, but I suppose you could just take one with your normal feats.


Wei Ji the Learner wrote:

Actually, would that be legit?

An in-game method of breaking the Nth wall to get insight on the game and how it is put together as it relates to a given encounter?

That changes the Feat from 'meh' to 'freaking awesome'.

...and probably soon to be nerfed because it's too awesome like that, and as we've determined already UW is about the not-AWESOME.

So what kind of terrain are golems native to?

Remember, we've had access to stuff from more-or-less outside the world for quite some time. Called outsiders.

And, if you want to get really boring, there's always Legend Lore.

Silver Crusade

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

Animal Call says "animals native to the terrain", so golems would be out, but the what about Magical Beasts and Dragons?

Granted it probably does just mean creatures of the Animal type.

Sovereign Court

Rysky wrote:
Animal Call can be taken at first level by anyone and is usable all day.

Have your PC call animals all day and see your GM's annoyance skyrocket to "quote Spartacus-style expletives" levels! :P (yet another strong point for the feat! not... I own the book, but that doesn't mean I need to worship that book... or any book...)

Silver Crusade

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

*shrugs*

I just like imitating a T-rex


Feros wrote:
Joe Hex wrote:

... Example- I'm assuming the season witch loses their familiar to get other features. Nothing specifically says the familiar is replaced. Also, depending on the season you chose, you get to pick a bonus hex out of two options, but below, it says that feature "alters the hex gain at 1st level", which sounds like it replaces the 1st level hex. But if that was the case, it's not really a bonus hex... Usually it would say you must pick specific hexes at that level. Anyhow, I decided to treat it as a bonus hex in addition to the one normally granted a 1st level. Since you're losing your familiar, a bonus hex seems appropriate.

...

Actually, I think they misused the word "bonus" here, and you keep your familiar but are limited in your choices of 1st level hex depending on your patron season. So you get a bonus off choosing a season to compliment your patron spells—which you normally get nothing but the bonus spells per level—and as a result your choice of 1st hex is limited. That's my take on it.

What got me thinking you lose your familiar, is the bit about it saying the witch "learns her spells through communion with nature, divining secrets from shapes in the clouds or the play of leaves on the wind." I suppose none of that specifically states not having a familiar. However, if that's the case, the archetype sure gains a lot, with the only sacrifice/restriction being the need to pick one of the two listed hexes at first level- the options are all pretty good ones. I think anyone choosing a season patron would be foolish not taking this archetype. Plus it's one of the rare ones that make it easy to find a second archetype to take with it.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
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... I want a fluffy cloud familiar now.

Dark Archive

Random thoughts;

Love that there's a 'tree of woe.' The seasonal limitations make the altitude fern, fishweed and and sheltershrub less reliable for a community to use, but the goodberry bush is handy for keeping a family fed for a nature-lover who can afford to craft those sorts of things.

Ooh, rules for harvesting / milking poison! That's something that gets asked a lot (particularly if someone has a viper familiar, but also when the party kills a giant spider or whatever.

Tardigrade familiars? Grizzy Bear companions? *Two* new flying companions that a small Druid can ride from 1st level (and a medium user can even ride one at 7th level)? Super-cool. Also cool that there are some companion options with less common abilities, like poison, webs or ranged attacks. That's something I expected to see more of with alien critters (in Starfinder or Numeria), but it's cool to see non-alien-animals (and plants and vermin) with some non-traditional abilities.

Wow, information on the Green Faith! Super-cool. I think this is more than has been written on them in the last eight years!

Whole lotta Archetypes... I suppose I should use one, someday. :)

Contributor

I’m pretty excited for the saga familiar archetype. Didn’t realize it was compatible with improved familiars. I want to make Yreshi into a sage for my sorcerer. :-)

Grand Lodge

Just posted a review. If anyone liked the 3.x AEG supplement book "Wild", this book is for you.


Well, I've posted my review. Maybe I should go back and add detail to my thoughts on more things in the book later though, instead of mostly just focusing on a single aspect of it. I can be a bit OCD at times XD

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