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!

*****

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

**( )( )( )

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

****( )

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

*( )( )( )( )

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.


****( )


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Ed Reppert wrote:
Has anyone done a comparison of the shifter with Kobold Games' skin-changer?

That question probably doesn't belong in the Product Discussion thread...

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Fourshadow wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Has anyone done a comparison of the shifter with Kobold Games' skin-changer?
That question probably doesn't belong in the Product Discussion thread...

Well, neither do "I want my PDF so badly ... I still don't have it!" posts :)


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
Fourshadow wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Has anyone done a comparison of the shifter with Kobold Games' skin-changer?
That question probably doesn't belong in the Product Discussion thread...
Well, neither do "I want my PDF so badly ... I still don't have it!" posts :)

I think the question is fine here, or I would have asked it somewhere else. I would agree that long discussion of the comparison would not belong here, but "yes" or "no" would imo be fine.


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

I can see why you wished those archetypes stacked though I would have loved a spontaneous caster version myself.

Shadow Lodge

I can understand why they don't, but man would it be cool. Sort of like a Two Pact* wizard going into the Stargazer prestige class.

*There are two different archetypes for Wizard that are both called Pact Wizard. They stack and it is hilarious.


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

They have the same name and they stack, that is hilarious.


Fourshadow wrote:
Ed Reppert wrote:
Has anyone done a comparison of the shifter with Kobold Games' skin-changer?
That question probably doesn't belong in the Product Discussion thread...

If you think something doesn't belong, flag it and move on.


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

Sorry that I brought up a lot in my post. I feel that there are times that the message 'oh you can house rule that' or 'oh there is home brew for that' when the reality is that, if paizo content isn't produced, I don't get to use it. I honestly don't care if the shifter is terrible or the book is poorly edited; what I care about is that poorly made material that is clearly divisive takes up design space, at the expense of things like the following:

Cernunnos, empeyreal lord of the wilderness not getting any material in six years.

As one reviewer pointed out, no additions or corrections to mounted combat.

As another reviewer pointed out, magical plants significantly more expensive and less viable then the creation of a magic item equivalent.

Zero expansion of campaign, build points, wilderness buildings, etc, despite bandits and settlement building being a big and popular deal.

Details of how the 20 core deities, the other emperyeal lords, demon lords, or green faith ,interact with the eldest.

The Green Faith getting any updates at all.

Monster settlements.

Yes, I can house rule and home brew whatever I want. However, as evidenced by the people waiting for this to hit PFS, if I am NOT in a home brew game, I don't get to use this material. I don't get answers, and it will be another three to six years before something else comes out.

In short, a deeply divisive, poorly edited starter class meant to be a "quick pick up" for people who don't understand druids and don't want to read a basic guide stole design space in a book that was - based on previous editions of the ultimate series - meant to be a go to quick guide for "title"-related material. This is in addition to wilderness related reprints, which anyone interested in wilderness material already had, either in part or in full. Like... As I said, the design decisions seem less than informed by paizo material and more to just be some stuff thrown together to create a poorly edited, poorly received, clearly divisive book. One person said they thought the book would be fine if the shifter didn't exist; I think people would still be less than enthused, but simply have less objectively contentious targets.

Anyways tldr i think some broader questions could be asked on other fronts earlier on to prevent a great deal of irritation and headaches on the back end


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

While I agree about "poorly made material taking up game space" issue, none of the things you listed was anything I was expecting from the book or have any real interest in seeing in a player options focus based book.


6 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Official changes to the shifter and comments on play-testing from Paizo's Director of Game Design.

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
While I agree about "poorly made material taking up game space" issue, none of the things you listed was anything I was expecting from the book or have any real interest in seeing in a player options focus based book.

Meanwhile I think RPG core line books shouldn't be just player focused options books, but GM rule books as well, I still agree that none of things listed was anything I've seen anyone expecting from rpg line of books


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

What exactly did they change/nerf about the Lore Warden?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

No longer a flat bonus to CMB/D, instead a selection of options including the brawlers bonus to a single maneuver. Also made Combat Expertise a virtual feat only counting for prereqs at 2nd, becoming the full feat at 6th. And taking away the 2nd level bonus feat as well.


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

I really don't see the reason for that nerf at all. The Lore Warden wasn't that strong to begin with.

Silver Crusade

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

It was strong enough to be the default Fighter archetype for anybody who wanted to optimise the class.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I really don't see the reason for that nerf at all. The Lore Warden wasn't that strong to begin with.

I think they overdid the Combat Expertise nerf, but they really did need to at least cut the CMB bonus in half for balance reasons.


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

Just another reason to have an unchained fighter then;)


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Let's please not get another thread locked because of the NerfWarden.

Dark Archive

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Really though, only thing I want is that someone updates fighters to have 4 + int skills per level. I mean, its the only martial without spellcasting that has 2 + int skill ranks. Even barbarian has 4 + int


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

CorvusMask I highly agree with you about the skill point thing. Though I also feel that no class should have less then 4+Int skill points.

In fact I really wish it was sett up like this...

Martials would have 6+Int skill points
Full casters would get 4+int skill points
Skill focused classes would have 8+Int(except rogue would be 10+Int)
All other classes would range from 4-6+int skill points.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Manager

10 people marked this as a favorite.

Removed a post with a derisive tone and language that is inappropriate for our website and replies to that post. It's okay to critique and discuss what you don't feel works for you or your gaming group, but you need to do so in a manner that remains respectful to the community discussion taking place on our forum.


Wild growth Hex linked to charisma?

Was just reading the Wild Growth Hex feat and wondered that it was linked to the witch's charisma rather than the usual hex-related intelligence score.

Could it be that the charisma carried over from Wild Growth Channel?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Maps Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Is there any notification when we can expect this to be in additional resources?

I understand the Shifter may be on hold due to tweaking, but the Archetypes and magical enchants can add flavor now.

I have had players ask about it while in PFS and i have to just deny until it is legal. I personally want to make a Shifter even though they are not ideal.

As for the Shifter aspects -

-Is there any thought to add the ability modifier away from enhancement bonus and just to a size (as polymorph), competence, sacred, or untyped?

Also allow the Shifter to change into its limited form unlimited back and forth once the hour marker is set?


Pathfinder Companion, Lost Omens Subscriber

If they make aspects grant a size bonus instead of enhancement bonuses it wouldn't stack with the bonuses from wild shape since they are size bonuses as well.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

With the big announcement, I think it is fair to say that there will never be a reprint of Ultimate Wilderness, so the shifter is stuck more or less as is. I expect it was a test of the reception to the new design paradigms...


Mm, I don't think that is fair to say at all. We're still looking at over a year of official support for Pathfinder. And I imagine we are going to get a pocket edition of Ultimate Wilderness eventually, so there's your reprint.


That would be very very crappy of Paizo to not at least fix the Shifter before they abandon us 1e Pathfinder players for good.


The weather rules fail to address how much snow melts when the temperature rises above freezing. A warm spell of a day or two probably isn't going to melt multiple feet of snow...

Dark Archive

About the Pose as Scenery plant companion trick: can anyone provide advice on how to improve that Disguise check? I don't think it's a class skill for animal companions, and many plant companions have a low Cha which works against that +8 Disguise check. The only thing I'm thinking right now is hat of disguise and I'm not sure plant companions can even equip that magic item...

Any advice would be greatly appreciated! thank you!

PS: under the Bestiary's description of the Plant type, we have this "The following are class skills for plants: Perception and Stealth." which leads me to think this Pose as Scenery trick may have been intended for Stealth instead of Disguise.

Dark Archive

Mark Seifter wrote:
Glad to see you guys are excited!

Hi Mark - could you please provide any thoughts on using Stealth instead of Disguise for 'Pose as Scenery' trick?

Any insight would be much appreciated.


bump


Within this book, Paizo introduced a lot of very nice, but badly implemented ideas:

The "Mastering the Wild" chapter is full of amazing ideas...

...foraging and salvaging...harvesting poisons...crafting trophies...

...all ideas that have been already tentatively proposed in other supplements, like in the Monster Hunter Handbook or the Dragonslayer Handbook...in fact the idea of using monster body parts to spend less on magic item creation has been proposed over and over by Paizo authors, but never in a coherent way and never in a non-splat-book (which are always sort of self-contained half-forgotten material) format...

...with Ultimate Wilderness we saw such attempt, but Paizo left a lot of holes into it:

With the excuse of providing "explanations" (valid for Pathfinder Society only) on Rule Clarifications, they literally stopped to "patch up" half-baked rules in the FAQ and excluding a rule from PFS seems a easy way to not address the fact that Paizo is releasing more and more material with half-baked unpolished rules...

On top of it Paizo seems to be abusing its "rule clarification" and "rule adjustment" authority to nerf old material and provide for itself and easy, very un-creative and not correct way of making "new" material:

Un-nerfing old material through additional options in new paid resources.

On top of it within the splat-book there is the ever-increasing tendency of putting silly "special class only" or "special race only" or by abusing the archetype stacking rules to make archetype impossible to combine that is something that has an action-figure-like approach that not even action figures had in them:

Feats, archetypes, etc... cannot be combined...are supposed to work only with that splat-book material...and splat-book never get any serious rule clarification, apart from the whatever PFS-legal material included in it (and most half-cooked rules, talents, etc... get simply removed from PFS material to avoid saying a word about them)...

I am under the impression that lack of clarification on the "Mastering the Wild" chapter of an hardcover book shows that Paizo has become a much less serious and player-oriented ("enthusiasts'") publishing company and more a grey money-focused company who only cares about "fire and forgetting" books:

While an ideal approach would suggest to not have "orphan" materials like splat books who never get an explanation for brilliant but half-done rules, the hard cover materials should be at least paid enough attention to get an in-deep treatment of the most half-baked rules within them...would have been nice to understand how the Ultimate Wilderness rules about harvesting monster parts could have been "interlocked" with previous splat-books material...but no...

Paizo merely seems to launch new lines...new editions...while leaving a lot of the stuff they do half-done and half-baked...

...even the fact that they turned Archives of Nethys into the SRD source....while AoN is a very good and well-done source, it shows us that Paizo is "cutting" anything who doesn't make "quick cash":

The SRD...the FAQs...have always received a very limited and delayed treatment...the SRD have been "to be updated" since ages...and the SRD update was supposed to come with a lot of rule clarifications, not just focused on PFS...but with this move that long-repeated promise is "gone"...

I frankly think would be nice if Paizo started providing a serious (and not PFS-only) rule clarification on its books, else frankly they seem to be taking the old TSR-path: A myriad of "fire-and-forget" incoherent and unsupported books just to make "quick cash" and forget about them.

I don't think TSR's path is a good path for a publishing company to take, considering how TSR ended up!

Skarm

Silver Crusade

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

It’s not fire and forget, it’s that FAQs literally provide no income while also having plenty of requirements to be met to made (the Designers all being together and not being busy, etc). And people universally got mad when they were put so *shrugs*


I wouldn't say "literally" no income, at least not without throwing a "direct" in there as well. FAQs and errata show that Paizo is willing to fix the bugs in their own product, raising customer confidence and making it more likely they'll actually buy the next book when it comes out (even if it looks broken.)

Silver Crusade

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

The noise from the forums is the exact opposite. "Why bother buying something that's going to be 'outdated' almost immediately".

I don't agree with that mindset and agree your's isn't unfounded, it's just there's absolutely no way to gauge that FAQs produce any profits. You make a book, put out a book, book sells, profit.


People ask for FAQs that resolve incomprehensible or broken (in the sense they don't work at all, not that they work too well) published rules, which would enhance sales for those doing research and learning a book contains busted material.

Paizo also (sometimes) provides (sometimes) unasked for FAQs that nerf stuff, suppressing sales in the way you mention by harming confidence in the clear and workable rules that they have published.

Silver Crusade

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

The FAQ turning out the way you didn't want it to does not make it unasked for, that's how the FAQs work, someone had to be asking for them.

Also your statements contradict each other. "FAQs increase sales." "FAQs decrease sales" Whether they make things work better or nerf is usually up to interpretation.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Pawns Subscriber

About the Pose as Scenery plant companion trick: can anyone provide advice on how to improve that Disguise check? I don't think it's a class skill for animal companions, and many plant companions have a low Cha which works against that +8 Disguise check.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated! thank you!

PS: under the Bestiary's description of the Plant type, we have this "The following are class skills for plants: Perception and Stealth." which leads me to think this Pose as Scenery trick may have been intended for Stealth instead of Disguise.


Rysky wrote:

The FAQ turning out the way you didn't want it to does not make it unasked for, that's how the FAQs work, someone had to be asking for them.

Also your statements contradict each other. "FAQs increase sales." "FAQs decrease sales" Whether they make things work better or nerf is usually up to interpretation.

My statements do not contradict each other; you were simply unable to understand the difference between the two statements. One suggested that an unmet FAQ need would potentially enhance sales (slightly), the other that an undesired (outside of PFS GMs) FAQs actually being produced are potentially reducing sales (slightly).

Silver Crusade

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

No I get what you're thinking, it's just not how it is. There's not a unified pile of "These are the FAQs everyone loves/wants" and "No one wanted these FAQs".

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Subscriber

Is there an official errata yet? I know Paizo was neck deep in PF2, but it's also been one year since the Feb 2018 FAQ entries.

The "free downloads" web link now goes to the PF2 pre-order page...

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