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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Average product rating:

3.00/5 (based on 59 ratings)

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A tragically flawed product

2/5

With an outright moratorium on discussion of the class that was supposed to be the crown jewel of the book in the product discussion forums, I feel compelled to lower the rating I was considering giving until such time as proper addressing of the many flaws with the class can be addressed.

I am hoping that this will be changed for the better and soon.


A great number of tools and options for the wilds!

5/5

So, I've been looking forward to this book for a bit. I've been wanting expanded weather and environment rules for a bit, and not to mention some more love for the nature based classes. This book certainly did not disappoint.

The class and race options are all very flavorful and interesting, with the Vine Leshy being one of the best race additions in ages. I am absolutely in love with the Terrakineticist and Geomancer (Occultist) archetypes as well, being classes that change abilities based on their environment.

As for the Spells, feats, and other player stuff, that will take some time to sink my teeth into, but I'm enjoying what I'm seeing.

Now to my favorite bits. The GM facing rules are fantastic and just what I need to run games out in the wilderness. The Discovery and exploration rules are a great codification of "hunting for hidden temples and the like" mechanics, and I will be using them in upcoming games, certainly. Rules for foraging, trophy collection, and others also really flesh out wilderness games, as well.

Now, I may be the odd man out, but these Weather rules are my favorite part. Codified, d% generation of weather based on several factors. This is important for me, as it is a great way to spice things up, as well as something that I have a hard time deciding on. The rules are quite extensive.

All in all, I love this book and recommend it wholeheartedly.


Great book with a lot of excellent new options

4/5

After some of the negative comments I was unsure if this would be a purchase or not, but for $9.99 on the PDF what do you have to lose? Then I was blown away. Regardless of what you think of the Shifter, the rest of the book is excellent, with plenty of new, exciting, and interesting options and additions.

As for the Shifter, I can see where some people would be disappointed, and would have expected something different, but for what it is, the Shifter is fine. They're not the end-all, be-all class for shapeshifting...that kind of class still doesn't exist, but they are a nature-based class, centered around taking on aspects of a chosen animal aspect, with new aspects chosen at higher levels. Some think the animal selections are too limited, but the introductory paragraphs before the aspects explicitly says these aren't the only choices...and encourages players and GM's to create their own. I have a feeling we'll see more Aspects in the future. The only thing I would change on the Shifter, is to give players a choice on their natural attack. I wouldn't make it claws only. Depending on the aspect I'd let them choose gore, bite, or slam instead, depending on what would be appropriate for their first Aspect. That's easy to houserule, and hopefully something that might get expanded upon with new archetypes somewhere down the line. Honestly, it's a little quibble.

Don't be scared away on this one, I think it's one of the best player focused books they've put out in a while!


Great book definitely worth the buy.

5/5


Great Ideas, Poor execution

2/5


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Perspicacious Wanderer wrote:
I am crossing my fingers for a dragon based archetype for the Shifter. I may finally be able to make Ryu from Breath of Fire.

Cross your fingers for a good/decent/usable one.


Some nature/fey/first world themed rogue archetypes and rogue talents would be cool.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Glad to see more Ultimate books coming.


My wish for the Ultimate series is still the "Ultimate Dungeon" with a class based on creating constructs.


I thought this was debuting this summer..not until fall? I guess I can wait until then...it will be difficult, though! :)

Jon Brazer Enterprises

1 person marked this as a favorite.
jedi8187 wrote:
The NPC wrote:
Do you suppose there are going to be a skinwalker specific archetype?
Eventually yes, but I'm skeptical it will be in this book.

Much better luck finding skinwalker support here and here.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

One suggestion I want to throw out there for the shifter: make it so that a natural shapeshifter (such as a kitsune or werewolf) can mix his natural polymorph effects with his shifter class abilities. As the polymorph rules are currently written shapeshifting races are actually bad choices for shapeshifting classes.... and this makes no sense.

Skinwalkers are actually the worst off, because they lose half of their racial stat bonuses when they use other polymorph effects.


It would be cool to see some fey/first world focused summoning spells.


I'd like to see armor rules by environment. Specifically how you deal with the fact that heavier armors are probably bad in hot environments, and armor variants that make up for it.


you already get penalties/higher DC for fort saves in hot environments - not sure if it'd be possible to have heavy armour that didn't get that


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
dharkus wrote:
you already get penalties/higher DC for fort saves in hot environments - not sure if it'd be possible to have heavy armour that didn't get that

People of the Sands had armor vents you could add to your armor to reduce the penalty, while the Pathfinder Society Field Guide had the comfort enchantment you could add to armor to eliminate it.

The Exchange

FINALLY!

A class that is actually focused on shapeshifting!

As a bonus, it's not homebrew! It's made by people who are pros at this sort of thing!


So, one thing I am hoping for that would be perfect for this book is an expansion to skills like swim and climb. I'd like systems that can handle encounters involving these skills with a bit more finesse and complexity.


Theliah Strongarm wrote:

FINALLY!

A class that is actually focused on shapeshifting!

As a bonus, it's not homebrew! It's made by people who are pros at this sort of thing!

People haven't been this excited since the Kineticist. Muahaha!

Liberty's Edge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Luthorne wrote:
People of the Sands had armor vents you could add to your armor to reduce the penalty, while the Pathfinder Society Field Guide had the comfort enchantment you could add to armor to eliminate it.

They sound like great candidates to get into a hardcover so they'll go on the PRD.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Well I know haven't been this excited for as a class since the kineticists;)


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm sure people will be at least as happy with the shifter as they were with the kineticist.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

I am happy with the kineticist;)


The Wilderness Survival Guide AD&D (1986) was one of my favourites. A pathfinder book touching on similar things is very welcome! It can be tricky to breath novelty into wilderness treks instead of hand waving them, so I have my fingers crossed that the natural hazards and terrain will provide good building blocks for doing some of this.

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I addition to the Shifter,

Quote:
•New and expanded rules to push your animal companions, mounts, and familiars to wild new heights.

This is very exciting.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

I wonder if we will see the iconic shifter at paizocon? :)


How is it that I only just now discovered this?!?! I am very stoked for this book, I will post my sentiments with the others that I am extremely excited about the Shifter! I've been waiting for Paizo to release a shapeshifting focused archetype for the druid.

One of my more memorable PCs from 3.5 days was a variant Shapeshift druid. While they weren't nearly as powerful as the standard druid (losing spellcasting), I thoroughly enjoyed being able to have unlimited shapeshifting that was actually combat viable.

Also, I'm ALWAYS excited for more kineticist options!


Hopefully there will be some kind of info for this during Paizo Con. It would be cool to see iconic shifter, cover art, or something.

Designer

13 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
Hopefully there will be some kind of info for this during Paizo Con. It would be cool to see iconic shifter, cover art, or something.

Nah...we thought we'd let people down this Paizo Con. It's can't always be cool.

OF COURSE, THERE WILL BE MORE INFO AT PAIZO CON!!!!!


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

I hope this book includes living lands. Stats for living thinking forests that shifts trails and leads those who would harm it into danger. Maybe a system similar to haunts where living lands can personify themselves and to take on intruders or things that are abhorrent to nature.


You might be right Macfarland, I have been disappointed before.


I am absolutely excited for this book! I love things fey and nature related and the Shifter seems awesome. I can't wait to learn more!!


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragon78 wrote:
You might be right Macfarland, I have been disappointed before.

He's an anti paladin wouldn't he fall if he told you the truth?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
You might be right Macfarland, I have been disappointed before.
He's an anti paladin wouldn't he fall if he told you the truth?

Not unless the truth best advanced his evil agenda. In this case, parting more nerds from their lunch money, which is roughly a 7.5 on the Pig Kicking Scale of Anti-Paladin EEEVIL.


Well this is a November release, so it would surprise me if they showed the cover art or iconic at Paizo Con. But I wouldn't complain if they did;)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:

I'm counting for a male elf, about time.

DM_aka_Dudemeister wrote:

The Alchemist is a male elf.

Gorbacz wrote:

I really need to throw the thought that he's a half-elf out of my head, thanks.

You and me both!

Dark Archive

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Gorbacz wrote:

I'm counting for a male elf, about time.

There's three Halfling Iconics (Bard, Mesmerist, Arcanist), so there's always the possibility of a third Elf, Dwarf, or whatever.

Although the evil Iconics had a few non-core races, like a Dhampir and a Duergar. Perhaps that's precedent that Paizo is ready to embrace a non-core Iconic. There's a few Golarion-specific races, like the Changeling or a Tengu, that could also be an option. (And a Shifter of a race that has a natural attack already, be it a beak/bite or pair of sharp nails/claws, might be saving itself a single shapeshifting option that it can use for something else like digitigrade legs for extra speed or armored hide for skin or beastie eyes for low-light or darkvision.)

Silver Crusade

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

I'm counting for a male elf, about time.

There's three Halfling Iconics (Bard, Mesmerist, Arcanist), so there's always the possibility of a third Elf, Dwarf, or whatever.

Although the evil Iconics had a few non-core races, like a Dhampir and a Duergar. Perhaps that's precedent that Paizo is ready to embrace a non-core Iconic. There's a few Golarion-specific races, like the Changeling or a Tengu, that could also be an option. (And a Shifter of a race that has a natural attack already, be it a beak/bite or pair of sharp nails/claws, might be saving itself a single shapeshifting option that it can use for something else like digitigrade legs for extra speed or armored hide for skin or beastie eyes for low-light or darkvision.)

I don't believe either of those are Golarion specific.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'm really looking forward to getting this book! :)

Character options are usually a good thing. The Shifter sounds like potential fun, particularly if it's martial and/or trickster-based. I'm a bit more "meh" about the First World (not being a Fey fan), but that certainly doesn't detract from the book in my eyes. Last but definitely not least, a system for generating weather has long been a wish of mine!

Regarding the weather system, factors like cloud cover would be appreciated, particularly at night. It would really help with determining when characters' low-light vision works. The inside front cover of Blood of Shadows (Player Companion line) distinguishes between Dim Light (e.g., outdoors on a moonlit night) and Darkness (e.g., outdoors on a cloudy, moonless night), all based on the CRB. Therefore the presence of cloud cover during the dark of the moon (or prior to moon-rise/post-moonset) suddenly becomes interesting. (Don't ask me what happens if the night is just moonless or just cloudy. I'm assuming that the low-light vision still works in that case.)

More love, please, for Kineticists! Especially phyto-Kineticists, including that all-important Basic Phytokinesis.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Set wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

I'm counting for a male elf, about time.

There's three Halfling Iconics (Bard, Mesmerist, Arcanist), so there's always the possibility of a third Elf, Dwarf, or whatever.

Although the evil Iconics had a few non-core races, like a Dhampir and a Duergar. Perhaps that's precedent that Paizo is ready to embrace a non-core Iconic. There's a few Golarion-specific races, like the Changeling or a Tengu, that could also be an option. (And a Shifter of a race that has a natural attack already, be it a beak/bite or pair of sharp nails/claws, might be saving itself a single shapeshifting option that it can use for something else like digitigrade legs for extra speed or armored hide for skin or beastie eyes for low-light or darkvision.)

My votes for a Skinwalker....


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Mine too

nighttree wrote:
Set wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

I'm counting for a male elf, about time.

There's three Halfling Iconics (Bard, Mesmerist, Arcanist), so there's always the possibility of a third Elf, Dwarf, or whatever.

Although the evil Iconics had a few non-core races, like a Dhampir and a Duergar. Perhaps that's precedent that Paizo is ready to embrace a non-core Iconic. There's a few Golarion-specific races, like the Changeling or a Tengu, that could also be an option. (And a Shifter of a race that has a natural attack already, be it a beak/bite or pair of sharp nails/claws, might be saving itself a single shapeshifting option that it can use for something else like digitigrade legs for extra speed or armored hide for skin or beastie eyes for low-light or darkvision.)

My votes for a Skinwalker....


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Quote:
I think it's in your best interest to make sure that the Adventurer's Guide does well. The Chronicle of the Righteous was one book where the Books of the Damned were three, so it has far less page count to fill up a hardcover. (Adding Concordance of Rivals content might swell that, but... see below.) If it's going to get an expanded and updated release, the 192-page format of the Adventurer's Guide is the most likely way it's going to happen. And since it's a world-specific book, that relies on the Adventurer's Guide doing well and proving the experiment successful.

I hear ya loud and clear hun. I've already purchased my copy and so have all my friends in my RPG group. ^_^

Quote:
The content is thematically dissonant. They're not going to put together Good and Neutral Outsider Worship. If someone has a better title idea, let James Jacobs know!

Yeah, that would be an issue but one should consider that the number of fiendish outsider races is ten while the number of Celestial outsider races is six. Adding Psychopomps, Aeons, Inevitables, and Proteans would bring the total number of outsider races to ten for a manual combining Chronicle of the Righteous and Concordance of Rivals (which would pretty much equal the Book of the Damned up above).

Quote:
The biggest issue, though - the bane of Second Darkness and the Dragon Empires - is sales. The Book of the Damned exists as much because its components are out of stock as for any other reason. As long as copies of the Chronicle of the Righteous are still in the Paizo warehouse, a hardcover is not happening. The same almost certainly goes for a softcover Concordance of Rivals, for the record. (Staff passion and other factors influence this as well, but... if it won't sell, they won't make it.)

Yup, I see that. Well, it may take people just buying the manuals to sell on Ebay but I'm sure sooner or later Chronicle of the Righteous (as well as Second Darkness and Dragon Empires) will sell out. :D


More love kineticist, especially phyto-kineticist would be awesome.

Weather and environment rules both natural and supernatural sounds interesting. I hope there will be different effects on an environment that has been affected by the first world.

I wonder if there will be any alternate racial traits, favored class bonuses, and/or racial feats.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber

I wouldn't expect any specific love for phytokineticist in this book, for a simple reason - it's entirely based in the softcover lines, and hardcover books don't reference softcover books in that fashion.

The only way it would happen is if the entire initial entry for the wood element were reprinted here. While that's not impossible, the kineticist uses a lot of words. I don't think it's something that will happen. Another alternative is some sort of content that benefits wood above other elements, while (somehow) never specifically mentioning wood. Mr. Seifter did hint at a new kineticist archetype recently...

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
Dragon78 wrote:
I wonder if there will be any alternate racial traits, favored class bonuses, and/or racial feats.

I wouldn't expect the first, based on previous Ultimate books.

At the very least, shifter favored class bonuses for the seven Core races are a safe bet.

Racial feats aren't impossible, but neither is there any reason to expect them.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Mark Seifter wrote:
Jonas Seaborn wrote:
jedi8187 wrote:

Oh I'm on board for the shifter. If it has some spell casting that's cool, but I assume it won't which is fine cause shape sifting is awesome.

The list of classes getting Archetypes looks good, a nice mix.

I love fey so I'm happy to see them around, but agree that some elemental stuff (especially that might tie into some under developed Kineticist elements, hint) is present.

Will we finally get Basic Phytokinesis?

zergtitan wrote:

Really excited for the Shifter Class! can't wait to see the playtest!

Also quick question for Mark, Since the Wood kineticist is still missing it's Basic Phytokinesis talent, will we be seeing that element released properly in this book?

Was going to ask this myself.
If we include the wood element in any new book, it will be certain to have basic phytokinesis, as well as positive blast, verdant blast, etc. However, I'm not confirming wood as being in this book (though kineticist content is confirmed in the product description). You'll have to find out in November! (or sooner with blog previews)

Just reposting Mark's response to the wood kineticist question.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Considering I haven't liked a single kineticist archetype, that is nothing for me to get excited about.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion Subscriber
zergtitan wrote:
Just reposting Mark's response to the wood kineticist question.

Indeed. All I'm saying is, that's an awful lot of words, especially if the Psychic Anthology content is included. And then they're leaving void behind. So I wouldn't get your hopes up too much.

(Conversely, if they do decide they want to reprint it all, this is exactly the place to do it.)

Dark Archive

I hope this book will have more options for swamp and desert related characters

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

Having a wild mana blast option could be nice. Rather than be a specific element, it's a rolled table of elemental blasts, with the chance to trigger similar effects to wild magic(positive surges and negative). While it could be done as an archetype to kineticist, I would like to have it be a pseudo-elemental option. Able to be taken as an expanded element, but having properties that make it seperate to admixtures and normal composites. Note I don't see this beating out Omnikinesis. Since you do have to take burn, it's less reliable and can even risk a backfire or magical error.


Since we have a lot of terrain based druid archetypes maybe we will get some cool ones for hunters.

Do we have any swamp and/or desert focused ranger archetypes yet?


2 people marked this as a favorite.

A Shifter-like Bard archetype would be cool - like Taliesin from Celtic mythology or Deth from The Riddlemaster of Hed.


Well if we are going to have a shape shifting themed archetype for bard then why not ones for hunter, rogue, ranger, slayer, swashbuckler, medium, spiritualist, and monk.


Dragon78 wrote:
Well if we are going to have a shape shifting themed archetype for bard then why not ones for hunter, rogue, ranger, slayer, swashbuckler, medium, spiritualist, and monk.

And you get an archetype and you get an archetype You all get an archetype!


Vidmaster7 wrote:
Dragon78 wrote:
Well if we are going to have a shape shifting themed archetype for bard then why not ones for hunter, rogue, ranger, slayer, swashbuckler, medium, spiritualist, and monk.
And you get an archetype and you get an archetype You all get an archetype!

Out of all the possibilities, I'm anxious to see the archetypes for the shifter itself. We already got a "confirmation"(?) about there being archetypes for the class that will indeed allow it to "shift" into other sorts of creatures... And you all known I'm hopping for a dragon themed shifter... *-*

I would love to see the Draconic Heritage feat here, but I'm sure it will take longer for it to ever make it into the Core line (if ever). =/

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