Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Construct Handbook

3.70/5 (based on 6 ratings)
Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Construct Handbook

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We Have the Technology!

Mortals have been obsessed with replicating life through metal and magic, and from their great labors have come all manner of constructs. The secrets to creating these marvels are usually reserved for the powerful and skilled, but now they are finally revealed! Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Construct Handbook opens the book on the powerful knowledge to create constructs and reveals never-before-seen clockworks, golems, and robots. Within these pages, you'll find:

  • Information on how to build a construct, as well as new modifications for your constructs.
  • Archetypes for characters who assemble or fight constructs, such as the construct caller, who builds constructs from planar energies.
  • New magic items that assist with both the creation of constructs and their destruction.
  • More than a dozen new constructs of all types, including clockwork goblins, gladiator robots, sand golems, and the powerful and enigmatic automatons.

Pathfinder Campaign Setting: Construct Handbook is intended for use with the Pathfinder campaign setting, but it can be easily adapted to any fantasy world.

ISBN-13: 978-1-60125-989-9

Note: This product is part of the Pathfinder Lost Omens Subscription.

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3.70/5 (based on 6 ratings)

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Solidly Decent

4/5

I will readily admit that I'm usually rather hard on Paizo with my reviews. But I have to say that I generally liked this book. I was hoping for options like ways for your character to become a construct over time--piece by piece. Or something that lets you merge with a construct similar to the Synthesist Summoner. Sadly, no such options included.

Overall, it's got a lot of constructs as monsters in it, has a good amount of flavor text about creating them, some options on improving them, and some archetypes around either building or fighting constructs.

Of the archetypes included, there are a bunch of bad ones, a few moderately interesting ones, 1 that is horribly written as to be contradictory (at least, it seems that way) and a couple that are actually pretty good. The Construct Saboteur gives some good options for rogues. The shining star is the Voice of Brigh bard, though. I really want to find a way to switch my character in Iron Gods into one of these.


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Dragon78 wrote:

Haven't had a chance to read the book yet, only glanced at it, though I do really like the automations. I will read it thoroughly when I get my physical copy.

Automations
** spoiler omitted **

The automatons really seem to be more interesting than I expected. I can't wait to see all these new constructs.


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Society Subscriber
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"


thecursor wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"

It's a tough one indeed. If you want to stay on the good side, the creature would have to volunteer to be turned into a robot - for example because its natural body is close to death. And even then you would have to make sure the process inflicts as little pain as possible.

On the lawful side, there might be a bunch of restrictions what creatures are allowed be turned into what robots. For example you shouldn't provide a typical goblin with a battle robot chassis that allows him to tear down whole villages.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
SheepishEidolon wrote:
thecursor wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"

It's a tough one indeed. If you want to stay on the good side, the creature would have to volunteer to be turned into a robot - for example because its natural body is close to death. And even then you would have to make sure the process inflicts as little pain as possible.

On the lawful side, there might be a bunch of restrictions what creatures are allowed be turned into what robots. For example you shouldn't provide a typical goblin with a battle robot chassis that allows him to tear down whole villages.

But it could be Goblins villages...


4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
thecursor wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"

Well, per the book, where Frankenstein went wrong was not in creating his monster, but in subsequently being horrified by it and rejecting it. So as long as the creature volunteers to become a robot and you don't immediately then start being a huge jerk to it, you're probably fine. ;-)


Souls At War wrote:
SheepishEidolon wrote:
thecursor wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"

It's a tough one indeed. If you want to stay on the good side, the creature would have to volunteer to be turned into a robot - for example because its natural body is close to death. And even then you would have to make sure the process inflicts as little pain as possible.

On the lawful side, there might be a bunch of restrictions what creatures are allowed be turned into what robots. For example you shouldn't provide a typical goblin with a battle robot chassis that allows him to tear down whole villages.

But it could be Goblins villages...

Suddenly I have this vision of Goblins getting hold of a mecha and going on a rampage through a Pact World city . . . Starfinder AP hook, anyone?


Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
UnArcaneElection wrote:
Souls At War wrote:
SheepishEidolon wrote:
thecursor wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
The Gold Sovereign wrote:
I want to create robots out of living creatures... =/
Like Dr. Frankenstein?

No! No... Not like him... Well... Yes... But you know, in a lawful good way. =)

"Yes, Hello, is there a lawful good way to play God and to create an abomination of life itself?"

It's a tough one indeed. If you want to stay on the good side, the creature would have to volunteer to be turned into a robot - for example because its natural body is close to death. And even then you would have to make sure the process inflicts as little pain as possible.

On the lawful side, there might be a bunch of restrictions what creatures are allowed be turned into what robots. For example you shouldn't provide a typical goblin with a battle robot chassis that allows him to tear down whole villages.

But it could be Goblins villages...

Suddenly I have this vision of Goblins getting hold of a mecha and going on a rampage through a Pact World city . . . Starfinder AP hook, anyone?

What I'd like is a construct book or construct creation rules for SF period. Only constructs PCs can use are the Mechanic drones, the spell bots from a technomancer, or summoning one of like maybe 3-4 types of constructs from the summon creature spell as a technomancer....... Hardly anything towards a creative construct other than mild battle assistance unless it is higher lvl robot summon....


Back then I was talking about using a template to create constructs from a living creature... Not actually warping a living flesh creature into a construct... =O


A flesh golem-like creature template would be interesting.


Was hoping we'd get a Shackle Golem but I'm still happy with what we got in this manual. :D


Is this book compatible with the Original Pathfinder, or is this going to be for the Playtest/ v2?


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

No PF2 stuff for sale until next summer. This book is for PF1.

Dark Archive

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

PF2 starts at GenCon 2019. All Paizo releases until then are PF1. This book is, as David Knott 242 said, for PF1.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Really guys, the Cruorchymist takes Con drain to heal his homunculus 1d6 per point? Seriously?

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.

The shifter archetype reads like whoever wrote it hadn't actually done more than briefly glance at the shifter. It goes out of it's way to specify a difference between using wild shape and using major aspect, when those are the same thing.


James Jacobs wrote:
CorvusMask wrote:
Does the book describe alternate ways to build constructs? Like, I remember posters long time ago wondering if using elemental spirits in golem is technically slavery and if there is alternate way to build golems
It will discuss that element of golem building and provide alternate methods that aren't "stealth evil" soul-enslavement methods for golem construction, yes.

I don't see this mentioned though I might've glanced over it. Can someone point me to the page where non "stealth evil" soul-enslavement methods for golem constructs is written?


5 people marked this as a favorite.

Okay I seriously want to know WHOSE brilliant idea it was to give the robot death machine an adamantine chainsaw???!!!!

Spoiler:
Because while it's insane it's also pretty damn cool.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:

Okay I seriously want to know WHOSE brilliant idea it was to give the robot death machine an adamantine chainsaw???!!!!

** spoiler omitted **

Because as proven in Iron Gods, chainsaws are the most badass weapon


6 people marked this as a favorite.

Hey, reviewers! We're literally at the end of this edition cycle and you guys STILL haven't figured out that Campaign Setting books are for game masters and Player Companions are for players.


So, uh.... Does the Clocksmith Wizard seem a bit... odd to anyone else? The big draw of the class seems to be getting Craft Construct at level 1. Which might be great if everything you crafted didn't cost 150% of what it normally would (and they're absurdly expensive already). On top of that, most constructs (especially Clockwork constructs) have a minimum CL to make.

...So... Is it just a really bad archetype? I'm fine with something mechanically inferior, so long as it has a novel concept. This just doesn't seem to have that, though.


Dαedαlus wrote:

So, uh.... Does the Clocksmith Wizard seem a bit... odd to anyone else? The big draw of the class seems to be getting Craft Construct at level 1. Which might be great if everything you crafted didn't cost 150% of what it normally would (and they're absurdly expensive already). On top of that, most constructs (especially Clockwork constructs) have a minimum CL to make.

...So... Is it just a really bad archetype? I'm fine with something mechanically inferior, so long as it has a novel concept. This just doesn't seem to have that, though.

My first impression of the arcanist, wizard, and occultist archetypes devoted to dealing with constructs was that they were all bad. Which isn't too surprising, since most archetypes are bad, but disappointing that none of them rose even to mediocrity.


Brother Fen wrote:
Hey, reviewers! We're literally at the end of this edition cycle and you guys STILL haven't figured out that Campaign Setting books are for game masters and Player Companions are for players.

I would normally be fine with leaving it be. However, because we are at the end of the cycle, the book needs to hold up to being quite possibly the only construct-focused splatbook in the entire run of the game, and thus provide for both players and GMs.


Hi guys, I have a question.

Construct Caller (Summoner (Unchained) archetype) wrote:

Planar Tinkering (Ex): At 3rd level, a construct caller learns to better shape planar energy to improve her eidolon. The number of points in her eidolon’s evolution pool increases by 1. The number of points in the eidolon’s evolution pool increases by an additional 1 at 7th level and every 4 levels thereafter, for a total of 5 additional points at 19th level.

This replaces summon monster I.

Is this "replaces summon monster I" replacing the entire summon monster class feature?

Or just replace the summon monster I you got at level 1. When you level 3, you still get summon monster I? (So your progress will be slower 1 step.)

Thanks!

Paizo Employee Developer

2 people marked this as a favorite.

It replaces summon monster in its entirety.


I'm sure I'm just missing something, but I have a question about "Self Destruct," here.

The save DC for Self Destruct is (10 + 1/2 Construct's HD + CON Modifier) but a Construct by definition has no CON Modifier and is treated as having a CON of 10.

So why is the CON Modifier even listed in this ability? Am I missing something in the book that gives a Construct a CON Modifier?

Or should this DC just be (10 + 1/2 HD)?

I'd be really grateful for some clarification, here, as I have need for an exploding construct in the not too distant future.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I love the Automaton sub-type (up-loaded souls!), and was disappointed to see that the book has only five of them. Did any more turn up, either by Paizo or a 3PP?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Also: any ideas on how to make a Transformer-type robot with an AI, using the existing PF1 rules?

Paizo Employee Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.
jemstone wrote:

I'm sure I'm just missing something, but I have a question about "Self Destruct," here.

The save DC for Self Destruct is (10 + 1/2 Construct's HD + CON Modifier) but a Construct by definition has no CON Modifier and is treated as having a CON of 10.

So why is the CON Modifier even listed in this ability? Am I missing something in the book that gives a Construct a CON Modifier?

Or should this DC just be (10 + 1/2 HD)?

I'd be really grateful for some clarification, here, as I have need for an exploding construct in the not too distant future.

10 + 1/2 HD + Con modifier is correct.

We try to make sure we tie DCs of all kind to an ability score in case a GM wants to tweak a creature's ability scores. Changes like these have rippling effects for a monster, so knowing what is or isn't affected by such a change is helpful. If a GM wanted to increase a creature's DC, they could easily do so by upping the associated ability score. As this is something we do across the board with our monsters, we try to avoid having exceptions so a GM doesn't have to relearn what they already know.

Thus, we have constructs with effects that are Constitution-based. (Take a look at the alchemical golem's alchemy ability or the ice golem's icy destruction for some examples.) In order to keep with this standard and to also somewhat mirror the clockwork golem's death burst, I made sure that the DC scaled with an ability score, in this case Constitution. 99.99% of the time, this will mean that the DC calculation is effectively 10 + 1/2 Hit Dice. However, as we can never know if that will always be the case, we have to keep that association with Constitution in place. Maybe a GM will decide to make a unique construct that does have a Constitution score or uses a different score in place of Constitution for the effects of determining DCs.If that were to ever happen, knowing the proper calculation is helpful.

Now, if you feel the DC is too low for the construct you plan to use, feel free to tweak the calculation to be something like 10 + Hit Dice or 10 + 1/2 HD + Str modifier. Don't be afraid to tweak the rules or even toss them out entirely to better suit your game!


Luis Loza wrote:
jemstone wrote:

I'm sure I'm just missing something, but I have a question about "Self Destruct," here.

The save DC for Self Destruct is (10 + 1/2 Construct's HD + CON Modifier) but a Construct by definition has no CON Modifier and is treated as having a CON of 10.

So why is the CON Modifier even listed in this ability? Am I missing something in the book that gives a Construct a CON Modifier?

Or should this DC just be (10 + 1/2 HD)?

I'd be really grateful for some clarification, here, as I have need for an exploding construct in the not too distant future.

10 + 1/2 HD + Con modifier is correct.

We try to make sure we tie DCs of all kind to an ability score in case a GM wants to tweak a creature's ability scores. Changes like these have rippling effects for a monster, so knowing what is or isn't affected by such a change is helpful. If a GM wanted to increase a creature's DC, they could easily do so by upping the associated ability score. As this is something we do across the board with our monsters, we try to avoid having exceptions so a GM doesn't have to relearn what they already know.

Thus, we have constructs with effects that are Constitution-based. (Take a look at the alchemical golem's alchemy ability or the ice golem's icy destruction for some examples.) In order to keep with this standard and to also somewhat mirror the clockwork golem's death burst, I made sure that the DC scaled with an ability score, in this case Constitution. 99.99% of the time, this will mean that the DC calculation is effectively 10 + 1/2 Hit Dice. However, as we can never know if that will always be the case, we have to keep that association with Constitution in place. Maybe a GM will decide to make a unique construct that does have a Constitution score or uses a different score in place of Constitution for the effects of determining DCs.If that were to ever happen, knowing the proper calculation is helpful.

Now, if you feel the DC is too low for the construct you plan to use, feel free to...

Hm.

Fair enough, I suppose.

Thank you for the swift reply!

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