DriveThruRPG.com
Close
Close
Browse
 Publisher Info









Back
Other comments left for this publisher:
Ultimate Relationships
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/26/2016 03:34:31

An Endzeitgeist.com review of the revised edition


This pdf clocks in at 14 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page inside front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page ToC, 2 pages of introduction, 1 page table-index, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 4 pages of content, so let's take a look!


We've all been there - a key-NPC just is more interesting to the players than a given module anticipated - whether as for romantic interests or just for the purpose of being buddies, the social component of interaction between characters is pretty much a component often neglected in PFRPG. Now this pdf provides a concise, no-frills base system to track how players and NPCs interact with one another. Basically, relationships are codified in 10 ranks, with rank 4, 7 and 10 being milestones. the default rank is 0, with 1 representing a basic alliance. Much like what happens behind the scenes with videogames from Mass Effect to The Walking Dead, these relationships are codified via the tracking of camaraderie points.


When a PC acts in concordance with a specific NPC, the PC gets 1 - 2 camaraderie points, with contrary actions potentially decreasing relationships. Whenever a PC levels up, he can assign 2 camaraderie points to assign to an NPC to represent the PC spending extra time with that NPC. Camaraderie starts at 0 for each new rank, but ranks are NOT lost due to camaraderie-loss - instead, the PC suffers a penalty according to negative camaraderie points. The higher the rank, the more camaraderie points one requires to rank up. Once the PC has accumulated enough camaraderie points to rank up, a talk is required, potentially also requiring a skill check or more. Failing to rank up does provide bonuses to future checks, so, much like in the Persona games, your relationships will not stagnate. Finally, there would be the component of affinities - essentially a representation on how a character interacts with a PC depending on diverse circumstances: A xenophobic dwarf may, for example, be a tough nut to crack for your elven character, while other dwarves find establishing a connection easier.


There also are so-called milestones (on the nit-picky side - the first reference to them points towards page XX, instead of the correct page-number) - one can determine these via providing about 5 per AP-book, with each providing different qualities of the interactions and gifts via a solid table of DCs - craftsmanship and repetition of such acts determine the target DC of these interactions to get camaraderie points. Rivalries are also covered in these contexts. A PC with a campaign-specific trait begins with a chosen NPC at rank 2, with +2 points towards rank 3.


Ranks achieved also net the PC XP-rewards and additionally, NPCs and PCs may actually end up with tangible, rules-relevant benefits from better relationships. EDIT: The system, generally, remains untouched, though the revised edition does offer a couple of subtle changes - for one, the pdf now provides advice for using these rules beyond the frame of the 6-book-AP-structure, with the imho most important change now being that the pdf does provide an easy formula you can use with e.g. mega-adventures and similar, different set-ups - yes, including downtime. Additionally, advice on affinity, for example, has been provided. Finally, the pdf mentions the possibility of redemption paths of evil characters in the future...interesting!


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are very good, though not perfect. Layout adheres to legendary Games' beautiful full-color two-column standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience. The pdf provides a solid array of nice full-color artworks.


Mark Seifter's relationship system per se is absolutely awesome and at 2 bucks, very affordable to boot. At this length, I did not expect fully fleshed out relationships herein, but I do believe that this pdf would have didactically benefited from one or two sample relationships to illustrate the system in game - if you want the examples, check out Imperial Relationships or the Ultimate Relationships-series. This is the nitpick-category of complaining, though.


Significantly more important, for my purposes at least, is the fact that this revised edition does offer rules for non-6-book-AP-relationships, which basically renders the revised edition universally useful as opposed to the self-imposed restrictions of the earlier formula. This instantly catapults this inexpensive, cool pdf to a new final verdict of 5 stars + seal of approval


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Relationships
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Ultimate Relationships #3: The Cassisian Detective
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/20/2016 05:10:16

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Ultimate Relationship-series clocks in at 8 pages - 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page how to use, 1 page SRD leaving us with 4 pages of content, so let's take a look!


All right, so this series provides romantic interests for the PCs as per the Ultimate Relationship-rules, so I'm assuming you're familiar with them. If not, check out that pdf first (and/or my review for it).


All right, so this time around...we romance a helmet with wings. No, I'm not kidding. Look up the artwork. The statblock is the most complex we've seen so far in the series, though, unlike another review I noticed, I saw no glitches pertaining class abilities - the archetype has been correctly added in the iteration of this pdf I read.


Affinity-wise, the cassian detective prefers introverted, silent characters, particularly investigators and the like and obviously has a fondness for riddles and puzzles and, obviously, as a good outsider, he loathes evildoers. A sense of requiring completion makes keeping him around rather easy and he is available for being a cohort as soon as 4th rank.


The detective, interestingly, is devoted to the empyreal lord of departed lovers and as such, entering a proper romantic relationship, abstract though it may be, ultimately would result in conflicting notions, particularly since the entity is currently in a chaste crush on Verity it/her/himself. (This gender-thing is getting confusing regarding helmet-shaped outsiders...apologies. And no, I'm not using "they" - it sounds wrong to me, like finger nails on chalkboard. Sorry.)


That being said, the ranking up procedure of the romance with the cassisian detective easily is the most intriguing so far: For one, the outsider loves riddles, so Int-checks (or out-game riddle-savvy players) are preferred. Secondly, the entity has a perfect memory, so if you're like me and have a better memory than your players, this can really be hilarious...otherwise, I'd suggest taking notes to properly roleplay him. Which is also, by far, the most awesome thing about this installment of Ultimate Relationships - you see, the cassisian does not know about a chaste crush on his mistress and is interested in the gaps and holes of actions and behavior - having a perfect, gapless memory, he feels intrigued by lack - the objectivity of nothing, the concept of presence heightened through absence, making this character truly well-rounded and unique.


Boon-wise, the relationship unlocks either Linguistics or Perform (Oratory) as class skills and +1 to saves versus visual and sonic effects, stacking with celestial obedience, if present. At 10th rank, the boon, you can 1/day expend 3 full-round actions to duplicate the detective's careful teamwork performance lasting 10 minutes and affecting only you and double campaign bonuses associated with the detective.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are good, though not perfect. Layout adheres to a nice two-column full-color standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length. The pdf has a nice artwork of the outsider.


Mark Seifter's Cassisian Detective is by far the weirdest of the relationships so far - but it's also the most unique, intriguing and well-rounded - the character has depth, means for philosophical engagement and character beyond being a relationship-stereotype - in a nutshell, this feels organic and well-crafted. Personally, I consider this by far the most intriguing of the relationships provided so far and well worth a final verdict of 5 stars + seal of approval.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Relationships #3: The Cassisian Detective
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Occult Character Codex: Mediums
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/17/2016 07:32:44

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Occult Character Codex-series clocks in at 28 pages, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page how-to-use, 2 pages of advertisement, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 19 pages of content, so let's take a look!


Occult Adventures is a great book, but the rather complex classes in the book do provide a challenge regarding time-investment to create sample NPCs. This is where this series comes in for the time-starved GM - basically, we have a collection of characters herein, spanning the CRs from 1 - 20, all ready and set for your perusal.


So how were they made? Well, for one, the builds use Pathfinder Unchained's automatic bonus progression, which means that the characters have a better chance to stand against the PCs sans flooding the campaign with magic items. The builds are not made to be sheer exercises in powergaming superiority that exist in a vacuum, instead championing the approach of making viable characters that work concisely as though they were proper characters, complete with a brief personality sketch, but expect no lengthy elaboration of motivations etc.. Options and buffs are included in the statblocks, though handy pre-buff sections provide the information sans them, should your PCs be able to catch the character unaware. There are also some minor pieces of advice for GMs using the character


As far as diversity of the statblocks is concerned, there is, particularly concerning the racial variety, enough going on: Beyond the core-races, we actually get e.g. centaurs and berbalangs. Now, as in previous installments, e.g. the berbalang and centaur-builds look similar in archetypes used, but that similarity comes apart almost immediately once you take a look at feat-choice, spells etc. - so no, no boring straight progressions.


Archetype-wise, we slightly deviate from the formula established by the series - that is, this time around, three archetypes are used in builds: Here, that would be the relic channeler and the storyteller and we also get a reanimated medium - unfortunately, the others aren't covered. On the plus-side, the tactics-section for the respective builds is relatively detailed and the statblocks include buff-suites, where applicable as well as stats for the unbuffed iterations of the respective character. Now, class-specific things to consider would be the following: The mediums presented here are presented with the spirit they usually channel - different spirits obviously have different ramifications. The general selection of spirits featured in the builds is pretty diverse. Taboos have not been preselected - an array of suggested taboos would have been nice. The pdf also noted that archmage's spells do not suffer from arcane spell failure and tactics are based on mediums not gaining additional influence.


The builds themselves, as organic characters, sport barkeepers, con artists and master merchants as well as adventurers; quite a few flavors are covered and provide different foci for the respective characters. Skills and magic item selection is similarly diverse, offering a broad selection of foci for the respective builds.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no glitches. Layout adheres to a beautiful, two-column full-color standard and the pdf sports several beautiful pieces of full-color artwork, some old, some new. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience


Julian Neale's collection of mediums is diverse, concise and covers a significant array of different roles and builds. While I would have loved to see all archetypes covered, I get why not all of them are part of this pdf's cadre of NPCs. All in all, this is a solid collection of NPCs that does what it says on the tin. My final verdict will clock in at 5 stars.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Character Codex: Mediums
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Occult Character Codex: Mesmerists
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/12/2016 02:59:06

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Occult Character Codex-series clocks in at 28 pages, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page how-to-use, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 20 pages of content, so let's take a look!


I like Occult Adventures - a lot. It's one of my favorite Paizo-books out there and the classes rekindled my faith in Paizo's class design, even though the book has some rough edges here and there. Suffice to say, the rather complex classes are cool - but making characters with them takes obviously a bit longer than for less involved classes...and we're all time-starved anyways, right? This is where this series comes in - basically, we have a collection of characters herein, spanning the CRs from 1 - 20, all ready and set for your perusal.


So how were they made? Well, for one, the builds use Pathfinder Unchained's automatic bonus progression, which means that the characters have a better chance to stand against the PCs sans flooding the campaign with magic items - a decision I very much welcome. The builds are not made to be sheer exercises in powergaming superiority that exist in a vacuum, instead championing the approach of making viable characters, complete with a brief personality sketch, though that component is less pronounced than in Purple Duck Games' codices. Options and buffs are included in the statblocks, though handy pre-buff sections provide the information sans them, should your PCs be able to catch the character unaware.


Beyond that, advice on using the characters in combat and class-specific peculiarities are covered as well. The design philosophy, in spite of the relatively brief fluff texts for the characters, is that you have living characters, not an exercise in min-maxing - while efficient at their given tasks and roles, the NPCs in this book ultimately are supposed to feel like they are more than an engine of fine-tuned destruction, sporting e.g. skills that can be used in contexts beyond combat. Long-duration spells are included in the respective statblock, though they also feature lines that provide the stats sans buff-suites. It should be noted that the tactics-section before and during combat is pretty detailed in this book, making the spontaneous handling of the mesmerists in this book slightly easier. A brief guideline regarding the handling of mesmerists is part of the deal before we dive right into the statblocks themselves.


So, we have a massive book of mesmerists spanning the whole range of levels - from level 1 - 20. As far as archetypes are concerned, we get Cult Leaders and Spirit Walkers (the latter in one of the builds multiclassed with 1 fighter level), but no Toxiticians or Vexing Daredevils. (And no, Occult realms' Umbral Mesmerist neither...) On the plus-side, the racial selection this time around is interesting, to say the least: The wonderfully fitting nagaji and kitsune races are represented herein alongside changelings and yes, doppelgängers - the three doppelgänger statblocks are assumed to be part of a doppelgänger conspiracy and represent leaders at different stages of their cabal. Interesting here: While they share some spells in common as a kind of leitmotif, the lists still are diverse and exhibit different foci, a practice that also extend to feat selection -while at first glance, doppelgänger mesmerists wielding greatswords of various potency look similar, even a casual glimpse at the respective feats shows that they employ different tactics and play differently as adversaries. Similarly, spell-lists of the characters that may seem familiar have been tweaked in a lot of subtle nuances that end up creating remarkably different experiences.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no significant glitches. Layout adheres to a beautiful, two-column full-color standard and the pdf sports several beautiful pieces of full-color artwork, some old, some new. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience.


Julian Neale's collection of mesmerists is diverse, interesting and sports quite an array of truly distinct, unique builds. While, like in the first book, the flavor-text is pretty minimalistic, the builds themselves are varied and interesting. Granted, I would have loved to see the other archetypes covered as well, but that is me being a spoiled bastard reviewer from hell. In the end, these mesmerists are solid, fun and work well - the statblocks I took apart sported no glitches, which is also a feat worth mentioning. In the end, my final verdict will clock in at 5 stars.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Character Codex: Mesmerists
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Treasury of the Macabre (5E)
by Matt D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/11/2016 12:57:10

Another excellent product from Legendary Games. See my review on The Baleful Coven. These are very interesting magic items and are not overpowered and will fit well in a low-magic themed campaign, or any horror based campaign. These will fit very well into my Old World Warhammer witch hunter horror campaign using 5th ed. D&D rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Treasury of the Macabre (5E)
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Tomes of Ancient Knowledge (5E)
by Matt D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/11/2016 12:55:40

Another excellent product from Legendary Games. See my review on The Baleful Coven. These are very interesting magic items and have very unique new spells as well. These will fit very well into my Old World Warhammer witch hunter horror campaign using 5th ed. D&D rules.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Tomes of Ancient Knowledge (5E)
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

The Baleful Coven (5E)
by Matt D. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/11/2016 12:48:05

I can't recommend work from Legendary Games highly enough. I've purchased The Baleful Coven, The Fiddler's Lament, and The Murmuring Fountain. The artwork is excellent but the story and writing are top notch! They are easy to read, easy to understand, and have a depth that makes them feel very immersive to play. They are not sweeping epic adventures but they are solid and fit well into almost any setting. I am running a horror based campaign set in the Old World of the Warhammer universe, using new 5th ed. D&D rules, and these adventures are perfect additions to that.
Thanks Legendary Games! Keep up the good work. I can't wait to see what else you put out for 5th ed.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
The Baleful Coven (5E)
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Gothic Campaign Compendium
by Elexious C. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 04/06/2016 16:38:37

I took a chance on this product. I had a horror campaign coming up and wanted some tools to make it memorable. I'm not very familiar with Legendary Game's products and never felt the need for them but it was highly recommended so I picked up a hardcover.


So how did I feel? Mixed.


In all reality I could run a horror/gothic campaign without this but it also brings a number of tools to the table and I became more impressed with it the deeper I read. The spells and character options range from things I'll never take to things that are ultimately not that great but I'll take it because it is hilariously spooky. For the GM the rules for Grimoires, monsters, NPCs and the general advice are more than welcome.


Overall this book is about fun and bringing your fluff to life when I came in expecting a few base classes and other options. So I was a bit disappointed. However as a DM it is much more useful although chapter 6 has a lot of rules that could have been organized differently. In the end I've recommended it on multiple occasions because it does handle quite a few ideas and made my horror campaign more lively so despite feeling a bet 'meh' on my first viewing it's usefulness is undeniable so I'm giving it 4 stars.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Gothic Campaign Compendium
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Ultimate Relationships #2: The Viking Shieldmaiden
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 04/06/2016 03:38:57

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Ultimate Relationship-series clocks in at 8 pages - 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page how to use, 1 page SRD leaving us with 4 pages of content, so let's take a look!


All right, so this series provides romantic interests for the PCs as per the Ultimate Relationship-rules, so I'm assuming you're familiar with them. If not, check out that pdf first (and/or my review for it).


Okay, in supposedly a formatting glitch, we start this file with a double header: "The rabbit Prince" is oddly printed sans context above the proper headline, "The Viking Maiden." Stat-wise, the lady would be an unchained barbarian with the superstitious rage power - it should come as no surprise, then, that her affinity is with martial characters and honorable fighters; her negative affinity particularly pronounced regarding witches, particularly those of Irrisen.


The viking maiden, once encountered, is the sole survivor of a botched raid on a dungeon that saw all her allies killed and herself trapped - hence, upon freeing her, the immediate reaction to her is pretty important - pity does not work well within her cultural paradigm. Advancement-wise, she focuses on two-weapon fighting with her shield. Physical relationships are rather easy to have with the lady, but to get to her heart, PCs will need to work.


The rank-ups of the viking maiden are centered around understanding viking culture (or rather, somewhat stereotypical tropes pertaining it) and range from Perform (oratory) to knowledge (local) and also sport several combative tasks - from a nonlethal duel to arm wrestling and competitive drinking, one has to prove prowess and a willingness to learn about her culture to find the humanity behind her brash and competitive behavior, the doubts and anxieties that are there. If she is not taken to rank 4 before fulfilling her temporary oath to accompany characters to her homeland, she leaves.


Boon-wise, rank 7 unlocks Intimidate or Profession (sailor) as class skills and grants +1 to CMD versus disarm and sunder, while rank 10 provides shared trait bonuses and an AC-bonus when adjacent to the shield maiden...and potentially, when the character's using a shield himself, a two-person Shield Wall teamwork feat benefit.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are good, though e.g. when separating lines are used is a bit inconsistent - still nothing grievous to complain about. Layout adheres to a nice two-column full-color standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length. The pdf has no artwork.


Mark Seifter's Shield Maiden is pretty much the tough warrior containing a wound from the past that she only shows to her most trusted allies. The general progression is interesting, the romance iconic enough in its progression, but I do feel the whole viking component and her nature as a shield maiden would have provided a great way to make her more detailed, more unique - as written, her overall romantic progression failed to take the cultural tidbits and gender roles into account, which could have been used to flesh her out in much more detail. That being said, this is not a bad romance and her arc is solid. Hence, my final verdict will clock in at 4 stars.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Relationships #2: The Viking Shieldmaiden
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Occult Character Codex: Occultists
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/30/2016 06:57:02

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Occult Character Codex-series clocks in at 32 pages, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page how-to-use, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 25 pages of content, so let's take a look!


I like Occult Adventures - a lot. It's one of my favorite Paizo-books out there and the classes rekindled my faith in Paizo's class design, even though the book has some rough edges here and there. Suffice to say, the rather complex classes are cool - but making characters with them takes obviously a bit longer than for less involved classes...and we're all time-starved anyways, right? This is where this series comes in - basically, we have a collection of characters herein, spanning the CRs from 1 - 20, all ready and set for your perusal.


So how were they made? Well, for one, the builds use Pathfinder Unchained's automatic bonus progression, which means that the characters have a better chance to stand against the PCs sans flooding the campaign with magic items. The builds are not made to be sheer exercises in powergaming superiority that exist in a vacuum, instead championing the approach of making viable characters that work concisely as though they were proper characters, complete with a brief personality sketch, though that component is less pronounced than in Purple Duck Games' codices. Options and buffs are included in the statblocks, though handy pre-buff sections provide the information sans them, should your PCs be able to catch the character unaware. There are also some minor pieces of advice for GMs using the character


As far as diversity of the statblocks is concerned, there is, particularly concerning the racial variety, enough going on: Tieflings, core races and even wayang and hobgoblins provide an overall diverse array of unique races. As in the previous installments, not all archetypes are covered - this time around, we get battle hosts as well as necroccultists, the latter including a baykok companion. Interestingly, age categories and spell selection appropriate for it, are covered as well - there would be e.g. an old occultist who casts age resistance as part of her buff suite. The pdf also sports the ordo metamorphic mundi, including information on the domains it grants.


Now, as in installments before, there are some builds that look a bit similar at first glance - but there are quite a lot differences once you dive into the nit and grit of the respective statblocks, you will notice diversity - both in skill and feat selection and focus of the respective statblocks. Similarly, implement school choices are diverse and run a relatively broad gamut. And yes, the spell-selection covers a lot of ground and does not restrict itself to doing the same thing over and over - instead, the choices for the characters make sense and emphasize their distinctions.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no glitches. Layout adheres to a beautiful, two-column full-color standard and the pdf sports several beautiful pieces of full-color artwork, some old, some new. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience


Julian Neale's Occultists are refined - as far as the statblocks I looked at are concerned, I saw no glitches and the characters are varied enough to make this a complex and fun collection of statblocks. While I would have loved for the other archetypes to be covered as well, the builds herein are neat, fun and sufficiently distinct to allow a GM to challenge his PCs with significantly different challenges herein. It's perhaps just me, but I did feel like the characters herein were a bit more diverse than in the previous installments, with different foci. Rock-solid stats, varied builds...what more can you ask for? My final verdict will hence clock in at 5 stars + seal of approval.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Character Codex: Occultists
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Occult Character Codex: Psychics
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/29/2016 04:41:51

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Occult Character Codex-series clocks in at 30 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page how-to-use, 1 page SRD, 2 pages of advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 22 pages of content, so let's take a look!


I like Occult Adventures - a lot. It's one of my favorite Paizo-books out there and the classes rekindled my faith in Paizo's class design, even though e.g. the kineticist's presentation in needlessly obtuse in comparison to the playtest...but that's just me being a nitpicking bastard, I guess. Suffice to say, the rather complex classes are cool - but making characters with them takes obviously a bit longer than for less involved classes...something that, as a GM, may prove problematic. This is where this series comes in - basically, we have a collection of characters herein, spanning the CRs from 1 - 20, all ready and set for your perusal.


So how were they made? Well, for one, the builds use Pathfinder Unchained's automatic bonus progression, which means that the characters have a better chance to stand against the PCs sans flooding the campaign with magic items - a decision I very much welcome. The builds are not made to be sheer exercises in powergaming superiority that exist in a vacuum, instead championing the approach of making viable characters, complete with a brief personality sketch, though that component is less pronounced than in Purple Duck Games' codices. Options and buffs are included in the statblocks, though handy pre-buff sections provide the information sans them, should your PCs be able to catch the character unaware.


Beyond that, advice on using the characters in combat and class-specific peculiarities are covered as well - and yes, bonus discipline spells are denoted separately, while psychics with the abomination discipline have dark half's rather complex ramifications included in the statblock for your convenience. Mimic metamagic, where present, does not sport a preselected metamagic feat to account for the individual campaign.


All right, so that would be the basics - how do the respective characters fare? Well, for one, the first thing you'll note is that the races run a gamut from the common core to the more exotic - sylphs, wayang, samsaran - there are some "oddball" races here among the builds, though not as much as in Purple Duck Games' comparable codices. Archetype-wise, we cover mutation mind and psychic duelist - so no formless adepts and amnesiacs herein. On the plus-side, the psychics do offer variety regarding age category and two of them sport 1 ranger level multiclassed in, though both of these take different approaches here.


For the psychic, spell and feat-selection as well as discipline-choice and phrenic amplifications constitute major decisions that provide diversity and indeed, the pdf does a GREAT job here. Granted, there are some cases of straight-progressions to be found, you'll still find a rather nice diversity of foci regarding the respective characters. While the flavor-text is pretty minimalistic, the tactics-section for the characters is rather extensive, which makes using them on the fly rather simple.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no glitches. Layout adheres to a beautiful, two-column full-color standard and the pdf sports several beautiful pieces of full-color artwork, some old, some new. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience.


Okay. I know some of you skip past that first section of my conclusion, where I talk about formal criteria. I'd like to draw your emphasis to the "top-notch" and the "no glitches." As you know, I tend to not pick apart every creature statblock, but I do pick apart a couple of them in a given file - and more often than not, I notice a small hiccup here and there...sometimes a big one. I care primarily about whether a statblock can be used by the GM sans violating x tenets or botching some crucial things. When I started picking apart these...I found nothing. No glitch. I picked apart the next one...same game. This may sound like it's an easy thing...it's not.


Julian Neale's psychics herein may be on the short side regarding their fluff when compared to Purple Duck Games' more evocative codices, but the wildly diverse builds herein are exceedingly refined and polished - and for that I really enjoyed this pdf. While I wished it had covered the missing two archetypes as well, this is at best a minor hiccup considering the diversity otherwise exhibited. My final verdict will hence clock in at 5 stars.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Character Codex: Psychics
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Ultimate Relationships #1: The Lonely Lyrakien
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/24/2016 04:11:31

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the Ultimate Relationship-series clocks in at 7 pages - 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page how to use/SRD leaving us with 4 pages of content, so let's take a look!


All right, so this series provides romantic interests for the PCs as per the Ultimate Relationship-rules, so I'm assuming you're familiar with them. If not, check out that pdf first (and/or my review for it).


This time around, would be a lyrakien azata cleric, whose level 3 statblock (sans CR) is provided. Associated with luck, the lyrakien has recently lost her human companion - praying to her deity, she is guided towards the PCs. Gifts will not help securing deeper connection, but shared experiences of unique beauty will. The character dislikes cruel jokes and the like. Convincing her to join the party should not be too hard. There is a crisis point the GM can relatively freely adapt, basically a point of no return, where she may require convincing to stay, with starting attitudes and individual options to entice her to stay around.


Advancement is covered briefly and there is a certain chance she may be doing other things on a given day before rank 4. Cohort status is unlocked at rank 7. As a lyrakien, she is obviously none too constant and romancing her is not too easy - on-again-off-again relationships can be expected until rank 10. Boon-wise, rank 7 grants either Knowledge (planes) or Perform (Comedy) as a class skills and also unlocks +1 to saves versus entangle/paralysis. Rank 10 doubles trait-bonuses shared and allows for 2/day immediate action 1-round the effects of freedom of movement, though the pdf fails to specify the CL - I assume her CL. Or is that supposed to be SU, since it only pertains the effects, not the spell per se? Not sure here.


As far as rank-up requirements are concerned, they are much more diverse than one would think - while Perform (Comedy) is often used, so are different Knowledge-checks and even Sense Motive. Finally, Fly can be part of the deal. The romance, as a whole, is interesting and alternatives, once breakthroughs have been achieved, are provided - the romance, as a whole, feels believable.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are good, though e.g. when separating lines are used is a bit inconsistent - still nothing grievous to complain about. Layout adheres to a nice two-column full-color standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length. The lyrakien has a nice full-color artwork, though fans of LG have seen it before.


Mark Seifter's first romance in the series is interesting, unique enough and believable. The lyrakien is pretty hard to romance, as she should be - and yes, I did enjoy reading this little pdf. At the same time, it's a bit of a pity that one boon is a bit wonky in the details. Still, overall a solid, nice, inexpensive offering that adds a bit of romance to the game - my final verdict will clock in at 4.5 stars, rounded down to 4 for the purpose of this platform.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Ultimate Relationships #1: The Lonely Lyrakien
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Treasury of the Orient
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/22/2016 04:53:03

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This collection of magic items clocks in at 22 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page introduction, 1 page SRD, 2 pages of advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 14 pages of raw content, so let's take a look!


All right, so the items featured herein, as depicted on the handy table in the beginning span the range from humble 30 gp alchemical items to 180K gold (and one artifact) - but what kind of items do we actually get?


Well, the first one would be kokowai, a protective salve that supposedly wards off demons and temporarily nets the user the stench-quality. There are two magical armors herein and both are truly interesting: The first would be the Bestial Haramaki - a spellstoring armor - when bull's strength, cat's grace or bear's endurance is stored, the armor provides the bonus of the spell for an extended period while it stores it - nice expansion of the base concept! The second armor would be unraveling silks, allowing the wearer to turn into threads as a move action to duplicate gaseous form with a climb speed instead and prevent lethal falls. Evocative imagery, neat modifications of abilities - that#s how it's done!


A total of 7 specific magic weapons are part of the deal as well: The first of these is the beheading blade, and O-M-G, is it glorious: A flying blade that can be unhooked from its chain to be used at range, returning to the user, with abilities like dancing being powered by ki...absolutely awesome and best of all: The tight wording manages to get the complex mechanics just right. Two thumbs up! Or what about a katana that, upon a critical hit, generates a spray of razor-sharp cherry blossoms? Yes, this is evocative imagery with awesome mechanics. (Yes, you can designate squares to exclude so your allies aren't cut to ribbons...). There is also a cursed katana that cannot be sheathed unless you've crited an opponent or reduced him to 0 hp or below, though, alas, the lack of HD-restrictions here means you can bag-of-kitten-cheese the curse, which is an unnecessary oversight in my book. Another bow allows you to forego damage to instead make an incorporeal creature laugh (and unable to act for 3 rounds), allowing the user to pinpoint the target - this would be pretty OP sans its limitations, but with them, the bow works. A keen flying blade sans penalties, a katana that increases in power when pitted against overwhelming odds and a fan that can generate a nonlethal damage-dealing line of wind that knocks foes prone complement this section of the pdf for an overall, nifty arsenal.


The cane of butterflies allows the owner to disguise himself as older/younger and benefit from threefold aspect as well as conjure forth a massive, hampering swarm of butterflies. The rod of the monkey king can assume the shape of different weapons and extend at command, with concise rules regarding the extended reach and its rules-interactions, while the rod of shadow puppetry allows the wielder to paralyze foes whose shadow was touched and then direct such creatures to do his bidding - interesting and once again, evocative imagery. However, at the same time, Touching the creature's shadow" is pretty wobbly as far as design tenets are concerned - while this is nothing a good GM can't handle, e.g. playing with light-sources etc. can pretty much radically change how this works and the range, so some guidance for less experienced GMs would have been appreciated for this item.


There is also a truly diverse selection of wondrous items in this book: There is a circlet crafted from the horn of imperial dragons that fortifies the wearer against fear and activate a frightful presence that scales with Cha and level in potency, while expenditure of ki can extend this effect - however, the circlet also amkes the wearer subject to easier control by imperial dragons, so beware! There are also clothes that can adapt to surroundings, duplicating different styles of nonmagical outfits, a feathered map that provides quicker rests and the evocative concept of ghost food is also represented in this book. A magical inkset allows the user to hide special messages in the art he creates and there is also a damn cool kapstan that can store ki and, provided a threshold is met, then allows creatures with ki pools to command the ship to which it has been added to move. Additionally, this item allows the user to command the ship to use ki to try to evade missiles, obstacles etc. - all in all, a glorious item.


The kimono of honored ancestors allows the user to ask the spirits of old for advice, while the koto of ki shards can duplicate an array of spells...but is powered by Perform, with scaling difficulties...and instead of its charges, users may have ki power the effects. Cool blending here! A rather nasty skull emitting cursed vapors and a bowl that produces a meditative hum can also be considered to be rather inspired, if less complex items. The Monkey's head charm is visuals-wise all awesome: You throw it at foes for damage...and potentially command it to erupt in eerie laughter, which penalizes foes and renders them even flatfooted, with a chance to cause spellblights...However, the item states that Will can negate the effects, but not the DC - I assume the same as for the spellblight, but I'm not sure.


There is also a massive array of shapechanging-themed noh masks, covering the base beast shapes as well as vermin shape, giant form and form of the dragon - and yes, they take daily use ability abuse is prevented - kudos for catching that! A magical papercraft sheet, a prayer scroll amulet that protects against the undead (and can soak up negative levels) and a fire-themed robe as well as an enchanted samisen are next - and the latter is particularly cool, since it has an alternate use when utilizing downtime rules, generating 7 labor a day that must be immediately spend (and can thus not be hoarded)- cool! A variant dragon-form-granting lungguang and a flute that renders targets ethereal (and subject to the wrath of spirits) as well as a sugegasa that can turn into a raft complement this section.


Pretty cool idea: There are three magical tea-pots in this book, all working by casting one of three spells into the pot while preparing a tea ceremony; all sporting three different effects for those partaking in the tea ceremony. These items are cool and can't be cheesed, but I do believe the pdf should specify just how many people exactly can partake in such a tea ceremony. I assume an army couldn't, for example, but RAW, we have alas, no guidance for this.


Obviously, the pdf also offers full stats for the White Peacock Crown, which is a rather awesome item, just fyi. The artifact, in comparison, is a bit of a let-down, being basically a mallet that can provide miracles that don't require diamond dust. Yeah...wasn't impressed by that one.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are very good, though not as streamlined as in some Legendary Games-supplements - I noticed italicization-glitches here and there and rules-language-wise, there are a couple of minor, yet noticeable hiccups. Layout adheres to the elegant, nice, two-column full-color standard of Jade Regent plug-ins and the pdf sports a blend of previously seen and new full-color artworks of a rather high quality. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience, with a rather nice little typo "magucal teapots" - does have an interesting ring, doesn't it?


Alexander Augunas, Tim Hitchcock, Jason Nelson and Victoria Jaczko have crafted, content-wise, one of my absolute favorites among the treasury-pdfs by Legendary Games - there is literally no filler in this little book and even items that are based on spells in a can modify the effect in unique ways. The items universally are evocative, though some of them have minor rough edges - which is understandable, considering that they tackle rather complex concepts and do their very best to be interesting. With the surprising exception of the artifact, they actually succeed in this endeavor and can be considered inspired. The rating, however, is a bit tricky - you see, the rough edges do mean I can't rate this the clean 5 stars I'd like to grant - however, at the same time, I'd rather have the rough edges and awesomeness than bland perfection -hence, I arrived at a final verdict of 4.5 stars, rounded down to 4, but will still add my seal of approval to this pdf for its intriguing arsenal of unique items. Highly recommended!


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Treasury of the Orient
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Mythic Magic: Advanced Spells III
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/18/2016 04:09:48

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of Mythic Magic-upgrades for the big Paizo hardcovers clocks in at 30 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 2 pages of ToC, 2 pages of introduction, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, which leaves us with 21 pages of content, so let's take a look!


So, this time around, we take a look at the spells featured in one of my least favorite Paizo hardcover released so far, the Advanced Class Guide. Much like in my review for the supplement dealing with the ARG, I am not going to judge the content herein on the virtues of the source material on which it builds (or the lack of balance thereof), instead trying to judge this on the merit of its upgrade to the existing material.


All right, that out of the way, we begin, beyond the internally linked list of spells with a handy list of spells ordered by alphabetical appearance. As has become the tradition with these pdfs, the respective spells can be roughly separated into several categories. The first would be numerical escalation: Greater aggressive thundercloud, for example, increases damage output and even adds a minor, save-negated negative condition. (On a nitpicky side, the non-greater version of the spell's augment references flaming sphere instead of aggressive thundercloud - though this typo does not impede functionality.)


Other spells extend the tactical options - Communal Align Weapon, for example, adds further bonuses and ignores a scaling amount of damage reduction, but the augment (6th)-option also adds the respective special weapon ability for the respective alignment - axiomatic, unholy - you get the idea. Aura Sight's mythic version adds a skill bonus and mitigates the line of sight requirement. Bloatbomb receives a pretty high chance of killing the target and makes the corpse it leaves remain a volatile threat to any subject to its vile effects. Similarly, targets provide for an interesting means of modification: Blurred Movement, for example, can now be cast at range of touch beyond also increasing the potency of its effects.


There also are spell-upgrades herein that are closer to their real world mythology's inspirations, with climbing beanstalk being closer to Jack's story. Personally, I consider Contingent Scroll ignoring the spell-list restriction somewhat problematic, but that may ultimately just be me being overly cautious due to years of heavily UMD-ing players. On the plus-side, dimensional bounce is awesome: It lets you either choose more locations or decrease the locations available at the expense of a longer range in two steps, enhancing flexibility and granting the spell a new tactical dimension.


Flexible Fury can also potentially cause minor issues - the spell allows for the exchange of multiple rage powers, which may even act as prereqs for one another; however, at higher levels, the augment allows for the permanent exchange of rage powers, which can potentially cause issues. On the plus-side, multiple-use hex glyphs (or greater ones that can store multiple hexes) is pretty cool. Long Arm is pretty brutal - its duration can be consumed faster for increased reach, it can be applied to other characters and casting it on yourself is only a swift action - if that doesn't seem like much, start thinking what you can do with it...Bingo. Clinging damage is another theme featured in some of the spells herein. Sickening Entanglement is a bit odd, in that its poisonous, Dex-damage causing sap has no save AND does not declare its damage as a poison-effect, which is somewhat odd. The dual-maneuver using thunderstomp gets discrepancies between CMDs right, which is nice to see. I also really liked triggered suggestion's potential for AoE-effects. Similarly, senses dampening walls of blindness/deafness have intriguing effects, affecting even creatures only nearby.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are very good, though not as almost perfect as in most Legendary Games-supplements. Layout adheres to Legendary Games' two-column full-color standard for Mythic plugins and the pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience. The pdf provides internal linking for quick navigation as well. Artwork-wise, this book sports several rather neat pieces of gorgeous pieces of full-color artwork.


Jason Nelson has, at this point, my utmost respect for making these pdfs - I honestly can't fathom how much work it takes to convert all those spells and check them for internal consistency. This is not regular design work, this is a trooper's work and I am truly thankful for these mythic magic-books - mainly because I can't fathom a mythic campaign sans LG's material. So yes, if you're using the spells from the ACG in a mythic context, this book is basically a no-brainer must-own book. Now, while I am not a big fan of the ACG, some rare instances of spells herein feel like they are a bit too much for my game, but the vast majority of the content herein is rock solid in any mythic context. Hence, my final verdict will clock in at 4.5 stars, rounded down to 4 for the purpose of this platform.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Mythic Magic: Advanced Spells III
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Mythic Monsters #32: Shadow
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 03/08/2016 04:40:33

An Endzeitgeist.com review


This installment of the mythic monsters-series clocks in at 32 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page inside front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page ToC, 2 pages of introduction, 3 pages of advertisement, 1 page inside of back cover, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 18 pages of raw content, so let's take a look!


We begin, as always, this installment of Mythic Monsters with supplemental material - this time around, we get something rather uncommon, namely a complete mythic redesign of a prestige class, namely the shadowdancer. Now if you've been following my reviews, you'll probably have noticed that I don't have a particular high opinion of any of the basic PrCs from PFRPG's basic setup - design-aesthetic-wise, they tend to be antiquated and subpar as options. As much as I like how the mythic shadowdancer provides a nice upgrade for the PrC, one that competently upgrades the class for mythic functionality, ultimately, I prefer the other shadow-themed options the various 3pps have graced us with so far...but still, this is ultimately unfair: The mythic shadowdancer here is solid, even though it misses the chance to make the PrC more unique.


All right, that out of the way, let us take a look at the main meat of this supplement, namely the monsters: We begin with the beautifully-illustrated CR 3/MR 1 Dark Creeper, whose mythic upgrade includes some truly cool tricks: Beyond being simple master poisoners, their very rags now contain a kind of smear poison that may truly cause targets to sicken. Where there are creepers, their stalker masters will not be far behind: At CR 5/MR 2, the Dark Stalker's mythic version is an expert commander of dark creeper, providing bonuses to them and they may actually detach their very shadows as a kind of spying device and better yet, if one's shadow is touched by that of the stalker, the victim will be more susceptible to the tricks of the stalker - smart, awesome visuals, love it! At the same CR/MR, gloomwings receive weakening pheromones, can overwhelm weakened minds and implant their lethal offspring into those unfortunates subject to their tender ministrations.


Obviously, in an installment focused on the masters of the dark, we also need to take a look at the wonderful Kytons: At CR 5/MR 2, the Lampadarius may expend mythic power to add potentially staggering cold damage to touch attacks and thanks to their defensive tricks and semi-corporeality, these guys are neat...oh, and yes, they come with a glorious artwork. The mythic sacristan, at CR 12/MR 5, can unleash AoE bull rushes and enhance their lethal shadow screams by expending mythic power to drag foes kicking and screaming into the plane of shadows...awesome. At CR 15/MR 6, the interlocutor may hijack constructs and undead via their skills and mark targets by virtue of their claws, forming a dread connection that makes them aware of weaknesses to exploit: All about control and savagery - like these guys! The Eremite, at CR 25/MR 10, would obviously be a bit of a different caliber: Beyond instant evisceration and grafting, these kytons can expend mythic power to alter their gaze attack to make victims attempting to inflict damage upon themselves as well as encroaching madness...oh, and speaking of which: As a response to attacks, these guys can teleport/shadow double AND negate the damage inflicted...Neat!


In similarly high strata, the CR 20/MR 8 Nightwalker receives obviously upgraded gazes that can be upgraded via mythic power and surge-die mechanics and even erode magical weapons, draining them away - indeed, the leitmotif here is lethal entropy - nice one! At CR 18/MR 7, the Primal Umbral Dragon's standard build comes with the giant template applied, with the non-templated version being provided as well for your convenience. These dragons may literally swallow the light (and use mythic power to add vampiric shadow shield) and conjure forth swarms of winged, lethal shadows from their breath - glorious! Have I mentioned the more lethal gullet these dragons get? Yeah, damn cool!


While the ardent LG-fan may already know the gorgeous artwork provided for the CR 4/MR 1 mythic shadow, the eponymous undead's light-dimming aura is indeed nice. The CR 10/MR 4 tenebrous worm can fire piercing bristles at adversaries and may use mythic power to make the lethal acid damage of their bites cling...and yes, they may fire strands of shadow stuff adversaries. At CR 6/MR 2, the umbral shepherd can expend mythic power to render a victim and all earthly possessions of the creature into shadow and use mythic power to further enhance its crits.


Finally, the pdf does provided a new creature with the CR 3/MR 2 shadowperson: Invisible when not seen out of the corner of one's eyes, these creatures feed on fear, can use mythic power to enhance their fear-causing tricks and can possess victims...though they are banished by light. While concept-wise, this creature may not be particularly new, the execution of the shadowy stalker/possessor is admittedly excellent and inspired here - in fact, I think this one is closer to what shadows should be capable of doing in the first place.


Conclusion:


Editing and formatting are top-notch, I noticed no significant glitches. Layout adheres to Legendary Games' two-column full-color standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience. The artworks provided are nice as well.


Jason Nelson got Jeff Lee on board for this installment - a wise decision, considering that Jeff has written a rather awesome Dark Folk-supplement for Rogue Genius Games. And indeed, the duo's builds herein are interesting, effective and exciting, with not a single build falling truly flat. While personally, I'm not the biggest fan of the shadow's build when compared to similar low CR/MR-builds by Legendary Games and while the Shadowdancer's mythic upgrade could have used a step beyond the simple upgrade of the PrC, ultimately, both of these complaints boil down to me being a spoiled bastard of a reviewer. In the end, this book is a great addition to the arsenal of a given GM and as such, this does receive a final verdict of 5 stars.


Endzeitgeist out.



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Mythic Monsters #32: Shadow
Click to show product description

Add to DriveThruRPG.com Order

Displaying 1 to 15 (of 229 reviews) Result Pages:  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9 ...  [Next >>] 
0 items
 Hottest Titles
 Gift Certificates