The third and final release in teh Future Player's companion series build nicely on its predecessors and introduces some great new material as well. Details follow.
The book kicks off with a standard introduction, discussing the general use and design philosophy of the book, then dives straight into the crunch of chapter 1, which collects 6 new advanced classes and 3 new prestige classes.
The chapter leads off with the corporate agent, a sort of sanctioned corporate PR man and high-powered negotiator. Those wishing to make more lethal and sinister corporate types would do well to stir in levels of enforcer, tracer, or infiltrator with this class.
The cyborg adept is a sort of hyper-adapted cyborg, intimately familiar and comfortable with his implants. The class manages to be unique despite something like 8 other cyborg classes out there from WotC (Bioic Agent, Cyberwarrior, Implant Hack, Cyber Raver) and Ronin Arts (Cybersoldier, Assault Borg, Psionic Cybersoldier, CyberOp) alone, and doesn't render any of them obsolete in the process.
The evolved mutant is one of the more interesting classes in the book, allowing ample implementation of the new mutations in Tomorrow's hero. With constantly developing and changing mutant abilities, the player of this will never get bored nor will they ever feel useless. This also allows some of the pricier mutations like Wormhole Jumper to actually see the light of day on something other than NPCs.
The geneshifter makes use of the various short-term genetic templates in d20 future and this book, and does so in a really neat way that allows for a sort of hyper-adaptable jack-of-all-trades sort of character. This is very much what you'd picture a sci-fi James Bond being like.
The pharmer focuses on chemical (drug) augmentation, and gets more benefits for fewer side effects than other characters who use drugs. Those wishing to make characters resembling a certain well-known chemical warrior archetype from another famous RPG would do well to mix this with a few levels of strong hero, fast hero, and enforcer. The result would be just about right.
The robot avatar makes robot heroes and villains much more versatile than they'd otherwise be, allowing a robot character to transfer their consciousness around from body-to-body and even to dominate other robots. This is a perfect class for a malevolent AI or a robotic puppetmaster.
The robot hunter's class name says it all really. Whether you want to destroy them or just disable and fix them, if you intend to be fighting a lot of robots, this is a must-have class. Great for making resistance fighters against Terminator-style killer AIs and the like.
The shockmonk is a cool psionic luddite-type with some impressive technology-disrupting abilities. By the last level of this 5-level prestige class, the character who takes it may well be more dangerous to technologically-dependent foes than an EMP device.
The tech knight is a fun and interesting mix of gadgetteer, knight-errant, and robot-rights activist, and allows for some upgraded use of the robot familiar rules from Tomorrow's Hero.
Chapter two focuses on cybernetics, adding more gadgets, new upgrades, and some other variant rules to the system. Unfortunately, given the recent proliferation of d20-future related cybernetics material some of this is already redundant, but most of it is not, and what is unique is flavorful and interesting. Also in this chapter are a selection of primitive cybernetics, which will be useful in games that are influenced by video games like Metal Gear or Splinter Cell, and a cyborg template for those human-brain-in-a-robot-body types of characters.
Chapter three covers equipment, adding archetypal weapons like the antimatter cannon, sonic disruptor, and wrist-blade launcher to the available arsenal of Future heroes. This chapter also includes some nifty weapon gadgets including the dual-targetting and overheat gadgets, which will be instantly recognizable to first-person shooter fans. As with other releases in this line, many of the gadgets actually make the device LESS effective in some way, and correspondingly reduce its cost. This allows for the design of shoddy devices like those used by terrorists, third-world guerillas, criminals, and backworlds colonists who have to make due.
Chapter four is probably the most ambitious of the chapter in the book, covering futuristic drugs of all types in a staggering, but still manageable, level of detail. If you want to use drugs in your game, this will be an absolute godsend. If you don't want to use drugs in your game, either don't read this chapter, or be ready to change your mind!
As I have come to expect from the Game Mechanics, this book is a superb value for the money, just make sure you've got the previous two volumes, or much of this won't be much use to you. It builds heavily on the excellent foundation set by Tomorrow's Foundation and Tomorrow's Hero, and references back to both extensively.
<b>LIKED</b>: As always with Game Mechanics' products, layout & design are excellent. The material is well-designed and professional, and the writing is readable and flows nicely.<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: Some unanswered questions raised by two of the prestige classes: How, exactly does the Tech Knight's sword work, and why does the shockmonk have a nonstandard BAB? <br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Excellent<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Very Satisfied<br>