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A Necromancer's Grimoire: The Book of Faith Pay What You Want
Publisher: Necromancers of the Northwest
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/02/2011 07:36:14

This pdf is 37 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page advertisement, 1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving 32 pages of content.

This pdf kicks off with an aptly-written short narrative and an introduction to the task at hand, i.e. making divine casters feel more different from arcane casters by providing a new complementary mechanic to cleric along a new base-class, the Priest.

The Priest is a divine vessel of its deity, determining his spell's DCs via Wis, but calculating the bonus spells not via by an attribute, but via his piety, but more on his peculiarities later. The class gets d6, 1/2 BAB, 4+ Int skills, a good will save, full spellcasting and a point-based amount of favors per day. He can ready a very limited array of clerical magic every day, but casts them via said favors. All in all an interesting, point-based casting system. Additionally, he gets miracles, but more on that later. The ability to offer absolutions and care for their flock via confessions , a varaint of the atonement, offers a nice additional roleplaying incentive to care for others.

Roleplaying is, much to my pleasant surprise, one of the central mechanics of determining the excess power of a priest - as they are dependent on the piety for their powers, a slacking priest of one level might actually fall back in power-level behind his zealous compadre, offering an extremely powerful and rewarding tool for the DM to reward the player all while the player is encouraged to adhere to the tenets of his faith. Favor can also be rewarded thusly and a lot of coverage is given to help the DM balance these gains and offer necessary guidance. Nice!

Additionally, miracles offer a new way for Priest to channel the favor of their deity: The can be used only a limited amount of times per day/week etc. and are very powerful, depending again on the priest's piety - for the severity of the respective miracle's effects. From blessing the harvest to anointing ground, constructing and creating objects and structures from thin air, curing diseases, etc. Symbolizing major favors from the Priest's deity, these should not be used frivolously and draw heavily center on major ramifications and iconic things. Being similar to ritual magic, they usually feel powerful and cool. However, only 17 miracles are presented and I would have loved to see more. A lot more.

Finally, the devoted apostle, a prestige class for especially devout characters and priests in general is presented - many abilities working only if the characters has enough piety. The apostle gets d8, 1/2 BAB, good will saves and 8 levels of spellcasting over 10 levels.

Unfortunately, the PrC offers just about the only major blemish I could find in this product - the class lacks information on how many skill points per level they get, rendering using them as written impossible.

Conclusion: Editing is good, I noticed some minor punctuation errors. Formatting is fine as well, with the notable exception of said skill points missing, which costs the pdf 1 star. The pdf comes as a printer-friendly and a screen version and is bookmarked. The artwork are stock-photos of beautiful church windows. Nice idea!

Mechanically, I loved this pdf - the new class is neat, very distinct and divine in feeling - The mechanics are sound and when all's said and done, I absolutely loved the concept of the Priest and his roleplaying-dependant abilities. If you're rather a roll-player, this book might not be for you, but if you ever thought that rules-wise the cleric did not feel too divine, this is gold for you. Unfortunately, the blemish of the PrC makes it impossible for me to rate this pdf the full 5 stars. If there were more miracles to choose this would have been almost perfect and due to this limited selection and the major formatting glitch, I'll settle for a final verdict to 4 stars. If you don't mind the glitch, this is 5 stars for you.

Endzeitgeist out.

[4 of 5 Stars!]
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A Necromancer's Grimoire: The Book of Faith
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