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Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
by Skjalg K. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 11/03/2014 19:20:15
The Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting is a comprehensive guide to adventuring beneath the waves, as well as a complete campaign setting for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game.
Within the pages of this book you will find new subsystems like boyancy, drag and plunging attacks, new ocean-based races and classes, as well as a host of new feats, spells, equipment and magic items to enhance your game beneath the waves.

I love this book. I am completely infatuated with the premise of the setting, and I really appreciate all the hard work and dedication that went into making this book. The authors consistently refer to the book as a tome, and they are absolutely right. At 288 pages this is a meaty volume, and every inch of it is packed with options and rules for making any underseas campaign enjoyable and different. There is more here than mere novelty value, too. The authors have thought long and hard about how to make an underwater campaign setting unique and special, and it really shows. In addition to all the new player options found within this book, there is some very good GM material, including a simple and elegant way of doing three-dimensional combat without breaking the Pathfinder system. Admittedly it requires you to actually build your own game aids, but the process is explained in detail and it really is simple to follow their instructions and create the neccesary components. The 3D system by itself is worth the price of admission, and the detailed and setting neutral material makes it an ideal book for GMs seeking to flesh out the oceans of their campaign worlds with unique races and civilizations beneath the waves.

The Cerulean Seas setting by itself is interesting and compelling, as well as being well written. But the real draw of this book for me is the setting neutral way the book is presented. You really can discard all the setting specific material (though I don't know why you would, as it's a very good setting) and use the new rules found in this book to run your own underseas campaign in your own world.

The love that went into this project is easy to see. And once you see it, you will share it.

The Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting is an excellent book, well worth the money and full of new, awesome content that can slot into any homebrewed campaign setting. Just buy the book, read the first six chapters and you are ready to go. Or you can set your game in the Cerulean Seas setting, and really see the book come into it's own.

I recommend this book to anyone and everyone.
GMs will love the new rules and features of the submerged setting, while players will rejoice at the new, exciting options of adventuring beneath the waves.

Buy this book!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
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Cerulean Seas: Beasts of the Boundless Blue
by Thilo G. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 01/15/2014 01:52:38
An Endzeitgeist.com

This bestiary of aquatic (and water/swamp etc.)-themed creatures is 294 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial/KS-thanks, 2 pages of ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page blank inside of th4 back cover and 1 page back cover, leaving us with 286 pages of content, so let's take a...



...what? 286 pages?? O_O

Oh boy, that's a lot ground to cover, so let's get started! Emily E. Kusbisz's introduction explains what to expect from this book: First of all, all races introduced by Cerulean Seas-books get their own entries and the book also contains ALL Cerulean Seas-creatures contained in the various bestiary-chapters of the respective books released so far - several of which actually get new and improved artworks. Yes. Since artworks were a weak point of Alluria Publishing's oeuvre. /sarcasm. Seriously - if you're not familiar with Alluria Publishing's offerings: These books look GORGEOUS. The artworks are often on a level that surpasses even what one can see in Paizo's bestiaries. Yes, that good. But this is no mere compilation - we actually also get a rather significant array of new creatures - which by themselves would probably warrant the asking price.



"But I don't use the Cerulean Seas campaign setting!" you're saying? Well, the book takes the time and explains in detail the little peculiarities like depth tolerance, buoyancy etc. and explains how to hand-wave them if you're so inclined. What I'm getting at is - this massive TOME is a stand-alone product that does not require Alluria's other books. Even regular Pathfinder campaigns can draw from this material with ease. (Though any aquatic adventure benefits from having the very best underwater resources ever penned for any iteration of d20, but that's just my opinion...)



The three subtypes of humanoids introduced by Cerulean Seas are also explained here before we take a look at the icons/creature glyphs that have become not only a staple, but a joy in every bestiary the folk at Alluria release: Each statblock comes with easily identifiable glyphs that denote the particular subtype AND geographic region in which the creature can be found. I didn't believe it at first, but when pressed for creatures and skimming through these pages, the glyphs offer a significant amount of comfort for the beleaguered DM to choose the right creature at a glance. Now, if you're looking for the original book in which some of these creatures have been released, a simple glance also unearths that, for the respective books also get their own glyphs. Adding the strawberry to the whipped cream, psionic creatures (fully compatible with Dreamscarred Press' Psionics Unleashed / Ultimate Psioncs) also get their own glyph that makes it easy for fans of psionics to find them and for detractors of psionics to avoid them. Additionally, green dots mark player character races and beyond even the massive array of creatures from the Cerulean Seas-line, we also get references to Alluria's excellent Fey Folio and Remarkable Races-series.



Now since I can hardly detail every creature herein without blowing this review up to novel-like lengths, let's instead take a broad sweep, shall we? take for example the Mohir - representing the apex of the CR-spectrum herein (which ranges from CR 1/8 to CR 25), these behemoths of the deep sea may resemble angler-fish that let whales look like toothpicks, but they also are something different - sleeping titans from a past unimaginably long gone or visitors from another planet, Mohirs can send just about all creatures their gaze encounters into a dread, madness-filled stupor, unleash deadly blasts of plasma from their glowing tentacles or, yes, suck in all but the nimblest of foes. Terrifying engines of annihilation, these beings make even the mighty song dragons, of which this book delivers a whopping 13 varieties, tremble. Speaking of impressive apex predators - the new Leviathan Devil should also be counted among these threats - beings of vast power, these titanic hunters represent the ultimate expression of the sahuagin's ideal of a hunter. And yes, at CR 20 they'd also make superb avatars of Dajobas or Sekolah in campaigns featuring these two entities.



Also rather interesting in a low CR-spectrum - the tentacled, orb-like douselings at CR 4 - predators of all things magical, these beings are superb guardian creatures that come with a constant antimagic field - ouch! Speaking of ouch - what about aquatic lycanthropes? Were-crocodiles, were-rays, were-seals, were-sharks and even were-squids can be found within this book, finally bringing the dreaded curse to the realms below the waves.



There are also new creatures herein that simply made me hungry - the CR 14 Meganantantia, for example: A whale-sized shrimp-like being that actually manages to look rather badass. Whale-sized. Shrimp. If these creatures existed irl, I'd be so all over them... *At this point the reviewer prepared his favorite chili-garlic-shrimp-ceviche before returning to the review* Among the more fun creatures herein would be the Moat Monkeys at CR 3 - remember those Sea Monkey-kits and their advertisements in various comic books etc.? Remember how dissatisfied we were when the actual creatures hatched and looked nothing like the humanoids depicted in the drawings? well, these creatures actually ARE those humanoids and stand ready to finally put an end to many a childhood disappointment...or as a safe way to exact revenge fantasies on them. Nice!



Not all creatures herein are beings of the oceans, though - brine and swamp, marshlands etc. also get quite a few rather iconic beings - take for example the swamp nixie - these fey may absorb and metabolize poisons and spit them at adversaries - oh, and eating them is not a smart idea...



Speaking of smart re mind - aforementioned psionic creatures also get new additions to their ranks herein, with for example the deep sea-crab-like psion-race called Oceanari at CR 8. Have I mentioned the extremely awesome looking septapi, the 5 different types of ships of the damned (though these are haunted by some minor issues), the beach-combing, acid-spewing clawed Soak Bugs? Old man-like fey swathed in cloaks of crabs or intelligent aquatic fungi waiting for the "stars to align"? the sheer amount of monsters herein is staggering, but does not constitute all of the pdf's offering.



4 simple templates, a brief discussion of monster types in aquatic environments, an art-index that properly credits all the incredibly talented artists that worked on this book, a glossary, a pronunciation guideline, extensive lists of aquatic weapons, armor and geopoisons, 8 pages of feats, aquatic environmental conditions (and e.g. rules for breaking through ice), 20 pages of aquatic spells and powers, indices of monsters by CR, by terrain type and by monster type and an extensive list of aquatic animal companions complete the deal and make sure that navigating this massive behemoth of a book remains comfortable. Have I mentioned that the index of appropriate creatures also extends to the Bestiary 4? The book also closes with a nice short poem, has has become the tradition with Cerulean Seas-books.



Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any significant glitches. In a book of this size. Go figure - it's possible! Editors Ben Welsby, Jeffrey Turner & Steven O' Neal have done a great job! Speaking of a "Great Job" - the layout adheres to Alluria's beautiful, slightly blue-tinged Cerulean Seas-standard and complements nicely the artworks. I've been there all the way through the d20-heyday and have a vast collection of bestiaries on my shelves and HD. The artworks in this one mop the floor with some books released by Wizards of the Coast and Paizo. Let that sink in. I'm not kidding when I'm saying that this book is the most beautiful bestiary I've ever seen a 3pp produce - PERIOD.



I usually don't do this in that extent, but here it is justified:

Tim Adams, Stefano Azzalin, Ian Barker, Joseph Barker, Michael Beaudry, Kevin Bedan, Caren Billings, Lane Brown, Adam Burnier, Juan Calle, F. Drew Chandra, Lauren Clark, Nicholas Cloister (of www.MonstersByEmail.com), Roy Cokenour, M. S. Corley, Vincent Coviello, Collette Curran, Alex Dedy, Nancy Disiro, Drachenmagier, Thomas Duffy, Edyta Felcyn, Dennis Fröhlich, Diego Gómez, Sandeson N. Gonzaga, Mary Graham, Michael Habiger, Mika Harju, John Harrison, Jim Healy, Roman Ilin, Forrest Imel (who also did the gorgeous cover), Derik Iron-fox, Eugene Jaworski, Cornelia Jolitz, Markus Juuso, Eoghan Kerrigan, Mathias Kollros, Anna Kowalczewska, Emily Ember Kubisz, Caroline Lahaise, Setiawan Lee, Philip Lindberg, Dez Lon, Chan Tuck Lueng, Dmitriy Mad-Hatman, Jorge Mantilla, David Melvin, Chenthooran Nambiarooran, Juan Novelletto, Bobbie Jean Pentecost, Mera Pierson, Fabio Porfidia, Randall Powell, Edward Pun, Andreas Rabenstein, Ryan Rhodes, Marissa Rivera, Molly Rodman, Emmanuel Bou Roldán, Markus Röncke, Javier Ruiz, Cesar Sampedro, Tyler Sowles, Dean Spencer, Dawne Stantien, Colby Stevenson, Candis Swain, Lotta Tjernström, Arna Tornwolf, Eliina Uibu, Justinas Vitkus, Sam Yang, Seoro Zgul, Daryl Toh Liem Zhan, Vasilis Zikos



-all of you artists DESERVE this shout-out. Why? Because almost universally, the interior art of roleplaying products has a hard time living up to the cover. Not so here. While not all of the artworks are this mind-blowing, the vast majority (and we're talking about 98%) actually ARE. Yes, that beautiful. This book is insanely gorgeous to look at and even casually skimming through these pages makes you want to use these creatures. The only bestiaries I could mention from the top of my head that reach this abject level of beauty would be Legendary Games mini-bestiaries - but those work on a completely different scale.



What makes this even more impressive is the significant amount of organization that went into this bestiary - from extensive nested bookmarks to the appendices, using this book is as easy as humanly possible - also for non Cerulean-Seas-campaigns, thanks to the advice provided.



The new creatures are varied and live up to the highest standards one could wish for, often featuring not only one, but several unique signature abilities and making clever use of the rules. Moreover, even simulationalist DMs should get their fair use out of these creatures, as they feel at times as if taken from the deep sea biology book of another world - they make sense and feel coherent, logical in their niches and yes, even in the titanic sizes some of these beasts reach.



Reviewing this book was a monumental task that made me get even a tiny glimpse of what putting this together might have been like - a labor of love if there ever was one that breathes its flair from every single page and illustration.



The team of authors Sam G. Hing, Emily Kubisz, Jeffrey Turner & Matthew Cicci (many of which you should know as some of the finest monster-crafters out there) have woven a tapestry of creatures both profoundly disturbing and alien and at the same time beautiful - these pages perfectly encapsulate the wonders of the Deep Sea that are instilled by documentaries, diving etc. and add the spark of fantasy creative people tend to experience when confronted with beauty.



Superbly useful, supremely edited with production values of a whole new level that surpass even most kickstarted products (and their higher art budget) this book is THE ANSWER for any DM looking for any type of aquatic critter. Personally, I can't imagine running "Skull & Shackles", "Savage Tide", "Freeport" or "Razor Coast" without the creatures herein (or the Cerulean Seas Campaign book, for that matter) - and in the context of the Cerulean Seas this book should be considered even more as something all but required. And yes, I was impressed - what drove me to the point of sitting slack-jawed at my desk was the price-point. At this quality, $20 would not have been too much for the pdf. Now look closely at the price and page-count. Yeah. I guarantee you won't find a better bang-for-buck-ratio in ANY bestiary out there and honestly, even for the massive array of new creatures, the price would have been justified. This book is one of the rare examples that you can show to people and brag - gorgeous in production values and content, this demands to be rated as the apex of what can be expected and is hence a candidate for my Top Ten of 2013. Final rating? Oh, if only there were six stars. Since there are only five, I'll instead settle on that and add my seal of approval. Books like this make reviewing worthwhile.



If you only remotely are interested in beautiful bestiaries and awesome aquatic monsters, then this should go into your shopping cart right now.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Beasts of the Boundless Blue
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Cerulean Seas: Azure Abyss
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/31/2013 04:43:03
An Endzeitgeist.com review

This massive sourcebook for the aquatic unfathomable depths is 100 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page kickstarter-backer-thanks, 1 page poem and 1 page back cover, leaving us with 92 pages of content, so let's take a look!



So what is the Azure Abyss? Essentially, it is the aquatic equivalent of the Underdark - the unfathomable depths and after a basic introduction including a glossary we delve into the hostile terrain that is encountered in the very lowest depth of the sea - abyssal depths and hadal depths - 10.000 ft beneath the waves until 20.000 feet for abyssal zones and below that, the hadal zones. Terrain, from trenches to sediment to mini-ecosystems that spring forth from the cadavers of massive beings to finally cold seeps, infectious slimy warts and mussel beds. Hydrothermal vents, acidic zones, megaplumes (essentially aquatic volcanic eruptions) and 6 forms of geologically poisoned areas as well as pools that act as teleportation gateways further suffuse the depths, making for a crunchy and thoroughly intriguing toolbox to spice up your terrain.



The second chapter details deep sea-races and kicks off with a revisited section on other aquatic races that allows you to create deep sea versions before providing new aquatic races, which of course include buoyancy information and depth tolerances. The first would be the Asterak, who gets +2 to Int and Con,-2 to Str, count as merfolk, get darkvision 60 ft, may 1/day utilize shocking grasp, electricity resistance 5, can control their bioluminescence and are susceptible to low depths. beyond these luminescent creatures, we also get aquatic dwarves - the austorian Dwarves. They get +2 Con and Wis, -2 Cha, pressure and geopoison immunity, slow swim speed, darkvision 120 ft., breathe only water, get +2 to appraise, cold resistance 5, +2 to saves versus poisons, spells and spell-like ability, may move on land at 75% of their speed, stonecunning, +4 to CMD versus bull rush, trip and proficiency with austorian weapons.



And then, we get perhaps one of the insanest, most badass races to ever spawn - if the artwork doesn't blow you away, I don't know what will - Echinns are essentially giant humanoid sea urchins - glowing tentacle-like fingers, arachnoid-resembling eyes, bristling spines. O M G. Want. Crunch-wise, they get +2 to Str and Con, -2 to Int and Wis, Pressure and Geopoison immunity, are gilled anthromorphs, get a normal swim speed, low-light vision, can use bioluminescence at will to glow like a torch, get natural AC of +2, cold resistance, +4 to saves versus poisons, echinn weapon familiarity and poisonous spines. Usually I'd complain about the racial attributes gearing them too closely into the melee-roles - but seriously, they simply are TOO COOL.



If you read Alluria's Remarkable Races Compendium, you'll enjoy the aquatic take on the Obitu - neither dead, nor undead, these beings get +2 Str, +2 Dex, -2 Cha, darkvision 60 ft., +4 to saves versus disease/poison, improved initiative as a bonus feat at 1st level, +2 to acrobatics, escape artist and sleight of hand, 5+ 1/2 character level negative energy resistance and immunity against sleep. And no, they are not undead - they just look that way and thus you won't have to deal with all those pesky immunities. Viden Oculi look somewhat like a beholder - with long rubbery tentacles that act as legs and hands and two of them featuring additional eyes - it's a weird creature to describe and one you'll have to see to truly get. The Viden get +2 to Dex and Wis, -2 to Str, are small aquatic aberrations, can secrete slightly acidic tears as slime from their eye, get 30 ft. swim speed, all-around vision, can shed bioluminescence as a torch, suffer from light blindness, are pressure sensitive and choose two detect spells of the first level, which then are constantly active for the creature. Unfortunately, at least personally, I consider that ANNOYING AS ALL HELL. I hate the detect spells and having to consider two that are permanently in effect just sucks - sorry. It's just busy-work for the DM who will have to look at all those pesky auras all the time. Annoying.



The final new race would be the Abyssal Rusalka, a feykith with a lower torso resembling a jellyfish. These embodiments of deadly beauty get +2 to Cha and Dex, -2 Str, count as feykith, can exude luminescent blood that provides concealment 1/hour, may shed bioluminescence as a torch, get +1 to DCs of enchantment-spells they cast and those of cha 15+ may use charm person 1/day - but what's rather cool is their shirt of tentacles: It AUTOMATICALLY drains 1d4 hp from foes, healing 1 hp to the Rusalka. They may suppress this ability. And I like its idea -though the execution made me cringe...for a second. Creatures have to begin their round in the Ruslka's square (!!!) - not an adjacent square, but the Rusalka's. This is enough of a limitation for me - hence: Two thumbs up!



Deep Drow and anthropomorph crossbreeds of Seafolk and Echinn complete this chapter before we get tables for all the vital age, height and weight/depth tolerance etc.-tables and dive into a discussion of existing classes in a Deep Sea context and get into a new base class, the Angler. Anglers get d8, 6+Int skills per level, 3/4 BAB-progression, good fort-saves and proficiency with light and martial weapon as well as light armor proficiency. And the class is interesting indeed - essentially, its angle (pardon the pun) is battlefield control: They may, via preparation, change 5-foot square upon 5-foot square, into a deadly area - impeding defense, movement, offense - make hindrances only happen to one character etc. - as well as creating traps much like those of the ranger to further pepper the battlefield. Per se a great class, though honestly, I would have loved to see more hindrances/traps, though Drop Dead Studios' "Vauntguard"-class could easily be scavenged for more traps - at least that's what I'll be doing!



We also get 3 10-level PrCs: First would be the Halionaut, who gets d10, 6+Int skills, full BAB, medium fort-saves and essentially are masters of the depth diving, being able to divine how warp pools work, gaining favored terrains both planar and common and terrain mastery for these new terrains, all depending on the chosen terrains. Interesting PrC, though not one that blows me away. Myxinmaves get d6, 4+Int skills per level, 6 levels of spellcasting progression and are all about the hagfish - their slime covering the myxinmave's body with protective coating. They also get a giant hagfish servant, a bite attack that only works against foes with flesh, immunities to all things putrid and an armor of living hagfish as well as the option to transform partially into the creatures, the option to become flexible as if boneless and a poison before gaining a hivemind as a capstone. Cool PrC with some disturbing imagery... (And yes, we get a full page of rules for creating hiveminds and determining their stats - and eventual spawning spellcasting prowess...)



The final new PrC is the Seductor, who gets d8, 6+Int skills per level, 1/2 BAB-progression, medium will-saves, 5 levels of sneak attack progression and essentially are the secret agents of the depths, combining deadly sneak attack with touches that may charm and paralyze foes. while hiding their alignment. Again, not a bad PrC, but not one that got me overly excited.



After that, we're introduced to Special materials and weapons of the deep (the latter coming with full color artworks!!!) before getting, of course, more feats - 21 to be precise. I won't go into details for every one of them, but I will mention the following: Eating special materials to heal yourself, emit a siren song 1/day, dazzle with bioluminescence, expand poison clouds and Viden may take a whole array of feats to transform their base forms and finally even see slightly into the future. Of course, some new toys for anglers , sharper spines for echinns, etc.. can also be found here - my favorite feat, though, would be the female ceratiodi piscean's Dual Mind - after having mate graft himself into your side, you may now use your mate's mind to gain two weapon fighting and ignore dex-requirements for the follow-up feats, get +1 favored class and +4 to saves versus mind-affecting effects. Weird and cool.



Speaking of cool - the 10 new spells are absolutely glorious: Ever wanted to make a foe want to attack him/herself? Or create acidic zones? Yeah. Extinguish pesky bioluminescence? Yep. Or merge part of your body with a greater creature, highjacking its body for your purposes, essentially becoming a parasite? Now THAT hasn't been done before! After 8 new magical items, we dive into the campaign setting specific part of the book with A LOT of awesome adventuring potential.



The Deep Sea Bestiary deserves special mentioning - Alluria's monsters usually at least are good, as are their artworks. Seriously, you have to see this book's bestiary to believe in its existence. We get a minimum of at least one signature ability for each one, but the artworks - OMG. I've never seen anything like it. Seriously. Paizo-level and beyond. These artworks can stand their ground, toe-to-toe with the industry-leader and perhaps even surpass them. Yes. That good. This bestiary may be the most beautiful one I've EVER SEEN. From the disturbing deep sea dragons to squid imps and the alien grandfather worm, these artworks will BLOW YOUR MIND. And the best thing about them is: Their crunch lives up to these artworks. From the humble to the CR 23 behemoth, these creatures are glorious, ooze iconicity and set the bar higher for ANY monster-book out there. Have I mentioned starfish people that manage to look badass?



We also get a pronunciation guide, a list of deep sea critters by CR (including the Bestiaries and Alluria books!), an index of tables, an art index and 1 page of cardstock minis.



Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches - which is a massive feat at this length. Layout adheres to Alluria Publishing's drop-dead-gorgeous 2-column standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked, though sans printer-friendly version. Expect a massive drain on your printer (or get this in full color print). I HAVE to mention the artworks - even by Alluria's insanely high standards, they are insanely beautiful. They actually are the best-looking artworks I've ever seen in any 3pp-book. They surpass many 1st party publisher artworks, whether Paizo or WotC. It boggles the mind, incites imagination. Thoroughly impressive - the artists have been up to their a-game!



At first, I was blown away - the new races actually included two ones I'd want to play and WILL include in my campaigns - something that rarely happens! When the class and PrCs didn't stand up, at least for me, to the predecessor-pdf's awesomeness, there's nothing particularly wrong with them, but still - my enthusiasm was slightly dampened. And then, via feats and spells and items, the book once again managed to build up tense expectation that was released in a blast in the bestiary and campaign setting information. While I first thought this would clock in as 4 stars after reading the class-section, I can wholeheartedly recommend unanimously ALL THE REST of the book - from terrain to fluff, from crunch to creatures, we get a massive array of superior content that provides some of the coolest creatures to have ever featured in a given bestiary - to the point where any verdict not a 5/5 and a seal of approval would be a disservice to this book's stunningly awesome content - so there you have it. GET THIS! Even if you don't play beneath the waves - for aberrations and strange cthulhoid creatures, there is so incredibly much to scavenge here that I'll guarantee you won't regret getting this, even for usage above the waves.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Azure Abyss
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Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/27/2013 12:30:01
Opening with a tale of horrific bloodshed and hostility between different peoples, Chapter 1: The Frozen Sea looks at the fascination and fear generated by lands of eternal ice and snow. Although inhospitable at first glance, they boast hardy lifeforms adapted to the conditions on the surface, and teeming multitudes of creatures thriving in the waters below. With limited resources, conflict and hostility towards outsiders are key to survival. The stated intention of this work is to go beyond merely providing an arctic expansion to the Cerulean Seas campaign setting but to go beyond that to present a sourcebook for adventuring in fridgid climes, above or below water, for anyone playing with the Pathfinder ruleset. It's a mix of ancient and modern, fantastic technology swirled in with history and peoples old when the world was young.

Following this introductory material, the chapter goes on to look at the arctic environment and the perils that it poses for anyone wishing to travel or live there. It's not just the cold... there are high winds, uncertain footing from slush to crevasses in ice, deep snowfields and thin ice to contend with.

Next, Chapter 2: Aquatic Polar Races looks at sentient - and playable - races of the arctic regions, both the low-temperature variants of races already provided in the Cerulean Seas product line and wholly-new ones created specifically for this environment. Races not adapted to the environment are rarely found here, certainly not making their homes in arctic regions as the conditions are just too harsh for them. The adapted races are the seafolk, the karkanaks, the selkies, the pisceans, the sea elves and the nommo. The history of how come they have reached the frigid areas of the oceans is covered for each race along with specific anatomical and physiological modifications they have gone through over the ages since their migration. New races include two new species of merfolk, some feykith, ice elves (who appear to be made of ice, they are so transparent) and two quite unique races - the squawk, who are ferocious warlike sentient penguins, and the thanor, chivalric sentient walruses who combine a strict code of honour with a decidedly bloodthirsty streak. Each race is given a full write-up in sufficient detail for creating player-characters or NPCs.

Chapter 3: Aquatic Polar Classes - introduced with a particularly noteworthy picture of a noble squawk warrior - discusses the range of character classes found in arctic regions. Virtually all those that exist in the Cerulean Seas setting are found here as well, although due to the savage nature of many inhabitants the martial classes are predominent. There is also a new class, the angakkuq. This specialises in harnessing spirits - from the world around them and from the one beyond - both to gain information and to power constructs created from inanimate materials found around them, which become familiars. Some prestige classes are also presented here.

Then Chapter 4: Frostcraft looks at life in arctic regions through the resources and equipment available. Aglooliks, a native feykith race introduced earlier, are resourceful tinkerers, producing a range of items often known as aglootech based on their rigorous study of everything from magic to alchemy, engineering and materials science. Naturally a range of weapons have been developed by the arctic races, including - if you use them in your campaign - some firearms (agloolik-made, of course) called fizzlepops. Bizarre indeed, and full details are given on how they function should you wish to allow them. This chapter also contains new feats and spells for the icy seas, as well as details of a new substance called ancient crystal and a selection of magic items.

Next, Chapter 5: Indigo Ice Setting gets specific with the arctic regions for the Cerulean Sea setting itself. Expanded racial histories, notable NPCs and notes on other races which are presented in the following chapter are included here, ready to help you develop the colder parts of your undersea campaign world. Languages and religions are also discussed as well as the nations and political alliances to be found here. Whilst ideas here as well as those throughout the whole book can be used in any frigid underwater realm, this chapter in particular is linked to the Cerulean Sea setting and works best if that's what you are using.

Finally, Chapter 6: Polar Sea Bestiary introduces a wide range of creatures that may be encountered, ranging from savage monsters which will eat you as soon as look at you to minor races which, truth be told, probably are little more friendly. Even looking at the pictures is quite scary!

This is a fascinating presentation of an alien environment, hostile enough in its own right even before you meet the inhabitants who appear unwelcoming to strangers and violent amongst themselves. Yet for the true explorer this could make for some memorable adventures... and the illustrations are wonderful, encapsulating the whole feel of frigid seas!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice
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Cerulean Seas: Waves of Thought
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer] Date Added: 05/26/2013 13:35:20
The work dives straight in with Chapter 1: Underwater Psionics, beginning with the ancient history of the world, right back when there was nothing other than water, no dry land at all. Neither arcane nor divine magic had yet developed, the only power was that of the mind, exerted by will alone. Well, it's a bit difficult to muck about with spellbooks and gestures and incantations, after all, when you're underwater! Innate powers led to greater intelligence and eventually to sentience, an intriguing role for psionics in the development of life. However, once mighty psionically-gifted creatures crawled onto dry land, other forces - notably 'the gods' - stepped in and over the course of time arcane and divine powers were discovered and knowledge of the pure force of will was by and large forgotten.

Laying this epic sweep aside for a moment, we next get the Introduction, all about how the announcement of Psionics Unleashed for the Pathfinder RPG by Dreamscarred Press inspired Alluria Publishing to take a different look at their Cerulean Seas setting, in which it had been intended from the outset that psionics should be important. The result, of course, being this product. Ancient races, inky depths and lots of tentacles go both with an undersea world and with the core concepts of psionics, so it seems a good match. The collaboration worked well, with correspondence between the two publishers resulting in a compatible development, creating a 'universal' theory of psionics that works equally well under and above the waves. However, it's been approached in a modular fashion, such that individual GMs can decide just how important psionics will be, from merely one or two monsters wielding this mysterious power to it being all-pervasive once the water closes over your head.

Background provided, next comes Chapter 2: Aquatic Psionic Races. Here six rich and strange new races are presented, denizens of the deep with, yes, psionic capabilities. Seas are rich with biodiversity and 'new' yet ancient races are always being 'discovered' - even if they have been there all along. The amphian and the melusine are evolutionary branches of the merfolk. Merkoths are sort of sea-cuckoos, being raised by other races rather than their own kind. Asrai are quite unusual, being feykith, a heritage in which psionics are rare. Then there are benthic naga, related to the land-based snake people, and finally the zef, an ancient race that is cousin to the snail-like zif who were introduced in Alluria Publishing's Remarkable Races line.

Each race is given a full write-up from history and appearance to society, racial traits, views on religion and on other folks... all you need to play one as a character or present a vibrant living group as an encounter. Both rules mechanical information and flavour text is presented - rather neatly, each one takes up by a single page (including an illustration), so you could print off the page for an interested player to review if they are considering playing one. The chapter ends with notes on halfbreeds and tables with vital information such as bouyancy and depth tolerance as well as the usual age, height and weight, etc., you normally need for a character race.

Chapter 3 deals with Aquatic Psionic Classes. Most existing psionic classes can be adapted readily enough for races who dwell underwater, and they are discussed in turn. There is also a wholly-new class, the aquanaut, specifically designed for aquatic races. Aquanauts are honed for combat, with the ability to mould their very bodies to effect... each individual comes up with their own unique interpretation. Full details are provided so that this class may be played by any character who qualifies. The mutations are wide and various - extra limbs, a shell, or amour being common. As they rise in level, an aquanaut may choose to develop himself along the lines of a particular species or group of creatures, taking on various characteristics of the creature in question... examples such as jellyfish or crustaceans, sea mammals and molluscs and more are given in detail. There are also some aquatic prestige classes to aim your development towards.

Next, Chapter 4: The Gifted Sea explores feats, powers and items for underwater psionicists; beginning with the statement that the feats of Psionics Unleashed may be used without modification underwater. Other ones may need to be examined and amended as necessary to suit the aquatic environment. There are, of course, some wholly new ones to explore as well. Altered and new psionic powers follow, along with lists for the modified classes presented in Chapter 3 as well as for the aquanaut. A wealth of material here from which to develop your capabilities. The chapter rounds out with a few new psionic items that ought to come in handy.

Chapter 5: Cerulean Seas Psionics provides a glimpse of aquatic psionics as found in the Cerulean Seas setting specifically. Racial histories for the new races presented in Chapter 2 are expanded upon, including famous members of these races and their influences on underwater history... some are still around, and could prove influencial NPC patrons, enemies or contacts. There are similar comments about other races which are described in Chapter 6, deemed unsuitable to be played as characters but potentially influential in the underwater realms nevertheless.

Finally, Chapter 6: Psionic Sea Bestiary presents a range of creatures that are both aquatic and psionic. Not all are 'monsters' in the true sense, but many may wish to fight rather than parlay. Everything from stat blocks and illustrations to descriptions and likely behaviour are provided. I don't think I've met any of them whilst diving, but they are so well-written and developed that I wouldn't be too startled to find myself adding a cerebral crab or a mindshrimp swarm to the 'observations' column of my logbook!

This is a fascinating read and, even if you normally shy away from psionics, is worth considering if you are planning underwater adventures - it's a strange world, under the sea, and if your dry land campaign is psionics-light, this could be another way to highlight the 'otherness' of the depths. Everything is clear and thought out well, it all hangs together and provides plenty of scope for development of a truly unique experience underwater.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Waves of Thought
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Three Dimensional Combat Solutions
by Joseph R. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 03/13/2013 14:53:58
I cannot recommend this product more. This is an elegant solution to a problem that my d&d group has struggled with for some time - how do we deal with three dimensions in combat? You actually get two helpful solutions here: 1) tracker trees, which allow for three dimensional combat, and 2) cubes, which give height in one inch increments. No more shot glasses, bottles, or whatever else we could find lying around.

This book provides the details to construct tracker trees, as well as some useful printouts. You do need to buy some materials at the hardware store and/or art supply store, and you need to have a little bit of the crafting skill in you. I spent one whole day on the project, and the look on my players faces when I pulled them out was worth the work. I am no longer afraid of three dimensions, in fac6t, I can now embrace them!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Three Dimensional Combat Solutions
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Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 02/19/2013 03:50:14
The second expansion-supplement for Alluria Publishing's critically acclaimed, stellar underseas-campaign-setting Cerulean Seas is 114 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial/Kickstarter-thanks, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page list of KS-contributors, 1 page back cover, leaving us with107 pages of content, so let's check this out!

The introduction makes one thing clear: You have not read a book like this before. Ever. This sourcebook is about the arctic clime, yes, but not on humano-centric cultures, though it lends somewhat from Icelandic, Norse, Inuit etc. traditions), but on recent realizations of how much the world beneath the waves shapes the polar regions. Combine that with the fact that in Cerulean Seas, there is not much dry land and we have an interesting base assumption. More interesting yet, at least imho, would be the fact that logical assumptions have been taken: In order for any culture to thrive in a land of few resources and extremes, the resulting culture developing from it would require a sense of progressive-mindedness and war-like aspirations. Against this backdrop merging progress and tradition, arcane and technological and the struggle for survival, we are introduced to this book's core concepts.

A special mention deserve here the artworks - the "City that never thaws" and most of the other artworks herein follow a cohesive, extremely high quality style that is not only consistent in itself, but also with the high quality artworks Alluria Publishing has featured in their other Cerulean Seas-products. In fact, some of them may even surpass them due to feeling more iconic, but more on that later in the conclusion. The pdfs begins with environmental undersea environments, glaciers and slush swamps as well as hazards for the respective areas, which include e.g. acidic slushes, catabatic winds, wind chills and cohesive rules for breaking through ice. All in all, a cool chapter that is useful for any cold climate, not just those in the Cerulean Seas-setting.

The second chapter is all about races and kicks off with a revisit to the classic races of the Cerulean Seas setting as well as Waves of Thought before including new races - which, of course, all come with the trademark pieces of information on buoyancy, types etc. The first new race would be the Aglooik, small feykith (only two and a half page) and they get +2 to Dex, Int, -2 to Con, 30 ft. speed, get +1 to ref saves versus electricity, steam and acid, +2 to Knowledge (engineering), Profession (engineering), Craft or disable device as well as proficiency with any aglootech-weapon, but more on that later. The second new race would be the arctic, cold, charming and professional Crystolix, who get +2 Int and Cha, -2 Str, must take skill focus (diplomacy), +2 to appraisal, cold resistance 10 as well as +2 to saves against spells and effects that would result in negative conditions. Interesting race that can be played as creepily friendly. The transparent Ice Elves get +2 to Dex and Wis, immunity to cold and fire vulnerability, +1 to AC when touching water and at a depth of 300 ft. or less as well as a spell-like ability to use ice water-jet and +1 DC to saving throws against cold spells they can cast.

The Talilajuk Ningen are special fishfolk: Based on Belugawhales, they can breathe air and get +4 Str, -2 Str, are fast, must take Skill Focus (Stealth) as their merfolk-bonus-feat and gain blindsense while in water. The coolest new race, perhaps would be the Squawk - mechanically, these beings get +2 to Str and Con, -2 to Int, are small at a fast movement rate of 30 ft., get +1 dodge bonus to AC and CMD, +2 to saves versus poisons, spells and spell-like abilities and always count as wearing cold weather outfits and proficiency with skiths. What are they? They are a race of deadly warriors living in a martial society of penguin-like humanoids. And yes, the artworks actually manage to make that work - squawks are bad@ss! The Thanor are a race of walrus-like humanoids who get +4 to Con + 2 to Str, -2 to Dex, -2 to Wis, are large and have lungs, +1 natural AC, only a speed of 30 ft., always count as wearing cold weather outfits and natural attacks with their tusks.

Pinniparian and Seafolk-crossbreeds are also covered and the vital statistics like age, height and weight tables are part of the deal as well. In chapter 3, the roles of the different classes (including psionic ones) in the cold waters of Isinblare are covered. The chapter also features new classes, the first one being the Angakkuq base-class, who get 3/4 BAB-progression, d8, 4+Int skills per level, proficiency with light and medium armor, prepared divine spellcasting of up to 6th level via Cha as key attribute and get the option to create a Tupilaq: Somewhat similar to eidolons, these creatures are created from either flora, fauna or frost and can share spells with their masters and be enhanced etc, learn tricks à la animal companions etc. - a great alternative to the druid base-class with its fetishistic creature.

The chapter also includes new PrCs: The Conulair is singular among PrCs in that is requires a cool oath as well as is based on an interesting concept - mechanically, the class gets d10, 2+Int skills, full BAB, medium fort-saves and several cold-adaption powers. The cool thing about the PRC, though, is that entry actually bonds the applicant with a semi-conscious symbiote that grants the creature the respective powers and allows them not only to create deadly rimefire powers and may also choose frostboons. An excellent, iconic PrC! The second class is just as awesome and is imho the best rules-take I've seen on the concept: The Cyrokineticist, a psionic class who gets d8, 2+Int skills, 3/4 BAB-progression, medium fort-and ref-saves as well as a variety of abilities that include rimefire weaponry, flash-freezing etc. - analogue to the pyrokinetist a warrior-style class. Nice to see some psionic support beyond the Waves of Thought supplement. There is also the Cryomancer-PrC (d6, 2+Int skills, 9/10th spell-casting progression, 1/2 BAB-progression, medium will-saves),a nm arcane specialist of cold-based magic.

In chapter 4, we are introduced to the art of Frostcraft, but what is that? Well, first of all it's about arctic materials, bartering and how economies work in the polar context, including compressed air, ice rubber etc., which make a whole new class of item possible: So-called Aglootech. Unsurprisingly pioneered by said race, the class of items includes new weapons (by the way, all of which are rendered in gorgeous full color) that use this fizzling to create rifles, pistols etc. that propel nail-like projectiles through the waves, pneumatic blades and spears can be found in this chapter alongside the skitch-battle-scythes of the Squawk, ice blades. Also rather extremely cool regarding artworks: How exactly such rifles work is shown in a neat schematic that also provides enlarged and named components for the respective weapons. When harpoon-like rifles are possible, it should come as no surprise that there also are massive harpoon-cannons based on this technology to be found.

We also get a table for the 24 new feats herein, some of which allow angakkuqs to enhance their tupilaqs, grant squawks natural attacks and improved combat prowess with their signature skith, expand ningen blindsight, allow ice-elves to coat weapons in damaging ice and even pierce cold resistance with your cold resistance. The new class also gets an extensive spell-list and we also get an aquatic magus spell-list, which is neat to have indeed. I applaud one decision by Alluria: Instead of contributing to spell-bloat, we get 10 spells that adhere to the maxim of class instead of mass. From a spell that allows you to partially take on aquatic animal characteristics, one to encapsulate foes in ice or one to use the new entombed quality. Of course, you may also create a rancid murk that carries a plethora of debilitating diseases and unleash it into the waves.
The arctic "lands" of Isinblare are also rich in a material called Ancient Crystal, which can provide an array of interesting qualities to benefit from or be hindered by. 3 new magical items, also with gorgeous, perhaps even above-paizo-level artworks, complete the package of the chapter.

Chapter 5 is where the setting-specific pieces of information for the region of Isinblare in the context of the Cerulean Seas-setting can be found. (And yes, that means until now, the book was all about material just about any campaign could use). In tradition with the Cerulean Seas-setting, we get what amounts to essentially short racial histories of the respective races, each of which comes with a fluff-only write-up of a famous personality of the respective race. Beyond the main playable races, though, we also get pieces of information on the civilization of races from the bestiary. Languages and their speakers are part of what is provided, as are 6 deities and write-ups of the nations and big cities to be found in the realms of indigo ice, though the latter lack city statblocks. The maps provided do their job, though they admittedly fall far behind the quality of the artworks and feel slightly out of place.

In tradition with other Alluria Publishing-releases, the final chapter provides us with a bestiary-section, which includes fiskheim akhluts, domesticated huge versions of the regular akhluts, aquatic bears, the fish-humanoid Brothers of Frost , a new song dragon, the riding penguins called Kairaku, two new types of ningen, a wicked fey of frozen glaciers, seal variants (both mundane and partially represented as the sunhunter as a deadly glacier-predator and more: Take e.g. living ice-float constructs, ice-breaker whales, AWESOME-looking ice leviathans, ice kraken, orcoths and tizheruks and even ice liches. Alluria books are usually beautiful. These monster-illustrations, though, transcend even some of the offerings I've seen by WotC and paizo - mind-boggling and awesome. Also, each of the creatures gets some kind of interesting (sometimes even multiple) signature abilities. Arctic/Aquatic mounts and war-beasts are also covered, with e.g. animal companion stats.

Beyond even this content, we get an index of aquatic polar monsters by CR(including up to Bestiary 3, Creepy Creatures and all Cerulean Sea-books), pronunciation guidelines, a table that lists all tables, an art-index, 8 card-stock minis and a small poem on the last page.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn't notice any glitches - quite a feat at this length. The pdf comes fully bookmarked with nested bookmarks and its layout adheres to Cerulean Seas' two-column full-color standard and is, still, among the most dazzling out there. The artworks deserve special mentioning: Where Waves of Thought and even Cerulean Seas had an odd one out here and there, Indigo Ice goes above and beyond: These artworks are so beautiful, I honestly can't recall having EVER seen such a beautiful book by any 3pp - this ranks, presentation-wise, among the very best and in fact, at least imho, surpasses even multiple paizo-books. The supplement unfortunately comes sans printer-friendly version and if you can, I suggest you get the full-color print. If the print is half as beautiful as the pdf, you'll still have a drop-dead gorgeous book.

When I read the premise of the book, I was honestly doubting whether this would interest me: Cerulean Seas is a peculiar set of rules/setting and combining them with the frozen north seemed problematic to me at best: Especially with Kobold Press' Northlands already doing a great of Norse-themed fantasy, albeit above the waves. Indigo Ice thankfully takes a different approach: Blending Norse themes with a large dose of Inuit-myth (something seen all too rarely) the setting is something different altogether from the sum of its component parts: Flavor-wise, the vibe that best describes the indigo Ice is imho a pulpy underlying theme of a harsh land of harsh people coated with more than a fair share of original ideas (Spartan penguins actually are much more badass than you'd think!) and mixed up with technology that creates a combination of themes both in line with traditionalist mythologies and a sense of ancientness as well as with the throes of progress and a feeling of being on the dawning of a new age.
The weapons with their details (and especially the extremely detailed schematic that depicts it) make what would otherwise be a ridiculous concept feel believable. In fact, that's pretty much the crowning achievement of Indigo Ice: Many concepts may sound ridiculous when paraphrased in a review such as this, but the unity of stellar artwork, superb rules and excellent writing combine to make them work: To the extent where even usually gun-less campaigns can probably use these weapons sans breaking the suspension of disbelief. Now the fact that neither class, nor feats or any other component of the pdf can be considered broken or unbalanced further serves to boost the overall impression of excellence that withstands even closer scrutiny.
Beyond the usefulness of the book as a whole, I feel obliged to mention that the races, items and ideas herein can enrich campaigns in any northern setting, not necessarily only ones beneath the waves: If your PCs only plan sojourns into the frozen depths, then this pdf will still provide extremely fine critters, feats and intriguing civilizations for you to scavenge and add.

To cut a long ramble that gushes about artworks, monsters and weapons, the potential usability for underwater-steampunk-adventures (if you emphasize Aglootech further) and the quality of the writing short: This book is a truly excellent addition to Alluria's oeuvre and its quality stand up to the highest standards you could demand, the one shortcoming being the maps in the campaign setting-section and the lack of city statblocks, but which in no way would justify rating this superb, surprisingly consistent book down: My final verdict will be 5 stars + seal of approval.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice
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Cerulean Seas: Indigo Ice
by Tavis H. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 12/13/2012 12:45:59
I'm happy with this purchase. The new races are interesting, if a little bit silly (Spartan Penguins!) The new class - the angakkuq - is a like a combination of a shaman and a summoner. They are able to give life to constructs made of ice, plant matter and even animal carcasses. I appreciate the use of Inuit lore, this is something I've never seen in a role playing game. The fluff of the book can be used outside of the Pathfinder system and even in a game that is not set completely underwater.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Waves of Thought
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 09/24/2012 03:13:34
This pdf is 98 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page list of thanks for the Alluria kickstarter, 2 pages of Index, 1 page inside the back cover and 1 page back cover, leaving us with a total of 88 pages of content, so let's check this out!

This is a pdf I honestly thought I'd never see - Alluria Publishing has created THE definite book for underwater adventuring with their massive, stellar quality Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting. Unfortunately, after that, the company got put on hold and now, like a phoenix from the ashes, has risen to once again grace us with their material - but can the psionic supplement, fully compatible with Dreamscarred Press' Psionics Unleashed material and made in association with these masters of the mind stand up to the incredibly high standard Alluria has set for themselves with the Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting?

Only one way to find out! This book kicks off with a flavorful introduction about the cycles of divine might, arcane power and psionic potential and then goes on about how this product was made and a set of basic terms one should understand when reading this book. Without any significant further ado, we are then introduced to new aquatic psionic races that might be added to a regular heavily aquatic campaign or used with the Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting. First in the array of new races would be the Amphian, a subtype of clownfish-like-looking merfolk that is renowned to be a race of gifted entertainers and scoundrels - they get either the wild talent psionc feat (if non-psionic class) or the psionic talent feat (if they choose a psionic class) at first level as well as fast swim speed, 2 to Cha and Dex and -2 to Str as well as the favored class option to get 1 power point when taking a level in the wilder class and a resistance to venoms. The Thalassic Asrai, a new type of medium feykith, get either the wild talent psionc feat (if non-psionic class) or the psionic talent feat (if they choose a psionic class), are boneless and thus get 2 to acrobatics and escape artist checks as well as 1 to CMD & CMB, 2 Dex and Wis, -2 Con, can get a power point instead of hp or skills when classing in a psionic class, deal cold damage with their natural attacks and swiftly die when brought out of the water. They also gte 2 to checks to overcome psionic resistance instead of feykith magic.

The Melusine are an interesting race that sprang from the nommo and can be considered a psionically changed race that is heavily influenced by its rigid caste system and the fact that beings from diverse castes produce offspring belonging to certain caste combinations, enforcing a complex structure that is interesting to explore in game. Rules-wise, these beings get 2 Con and 2 Int, -2 Cha, are of the merfolk subtype, get 40 ft swim speed, darkvision 60 ft., light sensitivity, suffocate out of the water, get a 2 to Perception due to compound eyes, get either the wild talent psionc feat (if non-psionic class) or the psionic talent feat (if they choose a psionic class), can get a power point as a favored class option when leveling in a psionic class. They are also acclimated to extreme depths, meaning they suffer at low depths of 300 ft. from being pressure sensitive and can negate damage they receive as an immediate action by burning power points, ignoring 2 points of damage for each power point spent.

Speaking of interesting races: The Merkoth, is a weird merfolk indeed, ending in multiple, octopus-like tentacles. They get 2 Dex and Int, but -2 Cha, have a normal swim speed, get either the wild talent psionc feat (if non-psionic class) or the psionic talent feat (if they choose a psionic class), can cast detect psionics and concealing amphora 1/day as a psi-like ability - well, and they have tentacles, enabling them to hold up to 4 items ready (but not use them) to be retrieved as a swift action and also granting them 4 to CMB when trying to grapple. Oh, and they have a unique peculiar behavior as well: They hate their own race, trying their very best to avoid each other as often as possible, even having their young brought up by foster parents and actually get sickened without a save when within 30 ft of another being of their race. Now if that is not story-telling gold!

The reptilian-headed Benthic Naga are next on the list. They get 2 to Dex and Wis, -2 to Cha, belong to the anthromorph subtype, get 1 natural armor to AC, get either the wild talent psionc feat (if non-psionic class) or the psionic talent feat (if they choose a psionic class), are immune to mind-reading and get 2 to saves vs. enchantment and poison as well as a mildly poisonous bite. The DC of latter scales with the character's level, ensuring prolonged usefulness. The final new race is actually one you might recall from another Alluria publication, namely the Remarkable Races Compendium. The Zef, originally parasites that have taken over the collectives of a form of snail-like humanoids and guided them benevolently, granting them sentience. The small snail-people are presented here in a psionc variant that gets 2 Int, 2 Wis, -2 Str, 20 ft swim speed, can choose a knowledge skill as a class skill at first level due to their inborn knowledge and also feature a protective shell in which they can retreat. If you remember the campaign setting, you might recall the eclectic options to play half-breeds of a wide variety of races and here we also get seafolk/amphian, seafolk/melusine and seafolk/benthic naga crossbreeds. It should also be mentioned that the chapter includes tables that comprehensively list all racial modifiers of the new races, tables to determine random height and length, age-tables for starting age and age effects as well as information on racial buoyancy and depth tolerance, both in the respective racial entries and in the table - great service and concise presentation there!

After that we are introduced to Alluria Publishing's take on the psionic classes released so far in the context of underwater adventuring, providing easy to implement conversion advice ranging from cosmetic remodeling to some minor crunchy modifications before we delve into the new base-class, the Aquanaut. The Aquanaut gets d10 HD, 4+Int skills per level, proficiency with simple and martial weapons, light and medium armor, shields and all natural weapons they have, but more on that one later. The Aquanauts also gets full BAB, good fort and will-saves, up to a total of 74 power points and can learn powers of up to 4th level. Sounds like a martial class? Yes and no, for the Aquanaut is so much more than that! The Aquanaut starts off with something called Phylum and gains an additional phylum at fifth level and every 4 levels thereafter, gaining an empathy with creatures associated with her phylum - examples would be Cnidarians, Crustaceans, Mammals etc. Now, the Aquanaut foregoes membership of her original race, becoming essentially a race of her own she shares with other members of the class (Aquanaut). She also becomes an inherently magical being that increases her natural AC, makes her resistant to pressure and means that she counts as magical for means of attacks. Can you see where this is going? The Aquanaut is actually evolving her own body, learning to change her body with her very own brand of mutations, to which quite some space is devoted: Starting by explaining the basic [armor], [extra arm] and[shell]-descriptors of the introduced mutations, we are then presented with phyla and their associated mutations: 6 phylums are detailed, each coming with a plethora of these new mutations - from root-like tendrils, to anchor yourself, coral-style to surfaces to extruding poisonous slime or growing a coral head, from poisonous and shootable spines to fins to crab legs, chitin skin, additional tentacles, lobster claws to an otter's keen sense of smell, a sonar, up to the option to change colors and thus speak the cephalite language and gain a stealth bonus, extrude octopus ink or being able to grow, puffer-fish style - or grow a turtle or nautilus shell: Not only are the respective options sheer genius in their iconicity, they also are so rock-.solid and balanced in their rules-implementation that I can do naught but utter the utmost praise for this class: Even in the reign of excellent PFRPG-classes, the Aquanaut stands out and surpasses all regular Cerulean Seas-classes, being on par with my favorite pathfinder-classes ever. The best new base class I've read so far in 2012! Take heed, designers - this is how it's done!

Next up are the regular psionic PrCs and how they can be changed to fit in an undersea environment and goes on to provide us with two new PrCs - the 10 level Current Adept (d6, 2+Int skills, 1/2 BAB, 1/2 will-save, 8 levels of power progression) are beings that can manipulate water to work telekinetic style and gain vast speed enhancements as well as the option to create impassable water and change water temperature - interesting casting battlefield control/mobility class. The second class, is the 5-level shark incarnate, a feral melee PrC for psychic warriors that gets d10, 4+Int skills per level, full BAB, good fort and ref-saves, only gains an additional 9 power points and 3 levels of power progression, but gets special enhancements options to make truly devastating bites and can be considered a fearsome foe indeed: The shark incarnate can add double the str-mod to attacks when blood is in the water or an enemy is almost dead and can get additional attacks to follow up on critical hits, may reroll class levels saves and add his strength modifier on the rerolls. Worse, once the shark has destroyed a foe, he gets temporal life-force from cannibalizing. The capstone is also cool, offering the option to treat power points as hit points on a one-for-one-basis if the shark incarnate would otherwise be dropped below 0 Hp. Both PrCs are absolutely neat, though, unsurprisingly, they are "only" excellent, not a class of its own like the Aquanaut base-class.

The pdf also provides us with 23 new feats, including e.g. the option to craft mystic starfish (!!!) to gaining ectoplasmic ink to the option to gain a hypnotic angler-fish style gaze or even turn to water to 1/day automatically escape a grapple or change your naga venom to one that deals wis-damage that makes susceptible to your psionic attacks. You could also form psionic quills of ectoplasm while focused, granting you access to armor spikes in any armor or even unarmored. Beyond that, we are also introduced to a variety of psionic powers and the careful consideration towards environmental factors we've seen in Cerulean Seas - e.g. the fact that cold energy effects may result in ice-crystals, but only up to a certain depths. It's small bits and pieces that make the difference between a good setting and a stellar one - attention to detail and internally consistent logic. We also get a complete powers-list for the new Aquanaut-class, including highlighted and altered aquanaut powers. This care is extended towards the psion and wilder as well as the psychic warrior class, before we delve right into the selection of new powers.
Oh BOY! Aqueous Coalescence thickens the water around you, halving enemy movement and hampering attacks and damage as well as preventing ranged attacks. Better yet - the power also effects buoyancy and can be dissipated by currents. You'll see powers like this more often in the chapter than not - i.e. powers that not only offer interesting tactical options, but also exhibit a true mastery of psionic rules (the Dreamscarred press connection is evident) as well as taking the stellar rules from the Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting into account, merging both in an accomplishment of great design. Whta I mean with this rather cryptic wording is that these powers take three-dimensional fighting, buoyancy, floating ice, etc. into account, create devastating vortexes, use atomic agitation to create superheated blasts of water, etc. into account.

Not even here does the pdf stop, though, and instead it provides us with 2 new item classes, the mystic starfish and the ioun bubble, as well as 6 new psionic items and a new psionic material. If you've read the Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting, you'll distinctly remember the racial perspectives on the setting's history and the grand panoply their combined perspective offers - just like the setting, this pdf provides a chapter of fluff in this vein, containing famous members, adventure hooks and myths galore, enough to fill a wide variety of adventures and campaigns. It should be noted that the perspectives on non-player races have not been ignored - we also get to know at least a bit about the psionic jellyfish called medusians and similar NPC-races.

The final large chapter provides us with a bestiary in true Alluria Publishing-style - i.e. with easily identifiable creature-glyphs and gorgeous full-color artworks for every creature. We are introduced to the golden-scaled Apsara merfolk, the enigmatic Arichteuthian shapers, to calcified skeletons and brain corals that kill their victims and make them their calcified skeleton slaves, to tiny, yet deadly brain crabs, the demonic and powerful Jormungandi, to a new almost cthulhoid-looking species of song dragon, to nightmare-inducing eels, frogs on whose backs brill grows to the non-player castes of the Melusine to disturbing mindshrimp swarms, to translucent, glowing deep sea octopi and psionic slurgs, host creatures for the Zef and their racial blood foes, the Zoh, - the bestiray is of a stunning quality and many of the artworks herein would even stand out in Alluria's excellent oevre.

In order to make navigation easier, we get an appendix with aquatic psionic monsters released so far by CR, a pronunciation guide, an index of tables, an index for art and 2 pages of cardstock minis.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting, I am happy to report, are up to the stellar quality Alluria left off with - I did not notice any glitches, top-notch! Layout is GORGEOUS and up to the highest standards conceivable, using the same awe-inspiring full-color blue-tinged loook as the campaign setting. Alluria Publishing's artwork was always stellar, but some pieces herein, be it the monsters, the chapter-introducing artworks or the Aquanaut blast the lids off of what to expect from a 3pp artwork-wise. Only rarely does one see so many awesome full-color artworks in one pdf. Impressive indeed! The pdf also comes fully bookmarked, with nested bookmarks, making navigation easy. The only formal point I could nag about is the lack of a printer-friendly version. Then again, if you do print this out, you'll want it in full color or even print from the get-go: The pdf is that pretty.
And best of all: The content is up to the visuals! Whether it is crunch or fluff, this pdf leaves nothing to be desired - much like the spell-adaption in Cerulean Seas, this pdf not only goes the extra mile, it goes an extra marathon and then some. Advertised as a psionic underseas sourcebook I at first considered the publisher's blurb speaking of "mastery of Psionic Unleashed and the Cerulean Seas Setting" sounding like hubris. It's not. It's the plain truth. I did not find one piece of content I'd consider off, not one single piece. Better yet, the pieces herein are not contend with working - they strive to be iconic.
They ooze heart's blood and passion. They provide innovative synergies and take the peculiarities of undersea adventuring into account. This pdf, much like the original Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting, is not content with being good, or very good - it strives to excel. And that shows. In every page and every idea. Let me spell it out: My expectations were insanely high. They were met and surpassed. My expectations, when this high, are almost universally disappointed. Instead, e.g. the Aquanaut should be considered a compulsory addition to ANY campaign featuring psionics and could, with some minor tweaking, work in regular settings as well. I only have one thing to ask for: Do we get Waves of Thought 2 with more support for the Aquanaut and additional support for Psionics Expanded: Advanced Psionics Guide? Please?

I forgot my verdict. It should come as no surprise: This book is a must for fans of psionics, of the Cerulean Seas setting and all those who felt even remotely intrigued by what I described here. This pdf is worth every cent of its asking price and I hope there'll be a print option. Final verdict: 5 stars endzeitgeist seal of approval. Congratulations for the triumphant return -it comes with a bang!

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas: Waves of Thought
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Remarkable Races Pathway to Adventure: Compendium of Unusual PC Races
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/30/2012 11:09:03
This massive pdf is 161 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 blank page inside the front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC,3 pages of indexes (vital for a book of this size), 1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving 151 pages of content, so let's take a look at each of the new races:

The first in the cadre would ne the race of Anumi: Born from a sacred fruit found by an enterprising charlatan, these humanoids are actually the revitalized (or rebirthed) animal companions, familiars etc. that had reached the end of their life cycle, given a new, fully grown humanoid body with an animal head by the consumption of the draught distilled from it. Thus, it is not surprisingly that introducing this race to your campaign will immediately make animal rights etc. a new political factor -rather cool if you're so inclined, though in some rather dark/low fantasy campaigns that'd out of place.
Well, on the other hand, the background is easily enough ignored. So let's get to the stats: Anumi all get 2 to Str, 2 to perception and additional bonuses depending on the animal they originated from. Amphibians get 2 Wis, -2 Cha, acid resistance 5, can hold their breath 4 times their constitution score, get 4 to swim checks and 2 to saves against poison and disease (Bestial Fortitude). Arachnid Anumi get 2 Int, -2 Cha, darkvision 60 ft., 2 to reflex saves against electricity, fire or light area of effect spells (Bestial Reflexes), 4 to climb and can cast a web once per day as a spell-like ability. Avian Anumi get 2 Cha, -2 Int, the same reflex-bonuses as the spiders, 1 to ranged attack rolls and can cast feather fall on themselves once per day. Canine Anumi get 2 Cha, -2 Wis and scent as well as improved trip as a bonus feat.

Equine Anumi get 2 Int, -2 Wis, a base speed of 40 ft. that never decreases due to encumbrance, 2 fort-saves against poison and disease and can add a regular attack after a bull rush maneuver - the ability to not be encumbered is already powerful and adding this special attack goes too far for my tastes, making this choice particular insane for barbarians or similar heavily armored tanks. Feline Anumi get 2 Cha and -2 Wis, low-light vision, 2 to acrobatics and climb checks and may reroll every reflex save before the result is known. Unlimited times per day rerolls of reflex saves? Come again?
That's sick and unbalanced. Not gonna happen in my game. Ever. Ophidian Anumi get 2 to Wis, -2 Cha, darkvision, 2 to saves against poisons and diseases, bestial reflexes and 2 to escape artist checks. Porcine Anumi get 2 Int, -2 Cha, bestial fortitude, scent and can continue fighting for one round after being brought below 0 hp. Reptile Anumi get 2 Wis and -2 Int, bestial fortitude, 1 to atks against tiny or smaller creatures and may reroll all will-saves, even after failing them, making this race imho more broken than the feline Anumus. Again, not gonna happen in my game- Rodent Anumi get 2 Int and -2 Cha, bestial reflexes, 2 to initiative and can reroll failed saves, but have to announce that they do so before the results are known. Again, unlimited rerolls per day are a huge no-go for me. Ursine Anumi, the final type presented, get 2 to Wis, -2 to Int, get 1 atk 1 damage to one unarmed attack per round, bestial fortitude and the improved grapple feat.
After these racial traits, we are given advice on creating more Anumi-types and how to integrate them in your game. It should be noted that the necessary age, height and weight tables etc. as well as speeds and a concise list of starting attributes for all new races herein are provided at the end of the race-section of the book.

The second race we are introduced to is called "Boggle" - manipulated and bred to be more intelligent goblins, boggles have changed into rather benevolent beings and now can be considered beneficial inventors. These strange little goblins get 2 to Dex and Int, -2 to Cha, are small, get a base speed of 30 ft., darkvision 60 ft, 1 to ref-saves against fire, electricity and acid area attacks, count as goblins, get 2 to Knowledge (Engineering), Profession (engineering), Craft (any), disable device or Use Magic Device and boggle weapon familiarity. Speaking of which: From the multitool-style boggle-wrenches to wind-up buzzblades and sniping crossbows, the new weapons are rather cool. Better yet, boggles come with an inbuilt adventuring-reason: Boggle madness, a racial disease stemming from their unnatural genesis that drives venerable boggles mad unless they inject it daily- suffice to say, it's anything but cheap at 1 GP per dose. A nice race, especially for those slightly steampunkish in inclination.

Perhaps one of the weirdest races I've seen is the Entobian race: Upright walking caterpillars with a friendly disposition, though they fail to grasp the concept of romantic love. They also are larvites and can transform via metamorphosis, but the default Entobian gains 2 to Dex and Cha, -2 to Wis, are small, get 30 ft. movement, 2 to will-saves against charm-spells and effects, 1 to atk against vermin, get 2 to acrobatics and climb, can create strands of silk-like rope a couple of times per day and get a set of natural claws that deal 1d4 damage. The Entobians can also transform into 5 different evolved versions by taking the respective feats, but more on that once I get to the massive feat-section of the book.

Kvals look like wingless imps with huge hands and actually are a rather interesting concept: Basically, these creatures can be considered to be agents of entropy that seek to destroy evil when the balance is shifted too strongly. Abrasive and dark, yes, but if you'd have to draw some kind of comparison, the closest one I could find would then be that Kvals are a kind of cosmic antibody against the truly vile. They get 2 to Dex and Wis, -2 to Cha, are tiny, get low-light vision, can detect evil as a spell-like ability, are fast for their size (20 ft.), can wield weapons as if they were small, don't provoke AoOs when entering the square of larger creatures, get 4 to acrobatics and poison those delivering bite attacks or swallowing them. Playing such a small character can surely be interesting and honestly, balance-wise, they are solid.

Next up are the Mahrog, which are essentially a form of neanderthal, taken by a benevolent goddess, isolated from the world and kept peaceful and prosperous - until they found their way back into our world. Now, their primitive culture and race shaped by millennia of isolation clashes with the modern world of the setting they're placed in. They get 2 to Str, 2 to either Con or Wis, -2 to Int, count as humans, get either improved unarmed strike or improvised weapon mastery as bonus feats, get an additional skill rank that can be spent in appropriate skills and as long as they don't wear anything made of metal, they add a 2 natural armor bonus to AC when clad in leather or hide armor. The very conservative, overprotective mother goddess Mahra also gets a full write-up, including her new preservation domain. A nice race that comes with an inherent tragedy: The Mahrog goes out into the big world, starts as conservative and indoctrinated and returns to his/her brethren only to realize that the edicts on which their utopian culture is based are stifling, constricting and ultimately dooming the race - or perhaps they are right? I like races that have such an inherent potential for conflict and development.

Mogogols, cheerful humanoid frog-people, have developed from boggards to become a race of sea-faring, friendly frogs (and also play a role in the stellar Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting by Alluria Publishing). They get 2 Con and Cha, -2 Int, can be either medium or small with according movement speeds (30 ft. and 20ft., respectively), can hold their breath longer, move unimpeded through marsh or mud, have a 10 ft. grasping tongue, get 4 to jump checks and small mogogols also get 4 to climb-checks. Best of all, though, is that they get a 10 ft. grasping tongue with which they can grapple. Due to the strange curse, affliction or mutation that separated them from their boggard ancestry, all mogogols are born good. Generally, these Gripli-like beings make for a nice race.

After them, we are off to the more esoteric Muse: Born from the realm of dream (or nightmare), these ephemerally beautiful beings serve to inspire mortals towards great deeds. They gain 2 to Cha and Int, but -2 to Con, low-light vision, can grant allies 1 to all skill checks that involve skills you have yourself, can 1/day grant a reroll of an atk, save or skill-check via a touch and when they are above half their maximum HP, they get 1 morale bonus to armor and saves against adjacent creatures (an unwelcome design-remnant of 4th edition's "bloodied" condition, I guess - crunch-wise not impressive). But why have they left the realm of dream? To inspire the dawning of a new age? Or to escape something dreadful, lurking just behind the walls of sleep?

The coppery-skinned Numistians with their cat-like, green third eyes on their forehead may seem familiar at first: Denizens once native on the plane of commerce, these beings quite literally bleed sand and coins and actually sustain themselves on coins and wealth - to them, commerce is literally life. They get 2 Wis and 2 Cha, -2 Str, can change their size between small and medium, are slow but steady like dwarves (20 ft movement, but no penalties due to encumbrance), gain low-light vision, can 1/day lose hit points equal to their level to reroll a given save to bribe fate, get 4 to perception to detect coins, get 2 to saves against poison and can actually consume money (in gold or platinum increments) to heal their wounds - especially the latter ability being rather cool.

Oaklings, mobile plants with humanoid "faces", have an interesting life-cycle, starting as acorns and then evolving to small trees that observe for years before springing to life and mobility. The coolly logic plants value survival above almost anything, making them feel rather detatched, hence also their racial traits: 2 Str and Wis, -2 Cha, 2 to saves against mind-affecting effects, paralysis, poisons, polymorph and stun effects as well as an immunity to sleep effects and can be affected by both humanoid and plant spells and effects. If below 50% of their HP, they get 2 AC due to rotective sap (again, 4th edition design remnant...), can heal by basking in sunlight and stand up as a swift action. Overall, the race feels rather powerful: The array of bonuses combined with the option to easily heal and standing up fast is slightly more powerful than I enjoy, though write-up wise, making these plant-beings essentially pragmatic beings determined by logic, I enjoyed them very much.

Next in the cirque is the one race I honestly dreaded, not due to their nature, but due to how many ways exist in which you could screw them up: The Obitu are a player-race infected with the so-called vivification virus - a virus that infects undead, and reverses their polarity, ending in a transformation that sees the beings being reborn as skeletons empowered by positive energy and thus also none of the life-hating characteristics of the undead. Obitu get 2 to Str and Dex, -2 to Cha, darkvision 60 ft., 4 to saves against disease and poison (how do they catch them sans metabolism?), gain improved initiative, 2 to acrobatics, escape artist and sleight of hands-checks, have a negative energy resistance of 5 1/2 character level and are immune to sleep. Good news first: The crunch is solid, if slightly more powerful than I enjoy - at least they don't have the sickening amount of immunities undead have. The negative being that the Obitu, with their magic virus (which also gets its stats) can potentially break a campaign's logic - after all, they offer an excellent way to enhance one's lifespan greatly. Also rather weird are the references to muscular contractions and blood, when the obitu are skeletons - a more detailed run-down of their alien physiology would have been nice indeed. That being said, while certainly not perfect, they are nevertheless the best undead race for PFRPG also far and in far-out campaigns with a lot of weird races (or Plane-hopping campaigns) I will definitely use them, perhaps once my next player dies, an Obitu spawns and takes root in the bones of the fallen... My favorite race herein so far.

Relluks are an interesting relic of a bygone era - literally. These beings are constructs made of basalt and obsidian pressed into the shape of a vaguely humanoid creature with a gaping maw of a tribal face at the front, sprung to life via a soul-crystal and covered in strange golden metals that cover their frames in a distinct pattern resembling circuits, these relics of the downfall of two allied civilizations of atlantean proportions now scour the earth, guided by instinctual memories of their as of yet undiscovered brethren. They gain 2 Con and Cha, -2 Dex, have a con-score and make fortitude saves as normal, but do get some (though thankfully not all) construct immunities: poison, sleep, paralysis, petrification, disease, nausea, sickening and energy drain all hold no threat to the Relluk, which is a quite impressive list in my book. However, this is offset by the inability to heal regularly - without magic, no Relluk can heal and additionally, they are susceptible to spells that deal with stone and non-ferrous metals. Relluks use their gems to emulate magic items and armor - if the wear a regular armor, they quickly become fatigued and exhausted and 1/day, Relluks can emit a, obscuring mist-like cloud of steam that deals minimal fire damage. Finally, they always shed light as a torch and contact with the Relluk's soul crystal ignites flammable objects, leading to some nice potential for humorous roleplaying. I honestly did not want to read this entry - yet another construct race? Yawn! But unlike Replicants, Ironborn and Automata, the Relluk are different in that they are WEIRD, don't feel necessarily humanoid and also thankfully (as did some of the aforementioned, just to be precise...) avoid the "slap construct-immunities on them"-approach. Even if your world already has a sentient construct-race, I wager that the Relluk with their antediluvian flair will make for welcome additions and bring something new to the games! By the way: They come with a MASSIVE assortment of armor gems: 13 different base-types of armor gems are provided and apart from being useful as armor for Relluks, they also provide additional benefits like skill-bonuses, elemental resistances etc. Even cooler, there are gemstone equivalents for each armor gem, enabling Relluks to harness found gems in similar ways (which are actually VERY effective) and making gemstones finally more than just an annoying trip to the jeweler accompanied by an appraise-check. Kudos!
Ever wanted to play a slime? The Squole-race is just that. Slime. Humanoid-looking slime. Spawned from the Paraelemental plane of oozes, these beings get 2 to Dex, 2 to Con, -2 to Int, are blind beyond the range of their 40 ft. blindsight, get 2 to Acrobatics and Escape artists-checks due to being boneless, gain a resistance of 1/2 his character level against either cold, fire or acid and share some traits with oozes such as immunity to stunning, sneak attacks, poison and sleep. they can still be flanked, crited, paralyzed and polymorphed and while they don't sleep, they do need to eat and drink. The blindsight is powerful, but the blindness beyond the reach is a cool way to balance the benefits of this race and while these oozes don't feel as cool as the Relluk, they are a solid, albeit very weird addition to a campaign.

Speaking of weird: The Taddol are a weird crossbreed of elf and ettin, encompassing two personalities in one humanoid body. They get 2 Str and Int, -2 Cha, low-light vision, count as both elves and giants for race-related effects, get two favored classes (and 1 skills and hp every time they take a level in such a class), 4 to perception, double the number of head and neck-slots, but have double the chance to die by vorpal weapons -losing one head kills a Taddol. They also get Two Weapon Fighting as a bonus feat and qualify for the improved and greater feats without taking the dex-requirement into account.

The Xax are born from a combination of mad worshipers of the great tapestry and the primordial forces of the Abyss - and are strictly logical. Their physiology is weird, with a vertical mouth and eyes above another, organs comprised of tentacles (!!) and similarly weird stuff. Xax get 2 to Con and Int, -2 to Cha, are small, slow (20 ft.), roll at character creation for a random elemental resistance, gain proficiency of an exotic weapon of their choice and can randomly gain access each sunrise to another race's signature racial powers, like stonecunning or halfling's luck. A combination of chaotic fluxes akin to a rod of wonders with a dint Lovecraftia would the best describe these strange beings and honestly- they are so imaginative, I kind of like them. I might even introduce them into my campaign world - though I'll have them all disguised. In my campaign, all races in this book would get lynched faster by the xenophobic human populace than you could say "Tar and Feathers".

The final new character race is another one you're guaranteed to never have seen before: The Zif are intelligent parasites that thrive in symbiosis with mollusk-forms and have since adopted the race of Snillorhgs, which should be understood as large snails with hands. Zifs get 2 Int and Wis, -2 Str, are medium, slow, gain an additional knowledge-skill rank at character creation, can't wear shoes (but gets a second belt-slot), and can retreat into their shells, gaining 5+character level DR/-, but blinding the Zif. They also get 4 to climb checks and attempts to resist bull rushes - and possess an inbred and surprising hatred of aberrations and traditionally evil races. Another truly unique and intriguing race, I must say!

So, now the basics are out of the way, let's move on to the racial prestige classes, for this book contains one for every new race.
First in the array is the Zif Abolisher, who comes at d8, 4+Int skills per level, medium fort and will-saves and full BAB as well as 9 levels of spellcasting progression. These beings can essentially be considered a dual-class of aberration-specialized hunter with arcane capabilities and the option to disable mental powers temporarily. The Relluk Archeovitus gets d8, 8+Int skills per day, medium BAB, medium ref-and will-saves and no spell-progression. The PrC gets the option to access bardic music, stonecunning, the option to perceive invisible creatures, an enhancement to make the steam solid fog and finally the abilities to cast find the path as well as legend lore. The Taddol Battletwin gets d12, 2+Int skills per level, full BAB, medium reflex saves and the abilities to replace the traditional two-weapon fighting style f the Taddol with a singular determination on large and deadly two-handed weapons, thus putting two minds to one blade, with devastating consequences: From improved reach to a better CMD to a cool capstone ability that lets her reroll her attacks 1/hour, the class is a cool, martial class that does not need any magic gizmos - quite cool, especially since the Taddol to me give off a distinct Howardesk flair - I'll probably rather use them in my extremely low-magic Hyborian campaign...

The Kval Deathseeker (D12, 2+Int skills, medium fort and ref-saves, full BAB) gives new meaning to the phrase "Small but Fierce" - granting abilities to jump into the fray and even grant improving DR. Better yet, though, is the level 10 capstone ability: If an event would plunge a world towards catastrophic evil, this blaze of glory ability lets the Kval Deathseeker shunt all in a 1000 ft.-radius into a demiplane cyst, trapping the vil in question for a thousand years at the cost of not being able to escape himself - a cool final resort ability for a heroic sacrifice-endgame and since using the ability is dependent on DM-approval, one I absolutely LOVE. The Boggle Demolisher gtes d8, 6+Int skills per level, medium BAB and medium ref-saves and could be seen as a roguish demolitions-expert that excels at breaking things (for example the armor of his foes..) and creating explosives. Unfortunately, the Demolisher has not aged well and with the creation of the APG and the alchemist-class, feels somewhat dated. A revision as an alchemist-PrC would be cool.

The greedy Numistians introduce the Entrepreneur, who gets d6, 8+Int skills, medium BAB, medium fort and ref-saves and no spell progression. Entrepreneurs gain the abilities to automatically treat appraise-checks as rolled 20s, massively improved knowledge checks, improving blindsight, darkvision, an interesting ability that seems to heal damage when hitting a foe with a bludgeoning weapon, but actually doesn't, an aura of trustworthiness and even x-ray vision. An interesting class, though one too focused on enhanced senses for my tastes. The Golden Muse (d8, 2+Int skills, medium BAB, medium will-save, full divine spell progression) is focused on bringing evil to justice, making the class essentially celestial in themes - golden light that crushes evil and inspires ally - the like. I found this particular class not too captivating or cool. The Obitu Grim Reaper (d8, 4+Int skills, full BAB, medium will-save 9 levels spell progression) is another PrC that does not excite me - yes, an undead-looking undead-hunter is cool. But the abilities are boring - I've seen bonuses against creature type y, immunity against negative levels etc. too often to consider this class well-made. I've literally seen all the abilities (apart from a slight improvement of the vivification virus) before. Wasted potential for the cool name. Entonbian Lightseekers get d10, 4+Int skills per level, full BAB, medium ref-saves and can be seen as trailblazers with some minor abilities to enhance their weapons with light-effects as well as speed and mobility-enhancements.

The Anumus Pharaoh (d8, 4+Int skills per level, medium BAB and will-save, full spell-progression) is actually a true surprise - not only get they to choose from different ancient secrets, they can also exchange persons via teleport in combat, punish or aid foes and allies by sheathing them in purple flames and sway the masses - the Pharaoh-PrC rocks hard and I'll use them in my campaign - not only for Anumi (though I'll rename it -scion of the duat). Two thumbs up for that one! The Oakling PrC, the Reverent of Spring (d12, 4+Int skills per level, full BAB, medium fort and will-saves) is a hunter/melee combatant that sees nature as "Kill or be killed" and can even learn to heal minor wounds each time they inflict damage in melee. The Mahrog Savage (d10, 2+Int skills per level, full BAB, medium fort-save) gains bonuses to handling a specific type of animal, summon animals of this kind, can create special hides that are the equivalent of civilized armor, special weapons that emulate civilized ones and turn into his totem animal. The Squole Slimelord (d8, 4+Int skills, medium BAB, medium fort-and ref-saves, full spellcasting progression) gains the ability to summon oozes and influence the mindless creatures as well as launch slime globes at foes and even turn into a full-blown ooze at the end.

The Xax warrior philosopher (d10, 2+Int skills per level, full BAB, medium fort and will-saves) starts off as a regular fighting class, but e.g. the option to roll 5d4 instead of a d20 once per round as well as the cool capstone "Perfect Strike" (treat atk as 20 or damage as maximum) make this class rather cool and the warrior philosopher a well-rounded class. The final new class is the Mogogol Zubbit, who comes with d10, 2+Int skills, full BAB, medium will-saves - and is unfortunately utterly lame - a kind of pseudo-paladin, all of the zubbit's abilities are worse than those granted by the Paladin and Cavalier base-classes. Ok for NPCs and if you consciously want to make your Mogogol weaker. Otherwise: Avoid like the plague!

After this massive section, we delve into the feat-chapter, which is thankfully equipped with a two page table of feats by race so you can easily find what you're looking for - special mention deserve the entobian metamorphosis-feats that give you the option to transform your larva-like entobian into different entobian forms, including new racial modifiers etc. - since, however, this review is already bloated beyond compare, I'll refrain from going into all details. Overall, the majority of the feats offer some neat benefit and make sense.

The second portion of the book is specially for the GM and includes short write-ups of the island-home of the taddols and the plane of commerce of the Numistians. We also get a lot of magic items: From pet-related item like an invisible lash to put on Anumi (or would-be enslavers) to boggle one-man helicopter-backpacks, magic mistletoes, heartstones obitu can put in their empty chests to an enchanted slime armor and a diving helm-like ooze that enables you to breathe underwater, this chapter unanimously deserves my fullest praise - iconic, cool, imaginative items, one and all.

After this, we get a bestiary-section for all the races and related creatures, including undead oaklings, new oozes, etc., the section is useful and nice. The pdf closes with an aforementioned index. The pdf also comes with 3 pages of paper cardstock minis in full color.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are very good, though not perfect: I encountered a couple of different minor typos, though none impeded my ability to enjoy this pdf. Layout adheres to a beautiful 2-column full-color standard, that, while beautiful, will extol a brutal drain on your printer since there is no printer-friendly version. The full-color, original artworks are mostly awesome and range from good to excellent. The pdf is excessively bookmarked.

I honestly expected to hate this book. Seriously. New races have a hard standing with me as I don't like it when races don't bring anything new to the table but variations of crunch. Thus, I was rather astonished to see that all of the different races herein at least have something going for them - some being even exceedingly innovative in their design and ideas. That being said, these races are weird and may not be appropriate for every setting, gravitating more towards settings with a lot of weird humanoids running around. The average creature herein would lead to people screaming "Monster" and piling up the pyre in my home campaign - in high fantasy, racially diverse settings or even better, planeswalking settings, though, these races truly shine and offer some breaths of fresh air to known and tried tropes. In fact, I can easily picture all of these beings fitting seamlessly on the streets of Sigil or any other place in the great beyond.

That out of the way, the supplemental material also deserves mentioning: While the magic items provided can stand up to the best of books, the PrCs, with some notable exceptions, fell flat for me: Too often do they remind one of classic tropes like "Mage with favored enemy" or "celestial bard" and while some offer truly ingenious abilities, not all feel that well-crafted. But back to the races: Apart from some slight balance-concerns I voiced in the respective sections (especially regarding the Anumi), I was positively surprised to see how well the races herein fare. Especially the Relluk practically belongs into any campaign that features a lost civilization prominently and remains my favorite race herein - probably because they have the most elaborate background. I know that the choice is by design, but my major gripe with this pdf is the lack of customs of the new races. While the omission of religious rites etc. makes them easy to integrate into a given campaign, it is religious rites, social peculiarities etc. that make races stand out and shape their identity. Take a look at Rite Publishing's race-books, notably the Ironborn in direct comparison: While the Ironborn are also a relatively new race, they do come with customs, terminology, identity-creating ploys. I really would have loved to see more in that vein, to e.g. properly present the ramblings of Xax warrior philosophers in battle. For me personally, this flaw weighs quite a bit and combined with the lack of a printer-friendly version and the minor glitches I encountered, makes me settle for a final verdict of 4 stars in the end.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Remarkable Races Pathway to Adventure: Compendium of Unusual PC Races
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Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
by Nicholas B. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/25/2012 15:08:32
This book is a steal at the current price, though I admit the price used to be higher and that kept me from checking it out. Now that I have it, I intend to buy the print edition. Very short but here's the pros and cons of the book:

Pros: a fantastic resource for an undersea campaign environment and very comprehensive at that; gorgeous illustrations, the nicest 3PP Pathfinder book I have yet seen; full of useful and interesting content; provides three dimensional rules for undersea combat.

Cons: Very specific to undersea adventuring, so of limited use if that's not your thing; the undersea combat rules look a bit complex.

Overall ratings:

Style and Presentation A+
Content: A+ for what it sets out to do; a C if you are looking to mine for ideas in on undersea campaigns.
General Value: A+

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
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Three Dimensional Combat Solutions
by Bruce L. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/15/2012 13:55:12
Great idea for representing 3-D combat on the tabletop. This approach is useful for both underwater gaming, as well as aerial combat. This system could easily be adapted to different game systems, as it is not rules-specific. You will find that it requires additional items to be purchased to use, such as wooden dowels, but for the price, it is a steal of a deal. Cheers!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Three Dimensional Combat Solutions
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Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/15/2012 05:43:45
This massive full-color campaign is 290 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages of editorial, 1 page ToC, 4 pages of index, 1 page inside back cover and 1 page back cover, leaving a staggering 279 pages of content for this campaign setting, but what exactly are in for?

What if the world saw an age of peace above the waves, an era of enlightenment overseen by a powerful nation? What if said force of goodness and equilibrium suddenly vanished and the surface-dwellers, in their despair and ignorance initiated a cataclysm that sees most of the world flooded, leaving only sparse patches of land unsubmerged? What if the surface-dwellers went extinct and yet, the world would continue spinning? The action and eternal war between good and evil would continue, but beneath the waves. These are the Cerulean Seas, a world flooded and in the grip of tidal waves, where new races have claimed dominance after vanquishing the dreaded sahuagin and this book follows an ambitious goal - Not only do the people from Alluria Publishing try to offer you an original setting, but also provide all the necessary rules for all instances of underwater adventuring.

Let's see whether they've succeeded in that endeavor, shall we? There's a lot to consider, believe me. Seeing I converted the monstrous arcana Sahuagin-trilogy from the 2nd edition days of old to 3.5 and ran the campaign, I do know that even if you prepare a LOT of magical items/spells etc., there are a LOT of additional concerns to address and this book is wasting no space and jumps in to introduce us to some of the peculiarities of underwater adventuring:

From an introduction to the different light zones, to mechanics to determine tides and even very extensive terrain information, we get a lot of cool new rules, favorite of which for me would be buoyancy -natural air bladders from races to items: The rules presented for buoyancy should be standard - they are elegant and easy to implement: Essentially buoyancy comes in positive and negative values, either dragging you down or pushing you upwards - including acceleration and drag. Str determines what you can carry until you fight against buoyancy. Combine that with water pressure and currents (which also get their easy and yet extensive rules) and we get a wholly unique experience: Seeing that until I read this, underwater combat felt mostly like flying underwater, this is just awesome - 3d exploration and combat that opens a whole array of new tactics and combat options. Combat will never be the same under the waves and even if you're only planning on having 1 or 2 adventures under the waves, this chapter (especially when combined with OD's Sunken Empires), is absolutely the best resource you can imagine. It also includes extensive information on underwater hazards ranging from poisons, whirlpools etc. A new condition replaces prone (disoriented) and thrown weapons are replaced with plunge weapons - be aware, though, that not a simple name-substitution has been made: E.g. the splash weapons work in some key-aspects different from their dryland-counterparts.
After this chapter on terrain and the basics, we are introduced to the new playable races, all of which come with their own natural buoyancy, information on their depth tolerance as well as the information on attributes. I'd usually sum up the racial modifiers etc., but in the interest of finishing this review this century, I'll just go on to give you a general overview. Generally, the races of the Cerulean Sea can be divided into three general categories: Anthromorphs (4 races), which include cool races like the crab-like Karkanaks and the crocodile-humanoid Sebek-Ka, the Feykith (4 races), which contain Sea-elves, Selkies and Viridian Naiads, the latter being plant-like in life-cycle and mentality. The final category is the Merfolk, which includes the mysterious and alien, deep-dwelling Nommo, the poison-spined Cindarians and the proud, mount-like Kai-Lios. 11 merfolk-halfbreeds are also provided along tables for age, height/length, buoyancy and depth-tolerance. I expected to get lame aquatic variants of regular races and instead found a plethora of well-written, balanced, cool races that ooze unique flavor and thus lend themselves to truly ingenious plots.

Chapter 3 deals with classes and how they work under water and some interesting components and rationalizations/modifications have been made to them: Alchemists for example have invented aqua gravis, a substance to make bombs and potions with and its discovery, manufacture and usage lends a whole new dimension/other was the items work to the whole class. Wait, Alchemist? Yep, Cerulean Seas comes with full-blown APG-support. While all classes get their respective treatment, the two new domains for the cleric (Flora and Steam, replacing Plant and Fire) as well as an one-page domains/deities-list deserve special mention, as do the 18 aquatic animal companions and the new eidolon evolutions. Conversion notes for e.g. Infernal bloodlines etc. are provided as well.
The chapter does not stop there, though: We get the new Kahuna-base-class, a druid-like ally of the spirits of the sea with neat spirit aspect powers of 8 different totems - mechanically one of the most interesting spirit shaman-like classes I've seen. Speaking of interesting - the 20-lvl Mariner base-class, focusing on supreme 3d-movement and agility makes for an interesting melee-choice and the substitute for the bard, the siren-class, also makes for a neat design, though the latter could have used more options to choose from with regards to her songs. The base-PrCs are also covered along 3 new PrCs - The Beach Comber, a ranger-like elite, the Glimmerkeeper, legendary rogues and possibly mutants fighting for the downtrodden and the Sea Witch, who is a rather evil and dark PrC for the siren - think Ursula from Ariel in mature and you'll get these nice fellows.

The next chapter deals with skills and feats - jumping from the waves, diving perception beneath the waves and coverage of existing feats help adapting them to the world beneath the waves. The chapter does not stop there, though: 45 new feats expand upon racial qualities (enhancing Cindarian spines and Karanak-claws for example) as well as dealing with the new environment, improving e.g. Air Bladder class. Surprisingly, I did not find a single feat that felt overpowered or useless - quite a feat! (Pardon the pun!)

The next chapter deals with underwater currency: Seeing that copper and silver tend to rust, the currency of the seas is based on shell, gold and pearls. Tarde and new goods like the aforementioned aqua gravis as well as alloys for weapons are covered. The new weapons cover both weaponized harnesses for awakened animals and a vast array of thrusting weapons - the tables alone cover 2 whole pages, ensuring that you don't have to arm all your characters/NPCs with piercing weapons. The aquatic armors are also interesting, including for example jellyfish armors as well as clamshell plates. 11 new ships are introduced for traveling on the waves (which seems to be a bit more secure than under the waves) and a huge array of conversions are provided for all the regular items and obsolete ones are mentioned as well. Kelp ropes e.g. replacing regular ones. Extensive lists including buoyancy information for these items have been provided for your convenience as well, as have buoyancy-control items that help you combat updraft. Have I mentioned the phosphorescent jelly-fish lanterns? This chapter, with all the small details and miniscule meticulously pieced together components makes underwater adventuring and societies that much more believable - excellent!

Chapter 6 deals with new magic as well as old one: After introducing some exceptions, we are introduced to a huge list of aquatic spell components, replacing drylander components - I love this list. While it seems to be a small and unnecessary component, I really consider going this extra-mile in detail and depth of coverage makes the approach stand out. APG-fans can rejoice, by the way: Undersea spell lists are provided for all the core and APG-classes and modifications to the spells have also been included in the lists. Over 100 spells are either entirely new or have been heavily modified to work beneath the waves and the two new casting base classes Kahuna and Siren also get their respective spell-lists. Surprisingly, the spells ranging from acidic red algae to black maelstroms are surprisingly well-crafted and none felt like overpowered or a story/game-breaker to me - indeed, some do expand the tactical options provided by 3d-fighting and currents - awesome! The new magic item-section comes with 2 armor and 4 weapon qualities as well as 1 new specific armor as well as 8 specific items, all of which (with one exception) come with their own high-quality artworks.

The 7th chapter deals with the Cerulean Seas campaign setting and can be considered a primer/gazetteer of the setting: This section contains racial histories, short NPC-write ups of famous NPCs as well as detailed information on the respective languages spoken beneath the waves. Religion is covered as well, but in a different way from what you'd expect: The council of nine, 9 deities seeking to absorb all other faiths, make for the mainstream religions and uphold the verdicts of "There shall be only 9" - but where there's persecution, there will also be cults, ranging from variations of the 9 teachings to more heretical positions. Two sanctioned cults per deity are included in the respective write-ups, lending further diversity to the pantheon. A vast array of short city-write-ups as well as a page chronicling current events provide ample hooks for the DM to craft adventures around.

Chapter 8 offers advice for Dming adventures under the sea and does a great job - extensive tbales to help you convert both items and creatures to the Cerulean Seas are provided along guidelines for buoyancy and then there's the battlemat-problem: If you've been stacking dice, this pdf has a page of depth-cubes you can print-out and use instead, providing more stability -quick and doesn't take too much time. If you're going for the recommended solution (after discussing some alternatives), we get actually some cool DIY-information: Tracker trees! Templates for the trees are provided both in full-color and B/w at the end of the pdf and the assembly instructions are comprehensive and easy and most importantly: Affordable, relatively easy to contruct and also a nice alternative if you're shooting for a solution for aerial combat as well.


No environment-focused book would be complete without a bestiary and thus, Alluria Publishing provides us with a smattering of new creatures in chapter 9: From Algoids (underwater shambling mounds) to degenerate merfolk, coral shephards (treant-like guardians of coral reefs) to a vast array of fishes, dinosaurs to 9 new kinds of deep-sea song dragons, we get a lot of cool critters. Have I mentioned the sound and steam elementals as well as 12 new familiar animals, creatures like dire lampreys to seacats and several species of sea-titans (e.g. with kraken-tentacles as lower parts of the torso) to original creatures like the mind-controlling, arcane static-producing mysterious slug-humanoids Slurgs and the awakened animal species of animals, the so-called trueforms? The creatures herein add a lot to a given campaign, even if it only skirts the water's surface. 4 simple templates also help you adjusting other creatures to the Cerulean Seas.
We also get appendices: Creatures by CR, a pronunciation guide, an index of tables, an art-index, 2 pages of char-sheet, 4 pages of card-stock minis,2 tracker tree templates, 1 page of depth cubes and 1 page-map of the Cerulean Seas. Finally, as I've mentioned in the beginning of this review, we get an index.

Conclusion:
Editing is very good - I noticed only about 10 glitches over 290 pages and all of them were minor hyphen- or punctuation errors. Formatting is top-notch and layout adheres to the two-column standard. The layout. Oh my god, it's beautiful. The slightly blue-tinged full-color pages are accentuated with gold and offer for a cool, unified look. The pdf comes with more than extensive bookmarks, greatly facilitating usage of the book and it should be noted, that size and art notwithstanding, the setting only takes up about 18 mbs, making it still a viable candidate for e-readers. Let me talk about the art: The artwork herein is GORGEOUS. I mean Paizo-level GORGEOUS. In fact, the interior artwork is probably at a level of quality I've rarely, if ever, seen before in a 3pp-book. In spite of having a lot of different artists creating these pieces, the book nevertheless maintains an unified look that is beyond what one would expect from most publications. Have I mentioned that a lot of weapons, ships etc. also get their artworks?

Let's get to the content: The attention to even the most miniscule detail and peculiarity is STAGGERING. Just about everything has been taken into consideration and lists like the spell-components and their underwater equivalents, the item conversions, the idea of aqua gravis etc. ensure that this pdf does not only provide a blue-tinged dryland equivalent of a setting, but rather an astonishing world that feels distinctively different. Underwater economics, travel etc. - all the aspects of underwater adventuring that had been handwaved at best until now have been covered in a consistent, intelligent and concise manner. Have I mentioned that the amount of letters f the respective alphabets are mentioned in the language write-ups? The sheer amount of fluffy details complementing the crunch is awesome. The new content is almost universally killer, ranging from the new races and their more unique representatives to the new classes. I didn't have a balance-concern with a single spell or feat. An then there's the setting-primer, which provides for a nice political landscape to spring upon your players. Proving that they know how to go above and beyond, the folks over at Alluria have also covered the 3d-combat an its representation with tracker trees to an extent that I did not expect to see. Conversion hellp for the GM ensures that this book will not be limited to single uses or just the material herein, but make it easy to expand the setting with more content. The buoyancy, deep pressure etc.-rules are plain awesome and the bestiary-section alone, with the resplendent artworks and huge variety enables you to genuinely portray an underwater world. Even if you choose to utterly ignore all setting-specific information, you'll still be left with over 200 pages of top-quality content that makes this book the ultimate resource on underwater adventuring - be it for an extensive period or just a couple of adventures. If you combine this book with e.g. OD's Sunken Empires, you'll be in for a fresh gaming environment that by its rules and premises alone evokes non-conventional tactics, environments and twists of tried and true tropes as well as opening whole new revenues for adventurers. I am rarely blown out of the water (bad pun, I know), but this epic tome managed not only to surprise me with all-around stellar quality, but also with its imaginative potential, its attention to details and the fresh approach to the world beneath the waves. If your campaign world has even one ocean, you need to have this. in fact, I maintain that this book belongs to the rare pdf that should grace just about any shelf of PFRPG-material, as it easily surpasses e.g. D&D 3.5's Sandstorm and Frostburn - it's that good.

If all books were like this, I could stop reviewing right now. If I could give this pdf 6 stars, I would. Seriously. The 20 bucks they charge for the pdf are a steal and while the pdf will extort a brutal drain on your printer, the downright beautiful end-result will be worth it as this is one of the instances where craft and art of deigning RPG-products go hand in hand. Seeing that I can't give this pdf 6 stars, I'll settle for my highest possible verdict of 5 stars and the Endzeitgeist seal of approval - this belongs to your shelf and I guarantee that you won't regret your purchase.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting
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Creepy Creatures: Bestiary of the Bizarre
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/15/2012 05:42:03
This massive 115 pages full-color pdf has 1 page front cover, 1 page blank inside of the front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page explaining the glyphs that denote creature-types, 1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving 107 pages for the content.

The first thing you'll notice is that this book is beautiful - full-color, cool artworks are provided for every monster and both formatting and layout are professional and adhere to the highest standards.
What do I seek in a monster-book? I want iconic beasts that are more than just another set of stats, that feature more than just variations of old tropes. I want the immediate impulse to use them in my games and, ideally, to yell: "Yeah, now that's it!" "Creepy Creatures" is a bestiary of rather horror-themed creature or at least bizarre ones, so let's take a look at some of my most and least favorite among them:

Rather lame ones:
-Adhaesus: Creature that clings to walls while fighting. The choker is much cooler and the artwork doesn't help the creature.
-Bisontaur: Centaur with Bisonlike-top. Boring.
-Hawkape: Owlbear-like creature. Owlbears are canon by now and while they never were my favorite creatures, Hawkapes are in my opinion unnecessary. Their abilities don't really set them apart.
-Centpede Folk: Centipede-like humanoids whose artwork unfortunately lacks arms.
-Frogodile: Another amalgam animal. Just as boring.
-Gibbering Terror: Incorporeal undead which feature the one truly boring/bad artwork of the book.
-Magma Kraken: Fire-elemental kraken creature. Disappointing for a CR 20 creature, this one has almost only elemental abilities.
-Star Jelly Ooze: This creature is a ooze-steed that looks like a long version of a Super Mario star with wings. I'm not kidding.
-Assassin Zombie: Assassins. Zombies. I don't think they go together or that you actually need a separate creature that fits this particular niche.

Cool creatures:
-Assassin Cat: A cat with brilliant abilities with supernatural abilities and a deadly toxin.
-Brain Wasp Swarm: Disturbing swarm of vermin.
-Clutch Hound: Cthulhoid dog with a great artwork.
-Corpse Worm: Shapechanger-worm - great variation of the doppelgänger-trope.
-Plague Dragon: Deadly dragon with cool abilities.
-Eye Parasite: One of the few truly despicable and creepy creatures in the book, this is a combination of a bodysnatcher and beholder-like abilities. Two thumbs up!
-Fleshwarper: Undead that drains charisma by warping flesh.
-Fungus, Ooze: Deadly plant that spawns oozes.
-Hair Golem: Disturbing Golem with a cool artwork.
-Hydra Grub: Multi-headed giant grub, delicacy for dragons.
-Terrorkin: Dream-demon that is half beautiful & half deformed - One of the best artworks i the book.
-Century Tortoise: Giant benevolent turtles that drain away the years of enemies.
-Fang Tree: Spiked, poisonous, carnivorous tree with a beautiful artwork.
-Windigo: Another version of the classic wendigo, this take on it has a mechanically interesting, cool snow and wind aura.
After the monsters, we also get information on the remarkable races (other Alluria products) and have the monsters listed by CR, roles, type, terrain and climate, which is nice.

Conclusion:
Layout and artwork are beautiful, editing and formatting are top-notch (I didn't notice any typos or glitches) and the pdf is extensively bookmarked. On the production-value side, there is nothing to complain. On the content-side, though, there are some problems, at least for me: I thought I'd get a bestiary of rather horror-themed critters and while the book delivers on "bizarre", it, at least in my opinion, does not deliver with regards to "creepy." Even more important: In contrast to e.g. Fey Folio, the monsters herein often fall in the rather bland category, be it fluff- or crunch-wise or just didn't capture my attention, which is a pity as some of them do rock. There are no lore-sections for the critters and most don't get too much fluff-text. More importantly, though, several of the background stories of the critters mention characters of races from Alluria's "Remarkable Races"-line. While I usually enjoy some plug-ins, I do think they went a bit over the top with regards to this book - some of the monsters are directly tied to the races and thus are harder to get or insert into your campaign than necessary. There is no b/w printer-friendly version and while the book is beautiful, it is also very taxing on your printer. While it's a long and beautiful book, it's also not too cheap. My final verdict, taking all of the above into consideration, will be 3.5 stars, rounded down to 3 for the purpose of this platform.

Rating:
[3 of 5 Stars!]
Creepy Creatures: Bestiary of the Bizarre
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Fey Folio: Clans of the Fey
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/15/2012 05:40:55
This pdf is 27 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages editorial, 1 page ToC and Fey by CR, 1 page SRD and 1 page back cover, leaving 21 pages for the fey.

The first thing you'll notice about this pdf is that it is gorgeous full-color and that it's extensively bookmarked, high hopes, so let's dive in.

The first page gives us an introduction to the concept of the fey as well as a table listing the quick-reference glyph system.
The fey herein are:
-Dullahan (CR 7): A fey take on the headless horseman, two additional stat-blocks are provided: 1 for the Dullahan Dreadknight (CR 9) and for their dark mares (CR 6). Their artwork kicks ass and is on par with what you can see in Paizo products.
-Erlking (CR 2): Kidnapper fey based on the ballad by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, their artwork can be seen on the cover and, again, rocks! They have abilities to shroud themselves from sight and kidnap people. As a German who grew up learning the ballad by Goethe by hard, I love this hommage to the disturbing song.
-Fachen (CR 6): Strong, deformed soldiers of the Fey-lord Jack-in-Irons, I like how they got a weakness for adventurers to exploit: Fighting smart should be rewarded. They also get a CR 9 sorceror. Their artwork first threw me off, but after printing it out and taking it in, I've come to like it.
-Jack-in-Irons (CR 21): An extremely powerful fey king, broken and chained, Jack-in-Irons is interesting due to one fact: He fits nicely in with already established fey lore in your game. Due to e.g. Oberon already existing in my game, I can insert him nevertheless, as his portfolio does not conflict with Oberon's. On the downside, though, his AC is low for his CR and his artwork reminded me more of a giant than of a fey. It's still a good artwork, though.
-Kapre (CR 4): A kind of umanoid treant, this creatures make for interesting takes on the Green Man. Their artwork is nice.
-Nightshade Wisp (CR 3): Poisonous, revenge-seeking soldiers associated with the Nightshade plant. Nice artwork.
-Rarog (CR 13): Not actually a fey, but an elemental outsider, this fire/wind-aligned creature nevertheless makes for a great creature to associate e.g. with the scorching Sirocco. The artwork, again, rocks.
-Lean Sidhe (CR 7) & Bean Sidhe (CR 9): Beautiful, alluring emodiments of cathartic moments, the capricious Lean Sidhe may drain mortals of their creativity. Their dark sisters, the Bean Sidhe, born of grief and misery, get completely different abilities. Both share a beautiful artwork, though I would have liked to see a separate one for the Bean Sidhe.
-Spriggan (Cr 1/3): Ugly little creatures who worship Jack-in-Irons, their picture is actually the first picture of a Spriggan in any incarnation of the game I considered creepy. Well done! They come with information to make Spriggan characters yourself.
-Spring-heel Jack (CR 5): Urban, suave swashbucklers, their artwork is cool and could also be used for iconic Elven duelists. As a fan of urban settings, they'll see some use in my campaign.
-Sylph (CR 2): A cute, butterfly-winged fey, Sylphs actually get another great piece of artwork that makes them look not only cute but resolute at the same time.
-Vodnik (CR 3): An ugly little creature that drowns its victims and has some nice additional information (a mini-template) to make a variant bog-troll/vodnik hybrid.
-Yallery (CR 6): An embodiment of apathy and laziness, these urchin-like fey have some interesting abilities: Beggar's Idle lets them increase the duration of spell-like effects by 1d6 rounds on a successful attack. Nice.
After that, we get 2 pages containing both tips for the DM to properly play fey as well as a hook for a campaign centering on the new fey.
The final page features 5 new magic items.

Conclusion:
I've commented a lot on the artwork and rightly so - this book ranks among the most beautiful 3pp-books I've ever seen. Editing and formatting are top-notch and I didn't notice any mistakes. All of the fey are iconic and feature at least one signature ability that makes them stand out. I'm quite frankly at a loss to say anything negative about this book - the only true criticism I can provide is that a printer-friendly version would have been nice to have. Apart from that, I can only say: I want more! I love fey and this book actually gets them, resulting in a 5-star final verdict. Well done!

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Fey Folio: Clans of the Fey
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