The latest installment of Rite Publishing's FREE E-zine, Pathways, is 42 pages long, 1 page front cover, 9 pages of advertisement, 1 page SRD, leaving us with a rather impressive 31 pages of content, so let's check this out!
This issue's editorial by David Paul recounts some of his experiences at Gen Con is definitely worth a read and after that, we immediately delve into a template that takes no prisoners: Steven D. Russell's cataclysmic creature template is definitely not an overstatement, making a being not only CR 25, but also enabling them to evoke the powers of the end-times to evoke catastrophic floods, acid rains etc. to deal annihilating amounts of damage to anything in a vast radius. The sample 4-armed mutant sahuagin depicted also on the cover, illustration by Joe Shawcross definitely would give legendary Dagaanisoraan a run for his money!
In Thomas LeBlanc's tribute to the stellar "101 Bard Feats", we get even more tools for the bard: From the option to a companion that can use the perform skill to new feats: One to further enhance your masterpiece power to gaining an insight bonus when using the tactical naturalist feat to a feat that makes you a tempting target indeed. We also get new pieces of equipment, both mundane and magical: Gong shields, howling hammers and singing blades are provided alongside figurines that either distract your foes or act as supporting cast for your performances! NICE indeed!
This issue's contribution of Raging Swan Press' mastermind Creighton Broadhurst sees the PCs explore a ruined tower that has become the hunting ground of both a yellow musk creeper and a shambling mound, making for an experience with the creepier sides of flora.
Mike Welham also has creatures for us, though these are new: Friends of all the squirmy, squicky vermin will delightedly realize that this issue contains e.g. the woodworm, a creature that, like my dire beavers, can spray splinters at its foes. There also are Necroworms, infused with necrotic disease that can absorb positive energy effects (great mechanics!).
AdventureaWeek.com's contribution this time around comes from the feathers of Will Myers and Nathan Land and provides a great artwork/cartography of dread Mek'Madius hide-out by Todd Gamble as well as the full stats of Iqus'Cath, an aquamia.
Next up is a rather informative review with Stan! as well as a vast array of reviews of yours truly.
Editing and formatting are good, though not perfect - I noticed some minor glitches, but hey, this is FREE! Layout adheres to RiP's 2-column, full-color standard and the pdf has no bookmarks, which is a tad bit annoying, but oh well. This installment of Pathways is awesome not only for its cool end-of-days template (do I get them as minions, being the spirit of the end-times?) but also for the cool worms and the excellent material provided for bards. All in all, a more than solid and best of all, FREE installment of the e-zine. Thus, my final verdict will clock in at 5 stars - you should definitely download this!