Behind the Spells: Polymorph is a short 5 page pdf and is one of many products in Ronin Arts and Bret Boyd's Behind the Spells series. Each product in the series expands on a common spell found in many spellbooks by including details of its creation and history, variants of the spell, spell secrets or other ways of using the spells, new magic items and the like. This particular pdf features polymorph and details and explains the spell as told by the gold dragon, Maxolt Alberiim.
For a short pdf, layout and editing is acceptable, with a simple standard that is used for all the pdfs in the series. Writing is clear, and the text uses helpful blocked-text to highlight all the mechanical aspects of the pdf and separate them from the flavor text. About 3.5 pages are devoted to content within the 5 pages of the pdf.
Polymorph is a favourite of many players and DMs alike, both in its versatility and power. This pdf provides a number of new options related to the spell, and does a good job of providing some new and interesting material. We are told that the spell was created by an elven wizard with an obsession to study the nature and behaviour of all the different types of creatures in the world. His obsession resulted in him devising the polymorph spell, which allowed him to study creatures in more detail and experience the nature of their world. The background creation details are simple and flexible and provide some insight into the spell, including the origin of the spells baleful polymorph and polymorph any object.
The pdf continues by providing two new spells secrets - one that allows a caster to polymorph unliving creatures by transferring some of his soul to the creature, and the other that allows the use of polymorph as a strong fast healing spell. Both spell secrets flow nicely from the background material and the nature of the spell, going beyond the boundaries of what polymorph normally allows and providing something different. The healing secret of polymorph is on the strong side, having a longer duration (lasting as long as the polymorph spell) and more healing capability (up to fast healing 5) than similar cleric spells that also provide fast healing.
Lastly the pdf presents a new spell, false bloodline, and a new magic item, gloves of the beast, as part of related research into the spell. Again these provide useful little additions to the polymorph theme, in allowing spellcasters to mimic other bloodlines and thereby use race-specific items or be considered of another race. The magic item in question allows a certain number of useful changes to the users arms that allow for, for example, claw attacks or improved grab. A good end to a nice little pdf.<br><br>
<b>LIKED</b>: This is a useful pdf that provides a number of new options for the spell polymorph. The history and background are good, and I can certainly see using these spell secrets, spells and magic items in game with little change. There is some nice flavor within the pdf.<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: The healing spell secret is on the strong side, particularly compared to other similar spells and the duration of polymorph.<br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Very Good<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Satisfied<br>