Master at Arms - Peltast
Dungeons and Dragons is its own genre and its own set of realism. There are just some assumptions in the game that get made that do not hold true historically. Some weapons are stated out to be better then others even though in our world they are not. Other times certain weapon characteristics and advantages just get ignore because either they were to difficult to fit into the rules or it was just easier to give the item simple stats. These assumptions will not work for everyone and there have been a few products over the years that tries to make real life weapons to make them a little more realistic. The Master at Arms series does this by designing a prestige class that specializes in a single weapon and allows the class to gain special abilities with the weapon to accomplish this. This is the second product of the line I have reviewed so the opening may seem really similar.
Master at Arms: Peltast is a PDF by Blackdirge Games. It is published through an imprint with Skeleton Key Games. The book is written by Aeryn Rudel. The seven page PDF has a nice lay out but it also has no book marks. There is a little bit of art in the book that is nice but they do use the art on the cover elsewhere in the book. I am not a fan of repeating art pieces like that. Again I find it very much like the first book in the series I read. Do not worry from here on it differs.
The book consists of a single prestige class to help one really get a lot of use out the Javelin or Short spear. There is a new weapon detailed and an NPC as well but the class is the main focus of the book. The class can be taken as early as level six though it could be tough for a straight fighter. I mention the straight fighter since this class like stacks with fighter levels to select certain fighter feats. However after taking all five levels in the class one only gets three fighters level so still needs actual fighter level to get to Weapon Specialization. The class gains the ability of a ranged sneak attack, can hamper enemy shields by impaling them with spears, gains movement abilities, gains a ranged power attack and charge option, and superior javelin damage. All in all it is a pretty good class. Not as strong as other prestige classes but can be fun for a player wanting to make use of these weapons. I would also be tempted to use Skirmish instead of a ranged sneak attack but of course that ability is not open content so would not be able to be used in this book.
The NPC is a very interesting choice. The NPC is a gnoll with Barbarian and fighter levels making him a very strong fighter type with javelins. Over all it is a good if small PDF that can help with making short spears and javelins more useful in a campaign.<br><br>
<b>LIKED</b>: Good abilities and balanced prestige class<br><br><b>DISLIKED</b>: The class could have been a little easier to gain or perhaps just gained at a lower level. <br><br><b>QUALITY</b>: Very Good<br><br><b>VALUE</b>: Satisfied<br>