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OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord $2.49 $1.25
Average Rating:4.3 / 5
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OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
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OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by Dennis P. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 06/27/2013 06:26:59
As a fan of Planet of the Apes, Gorilla Grodd, and Grommam, I've always like ape-men. The Apelord by One Bad Egg intrigued me as soon as I saw it on drivethrurpg. Since I'm currently running 4E and not playing, I put off purchasing it for a long time. One Bad Egg no longer exists but it's products are still available from Highmoon Games.

Races of the Shroud: Apelord describes a new race for players. It includes several new feats to enhance the Apelord. Additionally it provides some Apelord monsters for the DM to throw at players. Finally it closes with several adventure ideas to use the race.

The apelord race seems fairly balanced to me. It does have a climb movement that might give some DMs pause. The product was released early in the life of 4E. Due to this it follows the early standard for races. The race has two bonus stats, Strength and Dexterity, unlike the one stat bonus with a choice of between two others as is the current approach. If you wanted to update them, I'd probably allow Constitution or Dexterity as a bonus stat.

An unusual ability of the apelord is Arms Like Clubs. An unarmed apelord uses the statistics of a club for their unarmed attacks. This includes both the damage and the proficiency bonus. While useful, most PCs would probably not rely of that too much since you can't get magic bonuses and a melee combatant probably wants something better. One possible solution for players wanting to make use of this is to allow them to use Ki Focus implements like Monks. There is a feat to increase the damage die size by one which could make it attractive enough for a class with only simple weapons.

The racial power relies on the Arms Like Clubs feature. As a standard action the apelord can make two attacks provided he is bare-handed. This makes it problematic to make use of the power as most characters will be holding something in their hands. Like most weapon powers, it doesn't increase the to-hit bonus. Unless your DM allows you to gain a magical enhancement it will become less effective over time.

Most of the feats enhance a feature of the race like Tall-Tree Tumbler which allows fall damage by 20 feet instead of 10 feet. The paragon tier feat is a power swap feat which have fallen out of favor in feat design. Using the power requires the character to be above the opponent. If a character can consistently use the power the 2[W] plus 3d10 bonus damage may make it a little unbalanced.

While the race can be easily used in other campaigns, the history for the race is based on the Shroud. What is the Shroud? One Bad Egg has prepared a pdf to provide a short explanation. In the frozen north, a huge chasm opens. From it's depths comes a warm mist that melts the ice. Everything is shrouded by the mist and fog. The sudden climate change wreaks the ecosystem. The strange mist alters some animals like the savage apes into the apelords. Concealed an undead force steps out of the chasm. The setting sounds very intriguing to me but it was designed as a seed for your games. One Bad Egg never intended to full fleshed out the setting.

Given the age of the product the monsters are the most problematic pieces to use of the supplement. They conform to the original monster creation rules. While they seem interesting and well done, you will probably want to adjust their damage. All the monsters are heroic tier and apelords (or at least were apelords). The early description of the apelords way of life and their conflict with necromancers gives plenty of hints about how to use the monsters. Many of the adventure ideas include moral dilemmas instead of simple good versus evil.

Overall I enjoyed the product and I'm tempted to collect the other Shroud material to build a more complete image of the setting.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by David K. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 03/10/2009 12:57:24
This product was one of the first 4E .pdfs I purchased. I liked the primal feel of the race from other reviews, and believe that One Bad Egg creatively infused this interesting, intelligent race with crunch to compliment the fluff. My gaming group added the apelord as a possible race during our first foray into 4E, and we weren't disappointed. In particular, the race offered our group some interesting options: * rich background and options of role-playing the beast-men; * great bonuses to two key combat traits; * interesting feats that encouraged one player to want to climb trees and ambush/attack; and a great resource for me as a GM to make some interesting challenges. Overall, the quality of this product was outstanding for the price an ease of use. Original artwork kept pace nicely with the character options and stories, too. I highly recommend this resource as a player option or a DM reference to change gears on players!

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by Christopher H. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/13/2008 02:24:08
The company's name may be One Bad Egg, but The Apelord is one good product, a good model for what creative third parties can do to extend D&D 4e. The first quarter of the PDF provides D&D players with a new PC race, the apelord, fully supported with appropriate racial powers and feats. The remainder of the product gives DMs Monster Manual-style writeups of various types of apelords, including undead versions. All are interesting and well done.

There's plenty of storyline (fluff) in this product to go along with the crunch; a second, two-page PDF gives buyers a little bit of the context for the story elements. However, if you don't want to use those story elements, you can easily rewrite them for your own campaign, with no more difficulty than adding genasi (Forgotten Realms) or warforged (Eberron) to your homebrew setting. For example, One Bad Egg locates the apelords in "the north," but I'll be finding a place for them in my tropical islands campaign.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by Peter I. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 10/09/2008 09:54:38
October has finally arrived, and as the 4e GSL goes live the first of the 3rd party support products for the new 4e GSL have started to appear on the market. As can be expected both old and new publishers are signing up to the 4e GSL, and one such new publisher is One Bad Egg. Their first product is called Races of the Shroud: The Apelord, and presents a new PC race, several racial feats for said race, new monsters based on this race, and several adventure and campaign ideas related to the race and the Shroud, a mysterious mutating fog that covers the land.

The product comes as two pdf files - one detailing the Shroud and giving a brief campaign idea involving it, and the second presenting the apelord race, racial feats and monsters. I have to admit that things have come a long way in the industry since the OGL was released years back, and the quality of presentation and material on offer from new publishers is on another level compared to the early OGL offerings. This product is very well presented and formatted, with a clear layout, good and imaginative writing, and some wonderful pieces of full color art. The product looks good and professional, and I hope that this style of presentation continues despite the natural rush to get products on the market. One Bad Egg have delivered on a good presentation.

This product presents a new PC race, the apelord, a race of intelligent apes that have been changed by the mysterious power of the Shroud. Much like one would expect, this race is good at climbing, good a falling down from trees and other heights, and good at using its fist to batter things into submission. Basically, if you want a very playable PC race that's, well, an intelligent gorilla, then this is exactly what you need. The product provides plenty of information on the apelord race, from descriptions to habits to community and other social aspects. In addition, some useful details on a few apelord adventurers are provided (without statistics) and applicable names and general naming conventions. I thought this was a well done race which catches the flavor of the race well in the mechanics and implements a sound and playable race that can make for an interesting change. It's not the most novel or even interesting race I've ever seen, but it's been well implemented and detailed.

For me at least, and most likely for the DMs and not the players, this product doesn't shine so much with the race but more with the new monsters based on the apelord race. There are some really useful and interesting new monsters, particularly the bunch of corrupted undead apelords and the apelord speaker. The minor apelords are mostly standard fare, but for the higher level creatures (creatures range from levels 4 to 9) the product does an impressive job of coming up with unique and interesting abilities for the monsters to use. The apelord speaker, for example, has an ability to call a spirit to assist it, and this is clever and versatile at the same time as flavorful. The monsters are generally creative and well done, and worth challenging your players with.

For those interested in reskinning monsters, these monster abilities can be used for a variety of other concepts and creatures. I have to wonder how long it's going to take for the first generic monster book to come out, that only contains flavor and descriptions along with special abilities and no actual normal combat statistics to create a paradise for those interested in modifying monsters. The product concludes with some creative adventure ideas and hooks which tie all the material in the pdf together nicely.

Overall I thought this was a very good product. It contains some very useful new material, good flavor and good implementation of mechanics and concepts. Players and DMs who don't like animal/human hybrids can still find plenty of use in this product through the monsters provided and the details of the Shroud along with its associated campaign ideas and adventure hooks. The monsters in particular are enjoyable with some innovative new ideas and attacks developed for these creatures. While this material is applicable to any campaign setting, something African would likely fit very well with the concepts and the ideas presented. A good little pdf.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by Doug L. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/03/2008 10:49:51
Wow -- I'm glad to see the 3rd party 4e market get off to such a sterling start! I've been playing D&D in various forms for almost 30 years and I've become pretty jaded about such things, especially after the glut of mediocre-to-useless stuff that flooded the d20 market not all that long ago.

This li'l pdf, on the other hand, is *exactly* the kind of thing that sets my brain on fire. Good production values. Cheap. Concise. It's well and cleverly written (kudos Fred and Lee), nicely illustrated (Storn!), makes good use of the 4e mechanics and brings a boatload of fun gaming ideas to the table. Races of the Shroud: The Apelord has really inspired me. Even if you don't feel the urge to explore the Lands of the Shroud setting, there's plenty of genuinely excellent ideas here to pirate.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
OBE: Races of the Shroud for D&D 4E: The Apelord
Publisher: Highmoon Games
by william w. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 10/02/2008 16:23:08
If your looking for a really cool ape race for your 4th ed. Campaigns this IS the product you've been waiting for! Nice Illustration by Storn gives you a good idea of what this race looks like. A selection of feats to customize your Apelord, and several stated out apelords for you to encounter (including some undead ones). Some interesting adventure ideas round out this pdf. I was very satisfied with this product and look forward to more info, supplements etc. about the Shroud Setting. I can't wait to play an Apelord in our next Campaign.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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