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Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot $3.00
Average Rating:4.9 / 5
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Infamous Adversaries: Raxath\'Viz, the Creeping Rot
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Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Benjamin M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 08/16/2012 04:59:28
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot

This entry into the series of infamous adversaries has the usual good back ground that I have seen in their other products of this series. with very fully shown motives and back story to help fit the char. into just about any campain. The easy use of the stat blacks again is a plus in my mind. The big twist of the Raxath'Viz being a Kobold is amusing to me as it takes what is offen seen as a weak monster and makes it something much more a threat to most parties, and it tell you what he might have in the way of minions / disposable thugs to thow at the party as distractions.
As usual in these books the unusual creatures are fully ststed out and put in the standard stat block format for ease of use.

The addition of the Hero Lab files for the charathers/monsters/ items/ the "god" he worships add to the usefulness of this product only if you happen to own the hero lab program. I do own the Hero lab and use it.

Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Megan R. [Featured Reviewer]
Date Added: 05/01/2012 02:38:17
Opening with a full-page, full-colour illustration that's enough to scare anyone (even a reviewer sitting safely at her computer!), this product contains a wealth of detail about a single adversary. Considering how much effort many players put into their characters, it seems reasonable that their opposition needs to be at least as well-developed... much more than a bunch of stats that the GM can roll against when the inevitable climactic brawl takes place!

So this Raxath'Viz fellow, where does he fit in your alternate reality? The short answer is, in some really rather nasty corners of it, ones that are just asking for some heroes to come and clean them up! Without giving too much away, we have here the life-story and formative background of this individual, explaining both how and why he ended up as he is now, serving a dark goddess who is scrabbling frantically to retain the last vestiges of godhood and spreading, as best he can, her own particular form of, well, rottenness....

Euw, you might well say. Adventurers will need strong stomachs, as well as mighty swordarms - remember that the Fortitude save can be your friend as you describe to your players the horrors that unfold before their characters' eyes.

The detail provided is copious. The background mentioned above is introduced as evocative fiction, that makes Raxath'Viz come to life in your mind's eye... useful when you, in turn, have to bring him to life at your game table. The stat block - well, couple of pages, not just a mere 'block'! - is, if you are using the PDF onscreen, hyperlinked to the D20pfsrd.com site, so you may check up on the precise rules you need to apply, very handy. More background, broken down into his history, motivations, appearance and so on; along with more expansive material on his deity and what she's after, and what she offers to her devotees.

We then move on to the resources Raxath'Viz has available to him, and there is so much here that can be mined to create a campaign never mind a single adventure... should you so wish, defeating Raxath'Viz and his dark mistress could be the focus of a whole campaign arc as your characters first hear of disturbing events - poisoned wells and the like - and eventually track them to source, whilst you are provided with all that you need to make Raxath'Viz a pro-active adversary, working against the characters as it becomes apparent to him that they are seeking him out with a view to his destruction.

Good as this is, it is also a fine exemplar of how to set up and develop major adversaries. He develops over time, linked to the events that he can bring about. There are assorted plot hooks that you can use, and even some of his sidekicks and minions, also presented in copious detail for you to pitch into the fray. Oh, and he likes traps and keeps exotic pets. Guess what, they are all spelled out for you as well! And to round things off, the goddess herself and a complete run-down of the cult that venerates her.

"May your flesh feed Her malignant soul. May your soul feed Her cursed flesh," hisses Raxath'Viz. Are your characters up to the challenge?

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Landon B. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/15/2012 12:46:21
This product contains everything you need to insert a powerful, fully detailed NPC villain into your Pathfinder game. Considering that I wouldn't want to try to design something this complex in less than two or three hours (not to mention all the time just thinking through the backstory), this product is potentially a huge time saver and a fantastic investment at under $3. It has a few glitches, but no more than usually crop up in my major NPC creation, and it offers several things (original artwork being the biggest) that I couldn’t provide as a GM even if I undertook such a large project.

Following the cover and credits, we get a fantastic full page picture, “kobold warlock,” which creates a fantastically evocative image of Raxath and sets the mood for the document overall. Otherwise, the art in this work is fairly sparse, though of good quality and layout. There is also a lot of blue hyperlinked text that, at first, seemed to make the document difficult to read, until I realized that this hyperlinking is confined to the stat blocks and is actually a huge help for quick references to the PFSRD.

I enjoyed the opening fiction as an origin story for Raxath; it was suitably dark and foreboding, and gave a glimpse of the tiny, puny, scared kobold rogue who could eventually become the vessel of a goddess’s reincarnation. One thing that might go nicely with future installments in this line would be an origin story that can be shown to players…something similar to “Birthed of the Dark” (the title of the first fictional work in this document) but in a form suitable for characters/players to discover and read. This could be something like a journal entry, a letter vowing revenge upon a childhood bully, etc. This is just a thought for a way to connect players to the villain (and give the DM a bathroom break while they read it). I noticed a few grammatical and syntactical glitches (here and elsewhere in the document), the sort of thing that a spell checker wouldn’t necessarily pick up on, but nothing too major, and overall the editing seems pretty good.

After the opening fiction, we get an intense stat block for Raxath in all his vileness. This is the mechanical meat of the document, the “hard part” of designing such a complex NPC. Overall, it is very well done, clearly laid out, and thoroughly hyperlinked to appropriate references on PFSRD…a very nice touch. I noticed a few things that I question, such as the attack bonuses on the rod of withering. The stat block lists +11/+6/+1, which should be Raxath’s BAB, not the bonus with the rod; the rod’s bonus should include his Dexterity modifier to the touch attack, as well as size and enhancement, for a total bonus of (I believe) +17/+12/+7. I have a feeling that this may be the result of putting a little too much faith in the ability of Hero Labs to create a flawless stat block; while Hero Labs is good, it is not perfect. Though the rod is linked to the appropriate PFSRD page, it also wouldn't hurt to list the 1d4 strength and con damage and the DC 17 fortitude save to negate these in the stat block, just in case the wireless is down or you want to use a printed version. On a purely cosmetic note, I would also like to see either slightly larger margins or smaller borders to make the stat block easier to read…the text goes right up to the border, making the beginnings or ends of some lines seem slightly disjointed. Other than these few minor details, this stat block is tight, organized, and very useful, well worth $3 just on its own. Did I mention how useful the hyperlinking to the PFSRD is? I did? OK, well then, I’ll mention it again.

The villain himself is a thoroughly despicable creature, sure to pose a great challenge to most parties of a suitable level, especially good aligned ones. Raxath is cleverly built using the Hidden Priest cleric archetype, and is able to disguise his divine casting as arcane. If he opens with a spell that is dual-listed cleric/wizard, be sure to make a point of material components (even if the spell doesn’t call for them)…you never know, you might be able to lure a martial character into trying to disarm him of his spell component pouch rather than doing actual damage.

Raxath is also particularly effective against parties of primarily good alignment, especially those with good divine spell casters. The Talisman of Ultimate Evil can easily be the doom of a paladin, a good-aligned cleric, even a kind-hearted ranger. However, it doesn't do much against a largely neutral party, meaning that Raxath’s most potent weapon is really only circumstantially useful, as is his highest level prepared spell, Blasphemy. Raxath is also not quite as adept at escaping as I was expecting, unless I missed something in his stat block; he can be fairly easily contained unless he has a few backups not listed as standard in his entry. Wands of Freedom of Movement and Dimension Door with just a couple of charges each can make the difference between narrow escape and an untimely death at the hands of a grappling PC. If he is going to be away from his potent otyugh ally Zogulryk (such as to spread disease in a city), changing one of his spells to (or giving him a scroll of) Word of Recall to get back to his lair can also be a good way to ensure he lives to fight another day. Also, he has no real way of using swift actions with the feats and gear listed. Quick Channel gives him a move action attack (extremely useful in the overall action economy), but he has no rods of metamagic quicken to be able to throw out an extra spell on his turn. I recommend taking advantage of the flexible “Resources” entry and adding a rod (or lesser rod) of metamagic quicken to his equipment before letting your PCs track him down.

Beyond just the numbers, we are given a really great view of WHO Raxath is, not just what he is. His motives and history, a series of profane boons and prophecies that weave his destiny, all contribute to a VERY thorough presentation of his unholy existence. I also found a new respect for a creature that I have never really used before: the otyugh. In the artfully described filth that is Raxath’s home, “the otyughs thrive.”

We also receive some suggestions for Raxath’s lesser associates, low level kobolds who are primarily for story support (and fireball fodder). They do not receive stat blocks of their own, though they should be easy enough to stat out if you ever need them, and some of the simple ones (low level rogues, for instance) can probably be run from memory by many GMs. Stat blocks could be nice in a campaign that starts at lower levels and works up to fighting Raxath, Zogulryk, and possibly the Profane Vessel of Maramaga, but we get something just as crunchy instead: new custom traps. The traps are truly brutal, and likely to be strewn all over the PCs’ path. From the mechanical Devouring Box and disease-spreading Fetid Breath Blower to the magical Clutches of Fear and Dread Cannonade, these traps HURT.

The stat blocks that we do get are for a couple variant otyughs (I am curious as to their alignments…the stat block lists them as “NN,” making me wonder if they should read “N” or “NE”). The final stats are for the CR 20 Profane Vessel of Maramaga, a monstrous otyugh that houses the regenerating body of the dead goddess. Aside from a typo on the creature’s hit dice (it should say 19d8 instead of 6d8) and a question about its caster level for spell-like abilities, this monster is well laid out. Its combat abilities do not, in my opinion, warrant a CR 20, but the main challenge it presents is FINDING and reaching it. The spell-like abilities Screen and Guards and Wards make the thing very hard even for high level PCs to find. I suspect its main purpose is to not be found, leaving open the possibility that adventurers may one day be needed again to combat the evil goddess Maramaga. The work closes with details on Maramaga, including her history and divine doctrines, and a brief look at the secretive Deadwood Order.

In closing, this is one of the best 3rd party NPC/organization works I’ve seen for Pathfinder. The bang for the buck is second to none, and the publisher could well use this NPC and his organization to create a full adventure (perhaps with those stat blocks for his lackeys, and definitely with those new traps strewn about in strategic locations). While I did note some glitches as I mentioned, they were relatively minor and can be easily forgiven in light of the exceptional overall value this product offers. Five stars.

((I should mention for the sake of full disclosure that I did receive this particular product free for the purpose of reviewing. However, I believe in putting my money where my mouth is on a 5 star review, so I just bought two more Infamous Adversaries [Ichor Humansbane and Cytheria the Blasphemer] and am looking forward to reading them.))

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Dark M. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/12/2012 16:11:12
Raxath'Viz The Creeping Rot by Raging Swan

This product is 30 pages long. It starts with a cover and credits. (3 pages)

Raxath'Viz The Creeping Rot(22 pages)
First we get a bit of a background, which is really well written. Next we get a full heavily hyper linked stat block for him. He is a CR15 kobold, Cleric 10th, Divine Scion 3rd and rogue 3rd. Following this we get motives, appearance, history, personality, resources, Lair, network, tactics, morale, plot hooks, lore with DC checks, and the six profane boons, these are things his god has charged him with. As written he has accomplished 5 of the 6. It has rules for downgrading him to what stage he is at. Each time he accomplishes one he got more powerful.

We get a short bit of IC story told. Next we get stat blocks for a 10th level oracle Otyugh, then there is a list of followers but no stat blocks for them. There is also some new traps as well listed. There is also a full stat block for his pet as well, along with a full stat block for a massive otyugh as well. There is a full write up on his goddess Maramaga, with her church. It ends with a page on a cult.

It ends with a OGL ads, and how to use this with herolab. (5 page)

Closing thoughts. There is very little artwork, there is one color and a black and white art. They are fair. Editing and layout was good, I didn't notice any obvious errors. These products have been getting better and better. This one is very well written and interesting. I liked the last one in the series a lot but I think I might like this one even better. So what's my rating? Well I have nothing really negative to say about the product so I am going to give it a 5 star review.

Trust me, I'm a Succubus.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Thomas T. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/06/2012 12:17:46
TPK live up to their name with their Infamous Adversaries. These villains are always a bit overpowered for the CR, but that's what makes them Infamous, in my opinion. Raxath was no different: we dropped him into our campaign as the weekly Big Bad. 3 sessions later and we're STILL trying to kill him. 1st encounter caused our party to lose 3 stalwart souls (Talisman of Ultimate Evil be damned!) . 2nd encounter was a draw, with Raxath escaping into the valley. His meddling and intellect actually makes him into a powerful campaign threat rather than a conniving one-off villain.

The great/dreadful thing about Raxath is that he's open to working with other forces to his own purposes. From a game-perspective, he's a great foe to weave into whatever story arc your campaign is rolling out.

All in all, this is a contender for one of the best villains TPK has concocted yet. Sure to give all gaming parties a run for their healing potions

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Infamous Adversaries: Raxath'Viz, the Creeping Rot
Publisher: Total Party Kill Games
by Thilo G. [Verified Purchaser]
Date Added: 02/02/2012 09:22:11
This installment of the Infamous Adversary-line is 30 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 4 pages of advertisement and 1 page SRD, leaving 23 pages of content - that's quite a bunch for the low price, so let's check it out!

The pdf kicks off with a bang - a stellar, original, full-page artwork of Raxath'Viz - gorgeous and not something I would have expected for the price point. You'll hear these words more often in this review. The description of Raxath'Viz kicks off with a disturbing, well-written introduction before providing us the statblock of the villain: Raxath'Viz is a Cleric (Hidden Priest)10/Divine Scion 3/Rogue (Trapsmith) 3 and thus has a COMPLEX statblock with a LOT of special abilities. The statblock contains a minor layout error - a part of the statblock is not shaded like the rest of the block. That does not deter from his wide array of abilities or their usability, though, just an optical hick-up. Raxath'Viz has an ambition quite profound - be the instrument of reincarnation for the goddess of disease and become a demi-god himself in the process.
In order to accomplish this lofty goal, he has to succeed in 6 profane boons, which are detailed not only with prophecy-like lines, but also how Raxath'Viz plans to accomplish/accomplished them - this prophecy per se could be seen as a seed for a whole campaign, if desired. If you want to use a Raxath'Viz over the course of a campaign, you'll also get an advancement track for him as well as 3 additional plot hooks. Sample lore-DCs are provided to go along the campaign and plot seeds. If you want further ideas n how Raxath'Viz operates, you'll see it in yet another short piece of fiction before we get to his perhaps most valuable ally, Zogulryk the unholy, a male Oytugh Oracle 10 who is the one true ally/friend (if such a word is applicable) the Kobold has.

The installment does not end here, though, and instead goes on to provide sample names and personalities for the Festering Lesion, Raxath'Viz rag-tag band of kobold followers. We also get some sample custom traps the clever kobold employs and especially a consuming jack-in-the-box is worthy of Batman's Joker in its twisted humor. Of course, the Kobold also has pets, namely a variety of otyugh-mutations, one of which, the two-headed guardian otyugh, is also presented with a full statblock.
Unbelievably, we get even MORE: The profane Vessel of his goddess, a giant CR 20-super otugh remains even after his defeat, waiting for the day when a divinity will emerge from its cancerous growths and posing the final obstacle for the PCs to squash the ambitions of Maramaga, a goddess of pestilence spawned from a barbaric ritualistic druidic sacrifice and her own 2-page write-up is surprisingly compelling in imagery and tone, making her more than yet another deity of disease.
The pdf closes with information on a faction of (semi-) unwitting pawns to Raxath'Viz machinations that shall remain unnamed for spoiler's sake as well as a new devastating disease.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are good, though not excellent: I noticed this one layout-glitch and an incorrect use of the -eth-suffix for a verb in the prophecy. All in all, though, less than 5 hick-ups, all minor, over 23 pages. Layout is new, different and beautiful - while not as printer-friendly as TPK Games' previous layout, the grey borders make for a visually pleasing reading experience. The artwork of Raxath'Viz is STUNNING. It makes a KOBOLD look intimidating as hell. The villain per se features a lengthy statblock, and as has been the tradition with TPK Games alongside all other statblocks in this pdf, been excessively hyperlinked to d20pfsrd.com, making usage of the file on a laptop extremely easy. The pdf is also excessively bookmarked and *drumroll* comes with full hero lab support of all the creatures herein - great for the people who use the tool (though I don't).
Content-wise, I'll just say: Wow. Temerlyth was a very good villain. Raxath'Viz blows him out of the water. The sheer amount of content provided in this pdf is awesome - the short stories are well-written, Raxath'Viz's statblock is complex, we get unique servants and allies, a new (and cool) goddess, a dread prophecy (including his plans to accomplish it - a potential campaign in itself) and a villain that acts SMART. Oh yeah, and new traps. The only thing anyone could ask for from this file that is not there is statblocks for less accomplished versions of him, but seeing that we get the high-level version, they can potentially be reverse-engineered. This pdf provides a LOT of content for 3 bucks - much more than I would have expected and at a higher quality, too. In fact, I'm going so far as to say that TPK Games have just upped the ante on NPC/Villain-supplements in the low price-range by a considerable amount. While the minor glitches would usually result in about half a star being detracted, the excellent bang-for-buck ratio more than does its share to counter this minor blemish. Thus, my final verdict will be 5 stars and the Endzeitgeist seal of approval - a truly deadly, devious, frightening kobold villain indeed and a great testament to the level with which the Infamous Adversary-line has been improving.

Endzeitgeist out.

Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
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