||Adventurer Essentials: Holy Water is a short 7 page pdf product for the d20 system. This product is the first in Skortched Urf' Studios' new line of Adventurer Essentials products. Each product in the series aims to examine those essential items that adventurers frequently use or require during the course of any dungeon crawl or adventure. This first product looks at holy water, the bane against undead and evil outsiders.
The product comes as a single pdf file without any bookmarks. The latter though shouldn't be a problem considering the short length of the product. Only 5 pages of content are included, but there is a nice little cover for the product, and it contains some simple yet welcome interior art of the various containers typically containing the different types of holy water in the pdf. Writing and editing is good, although some introductory text on the pdf (not its content) would've been welcome. Overall, a pleasing presentation and a good start to this line of products.
This product is all about holy water. It starts by presenting a brief history of holy water, and its somewhat contrived discovery at the hands of an elven priest. Then it proceeds to dive into discussing the various ingredients of holy water, most notably water, silver and the blessing of a deity. I found this an interesting read, with some useful titbits that could make something considered to be just a weapon have a little more history and flavor to it. The descriptive text also gives enough information to have you thinking about variants of holy water beyond those presented in this product. The product, unfortunately, does not deal with, for example, unholy water for evil characters, or any particular tactics regarding the use of holy water, though in the latter case one would expect them to be rather self-explanatory.
Adventurer Essentials presents a number of new variant and magical holy waters that can be used by an adventuring party. There are some interesting and good ideas here, from holy water that can turn various creatures, to holy water that is particularly effective against certain undead creatures. Magical holy waters are all based on a similar formula, that of the holy water removing from a creature one of its special attacks or abilities for a limited duration. For example, the holy water of freedom prevents a ghoul's paralysis from affecting anybody. The other holy waters prevent similar abilities in undead and evil outsiders, those creatures normally affected by holy water. The product also contains a mundane item, the aspergillum, for sprinkling multiple doses of holy water, and several magical artifacts that can be used to create holy water by merely touching water.
This is a good little pdf. It provides some interesting and useful new material, and expands a little on a single item that most adventurers use at some point in their careers. Presentation and writing is good, and you get enough content to make the product worth its value. On the negative side, perhaps the product could've been more complete by including perhaps unholy water or tactics using holy water, or more pertinently creating a wider variety of magical items, rather than a bunch of items around the same formula. Overall, a solid product and good value for money.
LIKED: This product contains some interesting ideas, and it expands on holy water to give it a little more flavor. Some useful mundane and magical items, as well as variant holy waters. Solid presentation.
DISLIKED: A wider variety of different types of holy waters would've been interesting, as would perhaps some additional information to fill out the product a little more.
[3 of 5 Stars!]