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Caves of Chaos
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Encyclopaedia Arcane Chronomancy
$14.95 $3.99
Publisher: Mongoose
by gerald h. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/31/2016 02:51:59

I'd really thought that Demonology had to be the lowpoint of the Encyclopaedia Arcane series, until I read the Chronomancy installment.

Basically the entire book revolves around the Chronomancer feat. It requires 5 ranks in Knowledge: Continuum (inclass Bards & Wizards only until you take the feat.), spell casting, and for you to pick two of five listed metamagic feats. Three of which aren't in either the core rulebook or this one. No idea if they even exist. One of the required is Quicken Spell, which you won't be able to use for several levels if you're getting it Chronomancer as quickly as possible. Which you'll probably need to, since all acquisitions are preceded by going insane.

You're a fighter who has learned too much about the continuum & paradox because Chronomancy is a thing? Congratulations, you're insane. And going to be completely insane, increasingly homicidal, and overall handled like a bad npc until you pick up 5-6 levels of Wizard. So you can take the chronomancer feat and pick up a quirk. Most of which are badly written potential death sentences. No you don't get a choice on how YOUR character responds to the knowledge, the book has spoken.

Oh, and you get to track multiple types of paradox and run them through the clunky rules to determine how it's going to affect every type of roll on your character sheet. Doesn't this sound fun?

Then there's ritual chronomancy which allows you to complicatedly, but quickly, perform things that would actually be fun if you did them the hard way. Also, it massively increases paradox, which will wipe you out of existence eventually. Or give you more quirks. Yay.

You also have two prestige classes, one of which requires you to be an 8th level wiz/sorc then give up spellcasting for a bunch of abilities that mostly only work against chronomancers. It also requires multiclassing to pick up the six required feats. The other requires basically every feat or skillpoint on your character sheet for ten levels to qualify for. Don't worry, it doesn't include Concentration. You didn't need that right?

Chronomancers are supposed to be lonely hermits according to the book, which makes them a bad choice for a PC in general. Especially since the only way it really seems like this book would work for a party is if everyone was a wizard aiming for the same prestige class.

Frequent, bizarre death (Paranoia) and insanity caused by an insane universe (Call of Cthulhu) can work just fine, and even be part of the appeal, in a game. However, those all have strong thematic reasons and everything works towards it. That leads to fun role play. AE Chronomancy combines clunky mechanics with hamfisted railroading to lead to annoying roll play instead.

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Encyclopaedia Arcane Chronomancy
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