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Epic Mecha: 01 Infantryman
by Robert A. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 08/30/2017 17:57:06

This is a great product that fills a much needed role! As an avid Battletech and Robotech fan I need about 30 or more mecha! I love that they include BOTH stats for starship and vehicle rules. I'll be excited to see what they do in volume two  Pick this up!



Rating:
[5 of 5 Stars!]
Epic Mecha: 01 Infantryman
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Epic Races: Adapticons
by Justin I. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 07/07/2017 12:34:46

Want to add Transformers to your Pathfinder or Starfinder game? It's probably not something you've thought about, but now that I've mentioned it, you're kind of interested, right? No? To each their own. However, if your answer is yes, Epic Races: Adapticons has got what you need.

The pdf is 25 pages (including front and back cover, a page of advertisements, three pages of OGL). It gives you everything you need to play a transfor... adapticon in Pathfinder (or soon Starfinder). The book starts with history and origins of the race. To be honest, if I added them to my game I'd probably just straight lift all of that from Transformers. That being said, the background isn't a bad one.

In game terms the designers created the race emulating racial creation rules from the Advanced Race Guide. Adapticons are "multi-formed constructs" which means they have the construct and shapechanger subtype. They are large and get bonuses to Str, Wis, and Con, while getting penalties on Dex and Cha. They get an alternate vehicle form, though there are also options to have a metallic animal form, or even not being able to transform. There are Pathfinder favored class options and two racial archetypes (Spybot and Transporter). While these are cool, I kind of wish this pdf had came out a little later and we could have seen Starfinder racial archetypes (assuming the game has them). Note that adapticons do use vehicle rules which are found in Ultimate Combat. We get a new vehicle (dwarven dozer), nine feats (metamagic and racial), and several bits of new equipment (some magical, some technological).

Overall, I think this is a fun pdf. It's not a must have by any means, but it's still really cool. The race isn't overpowered and due to its size and actually has some rough drawbacks (beware of rust monsters).

To be honest, I mainly picked it up because I thought it would be cool for Starfinder, and I hope the pdf gets an update once that book comes out. That being said, this is a solid and unique addition to any Pathfinder game.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Epic Races: Adapticons
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Occult Rituals of the Necronomicon Vol. 1: Undead
by Tyler E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/23/2017 06:43:16

Copies provided by Fat Goblin Games.

Bloody, Gross, and I'm digging it.

So, before I begin this I have a confession to make. I love the Occult Ritual system. Presented in Occult Adventures about 2 years ago, the ritual system has in my mind helped go a long way toward solving one of the greatest problems the magical system has in the OGL/3.5/Pathfinder system, that is, making magic feel well... magical again. As it stands, magic really doesn't have any unknown elements, there's no mystery or surprise inherent in casting a spell like magic missle or dumping a bag of diamonds on the floor and trying to raise your friend from the dead. Everything does exactly what it says on the can, nothing inherent to the spell causes a change, and everyone goes on about their lives. Now, this might be nice for new players but in my mind that makes it math, not magic. Magic needs chaos, it needs uncertainty, and it needs risk for it to FEEL like the spellcasting we all know from myths and stories. Magic missles need a chance to explode to life with more power than that neophyte expected and raise deads need to be able to fail spectacularly as demonic enemies take the opportunity to use this freshly prepared corpse to crawl into the lands of the living. This is part of what makes "magic" as a concept compelling to introduce in mechanics, and it is in part what makes the system we have often been saddled with so uninspiring after a while, it becomes routine.

And magic should never feel routine.

Now though, with the Ritual system in Occult Adventures we, the consumer have finally got a REALLY solid system for presenting increadibly powerful magic, both new ideas and spins on old, as something strange and fantastic again. Something that I as a GM could give to ANY PLAYER and watch as the party now looks for an opportunity to literally call on the Gods of old to smite their enemies while simultaneously dreading what happens to them if they succeed, or worse, if they fail. That makes me as a GM and a player giddy.

Now, with that in mind lets dig into this piece.

Presented as a 15 odd page folio of new occult rituals wrapped around a specific theme, Occult Rituals of the Necronomicon Vol. 1: Undead focuses on rituals aimed at, well you guessed it, Undead. Filled with about a dozen new occult rituals, Undead Volume 1 presents a rotting smorgusboard of fun, bloody, creepy, and spiteful new rituals for you to scatter amongst the musty tomes and crammed shelves of some spiteful necromancer or ancient nosferatu's library and just leave players reeling over.

And spiteful might be the keyword here, because if their is one theme that runs through these rituals more than anything it's spite. Spite for the caster's enemies, spite for the dead, spite for time, nearly every single ritual in this thing feels like something you cast to spit in the face of the forces the caster rallies himself against. Unnatural Appetite has you cooking a person into a meat pie and serving it to someone to turn them into an insatiable cannibal that can't enjoy the taste of anything but the flesh of his own kind, Worm Feast gives the target freaking piles of tapeworms that wreak all kinds of hell on their innards until they somehow... remove them through either magic or a lot of traditional medicine, and Curse of Binding Rot raises the target corpse as a Juju Zombie with all of its skills and abilities it had in life and completely under your control.

Again, spite seems the apt descriptor for this thing, and with that bloody, squirming, and gross.

But that's not all. You also get rituals like Flesh of Sand, which takes the Mummy Lord and gives you a ritual to transform yourself into one a la Occult Realms Eternal Apotheosis and the 90's classic The Mummy. Unfortunately it doesn't go into as much nitty gritty detail as either of those sources do, which is a shame as having to have your party collect swarms of scarabs and/or remove their organs and embalm them as part of the casting would be super cool, but having another ritual to create super undead added to the list is a nice bonus and one I'm happy to get on my shelf. We also get Under the Skin, which has the caster painting a portrait of the person they are wishing to target that with paints made from crushed up spiders and a brush made of the victim's likely stolen hair. When completed, the painting turns hellish and the victim has an experince that literally makes their skin crawl and reads like something from a medieval Kronenburg film and an arachnaphobic alien remake that is best left to them to describe. Suffice it to say, it's the beginning of your grossest Halloween special game encounter and you'll be looking for an excuse to do it. Land of the Damned basically drops a necromantic nuke on wherever the hell you put the focus and makes sure that EVERYTHING that dies or is buried there rises as a walking corpse set to wreak havoc on whatever poor sods live within sight of the damn thing, and Walk of Ages literally DECOUPLES YOUR SOUL FROM THE CYCLE OF LIFE AND DEATH and just lets you return to life over and over again, being reborn to different, unnoticable parents of whatever race you want as whatever sex you want and do it all over again.

The stories I want to build around whoever's stupid enough to try that last one are freakin' epic.

Now, amid these horrors of necromantic spite and bloody, wriggling awesome we also have some options that are far less... evil? Maybe the better word is maliciously spiteful. Anyways, among all these great balls of Ewwsome we also get stuff like Eternal Slumber, which lets you annoint a corpse so that it doesn't rot and can be transported to wherever you need to take it in order to raise it from the dead or perform last rights (and makes it smell good). We also get things like Rise from the Grave, which lets you bring back people a la Raise Dead but turns them into Undead if the ritual is failed or Vampire's Flesh, which, for the simple price of a drink of wine, going a little Ozzy on some ground up bat, and having to gnaw through some zombie fingers grants you the defenses and healing powers of a vampire for a limited time. Finally, we get Ward of Pain, which lets the casters draw an intricate ward that causes a constant ball of damage on anyone who tries to stay within the warded area without having been cleared. All of these make fine rewards for any white necromancer or pious follower of a church looking to get access to any of those great secrets of the faith that might deal with life & death without having to worry about whether or not it fills their friends full of worms.

All that said, this book still has some problems. Walk of Ages has some DCs so incredibly low they make me think they have to be a misprint. Even with 9 saves across a wide array of skill checks a DC 12 feels waay too low for what this spell is going to give, and with the relativley innocent nature of most of the checks (like having someone pen a geneology and make it into a book) the chances of a caster passing this with just a bookbinder and geneologist he hired in town are way too high. Second, a lot of these rituals NEED the evil subtype. Now, don't get me wrong, I like unaligned spells of dubious moral use but some of these like the aforementioned Unnatural Appetite, Under the Skin, Curse of Binding Rot, and Flesh of Sand just scream to have that [evil] subtype tacked onto them right beside their necromantic school and not having it just seems like a rookie mistake that shouldn't be made by a dev house who's now on their 4th or 5th book of rituals like this. My final real complaint comes with the Crafted Companion ritual. A rather standard rit, Crafted Companion lets you upgrade a construct by 1 CR and give it all the commiseruate parts therein, including a new universal monster ability. It sounds cool, but the idea of giving just ANY universal monster ability feels a bit too powerful on its own and what's more there's this giant text block that explains the Bezerk rule but really doesn't make sense within the context of the book. It doesn't make sense as a support text to go along with the Failure state of the ritual since anyone who's casting a ritual to upgrade a construct/golem should already have access to a source that explains Berzerk and as something that only happens on a failure just clutters the page. By sticking it on the page it makes me assume that it's supposed to be something that any construct gains as part of undergoing this ritual rather than a side effect of things going horribly awry, and that busying of the page is the kind of stuff that just creates unnessecary confusion at the table.

These complaints aside, this is truly a stellar, if not perfect, addition to the rituals system and something any table that uses the ritual system would be happy to have, both as rewards for players and dark weapons for the vilest of villains. I know that at least 3 of these feel like something that would totally fit into any church as sacred mysteries and having that side by side with a bunch of awful curses gets me excited to crack these open and look for ways to add them into my home game.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
Occult Rituals of the Necronomicon Vol. 1: Undead
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Occult Rituals of the Necronomicon Vol. 1: Undead
by James E. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 06/18/2017 11:23:15

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this product for the purpose of this review.

This is a 15-page, full-color PDF. Or, well... two PDFs, actually, but as far as I can tell they're exactly the same (not even a grayscale printing one... uploading error?). Nine pages are actual content, and after a brief bit of story, this product jumps straight into things. Helpfully, many of the references include online hyperlinks.

Options present here focus on new Occult Rituals (the rules for which are introduced in Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Occult Adventures). Don't be fooled by the similarity to spell blocks - these are not spells. Options include rituals like Unnatural Appetite (which push people towards cannibalism), Eternal Slumber (permanently stopping the decay of a body so resurrection can be done later), and the Ward of Pain (which creates an area that can constantly damage others). Most of these rituals are meant to be used by the GM, but clever (and mostly evil) player characters might also find use for them in certain games.

One of the options includes rules for creating a Mummy Lord, although I question the use of black text on dark red highlights at this point - as a general rule of thumb, highlights should always be on the opposite end of the brightness spectrum (dark if the text is light, or light if the text is dark). It's not a huge problem, but it does make some ability names hard to read, and it really should have been caught on even a casual glance through the final product... so I do have to knock a few points for that.

Otherwise, though, this product is essentially exactly what it presents itself as - a collection of new occult rituals focused on the undead. You'll probably want to have a plan for them before you get the product - a BBEG focused on occult lore and undead? - but they'll work quite well as either things for the enemies to cast or for the players to interrupt.

My final score for this product is 4.5/5. Points were lost for a proofing error that should have been caught, but gained for the nice hyperlinks. For the purpose of this platform, I've decided to round down this time.



Rating:
[4 of 5 Stars!]
D20 Generator: Character Goals
by Justin T. [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 05/22/2017 22:50:08

Two pages, and information that I found for free on the web already. Not worth .50cents!



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
D20 Generator: Character Goals
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D20 Generator: Crazy Town Events
by A customer [Verified Purchaser] Date Added: 01/28/2017 19:48:47

There are only 20 events in this products. Some of them are great but most things you would see as headlines in the newpaper just replace man or woman with race and a few other descriptors. All of it together it is not worth .50 mabye .10



Rating:
[1 of 5 Stars!]
D20 Generator: Crazy Town Events
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