Faces of the Tarnished Souk: Nix Ra Bael, Dreamkiller
By Thilo Graf
This instalment of the FoTS-series from Rite Publishing is 12 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD and 2 pages advertisement, leaving 7 pages of content for the Dreamkiller, so let’s check him out, shall we?
Following the format of the FoTS-series, we first get one page of fluff complete with dream burning information and lore-section- character-wise, I can say that Nix Ra Bael is so incredibly cool, it almost hurts – a nihilist albino drow assassin, he is essentially an owner of his own, depressing theatre, complete with a never-complete Beckett-like play in the making with a nice nod towards Lovecraft. A killer of not only entities, but also dreams, he makes for a formidable, intelligent foe:
His low-level incarnation is a CR 10 level 10 gunslinger, his CR 15 incarnation adds to that 4 levels as well as the blind oracle template and the final incarnation is CR 21 and adds the siphon creature template as well as more levels.
We get additional content, of course – the blind oracle template (CR +1) that lets you dabble in divination and the siphon creature template that lets you absorb energy, even kinetic one, to turn it against your foes. It is especially the latter template that is plain genius and makes Nix the cool, aloof killer he is. Additionally, we get two new weapons, the wrist-crossbow and the bladed tonfa, a new weapon quality specifically designed for siphoning creatures and 4 new magic items: The arsenal gloves (better gloves of storing) , the mask of sightless dreams (which improves its boons when worn by blind people) and the two legendary wrist crossbows bullseye and sniper that guarantee that Nix is a terribly deadly adversary indeed. Additionally, we get a new archetype that lets you salvage the gunslinger base-class even if you hate black powder, the arbalester, a specialist of all kinds of crossbows, adding yet another option to utilize the gunslinger in black powder-less campaigns and ensuring that Nix has a place in just about every setting.
Editing and formatting are good, though not stellar: The upper-case “B”s behind some feats should be superscript. Layout adheres to the old, classic b/w-two-column RiP-standard and the b/w-artworks rock, especially for the low price. I love Nix Ra Bael – he is a sophisticated, sinister, nihilist with a twisted sense of humour and mechanically VERY smart – the siphon template, his battle-tactics and items all complement each other to create a devious, deadly foe with a unique fighting style. Character-wise, he is my favourite f the FoTS-characters yet. However, the editing glitches serve as a minor blemish to what would otherwise be the coolest of the series, on par with Belladonna, Gozutozawa and Arhanot – my final verdict will thus be 4.5 stars, rounded up to 5 for the purpose of this platform.
P.S.: The King in Yellow never comes…or does he?
Evocative City Sites: The Lost Laboratory is available from: