By Thilo Graf
This pdf from Tricky Owlbear publishing is 10 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page SRD, leaving 8 pages of content, so let’s check out the second instalment of Tricky Owlbear’s line of achievement feats!
I really like the premise of using special feats as a kind of reward for player characters, however, the fine line between tracking individual deeds and pedantic book-keeping is all too easily crossed and benefits might feel unbalanced. The first achievement-feat book did a fine, though not perfect job of walking said line, so let’s check out how this second one fares. The basic idea of these feats herein is that each player starts with an achievement slot: Once they’ve completed the required task, they can fit one of the achievement feats into the slot. Each PC can only have one of these achievement feats active at any one time, unless they take the new extra achievement feat or a new alternate human racial trait.
The feats herein, quite simply, blew me away: Where the first achievement book still had some feats that could have been considered a bookkeeping nightmare for the GM, most of the feats herein centre on TRUE achievements: Samples include gaining rulership of a kingdom, commanding a fleet, becoming the prime cleric of a god, destroying (or saving) a world, slaying the infernal ruler of a plane etc. The feats mostly centre on true achievements, i.e. acts that only rarely are accomplished and can be considered…well…achievements. While most of them are rather grand ones (and grant corresponding benefits), e.g. Unkillable (which saves you once from death) and Jack of all Trades (which slightly enhances all your capabilities) are neat. Fans of psionics may enjoy the fact that some feats also have effects on the arts of the mind while remaining usable when no psionics are used in a given campaign.
The pdf also includes advice on how to create ad.hoc achievements and pre-made achievements yourself.
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any glitches. Layout adheres to a printer-friendly two-column standard and the artwork is stock, but fitting and ok for the low price. The pdf unfortunately has no bookmarks, but at this length, that’s still ok. I was quite frankly surprised at the quality of this pdf. While I liked the predecessor, this one blows it out of the water – the feats rock and feel sufficiently epic and grand in scope and the restrictions help keeping the benefits in line. Design-wise, I have nothing to complain and evil achievement feats are included as well. If I had one complaint, it would be the lack of bookmarks, but that’s not enough to scale this pdf down. My final verdict will be 5 stars.
Cerulean Seas Campaign Setting is available from: