By Thilo Graf
This installment of the FoTS-series from Rite Publishing is 17 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD and 2 pages of advertisements, leaving 12 pages of content for the new FoTS-installment, so let#s check it out, shall we?
As has become the tradition for the FoTS-series, we are introduced to the new NPC in one page that contains the background information of the NPC, advice on how to use him and information for Coliseum Morpheuon’s dreamburning rules. Kahrvass is an interesting character in more than one way – background-wise, his mastery in any craft and the burning desire with which he throws himself into his work is contrasted by a void inside he forever seeks to fill, an emtiness that might eventually consume him. Thus, as both a supplier of magic weapons/armor/trinkets and adventure hook, Kahrvass offers more than one way to use him.
The pdf provides a new template, the Cr +1 Magma Creature with 3 different sample creatures, 3 new dreamcatcher items, the new dream-smashing weapon quality, the reborn dreamer trait and the brand of burning desire, a rather interesting new magic item that works via a short ritual.
Kahrvass comes in three relatively straightforward progressions: The Azer-smith starts as a CR 8 advanced artist and develops by adding the aforementioned magma-template (and more levels) to a CR 15 NPC to finally become a CR 20 entity that can craft just about anything. It should be mentioned that his spell-lists are beyond extensive and take a lot of work off your hands – neat.
As you may have gleaned, the true focus of this particular FoTS is not battle, but rather item-creation and thus we are offered a wide variety of tools to make the system more viable: The 20-lvl Artisan class is a great idea to salvage what I considered always a downside of the crafting system – The Dwarven smith without any access to spells usually wouldn’t be able to create magic items without help from casters. The Artisan-class remedies that by providing a class that gains access to just about all spells available, but only for the purpose of item creation. The design of the class is awesome and I’ll use it for my master craftsmen from here on out. Especially due to the fact that they still need to transcribe the spells to their portfolio, needing e.g. PCs to acquire new spells for them, they make for a viable and cool addition to any PFRPG-game and add adventure hooks as well. We don’t stop with this one cool new class, though, but also add a whopping 14 feats centering on crafting, intensifying auras and the like. I especially loved the idea to implement the apprentice/journeyman/mentor-system of traditional European guilds via feats, another innovation I have already used for quite some time and will now supplement with these feats.
Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any glitches. layout adheres to the classic 2-column b/w-layout by RiP, the artwork for Kahrvass is neat. The pdf comes with bookmarks, which is nice. Kahrvass provides so much more than an interesting NPC for use in your campaign – if you’re like me and the necessity of wizards for crafting always bugged you, this pdf is pure gold. Were it only for the NPCs, I’d give this pdf 4 stars – the new Artisan-class and feats, though, add a spectacular amount of content to this installment of FoTS, making it well worth the low asking price. Thanks to the excellent additional content and the value it adds to one’s game, my final verdict will be 5 stars.
Faces of the Tarnished Souk: Kahrvass Fleymbrow, Smith of Burning Desire is available from: