By Thilo Graf
This pdf is 16 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD and 2 pages of advertisements, leaving 11 pages of content, so let’s check it out!
In contrast to the other FoTS-reviews I’ve posted, I’ll head this with an explicit SPOILER WARNING for players. Please stop reading now, as there is a special twist to this NPC that is impeded by out-game knowledge.
Still here? Ok. As in all the other installments of FoTS, we get three incarnations of a certain creature and this time they cover CRs 8, 14 and 21. However, due to the nature of the creature in question, we get 2 stat-blocks per incarnation, as the character is actually…a will-o’-wisp summoner. Yep, a will-o’-wisp that stopped wanting to feed on terror, has surpassed its disposition and wants to become mortal and interact with all the normal people. You heard me. As an interesting twist, it’s eidolon is actually what you’ll interact with and looks like a human bard. It actually goes as far as to consider his eidolon his link to reality and the potential vessel for its reverse transcendence from incorporeal creature to flesh and bone. Far-out, heh? It gets even better, though: We get a whole slew of new crunchy bits: Two metamagic feats for summoners to use still and silent spells on their eidolon, a recap of how to implant ioun stones as well as 9 ioun stones and a new amulet, bracers and belt. There also is a new summoner archetype containing 3 new evolution for monstrous summoners and their eidolons as well as two short and simple templates to make creatures tougher or craftier. The IC-introduction to the character is, as always in this series, very well-written and works well to establish the character. Even more so, it’s how-to-section and dreamburning information provide ample ideas for the DM to not only use the character, but tap its potential to tackle philosophical questions on what can be considered “alive” and the nature of eidolons per se.
While the stat-blocks are not as complicated as I’d like them to be, the sheer imaginative potential and expansion on what I considered to be the dullest APG-class has to be applauded and more than makes up for this minor shortcoming.
Editing and Formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any glitches. Layout adheres to the two-column RiP-standard. The artworks provided for some items and the characters are nice and wit the tremendous potential of the characters, I practically have to settle for a full-blown 5 stars. This character made me reconsider what a summoner can be and the APG-love is much appreciated – it just shows the tremendous largely untapped potential of the new classes. I hope to see more of them.
Book of Beasts: Wandering Monsters is available from: