By Thilo Graf
This pdf is 24 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page blank inside front cover, 1 page overview, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC and SRD, 1 page explanation on how to read the statblocks, 1 page advertisement and 1 page back cover. That leaves 17 pages of content for the harpies of Pazuzu’s Fury.
The first chapter (6 pages) details the fluff of this particular tribe (or is it flock?) of harpies, offering e.g. a particular myth for the origin of this particular flock of harpies, which I definitely liked. While I admit to really liking Pazuzu’s real-world mythology background, I like how he is supposed to have acted in this myth (if the GM decides the origin story is correct) and how something new is done with the harpies. We also get 6 pages of new tribal feats, some of which enhances the deadly songs of Pazuzu’s Fury, some of which could be used for any airborne creature to devastating effect. None seemed overpowered or too weak. One, though, “Death from Above”, might be considered to be potentially fatal for PCs, so be warned. Pazuzu’s Fury also gets 5 new spells, many of which interact with bardic abilities and might interest players playing bards. The chapter ends with a page with the new exotic weapon of choice of the harpies, the aptly-named gutripper and 3 new magic items, of which none really impressed me. In fine Raging Swan tradition, they get their artworks, though.
The next chapter details stat-blocks, allies and encounters (10 pages).The chapter kicks off by providing 4 sample encounters as well as a side-bar on aerial combat, 8 stat-blocks of different harpies (casting and non-casting, from CR 6 to CR 10) as well as the corrupting aspect of Pazuzu, a kind of minor avatar-like creature (CR 10). Two pages are devoted to a sample lair, albeit without a map and some ideas for other lairs. The final page of the products features 5 adventure hooks, one of which “The Ugly duckling” is absolutely awesome. I’ve got three words for you (or 4, depending on how you count the compound): HALF-CELESTIAL HARPY PALADIN. ‘Nuff said.
I’m starting to feel like a broken record – here before you is yet ANOTHER excellent entry of Raging Swan’s TRIBES series. An intelligent, cool revision of a tried and true old creature, mixed with interesting mechanics, old-world-style fluff, nice tie-ins into the lonely coast and beautiful artworks. While I was missing a map for the lair and would have liked to see the aspect at a higher CR, it seems hardly fair to detract a whole star for that. Thus, my final verdict will be 4.5 stars, rounded up to 5, continuing the trend of extremely high quality Raging Swan has set for itself. Well done!