May 132015
 

Demon Cults: The Cult of Selket

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This installment of Kobold Press’ Demon Cults-series clocks in at 15 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial/ToC, 1 page advertisement, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 11 pages of content, so let’s take a look!

 

So, what is the Cult of Selket? Well, if the gorgeous cover was not enough of an indication, the cult is a kind-of Egyptian-themed cult, wherein the dread assassins of the desert scorpions execute those that dare to violate the divine mandate of Selket’s clergy – preferably via poison and a semblance of “divine retribution.” The cult’s cadre of leaders receives full statblocks – from the deadly current (multiclassed, btw.) leader of the desert scorpions to the eternal guardian (a nasty divine guardian gynosphinx, complete with sample riddles!) to the Daughter of Selket herself, the builds are nice to see and feel a tad more diverse than in previous installments of the series – good!

 

Now if you’ve been following my reviews of the series, you may have noticed that I’m a huge fan of the exceedingly numerous and detailed hooks provided, which generally are enough to utilize the cult in question for more than one module and potentially craft a whole campaign from it. This pdf’s hooks are no less diverse and intriguing, with the sidebox detailing the cult’s workings in Midgard falling in no way behind the great writing of the hooks – but the pdf does go one step beyond: What if your PCs actually work for the cult? Yup, while not as detailed as the massive array of hooks, the pdf actually manages to cover some basic points for the DM and present some concise orientation points. And honestly, I haven’t run a campaign like that and would love to. Nice to see this series going the extra mile here!

 

Speaking of which – we also receive a special kind of CR 5 mummy, which is not only poisonous, but should also offer a nasty surprise if cocky adventurers should try to set it ablaze: Toxic fumes. Yeah, I *like* that. We also get stats for a scorpion swarm and a greater swarm summoning spell. A bracer that can net limited tremorsense and quickly apply poisons and two cool new traits are also part of the deal, as is the vermin subdomain of the animal domain – while I have seen the concept of the vermin-friendly caster implemented via other means, the absence of such a (sub-)domain option is welcome here, though, when compared to even the traits, this constitutes the one piece of crunch I wasn’t that intrigued by.

 

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any significant glitches. Layout adheres to a modification of Kobold Press’ beautiful 2-column full-color standard, with the borders evoking the theme of the gorgeous front cover. The pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience.

 

Jeff Lee’s Cult of Selket brings the series home for me – for the first time, I read a Demon Cult-installment and thought “Yes, I want to run these as is.” Whereas the first two installments were certainly good supplements, this one feels just a tad bit more lovingly crafted – from the sample riddles to the builds to the supplemental crunch, almost every component of this cult feels like is has been polished to a shine, with little tidbits added here and there to make the whole thing feel more complete. If you’ve been doing this whole reviewing shtick as long as I have, you get a sense when a designer goes above and beyond, when heart’s blood oozes from the page. This is the case here. You find all those small, optional bits that inspire, that make a difference between a good file and a great one. This is the best Demon Cult-installment so far and well worth of a final verdict of 5 stars + seal of approval.

 

You can get this awesome Demon Cult here on OBS!

 

Endzeitgeist out.

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