The 53rd installment of Pathways, Rite Publishing’s free e-zine, clocks in at 53 pages, 1 page front cover, 2 pages of ToC, 12 pages of advertisement, 1 page of SRD, leaving us with 37 pages of content, so let’s take a look!
Note: I usually don’t review free material any more, but was explicitly asked to take a look at the current Pathways-issues by one of my patreons.
As has become the tradition with Pathways, we begin with Dave Paul’s editorial before moving on to the template of this month. This time around, Steven D. Russell Provides basically a creature that is a living execution-machine – including lethal hangman’s noose! These constructs are nasty. Nice template!
Creighton Broadhurst, master of Raging Swan Press, does have some material for us as well – two small, yet inspired dressing tables of things you can find in a dusty crypt or a vampire’s lair for two damn cool little articles.
Jonathan McAnulty provides something glorious 11 traits particularly suited for dark fantasy/horror gameplay – and all of them transcend the power you’d expect from a trait or feat for that matter…but pays for this power with a well-crafted drawback, marrying mechanical coolness with high-concept ideas: from surviving a massacre to being born into a cursed family, this article made my black heart thump in anticipation.
The next thing you’ll see is a thing of beauty: Stat-block wizard Justin Sluder returns with the lavishly-crafted CR 23 divine resilient centaur mageknight Aliltus, who, following the tradition of Faces of the Tarnished Souk, does sport a CR 8 and 16 built as well – and yes, I want to inflict this guy on my players!
We also return to Elton Robb’s Leviathan Archipelago to visit to Karnak, Island of the Archosaurus, home to two cultures, that of Sebek-Ka and that of a pharaonic culture…what are Sebek-ka? Humanoid crocodiles that gain +2 Str and Wis, -2 Int, a swim speed, a bite attack for 1d6 (which should specify it’s primary, for nitpickers…) and they gain +1 to atk versus tiny or smaller creatures. They also may reroll Will-saves. Over all, a solid race that also comes, fully Cerulean Seas-compatible, with racial buoyancy and depth tolerance-info…neat! It should also be noted that Elton Robb’s writing has improved further from the last article in the series…so kudos!
Beyond this cool article, we have a spell showcase drawn from Dave Paul’s excellent 101 Subterranean Spells and an informative interview with David Silver, master Ponyfinder himself.
The pdf concludes, as always, with a showcase of reviews by yours truly as well as the Path Less Traveled.
Editing and formatting are good – while I noticed some minor hiccups, none were too serious. Layout adheres to Rite Publishing’s two-column full-color standard and the pdf comes fully bookmarked for your convenience. The pdf’s cover art is awesome.
I’m a big fan of Pathways – monthly, FREE – what more can one ask for? Indeed, even one little component of this installment alone can warrant downloading this neat, free magazine, which I suggest you do immediately. My own favorites this time around would be, surprise, Justin’s centaur and Jonathan’s awesome drawback-laden horror-options. Since this is FREE and has some glorious pieces, I’ll rate this 5 stars + seal of approval.
You can get this cool e-zine for FREE here on OBS!
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