Spheres Apocrypha: Nature Talents – Fire
This installment of the Spheres Apocrypha-series clocks in at 4 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 2 pages of content, so let’s take a look!
We begin this one with 7 different basic talents, all of which have the fire tag:
Dragonlung nets you a 30.-ft-cone or 60 ft.-line breath weapon that deals 1d8 fire damage per two caster levels, Reflex halves. The talent has no prerequisite and no minimum level, and thus could be useless at first level. Additionally, the breath weapon has only a 1d4 round cooldown, but no spell point cost associated. Yeah, not gonna happen anywhere near my game.
Firelord enhances CL for the purpose of magical fire size creation – and yes, there is an expansion of the fire size-table included, accounting for Colossal+ to Colossal+++ – cool! Reflash lets you relight nonmagical fires in the vicinity as an immediate action in a 15.-ft.-burst. This may reignite targets. Ride the Flames (also tagged with spirit) nets you a clumsy fly speed that basically duplicates rocket jumps plus gliding down. Smokewalk (also tagged with spirit) lets you walk on fire and byproducts, and sink in them – and you get a bit of fire resistance and may see through the like. Wreath of Flames (also tagged with spirit) allows you to use your immediate action to hit a target within your reach that hits you with an attack or combat maneuver take CL fire damage, Reflex save halves. Personally, I think that should specify that reach weapons don’t extend the wreath, but your mileage may vary. Trail Blaze (tagged as geomancing) allows you to clear a path through difficult terrain AND make critters in the area when cleared exhausted on a failed save. Neat!
We get two advanced talents: Phoenix Resurgence (fire, spirit) lets you blow up when disabled or dying as an immediate action that costs 3 spell points, returning battered, but with temporary hit points. Cool! Wildfire offers for an expensive (3 spell points), vast (1000 ft. + 100 ft. per CL) blast circle of flame.
The pdf sports 3 feats: Heat Absorption builds on Feed on Fire, and improves the healing and now nets temporary hit points over the maximum. (Can’t be cheesed, base ability costs spell points); Phoenix Flight makes the aforementioned jetpack-like flight of Ride the Flames to hover etc. Nice. Luminous Flames is a dual sphere feat that makes create fire geomancing also double as a glow. (this is not properly formatted).
Editing and formatting are good on a formal and rules language level. Layout adheres to the series’ two-column full-color standard, and the pdf sports a nice artwork of an azer. The pdf has no bookmarks, but needs none at this length.
Derfael Oliveira’s fire expansion is a solid offering; while Dragonlung should imho be relegated to the realm of advanced talents (being OP for a lower-powered game), it is, as a whole, a solid offering. My final verdict will hence clock in at 3.5 stars, rounded up due to in dubio pro reo.
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