EZG reviews Amazing Races: Merfolk
This pdf is 4 pages long, 1 page front cover, 1 page SRD, 2 pages content, so let’s take a look at new options for merfolk!
The pdf kicks off with 4 new feats for merfolk:
-Drowning Tail: Use HD in place of BAB when grappling under water and make it harder o escape from your grip.
-Improved Drowning Tail: Air-breathing creatures have their rounds to hold breath reduced by 1d4 every time they try to free themselves or reverse grappling. Neat!
-Seafoam Shaper: You are never swept away by water and your spellcasting is not hampered by flowing water or water-based precipitation.
-Sea Slayer: +2 damage versus off-balance targets in the water.
Merfolk also get two new character traits:
-Coastal raider: Climb as class skill and faster transition when climbing from water.
-Treasure-Diver: DM rolls secret Perception-check when you pass 30 ft. by a hidden treasure.
Merfolk may now also chose from two new alternate racial traits:
-Arctic swimmer: 10 ft. slower, but +5 cold resistance.
-Shimmering Scales: Illusion (pattern)-spells at + 1CL.
The second page is devoted to a new sorceror bloodline, the Sirensong Bloodline, which nets access to bardic/enchantment-themed spells and feats as well as the option to sing a bewitching tune and summon creatures from the deep.
Editing and formatting are very good, I didn’t notice any significant glitches. Layout adheres to Abandoned Art’s no-frills standard and the pdf has neither bookmarks, nor artworks, nor would I expect them at this length. These options for merfolk are solid and especially the drowning-feats make this definitely a worthwhile supplement. However, I also feel that this pdf slightly falls short of what it could have been due to two things: The first, I won’t hold against it, but I would have loved to see some synergy with Alluria Publishing’s acclaimed Cerulean Seas-campaign setting, depth/current-rules etc. The second one, though, is more relevant – why make the sirensong bloodline a bloodline? This screams bard to me and either access to limited bardic abilities (masterpieces?) or a whole switch around to make it distinct and bardic would have helped the bloodline – especially since its individual abilities don’t build that well upon one another. In the end, this pdf didn’t have as much exciting or unique ideas going for it as e.g. the goblin or gillmen-installments and hence I’ll settle on a final verdict of 3.5 stars, rounded up to 4 due to the low price.
Dive beneath the waves here!