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  1. - Top - End - #31
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    Blueiji's Avatar

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by Novawurmson View Post
    Does Secrets of Pact Magic actually have more stuff for Binders, the class?
    Yes, it does. I believe that it contains a bunch of new vestiges and prestige classes, as well as a couple races (I might be wrong about the races). I don't believe it has any base classes though.

    Although, if you're looking for a new binding base class, here's a homebrew one.
    Last edited by Blueiji; 2012-10-30 at 10:57 PM.
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  2. - Top - End - #32
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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by Blueiji View Post
    Is the Rokugan stuff the same as the Oriental Adventures sourcebook?

    So the current list of good third part books to acquire seems to amount to the following.

    - Hyperconscious
    - Untapped Potential
    - Secrets of Pact Magic
    - Tome of Horrors
    - Advanced Bestiary
    - Into the Green
    - Guildcraft
    - Book of Fiends

    Did I miss anything?
    Yeah, rokugan is the oriental adventures setting. More properly it's the Legend of the Five Rings setting, but there is a d20 version. I have to admit though, the actual rokugan campaign manual isn't particularly well balanced for a typical game, but creatures of rokugan and magic of rokugan work pretty well.

    The setting is geared more toward the intrigues of the imperial court than the old-school hack'n'slash motif. It's great if you're into that sort of thing, otherwise skip the campaign manual since there's precious little in it for a normal game and the other two books work just fine without it. OA is kinda necessary to make them work though.
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  3. - Top - End - #33
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    eggs's Avatar

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by Blueiji View Post
    Yes, it does. I believe that it contains a bunch of new vestiges and prestige classes, as well as a couple races (I might be wrong about the races). I don't believe it has any base classes though.
    Not quite. It has its own system that's very similar to ToM's, but it has some meaningful distinctions, the most important being the way ToM and SoPM treat spirit levels: ToM attempts to scale low-level vestiges' powers to stay comparable to high level vestiges, and doesn't factor vestige level in determining what a Binder can bind; SoPM still scales powers, but to a lesser degree, and restricts binders by the total levels of spirits they can bind - compensating for lower-quality/less-scaled low-level spirits by allowing more of them to be bound simultaneously.

    I don't imagine SoPM materials would be inappropriate to port directly onto the ToM Binder, but SoPM's low-level spirits would be noticeably weaker than ToM's at higher character levels, and its higher-level spirits might be a bit overwhelming.

    On the actual contents of the book, SoPM comes with 8ish Base classes (give or take - a fair number of its classes come with extensive adaptations, and it also introduces some binding ACFs for non-binders, but some of the classes aren't much more than variants to existing content), 3 new races (but one's a Dragonborn-style race/template thing) and a bunch of PrCs. You can see its table of contents and some of its samples here.

  4. - Top - End - #34
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    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    Hm? New pact magic stuff? Is it any good?

    Being able to bind 3 1st level vestiges or a single 3rd seems like a good idea, but most 3rd level vestiges are only mildly better than 1st level ones, so in practice it just means your binder has a ****ton of lower level vestiges and no higher level ones.

  5. - Top - End - #35
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    Kobold

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    For the Mad Scientist types: Crossbreeding

    For those of us who want to play with fiends from just about the start: Demonology <-Only place i knew you could look it all up free was taken down D: but it's from Encyclopaedia Arcane too
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  6. - Top - End - #36
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    eggs's Avatar

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rejakor View Post
    Hm? New pact magic stuff? Is it any good?
    It's pretty good. There are some parts that are deliberately silly or unsubtle tributes to one thing or another and the occasional proofreading error, but the mechanics are solid, the content is interesting and the presentation is good.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rejakor View Post
    Being able to bind 3 1st level vestiges or a single 3rd seems like a good idea, but most 3rd level vestiges are only mildly better than 1st level ones, so in practice it just means your binder has a ****ton of lower level vestiges and no higher level ones.
    That's what I meant when I said the treatment of levels is the biggest compatibility issue between the systems: SoPM's level 1 spirits don't scale quite well enough to match its level 3 spirits, but its system provides the option to pick 3 level 1s instead of 1 level 3. Otherwise, the Secrets of Pact Magic and Tome of Magic systems are very similar.
    Last edited by eggs; 2012-10-31 at 03:24 AM.

  7. - Top - End - #37
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    Agent 451's Avatar

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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    I know that the psionics books put out by Malhavoc Press are pretty well received, but does anyone have experience with Chaositech?
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  8. - Top - End - #38
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    Default Re: Best 3.5e Third Party Books?

    I can't speak for the rest of the book, but I used Chaositech's grafts once in a Mind Flayers of Thoon campaign. For the most part, they were pretty typical Monte Cook/Malhavoc - cool fluff, good presentation, but mechanics that are either dull or ambiguous in their details (static DCs, lots of flat numeric bonuses to track and rules whose specifics aren't always clear).

    Just addressing Malhavoc in a general sense, it's Monte Cook's company, and almost all the work is Cook's. The books (besides Cordell's) primarily support the fictional/fluff elements of a game, and only do a cursory job on the rules backing them up.

    As a rule of thumb, the more one of their products is aimed toward supporting the fiction of a specific story, the better the product is (Chaositech is one of the better ones in that regard; I also like the event books); the more a book is directed toward augmenting the rules themselves, the worse it is (eg. Book of Eldritch Might 2, which presented things like 3d6 damage or +1 attacks as a fair trade for level 6 Bard spells, or Book of Iron Might, which was complicated to the point where it's easier and more fair just to make up rules on the spot than it is to navigate the system's formulas).
    Last edited by eggs; 2012-10-31 at 03:10 PM.

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