The Secrets of the Inquisitor, the latest offering from Rite publishing in the Secrets of…series weighs in at 23 pages, with a cover, credits page, OGL and one ad, leaving us with 19 pages of new Inquisitor goodness. The formatting follows the standard dual column approach, and where as there are some odd spacing effects from time to time within the text, that while slightly distracting to the eye, they do not in any way detract from the understanding of the material. Artwork is both old and new, stock and original. One of the things that, to me, truly makes Rite’s books stand out from other companies when it comes to the visual aspect, is their usage of artwork that carries a feel of history to it. I was pleased to see that this product continued that theme, albeit not quite as prevalent as I might have liked. There are a few pieces of stock art here that have been recycled a few times now, but they are at least good pieces of art. And I would rather see art I’ve seen before, than no art.
Offering new archetypes, inquisitions, feats and judgments, there is a great deal here to go through, so shall we? Starting off with the Herons of the Fountain, this order of inquisitors will please any GM looking to unleash prohibition upon their world. Reading through the description of this orders mantra, their tactics and motivations all I kept coming back to were the prohibition era police and women’s groups, determined to put an end to the devilment of intoxication. Next up we have the Thief-Taker, an archetype I can guarantee you will be seeing my game table this coming game night. The classic Good Bad-guy, a rogue seeking redemption, that character who always seems to be in-tune with the wrong side of the law, even though he’s not quite there himself….that guy. Individuals selling their talents in tracking, negotiating and returning items or people, to those who can pay. And of course, those who pay decide who the guilty are, and therefore who the target of the thief-taker is. Next on the menu, the Monster Hunter Ala Van Helsing anyone? This archetype seems to be missing a word or two in the description of one of it’s class abilities (“….the monster learns the relative power of a single monster…..”) I’m going to have to assume this was supposed to read Monster Hunter learns….Regardless of that hiccup, this is a cool archetype, and seriously takes the inquisitor into the realm of the Church’s worst kept secret, those hunting monsters in the name of their church. From there we go to Questioner of Trail and Tide, inquisitors focusing on the brigands and bandits of the world, both on land and sea. Believing themselves to answer only to a higher calling, here’s where you find that inquisitor who strides into a community hunting prey, ignoring all the laws of that land to carry out a death sentence on their foes, as for this archetype, justice and holy vengeance are their top priority. Truth Seeker introduces us to those inquisitors who are in fact seeking, truth. With several interesting class abilities to enhance one’s pursuit of truth, as well as the added bonus of rage and rage powers, this archetype has potential to be interesting. One thing that left me confused, and it might be my own ignorance, but the Grasp of Honesty ability can be overcome if the target makes a Wave save…..am wondering if that was supposed to be a Will save, or if somewhere along the way getting a crowd to do the bleachers wave with you has gained the ability to save you from in-game effects….The Purifiers of the Burning Pentagram detail an inquisitor I personally thought was missing, and so these guys make me very happy, as they are agents of a church that is not of a good alignment. Inquisitors serving Asmodeus, they are able to harness and use hellfire for several different effects, and this archetype truly goes hand in hand with a recent release from the SGG camp concerning hellfire, and several usages for it. With Channeling Martinet we are given an alternate inquisitor who can harness and channel energy, much as a cleric does, for various different effects, at the cost of several of the standard class abilities known to the inquisitor.
Following the new archetypes, we’re given a handful of new inquisitions, which Is always a good thing.
Asmodeus’ Inquisition opens with a line telling us to purify weakness with the fires of heal….am thinking that was supposed to say hell…not positive, but taking in the rest of the context it makes more sense. Faction Inquisition allows you to target an entire faction or organization with your wrath, and even dominate someone into betraying their loyalties. Marauder’s Inquisition improves upon the standard attack action by making it a devoted strike. Adding dice to the actual roll, as well as modifier bonuses to damage if the hit is successful. Secondary ability being to improve ones usage during the surprise round, giving the inquisitor more actions as a player. Supernatural Inquisition gives a hp damage reduction when dealing with supernatural creatures, as well as supernatural inquisition points, their usage, and rules determining when you earn them, and how many you can have. Temperance Inquisition grants through touch morale bonuses and additional saving throws vs. effects.
With 36 new feats, the Feat section of this book obviously offers up a nice variety for players of all types. With names inspired by the writings of Sun Tzu (Sit on the Mountain and Watch the Tigers Fight, Kill With a Borrowed Knife, Besiege Wei to Rescue Zhao to give a few examples), these feats allow for an inquisitor to become a much more dangerous individual upon the battlefield. And, as an added bonus, as we have seen a few times before, once again the Rite and SGG camp are shaking hands and designing with each other in mind, as these feats are usable by the SGG class War Master as well, with the slight modification to the prerequisite of changing out Solo Tactics for Individual Tactics.
11 new judgments bring us to a close, with such options as Accepting, which allow you to effectively only have to take half the amount of a detrimental affliction or effect. Personally, this was my favorite of the new judgments, as this gives us a solid game mechanic that works for those characters that accept that life sucks, stuff happens, and just trudge on regardless…folks like that tend to be better at carrying a mantle of detriment, and this gives us a way to reflect that within game. Typhoon Struggle has the potential to be a really cool, and I mean really cool, judgment in the hands of a high power inquisitor. The long and the short of it is, character has a weapon, and for every x amount of levels they also have a duplicate of said weapon made of energy. Upon a successful hit, that weapon and all of it’s duplicates do damage…seeing the visual yet? Yeah, like I said, that could be epic in the hands of a high level inquisitor.
Closing thoughts, a lot of really good material, some fantastic interpretations of the inquisitor via archetypes, as well as the inquisitions, feats and judgments. The material offered here is fantastic, making this PDF a welcome addition to any group currently using or looking to use an inquisitor. And where as there are a few minor hiccups left, the meaning is still conveyed well enough that they are easily overlooked. Giving this PDF a 5 star rating