Matt Roth Archive

  • Faces of Vathak: Survivors This collection of NPCs clocks in at 18 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 14 pages, so let’s take a look!   The NPC statblocks within are, ultimately, NPC-Codex style stats for general themes, with the first page providing an overview of the NPCs by CR. It should be noted, however, that these stats are not exactly standard critters, providing a relatively complex array in some cases. They also come with a brief flavor description each, and the artworks featured are clever, often using public domain art that has been twisted in certain ways – I adore this, as it provides a sense of strange […]

    Faces of Vathak: Survivors

    Faces of Vathak: Survivors This collection of NPCs clocks in at 18 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 14 pages, so let’s take a look!   The NPC statblocks within are, ultimately, NPC-Codex style stats for general themes, with the first page providing an overview of the NPCs by CR. It should be noted, however, that these stats are not exactly standard critters, providing a relatively complex array in some cases. They also come with a brief flavor description each, and the artworks featured are clever, often using public domain art that has been twisted in certain ways – I adore this, as it provides a sense of strange […]

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  • Adventure Avenue: A Nightmare Awakening This installment of Purple Duck Games‘ Adventure Avenue-series clocks in at 59 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 55 pages of content, though these have been laid out for pamphlet-size (6’’ by 9’’, or A5), which means that, provided your eyes can handle small text, you can fit up to 4 pages on a given sheet of paper when printing this.   Now, first things first: On a formal level, the module sports two maps: One full-color regional map of the Burroughs of Dunmark, basically a horror-themed region of Porphyra, and a b/w-map of the dungeon featured herein. Unfortunately, we do not get a player-friendly version […]

    Adventure Avenue: A Nightmare Awakening

    Adventure Avenue: A Nightmare Awakening This installment of Purple Duck Games‘ Adventure Avenue-series clocks in at 59 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 55 pages of content, though these have been laid out for pamphlet-size (6’’ by 9’’, or A5), which means that, provided your eyes can handle small text, you can fit up to 4 pages on a given sheet of paper when printing this.   Now, first things first: On a formal level, the module sports two maps: One full-color regional map of the Burroughs of Dunmark, basically a horror-themed region of Porphyra, and a b/w-map of the dungeon featured herein. Unfortunately, we do not get a player-friendly version […]

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  • Haunting of Hastur #2: The Buried Zikurat (5e) The second installment of the Haunting of Hastur-series clocks in at 28 pages of content if you take away the editorial, ToC, etc., but that does not really represent the module properly.   This review was moved up in my queue due to me receiving a print copy of the adventure.   You see, that page-count only covers the core adventure sported, and the book comes with two supplemental tomes: The first would be the Map and Illustration booklet, which provides full-page, high quality renditions of the artworks, as well as all the full-color maps of the module. These are provided in the pdf as well, and oddly, the maps in the […]

    Haunting of Hastur #2: The Buried Zikurat (5e)

    Haunting of Hastur #2: The Buried Zikurat (5e) The second installment of the Haunting of Hastur-series clocks in at 28 pages of content if you take away the editorial, ToC, etc., but that does not really represent the module properly.   This review was moved up in my queue due to me receiving a print copy of the adventure.   You see, that page-count only covers the core adventure sported, and the book comes with two supplemental tomes: The first would be the Map and Illustration booklet, which provides full-page, high quality renditions of the artworks, as well as all the full-color maps of the module. These are provided in the pdf as well, and oddly, the maps in the […]

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  • Villain Codex IV: Monsters for Meddlesome Heroes The fourth installment of the Villain Codex-series clocks in at 17 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 13 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   This review was moved up in my reviewing-queue at the request of my patreons.   Okay, so we’re changing the formula this time around: Each of the characters featured herein is a monster with unique additionata – class levels, archetypes, etc. Analogue to the regular Villain Codex monikers, this book covers the middle level range: CRs range from 3 to 14. Each of the monsters herein comes with its own b/w-artwork and entry-wise, we focus on stats, […]

    Villain Codex IV: Monsters for Meddlesome Heroes

    Villain Codex IV: Monsters for Meddlesome Heroes The fourth installment of the Villain Codex-series clocks in at 17 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 13 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   This review was moved up in my reviewing-queue at the request of my patreons.   Okay, so we’re changing the formula this time around: Each of the characters featured herein is a monster with unique additionata – class levels, archetypes, etc. Analogue to the regular Villain Codex monikers, this book covers the middle level range: CRs range from 3 to 14. Each of the monsters herein comes with its own b/w-artwork and entry-wise, we focus on stats, […]

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  • Adventure Avenue: Fallen Dawn This module clocks in at 48 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 3 pages of SRD, 3/4 of a page blank, leaving us with 42 1/4th pages of content, though it should be noted that the pdf is formatted for A5 (6” by 9”) size, which means, that if your sight’s good enough, you can fit up to 4 pages of text on one sheet of paper.   Fallen Dawn is a location-based exploration adventure for 5th level characters, taking place in the Lotus Blossom Steppes of Porphyra, to be more precise, on the Lung Plateau. These steppes (fully mapped in full color, just fyi!) are the home of many struggling clan of powerful […]

    Adventure Avenue: Fallen Dawn

    Adventure Avenue: Fallen Dawn This module clocks in at 48 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 3 pages of SRD, 3/4 of a page blank, leaving us with 42 1/4th pages of content, though it should be noted that the pdf is formatted for A5 (6” by 9”) size, which means, that if your sight’s good enough, you can fit up to 4 pages of text on one sheet of paper.   Fallen Dawn is a location-based exploration adventure for 5th level characters, taking place in the Lotus Blossom Steppes of Porphyra, to be more precise, on the Lung Plateau. These steppes (fully mapped in full color, just fyi!) are the home of many struggling clan of powerful […]

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  • The Dragon’s Hoard: Rings, Rods, and Staves The second of Flaming Crab Games’ magic item-pdfs clocks in at 12 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 9 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   We begin without much ado with 16 new rings – and ALL of them receive their own b/w-artwork – with one exception that has a black-red-artwork…don’t know why – I think the b/w-version would have been a better aesthetic choice there…but I digress. The first ring is a winner: Anchor rings look like a bland dimensional anchor spell in a can…until you realize that you can throw your magical anchor at a creature who already teleported away. […]

    The Dragon’s Hoard: Rings, Rods, and Staves

    The Dragon’s Hoard: Rings, Rods, and Staves The second of Flaming Crab Games’ magic item-pdfs clocks in at 12 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, leaving us with 9 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   We begin without much ado with 16 new rings – and ALL of them receive their own b/w-artwork – with one exception that has a black-red-artwork…don’t know why – I think the b/w-version would have been a better aesthetic choice there…but I digress. The first ring is a winner: Anchor rings look like a bland dimensional anchor spell in a can…until you realize that you can throw your magical anchor at a creature who already teleported away. […]

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  • Adventure Avenue: A Plague of Paucity This little module clocks in at 41 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page patreon-recognition, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 36 pages of content, though it should be noted that these adhere to the A5-size-standard (6” by 9”) and as such, you can fit up to 4 on any given sheet of paper when printing them out.   This is a module for 2nd level characters, set in the Last Kingdom region of the patchwork planet of Porphyra, though adaption to other settings should be relatively easy, particularly in the context of Rokugan or a similarly slightly Asian-tinged environment. The ratfolk of the Last Kingdom have thrown off the […]

    Adventure Avenue: A Plague of Paucity

    Adventure Avenue: A Plague of Paucity This little module clocks in at 41 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page patreon-recognition, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 36 pages of content, though it should be noted that these adhere to the A5-size-standard (6” by 9”) and as such, you can fit up to 4 on any given sheet of paper when printing them out.   This is a module for 2nd level characters, set in the Last Kingdom region of the patchwork planet of Porphyra, though adaption to other settings should be relatively easy, particularly in the context of Rokugan or a similarly slightly Asian-tinged environment. The ratfolk of the Last Kingdom have thrown off the […]

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  • Shadows over Vathak: Player’s Guide to Vathak This Vathak-book clocks in at…436 pages. No, NOT kidding. 436. 1 page of front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 4 pages of SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 427 pages of content. HOLY MOLY.   This massive book was moved up in my review queue as a prioritized review. Additionally, it was moved further up due to me getting a print copy. Finally, the reason you see this now, so shortly after release, is simple: I’ve had the WIP-version for more than a month and had sufficient time to tinker and analyze this book.   Vathak. Before we take a look at the content, a brief […]

    Shadows over Vathak: Player’s Guide to Vathak

    Shadows over Vathak: Player’s Guide to Vathak This Vathak-book clocks in at…436 pages. No, NOT kidding. 436. 1 page of front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 4 pages of SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 427 pages of content. HOLY MOLY.   This massive book was moved up in my review queue as a prioritized review. Additionally, it was moved further up due to me getting a print copy. Finally, the reason you see this now, so shortly after release, is simple: I’ve had the WIP-version for more than a month and had sufficient time to tinker and analyze this book.   Vathak. Before we take a look at the content, a brief […]

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  • Campaign Kits: The Mysteries of Hollowfield This Campaign Kit clocks in at 39 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 35 pages of content, so let’s check this out!   This installment of the Campaign Kits-series is a charity product for the Roleplaying Game Creators Relief Fund and it is, to make that clear from the get-go, a “Pay what you want”-product. The original iteration has sported some glitches that have been identified and rectified, which is why this review is based on V.2.0 of the book.   So, what is this? Well, in short, this book contains 8 expanded adventure seeds: With statblocks and structure and all, just […]

    Campaign Kits: The Mysteries of Hollowfield

    Campaign Kits: The Mysteries of Hollowfield This Campaign Kit clocks in at 39 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 35 pages of content, so let’s check this out!   This installment of the Campaign Kits-series is a charity product for the Roleplaying Game Creators Relief Fund and it is, to make that clear from the get-go, a “Pay what you want”-product. The original iteration has sported some glitches that have been identified and rectified, which is why this review is based on V.2.0 of the book.   So, what is this? Well, in short, this book contains 8 expanded adventure seeds: With statblocks and structure and all, just […]

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  • Call to Arms: Javelins and Throwing Spears This installment of the Call to Arms-series clocks in at 32 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 26 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   After a fluffy introduction, we dive right into a brief history of the javelin and similar throwing spears and their use throughout history, acting as complimentary means of softening up the foe or for skirmish tactics; following these observations, we distinguish between light and heavy javelins, with light javelins being designated as the standard as depicted in PFRPG; and just because javelins were auxiliary weapons in real life […]

    Call to Arms: Javelins and Throwing Spears

    Call to Arms: Javelins and Throwing Spears This installment of the Call to Arms-series clocks in at 32 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page ToC, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 26 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   After a fluffy introduction, we dive right into a brief history of the javelin and similar throwing spears and their use throughout history, acting as complimentary means of softening up the foe or for skirmish tactics; following these observations, we distinguish between light and heavy javelins, with light javelins being designated as the standard as depicted in PFRPG; and just because javelins were auxiliary weapons in real life […]

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  • Wayfinder #15 This magazine from fans, for fans, clocks in at 84 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial/ToC, 2 pages of SRD, 2 pages of advertisement, leaving us with 78 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   Well, first, before we do…let me ask you why you’re still reading this instead of downloading this right now. The Wayfinder magazine is FREE, costs absolutely ZILCH and contains evocative, unique material. Even if you don’t play Pathfinder, the excellent artwork tends to make the magazine a great download to just print out and use the art as handouts. So yes, I do believe that you should download all of them right now.   That being said, while I […]

    Wayfinder #15

    Wayfinder #15 This magazine from fans, for fans, clocks in at 84 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial/ToC, 2 pages of SRD, 2 pages of advertisement, leaving us with 78 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   Well, first, before we do…let me ask you why you’re still reading this instead of downloading this right now. The Wayfinder magazine is FREE, costs absolutely ZILCH and contains evocative, unique material. Even if you don’t play Pathfinder, the excellent artwork tends to make the magazine a great download to just print out and use the art as handouts. So yes, I do believe that you should download all of them right now.   That being said, while I […]

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  • The Dragon’s Hoard: Magic Arms and Armor The first collection of magic items released by Flaming Crab Games clocks in at 17 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 13 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   We begin this installment via 6 new magic armor special abilities: Featherlight armor duplicates featherfall and has reduced armor check penalty and increased maximum Dexterity bonus. Analogue to this, sea-faring armor provides water breathing and easier Swimming. While light resting armor allows the user to expend a move action to mitigate the armor’s arcane spell failure for enhancement bonus rounds. I’m not a big fan of giant wrestling armor – it ignores the […]

    The Dragon’s Hoard: Magic Arms and Armor

    The Dragon’s Hoard: Magic Arms and Armor The first collection of magic items released by Flaming Crab Games clocks in at 17 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 2 pages of SRD, leaving us with 13 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   We begin this installment via 6 new magic armor special abilities: Featherlight armor duplicates featherfall and has reduced armor check penalty and increased maximum Dexterity bonus. Analogue to this, sea-faring armor provides water breathing and easier Swimming. While light resting armor allows the user to expend a move action to mitigate the armor’s arcane spell failure for enhancement bonus rounds. I’m not a big fan of giant wrestling armor – it ignores the […]

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  • Wayfinder #14 The 14th issue of the eminent Wayfinder fanzine, by fans, for fans, clocks in at 80 pages, 2 pages of SRD, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial/ToC, 6 pages of advertisement, leaving us with 70 massive pages of content, so let’s take a look!   Okay. This is NOT a review in the traditional sense. Why? Because I am NOT going to analyze piece by piece, content by content everything featured herein – with a book as dense as Wayfinder #14, this would bloat the review to a level that would benefit no one, considering its free availability. What I’ll be doing instead, is first telling you a bit about Wayfinder…and what it means to me.   […]

    Wayfinder #14

    Wayfinder #14 The 14th issue of the eminent Wayfinder fanzine, by fans, for fans, clocks in at 80 pages, 2 pages of SRD, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial/ToC, 6 pages of advertisement, leaving us with 70 massive pages of content, so let’s take a look!   Okay. This is NOT a review in the traditional sense. Why? Because I am NOT going to analyze piece by piece, content by content everything featured herein – with a book as dense as Wayfinder #14, this would bloat the review to a level that would benefit no one, considering its free availability. What I’ll be doing instead, is first telling you a bit about Wayfinder…and what it means to me.   […]

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  • Call to Arms: Ten-Foot Poles This pdf clocks in at 24 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, leaving us with 20 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   So, in case you’re not 100% sure – yes, this is an April’s Fools product. And yes, I’m reviewing it in August. Sad, but better late than never, right? So this begins with a basic, humorous introduction of poles – both in the game worlds and in real life. Let me go on a slight tangent here: If you do not know 10-foot-poles, they are perhaps the source of more anecdotes and prevented PC-death in old-school gaming than any other item. They […]

    Call to Arms: Ten-Foot Poles

    Call to Arms: Ten-Foot Poles This pdf clocks in at 24 pages, 1 page front cover, 1 page editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page advertisement, leaving us with 20 pages of content, so let’s take a look!   So, in case you’re not 100% sure – yes, this is an April’s Fools product. And yes, I’m reviewing it in August. Sad, but better late than never, right? So this begins with a basic, humorous introduction of poles – both in the game worlds and in real life. Let me go on a slight tangent here: If you do not know 10-foot-poles, they are perhaps the source of more anecdotes and prevented PC-death in old-school gaming than any other item. They […]

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