Friday, July 13, 2012

Pathfinder Condition Cards Review

Until recently I've probably been a bit of a roleplaying 'purist' (if such a thing exists), which means (in my head anyway) that adding card, chits, clips, pogs, and other paraphernalia to roleplaying just seems to detract from the actual game.  However my view has changed recently, and I now feel that used appropriately these things can compliment or add to the gaming experience.

Such is the case with the Pathfinder Condition Cards from Paizo. There are loads of conditions in Pathfinder and they are part of what makes the game interesting.  Unfortunately they are another book-keeping thing to keep track off and can be easily forgotten in the heat of combat by both the GM and players.  The Condition Cards aims to solve that by giving you a pack 'playing-card' sized cards that you can hand out to players (or use yourself as GM) to help you track them.  

There are 52 double-sided cards; basically 4 of each type, so 13 different kinds of cards.  Each of them illustrated with a Pathfinder goblin suffering the effects of the condition, as well as the in-game effects.  The effects on each side of the card is related so, for example, you have 'grappled' on one side and 'pinned' on the other. The cards are even colour-coded to make it easy to pick them out.  Great!

In play the cards work really well, even if you know the rules, having the card in front of you really helps you remember the presence of the condition. My players like them so much that when they get a condition they shout 'gimme the card gimme the card' and as a GM it just makes life so much easier. Additionally it's worth noting that you really only need 1 pack per gaming table - unlike say, the Buff Deck (which I've recently bought and will probably review in time)

The Condition Cards aren't quite perfect though, there are a few minor rules errors, and it would have been nice if they could have included the page numbers to the rules in the PFRPG book, but these are genuinely minor quibbles.  

I'm of the opinion that these are an essential purchase for any Pathfinder group. They are cheap ($10.99), colourful, fun and very useful.  Highly Recommended!

Rating: 4.5/5 (they drop .5 for a couple of little rules mistakes and no page refs)

2012 Ennie Nominees

Well, the 2012 Ennie Awards Nominees are out and always make interesting reading, if nothing else it's a great way to discover new games, podcasts, blogs, et al!

Check them out at

No surprise to see the Pathfinder Beginners Box on there (as well as 'We be Goblins' which is an essential download in my opinion).

Moose Hunting?

Or something...

This dates back to 2007 but I've only just spotted this (and I don't play WOW), but it makes fun reading!!

Hans Jørgen Olsen, a 12-year-old Norwegian boy, recently survived a moose attack by feigning death, "just like you learn at level 30 in World of Warcraft."

HAHA! Nice one Hans! Lucky you weren't a Mage in WOW though - that could have been a bit embarrassing.

Still I suppose it's better than killing 65 million boars.. ;)

New Terraclips

Oooh!  New Terraclips have been announced! Check out
I'm a new fan of Terraclips and currently have one set each of Buildings, Streets, and Sewers of Malifaux. They aren't cheap but are a real centrepiece to any gaming table and my long term players were wowed by them.  Of course, it takes time to put them together, and you have to accept that you're not going to get an accurate version of your map - unless you use the Terraclips as inspiration, which is easy because they very cool.
The new sets 'Dungeons..' look great, and yes I'll be getting them as soon as they are available in the UK. 

Check out these previews -

The Kingmaker Sandbox

Well, I've not posted in months.  That's mostly because I'm crap, and I've also been busy.  Anyway, I've finally started GMing the Pathfinder Kingmaker Adventure Path.  It's quite a lot different from what my players are used to, being a sandbox game.  I'm not saying that were expect to railroaded, but generally speaking there is a distinct plot and they are generally reactive.
In Kingmaker, though there is a plot, it takes a long time to really appear (and isn't that deep), so most of the emphasis is on the PCs to make the plot themselves.  This is great, IF you have the group that want to do that, otherwise it's going to be boring and tedious I suspect. At the moment I'm still not sure whether my players are going to enjoy it - they've just got to 2nd level and are in the process of 'hexploring' the map.  Let's see how it goes I guess.

The most annoying thing for me is that I'm not getting any chances to use my new Terraclips! :D

You can follow the 'action' at my campaign at Obsidian Portal.