Review – The Secrets of the Oracle (PFRPG)
Rite Publishing recently released The Secrets of the Oracle, a new Pathfinder supplement. Focusing on the title class, the book greatly expand upon the character options presented in Paizo’s core products.
The Secrets of the Oracle is Rite Publishing‘s new class based sourcebook in their Secrets series. We receive many new character options, including six new mysteries, six Oracle’s curses, and another six archetypes.
I think David Mallon wrote a very good book here. While most of the content won’t cry out as extremely surprising, but they are balanced and interesting options, both for player characters and unique NPC-s. I think the graphical presentation is also really good, and I may even add that it’s better than many other from the publisher.
The six new mysteries to choose from are Arcana, Darkness, Luck, Primeval, Rot and Sound. From these Arcana and Luck which is maybe the most closely connected to a “typical” Oracle, as they deal with knowledge and fate. The Primeval mystery is fitting for savage tribal shamans, communicating with the spirits of the ancients and gaining primal (often animalistic) powers. On the other hand Darkness focuses on hiding, deceit and some shadow related combat abilities, which assumes an entirely different play style. The only mystery I didn’t like was Sound, because to me it felt like closer to a wizard specialization than to something I would call an Oracle, but otherwise it’s as well balanced and written as the rest of the book.
Out of the six options Rot is the one which is not suited for heroic characters, but villains only with their degenerating body and destructive abilities. I think this mystery is a viable option for a Game Master to create an unique opponent for their players, which is always a great plus.
The Secrets of the Oracle continues with the six new Oracle’s curses. I think most of these are viable options : you could choose Bad Luck, Emotionless, Hated or the very fitting Voices. The later assumes that you constantly hear strange voices whispering in your mind, and I think this is extremely suited for those oracles who receive their powers from an unknown source or from evil deities. I have some problems with the last two curses : Technical Ineptitude‘s drawback is very situational, and Simpleminded simply means that you will spend less points (or your worst roll) on intelligence at character generation, so it’s not really a drawback. I think I wouldn’t allow these two to my players.
The six new Oracle archetypes in the book are again hitting right on the mark, and most of them are really something with a very strong inherent connection to the class. I think I don’t have to explain why archetypes like Ascetic, Crone, Mad Prophet, Tribal Shaman or Wanderer are falling into this category. Enthengenecist are using hallucinogenic plants, which is again, something typical for these kind of characters.
I think The Secrets of the Oracle is a very good book, which seems a surprisingly natural extension to the core rules. I think it’s really deserves an 5/5.
If you are interested, the book is available for purchase at DriveThruRPG, here.
Or you may get the whole Secrets of series with a nice discount here.
Zoltán “Cain” Mészáros