My Favourite Third Party Pathfinder Books

Pathfinder Bookshelf 2015

A little while ago I had a look at my favourite Pathfinder products made by Paizo. Today I’m going to have a look at my collection of third party books. I’ve collected these in PDF format over several years, and thanks to the awesome Bundle of Holding, my collection has grown quite a lot faster than it normally would have.

Pathfinder Products

New Paths Compendium: This book by Kobold Press contains a host of great stuff for your Pathfinder game, but it is the spell-less ranger alternate class (also available separately) that I really love here. Ditch those pointless ranger spells for some more bonuses against your favoured enemies and a few other cool things. There are new feats to complement this class as well. All rangers in my game are spell-less rangers.

Spheres of Power: A newish product that was funded through Kickstarter, Spheres of Power brings an entirely new system of magic to Pathfinder. Instead of spells, casters gain spheres and magic talents, which they can combine to create a variety of magic effects. The book also contains several new classes and conversions for the core magic-using classes (there is another PDF that has conversions for the other Paizo classes). Needless to say, I’ll be implementing this system in my next campaign.

Monk UnfetteredI’ve already reviewed this product in detail, and it’s a great alternative to the standard monk, or even the Unchained monk, offering some very different but very monk-like mechanics.

Ultimate Rulership: This is a great companion to Paizo’s Ultimate Campaign, expanding on the kingdom-building systems in that book. If you’re thinking of using kingdom-building rules in your game, Ultimate Rulership is a must-have.

Raging Swan Press: Raging Swan has a huge range of products, which are aimed at Pathfinder RPG but are largely system-neutral. I’ve reviewed many of their awesome products here on my blog, but a couple of my favourites include So What’s the NPC Like, Anyway? (a collection of tables for generating interesting NPCs), So What’s the Human Called, Anyway? (there are several of these, all containing lists of names of different ethnicities, perfect for coming up with interesting names), and So What’s the Riddle Like, Anyway? (a useful collection of riddles for your games). Their GM screen inserts are also excellent, though Pathfinder-specific, of course.


System-Neutral Products

There are tons of general roleplaying resources out there, covering topics such as game mastering and world building, and everything in between. Some of my favourites are below:

Robin’s Laws of Good Game Mastering: A quick read with some good advice that game masters may not know or may have forgotten. A great starting point for new GMs.

The Tome of Adventure Design: This massive tome has over 300 pages of tables for generating ideas of all kinds, from monsters to locations to cities to villainous plans. A great resource for GMs.

Engine Publishing: Masks (1,000 Memorable NPCs) and Eureka (501 Adventure Plots) are both excellent resources filled with NPC and plot ideas for a variety of settings. Engine Publishing also has several other products on planning and running campaigns that I still have on my wishlist.


Other Products

Thanks to things like Bundle of Holding, I’ve picked up a fair number of non-Pathfinder PDFs, which I enjoy for ideas or perhaps to play one day. Since I’m specifically talking about Pathfinder in this post, I’ll only mention one product, well, a set of products, that stands out for me:

Numenéra: The books for Monte Cook’s roleplaying system are the most beautiful RPG books I’ve seen. They have beautiful art and layout, easily as good as Paizo’s best Pathfinder books. I don’t plan to play Numenera at this stage, but as a bit of a design nerd, the rulebooks hold a special place in my collection.

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