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Tome of Magic based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Tome of Magic may very well be the most significant supplement to come along for Dungeons & Dragons in many years. This book isn't about just giving gamers new spell-casting classes and spells, this is about a whole new way of looking at magic. Specifically, it introduces three new, and very different forms of magic designed to enhance the fantasy flavor of any campaign. The first new form of magic introduces pact magic. The power behind pact magic are beings...mortals, demons, angels, and even deities, who have passed on from their native planes and are now existing in a sort of void, where their wills were too strong to move onto their final resting place. The new class called binders can make pacts with these beings to gain powers and abilities, merging their own souls with those of the 'vestiges' of these powerful beings. Binders have a D8 for their hit points and can, through experience, make pacts with more than one of these vestiges at a time. Like a magic user, the Binder can change which vestiges they make pacts with on a daily basis, as they see fit and the abilities only last as long as the pact lasts, each time requiring a check to see if the entity can exert their will on the player. Binders do not have to pray for these spells and abilities or memorize them from a book as wizards do...they simply have them once the pact is entered into. Examples of these vestiges include Acerak the lich, whose name long-time players will recall from the module Tomb of Horrors. And then there is Focalor, Prince of Tears who may have been a powerful angel and can grant powers such as an aura of sadness and a lightning strike. The Binder class includes, as do all of the new magic types, five prestige classes which include the powerful Anima-Mage and the Witch Slayers. In addition the Pact Magic section includes 19 new feats, new magic items, monsters, pact magic organizations, as well as mini-adventures designed for the class that can easily be incorporated into any campaign. Next up is Shadow magic. Shadow Magic Users call upon and control the magic derived from the elemental plane of shadow, and while the introduction to the class is a bit muddled, this is quite a potent class, made up of primarily humans and half-elves. The class can be any alignment but should typically be evil or neutral with good aligned characters being very rare. These D6 classes learn what is called 'mysteries' as opposed to spells but think of them as essentially the same thing. Like wizards, they progress over various levels with the number of new mysteries they can learn and utilize and a table of progression is included. In all, the book includes 68 shadow magic spells/mysteries such as the potent Shadow Surge spell which will kill the target if they fail their saving throw and immediately bring them back to life under the control of the caster for one round per level, at the end of which the target dies for good. It also includes five prestige classes, and again new monsters, magic items, and feats. Last, and I think most intriguing, is Truename Magic. We've often heard over the years about true names of powerful beings such as Demons and Devils and how learning their truename can give a person control over the being. The book takes this several steps further, offering truename as a sort of quasi-language. Virtually everything has a true name whether it is a living being or an inanimate object. Further more, words and phrases have truenames, things like 'sharpen', 'Destroy' or 'Vanish'. Once you learn the truenames you can gain mastery over them and it essentially becomes magic. But this is no easy task. As pointed out in the book, truenames, especially those of powerful creatures like demons, are very long and have their unique inflections in the pronunciation. Only a correctly pronounced truename will work to grant the Truename Mage power. For this reason, he or she spends much time pouring over tomes of lore to research and learn the