Path of War, Courtesy of Chris Bennett and Dreamscarred Press

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

It is no secret that I am huge fan of Pathfinder. What may be less well known is my fondness for the 3rd Party Publisher Dreamscarred Press, and the old 3.5 Dungeons and Dragons book Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords.

Thanks to the work of one ErrantX, aka Chris Bennett, these two loves have been brought together in Dreamscarred Press' upcoming product The Path of War. Rather than bore you with the details, I'm just going to tell you to check out the play-test at Dreamscarred's site linked in above, and follow the product thread at Paizo's site here.

Also, here's an excerpt from my running play-test and review of the product, which I'm also posting in the Paizo thread:

"So, a note on the current Maneuver system and its playability, at least as regards the Warlord- 
I had the opportunity to play-test the Warlord in our weekly game and I was really impressed by the balance of the class. 
I made a ranged Warlord, focused almost exclusively on the Golden Lion and Solar Wind disciplines.  
I focused largely on Boosts and Counters, with a few key Strikes for when the situation was right.  
Much of the combat involved me holding my Stance of Piercing rays for bonus damage on normal ranged full attacks, while using abilities like Intercepting Shade and Warning Roar to negate attacks against our tank and caster during the off round. 
I found that of my 6 readied maneuvers, the non-standard action ones actually tended to be the most valuable, and the ones I was most eager to replace. Few encounters actually required me to recharge my maneuvers, but during our last encounter (which was actually 3 encounters we inadvertently pulled together) the combat actually ran for over 12 rounds. I found myself going through a rotation where about every 3rd or 4th round I was using my Deadeye Gambit in a desperate flurry to try and recover as many maneuvers as I could. Fortunately, 3 chances to land a shot were fairly reasonable odds, even with the -6 to attack I was taking (-2 for Rapid Shot, -4 for trying to recover 3 maneuvers with the Gambit). I only ended up failing to recover my maneuvers once, and since I couldn't full attack the next round due to the Rake from Deadeye, I spent a full-round action the next round regaining my most powerful Strike (Solar Reflection), and used that the next round to ping the BBEG and drop a lesser ghoul.  
Overall, I think I was a bit behind the party tank (TWF, sword-and-board Viking) in damage, but my counters helped a fair number of attacks allowing us to conserve our (very) meager healing supplies. The combination of Counters and utilizing my Warleader ability to share Enfilading Fire (allowing me to gain extra attacks off of our wizards ranged attacks) did a fantastic job of keeping me engaged throughout the entire extended combat, and I felt like I was always poised to do something. The desperation of using the Gambits to recover my powers was actually an awesome experience, as they really did feel like desperate gambits, hail-mary attempts to pull my character back into full fighting efficiency."

All in all, I'm very impressed with the current result, and looking forward to playing this class some more :)