Thursday, October 29, 2020

5e Witch Project: Hidden Oddities, A Witch’s Primer

Here we are at the end of all my 5e Witch class reviews.  I was saving this one for last just because it is so complete and there is so much here.  

Again, I am following my own rules for reviewing these; I want to stay fair. 

Hidden Oddities, A Witch’s Primer
By Eva M. Brown

Hidden Oddities is a monster of a book.  At 154 pages for a single class it has my attention.  Also at 154 pages, no point in figuring out how much is content vs. title, ogl and the like.  It is a beast of a book.

This book rivals any other published book for the D&D 5 game or any other game.  The layout is great, with crisp easy to read text. The artwork is fantastic.  And the authors know their OGL.  I should really just say "Author".  While it looks like Eva M. Brown surrounded herself with a great team to work on this, it is obvious from the reading that this is a single voice and author vision. 

Up first is a Foreword and it becomes obvious that this book is just more than a witch class. There is a bit of world-building going on as well.  This can only be a good thing in my mind.   There are Seven Chapters in this book. 

Chapter 1 covers the Introduction, what this book is about and the list of Kickstarter backers.

Chapter 2 is the Witch Class.  There are little quotes and “magical text” all throughout the book that really gives it a nice feel.  Break the code of the magical text for more information!

And in a bit of “magic text” of my own, “yes Eva, I do think we will be great friends!”

We start off in a place I think it great.  Background.  There are also d6 tables of “I Became  A Witch Because…”, a d6 table of “We Whisper to Each Other By…”, “Our Relationship Is…” and “My Curios Are…”  This is great stuff and perfect not just for EVERY D&D5/DMsGuild Witch I have reviewed but nearly every witch I can think of (and that is a lot is I can be so bold).

An aside. Curios are a great idea. I love them. I wish I had come up with them first.

The witch is a full 20 levels spellcaster. She can’t use armor and has 1d6 HD.

Instead of getting spell slots the witch gets curios, which are tiny mundane object that can store spells.  The witch records her spells in her spell book but uses that knowledge to charge her curios.  The witch gains two spells per level (four at level 1) of any spell level she can cast, half her own level rounded up.  This means the witch can know up to 42 spells. She can only cast the number of spells as she has curios.

The witch also gains an otherworldly companion. These are roughly the same as Familiars, but can be more than just animals.  The witch’s other worldly companion teaches the witch, Witch Script. It is invisible to all non-witches save for when detect magic is cast on it.

The Witch Archetypes are known as Sacred Secrets. There are also some powers known as Arcane Wonders.  

Between these, the different types of otherworldly companions and the various types of Curios, there should be an unlimited variety of witches one can create with this book.

Chapter 3 covers the Sacred Secrets.  Each one has their own background, Arcane Wonders and other powers.  Again, these are treated like subclasses, Traditions, or Covens in other books.  There are 14 of these and are all quite details have a lot of great potential.

Chapter 4 (mis-labeled Chapter 3 in text) are Additional Options.  This is a great chapter and one often forgotten about by other authors of Witch classes (including myself on occasion) and that is other archetypes for other classes.  There is a new Druid Circle, a Fighter Archetype, A Paladin Oath, a Ranger Archetype, and a Wizard Tradition. There are also new backgrounds, complete with personality traits, ideals, bonds, and flaws, for any class.

This chapter also has a number of new feats and some new equipment.

Chapter 5 gives us Spells.  Here there are 111 new spells. Overtly for witches they can be used by other classes as well.  Some of these spells share the same or similar names with spells I have written, enough to make me do a double take.  But it is obvious from reading them that these are not used OGC, merely the result of both Eva Brown and myself reading a lot of the same source materials.  Which in a way is really cool.

Chapter 6 Lore is our world-building chapter. Here we get some organizations the could belong too, or are against the witches. Even if you only use them as ideas or seeds there is a lot here to add to any game.   Membership, leaders (some detailed), goals and headquarters are all detailed.   Nine such organizations are detailed here.

The Appendices cover how to choose a companion, what equipment you might need and the roles of the witch. 

Additionally, there is art information and a Witch’s Script translation guide.  OGL and a four-page Character sheet.

While this might not be my favorite 5e Witch class, it is my favorite 5e Witch book.  There is just so much here that is great and really grabs my imagination.

I mentioned before that the art is great, but it really needs to be re-said.  This is a great book.

You can also get the Character Sheet for PWYW.  It works nicely with other witch classes as well.

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