Age of Lords, an Indie Campaign Setting for Pathfinder (or 4E)

Indie Blackbyrne Publishing has stepped up from their Dark Veil series of adventures and created an entire campaign setting. Age of Lords is set on a large continent with a long history. In the aftermath of an epic war, nations are embroiled in tense conspiracies and political intrigue. It’s available for both Pathfinder and 4E (this review focuses on the Pathfinder version).

Age of Lords is divided between two books, A Campaign Setting book and an Expedition Guide. The former is the DM’s book, the latter aimed at players. The Expedition Guide is the better and more useful of the two.

The Campaign Setting book offers up tons of world history. There are timelines that seem to go on forever, and honestly, little of this information would be of any use in a campaign. There are also lengthy descriptions of the various kingdoms and regions within the world (called Braugh), and while these are a core part of any campaign setting, they’re recapitulated in thumbnail form in the Expedition Guide.

The setting book does have some cool stuff in i. My favorite is the inclusion of specific info on the nature of the various religions and gods of Braugh, along with skill check DCs for history, knowledge religion, knowledge arcane, etc. There are some interesting new monsters as well, like the Morgon and the Bloodmad Vampire.

The Expedition Guide has a lot more crunch in it. There are quite a few prestige classes, and even an entirely new class, the Blade Conjurer (which you can imagine works pretty much like it sounds). The book guides you through the core races and how they exist in Braugh, then offers up some excellent new ones. Osotarians are half human half bear, and Half Dark-Elves, which are…well, you know.

Some essential information on currency and trade, calendars, and some item lists including new magic items round out the book (along with the aforementioned region descriptions). This book accomplishes more than the Campaign Setting in fewer pages.

This looks like an interesting setting if you’re looking for a lot of intrigue, or if the players want to adventure with the backdrop of a tense political standoff. While it uses modern Pathfinder rules, it strives for the feel of older editions (helped somewhat by writing that is a little rough around the edges). You can grab PDFs of the Age of Lords setting at RPGNow.


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