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Tome of Magic: Pact, Shadow, and TrueName Magic (Dungeons & Dragons d20 3.5 Fantasy Roleplaying Supplement) Hardcover – March 14, 2006


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Wizards of the Coast; First Edition edition (March 14, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786939095
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786939091
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 0.9 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #491,119 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

If you can find it in your local hobby shop or bookstore, then by all means, snag it!
D. Weber
The Difficulty Classes on the skill's use are also very well done, ranging from 10 at lower levels, up into the 50's at higher levels.
D.W.
That said, Tome of Magic is a fantastic new supplement that is sure to impress D & D fans.
Tim Janson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

84 of 92 people found the following review helpful By Tim Janson HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on March 14, 2006
Format: Hardcover
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.
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36 of 42 people found the following review helpful By Prophet on May 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Having been inspired by the positive reviews this book received, I ran out to pick one up first chance I got. I spent hours pouring over it, and have come to a few disappointing conclusions.

The three new base classes presented in this book (Binder, Shadowmancer and Truenamer) are lackluster at best.

The Binder seems interesting, but because of his unpredictablity, he can go from overpowered one day to all-but-useless the next, depending on which vestiges he binds himself to. A binder who lucks out on his binding checks (resulting in bad pacts) can find himself being drawn in several different directions in even a mundane situation. Disobeying any of the vestiges' wishes results in a cumulative -1 penalty to all rolls for each vestige offended and each time they are offended.

The Shadowcaster smells like a weak rehash of the Warlock class from Complete Arcane. Much like the Warlock, they gain their "masteries" slowly (1 / level), but unlike a warlock, they do not get unlimited uses of these abilities. In fact, their best abilities they can only use once / day each. Additionally, they lack the Eldretch Blast ability that gave Warlocks an offensive side to their spells, instead getting to choose from buffs, debuffs and a few weak offensive abilities. Keep in mind that these start out only usable once / day, so our first level Shadowmancer can use his only mastery ability once in a day. The use of "Fundamentals" (equivalent to 0th level spells, usable 3 times / day) does not help the situation, as the Shadowmancer starts with only one of those, and gains more of them at the rate of 1 every 4 levels.

Lastly, the Truenamer class is an utter disappointment.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful By M. Blackwell on September 27, 2006
Format: Hardcover
The first time someone brought this book to the table, I'll admit that I wasn't immediately impressed by it. However, I thought I saw some potential, so I borrowed it from a friend at work to read over the weekend. I read the whole thing, cover to cover, twice, before Monday.

This book has finally reminded me what it was I loved about D&D when I started playing second edition over a decade ago. Unlike most every other third edition book (and even more so with 3.5), Tome of Magic isn't just a gotta-catch-em-all collection of new feats, spells, magic items, and prestige classes. It is stuffed with truly new, fresh ideas. I had thought that the rules in the Expanded Psionics Handbook were a novel approach to spellcasting in D&D, but the alternate magic systems in Tome of Magic are worlds beyond psionics in scope and style. This book could easily serve as the basis of at least one, if not three or four, whole new campaign settings. Truly different, truly spectacular.

And a special aside for Truename Magic. This system is the way spellcasting in a fantasy setting should be. Lets face it. Spells per day? Choosing spells in the morning when you wake up? Transparently artificial, rediculous, and illogical concepts. Truename magic fixes this and fixes it right, while still being a viable and fun system to use.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By D.W. on August 10, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Tome of Magic offers you three new styles of magic to incorperate into your game.

The first, Pact Magic, bears a slight resembelence to the "summons" system from Final Fantasy VIII. They don't attack, as such, but instead provide you with interesting abilities. The only major draw back to Pact Magic is the fact that the book seems to set up the Pact users as almost inherently evil. The beings you have to make deals with are not nice in the least, and the complicated system of "I've used this one, so I can't use this one," will be tedious to a beginning player.

The second, Shadow Magic, could easily take the place of the Shadow Weave in a Forgotten Realms setting or be incorperated into basic games as an alternate style to normal magic. Of the three new styles, this one is the most traditional, combining a blend of "domain-like" styles and specalized magics. In addition, their powers eventually become spell-like abilitites. The only real downside of the system is the sheer lack of volume of spells. Even bards get more. What they lack in versatility, though, they more than make up for in power.

Finally, True Name magic feels incredibly similar to the Earth Sea book series, in that you discover more powers and abilitites with more names. The fact that this one is actually based off of a skill, the True Speak ability, makes it even more interesting. The Difficulty Classes on the skill's use are also very well done, ranging from 10 at lower levels, up into the 50's at higher levels. Best of all, the progression into Epic Abilities, though not really spoken of much, could be easily done by simply raising the DCs of things.

A fairly good book, but not for everyone. Each of the new magics is interesting and dynamic, but this book is not for everyone.
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