Game: Power Classes: Exorcist
Publisher: Mongoose Publishing
Review Dated: 31st, October 2002
Reviewer’s Rating: 6/10 [ On the ball ]
Total Score: 6
Average Score: 6.00
The Exorcist core character class is the third of Mongoose Power Classes and is presented in a booklet of 16 thin pages. It’s about value for money. At $2.95 the booklets aren’t going to break the bank and they’re never going to fall into the same awful mistake category as a $39.95 hardback that you buy but never use. In that sense the series is a safe bet but they also present something of a risk; if the idea behind the new core character class gets off on the wrong foot there’s no space for it to recover. You’ll either like the booklet or you won’t. Or so I thought.
I really wanted to see an exorcist character class that wasn’t based in divine magic and power. There’s no need to associate the divine with the removal of demonic powers in a fantasy game because there’s not the same divine-demonic mythology in most high fantasy games. This exorcist class certainly in this booklet is divine in nature. At one point in the introduction it is said that the exorcist is divinely powered whether he likes it or no. But no, the exorcist wields his powers through a conscious and deliberate use of divine magic. I’m happy with the result anyhow; the exorcist here seems to be a better match for a generic priest than the cleric is. The term “benediction” is loaded with religious connotations and used to label some of the exorcist class powers too. At d6 hit points and without the healing powers bias of the cleric the exorcist is less handy in an out-and-out melee. Instead you’ll turn to the exorcist when you want something unnatural kept away or expelled – exactly how you would want an exorcist class to work.
This Exorcist class is able to repel undead, elementals, outsiders and even fey. Interesting that. In this instance the exorcist class presented here exceeds expectations. It’s pretty hard the exorcist’s ability to effect fey unless you’re willing to simply remove that special ability when it becomes available. The repulsion powers works pretty much as the cleric’s ability to effect undead but the game content is enhanced through a number of ward and benedictions options listed at the back of the booklet. An exorcist can invest a number of “daily turns” in a ward to keep it active. The benedictions are spell-like effects and it’s here you’ll find the trademark “Eviction” used to expel a possessing life force from an occupied body.
There are a couple of new domains too; Guardian, Partisan and Vigilance and although they’re called Exorcist Domains they are just the same as Cleric domains and come complete with granted power and suggested deities too.
I didn’t feel as if the booklet got off to a good start but it certainly does pull back up. There is room in just 16 thin pages to turn the content and that only underscores my belief that rather than being a waste of money the Power Class series is excellent value. They’re excellent value but just don’t have the same feel good factor of a great big hardback.