The Heroic Fantasy Handbook is a rules supplement that brings the flavor of heroic fantasy to your favorite role-playing game. Cleaving away decades worth of detritus of assumptions and expectations about how characters heal, fight, and adventure - how magic works - what spells do - and more, the Heroic Fantasy Handbook offers a fresh way to play with familiar D20 fantasy mechanics. The Heroic Fantasy Handbook is designed for use with the Adventurer Conqueror King System™ (ACKS™) but is readily compatible with other fantasy role-playing games built on the same core rules. In the Heroic Fantasy Handbook you get:
- An entirely new magic system, eldritch magic, designed to capture the flavor of heroic fantasy. Subtle but powerful, eldritch magic brings a new arsenal of effects into your game. Low-level eldritch casters can infuriate their foes, summon minor demons from the Outer Darkness, or call wolves from the forest. High-level eldritch wizards can call giant eagles from distant mountain lairs, lead foes into madness through corrupting dreams, or unleash the hounds of hell to hunt down their enemies. But eldritch magic carries risks, not the least of which is corruption and madness from the black arts.
- A new way of creating magical effects, ceremonial magic, for worlds where not every magic-user casts spells in a round. With ceremonial magic, characters can perform lengthy ceremonies from a variety of traditions ranging from the chthonic to the liturgical to the shamanic. Using traditional implements, trinkets, and talismans, and drawing on power found in reagents, blood sacrifice, faithful cultists, or places of magical potence, the ceremonialist can work miracles – or suffer the terrible consequences of failure.
- A new way of casting spells, spellsinging, that allows characters to spontaneously weave together new spells on the fly. Use spellsinging to represent the fluid arts of the elves, the psionic powers of a dying race, or the weaving of words of power by island wizards.
- Over 155 new spells designed for use by eldritch casters, ceremonialists, and spellsingers. Forget comic-book teleportation and fireballs. If you walk the dark path, be ready to madden your foes with dark whisper, torture them body and soul with iron maiden or even yank out their bones and animate their flensed skeleton as your minion with fillet and serve. If you crave elemental power, get ready to transform rain into acid with rain of vitriol, raze your enemy’s walls with sunder structure, or even call down a starfall from the heavenly firmament.
- A set of 10 new character classes inspired by the archetypes of heroic fantasy. Comfort and console the wounded and rally the faithful as an ecclesiastic. Master the power of ancient runes and learn the wisdom of the ages as a runecaster. Unleash your charismatic ferocity as an alluring but deadly warmistress. Plumb magic so dark that no mere human could survive it as a Zaharan sorcerer.
- A set of new rules for heroic adventuring, including fate points, heroic funerals, warrior codes, critical hit tables, new special maneuvers, updates to the mechanics for thief skills, and more.
- And much, much more!