Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Old Ways by David Dalglish

The Old Ways is another book in the paladins series. It's also a bit shorter than a regular novel but reads longer then the previous two. David continues to have a relatively small cast, but it does grow. In many ways, the setting grows in this book as we get more views of how things are working and turning out in the setting as a whole.

It's another solid book and plays well into the previous series and even brings back the baddies from the first book.

Now onto spoilers.

1. Watch the Magic. The 'evil' priest here manages a sacrifice and is rewarded with VAST friggin' power. Too much power for the amount of sacrifice in my opinion. The reason why I say watch the magic is that if you make it too easy to get power, then the players are going to want to know why when they do the same thing it doesn't work. The other problem is that it cheapens the methods used if you're just going to have the heroes block everything the baddies have. What good was all that power eh? You just got Punk'd.

2. The God's Will Is Not Your Will. David hit this a little last book but it hits again this book. When the gods are real in the setting, thinking your method of worshipping the god, of what the god wants, may get smacked upside the head when you see something that doesn't jib with your morale or perhaps even your entire foundation of the religion. If you didn't get that right, is anything about your religion right?

3. Gods Have Servants. On the cover of the Old Ways, we see some servants of the evil god of order here. They're like fiendish lions made of obsidian with lava for blood.

4. The Supernatural Has Limits. There is a wraith introduced here as well as the demonic loins. None of them can cross water. It makes a nice change of pace from seeing the can do this and that and and and and... Putting some limits on monsters allows you to have some perhaps more powerful monsters but creatures that have limits.

An affordable fantasy series that should provide some inspiration for those who run paladins or have them in their campaigns, the Old Ways brings a lot of threads together even as it expands the setting.