Reviewed version: physical copy
Note: This would be a solid 4 rating if the marketing was updated to be less misleading on book contents.
- Artifacts are more flushed out and alive than those included in the E3 core. Rules often utilize coloured box-text helping make long paragraphs and rules easier to read.
- The lore in the book helps to flush out the world.
More general equipment - not just weapons.
- Marketing and description of the book. "Discover the mystical power of the five magical materials and the secrets of creating your own Evocations."
- This is just not true. There are zero rules included for creating your own evocations - the one thing that makes artifacts different from mundane equipment. There are some slightly enhanced descriptions of the five magical materials but nothing that expands in a very meaningful way upon the core. The way the five materials are described make it possible for a user to create an artifact that does anything they want then pick a material later. The amount of space dedicated to artifact design is limited to 1.3 pages and only amounts to listing the maximum amount of evocations possible.
- How to design evocations for artifacts is said to be coming in an upcoming sourcebook on Exigents.
- The art, this was almost in the good category but the stand-out exception of a poorly done cover which matches neither the theme of Exalted nor the quality of most of the internal art helped sink it - the cover design also makes reading the logo (to see the version of Exalted) difficult as the font is small and gold-orange on top of a gold-orange background element. Most of the art is decent to good but there are several pieces that are a bit flat and lifeless - this may be in part due to the flat colours from non-glossy paper. The quality is generally higher than a lot of RPG supplements (notably Exalted 1E). One amusing end note here is the book has an ad for Scion which was a very well rendered piece of artwork beyond anything included in this book.
- Pointless and confusing lore references. Various eras are referenced for every artifact with no timeline for the reader on the order of the eras, or how available information would be on an artifact from any given era. As written, the lore seems storyteller-only and even then the storyteller has no idea what the world looked like during the era referenced.
Should you Buy?
- If you want more of the Exalted world: Yes.
- If you want more already created equipment: Yes.
- If you want is rules to make your own artifacts: No (that said the ones included can be cannibalized for their evocations).
[3 of 5 Stars!]