I am a fan of role-playing games. I have watched as several comics based on popular games came out but never took the time to pick one of them up. I was given the chance to read Pathfinder: City of Secrets number one from Dynamite and realized I was missing out on a damn fine comic.
This book is written by jim Zub of Skullkickers fame. I love those books and enjoy how he takes the adventuring group trope and uses it to hilarious effect. His awareness of the tropes of Pathfinder and the flow of an adventure are on full display in this issue.
City of Secrets opens by introducing us to the members of the adventuring band who are iconic characters from the Pathfinder game. The team is made up of; Seoni, the sorceress, Valeros, the fighter, Harsk, dwarf ranger, Ezren, the wizard, Merisiel, elf rogue, and Kyra, cleric of Sarenrae. A well balanced party though a little light on the healing in my mind.
The groups arrival in Magnimar heralds the end of an adventure. They have come here to rest, regroup, and begin the next adventure. Instead of being the standard search for wenches and ale, the group finds an inn and begins planning the next day. Having been away from a city for some time, each member has personal business to attend to and the party scatters. This is never a good thing.
Oliviera’s art and Campbell’s colors are just stunning. They have captured the feel of the Pathfinder game with ease. The outfits of the adventurers are wonderfully detailed and the backgrounds provide a sense of grandeur that is inherent in the setting. Campbell adds a touch of nostalgia to the story through his use of a muted palette that echoes the sepia tones of old photos. It is easy for this to come across as a cheap trick but it feels genuine in this instance.
The story ends with the cleric and rogue under attack and the wizard attempting to join the Pathfinder Society. We are only given a short introduction to this adventuring group but I find all of them interesting. I especially love how Zub has flipped the trope of the wizard here. Erzen has the look of the wizened wizard but has only been adventuring for three years.
City of Secrets is filled with a great cast of characters and sets up several intriguing storylines. I am looking forward to seeing whether Erzen becomes a member of the Pathfinder Society and what is plaguing the church of Sarenrae. I am looking forward it’s second issue.