Are you brave? Brave enough to hold onto a tome of incredible power, with countless others trying to obtain it’s secrets? If so, you might be one to hold on to Soth’s Accursed Journal 5e Sourcebook. However, be aware that having possession of this knowledge will paint a target on your back! We have been lucky enough to have had only a brief encounter with this book, so we can tell you what lies ahead. You have been warned.
Soth’s Accursed Journal
Brew Book Games created this supplemental sourcebook. It’s a 75 page full color PDF sourcebook for Dungeons & Dragons 5e. While originally designed with Ravenloft in mind, it’s alternate rules, and class features are something that will fit nicely in with many other D&D settings. The layout is what you would expect for a professional D&D sourcebook, with great artwork and design.
Immediately, from the preface onward, they make what is essentially a rule book have gravity itself. Every part of the book feels as if it’s drenched in dangerous and forbidden knowledge. Lore text is always perfectly on-point, with a perfect sense of humor. However, the true brilliance of Soth’s Journal is the pure amount of character options that you get, with 12 new subclass options, 3 brand new classes, feats, spells, and magic items. For the DM’s out there, there are also a few variant rules, monsters, and advice for your players running evil characters.
These subclasses are seriously cool. Each one has the perfect feeling in line with the theme of this book. The Undead Domain, Forbidden Way, and Toxicologist were absolute standouts for us. These three subclasses really bring the tone of this sourcebook to the forefront and I just loved them.
All of the subclasses have a distinct feel and unique mechanics. Let’s take a look at what each of the subclasses. There’s a lot of ground to cover on this one, so we’re going to go into a list form!
Path of Focused Fury (Barbarian)
While they may look calm and collected, the rage is still all consuming underneath their interior. These barbarians are able to hyper focus on the combat at hand, becoming more deadly over time. Especially with their 10th level ability Inevitable Critical.
College of Faith (Bard)
Some may be inspired by an individual, or even a deity. These bards, however, are inspired by an ideal, that they hold above all else. And they want to share that ideal with the world. Not only that, they know how to heal themselves when other’s get healed for free!
Undead Domain (Cleric)
Proving that Cleric’s make the next necromancers, it’s the Undead Domain. There’s not much more to say than this has been a long time coming, and Brew Book Games delivered!
Circle of Water (Druid)
What if instead of being 70% water, you were 99%? That’s how these druids do! Welcome to the Circle of Water. This is the basis of the Water Camouflage technique starting at 6th level, with additional benefits granted from there!
When fighting one-on-one, they always hold the advantage! It’s a simple premise, done to perfection!
Forbidden Way (Monk)
These are the monks that decided to forego their traditions to learn forbidden arts. This is a seriously cool subclass with a shadowy surprise!
Oath of Protection (Paladin)
The epitome of Paladins, they are compelled to save people. everyone! And they’re amazing at it.
Elemental Archer (Ranger)
These are some serious rangers with a ranged bite! Especially when they reach the Elemental Enhancements to bolster their own abilities.
Sneaky and tricky! They are able to concoct poisons to help them in combat, or hinder opponents before the fight even starts.
Time has no control on these adventurers! Bending time and realities to their will.
The Legion (Warlock)
They’re charismatic, and good at bringing people to the Legion’s power. Basically, a warlock cult leader. It perfectly balances that line between power and creepiness.
These are the wizards that focus on the mind! Communication, affecting perceptions, eventually changing their memories.
Additionally, Soth’s Accursed Journal comes with three brand-new classes, each with their own distinct flavor and mechanics. This is the true highlight of Soth’s Journal. Three well-constructed and original classes at your fingertips!
One of the all new classes is the Death Knight. These powerful arcane warriors have been raised from the dead to fight again, devouring souls as other creatures do for food and water. Of course, doing so will give you mechanical benefits as well! The Death Knight comes with three Deathly Realms subclasses: The Realm of Freezing Freight, Realm of the Swearing Spirit, and the Realm of Vengeful Vision.
The Death Knight has a high level of customization, and unique abilities to make this class stand out as the perfect mix between martial might and spooky magics. Honestly, I’d love to see a party consisting of a Death Knight, and a Knight from Brightlance.
The second of the new classes is the Elementalist. These extreme mages have had a close call with a life-threatening incident involving an element, and were saved by an extremely powerful primordial. Elementalists start off with an affinity to acid, cold fire, lightning, or thunder each with their own abilities and spells. These are further augmented by the three subclasses: Resolve of the Elemental Master, Resolve of the Primordial Knight, and (my personal favorite) the Resolve of Dualemancy. Again, this class comes with a high level of customization.
The third and final class is the Monstral, religious people devoted to their ideals of an ultimate lifeform. Through their worship and devotion, they are granted the ability to change into a hybrid monster. This comes with three subclasses, based on what kind of monster they idolized. The Cult of Malar that idolizes lycanthropes, the Cult of Juiblex that sought the power of slime-like creatures, and the Cult of Malcanthet seeking the powers of succubi or incubi. Of the three classes, the Monstral has the least level of customization, however, each subclass feels so drastically different from each other one, this really doesn’t feel like a problem.
The end of the book has some new character options, variant rules, and some recommendations on running an evil party. Without getting into the weeds, all of these options are pretty solid. It’s a great way to give both the players and the DM additional options to customize their campaigns. Also, a big tip of the hat for posting the original spells and rules, followed by it’s variant. Nothing grinds my gears more than having to look up the original to determine which will fit better into the game I’m running. Overall, these are the additional supplements in the book.
- 10 feats
- 20 racial feats
- 8 new spells
- 16 magic items
- Variant rules and revised spells
- 4 Creature Stat Blocks
Soth’s Accursed Journal is a pure 75 pages of options to customize your game. And I’m an absolute sucker for customization. If you are basing a campaign in Ravenloft, or just want to add a bit of forbidden lore to your character’s backstories for your homebrew, you can’t go wrong with this book.
And it’s well worth it!