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Heroes of the Orient: Player's and DM's Companion
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Heroes of the Orient: Player's and DM's Companion

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This 75-page handbook contains lore, flavor, and rules for creating adventures in the Orient.

Included are also:

  • 6 new races, a new dwarf subrace and an oriental human variant
    • Nezumi - humanoid rats with 3 subraces
    • Hengeyokai - shapeshifting animals with 10 subraces
    • Spirit Folk - descendants of humans and spirits with 3 subraces
    • Vanara - monkey-like humanoids with prehensile tails
    • Hakuma - humans with oni heritage and 3 subraces
    • Serafu - small lizard-like folk with 4 subraces
  • 2 new classes
    • Kensai - a ki-using warrior with a strong bond to a single weapon (includes 5 archetypes)
      • Blademaster - focuses solely on the blade, capable of moving into battle quickly and taking on many enemies at once
      • Master of the Unseen Hand - bolsters melee prowess with telekinetic powers
      • Samurai - an honorable warrior that focuses on versatile stances
      • Shinobi - specializes in infiltration, misdirection, and utilizes the most maneuvers
      • Villainous Class Option: Ravager - a kensai that has been warped by Taint
    • Shogun - a commander who enables new strategies for his allies (includes 7 archetypes)
      • Crawdad - focuses on martial defense
      • Heron - focuses on mobility
      • Pegasus - focuses on mounted combat
      • Phoenix - focuses on magical defense
      • Spider - focuses on trickery
      • Tiger - focuses martial prowess
      • Wyvern - improves the abilities of the base class without focusing on any one area
  • 27 new archetypes for existing classes
    • Barbarian 
      • Path of Brawn - focuses on rage damage and mobility
    • Bard 
      • College of the Geisha - more expertise and good with enchantment and illusion spells
    • Cleric 
      • Shamanism Domain - gains powers depending on a spirit patron (either ancestral, animal, demonic, or primordial)
      • Shugenja Domain - gains elemental powers, focusing on either air, earth, fire, or water
    • Druid 
      • Circle of Chaos - utilizes the Wild Magic Surge table
      • Circle of Elementalism - casts elemental spells efficiently and summons mephits
      • Circle of the Fey Touched - has several fey powers
    • Fighter
      • Bushi - a warrior of the common people, skilled at combat and versatile through stances
      • Hogo-sha - a protector both in and out of battle
      • Satsugai - a swift and ferocious warrior, foregoing heavy armor to better navigate the field of battle
      • Witch Hunter - specializes in fighting aberrations, fiends, and undead
    • Monk
      • Way of Ancient Symbols - gains magical tattoos, offers a ton of customization
      • Way of Purity - a pacifist monk with shapeshifting and utility
      • Way of Righteous Fury - can enter a Ki Frenzy, much like the barbarian's rage and the bladesinger's bladesong
    • Paladin
      • Oath of the Stalwart Defender - focuses on defending himself and his allies
    • Ranger
      • Ishi - inspires his allies on the battlefield
      • Niten Master - focuses on dual wielding
    • Rogue
      • Shadow Spy - a master infiltrator and gatherer of intelligence
      • Skirmisher - emphasizes mobility and ranged attacks
    • Sorcerer
      • Void Disciple - manipulates reality and time
    • Warlock
      • The Great Phoenix - grants the warlock powers from the Fires of Life
      • The Great Sylvan - grants the warlock sylvan powers, becoming one with nature
      • The Great Turtle - grants the warlock protective powers and the ability to transform into water
      • The Great Wyrm - grants the warlock power over lightning and thunder, smiting foes in the patron's name
      • Seishin Mystic - possessed by a spirit, the seishin mystic has an internal patron, rather than an external one
    • Wizard
      • Wu Jen - focuses on the old elements, choosing between earth, fire, metal, water, or wood
      • Villainous Class Option: Maho-Tsukai - a blood mage with three distinct paths: mage, magus, and necromancer
  • 6 new backgrounds
  • 11 new feats
  • 52 new spells.

Please leave a review after purchase, so I know what you like and/or dislike. It'll help me with future iterations of Heroes of the Orient, as well as with the other products I have in the works.


v1.1 (July 8th 2016) - Fixed some spelling, wording, and slight rebalance. Added some ribbon features.

v1.2 (August 17th 2016) - Replaced some art, various balance adjustments, included detriments of childhood as variant rule, added several new armors, added a new weapon, added four new familiars, added two new fighter archetypes, added a new warlock archetype and one additional eldritch invocation.

v1.3 (November 28th 2016): Wording and balance, new weapons, new races, new magic items (talismans), details on how to run flavorful duels and how to reward characters

v2.0 (March 21st 2017): Wording and balance, expanded on several sections, added Shijin and Oni Lords, added Jigoku and Tengoku, added Oriental names, added a variant rule for ancestry, added special materials, added 17 new magic items, added an oriental calendar, added random events, added a new fighter archetype, added three new warlock archetypes, added three new pact boons, added 16 new eldritch invocations, expanded on the wu-jen taboo variant feature, added a villainous archetype to the wizard, added 15 new spells.

Upcoming releases

  • Epic Monsters

Other products

Monsters of the Orient: Complete Bestiary Epic Characters   Heroes of the Orient: Unearthed Kensai

 Customers who bought this title also purchased
Reviews (10)
Discussions (149)
Customer avatar
dawn S December 08, 2017 6:28 pm UTC
quick question if I bought an older version is there a way to get the current version without rebuying
Customer avatar
Marc A December 09, 2017 11:38 pm UTC
Hi there,

Yes, all updates are included with your initial purchase.

Simply click the file you wish to download.
All files are displayed at the top of the product page once a title has been purchased.
Customer avatar
dawn S December 10, 2017 4:27 pm UTC
Thank You that really helps
Customer avatar
Kaine O November 16, 2017 5:55 pm UTC
I’m a huge fan of this work and my players have been having a lot of fun with it so far. I was curious about one thing. The Kensai clash damage was nerfed from 1d6 to 1d4, but the Samurai’s Improved Clash feature is still 1d8. Is this intentional, or was it meant to reduce to 1d6?
Customer avatar
Marc A December 07, 2017 2:32 am UTC
Hi Kaine,

First of all, thank you so much for your kind words. That means the world to me :)

As for your question, the samurai's clash is still intended to be 1d8. It is really a mechanic to allow the samurai to stay relevant in terms of damage output.
Customer avatar
Carson A November 08, 2017 2:57 am UTC
On page 5, the word vast is misspelled as wast. Just letting you know.
Customer avatar
Marc A December 07, 2017 2:27 am UTC
Hi Carson,

Thank you for letting me know :)
Customer avatar
Lucas D October 25, 2017 4:13 pm UTC
How do you build a Blademaster Kensai? To me it doesn't make sense to wield a STR sword in a DEX based class
Customer avatar
Marc A October 25, 2017 11:54 pm UTC
Hi Lucas,

The kensai isn't a Dex based class, but is usable with Str or Dex - much like the fighter.
The quickbuild section mentions it as well.
It all depends on which discipline you follow.
Customer avatar
October 24, 2017 10:11 pm UTC
I have a question. What Character Sheet would you recommend to create characters from your work ? Please respond in kind. Thank You.
Customer avatar
Marc A October 25, 2017 11:56 pm UTC
Hi there,

I can't really recommend any one sheet. There are many, many good ones.
Personally, I've used several different ones.
I think it comes down to personal preference more than anything else.

That's probably not the answer you were hoping for, but it's the best I got :)
Customer avatar
September 17, 2017 7:28 pm UTC
Knife Juggler feat on page 66
You have mastered the throwing of weapons. You gain the following benefits:
• When you throw a weapon or item, you can also draw it as part of the same action.
• When you use the Attack action to throw a weapon or an object, you can use your bonus action to make an additional throw with a light thrown weapon with which you are proficient.
• The short and long range of all thrown weapons with which you are proficient is doubled for you.
• You can use your reaction to throw a light thrown weapon with which you are proficient, when a hostile creature enters the short range of your thrown weapon.

My question pertains to the reaction. Is this an attack of opportunity or not? It matter because of Disengage. If a person uses Disengage that cannot get hit by attacks of opportunity. Look at Pole Arm Master. If someone Disengages and then moves toward someone with Pole Arm Master the ruling is the person with Pole Arm Master does NOT get the...See more
Customer avatar
Marc A September 18, 2017 7:12 am UTC
Hi there,

It is indeed intended to be an opportunity attack.
Customer avatar
Antonio B September 09, 2017 2:29 pm UTC
Question: Pegasus Steed companion. The companion is replaced all in all by the pegasus? or is the companion changed into a pegasus AND you can cast find steed with pegasus or unicorn as options?
Customer avatar
Marc A September 11, 2017 8:05 am UTC
Hi Antonio,

It is intended to be replaced all in all by the pegasus and the find steed spell to recall your pegasus - or change it into a unicorn.
Customer avatar
September 06, 2017 7:41 pm UTC
Is this supplement set in and based on Kara Tur on Toril or is it something else?

Just wanted to know if I would have to use it as a base and work to convert or if all the info was to hand.

Thanks in advance.
Customer avatar
Marc A September 06, 2017 8:10 pm UTC
Hi there,

It isn't Kara-Tur no, though I am working on a supplement that adapts some of the contents to Kara-Tur.

What this does have is a continent you can drop into any setting.
Customer avatar
stephen M September 05, 2017 7:31 am UTC
ok so some of my players have been in heated debate about the spell Elemental Weapon Manifestation is it a spell attack for the normal attacks or is it based off of the weapon requirements? I just want to clarify it to settle the debate.
Customer avatar
Marc A September 05, 2017 9:45 am UTC
Hi Stephen,

A weapon created with EWM has the actual statistics of the specific weapon except as specified in the description.
It benefits from proficiency and attack modifiers as any normal weapon of the same type does (traits such as finesse, versatile, reach, etc. all apply).
It doesn't benefit from damage modifiers, however. Instead, it deals the damage as specified in the description.

It seemed fine during the playtest that way.
If you stumble across some unbalanced abuse of the spell, please inform me at

In the meantime, I'll see about rewording it to make the intent clear.
Customer avatar
September 05, 2017 12:39 am UTC
I have two questions for you. The First, Will You Have A Printer Friendly Version of This Work Available ? And Second, Why didn't you use the Names of the Clans from the Previous Oriental Adventurers ? Please Respond In Kind. Thank You.
Customer avatar
Marc A September 05, 2017 9:39 am UTC
Hi there,

The goal is to make the title Print-on-Demand.
Failing that, I'll try and include a printer friendly version with the next update.

The names are different because the world is different. It is definitely inspired by the OA releases of the past, but is a different setting altogether.
It was a conscious choice made for IP reasons.
However, you can freely use any names you like in your own games.
Customer avatar
Victor V September 04, 2017 8:27 am UTC
What are the subraces of the hengeyokai?
Customer avatar
Marc A September 04, 2017 9:10 am UTC
Hi Victor,

The hengeyokai have the following subraces:
- badger
- cat
- crawdad
- heron
- fox
- hare
- sparrow
- spider
- viper
- wolf
Customer avatar
Cody T September 04, 2017 12:37 am UTC
what levels do Kensai learn maneuvers at? I cant find that information in either the main class or the subclasses.
Customer avatar
Marc A September 04, 2017 7:05 am UTC
Hi Cody,

Have a look at the Kensai Maneuvers Known column in the Kensai table.
Customer avatar
Antonio B September 01, 2017 10:32 pm UTC
feat called tattoo: Arrowroot should probably be worded better. It says monklevelx5. if you take the feat, that's a 0x5 and in my math, that's a cool 0. Maybe you should write class levelx5? or say in the tattoo feat that, in case it is specified monk, it is swapped with the class giving the asi?
Customer avatar
Marc A September 02, 2017 11:02 am UTC
Hi Antonio,

It was worded that way to avoid abuse through the feat or through multiclassing.
If it was based on character level, there would never be a reason to take the Healer feat.

The Heron tattoo is similar as it does nothing for non-monks.
There are plenty of tattoos that work fine though.

This is based on playtesting and feedback, though flavor plays a part as well.
It's a fine balance with new options and not stepping on the toes of other options (archetypes, classes, feats, etc.).

That all being said, at your table you can of course run it in any way you choose.
It's your game after all :)
Customer avatar
Antonio B September 02, 2017 8:28 pm UTC
It doesn't seem like the healer feat is taken much anyway. And well, afaik, i'd still want reasons to have my player pop up a tattoo just like that.
Customer avatar
Allan D August 29, 2017 5:31 pm UTC
While the Shogun is one of the more appealing parts of your product, I have some gripes with the design. From reading the class description and looking at its features, it seems to me the class is suppose to be a martial support kind of deal which is great but why then so few command dice?? It starts off with way less than the battlemaster and ends up with 1 fewer at the end. A battlemaster can still fight without dice, their main stat is still their physical ones and their maneuver dcs run off that. Following your build advice, the shoguns attack stat is their tertiary pick. It feels like the shogun should have MORE dice than a battlemaster since theyre not bashing stuff as well.
That leads to my second issue. Why does it get extra attack? It just doesnt fit with anything the class is trying to do. Their maneuvers arent addons to attacks like a battlemasters(other than battle cry) so they dont gain a lot from tossing out a second feeble swipe.
With such a focus on charisma and support, i feel like...See more
Customer avatar
Marc A August 29, 2017 6:27 pm UTC
Hi Allan,

While I conceptually agree with much of what you say, I wanted to err on the side of caution.
During testing, it seemed to be fine though.
Worth to note, is that I focus on levels mostly on levels 3, 5, 11, and 17.

As for extra attack, I very much see the shogun as a martial class. Just a martial support class with focus on the support.
Leading by Example also ties into it, thought that feature might come a bit late.
He should be quite hard to kill but have slightly less damage than other martial classes.

I'll try to run it through a few more rounds of playtesting.
In the meantime, I'd very much be interesting in any playtesting feedback you could provide. You can reach me personally at
Feel free to test it in any way you see fit. Playtest feedback is invaluable. Here's an example of something that would be very useful:
"At level 3 it just wasn't fun with only 1 command die. I couldn't contribute...See more
Customer avatar
Gary F August 27, 2017 10:35 pm UTC
When can we expect any new updates for this book? Love the content! Please keep up the wonderful work!
Customer avatar
Jeromy R August 14, 2017 6:14 pm UTC
Hey one of my players is having trouble imagining what a serafu looks like are they basically kobolds?

I feel like shadowskin is to strong at higher levels.What are your thoughts on this maneuver.
Customer avatar
Marc A August 14, 2017 9:20 pm UTC
Hi Jeromy,

Yeah, that's how I imagine them too. Though they're a little different depending on the type of Serafu.

In order to explain shadowskin properly, let me explain the general design of the kensai.
Firstly, you'll notice the base class doesn't have much in terms of defense. Unarmored, light armor, and a d8 hit die.
There is, however, a little defense baked into the various archetypes.

The Master of the Unseen hand gets blur and is capable at a distance as well.
The Samurai has tons of defensive options (not to mention medium armor).
The Ravager can gain temporary hit points, but is otherwise intended to be hard to keep alive.

The Blademaster has movement with Blinkstrike and gets some defense at level 10.
The first part of Ki Defense seems good, but if surrounded by more than two opponents, there'll be more incoming hits as well. The second part of Ki Defense costs ki to activate and requires concentration checks to maintain....See more
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This title was added to our catalog on July 06, 2016.