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The Beginner Box

Thursday, May 5, 2011

For many months now, a good portion of the staff here at Paizo has been slaving away in secret, working on a project that has only been mentioned in hushed tones and vague inferences. While its existence has become common knowledge, few outside the halls of Paizo know much about this rumored product. Well, the time for secrecy is over! Now it is time to take our first look at the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Beginner Box!

Personally, I have wanted to do this project since the early days of the Pathfinder RPG. A beginner set not unlike this one is what got me into gaming over 20 years ago. While I can't go into all the details of this impressive box just yet, it is time to give you some of the basic details about what to expect from the Beginner Box and what it will contain.

First off, this box is designed to contain everything that a new gamer needs to begin playing the Pathfinder RPG, from dice and pawns to a simplified rules set and an exciting starter adventure. There are enough rules in this box to take characters all the way up to 5th level, and plenty of tools for the GM to create countless hours of play. But that's not all. Take a look at this list of components.

  • A 64-page Hero's Handbook, detailing character creation, spells, equipment, and general rules for playing the game
  • A 96-page Game Master's Guide packed with adventures, monsters, magical treasures, and advice on how to narrate the game and control the challenges faced by the heroes
  • A complete set of 7 high-impact polyhedral dice
  • More than 80 full-color pawns depicting tons of heroes, monsters, and even a fearsome black dragon
  • Four pregenerated character sheets to throw you right into the action
  • Four blank character sheets to record the statistics and deeds of your custom-made hero
  • A durable, reusable, double-sided Flip-Mat play surface that works with any kind of marker

Suffice it to say, that is a lot to pack into one box. I am going to have a lot more to say about this particular product in the coming months (especially during the banquet at this year's PaizoCon). Until then.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
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Sczarni

yes! :) I'm getting five copies so people can play it. :)


I prefer low-impact dice to high-impact dice. Especially when people are throwing dice at me in the middle of a game.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

Beginner Box must be the best name for a starter set ever. Well, maybe "Starter Set" could beat this.

Sczarni

hogarth wrote:
I prefer low-impact dice to high-impact dice. Especially when people are throwing dice at me in the middle of a game.

This is why you wear helmets at Pathfinder games.

Cheliax

Beginner Sexy.

I would love to see what these 'pawns' look like.

Will there be new art for the Hero's Handbook and Game Master's Guide covers?


Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

YES!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
Nightfall wrote:
hogarth wrote:
I prefer low-impact dice to high-impact dice. Especially when people are throwing dice at me in the middle of a game.
This is why you wear helmets at Pathfinder games.

High impact helmets, that is.

Taldor

What do you project the price to be on this nice little boxed set?


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I hope this gets more players into the game

But I hope it is not part of any subscriptions

Cheliax

Where can I pre-order it? ;D

Andoran Contributor

Finally! We don't have to hide this super-cool product from our fans any longer!

I haven't been this excited about a product since I was a pint-sized junior gamer. It takes me right back to my very first boxed set, freeing dwarf slaves from an evil wizard's mine!


Of course, I want more information! But I will start with what is in the post.

What's a "pawn" in this context? Like a standee illustration type thing? Are we talking plastic? Plastic base? Is it like a pog or a lay-flat cardboard token?


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

What classes? I can't see cramming 5 levels of 11 classes into 64 pages. So cleric, fighter, rogue, wizard? Or some other combo?


Hum, I hope that this box might make its way into big box retail channels, but somewhat doubt that will happen.

So um what exactly is a pawn?


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
SMurphy wrote:
What do you project the price to be on this nice little boxed set?
golem101 wrote:
Where can I pre-order it? ;D

On the product page!

Andoran

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
SMurphy wrote:
What do you project the price to be on this nice little boxed set?
golem101 wrote:
Where can I pre-order it? ;D

To answer both your questions.

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game: Beginner Box

Edit: I was Ninja Smurfed!!!


Gorbacz wrote:
Nightfall wrote:
hogarth wrote:
I prefer low-impact dice to high-impact dice. Especially when people are throwing dice at me in the middle of a game.
This is why you wear helmets at Pathfinder games.
High impact helmets, that is.

And steel shank work boots to protect against those wily d4s.

Cheliax

Dragnmoon wrote:
Edit: I was Ninja Smurfed!!!

Edit: I was doubled ninja'd. This is a fast paced thread. Wear a sat belt.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
coyote6 wrote:
What classes? I can't see cramming 5 levels of 11 classes into 64 pages. So cleric, fighter, rogue, wizard? Or some other combo?

Those are the four on the side of the box; they're also the longest-lived iconic classes dating back through most editions of the game.

Andoran

I have a feeling this product will sell out right when it is released. I already know five people I want to send these to!

Paizo Employee Lead Designer

Just as a note to everyone in this thread,

We will not be answering any further questions about the product at this time. Other than the info in the product description and this blog post, we are going to play it close to the vest until the banquet at Paizocon!

I, personally, cannot wait.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Qadira RPG Superstar 2008 Top 6, Contributor

I think I'll need two.

No map pen included? :)


I wonder is it meant not to come with a marker as that is not listed as the contents.

Paizo Employee Lead Designer

doctor_wu wrote:
I wonder is it meant not to come with a marker as that is not listed as the contents.

There are no markers, pens, or pencils in the box. Too many complications to add writing implements (especially the marker as it turns out).

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Andoran

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber

Other then the Pawns, I will probably get zero use out of this, So I am a bit undecided on my feelings of it being part of the RPG subscription.

Andoran

Dragnmoon wrote:
Other then the Pawns, I will probably get zero use out of this, So I am a bit undecided on my feelings of it being part of the RPG subscription.

Do you have any friends or family with younger kids? This would be a great gift!

I know I'm getting one for my nephews (and probably a second copy just, well, to have ... :)

RPG Superstar 2011 Top 16

Can you say if the Hero's Handbook and Game Master's Guide are actually bound books or just stapled?

Bound books could still be useful to me, just to have an extra set of rules floating around the table. But a 64 page book that is just stapled together? Probably wouldn't last long enough to be worthwhile.

Andoran

Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Marc Radle wrote:
Do you have any friends or family with younger kids? This would be a great gift!

The answer is either no, or non that would appreciate the gift.

Cheliax

Anyone else thinkin' usin' the box set as the beginnin' of their E5+ campaign?

Qadira

Hmmm, if this is part of the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscription, does that mean no Bestiary 3 this year? That would be too bad if that's the case...


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Didn't Bestiary 2 just come out a few months ago?? I confess to being near my limit for the number of monsters I need....

Contributor

Will the bound books in the box be added as PDFs to subscribers downloads? Ditto character sheets? Ditto tokens?

What's in the box? Gotta find out what's in the box!

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

With the projections of super-adventure boxed product prices I've heard come from the mouths of Paizo, I'm pleased the starter set has such an accessible price point. It's less than the Core Rulebook!

Contributor

Jason Bulmahn wrote:
doctor_wu wrote:
I wonder is it meant not to come with a marker as that is not listed as the contents.

There are no markers, pens, or pencils in the box. Too many complications to add writing implements (especially the marker as it turns out).

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Any plans to have a separate set of markers, pens, and pencils printed with, say, the iconic characters who I note can easily be slotted to various colors? No, you don't need markers printed with the iconic characters, but they would be cool.

Osirion

I just found another gift for my daughter.

Also the pawns{guessing tokens} would be great as a stand alone product.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Jason Bulmahn wrote:
doctor_wu wrote:
I wonder is it meant not to come with a marker as that is not listed as the contents.

There are no markers, pens, or pencils in the box. Too many complications to add writing implements (especially the marker as it turns out).

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

Not even white crayons to colour in the dice??


I want a copy for myself.


Crystal Frasier wrote:

Finally! We don't have to hide this super-cool product from our fans any longer!

I haven't been this excited about a product since I was a pint-sized junior gamer. It takes me right back to my very first boxed set, freeing dwarf slaves from an evil wizard's mine!

Ah, good old Zanzer Tem and his mine full of dwarves. And we can play the PF Beginner's Box game without having to fold up all those flimsy standees!


It will be interesting to see if this spawns a Pathfinder 2.0, based on a simpler rule set, and if any third party products will follow.


Does "pawns" = super awesome plastic, or equally fantastic thick punchout card board, 1" toke with full color image of monsters and NPCs that will make a perfect stand alone product???


This. Is. AWESOME!

Seriously, I knew it was coming but...BWAGH!

-The Beast


Why is this cool? Isn't it just a dumb down version of the main game?

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Crystal Frasier wrote:

Finally! We don't have to hide this super-cool product from our fans any longer!

I haven't been this excited about a product since I was a pint-sized junior gamer. It takes me right back to my very first boxed set, freeing dwarf slaves from an evil wizard's mine!

So.. um, yesterday? ;-)

(I don't know why, but I always picture Ms. Frasier being about 5' nothing and 98 lbs soaking wet. Never been able to make it out to Seattle to say hi)

RPG Superstar 2009 Top 32, 2010 Top 8

Jodi Lane wrote:
I have a feeling this product will sell out right when it is released. I already know five people I want to send these to!

Only two here, my Godkids and my Niece & Nephew.

(Then I need to take leave of my senses and host a big gaming party at my Condo. I love running games for kids.)

Osirion

We all know paizo likes to use Icons on the covers they use in products. Based off the four lined up icons on the side of the box we are getting: Mage,Rogue,Cleric and fighter and Human and elf as races at lest.

Taldor

<Gazes at Banquet ticket> <Smiles> :-)


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Mordo wrote:
Does "pawns" = super awesome plastic, or equally fantastic thick punchout card board, 1" toke with full color image of monsters and NPCs that will make a perfect stand alone product???

Well, I can guarantee they're not shipping 80 full color plastic miniatures in a $34.99 box set.

I'm hoping they're not shipping 80 circular color counters like were in a lot of the WoTC stuff, those are yuck when you're using only the counters, and utterly terrible if you use even one actual mini.

I'm hoping they are stand-ups of one kind or another. Heavy gauge cardboard with a base is good, but probably prohibitively expensive, so I'm hoping it's heavy cardstock similar to the existing Pathfinder Paper Miniatures, but without all the cutting.


Pathfinder Tales Subscriber
Jason Bulmahn wrote:

Just as a note to everyone in this thread,

We will not be answering any further questions about the product at this time. Other than the info in the product description and this blog post, we are going to play it close to the vest until the banquet at Paizocon!

I, personally, cannot wait.

Jason Bulmahn
Lead Designer
Paizo Publishing

::Gives Bulmahn the BIG EYES::


Matthew Morris wrote:
(I don't know why, but I always picture Ms. Frasier being about 5' nothing and 98 lbs soaking wet. Never been able to make it out to Seattle to say hi)

In truth, she is 6'5" and build like a weightlifter. I've seen her fold pennies with her fingers. Better watch what you say about her...

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Vigil wrote:

Can you say if the Hero's Handbook and Game Master's Guide are actually bound books or just stapled?

Bound books could still be useful to me, just to have an extra set of rules floating around the table. But a 64 page book that is just stapled together? Probably wouldn't last long enough to be worthwhile.

I can't talk about the Beginner Box specifically, but I *can* tell you that generally, the limit for saddlestitched (that is, stapled) books is 32 pages; after that, you pretty much have to go perfect bound (that is, bound with a spine).

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