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Respect for the Past, Eyes on the Future!

Friday, December 1, 2017

When setting out to write Taldor, The First Empire, I found myself presented with a circumstance unlike any that I had previously undertaken: round up everything we've ever said about the nation of Taldor in the 10 years the Pathfinder campaign setting has been around, put all of that into a single cohesive document, make sure it's exciting and inspirational for readers, and lay the groundwork for a Pathfinder Adventure Path campaign that will take place entirely within the nation and deal with the inner workings of its government and long history. But if anyone could do it, I told myself in true Taldan fashion, it was me. Right?

The first major challenge was determining what tone we wanted to present Taldor with going forward, in part because we've been less than consistent on it in the past. Some sources made it out to be more like the Byzantine Empire, complete with laws dictating who could have a beard, while other sources described the court of Louis XIV, with nobles so incompetent that they couldn't even spell their own names correctly. The problem isn't with either presentation, but rather with the fact that there are a lot of fans of both sides of Taldor.

I spent much of PaizoCon 2017 chatting with the community about what they wanted out of the book, what they liked about Taldor, and what never seemed to make sense to them. The development team held a series of meetings wherein we broke down our own views of the nation and what we needed from it in the future, from NPCs, locations, and events to seed into the campaign setting for forthcoming adventures to even larger meta-plots. Then I took all of that and used it as a guideline when combing through the myriad bits we'd said about the Inner Sea's greatest nation to construct what would become the book itself.

Illustrations by Allison Theus, Mary Jane Pajaron, Raph Lomotan, and Katerina Kirillova

I'm incredibly proud of this book, and think the final result is one of the best entries in the illustrious Pathfinder Campaign Setting line. It will be headed to subscribers and game stores soon, and I look forward to hearing the what the community has to say. Check back next week, when I'll go over a few of the reasons why Taldor is the greatest nation in the Inner Sea, and enjoy these glorious illustrations as a preview of what Taldor, The First Empire has to offer.

Mark Moreland
Franchise Manager

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Allison Theus Katerina Kirillova Mary Jane Pajaron Pathfinder Campaign Setting Raph Lomotan
Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

This blog is making me interested in seeing what Paizo ended up deciding, but I'm confused who wrote it since it isn't signed ._.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm guessing it's Crystal Frasier, developer of the War for the Crown Adventure Path (and probably this book as well). ^_^

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Would be neat to learn a bit more about how the empire works(/ed), and the social structures.
Though according to the one review, the senate class is no longer there?


Book cover image says Mark Moreland.


Does it? Huh. Perhaps it's his work, then.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Interested in the Baron Vinmark there!


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

Looking forward to it!

Paizo Employee Franchise Manager

5 people marked this as a favorite.

I wrote this blog. I don't know why my signature was left off, because it was totally sent in with the body of the entry.


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

Who or what is Grogrisant(the lion)?


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Something way outside of the Animal type, as it has six eyes ...

Shadow Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bellona wrote:
Something way outside of the Animal type, as it has six eyes ...

*moves the drinks away from bellona*

Scarab Sages

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

For my part, though I do enjoy being able to ridicule incompetent aristocracy, there comes a point where it interferes with the verisimilitude, by prompting the question "How has a country, almost universally run by such bumbling idiots, not been overrun by their neighbours?".

So I support the setting canon being of a mainly competent Taldor, with the option for future writers and GMs to sprinkle a few chinless inbreds in positions of unearned authority, as they see fit, whenever they need a comedic interlude.

Shadow Lodge

Snorter wrote:

For my part, though I do enjoy being able to ridicule incompetent aristocracy, there comes a point where it interferes with the verisimilitude, by prompting the question "How has a country, almost universally run by such bumbling idiots, not been overrun by their neighbours?".

Looks at every nation in history.

"too big to fail?"

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
BigNorseWolf wrote:
Snorter wrote:

For my part, though I do enjoy being able to ridicule incompetent aristocracy, there comes a point where it interferes with the verisimilitude, by prompting the question "How has a country, almost universally run by such bumbling idiots, not been overrun by their neighbours?".

Looks at every nation in history.

"too big to fail?"

Also, all the neighbours are bumbling nitwits too.

Charles II managed to restore the monarchy. And he was a grade-A doofus.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Snorter wrote:

For my part, though I do enjoy being able to ridicule incompetent aristocracy, there comes a point where it interferes with the verisimilitude, by prompting the question "How has a country, almost universally run by such bumbling idiots, not been overrun by their neighbours?".

So I support the setting canon being of a mainly competent Taldor, with the option for future writers and GMs to sprinkle a few chinless inbreds in positions of unearned authority, as they see fit, whenever they need a comedic interlude.

This is part of why I favor the Byzantine comparison...

'Cause the Byzantines could be SUCH SHCMUCKS, clinging to the tatters of their pride in being the Roman Empire, even though the days of Justinian were long in their past... and then they'd get a good leader and enjoy a brief resurgence- never to full power, of course, but they'd regain some of what they'd lost, make some big reforms... and a decade or two later, they'd be right back into the mess their own arrogance and complacency created.

Scarab Sages

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
GeraintElberion wrote:
Charles II managed to restore the monarchy. And he was a grade-A doofus.

I know. What were my people thinking?

"Let's go back to being ordered around by syphilitic cousin-humpers.
...
Because Cromwell banned mince pies."


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Modules, Tales Subscriber

I'm confused how this got reviewed already, when today's blog says it's going out to subscribers soon. Does Paizo send out advance copies??

Or maybe this blog was written a while ago and is only getting posted now...I suppose that would explain it.

EDIT: this could be my fault. Looks like this went up on Friday, not today.


Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

That first review did go up four days before any subscribers had their PDFs.

Sovereign Court

I'm sure it is a simply wonderful book.

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