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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber. 1,338 posts. 2 reviews. No lists. No wishlists.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Amidst the various optimization threads, this class is nerfed/overpowered posts, and raging against errata/FAQ nerfs that somehow invalidated a character concept because one item was clarified to not provide the most generous interpretation possible, I just wanted to send a simple message to Team Paizo:


I just had a tremendous weekend of Pathfinder RPG greatness, running two lengthy sessions for different groups/campaigns. Group A = six 11-yr olds. Group B = seven 16-yr olds. Both groups expressed what a blast that they had. Everyone participated and felt relevant, combat and skill checks ran fluidly, everyone had their moment to shine, and all while new players were introduced.

Combined Player List
Half-elf Fighter
Goblin Rogue
Human Magus
Human Wizard (Conjurer)
Elf Rogue
Dwarf Fighter (Crossbowman)
Human Slayer
Human Occultist
Gnome Alchemist (Chiurgeon)
Human Investigator
Dwarf Gunslinger
Human Fighter
Tengu Magus (Blackblade Magus)

My campaigns are designed as “open area” sandboxes with published adventures dropped into it. The session for the younger group was primarily published adventure; the session for the older group was 100% my adventure plots. But with the Pathfinder RPG, I was able to run both sessions painlessly.

Look, everyone runs a game their own way. I’m not a subscriber to “you’re doing it wrong”; play the game however you like. But after the guests had left and my kids are smiling ear to ear and each one makes a point to come and tell me “that was great, Dad” I took a bit of post-game prep to reflect on what went well and why.

Here’s the short answer: Pathfinder is a damn fine RPG.

RPG forums frequently turn me off because, as with most Internet-related commentary, negativity has an unfettered voice. I’m not saying I love every rule in Pathfinder or that every character concept or subsystem works exactly the way I want it to. But I am saying this: if I look at content, options, flexibility, & support, I feel it’s the best RPG. Others may edge PF out in a single category but nothing comes close in terms of those criteria combined. (My opinion, of course. YMMV)

So thank you, Paizo.

Thank you for taking a good RPG and improving upon it.

Thank you for making it your own by expanding it in new and unique ways like the APG, Occult Adventures, archetypes, hybrid classes, and new subsystems, etc.

Thank you for continuing to open up new design spaces within the existing game.

Thank you for not jumping on the Edition Re-Design Treadmill.

Thank you for providing new options for new adventures and stories; even for the ones that don’t scratch my particular RPG itches (e.g. gunpowder)

Thank you for sticking with the OGL so that my games are enriched by awesome third-party content (Frog God Games, TPK Games, Kobold Press, and Raging Swan Press - my go-tos 3PPs - props to you, too!)

Thank you for looking at other RPG designs for inspiration without attempting to make Pathfinder into a clone of another RPG.

Thank you for listening to your customers/fans in the forums.
But thank you just as much for recognizing/understanding where to draw the line and not compromise critical elements of the game…
…and when the loudest voices don’t equate to or exceed the silent majority.

Thanks to everyone at Paizo, but for this post, I want to single out and sincerely thank the Pathfinder RPG design team. Thanks for the best Fantasy RPG and thanks for your continued efforts to keep making it better. Your game and your efforts are greatly appreciated.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Nutcase Entertainment wrote:

I can keep my "SkyFinder" ideas in the freezer.

Nightdrifter wrote:

I find this to be an odd business move considering:

*Lisa is the one who pointed out part of TSR's downfall was due to self-competition with different campaign settings

*Paizo's reluctance to reprint old APs as that would mean competing against current APs

I hope this doesn't come back to bite Paizo in the behind.

TSR's problem ended being "too much self-competition".

Competition brings creativity, self competition means they get the money anyway instead of some third party or rivals.

Also, this isn't exactly a new campaign setting. It's a possible future setting set in the same solar system & universe. Between magic and technology, I'm calling it now - an AP that takes you from "present day" Pathfinder into Starfinder. Of course, with time travel shenanigans, the reverse could also happen.

Also, they aren't competing for identical genres - which is where TSR went wrong.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

To the Frogs, I just have to say that you guys exceeded my already-high expectations on this one! I'm still reading through my PDFs but this is ticking all of my GM Setting Requirement boxes and is filled with so many plot seeds and ideas, I don't know where to start.

This is what RPG settings should be about - empowering GMSs to run games. The thing oozes history, conflict, and verisimilitude without ever losing sight of the fact that it exists to inspire and support RGP stories. Great job!

And although the Blight really isn't my cup of tea (I don't really like my FRPG tech beyond Renaissance-level), the full blown campaign setting kickstarter can't come fast enough! I'm also looking to pick up Sword of Air once there's some additional money in the wallet.

Thanks to everyone who helped make this project full of awesome, awesome RPG goodness.

P.S. Pathfinder all the way!

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Qaianna wrote:

I think I've seen some writeups do Aristocrat X/PC class X multiclassing. But otherwise, there aren't any mechanics past Diplomacy, Sense Motive, Intimidate, and Leadership that 'come with' or 'come from' class levels.

I'm hoping Ultimate Intrigue expands this area significantly.

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roysier wrote:
Too be honest it looks to me Paizo is running out of sales ideas. The early books everyone in my game group bought, that would be 6 copies of each book, but by bestiary 4 & 5 by group had no interest, inner race guide, also no interest, the strategy guide sits as my local game store without a single copy purchased, so now my local game store only stocks 1 book instead of the before 3 books. I have only seen the Inner Sea Race Guide in 1 of the 6 games stores I frequent. The stores simply didn't stock it.

Oh, please. Stop. Just stop.

I’ve been reading the “Paizo is out of ideas” lie for 7 years now. Will supplements likely sell less than core books? Duh, no kidding. What is frequently omitted from such critical dissection of sales (aside from actual sales data, but hey if you can’t use anecdotal evidence on the Internet, where can you?) is the fact that for many years, Erik Mona would let slip that Core Rulebook sales increased year-over-year.

But let’s discard that nugget of industry-relevant information and just take a quick stroll down memory lane and look at the “out of ideas” claim.

2009 – Pathfinder Core Rulebook – “Paizo is releasing a set of house-rules for a tired rules set. WotC has exhausted the 3.x design space”. Obvious improvements, rules clean-up, & redesign be damned. There was a 4e to save after all!

2010 – Advanced Player’s Guide – Multiple new classes that become critical and fan favorites. Plus archetypes – which single-handedly eliminated prestige class bloat, expanded versatility of existing classes, and in the eyes of many is where PF “came into its own”.

2011 – Ultimate Combat & Ultimate Magic – “We’ve got a gish class now and a ninja. Lots of eastern martial content and some optional rules. Yeah, they must be running out of ideas.”

2012 – NPC Codex – This “who wants a bestiary full of NPCs?” is widely hailed as an incredible time-saver for PF GMs everywhere.

2013 – Ultimate Campaign – “Character backgrounds, cleaned-up kingdom building? That’s not really new.” We’ll just pretend an entirely new Downtime subsystem didn’t exist, because there couldn’t have been any design space left. Oh, and GM subsystems and advice for honor, investments, reputation, etc. Nothing to see here, move along.
"Hey, didn't 5e (released after UltCamp) have Downtime rules, too?"
"Shut up, you're not helping."

2014 – Advanced Class Guide – “Hybrid classes? Yeah, they are soooo out of ideas.”
Except for the every class we knew we wanted (swashbuckler, slayer, warpriest) we were treated to ones we never knew we wanted but immediately realized that we did (bloodrager, skald, investigator, brawler).

2015 – “You know that you-know-who is coming out with that new edition of you-know-what. Boy, Paizo’s lack of ideas must sure have them sweating bullets.” But then…
BAM – Pathfinder Unchained – new rules to tweak, expand, or reinvent your PF game. “Well if it’s the Unearthed Arcana of PF, it MUST mean there’s nothing left in the design space of that game.”

SMACK! – Occult Adventures right between the eyes! – Psychic magic, chakras, psychic duels, possession, auras… “What do you mean I can make a bender from Avatar?!?! Wait, there’s an iconic who has a ghost companion and it’s the ghost of her dead husband?!?!?” <mind explodes> Oh wait, that’s in there too.

Yeah, that’s a pretty damn strong case on how Paizo is running out of ideas… (how do you do ‘roll eyes’ in forum-speak?)

Now, it’s completely fair to debate the utility of any given book, subsystem, class, etc. But spare me the talk about “running out of ideas”. I have never seen a track record as good as Paizo’s. And I have no horse in an edition war race, so this next comment is purely for comparison to “ideas”. Which is more “original” - what’s laid out above or Player Book 5, GM Book 5, Monster Book 5?

Which is more “original”:
Ravenloft 4.0
Return to the Tomb of Horrors – for the 3rd time!
Beware the Sundering – where we undo the past to, um, reset things to closer to an older past…

Travel in Baba Yaga’s Hut to Earth and fight Rasputin
Fight in land of science and sorcery against an AI that wants to become a god
Lead a rebellion in one of the setting’s cornerstone evil nations
A Marco Polo-style journey to the other side of the world

I'll take Paizo "out of ideas" over almost every other RPG publisher in the world during the "Golden Age" of their game/edition.

Final Note: If you have a FLGS, be thankful. Embrace it. Support it. But you need to realize that for many of us, it’s a MYTH. I’ve been gaming for 30 years. I’ve never lived near a store that I could call “local”. Most that I visited were anything but friendly. 90% of my RPG library was purchased from the Internet once I learned I didn’t have to go to the Distant-Unfriendly-Gaming-Store or rely on what a local bookstore stocked. The stock of any given gaming store is anecdotal. It doesn’t reflect the industry any better than 3 randomly-polled gamers RPG libraries do.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Cerberus Seven wrote:

Try teaching Pathfinder to a few friends who aren't incredibly numbers-savvy and who don't have much (if any) experience with TTRPGs. It's not an easy task.

Actually, it is relatively easy. I'm doing it now for my youngest son and four of his friends (age 10).

Character creation was done before the first session. I explained the RPG concept, provided a few examples, and asked what kinds of abilities/skills they wanted to have in general, non-game specific terms.

Next, based on their answers, I provided them with examples, primarily comic-book, movie, TV and video game references plus the PF strategy guide or the relevant supplement. Then they chose their race & class and we made characters. They arrived at:
2 rogues
1 fighter
1 magus
1 conjurer

Die mechanics, combat basics, skill checks, and starting spells were understood before the end of the 1st session.

What I didn't do was plop 6-7 books on a table and expect them to absorb it. Each session, you add another element as needed.

It's easy. I know there are those who like to claim otherwise, but either they are unintentionally boiling the ocean, they aren't trying to teach, or they're exaggerating the magnitude of the challenge.

More than a few also like to say things like "I like 5e because it's leaner/has fewer supplements." This is often followed with "I wish Paizo made 5e material...."


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Steel_Wind wrote:

All NEW Chronicles Podcast Episode 20 - The Dragon's Demand with Mike Shel

Available Now! Download HERE

Chronicles Podcast Returns from the Dead with an all new episode. Steel and Azmyth catch up on their games and campaigns and what they have been doing lately in the intro. We interview Ben Loomes, creator of Syrinscape as well as Matt Morton and Tobias Drewry of Mesa Mundi, publishers of d20Pro. Chronicles welcomes the return of authors Richard Pett and Greg A. Vaughan for a special spotlight on The Blight by Frog God Games. On the review, author Mike Shel checks in to discuss his unique 64 page stand-alone module "The Dragons Demand" in spoilerific fashion. To finish, Azmyth and Steel discuss the module with an in-depth (if not protracted) review. Brevity? Never! We stretch it out with 4hrs and 20 mins of podcast, cause that is how we roll!

Oh, thank God!

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pennywit wrote:

I know this comes up every so often, so pardon me for re-asking ... but does Pathfinder need a second edition? We've got rulebooks and splatbooks galore now, along with Unchained's optional rules variants. These all have some good things, some bad things, and some neutral things. But it strikes me that we're reaching a certain critical rule mass, where the first step for a PF table is to run down a checklist of all the books to decide what is allowed and what isn't.

IMNSHO and after browsing this Reddit thread, I think we may be at a point where it's worth codifying some of these rules and lessons learned into a new edition of PF. If I had my druthers, it would look something like this:

A Core Rulebook that pulls in material from across the Player Companions, Unchained, APG, UMagic, and UCombat to codify the "core classes" and rebalance them. I particularly think it's worth giving each class a suite of talents (consolidating talents, discoveries, arcana, mercies, arcane exploits, and so forth), points pools (codifying arcane pools, inspiration, grit, combat stamina, hero points, and so forth), and archetypes (consolidating archetypes, bloodlines, mysteries, and so forth). It might even be worth consolidating some of the classes.

A GameMastery Guide that contains a lot of material in the current GMG (there's some truly excellent stuff there if you look for it), supplemented with optional systems from UCAM and from the Adventure Paths.

And, of course, new bestiaries and so forth.

Any thoughts in that direction?

No, not needed.

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My Self wrote:
Casual Viking wrote:
If you want to play a simpler, more down to earth, less rules-intensive fantasy RPG, I suggest not using 5E. There are plenty of other games out there, almost all of them better.
Would you mind me asking what games they are?

Since I share Casual Viking's opinion, here would be my suggestions:

1. Savage Worlds - you could convert 90+% of PF flavor to SW with just SW Deluxe and the Fantasy Companion (if you wanted to; conversion isn't required). It also has excellent 3rd-party support for fantasy gaming. I love PF but if I ever switch fantasy systems it would be to Savage Worlds for its flexibility, ability to customize, and speed of play.

2. Dragon Age/Fantasy Age - I've only tried the preview rules but DA ticks almost all of the PF/D&D boxes via a much simpler system. DA emulates its source material well from what I can see, and FA seems like it will offer the engine for you to customize as you like.

3. Mutants and Masterminds - my seemingly "weird" choice, but it can model fantasy (especially swords and sorcery-style comics) incredibly well. Of the 3 I mention, this one has its roots as a d20 game.

Why don't I use these as my FRPG go-to? I like my PF options. :)

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It was likely to be a shallow step since I love the book, but the pilot ep surpassed my expectations. This is the prettiest sci-fi since BSG. There are movies that don't look this good. The practical sets have a realistic look and feel like BSG, Alien, Blade Runner, etc. The CGI looks incredible.

I can't wait for the series to get rolling!

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Backed! (PF all the way, baby!)

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I have to say, the portrayal of the "vampire spirit" is the most elegant and interesting depiction of the auto-alignment-shift caused by becoming undead that I've seen.

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
baron arem heshvaun wrote:

After all the print books, its time in Dragon, and 1000 plus strips, Rich still keeps me wanting more.

Thank you Rich Burlew, a modern day maestro.

It's not said often enough, I dig your work sir.

Amen, brother. Rich rocks!

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Ok, I bought Town of Glory last night and have done a preliminary read-through and started a test-build. I plan to post an actual review once the product is offered here on

First Impressions:
Reasonably quick resolution
Lots of room for expansions & future add-ons.

Kingmaker is probably my favorite AP. The sandbox approach that they took is, IMO, brilliant and while I know that the initial kingdom-building and mass combat rules were rough, I liked them enough to want to see them refined and expanded - which they were via Ultimate Campaign and Legendary Games' Ultimate X line.

The downside to kingdom-building is that it really is geared for what it's name implies: kingdom-building. I've looked at using kingdom-building as a nation-tracking mini-game for myself but to take existing nations and develop them, the process is very front-loaded with work and the level of abstraction doesn't really work for me. I can't lift a settlement stat block and easily reverse engineer it into Kingdom-building settlement stats, for example.

However, I'm a huge fan of the Downtime system in Ultimate Combat.

Town of Glory is closer to the Downtime system than Kingdom-building. It has a fair level of detail but a GM or group of players don't have to devote a campaign's focus to developing their settlement. The development of a frontier town or outpost is also a far likelier scenario for your average campaign than developing a new kingdom.

Reading through the PDF, I can't help but get a Warcraft-style vibe from it, as population, food, goods, and trade interact within the outpost/community rather than having stats focus on contributing to the kingdom-level stats. There are Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced buildings and while Kingdom-building has pre-reqs and dependencies as well, Town of Glory lays the options out by Building Complexity so understanding the town's possible "feat chains" is clearer when reading.

Also unlike the Kingdom-building settlement rules, I was able to quickly start out a thorp and generate growth for a couple of months as a quick test-drive. It's intuitive, yet flavorful.

I seriously hope this line gets additional expansions. Additional buildings, event generation, integration/intersection with the Downtime rules, and extrapolating this mini-system to other parts of the game seem like they could be easy and logical extensions of the game. Remember how everyone liked Jade Regent's caravan rules in concept but had problems in execution? I could see a Town of Glory approach to caravans, shipping, and trading.

Best of all, it doesn't replace or invalidate the Pathfinder system's normal settlement stat-block building rules. If the settlement stat-block is the summary-level view, Town of Glory can be used to drill down to street level if desired.

My "first impressions" reads like a mini-review but, honestly, this PDF impressed me with it's utility. It was an impulse buy in the hopes that it would generate some ideas.

My only regret is that I can see the potential lurking within Town of Glory and can't apply it (yet) to a broader swath of my campaign. I would love to see it get a much broader and in-depth treatment.

Minor criticism: The "Town Walls" basic structure is incorrectly listed as "Town Halls". "Town Halls is also listed in it's correct placement as an Intermediate Structure.

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I love the Pathfinder RPG. More importantly, my players love it.

Is it a perfect system? Of course not. There is no such beast.

And while constructive criticism is good, what I don't like are the posters that just have to throw barbs and slurs at the designers or Paizo when designs or errata don't conform to their wishes. You don't have to like it, you can certainly say you don't like it, but you don't have to buy it or use it and you certainly don't have to be a di-k about it.

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Greg, I just wanted to say thanks again for such a detailed reply. I've been a fan of FGG and Necromancer before that for many years and your detailed teasers of the larger Lost Lands setting have been fantastic.

I also want to thank you and the entire FGG team for your approach to the setting. This world is clearly a labor of love and the details that you are placing within the setting are bringing the internal consistency that I love from fantasy worlds. With most RPG settings, these kind of details are ignored or barely touched upon. This is all the more impressive to me given that the setting previously only existed as a loose framework for the company's adventures. That this level of detail and internal consistency can be added later to make a coherent whole is pretty darn incredible.

I can't wait for the setting to come out!

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Another awesome iconic image by WAR and a very cool backstory by Mr. Mona. Another great iconic!

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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Wow, THAT was a great Iconic background!

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Skaorn wrote:

I would be in favor of a streamlined version of Pathfinder, myself. not necessarily a new addition but not necessarily a new addition. There are several things I like from 5E that I have been enjoying. I like the Advantage/Disadvantage replacing a lot of status effects and modifiers because its fast and its super easy to work with. I like the iterative attacks better and think they're a better idea for fighting classes over 3rd's version. I like the fact that you can tank in AC and actually be a hard nut to crack. I like the scaling spells as it makes more sense having one cure spell than various cure spells at different levels. I also like their Feats better, though not the system of how you get them, because they are a big deal; and not just the equivalent of a major class feature or close to it in power level.

Having a book dedicated to pairing off the flash of Pathfinder so you could focus more on running a story and not looking up status effects and rules. Most games I play in are 2 to 3 hours long. By the time you get to mid level in the PF games I play in, we can only really fit one medium or large encounter in a session. A Dungeon crawl might take months to do while in the 5E game I play in now we might do as little as a third of a dungeon in one session. This provides a real sense of accomplishment rather than frustration of slogging through a handful of rooms in a month. This is not to say I don't find 5E kind of shallow, but it does let you do a lot more in a short span of time.

I do think there are room for things from 5E that could be added to regular PF, though, without major changes. Scaling Spells and big Feats for instance. Imagine for instance if the basic range combat Feat included Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot, and either a couple of Weapon Proficiencies or Far Shot. I like that better aesthetically and think it would condense the Feat tree.

I wouldn't mind seeing the linked accuracy for attacks as well, but I agree I'd rather see +10 rather than +6. Poor BAB would...

So, a few clarifications up front so that things don't get misunderstood due to the Internet Forum Filter:

You like several things from 5e. I understand and can appreciate that design innovations can serve as inspiration and in some cases appear as parallel design. So with no snark intended, I have to ask:

1. Are you playing 5e?

2. Regardless of the answer to #1, above, why should PF adopt those things? If they already exist in 5e, wouldn't it just be easier to play 5e rather than rewrite PFRPG?

We saw it with 4e and I'm seeing it again with 5e. Why does PF need to skew towards D&D? Why can't it be it's own thing?

As an example, in addition to Pathfinder, I love Savage Worlds. Very different games. Each appeals to me with different aspects of RPGs even though I could use either system to run a fantasy game set within the same world. But I don't expect, nor would I want, Pathfinder to adopt the raise/exploding dice mechanic of Savage Worlds, nor would I want Savage Worlds to adopt a PF-style Vancian magic system. Different RPGs can be their own thing.

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adembroski wrote:

I do use a home brewed ability score generation method... But working in bounded accuracy and flattening the feat trees are total reworks that effect other systems. The feats themselves would have to be rewritten, and who knows how magic is effected by all this. If I had a team of playtesters and a couple more designers just hanging around, sure.

I do think Paizo is dipping their toe in the new edition waters... That's one of the reasons I posted this. Throw my voice behind the idea.

...and throwing my voice and subscriptions against the idea.

I love Unchained and it and Occult are showing that there's plenty of design space left in the current system.

When a new edition comes, I want it to be the clean-up & tweaks that almost every other RPG adopts. I do not want, nor will I buy, a WotC "nuke & start over" approach that D&D seems to go through every time.

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Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Obviously I can't promise anything, but I AM interested in what people DO want to see in this book, and books like it. The short solicitation text is often written *very* early in a book's life.

1. The in-game operation of locating, buying from, and selling into black markets.

2. Smuggling in-game treatment.
3. Player options for integrating black market downtime actions/events.

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So far, I'm really liking this entry in the series.

I especially like the enhancements to Ultimate Campaign expansions to buildings/rooms. More of this in future installments, please!

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WOW.... just WOW.

Just got my PDF this evening but first impressions are that this book is everything that I hoped for and more. The number of levers and switches that this book provides is staggering.

It's been called PF's Unearthed Arcana but this is a much more useful & coherent collection of optional rules than any Unearthed Arcana book I've owned previously. It also appears to have avoided the missteps of earlier variants like Ultimate Combat's Wounds/Vitality and Armor as DR.

For everyone who's ever been told "you can't use Pathfinder to run that type of game because X is too ingrained or hard-wired into it", this is the book for you. Skill systems, wound thresholds, ways to customize spellcasting, the Stamina system, the inherent bonus system... there is so much here.

It will take me a while to determine what to include & use but there is so much of it that I want to try!

For anyone who has heard people say that Paizo is running out of design space with the Pathfinder rules - this book shows what a hollow lie (misperception if you prefer) that is.

I just want to thank Paizo and all of the developers and staff who worked on this book. You have my sincere thanks.

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Kthulhu wrote:

The developers also don't see a caster-martial disparity. (To the point where they regularly nerf martial options, while introducing even more overpowered caster options.)

That doesn't mean it doesn't actually exist.

By extension, that doesn't mean that it actually does exist, either.

Note, I'm not saying one doesn't exist - it has in some fashion since the game was created. The degree to which it exists is debatable, however.

Combining this post with your earlier one about duct tape and gushing pipes, however, this comes across simply as mudslinging rather than an attempt to persuade/debate.

Out of curiosity, if PF is so "broken", do you play it? Are their other systems that you've tried that better align to what you want from a FRPG? Are you a Paizo adventure/setting fan hoping for a fantasy heartbreaker closer to your desired style of RPG?

I ask because you seem less interested in tweaks and more in the "completely new edition/start from scratch" camp. Things don't always come across as intended on the Internet, however, so I'm not certain what you're hoping for - thus the questions, above.

That you're dissatisfied with PFRPG in its current state is clear, however.

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Hark wrote:

The real advantage of a 2.0 would be to bring innovations developed later in the line to the core rules providing a better and more diverse base to build a game on.

When this kind of thing happens is very uncertain as Pathfinder is still going strong, and things like archetypes do a lot to bring new concepts to older material.

That said without an eventual second edition Pathfinder as a game will eventually be abandoned and die as the product line eventually loses profitability. A 2.0 is a far more preferable answer than no more Pathfinder.

Except that unless you're positing a "what if", that hypothesis is irrelevant. Paizo, has even as recently as the past few months, said that PFRPG Core Rulebook sales continue to grow. 5e didn't "dent" PF sales according to Eric Mona, so either people chose to buy 5e & PF, or PF fans didn't drop PF in favor of 5e.

Will there, someday, be a revision or new edition? Very likely.

However, at present the PFRPG is around 6 years old as its own thing. Paizo continues to find new creative space with the current rules.

I've been with Pathfinder since RotRL#1. Even back then, there were a lot of predictions that weren't worth carrying around in the plastic bag used to clean up after a dog. Things like:

"If Paizo doesn't jump on the 4e bandwagon and produce 4e content, they're going to go out of business."

"If Paizo thinks people are going to buy another version of 3e, they're wrong."

"How can Paizo think this will work? There's nothing left to design that hasn't been done."... and then we saw things like the Advanced Player's Guide...

More recently, say in the past 2/2.5 years: "they're running out of design space. Really, what's left for them to do?" and then we saw Ultimate Campaign, Advanced Class Guide, and now Pathfinder Unleashed, and this summer Occult Adventures.

Now, if someone wants to say, "I want Paizo to design precisely to my tastes and I know that there's zero chance of that without a new edition" or "4e or 5e does it for me but Paizo makes the best adventures so I need them to get with the program" or "if I post often enough or am disdainful enough, they'll design things the way that I think that they should", I can at least appreciate the honesty of the approach.

As for the doomsayer predictions, you've been consistently wrong for 6+ years. Yes, even the weatherman calls for rain on the right day on occasion - it doesn't make him a prophet.

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Honestly, I think you have an opportunity, here, rather than a problem. However, you’ll need to get GM buy-in, obviously to proceed as planned.

While I’m not against re-fluffing something in a game on occasion, as a GM I think it’s usually cheese-fuel to do so just so a player can get a certain build or mechanical benefit. Personally, I’m much more inclined to allow the exception if it’s done in a way that integrates into the story and campaign world.

As an example, BioWare does a really good job with world-building. If you look at their Dragon Age games, Dragon Age: Origins establishes the setting & some of its “rules”. However, as you progress through the series, you begin to see exceptions to those rules but there is usually a strong storytelling reason to explain away the apparent contradiction.

My recommendation would be something like the following:
The path of Pharasma cleric to Shadowdancer is almost unheard of – in fact it is viewed as a heretical practice by Pharasma’s faith (but not necessarily by the goddess herself). By going down this path, you are acknowledging that your character is coloring outside the accepted lines of most Pharasma followers and inviting story-conflict. This is also known as providing story ideas for your GM, which most GMs (and in my experience all good GMs) appreciate.

As for the undead follower, this is the (perhaps secret?) tradeoff for pursuing this path: when your character dies, they too, become an undead who will be paired up with a future follower of this rarely-traveled path of Pharasma’s faith. Obviously, negotiating how absolute this is with your GM would be important – can you still leverage things like raise dead and resurrection?

Other possibilities:
Is this a forgotten practice, and your cleric is the first in generations to follow these teachings? Or is there a hidden sect, seeking to do Pharasma’s will while avoiding persecution by the traditional faith?

Is Pharasma truly ok with this breaking with doctrine given the eternity of service pledged or has another divine force with a similar portfolio fueled this rift with Pharasma to further its own ends? Perhaps one of the ancient Osirian deities, given the culture’s obsession with the afterlife…

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Rynjin wrote:

Still, over reliance on a tool to the point that you don't know how to function without said tool is not good

That's a mighty big assumptive brush that you're painting a whole lot of people with...

And even where it might be applicable, it would be an issue with the user, not the application.

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Dekalinder wrote:
I mean, you guys really stat outs npc? I always just winded them

Sure, I improvise when I need to or rely on sources like the NPC Codex or Gamemasters Guide. But important, recurring, or adversarial NPCs I stat out when I can. I've found that doing so makes it easier to bring the NPCS to life during the game. It also has provided inspiration for characteristics of the NPC and even entire plots and subplots that I wouldn't have considered without fleshing out that NPC.

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Ok, I've wanted this book since it was announced and the previews keep amping up my anticipation!

One question. Why does it show up in my "my subscriptions" list but not in my "expected to ship" listing?

Normally, I'd take a wait-and-see approach but I want this book ASAP and don't want a clerical error delaying it!

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I'm an unabashed Midgard fan. I've converted all of my Pathfinder campaigns over to it and currently have 3 ongoing campaigns set there. The primary campaign is set in the Canton of Melana, the second is in the Zobeck region, and the third is currently on an island in the western ocean but will be moving to the Southlands.

I'm the GM of the campaigns but the PC composition of the main campaign is as follows:

Human male fighter/rogue
Gearforged male fighter
Human male slayer
Gnome male alchemist
Gearforged male ranger/sorcerer
Tengu male magus
Dwarf male gunslinger

My players absolutely love Midgard. As a GM, the setting resonates with me in a way that few others have and is perhaps the only setting where I wanted to run a campaign in every region.

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Merry Christmas!

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Rynjin wrote:
Green Arrow from the comics (I believe. I'm assuming his portrayal is the same as in the cartoons) is basically "Liberal hippy Batman".

At times this has been true in the comics, usually it was done in a very ham-fisted way that didn't do the character (or the causes) any favors. Basically, they took the Robin Hood angle and amped it to 11. Which made him a bit of a hypocrite being a billionaire. Unfortunately, many writers were fond of making him a hypocrite in most facets of his personal interactions as well.

Much of this was (thankfully) jettisoned with the New 52 reboot. Unfortunately, it took a bit for rebooted Green Arrow to find his New 52 footing but the recent run by Lemire has quickly become a fan-favorite take on the character. The current writing team, I believe, are actually from the Arrow show and even before that, the show had begun to positively impact the comics with the introduction of characters like Diggle.

The take on Green Arrow and his progression/evolution from vigilante to hero in the show has been far superior to many (not all) portrayals in the comics and if the show can continue to not only take content from the comics and reimagine it, but then also positively influence the comics then I'll be a happy viewer & a happy reader for years to come.

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Freehold DM wrote:
No, I'm not, I- OH! Skyhold. Nm.


(Looks at the DA dialogue tree...)

Friendly response: Nicely played.
Humorous Response: I don't think you're my type.
Antagonistic Response: Yeah, you wish!

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Good Lord. I sat down to play after the kids went to bed and before I knew it, eight hours had passed.

Fantastic game. So far, everything I enjoy in FRPGs, Dragon Age lore, and Mass Effect-style interaction. LOVING this game so far....

.....just so tired. :)

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Aranna wrote:

Doom however needed a rewrite. And some crazy hacktivist blogger might appeal to the coffee shop hipster crowd.


...oh wait, you're serious?

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Vibranium is what Cap's shield is made of.

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Rakshaka wrote:

Oh, believe me, between Stoneshape and some of the other Druid spells, I've crafted coffin scenarios that were as vexing as hunting down a Lich's phylactery. It's amazing how many one inch tunnels you can put into a 5' cubic square of stone.

Its not so much the action economy that gets me, more of the "Is this monster behaving like every legend and myth that's been told about" shtick. More often than not, its alway better to mist the vampire from damage than wasting the action on turning them away. I'm wishing I was wrong about that and am looking for examples to solidify my conflicted opinion.. 'Has PF made vamps no different than any other monster? Is the folklore (weaknesses) ignored in favor of the mathematical practicality of damage until death?

Off to bed, so I'll be back to respond in 7-10 hours.

In my experience, yes the vampire weaknesses come into play. They almost HAVE to if you're running vampires effectively.

Vampires are social creatures that can enlist outside, non-vampire resources, especially if they're wealthy and can leverage civilization's laws against the players.

Vampires should not be going toe-toe with PCs all the time, especially if it's a vampire that's survived for decades, let alone centuries. Guerilla tactics, dividing the party and attacking isolated PCs or NPCs, softening them up with dominated NPCs/creatures and "creatures of the night" should be employed.

In other words, in my experience, when vampires are played to utilize the benefits at their disposal in a manner that the PCs themselves would employ, those vampire weaknesses become essential tools. If vampires are limited to a static role in an encounter/location then don't be surprised if they get killed like "just another monster".

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Yes, I'd buy this book.

Additionally, I'd like a book (or section) that shows how to apply Kingdom-building & Settlement-rules to existing settlements & nations, which, let's face it, is more likely to see use in a politics-influenced campaign than the development of virgin territory. I understand why Kingmaker took that approach and I love it, but I'd really like to see this next logical step taken.

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I really hope that the new magic item creation system is simple, yet flexible - something along the lines of a rune-based enhancement system like those found in Dragon Age and Shadows of Mordor video games.

I really want a way to incorporate flavorful magic items with history and an ability to be improved by the PCs and get away from the "magic-mart" requirement/desire to replace Item X with new/different Item Y.

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Can't wait! I've been looking forward to this one.

FWIW, Iron Gods is awesome as well. However, I think those bemoaning a return to "classic" tropes are forgetting - or perhaps ignoring - that for players new to the hobby these aren't "classic", they're new. I run a campaign for a bunch of 14-yr olds and none of them have heard of, much less played, Against the Giants.

And given my newfound love of orc-slaying thanks to Shadows of Mordor, hell yeah, bring on the orcs. (Tolkein or otherwise.)

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Tirisfal wrote:

Its THAT argument again!

Look, first off, 17th-19th century stuff is my favorite; my homebrew is heavily inspired by the cultures of that era (such as colonial America, the French Revolution, the Age of Enlightenment, Edo Period, etc), so its safe to say that this is totally my cup of tea. I get that this isn't for some people, just as pirates and space lazors aren't for others, but I'm the target demographic for this one.

Secondly, how does this really anachronistically stick out when its stuck between a nation with a space ship jutting out of a mountain, a nation with an abyssal chasm torn into it, or (my favorite) a nation shrouded in fog and overrun by Victorian zombies, vampires, and werewolves and was once ruled by Sauron?

Last I checked, Golarion is supposed to be a kitchen sink, so claiming that ONE nation is anachronistic when the rest of the campaign setting is taken into account is just silly.

Oh, it's THAT defense again! Kitchen sink is supposed to be a feature, not an excuse.

It's anachronistic given that in the case of the Worldwound & Numeria, there are in-setting reasons containing/limiting the influence of those regions beyond their borders. With Andoran, you have one of the dominant nations in the Inner Sea which is also one of the largest naval powers whose influence extends far beyond their borders.

From a warfare/technology perspective, if Andoran is entering into battle with inferior weapons/armor compared to, say Cheliax, they're going to get slaughtered unless in-setting reasons are presented for why their unarmored armies can go toe-toe with "traditional" armies - and none of the Andoran source material indicates that it's now the dominant firearm-bearing nation of the setting.

Kitchen sink is supposed to allow for a wide variety of playstyles, genres, locales, etc. It doesn't have to mean "anything/everything goes because it's just a game". If there are in-game reasons presented in the campaign setting material, no problem. If there aren't and it's presented just to look different/cool, you're needlessly weakening the setting by weakening the immersion/consistency factor.

I'm a Golarion fan and I appreciate the design & business considerations behind the "self-contained" nation/area approach. However, the biggest issue that I have with Golarion is that sometimes "halfway" approach of integrating elements into the setting.

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Fourshadow wrote:
It has already been established as such, so why change it now?

Because it's needlessly anachronistic and sticks out like a sore thumb compared to the rest of the setting, especially given how this nation supposedly grew out of a vassal state of other realms. Also, in a setting where firearms are rare and armored warriors still prevail, they've been set up to be slaughtered in any battle.

While the attire, colonial US anachronisms, etc. would be fine in another setting, given Andoran's prominence in the Inner Sea, just "ignoring it" doesn't really work.

I love the premise of Andoran as a solid "good guy nation", but every time I had to look at the uber-colonial artwork, it killed it for me. Andoran is the nation that I WANT to like the most (I've centered a campaign there).

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Fake Healer wrote:

3 words-

Elder Scrolls Khajiit.

I never cared much before playing that series, never got into the almost disturbing "furry", manga, toony bull**** that seems to surround people that tend to like catfolk

100% THIS.

Khajiit-style? Yes! Other (but I'm so cute!) - No thanks

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Theorycrafting has a place but in just about EVERYTHING the practical & actual trumps theory. Theoretical and/or statistical analysis is fine but let's not pretend that the scientific method is getting rigorously applied here. In most cases, the "analysis" is comparable to a bunch of sports fans arguing the merits of a fantasy football (insert preferred sport, if you prefer) league and their Dream Team.

And with RPGs, there are multiple, yet equally valid play styles to consider. The majority of the Theorycrafting on these boards that I've read, particularly with respect to playtests, make zero provisions for that consideration. Honestly, most of it comes across as political lobbying for what they want rather than objective analysis. Not all, certainly, and perhaps "most" is overstating it. Perhaps, it's just another very vocal and belligerent minority but it certainly undermines the "statistical sample".

In any case, I've been pretty happy with Paizo's ability to solicit feedback without surrendering the development process or sacrificing design goals. YMMV.

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Scythia wrote:

Lately it seems like the forthcoming Pathfinder Unchained is being offered as the (potential) solution of all problems. Don't like how X class works? Unchained. Want a rules light/streamlined game? Unchained. Want a secret edition playtest/stealth edition change? Unchained. Are your colours fading in the wash? Unchained. (One of these is facetious.)

When I read the write-up for Unchained, my impression was that it would essentially be like a Dev. brainstorming session, in book form. Equal parts "wish we'd thought of that before", and "here's a cool idea that wouldn't fly in a canon rule book". Perhaps I read it with different desires.

What do you expect Unchained to contain, and do you think it can live up to the expectations being placed on it?

I agree with your assessment. I expect it to be a good book but if it follows the premise of a PF Unearthed Arcana, it'll be a grab-bag and not something taken as a whole.

As for living up to expectations, given how of late a very vocal group of critics deride anything that deviates from their view of how PF should evolve (going so far to trash developers efforts & refer to content as crap)... no, it can't live up to expectations. I expect much gnashing of teeth and wailing about the need for a radically different new edition by that crowd...and a lot of "hey, that's cool stuff" from the bulk of the fans regarding Unchained's content.

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1. Pathfinder RPG
2. Pathfinder RPG
3. Pathfinder RPG (yes, it's worth the 1st 3 slots!)

4. Golarion

5. Taking the 3.5 rules & not only improving upon them but proving the lie that the system was done, used up, & had no design space left within it.

6. Varisia

7. APs

8. Modules

9. Campaign Setting sourcebooks

10. 3rd-party support

11. Message board presence & feedback

12. Savvy business acumen

13. Subscriptions

14. Free PDFs with Subscriptions

15. Archetypes

16. Continued support for the kinds of stories that I want to tell within a RPG framework.

17. The Cavalier

18. The Slayer

19. The Witch

20. The Magus

21. The Alchemist

22. Runelords

23. Successfully walking the line between soliciting customer feedback yet refusing to cave into the forum equivalent of mob-rule by vocal detractors.

24. Kingmaker

25. Advanced Player's Guide

26. Ultimate Campaign

27. Successfully conveying their enthusiasm & love of the game in interviews, forum posts, conventions, etc. Regardless of whether it's Lisa, James, Eric, Wes or any of the Paizo crew, their love of the game and the myths, stories, and legends that inspire the game's development, it's clear that their enthusiasm is genuine. It's also contagious.

28. Their continued ability to produce stuff that I want, especially stuff that I didn't know that I wanted in the first place! NPC Guide, map accessories, minis, comics.

29. Their continued ability to develop new and interesting monsters.

30. Curse of the Crimson Throne

31. Not jumping to PF 2.0 just because D&D 5e was released.

32. Not jumping on the GSL bandwagon.

33. For taking what could have been a crippling loss (the loss of Dragon & Dungeon) and producing what is arguably the most successful RPG system and RPG company in the industry -- and never b-tching about it.

34. Their optimism.

35. Stories of games that they run & play in.

36. Auntie Lisa

37. RPG Superstar

38. Giving me a RPG that has reinvigorated my love of the hobby and provided me with the best set of tools I've ever had to run a game.

39. The Beginner Box, to help pass the torch to my kids.


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After two evenings of extensive play, I have to say that I love this game.

First, it's drop dead gorgeous - Bungie has made an amazing universe that I find myself frequently stopping to admire in a reaction similar to when I first played Skyrim.

Second, the game play is tight. Guns have appreciable look, feel, & performance differences. Bungie has incorporated FPS features lacking from Halo without sacrificing Halo-style fun.

Third, the setting & story are interesting. Honestly, these were the elements that on the surface in interviews & trailers underwhelmed me but I was completely sucked in after the intro.

Fourth, it's just FUN. It's not grimdark like most post-apoc and I really appreciate the fact that it's rated T rather than M so my kids can enjoy it. It doesn't have the CoD run-and-twitch gameplay (doesn't force it at any rate) and maintains the positive Halo-style gameplay while adopting a Borderlands-style RPG & loot structure.

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1) Azeroth (Warcraft setting)
2) Greyhawk
3) Scarred Lands
4) Mystara/Known World

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LazarX wrote:
You'll find that most people who like Pathfinder rapidly come to the conclusion that it's in their best interests to stay the hell away from these message boards,

Sadly, this is becoming increasingly true. I've been a Paizo fan & customer since the RotRL AP/Golarion announcement. I spend a lot less time here these days than I used to because of what these forums have developed into in the last six months or so.

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HalifaxDM wrote:
ElyasRavenwood wrote:
I'm happy with pathfinder. I like the system. Can it be improved? sure. Are there things I don't like here or there? sure. But on the whole I am happy with the game.

This. I have played Pathfinder since it's inception migrating from 3.5 (and previous to that all editions back to AD&D and BECM). Yes there are some things that niggle me about PF such as escalating skill bonuses and DCs to ridiculous levels and travel rules that are a little to dull and simplistic but overall PF is one of my two go to games (the other being Savage Worlds).

Go team Paizo!

THIS +1.

And honestly, the constant straw-man arguments permeating the boards these days that you have to like everything to like anything, that if you don't want a completely new edition you're slavishly devoted to butt-kissing Paizo, etc. are becoming more than tiresome.

For those clamoring for a radically new edition, all change is not good. A PF 2.0 will likely not satisfy some, heck even most, of the radical design suggestions being thrown around. Even if/when a substantially different PF 2.0 appears one day, once you realize Paizo didn't adhere to your specific criteria then what? Immediate calls for PF 3.0?

There have been threads recently that have progressed well beyond differences in taste - complaints of developer's turning a deaf ear & blind eye to the poster's obvious RPG genius, calling Paizo incompetent, exaggerated claims of bloat, references to new material as "tumors" & "cancerous". Not to mention the dismissive posts or outright attacks on those who don't agree, or even dare to not agree as strongly about the things they view as broken. These are the standard-bearers of the Paizo fanbase that should guide the specs & goals of future Pathfinder content? Do they even like the game that they so radically wish to change? Did they ever?

I like Pathfinder in it's current form. Do I like everything? No, but I look to things like Pathfinder Unchained and third-party publishers to provide me alternatives that don't require me to redo/undo everything. Paizo continues to produce some of the highest quality products in the RPG industry - ever, not just today. They continue to find new design space and creative elements in a system that, according to claims that are very similar to the "PF2 must come!" crowd, was "done" and "used up" back in 2008. Archetypes, new classes, new takes on races and monsters, subsystems like those found in Ultimate Campaign now combining with products like Pathfinder Unchained & Psychic Magic.

Not to mention that they've displayed an incredible amount of skill and knowledge with how to profitably run & just as importantly, grow, a RPG business. Eric Mona has, for several years running, cited that Core Rulebook sales continue to grow.

Yeah, I'll stick with Paizo & Pathfinder. I don't have to like everything, but they're doing a TON of things right.

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