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I appreciate that folks are mixing in some "cautious" with their optimism regarding the audio dramas, but as I have heard the whole episode and have been working with Big Finish on the first five scripts (so far), I wanted to pop in and encourage you to keep an open mind about this product line.
For starters, these are NOT audiobooks. Big Finish has produced full-cast audio adventures, with music, sound effects, and a large cast including four regular characters and numerous supporting roles and bit players. While of course everyone will need to decide if the asking price makes sense to them, comparing Pathfinder Legends to an audiobook isn't really a fair comparison. These are not audiobooks.
The cast has been reduced from six to four due primarily to Big Finish's experience with more than 200 Doctor Who audio dramas that it's difficult for listeners to follow the storyline when there are so many characters fighting for screen time. Even making sure that six characters each have "character moments" means that much of the plot could get crowded out. Don't worry too much if your favorite character is not featured in this series. The plan is to produce additional adventures that will feature some different characters, too.
I don't think there's much rhyme or reason to the gender balance of the party. It certainly doesn't have anything to do with Big Finish having more male actors available than female actors. They have access to hundreds of top-talent voice actors, and all of the folks working on the Burnt Offerings audios are great.
The actors portraying Harsk and Ezren, for example, are _wonderful_. Those voices "are' the voices of those characters in my mind, now, so when I'm reading a line from a Pathfinder Comics script or an upcoming Big Finish drama, their voices are the ones I hear in my head. They really do a good job to add to the iconic characters.
As you might imagine, given the running time a lot of the minor elements of the story of the Adventure Path have been condensed or cut out entirely. Big Finish has used the modules as a basis, and then produced an _adaptation_ of the material. Everything in the audios will be familiar to folks who really know Rise of the Runelords, but folks expecting the equivalent of a "shot-for-shot" remake of the Adventure Path are likely to be disappointed.
But folks who keep and open mind, who are interested in the characterizations of the iconic characters, and who are eager to hear the Pathfinder world come alive are going to find A LOT to like about the audio dramas.
Big Finish has done a terrific job.
Some time in the future. ;)
We're in paint masters on Reign of Winter set right now, have approved all the sculpts on the following set, and are through all sculpt approvals on the set after that.
I'm still building the set list for the one after that. It's about half done.
I have a vague idea what the set after that is.
There are a few other smaller releases in the works as well, but I've got nothing concrete to report on that front.
Remember that releases are slowing down a little now, so the frequency will not be so fast.
There have been some changes with the vendor that have pushed this back significantly, and possibly off the schedule entirely. We'll let you know if and when that changes, but for now I have to say it is unlikely to make it for this year's anniversary, even if that anniversary is a year from yesterday.
It's a combination of things.
Sometimes we assume a clear plastic figure will work great, but once we see it, we decide to add paint highlights to make it more interesting. Ideally, you can still appreciate some of the clear effect by holding it up to light or something, but these are generally mid-process changes to create what we think will be better-looking miniatures.
Understanding why something like a black dragon or a Kamadan might be cast in clear plastic requires a bit of understanding of how miniatures are made. Generally speaking, a mini is composed of between 1 and as many as 8 different pieces, each with its own "slot" in the mold. Molds tend to be about the size of a dirt bike wheel in circumference, so many more than one figure fits on the same mold. All of the pieces on a single mold are filled with the same plastic, so if even one figure in that mold must be cast in clear plastic, they all will be cast in clear plastic. If there is not enough clear figures to fill a mold, WizKids will put non-clear figures on the same mold and simply paint over the clear plastic.
Unfortunately, I do not know enough about the sealer or paint specifics to answer this question. Sorry!
I am hoping to do a tavern-themed set some time in the future, which would be a great place to include some of these figures.
We've already done town guards in Heroes & Monsters (and there's another one coming shortly), and a fifth of the Skull & Shackles set probably qualifies for your sailor mini.
If you can stomach a monkey on his shoulder and a spell effect on his hand, S&S's Gilbrok the Tongue is our best "old man" so far. He seems to fit your other criteria.
Legends of Golarion has a king and a queen already. I can see maybe doing a less martial-looking (and better executed, frankly) king in a future set, but I think Queen Ileosa is pitch perfect and fits your description perfectly.
At least three other suggestions of yours are coming within the next two sets.
The rest will have to wait, but a lot of them are enticing.
According to a conversation between our sales team and Esdevium from earlier this week, they're saying early March but claim it could be as early as late February. So I was able to get a little bit of visibility on the UK specifically. They apologize about the weather delays (mostly stateside) that contributed to a late UK release for this product, and assure us that they are taking steps to improve this gap in the future.
I don't have any idea, of course, but I wouldn't be surprised at all to learn that WotC gets a higher royalty percentage on their licenses than we do. That could account for some of the difference in retail price, I suppose.
That's a good question. I do have plans for providing more adventure content for PFS, but those plans interlock with many other plans at Paizo. Sometimes resources that I would prefer go to one thing end up getting cannibalized by a more pressing and immediate need. We're currently focusing a ton of attention and effort to getting a stronger hold on our production schedule. I have hope and expectation that mastering that issue will provide the opportunity we need to commit more resources to PFS adventures.
Oh, it's nothing so dramatic as all of that. I read and comment on these boards just like everybody. I'm not trying to shut down discussion of this, just letting Patrick Harris specifically know that his concerns have been noted and will be considered in future decisions of this nature, but that there is not really anything to be done in this case, and that continuing to gripe about it (however constructively) is not likely to have any additional effect above and beyond the several similar posts already in this thread.
Patrick Harris @ MU wrote:
Your concerns have been well noted by the PFS team, by the other participants in this thread, and by Paizo's publisher. The latter is working very hard to devote more resources to Pathfinder Society as soon as possible, so that we have more capacity to do things like this. This year, internal scheduling concerns make it so that drafting a brand new scenario for the Exclusive slot was not in the cards.
I respectfully ask you to roll with this particular blow. The deed is done. We understand that it is not universally popular, and the best we can do is take that into consideration when we are planning out our offerings for 2015 and beyond.
I hear the comments on the goat rarity. In the case of a basic sculpt like this, I'll often err on the side of common in favor of reserving the uncommon slot for a more complex sculpt or paint job. I figure a GM could use a herd of goats or something if need be. I also have to think of the guy who buys three or four boosters instead of the guy who buys a whole case. Still, this is one of the hardest parts about building these set lists (especially in the case of "Adventure Path" sets with lots of NPCs), and I'm constantly tinkering with my methodology based on feedback from customers.
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Huh. That is a very interesting idea.
The photos shown here are generally "paint masters," meaning that we send these figures to the factory and expect them to match this quality as closely as possible. Most of the time, they do an excellent job. Sometimes, the plant's quality control slips at certain points during the production run, meaning it's possible to have some variance in fidelity to the paint master.
WizKids' factories seem to have especial trouble not overpainting female faces, which is something we continue to work with them to improve.
Wow, thanks guys. It took forever for people to get to play it, so I was really starved for feedback for about a year or so. Glad to hear people enjoyed it. I had a great time running it, as it really gave me a chance to both focus on some of my favorite aspects of Pathfinder continuity (the Society, Durvin Gest, Galt, ice devils) while at the same time getting in touch with my organized play roots.
To be honest there are still some issues we need to address (female human faces, for example), but overall I was very impressed with my pulls. Until I get faces that look as good as Beginner Box Heroes again I'm not going to call the paint issues "resolved," but then again I think I will always push for improvement no matter what.
The post on the Frost Drake will indeed be clear.
There's also this: A Player Companion can involve setting background, feat design, item design, spell design, and other neat little bits.
A Module puts it all together. There is no writing task like an adventure to really push your understanding of the game and how it all works together as a whole. It's the best test for a Superstar.
Lots of people can "fake it" or luck their way into writing a neat item, or having a good idea for a spell.
It is impossible to "fake" writing a good adventure.