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Erik Mona

Erik Mona's page

Publisher, Chief Creative Officer. Pathfinder Society Member. 6,064 posts. 3 reviews. 1 list. 1 wishlist.


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Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

We are working on the subscriptions issue, and hope to have something in place before the next series starts.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Right. Two full sets in 2015 plus at least 6 Iconic Heroes boxed sets.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

claudekennilol wrote:
First release in 2016?

Yes, I'm working on the setlist for a set that will not release until probably March or April of 2016.

These things take a looooong time. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Yes. WizKids has not yet solicited the next set, so I can't talk about it. The situation should resolve itself shortly.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

We're currently discussing planning for the next series, so things are rosy enough to keep doing them.

They could, of course, be doing better, so please help us spread the word!

They're great for work commutes. I just finished Big Finish's 25th Doctor Who audio, which I'm using for exactly that purpose!

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

As soon as WizKids lets me. Quite soon, I think.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Wow. I feel bad for the guy who paid $49.95 for the Slaver Demon on eBay three days ago.

Merry Christmas, buddy! :/

:)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

No.

We wanted to focus on more popular, mainstream monsters with the widest possible base of people interested in using them in campaigns.

Urdefhans were never seriously considered.

My position is that we need to have a book like this prove itself with much, much more common monsters than that before we can dream of diluting the customer pool with creatures they don't recognize.

Monster Codex 4? Sure.

Some sort of Pathfinder Campaign Setting Monster Codex? Absolutely.

Not here.

Not when so many folks were skeptical of whether they would need this book, and not when we're trying something that has basically never been done before.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Cletus:

I've been out sick the last two days so I am unfortunately not up to date on the progress that has been made in that time. (TriOmegaZero's post provides some measure of encouragement).

My understanding of the problem is that a recent software upgrade to our shipping software accidentally erased a prior fix related to shipping Pathfinder Battles boxes. Because these boxes are unusually large for their weight, the software got confused about the shipping rate, locking it to an ultra-expensive custom shipping option that would cost customers hundreds of bucks.

The second the team became aware of this they immediately began fixing the problem.

I'm not sure if that amount of information is helpful to you in any way, but there it is. That's what happened.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Brandon Hodge and I just completed a wide-ranging interview about Occult Adventures on the Know Direction podcast.

You can listen to the interview here.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Thanks to the lads from Know Direction, who were kind enough to invite me and Brandon Hodge to be their guests this evening. The topic was Occult Adventures, the major 2015 Pathfinder RPG hardcover rules release.

We also briefly discussed Pathfinder comics, including major revelations about the next Pathfinder comic series from Dynamite, with stories from Pathfinder co-creators Erik Mona, F. Wesley Schneider, and James L. Sutter.

You can listen to the wide-ranging interview on the other side of the link.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Shem wrote:

I bought two boxes of both the goblins and the undead.

I think I did my part.

I get this isn't going to happen, but kobolds would be nice in one of those boxes.

Maybe in a different format.

The kobolds and orcs in Legends of Golarion were designed to be "feeders" for kobold and orc Builder Series sets.

Oh, well.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

There will be a lot of new stuff very shortly.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

There will be very, very soon.

It's going to be awesome.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

And, btw, apologies on any shipping mishaps on Lost Coast orders. It was a top agenda item at today's management meeting and all departments of the company are treating it very seriously. I am informed that a solution is in the works, and beg for a couple more days' patience as we work through the problem.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

The goblin and undead sets did not sell well enough for WizKids to be interested in that format.

There will not be any more sets like that in the foreseeable future. Everybody loved them, but not enough people bought them. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

bugleyman wrote:


(why two boggards? The world really needs a 2nd wolf much more than it needed that second boggard).

I included two boggards in the set because I like to mix up the sculpts for similar groups of creatures to make for more flavorful encounters. Generally speaking, I'd prefer to do a common "warrior" type, a common "archer" type, uncommon "brutes" for advanced or leveled martial monsters, and rare leader and spellcaster types. Until I've covered all of those bases, I don't really consider myself "done" with a somewhat common race.

As for more wolves, we still need a dire wolf and worg, both of which are more likely than another wolf. I know they've been out a while, but it seems to me like the original D&D Minis sets were lousy with canines, so I assume at least a decent number of collectors are good as far as Medium wolves are concerned.

We'll probably do another one, as the single from Heroes & Monsters was VERY popular, but in the meantime you can pick up Harbinger wolves from the old DDM line for five bucks on ebay. I just checked, and there are plenty to be had.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Greg Hurst wrote:


I wish some of the minis like the fire giant king and the hill giant in suspenders had been unique as I don't see my self needing the 3 of each that I got. I feel that overall there are quite a few more day-to-day usable minis here than from Reign of Winter which had all those weird 6-legged weasels or whatever.

Expect the distribution (and general utility) of figures in future sets to align a bit more with your expectations. This set had to absorb a few figures cut from previous ones, which is why those two giants are uncommons, for example. This type of thing becomes less common going forward from here.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

We've been focusing on things other than Huges recently, but I'll see what I can do to work it back into the conversation.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

In case the blog doesn't make it clear, these are actual production-run versions of these figures. As I understand it, the versions sold in stores should look very much like this.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

They literally just started, so I imagine it's still working its way through the system. It takes several days for the entire sub run to process and ship.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Ha! Yep, I have a pack of that in that shelf system. Oh well, bonus ad for Wizards of the Coast! :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Frog people get their own book. They'd resent having to share with snakes.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.

I think we've generally steered clear of dragon-men because that was so overdone (often by us) in the Dragon and Dungeon magazine days. 3.5 had dragon races all over it, especially in the latter period immediately preceding the introduction of Pathfinder.

I think a lot of us also thought that the fin-headed half-dragons from third edition D&D were really goofy looking, and didn't fit our grittier sense of what the game world should be like. Almost too fantastic, if you will. Keep in mind this is going on 12 years ago, now, so I think some of us have mellowed in our militancy about this issue. I mean, at one time we had a "no succubi adventures" rule after doing too many of them in Dungeon, but we've obviously gotten past that.

At the VERY end of third edition, WotC made dragon-men a major part of their brand, and something that most of us associated with fourth edition. Dragon-men seemed more like a "D&D thing" than a "Pathfinder" thing, if that makes sense, so I think the focus on dragon-men in D&D resulted in less of this sort of thing in Pathfinder.

But anyway, there's clearly interest in the idea and it would be fun to try to do a book like "Blood of Dragons" some day.

I wouldn't include the other races folks have been suggesting here, like nagaji, lizardfolk, etc. I'd give the latter its own book, and I'd throw a couple of serpentfolk-like creatures (and maybe the vishkanya) into a book called 'Blood of Serpents."

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Cleanthes,

Thanks for reminding me.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Lemmy wrote:


We don't really need 6 new classes every year. We don't even need getting a new class every year... We already have 36 of them. And a few of those are quite unnecessary already.

I definitely agree with this, and so does everybody else. Occult Adventures would have had fewer classes if we didn't try to put all of the relevant concepts in the same book, rather than drib-drabbing them out over the years.

It's difficult for me to think of a book concept that could spawn enough "legitimate" classes to reach even six at this point.

Occult/Psychic is a very rich vein, that we've been deliberately leaving largely untapped until we could "do it right," all at the same time.

If you've got tons of ideas of other themes like that that inspire classes that absolutely demand to be made and that would meet with general acclaim, I'd be delighted to hear them.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Awesome item, btw.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Joana wrote:
Plus, if I'm understanding the problem correctly, a quick riffle through a newly-completed book would have looked fine; it was only after the ink fully dried that the pages started sticking together.

This.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

8 people marked this as a favorite.
The black raven wrote:

Isn't the feeling of bloat related to the number of classes that are sprung on us these days ?

I do not know if someone followed the chronology, but I feel that, before ACG/OA, we had more time to swallow each class that was thrown at us while this does not feel like it's the case here.

August 2009 = Core : 10 classes (but heavily based on 3.5 and with alpha and beta playtests to get used to them)

August 2010 = APG : 6 classes

April 2011 = UM : 1 class

August 2011 = UC : 3 classes

August 2014 = ACG : 10 classes

OA : 6 classes

So, after 3 years with zero new classes and 4 years with only 4 new classes, we are dealing with 10 new classes and 6 new classes in play test.

The only comparable period was the playtest for the APG, and that was a considerably easier learning experience because the 10 classes before were very familiar, which is definitely not the case with those in the ACG.

So, the feeling of class bloat from Paizo does have some actual basis.

The real outlier on that list is the Advanced Class Guide. In retrospect that book should have followed the APG model and focus on six classes, with a bit more support (and perhaps development) on those. I think the fact that it was a CLASS guide and the starting point of trying to replicate a bunch of interesting "multiclass' concepts escalated more than it should have, in retrospect.

Occult Adventures follows the Advanced Player's Guide pattern of six classes. The fact that it is tied to a new type of magic (and several associated cultural archetypes) means that "if it's psychic and it's worth having in the game, it's going in this book."

While my crystal ball is a bit shabby and cracked, I feel pretty confident that future books will not include the sort of new class pace we've seen over 2014-2015.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Our printer bound the books before the ink was dry, and many of the pages were basically sealed signatures, making the books difficult to open and read.

You could pretty easily grab a letter opener and separate the stuck pages with relatively minor damage to the page corners, but that is far below the standards that we hold for our products, or that the printer holds for their own work.

When notified of the problem they immediately offered to re-do the entire print run at their expense.

The Advanced Class Guide logo swap was our fault, and didn't substantially (or even "at all") change the value of the book's content, so we decided to bite the bullet and release it as is.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

The case I opened last weekend coughed up three each of the figures you cited in your hunt for giants, Wally. :)

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

The Forest Shadow is a super complex sculpt with a ton of three-dimensionality. When you get him in hand you'll understand why he's where he is, I think.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

The official release date is November 19. My guess is that preorders will likely ship a bit before that so that they arrive as close to that date as possible.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Kthulhu wrote:


I find it pretty hard to believe you don't understand what he meant by that comment, but anyway, here's the link.

Even Monte Cook has distanced himself from that stance these days (although it's kind of expected, given that that essay was at the center of the majority of most people's critical thoughts about the man).

Sorry, I should have been more clear. I understand the phrase and I've read the essay. What I meant was in what ways, specifically, Lemmy thought that Paizo had fallen into the habit of "ivory tower design."

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Lemmy wrote:
And I believe the adherence to ivory tower design is unnecessarily hastening the process.

I'm curious about what you mean by this comment, specifically.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Wiggz wrote:


Just to clarify - once Unchained is released there will be two separate, legal versions of the Fighter (and Monk, Rogue, etc.), each with its own attendant archetypes?

"In existence," yes. If/when we refer to the Unchained monk, for example, we'll call it an unchained monk in the stat block.

It remains to be seen how these classes will be implemented in PFS. It's too early to make those decisions, but it's certainly my hope and expectation that players will be able to choose one version or the other.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Also, Unearthed Arcana didn't have alternative versions of classes. It's certainly my hope that these classes appear in PFS and in future books, if the authors of an adventure would prefer to use them over their Core equivalents.

Yes, it could turn out to be a book of options most people don't use. I hope that doesn't happen, and plan to do whatever I can to help the book avoid that fate.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

8 people marked this as a favorite.

All I'm asking for is that you not act like a jerk.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

22 people marked this as a favorite.
Kthulhu wrote:


Ironically, almost all of these underpowered prerequisites are for martial characters...spellcasters have very few feat taxes or the equivalent. Which only exacerbates the whole spellcaster vs martial imbalance even further. And the worst part is that Paizo doesn't seem to give a damn...they continue to follow that design paradigm...despite the imbalance, spellcasters have free choice to grab any of their overpowered options, while martials have to wade through a bunch of sub-optimal prerequisites in order to take their best (ie, somewhat viable) options.

If you like us so much, maybe turn down the hyperbole a little?

I mean, seriously. We're making a whole book called Pathfinder Unchained to re-address core elements of the system that people don't like. Included in that effort are redesigned rogue, monk, and barbarian classes, all of which will significantly amp up those martial classes.

I'm not certain it'll be to your liking, and I'm not certain we'll do a perfect job.

I am certain that spending a quarter of a million dollars to print and a third of our hardcover release schedule to address some of these issues registers somewhere north of "Paizo doesn't seem to give a damn."

Criticism is fine. Criticism is good. Criticism is welcome.

But I do recommend occasionally tempering that criticism with good faith.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Squeakmaan wrote:
My hope is the when Occult Adventures is fully released that it will contain some info on the Dreamlands.

It will.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Well, I guess that's what they mean by "Innovate".

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

I've opened three of my bricks so far, and I've found two common figures with slightly misplaced eyes that I'd probably want to to fix before putting them on my game table. A lot of the faces look really good to me.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yes, but I'm not planning to cover them anyway. It just feels like a different vibe to me.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Yes and probably not.

I'm sure I'll be mentioning the First World, but I see that as more of a myth/fairy realm than something occult and esoteric. I'm also not spending a lot of time on the Plane of Shadow.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
xavier c wrote:
What are the esoteric planes?

Astral, Ethereal (and associated demiplanes)

Material (ok, not esoteric, but an important part of the overall scheme
Positive, Negative

All of these planes play into the spells and systems in the book, so each gets a short section with some new rules, context, and other fun stuff.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

13 people marked this as a favorite.

The book WILL, by the way, contain stats for a tinfoil hat.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

This book does not contain any specifically Cthulhu Mythos material. There are no great old ones, etc. It does have some material on cults and stuff, but when/if we finally get around to doing a genuine top-to-bottom take on Mythos themes, we want it to be in a book that doesn't also include psychics and eastern mysticism and stuff.

There's definitely overlap thematically, but we'd prefer to give that material in specific a more robust treatment that just making it a small section of a book with lots of other items on the agenda.

Some day, the stars will be right for this sort of thing, but that day is not today, alas.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Speaking totally personally, as in "not in any way officially as a Paizo employee," I sympathize with some of the perspective of the OP, even though as a player I often benefit from and greatly appreciate haste being cast upon me.

I don't really have a problem with the "visuals" of it. The game has always been pretty crazy and high-octane in terms of weird magical effects, so I'm not sure people moving fast is more reality-breaking than huge exploding balls of fire.

But it is _VERY POWERFUL_. As a force-multiplier it's difficult for me to think of a better spell.

The part of me that has been playing for a very long time, and who values weird little Gygaxian subsystems more than he probably should, I do sort of long for the days when having haste cast upon you would age you a year of your life. By a careful read of the old AD&D rules, any magical aging also triggered a system shock check, which involved a very small chance that your character would die outright.

That kind of atmospheric drawback made haste not quite the "one size fits all" solution that it became as the game system developed over the years. While I'm fine with the spell as it is now, a do long for the days when people thought twice about casting this spell, or casting it on the entire party in every fight, anyway.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Thelemic_Noun wrote:


"Hey guys, I know we got into this game to project ourselves into a fantastic universe, but the very mechanics we use to determine success or failure tell me that launching a ball of fire to obliterate our foes is objectively, provably, mathematically worse than turning all of you into a shakey-cam effects shot from Crank 2. So put on your Statham face, because rules interactions and probability calculations that weren't fully thought through at the time by some guys in Seattle during the Clinton administration are about to break your immersion like the neck of a Hispanic guy being pulled out of a helicopter."

This made me laugh out loud.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

It's going to be a big psychic surprise!

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