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F. Wesley Schneider

F. Wesley Schneider's page

Editor-in-Chief. 3,027 posts (3,057 including aliases). 1 review. No lists. No wishlists. 3 aliases.


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Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Ross Byers wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:
Vengeful Stinger: Grow a Wasp like tail with stinger that strikes at those who dare to attack you.
I like the art for that one.

That was totally one of those are pieces where I ordered it and was like "That's never going to read."

But somehow it did!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

The NPC wrote:

Mr. F. Wesley Schneider,

This was written on the "Ask James Jacobs" Thread. Do you have an answer to this question?

James Jacobs wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Why are all the violent Empyreal Lords Archons? Why no combat heavy Azatas ?
You'd have to ask Amber and Wes. My guess? Archons, being lawful, are more intolerant and thus more prone to aggression, whereas the azatas are chaotic and a lot more easy-going.

What's suggested here is not some subtle design philosophy. It's purely coincidence.

While archons are highly organized and many lean toward military-like hierarchies, that is not meant to suggest that all archons are martial-minded. It's also not meant to suggest that the empyreal lords of other races are less prone to or skilled at combat, strategy, or violence.

The empyreal lords presented in Chronicle of the Righteous are but a handful of the empyreal lords in existence. We'll certainly learn about more in the future, many likely designed to take advantage of creative opportunities like those singled out here.

If anyone wants to jump in and create their own empyreal lords to fill in some of these spaces sooner rather than later, though, by all means!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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doc the grey wrote:
Can you give us any idea on what hell was like before Dahak scorched it through, how different was it from what it is now, were the asura and kytons roaming about it during that time or did they not appear till after, if the were around how did Dahak's inferno affect their lives on that plane?

Someday we'll get into the history and prehistory of the planes, but for now the specifics range from being pretty academic to purposefully vague. All I'm really comfortable with saying about this right now is that in a time before most deities, in epochs beyond any sane reckoning, before mortal life was a thing that was considered significant, things in the multiverse were different. How folks want that to impact their games is up to them.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Tirisfal wrote:
1) Do you have any future plans for the Devil in Gray?

Not specifically. If you want more ideas for it or that area, watch Brotherhood of the Wolf.

Tirisfal wrote:
2) Do you have any tips for building a haunted castle super dungeon? :)

Variety. A haunted castle doesn't need to just be a castle. With Bastardhall I've detailed a now nearby, a ruined village, the lake surrounding it, the grounds beyond, the gardens, and only recently a chapel and ruins within its outermost walls. So far, my haunted castle has very little actual castle.

Each of these areas has also had its own distinct theme of monsters and threats, making each quite distinct. Many players have come to the dungeon expecting it to be thick with undead, but thus far there's been more fey, vermin, and haunts than anything else.

So don't feel like your dungeon has to have just one physical structure or genre of monsters.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

This might be helpful: Best Bard Books/Films.

If you're wondering how bards work and want some examples, trying checking out some of these stories and movies.

Although the movie's weird, Paul Bettany as Chaucer in A Knight's Tale is a pretty spot-on oratory bard.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

wolfpack75 wrote:

Thank you, I was staring at that with no clue what it meant.. other than the obvious inference.

So they are Hell residents with power but aren't part of the corporate structure?
I didn't expect Demi-gods to be able to grant much in the way of power...

You can expect more about these characters and their status in Hell in Asmodeus's write-up, along with plenty more about many other plenty-powerful and worship-worthy demigods.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Majuba wrote:
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
That's tomorrow, 5:30 Pacific, Know Direction Podcast!

Fixed link (I think!)

Have the Empyreal Lords been assigned appropriate sub-domains, or do they still get "all but..."?

They, and many, many others, get the full treatment.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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While we'll definitely be previewing more of Inner Sea Gods over the coming days and weeks, if you're keen to learn more soon rather than later be sure to check out the Know Direction podcast tomorrow!

We'll be talking about Inner Sea Gods, what's new, what's awesome, the insanity of putting this thing together, and things so secret I don't even know what they are yet.

That's tomorrow, 5:30 Pacific, Know Direction Podcast!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Mike Franke wrote:
I personally am heading straight to the chapter on selling my soul!

Rightly so! That's my chapter and includes the second best advice I can give practical-minded future immortals and devil-may-care despots! Win eternal power and influence semi-gods with such irrefutable tips as:

* How to untethered a ratty soul from your gross meat-body!

* Determining (and increasing!) the value of your mortal essence!

* Finding agents you can absolutely, always, 100% trust to give you fair value for your afterlife!

* Tips to assure you'll never, ever, ever, need (or want!) a hereafter!

* Phenomenal rewards vastly outweighing pedestrian mortal taboos.

* Practical ways to make your most depraved—er, LORDLY—dreams come true!

* And Much, MUCH more!

Act fast! Before the soul market's flooded with the tarnished essences of everyone who bought the Kobold Guide to Magic first!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

5 people marked this as a favorite.
Liz Courts wrote:
JohnF wrote:

The product page is missing a word:

This special 16-page Pathfinder Module will initially be made available for Free RPG Day ..

(adhering to the proof-reading standards set by your Editor-in-Chief?)

That was my typo this time. :D

Oh to live entirely in the virtual world, where one's blackest sins prove so fleeting.

Boo hoo. Etc.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

bugleyman wrote:
Question: Is "strange, rarely seen powers" an allusion to mythic, or to the advanced class guide pregens?

Advanced Class Guide. There is no mythic content in this adventure.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Paladinosaur wrote:
Wesley, can you tell us which are the pregens?

Yes I can. But to do so would break my new BLOOD OATH.

So, as not to risk the wrath of my esteemed colleagues, I'm going to let everyone be surprised come Free RPG Day.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Gentleman Alligator wrote:
You're a cruel, cruel man Mr. Schneider.

Yes.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

zergtitan wrote:
*takes knife and cuts hand* I swear the Blood Oath to remain silent! Though I do expect these "meet the iconics" to happen in mid-late May.

Or June.

We'll let folks know once we have something like a schedule.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Mikaze wrote:

New Iconics AND an Osirion-themed adventure?

GIGGITY

Gentleman Alligator wrote:
I hope the Arcanist is of Garundi descent.
While there's a lot of arcane historoy behind the Garundi(seriously, between Nethys, Nex, and Geb...), we have two Garundi iconics already. But we don't have any Mwangi ones. And they've got Old Mage Jatembe and the Magaambya just itching to be represented. :D

It is SO tempting to comment on this.

But I'm not.

In fact, I'm going to go make everyone swear a blood oath not to reveal these characters until this product hits and the Meet the Iconics start rolling out in May/June.

BLOOD OATH.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Devastation Bob wrote:
Would this dovetail into the Mummy's Mask AP as a side adventure easily?

Rob would be just the man to answer this. I'll point him your way once we're all caffeinated and presentable.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Axial wrote:
Wait a minute! If this module provides an early preview of the final ACG classes, does it contain the updates that were made after the last playtest document?

The pregens were created with the class rules available in February. These are refined from the playtest, but we also put in the caveat that these might not be the final-final builds.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Strife2002 wrote:
How many players is this for? I know most of the time it's for 4, but Dawn of the Scarlet Sun was for 6 players.

4.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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DM Barcas wrote:
Time for seppeku.

I started editing with blood years ago. No one ever mentioned it.

Either we have a very high tolerance for gore here, or folks are too busy to notice.

So I'm looking for something a mite flashier.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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brad2411 wrote:
We have a swashbuckler and I would say a Bloodrager or warpriest.

Swashbuckler and Warpriest, yup.

Expect names and details on these characters closer to Free RPG Day and the Advanced Class Guide's release!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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I'm going to jump out in front of this WAY before it even comes up (which it certainly will).

Risen from the Sands is awesome—I just ran it last week and we had an absolute blast. Rob McCreary did a fantastic job and poured equal shares of artistry and sadism into this work.

Not detracting from any of that in the least, but still a thing of note, is the fact that there's a very visable typo marring the back cover. In the tagline at the top, in about 1,000-point font, the word "Pharaoh" is misspelled "Pharoah."

And that is TOTALLY my fault.

I made a change to the line during my final approval and no one past me ever saw it. So 100%, unequivocally, absolutely, without a doubt, my fault.

Of course, as always happens in cases like this, that means I learned about this when we got our first printed copies in house. You know, when it's absolutely too late to correct the issue.

So that's a thing. A personally and professionally embarrassing thing that—along with 10 years of dishonor—has resulted in the hanging of a very clearly lettered Post-It note in my office.

While the print copies will bear this beauty mark, the error has already been corrected on all PDF copies.

In any case, my deepest, most sincere apologies to gamers, Egyptian nobility, and literate sorts everywhere. Fortunately, though, my utter failure has absolutely zero impact on the awesomeness you'll find on the front cover or on any of the pages within.

On a slightly lighter note (if there are such things as lightness and joy anymore), if you're a fan of schadenfreude (and who isn't?), here's a link to the moment this was brought to my attention. Enjoy... you jackals.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Wraith235 wrote:
will thizs be PFS Sanctioned like the previous years

Sure will be. Expect more details down the road.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Mechalibur wrote:
Ordellia's a ghost? Hmmmm...

Classic Horrors Revisited, page 26. :)

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Mechalibur wrote:

Ordellia's a ghost? Hmmmm...

Is Unleashed going to be a recurring book type? The last one was pretty neat.

We're making a few adjustments. I'm not a fan of sticking to a format just to stick to a format—so don't expect hoards, for example. But, we'll see how this one goes. If folks dig this as much as they did dragons, we'll certainly be interested in hearing what people want next.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Jadeite wrote:
Will this book reprint the Occult Mystery from Reign of Winter 5?

Take a look at the freshly updated product description above.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

137ben wrote:

1. What are the top 5 reasons that Daemons are more awesome than Demons?

2. What are the top 5 reasons that Daemons are more awesome than Devils?

To each his own, but ultimately, I'm quite pleased with the tact we ended up taking with daemons in Pathfinder. I was a big Planescape fan back in the 90s, but the yugoloths always felt so tacked on. The nihilistic, screw law, screw chaos, burn it all down then burn the ashes direction fits nicely with my sense of the neutral alignments being, the "pure" alignments. That folks actually care about daemons at all has been fantastically gratifying, especially since at one point we were having conversations like "Do we even want to bother with a daemon book?" Turns out it as worth it. :)

As for the top 5 reasons they're awesome, it's the same for both: The Four Horsemen—which readers of Pathfinder #2 can see that I slipped in the game even that early on (though their direction was since refined)—and thanadaemons, which are hardcore. :)

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Rysky wrote:
Since we have obediences for Demon and Empyreal Lords and the core Deities in the upcoming Gods of the Inner Sea, what would you put as Obediences for the Archedevils? If not all of them what about Dispater?
doc the grey wrote:
Rysky wrote:
Since we have obediences for Demon and Empyreal Lords and the core Deities in the upcoming Gods of the Inner Sea, what would you put as Obediences for the Archedevils? If not all of them what about Dispater?
With this guy. Also is there any way we will see obediences for the 8 in print some time in the future?

I'm going to skip questions about this for two reasons: not to hedge future me in when I can actually dedicate some design time to creating these, and to provide a PrC that ties in with them.

For now, indulge whatever you feel like the archdevils' vibes and areas of concern suggest. Sacrifices of favored animals (see Inner Sea Gods), corruption of other creatures, contributing toward long term seductions, and self debasement all seem like general way to please these guys.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Kittyburger wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:


And because you asked for meaty, here's something that I think would be right up the cult of Arshea's alley:
I'd imagine that many transgendered people within the Cult would still probably prefer the girdle over the cord, if only because the "cursed" magic item doesn't require you to wear it after it has changed your gender.
That or the cord should be much much cheaper.
I think most would prefer the elixir over either - it's an instant one-and-done, not vulnerable to disjunction, remove curse or other similar magic. :)

Well good news!

Keep an eye out in 2014. :D

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

donato wrote:
GTA 5 approaches. Thoughts?

Soooo late on this, but I really enjoyed it. The torture scene was fantastically uncomfortable. Like I REALLY didn't want to keep playing it, and I don't know that I've ever had that visceral a reaction to a game. While there's certainly plenty to criticize—it's FAR from PC or anything like forward thinking on a range of fronts—it was enjoyed for what it was.

Also, I didn't expect to enjoy Trevor at all, but his writing was great.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Steve Geddes wrote:

Hi wes. I probably asked you about this before, but there's been a flurry of similar requests recently so I thought I'd ask again in the hope momentum was building..

Any chance for a devils revisited in a year or two? Is spare time really that important?

DAMN YOU JACKALS! CAN'T THERE BE A MOMENT'S PEACE!?!?

*Ahem*

I mean. There's certainly a chance. I've got a few other pressing things I need to get through (see that interview I just linked above for the primary example). Beyond that though, more on devils could be fun!

And so could Bastardhall...

And so could writing another creepy AP...

And so could a book on hauntings...

And so could more fiction...

And so could...

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

If you're on this thread, this might interest you.

Author Dave Gross was kind enough to include me in his Creative Colleagues series of interviews. Check it out to hear more from me about creating some of the most terrifying parts of the Pathfinder Campaign Setting, “consensual trauma,” writing GLBTQ characters, and my long hinted at secret project!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Name and description sound made-up. If we're going to invent people for these blogs they should come off as more believable.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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If I were looking to rename these characters in ways that have similarly ominous impacts, but that don't have specific meanings in Italian, I might suggest the following options.

The first set takes the existing names and replaces them with the names of fallen angels (as listed in Gustav Davidson's A Dictionary of Angels, Including the Fallen Angels).

■ Alichino - Astoreth
■ Barbariccia - Balberith
■ Cagnazzo - Caym
■ Calcabrina - Carnivean
■ Ciriatto - Carreu
■ Draghignazzo - Danjal
■ Farfarello - Ezequeel
■ Graffiacane - Gressil
■ Libicocco - Lauviah
■ Malacoda - Marchosias
■ Rubicante - Raum
■ Scarmiglione - Senciner

Alternatively, if you'd like less directly Judeo-Christian options, try these from Theresa Bane's Encyclopedia of Demons in World Religions and Cultures.

■ Alichino - Ayperor
■ Barbariccia - Bensozia
■ Cagnazzo - Chordeva
■ Calcabrina - Ciuapipiltin
■ Ciriatto - Conferentes
■ Draghignazzo - Diralisen
■ Farfarello - Finaxos
■ Graffiacane - Gandarewa
■ Libicocco - Librabis
■ Malacoda - Mascarvin
■ Rubicante - Ramaratz
■ Scarmiglione - Serguliath

Hopefully these (or some combination of these) are helpful and don't come off as silly in your language in the same way.

(Longer post and reasoning here)

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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With the malbranche I chose to do what we frequently do when it comes to new monsters and divine beings, I drew upon the existing names and cache of creatures already established in folklore, myth, and fiction. That's not necessarily the same as drawing from a primary source, though.

Let me use another infernal figure as an example.

Here's Barbatos's depiction from a century or two ago.

Here's our depiction of Barbatos.

There isn't much in the way of similarities there visually. So why use the character and/or name at all?

Well, aside from some overlap in their description and areas of concern, I picked up this archdevil's in part as a not to the readers out there who would recognize it. The intention is that some readers will recognize the name and even if they don't know all the specifics of Barbatos from the Ars Goetia and similar texts, they'll know that he's an established figure from real-world demonology with all the connotations that implies. They'll also have a thread they can follow if they're looking for more details on the character. So, in part—aside from our own tastes in mythology and demonology—we like to give readers the opportunity to see a cool name, have the satisfaction of finding a touchstone they recognize, have whatever emotional response they have to real-world demonology, and have the option to go on and learn more if they so choose.

Being respectful of the source material is particularly important to me—I wouldn't drawn in a character just to mock it. But if we can add to a figure's story to make it even cooler or more accessible or more popular, that's great.

We're also not the only folks to do this. There's a long tradition of game makers and storytellers drawing on mythological and fictional primary sources. And in many cases, that causes the new creations to diverge from the original material and take on their own lives.

The comic character Iron Man comes immediately to mind. His original outfit, I dare say, not awesome. His current incarnation, awesome. Same character, but he's changed radically from what he was a few short decades ago.

Closer to our genre, lets take beholders. They began as goofy pun monsters. A few decades later, they're one of most infamous creations of Dungeons & Dragons.

Time, momentum, popularity, and prevailing tastes change our preferences and our stories often change with them.

Getting back to the malbranche, lets see if there are any examples of this.

(Warning: Potential NSFW content to follow)

Here's the Google image results for Alichino. I'm seeing a lot of jesters and seductive pretty boys in here.

Here's the Google image results for Rubicante. I'm seeing a lot of red guys and fire monsters here.

Here's the Google image results for Scarmiglione. I'm seeing a lot of brutish and skeletal monstrosities in here.

Even when we just search for "Malbranche Demons" the results are typically less then comic. Going as far back a Gustav Dore, it looks like the malbranche have terrifying connotations.

While I know these modern visions are far from what Dante intended, they're still powerful characters. Even though their names might have comedic (or, at least, not frightening) connotations in their native tongue, those same names are the keys that unlock a host of fearful connotations for many gamers.

That's what I chose to draw on them in Book of the Damned: Princes of Darkness.

Now, all that being said, I'm not refuting the fact that in Italian, these names don't necessarily work. The hard definitions of those names are much stronger than any implications. So, if I were looking to rename these characters in a way that has a similarly ominous impact, I might suggest the following options.

The first set takes the existing names and replaces them with the names of fallen angels (as listed in Gustav Davidson's A Dictionary of Angels, Including the Fallen Angels).

■ Alichino - Astoreth
■ Barbariccia - Balberith
■ Cagnazzo - Caym
■ Calcabrina - Carnivean
■ Ciriatto - Carreu
■ Draghignazzo - Danjal
■ Farfarello - Ezequeel
■ Graffiacane - Gressil
■ Libicocco - Lauviah
■ Malacoda - Marchosias
■ Rubicante - Raum
■ Scarmiglione - Senciner

Alternatively, if you'd like less directly Judeo-Christian options, try these from Theresa Bane's Encyclopedia of Demons in World Religions and Cultures.

■ Alichino - Ayperor
■ Barbariccia - Bensozia
■ Cagnazzo - Chordeva
■ Calcabrina - Ciuapipiltin
■ Ciriatto - Conferentes
■ Draghignazzo - Diralisen
■ Farfarello - Finaxos
■ Graffiacane - Gandarewa
■ Libicocco - Librabis
■ Malacoda - Mascarvin
■ Rubicante - Ramaratz
■ Scarmiglione - Serguliath

Hopefully these (or some combination of these) are helpful and don't come off as silly in your language in the same way.

As an aside, I'd love to hear what plots you're cooking up using these characters. The malbranche haven't gotten a ton of play yet and I'm sure lots of folks here would like to hear what you have in store for them.

Also, I was in Lucca a few years back with the crew from Wyrd Edizioni and was shocked how much folks there were digging Council of Thieves. I've been eager to get back to Cheliax, Hell, and some strong political adventuring ever since, so be sure to let me know what you'd think of more in that same vein.

Thanks!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Tirisfal wrote:

So.

How did your Bastardhall game go at the PaizoCon this year?

;)

Frickin' fabulously! It was one of those times where you're GMing and know that if the PCs go left they'll find what's to the left and if they go right... well, they'll find what's on the left.

But it was good times! They met a very grabby old tree, almost got killed by their own wall of fire, and ventured into the servant's chapel... where some old magic was keeping a pair of nasty soul eaters contained. Well, contained until the PCs decided to tinker.

We had a harrower in the group who was quite adept at reading her cards, so that was a great addition!

Overall, good times. And I'm already gearing up for this year's game. In fact, I just got to re-run a group through the Black Gardens of Bastardhall, which I'll talk about here on the blog soon.

Thanks for asking!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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James Sutter wrote:

(づ。◕‿‿◕。)づ *♥:・゚✧ *♥:・゚✧

This is the greatest and weirdest compliment I have ever received.

Yeah, and that's after this last night. :P

Come on people. Some of us have to deal with this #$%&.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Mikaze wrote:
I would stand out on the balcony of my open air bedroom, my hands resting upon the parapet as I gazed longingly at the infinite stars shining in the night sky and my hair flows in the cool breeze...

LOL. Holy #$%&! Good show. :D

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Psiphyre wrote:

Hey Wes.

Since you've put a lot into developing devils & Hell in Pathfinder (such that you're probably the "devil-guy at Paizo" - in as much as James is the "demon-guy at Paizo"), I was wondering whether or not you've seen these?:

Consorts to the Archdevils

Although the consorts referred to above (DeviantArt page) apply to the D&D Lords of Hell, the illustrations just might be of interest to you...

So, will we be learning more on any consorts to the Pathfinder Archdevils? Do they all even have consorts? I'm pretty sure there was mention of Dispater having one (of a few?)...

Carry on!

--C.

I HAVE! And frickin' love them!

Lets see here. Who would even have them.

Not Barbatos... because reasons.
Not Mammon, since he's a genus loci.
Not Belial, since he can be his own consort.
Not Geryon, because he's snaky smart Godzilla.
Not Moloch, cince he.s made of fire.
Not Baalzebul, since he's insane and flies.
Not Mephistopheles, since he's A) alien enough to be beyond that or B) is married to Hell.
And probably not Asmodeus, because he only loves himself.

Really, Dispater is the only one I'd say definitely had past romances. I could see exceptions and arguments for some of the others, but personally I don't think their existing themes and trajectories set them on that course.

As for Dispater's exes, you'll want to check out Kobold Quarterly #23, which touches on Erecura, Feronia, and another.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Nicely done man! Good show!

PFS wouldn't be anywhere as awesome as it is without heroes like you! :D

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Alexander Augunas wrote:
For Wes: What's the number 1 word that you most commonly misspell/mistype?

Skipping ahead.

Normally, I would say "silhouette."

This week, I would say "pharaoh." Because I done @#$%ed it up in a very visible way that thousands of people are going to see in just a few more weeks here.

As soon as the product page goes live I plan to being my public flagellation. :(

It's cool, though. The shelf life on cover-bound spelling errors is only about 10 years, so in about 2024 I should have lived this down.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
As the Empyreal Lord Smiad (he's an archon and exhorts his followers to be honorable and slay evil dragons while aiding good ones) doesn't have a holy symbol in the books (he's one of the lesser ones in the back of Chronicle of the Righteous, and as a result doesn't have a full-page writeup), what, in your mind, would be a good holy symbol for his faithful to use? What would be a good obedience for his cultists to practice?

Holy Symbols: A scale carved to resemble dragon horns, a sunburst of scales, an armored dragon head (like a dragon knight), a golden eye, a spiral of golden fangs, a stained glass dragon design, a red dragon claw gripping and being gripped by a gold dragon claw. Stuff in that direction.

Obedience: Brew a tea made with scales (any reptile scales if dragon scales are not available; and they rarely are) and drink the bitter liquid while meditating. Burn scales with incense and meditate while standing over and breathing the thin smoke. Polish your collection of dragon fangs, paying honor to each in turn—especially your foes (assumes every worshiper starts with a dragon fang, either gifted by a dragon ally of the church or taken from a low-level dragon). Craft a toy or doll in the shape of a famous or known good-aligned dragon; give this to a child or passerby, making sure they know the story and good deeds of that dragon (helping spread knowledge that dragons are more than just monsters).

Try some of those on.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Rysky wrote:
Have you played either Demon's Souls or Dark Souls? If so what did you think of them?

I have not. I know of them, and have been hearing about them endlessly this week between Patrick and James, but I've been caught up in Castlevania Lord of Shadows 2, Spelunky, Lego Marvel, Starbound, and Culdcept Saga (an old fav that, for some reason, re-entered rotation) recently. Batman Arkham Origins and Pokemon Y are near next on the list, but either Stick or Truth or Bravely Default may jump them.

My husband's been playing Dead Nation and (replaying) Grandia III while I'm writing, so I've been getting those vicariously. Both seem really cool.

But Dark Souls is definitely on the list!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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captain yesterday wrote:
do you roll your abilities for your characters or use the point buy system? just curious

Rolling abilities is one of the most fun parts of the game for me. But I also have a deep love for wildly unoptimized characters. I run to run a game at some point where the characters are broadly different levels and see how that goes.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

ulgulanoth wrote:
After running through a bunch of the modules in a resent game, our group's cleric is feeling his god being cast in a bad light, being shown as the enemy on several senarious, ofcouse we're talking about Asmodeus, so can we have in the near future more support showing this god in a better light?

He's going to want to check out Inner Sea Gods. Asmodeus is ALL about good PR, after all. ;)

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
Mikaze wrote:
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
How does someone straddling those two worlds reconcile the different beliefs, or is such a thing impossible? James mentioned before in his thread that, for example, a Sklar-Quah Shoanti wouldn't venerate Sarenrae AND the totems at the same time. I'm a big fan of playing "straddling the line between ancient traditions and modern beliefs" kinds of characters, like many...

I'm not FWS, but...

I kind of took James' answer to be more about "could not get spells from both". I really like characters that straddle cultural lines too, and things like religious beliefs are rarely "all this" or "all that".

Currently playing a Shoanti half-orc who does just this. He venerates the totems of his Shrii-kirri Quah side as well as the celestial spirits and gods of his orc tribe's side, so it's a mishmash of Desna, the hawk, the wind, Pharasma, Sarenrae, and his ancestors and more. Some are seen as spirits closer to the natural world, some are seen as more a part of the spirit world beyond, but all are respected and worshipped. He tends to look to the totems for more immediate and tangible concerns of the natural world and the gods/celestials for spiritual matters of the heart and soul.

I understand, and that's perfectly fine for a non-caster, but if I decide to take levels of Cleric or Inquisitor, I'm told it won't fly, as clerics can't be pantheists. What do I do in those instances? Also, don't interrupt! I was asking Wes! >.<

Jumping ahead real quick.

This is a case where the rules demand one answer but the world allows for thousands. While I can see (and like) the idea of polytheistic cultures or faithful individuals, that doesn't play particularly nice with the RPG's rules. But fortunately, you can kind of have your cake and eat it too... from a flavor perspective.

If you're playing a devout character who expects to get supernatural power from a divine source, I don't think it's unreasonable to say that the godhead expects extreme devotion. (They're giving you the power to perform miracles after all.) That said, if your culture raised you in a more polytheistic way, I don't think outside either the realm of possibility or the god's tolerance for you to say a few prayers or swears in other divine figures' names. But, if you still expect to get power from one over all others, you have to hold that deity above all others.

So, in this context, if you want to play a Shoanti cleric and get the powers of Sarenrae, you're acknowledging that your character values Sarenrae's faith (and grant powers) over the totemism practiced by your culture. I'd play it that you can still join your family in their vernation of their totems—that's a cultural thing at this point—but you get no special benefits. Just attending or even participating in a basic ritual doesn't make you a member of that faith, you have to accept it into you more fundamentally than that. (Just because I attended mass at the Vatican doesn't make me Catholic. Every person paying respects at a Shinto temple doesn't instantly become shinto.) Even saying an occasional prayer to another deity or asking for a blessing as it pertains to events within other deities' purviews just makes sense—since it's a world where the gods are active and their dominions are known.

But despite all that, for the purposes of game balance, you can't use culture as a way to get more benefits than usual. Now, if you and you're GM wanted to work out some new balanced rules for a combo deity-totem character, that's cool, go for it. But it's a bit niche for us to focus on anytime soon.

Overall, I wouldn't be too afraid to worship one deity and still invoke others, I don't feel like that's a deal breaker. Heck (to get uncharacteristically religious for a moment) even the Christian god says "Thou shalt have no other gods before me," it doesn't say "Thou shalt have no other gods."* I feel like most of Golarion's deities feel the same: Want power from me? Okay, but I'm your one and only. You can look, but you go trying to get better miracles from someone else and we're through.

All of that being said, if you still want your character to be a religious totemist, there are ways to do that. I'd suggest a dual-classed cleric barbarian who uses some of the totem archetypes in the APG and Ultimate Magic (I think).

Very cool idea! Thanks for putting it out there!

(* I'm not actually opening up the door for religious debate here—ultimately I do not care. If this doesn't work as an argument for you, just ignore it.)

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Shadowborn wrote:

Mr. Schneider,

This committee recently questioned one Adam Daigle concerning an action known as "Ponygate." He denies all involvement but evidence and witness testimony points to you being the ringleader of this operation. Will you tell us what went on during this incident? And I remind you that you are under oath, sir.

To not forbid a course of action is not the same as directing one toward a course. By the same token, acknowledging one's options cannot be seen as suggestion action.

In short, any evidence of my involvement is coincidental at best and—

Patrick did it.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

The Golux wrote:
Why were the first two Psychopomps' names changed from Yanakeion to Nosoi and Amzranei to Vanth?

Totally because of an editorial screw up on my part. I'd scripted out what I wanted for the first psychopomps and assigned Crystal Frasier to write up the first of them. Before I developed them, though, I had Sean's Pharasma article on my plate. During development of that I figured it'd be cool to throw in a mention of psychopomps, since they were coming down the road and to whet folks' appetites. So I threw them in, along with the names Crystal had given them. Then promptly moved on to other fires.

Some time later I got to developing the first of the psychopomps. In doing my revisions, I decided I hated the names. That's a bit strong, but they just didn't mean anything. They were just made-up words. These guys were too cool to just have made-up names. There were also too many existing, real-world psychopomps out there to not draw on them. So, I chose vanth, after an Etruscan psychopomp, and nosoi after a Greek death bringer. That satisfied me much more and gave these guys more conceptual weight.

And I TOTALLY forgot about the earlier note. Not having the write-ups in front of me, I thiiiink I noticed at the 11th hour, but still liked the new names enough to keep them and just left a note to the previously noted names in the descriptions.

So, in short, why? My personal editorial fickleness and an obsession with mythological cache.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Rysky wrote:
Question. Why no Mythic Graveknight yet?

Just haven't found a place yet. Though I should warn folks, there is no, no, no, no, no, no way we're going to be able to mythic versions of every monster—or even a significant fraction of the monsters. That said, I think there's some third party folks already playing in that design space. Check out what Legendary Games and Necromancers of the Northwest are coming out with. For at least now, they'll be serving you far better than us!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

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Daethor wrote:

So I recall hearing something about you being an Avatar: The Last Airbender fan. Is this true? If so I have some questions...if not, ignore me! :P

1) Who is your favorite character?

2) What is your favorite episode?

3) What do you think of Legend of Korra if you watched it?

4) What do you think of the movie if you've seen it?

5) Do you think benders/bending can be modeled well with the D20 system?

Thanks for your time! :)

1) Probably either Uncle Iro, Asoka, or the "Secret Tunnel!" bard.

2) The episode right before the last two-parter, where Ang asks his past incarnations for advice on how to defeat the firelord, and Every Damn One Of Them is like "Sometimes you gotta killa @#$%&." Certainly a truism I don't remember getting from Transformers.

3) Love it. Haven't finished the second season yet, though.

4) Even with the Rifftrax it was nearly unbearable.

5) I'd nab the Monk of the Four Winds archetype from the APG and then pick up some of the styles from Ultimate Combat (like Efreeti Style). The upcoming Player Companion: Blood of the Elements, might also have a few new toys for ya!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Wildebob wrote:
Hey, Wes! I recently listened to your Horror in RPGs panel from PaizoCon and it inspired me to start a new tradition: I want to run the scariest one-shot scenario I can manage for my friends every October. Just something fun for Halloween. The ideas shared in that panel were fantastic, but I wanted to ask your advice on a horror module to use. It'll have to be PF (or at least easily convertible to PF) because it's the only system my friends and I know. I'm willing to go all out with music, setting, props, etc. Suggestions?

While I still STRONGLY recommend Dread, as there's like no rules impact, lets see. For Pathfinder, I'd suggest either Carrion Hill, From Shore to Sea, or the Haunting of Harrowstone. Aside from the creepy themes, the low level nature of a few of those really encourages a night of creepy gaming.

As a side note, I try to do something like this every year—but it typically turns into every other year. For that game, I take more of a B-horror movie direction, pulling out my copy of A Light in the Belfry, a second edition Ravenloft adventure that includes a CD with a fantastically over the top narrator. Its kind of the MST3K of D&D Horror. Well worth your time if you can dig it up!

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