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Golden-Esque's page

Goblin Squad Member. Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber. FullStar Venture-Agent. 766 posts (5,497 including aliases). 38 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 12 Pathfinder Society characters. 4 aliases.

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Yeeeeeees. This is the first time something I've wrote has been in a preview! Awesome! :D

Cyrad wrote:
What's a shadowcraft weapon?

Its a quasi-real weapon formed from the same energy that creates spells like shadow conjuration or shadow evocation. There's a basic weapon, advanced weapons, and deific shadowcraft weapons (like Feast of Rats).

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MagFire wrote:
I just wanted to peek in here and say thanks for adding some additional love for the Wayang. I find them tremendously interesting and it felt like they had been kind of forgotten. The new stuff is great and I love that Alex got to contribute since he is the one that got me into the awesome little shadow monsters in the first place!

That's great to hear, thanks!

Although I'm most famous for my love of kitsune, I'm actually a REALLY big fan of all of the Dragon Empires races, so getting to do wayangs was something I was really excited about. (I said as much to Owen when he asked me to come on board. I certainly hope I didn't disappoint him with my offerings.)

I think one of more interesting things that I got to do with this article (at Owen's behest) was start talking a little bit about WHAT, exactly, witch patrons are. There are a lot of small nudges and winks in the wayang section, and it was soooo much fun to try and capture that without being a brow-beater.

(And yes, the druid favored class bonus for wayangs is one of my absolute favorite additions overall, not because of the actual bonus but because of what it lets you do at 1st level.)

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I love Tian Xia: more would be awesome!

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When I designed the AWTs, I did so with the assumption that the gloves increased the weapon training bonus, and that modified bonus interfaces with the advanced weapon trainings. For example, if you had the gloves at 9th leveland had trained grace, you'd add +2 to your weapon training bonus which would then be multiplied to +8 for damage rolls.

This might not be Paizo's stance now that ADTs have gone through development, but in my opinion, we're talking about small bonuses to a class that has been historically weak.

Talk to your GM and if Paizo releases an official statement, use what they say. (And I probably shouldn't be considered a reputable source for the purpose of PFS and the like since I'm not a golem.)

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BardWannabe wrote:

Just got mine, and have only skimmed for what I was looking for. My first question is why does the Shadow Oracle Mystery have Lao Shu Po as a related diety but the Shadow Subdomain does not?

Since this is a Golarion specific product, I was hoping for at least a little support for the fact that previous publications had stated that Lao Shu Po was the favorite deity of the Wayangs. Was there a deliberate decision to try to downplay the rat-Wayang connection?

We only ended up with two Wayang specific feats, one of which is based off of an alternate racial trait.

Well, the Shadow subdomain appears in the drow section, so I'm sure whomever wrote those pages wasn't thinking about wayangs when they designed it; they were probably thinking of drow and half-drow. In contrast, the shadow mystery appears in the wayang section, and obviously I WAS thinking about wayang, so it appears there. I think adding it to Lao Shu Po is fair for GM territory, however.

Stuff About Clerics:
Domains and Subdomains are SUPER hard to write from a world setting point of view, especially in the wake of Inner Sea Gods. On one hand, you want to continue to redefine the cleric class and give it some love because clerics don't get many nice things that aren't spells on account of how hard they are to design for. On the other hand, Inner Sea Gods has this BEAUTIFUL table listing the domains and subdomains of every major deity in Pathfinder, and adding new subdomains technically invalidates Inner Sea God's appendix. Its a lose/lose situation when you get down to it, really. Whether or not this factors into what you're seeing here, I can't say.

I can't say whether or not there was a deliberate attempt to downplay Lao Shu Po as their favorite deity, but here's my thinking: favorite doesn't mean "racial deity," and this wasn't a spread about Lao Shu Po. Maybe that'll happen in a sequel to Inner Sea Faiths or something. Instead, this was about the wayang; who they are and what they believe. As trespassers on the Material Plane, more emphasis was put on the concept of the Dissolution, which is really fantastic and nihilistic when you stop and think about what wayangs actually believe. To them, "paradise" is the dour entropy of the Shadow Plane. Wowzers. It was way more fun to write about that then to cram a few more lines in about a deity that isn't even Wayang specific or depicted as a wayang.

I originally wrote more feats, but they didn't make it to print. That's the business. Regardless, I am much happier anyway that the druid Favored Class Bonus that I wrote for the wayang made it into print. It was a grand experiment and I'm glad Paizo thought it was cool!

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And as long as we're talking about things we liked. I'm REALLY grateful that Owen let me roll with Flexible Shadow Jump and Extra Shadow Jump. I feel like those two feats alone make shadowdancers incredibly more fun to play because they loosen the ropes on one of their most iconic abilities.

Granted, it also means that shadowdancers care a LOT more about their feats now. Perhaps somewhere down the line the Player Companion line will have a place where we could let the shadowdancer pick those feats up as rogue talents or something.

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BardWannabe wrote:
I have to admit that the fact that Alex has announced that he will release a third party book covering Wayangs has me a bit worried that I will be disappointed with the Wayang section of this book. I know we only get one shot at getting some good PFS legal options.

I wrote the wayang section of this book.

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Barachiel Shina wrote:

I believe people are reeeeeally going to like the "Flexible Shadow Jumper" feat.

HINT: There's a certain "dimensional" chain of feats connected to it...

I aim to please, and Owen is pretty fantastic in every sense of the word.

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May the record stand that I bested the odds and was NOT the person to make this thread!

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Dragon78 wrote:
So, is this the first time a iconic's finished artwork has been shown on the final cover of the book the class will be in?

Nope! It's been happening since the APG. Damiel was on the APG's cover, Setyiel was on UM, Hayamato (sp?) was on UC, Jirelle and Crow were on the cover of ACG, and Mavaro and the Iconic Psychic were on OA. Plus Balazar, Miresielle, Amiri, and Sajan were on Unchained.

In other words, putting a new iconic on the cover is almost always a given.

(Sorry about spellings; I'm on my phone.)

* Venture-Agent aka Golden-Esque

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rknop wrote:

Honesty, I don't fully get the whole idea that GMs have to be given more replay and more rewards to want to GM. If you don't enjoy GMing for its own sake, why are you doing it? Yes, GM credit is a nice and great thing. But I GM a lot of repeat scenarios without credit, and I'm happy to do it, because, well, this is my hobby. I know that some people prefer to play to GM; those people really probably shouldn't be GMing any more than they are.

This line of thought isn't on topic, but I'm going to address it anyway because this is the single most common, "Lazy Man's excuse" that I see whenever someone doesn't want to change the way we reward GMs. (This came up in my "Game Day Boon" thread as well, so I apologize; you struck a nerve with me.)

So here's the dirty secret of life: the time we spend to do anything is the time we lose from something else. For that reason, time is the most valuable possession we as humans have, because all time is restricted. Tomorrow, I could get hit by a bus and my days of freelancing and GMing could instantly come to an end. Every day is a gamble, and so every day every person should get the most out of their time, and that goes beyond mere satisfaction.

For instance, I love writing for Paizo. I can't describe the amount of satisfaction I feel when I see my name printed in the front cover a Player Companion or a Core Rulebook, or whatever. That being said, do you think I shouldn't get paid for the time I spent working with Paizo developers in creating that product just because I enjoyed the process? Should the Paizo developers not get paid simply because they love their jobs? Should the artists that make the art for your book not get paid, or the graphic designers who lay the products out, or anyone else working at Paizo simply because working in the Game Industry is immensely fulfilling? The answer for all those questions is no.

When you're a GM running a game, there's a very real opportunity cost that you're spending. Without going into detail about all of the other things you could be doing with the 4 to 8 hours you likely spend running the game, or the 1+ hours you likely spend prepping it, you're paying for the privilege to GM with the ability to play in a game, the ability to be creative and to actually define an experience. The GM sets the stage, but its the players who really create the experience; a plot is meaningless without players. Furthermore, if you're a creative type who likes to RP, you're missing out on roleplaying as a character you wrote and that you enjoy. You've got some pretty tight constraints on your roleplaying as a Pathfinder Society GM, and that lack of freedom can be frustrating and intimidating. You also aren't always on the receiving end of "fun," and if its fun for you to make your players sweat, you might not get that experience based upon the nature of the scenario you're playing. (For example, Wounded Wisp is an amazing game story-wise, but combat wise a good barbarian completely owns all but the final encounter.)

Finally, I'm a teacher, and one of the first things they teach you at University is that reteaching a lesson you've taught before is the most essential thing that you can do in regards to becoming a master teacher. If you don't get an opportunity to reflect upon your mistakes and shortcomings as a teacher, you never grow. You'll never make superior lessons the first time around. That's the big thing that I don't like about the "no rerunning for credit" rule that GMs have; that it literally goes against everything I learned in college as an educator. We should encourage GMs to better themselves by taking advantage of the unique opportunity that PFS provides to perfectly rerun a game session that we've run before, and we should reward people who take real steps towards becoming better GMs.


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Todd Reidenbach wrote:

I think too many people are looking at both extremes; either unlimited replay or the current conditions of no replay (Core mode and limited stars aside).

Maybe one play credit per sub-tier would be a good option to consider. You can still limit the GM credit to one chronicle, but an extra play (or two for the 1-7s with three sub-tiers) gives players an option to get the full chronicle in rewards without being excessive. It would also allow players an extra chance to join a game without being left out of an event, because they've played what is scheduled.

After reading John's post, I wholeheartedly agree with both you and he that unlimited replays for players isn't a good tactical move. I do, however, think that the current system is still too prohibitive, and similar to what you're saying, I think it encourages GMs to bottle up until that "Perfect scenario" roles around. I would much rather see that the system has the flexibility that GMs could use it altruistically to try to combat "Geek Sudoku." (That term is REALLY growing on me, man!)


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John Compton wrote:
One of the reasons you're seeing a lot of pushback here is that many of the commentators who have participated in these discussions have witnessed the decline of other organized play campaigns that embraced unlimited replay. That's valuable insight, as I had limited exposure to other organized play campaigns before I began working at Paizo. What's more, it's feedback that closely parallels that of my more OP-savvy colleagues. It's really easy to dismiss that caution as fear, yet much of that caution comes from hard-learned experience.

I seriously appreciate the time you took to post in this thread, John. Thanks. :D

I also appreciate everyone's feedback about other organized play methods, because I'll be the first to admit that I haven't been doing this very long. My 1-year PFS participation anniversary was last July, and I've been a coordinator for about a month now. I am the epitome of the no-experienced guy spouting his opinions on a public forum.

Alex Augunas wrote:
I think that if we can trust GMs to replay scenarios for credit fairly, we can trust every player to.
We trust GMs to play through scenarios despite being familiar with the material for three major reasons. First, the GM may be familiar with the material because she had to read the scenario to run it for a different group of players. That introduces the second reason, which is the ability to play (and sparingly replay) those adventures for credit as a thank-you and sign of consideration for the time a GM puts into preparing, printing, and delivering a great gaming experience. Finally, I tend to trust GMs with replaying because our GMs are on the receiving end of a variety of play styles and are in a unique position to learn what works and what doesn't in managing the play experiences of 3–7 players. When it comes time to replay an adventure, I trust that a GM (and admittedly many but not all players) can apply that experience to replay in a considerate manner that doesn't spoil or overshadow others who are seeing the adventure for the first time.

I don't have any comments here. These are great reasons, and I agree both with the reasoning and the practice. The logic makes sense.


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chris manning wrote:

unlimited replay was one of the final nails in the coffin of 4E LFR for me, when a local group ran a 'speed day' where they just ran the combats & skill challenges (so as to be legal, as they had all played them multiple times before and the plot was meaningless). they ran 8 scenarios in 8 hours just to farm the certs for powerful items.

If your players have burned through the 300+ available scenarios, they need to learn to pace themselves; rather than expect paizo to turn out more scenarios a month.

Personally, I'm of the opinion that if it doesn't disrupt your organized play experience, they should be allowed to do what they want with their games.

As a matter of fact, at GenCon 2015 I ran a Speed Run of Thornkeep: The Accursed Halls for Monica Marlowe and her husband, Andrew, the Ventura clan (Rachel, her husband, her brother, and her nephew), and Owen K.C. Stephens. It was a real Who's Who of the Paizo Community, topped with us all trying to run Thornkeep at break-neck speed so Monica, Andrew, Owen, and I could make it to Adam Daigle's freelancer meet up in time. We have some pretty hilarious stories from that run, like when Owen's warpriest charged the end boss of the floor with reckless abandon and managed to critically hit her with his scorpion whip, killing it instantly.

I would agree that its a problem if you're doing something like that to a group that includes people who want to enjoy the scenario normally, but if everyone's down for a little bit of insanity, let them.

* Venture-Agent aka Golden-Esque

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Some of the more prolific posts on the Paizo forums might recall a few months ago when I proposed an alternate rewards system for GMs who run Pathfinder Society games. While many people agreed with me that coordinators need a way to reward GMs more, a surprising number of people seemed utterly against rewarding people who take time out of their busy lives to prepare our games for us on a regular basis. I was surprised by this result, but went back to the grindstone to ponder ideas for an alternate rewards system regardless. Then life happened. One thing lead to another, and now I’m a Venture-Agent for my favorite place to play PFS. Go figure.

The place that I’m currently running is old. We’re not talking Season 0 old, but old enough that I have a backlog of data spanning roughly four years in front of me. Yikes. Part of the turf that comes with inheriting a location with such an oppressive amount of data is that it becomes REALLY hard to run Game Days. Why? Well, there’s a few different reasons. First, our gamers tend to be fairly hard-core. They play a lot, and they play often. Most sit down to at least two tables a week, with some managing nearly four a week. Sometimes as GMs, sometimes as players. Crazy, right? Although numbers differ between people, let’s say that as a safe average, roughly half of my store’s player and GM base is sitting down to an average of 10 games a month. Now, it doesn’t take Albert Einstein to realize that the amount of games being played at my store drastically exceeds Paizo’s ability to publish scenarios, so in a nutshell, the problem that I’m running into is that it is getting increasingly hard to deliver games for my store that people can play.

One of the common responses to my issue is, “Well, tell them to GM.” Obviously, if they’ve played a piece of content before, my players should be able to run the game and get twice as much out of the content. Putting aside the implications that my players should “GM or stop whining,” mathematically that’s impossible; it requires all of the players present to perfectly swap with one another; the GM and players from Table 1 switching with the GM and players from Table 2. How often does that happen in practice? The net result is that I have people scattered all over the place, and not a whole lot of flexibility when it comes to offering them things that they can enjoy. It’s sad, really.

Now, what can we not as organizers, but as an organization, do about this? How can we keep people who are interested in playing, but who are almost entirely prevented from doing so? One idea that I had, funny enough, was by employing the Sky Key. Yes, that Sky Key. The fictitious artifact, or at least, its concept. Let me explain.

When we talk replying scenarios, typically the answer is a big, resounding, “NO.” Usually the reasons are twofold; first, we’re afraid that the replayer will spoil the story for people who haven’t yet experienced it. Second, we’re certain that people will use the ability to replay scenarios to farm desirable boons on their characters. In terms of replaying content, that already exists in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. The rules clearly allow replaying for no credit, so long as everyone at the table is aware and accepting of the replayer. Furthermore, we allow GMs to replay scenarios if they possess a specific boon. I think that if we can trust GMs to replay scenarios for credit fairly, we can trust every player to. That being said, I think that the issue regarding boon farming is, sadly, an apt one. Which is where my Sky Key suggestion comes in. Basically, we use the Sky Key as an in-universe excuse to allow players and GMs to replay scenarios for reduced credit. Each scenario is worth its normal amount of XP and gold (because both wealth and experience are factored into the game’s balance), but the character gets all boons crossed off her chronicle sheet, save for those that inflict conditions that must be removed via the expenditure of resources (like curses, diseases, or Bonekeep’s debuffs). The excuse for this lies with the Sky Key:


In 7-00: The Sky Key Solution, we see that the Sky Key has the power to catapult someone back through time for the Society’s purposes. After the catastrophic events of that scenario, we can say that the Pathfinder Society is attempting to perfect technology that will allow a Pathfinder to experience any moment in time of the society’s choosing, regardless to the agent’s relative distance to the place where that event occurred. This would not only provide a useful plot point for future scenarios and give players who have experienced that storyline a sense of fruition, but it would also explain why the boons don’t stick with the Pathfinder unless they’re detrimental; the Pathfinder wasn’t truly there for the event, so she doesn’t get any of the rewards for actually being there.

Whether or not we stick with this fluff or come up with something else, I personally think that laxing a bit on replaying is good for the Society as a whole. We want people wandering into our game stores seeing a full, excited, and energetic crowd to make them curious about what, exactly, is going on with this “Pathfinder Society” thing, and we’re not going to get that happen if our gaming rules make it difficult or undesirable for people to play together. This isn’t so much about, “accommodating the few people who are locked out,” as it is, “making it easier for friends old and new to enjoy the game together, without punishing people who are willing to take another trip on an old ride for the sake of newer players,” which I believe is something we should promote and commend, not ban.

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Pillbug Toenibbler wrote:
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Why does Alain getting savaged by undead fill me with glee?
Good taste.

Are you saying Alex has refined discernment, or that Alain actually tastes good?

{stomach rumbles} Shush, you.

Can it be both?

11 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:
Some people are never satisfied Mister Augunas.

Eh. I personally believe that it is through pushing the boundaries of what the d20 system can do that Pathfinder can (and probably will) stave off that 2nd Edition reboot that, like, four people are clamouring for.

Because really? Who wants their ENTIRE stock of books rendered obsolete? Give me more Unchaineds, but don't nuke us all! D:

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Thomas Seitz wrote:


But you're a DRAGON!?!

Well I reckon 'e's one 'o dem self-atin' dragons! Ain't nuttin' more sad thenna self-'aitin' dragon!

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TOZ wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
That's on you, man. I was working on the Secret Wizard's Handbook when Owen flipped the kill switch. :- /
Must not be much of a kill switch if you're still standing.

Owen killed me, but Crystal said that there was still work to be done. I'll tell you more when I see you at PaizoCon this year, perhaps over a lovely dinner of wine and your brains.

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Secret Wizard wrote:
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Secret Wizard wrote:
Secret Wizard wrote:
Can someone confirm this will have the first Samurai archetype in 4 years?

Holy tengu turds, I was b+#@#%+&ting when I said this, but suddenly not only there's an archetype confirmed but Hayato appears on the cover!

Owen, stop reading my journal.

Okay... if you really want me to...

(Begins to erase the outline with 7 things taken directly from the journal... )

Whelp, I guess we are not having an archetype to turn the Rogue into a threesome between Ron Perlman, Tina Fey and me.

That's on you, man. I was working on the Secret Wizard's Handbook when Owen flipped the kill switch. :- /

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Jack of Dust wrote:
Looks like we may be finally getting another Samurai archetype. Should be pretty interesting.

Speaking from freelancing experience, Owen is a benevolent genius. Ask, and you will be reasonably considered!

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Imbicatus wrote:
The archetype trades out weapon training, and was introduced in the same book that grants Advanced Weapon Training. Both the Free-Style Fighter and the Martial Master give up weapon training, so they are both poor choices. If you want feats on the fly, be a brawler, you give up too much if you go fighter.

As the person who invented advanced weapon trainings, I disagree that martial master is a poor choice as a result of its giving up of advanced weapon trainings.

In fact, I think that it balances martial master out considerably, because before advanced weapon trainings I personally thought that martial master was a brainless choice for fighters, similar to lore warden.

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Mark Seifter wrote:
N N 959 wrote:
I am also at a loss for how you can make that claim with any certainty? What convinces you that follow ups don't help? People will always complain, that doesn't mean you aren't helping.

Basically, I used to do it earlier on when I was newer at the job, and after repeated negative examples, I started to wonder whether the flare-ups would have happened anyway or whether my posts were influencing it. Thus, I started experimentally doing it sometimes but not others (without mentioning this to anyone so as to avoid a Hawthorne effect), and I compared statistics based on my qualitative "grar" scale. While not fully scientifically rigorous, my results (that FAQ threads are negatively impacted by my clarifications after the FAQ) were enough for me to conclude not to do so.

EDIT: Lest it seem odd that I am posting here in a FAQ thread after pointing out why I don't post FAQ follow-ups, I also found that meta-discussions like this one tended to be positive or neutral (slightly positive, but not statistically significant).

Its almost like you went to MIT and know the scientific method or something! :D

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This is probably a better conversation for a thread devoted to those feats, rather than the product page for the Weapon Master's Handbook. :D

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Hayato Ken wrote:

As for the other stuff, it´s really high feat investments, so only classes with lots of feats are likely to go there, like the fighter.

People have been calling for fighter buffs since eternity, now it´s here.
Wanna complain about that?

I got the impression that Tobex doesn't like martials being able to do fantastic things without the use of magic.

If a "martial vs. caster discrepancy" exist, it has nothing to do with mechanics and everything to do with what different camps of players, GMs, and designers feel martials should be able to do without the use of magic.

Personally, I get a kick out of stuff like One-Punch Man and the like; martials with such an insane amount of skill that it surpasses everything that people can do with real-world martial abilities. There are people (like Tobex, I'm presuming) who don't like that.

The problem, however, is that martial options quickly get repetitive and boring if we don't lighten up and give them access to the fantastic every once and a while. We ignore so many laws of physics in other places (such as how the heck dragons can remain aloft or how a giant's manages to stay alive despite exceeding the surface area to volume limits of a humanoid body), that it isn't fair to force one small subset of the game to perfectly adhere to what is realistic while the rest of the game reveals in fantasy.

At least, that was my design philosophy for my work on this book.

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Coming in March of 2016, Everyman Gaming, LLC will be unveiling its first-ever Kickstarter Project: the Dynastic Races Compendium Kickstarter!

By March, this product will have been alluded to for roughly a year; it was mentioned as being something that author Alexander Augunas has had ambitions of doing within the author anecdote of the Samsaran Compendium. Now the time has come to finally see those ambitions realized, but Everyman Gaming, LLC will need YOUR help to do it!

The Goal
The most expensive parts of funding a Kickstarter is paying for the art and paying to print the product. The goal for the Dynastic Races Compendium Kickstarter is to pay for all-new artwork depicting characters and illustrations appropriate for the product. We’ll be using Jacob Blackmon as our artist, for his energy, speed, and bold color choices have become Iconic for Everyman Gaming, LLC.

In order to make the Kickstarter happen, we would need to raise $5,200. However, in preparation for the Kickstarter, I’ve been making dual-purposed art purchases for my other Everyman Gaming products with the intention of eventually reusing the artwork in the Dynastic Races Compendium. (Notice all the kitsune in our products for the past year? There was an ulterior motive for that besides “Alex loves the kitsune race!”) As of today, Everyman Gaming, LLC has effectively funded the entire kitsune chapter of this product, reducing the amount of money that needs to be raised from $5,200 to just $3,800. As a result, the starting goal for this project to be considered funded is $3,800, but as always we have a number of awesome Stretch Goals in mind should you manage to go above and beyond this amount.

Where Does Any “Extra Money” Go?
If there’s money left over from ordering art, getting the product edited, and shipping the product to the backers and web venues, all excess money will be funneled into making a second product that people have been asking me for: an updated version of Microsized Adventures, including a print version. This will be a direct update to the existing Microsized Adventures product, so if you already bought the digital copy you won’t need to buy it again. Call it a bit of altruism. Based on the goals I’ve set, however, I don’t suspect that the amount of money going to Microsized Adventures will be meaningful until we reach the $7,000 goal. (See below.)

What’s the Content Look Like?
The book is split into two sections: Racial Compendiums and Rules and Options. The Racial Compendiums section will feature four massive, 24-page chapters on the kitsune, nagaji, samsarans, and wayangs. For kitsune and samsarans, this information will be refined and expanded from what appeared in their respective Compendium products; for example, since all rules text from those products will be placed in the second section of the product, there are places where up to 1/2 a page of text or more was added to the flavor descriptions. Better still, the Culture sections of these products has had its page allocation doubled from four to eight, and there’s also a section on falsehoods about each race to go along with the common facts.

The races chosen for this product were picked because they are Eastern-flavored races that have gotten little exposure or expansion in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game; even other race-themed products tend to focus on general strokes about the race’s flavor and instead focus on new rules elements. This product gives you everything you need to actually build civilizations with these races; you’ll get to see illustrations of what members of the race look like at each age category, you’ll learn about their peculiarities and mannerisms, you’ll see sample religions and learn information about what separates people of each race from humanity in terms of biology and culture.

A common question that I get when talking about this product is, “Why no tengu?” I feel that tengu are a legacy of 3.5 and have had much more opportunity for expansion over the years; Pathfinder itself tends to be more willing to talk about tengu than the other races provided here, for instance. However, I agree that no Eastern race product would be complete without the tengu, so if we reach $7,000, I will add a fifth chapter to the book for tengu, plus all of the additional rules and options content that the other characters will receive. The reason this goal is so high is that in addition to needing to build up enough “excess” revenue to build up what is effectively a fifth chapter, I also need to fund the stretch goals that help us reach that lofty height.

What Kind of Rules Can We Expect?
New spells, archetypes, and feats. Stretch goals will be provided that add additional spreads with all-new information and options. For example, you can unlock a Tail Tricks spread that allow kitsune with the Magical Tail feat to gain additional powers from their tails. A shadow henna spread will talk about mystical body piercings that wayang can take in order to give themselves benefits. Samsarans will get a spread on past-life shards that they can take to give them temporary access to other feats and abilities. And much, much more.

How Do I Know I Can Trust You?
I’ve successfully run the Pact Magic Unbound Kickstarter, which should be in the final stages of book fulfillment when this Kickstarter goes live. (We still have to fulfill our Spirit Cards, but much of what needs to be done is on the end of Dario’s company, not myself.) In addition, as previously mentioned I’ve already completed the entire Kitsune Flavor chapter for this product; [url=""you can check it out here for free at the Everyman Gaming, LLC Facebook group.[/url]

I hope that you’ll come out and support Everyman Gaming’s first Kickstarter in March, the Dynastic Races Compendium Kickstarter!

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Eric Hinkle wrote:

I got this one and I love the list of ideas presented. I have to admit, I never would have thought of half of these eidolon concepts (lie the conjured ancestor or idealized version of yourself), but they all make perfect sense.

I hope you'll be doing something for the summoner end of the summoner-eidolon relationship in the future!

A lot of it came from Carl's mind too! And the "idolized version of myself," actually comes from a PFS scenario. I was sad that you couldn't do something like that with the new unchained rules.

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Milo v3 wrote:
I'm surprised that Outer Dragons aren't an option as Eidolons.

I wanted to do them and the esoteric dragons too, but I ran out of room for them to make it into this product. However, I have a precedent for doing sequels in the Everyman Unchained line, so if this proves popular I'll likely end up doing an Eidolons II product that will include them.

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Endzeitgeist wrote:
Reviewed first on, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and's shop.

Thanks for the review, End!

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Luthorne wrote:
So, as it is right now, aasimar, android, fetchling, ganzi, gathlain, ghoran, ifrit, oread, shabti, suli, sylph, tiefling, trox, undine, wyrwood, and wyvaran shapeshifters get reduced benefit from the wildheart Instinct since they have no Kingdom to gain the kingdom abilities of, and the same for the hybrid shape Adaptation? They can still get some benefit from other aspects of those abilities, but that part of the ability doesn't do anything as of this time?

Yup. Every class should be workable for every race, but every option for that class need not be.

I ask because I was pondering a native outsider shapeshifter, when I realized that as written, there are a few gaps...would you suggest talking with my DM about homebrewing an extraplanar Kingdom, or just preferably skip those abilities and focus on other Adaptations/Instincts?

Eventually I'm going to do expansion products for both the shapeshifter and the vessel, and I'll happily add "weird humanoids" to the list of things that I cover. However, I don't do free design work because between my blog, my podcast, my company, and my work for Paizo and Legendary Games, my time is EXTREMELY valuable to me.

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BardWannabe wrote:

I was a bit surprised to see no arcane discoveries for wizards, as that was something that was strongly encouraged above.

If I had to guess on something that will get the PFS ban, it is the trait that gives...
** spoiler omitted **

Martial Weapon Proficiency gives proficiency with ALL martial weapons. If a trait only gives proficiency with one martial weapon, its not as strong as Martial Weapon Proficiency. (See the heirloom weapon trait, which lets you pick any martial weapon and get a few copy of said weapon, which is PFS legal.)

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Chess Pwn wrote:
But curious still, was the Ascetic Style Feat supposed be just feats then and the second feat, Ascetic Form, adding in class abilities?

Yes, but with some restrictions on the Ascetic Form. For one, that feat wasn't supposed to render Ascetic Strike useless for monks, like Ascetic Style currently does now.

My original notes don't matter very much, though, because if Ascetic Style is changed it'll be the Paizo team that'll decide how its done.

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doc the grey wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
doc the grey wrote:
Huh, I've just realized that most of the stuff I've really found memorable from this book have come out of the Old Mage Jatembe section. Did not expect that.

Huzzah! I've done my job!

Also if you wrote all the 40k/roman aquila stuff into aroden's spells then props. Totally excited to whip those out in my home game (and maybe make some orc variants!).

I did not. Each of the three of us (Steve, David, and myself) each took one of the "big name" spellbooks and two of the smaller books. (Except David; he took one small book and the Preparation rules.) I know Steve did the Analects of Aroden and David did the Runes of Wealth. I don't recall who did which mini spellbook, however. (Aside from my own, of course.)

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doc the grey wrote:
Huh, I've just realized that most of the stuff I've really found memorable from this book have come out of the Old Mage Jatembe section. Did not expect that.

Huzzah! I've done my job!

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Gisher wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Shisumo wrote:
Does anything in Startoss Style actually prevent you from gaining the damage bonus on melee attacks with weapons in the thrown weapon group?




At some point, people are going to realize that a good tenth of my turnover to Owen (including Startoss Style) only exists because I wanted my flying blade swashbuckler, dagger master fighter to be remotely viable. ;-)

As a game designer, I HATE when effects that augment a weapon only apply to one specific use of that weapon, so I made sure to make the feat read in a way that it didn't completely mess up people who use daggers, chakrams, starknives, THE HALFLIG SLINGSTAFF, and similar weapons because the fact that those weapons can be used both ways should be a neat feature of fighting with that weapon, not something that you're forced to hyperspecialize out of.

But keep in mind that I'm not a Paizo developer or designer, and my design goals are second to Paizo's.

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Entryhazard wrote:
My experience actually says that usually Eldritch is associated with Arcane stuff, with both stats being involved with comparable frequence

"Eldritch" is just a general term that Pathfinder uses for magic, although there is more of a slant towards psychic and arcane with the word. But its sort of how "mage" is general-speak for "any arcane spellcaster" or "priest" is general-speak for "anyone who worships a deity."

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I've seen (but can't find) posts in the thread where people have commented about oddities with two of my spells, cylindric reincarnation and celestial healing. I'm going to comment briefly on them, but you'll have to wait for Owen for clarification.

Cylindric reincarnation: In my turnover, the "tradeoff" for cylindric reincarnation was that instead of turning into some random (often gross or build-destroying) race, the spell had a 75% chance to reincarnate you as a Youth (see Ultimate Campaign) instead of an Adult. This is why there's references to monsters gaining the Youth template in the spell. At some point in development, that line was removed. If I had to guess, it might be because the current description of the Youth age category is ageist and maybe Owen wanted to avoid GMs claiming that PCs lost their ability to have or take PC class levels as a result of becoming Youths, but my guesses aren't any better than yours.

Celestial healing: I wrote celestial healing as a "good" mirror of infernal healing in the same was that "holy word" is a mirror of "blasphemy." I'm not sure why the spell is unquestionably weaker than its evil-variant now, but my gut guess is that its a typo. Owen is a rules GENIUS, and there's no way he knowingly let anyone print a spell that was useless at CL 1st, least of all himself. I would expect a not-errata-ruling for this one when he's around again.

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Terminalmancer wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Terminalmancer wrote:
"If you ever reveal or confirm your connection to your eschewed identities [...]"

"If a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sound?"

My official-not-official answer, for the purpose of this feat, is yes. You take the mask off, you're revealing your identity and taking the penalties. Because even if you can't see them, you've revealed your identity to SOMEONE.

That is a bizarre and unintuitive way of phrasing a requirement that the mask never come off, but if that was your intention, that is your intention. Fair enough!

So in reviewing the feat in the context of the product, it looks like my original wording was made a bit vaguer. I originally wrote that if the mask ever came off, you took negative levels; didn't matter how or why. Currently, it says "if you ever reveal or confirm your relation to your eschewed identities," which leaves a fair amount of wiggle room for interpretation. You'll need to wait for Owen's input for more info on this; I wouldn't call myself a reliable source of a ruling on the feat because the feat's current implementation is basically the opposite of how I originally wrote it. (I wanted it to be a REAL penalty to lose your mask to solidify why this was worthy of being a feat compared to the dual identity class feature.)

But I would also use it as written, regardless of some freelancer's preferences.

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Terminalmancer wrote:
Stuff about Nameless One

I actually included the whole, "I based this off of the playtest vigilante," bit in my turnover for the Wisdom of Jatembe section. I don't think Nameless One comes close to invalidating the vigilante, not even close. There's a pretty big thematic divide between "X by day, Y by night," and "I give up what I was to become something new."

The best way to put it (and the way I originally pitched the feat) is that the vigilante is Batman and someone with the Nameless One feat is the Phantom. You don't see the Phantom at social gatherings or having a life outside of being the Phantom, after all. If you take the Nameless One feat, you're not trying to lead a double life. You're abandoning your previous life instead.

(Btw, I was the freelancer for Wisdom of Jatembe, Arrowsong's Lament, and the Wards of Stone, or "that super dwarf-tastic magic book," as I like to call it. I'll pop in as I'm able and answer any questions directed at me.)

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Eric Hinkle wrote:

And please put me down as a buyer for "A Fox's Wedding" when it's done. Be nice to see how some social roleplaying with a whole skulk of ready to celebrate kitsune can be set up.

And I'm working on it! Its just been slow with Unchained Eidolons and the Dynastic Races Compendium in the pipelines. Writing an adventure is somewhat new to me (although I think playing and running PFS has given me a good handle on how to do it well), and there's a surprising amount of crunch development going into the project. Let's just say that making the adventure work requires that I "unchain" the chase rules first....

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Chemlak wrote:
Reviewed! This was a hard one: I had to actually stop myself writing too much (and I still waffled on longer than I normally like to). It's soooo gooooooooood.

Thanks for the review!

You know, its funny that you mentioned the amount of kitsune artwork in that book. When you're ordering artwork for individual products, you don't really realize how MUCH you're using a theme when its one or two pieces per book, but when you're doing a compilation you're like, "Let's dip back into the old backlog and see what we can put in here so I don't bankrupt my company trying to put new dressings on something I've already published." (At the time, I wasn't sure if people were going to like Ultimate Charisma.) That's about when I looked at my art library and was like, "Oh. That's a LOT of kitsune artwork." I actually deliberately went out of my way to make sure I picked a scene for the cover that didn't have any kitsune in it for that reason!

That said, pretty much every character and every scene in Ultimate Charisma is from one of two different home games; one I play in and one I run. When I was starting out with Everyman Gaming, LLC I found it was easier to write art order and catch potential hiccups in the art ordering process if I already had a strong vision for the character in my head, and using characters that I've already spent a lot of time thinking about was easier then trying to come up with something new. Nowadays Jacob has a much better idea of what I'm looking for in a brief and I have a much better idea of what I can expect from him, so I'm significantly more confident saying, "I need X and I need it to look cool!" and letting him just go from there. As a matter of fact, I only ordered one kitsune piece in Paranormal Adventures (the next major art order that I placed after Ultimate Charisma), which was the one that I had also intended to cross-pollenate into the heavily story-driven Microsized Adventures, whenever I have the resources to make that into a print product too. (Coincidentally, the kitsune vessel in the Favored Classes section of Paranormal Adventures was actually a freebie. I asked Jacob to 'Give me a vessel of any nonhuman race with any passenger of your choice,' and sent him a list of visual cues for passengers. I got back a kitsune vessel with an azata passenger, which I was pleasantly surprised with!)

However, there's a pretty good chance that you'll be sharing a fair number of kitsune in the Dynastic Races Compendium and A Fox's Wedding. :-P (Whenever those two long-term products are finished.) And before I get the question, A Fox's Wedding is a module-length adventure that I'm working on where the PCs need to solve a murder mystery by crashing a kitsune wedding. #ExplainAModulePlotBadly

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I blame Cosmo for just smashing all of my hopes and dreams about ever getting a job at Paizo. I got in much ado for spelling the word "ado" wrong, so now I need to bid any chance of a career at Paizo adieu. :(

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Eric Hinkle wrote:
Alexander Augunas wrote:
Endzeitgeist wrote:
Thank you for making this gorgeous milestone, Alex!!!
Hopefully you're just as impressed by Paranornal Adventures and the forthcoming Dynastic Races Compendium! ;-)
Dynastic Races Compendium? Just what is that?

I'm going to be running Everyman Gaming's first Kickstarter in March of 2016 that takes the Samsaran Compendium and the Kitsune Compendium, updates them, and adds an equal amount of content for Nagaji and Wayangs. I'm calling the final product the Dynastic Races Compendium because the races involved are all associated with "dynasties," i.e. Eastern races. There's going to be a stretch goal for tengu, and possibly ratfolk. Each race has about 30 pages dedicated to its flavor text alone; including crunch, its a good 40 pages per race, so keeping the theme tight and the number of races in check is important to me.

This has been a project that I've wanted to do since the Samsaran Compendium (its even noted as such in the Author Anecdote for that product), but after much deliberation over the past year (as well as some experience with Kickstarters and printing books), I've decided that sooner is better for the Dynastic Races Compendium. I'm hoping to have some more information out on the Kickstarter tomorrow on the forums, but its going to depend how much progress I can make on the work I have in my schedule. (Among other projects, one of my goals is to have the entire Kitsune section updated and finished, sans a few pieces of new art that I'm still ordering, before the end of the year.)

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Endzeitgeist wrote:
Reviewed first on, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and's shop.

Thanks for the review! I'm glad you liked Ultimate Charisma as much as you did. :D

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Bleys Jackson wrote:
All I want for Christmas is a release date for Pact Magic Unbound: Grimoire of Lost Souls.

You and me both, Bleys. You and me both.

We're waiting on the last few pieces of art. The time I update, however, I'm going to be showing off the cover! (Judah's putting the final touches on it.) I'm also hoping to have a more clear time table for everyone.

Our stuff is tentative because once you bring other people onto a project, you're sort of at their mercy to an extent. Even if we drop an artist like we had to, that work still has to get done which means more waiting. We feel your pain, but we didn't collect nearly $10,000 to half-ass this project.

We're almost there!

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F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Yakman wrote:
Love the Vampire Hunter D hat on the cover. Might just give this one a whirl on my next flight.
Kane, D, Alucard. Everyone knows a hat is a vampire hunter's most important equipment!

Of course. Its impossible for people to know how cool, evil, or important you are unless you have a hat that conveys it for you.

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Barachiel Shina wrote:
One question I have is...why isn't this book going to be a March release? There's nothing for March concerning a Player Companion, why was this bumped up to April?

From casual observation of the product schedule, March is when Paizo's releasing Inner Sea Faiths, that massive 92-page Campaign Setting line product. Inner Sea Faiths is currently the size of a standard campaign setting product and a player companion product combined, so my guess is that it was deemed necessary to skip the Player Companion line for a month for the sake of the budget.

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Diego Rossi wrote:
D20PSRD wrote:
Abundant Tactics (Ex) The fighter adds his weapon training bonus to the number of times per day he can use a combat feat he has that allows a limited number of daily uses, such as the Stunning Fist feat.

As I read it, you chose a single combat feat when you take the ability and apply the bonus to it.

I intended it to apply to all such feats, as abundant tactics doesn't specify a target for its effects to solely benefit. Paizo mileage may vary, check with Dr. Stephens and your GM to decide whether Alex's designer intent is right for your game.


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Kitty Catoblepas wrote:

While we're at it, what's up with the "Thrown Weapons" category? Sling and Blowgun are in it, which would allow you to use them with the Splintering Weapon feat and add your strength modifier to damage. But both of these are listed as "Projectile weapons" (which isn't a category listed above) which doesn't let you use your strength bonus, exempting the sling by special mention. Do mentions of "thrown weapons" refer to the weapon category, or to something else?

And where does grapple fit into all of this? Since I can Weapon Focus in grapple, doesn't it into some category?

You're confusing fighter weapon groups with types of weapons. They're not the same things.

All weapons belong to one of two general types: melee or ranged. Melee weapons are further divided into light, one-handed, and two-handed weapons. Ranged weapons are divided into projectile weapons and thrown weapons.

Thrown weapons are tricky. If a thrown weapon can also be used as a melee weapon, its melee type (light, one-handed, or two-handed) takes precedence and it is listed as a melee weapon with a ranged increment. (See dagger for an example.) If a thrown weapon cannot be used as a melee weapon, it is listed as a ranged weapon. (See shuriken as an example.)

None of those categories (light, one-handed, two-handed, projectile, or thrown) are fighter weapon groups, which this blog is listing. Fighter weapon groups are groups of thematically similar weapons that are grouped together solely for the purposes of feats and class features, namely a fighter's weapon training ability but also the new weapon style feats from the Weapon Master's Handbook.

So, to reiterate:

  • Thrown weapons are a type of ranged weapon. The name also lends itself to the thrown fighter weapon group. Unless an ability says, "Weapons belonging to the thrown fighter weapon group," then any ability that references thrown weapons is referring to any ranged weapon that you throw.
  • Projectile weapons are a type of ranged weapon. They are too varied to have a single fighter weapon group, as projectile weapons include crossbows (a fighter weapon group), bows (a fighter weapon group), firearms (a fighter weapon group), and certain thrown weapons.

One could make the argument about whether or not the Pathfinder Design Team should issue an FAQ on the subject of whether the terms "thrown weapons" and "weapons in the thrown fighter weapon group" should be synonymous, but currently they aren't. The distinction between types of weapons and fighter weapon groups is important in certain circumstances, however. For instance, the urumi does not have the monk weapon feature (and is therefore not a "monk weapon"), but Ultimate Equipment lists it as being in the monk fighter weapon group.

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gharlane wrote:
1. are we going to see more archtypes and expansion material for this? Both concepts really cry out for it. (A varient multi-class optoni a'la Pathfinder Unchained would work very well for classes that want more freedom to be an animal than you get from wild shape).

Yes, I am totally going to do more with the two new classes. I'm slowly working on new animal shapes for the shapeshifter and down the road I want to do more passengers for the vessel. One idea that's been floating through my head is a ghost passenger, where instead of having an outsider in your subconscious, you've got a ghost. I have a couple of other ideas for some new vessel and shapeshifter archetypes too, and McTeague keeps bugging me for an archetype for the shapeshifter that can transform into inanimate objects.

[quote[2. How hard/unbalancing do you think it would be to do a varient shapeshifter that allows the creation of a warform with eidilon style customizations?

It'd be hard, but its another thing that I want to tackle with the class.


But I heartily recommend this product to anyone interested in it. Both classes are very flavorful, and just as importantly, play nice with the core classes and assumptions, which has been a problem with some 3rd party products. They're also simple enough in execution that the GM won't have to be doing a lot of looking over the shoulder of his players.

Well worth the purchase price!

Thanks! I appreciate the endorsement. :D

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