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James Jacobs

James Jacobs's page

Creative Director. Pathfinder Society Member. 51,442 posts (53,820 including aliases). No reviews. 2 lists. No wishlists. 1 Pathfinder Society character. 9 aliases.


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Paizo Employee Creative Director

Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
What's the most popular deity among Molthuni enlisted men/women? Info about Molthune says that Abadar, Erastil and Iomedae are the most popular faiths there, but the war they're fighting doesn't seem particularly just, and Abadarans prefer peace, which better facilitates trade...

Abadar is the most popular among enlisted folks, and is in fact the most widespread religion in the region. Erastil is popular among rural folks who aren't so involved with the war, or are actual citizens of Molthune who have Nirmithas leanings. Iomedae worshipers are the least populous of the three, and are mostly lone groups working for a peaceful solution to the war. Overall though, Molthune isn't a particularly religious nation, and the bulk of its enlisted men and women don't really worship much or are pantheistic or agnostic or the like.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

IDTheftVictim wrote:

1. I am planning an ally of convenience for a future session, a male Drow who hopes to achieve becoming a Matron (we'll assume the term covers both genders). What would be a fitting Demonic Patron for such a character? If it helps I have currently built him as an Arcane Archer, with earlier levels in Fighter and Bard.

2. A continuation on the Antipaladin question I suppose but how does Paizo determine rather a character is Iconic? Most of the Iconics have full backstories but I remember two or three Prestige class people with names from the NPC Codex, are they Iconics? Apologies if I focus to much on this I just love the Iconic backgrounds and want to read more.

1) Socothbenoth. (Character class is kind of irrelevant to a certain extent in my opinion for questions like this.)

2) What determines if a character is an iconic is if it's a base class AND if Wayne Reynolds illustrates it. ONLY base classes have iconics. The antipaladin sort of muddies the waters since it's as much an archetype as a base class, similar to the samurai and ninja, but since the antipaladin came out first and since we presented that archetype differently (had we intended it to be a full-on base class like the samurai or ninja from the start we would have made the class more robust and individualistic from the paladin OR we would have been more obvious about it being an archetype) and since it doesn't have any Wayne Reynolds art.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

thegreenteagamer wrote:

James, personally, when you calculate Masterwork or Mithral animal barding's price, do you multiply the cost before adding the Masterwork or Mithral adjustment?

For example, a "mithral chain shirt" equivalent for a wolf; would you do (100+1000)x2=2200 or (100x2)+1000=1200?

Masterwork is a flat cost that's added on. Mithral goes off the weight of the item, or in the case of armor (like barding) the category of armor.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Paladinosaur wrote:

James, was Druma part of the Chelish ou Taldan empires? I found very little info on that country's history...

Also, do you think that one day every nation in the inner sea will have it's own book?

It was part of Taldor way back, I believe, but never part of Cheliax. Some day, we'll probably have books for all the regions but I don't really see Druma happening all that soon. Who knows, though... if lots and lots of folks start asking for a Druma book maybe...

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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TheAlicornSage wrote:


Do you ever GM pbp games? If so, where can I apply to join in?

Do you like players who see beyond the mechanics and can really take advantage of in game things, not mechanically, but situationally, such as using silent image to gain total cover or to terrorize a bunch of commoners?

The big question, I want to make an arcanist/monk. The concept needs these two in equal measure, not separate. But since I can only take one at a time, which should I start with? How can I really represent the other while still waiting on second level?

I do not do pbp games, but if I did, I'd run them strictly for friends. Gaming, for me, is the most fun when you do it with friends, and even moreso, as someone who's day job it is to create game stuff, it's very important to me to keep that in mind and to make sure that when I do play games, I do so with friends. If I play with customers or fans, that's pretty much impossible for me to be myself, since I also have to represent Paizo, and that means I'm "on the clock and working" and not relaxing and that blurs the line for me between work and play and takes the joy out of gaming by tiny bits.

I much prefer players who are great roleplayers. Whether or not they're number-crunchers or casual is kind of irrelevant to me, unless their behavior is making the game less fun for others at the table.

I don't generally give out character build advice since it opens up a rabbit hole. I just don't have the time to offer that advice to everyone. My preference in building characters is to come up with a personality first and then pick the class that fits that personality; picking a class or class combo first and going from there is kind of alien to how I build PCs. My suggestion would be to seek build advice on the advice forums here on the boards.

That said, I'd probably take an arcanist level first with Improved Unarmed Strike or Dodge or Fleet or some monk-like feat to help be all adroit and agile in combat.

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Razcar wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:


Nualia is inspired by my frustrations at how a male-dominated society has a double standard at how they treat their daughters versus their sons, and how men don't understand women. Had Nualia's adoptive father been less of a failure at being a father, Sandpoint would not have suffered nearly so much.

This made me react - I assumed that Golarion wasn't sexist the way our real world is, and has been. The reason behind my assumption is that I've seen you at Paizo present genders in the same roles in your products - and often in RL traditionally very masculine vocations, such as soldiers, ship captains, officers, etc. I understand Paizo's reasoning behind this (and applaud it personally) and I think it mirrors Steven Erikson's approach in his fantastic novels; to just do it without any fuss ("One of the first things we realized in creating the Malazan world the way we did, was that we would not sign-post these fundamental shifts away from the real world. After all, no-one in that world thinks about it either way. It’s not a point of debate, period." Quote from here.)

My players have reacted (positively, I should add) to what they've seen as gender equality while playing in Golarion and have asked me about it, and I made up (on the spot) that since there's no difference in physical attributes (i.e. Strength) between men and women in Golarion (as opposed to our world where women have 50-60% of men's strength), there's never been any possibility for any gender to specifically dominate the other, and hence there's no tradition of chauvinism. So while there's plenty of oppression in Golarion, it's not gender specific. Was I wrong?

Golarion encompasses all the range of possibility we want it to encompass in order for us to tell the stories we want to tell. We at Paizo are VERY open to diversity and want the game to be something that anyone can enjoy, regardless of who they are. But at the same time, elements like sexism and racisim and such are excellent topics to explore in stories, including games, since they help us grapple with complex topics and hopefully learn something about humanity in the process.

There are regions in Golarion where there are people who are close-minded or narrow-sighted and are sexist or racist or whatever, as needed for the story. With "Burnt Offerings" I wanted to tell a story about how a mostly nice town of good people can still get it wrong and cause trouble, in small part due to the town's misconceptions, but in most part due to a single person's character flaws. Father Tobyn is meant to be a DEEPLY flawed character; a bad father and priest who not only ruined his daughter's life but brought down a world of hurt on his town. The PCs can uncover some or most of this info if they look closely, and I would certainly hope that they'd learn from the mistakes and help Sandpoint grow from it.

You're not wrong though. There is gender oppression on Golarion, in all ways possible, but it's not the same everywhere, and it's not gender specific. Nothing in the rules is gender oppressive, and the fact that the NPCs in game DO sometimes gender oppress therefore is wrong and based on flawed theories.

In other words, there's no advantage or disadvantage, game-rules wise, to being male or female, and when in-world NPCs act like there is, they're ignorant and wrong. But that ignorance gives us tension and conflict to tell stories.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Sanareth wrote:

For the LENS OF THE DARK TAPESTRY item, why does it specify that placing a creature in space deals cold damage?

Space is not in and of itself, cold. It's actually an excellent insulator- you can observe this in every day life when you use a thermos to store liquid and retain it's temperature. Thus a warm body in space is more in danger of overheating (assuming they're not suffocating) than freezing.

While it could be said things are different in this setting, I still want to know if it deals cold damage because someone thought space was cold- or because there's an additional magical effect that causes it.

It deals cold damage because that's the most flavorfully close option.

Also, please take the discussion of it elsewhere and don't clutter this thread with non-questions.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Archpaladin Zousha wrote:

When a spellcaster uses the giant shape spells, does the giant they turn into resemble them physically or does their giant appearance appear completely different (since the spell's basically a giant-flavored variant of beast shape spells, and you obviously couldn't turn into a bear or a kangaroo that resembles your appearance!)?

Up to the GM, but I'd say no... the giant shape gained looks like a typical giant of that race. The spell you're looking for, the "Giant version of me!" is enlarge person.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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AlgaeNymph wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Rennaivx wrote:
How do cults of empyreal lords tend to proselytize/evangelize? I know they aren't terribly prolific in most cases, but I'm pondering a warpriest of Ragathiel and was wondering how she'd be most likely to have stumbled into the faith without being raised in it. I know Magnimar is one of the bigger clumps of mystery cult activity, and she'll be passing through there. But would she be most likely to come across a pamphlet, a street preacher, gossip in a tavern, a bard's stories...?
It'd vary wildly; there are dozens of them, after all, and they're not all the same. The one constant would be that they'd do so without being evil about it. Ragathiel's faith, being a more military type of deity, probably gathers new people by showing their prowess and goodness on the battlefield or in times of war.

How does Arshea's faith proselytize. Please answer with as much detail as possible!

This raises another question: why isn't Arshea's faith more popular? Given what it offers, you'd think it'd be in demand more.

Alas, Arshea's faith proselytizes in ways that would get censored on these boards. Use your imagination! :-P

And it's not more popular for lots of reasons, but one that stands out is that sex scares lots of people. Another is that a lot of other people are frightened by equality. And another is that the faith might just not be all that into being popular. They have other things on their mind.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
What's the big differences between drakes and wyverns?

Drakes are a huge family of related creatures that have breath weapons.

Wyverns are just wyverns, pretty much, and don't have a breath weapon but do have a poison sting.

It's all right there in the rules pretty much.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

As mentioned in the Core rules, the GM is free to adjudicate that some forms of damage bypass some or all of an object's hardness or the half-damage rule. Let common sense be your guide. And it probably should have a range; line of sight is a long way. I'd say 60 feet.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

TheAlicornSage wrote:

Are there assistance dogs in Golarion, like for blind people?

Playing a pfs scenario where we get into an opera, well I got my guard dog in by claiming it was an assistance dog.

There would be, and they wouldn't be limited to just dogs, and there's plenty of venues in Golarion that wouldn't care and you'd still need to make a Diplomacy check or something in order to get your assistance pet in with you.

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Luthorne wrote:

1) If you could transform to and from the form of a single humanoid creature within one size category of your own - sex, race, and general appearance up to you so long as it fits within the norms of that race, though you still can't choose to be identical to an existing individual - what form would you choose? Elf? Female version of yourself? Giant? Merfolk? Mostly otherwise works as Change Shape.

2) The same question as above, but a single monstrous humanoid creature within on size category of your own...what would you pick?

3) And the same question as above, but a single animal within one size category of your own...what would you pick?

4) And finally, if you had the opportunity to pick one of the above three shapes as being one you could freely transform to and from, but only one, which one would you pick?

1) Female elf.

2) Doppelganger. HA.

3) Deinonychus... or some sort of flying bird like an eagle if I could get in on the size restriction.

4) Doppelganger, of course, since that opens up EVERY other category!

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IDTheftVictim wrote:

1. Who is your favorite Occult Iconic?

2. Who is your favorite Evil Iconic?
3. Favorite bit of art in a Paizo product? Outside of one?
4. Is the Antipaladin pictured in the Advanced Players Guide still nameless? And if so why?

1) The psychic.

2) The magus.

3) Paizo: Cover to Pathfinder #100. Outside of Paizo: So many choices; dunno. Probably the sketch of Merisiel that Eva did for me, or maybe something from Escher or Clive Barker or the poster to "The Thing" or so many choices... dunno.

4) He's nameless because he's not an iconic.

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Bullo Dagmawi wrote:

I have an odd question here.

If you were using the downtime rules and someone wanted to make some of their structures (perhaps many of them) underground, how would you handle that for price and time?

I am asking for some guidance/inspiration because it seems more to be a GM adjudicating decision rather than straight rules.

Thoughts?

Thanks in advance.

Try double charging and go from there.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Alexander Augunas wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
AlgaeNymph wrote:
Do you think the wizard class needs an "unchained" version? If so, what would the changes be? (I'm not asking for a detailed writeup, just a general summary.) If you're not the person to ask, who would be?
I don't think so.
Are there any classes left that you feel could use a good, old-fashioned unchaining?

Nope.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

kevin_video wrote:

Hey James, got a question regarding the black blade magus.

"Languages and Skills: A black blade starts with Common as a language."
"Telepathy (Su): While a magus is wielding or carrying his black blade, he can communicate telepathically with the blade in a language that the magus and the black blade share."
What happens when a black blade and the magus don't share languages, or at least don't both have Common as a base language? It's rare, but there are races that don't get Common as a standard known language. Does the black blade just happen to know a different language instead?

Don't do it because that's a goofy character build. If you don't share a language, you can't communicate. At all. Personally, I'd let the black blade speak the magus's "native language" in my games, but that will normally not be a problem since all base races speak Common. This is a good example of a rule that's frustrating since it makes an assumption that the character using the rule is a core PC class, and is one of hundreds of reasons why I'm not a fan of allowing unusual races as PC options. Still... it's lame that you as the GM have to tinker with the rules if, for example, you want to build a monster magus who doesn't speak Common. In that case, as the GM, you should ABSOLUTELY let the black blade just speak the magus's native language.

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Shogal wrote:

Can a single Cackle maintain different kinds of hexes at the same time? or the same hex affecting more than one creature?

Good question for the rules forum. I'd only let a cackle maintain one hex at a time, but would reserve the option to change my mind once I saw that playing out in game play.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
What are android naming conventions, as far as Numeria's android population is concerned?

Something science-fictiony, or something adopted from surrounding cultures. Check out Iron Gods for examples.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Shogal wrote:

Can i trade a standard action or a move action for a swift action? for example, if i do nothing else, could i use two or three swift actions? i think not, but my players are insisting on it.

Nope.

Your options are:

1 full round action and 1 swift action, or

1 standard action and one move action and 1 swift action, or

2 move actions and 1 swift action.

You can NEVER take more than 1 swift action in a round, and remember that an immediate action counts as a swift action.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Rennaivx wrote:
How do cults of empyreal lords tend to proselytize/evangelize? I know they aren't terribly prolific in most cases, but I'm pondering a warpriest of Ragathiel and was wondering how she'd be most likely to have stumbled into the faith without being raised in it. I know Magnimar is one of the bigger clumps of mystery cult activity, and she'll be passing through there. But would she be most likely to come across a pamphlet, a street preacher, gossip in a tavern, a bard's stories...?

It'd vary wildly; there are dozens of them, after all, and they're not all the same. The one constant would be that they'd do so without being evil about it. Ragathiel's faith, being a more military type of deity, probably gathers new people by showing their prowess and goodness on the battlefield or in times of war.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

137ben wrote:
James, have you ever played Mongoose Legend? What did you think of it (if you did play it)?

Nope; never heard of it.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

I'm Hiding In Your Closet wrote:

Maybe this has been asked before, but:

How does one become "Creative Director" of something?

You can be promoted into it over time after you display you have the skills for the position. You can be hired in that role from day one. I took the former route.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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xavier c wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
xavier c wrote:
Did you watch The Conjuring 2? If yes what did you think of it?, what did you like about it? and what did you not like about it?

I just saw it this weekend.

I LIKED: That it's an R-rated horror movie that isn't all gore that still made a huge pile of money, which means that studios will continue to release more and more horror movies, which means that even if most of them are no good, there'll still be more good ones overall.

I DID NOT LIKE: The noisy audience.

OVERALL: It was mostly underwhelming and disappointing to me. Not TERRIBLE but not spectacular, like the first one.

Really? From what I heard is was better than the first movie. What was underwhelming and disappointment to you? And what were you expecting when you went to watch this movie?

What was underwhelming was it seemed to rely more on jump scares than dread. And the general storyline was less interesting than the first one, perhaps because I was more familiar with Amityville and Einfield than with the cases in the first movie. And beyond that, knowing that Amityville was a hoax and other information about the Warrens in real life kinda tainted the depiction of them as heroes a little. I did very much like the actual direction of the movie though, and the design of the you-know-what at the end was great. And I did like the twist about the ghost's reason for haunting, but wish it had explored that more. Also it felt like the characters made less logical choices in this movie than in the first one, which was distracting and annoying.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

xavier c wrote:
Did you watch The Conjuring 2? If yes what did you think of it?, what did you like about it? and what did you not like about it?

I just saw it this weekend.

I LIKED: That it's an R-rated horror movie that isn't all gore that still made a huge pile of money, which means that studios will continue to release more and more horror movies, which means that even if most of them are no good, there'll still be more good ones overall.

I DID NOT LIKE: The noisy audience.

OVERALL: It was mostly underwhelming and disappointing to me. Not TERRIBLE but not spectacular, like the first one.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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AlgaeNymph wrote:
Do you think the wizard class needs an "unchained" version? If so, what would the changes be? (I'm not asking for a detailed writeup, just a general summary.) If you're not the person to ask, who would be?

I don't think so.

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Cole Deschain wrote:

1. What was your favorite segment?

2. Favorite non-zombie apocalyptic hazard explored by the book?

3. Any parts that make you tear up? ('Cause I have at least five...)

1) The segment set in the high-rise apartment building in Japan.

2) The disease spreading vector tracking stuff.

3) Not that I remember.

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Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
Is Lovecraft's mentions of whippoorwills in The Dunwich Horror as psychopomps the reason they're Pharasma's sacred animal?

Yes.

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Simeon wrote:
I'm trying to retrofit a forest drake into a plains/prairie drake, any suggest for what the breath weapon damage could be changed to and what I could replace aquatic adaption with?

I'd make up an entirely new drake if it were me, rather than retrofit one. But that'd be starting from ground zero. And THAT said, I'm not really a fan of every terrain getting its own drake. How about just using a forest drake that wandered out of the woods, maybe with a simple template on it? If you wanna throw off the players, describe it as being light green in color and with fire that's also green... cosmetic monster changes go a long way with players!

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Thomas Seitz wrote:
*wonders James Jacobs can travel back and forth through time*

Just forward, alas. Otherwise I would have fixed a lot of bad decisions I've made over the years.

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Cole Deschain wrote:

On the subject of marine undead...

Have you read World War Z?

Of course I have! That book's a big part of my "Undead walking along the ocean floor is creepy and cool" inspiration.

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This is in fact one of the central plot elements for...

Spoiler:
...the Second Darkness Adventure Path.

1) It absolutely can occur.

2) It's super rare. In order for it to occur, the elf must be chaotic evil, must worship a corrupting influence (traditionally a demon lord or Rovagug, but any chaotic evil deity will, in theory, do), and must commit an atrocity above and beyond the norm for a chaotic evil person. Even then, it's not always going to happen. Essentially, when it happens is when you the GM decide it does, and it should be a MAJOR plot point to the story you're telling. The vast, vast, vast majority of drow come to be by being born to drow parents.

3) Nope; doesn't work on half-elves.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Mythraine wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Mythraine wrote:
James, with your discussion here on this particular product page, will you be involved in the writing or design/development of Paths of the Righteous? Will your preferred method of prestige classes as options for multiple base classes be showcased in this product?

That's precisely the reason I'm here. After finishing my work on Curse of the Crimson Throne, I was asked by THEM to come in and take up development work on several Campaign Setting and Player Companion volumes to help get things back on schedule. I developed Haunted Heroes Handbook and Divine Anthology, but Paths of the Righteous is the only one of the Player Companions I've actually concepted from the outset—it's the only one that I've outlined, assigned, and developed from start to finish.

So... yeah. The whole point of Paths of the Righteous is that each of the 14 prestige classes should be viable for multiple classes. The theme that ties them all together is that each one is focused on a specific deity, so that's the one shared characteristic—they all have "DEITY: Must worship this deity" as a prerequisite. But beyond that, options are pretty wide open.

OK, wow. That's got me rather excited. Slightly off topic ... are there other Player Companions announced or TBA that you have concepted from the outset?

Going forward, not at this time, but lately things are changing weekly for my job duties it seems.

Going backward... it's been a long, long time since I've done one of these. Many, many years.

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Mythraine wrote:
James, with your discussion here on this particular product page, will you be involved in the writing or design/development of Paths of the Righteous? Will your preferred method of prestige classes as options for multiple base classes be showcased in this product?

That's precisely the reason I'm here. After finishing my work on Curse of the Crimson Throne, I was asked by THEM to come in and take up development work on several Campaign Setting and Player Companion volumes to help get things back on schedule. I developed Haunted Heroes Handbook and Divine Anthology, but Paths of the Righteous is the only one of the Player Companions I've actually concepted from the outset—it's the only one that I've outlined, assigned, and developed from start to finish.

So... yeah. The whole point of Paths of the Righteous is that each of the 14 prestige classes should be viable for multiple classes. The theme that ties them all together is that each one is focused on a specific deity, so that's the one shared characteristic—they all have "DEITY: Must worship this deity" as a prerequisite. But beyond that, options are pretty wide open.

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Protoman wrote:

James, you're pretty much the only Paizo staff member that I can find that's made any reference to deep water pressure damage in my search of the forum (this is searching "water pressure damage" under "Everything" of the Paizo site) so I hope I can trouble you with a quick question:

Are objects and constructs susceptible to underwater pressure damage? Constructs are immune to any effect that requires a Fortitude save unless the effect also works on objects, and the deep water pressure rules only say "creature" and "diver" and doesn't specify object (like effects setting objects on fire would), but I figured I'd maybe check with you for your input?

Sorry if this is against the spirit of the "Ask *James Jacobs* ALL your Questions Here!" thread if we're supposed to keep rules stuff outside of it.

I'd say that as a general rule, objects (and thus constructs) are not subject to pressure damage. I'd go further to say that incorporeal creatures or most undead would be immune as well. I'd ACTUALLY like to classify pressure damage as "bludgeoning damage that affects living creatures or objects with enclosed hollow spaces." But in the interim, it's best to simply use common sense on a case by case basis. After all, it's not like we made up the concept of pressure damage from deep water. It's a real-world thing. A rock dropped into the ocean won't get crushed. And there's plenty of real-world examples of deep-sea robots that work down there—so constructs being immune to it is neat too. And furthermore, the idea that a zombie or other undead could just walk down to the bottom of the ocean and not worry too much about it makes undead more interesting as well.

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Hayato Ken wrote:

I can see that. I´m afraid you lost me there - logicwise - though.

Did only the PrCs in Paths of Prestige have the design goal to be flexible and an option for multiple classes or points of entry?
And other PrC´s then have different design goals?
What were the goals for Lion Blade and Enchanting Courtesan then if i may ask?

And how might this be with future PrCs?

Not everyone at Paizo has the same design goals and philosophies when it comes to Prestige Classes. For me, I see them as options that should appeal to multiple characters, allowing for multiple entry points. For example, the Hellknight prestige class is a good option for fighters and paladins and cavaliers, but isn't an impossible option for other classes. An archetype, on the other hand, ONLY works with one class. Prestige classes are more versatile.

The prestige classes in Paths of Prestige were also initially intended to follow that maxim as well, and they do relatively well there I think. Some, like the Winter Witch, are specifically for a specific class, but most are more versatile. The tattooed mystic, for example, works for any spellcaster.

I wasn't involved with the Lion Blade and the Enchanting Courtesan, so I can't really say much about their goals, other than that I think one of the Lion Blade goals was that someone here wanted to update/fix that prestige class to address concerns from PFS. I could be wrong there.

If I have my way, the "should work well for multiple classes" theory will be adopted for all future prestige classes, but as Paizo has grown my direct influence over our products has started to diminish.

And of course, my design philosophy for prestige classes is somewhat different from the design team's preference that prestige classes help to enable specific multiclass combinations (as seen in classes like the arcane trickster or the eldritch knight). I'm not as big a fan of that philosophy, and instead prefer prestige classes to be tied to the world's flavor and serve to expand and grow organization roles. Like the Hellknights, the Red Mantis assassin, or the prophet of Kalistrade.

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From where I'm sitting, the largest part of the problem with Wrath of the Righteous is that I as the developer of the AP didn't have enough experience with Mythic when it combines with high level play to do a great job developing the encounters, in part because we didn't really have solid playtest data for how a high level campaign worked with mythic in play. I learned a LOT from that and from looking at the feedback. If I were to do Wrath of the Righteous today, I'd probably not change much about the actual adventure other than perhaps cutting in half the rate at which folks gained mythic tiers... perhaps more. Having the AP end with 20th level tier 4 or tier 5 PCs would probably work better. Maybe even lower tier.

Of course, player skill and GM skill are a HUGE element for all of this. For all the hullabaloo about Wrath, there were plenty of folks who had a fine time with the AP. But with Mythic in particular, adding all the new rules on to high level play makes for a lot of places where players and GMs alike can misinterpret the rules. It was sort of a perfect storm in that regard, from the design and development through to the actual game play at tables itself.

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Lem the Halfling wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Snowsarn wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Voyd211 wrote:
Who's your favorite iconic character, other than Merisiel?
Probably Kyra. With Jirelle third and Lini fourth and either Seoni or Feiya fifth.

Do you like any of the male Iconics?

Do you prefer female characters in general?

Lem is my favorite of the male iconics (he probably pops in at about 9 or 10 in the top ten iconics list), but in general I do prefer female characters to male characters.
Thanks, boss!

No problem! Keep being rad!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

j b 200 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
j b 200 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
As for an entirely new adventure? Nothing announced yet, but stay tuned, I guess!
Is this a "things are on the horizon" stay tuned or more of a "I am working on something, it's just not announced yet"?
I don't see how those two options are really any different. But barring unexpected developments, the expansion to "A History Of Ashes" in the Crimson Throne hardcover will not be my last adventure.

I meant

A) you are working on a specific adventure, but it is unannounced so you can't give any specifics.
VS.
B) you aren't working on any specific adventure ATM (excluding "a history of ashes") but you work at a gaming Co, so that could change in the near future.

It's kinda both right now.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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TriOmegaZero wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
It's certainly strange how often experienced gamers prefer to play the game on "easy" mode (higher point buy) rather than test their skills and try for the challenge of "hard" mode (lower point buy).

You say that like the GM doesn't up the challenge of higher point buy games.

It's also certainly strange that you use disparaging language about such games.

Upping the challenge of a game when upping a point buy doesn't create a "hard mode." It preserves the status quo.

And what's strange about me having passionate opinions about gaming? That's like 50% of what gaming is, it seems! :-P

What's MORE frustrating is that I can't post things in jest, apparently, without folks taking them as personal attacks. So, if anyone did take that as a personal attack, I apologize. I just get frustrated seeing so many complaints that "Pathfinder is broken!" followed immediately by something I interpret as "I build overpowered characters!"

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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The Doomkitten wrote:

Looking at your recent post, I had an idea.

Would a group of Desnan faithful who venture into the Dreamscape to hunt down and banish nightmares be considered heretical, as her faithful are supposed to embrace all dreams? I'm sorry, it's just reading that gave me a GREAT concept for a campaign wherein the PCs do exactly that.

Not heretical at all. I could see Desnans getting into exploring dreams and fighting nightmares like that.

You can embrace all dreams while still understanding that some dreams are bad and need to be fought against, in the same way you can be a champion of diversity and inclusivity but still fight against organizations or beliefs that threaten diversity—doing so doesn't make you a traitor to your beliefs, but a defender of them.

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Kryzbyn wrote:
Keeping on topic with Gorum for a bit, in his write up in Inner Sea Gods, it seems that he is more about fighting or battle itself, than the cause that the fight or battle is being fought for. Aside from cowardice, are there any tactics he would find reprehensible? He is CN, so I'd imagine anything overtly evil may be out, but in the heat of battle, is anything out of bounds to Gorum?

Tactics that endorse and promote peace and cooperation between enemies are not beloved by Gorum. He's also not a fan of mindless murder or bullying—to Gorum and his faithful, the person who runs away from a battle out of fear is just as much a coward as the high-level assassin who sneaks into a king's bedroom while he sleeps to kill him with a knife while he's out cold. Poison's a complicated example; his faith is fine with the use of poison on weapons, but not as a REPLACEMENT to weaponplay. Poisoning an arrow or dagger that you then use to nick a foe when not in battle is cowardly. Challenging that foe to battle and then sticking him with a poison blade on round 1 is not cowardly.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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TheAlicornSage wrote:

What do you think of bronies*?

*Bronies are the mostly adult male fans of Friendship is Magic, the latest My Little Pony series (significantly different from earlier series)

I know what bronies are.

I think that they're admirable and brave in embracing their fandom—a fandom that often gets them ridiculed, but they remain fans in the face of that ridicule. And I've yet to see a bronie lash out against My Little Pony in the way that, say, fans of Game of Thrones lash out at George R. R. Martin, or fans of Star Wars lash out at the idea of a female lead in a movie, or fans of Pathfinder lashing out at us fixing a broken rule. Maybe it's because I'm not that deeply involved in My Little Pony—maybe there ARE bronies who are toxic to their own fandom—but that's not my perception.

Anyway. My Little Pony isn't my thing, but more power to the bronies for finding something they love. We should all be so lucky, and we should all be so willing to be ourselves. Same goes for ANY fandom or religion or culture or society. It's a hard ideal to live up to—being accepting of all sorts of different interests, and its certainly something even that we here at Paizo need to keep working on. We're getting there, though, thankfully!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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j b 200 wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
As for an entirely new adventure? Nothing announced yet, but stay tuned, I guess!
Is this a "things are on the horizon" stay tuned or more of a "I am working on something, it's just not announced yet"?

I don't see how those two options are really any different. But barring unexpected developments, the expansion to "A History Of Ashes" in the Crimson Throne hardcover will not be my last adventure.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

5 people marked this as a favorite.
Kryzbyn wrote:

So, we're playing Iron Gods and ** spoiler omitted **

What would Gorum's thoughts on the chain sword as a weapon of war? I'm not asking if he'd accept it as a favored weapon substitute, but would he look down on it's use?
My warpriest has taken the EWP and Weapon Focus for it to be useable as a sacred weapon mechanically, just curious what you'd think Gorum would think :)

Gorum and his faith would absolutely embrace a chainsaw as a weapon of war. In fact, Gorum and the faith do not look down on ANY weapon. He has a single favored weapon, yes, but he's also SPECIFICALLY the god of weapons. As such, any weapon is sacred to him and a viable tool for his faithful. It's no different than Gozereh's faith embracing all forms of nature, or Desna's faith embracing all forms of dreams, or Shelyn's faith embracing all forms of art. Urgathoa doesn't force her clerics to ONLY use the plague in their disease-spreading plots, and Cayden Cailean's faith approves of white wine and red wine and all the rest. Likewise, Gorum's faithful are cool with ANY weapon someone might wish to use.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

Paladinosaur wrote:

James,

what is out there east of Taldor? Is it a nation we've heard of?

East of Taldor is the continent of Casmaron. The region JUST east of Taldor hasn't yet been nailed down though. It's likely to be a remote part of Kelesh though, or more likely the Windswept Wastes or another hard-to-navigate region... but again... it's not yet set in stone.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Snowsarn wrote:

I can really relate to you feelings about 'toxic masculinity environment'. Something that made me feel out of place growing up and something I've only truly come to terms with after turning 30.

I agree that there is a need for more female and minority characters in fiction, but don't you think it would a good thing to show male characters, who showcase a different kind of masculinity?
I work with children and try to be a different male role model, than what is seen in a lot of fiction.

I've always thought the Paizo boards were very nice, especially compared to the rest of the internet, but maybe I've not been looking in the right (well wrong) places?

Almost forgot my players read the thread occasionally

Spoiler:
I'm intrigued at your idea to try give the players an opportunity to redeem Nualia. I thought that she was too far gone now: After she fled Thistletop she went to Ironbriar who sent her to Xanesha, who eventually sent her to Lucrecia, who gave her a contingent of ogres. Nualia took them on a killing/burning spree and became a half-fiend.
Lamashtu didn't remove her "curse of beauty" though (because Nualia had failed the first time around).
But despite Lamashtu's aid and her new half-fiend powers, Nualia was defeated again, and Sandpoint was saved from the fire.
I guess that could make her start doubting the goddess' power?

I think at least she'll doubt her allies, who care little for her goals, and have only used her as a pawn.

Is there a way to undo the half-fiend transformation? Even if they push her to Chaotic Neutral, she'd still be a half-fiend.
Perhaps something with the Runeforge could help?

Any insight is very much appreciated :-)


Showing male characters in roles other than toxic masculine roles is absolutely important, but it's not NEARLY as important as diversification and making the game welcoming to ALL types, not just white men. In fact, by giving more attention to women or by shaking up the expectation that every character in a fantasy setting is a white dude we DO work against the whole toxic masculinity problem, and in a much more productive and healthy way than devoting yet more space to white male characters.

And I agree that the Paizo boards are a nice and welcoming place compared to much of the rest of the internet, but they're not as nice and welcoming as they have been traditionally. That's an unfortunate side effect of Pathfinder's increasing popularity, and we see a spike of trolling and toxic behavior whenever we do something to significantly increase our visibility in the entertainment industry. So, every one here who can help keep these boards friendly and welcoming is worth their weight in platinum.

As for the spoiler topic...

Spoiler:
Nualia isn't too far gone. After all... we've done redemption arcs for full-on succubi, and have a redemption arc in process for a demon lord, so there's still PLENTY of hope left for Nualia... provided she gets some positive relationship energy rather than just more doses of negativity. Doubting Lamashtu's power is the road to failure and an eternity tormented in the Abyss... it is NOT in and of itself a road to redemption.

There's absolutely methods to undo the half-fiend transformation, but just as that process is a specific ritual, the reversal should be a complex ritual or adventure-based mission as well. And then again, she can be redeemed without being un-fiended as well, but that's probably tougher. Tying her redemption to later events in Runelords is an interesting idea—and in fact tying it to elements of virtues in Runeforge is a great climax to such a goal, assuming she teams up with the PCs a few adventures before then to start that long walk.

Being a game where the PCs are the stars, though, it really should be a PC who starts her on that path by either granting her mercy after she's defeated in battle or otherwise making a personal sacrifice or great step of trust in her.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
And where's Ripdog Alley?
In the sausage district, of course!
Which city's sausage district?!

I never said the sausage district was in a city.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

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It's certainly strange how often experienced gamers prefer to play the game on "easy" mode (higher point buy) rather than test their skills and try for the challenge of "hard" mode (lower point buy).

Paizo Employee Creative Director

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Hayato Ken wrote:
James Jacobs wrote:
Hayato Ken wrote:

Here´s hope Prestige Classes become a bit more flexible, so they are of use to characters coming from different entry classes, with different main stats, etc.

It´s certainly believable that members of a certain organization share some ideals, goals and also some abilities, but i think it´s totaly unbelievable when a PrC produces nearly 100% similar characters in each case or has one good and one bad entry option.
That doesn´t make sense for those organisations, since they would hinder themselves.

Prestige classes work best when they are flexible and an option for multiple classes or points of entry—in that way, they're kind of the opposite of an archetype, which REQUIRES a specific class and usually requires you to make that choice at 1st level.

In any case, these prestige classes are all designed to be attractive to multiple classes; not always divine spellcaster classes, despite the fact that each one is tied to a specific good-aligned deity.

I´m sorry to say that the New Lion Blade PrC and Enchanting Courtesan didn´t give me this impression.

Those prestige classes aren't part of Paths of the Prestige's design goal of "be attractive to multiple classes," and as such weren't intended to exemplify that design goal at all.

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