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I'm starting to feel for the Starfinder team, so much is being expected out of the core book... Not that it will stop me from playing along in games of blatantly wild speculation about what will be there or not.
Thank you. :) It can be hard knowing that no matter what you do, *someone* is going to be angry or disappointed with your choices, but we're just going to make the best game we can within the constraints we've been given, and hopefully a lot of folks will have fun!
The Masked Ferret wrote:
There will be some information and advice in the core rulebook about porting things between the two game systems, and I'm sure there'll be a blog post here or there, but ultimately, the focus in Starfinder will be on playing Starfinder, not using it as an expansion for Pathfinder.
Putting in a fey template that doesn't restrict you so much in terms of your physiology was one of the first things I did. :)
And thanks for the kind words, everybody! I've got my head down in Starfinder right now, but I'm definitely planning on doing some preview blogs before the book releases next month.
Theliah Strongarm wrote:
So, what I'm hearing is: there technically will be more than just the hardcover rulebooks? (Looks at James the Creative Director with the hint of questioning in my voice.)
Yes, absolutely. The intention is simply to have far *fewer* books than Pathfinder. There definitely have to be a few supplements beyond just the Core Rulebook and the AP, though! Half the point of doing a science fantasy game is to get to make big books full of aliens. :)
Oh dear, what a question! I think my answer is twofold: If it were just a question of including all the content I'd love for people to have, I think the book would be about 700 pages. :P But the more reasonable part of me actually wishes we could get the whole book down to about 300 pages, both simplifying the game and leaving out a lot of less-used content so as to make it less intimidating to new players.
The actual answer will be somewhere between those two. :)
There will not be a bestiary section in the Core Rulebook. While we originally considered it, trying to do the full game rules PLUS starship combat PLUS a bunch of setting material PLUS monsters was leading us toward a book that would need to be delivered via forklift. :P That said, we'll be doing a monster book shortly after the release of the core rulebook, and I'm super excited about some some of the ways it'll diverge from the Pathfinder bestiary format!
Oh man... do I dare give up the grippli? It's hard to imagine, but you're right that there's probably a ratfolk avatar in my future somewhere. :)
Thinking about the economy and futuristic services is indeed super fun! But it's also a bit of a challenge, because we've got a *lot* of information to fit in this book, so I'm constantly having to figure out where we can cut and squeeze to get all the necessary rules in. Rest assured, though, that if something like that doesn't make it into the core, there's always the possibility of doing a Starfinder Adventure Path article on it at some point!
Will the standard Pathfinder RPG classes be compatible with this new game, just in case I want to be from a planet full of primitive people or something like that?
Somewhat! It's a different game engine, and some math is very different, so you can't just port your characters over directly with no revision. That said, we're trying to make it reasonably simple to kitbash and move things between the two games—this isn't just Pathfinder in Space, but it DOES share most of the same DNA.
The hardest part of writing for me is always coming up with the ideas. Outlines are like pulling teeth, but once I know what needs to happen, it's much easier to get in the zone and just let the words flow.
Although really, that's only partially true—the hardest part of writing is actually making myself stop procrastinating and start working. The first 100 words can take as long as the thousand that follow. You just have to turn off the internet and push through that inertia. :)
And yeah, I question my ideas (and my work as a whole) all the time. But the thing is, you can't spend your time worrying if an idea is perfect—far better to just write it and see what happens. Sometimes the result will surprise you. And even if it isn't perfect—you're more likely to hit on something people love if you write a dozen stories than if you just write one. As I believe Bradbury (or Clarke?) once said: quantity begets quality.
And also, lest that answer seem too cold and corporate... you can't imagine the wailing and gnashing of teeth around here as we came to that conclusion. We *really* wanted to do a full public playtest, and overturned every rock in our search to make it feasible. But in the end it was a trade-off we had to make. :\
In addition to our in-house playtesting, we'll also be doing a closed playtest for Starfinder that's invite-only and will feature other RPG designers and third-party publishers, Pathfinder Society members, and various key members of the industry and community. While we wish we could open the playtest up to everyone, the timeframe involved and scope of the playtest simply make it impractical. (Unlike Pathfinder's class playtests, in order to make this one work, we have to give people the *entire* game.)
That said, we've got some cool ideas on how to give the community previews and get feedback, which we're looking to roll out here in the coming months. So stay tuned!
This is exactly where we're going with it.
In our new grimdark universe, the economy is totally just dwarf parts. "Gimme five teeth for an ear," you'll hear someone say.
Okay, maybe not. Actually, I'm really happy with our idea for the futuristic currency—I think we've figured out a cool way to have it be both physical *and* digital (and plausible) while avoiding some of the pitfalls of either alone. Dunno when we'll be revealing it, but I'm excited to share with y'all!
Will Huston wrote:
I apologize for spreading the crud. Shaking hands is a hard reflex to break!
But yeah, I recovered in fairly short order. Hope you did as well. :)
One thing I should point out in the various narrators' defenses: The Steve West/Ilyana Kadushin books were produced *at the same time* as all of the backlist titles. We signed two separate deals—with Macmillan Audio to make audiobooks of the new Tor-produced novels, and with Audible to release all our backlist. The two companies were working in parallel, recording simultaneously to try and get the whole line out in a relatively short window of time. Trying to use the same narrators for all of them would have created a world of problems, especially since each company had its chosen narrators that it like to use, so in the end we opted to let each company operate independently. (At least this way, if you don't like one narrator, you've got a lot of alternative choices.) But it definitely wasn't that the narrators weren't following each other's leads and trying to maintain continuity with previous narration, because there literally *wasn't* any previous narration when they started!
This has been your Behind the Scenes Business Moment at Paizo! :D
Liar's Island featured some material from** spoiler omitted **, is there any other Pathfinder Tales that have any of the occult classes show up ?
While I can't think of any off the top of my head, Meligaster from occult Adventures features prominently in the Pathfinder: Hollow Mountain comics! :D
We're not planning to do any fiction in the Starfinder Adventure Path—since it's the start of a whole new game, we need all the backmatter space we can get for new setting and rules info! That said, I can pretty much promise you'll see some fiction-like things popping up elsewhere...
The journal debate is dead—long live the journal debate! :P
Seriously, though: Thanks for the feedback, everyone! The idea of doing a short story collection or some sort of short story subscription (like a paid version of the web fiction) is deeply appealing to me as a creator, but so far we've shied away from it because the sales numbers on short story collections are pretty dismal compared to novels. Ditto for short fiction in other formats—the web fiction, while beloved by some, just didn't generate enough buzz by the end to justify the opportunity cost in addition to the *actual* cost. Each web fiction blog cost the company around $500, and even more importantly took some of our top editors away from working on the products that were *making* the company money. As with other discontinued projects like Planet Stories, we kept it going as long as we could out of love for the art form, but in the end, we had to do the responsible thing.
That said, it's really nice to hear from people who appreciate short fiction, and who knows? If the demand is there, perhaps it could return in a new and improved form someday...
Amanda Plageman wrote:
Thank you! I've written those little chapter opener bits for almost all the hardcovers, and I've really enjoyed developing the iconics' personalities through them. So much good-natured snark. :D
Mark Moreland wrote:
I too am sad to see the fiction go, both because it means 6 pages of extra work for me to do on a monthly basis, but also because it was one of the elements of Pathfinder that first hooked me as a fan. Back when I was just "superfan" Yoda8myhead, I even made my own lulu.com compilation of all of Eando Kline's adventures so I could more easily read them on my daily commute (see this blog post from 2009 for pictures)—my first foray into publishing.
Oh man, blast from the past! Mark handing me that little book was one of my most memorable fan interactions, as it was the closest I'd ever been at the time to holding a novel I'd written.
Fun fact: For several years after, my author photo was that picture with Death's Heretic photoshopped in over the cover. :D
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
Hey, thank *you*! I still love the City of Strangers, and I'm so glad people keep adventuring there. :D
Erik was saying he wants PC playable stats in every *bestiary*, not every bestiary *entry*. As a general design goal, we feel like a science fantasy game benefits from having a lot of playable races, and thus we want to lean toward including that info where feasible. But we are absolutely *not* promising that every CR 18 space whale will be a playable race. :P
I mean... yeah, totally intentional, I'm the king of symbolism.
Archpaladin Zousha wrote:
I'm sure I knew at the time, but I actually don't remember! Perhaps he's more into having his staff be happy and empowered and calling the shots—it would certainly make sense, since his workers are also espionage experts.
Sorry I can't be of more use. :)
Thomas LeBlanc wrote:
Genre: Most of them! If we do this right, you'll be able to play Alien and Event Horizon as easily as Star Wars and Fifth Element. :D
And we decided to announce it so far in advance because we wanted to do it at Paizocon, surrounded by a bunch of hardcore fans, rather than at some convention where only a portion of the audience gives a hoot.
Are there any new classes on the horizon? Also are there any areas of Pathfinder you'd like to explore more?
Starfinder will have a bunch of new classes. :)
In terms of areas of Pathfinder I'd like to explore more, I just finished a First World book that's coming out this fall, so that's one of my bucket list items! But right now, most of my attention is really turned to the other planets in the system.
I can now confirm there's a Starfinder panel at Gen Con! I don't know what new info we'll reveal there—we're all pretty leery of saying too much when the game's still a year away—but I'm sure something new will leak. :)
Look, if Paizo splits in half, it's inevitably going to be Upstairs vs. Downstairs. You'd think that we down here in the pit would have the natural advantage, being on the ground floor and controlling the stairwells, but that's underestimating Customer Service's willingness to use Cosmo as a human shield as they rush the barricades...
Seriously, though: If we thought there was *any* reasonable chance that Starfinder would fail or split the company in some terrible way, we wouldn't be doing this. As somebody who's put 12 years into Paizo, and whose ability to not sleep outside in the rain directly depends on its profitability, I'm certainly not eager to throw caution to the wind. So while I know I'm a biased source, I hope that helps put some minds at ease. :)
Just to clarify: Learning things about the Gap is only *one* of the Starfinders' missions. There are other aspects to what they do, all based around the core idea of exploring new worlds and sharing that information for the good of all.
Beyond that, I should probably hold my tongue until we're finished with development on those sections. :P
Years later, I still think my original answer from that older thread is pretty good:
James Sutter wrote: