|Paizo Pathfinder® Paizo Games|
|About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ|
I know we've had a goodbye thread, but it just doesn't seem right not to say something on his last day. You know, like those awesome action/suspense movies where the detective catches the bad guy, or the bomb is diffused and the city is saved?
Then everybody rises to their feet and gives one final round of applause as he leaves the scene?
Ladies and gentlemen, Mr. Sean K. Reynolds.
Applauds on Sean's way out.
PS: I respectfully ask for those who don't share the feeling to refrain from posting in this thread. Just this one time, please and with gratitude in advance?.
No egos were bruised in the last 24 hours. We praise whoever we like.
Alright, let's look at this then.
1.) The GM benefits. They're able to introduce a hazard that is flavorful, thematic, challenging, and provides XP. Even if levels are granted subjectively, encounters are still required to be in place to justify raising the characters to another level. A haunt contributes to that. It is part of an XP budget that must be spent to construct an adventure. The players don't really benefit, except from the experience of dealing with a haunt (thrills, chills, suspense). That is where the GM can really help to improve the game with colorful narration. The author also needs to ensure the haunt is reasonably well constructed and how it works is clear.
2.) It introduces a supernatural event without the reliance on a creature. That is really important. It is also mechanics based, rather than relying on subjective GM narration. That is not a condemnation of rules-lite, narrative RPGs. Far from it. Pathfinder RPG, however, is not that type of game. Haunts provide an objective structure to introduce these supernatural hazards.
(Granted, a GM can sway thing events to their liking. That is a different conversation however).
3.)Honestly, word count plays a factor. Creatures, especially unique ones, absorb word count in adventure design. A haunt requires much less of the author's wordcount. Also, sometimes having multiple creatures, side by side and in every room and hallway, is redundant and boring design. It can be a simple matter of variety, while adhering to a supernatural theme.
Finally, many spell-like effects would make some creatures more powerful than they need to be. Haunts can be a little more flexible in that regard (still, even they have limits).
4.) This question is too subjective to provide a fair answer. I'm not trying to dodge it. I can't honestly describe where should a monster or a traditional trap should be placed either. That is a creative decision and a lot of factors go into making it. RPG authors are not just mechanics, there is some artistry in our work and this is part of it. I would look to the story for the best answer, and also the physical layout and spacing in relation to more traditional encounters.
5.) You might have used those elsewhere already. Again, nothing consumes wordcount more than creature encounters or roleplaying encounters. A good adventure requires a variety of different types of encounters to avoid redundancy. A haunt is another tool. I could turn this around and ask why an adventure is nothing but endless waves of monsters, or lacks combat encounters in favor of endless roleplaying scenes. Variety is the spice of adventure design.
5A.) Some encounters, like monsters with class levels receive a greater than normal treasure allocation. To compensate, other encounters must be introduced that don't grant treasure in order to balance the treasure budget. A haunt encounter works well for that.
6.) Again, this is a subjective question. I can tell that there are instances when you thought something else should have been used besides a haunt. You might be right. That's not sarcasm at all. If the topic concerns you, then there might something to what you're saying. I honor that. But in a general conversation, without specifics, who knows?
Necronus, you have conceded that haunts can be good tools in some instances. I concede that their use requires some thoughtful consideration and not every implementation in the Pathfinder line has been perfect. I hope we can respect each others views.
I have to admit, I was only attracted to this thread because I saw Brandon posted in it. However after a quick read, I have to agree. Well said, MP. EDIT: and Pryllin
The implementation of haunts has been a new design space that freelancers have (and still are) learning to use effectively and with finesse.
I am going to re-iterate something I said early, because it was a throw-away line.
I don't know about a hardback AP, ever. I don't rule it out, but that is a decision that is weighed heavily with the financial side of the business.
So why I am posting?
Because I want to plant the seed of the idea that 2017 should have extra special APs to commemorate the occasion.
A major campaign event. I'm not talking about metaplot or Aroden- but something really cool like Nex or Aboleths. I have another cool idea I would love, but I don't want to jinx it.
My dream would be a really heavily political AP, Game of Thrones style, where the PCs started out as young nobles and have to deal with intrigue, *war*, revolution, treachery et al. I was disappointed at the lack of politics in Kingmaker, where it would have fit perfectly. For scope, I'd say bigger the better - how about setting it in Cheliax? :D It should be as open as possible, so that by the end the political situation may have changed drastically, probably with at least one new monarch on the throne. The civil war in GoT/ASoIAF is a good model - a bunch of NPC factions of varying levels of good/evil; PCs members of one relatively good-guy faction (the PCs need an incentive to stick together in this kind of game) initially just trying to survive, later on critical in shaping the destiny of the kingdom/world.
Sounds cool to me! Don't think that you're all alone with this wish.
@ Snow Crash,
Your last post in this thread made me happy and I am pleased with the change of tenor in this thread.
EDIT: This post might sound condescending, so I want to clarify. As a community we focus on negative threads quite a bit, but we should also focus on the positive. I think Snow Crash is sincere. They joked in a manner that was very familiar with people they didn't know and it didn't come off well. Who hasn't done that at least once? Now this conversation has turned around despite an unfortunate subject line. This is worthy of being noted.
If you say something that is embarrassing to yourself the person you calls you on it didn't embarrass you. You embarrassed yourself. Likewise with being a jerk.
If that actually happened, Big D. There is no agreement on what actually transpired even though we have a written record of it. To really talk about this, we first have to come to some accord on what actually took place.
Let's be clear, that thread was not about the ice tomb hex. It was an accusation that staff refuse to help. That is an aggressive way to start a dialogue. Especially when they feel they do all they can with the time and resources they have.
Then to suggest that someone would withhold help to other people, because they were mad at someone else? What you may not be appreciating is that is a very harsh thing to suggest. Only a jerk would do that. So a question phrased like that is not going to get a good reaction from anyone. Because you're asking someone if they intend on being a jerk.
Can't you see that, Big D?
And just in case there is any doubt, this post is not written to be unpleasant. I'm just asking you to step outside the situation and think about how it sounds from the other side.
I'm going to step away now. I probably have contributed all that I can. My hope is that we can get past this accusation. Get the question answered, and put this whole thing behind us.
I read Question's thread and though you're not responsible for it, the thread was poisoned from the start with an accusatory tone.
Sean was explaining that the matter of a FAQ not being answered is not black and white and that he had a lot of demands on his time. You can choose to take that as a hostile statement directed towards you, or—you can interpret it as asking for empathy. You can dismiss me as biased, but I believe Sean was explaining himself as best he could as asking for perspective.
Your response was something akin to, "Not my problem." "What exactly does this have to do with me again?" It was pretty cold and distant.
Is the implication here that you'll refuse to respond to the at least sixty-something people who have asked for a response to this ice tomb hex issue because you don't like how one person is talking about it?
That's a really loaded question. Honestly, don't you think? Because it is a really terrible thing to suggest that anyone would do that. He's never going to say yes to that. And, it's kinda of insulting to have to answer "No" to it as well.
Let's exaggerate this, just to make it clearer. If someone asks me, "Does this imply that you're going to kick puppies because a puppy did his business on your lawn?" That's a trap question. Because it implies that I might enjoy hurting animals. Its kinda of insulting to be asked that in the first place.
But you're asking Sean, "Are you going to withhold the answer in order to be petty?"
Likewise that is insulting to Sean. It's HURTFUL.
And your response was to say you don't care.
Vivianne, I know you're upset about not getting the answer to your question. But this is not the way.
Todd Stewart wrote:
Same here my friend! And you would be among my top people to contact about such a project!
Gushing aside, there is a steady stream of new and interesting outsiders created every year (along with aquatic creatures) but there's limited support on how to draw that together as a campaign. For any one from Paizo reading, that is not complaint. I realize that priorities have to be set. Rather, I see that as design space that is can be built upon in the future.
A lot of has been invested in Golarion and that setting is nowhere near exhausted but planar adventures is good platform for expansion.
(So is psychic magic, but I don't want to derail)
I would like see this book, plus have some more detailed rules about planar adventures. There are some but I think they're pretty threadbare.
Oh, I didn't get it! Thanks Set! Well played, William, well played indeed.
I don't want to step on Rob's toes, but I have to answer the question with a question? Why does any paladin involve themselves in any adventure that is not totally selfless and altruistic?
The fact that the authorities have opened these burial sites for exploration covers the legal aspect to it.
It a good few thousands of years since the original decimation of Wati. The dead in the Boneyard are judged and no longer require their grave goods to identify or comfort them.
A paladin might be seeking to learn about the past. They might be protecting scholars from traps and unwholesome threats while they do their work. They might be collecting treasure to re-purpose it to help the needy, hungry, and oppressed. Even equipment used to combat evil is a justifiable expense.
Sooner or later, Pharasma judges the dead. Even if takes a while. Then this mortal coil is no longer relevant in the Great Beyond.
I wish Sean all the very best and it is commendable that he is willing to help Jodi achieve her hopes and dreams. I have known him for a few years now but that alone speaks to his character.
My thoughts also go the rest of the Paizo Staff. Sean *IS* their very good friend and he will be missed.
For those who never got the opportunity to work with him directly, he is a very kind man and an excellent teacher. If he ever spoke frankly, it is because that is necessary to instruct. The truth is he is a very good person who does his best to bring out the best in whoever he works with.
I'll miss his official role in this community but I look forward to his freelance contributions and 3PP offerings.
Hey PFS Folks!
I am not posting this to make mischief, and my regrets if this is common knowledge. I checked a couple pages worth of threads and didn't see a subject line that had 'Ennie' in it. So if this is yesterday's news, please disregard with my regrets.
This was something interesting brought to my attention. I didn't know about it and I wondered if the headline got buried.
Seems that the Ennies have created two new catagories for Organized Play. One for Publishers and one for Volunteers.
Here's the ink: HERE
This is going to be a noob question, so I am embarrassed to ask.
However, if I preorder a copy does my card get charged when it ships? Or right away?
Does that answer change if I preorder a PDF bundle?
Admittedly, I have been fairly "hands off" this book, but Endzeitgeist has convinced me that maybe my serpentfolk need it.
In the encounter with mindslaver mold, should Finngarth and the mold be treated as separate entities, and how should the players be made aware that there are two targets to attack? Otherwise I envisage them just attacking the man who is wailing on them with a battleaxe and quickly dispatching him.
This is my interpretation (though I wouldn't be surprised if Rob actually created the mold himself, as he was an author on that book and he's made creepy fungi creatures before).
They are definitely separate creatures that are inhabiting the same square. The mold's avoidance special ability is NOT based mechanically on whether the PCs know that it is there or not. They can be fully aware of it and the mold's avoidance ability still works. So once they are aware, they can target the mold, but the mold still has a chance to use avoidance against that attack.
When are they aware? That is a GM decision, but Darrell Imprey's suggestion is certainly a valid one. If the PCs are having a tough time, I can also see just telling them outright once they're very close or adjacent. The huldra never knew because she never got that close to Finngarth.
Otherwise I envisage them just attacking the man who is wailing on them with a battleaxe and quickly dispatching him.
I would discourage that honestly. The encounter has a story and that approach is really letting a lack of mechanical explanation do the GMing for you. Please understand I'm not saying this harshly nor am I judging you. Just remember, this game has a GM for a reason and part of the GM's role is to tell a good story. If the players just cut this helpless guy down, that's a pretty pathetic and pointless story.
Give them a clue or a chance to figure out and be heroes. If they accidentally take him out because they can't take a hint or the mold is just too crafty and successful at avoiding their attacks—well that's different.
Orfamay Quest wrote:
This sounds familiar and wise.
captain yesterday wrote:
Captain, my Captain!
Try this link instead. Now with 100% less brown border. Filled with awesomeness, or me anyway.
This warms my heart no end!!!!
What a wonderful thread to find!!
I have to be honest: Mr. Compton has asked me TWICE now, and I have had to turn him down. So he has tried and if you haven't seen me, it is no fault of his. And truthfully I *WANT* to do another scenario. Its not about the money or the prestige or anything. I love PFS scenarios because, to me, they're really, fun moderate sized projects. They are excellent teaching tools for new freelancers. I love the PFS forum community, even when we have trials and tribulations.
Back when Iron Gods was being assigned I jammed my hand toward the sky. The Creative Director said, "I'm concerned. You're going like a rocket. You don't want to burn out. Sooner or later you're going to have to catch your breath." Well, that that was a paraphrase.
First, I respected his decision. Always important. But I said, "I AM INCAPABLE OF EVER BEING TIRED. I CAN DO THIS ALL DAY LONG!"
Guess what? James Jacobs knows what he's doing. Raw creation / authorship is hard work. And multitasking? One better be careful with the multi-tasking. Plus, there are all ready many projects I am attached to where the authors have not been announced yet, that are in the Developing and Editing stage. You will see me soon in the Campaign Setting, Companion, and Core Rules lines, and I hope you like that material.
Here's the deal. I got a couple projects on my plate that need some time and attention, and they it right now. Then I think I need to chill and process for a few weeks or a solid month. Read some books, watch some movies, play some video games. Read other Paizo author's projects and study their techniques. Recharge.
And then look for new projects. After a break. NO, I CERTAINLY DO NOT WISH TO RETIRE. Hell no.
But taking stock of this past year and what I have done, I honestly think that taking time to process what you have done and how it can be improved is important. You don't get that in a constant stream of projects. I don't at least! There are few of my colleagues who may have a different experience. Eh, they've been doing it longer too.
BACK TO PFS: If during this late spring or summer, John still wants me, I would love to do a scenario. But I need to get my house back in order and take a break though. That way I can deliver the top-notch scenario you guys deserve.
(I hope James sees this, because he deserves to be told that his decades of experience is absolutely validated.)
Hayato Ken wrote:
I am not sure and I don't want to be disingenuous. I'm not seeing a Mummy's Mask and Kingmaker crossover, myself personally. Please understand, however, that my insight into Chapters Two through Six is limited.
I can see an Osiriani Kingmaker style campaign.
What I can say about the Mummy's Mask AP is that the support articles and Bestiaries will certainly be an essential resource, along with the new Player Companion and Campaign Setting books. Likewise without a doubt you'll be able to cherry-pick some great encounter ideas from the AP itself.
The idea that immediately springs to mind is that the Ruby Prince extends a land grant to re-occupy the City of Tumen, which temporarily became the Osiriani capital during the time of the Four Pharaohs of Ascension. Tumen is a ruin, but it is a sturdy stone ruin quite suitable for occupation with some caveats. It's also huge. With many secrets, mysteries, and dangers. But structurally intact!
There would be some big challenges. First of all, sooner or later the PCs would have to negotiate with the elemental tribes to stop trying to cover it up when the khasmin storms kick up. That might be making an arrangement with the Goanron Triumvirate or obtaining protection and support from the Aisi (more likely).
Then there is the gradual clearing of the lower sections. Establishing a safe trade route and water supply. It has.. possibilities. Also a lot of adventure hooks, exploration, discovery, and dungeon fightin' opportunities. Lost Cities of Golarion has a nice section on running a Tumen campaign, broken down into sections by PC level, that could be Kingmaker flavored.
PartTime GM wrote:
No need to feel threatened. You are always welcome to keep your own interpretation. I don't say that just to offer easy trite advice, but it really is just that simple.
I would consider this to be an important book in any freelancer or GM library. Whether you're preparing a homebrew game or designing professionally, the fact is that players enjoy coming across new and dynamically interesting monsters.
The Advanced Bestiary gives you the tools to really spice up any monster without an entire design overhaul. New powers, abilities, and even weaknesses that the PCs may not see coming. Players enjoy challenges and surprises (assuming the GM is not unfair).
This literally increases the value of every single Paizo Bestiary, AP Monster Section, Midgard Bestiary, and single other 3PP Monster product you own right now.
It is an added value that expands on the money you already spent on other monsters books. There's an old saying that goes, "You can never have too many monsters for your RPG." Well, multiplying your existing library of monsters EXPONENTIALLY seems like a pretty smart idea to me.
Now as Owen said early, if you don't have the money then you don't have the money. Bless you and I wish you better financial times ahead, and don't worry the book will be for sale at a later date. If you're just uncertain—then don't be. This book has been a trusted in-house resource for years. Just read Chris's post above, this isn't rocket science, it is a trusted and relied upon resource. I suspect anybody who doesn't buy it now may well want it later—but if you invest in it now, you and everybody else might get an even better book. If you got the money for other Bestiaries, you should consider adding this to your library.
Okay.. Speech over. For the record, I have no business relationship with Green Ronin. I just believe in the product and I am a backer.
Rob McCreary wrote:
Sorry, Jim. :)
Rob McCreary, eight ball, corner pocket!
Edit: I don't mind being wrong. It just shows that our developers are really looking this material over to the best of their ability and trying to make sure things are accurate. We look at these GM threads and people ferret out all these little mistakes, it's really cool to see "No, that's not a mistake. That's correct."
And as a saving grace (for myself), many archetype/prestige class combinations are complex and this is no exception. This is why we have professional developers looking this stuff over.
My apologies in the delay in replying to your question. You wondered what I thought of Marhevok as a bloodrager instead of a barbarian with the fiend totem.
I think that is a wonderful idea for a playtest.
The only alternative I can think of is perhaps just a few levels of abyssal bloodline sorcerer mixed with a lot of brawler. While Marhevok is supposed to be a barbarian in theme, he doesn't have to be one literally—he could just be a ruthless and bad tempered brute with a heritage he doesn't understand and has been manipulated by a superior and seductive mind.
Or keep your bloodrager. I think its a good test, and I wouldn't worry about the drop in AC. He really didn't have a good one to begin with, plus you've given him the option to cast shield.
Also that encounter isn't set up to be a straight fight anyway.
Is it poor form for Paizo to use the names Advanced Player's Guide, Advanced Race Guide, and Advanced Class Guide? Green Ronin used "Advanced" first and will be again.
No. This is silly. These people are friends but also business people too. Paizo consistently uses the Advanced Bestiary and the Tome of Horrors, and has raised the profile of those two products enormously. They have praised the products publicly. A large number of the staff are backers on the Kickstarter.
The decisions on the names of those products were made to effectively communicate what the product is about in clear concise terms, and also in a way that was just slightly catchy so that the potential customer would remember them.
If anything the synergy in the titles only serves to help both companies.
You should understand, Paizo wants Green Ronin to succeed with their product. Its good for both companies. Paizo gets an updated resource they can get use from a developer they have confidence in. The game itself is strengthened. Paizo has another cool book to sell in their store. The Pathfinder brand is enriched.
Jason Bulmahn wrote:
Alan Parsons Project Via Bulmahn wrote: