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So reading your interview on the blog, I didn't realize you invented most of the Eldest. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions concerning these?
1) What are the odds of getting a campaign setting book focused on the Eldest, ala Chronicles of the Righteous?
2) What are the odds of getting new Eldest?
3) Is there a specific reason why the Eldest vary so much in alignment, but non of them are Good? Any possibility of getting a Eldest with Good in it's alignment?
Yeah but DnD probably to some extent has already passed beyond that point.
I think Hindu gods need to be treated carefuly, as they are worshiped by a large population of people, and whats more worshipped by a culture that a lot of people in the West are not terribly familiar with, so easy to accidently offend. I would argue that same case for Jesus, or Allah, or Yahweh. If you want to publish a Hindu Pantheon, or design a monotheistic religion, it's best to change the names and details.
I am sure there is some pagan group somewhere that venerates Greek gods, but they have to be an incredibly minor part of the population, on par with those who still worship Egyptian gods (which were recently introduced in the the last published AP volume). For the most part the Greek Pantheon has transitioned from religion to mythology and pop culture. Whats more, The Greek and Norse gods have always been somewhat a basis for how DnD gods have been portrayed. I don't think you can create a "serial number filed off version" that wouldn't seem like a generic DnD god.
I would argue the Bestiaries are a great example of this: a large chunk of them are named creatures from folklore/mythology, but many of them have had minor to major changes in their flavor. Similarly, Pathfinder already has incorporated a ton of real life Gods. Asmodeus, Lamashtu, the archdevils, most of the demon lords, a good chunk of the empyreal lords, Some of the Tian Xia dieties, etc.
Beyond what everyone else said (Good plot, characterization, etc)
-Minimal technobabble. I don't mind if a science fiction uses speculative ideas to explain the technology, but please keep the science in the setting consistent. I hate it though when technobabble is used to randomly get characters out of any problem they have, or to restrict the characters actions in ways that it didn't a few books/episodes ago.
-Keep a theme. Having a consistent theme in a novel or science fiction show is good, whether it's exploring the consequences of a certain technology or taking another genre and putting it in a new setting. Some themes to me just don't gell well when they are used in a kitchen sink approach (I am looking at you, time travel)
-Realistic time frames: Personally, if you are going to create a story about people colonizing the galaxy, try not to set it within the next 20 years. I always get distracted when I read space opera set in the far future of 1990.
-Build a realistic culture: Another pet peeve of mine is how much a future setting coincidentally shares all the same fashion/moral qualms/etc as today. Obviously you need shared cultural touchstones, but I think it's silly to think society will remain static between now and a hundred years from now, when it hasn't even in the last 50 years. Also I eyeroll everytime a show set hundreds of years in the future has characters that are somehow intimately familar with all of today's pop culture.
I always interpreted what happened to the Red Skull as being a result of the tesseract teleporting him somewhere. They might not want to use him again right away, but I am skeptical the MCU would kill off on his first appearance. He is one of the most iconic Marvel villains the MCU actually has the rights to use.
Anyway, my current impression is that Hydra might not be terribly unified right now, so I question whether it has a single leader. This is based on the ending of Winter Soldier as well as last nights AOS episode
Generally people don't get too up in arms when you demonized...err...a demon. I suspect religious people would really only have a problem if you portrayed Asmodeus in a positive light, and even then there have been plenty of at least somewhat sympathetic portrayals of the devil in various books and other media.
DM Pendin Fust wrote:
** spoiler omitted **
Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are special cases...they are mutants but IIRC originally introduced in the Avengers, so Fox and Marvel can both used them. Since Fox own the rights to mutants, they can't be referred to as mutants, nor can they be linked to magneto
That is not the case for the vast majority of mutants, or Spiderman, or fantastic four
Horses are native to North America and have been for pretty much as long as their have been horses. There recent extinction on the continent was an anomaly, due to either overhunting by humans, climate change, or disease (or some combination of all of the above).
For that matter, DNA analysis shows that some of the Pleistocene horses in North America were actually the same species as those in Asia, which gave rise to the domestic Horse of today.
Given that the megafaunal extinctions were not that severe in Golarion (see survival of mammoths, etc), it seem pretty fair to assume that horses should be also present in Arcadia. I don't think they need to be introduced from Avistan.
I feel the same way. I would much rather get the F4 back to Marvel just so they could add Dr. Doom and the Skrulls to the bad guy roster.
DM Pendin Fust wrote:
I'm still of a mind that Sony, Fox, and Marvel/Disney are going to do a crossover for Avengers 3 or later. I truly believe the studios would realize that "loaning" there characters for a movie like Avengers 3 would be boatloads more cash for everyone.
Sony has apparently been pretty open with the idea of sharing elements...IIRC a building with Oscorp on it was suppose to be in Avengers, but got cut.
The big problem though is the whole cost sharing for a larger crossover. That's a nightmare to work out, and apparently a major reason why we haven't gotten a sequel to "Who framed Roger Rabbit". I would also imagine that Marvel, since it's trying to do a consistent shared universe continuity, might be a bit loath to cross over characters who they have limited rights on, and might have to ignore the existence of later.
Yeah...back before they got their own studio to make movies, they sold off a ton of rights. A lot of them have clauses where basically if a movie isn't done with the property in X-amount of time, they revert back, which happened with the hulk and I think a few other properties. They have also bought back a few.
Personally, I don't want to see elves on Arcadia, if only because we have them in Tian Xia. I'd like to see either halflings or gnomes in Arcadia (I would would like to see Dwarves as the Avistan race in Casmaron)
I don't know how important that question of how humans got to Arcadia is really. IMHO it still not been adequately established why they exist in Golarion to begin with. I do get a sense that Syrinx might have been the dominant eastern Arcadian empire during age of the Azlanti. Now? who knows?
I also don't necessarily see an issue with stone age hunters in Arcadia. In Avistan, you have stone-age barbarians In the Realm of the Mammoth Lords, at the same time as steampunk elements in Alkenstar, and high magic in Nex, with a vast diversity of nations filling the spectrum in between. Arcadia (I think) is bigger than Avistan, so I don't see a problem with it being just as diverse.
The setting I had been originally doing was basically an alternative history of Earth, and I abandoned it just because I didn't feel my knowledge of history and anthropology was up to snuff to set something in the real world. Which is basically why I turning my setting into Faux-Earth, with some continents rearranged and some "historical events" changed around or reversed. It's makes a setting way way easier to play with since I feel more comfortable handwaving things like anachronisms, etc.
Kairos Dawnfury wrote:
Marvel is never ever getting X-men back, or at least they won't until Super heroes are no longer profitable. Which is kind of the same thing
Sony has also said they will never ever sell Spiderman, although my understanding is that Sony Pictures has been having some financial difficulties, So I suppose Disney just up and BUYING Sony isn't impossible, and presumably they would hand over Spiderman rights to Marvel.
Fantastic Four (and Namor..wtf) are pretty much the only series I could imagine might get sold back, and that probably depends on if the next movie is a failure or not.
James Jacobs wrote:
Thanks for answering! I did want to clarify that for 1), I wasn't asking what your favorite horror film was, rather if there was a decade that you thought produced the best horror.
I tend to think, and I admit it might be from sheer nostalgia, but the 80's for instance were I think a really good decade for the genre: Special effects were getting good enough to pull off convincing monsters, their was a lot being produced due to the VCR home rental boom, and for the most part there was a pretty wide variety (zombies, slashers, creature features, etc)
I do have to say, while some trends are getting a bit boring to me, I do think the last decade has been good at exploring more existential/psychological horror than previous decades. So I do feel that the "IQ" in some respects has risen for horror, and pretty much all the horror movies that have gotten under my skin in a bad way are things from the last few years (The Girl Next Door, Megan is Missing, The Woman, Red, etc)
I think the current Pathfinder approach is to do a different set of core races for each area, with some minor overlap
So Tian Xia has elves and humans, but Nagaji, Tengu, Wayang, Kitsune, and Samsaran are the other the other dominant races.
I really like this approach, since I would rather see new races inspired by New World folklore rather than a bunch of reskinned races. Presumably Skinchangers and humans are part of the core 7 for Arcadia. the cryptid revisisted book also hints at a half sasquatch race as existing there as as well.
I hope you are having a lovely Sunday, and not too inundated with project deadlines
Anyway, I was in Hastings the other day and thinking about horror movies, which inspired these questions
1) What do decade do you consider the best for horror film, and why?
2) What was the worst decade (limiting yourself to say, the 1960's to today)
2) What is your opinion of the boom in zombie movies over the last decade? Good or bad for horror? and are you getting a bit tired/sick of zombies yet?
3) any predictions for the next big trend in Horror?
4) are there any particular genres/themes/monsters you would like to see more of in horror and think are currently underrepresented in the last decade or two?
5) What overall theme or trend have you most enjoyed in horror movies that have been made over the last decade?
Armin Zola also may have just not given a huge crap if he revealed Hydra's plans. I can't imagine getting mostly abandoned in an old military base is exactly the sort of thing that endears you to an organization.
Pierce seemed to believe that Zola was dead due to missile strike, so if Zola did download himself elsewhere, he obviously wasn't sharing that info with Shield-Hydra
When Garret started going off on what the Clairovoyant has done, he mentioned putting Raina in the same machine as Coulson. Maybe that machine is not only used for interogation, but also brain washing. In which case Ward could have unwittingly been a sleeper agent the whole time, and was only activated somehow in this episode.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
As someone who spends an ungodly amount of time here, I pretty commonly see confusion on flavor elements between Paizo and WOTC products (How gods work, presence/description of certain races, etc). So I am not certain that if there were 2 or 3 different versions of Arcadia, people could really mentally figure out what elements were Paizo and what were from other creators.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
Oh...I can definitely see how that is annoying. Although to be honest I wonder how a person can even find their way out of their house if they are confused by River Nations/River Kingdoms
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
Confession: I have never ever played or bought any of the Kingmaker volumes, nevertheless 3rd party products supporting them.
With that said, I wonder if this is more an issue with producing really specialized products pitched toward a single AP from Pathfinder. As I see it you are basically catering to a very very limited audience:
Pathfinder players...who are playing in the Kingmaker AP...who regularly buy 3rd party products. At each step you are reducing your audience down. I would also imagine that pool shrinking even further if its adventure plug-ins that ultimately are of only of interest to GMs
As someone who supports third-party products...I admit I tend to lean towards products which are pitched towards a broader audience. Monsters, new races, and new classes which I can plug in anywhere as needed. Or completely new settings which I can mine for ideas
So far, not many other 3rd party publishers have replied to this thread, and I know there are a few other publishers that do adventure plug-ins and such for APs. I would be curious to hear there opinions on this thread.
People who are biased against 3PP products are not going to necessarily be won over because someone is releasing products for an off the map section of Golarion. They MIGHT get more buyers, but that is because some people will be confused and think it's actually a Paizo product. Which doesn't strike me as engendering good will with consumers. Not to mention it would generate a lot of needless internet debate over Golarion canon, when product x implies something that is refuted by product y from another company.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
To me there is a thin line between rules and flavor. Rules provide the means to play a game, while flavor provides the means to tell the story in the game.
Your argument is less about why game companies don't open up their settings, and more about why copyright exists. After all I could take your example and extend it to ask why I can't publish novels set in Essos...obviously George R.R. Martin not doing all that much with most of the free cities? Or why can't I write a series of novels set in the Americas in the Harry Potter Universe? It's not like J.K. Rowling will?
In many ways, Golarion is really the only thing "unique" that Paizo has (even then it's built on a lot of well established tropes). The game itself is an adaptation of a pre-existing ruleset, and while the company has added new elements, it's still mostly an updated 3.5.
So yeah, I like to think that the people who have invested blood, sweat, and tears in investing in the setting, whether it's comic books, novels, movies, or campaign settings, should have the final say in what exists and doesn't exist in their world. I think it's just a bit...weird...to begrudge them from keeping their own product identity when they make almost their entire rule system OGL.
Furthermore, I think that the OGL was great for the hobby, but probably bad for Dungeons and Dragons. It directly allowed a major competitor to develop and support a system they were hoping to do away with.
I still don't really see how this is limiting 3rd party producers. You can still produce sourcebooks on african adventures that most people would use to fill in Garund for now. Odds are if someone is using 3rd party products they are already merging them with Golarion, Midgard, or Faerun anyway.
I suppose something like a 3.5 changeling wouldn't be too bad, but the hell rider seems way to powerful to be a 0 HD playable race, and would probably best be emulated as a higher CR monster, or for playable purposes, a prestige class.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
Which is by a different company...which at various points has supported 3 or more campaign settings at a time, and has also done major reboots of their primary setting.
I mean really...this is about creative control. You could make this argument about legally publishing fan fiction for novel series. If you are going to invent new lands, why not just apply the effort to a novel setting. I mean, it's not like GM's won't cannibalize the parts they want anyway to fit into there own version of Golarion. Or attempt to organize a new setting with other 3rd party publishers that is completely OGL.
Dale McCoy Jr wrote:
But you assume that they have no plans to ever develop that region. James Jacobs has said on many occasions they hope to explore southern Garund in the future, and in other products they have already hinted at specific nations found south of the map, so some thought has obviously already been put into the region (same as Arcadia, Casmaron, etc).
I dunno...personally I would rather see more original settings, than "stuff" necessarily stuck in pre-existing ones. If a publisher (such as Paizo) opens up their campaign setting in such a way that anyone can publish and make money off it, than potentially the publisher either loses the ability to develop that region, or if they do develop it, their is confusion over what isn't or isn't canon, as well as potentially rendering a product someone produced as irrelevant.
Not to mention part of the wonders of copyright is having control over the creative direction of the setting. If the publishers want a grim gritty world, than having a third party produce populate a continent with sparkle ponies kind of weakens that aspect.
In the case of Paizo, I think they absolutely have in rough terms figured out the themes of the other major unexplored regions, even if the exact geography or make up of nations and cultures is still not fully formed. And at any rate, I think it's important for a good setting to have Terra Icognito, in case the developer later comes up with an awesome idea but can't find a pre-existing realm to easily place that in.
James Jacobs wrote:
Thanks for the answers.
So correct me if I am wrong, but ghouls in Mythos fiction are less undead than they are a separate race. At least that is my reading on things. I know one of Caitlin Kiernan's books have a half-ghoul character. Is that sort of what you had in mind for a half-ghoul, or is this something completely novel or based on some other work.
Incidentally, what is your opinion ion Caitlin Kiernan? I love her short fiction, and in some ways she is kind of a hero to me, since she is a sucessful genre writer who did a paleontology-based PhD (Mosasaurs!)
Good Morning James!
1. Reading about new releases this morning, I was wondering: Was District 9 part of the set of inspirations behind Iron Gods and some of the support books being released this fall/summer? Somehow the whole "alien tech in the hands of people who don't fully understand it or can replicate it", along with all the various factions that want ahold of it, seemed very similar to some of the ideas explored in Iron Gods.
2. I read you recent interview where you talk about Unspeakable futures, and the half-ghouls and Deep One Hybrids as races. Are these beings you would prefer not to work up for Pathfinder, and what are the odds we might someday see these races featured in Golarion?
Sovereign Wyrm wrote:
There are no doubt people who would find animalistic or abberrant monsters sexually or romantically attractive. But the internet is a bit of an echo chamber, and the actual proportion of the population who are into that population is probably very very small. If anything, it would be even smaller if some of those races existed in real life and acted like they do in Golarion. If a gnoll eats your neighbors, that might be a quick mood killer
Then consider the fact that the number of gnoll that are likely to consider humans attractive is probably also pretty small (again, assuming the Golarion default portrayal). So what are the odds that the one guy who finds minotaurs hot and the one minotaur who finds people hot would actually cross paths and have the opportunity to romance.