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Epic Level Handbook now, please


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So.
Now we have the Core Rulebook, 2 Bestiaries, the APG as well as Ultimate Magic and Ultimate Combat. And after, we will see a "beginners' set" (not needed IMO, but I suppose it's a good commercial move).

Could we please have, as the next hardcover book, the epic level one? I do not really see anything left to do apart from that (and psionics, but I would say more people will use the Epic level rules than the psionic ones, especially since mind flayers are not included in PFRG).

I know some people prefer low level options. But nowadays, you have a ton of them, yet absolutely nothing about epic level adventures. I do not think it is too much to ask (and pay for), especially when you see that answers about this from official posters started very early on, and yet we still have heard nothing concrete about it.

Do we really need more classes very few people will ever use (cue the Gunslinger)? I do not mean to insult the good people of Paizo, since they have done such an amazing job most of the time, but I have to admit that one truly had me boggled. From all my years of playing RPGs, I have seen precious few people ever wanting to use guns in a fantasy setting, and many, many more being virulently opposed to their existence, much less to their use.

Yes, some people will tell me "It is an option, do not use it if you do not like it!". But I think those people are also familiar with this strange affliction: feeling compelled to use official content, regardless of contempt.

I know I may sound somewhat childish, or even whiny, but this has been a pet peeve of mine ever since the absolutely abysmal ELH Wizard published and then promptly forgot about. Probably one of the worst products ever published, with extremely little thought and effort put into. Which is why I have such high expectations for its replacement.

Thank you for your time.

PS: I have to admit I really want to see Tar-Baphon statted.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Tales Subscriber

I for one, would like to see an epic level handbook.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

My want of an epic level book from Paizo is bordering on critcal mass.

This and a great, big hardback cosmology book and I'd be in rpg heaven.

Take my money Paizo!


Only 25% of the community plays the game past level 6 as far as I can tell.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Tales Subscriber
Cartigan wrote:
Only 25% of the community plays the game past level 6 as far as I can tell.

What?

That means that only 25% of the community plays the books 3+ of Paizo's AP and that 75% of the people that play PFS retire their characters half-way.
I sure there is something wrong with that.

Osirion

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber

I would also tend to disagree with the 25% number. I have no facts on this, but then again, neither did cartigan.

The AP's are the main product after the Core RB and the other Core rule books. So I would say that maybe 25% only play to level 6, but then again, that seems high to me a well.

CC


I am a potential customer of an Epic level handbook.

Said this, IMHO is better "adjust" and make solid the game in every aspect, and THEN raise it to the epic levels.

3.0 ELH came too early, was very inspiring but very badly conceived in several parts.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

ELH seemed to represent so much wrong with the old system, that the prospect of it in PF scares me.

Also note that if they are trying to sell their AP's and modules, an ELH doesn't really serve them well. Most APs stop at 15ish, and most modules are 1-15 (with an expception or two). So ELH would be for those % customers not running modules or APs, and who play to epic levels. Seeing as how most PF setting stuff itself is lower level as well (they tend to keep the setting pretty tame), we I can imagine they aren't using the setting stuff (though they could be). Seems like a narrow audience.

I would prefer more 15+ content before I'd ever ask for a 20+ book.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
Cartigan wrote:
Only 25% of the community plays the game past level 6 as far as I can tell.

Oh hi Carty, looks like we're on the same boat in this thread.

*looks nervously at Cartigan*

*grabs the oar*

Andoran

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

ROW, MAN! ROW FOR ALL YOU'VE GOT!


Brandon Tomlinson wrote:
I would prefer more 15+ content before I'd ever ask for a 20+ book.

+1. The game gets very crazy at high levels, and some APs or modules for parties going up to 20th would make for some good templates on how exactly to GM groups at those levels. Lots of GMs seem to think it's not worth the effort, and everything breaks down.

If you want to play epic, you gotta get to that level first.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I want a PF ELH.


Kaiyanwang wrote:

I am a potential customer of an Epic level handbook.

Said this, IMHO is better "adjust" and make solid the game in every aspect, and THEN raise it to the epic levels.

3.0 ELH came too early, was very inspiring but very badly conceived in several parts.

Well, PF is already a very solid and complete system. And personally, I am getting tired of waiting around for the ELH; as I have previously said, whereas people who enjoy low-level content have had more than their fill, people who enjoy epic-level adventures have had nothing so far, not even one lousy article in an Adventure Path. 0. I do not think it is too much to ask for; especially since I am sure even the people who say they would not buy it, would eventually buy it too (we all know how that goes... We all say "I don't need that" and the next thing you know you're looking for another house because you have too many books in yours).


The ELH has been discussed, and is supposed to get done one day. That day just happens to be more than a year down the road. I wouldn't mind an epic level book either, but I want it to include rules for deities, and similar beings also. I also want it to be done correctly, even if I will only get to use it once or twice.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Tales Subscriber
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Brandon Tomlinson wrote:
I would prefer more 15+ content before I'd ever ask for a 20+ book.

+1. The game gets very crazy at high levels, and some APs or modules for parties going up to 20th would make for some good templates on how exactly to GM groups at those levels. Lots of GMs seem to think it's not worth the effort, and everything breaks down.

If you want to play epic, you gotta get to that level first.

+1

APs that go up to 20th level sounds very good.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
wraithstrike wrote:
The ELH has been discussed, and is supposed to get done one day. That day just happens to be more than a year down the road. I wouldn't mind an epic level book either, but I want it to include rules for deities, and similar beings also. I also want it to be done correctly, even if I will only get to use it once or twice.

+1

Rules for deities would be much appreciated as well. If your gonna do it, go all out is what I say.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Starsunder wrote:
Rules for deities would be much appreciated as well. If your gonna do it, go all out is what I say.

It would make sense to me if they were in the same book.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

I'd absolutely buy everything epic-level that Paizo made.

The thing is, epic-level gaming has some tough needles to thread. I think a major part of epic-level - more than most gamers realize - is based around feeling rather than mechanics. An epic Pathfinder guidebook needs to be, much like the GameMastery Guide, a book with a lot of advice and guidelines for how to make the game feel like it's entered a larger-than-life area...something that's no small feat, given what 20th-level characters can do.

There also needs to be strong support of a holistic design view. There have to be good reasons why epic-level monsters and villains haven't already conquered/destroyed the world, and why epic-level good NPCs haven't made the PCs superfluous. I'm not saying these issues don't have answers. They do; the book just needs to talk about them.

And of course, there needs to be a set limit on how powerful creatures can become - that is, a level cap. While I've seen people (specifically, Craig Cochrane with the Immortal's Handbook) come up with great ideas for 3E's "infinite leveling" idea, it puts much too much of a strain on the game system. Keeping things within set limits allows for much more creativity within those limits, paradoxical as that may sound. And within these level limits, we should get stats for all degrees of creatures, up to and including deities - better to have them and not need them then need them and not have them.

That's what I'd like to see from a Pathfinder Epic Level Handbook, at any rate.


Hell yeah I'd like to see that!

Also for epic weapons like those that can take down a Torrasque.

Silver Crusade

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

Yeah, because this game isn't epic enough with PCs teleporting across dimensions at level 9.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Gorbacz wrote:
Yeah, because this game isn't epic enough with PCs teleporting across dimensions at level 9.

I'll see your snark, and I'll raise you; fightin' demon lords. It's gotta happen.

Pathfinder gets super pretty quick, it's true. That's no reason to discount 21+ play. If they do it right and find a way to make such a thing playable, instead of merely "These go to eleven..."

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
Evil Lincoln wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
Yeah, because this game isn't epic enough with PCs teleporting across dimensions at level 9.
I'll see your snark, and I'll raise you; fightin' demon lords. It's gotta happen.

Followed by fightin' gods, fightin' Immortals, fightin' Galactus and fightin' reality itself.

Count me out. I'll be happy there in the corner, where a CR 24 monster means oh crap that's gonna hurt.

Cheliax

Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

I'd also love too see an ELH, count me in.


Alzrius wrote:
I think a major part of epic-level - more than most gamers realize - is based around feeling rather than mechanics.

Agreed.


Gorbacz wrote:


Followed by fightin' gods, fightin' Immortals, fightin' Galactus and fightin' reality itself.

Count me out. I'll be happy there in the corner, where a CR 24 monster means oh crap that's gonna hurt.

I don't know, the idea takes me to Greek Myth with Mortals opposing the Gods. Doesn't mean that a level 21 character can fight a God, but a level 40, maybe.

Anyways, if you don't like the idea theres tons of ways you could go about it, you could say that no mortal can go past level 20. Maybe level 21+ is for minor deities or whatever the like, something more than human.

I personally like the idea of seeing the PC's eventually get to a level where they are among the widest changing force in their world.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Estrosiath wrote:
Could we please have, as the next hardcover book, the epic level one? I do not really see anything left to do apart from that (and psionics, but I would say more people will use the Epic level rules than the psionic ones, especially since mind flayers are not included in PFRG).

While I agree with you, I would use the Epic rules before I personally use psionic rules, there's a problem with releasing them first.

Epic rules for psionics.

Do we include them with the rules for epic psiconics with the psionics and risk them not getting proper playtest attention? (1-20 is waaaaaaaaaay more important to playtest!)

Or not include them and release an Epic rule 2 book? I certainly don't want 2 books... especially if it means only psionics are in the book.

Epic rules are as niche as psionics.. it might be forever before we get a book 2, if ever if sales aren't good.

Also, what do you include in the Epic level rules? We have the core classes and all the extra base classes now. If Paizo releases more base classes after the Epic book comes out, then you now need more epic books.

No, the epic book can't come out until Paizo is finished releasing base classes. Which I REALLY hope happens when the Psionics book comes out.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

If Paizo announced tomorrow: "Hey, we're stepping in and not only reworking level 21+, but we're recommending some changes to the game from 15th+" (or even 13th+)

My response would be: "Hells Yeah."

Everyone gets hung up on the 20th level ceiling. We shouldn't lose site of the big picture — all of the higher levels need a little design help.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Evil Lincoln wrote:

If Paizo announced tomorrow: "Hey, we're stepping in and not only reworking level 21+, but we're recommending some changes to the game from 15th+" (or even 13th+)

My response would be: "Hells Yeah."

Everyone gets hung up on the 20th level ceiling. We shouldn't lose site of the big picture — all of the higher levels need a little design help.

Even though this has been discussed a thousand times...AND...James has said, at best, we are more than a year off on something like this...YES PLEASE!

I cannot stress my desire for this enough. I can personally vouch for at least 5 sales of such a book - as me and all my players would get it. Plus, I would buy the digital version.


Katerek wrote:
Evil Lincoln wrote:

If Paizo announced tomorrow: "Hey, we're stepping in and not only reworking level 21+, but we're recommending some changes to the game from 15th+" (or even 13th+)

My response would be: "Hells Yeah."

Everyone gets hung up on the 20th level ceiling. We shouldn't lose site of the big picture — all of the higher levels need a little design help.

Even though this has been discussed a thousand times...AND...James has said, at best, we are more than a year off on something like this...YES PLEASE!

I cannot stress my desire for this enough. I can personally vouch for at least 5 sales of such a book - as me and all my players would get it. Plus, I would buy the digital version.

My issue with this is mostly that he said something to the same effect a year ago, too. It seems the ELH handbook is always a year away; meanwhile, we get "Goblins of Golarion". Never mind that the book is going to rock and that I love the little critters, and that it is only one of the Companion books, I think players would still get more mileage out of a ELH.

As for the higher levels needing help, I just don't see it. I play regularly at those levels and have never had any issues.

As for the "Epic is a feeling, not mechanics!". Well, up to a point. A 1st level campaign might have some epic moments, but I talking about something else.


In all honestly its likely more players will play gunslingers than buy the ELH (Im not against it just wanted to say i disagree witht hat asessment in the Ops post)

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Chris Ballard wrote:
I want a PF ELH.

+1

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Evil Lincoln wrote:

If Paizo announced tomorrow: "Hey, we're stepping in and not only reworking level 21+, but we're recommending some changes to the game from 15th+" (or even 13th+)

My response would be: "Hells Yeah."

Everyone gets hung up on the 20th level ceiling. We shouldn't lose site of the big picture — all of the higher levels need a little design help.

HELLS YEAH! **********


EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC!!!!!


vidmaster wrote:
EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC EPIC!!!!!

I appreciate the enthusiasm!

I am -very- curious as to what Tar-Baphon is packing... He did take down a goddess after all, no mean feat. It is pretty awesome; I think most people would have thought "He is toast now, they sent a god after him!", only for him to take care of her.

On a side note, the artifact that weakened him seems awfully weak compared to... well, to what he actually managed to accomplish.


I would be happy with a set of basic rules and a few feats for epic level. I understand most people don't play the game that high level and epic wizards pretty much use the world around them for their amusement, but I still like aspiring to ridiculous abilities.

I pretty much just want to be able to sit around a bar with some friends and talk 'what if' for characters that will probably cap at lvl 15 anyway.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Benicio Del Espada wrote:
Brandon Tomlinson wrote:
I would prefer more 15+ content before I'd ever ask for a 20+ book.

+1. The game gets very crazy at high levels, and some APs or modules for parties going up to 20th would make for some good templates on how exactly to GM groups at those levels. Lots of GMs seem to think it's not worth the effort, and everything breaks down.

If you want to play epic, you gotta get to that level first.

Well, there's already rules to get there, so I guess the stage is set.

Now I agree that it can get very crazy at high levels, but so what? Sometimes it's fun for it to be a bit crazy. And it doesn't mean that every game will just be a massive combat against uber-high CR creatures.

Evil Lincoln wrote:
Starsunder wrote:
Rules for deities would be much appreciated as well. If your gonna do it, go all out is what I say.
It would make sense to me if they were in the same book.

I completely disagree. I run an epic campaign, and the deities are still not statted out, because it's that kind of campaign - it's understood that they're "too powerful for you to even think about taking on", even for characters well above level 20.

Based on what I've heard from the Paizo folks, their first (possibly only, depending on response) epic book will be for high levels of power, not for taking on the gods. That's my kind of epic. It's not the only kind, but it's what I'm looking for.

Mojorat wrote:
In all honestly its likely more players will play gunslingers than buy the ELH (Im not against it just wanted to say i disagree witht hat asessment in the Ops post)

Well, since we're throwing out opinions as statistics, did you know that 87.4% of all statistics are made up on the spot? It's true! :)

It's my guess that far more people will use epic rules than gunslinger rules, but that's just a guess.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I'd definately like to see epic rules, and would certainly buy it. My campaigns never go that far as they all start low, but it would be fun for oneshots or for actually stating out crazy powerful beings as thought experiements.


For the record, James Jacobs, over on his "ask" thread has pretty much always said ELH is slated for no earlier than 2012 or 2013, maybe even 2014.

He's also said that if he has his way, he would like to try and support it with a module or two and maybe even an AP.

Problem is, they want to make sure its a LOT more well done than 3.0 and they want t figure out the proper design philosophy. One thing I know that's been discussed is a level cap of around 35. Personally, I hope its 40, fits much better overall.

James is also seemingly wanting to do this book, as he wants to do official stats for the Runelords, but there's a lot off stuff that's been in the works for a long time now. Its almost a definite it'll happen, but we need to have paitence.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

6 people marked this as a favorite.

I've been championing a "post-20th level book" for some time here at Paizo, but the time has to be right for us to do it. It won't be called "Epic level" though, since whatever we do with the topic will be handled differently enough from the 3rd edition take on the topic that calling it "epic" would be weird.

My current favorite word for "post-20th level play" is "Mythic Adventures." Or something like that.

Seeing a LOT of support for epic level play... not just in this thread, but across the boards, and indeed across the internet, or even best, in person at conventions, would help speed such a book along.

Qadira

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber

How about overlapping the 'Mythic Adventures' book so that it gives guidelines on how to run with high-level characters under the existing rules, say levels 15-20, and then extends that past 20th? So cover the nation/guild/city scope stuff that high-level PC's get embroiled in, give the GM hints on how to cope with existing high level gaming, and such for folks who just want to run a better high-level non-mythic game.

Edit: I am eager for some post-20th level stuff, I just want the book to draw in other folks too and perhaps get more people playing into the high-teens of levels.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I would LOVE to see a post 20th level book down the road. But our group is only 3rd level, and we are taking the slow XP progression, so take your time and do it right, James. :)


James Jacobs wrote:


Seeing a LOT of support for epic level play... not just in this thread, but across the boards, and indeed across the internet, or even best, in person at conventions, would help speed such a book along.

I wish I could say it in person at conventions, but that's unfortunately not going to happen.

So, in place of that I will state here that I would be very happy to see a book such as this for post level 20 play. We are just starting the Rise of the Runelords path, and considering the amount of time it takes us to get through these adventures I suspect that we will be nearing the end right around the time this book will come out (assuming it's going to be in about 3-4 years).


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:

I've been championing a "post-20th level book" for some time here at Paizo, but the time has to be right for us to do it. It won't be called "Epic level" though, since whatever we do with the topic will be handled differently enough from the 3rd edition take on the topic that calling it "epic" would be weird.

My current favorite word for "post-20th level play" is "Mythic Adventures." Or something like that.

Seeing a LOT of support for epic level play... not just in this thread, but across the boards, and indeed across the internet, or even best, in person at conventions, would help speed such a book along.

Hard to imagine me being even more supportive of above-20th-level play than I already am without getting (even more) annoying about it :)

However, I'll be sure to continue my 40th-level pregen games at conventions. Of course, that's only at 2-3 of them a year. They're fun to run though. I'm still debating whether to attempt a 40th-level Pathfinder game for this year's ConnectiCon - I've always run them as pure 3.5e in the past.

Also, I view a book that provides guidelines for how to run a high level game well (which doesn't necessarily mean "above 20th level") is a different animal than a book with rules material for above 20th-level games. I think a lot of people would be interested in a book that contains tips, tricks, guidelines and rules of thumb that make games in the teens and above run well.

Personally, I'm more interested in true-blue Pathfinder above 20th-level rules, but I never turn down good reading material about running games.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
brock wrote:
How about overlapping the 'Mythic Adventures' book so that it gives guidelines on how to run with high-level characters under the existing rules, say levels 15-20, and then extends that past 20th?

This is what I would most like to see.

I think it would be wise to downplay the "barrier" at 20th, and work on correcting higher-level play in general. This would naturally lead to some expanded rules for 20+ play, but I would really prefer the holistic approach.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Evil Lincoln wrote:
brock wrote:
How about overlapping the 'Mythic Adventures' book so that it gives guidelines on how to run with high-level characters under the existing rules, say levels 15-20, and then extends that past 20th?

This is what I would most like to see.

I think it would be wise to downplay the "barrier" at 20th, and work on correcting higher-level play in general. This would naturally lead to some expanded rules for 20+ play, but I would really prefer the holistic approach.

Both of these are spot on IMO.

Paizo Employee Creative Director

9 people marked this as a favorite.

I've wanted to do a guidebook to high-level play as long as I've wanted to do a post-20th level book; combining them into one book is actually a REALLY good idea.


James Jacobs wrote:
I've wanted to do a guidebook to high-level play as long as I've wanted to do a post-20th level book; combining them into one book is actually a REALLY good idea.

I would be far more inclined to purchase this kind of book personally. Its not like you aren't a world shaker at 15-16.


James Jacobs wrote:
I've wanted to do a guidebook to high-level play as long as I've wanted to do a post-20th level book; combining them into one book is actually a REALLY good idea.

IME the two high end levels of play (15-20 and epic) shares similarities in the way GMs should handle the party power and set up challenges.

The way you design "dungeons" (you cannot call them dungeons anymore, we could say), and the fact that travel CAN become trivial. Divinations. Way to expand the PCs world without frustrating players.

Two hypotetical books would share great part of the suggestions and analysis part anyway I guess..


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'd buy a Post 20th book! The group I play with definitely would buy it.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
James Jacobs wrote:
I've wanted to do a guidebook to high-level play as long as I've wanted to do a post-20th level book; combining them into one book is actually a REALLY good idea.

Something else that fits in with it is the idea someone else came up with of a figurative dial to dial-up and dial-down the power and or magic of a game, i.e. "How to run a low-magic game," etc.

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