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We Don't Need No Epic Content


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Dennis Baker wrote:
Paizo has said several times that high level supplements get far less interest than low-mid level supplements.

On the other hand, they've also said that their Adventure Paths with the shortest level ranges (the ones that end at 14-15 instead of 16-18) are worse sellers than the others. To be fair, there aren't enough data points to indicate that the level range is the primary reason for it (rather than the subject matter, writers, or whatever other variable), but it's still an interesting bit of info.

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

*We* certainly don't.

Lisa and the Paizo crew have 8 APs worth of sales numbers plus a fair number of modules to compare.


I don't see need to publish an entire book of advices or how to manage high levels, a web enhance is more than enough for that


Dennis Baker wrote:

*We* certainly don't.

Lisa and the Paizo crew have 8 APs worth of sales numbers plus a fair number of modules to compare.

It was mentioned specifically in reference to Adventure Paths. 8 Adventure Paths isn't enough data points for any kind of conclusive argument. I was just pointing out that there is some small degree of evidence that might indicate that there's actual marketable demand for higher-level gaming.

Osirion

Fozbek wrote:
Dennis Baker wrote:

*We* certainly don't.

Lisa and the Paizo crew have 8 APs worth of sales numbers plus a fair number of modules to compare.

It was mentioned specifically in reference to Adventure Paths. 8 Adventure Paths isn't enough data points for any kind of conclusive argument.

I would disagree. And it isn't 8, its 11 really if you count the first 3+ all the dungeon mags and the independent mod sales.

They have over 5 years of data from the people buying their products. That is more then enough to give an indication of what sales.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Anyone who wants more high level content should buy every level 15+ module Paizo produces. I have.

Shadow Lodge

Can I get a list?


seekerofshadowlight wrote:

I would disagree. And it isn't 8, its 11 really if you count the first 3+ all the dungeon mags and the independent mod sales.

They have over 5 years of data from the people buying their products. That is more then enough to give an indication of what sales.

First: You've clearly never taken any classes on statistics.

Second: No, you cannot count the three Dungeon APs. That's comparing tangelos to caviar.

Third: Paizo themselves said that their higher-level APs have done better than their lower-level ones. It's impossible to state with any certainty that the reason is because they're higher-level, but they themselves noted the correlation.


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Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Min2007 wrote:
gbonehead wrote:
Min2007 wrote:
gbonehead wrote:
Otherwise, it'e either a cake walk or sudden, absolute death. Neither of which is fun.
I have played in and run games in the epic level in 3.5e, and this is exactly what happens. It is exactly why epic level play doesn't work.

You are wrong.

It might not have worked for a table you sat at, or for your GM, or for your play group, or for you as GM, but there is nothing correct about the flat statement "epic level play doesn't work."

... if epic play can blindside me so utterly than maybe they need more work on presenting the fundamentals of play in a high level game of any level before tackling a product that only a few GMs seem to be able to manage. I mean think about it, there are a lot of GMs who need help with upper level play. If you get them that help first, then the usefulness of a set of optional epic play rules suddenly becomes useful to a large segment of your GMs not just a few.

And had you said that instead of saying "epic level play doesn't work" I'd have remained silent.

I'll be the first to admit that creating above-20 games is hard. Very hard. Been doing it for a long time, and it has not gotten any easier.

But think about it ... given that it's challenging running adventures for low-level tables, and the challenge goes up as the level goes up, how can it *not* be hard running above-20 adventures?

That was why we started at low levels and went all the way through, and it was not a mistake - we all learned a lot along the way.

It doesn't mean the epic rules were flawless, oh no. But "the epic rules have issues and are difficult to use" (which I agree with) is quite different than "epic level play doesn't work" which I disagree with.

Min2007 wrote:
I am a good GM. Better than most if you believe my players. My low level games are edge of your seat fun. I struggled a little in high level play and I made some mistakes but my game was still quite enjoyable.

~Pats Min2007 on the back~

*grin*

Osirion

Fozbek wrote:
seekerofshadowlight wrote:

I would disagree. And it isn't 8, its 11 really if you count the first 3+ all the dungeon mags and the independent mod sales.

They have over 5 years of data from the people buying their products. That is more then enough to give an indication of what sales.

First: You've clearly never taken any classes on statistics.

Second: No, you cannot count the three Dungeon APs. That's comparing tangelos to caviar.

Third: Paizo themselves said that their higher-level APs have done better than their lower-level ones. It's impossible to state with any certainty that the reason is because they're higher-level, but they themselves noted the correlation.

Nope, never taken said class. But why can't you count the three mags? They went higher then the Ap's and sold worse at high levels. I think 5-8 years of data is plenty enough to decide if you should risk it.

If the data changes in the years to come then maybe they will try it.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
TOZ wrote:
Can I get a list?

.

.
Certainly.

All of them are quite good.


gbonehead wrote:


And had you said that instead of saying "epic level play doesn't work" I'd have remained silent.

It doesn't mean the epic rules were flawless, oh no. But "the epic rules have issues and are difficult to use" (which I agree with) is quite different than "epic level play doesn't work" which I disagree with.

I am not sure how to take that pat on the back? Condescension or friendly poke? Yes it sounded like a brag but it was intended to explain my skill level as a GM... highly skilled at low level, not skilled but able to manage high level, and of course useless at epic level.

My statement that "it doesn't work" is accurate. I acknowledge that there are people who can make it work for them but for the most part if someone sold you a car that required constant daily maintenance to keep it running and even when it was running required careful attention to the controls or it would crash, I would say they sold me a broken car. You may be skilled at keeping that car going with a lot of work. But for the rest of us it doesn't work. Can you see where I was coming from now?

Shadow Lodge

Min2007 wrote:
I am not sure how to take that pat on the back? Condescension or friendly poke?

Take it the same way this one was meant to be taken.


TOZ wrote:
Min2007 wrote:
I am not sure how to take that pat on the back? Condescension or friendly poke?
Take it the same way this one was meant to be taken.

~hugs~

I was giving you a friendly poke... I thought you knew that.

Shadow Lodge

I wasn't sure, but I was giving you the benefit of the doubt. ;) After all, I started it! XD

Taldor RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

seekerofshadowlight wrote:

Nope, never taken said class. But why can't you count the three mags? They went higher then the Ap's and sold worse at high levels. I think 5-8 years of data is plenty enough to decide if you should risk it.

If the data changes in the years to come then maybe they will try it.

Small stats lesson (spoilered to protect the innocent)

Spoiler:
Statistics is all about making predictions about populations based on the data from samples. In this case, it would be making a prediction about how many people would buy high level products based on how well past high level products have sold. The problem here is that larger sample sizes lead to more accurate predictions - at least 30 is good. With only 3 Dungeon APs, 3 high level modules, and 8 complete PF APs, that's not a large enough sample with which to make really good predictions.

The reason you can't just lump the Dungeons APs in with the PF APs, or even the modules, is that each is sufficiently different that they don't compare well together. When the entire structure of the AP changed with the dawn of PF, it became much harder to compare the present method with the past in any (mathematically) meaningful way. Basically, Dungeon's method of more smaller parts that shared issues with other adventures is really apples to Pathfinder's six part oranges. They are both fruit, but that's about it, to overextend a metaphor.

You might be able to run a statistical test on the individual issues of PF and compare the low level ones to the higher, but it seems pretty obvious to me that low level will come out ahead here - the events of buying an early issue of an AP and a later are not independent. Generally, only some of the people that bought part 1 will buy part 2 and only some of those will buy part 3 and so on.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
ryric wrote:
Small stats lesson (spoilered to protect the innocent)

You are right that you can't just compare the magazine sales to the AP sales directly.

But if you map each AP and see a sharp drop off at the end of each AP, you might be able to draw conclusions from it.

There are only 3 modules Paizo has produced for levels 14+, only two of which are for Pathfinder. If those sales, compared to other modules of different levels, are all low, it makes them wary about commissioning another high level module.

Paizo can't afford a large sample size. They can only make very few low selling books per year. So they have to use the numbers they have to make their judgments. Which is why anyone interested in high level support needs to not only pick up the few high level modules (I listed above) that are produced, but encourage their friends to do so as well.

Because like it or not, those are the numbers Paizo has to work with.

Taldor RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

deinol wrote:

You are right that you can't just compare the magazine sales to the AP sales directly.

But if you map each AP and see a sharp drop off at the end of each AP, you might be able to draw conclusions from it.

There are only 3 modules Paizo has produced for levels 14+, only two of which are for Pathfinder. If those sales, compared to other modules of different levels, are all low, it makes them wary about commissioning another high level module.

Paizo can't afford a large sample size. They can only make very few low selling books per year. So they have to use the numbers they have to make their judgments. Which is why anyone interested in high level support needs to not only pick up the few high level modules (I listed above) that are produced, but encourage their friends to do so as well.

Because like it or not, those are the numbers Paizo has to work with.

Oh I agree Paizo has to make do with what data they have. My point is that any variation seen up to this point can't really be confidently attributed to...well, anything. There is likely not enough data to statistically support any conclusion so the best that can be done is eyeballing and best guesses.

Though I am curious if a lot of groups don't finish APs; if a lot of people play up to the 12-13 level range then ignore the end of the story that would be a important indicator of something wrong. I don't see that around my area at all; we tend to play the entire thing.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
ryric wrote:
deinol wrote:

You are right that you can't just compare the magazine sales to the AP sales directly.

But if you map each AP and see a sharp drop off at the end of each AP, you might be able to draw conclusions from it.

There are only 3 modules Paizo has produced for levels 14+, only two of which are for Pathfinder. If those sales, compared to other modules of different levels, are all low, it makes them wary about commissioning another high level module.

Paizo can't afford a large sample size. They can only make very few low selling books per year. So they have to use the numbers they have to make their judgments. Which is why anyone interested in high level support needs to not only pick up the few high level modules (I listed above) that are produced, but encourage their friends to do so as well.

Because like it or not, those are the numbers Paizo has to work with.

Oh I agree Paizo has to make do with what data they have. My point is that any variation seen up to this point can't really be confidently attributed to...well, anything. There is likely not enough data to statistically support any conclusion so the best that can be done is eyeballing and best guesses.

Though I am curious if a lot of groups don't finish APs; if a lot of people play up to the 12-13 level range then ignore the end of the story that would be a important indicator of something wrong. I don't see that around my area at all; we tend to play the entire thing.

Also remember that Lisa had access to, and had to do analysis of all of the information they had on D&D sales from the TSR days. So she has plenty of data to do a market analysis.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

They have sales data for over 38 modules, which is hundreds of thousands of individual sales. If the worst three sellers in the line happen to be the highest level, that is probably an indicator.

Sadly, I suspect modules sell in a bell curve with levels 10-11 at the peak. Low level modules are easier for a GM to come up with, high level modules people rarely get to.


deinol wrote:

They have sales data for over 38 modules, which is hundreds of thousands of individual sales. If the worst three sellers in the line happen to be the highest level, that is probably an indicator.

Sadly, I suspect modules sell in a bell curve with levels 10-11 at the peak. Low level modules are easier for a GM to come up with, high level modules people rarely get to.

That's true for modules, more or less, but not for adventure paths (not saying that you're claiming otherwise, just making a note about something that's been said in the thread).

Because of the way they're structured, it's basically impossible for issue #2 of an AP to sell as many copies as issue #1, for #3 to sell as many as #2 or #1, etc. Because each module depends on the ones before it, it can generally only be sold to people who own all the previous ones in that path. There will be some people who pick up individual AP modules, whether for specific set pieces (PF#2's haunted house, for example) or specific articles, but those will be very, very low sales figures compared to the people who buy them because they're part of the adventure path.

Furthermore, for the same reasons as above and because you'll never get 100% retention across an entire AP, each volume will sell less than the ones before it. I guarantee that issues #1, 7, 13, 19, 25, 31, etc (all the first books of each AP) sold the most copies of all the modules in its AP.

None of that is a result of the later modules being higher level. It's a result of basic human psychology and the nature of the product.

Incidentally, that's why the subscriptions are so important for Paizo's sales. I'm willing to bet that Paizo would be a lot less successful if the AP subscription hadn't worked so well for them at the start. It let them mitigate a lot of the natural sales attrition from module 1 to module 6 of an AP.


ryric wrote:
Though I am curious if a lot of groups don't finish APs; if a lot of people play up to the 12-13 level range then ignore the end of the story that would be a important indicator of something wrong. I don't see that around my area at all; we tend to play the entire thing.

My group starts but does not finish. Its always due to the fact that life gets busy and we may go several weeks where we meet regularly, then we can't meet for a few months. By the time that few months have passed, we've forgotten what we were doing so we start something else. I think the farthest a campaign has gotten was Star Wars Saga 6 or 7th level.

We started Rise of the Runelords and just about finished the glassworks. We've started doing one shots just because they can done in 2-3 sessions. And we are all over the map from 10th level to 25th level.

So for my group, campaigns start at 1st level, one shots typically take place above 10th level.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
deinol wrote:

They have sales data for over 38 modules, which is hundreds of thousands of individual sales. If the worst three sellers in the line happen to be the highest level, that is probably an indicator.

Sadly, I suspect modules sell in a bell curve with levels 10-11 at the peak. Low level modules are easier for a GM to come up with, high level modules people rarely get to.

It's kind of an inference on an inference, but my guess would be that the low level modules are the best sellers (and if I had to nominate an actual level it would be first level). I'm basing this purely on the facts that there are more of them (across many publishers) and that companies will generally try and produce what they think they can sell.

I'm pretty sure I read somewhere that the most popular Dungeon adventures were around the 6-8 level range, although I'd treat this with as much credibility as if I'd said: "I know a guy who told me someone read on the internet that..."


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

*I* need epic content. My players are 14th level, and I don't plan to stop until around 25-30 at least.


I never understood why stop at such low levels and don't reach level 20, why do that? At high levels is where you can get the more awesome abilities and the game become better for the most amount of options options you have

Shadow Lodge

edduardco wrote:
I never understood why stop at such low levels and don't reach level 20, why do that?

Because they choose to. Because they do not want to play those levels.


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
edduardco wrote:
I never understood why stop at such low levels and don't reach level 20, why do that?

Because it's hard to do well and it takes me too long to prepare for a session.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
edduardco wrote:
I never understood why stop at such low levels and don't reach level 20, why do that?
Because it's hard to do well and it takes me too long to prepare for a session.

Strangely enough, I found the levels from, say, 14-25 to be harder than any after that. During that stretch, characters are getting crazy new powers on a regular basis. One they were enough above level 20, the power gain slowed down (using the 3.5e epic rules), so the game took on a saner pace.

In any event, prep time remains a huge issue, but regardless of what Paizo does, that's not likely to change much. It's kind of like saying you want to play pro sports and want someone to make it "easier for you." It's pro sports. What the heck do you expect?


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
gbonehead wrote:
Strangely enough, I found the levels from, say, 14-25 to be harder than any after that. During that stretch, characters are getting crazy new powers on a regular basis. One they were enough above level 20, the power gain slowed down (using the 3.5e epic rules), so the game took on a saner pace.

We never made it anywhere near that (in 3.5, I mean - we're not playing PF atm).

Quote:
In any event, prep time remains a huge issue, but regardless of what Paizo does, that's not likely to change much. It's kind of like saying you want to play pro sports and want someone to make it "easier for you." It's pro sports. What the heck do you expect?

I dont know if I understand your point, but I dont think high level necessarily requires higher prep time in an RPG (though perhaps you meant it's necessary to PF/3.5?) My most experience with high level play was rolemaster and we didnt find it substantially different to prep for a session regardless of the PC level. Admittedly, I've had much more practise running rolemaster than 3.5, but it nonetheless feels like something inherent to the systems rather than just familiarity.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Creating NPCS with class levels by the book does take an incredible amount of time. I increasingly just adapt and tweak existing monsters or statblocks from adventures in my game. Currently at level 19.

Osirion

Yeah the pain of high level book keeping and , well grind is a flaw with the 3.x system. It is not something inborn to high level gaming as a whole.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Once you have the statblocks, running a game isn't nearly so complicated as some people make it out to be. (Although I recommend using Mage's disjunction and anti-magic field sparingly.)

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

So what I gather from all this is that no, Paizo has not announced anything new, people are just jumping at shadows.

Boring stuff on statistics and sample size:

The sample size is not the number of experiments you do, it is the number of data points in that experiment. In this case there are literally thousands of people buying adventure paths so the sample size is quite adequate for determining whether or not those thousands of people want high level content or not. With the adventure paths, Paizo has effectively run 8 experiments with thousands of data points in each one.

Additionally, Lisa had access to over 20 years worth of additional data on player purchasing habits including dozens or possibly hundreds of individual experiments with data points in the hundreds of thousands.

To suggest that Paizo has to release hundreds of products to get a statistically significant analysis is similar to suggesting a scientist has to run hundreds of individual experiments to validate his result.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
deinol wrote:
Once you have the statblocks, running a game isn't nearly so complicated as some people make it out to be.

Yes, once you have the stat blocks. But of course, those stat blocks have to come from somewhere. Things that help me stay sane:

  • Non-combat encounters It's not all about the stat blocks. In my experience, a good campaign has more non-combat encounters than combat encounters. Now, at uber-high-levels, encounters are virtually never about terrain, but there's other kinds of challenges too, like powerful magic vaults and vicious traps set by daemons.
  • Reuse When I have to craft a foe from scratch (and I nearly always do), I want to use it more than once, and I want there to be a reason it shows up more than once that makes sense in the game world. Using an existing creatures saves a lot of work.
    Role-playing Regardless of the PC's levels, it's enjoyable for them to take a break from combat. Legend lore has its place, but it's rewarding doing things the old-fashioned way too.

deinol wrote:
(Although I recommend using Mage's disjunction and anti-magic field sparingly.)

Yeah, that was a problem at mid-levels. Now, not so much; their saves are high enough that item burn by disjunction isn't an issue, and the non-casting classes have more than enought to make them go in an anti-magic field. The primary reason I don't use disjunction and [/i]anti-magic field[/i] in every encounter is it doesn't make sense. Why would every creature have access to these powerful high-level arcane spells?

Also note that Paizo has made the dispel magic spells useful once again at high level; back in 3.5e days, that level 20 cap on the caster level check meant that any effect with a caster level of 41 or higher was automatically safe, and the odds of it working against caster levels of 31 or higher were 50-50 or worse.

--

Re: statistics

The main issue is that something like marketing RPG material is different than verifying the acceleration due to gravity, for many reasons, one of the largest being that you can't practically release the same module or Adventure Path with subtle variations and observe the effect; you have to make generalizations when there are not only a large number of variables, but you often don't even know what most of the variables are.

Still statistics, but much more in line with advanced linear algebra (hello Mr. Linear Regression) or control systems (with observed variables, system state and guesses at unmeasuarable variables).

Now, if anyone's in a perfect position to do so, it's the Paizo team, especially Lisa, but even then it's still guesswork. Very educated guesswork, but I can't imagine it's a zero-stress endeavor.

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

No, you can never repeat the same *exact* experiment, you try and track down all the variables and isolate them as much as possible. Waving your hand at gravity and suggesting that all science and statistics is based on pure 100% repeatable experimental conditions is ignoring the huge number of problems out there which are solved using statistical analysis that are not repeatable. Any study involving disease, animal populations, or migration, is by definition non-repeatable, but there are huge works of legitimate science based on them.

You isolate the variables based on known observations (for example lots of negative reviews of a previous module are a strong indicator of why a module is selling poorly). Then you alter the experiment to discover the effects of other variables (you make a 12 level story arc instead of a 20 level story arc, you add in gaps between books, etc). Based on those observations you can come up with an accurate conclusion. Ten (11?) adventure paths means they have eight sets of data to draw from. Suggesting statistical analysis can't be applied to that is just intellectual hand waving, they have plenty of data points and they have the expertise to account for the variables. Suggesting it's 'guesswork' is suggesting that Paizo staffers are incompetent and there is some compelling evidence that that isn't the case.

Taldor RPG Superstar 2011 Top 32

Gosh, it wasn't my intention to derail the thread with my post about stats. It's probably best if we want to continue discussing the finer points of statistics and the scientific method to make a new thread somewhere else.

On topic, is anyone else amused by the double negative in the thread title, which thus implies the original poster meant "We DO need epic content?" This has been whirling around the grammar nazi part of my brain for a while now.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game, Tales Subscriber
Kain Darkwind wrote:
*I* need epic content. My players are 14th level, and I don't plan to stop until around 25-30 at least.

Then I suggest you start yourself cracking. No matter what happens I don't see it likely that you're going to see a stream of 20+ level modules from Paizo... EVER. Even TSR and WOTC COMBINED only cranked out 4 or so at 18 or higher... and that's counting everything from 1st to 3rd edition. The only ones I can remember, are the Bloodstone series which had ONE module for 18-"100" (sort of)for 1st Edition, and Isle of the Ape which was an 18th level mod for 3.0.


Dennis Baker wrote:
In this case there are literally thousands of people buying adventure paths so the sample size is quite adequate for determining whether or not those thousands of people want high level content or not.

This would only be true if the "experiments" weren't so very different from each other in many other ways as well. For example, a full 25% of the "experiments" are in a different game system from the others. Every single one of them covers a different subject matter. Some of them are more open-ended than others. Some of them cover much more mature material. And so on.

There is no way to isolate that it's the level range that affected the sales of the specific APs in question without doing a lot more experimentation. There just are not enough data points ("experiments" if you want to twist it that way).


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber
LazarX wrote:
Kain Darkwind wrote:
*I* need epic content. My players are 14th level, and I don't plan to stop until around 25-30 at least.
Then I suggest you start yourself cracking. No matter what happens I don't see it likely that you're going to see a stream of 20+ level modules from Paizo... EVER. Even TSR and WOTC COMBINED only cranked out 4 or so at 18 or higher... and that's counting everything from 1st to 3rd edition. The only ones I can remember, are the Bloodstone series which had ONE module for 18-"100" (sort of)for 1st Edition, and Isle of the Ape which was an 18th level mod for 3.0.

Neither Kain nor I are clamoring for above-20 adventures. We're talking about above-20 rules, a very different thing. You need the rules for the adventures, but needing rules doesn't imply a need for adventures. Not that I'd complain.

Now, given the Paizo philosophy, I'm sure if there's above-20 rules, there will also be above-20 adventures. I'll just never use them other than mining them for source material and ideas, just like I do with virtually every adventure path and module that I purchase.

Don't forget that the adventure paths run up to levels 15-18, so there's high level adventures coming out every six months like clockwork, and I'm still a fan of the part 7 of 6 suggestion for supporting high level content.

Shadow Lodge

James Wilber aka The Magus wrote:

....

The only people who have more fun at 20th level than 1st level are the rules monkies. People who live to destroy everyone else's fun by finding that combination loop-hole that is totally unstoppable.

...

I believe this thread needs to be renamed to "I Don't Need No Epic Content," with a subtitle of "Please Teach Me Proper Grammar."

As a GM and a player, I would love to see epic rules. My players want epic rules and they're not 'rules monkies.' They want to keep playing the characters that they have invested in.

Keep your broad generalizations to yourself. They make you seem more uneducated.

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

ryric wrote:

Gosh, it wasn't my intention to derail the thread with my post about stats. It's probably best if we want to continue discussing the finer points of statistics and the scientific method to make a new thread somewhere else.

On topic, is anyone else amused by the double negative in the thread title, which thus implies the original poster meant "We DO need epic content?" This has been whirling around the grammar nazi part of my brain for a while now.

There is really no point in arguing about something which is decided based on sales numbers. The only reason I commented is because the OP's wording implied that there was something being released they didn't like.

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

Fozbek wrote:
Dennis Baker wrote:
In this case there are literally thousands of people buying adventure paths so the sample size is quite adequate for determining whether or not those thousands of people want high level content or not.
This would only be true if the "experiments" weren't so very different from each other in many other ways as well. For example, a full 25% of the "experiments" are in a different game system from the others. Every single one of them covers a different subject matter. Some of them are more open-ended than others. Some of them cover much more mature material. And so on.

You should dig up some of the interviews with Lisa where she talks about why Paizo has done the things they have done. The product mix, the rate products are released, the levels they target are all based on statistical analysis of historical data. If you want to learn about statistical analysis applied to real world marketing data, there is a recording of "Lisa's Story Hour" from Paizocon, you can snag it from the Know Direction Podcast. It's pretty awesome stuff. The variables you seem to think are 'impossible to isolate' are merely very difficult to isolate and someone is damned good at it (and has had access to an unparalleled amount of data going back through much of WotC and TSR's runs with the D&D franchise).


/shrug

Then I'll point out, again, that it was a Paizo employee who pointed out that the lower-level APs sold less than the higher-level ones.

Osirion

When did they say this?

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16, Contributor

I think that is a good question.


It was maybe 5 or 6 months back, if I recall correctly. I think it was James who said it, but I'm not even 75% certain of the specific identity of the poster. I think it was in a thread about epic level content (which is, again, why I think it was James who posted it; he's been the most vocal of the supporters of epic/mythic content among the Paizo staff), but again I'm not entirely certain of that. Those two things combined make it very difficult to search for, and frankly, I'm too lazy to look for a needle in a haystack.

You'll have to decide whether you believe me or not. It doesn't matter to me either way; I believe me.

RPG Superstar 2012 Top 16

LazarX wrote:
Kain Darkwind wrote:
*I* need epic content. My players are 14th level, and I don't plan to stop until around 25-30 at least.
Then I suggest you start yourself cracking. No matter what happens I don't see it likely that you're going to see a stream of 20+ level modules from Paizo... EVER. Even TSR and WOTC COMBINED only cranked out 4 or so at 18 or higher... and that's counting everything from 1st to 3rd edition. The only ones I can remember, are the Bloodstone series which had ONE module for 18-"100" (sort of)for 1st Edition, and Isle of the Ape which was an 18th level mod for 3.0.

Isle of the Ape was a 1E module, not 3E.

Netheril/Age of the Arcane, and the Myth Drannor boxed set are basically made to be 16th+ Playgrounds. Netheril introduced 12th level spells and had level 40 casters running around.

Actually, if you play the GDQ series, it's very easy to be 16+ and higher when heading into Demonweb pits. Just start doing the demon-summoning-help daisy chain, and a random encounter with 6 bar-Igura can mushroom into 20+ and dump an assload of xp onto the party. My party had so much fun running around the mushroom forests of Erelhei-Cinlu, rounding up slaves, beating up demon/drow hunting parties, and the like. I had to rewrite a lot of the higher level drow just to keep up with them! By the time we emptied that sandbox of fun, they were all 17th+ rolling into the Demonweb pits, and I really had to rewrite stuff on the fly (Did you know animals on Chaotic Planes have double HD? So, Animal Growth a Giant spider, and throw a dozen 16+16HD monsters at them for fun).

I'd also point out that the Darkness Below boxed set(? can't remember...the one with the aboleths), was an AP in and of itself, taking you from low level all the way to 15th+ and easily higher.

Wasn't Dragon Mountain for levels 15+, too?

Also remember that 1 and 2E didn't have much high level content, although 2E was significantly stronger then 1E in that regard (+4 HD to all Giants, Dragons MUCH tougher, etc).

The best high level stuff I've read and enjoyed was always from Basic D@D, some of the COmpanion and Master level stuff was just a hoot to play and read.

==Aelryinth


Aelryinth wrote:


Wasn't Dragon Mountain for levels 15+, too?

Having run Dragon Mountain, yes, it was levels 15 and up or thereabouts. Lots of fun when combined with the Complete Humanoids Handbook too.

There were other 2E high-level modules around and about as well. I recall one that was meant for the high teens in the Realms; can't recall the name, something like Nightmare Keep; faint purple in color, cover art of a guy jumping down at his enemy with a spear. Some of the other ones that come to mind include Return to the Tomb of Horrors (let alone that trap-infested pit that was the original), the Rod of Seven Parts, certain parts of Tales of the Outer Planes (more like the 1E/2E border), and I'm sure some of the Planescape stuff was up there.

I'm still in favor of post-20 rules, and still in favor of the occasional post-20 adventure too. If we get a book of high-level stuff too, so be it.

Andoran

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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Just because 'leveling' stops doesn't mean you can't continue having rewarding adventures. I guess I just don't seeing leveling as the purpose of an RPG.


ciretose wrote:
James Wilber aka The Magus wrote:

I am hanging myself out in the minority again. I wish Paizo would spend their limited time and resources on things other than epic level rules.

I think epic only feeds players who refuse to give up their favorite character. As someone who's been in the hobby over thirty years I am telling you now that sometimes stories end. New heroes take up the mantle. Villains are vanquished and those who do the vanquishing become legends. There's plenty of high fantasy and adventure in levels 1-20 to handle it.

The only people who have more fun at 20th level than 1st level are the rules monkies. People who live to destroy everyone else's fun by finding that combination loop-hole that is totally unstoppable.

I say, no sir. I need no epic.

And I don't like them new fangled mechanical horses!

I do. I do not like having a top cap on my characters.

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