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Player Companions: I'm Loving...


Pathfinder Player Companion

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Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Tell me, what are you just LOVING about the Pathfinder Player Companion line?

(Or, conversely...)


Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Maps, Modules, Tales Subscriber

As always with Paizo products, my principal love is for the flavor material.

More specifically to this line, I like having the ability to hand a book to an interested player who wants to flesh out their character more without fear of spoiling anything and without fear that it's got some terrible game-breaker in it.

Scarab Sages

The most welcome things I've seen lately in the Companion line has been the new Paladin codes in Faiths of Balance and Purity.

I like the addition of relevant racial or faith traits, and, where present, racial or faith specific feats.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

The fact that I can throw one at a player and don't have to worry about them reading anything remotely close to a spoiler.

The fact that they are 32 pages long, so they won't overwhelm said player with material.


I like that they provide a quick overview of a particular subject, that I as a player can quickly come to term with the subject without being drowned. As a GM I like the small size because it means I can hand it out without overwhelming the player.

For content I really like it when there is more focus on fluff and when there are rules there are not too many. When there are new rules I like that they are all about flavor rather then being super general.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:

The fact that I can throw one at a player and don't have to worry about them reading anything remotely close to a spoiler.

The fact that they are 32 pages long, so they won't overwhelm said player with material.

+1

Additonally, i like the material that focuses on helping a player to understand the flavor, so that they can create a character that reflects the setting. I think the Faiths books have really done a great job in this regard. The Companions should have a laser-focus on answering what a player needs to understand this specific piece of the setting. What sort of material is going to help the player bring out the setting through their character? When the Companion books nail these sort of questions, they are at their best.


Elorebaen wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:

The fact that I can throw one at a player and don't have to worry about them reading anything remotely close to a spoiler.

The fact that they are 32 pages long, so they won't overwhelm said player with material.

+1

Additonally, i like the material that focuses on helping a player to understand the flavor, so that they can create a character that reflects the setting. I think the Faiths books have really done a great job in this regard. The Companions should have a laser-focus on answering what a player needs to understand this specific piece of the setting. What sort of material is going to help the player bring out the setting through their character? When the Companion books nail these sort of questions, they are at their best.

This, coupled with the quirky bits of flavour I detailed over in the other thread. :)

Scarab Sages

Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Cards, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I agree with what others have said about length and player focus / player friendliness.

While the art is of generally good quality, I particularly like how the borders of the pages, which frame the text, look in keeping with the theme, without being too loud. None of the backgrounds of the pages have been tough to read, either.


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

I love that the books are long-enough to provide Golarion detail for PCs that don't want to read a large sourcebook.

I love that the books cover topics that wouldn't warrant a larger treatment in a bigger book like the Campaign Setting line.

I love that the Companions add to Golarion lore in fluff and mechanics yet remain optional. You can incorporate what you like but since it's self-contained, it doesn't have to impact APs or Campaign Setting sourcebooks.

I love that the range of topics incorporates a mix of topics (races, religions, regions, etc.).

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Oh no no no, the "I'm Loving" thread does NOT get to be the least posted to of these Player Companion discussions you bitter, loveless bunch of so-and-sos. :P

Wake up and, if there's something you love - or even just like - about the Player Companions lets hear it. It's the surest way to make sure something you like doesn't get anywhere near the chopping block!

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

Oh no no no, the "I'm Loving" thread does NOT get to be the least posted to of these Player Companion discussions you bitter, loveless bunch of so-and-sos. :P

Wake up and, if there's something you love - or even just like - about the Player Companions lets hear it. It's the surest way to make sure something you like doesn't get anywhere near the chopping block!

Wes, it's an old truth that on Internets you buy positivity piecemeal and you get negativity wholesale.

Compare any "what you like about X" thread to any "what you don't like about X" thread. Just don't let that get you down - that's how it works, always did and always will. There will always be people who will harp any negative thread and never, ever post anything positive. Ever heard of Cartigan?

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Gorbacz wrote:
Wes, it's an old truth that on Internets you buy positivity piecemeal and you get negativity wholesale.

Sounds like your internetz needs a hug. But you're not wrong. :P

Gorbacz wrote:
Ever heard of Cartigan?

[Self-Censored]

Regardless of all that. More Liking. Lets hear it.

While this might just be me looking to see if I can leech creative validation from positive things said about a product line I have limited involvement in, I might also have other reasons.

So, if you love it, put your mark on it here so we know which calves are too cute to slaughter.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion Subscriber

To be more productive... I didn't really like the old "country companion" format where DM stuff was conflated with player stuff.

BUT before you groan about negativity :P I'd like to say that I would love some country companions that would follow the format of Faiths of -> more information on how to play somebody from that place, less about the place itself.

I'm itching to see the DE Primer for players because it's coming out simultaneously with DE Gazetteer. So for the first time we will have a player book and GM book for one area. Excellent idea! Now if execution will be good, I think this should be the format to keep. I really can't wait for these two books for oh so many reasons.

Scarab Sages

The sheer amount of stuff that seems to be packed into the Dragon Empire gazetteer, based on the preview in the back of Faiths of Corruption, sounds *amazing.*

Obviously every Companion can't be that packed, since the DE Gazetteer sounds like it's combining the best parts of Gazetteer and Players Guide, but if it lives up to its hype, that's the sort of thing I'd like to see more of in a Player's Companion.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Gorbacz wrote:
I'm itching to see the DE Primer for players because it's coming out simultaneously with DE Gazetteer. So for the first time we will have a player book and GM book for one area. Excellent idea! Now if execution will be good, I think this should be the format to keep. I really can't wait for these two books for oh so many reasons.

Great point, and this is something we've never been able to pull off before. Do folks dig this idea? Having a GM book with all the nuances secret details and GM rules, and a player book on the other side with all the player stuff? I know Dragon Empires isn't out yet, but it's very similar to what we did with the Inner Sea World Guide and the Inner Sea Primer. More products like this, perhaps?

What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

Thanks Gorbacz! Great point!

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Set wrote:
Obviously every Companion can't be that packed, since the DE Gazetteer sounds like it's combining the best parts of Gazetteer and Players Guide, but if it lives up to its hype, that's the sort of thing I'd like to see more of in a Player's Companion.

They're pretty cool. But yeah, now I'm really eager to hear how folks thinks we pulled them off and how well they feel like things mesh.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

A resolute "YES" on this. Having both the Player and GM books out on the same subject would really up the ante for roleplaying and flavor in said area.

I agree with the above posters in that the ability to pass the Player Companions without fear of any spoilers or GM material is highly useful.

Personally I enjoy reading the fluff and the information presented always aids in fleshing out and Roleplaying my NPC's.


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

I've been a companion subscriber since the beginning. I think it took you guys a year or so to find your voice. Most of the big complaints come from those first few.

But lately, you've been hitting them out of the park. The "Faiths of" books are excellent. Goblins of Golarion is excellent. The Inner Sea Primer is rock solid. I'm looking forward to Pirates and Tieflings.

So I know you are probably asking these questions to try to improve the line. But I think you have improved the line and just need more people to know that you've come along way since Elves of Golarion.

So I want to see more books on general topics like Pirates, Soldiering, Trade, and more. I want to see Kobolds, Aasimar, Tengu, and more. I do want to see more player's companions that tie in to APs and Setting books. Overall, I am a very happy subscriber.

RPG Superstar 2009, Contributor

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Do folks dig this idea? Having a GM book with all the nuances secret details and GM rules, and a player book on the other side with all the player stuff?...What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well?

Score!

If you revamp the lines in that fashion, it quickly gives the GM everything he needs to know in the GM-only book, while...at the same time...the players get everything they need to know about that region in their own separate book (which the GM can also peruse and get ideas from as well). That's the best of both worlds. Not coincidentally, it also helps you spin two products out of one (to a degree) by having a couple of products that focus on a certain area of the campaign setting, a race or two, some faiths and organizations, etc. The players get what they need in a spoiler-free resource. The GMs get what they need sprinkled across a couple of books. And your market is suddenly maximized. Should be a win-win.

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there?

That's just an added bonus. Though, from a planning standpoint, you'll need to carefully orchestrate which rules elements get introduced in the GM sourcebook vs. the player's sourcebook vs. the companion articles in the AP itself. That's a lot of pages to fill. And, you're likely to get some people bemoaning the fact that some new rules piece got introduced in the AP when it really should have been part of the GM or player's sourcebook. ::shrug::

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

That wouldn't really be any different than what you're doing now, would it? After all, we're all still waiting for an AP centered on Osirion, Qadira, and even Irrisen (though that one seems more likely to be on the schedule eventually given the whole Baba Yaga timeline). Yet, you have sourcebooks out on those regions already. The important thing here is that you're getting to round out your campaign setting one region, organization, species, or group of faiths at a time. You get to spin both a GM-centric and player-centric sourcebook out of each of them, ensuring the target audience receives what they want the most. I'd hitch my wagon to that star anyday.

Just my two cents,
--Neil


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Gorbacz wrote:
I'd like to say that I would love some country companions that would follow the format of Faiths of -> more information on how to play somebody from that place, less about the place itself.

This idea is so cool. A "Nations of" line. Nations of The Old Empire, Nations of The Northern Expanse, Nation of Lake Encarthan, etc. I have really enjoyed the "Faiths of" books and they have given me an even stronger feel for the way they are supposed to be played and protrayed.

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

You tease! Honestly, I would buy them, or at least the ones my group would use, until I could afford the others.


Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Maps, Modules, Tales Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
I'm itching to see the DE Primer for players because it's coming out simultaneously with DE Gazetteer. So for the first time we will have a player book and GM book for one area. Excellent idea! Now if execution will be good, I think this should be the format to keep. I really can't wait for these two books for oh so many reasons.

Great point, and this is something we've never been able to pull off before. Do folks dig this idea? Having a GM book with all the nuances secret details and GM rules, and a player book on the other side with all the player stuff? I know Dragon Empires isn't out yet, but it's very similar to what we did with the Inner Sea World Guide and the Inner Sea Primer. More products like this, perhaps?

What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

Thanks Gorbacz! Great point!

It is a good point and until he said it, I didnt realise it was something I loved.

In my group I am the sole purchaser of Paizo products (I even bought all our rulebooks). The campaign setting line is my favorite, but a lot of the flavor and inspiration I get from it remains with me - a complementary Player Companion would potentially be a way for me to engage my players in what's grabbed my attention.

Star Voter 2013

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
Gorbacz wrote:
I'm itching to see the DE Primer for players because it's coming out simultaneously with DE Gazetteer. So for the first time we will have a player book and GM book for one area. Excellent idea! Now if execution will be good, I think this should be the format to keep. I really can't wait for these two books for oh so many reasons.

Great point, and this is something we've never been able to pull off before. Do folks dig this idea? Having a GM book with all the nuances secret details and GM rules, and a player book on the other side with all the player stuff? I know Dragon Empires isn't out yet, but it's very similar to what we did with the Inner Sea World Guide and the Inner Sea Primer. More products like this, perhaps?

Honestly? This type of approach would probably push me over the edge and finally add on the Companion subscription (the one thing keeping me from being a Superscriber!). Like Mr. Geddes, I'm pretty much the lone connoisseur of Golarion material in my group. The rest pick up what they need for rulebooks, but I'm the only one who's really interested in the world itself and all of its nuances. As such, I get pretty much everything I need from the APs, Mods, Hardcovers, Novels, and Campaign Settings. I find the companions to mostly just repeat the info I already have.

That said, I DO have the Inner Sea Primer and the "Faiths of" books because they really encapsulate pivotal aspects of the world flavor (plus, I just love material on the Golarion deities) that my group can even just peruse at my place before sessions. My players don't particularly care about the race books, but they do make a point to come up with backgrounds, something that the Primer, the Faiths books, and these proposed Nations books would help greatly with.


Dienol has some great ideas!

I just wanted to pop in and say that I love the Persona section for character ideas. I've got a few ideas for it that I'll find the right thread for.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

I would rather see the Campaign Setting books be more wide-angle, and the Companions more focussed.

For example, rather than give Irrisen both treatments, I think I would prefer "Campaign Setting: Nations of the North" and a series of Companions detailing Irrisen, Land of the Linnorm Kings, and Realm of the Mammoth Lords.

Or vice-versa. I'm just not keen on directly corresponding books.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

Great point, and this is something we've never been able to pull off before. Do folks dig this idea? Having a GM book with all the nuances secret details and GM rules, and a player book on the other side with all the player stuff? I know Dragon Empires isn't out yet, but it's very similar to what we did with the Inner Sea World Guide and the Inner Sea Primer. More products like this, perhaps?

What if we did a 64-page Campaign Setting book on, say, Irrisen. Would you be cool with a 32-page Player Companion on it as well? How would you feel about that if we also had an AP set there? (Hypothetically, lets not make this about where we should set future APs) What if we didn't have an AP or anything else going to Irrisen (we just thought it was cool and wanted to do two books there before moving along)?

Thanks Gorbacz! Great point!

I love the idea of synergies across the product lines where it makes sense. My wallet has other opinions...

I think where it's possible to do this, Paizo should go for it. However, I wouldn't want this to become the "standard model". My favorites in the Companion line probably wouldn't have fit easily into this model and I'd hate to lose those kinds of books in the future. I'd cap this kind of tie-in at once or twice a year, though.


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

More PF Companion love letters...

I love that the books are small enough to warrant treatments on fluff-related campaign matters. It seems that once the 64+ p threshold is hit, the focus has to shift. Either it goes into adventure-idea territory or succumbs to the "Crunch Quota". One of the reasons I'm such a fan of the Companion and Campaign Setting line is that they don't follow crunch-heavy flow of Feats-Spells-Magic Items that so many other supplements do.

Case in point, the "Faiths of ..." series. Despite extensive treatment of Golarions deities in Gods & Magic and the god-articles in the APs, it took the "Faiths of ..." series to really move beyond the deity itself and address followers beyond the priest's role. Maybe Paizo would have found another vehicle to deliver it, but given how long it took, if the Companions adhered to a larger format, I don't know if that info would have ever seen the light of day.

Sure, there are crunchy bits in each of the books, but they're in there to enhance and support the fluff. I very much like the separation of content between the Companions, the Campaign Setting, and the RPG line. One of the primary reasons I purchased so few WotC 3.x splats was that they couldn't break out of the Feats-Spells-Magic Items format to really expand the game the way Paizo has with fluff & crunch --> The new subsystems that are frequently introduced in the APs are another favorite of mine.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

BPorter wrote:
I think where it's possible to do this, Paizo should go for it. However, I wouldn't want this to become the "standard model". My favorites in the Companion line probably wouldn't have fit easily into this model and I'd hate to lose those kinds of books in the future. I'd cap this kind of tie-in at once or twice a year, though.

Oh totally! I would never want to see a Player's Companion: Misfit Monsters all about fighting flumphs just because we did a Campaign Setting: Misfit Monsters Redeemed, the topic would have to deserve a player friendly treatment. I think the Dragon Empires Primer is a good example and good fit for this - I know this set up works for regions. I think Land of the Linnorm Kings could have supported a Player Companion, and I don't think that Player Companion would have needed to lump in Irrisen and the Realm of the Mammoth Lords to have legs. I don't know that I'm comfortable saying that I believe all of our countries could support both Campaign Setting books and Player Companion tie-ins, but I think it's worth considering. I do like the idea of having a place to present player friendly descriptions of regions and cities, traits, feats, equipment, prestige classes, and whatnot outside of the 64 pages of the Campaign Setting, allowing us to cover more descriptions, nuances, monsters, and GM friendly rules systems in those books. Just something to mull over.

And, as always, I'd love to hear people's feedback.

Shadow Lodge Star Voter 2013

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
I think Land of the Linnorm Kings could have supported a Player Companion, and I don't think that Player Companion would have needed to lump in Irrisen and the Realm of the Mammoth Lords to have legs.

I would absolutely love a Player's Guide to the Land of the Linnorm Kings, and also one to Ustalav. Rule by Fear is absolutely amazing, (easily amongst my top 3 Paizo books, if you count the Carrion Crown AP as a book). Honestly, I have no interest in the Dragon Empires, nor much at all in pirates, so the next year is looking pretty bleak for me. But I would absolutely buy either, (or both) of the PG to Linnorm Kings or Ustalav, or a variaty of other areas (Mendev and Lastwall!!!).

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
I don't know that I'm comfortable saying that I believe all of our countries could support both Campaign Setting books and Player Companion tie-ins, but I think it's worth considering.

I don't either honestly. A lot of areas in Golarion are either generic enough that they really dont need any mechanical support outside the Core books (Andoran, Cheliax) or are so specific to the point of actually (basically) disallowing either styles of play or entire groups of party roles, and honestly, those types I really don't want a guide too, as a player or as a DM. Either no interest or the most I might ever use those areas (regardless of if I like them or not) is as one-shots or short term <you travel through _______ don't get caught playing your class/race> type games. Doesn't appeal to me, and most players I know, really.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Beckett wrote:
I don't either honestly. A lot of areas in Golarion are either generic enough that they really dont need any mechanical support outside the Core books (Andoran, Cheliax) or are so specific to the point of actually (basically) disallowing either styles of play or entire groups of party roles, and honestly, those types I really don't want a guide too, as a player or as a DM. Either no interest or the most I might ever use those areas (regardless of if I like them or not) is as one-shots or short term <you travel through _______ don't get caught playing your class/race> type games. Doesn't appeal to me, and most players I know, really.

So what if instead of a guide to Nimathas we did a Players Companion: Robin Hoods... Bandits... Freedom Fighters... Rebels... Disenfranchised Rangery Types? Nirmathas would be discussed in there as a place these types come from, but it wouldn't be a huge focus - it would add content to that region, but wouldn't be more than a column, and other similar locales would get the same brief coverage. The topic, though generic, would be given a Golarion heavy spin, it wouldn't just be 32-pages of the historic archer.

What do you think of traditional fantasy archetypes as seen through the Golarion lens?

Shadow Lodge Star Voter 2013

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

So what if instead of a guide to Nimathas we did a Players Companion: Robin Hoods... Bandits... Freedom Fighters... Rebels... Disenfranchised Rangery Types? . . .

What do you think of traditional fantasy archetypes as seen through the Golarion lens?

I would buy it for the title alone. :)

In all seriousness, That could be a great idea. In 3.5, my favorate serious was the Heroes of books. Off the top of my head, I can see these concepts:
Bard/Rogue/Ranger/Fighter/Sorcerer/Oracle - Needs next to nothing as far as character ideas (it is pretty obvious just by the nature of the classes, but a little here and there, maybe a few suggestions).

Barbarian - ideas for playing an outsider in civilization, I could see an "Urban Barbarian", perhaps a tavern brawler or underground bodyguard idea.

Cleric - Milani says it all, but I can also see a religious organization devoted to many deities that form some sort of underground railroad, maybe a "watchers" guild on the look out for tyrrany and abuse of power, hidden societies that want to tempt fate/thwart destiny, (or restore prophecy!!!), or and second most important, DIVINE TRICKSTER.

Druid - an actual "Hippy" build.

Monk/Paladin - could be very interesting, also makes me hope for a "Rage Monk" or Paladin of Disorder.

Wizard - Like the Cleric, maybe a spellcaster concept that focuses on some sort of underground railroad, concepts of primal magic, chaos magic, etc. . . or ideas of what happens when Wishes go wrong (and actually recreate the world so that the characters must become rebels).

Feats and Traits that might grant various classes Skills that would be beneficial in such a campaign, like stealth, bluff, and survival.

Ideas for the various races, and why they might be in such an area:
Halflings, Humans, Half-Orcs, Elves, and Half-Elves are fairly obvious, but why would a Dwarf or a Gnome, an Aasimar, or a Tengu seek adventure and advantage in such lands?


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

So what if instead of a guide to Nimathas we did a Players Companion: Robin Hoods... Bandits... Freedom Fighters... Rebels... Disenfranchised Rangery Types? Nirmathas would be discussed in there as a place these types come from, but it wouldn't be a huge focus - it would add content to that region, but wouldn't be more than a column, and other similar locales would get the same brief coverage. The topic, though generic, would be given a Golarion heavy spin, it wouldn't just be 32-pages of the historic archer.

What do you think of traditional fantasy archetypes as seen through the Golarion lens?

I'm torn on this one. I love the kingdom/nation books so my natural inclination is to say stick to that format. However, I can see the following as good Companion fodder that might not always warrant a larger treatment. Off the top of my head:

Knightly Orders of Golarion
Arcane Orders of Golarion - Yes, Inner Sea Magic did some of this, but I could see a full Companion just on the Arcane orders of Varisia, for example.
Thieves Guilds of Golarion
Assassins Guilds of Golarion
Secret Societies
Merchant Guilds

While I love the Faction Guide, they just scratched the surface, IMO.

Shadow Lodge Star Voter 2013

I could go for a Knightly Orders book, (especially if it is like the DragonLance one), and maybe a Secret Societies book (Faction Guide, NPC Guide, Carrion Crown, and Rivals Guide pretty much cover this, so I would worry about copy/paste).

Not really much interest, on my part, for a merchants/assassins/thieves guild books. Magic of the Inner Sea and Ultimate Magic pretty much are the Book of Wizards and Arcane schools (and the above mentioned), so again, I see a lot of copy/paste. A book on Divine Societies might be cool, as for the most part, all we see are either Old Cults or generic temples, (every religious faction thrown together).

RPG Superstar 2008 Top 16, Contributor

The term archetype has found its own niche but you could do Companions focusing on a particular adventuring theme pretty easily. For instance, "Hunters of Golarion" could take a deep look at monster slaying/capturing and maybe bounty hunting too. While you could do up some history in the flavor section much of it could probably focus on tactics instead. What about countering various monster abilities? How do you take down burrowing/climbing/flying/swimming creatures?

Personally, I'd hope that the book would offer up something for each class and showcase how of them could take part in monster hunting.

Scarab Sages

BPorter wrote:

Knightly Orders of Golarion

Arcane Orders of Golarion - Yes, Inner Sea Magic did some of this, but I could see a full Companion just on the Arcane orders of Varisia, for example.
Thieves Guilds of Golarion
Assassins Guilds of Golarion
Secret Societies
Merchant Guilds

While I love the Faction Guide, they just scratched the surface, IMO.

I like this. The Temple Quarter / Thieves Quarter, etc. books by the Game Mechanics were neat, as were the 2nd edition books like College of Wizardry / Den of Thieves, for focusing on one sub-section of classes, rather than just one class.

A book listing mercenary companies, standing armies, etc. could rock, for fighter-types (and suggest places where cavalier orders or paladin orders might be based in the various nations of the inner sea).

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Lots of very cool ideas here. I'm much more enthusiastic about doing a book on, say, Assassins or Knights, than Rogues or Paladins. I feel like the former two can apply to a wide variety of classes, where the latter two work great if you are of that class, but not if you are of any of the other 18 base classes. (By the by, for the purposes of this discussion, the classes I'm considering are only the base classes, so the 11 in the Core Rulebook, the 6 in the APG, the magus in UM, and the gunslinger in UC - 19 total). I'm also down on the latter idea because it would take us years to cover all the classes we have now, and I don't think one 32 page book could handle everything we'd want to say about a class in Golarion. I don't think anyone's suggested going this route, but I just wanted to nip the idea before it became a topic.

All that said, I think the former idea has a lot of strength to it, and is something we're already going to be trying with Players Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea.

Speaking of which, how do you feel about that naming convention. We don't like using the word "Golarion" in our titles, as many buyers (and here I mean the employees of major book chains and retailers whose jobs it is to buy stock for their stores) don't know what a Golarion is. That's why you're starting to see a lot of "________ of the Inner Sea" or "Inner Sea ________" titles. But since these Player Companions are clearly branded "Pathfinder Player Companion" at the top, how would you feel if the title of what is now listed as "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea" was just "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates?"

I'd be semi-surprised if many people had super strong feeling about this, and it's largely tied to our marketing goals which isn't something we really open up to public discussion, but while we're having some discussions along this line I'd love to hear some of you guys' opinions on this matter.

Shadow Lodge Star Voter 2013

F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

All that said, I think the former idea has a lot of strength to it, and is something we're already going to be trying with Players Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea.

Speaking of which, how do you feel about that naming convention. We don't like using the word "Golarion" in our titles, as many buyers (and here I mean the employees of major book chains and retailers whose jobs it is to buy stock for their stores) don't know what a Golarion is. That's why you're starting to see a lot of "________ of the Inner Sea" or "Inner Sea ________" titles. But since these Player Companions are clearly branded "Pathfinder Player Companion" at the top, how would you feel if the title of what is now listed as "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea" was just "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates?"

It really doesn't matter to me. I think the biggest issue for me is designating more specifically what are player's guides vs general (GM/Player/I just want to read) books, and also which are Golarion and which are generic materials like the core books.

That being said, "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea" does seem like a long title. I'm not sure what you could cut out, but mayby just "PathFinder Player Companion: Pirates"? Maybe "PPC: Inner Sea Pirates" Another aspect is that both online and in other Paizo books (or PFS Guides) books are abbreviated, like the Advanced Players Guide is APG. Longer titles make this more confussing, especially as more books with similar titles come out. The Pirates books might be followed by Priests <example> of the Inner Sea, rendering "PPC:PotIS" confussing.

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:

Lots of very cool ideas here. I'm much more enthusiastic about doing a book on, say, Assassins or Knights, than Rogues or Paladins. I feel like the former two can apply to a wide variety of classes, where the latter two work great if you are of that class, but not if you are of any of the other 18 base classes. (By the by, for the purposes of this discussion, the classes I'm considering are only the base classes, so the 11 in the Core Rulebook, the 6 in the APG, the magus in UM, and the gunslinger in UC - 19 total). I'm also down on the latter idea because it would take us years to cover all the classes we have now, and I don't think one 32 page book could handle everything we'd want to say about a class in Golarion. I don't think anyone's suggested going this route, but I just wanted to nip the idea before it became a topic.

All that said, I think the former idea has a lot of strength to it, and is something we're already going to be trying with Players Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea.

Speaking of which, how do you feel about that naming convention. We don't like using the word "Golarion" in our titles, as many buyers (and here I mean the employees of major book chains and retailers whose jobs it is to buy stock for their stores) don't know what a Golarion is. That's why you're starting to see a lot of "________ of the Inner Sea" or "Inner Sea ________" titles. But since these Player Companions are clearly branded "Pathfinder Player Companion" at the top, how would you feel if the title of what is now listed as "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates of the Inner Sea" was just "Pathfinder Player Companion: Pirates?"

I'd be semi-surprised if many people had super strong feeling about this, and it's largely tied to our marketing goals which isn't something we really open up to public discussion, but while we're having some discussions along this line I'd love to hear some of you guys' opinions on this matter.

It wouldn't have a big impact on me. I mean I prefer the Pirates of the Inner Sea. But I don't care enough if you guys named it something else if you thought it would increase sales more.

Contributor

I think "Pirates of the Inner Sea" sounds sexiest. "Pathfinder" is the system and "Players Companion" is the line. They should be somewhere on the cover but with "Players Companion" logofied.

Something about "the pirates of the Inner Sea of the world of Golarion" can be put in the back cover blurb.

I hope that "Pirates of the Inner Sea" has lots of details on boats inside. Obviously "Pirates!" is a more flamboyant selling point than "Boats!" but if I want to get stats for a merchant ship, I want to know which book to pull.


As one of the posters in the negative thread, I'll add a post to the positive one too:

I really love the paladin codes in the "faiths of" books. Those sections did more for the paladin I play and the paladin of one of the players in my Kingmaker campaign than the entire paladin entry in CRB and the deities info here and there.

I'd love to see something similiar done for other organizations, be it slogans, sayings (or whatever it is called again, forgive my 01:43 am foreign English), company hyperbole or whatever.


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

+1 for Pirates of the Inner Sea vs. PF Companion:Pirates.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

BPorter wrote:
+1 for Pirates of the Inner Sea vs. PF Companion:Pirates.

You don't get off that easy? ;P

Why?


These threads! Seriously they've been some of the most interesting things on the boards for me for a while. It's great to chat with you guys like this.


Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Maps, Modules, Tales Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
BPorter wrote:
+1 for Pirates of the Inner Sea vs. PF Companion:Pirates.

You don't get off that easy? ;P

Why?

To me, the latter sounds more generic. I mean I know what the product line is but "pathfinder...something" sounds like it might have nongolarion stuff in it. Inner sea...something doesn't.

In anticipation of future breadth in the line, it may also help people choose. Rogues of casmaron might be less appealing than fighters of the inner sea - even if you like rogues more than fighters.


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

I love that you guys are putting racial and cultural notes about summoners in, even as James Jacobs complains that Golarion doesn't have anything about summoners and he doesn't like them because there's no precedent and yadda yadda yadda.


Pathfinder Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber
F. Wesley Schneider wrote:
BPorter wrote:
+1 for Pirates of the Inner Sea vs. PF Companion:Pirates.

You don't get off that easy? ;P

Why?

Lol. No problem.

1. The former evokes more Golarion flavor. The latter sounds like a generic RPG supplement.

2. The former allows for a tighter focus (the Inner Sea) rather than attempting to cover the topic more broadly. This also has the benefit of leaving the door open to cover the topic as it pertains to other areas of Golarion at a later date if warranted/desired.

Scarab Sages

Evil Midnight Lurker wrote:
I love that you guys are putting racial and cultural notes about summoners in, even as James Jacobs complains that Golarion doesn't have anything about summoners and he doesn't like them because there's no precedent and yadda yadda yadda.

One man's restriction is another man's opportunity. It's not like the setting really had much in the way of alchemists, cavaliers, inquisitors or oracles, either. Witches were the only APG class to be commonly mentioned before the APG came out, with the Winter Witches in Irrisen, and, before the APG, they were assumed to be sorceresses.

Adding the new classes to the setting is part of the fun, for those who want to integrate them.

Osirion and Qadira are the two places I'd be most inclined to have a strong Summoner presence, since both regions are thematically associated with heavy use of summoned and bound elemental and genie creatures. Re-envision the Ruby Pharoah and his invisible elemental cohort as a Summoner and Eidolon (just as the Winter Witches have been updated to the actual Witch class), and it's good to go. That being said, having the Korvosan Academae churning out a regular graduating class of summoners with infernal-themed eidolons also makes sense.

IMO, Osirion could use a touch up. The Players Companion came out fairly early in the run, if I recall correctly, and that area might be due a closer look and a fresh coat of paint.

Liberty's Edge RPG Superstar 2008 Top 32, 2011 Top 16 , Star Voter 2013, Star Voter 2014

I perfer "Pirates of the Inner Sea", but not for the reasons mentioned. Since for now, Golarion is mostly being detailed in the Inner Sea region, but is starting to expand to other continents, the "Inner Sea" reference leaves room in the future to have a similar Companion product in other regions. So, if the Dragon Empires really takes off, and in the next few years Paizo decides to provide more support for it, they could theoretically do a "Pirates of the Dragon Empires", or any of the other topics covered by the companions.

EDIT: I see that BPorter mentioned the same reason, so I guess that turns my post into "me too!"

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Twigs wrote:
These threads! Seriously they've been some of the most interesting things on the boards for me for a while. It's great to chat with you guys like this.

I totally agree. Thanks a ton for all the fantastic feedback from everyone. This has really felt more like a workshop than any discussions I've had on hear for a long time. If we make any changes to the Player Companion line, those who have contributed to these Player Companion: XXX threads should know that they were prime movers in our decisions.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

Evil Midnight Lurker wrote:
I love that you guys are putting racial and cultural notes about summoners in, even as James Jacobs complains that Golarion doesn't have anything about summoners and he doesn't like them because there's no precedent and yadda yadda yadda.

One of the nice things about having a small staff with varied opinions is that there's almost always at least one person in the office who's passionate about nearly anything we do. Just because some staff members post to the boards more than others, don't feel like any one voice speaks toward the tastes of everyone building content for Golarion.

Paizo Employee Editor-in-Chief

BPorter wrote:

1. The former evokes more Golarion flavor. The latter sounds like a generic RPG supplement.

2. The former allows for a tighter focus (the Inner Sea) rather than attempting to cover the topic more broadly. This also has the benefit of leaving the door open to cover the topic as it pertains to other areas of Golarion at a later date if warranted/desired.

Gotcha. And totally valid. Thanks for getting back to us! :)

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