Pathfinder Battles Preview: Ch-ch-ch-changes

Friday, April 4, 2014

Before we get to today's Reign of Winter miniature reveals, I want to focus on a couple of important general changes to the Pathfinder Battles line that will begin with this set, both in terms of the number of figures per set and in terms of the subscription benefits offered to ongoing Pathfinder Battles Case Subscription.

Number of Figures Per Set

Starting with Reign of Winter, Pathfinder Battles sets will go to 44 figures plus the Gargantuan case incentive figure. This reduction in number of figures per set is designed to help WizKids get its costs in line, and also comes with the added benefit of providing more common and uncommon figures to folks who buy their miniatures by the case (something a lot of customers have been asking for). The number of figures in a case, brick, or booster does not change, just the composition of the set in terms of total sculpts.

A case should still contain a full set (as always in the case of a collated product we can't guarantee this, but it's certainly the goal). Below is the model rarity breakdown for a case:

56 commons, 32 uncommons, 8 rares, 28 large uncommons, 4 large rares.

Here is the figure breakdown for the Reign of Winter set:

7 common (Small), 6 common (Medium), 11 uncommon (Medium), 8 uncommon (Large), 8 rare (Medium), and 4 rare (Large).

The total number of figures per case and the overall price of the case will not change. The specific figure size breakdowns will differ slightly from set to set, but the model rarity breakdown should be stable from release to release.

Case Subscription Changes

When we started the Pathfinder Battles line, the original plan was to supplement set releases with frequent Encounter Packs, Builder Series mini-sets, and other "one-off" releases. These have proven to be less popular than we'd hoped both with the audience and with our partners at WizKids, so as time has gone on we've produced significantly fewer of these special releases than we'd planned to.

We set up our Ongoing Case Subscriptions—a vital backbone to keeping the Pathfinder Battles line in production since it establishes a baseline of sales for the brand—with these special releases in mind. The current model earns subscribers discount codes to use on these releases, with three different discounts for the case incentive figure, special Encounter Packs or Builder Series releases, and another discount for loose singles sold on paizo.com.

Starting with the Reign of Winter set, the Ongoing Case Subscription benefits will change to:

  • The right to purchase one limited-edition case premium figure at 75% off its normal retail price per case ordered. (Same as existing benefit)
  • 30% off the normal retail price of ALL Pathfinder Battles products on paizo.com, including the cases ordered as part of your subscription, all previously released product, all Encounter Pack, Builder Series, or special releases, and all loose, unpackaged singles.

To recap: Active a ongoing Pathfinder Battles Case Subscription to the Pathfinder Battles line receive a 30% discount on all Pathfinder Battles-branded products on paizo.com except the limited-edition case incentive figures, which can be purchased at 75% off. These discounts bring our pricing in line with other online retailers.

These benefits last only as long as your Pathfinder Battles Ongoing Subscription, and go away if you cancel your subscription. Existing coupon codes provided as part of our ongoing Case Subscription benefits remain active. Even though they are for 20% off instead of the new 30% discount, they can be used even after you've stopped your subscription.

It may take us a little time to update paizo.com to reflect these new changes, but they will be in place by the time Reign of Winter is scheduled to ship to customers in late May.

We think these new subscription benefits are easier to understand and more attractive to Pathfinder Battles fans. Our ongoing Case Subscribers are absolutely vital to the continued success of the Pathfinder Battles line. If you are collecting every set, I strongly encourage you to sign up for an Ongoing Case Subscription today. It really is the most important thing you can do to encourage a long and healthy life for Pathfinder Battles. We certainly appreciate it.

Today's Reign of Winter Previews

With all of that business out of the way, let's take a look at a few of the remaining figures from the Reign of Winter set!

Up first this week is the Zombie Panther, a nasty undead great cat ready to pounce on your player characters! This mangy critter is covered in spots exposing rotting flesh beneath its fur, from a nasty bit of exposed ribcage along its side to a significant element of his face where the skull is completely visible. I'm holding the production figure in hand as I write this, and I'm impressed with the effectiveness of what amounts to a pretty simple figure. At the common rarity, you'll have enough of this gross undead animal to build a neat encounter. It also makes a great familiar for a necromancer!

Here we have the Wolliped, an eight-legged beast of burden from the snow planet Triaxus. Though Wollipeds do not play a prominent role in the Reign of Winter Adventure Path, they do appear on page 90 of Pathfinder Adventure Path #70: The Frozen Stars, which also features Triaxus heavily. I threw the Wolliped in this set as my "Erik's Choice" figure because I thought he looked cool and I'd never seen anything like him in plastic before. As a big fan of planetary romance novels like A Princess of Mars, I'm also a sucker for alien mounts with too many legs. The Wolliped officially has an intelligence of 2, but the figure's face is quite expressive, and he could easily double as some sort of intelligent creature. He's slated at the uncommon rarity, and is a Large creature.

Last up this week is Zavackuul, a reclusive and eccentric aberration who dwells in an icy fissure somewhere during the Reign of Winter Adventure Path (no spoilers!). Zavackuul is a compulsive collector of victims, whom she entombs in ice and displays in her lair. The simple (but effective) paint job on this figure looks great, but the real stand-out here are the six (!) tentacles whipping off her central form, bringing a great sense of dimensionality to the miniature. Zavackuul is a Large, rare figure.

And that's it for this week. Please consider setting up an Ongoing Case Subscription to make sure you don't miss a single Reign of Winter figure!

Until next week,

Erik Mona
Publisher

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So I now feel I'm spending the same amount of money for less sculpts. How exactly is this a win? I may just buy singles and skip cases altogether.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Kor - Orc Scrollkeeper wrote:


Larges:
1. Zavackuul
2. General Malesinder
3. Red Dragonkin Rider
4. Polkovnik

That's correct for the Larges.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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I'm going to get a bit granular with this response. Please bear with me.

Pigraven wrote:


I agree that monsters are almost always preferred.

It's funny. There's a huge disconnect between what people tell me they want, and what people actually buy. Put a different way, I get a lot of feedback on the forums that collectors are tired of NPC and PC figures in sets, to the point that many people quote a preponderance of them as reasons not to buy a case, or to cherry pick three figures from a set of 55, or whatever.

Alternatively, the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

Serving one side of this issue over the other basically screws me 50% of the time. So far I've been trying to balance things out, and quite honestly I despair that I will never be able to get the balance right for everyone. So, when deciding what figures to do I try to have a mix of both, guided by what I personally think would make cool and useful figures.

Because running this line is a huge amount of work (albeit fun work, but work none the less), I like to give myself one figure per set that I decide to do simply because power isn't power unless it's abused a little bit. There's no way most right-thinking people would do figures of the Wolliped, Gibrileth Demon, or Seaweed Siren, so I decided to make each of those for the simple reason that I think they look neat, and I felt I deserved at least one personal choice per set.

Now that we're doing 10 fewer sculpts per set, I've got to be a little more careful with this sort of thing, for reasons several critics have already posted in this thread. And thus a little joy dies from my world, but if it means better sales for the figures, I can deal with it.

* It seems to be that the best-selling figures in general are commons that you want a lot of--wolves, snakes, goblins, skeletons, etc. That's why I figured the Builder Series would be strong sellers, but alas… no.

Pigraven wrote:


That said, I'm glad we got as many animals as we did. Despite my love for monstrous creatures, in just about every campaign I run, animals are far more prevalent. While Falcons and Owls aren't always typical enemies, they often serve as scouts for hunting parties my group might come up against. The raven is a common familiar for my wizards and witches, what with their ability to speak. Still, I get why they wouldn't be for everyone.

I make no apologies for the number of animals in this set. A flock of birds of prey make for a cool encounter, and these things work great as familiars, animal companions, etc. I'm not going to load a ton of animals into future sets (this one is probably the limit), but there will be more of them in the future, I'm sure of it.

Pigraven wrote:
I don't mind when they stray a bit from the Adventure Path. Because this campaign was so vast and weird as far as the spectrum is concerned, it would have been okay either way as far as sticking with adventure path specific encounters. But in most cases, I prefer monstrous creatures to, say, an overabundance of campaign-related humanoids.

So says everyone except retailers and their customers. It's a conundrum.

Pigraven wrote:


I do admit I was a bit disappointed to see we wouldn't be getting another sculpt of the Frost Giant. I know I'm in the minority, but the Heroes & Monsters version does not impress me. For such a ferocious giant, he's way too skinny and frail looking.

The original Frost Giant was not based on Paizo art. WizKids brought that to the table before we even got started. I think it's a cool mini (especially with the neat change-out hand), but it's not really got the same oomph as some of our giant drawings.

Had the Reign of Winter Adventure Path included more good drawings of frost giants, I would have fought harder to get them in the set. As it was this set had more Larges that were helpful to running the campaign that I couldn't put in another set. I've got no room for Triaxian dragonriders in future sets, but I can put a generic Frost Giant in just about anywhere.

Pigraven wrote:


I'm a big troll fan, so a moss troll would have been great. But we did get a nice male and female ice troll, and I'd rather have the both of those over a moss troll.

Moss Troll is a weird monster because it established its "look" before Wayne Reynolds redesigned the general Troll for the first Pathfinder Bestiary. Therefore, it doesn't really look like other trolls and is a bit of a pain in my ass for branding reasons, even if the art we do have of this creature is pretty cool. That probably got in the way of including the Moss Troll in this set. I'll get to him eventually.

Pigraven wrote:
I was a bit surprised at the lack of a dracolisk, though not extremely disappointed. Although I think the artwork is beautiful and it would make a great miniature, it's something I can wait for.

Dracolisk has been sculpted and is currently on the sideboard with nine other figures waiting for their moment to strike. I'm pretty confident I'll get him in two sets from now. The figure is amazing.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

I forgot to mention that one reason there aren't more fey in this set is that most of them are Tiny or smaller, and I haven't really figured out a satisfactory way to represent such small critters in plastic. We've done a couple of Tinys in the past, but I cannot imagine how to do a good miniature of something that's Fine or Diminutive.

I'm open to ideas, btw.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Cpt_kirstov wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:
The problem with the Builder Series is that not enough people bought them.

Which seems hilarious to me - in CT that's all that we can sell. The store I work for has gone through 10 goblin builder set boxes and 8 undead, but still hasn't sold through a brick of and of the regular sets unopened (If I open them we can sell 95% of the singles in two weeks though)

I get this feedback from retailers all the time, especially at the just concluded GAMA Trade Show. The problem is that WizKids is not seeing this anecdotal information in their very real sales numbers, so there's a disconnect somewhere.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

DropBearHunter wrote:
with microprocessing these days, is it really unfeasable to guarantee "one of each" in a case?

Yes, because sometimes there's an error at the factory and the wrong figure gets put into a pack. It isn't common, but it happens enough that we don't want people to consider us liars when we say you should get a full set in each case.

I think if you follow some of the threads where customers post their case allotments, you'll see that incomplete sets in a given case are pretty rare.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Erik, to clarify, was that 30% of the 511 price, or the current case price of 399 if we do a subscription?


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

If less sculpts helps improve the quality of the paint jobs, I'm all for it. My fiancee and I were happy to see more animals in this set, though she is less pleased at Russian soldiers showing up as commons, with the reduced sculpt count.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Yeah, that's fair. I wouldn't have chosen this set to make the reductions, and had I known that there would be fewer figures when I built the set list I would have made some different choices.


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I think the problem with the builder sets was relative cost. It's 2.70 per fig if you buy by the box of 24. Through Bones or aftermarket sellers you could get the same size of miniatures without having to buy in blocks of 24 or dealing with randomization for 1.50-2.00 per fig.

My other personal problem with pathfinder miniatures in particular is how fragile they are. It means that I usually handpick minis that don't have many slender portions. Spears and spiders have to be older DDM if I want to avoid a snapped leg or shaft.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
Erik Mona wrote:

It's funny. There's a huge disconnect between what people tell me they want, and what people actually buy. Put a different way, I get a lot of feedback on the forums that collectors are tired of NPC and PC figures in sets, to the point that many people quote a preponderance of them as reasons not to buy a case, or to cherry pick three figures from a set of 55, or whatever.

Alternatively, the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

Serving one side of this issue over the other basically screws me 50% of the time. So far I've been trying to balance things out, and quite honestly I despair that I will never be able to get the balance right for everyone. So, when deciding what figures to do I try to have a mix of both, guided by what I personally think would make cool and useful figures.

I wonder if this is a function of the fact that players outnumber DMs. (And maybe that collectors are more often DMs whereas players are more likely to buy singles). The builder/encounter/evolution sets seem like a good concept but maybe the market for them has already largely bought cases.

Perhaps a solution is to try sets with not many PCs and builder sets or encounter sets of PC-appropriate minis collated and/or repainted from several sets.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

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I've got a couple of solutions for the PC issue that I hope to be able to announce in a couple of months.


Erik Mona wrote:
I've got a couple of solutions for the PC issue that I hope to be able to announce in a couple of months.

Colour me very interested to hear that!


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Would that be 399.99 x.7 = 279.99 +10 for case promo + shipping?

Or 511.68 price x.7 + 10 for a total of 368.18 plus shipping?

If the former I'll cancel my popular collection preorder right this instant, I'd much much rather buy from your guys directly.

If the latter that's sadly still not competitive.


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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I will say I am quite disappointed to hear about the reduction in sculpts per set.

I hear the statement of "This reduction in number of figures per set is designed to help WizKids get its costs in line" and it just gives me a bad and very nervous vibe. I am probably overreacting, but it is statements and changes like this where in the future people are able to look back and attribute when a line of product began to fail.

But then I see this part, which not many have commented on surprisingly:

Erik Mona wrote:


2) This set and the next one are 45 figures. The one after that will be quite interesting, and will likely have more sculpts. But it's more complicated than that (in a good way). I realize that is not a lot of information, but bear with me for a couple of sets. I am hatching plans that you will adore.

This piques my interest a great deal. I know you can't comment more on it Erik, but I do hope the reduction in minis is only a temporary one. And I am not including the two sets into the future that goes back up again, I mean I hope temporary in it will eventually permanently go back up again.

And that's a shame about the Builder series. I like to think I did my part in buying two boxes for each. I know what you pick and choose for future Builder series' is going to be even more selective, but I'd still like to see a Townspeople Builder series.


As sad as I am to see the Builder Series on life-support (or flat out dead, as the case may be), on a positive note the new case subscriber benefits are much improved.


Steve Geddes wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:

It's funny. There's a huge disconnect between what people tell me they want, and what people actually buy. Put a different way, I get a lot of feedback on the forums that collectors are tired of NPC and PC figures in sets, to the point that many people quote a preponderance of them as reasons not to buy a case, or to cherry pick three figures from a set of 55, or whatever.

Alternatively, the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

Serving one side of this issue over the other basically screws me 50% of the time. So far I've been trying to balance things out, and quite honestly I despair that I will never be able to get the balance right for everyone. So, when deciding what figures to do I try to have a mix of both, guided by what I personally think would make cool and useful figures.

I wonder if this is a function of the fact that players outnumber DMs. (And maybe that collectors are more often DMs whereas players are more likely to buy singles). The builder/encounter/evolution sets seem like a good concept but maybe the market for them has already largely bought cases.

Perhaps a solution is to try sets with not many PCs and builder sets or encounter sets of PC-appropriate minis collated and/or repainted from several sets.

I think a very important reason why PC miniatures sell well, is that they are really well painted and they bring a character in the AP to life. Especially so if the character is memorable.

Shadow Lodge

Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Erik, NPC/PC figures could sell better on singles markets because up until now you got around 1 a case (as a rare). I know I bought singles to give me the extra figure, fill a gap if I missed one in a case (one off thing to date). I think a balance is good and you've hit that balance well now.

I reserve judgemnt on distribution and size of this set but I think I may be happier with the common/uncommon numbers I get and the mix of large minis. I almost certain you will get some criticism by people who get 5 foxes or falcons, or four giant weazels etc. but to me this means in prior/future sets I will not have to go hunting for the extra NPS/PC, commons and uncommons since I'll get mnore in my case. I will most likely have been able to splash out on the extra rares I wanted. Also means the centaurs are uncommon so I can finally get a good number of them.

Your inclusion is great, of course you should abuse your power especially if we get things like the three we've received so far. Yeah they're niche but they are cool and it's only 1 a set after all.

Getting detail into a fine or smaller is incredibly hard. But perhaps a "pack" or "swarm" look could alleviate that. A mini that contains a swarm of fine pixies or similar so you are sculpting a slightly larger figure to represent a gang of the little blighters. The tiny ones we've has so far have been very good.

In short your doing I a great job in my eyes and I certainly appreciate the hours and effort you put into the line. Thank you for resurrecting the plastic.


Embed the tiny and smaller minis in some sort of transparent magical field or environmental effect, and then they effectively become a lot bigger and more durable.

As for PC/NPC vs monsters, I think it's important to keep in mind that the more vocal members of the minis community are also much more likely on balance to fit on the DM side of the scale, and to be a long-term collector. (And before you say it, yes, I know there are people who only just got into minis that don't have one of everything back to Harbinger. But I'm talking percentages here.) On the other hand, for every person like that who is much more interested in monsters, and niche monsters that don't already exists as prepaints, than they are in yet another PC to add to their massive bucket full of them, there are 10 or more new players who just want one mini to represent them on the table.

I have listings on Ebay that, in one case, let people build a collection of PC minis, and in the other case, let them build a collection of monster minis. For every lot of monster minis I sell, I sell at least 4 of PC's, maybe more. That's where the action is.


Erik Mona said wrote:

Because running this line is a huge amount of work (albeit fun work, but work none the less), I like to give myself one figure per set that I decide to do simply because power isn't power unless it's abused a little bit. There's no way most right-thinking people would do figures of the Wolliped, Gibrileth Demon, or Seaweed Siren, so I decided to make each of those for the simple reason that I think they look neat, and I felt I deserved at least one personal choice per set.

Now that we're doing 10 fewer sculpts per set, I've got to be a little more careful with this sort of thing, for reasons several critics have already posted in this thread. And thus a little joy dies from my world, but if it means better sales for the figures, I can deal with it.

Killing that little joy from your world is not cool. Your "power abuse" picks are always great fun and nice additions in each pack, so please, if you can, keep doing it.

Anyway, looking at the set, I'm wondering if some pieces should really be in a set named after an adventure path.

1. The 2 ice trolls, even if both are really great, well, we're basically getting the same monster twice (probably more, at uncommon rarity). Yes variety among the same sort of monster is great on the table but it's a bit puzzling when the set has 10 less original sculpts.

2. The animals, yes those are great additions BUT that's 5 more picks out of 45 (not counting the fox/Daji) that could have been used for NPCs or monsters that are more connected to the path.

3. The iconic, there's only one this time? That's kinda disappointing as I was looking forward to finding out who was the second one of the set, but it's understandable with the minus 10 per set thing.

Now having said that, would it be possible (or worth it) to create "add-on" sets, sharing the same name of the main set (in this case Reign of Winter), that could work a bit like the builder sets? I really liked the idea of the two huge RoW minis and that is sort of what I am talking about.
For example, those add-on set(s) could be a Reign of Winter Animal pack, a RoW Bestiary pack or a RoW Ice Humanoids (filled with ice trolls and goblins).
Since they would be tied to Reign of Winter perhaps buyers would be more inclined to purchase them. Or complain, or both heh.

Another thing, would it be possible/diserable to lower the total of minis per case? Without lowering the chance of getting a complete set of course. Someone already mentioned feeling like they are paying the same price for less choice; I wouldn't mind getting less duplicates for a lower price.


I also wanted to second the comment about these minis being too brittle. One big selling point for the old DDM minis is that, with a few notorious exceptions, they are extremely durable; they bend but don't break. Yes, that meant bendy weapons, but if I have to choose between a bendy spear and a mini in several pieces, I'll take the bendy spear, thanks. I wince in particular at the flying bases, which I worry about all the time. I know this is how Wizkids does things, but I wish they'd show a talent for more flexibility, in senses both metaphorical and literal.


The reduction in variety per set is too bad. I probably won't buy cases anymore because I like the variety, but I will still cherry pick singles and buy pawns.


Sweet zombie panther. Is the Zavackuul some sorta Snow Roper or something?

It does suck to hear the cases will he containing less of a variety. I was already contemplating not buying cases anymore and instead buying 3 bricks and then the 2 or 3 I missed out on as singles. I didn't buy any of the builder sets, I just bought a few as singles.

I've been quick to buy each evolution box though and hope we keep getting them. Btw, blue and green dragons coming anytime soon?

I'm also wondering how the huge pack went. I ordered it but its held up due to ultimate psionics being on backorder. If we can just keep getting those, the evolutions, and the AP sets I'll be happy

Oh and a colossal once a year would just be swell


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Tonnerre wrote:


shortened for length

Anyway, looking at the set, I'm wondering if some pieces should really be in a set named after an adventure path.

1. The 2 ice trolls, even if both are really great, well, we're basically getting the same monster twice (probably more, at uncommon rarity). Yes variety among the same sort of monster is great on the table but it's a bit puzzling when the set has 10 less original sculpts.

2. The animals, yes those are great additions BUT that's 5 more picks out of 45 (not counting the fox/Daji) that could have been used for NPCs or monsters that are more connected to the path.

3. The iconic, there's only one this time? That's kinda disappointing as I was looking forward to finding out who was the second one of the set, but it's understandable with the minus 10 per set thing.

Now having said that, would it be possible (or worth it) to create "add-on" sets, sharing the same name of the main set (in this case Reign of Winter), that could work a bit like the builder sets? I really liked the idea of the two huge RoW minis and that is sort of what I am...

A couple things to point out.

--I agree completely with the Erik Mona special selection. Especially considering that they're usually a rare. So not only does he get one special pick, but a case will usually only net a buyer one of the actual miniature in question.

-- I realize the Wolliped is a bit different, as an uncommon rarity. Still, for any DM out there who uses any sort of frozen land in his homemade campaign and can't figure out a way to fit in a Wolliped, I feel like it's time to turn in the DM card. I know that's harsh, but in a fantastical world that uses such cold-area creatures as ice trolls and frost giants, surely the Wolliped has a place?

--Speaking of ice trolls and the addition of a male and female version, I like it. I realize you might have missed it, but in one of his responses on here Erik made it clear that, had it been solely up to him, this would not have been the set where he made the reduction from 55 down to 45 miniatures. He pointed out that had he known when choosing the set that it would be cut from 55 down to 45, he likely would have made some different selections.

And yet, I still like the idea of a male and a female version when it comes to certain creatures. Basically the more common monster/creature types, such as giants, trolls and centaurs make the most sense to me in regards to each gender being represented. The reason I'm okay with both of the ice trolls in this set, besides how great they look, is that it fits that two-gender goal and in an ice-themed set. Better to get two ice trolls now than one in this set and one in a forest-based set, right?

--As for the animals, please feel free to put all your blame on me, and others on this site that have been requesting animals. I've been banging that drum since I first joined up on this site, and Erik has made it clear that he saw the opportunity with this set to give us a few more animals than usual because there were so many unique ones to choose from (Giant Weasel, Owl, etc.). Again, had he known going in that there would only be 45 different sculpts as opposed to the 55 that was originally planned, it's reasonable to think there might be one or two fewer animals. In one of his more recent posts he stated that while we'll continue to see animals in future sets, they likely won't come in the same large number as in Reign of Winter.

--Iconics. So many people on here are crazy nuts for the iconics. Don't get me wrong, I like just about every iconic in the Pathfinder brand. Still, I feel like I'm missing something about them that everyone else gets. Is it because it gives us more PC choices? Is it just a matter of making personal connections with them through the different Adventure Paths and other sources? I feel like Ethan in the movie Mallrats who just stares and stares at the picture all day but can never see the image.

--I like the idea of add-ons, but the one issue I see there is how does Paizo and Wizkids gauge demand for such a thing? If Pathfinder Builder series featuring Goblins and Undead--some of the most popular bad guys throughout the history of tabletop rpging--can't move enough product to satisfy Wizkids, could add-ons of any type to any Adventure Path sell well? The idea is fun, but the logic of it happening seems an ill fit.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Erik Mona wrote:
Pigraven wrote:
I agree that monsters are almost always preferred.
[...] the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

count me in as a Player Character collector

LoG gave me 3 Hodags so I don't need 3 Basilisks on top of that.
do I really need a Grimslake when I have 3 Seugathi?
or a death demon when I have 2 grey gargoyles? - I think not.
plenty H&M Zombies to play a Lost Soul
etc. etc.

but every player likes his/her own look alike figure
and unique figures for NPC mooks increase their (in-game) survivability too.
No player let's their PC pull punches just because the Balor is from WotR rather than LoG.
But put a name to an NPC and a memorable sculpt in the board and they might think it's worth talking first.

Dark Archive

Lorian wrote:
Erik, to clarify, was that 30% of the 511 price, or the current case price of 399 if we do a subscription?

I am wondering about this myself as I would love the cases to go down to $280 instead of being $399. Can we get any clarification one this Erik? Please with sugar on top!


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Steve Geddes wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:

It's funny. There's a huge disconnect between what people tell me they want, and what people actually buy. Put a different way, I get a lot of feedback on the forums that collectors are tired of NPC and PC figures in sets, to the point that many people quote a preponderance of them as reasons not to buy a case, or to cherry pick three figures from a set of 55, or whatever.

Alternatively, the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

Serving one side of this issue over the other basically screws me 50% of the time. So far I've been trying to balance things out, and quite honestly I despair that I will never be able to get the balance right for everyone. So, when deciding what figures to do I try to have a mix of both, guided by what I personally think would make cool and useful figures.

I wonder if this is a function of the fact that players outnumber DMs. (And maybe that collectors are more often DMs whereas players are more likely to buy singles). The builder/encounter/evolution sets seem like a good concept but maybe the market for them has already largely bought cases.

Perhaps a solution is to try sets with not many PCs and builder sets or encounter sets of PC-appropriate minis collated and/or repainted from several sets.

I feel like your first paragraph is the best answer in regards to the conundrum Erik pointed out.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
DropBearHunter wrote:
Erik Mona wrote:
Pigraven wrote:
I agree that monsters are almost always preferred.
[...] the NPC and PC figures generally sell much better than monster figures* on our own singles sales, and at every convention or trade show I go to, store managers and owners beg me to make more figures that work for player characters.

count me in as a Player Character collector

LoG gave me 3 Hodags so I don't need 3 Basilisks on top of that.
do I really need a Grimslake when I have 3 Seugathi?
or a death demon when I have 2 grey gargoyles? - I think not.
plenty H&M Zombies to play a Lost Soul
etc. etc.

but every player likes his/her own look alike figure
and unique figures for NPC mooks increase their (in-game) survivability too.
No player let's their PC pull punches just because the Balor is from WotR rather than LoG.
But put a name to an NPC and a memorable sculpt in the board and they might think it's worth talking first.

I'd much rather have a Grimslake to use as a Grimslake as opposed to a Seugathi to use as a Grimslake. This thought process goes for all your examples.

As a DM, I'll make do with something if I have to and there isn't already a sculpt, but otherwise I want the best representation for any creature encounter.

This whole "every player likes his/her own look alike figure" comment is lost on me. I see it given as an explanation time and time again, but I just don't get it. I understand the basic premise; If I play a Gnome Barbarian, I'm going to want a PC that looks like a Gnome Barbarian. But outside of the basic combination of race and class, does it really matter? Because every PC is distinctly unique in appearance, it's not like you're ever going to find one in a PPM set that fits your character EXACTLY as you see it. And if a player has to rely on the miniature to dictate what his character looks like, why even play the game at all?

I do understand the appeal of a good NPC miniature. It makes any potential encounter more fun for all parties. What I don't get is the reasoning that a unique looking NPC miniature increases its in-game survivability. Generally speaking, if any player around the table makes in-game decisions strictly based on the aesthetic appeal of the NPC miniature on the table, it's time to take him or her aside for a chat.

Finally, going back to the concept that a player wants a miniature that looks like his or her character, I suggest waiting a few months. By then, you'll be able to order your very own 3D Printed miniature from one of the many companies that have been gathering funds on Kickstarter.

The 3D printed miniature will have exquisite detail and look EXACTLY like the PC you've always pictured in your head. You'll be able to choose from thousands of different combinations of templates to create the perfect looking PC miniature for your character. It might cost $20-$30 for each medium miniature you personally design, but it will likely be worth it. I'm more than sure that the vast majority of people who put plenty of stock into their character's appearance will enjoy being able to personalize their PC miniature exactly to their liking.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Pigraven, I'm sure all those people who want the perfectly matching sculpt on their gaming table are as passionate and vocal abut it as you are.
If you are able and willing to spend 10$ for every 30minute hack&slay time, all the better for you and your players.

But apparently a whole lot of other people quietly spend their money differently, namely the way Eric stated,
possibly for the same reasons that I do.

I'm gaming on a budget and 30$ for a 3D print will buy me three (rare) prepainted NPCs that are going to last me a lot longer as approximations, for whatever, than one perfect sculpt.

Grand Lodge

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Erik,
I think that you've done an excellent job at balancing the character/monster mix. I understand whey various people will individually want more of either, but I think you've managed to get the right proportion. And I think that you've responded well to gaps (more female characters, female monsters, animals,...)
I also hope that you don't sacrifice your one weird choice per set, as I usually find them to be an interesting addition. However, it is possibly a problem when it is an AP-themed set and both your choice and the case incentive come from outside the AP (not actually referring to this set, as it's obvious plans changed).
I'm okay with the switch to fewer sculpts going forward. I can see a time where we may get "sequel sets" for the popular AP's (ex Reign of Winter 2), because there will be enough cool things left to represent.
However, it is extremely unfortunate that it was implemented with this set, and apparently partway through the process. I'm quite certain the choices would have been different if this had been a smaller set from day 1. And personally, my group will be well into Book 3 by the release date, so the changes will impact my purchase... I'm already past the majority of the set, based on distribution.

As far as Tiny miniatures, I would be perfectly happy if I got a Small atomie or lyrakien (for example) which I could just say is Tiny. And size didn't stop us from getting a Quickling ;)

I'm very interested to see what comes next... and the one after that.

Dark Archive

Erik Mona wrote:
The problem with the Builder Series is that not enough people bought them.

You have to think of the fact that the builder series were very niche, and often difficult to justify buying unless you were going to actively use them. I would suggest you repackage the builder series in a open view format like the Champions of Evil.

For example the Goblin Builder Set:
The Rares (excluding the Warchief) could be formatted as Goblin Iconics. and Sell at $16 dollars.
Now the Warchief and all the other goblins were old sculpts repainted so they can be sold cheaper. For the price of $25, you get two of each standard goblin and one of the war-chief.
In my opinion once you get prices above $30 dollars it becomes hard to justify them and once you buy 30 packs of goblins and don't get all the rares you become too discouraged to ever buy a builder set again.


I subscribed for the very first set, Heroes and Monsters, then cut the sub and just bought a brick for RotRL.

Since then I've been cherry-picking by buying singles, mostly through Troll and Toad and Miniatures Market. I find that I tend to drop about $140 to $160 on singles with each new release.

A subscription is what, roughly twice that? So, I have the option of getting a subscription and a ton of minis I don't actually want -- or I could spend about half the subscription price, and get exactly what I want.

It's not a hard choice.


Tinalles wrote:

I subscribed for the very first set, Heroes and Monsters, then cut the sub and just bought a brick for RotRL.

Since then I've been cherry-picking by buying singles, mostly through Troll and Toad and Miniatures Market. I find that I tend to drop about $140 to $160 on singles with each new release.

A subscription is what, roughly twice that? So, I have the option of getting a subscription and a ton of minis I don't actually want -- or I could spend about half the subscription price, and get exactly what I want.

I think this is what I will be doing now as well. I can't justify paying the same amount of money for less variety. (And the thought of getting 3 creatures like wolliped's that I never plan to use is not desirable to me -- especially since all my minis are already vying for space in my storage cabinet.)

As a collector I'm more focused on getting 1 of everything, and this now seems to be the more feasible route.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
DropBearHunter wrote:

Pigraven, I'm sure all those people who want the perfectly matching sculpt on their gaming table are as passionate and vocal abut it as you are.

If you are able and willing to spend 10$ for every 30minute hack&slay time, all the better for you and your players.

But apparently a whole lot of other people quietly spend their money differently, namely the way Eric stated,
possibly for the same reasons that I do.

I'm gaming on a budget and 30$ for a 3D print will buy me three (rare) prepainted NPCs that are going to last me a lot longer as approximations, for whatever, than one perfect sculpt.

I realize the point in your response isn't how much I make, but I want to start off by pointing out that I'm a teacher. I'm living on a pretty average teacher salary. I don't have money to burn through, which is part of the reason I look for deals. It's why I broke down the numbers in one of my earlier posts in this thread in regards to how much a case subscription would cost under the new 30% off pricing.

Furthermore, I run an after school program where we play tabletop rpg games with students. While I'd love to be able to afford 3D Printed customized miniatures for everyone, it's not going to happen on the program's budget or my pocket.

I'm sharing this with you because I want to make it clear I'm not advocating that everyone go out and get a custom mini for their character for every campaign they are in. But for those who have been in ongoing campaigns for a year or so, it could be an option. My longest ongoing campaign has been in play for nearly twenty years now. Because I backed one of these kickstarter campaigns, I'll be able to get a customized version of my character. I think that is very cool, and VERY much worth $30.00. Even in my other campaign that has been in active for about three years now, I'll definitely go the customized route. Because yes, it might not be the most economically viable option, but when factoring in pride of my character and campaign, it becomes worth it. Perhaps I should have made all this more clear in my last post.

A majority of my campaigns last anywhere from 5-10 character levels. I'd be willing to bet that number holds true with the majority of people on this site and in the rpg community as a whole. So yes, without a doubt, having a nice variety of PC Miniatures to choose from makes perfect sense. In fact, the day I decided to institute miniatures into my games, I went out and bought a large amount of singles for this very reason. I have continued to add to that group nearly every time I buy singles, and I'm almost never disappointed with the ones Paizo gives us in their battles line.

But we're talking an already very deep pool for me to choose from. Those miniatures from the 2000's that Wizards made, the old DDM ones, there is a plethora of options for a buyer to consider. Humans, Elves, Dwarfs…those miniatures are out there and if a player can't find the right one to approximate for his or her character in a shortened campaign, then it's likely said player doesn't own a computer and doesn't have a gaming store in close proximity. Add in all the PC-type humanoids in the Pathfinder Battles line and I could ask what more does one need?

I'm never disappointed when we get a chance to add to the PC pool of miniatures. I understand the value of both those miniatures themselves, and the need to keep expanding that particular pool. That's one reason why I think the Adventure Path battle lines are great. It allows loyal fans of the campaign to get their hands on key pieces of the story while providing nice PC-types to add to the pool for DM's that enjoy building their own world. It's a win-win, definitely.

My only problem with PC miniatures, or at least the only thing I don't understand when it comes to discussing them, is the perception that they are somehow in short supply in terms of variety. That's it.

NPC's are a different story. I fully understand the desire for an NPC miniature. Not only do they provide an attractive miniature for a particular NPC encounter, many NPC miniatures can be used as PC miniatures, too. It's this versatility that I feel is imperative to the NPC miniature. It's also this sort of usage that provides the NPC miniature with pitfalls of their own.

Some NPC's are conducive to groups, while other NPC's make sense as individual figures, or rarities. Street gang thugs, for example, make sense as commons or uncommon, because they are often encountered NPC's that player characters tend to face in groups. The Lord Captain Commander of the City Army, however, is an example where one nice-looking miniature can really do the trick. The Lord Captain miniature is likely a rarity, thus has multiple parts, is intricately detailed, and makes for a great reoccurring antagonist. In a different campaign, a player could proudly use the Lord Captain miniature as a wonderful representation of his or her Paladin, Cavalier or Fighter character.

In my opinion, Erik has been very good at selecting NPC's with regard to where they fit on the rarity scale. Multiple Pale Tower Guards make plenty of sense, especially since they can represent any tower guard in any homemade campaign. Likewise, Winter Guard Falconer as an uncommon makes total sense. For every group of two or three guards or barbarian riders, there is likely to be at least one Winter Guard member with a Falcon. Finally, Commander Pharamol as a rare miniature makes total sense. He's obviously the one guy in charge, of the army itself or any smaller unit within the army. He can also double up as some Catfolk-like ranger for a player to use as his PC representation in a different campaign. I hope Erik maintains his skill level at this sort of thing. I personally believe him to be a better decision maker in this regard than those making the call for the old DDM line.

I'd estimate about 80% of my campaigns are role-playing based, not combat oriented. That means the majority of my players' time is spent out of combat. It's a near impossibility to gather NPC's for every situation I incorporate into a campaign. That doesn't mean I don't try, only that I recognize that even if every Battles line from now until the line ends was nothing but different NPC characters, I still wouldn't have enough to get the job done. This is one reason why I don't get upset with the NPC-type characters (or potential lack thereof) in a particular set. And it serves as the reason I don't feel the need to litter Adventure Path battle lines with too many NPC-type characters. After all, variety is great, but I'd rather save more slots for a variety of actual monsters.

So yes, even though my players might only face these monsters, collectively, 20% of their campaign lives, I'd rather have all the monsters in the Bestiaries before all the NPC's. The logic is simple. I can't hope to account for all the PC interaction with NPCs throughout my campaign using miniatures. So while NPC interaction is much more plentiful, the visual impact is much less important. However, because my players only spend 20% or less of their campaign lives fighting monsters, I have a reasonable shot at making each particular monster encounter both visually and descriptively interesting.

The result, since I first began incorporating miniatures nearly two years ago, is that my players walk away much more proud of the feats they accomplish out of battle. Whether it is interaction with NPCs, carving out in-game homes or roles for themselves, or even coming together to solve the riddles and other mind-based games I incorporate. And while the players are generally more proud of these accomplishments, they can recount every battle with near-perfect recall, because even the less challenging fights are most often greeted with a very nice looking visual representation of the monster or monsters they battle against.


DropBearHunter wrote:

Pigraven, I'm sure all those people who want the perfectly matching sculpt on their gaming table are as passionate and vocal abut it as you are.

If you are able and willing to spend 10$ for every 30minute hack&slay time, all the better for you and your players.

But apparently a whole lot of other people quietly spend their money differently, namely the way Eric stated,
possibly for the same reasons that I do.

I'm gaming on a budget and 30$ for a 3D print will buy me three (rare) prepainted NPCs that are going to last me a lot longer as approximations, for whatever, than one perfect sculpt.

I think pigraven was saying that they can't possibly even come close to accommodating everyone in this aspect, so why put all the focus there. They can take those resources and put them elsewhere and completely fill several other needs. If it is really that important to you then drop a few extra dollars and get a custom mini for that one character you really need one for

I also want a huge range of playable minis, but I agree with pigraven that all I really expect is race/class. Of course its always super exciting when theres a mini that aligns those 2 factors AND weapon with yur character, but its a lot to ask for. Honestly I'm happy when I get 2 outta 3


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

@DropBearHunter

After re-reading my post from overnight in response to yours in addition to the one I just posted a few minutes ago, I am not happy at all with the underlying tone in my words. I sincerely apologize if anything I've said has come off in an aggravating way. That apology goes double if anything I've said strikes you in any way as personal insult.

Nothing I said was meant as any sort of insult. Instead, my intention was more or less responding to a situation that you happened to touch upon. I replied to that first post as a frame of reference for a topic I wanted to make my feelings known on, not because I had any particular issue with you in general. After reading my first response, I feel like it can be taken much more personal than intended.

My second response, (the one I just posted a few minutes ago), could also be said to hold a personal slant from me, and I don't like it. Again, I apologize if anything I said comes off as more personal disdain. My entire goal behind sharing my profession and budgeting with you was to make clear that I wasn't originally saying I believed everyone should buy expensive miniatures, nor am I unaware that some people simply can't fit it into their budget.

The only time I could ever justify spending so much money on a medium-sized miniature at all is to satisfy the wish of somebody in a long-running campaign. But I've crossed paths with plenty of those types in my day, and for years we would say things like "I just wish I could find a miniature that matched exactly what my character looks like", or, "the only thing missing from this guy over the last five years is an accurate physical representation". With 3D printing finally making that once far-fetched dream a reality, I'm just eager to share it with others.

The closest I came to this was a few years ago. The artist in our group drew very beautiful representations of our longstanding characters for us. When I noticed that everyone liked the version of their character he had done, I asked him to give me copies. I had all of them done in life-size wall decals from the Fatheads website. I gave them as gifts that Christmas, and it was wildly successful. They were pricey, but these guys have been my best buddies and fellow gamers since we were twelve, so it made sense.

As for the remainder of what I said in that last post, it's just more generally nattering by me on the subject. None of it was meant as any sort of personal response or insult to you.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I have found in the numerous campaigns I've run or played in that the party interacts with NPC's quite often. I have found the Pathfinder NPC's to be quite useful, with some in large quantities. I can totally see how Charcter / NPC types could out-perform monsters. I welcome any and all that we get in these sets. For instance, I already know I want a troop of Pale Tower Guards, as heavy footmen soldiers are a staple of armies.

Monsters are a bit more hit and miss. Many that come in these sets have been done before by WotC. And the Pathfinder versions are sometimes significantly different than what I already have. In those cases, I usually decide which style I like better and go with those. Sometimes Pathfinder wins, sometimes they don't. That would cut down a bit on the numbers of singles monster I'd pick up, skewing popularity towards NPCs. I still want monsters, it's just that I can see how the numbers could favor NPC's.

As for animals, I'm definitely all for them. Especially the birds, which have been sorely missing up until now. So much so that i amost started hacking up some stirges to make them look like birds. But, Pathfinder has done us a solid by covering three of the most common birds: falcon, blackbird and owl. They look to be set up similarly to the Blood Bugs, with the thin rods that hold them up at almost eye level on PC's. While I'm not a fan of the small bases I do think the larger base size allows for the additional height for these tiny flying creatures, so I'm getting over it. And I'll be getting extras of all three. I'm not for 5+ animals in each set, but Reign of Winter did give us some good ones.

In general, I don't think the reduced number of sculpts in each set will hurt much. But I could see it impacting the number of matching pieces in a group. I certainly have enjoyed the mini groups we have so far, and the best matches seem to come when all the pieces come in the same set. With less pieces per set, making four or five of a similar type seems less likely. That would be a shame, as we are getting some really nice warbands in the sets so far.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I'm big into completing sets; I collected action figures for years, and I'm not sure that bug ever left my system. This has carried over to my collection of miniatures. At a bare minimum, I strive to have at least one of every miniature in a set.

Buying a case of Pathfinder Battles lets me get at least one of each. Because I've been a big fan of the percentages of common, uncommon and rarities within a typical case, I find that it makes a good deal for me. Or rather, the choices so far that have been used for common, uncommon and rarities have been good ones for me.

The DM in me likes having multiple monster miniatures of nearly every creature there is a miniature for out there. Sometimes I end up needing to purchase more singles of a particular miniature, but they are usually the cheaper ones. It also helps that, as Berk mentioned, many of the same miniatures in the Pathfinder brand can be found in the old Wizards of the Coast sets. If I buy a case and receive three male ice trolls and three female ice trolls, that's six total ice trolls I can, at some point, throw at my party. However, I've also got four ice trolls from the old D&D Aberrations line that look great and that I can include with my six Pathfinder trolls. This means that at any given time, I can set up ten ice trolls on the board at one time.

I don't need ten miniatures for each different monster. The Gug is a perfect example. In my Shattered Star case, I received three Gug miniatures. Two weeks later, in the next session up, the members of my group ended up fleeing from one situation and coming much too close to a darklands-type area shrouded in darkness and foul smells. One of the PC's was injured, and a nearby Gug caught his scent. The Gug followed the bloody trail until he came upon the party. Despite being caught off guard, the party was capable of taking down the Gug. However, not long before he would have been killed, he was able to grab the injured player and flee back to the inner parts of the darklands area. injured as he was, he made slow time, and the party quickly caught up to him. However, the two other Gugs that were part of the original Gug camp had heard the commotion, smelled the blood, and went looking for their companion. What ensued was an impromptu battle of three Gugs against the PC's. The PC's barely won out, and two were critically injured.

In the end, three was the perfect number for such an encounter. I haven't used the Gug since, but I was happy to have three of them when I did. I'll likely use them again; my PC's in a different group are beginning to approach that level of creature. But as fun as the encounter was, they aren't the type of creature where I need to have more than three.

Overall, Pathfinder, and Erik, has done well by me in determining what should go where in the Pathfinder Battles line. It's obviously not a perfect science, and the amount of people on here who have expressed little need for more than one Wolliped, if that, is a clear indication of that statement.

I had never heard of a Wolliped before looking over the Reign of Winter adventure path files when I was trying to guess what miniatures we'd see in the set. I liked it for several reasons. First, it looks really cool. Second, it's got companion statistics, and can be wild or domesticated. This means that I'll be using it in my campaigns as the main animal/pet associated with the Frost Giants in my campaigns. Third, Wollipeds use spitting as a form as communicating with one another. This gives me a wonderful excuse to spit on my players during a session. And really, isn't that the true goal of every DM? (Just kidding). Finally, not only will I allow them to be used as an animal companion for those who qualify, but as a natural animal, I'll let my druid wild shape into them. In my opinion, the Wolliped is far more versatile than some of the other "Erik's Choice" miniatures, and so I'm glad I will receive a few of them.

I realize that my plans don't stay true to the descriptions of where Wollipeds are usually found. It looks like they are lumped in with the Triaxions, in whatever space or time that group occupies. Still, that means little to me as I'll likely not play this campaign for awhile, but I'm not about to let cool looking furry humanoids and big, long spitting monsters go to waste.


I have mixed views/feelings on this change. If the price/case size does downsize to match the number of unique miniatures, and brings it into line with the original Heroes & Monsters set ($270 for 40+1 miniatures) I see this as a sideways move and OK.

Side Note: Actually for me this would be a good move. After the first H&M set, I haven't been able to afford to purchase a case, I've only cherry picked what I want. And as many have observed, I cherry pick the Iconic, a some NPCs and one or two cool monsters from each set. Now I already have a large collection of monsters from WotC DDM line so I don't need a lot of monsters. Also, I had a good collection of undead so I didn't need anything from the Undead Builders line, but I did purchase from the Goblin Builders.

If the price and total number of miniatures per case remains the same as the recent sets, this unfortunately, I see as a bad move for the line. Simply, it looks like more low cost miniatures will be placed in each case. For me personally, this will be a good thing in the short run. I'll cherry pick the more expensive Iconics I want, and I don't see those prices wont changing much. However, with a flood of extra commons, the per-mini price for them will drop and that will save me money. In the long run I think fewer people will purchase cases, witch will have a direct, negative impact on the continuation of Pathfinder Battles line.

So when RoW comes out, I see myself spending $10 on Feiya and $20 on 6 to 10 animals.

Just My Thoughts


What Erik says makes sense to me actually. The majority of Miniature consumers are PLAYERS not GMs. Therefore the majority of players would be looking for that perfect PC mini, or buying a bunch for future PC ideas. Now I have been miniature collecting over a decade and a lot of miniature collectors would be very similar I would imagine as the hobby is well established, therefore builder sets would mostly appeal to one demographic new miniature collecting GMs. This would mean sales on those could be a bit lax.
But on the brightside Erik I will continue my subscription and enjoy what is produced.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Personally, I'm not finding the quality of some of the commons to be that inferior to the rares. From that aspect, I'm not nearly as concerned about more commons filling out a case.

Paizo Employee Publisher, Chief Creative Officer

Most of the commons in Reign of Winter are of amazing quality in both sculpt and paint job. I've seen the final figures and I am really, really impressed by them.


I think Erik makes a good point that what people say and what they do are fundamentally different (or that many doers aren't speakers and vice versa). In my gaming circle (about 12 people in rotation) two people make up 90+% of the dollars spent on gaming goods (myself being one of them). My compatriot subscribes to everything Paizo puts out and pretty much Kickstarts everything that touches his fancy (and buys half the charity auction at Gencon). So he's an easy customer.

For my part, I choose to buy cases on the basis of "are there enough cool pieces that a case is cheaper than singles." I'm on the fence with Reign of Winter since I have no intention of running it but I love a lot of the pieces. I would have ordered more cases if they were smaller and cheaper (and pre-ordered Reign of Winter). I am happy with the distribution of common/uncommon/rare as is. For me the $300 range marks the transition from large to major purchase.

What has been significant to my case vs. singles purchasing decisions is often rare NPCs/PCs, despite being primarily a DM myself. There is a wow factor to these pieces that monsters often lack (as noted previously).

Also, while a lot of people say they prefer monsters, I would posit that there are many more individuals buying singles than cases. The push that gets them from wanter to purchaser are the unique figures like NPCs and PCs (players won't covet monster figures much, and DMs often have extensive collections of close-enoughs). So we are probably talking very different markets.

How does everyone else REALLY spend their dollars?


Further thoughts a few days on:

De-coupling the minis from the adventure paths should lessen the pressure to include sculpts of the odder minis simply because they're featured in an adventure. In my opinion, this is an improvement.

Big savings for subscribers built on the back of a probable revenue hit to Paizo (as opposed to Wizkids) should make a sub much more appealing (as opposed to third party online buying). No doubt a calculated (and in my opinion, canny) risk.

Still mourning the probably demise of the builder series. I don't get it...they're such a perfect impulse purchase. :(

Keeping a line like this alive has got to be tough. Obviously the more miniatures one accumulates, the less marginal utility each additional mini offers. Eventually even Hasbro couldn't keep it going -- I hope Paizo/Wizkids can.


bugleyman: I think you may have misread James' comment. They are stepping away from releasing/planning them at the same time, not from doing AP sets altogether (Erik mentioned before that this is a fairly taxing endeavour and unlikely to be repeated when they did Shattered Star).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Just to make sure, saving my last code for when the new discount goes into effect will not make a difference as they won't stack, correct?

Webstore Gninja Minion

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Just to make sure, saving my last code for when the new discount goes into effect will not make a difference as they won't stack, correct?

Correct.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Superscriber
bugleyman wrote:

Still mourning the probably demise of the builder series. I don't get it...they're such a perfect impulse purchase. :(

Maybe the randomisation element for a single figure booster is depressing sales. Collectors seem to understand the necessity of randomisation far more than casual mini purchasers (that's purely anecdotal, of course, but it seems widespread).


I know that part of the problem with boosters for me is that there's no guarantee of any rares in these. With DDM boosters, you knew you were going to get at least one rare (though obviously some rares were more exciting than others.) With these, you know you're going to get at least one Large, but in every set there are a couple Larges that aren't all that exciting or valuable, and every time I buy a single booster pack, I experience the dread that it's going to be a booster filled with commons, uncommons, and an unexciting Large. Especially when I know I could have picked up those 4 minis for a fraction of the price of the booster as singles :-p I think Paizo does a great job randomizing a case, but individual booster packs seem like a bad deal given the risks.


Isil-zha wrote:
bugleyman: I think you may have misread James' comment. They are stepping away from releasing/planning them at the same time, not from doing AP sets altogether (Erik mentioned before that this is a fairly taxing endeavour and unlikely to be repeated when they did Shattered Star).

Ah...you may be correct. Disregard that comment, then. :)

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