Today is the official worldwide release date for Paizo's newest comics project, Pathfinder: City of Secrets #1! With a great story by rising comics phenom Jim Zub, amazing art from newcomer Leandro Olivera, and the triumphant return of removable poster maps with each issue's Pathfinder RPG appendix, the new series is truly a cause for celebration.
So we're doing just that! Starting today, Paizo has teamed up with expert Pathfinder Society GMs to host special in-store Pathfinder RPG sessions at comic and game stores throughout the next several weeks. This Pathfinder Comic Store Invasion features original encounters based on the poster maps in the first issue. Participants will receive fun rewards they can apply to new or existing Pathfinder Society characters. Check the events page for a list of participating stores in your area.
Pathfinder: City of Secrets #1 sees our familiar iconic heroes—Valeros, Seoni, Merisiel, Kyra, Ezren, and Harsk venture to the city of Magnimar. Ezren seeks counsel with the Pathfinder Society, hoping to bargain his research into the events of the comic's previous volume into a field commission. This brings him to the offices of Pathfinder Venture-Captain Sheila Heidmarch, a character familiar to players of both the Shattered Star Adventure Path and many a Pathfinder Society scenario.
Kyra and Merisiel, following the events of the recent Pathfinder Special One-Shot, seek out a famous abandoned shrine of Sarenrae in the shadow of the Irespan. There they run afoul of another group of familiar villains—but that's a spoiler for another day.
The familiarity Magnimar offers gives us plenty of opportunities to tie the comic more closely to the Pathfinder world, and it's been a thrill to read Jim's excellent scripts and see Leandro's spectacular art. I'm glad that the gap between today's release and the final issue of the previous volume gave us a chance to "bank" several issues of finished art, as I'm terrified Leandro will be poached for a major title once more editors get to see his phenomenal work. Best of all, he brings an eye for detail that makes him particularly suited for the adventures of Wayne Reynolds's iconic Pathfinder heroes.
Amid all of the call-backs to existing lore, Jim Zub's script portrays the iconic characters with real emotion. We learn more about their characters, motivations, and personalities in this series than in previous arcs. We see Seoni wrestling with the responsibilities of leading the group, Harsk's uneasiness amid the bluster and bustle of the big city, and the development of Kyra and Merisiel's still-fresh romance. City of Secrets offers lots of inventive battles against hideous foes, of course, but it's also packed with genuine emotion and character moments for the whole cast.
And the pull-out maps are back, thanks to your requests. The maps have been among the most popular features of the line, and I'm thrilled to see their return. The first issue features a map of Magnimar's Old Fang Tavern, a handy little spot perfect for staging a bar room brawl.
I did just that when I wrote the Tavern Brawl encounter for the City of Secrets Comic Store Invasion event. Stop by participating stores to see how you and your friends can help save the day when the bottles start flying and people start swinging chairs.
The Comic Store Invasion event packet also includes another encounter—also by yours truly—featuring a pack of Pathfinder goblins attacking a modern comic store. Only the iconic heroes stand to defend the sanctity of new comic book Wednesday! That encounter—and the modern comic store map that goes with it—is available exclusively in the Retailer Exclusive edition of the debut issue. This extremely rare issue was limited to stores that ordered 500 copies or more of the first issue. In the likely event that your store placed a more modest order, you can always get the Paizo.com edition of the Retailer Exclusive cover right here on our webstore.
And did I mention the Heroes of Magnimar contest? Hop over to the contest page to submit a 300-word description of YOUR hero of Magnimar. A team of Paizo judges will select one character each month to be illustrated by Dynamite's comic artists, and a chosen character's stats will appear in the RPG appendix of each issue starting with #2 next month.
So! Your mission today is to head over to your favorite local comic store (or game store that sells comics, of course) and pick up a copy of Pathfinder: City of Secrets #1! The better the comic does in this crucial first week of sales, the more retailers will order of the follow-up issues, ensuring a long future for Pathfinder comics.
The best way to ensure that future, of course, is to set up an ongoing Pathfinder Comics subscription right here at Paizo.com. Subscribers receive substantial discounts on comic purchases, and can elect to have their comics bundled with other Paizo subscriptions to save money on shipping. If you love the comics and want to do whatever you can to help them succeed, subscribing is absolutely the best thing you can do.
All of us here at Paizo put a lot of work into the Pathfinder comics we produce. Your support means the world to us.
To the comic store!