Wrath and Other Sins: How We Chose the Next Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Set

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


Illustration by Wayne Reynolds

Hello! Wrath of the Righteous marks the third Adventure Path for our humble little Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, and we are just pleased as punch that you would pony up your hard-earned nickels to—

Man, to hell with that polite nonsense. Or rather, to the Abyss with it. Let's gas up our panhead Harleys, set fire to the gas station, and head off on a power ride into a canyon of flames.

Wrath of the Righteous is all the sin you want in one game. Designers Paul Peterson and Tanis O'Connor will march you lockstep through the gory battlegrounds of the Worldwound in the next couple weeks. For now, I'm going to describe how we got to the gates of the Abyss, and why we barreled right on through.

The First Sin: Pride

When we were considering the next Adventure Path, we thought about what had come before it. Rise of the Runelords was a catalogue of essential fantasy tropes: there were goblins and ogres and dragons and giants and everything under the sun. Skull & Shackles was a lot more focused and personal: you were kidnapped pirates trying to stay alive in a sea of sharks and buccaneers. As epic as those adventures were, they seemed... manageable. You could get your brain around how to defeat the challenge. We wanted something crazy impossible for the next set, something that would make everyone say "How exactly do you expect us to beat THAT?" Basically, we wanted to show off. So we pridefully looked around for the most impossible thing. Going into the Abyss to stop a demon prince's invasion of the world sounded pretty, pretty good.

The Second Sin: Sloth


Illustration by Miguel Regodón Harkness

I've made no secret of the major influence that the videogame Diablo had on the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. The plot of Diablo is pretty simple: there's a demon lord named Diablo, and he's not a very nice guy, and so you kill everything in your path to get to him. Blizzard made two more Diablo videogames after Diablo, and they were exactly that thing two more times. Maybe that thing was the best thing ever. I have probably sat on my couch for a full three months of my life playing Diablo. Yes, I could be using that time to go outside and interact with the world. To heck with that. There's demons to kill. So when it became apparent that we could write an entire Adventure Path about carving a swath through the Abyss, I was on it like a Shakespeare sonnet.

The Third Sin: Gluttony

Wrath of the Righteous is about being mythic heroes. I mean, seriously mythic. Kings of the world, really. Everything is just bigger in the Worldwound. We wanted all that stuff. Of course, we had a real challenge ahead, because we needed every character we've ever created to work in that environment. We had to come up with a lot of clever trickery to make that all work. But basically, we did it because we like to eat the most awesome things, and nobody was gonna stop us from eating all of them.


The Fourth Sin: Greed

And oh, the toys! The Pathfinder RPG folks had built up all these artifacts and relics and other boss things that just didn't make sense in an intimate story like Skull & Shackles. We made a thing called a Boomcrown for you. Also, we made a bow that fires dragon breath. And that's not even scraping the surface. Would you like to ride a Dire Griffon? Got that for you. Wanna cast a spell called Terraform? No problem. Maybe have a goddess as an ally? All of this and more can be yours! It's so cool.

The Fifth Sin: Lust

I would like to introduce you to my friend Nocticula. She's a demon lord who controls a realm made out of the corpses of demon lords she's killed. She's got a cavalcade of succubi and incubi and other demons of lust, ready to bring down the will of the mortal world. She's a super-hot nova of sex and violence. And she's your friend. That's just the kind of thing that keeps our attention in Wrath of the Righteous.

The Sixth Sin: Envy

And okay, here's the basest reason we wanted to do Wrath of the Righteous. We were working on Rise of the Runelords when the Pathfinder RPG guys were designing the RPG version of Wrath. Throughout the day, we would hear them chuckling at the latest evil machination that James Jacobs and his team had come up with. They were having so much fun. And quite honestly, we're not the kind of folks who can abide people having fun without us. So we stole their fun. I'm sure they will get it back someday.


Illustration by Bryan Sola

The Seventh Sin: Wrath

With all those rationalizations under our belt, we set about to designing Wrath of the Righteous, breaking everything along the way. One of the coolest things about this game line is how the sets seem to take on the personality of one member of the design team. Rise of the Runelords is Chad's: it's a sweeping arc of everything one can pack into a fantasy game. Skull & Shackles is Gaby's: it's a jaunty adventure on the high seas, with all the yo-ho-hoing her galvo-obsessed brain can handle. The organized play seasons are Tanis's: they're a big inclusive tent under which all gamers can gather.

Wrath of the Righteous is Paul Peterson's. Paul is the designer of Smash Up and Guillotine and other violent-sounding games. If I'm going to find someone to design a hellscape, he's my guy. And so he'll be leading you through Wrath of the Righteous. Buckle up, because it's going to be a bumpy ride.

Mike Selinker
Adventure Card Game Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Bryan Sola Miguel Regodón Harkness Pathfinder Adventure Card Game Wayne Reynolds

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Mythic path card? So exited!


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Cohorts? Mythic Path? Fire Breath Bow? Sexy allies?

I wish it was May, so bad.


Cool!

I was waiting so long for this post ... And I am only third in line.

Hawk was first as always....


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

God I am so excited.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

1) Mythic Kyra looks so awesome.
2) "On it like a sonnet" is so Tanis' line.
3) I'm not sure Diablo 3 is really like Diablo 2. From what I've heard, it integrated too much of the free-to-play RPG stuff - and I kinda don't really like that.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Awesome! Can't wait to learn more about the mythic path cards!

So many questions running through my head.
Are they like role cards except...more epic?
Is it just a name change for what role cards are called?
or are they separate from role cards?
or maybe you choose from a pool of 6 or so mythic path cards that are generalized so that any character can pick any?


@zeroth_hour, 3) you should try it. It got a lot better with the add-on. Less crap drops, and drops that can completly change playstyles.

@bbKabag, I think it has to be your last idea. Anything else wouldn´t work with the already existing chars.

@blog, this sounds so awesome. I just hope it will arrive over here in May, and i don´t have to wait 1 or 2 additional months.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Quote:
We made a thing called a Boomcrown for you. Also, we made a bow that fires dragon breath. And that's not even scraping the surface. Would you like to ride a Dire Griffon? Got that for you. Wanna cast a spell called Terraform? No problem. Maybe have a goddess as an ally? All of this and more can be yours!

...

...
...
Are you Jesus? Because that's the only reason I can think of for these amazing things existing.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

I love the depiction of Seelah and Kyra on that cover artwork.


I wonder if the article included any relevant info I missed about the set, apart from the inclusion of mythic path cards? (what was not really that suprising)

I'm really waiting on details about the new mechanics - mythic paths, cohorts, etc - before geting too excited. The ship related additions in S&S were really underwhelming for me, so now I'm much more cautious.


So, if the Mythic path cards are going to be needed by any character playing this AP, and they've explicitly mentioned that they want it to be compatible with every character made for the game, it seems safe to assume that these cards won't be character-specific.

Does make me wonder how much mythic art we're actually going to see? - I'd really like it if the Character token cards had the mythic art (I've already got a couple of versions of most of them in normal version)

Adventure Card Game Designer

zeroth_hour wrote:
"On it like a sonnet" is so Tanis' line.

The phrase "On it like a Shakespeare sonnet" is common parlance at the Lone Shark offices, so much so that it snuck directly into The Maze of Games. I think I came up with it first, but it would not shock me if Tanis or Gaby did.


MightyJim wrote:

So, if the Mythic path cards are going to be needed by any character playing this AP, and they've explicitly mentioned that they want it to be compatible with every character made for the game, it seems safe to assume that these cards won't be character-specific.

Does make me wonder how much mythic art we're actually going to see? - I'd really like it if the Character token cards had the mythic art (I've already got a couple of versions of most of them in normal version)

If the characters are interchangeable, then the character token cards are created as the older ones. No change.

I think "mythic" cards give you some extra ability besides the standard character ones.
There are several mythic cards, so this increases the replayability to a great extent. Just imagine, multiplying all characters by the number of mythic cards gives you a new game space.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Mike Selinker wrote:
zeroth_hour wrote:
"On it like a sonnet" is so Tanis' line.
The phrase "On it like a Shakespeare sonnet" is common parlance at the Lone Shark offices, so much so that it snuck directly into The Maze of Games. I think I came up with it first, but it would not shock me if Tanis or Gaby did.

Interesting. I know you've talked about Shakespeare a lot before too, but I've associated you in my mind now with "worked with JK Rowling" and "got trolled by working with the Cards Against Humanity people". I suppose Gaby could also be associated with the second, but I haven't talked to her enough yet to make that type of association.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I expect the Mythic role will be independent, much like the RPG Mythic - representing a 'trope' or classic 'role' you choose, with each class of character finding one or two 'obvious' fits but room for bucking the standard stereotype if you really want to.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Andrew L Klein wrote:
Quote:
We made a thing called a Boomcrown for you. Also, we made a bow that fires dragon breath. And that's not even scraping the surface. Would you like to ride a Dire Griffon? Got that for you. Wanna cast a spell called Terraform? No problem. Maybe have a goddess as an ally? All of this and more can be yours!

...

...
...
Are you Jesus? Because that's the only reason I can think of for these amazing things existing.

Goddess as an ally. "Woot, I got Desna. Going to discard her to explore again." ;)

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Desna really doesn't care for being discarded.

Sovereign Court

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I'm fairly certain every god and goddess has an inherent power of "Discard to have your character killed by this ally"

Dark Archive

The top piece of artwork by Wayne Reynolds reminds me a little bit of the classic "A Paladin in Hell" picture.

Only this time, she brought friends along.

Adventure Card Game Designer

I have no reason to believe the paladin in "A Paladin in Hell" isn't female.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Myfly wrote:
MightyJim wrote:

So, if the Mythic path cards are going to be needed by any character playing this AP, and they've explicitly mentioned that they want it to be compatible with every character made for the game, it seems safe to assume that these cards won't be character-specific.

Does make me wonder how much mythic art we're actually going to see? - I'd really like it if the Character token cards had the mythic art (I've already got a couple of versions of most of them in normal version)

If the characters are interchangeable, then the character token cards are created as the older ones. No change.

But the token card doesn't really DO anything- just marks a space, so there's no reason why they couldn't use the flavour of this AP as an excuse to give us some cool new art - people who don't already own umpteen versions of these characters suffer no drawback, as they can still use a mythic-art token to play a different AP, and those who do get something new.

Not especially expecting to see it - I understand art is expensive, just saying it'd be nice.

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