Barbarian Class Deck Preview

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

We are thrilled to finally release the Barbarian Class Deck! These arrived in the warehouse last week and will soon be winging their way to lucky Class Deck subscribers, so we're going to talk about what to expect when they land on your doorstep/FLGS-step.

In the card game design world, when we design a small group of cards that share mechanical concepts and story themes but have different sets of abilities, we call that a cycle. Magic: the Gathering is famous for them—perhaps you've heard of the Mox jewel cards? In this deck we decided to design a couple of cycles. First up, we've got the War Paints:


Paint the town while painting your face.

All the barbarians can use these items, but different players will prioritize different paints' powers. Cycles are like a card game buffet—eat what you want, but only a certain amount of food's gonna fit in your stomach.

We also designed a bunch of weapons for the discerning barbarian, based on our popular Improvised Dinosaur promo card from Wrath of the Righteous. Behold the Improvised cycle:


Sometimes you don't have your giant greatsword, but a barbarian's still gotta rage.

As you can see, these weapons have a higher initial cost that can be offset with a lucky roll. Both Mike and I are very fond of the destroys-everything-around-her-when-she-rages style of barbarian. For a companion take on hitting people with whatever's to hand, meet Brielle:


Service with a smile... and a butter churn handle to the face.

Brielle specializes in improvisational combat, and her Kneecapper role enables both the before-you-act cheap shot and the feeling of invincibility after a raging victory. Because she's a halfling, she can also sneak away from a foe she'd prefer not to encounter.

Back when we did the original concept brainstorming for the Barbarian Class Deck, Mike and I agreed that barbarians do a few things very well: they rage, they smash foes with whatever is nearby, and they hate it when things stand in their way. Our new version of Amiri really doesn't like it when things stand in her way.


Let us not to the marriage of true barbarians admit impediments.

This Amiri is looking for trouble, and nothing but trouble. If a location's closed, or if she's bored with it, she's out of there. Boons just give her incentive to keep going. And when she gets to smash something, she charges ahead.

Paizo fans know the legend of Ostog the Unslain, Erik Mona's intrepid PC. He doesn't wear armor and he's never died. There was zero chance Ostog wasn't going to show up in this deck.


No, his other role isn't "The Slain." That proved unpopular in playtesting.

Ostog has no time for anything that's not a big two-handed weapon, and he doesn't need armor because he's one tough cookie. Put him together with the Improvised Boulder, and even dragons cower in fear.

That's it for this week's Barbarian Class Deck preview. Next week, Mike delves into the topic of cycles a little more deeply. Until next time, Pathfinders!

Tanis O'Connor
Adventure Card Game Designer

More Paizo Blog.
Tags: Amiri Barbarians Class Decks Pathfinder Adventure Card Game
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Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

I think Ostog is going to be just fine for Season of the Runelords.

Liberty's Edge

There's a typo on Amiri in the first ability, last sentence:

"If it is your exploration, bur it is not the first exploration of your turn, add an additional 1d6 ([] 1d8)."

Dark Archive

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Pawns Subscriber

All of the characters are looking really nice to play. With that said, Ostog looks simply badass in his abilities!!

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Joshua N Hancock wrote:

There's a typo on Amiri in the first ability, last sentence:

"If it is your exploration, bur it is not the first exploration of your turn, add an additional 1d6 ([] 1d8)."

Sigh. This sort of thing bugs me more than some of the stuff we issue FAQs on.

Silver Crusade

I really like the look of Amir!

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I heard she gets a Goblin Cohort in this deck.


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Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

It's possible that Ostog hates armor more than some of the more vocal posters on this forum. :) (To be clear, I'm pro-Armor).


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

Don't forget Ostog is available in a minature. (Some painting required. Armor not included.)


Brielle has the power

Brielle wrote:
You may bury a card from your hand to add 1d12...

Why on earth would this say "from your hand"? (Same question for Ostog.) Cards always come from your hand unless otherwise specified. This opens the door for newbies to be confused about all the other powers which don't specify where the card comes from.

Pathfinder ACG Developer

elcoderdude wrote:

Brielle has the power

Brielle wrote:
You may bury a card from your hand to add 1d12...
Why on earth would this say "from your hand"? (Same question for Ostog.) Cards always come from your hand unless otherwise specified. This opens the door for newbies to be confused about all the other powers which don't specify where the card comes from.

Looks like a direct copy of the original Amiri text from RotR.

Shame that wasn't caught months ago, but I doubt it'll actually cause problems at the table.

Sovereign Court

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I like Ostog's armor acquisition changing to weapons.

However, the Kneecapper is going to have a hard time not being the greatest set of powers I've seen so far.

Silver Crusade

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Anyone else disappointed that the halfling barbarian wasn't named Ledford and wasn't sporting a handlebar mustache? Opportunity missed? :-)

Sovereign Court

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Card Game, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Putting Ledford in the Barb deck would've very heavily pushed me towards actually playing a barbarian.

Shadow Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber

Amiri's "Unstoppable Force" Role Card powers include:

* When you defeat a barrier, you may examine the top card (* or top 3 cards) of your location deck. You may put any examined boons on the bottom of the location deck.

If I've got the box checked to examine three cards, and two of them are boons, can I choose to put only one of these on the bottom of the deck, or is an all-or-nothing choice?

Pathfinder ACG Developer

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Sorry, I haven't played "In Service to Lore", so I'm not hip to the legend of ledford ;(

My starting idea for Brielle was "For a more urban barbarian, I'd suggest a halfling drunken rager. Like a nasty little whirlwind of kneebitings and crotchpunchings."; obviously things evolved from there :)

@JohnF - you get to choose what you bottom deck. It's not all or nothing.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Brielle is one of my favorite examples of narrative being represented in mechanics. I love that she is bashing monsters with whatever items she has at hand. I love that after bashing a monster to death, the next monster flees in terror of this mad raging halfling.

Add in a melee character with a large hand and high deck cycling abilities... I think she may be the best melee character yet. It depends a little on her strength die, but if it is at least a d8, she's the best.

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

I'd like to point out that Ostog's last power lets you banish an armor that you acquired to draw a weapon from the box. It doesn't say a RANDOM weapon. That might be an issue (as it was probably meant to be random), since I know at least one other character who can summon (not draw, summon, so this might be an important distinction) a card of a certain type from the box and gets to CHOOSE it, based on certain criteria.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

Hi everyone, great preview.

I also think that a sentence like "[] At the end of the turn, you may use 3 as your hand size for the rest of the turn" may puzzle some players and that a bid of longer explanation may be welcome.

Maybe it's just me being a math guy not knowing good English, but IMHO when you get to the end of something, talking about the rest of that thing doesn't really make sense. :-)


Frencois wrote:
I also think that a sentence like "[] At the end of the turn, you may use 3 as your hand size for the rest of the turn" may puzzle some players and that a bid of longer explanation may be welcome.

I believe it means something like "[] When you reset your hand, you may use 3 (or []2) as your hand size." It's just worded oddly. I'm sure there's a reason it's written that way.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
cartmanbeck wrote:
I'd like to point out that Ostog's last power lets you banish an armor that you acquired to draw a weapon from the box. It doesn't say a RANDOM weapon.
Wrath rules p.9 wrote:
When you draw a card from the box, unless you are told to draw a specific card, draw a random card of the appropriate type.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
cartmanbeck wrote:
I'd like to point out that Ostog's last power lets you banish an armor that you acquired to draw a weapon from the box. It doesn't say a RANDOM weapon. That might be an issue (as it was probably meant to be random), since I know at least one other character who can summon (not draw, summon, so this might be an important distinction) a card of a certain type from the box and gets to CHOOSE it, based on certain criteria.

Believe they clarified a while back that "draw" always means random (like how you always shuffle after you examine a deck, unless instructed otherwise). I thought "Choose" was the wording for a non-random pick, but looking at Miracle, it just says "summon and play," so maybe the lack of the word Draw makes all the difference?

Silver Crusade RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16

Fair enough, seems like it'll work fine. :)

Adventure Card Game Designer

3 people marked this as a favorite.
Keith Richmond wrote:
Like a nasty little whirlwind of kneebitings and crotchpunchings."

This is basically my life goal.

Dark Archive

Okay, so I'm going to be a little negative here, but I've been wanting to get this off my chest. You've been warned!

-So personally, I am a bit annoyed at how Paizo's staff is going for self-gratification instead of diversification by turning their "pet" character concepts into card game characters that we all have no choice but to play or pass on. Athnul & Ostog are blatant examples of this. Now, don't get me wrong. I like the character art and the abilities (for both characters), but making your home game characters into card game characters? That seems like something that you'd expect more from an unofficial fan design, not an official Paizo product (and it's almost like you're taunting us non-Paizo employed gamers who would love to turn our own character concepts into real cards - but will never be able to do it officially; like you're saying - look what I can do but you can't!).

I'd much rather have preferred to get some more racial diversity in the card game instead. I mean, we've got two human characters in both the Monk & Barbarian class decks. Why can't we have more unique races like the one Tengu Monk & one Tiefling Oracle? I'd personally love to see a Kitsune (and I appreciate the Halfling Barbarian too) - but even more Dwarves, Gnomes, Elves, and Half-Orcs would be a welcome sight. I originally thought the Barbarian class deck was even going to have a dwarf and an elf (it was on the box art) - so seeing that there's neither in the finished product (but there are two humans) is even more upsetting for me.

Overall, I'd love to see more diversity and less self-gratifying pet projects in the Card Game.

That typed though, the new Amiri role card looks pretty boss, and I'm not a big fan of the artwork for the halfling barbarian - but if she has some kind of bar-maid backstory, then I probably will warm up to her. All the new item & weapon cards also look pretty promising.

Pathfinder ACG Developer

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Another quote from the barbarian brainstorm:
"why are all the barbarian tribes human??"

The iconics have a high percentage of human characters, as does Golarion in general, and that in turn is reflected in the character options.

Ostog has an existing art, miniature, toy, as well as lore. When we gathered information on existing barbarians in PF, he came up as someone people might appreciate seeing.
Similarly, you can expect to see some characters from other PF APs and PF Tales when it's convenient and possible. AFAIK, Erik Mona, who plays Ostog, had nothing directly to do with that decision.

All that said, the blog last week did note that folks can create and print their own characters and roles now. So, yes, you guys should be making your own characters. :)

Gaming Coordinator - Alien Worlds

1 person marked this as a favorite.

There's no way I don't play Brielle in Season of the Runelords

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

elcoderdude wrote:
cartmanbeck wrote:
I'd like to point out that Ostog's last power lets you banish an armor that you acquired to draw a weapon from the box. It doesn't say a RANDOM weapon.
Wrath rules p.9 wrote:
When you draw a card from the box, unless you are told to draw a specific card, draw a random card of the appropriate type.

Right. That rule means that where we used to say "add a random weapon from the box to your hand," we can now just say "draw a weapon from the box."

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

Rebel Song wrote:
Frencois wrote:
I also think that a sentence like "[] At the end of the turn, you may use 3 as your hand size for the rest of the turn" may puzzle some players and that a bid of longer explanation may be welcome.
I believe it means something like "[] When you reset your hand, you may use 3 (or []2) as your hand size." It's just worded oddly. I'm sure there's a reason it's written that way.
Wrath Rulebook, page 9 wrote:
End Your Turn: First, apply any effects that happen at the end of the turn. While you do this, unless a power directed you to end your turn, you may play cards and use powers. If your number of mythic charges is greater than the scenario’s adventure deck number, discard any charges in excess of that number. Then, reset your hand (see Reset Your Hand on page 14). When you’re done, the turn passes to the player on your left.

Remember that things may cause you to reset your hard outside of the End Your Turn step—we don't want this power to apply in those situations. It therefore needs to say "at the end of the turn" in order to only be applied by the rule above.

That said, we're constantly attempting to improve things here, and these cards actually went to the printer at the end of July. We were just discussing this template this past week, and today, we would make it "when you reset your hand at the end of the turn."

Paizo Employee Chief Technical Officer

2 people marked this as a favorite.
Joshua Gremillion wrote:
I'd much rather have preferred to get some more racial diversity in the card game instead. I mean, we've got two human characters in both the Monk & Barbarian class decks. Why can't we have more unique races like the one Tengu Monk & one Tiefling Oracle? I'd personally love to see a Kitsune (and I appreciate the Halfling Barbarian too) - but even more Dwarves, Gnomes, Elves, and Half-Orcs would be a welcome sight. I originally thought the Barbarian class deck was even going to have a dwarf and an elf (it was on the box art) - so seeing that there's neither in the finished product (but there are two humans) is even more upsetting for me.

The Pathfinder Adventure Card Game stories are set in the world of Golarion, so racial diversity looks to that background.

When we're talking about a specific Adventure Path such as Mummy's Mask, we have an especially particular background. Mummy's Mask is set in the country of Osirion. Osirion's largest city, Sothis, is home to 87453 humans, 6055 dwarves, 4918 halflings, 3361 elves, 2266 gnomes, 1924 half-elves, 1563 genie-kin, 1109 half-orcs, and 3340 others. A lot of MM takes place in the small city of Wati: 6670 humans, 292 halflings, 73 dwarves, 26 half-elves, and 239 others. A tengu or a kitsune in Wati is going to stick out like a sore thumb, and you can expect that to be reflected in the racial composition of the characters we choose to feature in that AP.

Class Decks aren't tied to a particular story or region, but they are still Pathfinder products intended for use with stories set mainly in Golarion's Inner Sea region. Race distribution in Golarion varies wildly from nation to nation, but if you were to look at the Inner Sea region overall, you'll find a majority are human. The other core races (dwarf, elf, gnome, half-elf, half-orc, halfling) are a majority of the remainder. Races like tiefling or tengu are far from the norm.

Indeed, I believe you'll find that the racial diversity in our Class Decks already errs on the side of overrepresenting these races relative to our setting. That is, if you were to take a random selection of 10 class deck characters, you "should" get something like 5–7 humans, 2–3 total characters of the other 6 core races, and maybe 1 character of a non-core race.


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

I may have missed that, how is Athnul a Paizo staff "pet" character?

Adventure Card Game Designer

Joshua Gremillion wrote:
-So personally, I am a bit annoyed at how Paizo's staff is going for self-gratification instead of diversification by turning their "pet" character concepts into card game characters that we all have no choice but to play or pass on. Athnul & Ostog are blatant examples of this.

As game creators, we put a little of ourselves in the products and iterations of characters that we release. While it's more often less obvious than Athnul or Ostog, it happens all the time, and we don't have plans to change that. For your reference: Athnul was originally a githzerai monk/psionicist from a D&D 3.5+ gestalt game about 10 years ago. The only thing I used was the general concept (punching monk) and the name.


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

Aha!

Too bad githzerai/githyanki aren't open content; I've always loved those.

Adventure Card Game Designer

Zaister wrote:

Aha!

Too bad githzerai/githyanki aren't open content; I've always loved those.

Right? Me too!


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

I really LOVE the idea that some of the non-iconics PACG characters are issued from already played RPG characters.
It means you have a full background and history in mind when you build them, and that always help making good decisions. Becuaes you knox there is content for many diverse situations (just not a fun power that will be fun just once).
Every home made characters we build for PACG is built from our past RPG characters for the same reasons... and some of them have been played for the last 32 years (yes I'm that old).
So GO ATHNUL!


I guess I've been assuming that most of the Iconics and significant named AP characters in the RPG (and the few new ones for the Card Game) come from the designers' pasts in some way. Given that "characterization" in the Card Game is limited to a name, picture, and a paragraph of text you might never read, it's not that big a deal.

The more annoying thing to me is when folks talk about these types of extra characters like everyone knows who they are, causing a bunch of "Who's X?" posts and quick trips to Google. Ostog pops up that way occasionally in blog posts (with less info than what's shown here). Ledford pops up in forum threads; our group killed their whole party in a couple rounds way back when (I played it at Gen Con at the start of Season 3) so whatever.

Anyway, I'm off to Con of the North. Hopefully I'll get to try out some cool stuff. :)


Vic Wertz wrote:
Rebel Song wrote:
Frencois wrote:
I also think that a sentence like "[] At the end of the turn, you may use 3 as your hand size for the rest of the turn" may puzzle some players and that a bid of longer explanation may be welcome.
I believe it means something like "[] When you reset your hand, you may use 3 (or []2) as your hand size." It's just worded oddly. I'm sure there's a reason it's written that way.
Wrath Rulebook, page 9 wrote:
End Your Turn: First, apply any effects that happen at the end of the turn. While you do this, unless a power directed you to end your turn, you may play cards and use powers. If your number of mythic charges is greater than the scenario’s adventure deck number, discard any charges in excess of that number. Then, reset your hand (see Reset Your Hand on page 14). When you’re done, the turn passes to the player on your left.

Remember that things may cause you to reset your hard outside of the End Your Turn step—we don't want this power to apply in those situations. It therefore needs to say "at the end of the turn" in order to only be applied by the rule above.

That said, we're constantly attempting to improve things here, and these cards actually went to the printer at the end of July. We were just discussing this template this past week, and today, we would make it "when you reset your hand at the end of the turn."

I knew there was a reason it was worded that way! :)


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Vic Wertz wrote:

....

That said, we're constantly attempting to improve things here, and these cards actually went to the printer at the end of July. We were just discussing this template this past week, and today, we would make it "when you reset your hand at the end of the turn."

Thanks a lot Vic, for the insight first, but most important for the whole work doing on the game improvement.

Don't blame us for pushing you to be even better everyday though :-) As you know it's just because we love your game too much.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Frencois, the only pertinent wording you need to know is:

"If undefeated, you die."

So much fun when you read that on villain cards. The wording is succinct.


Joshua Gremillion wrote:
Overall, I'd love to see more diversity and less self-gratifying pet projects in the Card Game.

You don't consider human ethnic background diversity to be diversity then? In Golarion (the game's setting), humans are supposed to be the most diverse of the races.


zeroth_hour2 wrote:
You don't consider human ethnic background diversity to be diversity then? In Golarion (the game's setting), humans are supposed to be the most diverse of the races.

You wouldn't know it by the playable characters.

I'm still waiting for a male playable to be something besides either a half orc or white.

Correct me if I'm wrong but all the males are white with the perhaps exception of Crowe and Sajan who are... maybe something else? But they could just have wicked tans.

The female characters represent though! Seelah, Kyra, Seoni, Bekah, Zarlova, and maybe wu-shen. We can't really tell.

Seems to me the guys have catching up to do in the diversity front. :P

Still, can't wait to see the full spread of the characters when they get added to the class deck download!


Theryon Stormrune wrote:
I heard she gets a Goblin Cohort in this deck.

That would be awesome.

Sadly I'm not sure I believe you (or your source)

Silver Crusade

Sajan is from Vudra, which is basically Golarion India.

Crowe is Shoanti, which is kind of a Native American representation. Except the Shoanti are ftom the Europe eqivalent. There is actually Arcadia, the America equivalent, that also has Native American inspiration, but it hasn't been developed yet.

There are non-white male iconics, but I don't think any of them have seen card game play. Quinn, the investigator, is garundi/black. Hayato, the samurai, is Tian/Asian. Zadim, the slayer, is Qadiran/Arab. That may be it.


Eliandra Giltessan wrote:

Sajan is from Vudra, which is basically Golarion India.

Crowe is Shoanti, which is kind of a Native American representation. Except the Shoanti are ftom the Europe eqivalent. There is actually Arcadia, the America equivalent, that also has Native American inspiration, but it hasn't been developed yet.

There are non-white male iconics, but I don't think any of them have seen card game play. Quinn, the investigator, is garundi/black. Hayato, the samurai, is Tian/Asian. Zadim, the slayer, is Qadiran/Arab. That may be it.

Thanks for letting me know. I had the inkling of different racial backgrounds with them but it never quite registered.

I patiently await Quinn's debut.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

So, question from someone who doesn't know but for whom this has piqued some interest: Do non-human races have "ethnicity" like humans do? i.e. are there "Asian" or black halflings or elves in Golarion?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Card Game, Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Hawkmoon269 wrote:
So, question from someone who doesn't know but for whom this has piqued some interest: Do non-human races have "ethnicity" like humans do? i.e. are there "Asian" or black halflings or elves in Golarion?

While not as varied as humans, dwarves and elves (and gnomes) do have some variety depending on the region they come from. It's not as widely played as human variants but the source books in Pathfinder Companion section for Dwarves of Golarion, Elves of Golarion and Gnomes of Golarion talk about the different types of those races and where they originate.

[Edit: And the Pathfinder Player Companion- Halflings of Golarion]

Silver Crusade

Shardra is a dark-skinned dwarf, but I think she is the only non-white-or-green, non-human iconic.

Adventure Card Game Designer

Also, a lot of the "half-humans" bring their non-white halves with them. For example, Channa Ti is a half-Mwangi/half-elf water druid.

We've been choosing the characters for our sets based on how they work with the sets. But we do have every intent to make all the iconics available in some product at some point.


Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber
Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
Shardra is a dark-skinned dwarf, but I think she is the only non-white-or-green, non-human iconic.

On the bright side (or is it?) we got cyclops harpies.

And let's not forget the female genie. While I can't claim familiarity with genie reproduction, I have an inkling they don't, strictly speaking, *need* females.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Keith Richmond wrote:

Another quote from the barbarian brainstorm:

"why are all the barbarian tribes human??"

The iconics have a high percentage of human characters, as does Golarion in general, and that in turn is reflected in the character options.

Ostog has an existing art, miniature, toy, as well as lore. When we gathered information on existing barbarians in PF, he came up as someone people might appreciate seeing.
Similarly, you can expect to see some characters from other PF APs and PF Tales when it's convenient and possible. AFAIK, Erik Mona, who plays Ostog, had nothing directly to do with that decision.

All that said, the blog last week did note that folks can create and print their own characters and roles now. So, yes, you guys should be making your own characters. :)

We have a huge choice of wetter or not to play these characters. Now that the drivethrucards custom characters are available to be made. I already have quite a few characters that I'm working on as we speak. Some of which are barbarians. That being said if you don't like them then don't play them, make your own that suit your playstyles and make powers that you like. As long as your making them for only you then image and/or miniature doesn't even matter.


Eliandra Giltessan wrote:
Shardra is a dark-skinned dwarf ...

Huh, I didn't realize this; thanks for pointing that out.

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