Kingmaker Update

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Since a bit before all of us at Paizo transitioned into work-from-home mode back in early March, my primary job has been all things Kingmaker. The upcoming 2nd-edition update is one of the largest single print projects we’ve ever attempted at Paizo, with about a thousand pages represented between the 640 page Adventure Path (compare that to, say, the 432 pages in the Rise of the Runelords hardcover compilation), the 128 page Companion Guide (which brings in all 12 companions from Owlcat’s computer game version of Kingmaker), and a pair of Bestiary companions to help folks run the Adventure Path using 1st edition Pathfinder rules or even 5E rules. And this doesn’t even touch the various accessory products—maps and screens and more!

Unfortunately, the magnitude of getting this all done means that we’re not going to have it out for folks anytime soon. At this point, we’re targeting a release sometime in the second half of 2021—we’ll keep everyone updated as we get closer to the finish line, of course, but until then, work proceeds apace, with it being pretty much the only thing (other than meetings and product approvals) that I’m focused on right now.

As soon as I’m done writing this blog post, I’m jumping right back in to development—I’m midway through Chapter 7: Blood for Blood, working my way through Fort Drelev. I’ve finished development on the Kingdom management rules, the Settlement building rules, and the narrative Mass Combat rules. We’ve got over 300 pages of content in edit as I race to stay ahead of that curve.

But there’s more than words in an adventure, and now we come to the exciting part of this blog post! We’re ordering a mountain of new art for this project, both to illustrate scenes and characters and creatures we didn’t have the budget or time or pages to do in the first printing of Kingmaker a decade ago, along with lots of art for brand new content that’s never before seen print.

Some of that art’s already coming in, in fact, as you’ve no doubt already noticed!

First, we’ve got an image from the new introduction to the Adventure Path, based on the prologue from Owlcat’s version of the game when the brand-new PCs gather at Lady Jamandi Aldori’s estate for a feast and to be assigned their charters for exploring the Stolen Lands. Of course, even at first level, Amiri’s not gonna take any guff from midnight killers trying to ambush her while she’s resting up from a night of feasting!

Pathfinder iconic barbarian Amiri taking on a would be assassin with a chair An armored half eld holding a sword and buckler

And speaking of Lady Jamandi, we’ve got a brand new illustration of her—she’s essentially your patron for the first part of this entire campaign, and her role throughout the Adventure Path is a bit more involved... unless, of course, the players at your table decide to cut ties with Rostland and go off on their own to build a kingdom. It is a sandbox campaign still, after all!

Being able to finally illustrate a certain enormous and angry owlbear in his own illustration had to happen, obviously.

And finally, have a mutant chimera that may have gotten a bit too close to a volatile mix of planar energies from the First World and the Abyss. I won’t tell you where this last critter shows up, but he’s certainly a handful!

A wild owlbear with arrows sticking out of its back a mutant chimera with the heads of a bird, snake, and beetle.

In closing, thank you again to all of you out there who played Kingmaker and helped make it one of our most successful, most popular Adventure Paths of all time. Again, apologies for it taking longer to publish and get it all into your hands than we’d anticipated, but I think it’s going to be well worth the wait!

James Jacobs
Pathfinder Creative Director

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Tags: Kingmaker Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Pathfinder Second Edition
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Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

If you demand it it's not really customary now is it?

Liberty's Edge

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Ignis Fatuus wrote:
Has they announced some ¨Mea Culpa¨ freebies for backers? Something like a bonus digital dungeon or something after release. It is customary for video game developers that want to retain goodwill after a botched release.

To add even more unforeseeable delay ?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Rysky wrote:
If you demand it it's not really customary now is it?

Who is demanding what? Expectations and demands are different. I missed the deadline. I just want to know how they are handling this to personally make a more informed decision in the future.

The Raven Black wrote:
To add even more unforeseeable delay?

No, I specify "digital" and "after release". Anything from a PDF plus version with the annotions from the developers and/or annecdotes from playtests to a new PDF with the cut content or a whole bonus dungeon or sidequests. And since most bottlenecks seem to be in shipping and logistics, it doesn't seem like something like that would incur in any additional delay.

Basically anything that says "We are sorry for not living up to the expectations we help set up. Please, accept this geture as an apology and not let this delays sour your perception of us"

Liberty's Edge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

For a crowdfunding ?

Note also that anyone working on such an additional product would mean less time and less money available for the usual Paizo products.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Yes, otherwise the perception could be that Paizo doesn't care if there is a delay since they already have your money.

Note that other products aren't being financed by the costumer's money 1 and a half 3 years in advance interest free and willingly taking an immediate financial hit is a of commitment at the very least. If Paizo wants continue to use the crowd funding model, it is in their best interest to try to keep consumer goodwill.

Liberty's Edge

2 people marked this as a favorite.

The consumers are those that will pay for the standard production of Paizo. Spending time and effort away from this will only alienate them. I remember already seeing posters upset at James Jacobs because he dared working on this instead of working on other usual products.

Also not all crowdfunders need to be mollified with free stuff.

My money for PF2 Kingmaker is gone and I believe Paizo will deliver quality goods for it someday. I am content to wait.

Silver Crusade

11 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I have had many crowdfunded projects deliver late. Not a single one of them offered me a "bonus" for the delay.

Shadow Lodge

8 people marked this as a favorite.

Yeah, this customary thing sounds made up.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
TOZ wrote:
Yeah, this customary thing sounds made up.

I do not doubt that It has happened in the wide world of crowd funded projects. Perhaps calling it customary is a step too far, but its not out of the realm of possibility.

I doubt it would happen for a project like this, though. Every product that Paizo publishes, even as a pdf, impacts the workload of writers, developers, copy editors, Graphic designers, art leads, artists and etc. It is hard for Paizo to just 'whip something up'. Given that the problem the project is facing is the development pipeline, any alterations to the current one is...ill advised.


6 people marked this as a favorite.

I have backed 100 Kickstarters. Almost all of them have been some degree of late; none have offered goodies for it, and I think it’s a little silly to demand them.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

It may be that the culture of expectation differs between video game crowdfunding projects and tabletop. I confess I have only backed very few projects and haven't paid close attention to their dates, but it sounds like this custom may be more niche than thought. I would say it seems like a 'mea culpa' apology bonus likely depends largely on whether the business can afford to produce content for goodwill, and whether or not it was actually their 'culpa'. The preceding discussions have been debating to what precise degree a global pandemic is responsible for how many of the delays on this project in various ways. Suffice to say, the impact of the pandemic is far wider reaching than shipping difficulties which have been argued above.

No 'mea culpa' bonuses have been announced to my knowledge, and only time will tell if this project has the time or scope to include such a thing either before or after it releases the extraordinary extents of content it has already promised.


5 people marked this as a favorite.

When the problem is that the products are late, demanding they make even more content /and/ release it for free feels pretty absurd.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.

I’ve seen the Mea Cupla offered on a few primarily RPG kickstarters recently. That said I don’t actually believe the latest estimate on shipping because Paizo keeps failing to build in any contingencies. Just another example of the poor project management on this.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
keftiu wrote:
When the problem is that the products are late, demanding they make even more content /and/ release it for free feels pretty absurd.

Again is not a demand. I haven't backed this project and, given things has been handled so far, likely wouldn't in the future.

Crowdfunding is a great model from the developers side. They get interest free money in the form of guaranteed sales and get an estimate of the sales for the print run sizes, but it depends on the trust of the customer.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
keftiu wrote:
When the problem is that the products are late, demanding they make even more content /and/ release it for free feels pretty absurd.

I did specify "digital" and "after release" so I don't see how it would conflict with the release schedule.

Shadow Lodge

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How long after release are they allowed/is acceptable to start working on it?


1 person marked this as a favorite.

2 to 7 years


1 person marked this as a favorite.
TOZ wrote:
How long after release are they allowed to start working on it?

It is more about perception than anything else and it depends greatly on what they choose to offer or not.

For example, if they chose to make Stolen Lands One Shot prequel it would make sense that it comes right before or with the AP, if it is an annotated pdf with commentary and playtest anectdotes it could come after release, but the more time they take the the it will serve its purpose.

Silver Crusade

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

But again, you're asking people to do extra crunch on a product that already strapped resources, and during a time when burn out due to the multiple world crises going on is a very real thing.

Liberty's Edge

And for a thing they are absolutely not involved or invested in.

The Exchange

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Thing is it shouldn’t have strapped resources given there was separate revenue that came in from it.

Liberty's Edge

Mark Peyton wrote:
Thing is it shouldn’t have strapped resources given there was separate revenue that came in from it.

I do not think hiring new employees for a crowdfunding project to be smart HR strategy.

The Exchange

5 people marked this as a favorite.
The Raven Black wrote:
Mark Peyton wrote:
Thing is it shouldn’t have strapped resources given there was separate revenue that came in from it.
I do not think hiring new employees for a crowdfunding project to be smart HR strategy.

This is literally a company built around freelancers working for Paizo.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
The Raven Black wrote:
Mark Peyton wrote:
Thing is it shouldn’t have strapped resources given there was separate revenue that came in from it.
I do not think hiring new employees for a crowdfunding project to be smart HR strategy.

It could have paid for a contractor or freelancer to complete the work. Which what they did with the 5e bestiary if I recall, outsourcing that to...Legendary Games?

And, of course, all the art is contracted work.

Could it have paid for another developer? Maybe. I bet that the number of people Paizo is willing to head a project like this is only one or two people. It requires setting and system knowledge, a knowledge of Paizo internal style, and some other elements. And we have heard that the job of a developer (on the AP line) doesn't split up well.

Maybe they considered it, but the benefits did not outweigh the cost. We don't know. I expect they made the decision that seemed like the best bet at the time.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

What's the latest on this?
Just asking out of curiosity. I thought I'd backed this, but supposedly I didn't. So just waiting for it so I can buy it after release.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Supposedly shipping in September, but only printing end of April then needs shipping from China,


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Supposedly being shipped in September. But only starting printing end of April.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mark Peyton and Khal Vila wrote:
Supposedly being shipped in September. But only starting printing end of April.

Okay. So it's done, then. As far as the creative work. Cool.

The Exchange

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Ched Greyfell wrote:
Mark Peyton and Khal Vila wrote:
Supposedly being shipped in September. But only starting printing end of April.
Okay. So it's done, then. As far as the creative work. Cool.

No not fully.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Mark Peyton wrote:
Ched Greyfell wrote:
Mark Peyton and Khal Vila wrote:
Supposedly being shipped in September. But only starting printing end of April.
Okay. So it's done, then. As far as the creative work. Cool.
No not fully.

More or less, depending on one's definitions. Its all editing work as far as I can tell, so art and the development work should be done, but I don't really know.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

3 people marked this as a favorite.

Removed a few posts for personal harassment. Also took quotes out. Lets keep it to polite discussion. Any more flags will result in the thread being locked.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

It isn't finished until it's in the banker's hands. Creative work may be done, but that isn't the end of it.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

New update, people can sell their backings. What's everyone's opinion on this?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Val'bryn2 wrote:
New update, people can sell their backings. What's everyone's opinion on this?

Seems like an excellent way to handle fulfillment running a lot longer than expected. If anyone has buyer's remorse, it shouldn't be too hard to find someone interested.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I'm open to pms for people that want a buyer.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, PF Special Edition, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

I can't read the blog, GameOn never lets me go to the project update tab. direct links, and both the tab/side bar option all just render the project main page. So I'm not exactly sure what's being offered, but it sounds like a good thing -- anytime you have a market for pledge transfers(and any late project will often have such a market) its good for the project creator to mediate between the buyers/sellers as it tends to greatly reduce the chance of scams.

Tried to debug why I can't see the GameOn updates, and I'm very puzzled how anyone can, the javascript console is full of errors being unable to load jQuery, and then executing jQuery based commands, so of course it won't work)

Radiant Oath

Val'bryn2 wrote:
New update, people can sell their backings. What's everyone's opinion on this?

If anyone is looking to sell, I am looking to buy. Can someone link me to the new update?


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Also happy to buy if anyone is looking to sell their pledge. Feel free to DM me.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

https://www.gameontabletop.com/cf194/kingmaker-10th-anniversary.html?utm_ca mpaign=799574_Kingmaker%20Apr%202022%20Transfer%20Service&utm_medium=em ail&utm_source=Paizo%20Inc.&dm_i=4XTJ,H4YE,3DXG8S,1UE35,1#project-b lock-details

This should take you to the update.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

Linkified for you

This takes you to the project page. Select the middle tab (looks like a megaphone) for the updates. The most recent update is displayed first.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

I would also like to buy someone’s silver or gold tier pledge!


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

Did everything go to the printer on schedule last week? Just curious if we are still on schedule for the release. Thanks!


Pathfinder Pathfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

The Game on Tabletop page was just updated. Short answer: yes, everything is off to the printer or in production.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

According to the update, yes. Everything is off to the printers now.

Kingmaker Project Update wrote:
Later this month, the printer will send us digital proofs to approve and then the printing process begins. We expect the printing to be completed in late June and start shipping to the Paizo warehouse and worldwide fulfillment centers in July and August. Once everything has arrived, we’ll start shipping to backers, which we still estimate to be September. We’ll continue to keep you informed each month as to the status of the production and shipping.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I'm looking forward to grabbing the PDF.

Horizon Hunters

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mark Peyton wrote:
I’ve seen the Mea Cupla offered on a few primarily RPG kickstarters recently. That said I don’t actually believe the latest estimate on shipping because Paizo keeps failing to build in any contingencies. Just another example of the poor project management on this.

Paizo should be sending in a crack team of warehouse ninjas to raid the ships when they are held up at customs.


Pathfinder Companion, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
Justin Franklin wrote:
Did everything go to the printer on schedule last week? Just curious if we are still on schedule for the release. Thanks!

I am going to call this an I ask and we get answers. Thus I will take full responsibility for us getting an update. :D

I am sure it had nothing to do with it being scheduled for today in advance.


Val'bryn2 wrote:
New update, people can sell their backings. What's everyone's opinion on this?

Yay, I was asking for a digital freebie and got something arguably better. =)


Was the PDF released yet? Could not find any info about it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Douglas Baiense wrote:
Was the PDF released yet? Could not find any info about it.

The best place for info is the crowdfunding campaign’s page, which currently has backer fulfillment slated for September.

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