Face The Whispering Tyrant in Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors

Thursday, September 14, 2023

The roguelite bullet hell survivor launches into Steam Early Access today!

The Whispering Tyrant awaits… Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors has officially launched into Steam Early Access! Developed by BKOM Studios in partnership with Paizo, this roguelite bullet hell survivor game allows you to experience the renowned world of Golarion through a whole new lens. Arm-in-arm with a trusted ally, delve into Gallowspire and confront the legendary villain Tar-Baphon!

Screenshots of the BKOM Pathfinder Gallowspire Gameplay

Within the depths of this gothic tower lies the disgraced lich-emperor Tar-Baphon, one of Pathfinder’s most ancient and powerful villains. While sealed away beneath his ancient seat of power, he has been deftly plotting his dark return. As the wards that contain him begin to fail, three fearless heroes will rise to the occasion, tasked with venturing into Gallowspire's depths to defeat Tar-Baphon and repair the wards that seal him away.

Take up arms as one of three daring heroes and battle through the horrors of Gallowspire. The Fighter, Wizard, or Rogue all come with their own strengths and talents that will aid their efforts against the disgraced lich. While they’re all skilled heroes, the task of sealing the Whispering Tyrant away is too much to bear alone. Choose an ally to fight alongside you as you slay hordes of Tar-Baphon’s undead minions, collect and upgrade your arsenal of spells and weapons, and extinguish Gallowspire’s unyielding bosses.

Screenshots of the BKOM Pathfinder Gallowspire Gameplay

There will be many failures throughout your journey, but the heroes can escape death and grow stronger with each attempt by using the power of an ancient medallion. Only those who find the strength to break through Gallowspire may face the Whispering Tyrant himself. But one victory will not be enough to seal him away forever. The heroes must confront him over and over to buy Golarion the time it needs to prepare for Tar-Baphon’s seemingly inevitable return.

Fall, rise, and grow ever stronger… Face Gallowspire's hordes again and again—for as long as it takes!

Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors is now available on Steam Early Access for $6.99. Brave heroes can take advantage of a 20% launch discount for a limited time. Additionally, a special Bullet Hell Survivor Bundle with Pathfinder: Gallowspire Survivors, Soulstone Survivors, and 20 Minutes Till Dawn is available at a special 10% discount. Keep up to date with the game’s development by joining the official Discord server and following BKOM Studios on X.

The key art for BKOM's Gallowspire Survivor, showing three heroes in the center of a circle of enemies.

Features:

  • Choose your class: Fighter, Wizard, or Rogue. Each features unique talents, powers, and playstyles.
  • Select a second hero to fight alongside you as a companion character.
  • Run the gauntlet of Gallowspire! Overcome all four sections and their bosses to mark a successful run.
  • Defeat enemies and collect their essence to obtain and upgrade your powers during the run.
  • Earn experience to level up your heroes and spend talent points to permanently enhance and customize their powers.
  • Collect and spend treasure to unlock permanent upgrades for all your heroes.
  • Complete quests, defeat bosses, and battle the Whispering Tyrant himself.
  • Customize your challenge level across 5 tiers of difficulty. The quest to contain Tar-Baphon is endless!
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Tags: Community Pathfinder Pathfinder Second Edition Video Games
Paizo Employee Director of Brand Strategy

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I'm so excited for fans to finally be able to play this. Seeing the game develop from an idea in a pitch meeting to this fully playable release has been really fun, and I hope folks have a good time with it. While it's a departure from the traditional Pathfinder-branded offerings we've done in the past, I still think it provides a great new way for players to interact with the brand, in a genre that might not have previously exposed folks to our incredible world and stories.

Please let us know what you think!


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

I still have no idea at all what kind of game this is.


I love the idea of there being different colors of "Crying Kings"- and what even is a Crying King, I'm so intrigued!


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Aaaaand it's bad: https://store.steampowered.com/app/2388460/Pathfinder_Gallowspire_Survivors /

Paizo Employee Director of Brand Strategy

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Zaister wrote:
I still have no idea at all what kind of game this is.

Now that it's available, there are likely to be plenty of youtube and twitch videos that will show you how it's played, but since I'm restricted to text here, I'll give it my best shot.

Basically, your character moves around a procedurally generated dungeon map as waves of enemies move toward you, inceasing in both number and power the longer you survive. You don't activate abilities, but your attacks at these enemies trigger at set intervals, so your main goal is to avoid getting swarmed by the enemies and move in such a way that the randomly dropped power ups and new attacks you get as you play target the most enemies or the largest threats.

Each time you play, you'll eventually get overwhelmed by the mobs and have to reset. But you'll earn resources that help make you stronger on each subsequent attempt, and you can invest these resources into the character build that matches your play style. So you might survive for 10 minutes on your first attempt, but then consistently increase your survival time by 30 seconds or a minute, until you're able to reach a boss stage and earn even bigger power ups.

So the goal of the game is not to win the first time, but to push as far as you can each time so you last a little longer the next time, until you finally have enough perpetual bonuses and enough strategy and experience with the game's challenges to get all the way to Tar-Baphon and further delay his escape attempt from Gallowspire.

But even if you do stop him, he's a lich, and will just try again, so you can always keep leveling and switching out your main character (of the three options) to put him down again and again and again, each time slightly easier than the last.

It's not a genre for everyone, and it's not as much a direct port of the tabletop game as traditional CRPGs are (or even the forthcoming Abomination Vaults hack and slash game) but it's great for just popping on to play for a half hour, go til you die, and then try again the next time you have a little bit of time. Or, if you're like me, obsessively binging run after run after run trying to get as efficient as possible.


Mark Moreland wrote:
Or, if you're like me, obsessively binging run after run after run trying to get as efficient as possible.

Huzzah! Same thing here!


Mark Moreland wrote:
Zaister wrote:
I still have no idea at all what kind of game this is.

Now that it's available, there are likely to be plenty of youtube and twitch videos that will show you how it's played, but since I'm restricted to text here, I'll give it my best shot.

Basically, your character moves around a procedurally generated dungeon map as waves of enemies move toward you, inceasing in both number and power the longer you survive. You don't activate abilities, but your attacks at these enemies trigger at set intervals, so your main goal is to avoid getting swarmed by the enemies and move in such a way that the randomly dropped power ups and new attacks you get as you play target the most enemies or the largest threats.

Each time you play, you'll eventually get overwhelmed by the mobs and have to reset. But you'll earn resources that help make you stronger on each subsequent attempt, and you can invest these resources into the character build that matches your play style. So you might survive for 10 minutes on your first attempt, but then consistently increase your survival time by 30 seconds or a minute, until you're able to reach a boss stage and earn even bigger power ups.

So the goal of the game is not to win the first time, but to push as far as you can each time so you last a little longer the next time, until you finally have enough perpetual bonuses and enough strategy and experience with the game's challenges to get all the way to Tar-Baphon and further delay his escape attempt from Gallowspire.

But even if you do stop him, he's a lich, and will just try again, so you can always keep leveling and switching out your main character (of the three options) to put him down again and again and again, each time slightly easier than the last.

It's not a genre for everyone, and it's not as much a direct port of the tabletop game as traditional CRPGs are (or even the forthcoming Abomination Vaults hack and slash game) but it's great for just popping on to play for a half hour, go til you...

This sounds very similar to a tower defense game...


Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Charter Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Mark Moreland wrote:
Zaister wrote:
I still have no idea at all what kind of game this is.
Now that it's available, there are likely to be plenty of youtube and twitch videos that will show you how it's played, but since I'm restricted to text here, I'll give it my best shot....

Thanks for explaining, Mark!


Bought it as soon as it was live and already sank some time into it.

Works great on steamdeck, you just need to switch to ProtonGE to be able to run it, but well done. I like the setting more than Vampire Survivors.

Feedback so far:
- Interesting skills and feats for the heroes, I'm hoping for some way to combine them in future updates.
- Dice mechanic with the loot is fine - but I really want hero points to re-roll them (for example, after killing the first boss, I got a legendary item at 16 and up, but, of course, i rolled poorly). Maybe one heropoint per level (or game) with optional quests ingame to replenish them or earn more?
- some issues with standing to close to the first boss, if he is stunned, pc gets hurt if you stand close, but not touching him. not too game breaking, I just noticed it.
- future updates with more classes would be awesome, maybe even some way to customize your companion ahead or during the game.

Otherwise, thumbs up, solid Vampire Survivor alternative, will stay on my steamdeck.


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Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Definitely steering clear of this one. Maybe take a look at launch. Current reviews are just as bad as expected, likely only getting worse, and no shocker cite some of the same points posters here predicted would be issues. Pick better partners Paizo. There is pretty clear evidence of demand for a PF2e CRPG, both in and outside the PF2e ttrpg community, but we get a vampire survivors cash grab and an ARPG with the most generic looking environments and enemies around.


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The game is having a rough launch, but it has potential to be something good taking feedback from the community which is why it's in early access. It's probably going to take a while longer than they initially hoped, but plans never go quite right. Here's hoping they can turn this into a standout title in the genre.


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Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Rulebook Subscriber

The Paizo forums aren't really the best place to be leaving reviews of the game, but I'll say this: Obviously it's not Paizo's fault that the game seems pretty lacking at launch, they just agreed to the use of the IP.

I'll only say two things about the game itself:
1. The game really doesn't lean into the IP enough to justify them having spent the resources on getting it. That's something that can hopefully be updated before it's out of Early Access.
2. As an Early Access game, the standards of judging it are different. However, even at that different standard, I feel that a game like this still needs to show the really solid foundation it has that will be further built on before its official release. I'm....not really seeing that here.

Either way, looking forward to hopefully more Piazo-IP-based video games in different genres so that different people can have a way to engage with the great worlds Paizo has built.


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

I hated the original trailer for this. However the low price had me curious. I bought it and I've been enjoying it.


I'm finding it oddly compelling for such a simple game. For about $5 I can't complain. How can we submit bug reports? I found a bug where the 30 second timer at the end of a level got stuck and let me wander around opening chests for about 5 minutes before I got tired of waiting to see if it would start counting down on its own.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber
Paladin of Baha-who? wrote:
I'm finding it oddly compelling for such a simple game. For about $5 I can't complain. How can we submit bug reports? I found a bug where the 30 second timer at the end of a level got stuck and let me wander around opening chests for about 5 minutes before I got tired of waiting to see if it would start counting down on its own.

Devs seem active in the steam forums for the game.


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So, gonna be real honest, as a fan of PF2 and Survivor Like games, this one still needs a lot of work. Devs are promising another patch in a week or so to handle some player concerns, but it's getting mixed reviews for a reason.

Survivor Like games have the feeling of being against incredible odds while ever increasing your power and abilities to fight them, eventually becoming incredibly powerful. This... does not. It lacks a lot of the core traits of an SL such as quick early level growth, a feeling of reward quickly for killing a lot of foes, and the recent patch got rid of the number of tressure chests and it SEEMS chest drops from elites. This results in a game that feels a lot more like a slog than a Survivors Like. Weapons are imbalanced, Fighter and Rogue have little in the way of unique weapons to them, with the Rogue being a scaled down fighter with more damage abilities and potentially some magic.

Pathfinder games, generally focus on deep customization, the ability to really take a character in a direction, and the ability to take that growth in a way that really feels impactful over time. This... doesn't do that. Base attributes don't remotely do what they do in the P&P, which is understandable, but we could have at least had Wisdom as a magic defense against spell projectiles, and Charisma influencing tressure drops or something. Currently, Strength helps weapons hit, dex helps rogue (no boost to AC), Con helps HP, but scaled to class, Int helps wizard, and Wis is for attack speed while Cha is for attack size...I really feel like a lot of opportunities were lost in this. It doesn't use a system remotely like P&P pathfinder.

Honestly, this is a kind of... half ARPG.... half...sort of...survivor like, with Pathfinder branding.

I'm hopeful the new patch will straighten things out, but honestly, I think Paizo needs to get a few of their staff who PLAY video games to go test this in secrete, and then maybe phone in some thoughts on how to make this MORE Pathfinder like to the developers. Right now, this isn't "The First Pathfinder 2E Game on PC" it's "Generic ARPG with Bad Balancing and Auto Attacks Wearing a Pathfinder Skin"

That said, before the patch, it was, in some ways enjoyable, despite its plethora of flaws. The path feels like a rushed bandaid, giving players a random attack option selection that could be all long cool downs, and could take past the first boss before you have all 4 weapons online to fight with. in a Survivors like game... that's... that's really unacceptable.

Director of Marketing

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Just like Paizo, BKOM is listening to players and making improvements. Check out the September 25 Update: Dividing runs into Chapters. Watch their Twitch stream showcasing their latest patch this Wednesday at noon eastern on OfficialPaizo!

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