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Organized Play Member. 272 posts. 2 reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 2 Organized Play characters.


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Hi all, Just wondering if anyone else feels like the last couple APs (Return of the Runelords, Tyrant’s Grasp, and the first book of Age of Ashes and summary of the AP) have been underwhelming to you? The plots feel simplistic and immature to me, the NPCs have little motivation, there’s not great connection between books, and plenty of weird plot holes. I find that more recent books take more work to adapt into something that's sensible. Is anyone else finding this? (See my review for Secrets of Roderick's Cove for an example of more specific complaints I have).

I’ve noticed that AP reviews on Paizo are also generally lower since War for the Crown, so it’s not just me perhaps? (**Only counting reviews with at least 2 reviews - a sample size of "1" doesn't say much, especially since there are a few reviewers who consistently give 4-5 stars).

I keep hoping the next AP will be better but I keep getting disappointed. I feel like they’re writing for people who just want a list of things to kill. There’s little room for subtlety and plot development.

Is there a new developer for APs or something? Have they tightened their budget on APs to invest in other things? Thoughts? I'm hoping that it's just that they've had to invest so many people-hours in developing the new Edition over the last year.

I’m happy to be more precise about the problems with any of the last 13 books, if anyone wants to get into the nitty gritty...


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I wish there weren't spoilers for the AP in the Adventurer's Guide. I don't think they were necessary. (Talking about the 'castle' details on p. 9 under "Downtime in Breachill").

I'll have to strike some things from this Guide and personally send it to players, I think.

Love the premise overall, just makes me cringe to see it given away to players before the AP even starts.


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Happy to hear I'm not the only one who feels like Focus Points would be an odd change from a Golarion / roleplay perspective. Again, this comes down to personal opinion... just glad I'm not the only one.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

.Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other sustens), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Well can't really make a logic based argument against an emotional based one so I don't what else to tell you other then maybe do some reading and try to imagine or think of your own explanation for it.
Roleplaying is a creative endeavour, so I would never expect a logical reason to influence my personal tastes anyways - but thanks for trying :) . I'm not asking for help, just giving my highly subjective opinion from a narrative perspective, and based on the styles of games that I've been running for the last 32 years as a DM.
Hmm. Its odd for me because I have been playing for less then that but have no problem imagining the focus thing in my head. no conflicts at all. Old dog new trick kind of thing maybe? I don't know. I've read a lot of books that does a lot of drastically different things with magic maybe that is why its easier? *shurg* I dunno.

Yeah I think it must simply be that you're better at imagination than I am. Thanks! I aim for mastery one day. I'll try to read more too. Maybe that will help. I only read about a book a week so I'll have to up my game.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:
Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

.Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other sustens), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Well can't really make a logic based argument against an emotional based one so I don't what else to tell you other then maybe do some reading and try to imagine or think of your own explanation for it.

Roleplaying is a creative endeavour, so I would never expect a logical reason to influence my personal tastes anyways - but thanks for trying :) . I'm not asking for help, just giving my highly subjective opinion from a narrative perspective, and based on the styles of games that I've been running for the last 32 years as a DM.


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Vidmaster7 wrote:
Focus your inner magical energy on the item as you consume it.

Yep, that's what we'll be saying I think. I don't like it. It's not integrated into Golarion lore deeply enough (or at all) so it sounds silly and ungrounded in the world. It sounds like a cludged-on explanation for a mechanic.

"You drink the potion and focus your magical energy on it so it will last longer."

That doesn't feel right, narratively. It moves away from the standard of fantasy RPGs where items do particular things. I get points that give heroes certain abilities (Grit, etc, and plenty of mechanics in other systems), but points that raise item power levels is something new and it doesn't feel right to me.

Just my personal opinion. I understand that many people are fine with it but it feels little closer to the D&D 4e style of play that was too mechanics-centred and lost some heart in the process..


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Focus Points sound interesting from a game mechanic perspective but don't make sense to me from a logical-world perspective. I can't imagine how a character decides to 'upgrade' a magic item in the world, in this example:

"If you only need to move into a combat and make an attack while invisible, you can drink the potion to get 1d4 rounds of invisibility. However, if you have a lot of sneaking around to do before you plan on fighting, you can extend the effect to 10 minutes instead by spending a Focus Point!"

Like, how am I supposed to narratively imagine that? Any reasons I can think of are too weird and against the world if Golarion that I know up to this point.

I actually think PF1 Magic items could be more wild than they are (more towards zany OSR abilities, less 5-10% situational modifiers), so the Magic item (and spell) nerfing that I'm seeing loses my interest somewhat. That quest for balance between classes is flattening the whole system in a way that makes it a very different game.

I play Pathfinder because I like the variety of character builds, and I like the stories that APs tell, and I'm not seeing the former as much with the new multiclass rules.

I remain lukewarm on 2e at this point. It's such a different system that I can't really see it as a natural evolution from 1e.

I hate to sound like a downer. This is the first time I've posted my opinions on the playtest.


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Just curious, are there issues with this book getting out to game stores? The local game stores in Vancouver Canada don't have it yet, and are having a hard time finding a way to order it. Also, amazon.ca just suggested that I ask for a refund with my preorder through them, because they don't yet have an estimate of when the book will arrive.

Thanks!


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I hope it's not nagging if I ask again about news on a print version?


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medtec28 wrote:
I'm starting to fear the response to the negativity this class seems to have provoked. I'm afraid that they may react in response to our complaints by doubling down instead of changing their stance. I almost expect the response to be that this is the shifter that we were always intended to have.

I also fear that response, because it would mean that Paizo as a business can't respond, react and adapt to consumer feedback.

As the customer, it's not our job to go gentle on feedback in case we make the business defensive.


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nighttree wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:

Can someone send me a link to the "FAQ's in queue to be answered" page for this book?

There's an awful lot of apparent omissions and required clarifications. The Flightless Owl Aspect is my latest "WTF" unpleasant surprise here.

I friggin' hate buying a book and feeling like I'm playtesting it. I've said that here before, but I'm saying it again because I can't shake the feeling.

And yes, sadly I will wait to pick up the next hardcover because I want to see if we've entered an unfortunate era of less-playtested PF hardcover books.

I'm also wondering if that's not prudent at this point....

I have always just purchased pretty much everything coming out...and historically have not regretted it.

But lately, between all the re-printed mechanics, and now the Shifter disappointment....I'm thinking I should be a bit more discerning....

Yes, and I hate to do that because I play the crap out of this RPG and I want to support it. But this book makes me wary and (I'll be honest) a bit afraid for the future of the game.

I realize it's just one book, but I frikkin' LOVE every other hardcover book I've bought, which is all of them except (oddly enough) the Book of the Damned and Ultimate Villains. Those two didn't have as much of what I wanted, so there's more 'lack of support' that I don't like to do.

I still think a lot has to do with the heavy investment into Starfinder. No matter what Paizo says, I think the attention has been split and perhaps the quality has come down. I hope Planar Adventures turns things around - but I don't know if that will be a great indicator, because it's at least 50% plane fluff, which doesn't require playtesting.


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Can someone send me a link to the "FAQ's in queue to be answered" page for this book?

There's an awful lot of apparent omissions and required clarifications. The Flightless Owl Aspect is my latest "WTF" unpleasant surprise here.

I friggin' hate buying a book and feeling like I'm playtesting it. I've said that here before, but I'm saying it again because I can't shake the feeling.

And yes, sadly I will wait to pick up the next hardcover because I want to see if we've entered an unfortunate era of less-playtested PF hardcover books.


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Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
I'm going to go back to having a little bit of faith and hoping that the team is aware of the issues as we've been bringing them forwards and are listening to the concerns, perhaps with wholesale revisions to classes/archetypes/problematic issues to address them.

I don't have the same faith, but I am REALLY hoping the team eventually publicly acknowledges that changes need to be made... both in the Shifter class and some of its archetypes, and perhaps with the way they're playtesting. That will do a lot to restore my sense that Paizo is trying to uphold a high standard of quality with their hardcover books.

For me, Pathfinder is founded on two things that no other RPG has: Awesome Adventure Paths integrated into a rich world, and a huge breadth of character options. I'm loving the AP's and I think they're actually getting better over time. If the character classes / feats / archetypes is starting to drop, that's gonna hurt.

I'm willing to overlook a certain percentage of crappy Feats and archetypes, but when the classes themselves seem rushed and uninspired, I actually feel a bit worried. I also get a lot more critical of what else the book has to offer.

Optimally, every single Feat and Archetype should be compelling and usable. There is no reason to have a certain percentage of Archetypes that is unusable (Oozemorph).

I will eventually write a review, but I'm posting here to voice the importance of a little more transparency from Paizo on class and archetype development - now, and in the future. I'm only saying this because I want to give contructive feedback, and I'm genuinely concerned that the current strategy is going to lead to more problems in the future.

I don't want to feel like a playtester on a $45 (CDN) book.


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I hope the developers step in to address the widespread complaints about this new class. It's not just here in the Paizo threads, it's pretty much everywhere.

I spend a fair bit of money on Paizo products every year and I'm genuinely curious to see how they handle this. The Shifter comes out at a moment where Paizo is expanding into another RPG. The quality of this new class is not what I've seen with the Vigilante or the Occult Classes (the most recent classes).

For me, this is a crucial moment to see how Paizo handles criticism and concern over playtesting. I will feel much better if I see that they're listening to what is being said and offer some formal acknowledgement and reply.

My greatest fear is that this won't turn into a conversation with Paizo, and that the class will be improved in splatbooks that I have to pay $30 each for.

Whether there is a problem with the Shifter or not, it's obvious that there is widespread public perception that it was not as well developed as other classes, and I am waiting to see how Paizo deals with that.

I want to keep playing PF for a long time in the future, and I hope the level of quality remains top-notch. I think a big part of that quality is for a company to hold themselves accountable to the desires of their playing audience. If this class is not popular, what went wrong? How could that change for next time? I would like to know that Paizo is listening and willing to change.

If this should go into a different thread, please let me know and I'll put it there.


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This is my favourite thread on these forums, since first arriving here about a year ago.

I am all over the spontaneous actions that consider the imagined situation, as opposed to mechanics. I try to encourage this as DM in all my games and find that many long term PF players have a hard time with it.

Agreed WRT combat maneuvers too. As DM, my monsters and NPCs are pretty in-character, which means they use all kinds of actions depending on the situation. They're not on the game to lower players' HP - they have their own motivations which means they take all kinds of crazy actions.

Also, manipulating RAW is a fave for me. Another one that many people here can't deal with. :).

In a PbF game I'm running right now, we have four medium creatures (2 PCs 2 enemy) in one 5' space, all wrestling, trying to push each other off a cliff, with one of the four trying to hang on to a rope that extends off the cliff. To keep it chaotic, everyone is declaring their actions at the same time. The action is awesome but impossible in standard PF rules.


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Another (I think) valid reason to ignore some posters is to cut down on a low signal-to-noise ratio. I do it all the time in other forums. Too much posting about nothing, or conversation between web-pals, makes it more frustrating and less efficient for me to browse through a forum when I'm looking for actual game information. So I see Ignoring as an ability to customize my experience, somewhat...


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I haven't read the book yet, but that additional option, and it's complications, is great. Good design gives players multiple paths and solutions to a problem.


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If I want to read fantasy fiction, I'll buy a book. I can deal with it in the AP's only because it doesn't occupy too many pages.


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Steven "Troll" O'Neal wrote:
See, I get the feeling the Mystic is more true to the Jedi. Take the requisite weapon proficiency there you go.

The designers have explicitly said that the Solarion is closest to a Jedi. It's a melee class with an energy melee weapon, telekenetic ("gravity") powers, and energy-based powers. It even has two polarities in the Force... er.... "solar energy" they draw from. If you go far along one end of the spectrum, you can't do as much on the other end of the spectrum. I don't know how much closer you could get to Jedi without calling it a Jedi. :)

It does sound like the polarity mechanic is very different from a Dark Side Corruption-type mechanic though.


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I'm playing a survival-based PF game (jungle), and DMing another (desert). Both are going well. We're all having a great time and it feels gritty. I don't think either will be as gritty in a few levels but that's the way it goes. Survival becomes an afterthought as new higher-level concerns arise.

Agree with NobodysHome and others on player-DM trust and investment.


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Sundakan wrote:
Well, WBL is a rough guideline overall, so I've never seen trouble giving my players weird items. Particularly since I play with a (IMO better) version of the Automatic Bonus Progression rules, and have done so for years.

Oh, totally, me too. My point is that there are enough rules that doing what we do is seen by many to be "house-ruling" and not what the game is about. That's super odd to me.

I think it might also have to do with RPG pedigree. Those of us that grew up with earlier editions might have more tendency towards a little bit of weirdness in the system. Those that began with 3e,3.5,4e,PF, might see a more consistent tactical game as the norm. One is not better than the other.


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Drahliana Moonrunner wrote:

Pathfinder's roots like in wargaming. You can't get more rigid than that.

You want free flowing, you want a rules light game such as BESM, or Storyteller, or Cubicle 7.

Your two responses to me have come across as lectures, as though you're trying to teach me something I'm doing wrong.

I'm having a conversation, not raising a complaint and asking for advice.

I am a 30-year RPG and wargaming veteran, and I've played about 20-30 different RPG systems. (I won't admit how many wargames I've played... Or own... :0)

I'm here on the PF forums because I enjoy the game. And I enjoy talking about it.

It is possible to have constructive critical conversations about things we like.

It's also possible that we all play PF differently, and all enjoy it.


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I'm hoping the rules approach is different enough that we don't need a lot of convoluted TWF feat blah blab blah stuff.

Just focus on actions like in 5e and give the Kasatha a racial trait of "one additional attack as a bonus action at -2 to hit and damage, using weapon in off-hand." Bam.

Really hoping SF simplifies the crap out of PF rules structures. This is a chance to make something new and fresh, not rehash the same overwrought 3.5e system.


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Bigger-picture response to the OP:

I don't think assumptions about magic reliability are breaking the game.

I do think there is a problem with PF's over-reliance on rules though. I think there is a dominant assumption (reinforced constantly in these forms, and several times in this thread) that PF is meant to have a fairly consistent play style, and that Paizo is the authority on how the game should be run.

DM-player adjustments to the rules are often referred to as "house rules" (granted, that's what the rule-book calls them), and I sometimes get the sense that people think these "house rules" should be an exception rather than the rule. "Rule Zero" is given less priority in PF than in any other RPG I've DM'ed in my 32 year DM career.

The game itself propogates the over-reliance, because it does have a rule for almost everything. How can a DM hand-wave a cool dramatic action when the rules say you need Feats X,Y,XX and ZZ to do that?

Following from that, how am I, as DM, supported when I don't think a player should have a certain spell (for good reason)? The rules say everything else that happens in the game... surely it would also tell us if the entire spell list wasn't accessible?

This all takes agency away from the DM as someone who builds a world with the players. It takes trust away from the DM. And I think it risks a RP environment where the DM is a 'rules-judge' in opposition to the players.

I suspect Starfinder is going to be a lot more restrained with rules, so the game doesn't slip into the same fundamental problems.

**I don't think any of these things kill PF for me. I am DM-ing it without these problems, but it takes a lot of investment and discussions with players beforehand so we agree on the style of game we want. It helps that all of us played a lot of more free-flowing systems, as well. And I think it helps not to have players with excessive mastery of the rules, or over-investment in this particular system over the RP experience itself. {edit - slightly ninja'ed by the OP who came up with a similar conclusion..: ) }


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Chess Pwn wrote:
what's causing the unreliability?

The DM, who is using the rules to help create an entertaining situation.

Chess Pwn wrote:
there's no rule to suggest spells suddenly stop working because of where you are to adding a houserule to do so is viewed as petty, Often because there's not a reasonable reason for the change in the story world.

I'll poke back and say it might be petty for the player to pick at the DM for suggesting a rule-change that might be really important to his / her idea of the campaign. But I think it's the DM's responsibility to convince the player why it's not petty.

It's pretty standard for the DM (with player agreement) to adjust rules to suit the campaign in any way they see fit. The idea is that the DM and players agree.

If I suggested a houserule to suit the campaign and you, as a player, told me you thought it was petty, then we'd have to have a deeper conversation about what we're seeking in terms of enjoyment of the game.

As DM, I need to know the players are willing to trust that when I want to propose an alteration to the rules, it's for the benefit and enjoyment of all.

If I hear backlash really quickly, it's an alarm bell that we're going to be battling about 'petty' things more than I'd like in a game.

Often that means the player and DM aren't suited to play together.

Thankfully, I've only heard alarm bells once, in thirty years of DM'ing. In that case, the player was out after the first session and we were golden from then on.


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Can you post updates here? I've never heard of you before, but this looks interesting!

Especially curious to see how you make use of the Medium. :)


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I hope no SFS play.

That requires a cumbersome, overwrought rule book that deals with every situation because you need consistent play styles. You also need something like WBL to ensure gear levels are consistent. That results in special gear that is sometimes less fun (because easier to price a specific Buff item than powerful zany random stuff that hearkens back to earlier editions of D&D).

Also, the developers have said they're trying to have every monster in the Starfinder Monster Book be a playable race. That kind of thing becomes a massive problem if you need to ensure that every monster is somehow equal.

I'm hoping for a more playful, free-wheeling system that (I believe) is not compatible with something like SFS.

If organized play does happen, I pray that the system is developed first, with a sky-is-the-limit attitude; THEN they figure out if and how organized play could work with the system.


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Saithor wrote:
Eh, I see your points, for me it's just like you said ripe for modification. Same as corruption rules really. I will say I don't think the the pathfinder morality system was really meant to handle V, or understand him.

Again, I don't think you need to feel constrained by the system in this or any other way; the system is only as constrained as your group is. All the rules are only suggestions. There's plenty of room for moral ambiguity in PF.


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Saithor wrote:
Kobold Cleaver wrote:

Yeah, there's a case to be made for the assassin, since no abilities are explicitly evil and some people see "murder for hire" as potentially Neutral in the right context.

"Serial Killer"? The name tells you all you need to know. :P

Ehh, I've played CN/CG characters in the past who have intense hatreds of monsters and a compulsion to kill and maim specific kinds of monsters for revenge reasons. That plus this being a good archetype for Vigilante's that I argue makes them better assassins then the Assassin class make me think there is justification for it being PC available.

Convince your DM and you're golden. :)

If I were your DM, N.Jolly's argument would be the same as mine. I'd say you have to be evil, or at least 'insane.' I would also remind you that this is from a Horror Adventures book. :) The idea is that there is something dark and horrific about what you're doing. Frame it under whatever alignment you'd like but this is supposed to be distasteful.


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OilHorse wrote:
Coffee Demon wrote:

I would be disappointed too.

Even if the DM didn't want you to understand the text, she could have given you something to reward your idea of casting the spell. This is less about rules (for me) and more about DM skills.

As a DM, I try to say "yes, and..." to my players as much as possible. That is, I let their ideas work and if needed I limit / complicate it somehow. I was to reward clever thinking.

I get what you are saying, and if you actually do that, then good for you.

Some don't work as well coming up with tangents off the cuff.

But I don't really see what the player was doing as overly clever. He only cast a Comp Lang in response to unknown writing. Now if he had some creative plan as to how he can learn what it said, then yes, he deserves to be rewarded.

Doesn't sound like he did have such a creative plan.

Not for you or I (as DM) to judge, I'd argue.

He used precious resources; give him something for it. He also used a slot for a not-always-useful spell.

Like you and the other said above, you don't want to create a DM-vs-player mentality. It is (almost) entirely the DM's responsibility to foster that sense of mutual enjoyment.

"Some don't work as well coming up with tangents off the cuff."

I'd argue that the DM should work on coming up with tangents. I think it's an essential skill of a DM who can keep players immersed and entertained. I think it comes with years of practice. But it's pretty awesome when the players hit you with a surprise tangent and you can roll with it so well that they think it's all part of your plan.

To each their own though; for me, improvising and supporting players' actions are some of the most enjoyable aspects of DM-ing.

There's a thing in stand-up improv. (Which I've never done) and collaborative idea generation (which I do for a living) where you never want to 'block'. Blocking is when someone suggests something and you say 'no'. It's incredible how quickly that will shut down even the liveliest thinker. In a game where I want to encourage excited and invested role-players, I do my best not to block.


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Bill Dunn wrote:
Alternative viewpoint: Summon nature's ally and the animal companion are powers granted by nature to its ally, the druid, to be used to protect the life of that druid and not be eschewed because of some human moral consideration.

This is the way I've always played it.


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MMCJawa, cool lists!

If you ever decide to formalize the list, email me at gogomax forty-nine (use numbers instead) at gmail dot com and I'll give you the spellings of Mi'kmaq names using the contemporary orthography. I can also help clarify some of the stories around Mi'kmaw entities.

Nmultis,

Jay


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Still don't like it because you're still using an outdated colonial naarative that makes assumptions about 'wilderness' and works with savage indigenous tribe-based cultures that would 'tear each other apart' if not for some external threat. Makes me very uncomfortable.

No place in the entirety of North and South America (that I know of) was not a part of an existing pre-contact human culture before Europeans visited it. You may say 'Golarian is different', but the fact remains that you're referencing a pretty standard colonial story that needs to be retold, in every medium including AP's.

Roleplaying games have traditionally been a bit slow to take up matters of identity and equality, but Paizo does a pretty good job when it comes to gender. An Arcadia AP provides an excellent opportunity to work proactively with matters of race and colonization.


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Sorry to say I'm not a fan because it sounds like you're reproducing a colonial 'terra nullius' perspective. ( http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/orgs/car/docrec/policy/brief/terran.htm )

Woulda worked well 30 years ago but I'd like to see more complex and realistic interactions with the inhabitants of Arcadia.


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Thomas Seitz wrote:

I admit I might be confusing H.P. Lovecraft stuff with some other writer.

But I don't believe so.

Given that I've read 95% of his writing, most of it more than once, and given that MMCJawa's interpretation is exactly the same as mine, I think you are confusing him with someone else. :) Just my opinion, and I'd be interested to be proven wrong with a specific example from his writing.


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MMCJawa is pretty spot-on. Lovecraft's stories have little in common with hentai. I'm sure there are Cthulhu-Mythos stories post-Lovecraft that go there; but I think you could pick any topic or genre at this point and find some way it's been treated with a Cthulhu theme.

Could be that I missed some story that Thomas is thinking about, and if so I'd love to know which one. If there's one out there, it must be pretty obscure though.


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As a DM, it sounds like you're attached to Cheliax for plot / RP opportunities that you could easily generate elsewhere.

What if you opened up to the possibility of letting the players take down the country? Might their joy at doing this be worth it for you?

To each their own, but as a DM I try hard not to limit any possibilities for my players. I want them to feel like their characters have as much agency as any person in the world, that isn't restrained by my biases.

Of course, some things (like taking down a country) are going to be really really tough. But pretty awesome if it succeeds and no matter what, it'll make a cool lasting impression on your campaign world...


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I don't think you'd need an employee to -design- an Arcadia AP, but I'd highly recommend hiring an advisor who is (1) indigenous (2) well-versed in issues related to race and culture in art and writing, not just in their own nation and (3) savvy about cultural knowledge in their own indigenous heritage.

Let's just say it's exceptionally complicated because every North American nation is very different, so drawing from bits of each to write one sorta-"Indian" AP wouldn't be acceptable. That's the kind of writing that is no longer tolerated, espcially because a lot of racial stereotypes have come out of that kind of project. These days, I'd argue that the best approach would be to deal directly with issues of racial identity in such an AP: Have mixed-bloods; have other races who have been accepted as "Aracadians" by the people there ("traditional" indigenous modes of cultural acceptance are very different than European/colonial ways); have "Arcadians" that defy the stereotypes; use multiple "Nations" within Arcadia and have them interact using similar procedures as some traditional indigenous modes of governance and diplomacy.

I would also argue that some aspect of colonialism should be a part of the AP, because that is absolutely a part of the history and situation of indigenous cultures. Making it pre-contact would be easier, but we cannot try to make things easy if we get into this topic.

So yes, it's complicated. But it could be -super- cool. I think it could be a challenge because some non-indigenous writers -and- players would be confronted with notions that they might find uncomfortable, but which some indigenous people (whoever those are) would say "Yeah! Finally, that's closer to my voice and my experience!" to. It would have to be a tricky product because identity -is- tricky.

Above all, give respect explicitly to the nations you're referencing, and say where you're getting your information from.

(FWiW, I do happen to be a person who is (1),(2) and (3) in case anyone's interested... :P)


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Muser wrote:
I get that the kitchen sink setting is patently ridiculous, but your post kinda reminds me of those times I'm listening to a radio show and some caller wonders why we don't just invade North Korea/Iran/Russia, etc! Checks and balances, wheels within wheels.

Also, if I'm DM-ing an extended campaign in Golarion, things DO upset and unbalance. Wars are fought and the canon world of Golarion transforms into something that is the product of my gaming group. That can make some AP's less appropriate, but I still find it possible to switch them around.

I see Golarion as a snapshot of a specific moment that I can enter at the beginning of a campaign, knowing full well that it's not going to be that same after we're done with it.

I also see non-adjacent nations on Golarion as out of communication with each other, for the most part. It could be that my PCs never go to Numeria; if that's the case, then whatever is there doesn't even exist. As DM, I'm happy to tone down a nation if I don't like it.

But I do like that the crazy options are there if I want them. Better to start with crazy and ramp it down, then start with boring and need to ramp it up.


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I hope the game doesn't dictate when and how players can have ships. Put in the rules for ships, possibilities for how players can get them, but don't attach rules to acquiring a ship.

Feats attached to ship ownership sounds like Leadership - really clunky and story-restrictive.


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One thing I don't like about PF is that a mechanic is expected for every type of interaction (ie followers, WBL to name a few) This makes things really start to bloat and it has a negative effect on storytelling flexibility. Discussions fall into rules interpretations rather than imagination.

I hope Starfinder takes some cues from D&D 5e and leaves a more old school / open-ended style of play with a simple bulletproof rules engine.

I think PF is constrained by the organized play PFS stuff which requires more consistency between groups. Do away with that and hopefully it allows for more flexibility from table to table.

Just a few thoughts. If there's anything I'd like the developers to hear, that's it.


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Oh my goodness... Wealth by Level. Please no!!


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I want to see mutations and mutants and radiation.


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No "net", please. No virtual battles among electronic avatars. Keep it in the physical / mystical realm like Star Wars.

I realize it might just be language, but even recoding the language of spells into something netrunner-ish is something I'm less interested in.

Leave huge openings for wildly divergent possibilities on other worlds. Don't lock the universe into one theme.


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For what it's worth, I've also started DM'ing RotR for two PC's - a Ranger and a Rogue - and again expect to have a great time with adjustments that allow the small party to progress by using their own particular skills.

Putting the onus on the players to come to bat with the right party is far from my ideal situation because:

1) It limits creativity with PC design and party composition.
2) It takes attention from what a DM should be taking care of.
3) It can lead to assumptions that players are 'doing it wrong' and force them to restrict their imagination or (worse) leave the game entirely.
4) It limits the number of players you can RP a set module with. (The opposite side of the argument would be a post complaining that an AP was too easy because you have 8 players going through it. Again I would ask, "What the h*(*& is the DM doing, then?") :)

Just my opinion.

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