Golem in Progress

Ken Marable's page

707 posts (1,836 including aliases). No reviews. 1 list. No wishlists. 31 aliases.




Please cancel my Pathfinder AP subscription. Thank you!


Unfortunately, we had a big pile of vet bills hit us all of the sudden from both an old, sick cat and an injured dog. :( So if it is not too late, is it possible to cancel my Starfinder subscriptions (AP & RPG) and along with them order 4410380?

Hopefully, it will work out to re-sub soon because I'm loving them so far!

Thank you!


Is it still possible to change the shipping address on order 4410380?

I added a new address (the "535 Chestnut" one) that I am hoping to use, but it looks like I can't change it for the existing order.

If it is possible, I would like to use the "535 Chestnut" one and not the "1547 Melrose" one for this and future orders.

Thank you!


CRIMSON THRONE: Table 1 Wiki, Maps, NPCs Table 2: Fishery Map, Harrow Points

Discussion thread placeholder.


CRIMSON THRONE: Table 1 Wiki, Maps, NPCs Table 2: Fishery Map, Harrow Points

Trying to set one of these up for the first time. Here goes!


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After a few years away, I'm getting back into RPG writing again and was thinking of taking a stab at producing some planar products for Pathfinder since it's often an under-served niche and I just love that stuff (plus Paizo has opened a fair amount of their cosmology - thanks!). But I'm that player who writes up 4 different PCs at the beginning of a campaign and then has to randomly pick which one to use because he can't decide. Same thing happening here, too. So I figured I would ask and see if there is more interest in any of these ideas over the others.

I'm leaning towards a hybrid sourcebook/adventure anthology format maybe in the 96 page range, but that's entirely flexible. They would be Pathfinder compatible, but heavier on the fluff than the crunch most likely - lots of locations, NPCs, plot ideas. Also, if there is interest, I am looking to build these into a line (tentatively) called Planar Frontiers. Planescape focused heavily on Sigil, and I'm looking to counter that with focusing more on the "wilds" of the Planes. Ruins, and small settlements far from big civilizations. Planar prospectors, bordertowns where two planes bleed into each other, those sorts of things.

Caravans of the Mercane
Adventures start innocently enough as caravan guards for traveling mercane merchants, but of course there is far more to their agenda - and their selecting the PCs - than at first appears. Include information on the mercane race as well as several planar trade companies. Several locations that feature planar bazaars. Information on various forms of planar travel beyond the traditional spells and magic items - from shifting your beliefs while travel to shift planes to "backroads" that only traveling merchants now about.

Pirates of the Silver Void (or just Sailing the Silver Void)
Fleshing out the Astral Plane with locations, organizations, and plots enough to support an entire campaign. Would also possibly include magical ship information (although I'd love for Sailing the Starlit Sea to get funded and be able to use or reference their ideas - just an unsolicited shout out to that project that is really close to funding but not there yet with the deadline looming).

Unnamed book on traveling planar circus/carnival/freakshow
Been burning through names on this one trying to find something with a lot of character but not too cheesy. I'll get there. But a sourcebook/adventure anthology on a traveling performance troupe that could be enemies, allies, or even the PCs themselves. Just an FYI - back when I played Warhammer 40K, I was Eldar Harlequins every time. So I love this mash up of bizarre circus/carnival and gaming.

Book of Elemental Fire
The first of 4 building up the elemental planes with locations, organizations, NPCs, plots, adventures, etc. Could see a bit more crunch creeping into this one with some definite new archetypes, support for the Ifrit, etc. I think there's plenty of great stuff that could be done with all of the elemental planes, but fire is of course an easier one to make exciting and help build initial interest. The elemental planes are an area that even Planescape didn't go too deeply into. A while back I even sketched out ideas to make an all elemental plane campaign viable with conflicts between genies and elder elementals, etc.

So, do any of these 4 appeal to you?

Lastly, on a related note, I am looking to use Kickstarter to get this funded (Claudio Pozas is already slated to do the cover artwork), but for a primarily digital product what sort of rewards would be enticing? I will probably include limited edition soft and hardcover options printed through Lulu for the higher backers. Otherwise, is varying levels of input into the design enticing? Or more tangible rewards better?

Thanks for the input!!


Apologies if this is not the best forum for this or if it's against policy (didn't see anything in the FAQ). If it's best moved, please do so.

Anyway, I'm unfortunately more in the need of some cash than my Pathfinders, so I have a set of Pathfinder #1-6 up on eBay.

Looks like most of them are out of print here at Paizo, and it's currently at half cover price anyway with 2 days left. So if you missed out on what started Golarion and the whole Pathfinder adventure path series then you can provide a good home for these books.

Thank you and take care!
Ken

Edit: Oh, and 10% goes to charity (breast cancer research in this case). I need the money, but I still think it's important to help out where we can.


Grab your knife, fork, and stun gun because it's time to Eat Your Own Clone!! Purge those extra clone workers and make room for next year's models. I've been fattening mine up nicely, and he's just about ready. Unsuspecting, but oh so ready.


Completely off topic, but I saw at the NASA Astronomy Picture of the Day that not only is there a dwarf planet named Orcus (photo and Wikipedia), but that it has a moon and the discoverer is asking people to suggest names.

I'm sure Necromancer fans can come up with a good one to mass suggest. :)

To get the ball rolling, I guest either "Rod" (appropriate but not very moon-like), or Tenebrous (sorry, big Modron March fan).

I know the rest of you can do better. So what do you have?


(Note to Mods - If this is the wrong forum, zap away. Scanning through the list, it seemed the most appropriate, but my apologies in advance if it is not.)

I am unfortunately parting ways with most of my original artwork collection I've gathered from Gen Cons past. They are being auctioned off here on eBay.

Included are several of Arnie Swekel's chapter openers (including Oriental Adventures, Manual of the Planes, and an amazing Savage Species one), an unused but completed piece by Arnie Swekel for Manual of the Planes, and a pair of Wayne Reynolds pieces of the Expanded Psionic Handbook races. They are amazing in detail and it pains me to part with them, but they need a good home.

As an added bonus, I elected to donate 10% to breast cancer research through eBay's new built in charity feature. My family does need the money, but it's hard to say no to generating some charity money as well.

My family thanks you and wishes you happy bidding! :)


(Edit: There's some wonkiness with getting this post to appear. Just seeing if it is a title issue. Sorry for double thread.)

I didn't realize how big of a deal the virtual game table was until the explosion of hate over the lack of it at 4e launch. (Of course, there's the internet fact that most angry customers post than happy ones, but geez, there's some serious hate and disappointment out there.)

Rather than trying to reinvent the wheel like WotC is failing at, Paizo should talk to Fantasy Grounds, or even Digital Adventures who converts other publisher's material to Fantasy Grounds format. Create a relationship there with Pathfinder products being quickly available for Fantasy Grounds and promote that as an alternative to waiting 6 months or more for a promises Virtual Game Table. Especially if you can get a company like Digital Adventures to do the conversion work, it needn't be a time burden which seems to often be an issue with the overworked Paizo staff. :)

I'm sure there's other software packages out there. It's just Fantasy Grounds is the one I've heard the most about.

Add in other people creating datasets for the various character generators (my groups uses DM Genie in particular), and the fact that you already regularly give monthly PDFs to your subscribers, and you already have nearly all of DDI available - tested, functional, and far from the DDI vaporware that might materialize over the next 6 months to year (if they improve their track record over Master/eTools and Magic Online 3).

I'm just saying tossing it out there. The software already exists. Make some partnerships and offer what WotC has failed at.


I just had a thought, with Rage Points now in the game, what about doing something like the "naturally psionic so you get +1 power point" thing for barbarians? You could have half-orcs gain an extra rage point at 1st level. Just like with being naturally psionic, it wouldn't grant the ability to rage, just give you an extra point.

Looking at it, overall, at very low levels, yeah, it's pretty nice, but in the long run, it's probably not a big benefit, but I think it does fit the race very well.

Having rage points around now is a nice hook to design around since they are small enough that you can do some interesting things with them without massive increases in power. So even beyond having half-orcs gain a bonus rage point, you could have many other of the more savage races gain 1 or more bonus rage points. You could have some abilities and/or feats to either rage longer (i.e. don't need to spend rage point to enter rage, but only to maintain) or to rage harder (i.e. cost of rage powers is decreased by 1) or any of a variety of things.


Just a shameless plug here (though, I don't feel bad because I'm not getting another dime for it, but Paizo might if you buy the back issues), but as soon as a I saw the picture of the lizardfolk and the dinosaur I recalled two of my Dragon magazine articles that could be applicable. Although they are for the Hollow World setting, they deal with dinos and lizardfolk together and can be applied most anywhere. I thought they were fun. :)

"Sundering Ka" in Dragon #315
Covers a ritual that lets you take some power of a dinosaur as your own (primarily geared toward evil NPCs, but applicable to PCs as well). Crunchy bits include a template (CR +1, LA +2) and some feats. Could be used for the lizardfolk even if the fluff in these articles goes completely against that.

"Children of Ka" in Dragon #318
This is the lizardfolk who are working to stop the above abuse of dino life force. Crunchy bits here are mostly spells (majority of which wound up in the Spell Compendium), and a lesser dinosaur good for low-level animal companions. (Also, a lizardfolk Savage Species style level monster class and one of those lvl 1-20 "sample progressions" that they used to have all the time, in this case a lizardfolk druid/rogue).

Just thought I'd toss that out there in case anything would be fun to add onto the adventure for any groups out there. Enjoy!


I realize it's probably not feasible this early on while still trying to establish/solidify the Planet Stories product line, but I figure I'd throw out there that I would love audiobook versions of Planet Stories. Doesn't have to be packaged and in stores, Audible.com is ideal for myself. I just find it leaps and bounds easier to get through a book on my iPod (going to and from work, doing the dishes, etc.) than it is to find time to sit and read a book.

It's unfortunately been months since I read a novel, but I get through 1 every week or two listening to it.

Just throwing out the request to see what other interest there is in it, and get the Paizo folk considering it someday. :)


If I preordered a product that is in the Chronicles Subscription (in this case the Gazetteer), but now want to go with the subscription instead - will the preordered product be replaced by the subscription automatically or is there something I need to do?

(Note: Although the Gazetteer sounds cool, I'm only looking for 1 copy.) :)


Haven't seen this posted yet (just stumbled upon it myself) but product details through August have been posted including many more GameMastery Modules (including two designated "Last Baron" LB adventures), Pathfinder through the first installment of Second Darkness, Second Darkness player's guide (of course), Guide to Darkmoon Vale, and a Pathfinder Chronicles Hardcover campaign setting!

Sorry, I would add links, but there's a lot, and you all should browse the Paizo products anyway. :)


Here's the write-up of my notes from the seminar. Anyone else who was there (especially Paizo staff) feel free to correct me and I'll edit accordingly.

Writing for Paizo Seminar Notes (8/19/2007)

When had 200 pages of magazine to fill each month, there were many opportunities for new writers (though Paizo staff "greedily took up many of those pages"). Now, obviously less than 200 pages of magazine a month, so not as many opportunities but still important to find new writers.

Using writers have worked with for much of GameMastery Modules and Pathfinder adventures, especially since Pathfinder adventure paths complex and need to be planned out far in advance.

Will look at new WotC D&D Insider content for new writers. For example, James is hoping to work in a new author as fresh blood on each Pathfinder arc, but will be from someone with publishing experience. But 3 main ways will be accepting open submissions.

#1 - Pathfinder Monsters
6 per book, and 3 or 4 are typically tied to the adventure and written by the adventure's author. So the rest are open. Booked with PF #1-4, but 5 and 6 as well as next arc has openings. Will start working on 5 within next few weeks.

Looking most for either brand new monsters or inspired by real world mythology

Either post on messageboards or email them to someone on the Pathfinder team (within a week should have pathfinder@paizo.com up and running, but it isn't yet)

2-page spread – stat block, ecology/habitat, then tidbits (Quick laundry list given by James: variants, using as a PC, nursery rhyme about, legends, roles, sample treasure, how might function in different climate – eg. "a whirlwind devil – how climate might effect", construction of golems and such)

1200-1400 words including stats. As a general rule should never have 4 or more special abilities because won't get to use them, unless it's something highly reusable with a variety of roles, but the special abilities eat up word count.

Do full write up and send it in.

Within week or two will post formal guidelines.

#2 – Pathfinder Companion
New, unannounced product (Ok I announce it hear, right? – Ken). Has gone from "We should do this" to "We are doing this" but no further yet. 64 or 128 page companion to a Pathfinder arc released after arc ends. Will including material that expands the adventure path – new encounters, fleshed out areas, etc.

Examples of exactly what they are talking about

Spoiler:
With AoW adventure 3, sidequest where everyone got a level 1 NPC to play through the infestation of the castle. Really put fear of the Spawn of Kyuss into the players. (And Jason notes that a baker does not stand up to undead very well.)

Another example – the Dungeon of Rust and Fire was just a dot on a map in the Savage Tide, but many posted on the messageboards fleshing it out.

This book will compile the best of these. Due to time needed to compile and print, will most likely commission authors for material that expands the last few adventures of the arc. But hoping to time it so that the first few will be out for people to post material on messageboards to consider.

#3 – GameMastery Modules
Usually set authors, but will have an open call soon (still solidifying plans for it).

Will release a "plot nugget" and people can send in an expanded outline for an adventure based on that plot nugget, idea for a new monster (since all modules have 1 new monster, but just idea for this proposal), and info on any other new rules like items, etc.

Paizo will review then ask a smaller group for more information, and then pick a winner to write the module to be released next year (2008). Will have more open calls, but not until after 4e (due mostly to the fact that the publishing schedule has to be set very far out). (I think I'm seeing the trend emerging of publisher timelines referring to pre-4e and post-4e even if it has nothing to do with 4e. – Ken)

Q&A portion

Q: Want monsters to fit party level? (Mostly in reference to PF #5 & 6)
A: Looking for monsters of all levels since GMs will not be running that adventure but still want something useful. More interested in monsters that fit the region.

Q: Maximum CR cap?
A: Not hard, official cap. But once have CR 20 monster or higher, makes it a lot easier to say "No thanks." Also since so complicated more likely to commission high CR monsters than take submitted ones. Lastly, much harder to fit a high CR monster onto the 2-page spread. So CR less than 15 is a good rule to work with.

Q: Sweet spot for monster CRs? (i.e. What are you most interested in?)
A: CR 5-12 probably best. People seem to like playing in that range the most.

Side note on Epic and other niches: James is a big fan of Epic and Mike is a fan of psionics, so eventually will fit those in. But right now, not sure how will work into the setting yet. Also, from what they can tell, Epic is less popular than psionics, and psionics is used by a small minority.

Side note on SRD: Emphasize to stick to the SRD. So no non-open monsters (beholders, mind flayers, etc.), and no "DM". Use GM instead. (Noted that they are still getting used to this as well. The Kobold King was almost sitting on a carrior crawler throne. Oops!

Q: What do you not want?
A: Generally still avoid clichés unless it is a REALLY original take on them. ("Don't have a rescue the princess adventure… unless the princess winds up being a hag that rides the king around." Yes, that's pretty much a direct quote. –Ken)

Also, there happens to have been a lot of templates in the early Pathfinder monsters, so good idea to avoid templates for a while.

Q: What about re-imaging of existing monsters (like the goblins), or will the Paizo staff being doing that?
A: Staff will do most of this, but might be interested in variants. However, with variants, don't want some monster just stronger (e.g. "Don't just raise its CR 2 and give it extra abilities. Like a blue headed troll that is also psionic. Because that's just what we really need - a rending psion.") Instead make it specialized somehow, not stronger.

Q: Specific templates for formatting?
A: Look at Pathfinder books for monster formats. Open calls will describe what format they want.

Q: If mechanics need a little work (e.g. if the CR is a little off), will work with to revise and not just reject?
A: If the core idea is good enough, will either work with the author or edit themselves to tweak mechanics. But certainly don't expect feedback on how to fix up every submission.

Q: Accepting magic items?
A: Yes, especially for Pathfinder Companion. Have a new magic item format (as well as new format for traps, cities, etc.).

Avoid spells. Very difficult to do properly, and there's a ton out there already.

Q: Are you looking for "great locations" / "set piece scenes" / etc.? What catches your eye?
A: Others said James goes for bards on dinosaurs. Big dinosaurs. James said it's easier to say what they are not looking for and what turns them off – this includes speling mistkaes, bad grammar, replacements for monsters that can't use (e.g. a "cube with 12 eyestalks that shoots spells" to replace beholders, etc.) National Geographic and history books are great inspirations. Interested in other types of cultures, cryptozoology, etc.

Wes said the setting will be traditional D&D. Medieval fantasy that is easy to fit any campaign into without much effort. So no lightning rails, ray guns, and such ("except that one spot").

Jason said "We get excited about everything."

Jeremy wants to see that the author is creative. Wants new and fun ideas, but not totally wacky. Show creativity and originality.

Q: What about darker, more adult themes? For example, R-rated material?
A: By and large will stick with PG-13. Caught some flack for some material that pushed boundaries too much ("You're going to the Abyss. It's going to be rough. Sorry."), but will listen to what readers want. Already many of their regular writers try to push it into hard-R area and they keep having to reel them in. Approach they like to take is, for example in Pathfinder, they include sidebars in certain sections saying "If you think your group would be ok with it, this part would be good to take to R-rated." So say where would fit best, but not have it on the page. Like to "ride the edge" so ok to push a bit. Ultimately, if the idea is good, they might still accept it and tweak the R-rated parts. But will be publishing in the PG-13 area.

Q: What about situations that offer no good choices for adventurers?
A: Love them!! But definitely don't want it all the time. So ok sometimes.


Just curious, I know nothing is set in stone beyond the Runelords Adventure Path, but is the INTENTION that Pathfinder for the foreseeable future will be based in Varisia, or is it primarily just the Rise of the Runelords will be based in Varisia and the next AP will be in another part of the world, and so on?


I just took a look at the first release of the Gen Con Indy events, and there's apparently nothing from Paizo. I've been attending your seminars for years and was looking forward to them again especially with the whole new direction.

So any chance that some might still get in there? In the past I've managed to add an event or two after the deadline. Or any possibility of any games being run to preview the Runelords adventure path (hint hint)? I'm sure you'd find some volunteer DMs pretty easily. ;)


That's all I ask, I don't care what's in it. ;)

Ah well, thank you Paizo for making the magazines truly great. It's just too bad that WotC decided to end the magazine that's been around... oh, pretty much as long as the game itself.


I'm wondering if someone who has the Dragon Compendium would mind writiing up a quick run down of the new (base) classes included in it? I don't care about BAB and saves and that sort of thing. Just a bit on what the class is and real generally what sort of abilities it has.

I'm planning on buying the book someday here, but with a new campaign starting soon, the base classes might be the tipping point between buying it in a couple months and buying it today. :)

Thank you!!